The Kitten, the Witches and the Bad Wardrobe - Willow & Tara Forever

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 Post subject: When It Don't Come Easy Update 09/18/2011
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 5:45 am 
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Title: When It Don't Come Easy
Author: Gaga01 (Marie)
Rating: PG-13, R for language sometimes; may become NC-17 eventually
Pairing: Willow/Tara

Disclaimer: I do not own any of the Whedonverse characters. Willow, Tara and everyone else belong to Joss, FOX, but not to me. I do not own any of the songs used in this fic either.

Notes: Ok, so this is the first fic I've ever posted here, so here it goes. It is set in season 6, a few months after Tabula Rasa. This could be considered a stand alone from the show, as I don't follow part of the season 6 timeline. The title is also a Patty Griffin song that I borrowed for the purpose of this fic. **A huge thanks to Maggie (Leonhart17), who helped beta this for the past few months. You are awesome, friend!

Warning: A lot of angst, a lot of drama so for those who can't stand it, consider yourself warned.

Summary: Willow and Tara have been separated for a few months; will a tragic event in Willow's life will be enough to bring the girls back together for good?

**********
“People always fallin’ in and out of love, It can be pretty painful, too; And maybe, oh maybe I’m just not strong enough; Sad but true, so tell me what’s the use?” -Catch Me While I’m Sleeping, Pink

‘Home sweet home,’ Buffy thought thankfully as she made her way into her darkened house after a long and uneventful patrol.

The slayer removed her shoes and jacket quietly, hoping that Dawn and Willow were upstairs sleeping. Walking lazily into the kitchen without bothering to turn on the lights, Buffy headed straight for the fridge and frowned as she peeked inside of it. On the top shelf there was a tall plastic cup filled with a thick pink juice. The small post-it on it said ‘for Buffy, your favorite.’

‘Oooh, strawberries.’ The glass was gulped down in less than a minute, leaving a brain-frozen slayer to lean against the counter as she moaned and held her head tightly. The pain subsided quickly and, after blinking a few times, Buffy went to put her glass in the sink besides another one that still had some yellow juice in it.

Buffy frowned and looked at the post-it again. The slayer felt a pang to the heart as she recognized Tara’s handwriting. Dawn must have asked Tara to bring them back smoothies after having spent the day together. Buffy glanced at the note one last time before putting it in the recycling bin. She found it hard to believe that Tara had been gone from the Summers’ house and Willow’s life for over two months now.

After the massive memory loss incident and the girls’ subsequent break-up, the witch had moved back into her old dorm room but, as promised, had kept contact with Dawn on an almost daily basis. The slayer saw her regularly as well, mostly at the Magic Box or when the witch came for impromptu visits at the Double Meat Palace. The only one who didn’t have any contact with the older blonde was Willow.

These past two months had not been easy for the redhead. After Tara’s departure, Willow’s dependence to magics had only grown and, after she had found a way to bring back Amy from her rodent form, things had rapidly gotten out of control.

A few days after Willow had started hanging out with Amy, the redhead hadn’t made it back home.

She had been missing almost two days when, after Buffy and Spike had spent the night searching everywhere, a demon had tipped the vampire about a secret hideout for magic junkies. That was where, after a bit more of searching because of the constantly moving hideout, both witches were found.

If the gang, Tara included, have been told about Willow being found to Rack’s, nothing else had been said. To this day, only Spike, Buffy and Giles knew exactly what had happened that night.

And Buffy intended to keep it that way.

Sudden hurried footsteps upstairs snapped her attention back to the present, the blonde wincing when she heard someone being sick. She quickly grabbed a bottle of water out of the fridge and made her way upstairs.

**********

Buffy glanced in her sister’s room and breathed in relief when she saw Dawn sleeping soundly. She closed the door and silently made her way to the bathroom, hoping it wouldn’t be too bad this time.

“Will?”

Buffy waited a few seconds and entered when she didn’t get an answer. The sight before her broke her heart. Willow was leaning heavily against the bathtub with her head resting sideways on her knees. The witch’s usually pale complexion was now ashen and Willow was shivering badly.

Putting the bottle aside on the counter, Buffy grabbed a washcloth and run it under cold water while keeping a concerned eye on her friend.

Satisfied that it was cold enough, she also picked a thermometer from the cabinet before sitting down next to the redhead, all thoughts about the surprise smoothies forgotten.

Without saying a word Buffy softly nudged Willow so she would raise her head. Buffy sighed when her best friend wouldn’t meet her eyes. “Will, come on, look at me. Please?”

Both girls still had their problems. They never really talked about Buffy being back among the living, nor discussed Willow’s magic addiction much, but Tara leaving had put things in perspective for the slayer. Her best friend needed her, whether Willow wanted it or not.

Willow sighed and focused on her body to feel if she was going to be sick again or not. She was still nauseous and the whole bathroom was spinning wildly, but the sooner she opened her eyes the better, she thought warily.

Part of her wished she would open her eyes and deep blue eyes would be there to greet her and take care of her. None of this would seem as bad if she could only feel her girl’s strong but soft arms around her, keeping her safe. But that wasn’t likely to happen. She had screwed up badly, and was still paying the price. In days like this, she felt like she would be paying the price for the rest of her life.

A different kind of blue eyes welcomed her when she finally felt good enough to open her eyes. Not the ones her heart ached for, but they were the next best thing right now.

Willow realized she was staring when Buffy frowned and looked about to leave. “No, don’t go.” She croaked.

“Jeez Will, you scared the hell out of me! I thought you were going to have seizures again.” Buffy hushed breathily.

“I haven’t had any in weeks, Buffy.”

“I know, but still. You haven’t been sick like that in a while now, I’m just worried, I guess. Open up.”

Willow knew better than argue so she let the thermometer find its place under her tongue. Buffy gently wiped her friend’s face with the cold washcloth, giving it to her when Willow reached for it and covered her eyes with it. “I didn’t eat much today, it must be why.”

“Uh-uh, no talking yet. And no it’s not, you look all avoidy. I thought we had a deal about stopping being avoidy when we were asked a question?” The slayer replied softly but firmly.

Willow took a deep breath but waited for Buffy to take the thermometer back. “I found a small stash or Lethe’s bramble in my chemistry book. I have no idea how it got there but I guess I shouldn’t have touched it to throw it out, huh?”

“No, I guess not.” The slayer agreed, although she was watching her friend closely to see if she was lying or not. “Why didn’t you ask me, or Dawn?”

“Oh goddess, don’t talk so loud! I was in school.” Willow muttered, never taking the washcloth off her face. “It made me so queasy I barely had time to rush from the lab to the bathroom before pulling an exorcist.”

“Oh. Are you okay?”

Buffy cringed and offered her friend a sheepish smile as the washcloth was temporarily lowered to reveal a pair of red and puffy eyes. “You’re having a 101° fever again. I know you don’t want to but I’m sure-“

“No.”

“But-“

“I said no. I’ve said it before, and I am saying it now, end of discussion.” Willow said sharply.

“Tara could help if she knew, she could make some herbal tea or something else that would help, Willow. It’s been two months, you don’t have to go through it alone. Without her, I mean. She still loves you even if she’s not here right now.”

Willow dropped the washcloth on her knees and crossed her arms on her chest. “I know she probably would, that’s the problem.” She argued, not commenting on the last part.

“She’d do it because she would take pity of me, or because she would feel obligated to do it.”

“Ugh! You are so stubborn! I swear Willow Danielle Rosenberg, one day you will regret thinking like that. I’d gladly knock some sense into you but I’m tired and you’d end up getting sick all over me anyway.” Buffy chided her, but there was a tiny smirk teasing her lips.

“Ha ha, you’re so funny! Patrol must have been really bad if you’re using your lamest puns on me.” Willow teased back weakly.

“Yeah yeah, I know. Okay, time for bed. You’re not going to throw up again, are you?” Buffy asked half-joking, half-serious as she leaned to gather her friend in her arms. Willow rolled her eyes and tried to glare at her best friend but she was too exhausted to pull it off. She was asleep before Buffy made it out of the bathroom, Willow’s last thoughts going to her girl, just like every other night before.

**********

Tara sat in an oversized bean bag chair in the corner of her room, her eyes drifting out the window to watch the stars in the darkened sky. The witch sighed and wondered if Buffy had made it back home safely, and if she loved her surprise. If Willow loved hers.

The witch closed the book that was resting on her knees and went to put it in her bag so she wouldn’t forget it in the morning. Her soulful blue eyes found the picture that had been on her nightstand ever since she had moved back to the dorm. It was a photo of her and Willow that was taken the summer before when the gang had went to the beach for a well-deserved break.

As always, Tara teared up as she stared hard at the innocent, smiling face of her soul mate. The Willow she knew now was still as beautiful and kind as she was before, but she was now tainted, impregnated with darkness and a dangerous edge she didn’t have before.
‘The consequences of living on a Hellmouth’, Tara pondered sadly. The innocent always got hurt, sooner or later.

The Willow she knew back then was so vibrant and perky, it was almost painful for the blonde to remember how things had changed since that day at the beach.

But Tara was hopeful, despite everything that has happened over the last few months.

The conversation she had with Dawn the day before confirmed what she had been praying for, that Willow was getting better. She hadn’t performed any magics in over two months, was back in school and was slowly getting back to her old self.

She had been unwilling at first to discuss Willow with Dawn because, as much as she loved the teenager, it simply hurt too much to even hear her ex-lover’s name. Dawn persevered though and, with time, Tara found herself anxious to hear about the redhead even if she was careful to not seem too eager to the youngest Summers’ girl.

Two months without magics. She didn’t know exactly what had made Willow stop, but it didn’t mattered much anymore.

Tara had been thinking about going to see her ex-girlfriend, or at least call her for the last couple of days now. She knew that they would have a lot of work to do to rebuild a mutual trust, but they could make it work.

They had to.

When the blonde witch had finally decided to go go in with Dawn after coming back from the movies but, after checking, the teenager had told her that Willow was already sleeping.

Tomorrow would be different. Tomorrow she would go and meet Willow after class. A decided smile gracing her face, Tara softly ran her finger down her girl’s picture before climbing into bed and, for the first time in months, slept peacefully.

**********

Dawn groaned as she sat on her bed. The teenager had been ready for school for over fifteen minutes already, but the argument raging downstairs kept her from coming down.

‘Screw it’, she finally decided when she had enough. She had the hand on the phone and was about to call Tara to try and knock some sense into Willow when Buffy’s frustrated voice startled her.

“Dawn, you’re going to be late!”

The teenager sighed, disappointed. She knew Tara was finally ready to see Willow again; she just needed an excuse to come over again. ‘What can be a better excuse than convincing your sick ex-girlfriend ‘soon-to-be girlfriend again’ to stay home from school?’

The voices became clearer as the youngest Summers came downstairs. Dawn understood why Buffy wouldn’t let Willow leave the house the minute she stepped into the kitchen. The hacker was pale and she looked as if a soft breeze would knock her over.
“I don’t care if that professor is an ass, I will deal with him if I have to. You are not leaving this house!”

But-”

“No but!” Buffy exclaimed sharply. She and Willow were staring each other down in the middle of the kitchen, neither of them willing to back down. “You were sick all night and you’re still have a fever, so I’m sorry but no.”

Willow glared at her best friend, unshed tears in her eyes. “It’s only one class, I’m fine. And it’s not like I haven’t done it before, you know.”

“Yeah, because that turned out so well!” Buffy answered back, her voice heavy with sarcasm. “I had to go and pick you up after a nurse called because you had collapsed! Maybe you forgot but I didn’t!”

Buffy’s features softened as she walked closer to the redhead. “Will, I’m not trying to be the bad guy here, I just don’t want anything bad to happen to you while you’re not completely back on your feet. Please? I will talk to your professor if he acts up again, I promise.”

The looks of both Summers girls was what made Willow cave. She was pissed as hell, but she could see in their eyes how they cared about her. She didn’t know why it also deeply annoyed her. “Fine. It’s not like I’ll ever be fine anyway, not without Tara.”

Without waiting for any answer Willow brushed past them, although not very fast, and went directly to the couch, slumped on it and curled on her side.

The redhead was already fast asleep when Buffy came to check on her, so she took a blanket that was folded on the arm of the couch and gently covered her with it.

Kissing her on the forehead, Buffy made a mental note about calling Tara during her break.

Enough was enough.

**********

Tara glanced at her watch for the fourth time in many minutes. She was leaning against the wall facing Willow’s classroom, her bag squished in her hands.

The class was running late, which meant Tara was running late for her next class as well. Sighing in relief when the door finally opened, Tara carefully searched through the sea of students in the hope of seeing a familiar redhead.

Frowning when she didn’t find her, Tara walked to a student that lingered in the hallway with a friend. “Um, excuse-m-me? Can you tell me if that class was 20th century French Literature?”

The young man smiled apologetically at her. “No, there were some last minute changes about that class. It’s at the Werner building now, across campus.”

“Oh. Ok, thanks.”

‘Damn.’ Tara muttered before turning around and leaving for her next class, her footsteps slow despite her lateness, her heart heavy. ‘Maybe it wasn’t meant to be, or not today anyway.’ She thought, slightly defeated.

Tara brought her hand to her neck and softly touched the small dragonfly pendant she always wore. The dragonfly had been a gift from Willow to celebrate their first anniversary. Tara’s was green and Willow, who had one as well, was blue.

‘Willow...’

**********

‘Tara...’

Willow sighed and stared at the phone in her hand. She had entered a staring contest with the piece of plastic a while ago but, so far, the phone was the clear winner. Until now.

Rapidly punching a series of numbers before she could change her mind, the redhead listened to the ringing nervously.

Disappointment with a mixture of relief flashed on Willow’s face when no one answered and voicemail kicked in. Her eyes teared up as she paid very close attention to every word that was being said by her ex-lover. Her soul mate’s voice cut through her so deep that, when the beep was heard, Willow couldn’t do nothing but gasp and abruptly drop the phone. She quickly retrieved it until she found the phone and hung up with a shaky hand.

Desperate tears now streaming down her face, Willow shot the phone an angry look and threw it against the room, where it shattered against the wall.

**********

Dawn almost squealed in excitement when her cell phone vibrated. She and a few friends were studying at the school library, like every Wednesday. The phone call was a more than welcome distraction in the middle of trying to grasp the concept of paradigms in literature. “Hello? Hey Buffy! Um, no, I’m still at the library with Tina and Janice, why?”

The teenager frowned and signalled to her friends she would be right back. “What do you mean, Willow’s not home?”

“The house is empty, I’ve checked it inside and out. She’s not there, and she’s not answering her phone either. And the cordless phone is broken too.” Buffy practically shouted through the phone. A few students that were working at the next table glared at the teenage who glared back before walking back to her table.

“I’m on my way home and I’ll stay there while you go looking for her, okay? Bye.”

Dawn hung up and shoved all of her stuff in her bad. “Sorry guys, I have to go, family emergency! Bye!”

The teenager received quite a few dirty looks as she jogged out of the building, bumping against people in the process, but she didn’t care.
‘If you messed up again, Willow Rosenberg, I am so going to kill you.’

As soon as she got home she was greeted at the door by a really pissed off slayer.

“No news yet, huh?”

“Nope.” Buffy hissed. The slayer had her black leather jacket on and was clutching two cell phones in her hands. “I found Will’s cell in her room. She’s not there but none of her stuff is missing, Dawn.”

“Oh.” Dawn whispered. She got the feeling of what her sister was implying. “Buffy, no, she wouldn’t do that, not anymore!”

“You think she looked sick this morning? You should’ve seen her last night, Dawn. She was in bad shape. And...I hate to say it but I’m not sure if she was telling the truth last night, about the Lethe’s bramble thing.” Buffy explained with a hurt expression.

“I wanted to call Tara today but I didn’t have time. I should have taken the time.” Buffy admonished herself.

“Buffy...”

“Anyway, you stay here and I’ll go looking for her, and then I am so going to kick her sorry ass she won’t be able to sit down until her graduation.” The slayer muttered as she left the house.

She shoved Willow’s phone in her pocket and briefly hesitated before selecting a number on her own phone. She had broken into a slight jog when a familiar voice sounded in her ear.

“Tara?”


Last edited by Gaga01 on Sun Sep 18, 2011 4:58 am, edited 17 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 6:05 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:35 pm
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DIBS!!!

Hey, Marie!

You've got me interested, no doubt about it! :bounce

The opening was sweet (literally) with Buffy coming home and finding a smoothie from Tara; nice touch! It's fresh (no pun intended!) yet perfectly in character.

Good description of Willow in the bathroom, really slams home how serious her magic addiction is!

Liked the interactions with Buffy and Willow; their friendship really comes through.

So, keep writing and give us some more!!! :kgeek :kgeek :kgeek

Ariel


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 8:03 am 
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This is definitely off to a wonderful start, and you kept the characters so perfectly in character. Please do update soon.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 3:04 pm 
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What a great start! I'm already totally hooked and looking forward to the next update. I really liked how you showed Buffy still caring for Willow even after all that happened and I'm glad Tara hasn't totally written or been written off by everyone else. Congrats on the first fic.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 5:31 pm 
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Me likey..more please.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 6:55 pm 
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this is an interesting start..can't wait for the update


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 7:38 pm 
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Season 6 hurts so much, and this one was right on par. Hope Willow's crisis isn't to horrible to come back from.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2011 5:22 am 
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Haha, here it is! (I'm SO sorry I suck at subbing you everywhere! I'm on it now!) You know I love it! Can't wait for the next one!

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:45 am 
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Thanks all for the feedback, it is really appreciated!!!

Feedback


Ariel: Congrats on the dibs!! Tara is such a sweet person (no pun intended either, lol) that even being away from Willow couldn’t stop her from doing little things for the other members of her family...

Whether people believes she suffers from a magic addiction or not, the symptoms are still there, so...

Thank you! Their friendship took a serious toll in season 6 so I needed to do something about it!!

Thanks for the feedback!!

knightwithoutacause: Thank you so much! I’m glad you think so! Thanks a lot for reviewing!

beautiful_love: Thank you! Well, like I said, one of the things that annoyed me the most from season 6 was the hard blow that took Buffy and Willow’s friendship, so I couldn’t let myself do the same here...It wasn’t always clear on the show but Tara is part of the family, so they couldn’t let her leave and never see her again! Plus Dawn would have never forgiven Buffy if she’d have done that, lol.
Thanks a lot for the feedback!

SMGOVAN: lol. Thanks! Yay for a new update today!

bouncer73: Thanks, I’m glad you think so! New update today so hopefully you’ll like it!

Promthea128: It is a hard and upsetting season, that’s probably why so many people are writing fics about it...things will be far from easy for Willow or everyone else, but thankfully she will have help!
Thanks for the feedback!

leonhart17: lol, yep! Sorry I didn’t mention I was posting here too! It’s fine, I didn’t give you any warning! Thank you, and thanks again for reading it to make sure it wouldn’t suck!! Haha, here’s the next update!

Update directly below


Last edited by Gaga01 on Mon May 09, 2011 6:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:55 am 
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“I, I would follow you around the world and back again; Yes, I’d give anything just to see your face another day” –I Miss You, Court Yard Hounds

***********

“Ok, n-no. Fine I promise, but call me even if you don’t have anything new to t-tell me, ok? Bye. Oh, and Buffy? Thanks for calling.”

Tara dropped the phone on the bed and slumped next to it. She had known something was wrong the minute Buffy said her name. Willow was gone. Again.

Maybe not missing though, from what the slayer had said. Tara’s heart sank and her whole body grew heavy as she prayed to the Goddess that it wasn’t true.

Did the silent voice mail she got earlier today had been from Willow?

She couldn’t have run away. She couldn’t have had left the house if she wasn’t feeling well to go back to Rack or do any other stupidity.
‘I should’ve skipped class and go home to wait for her like I wanted to. Maybe she still would’ve been there.’ The witch scolded herself.

Glancing annoyingly at the window and the now dark sky outside, Tara stood up and went to her closet, searching frantically through it.

“Where is it...ahh!” She exclaimed as she took a small duffel bag out, dropped it on the bed and started pulling herbs and a small map out of it. Without wasting any time Tara settled everything on the floor. She picked up candles and placed them carefully around the map, lit them then mixed and crushed the herbs.

The blonde witch recited the locator spell in her head, her hands scattering the powdered herbs expertly on the Sunnydale map. The hope in Tara’s eyes quickly vanished when none of the few small dots that quickly appeared on the map belonged to her ex-girlfriend. Frustrated, she blew out all candles before grabbing the map, crushed it in her fist and shoved it in the trash can.

**********

The hallways were surprisingly empty when Tara stepped outside her room a few minutes later. The stake in her pocket was making a comforting bulge in her pocket, and the bottle of holy water she held in her hand was ready to use.

She had just turned the corner of the south hall and was about to hit the stairs when she saw a movement from the corner of her eye. Not missing a beat Tara secured her grip on the holy water, turned around and threw it in her stalker’s face.

“Bloody hell!” Spike yelled loudly. He had somehow managed to avoid most of the burning liquid thanks to his vampire reflexes, but a few drops still got him on the side of the face. “What the hell is wrong with you?” He barked as he pressed his duster’s sleeve against his injured face.

“Spike! I’m so s-sorry!” Tara apologized quickly but the vampire had already vanished in the girls’ common bathroom. She stood there, stunned, and she still had not moved when he came out a few seconds later, his hair and face wet, a bunch of paper towels clutched in his hand. On his right cheek there were now a couple of small, angry-looking red holes.

“Spike-”

“Save it, blondie. Let’s get you back to your room now.”

Tara only stared blankly at him, the bottle of holy water twirling slowly in her hand.

“No.”

The bleached vampire stared back, not impressed, but his features softened. “Buffy is doing everything she can to find her. She’s talked and beat up every demon, vamp or freak that crossed her way tonight.”

The vampire cocked his head and watched her curiously when Tara wasn’t as responsive to the news as she should have been. “You’ve already tried a spell to find her, didn’t you?”

“It didn’t work.”

Spike nodded, serious. “It didn’t work or was she clouded by something else?”

Tara had been distracted when she had accidentally hurt the vampire, but she felt her anger rushing back to her now that the surprise effect was gone. “There was nothing. I would have felt it if she was clouded or cloaked by someone or something.”

“He was nowhere to be found, by the way.” Spike tried to reassure her. He knew what the witch was thinking but, unlike them, he didn’t think the redheaded witch had left to go on another magic trip.

“We’ve looked everywhere, Rack is not in Sunnydale. Now, be a good witch, go back to your room so I can go and help find your bird.”
Tara’s eyes narrowed dangerously. Her hand slowly went to her pocket and fished the stake out of it. “S-screw you Spike. I’ve got my girl to find. You either come with me, or you will meet mister Pointy’s sister.”

“Care to meet her?”

**********

“You jerk!”

“What? It was an accident!” The vampire shouted, but backed up quickly. His arrogance from a minute ago all but vanished as a deeply pissed pair of blue eyes glared at him.

“You ruined my brand new sweater, you moron!” Buffy shrieked with indignation. The new piece of clothing, a soft but especially warm cream woollen buttoned-down sweater, was now missing several buttons and had a big tear on the front. “I’m going to kill you!”

The young vampire, who had been a member of the UC Sunnydale wrestling team in his former life, was now shrinking under the slayer’s furious stare.

“You weren’t going to before?” He asked, confused.

Buffy shrugged and brought her stake up. “Well yeah, but it wasn’t personal. Now it is.”

The vampire was a pile of ashes before he knew what was happening to him. Buffy brushed ashes from her already ruined clothing, muttering under her breath. “It’s not enough that my best friend is missing, now my sweater is dead, I’m cold and...” She trailed off as she felt a presence behind her and twisted around, “my best friend’s girlfriend is here now too.”

“She threatened to stake me!” Spike defended himself before any of them had the chance to talk.

Buffy raised an eyebrow towards the witch, a little smile stretching her lips. “Fair enough. Have you tried everything to...?”

Spike’s warning signs kept her from finishing what she was saying, so she turned around and shot an attentive look to the rest of Shady Hill Cemetery. “I’m sorry I still haven’t found her, Tara. I swear I’m doing everything I can.”

Tara smiled sadly and dropped the stake she was still holding. “I know, Buffy. I just, I d-don’t understand, where could she have g-gone? Did you call the hospital? Or did you go to the library, o-or the school lab, or-”

“Tara-”

“No, she has to be somewhere!” Tara yelled as she broke down in tears.

Buffy rushed to Tara and shot Spike a look when he opened his mouth to speak. “Go take another swipe at the area, ok?”

“Hey, shhh, it’s okay- Oww! Okay no, it’s not,” Buffy promptly amended when Tara slapped her arm, “We’ll find her, and she’ll be okay.”

“You know what could help while Spike is gone?” Buffy asked gently, trying to take the blonde witch’s mind off any impending panic attack. “It would help if you could do that tinkerbell spell thingy, like you and Will used to do?”

Tara shot a surprised look at the slayer, knowing well what the ‘before’ referred to. Her eyes widened and she slapped herself on the forehead. “I’m so stupid! Of course!”

“Hey, there will be no name calling. I’m the only one who gets to do it, and that will be reserved to a certain redhead when I put my hands on her.” Buffy teased as she watched Tara settling down on the ground.

Buffy listened curiously to the spell the girls had apparently used on a regular basis during the summer she was dead. Her eyes widened in fascination as she saw a small but bright light take shape before Tara.

“Take me to Willow.”

Both girls rapidly took off after the small ball of light headed towards the east side of the cemetery.
The light had reached the far end of the cemetery when it suddenly started to get brighter before disappearing altogether.

“Huh.”

“Was it supposed to do that?” Buffy inquired curiously.

“No.” Tara answered, frustrated. It had never done that before, Tara didn’t know what to think of it. Willow must’ve been somewhere, probably in the neighborhood or the light wouldn’t have stopped at this exact spot. “Damn it!”

Buffy walked closer to the witch and put a comforting hand on her shoulder. “Maybe you could try again? I’ll go call Dawn and the hospital again while you do it.”

Tara nodded and focused on the now invisible tinker bell light, opening herself up to feel her surroundings. A few feet away the slayer was listening to the person on the other side of the line, frowning. “Ok, thank you. Crap.” She mumbled as she hung up. No trace of the redhead at the hospital.

Buffy sighed and was busy sending her sister a text message when she felt her hair rise on the back of her neck. She stilled, put her phone away and joined Tara, who was sitting on the ground again.

Nothing seemed strange or out of place, but Buffy grabbed her stake and raised it as she heard a ruffling sound coming from the left. “Jeez Spike! Do you want to get staked? Because you are begging for it tonight.” Buffy hissed when the bleached vampire jumped out of the bushes and ran to her.

“You need to get blondie out of here.” Spike ordered sharply.

“Excuse me? Who the hell made you the boss of me?!? You’re the one who brought her here in the first place!” The slayer retorted, instantly angry.

The vampire opened his mouth to answer back but a movement close to their left interrupted him. “Fine. I’ll deal with the witch and you deal with that bloody thing!” He shrugged casually.

“Deal with wh...” Buffy began but stopped when she saw what Spike had been talking about.

A small and dark looking werewolf was standing about thirty feet away and was watching them intently. Even if the beast wasn’t the biggest Buffy one had seen in her life, something about that one unnerved her.

Its cold onyx eyes, which were staring blankly at her, didn’t do anything to reassure the slayer. Goosebumps rose on her arms, back and neck as her whole body went on defensive mode. Spike had already joined Tara and placed himself protectively in front of her. There was no way either him or the slayer would let the werewolf get near the witch.

While Buffy was watching the werewolf and trying to spot any potential object that could be useful to beat down the beast, Tara was letting herself being guided away by Spike. The only thing she could think about was that Willow was probably out there somewhere and that she may have crossed the werewolf’s path. ‘No...no, please no...’ She thought desperately.

Tara started struggling against Spike, trying to get away from him. “Spike, it may have at-tacked Willow, do you smell any blood?!?” She asked frantically, her eyes going back and forth between the werewolf and the vampire.

The tinker bell light Tara had been attempting to conjure again suddenly reappeared close to Tara’s head, and started to flash brightly. “Willow, Goddess no!” Tara shouted loudly.

Distracted by Tara’s outburst, Buffy didn’t see that the werewolf was now charging at her. Noticing it at the last second she let herself drop to the ground, leaving the wolf to jump over her and miss her throat by an inch.

“Get Tara the hell out of here now!”

Spike grasped the witch’s wrist and tugged at her harshly. “No, let go of me!” She shrieked furiously.

“I have a tranquilizer gun in my crypt, it’s right over there. Come on!” He dragged her along with him, but kept glancing over his shoulder to watch the slayer feint and try to escape the werewolf’s dangerous teeth and claws.

“Agh!” the slayer yelped in surprise when the werewolf swung a paw at her and managed to shred her already wrecked sweater.

“Stupid moron monsters!” She yelled, her frustration getting the best of her.

Buffy ran to the closest tombstone and used it to make a back flip just as the wolf was almost on her again. Her foot caught the charging werewolf right under the chin, snapping its jaw shut with a sharp sound just before the beast fell at her feet, stunned. It was quickly back onto its feet though and stretched its neck to try and take a good bite out of the slayer’s leg. “Hey! No! Bad doggie!”

Buffy managed to kick it in the ribs just before being crushed by the wolf, which had just dived at her again. “Oomph!”

Sick of fighting and pissed about her now officially ruined sweater, Buffy grabbed the werewolf by its front legs and thrusted it as far as she could, sending the beast to crash against a small tombstone nearby.

It collapsed on the grass and tried to stand back up but, weakened and hurt, dropped again with a groan.

Rapid footsteps announced Spike’s return. Buffy jumped back on her feet and glared at him as she walked over to the werewolf. “Take even longer next time, why don’t you?”

“Red’s bird wanted to come back and I couldn’t find the gun. Plus,” He said as he dropped cuffs on the ground, “I figured these could be useful.”

Buffy gazed at the material and nodded. “Good thinking.”

They quickly but carefully cuffed the werewolf. Once it was secured, Buffy removed a tranquilizing dart from the gun and injected only about the third of it at the beast since it was almost sunrise and would go back to its human form soon enough.

**********

Tara was pacing and was clutching her pendant anxiously when the door slammed open, revealing Buffy and Spike holding a now very docile and sleeping werewolf. “Are you okay, Buffy?” Tara asked right away when she saw that the slayer was limping a little.

“Yeah, I’m fine. I always thought that Oz was pretty feisty for such a small werewolf, but that one gave me a freaking ride for my money.” Buffy commented dryly as both women watched Spike chain the werewolf in the far corner of the crypt.

“Did you...d-did you find any trace of b-blood or...?” Tara questioned softly as she cursed her nervous stuttering.

Tara sighed in relief when her friend shook her head slowly. “Come on, let’s get you back home. You need sleep and I’ll go back on patrol to find your girl.”

“No! I can’t, how can you ask me that! Would you be able to stay home and just wait by the phone in c-case someone would call if something had happened to Dawn?” Tara explained with a surprisingly commanding tone.

The slayer glared at her for a few seconds before agreeing. “You’re right Tara, but please? Dawn will be so glad to see you and maybe you could come up with a different spell to help find Will?”

There was a short moment before Tara sighed and nodded weakly. She left the crypt half-heartedly, Buffy following right behind her. “It’s been a while since I’ve stayed up all night like that.” Tara commented softly. “I never really liked it. It’s like being on the wrong side of the day.”

“Yeah, I remember.” Buffy smiled sadly before yawning and rubbing her face tiredly. “Ok, let’s get you home and then I’ll come back here to check on Miss wolfie here.”

Tara’s head snapped around, eyeing Buffy intently. “The wolf is a female?”

“From what I saw, or the lack of what I didn’t see, yeah, I’m pretty sure. Why?”

Sudden noises coming from inside the crypt made Tara forget what she was about to say.

“Bloody Hell! Buffy!” Spike bellowed from inside the crypt.

Buffy rolled her eyes in annoyance. “Can this wait, Spike? Tara has to get home!”

Spike’s voice grew louder but he couldn’t come outside due to the sunrise. “No, it bloody can’t wait. Get your arse in here!”

Tara and Buffy exchanged an odd look, both hurrying back inside and frowning when Spike was nowhere in sight. “Spike? What the hell is going on!”

“The wolf...” Spike began, uncertainty showing in his eyes as he appeared from behind a pillar and holding a blanket.

“What? What’s going on? Tell me!”

Spike shot the slayer a strange look but moved away from where he was standing.

“You’re not going to like it.”

Tara was observing Spike carefully when a sudden gasp made her look at Buffy again.

The slayer was frozen in place, her eyes wide and tearing up. Tara felt her heartbeat increase and her blood boiled in her veins as she glanced in the back of the crypt.

With the rising sun the werewolf had finally shifted back to its human form. As predicted by the slayer, the young human being was, indeed, a woman.

Her body had time to heal some of the injuries that had been inflicted by her earlier encounter with the slayer, but by the looks of it the young woman didn’t have time to make a full recovery. There were bruises and cuts still covering her naked body and her left forearm was red and swollen. But that wasn’t what both girls were staring at.

Her face was bruised and her hair was matted, but there was no mistake about who the girl was.

“Willow?”


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:58 am 
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dibs! Booya!

Aww, it's been a while since I read this part - I had forgotten how quickly everything happens! And the poor girls! Of course, you already know that I freaking love it! And I'm glad you've started posting it so everyone can love like I do (and prove me right!)

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 10:43 am 
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I think qujebejfbhashfdjdkejfl just about sums it up. I seriously love this story and the ideas behind it, and we're only two chapters in! The characters are all really themselves too, no over reacting. You are an amazing writer dude! Love it. More soon please? :pray

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 2:03 pm 
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So theres a werewillow in town must say thats something i haven't seen done often, so i have to say you have me exited hopefully Tara will be able to help Willow

could the mention of Oz be significant. If he's to blame for werewillow i do hope he *cough*accidentaly*cough* ends up on something sharp and silver cos of course no one messes with Tara's girl

Quote:
“S-screw you Spike. I’ve got my girl to find. You either come with me, or you will meet mister Pointy’s sister.” “Care to meet her?”
Go kickass take charge Tara. :bounce

Quote:
Plus,” He said as he dropped cuffs on the ground, “I figured these could be useful.”
i couldn't help but laugh at that bit.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 6:59 pm 
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Yikes! werewillow is gonna be bad ass!

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 7:35 pm 
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Hell yes, take charge Tara. WereWillow is a nice choice. Wondering if Oz is the baddie this time, and how Will ran into the wolf.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 7:37 pm 
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WereWillow is a cool dynamic. How did Will run into the wolf? Is Oz the baddie this time?

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 4:54 am 
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Feedback


leonhart17: congrats on the dibs!

Lol, things does happen quickly! I think it slows down a bit after a while though :P I know, and I’m so glad you love it so much! Haha, I hope that opinion will remain the same for the whole story, we’ll have to see how it goes!

Thanks again for reading it for me to make sure it wouldn’t suck, you're awesome!

vazy: lol, that is a pretty original way to sum it up! I’m glad you love it! It was a story that had been in the depth of my brain for a while before I decided to write it down, so it’s great to see that people likes it!
Why thank you! It means a lot! How about now for an update? Lol. Thanks for the feedback!!

Mgraham93: yep, that’s the general idea...I’ve only seen very few werewolf fic so far, so I thought I’d give it a try ?. It won’t be easy for either of them but Tara will do everything in her power to help her girl out, that’s for sure!

Ahh, you will have to read the upcoming updates to know! That is a harsh but oh so interesting idea...you never know what might happen in Sunnydale :P

Kick-ass Tara is awesome, I agree with that!

Lol, well you can always count on Spike to do/say something that will make people laugh :P

Thanks for reading and for the comments!!

SMGOVAN: Yep, we’re in for a ride with werewolf Will! Thanks for reading!!

Promthea128: Yep, it is all about take charge Tara :P Well, like I said before, it’s not something you get to see often, so it was a nice change from vampires and other creatures...Everything will be explained in the right time, don’t worry it’s coming soon!

Thanks for reading and for the feedback!!

Update directly below


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/09/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 5:02 am 
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“Sometimes a hurt is so deep deep deep, You think that you’re gonna drown; Sometimes all I can do is weep weep weep, With all this rain falling down” –Rain, Patty Griffin

************

‘Willow?’ Tara’s own shocked voice echoed Buffy’s in her head. Her heart stopped and felt as if it was about to die when she stared at her ex-girlfriend’s body in horror.

‘No. No, no, no...this can’t be happening.’ Tara was screaming inside. ‘She must be cold...cold?’

“Cold...oh, Goddess!” Tara rushed to Spike, tore the blanket out of his hands and ran to Willow. She was about to cover her when she noticed and remembered the metal cuffs bruising her soul mate’s delicate skin. “Get her out of those now!”

Time seemed to shift back to normal as Spike and Buffy hurried to them, the vampire fumbling with the keys to release Willow while Buffy helped Tara to wrap the blanket around the redhead.

“What is going on?” Tara asked fearfully.

“I don’t know!” Buffy replied with a shrill voice. “She can’t be a werewolf, it doesn’t make any sense!”

Tara glared at the slayer as she ran a soft hand on her ex-lover’s cheek. “It d-doesn’t but it looks like that’s what it is!”

Softening her voice the witch leaned forward while running her hand in the redhead’s hair. “Will, sweetie? Do you hear me? Please sweetheart, open your eyes for me, okay?”

Tears began to pool in Tara’s eyes when Willow remained unresponsive to her voice and hand. “Buffy?” She whimpered and looked with anguish at the slayer.

“Um...I, I don’t know...we should um, we should get her to a hospital for now, and figure things out as we go along.” Buffy whispered softly, although she felt like screaming inside.

This couldn’t be happening. Not to her best friend. Buffy was lost in her mind and was startled when Tara yelled her name louder than necessary. “Buffy!”

“We can’t take her to the hospital.”

“What? Why? She’s hurt, Tara! She’s hurt from when I-oh God. Oh my God Tara, I’m so, so sorry, I didn’t know she was her! I didn’t-” tears started to pool in her eyes when she realized she was responsible for Willow’s injuries.

“You didn’t know it was her, Buffy. You were protecting me, and yourself.” The witch explained softly, but she couldn’t help but cringe at the pain Willow would most likely be in once she would wake up. “I don’t want to take her up to the hospital because they’re going to do all sorts of unnecessary tests on her.”

“But-”

Tara raised a hand, the other one still stroking Willow’s hair. “We’ll make a deal. I will check her out and if she has anything broken, we’ll take her there but if not, we’ll take her home, ok?”

Buffy wanted to argue but realized that Tara had managed to put on her own version of the redhead’s infamous ‘resolve face’. “You’re going to do some sort of magical x-ray? Fine, but I don’t like it. She should be checked by a doctor.” The slayer mumbled anxiously.

“She will if she has to, I promise. You know she hates hospital, and she’s going to be as confused as it is when she wakes up.” Tara agreed, trying the reassure the slayer and, more importantly, herself. ‘You have to be fine, my love.’

Buffy backed up a little to give Tara more space to work, and watch the witch sit cross-legged next to Willow. Tara wiped her hands on her jeans and took several cleansing breaths.

Closing her eyes, Tara began to move her hands over the redhead’s battered body slowly and steadily.
Tara felt tears falling down her cheeks as she took in Willow’s energy and pain. The younger witch had two cracked ribs and a sprained wrist, but there was no eternal bleeding or any other major injuries.

Tara’s hands quivered as she continued to feel her ex-lover’s aura. It still had darker streaks swirling in it, but it was much clearer than the last time she had taken a look at it.

Tara gasped in amazement as Willow’s aura was now of a dark and rich velvet red with deep honey streaks running lazily through it. The colors were so pure and thick, she had never seen that before in her life.

Through her current injuries, Tara could also feel the redhead’s struggles that had lead to such a powerful yet beautiful aura. ‘She must’ve had to work so hard in order to achieve that...’ The witch thought, pride filling her heart and soul.

Having seen enough for now, Tara slowly released Willow’s aura but kept her eyes closed a few moments, still basking in the feel of her girl’s soul.

Breaking contact with Willow was harder than Tara thought. The blonde witch choked down a sob as she covered her face with her hands when she finally released the last of the redhead’s aura.
Buffy instantly panicked. “Tara?”

“I’m okay, I’m fine.” She said quickly, shaking her hands to stop them from trembling.

Buffy frowned and glanced worriedly at her best friend. “Is she okay? Do we need to take her to the hospital?”

Tara shot a small grin at the rambling slayer. “She’s...okay. She’s not bleeding internally, her worst injury is two cracked ribs. We can take her home, I’ll t-take care of her there.”

“Okay, if you’re sure.” Buffy caved. She stood up and brushed dust off her pants. “I’ll run home to get the jeep. I’ll be right back, okay? Spike is there if you need anything.”

Tara shot a surprised glance at Spike. She had completely forgotten he was there. Feeling a little better when he nodded and seemed genuinely touched by the situation, Tara watched Buffy leave before lying down next to Willow.

Mindful of not moving her too much, Tara embraced her girl as much as she could and prayed to the Goddess as she gently rocked her back and forth. ‘Please let my baby be okay, please let her be okay, please let her be okay...’

**********

Twenty minutes later Willow was back at the Summers house and in the comfort of her own bed. Except for a whimper of two during the short drive home, the redhead still hadn’t fully wake up, which was really starting to worry Tara.

“Okay, so we’ve got plenty of towels, warm and regular, warm water, soap, the big first aid kit for big emergencies, water, painkillers, um...I think that’s it. Just yell if you need anything, okay?” An anxious Dawn asked Tara for the third time since they had stepped inside the house.

“Thanks, sweetie, I will.”

“Oh, maybe I should get you one of those-”

“Dawn!” Buffy interrupted her before grabbing her gently by the shoulders. “You thought of everything, you did a great job but now we need to leave Tara alone for a little while, alright?”

The teenager glanced between her sister and her favorite couple. She didn’t understand what was going on, a feeling that was mutual amongst all of them right now. All she knew was that her surrogate sister had somehow turned into a werewolf last night, that she had been hurt and still wouldn’t wake up.

“Is she going to be like Oz now?” Dawn blurted out without thinking.

Buffy slapped her sister hard on the arm. “Dawn! What the hell is wrong with you?!? Of course not!”

Tara only stared wide-eyed at Buffy, stricken.

The slayer cursed inwardly her sister for her verbal slip. The last thing Tara needed to hear was for Willow to be compared at her ex-boyfriend.

“I have no clue what is going on, but it’s not the same, that I can promise you. But in the meantime Tara needs to take care of Will so Dawn, please...” Buffy exhorted her sister to understand.

After one last look at the redhead Dawn finally relented and sluggishly left the room. “You’ll yell if you need anything or when she wakes up, right?”

“Yes, and thank you Dawn; now go downstairs and go do your homework, I don’t want to have to tell you twice!” The slayer warned as she listened to her sister’s retreating footsteps.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to yell at her, it’s just...”

Tara sent Buffy a half-heartfelt grin while putting her hands in the water to warm them up. “She’s freaked out too, Buffy. Maybe you should give her some slack?”

Buffy shrugged, her eyes observing closely her best friend. “I let her stay home from school, didn’t I?”

Tara chuckled at the slayer’s obvious answer, making her smile in return.

“Um, Tara?”

“Yes, Buffy?” Tara frowned at how nervous the slayer seemed, but then it dawned on her. ‘So that’s how it is like when Buffy let her guard down.’

The small, insecure woman in front of her looked nothing like the fierce protector that had fought with the werewolf last night. ‘She’s as scared as us about what’s happening.’

Part of Tara wanted to be angry at the slayer for letting this happen to Willow, but she felt her frustration melt away as she reminded herself that it wasn’t anyone’s fault. No one could be blamed until they had an idea of what was going on. And even then.

Buffy wasn’t sure if what she was about to say would be well taken, but she couldn’t sit still and wait, as Tara as mentioned before. “I want to call Giles.” She admitted with a small voice.

The witch seemed surprised but smiled gratefully. “I-I think it’s a great idea, we’re going to need all the help we can get.”

The slayer nodded, relieved to have something useful to do. “Okay, good. Yell if-”

“I need anything? Don’t worry, I will.” Tara nodded faintly.

The witch waited for the bedroom door to close before starting to uncover Willow. They had made sure the room was warmer since they thought Willow would be freezing cold from spending part of the night in the crypt and Goddess knows where.

Carefully and with a tender touch, Tara began to clean up her lover’s body. Even if they weren’t back together yet, there wasn’t any doubt left in the blonde’s mind anymore.

Never in their time apart had she stopped loving Willow, even for a second. And, in her mind, it always had been more a break from each other rather than a definite break up so trying to constantly remind herself to call Willow her ex-girlfriend instead her girlfriend was just silly now.

There was no way in any hell dimension she would let her girl go through whatever was happening to her alone. Willow would have to deal with the fact that Tara was back now, and that she was there to stay. Indefinitely.

It took Tara almost an hour to clean every cut and every bruise present on Willow’s body. She winced every time she discovered a new cut, and cringed when tending to the wound would make Willow whimper in pain.

The witch took her time to make sure there wasn’t the slightest residue of dust or dirt on any part of her lover’s body. As intimate as the gesture was, there was nothing erotic in Tara’s gentle but thorough touches.

Not that they haven’t done it to each other before, but this time was different. Tara’s every touch, as delicate and cautious as they were, were meant to comfort the redhead and to let her feel that she was safe again.

Tara had covered Willow back with warm covers and was finishing applying a healing salve on a cut on her girl’s hand when Buffy announced herself with a soft knock on the door. “Hey, can I come in?”

“Of course. Any news from Giles?” Tara asked as Buffy came in, closing the door behind her.

The shorter blonde sat on the edge of the bed, her eyes focused on her best friend. “She looks better, Tare.” She remarked with a small smile.

Tara smiled back, genuinely this time as she looked down at her girl. “She does. She should wake up soon too, she’s been moving a little and I think she’s starting to react to my voice.”

“That’s really great, I’m glad to hear at least one good news.” Buffy said with a dejected tone.

“No good news from Giles?” Tara questioned curiously as she gently stroked Willow’s uninjured arm.

“No news at all from Giles. He wasn’t there so I left a message.” The slayer muttered. “Tara, I was thinking, did you notice a cut, or a scratch on Will that seemed different or more recent from the others?”

Tara watched Buffy closely, quickly understanding what she was asking. “No, not really, honestly. I was more concerned about other things.”

Buffy tensed but didn’t look away. “What do you want to know, Tara?”

“How about telling me how bad it really got? You and Dawnie, and Xander, you all kept telling me she was struggling and was having a h-hard time but no one ever told me how bad it really was.”

“She didn’t want you to know...she wanted to deal with it by herself. You know how stubborn she can be.”

“A-about as stubborn as a certain slayer I know.” Tara gently chided her. “I had the right to know, Buffy.”

“I don’t mean to be a pain, Tara but, technically, you’re the one who left her.” Buffy replied softly.
Tara sighed. “I know, but I’m here now, I’m not leaving again. I was ready to see her again, Buffy. You can even ask Dawn if you don’t believe me.”

Buffy watch the witch for a moment before running a hand through her hair, wincing when her fingers got caught in a knot. “I wanted to tell you, I swear, but I promised her. I couldn’t, I can’t...damn it, Tara!

“What difference does it make now, Buffy, huh? What I haven’t been told, I saw what it did to her. I s-saw what it did to her soul, I saw what it did to her body! Just how much weight has she lost? She’s practically skin and bones!” Tara barely refrained from shouting.

“I am well aware of that! She didn’t want to let me help either in the beginning until it got to the point where she didn’t have a choice anymore. I had wanted to call you so many times but I didn’t want to break my promise.”

“I think, I think she was ashamed of the withdrawals and of how weak she felt. She didn’t want you to take pity of her, which is a stupid thing to think, but her insecurity issues were acting up again and I needed to be the friend I haven’t been to her in a while...I’m sorry Tara, I hope you can forgive me for not telling you.” Buffy finished weakly, her eyes avoiding Tara’s.

Tara took a deep breath and pursed her lips. Even if she wanted to, she couldn’t be mad at Buffy for protecting her best friend. “Buffy...I don’t think there’s even anything to forgive, I understand why, even if it hurts. I guess I’m just glad t-that Will had you to take care of her when I couldn’t.”

The slayer shrugged. “She’s my best friend.”

Both women shared a moment of silence that was cut short when a moan startled them. They quickly shifted on the bed, Tara turning sideways to face Willow and Buffy getting up to go to the other side of the bed.

Tara smiled and fought back a sob when a pair of sleepy green eyes slowly opened and glanced at her before closing again. “Will, sweetie, come on now, open your eyes again for me. You can do it, I know you can. Come on love, let me see your beautiful green eyes again.”

“That’s my girl.” Tara whispered proudly as Willow woke up more fully and made an effort to keep her eyes open. The blonde leaned down and kissed her softly on the forehead, her hand coming up to cup the redhead’s cheek.

“Um, I’ll leave you two alone a few minutes, I’ll go check on Dawn for a while.” Buffy hushed hurriedly before leaving the room, but Tara glanced up just in time to see the slayer wiped her eyes with her sleeve as she left the room.

“Hey, beautiful.” Tara greeted Willow with a tender kiss on the cheek.

Tara felt Willow tense as her lips lingered on the redhead’s cheek. Misinterpreting her reaction, Tara quickly apologized and moved away to give Willow some space. “I-I’m, I’m sorry Willow, I d-didn’t-”

A small hand brushing against her wrist instantly silenced her. Looking down nervously, guilt overwhelmed her as Willow stared at her with pleading eyes. “Tara?”

“Shhh, it’s okay sweetie, you don’t have to talk right now.” Tara said, cringing at the roughness of Willow’s voice. “Do you want me to stay?”

Tara’s heart swelled with joy when Willow imperceptibly nodded her head. The redhead opened her mouth to talk but didn’t seem to be able to voice any words. Tara almost chuckled at the pout that formed on her girlfriend’s lips, relieved to see such a familiar expression on her face only minutes after being awake.

The blonde gently took the hacker’s uninjured hand and let her thumb run soothing circles on her skin. “Just take your time, there’s no rush. Do you want or need anything?” she asked softly.

Willow closed her eyes a moment and stiffened. “Ow.” She croaked.

“I know, sweetie. Here, do you think you can sit?”

Receiving a small nod, Tara carefully put a hand on the redhead’s back and helped her into a sitting position while she piled and fluffed the pillows against the headboard with the other.

Now in a more comfortable position, Willow watched tiredly as Tara fumbled with the bottle of painkillers, dropping three in her hand before taking a tall glass of water from the nightstand. “Here, take these.”
Tara sighed when Willow made a face at the sight of the pills. “Please? They’re going to make you feel better.”

It took a few more long seconds before Willow finally took the pills from the blonde with a shaky hand, soon swallowed with some water. Tara took back the glass and kept it in her hands as she now felt incredibly nervous.

“How are you f-feeling?”

“Like crap.” Willow admitted slowly, wincing as her arm brushed against her ribs.

“Tara?” Willow asked softly, her voice still raspy but already better than before. “What is going on, why do I
feel like I’ve been in a ten-round fight with Buffy without wearing the dummy outfit?”

‘Oh.’ “Um. You don’t remember?” Tara inquired, uncertainty tainting her voice.

“No...” Willow hesitated as she observed Tara until she knitted her brows in confusion.

Tara instantly went on worried mode. “What is it, are you okay? Are you in any other kind of pain?”

“What are you doing here?” the redhead blurted out but regretted the words as soon as she had spoken them.
The stunned and hurt look on the blonde’s face made her feel even more horrible than she already was, which she didn’t think could be possible. “Tara, no, that’s not what I meant!” Willow exclaimed a little too loudly, wincing as her ribs reminding her that any harsh movement at the moment was a very bad idea.

“I just, I just realized that you were here, with me, in our-my room,” she whispered, confused. “Why?”
Tara took a shaky breath, not sure where to start. “Willow, honey...you really don’t remember anything?”

“N-no, why?” Willow admitted, starting to panic. She had no idea why she was in so much pain and why Tara was there, acting all sweet and protective of her. Not that she wasn’t ecstatic to see the blonde, but why now, when she was obviously hurt, when- “um, Tara?” Willow stopped her mental rambling as she glanced down and frowned, perplexed.

“Huh, it’s just, um. Why am I naked?” The redhead blushed deeply as she tightened the blue sheet around her. “What’s going on?”

“Willow, um-”

‘Oh thank the Goddess’ Tara exclaimed inwardly when there was a knock at the door. “Is it okay if I...” Tara gestured at the door.

“Come in.” Tara called out after Willow had nodded absently to the request.

Buffy came in quietly, a huge smile lighting her face when Willow grinned shyly at her.

“Will.”

“Hey Buffy...” Willow whispered. The redhead was surprised when she was unexpectedly engulfed in the slayer’s arms for a bear hug. “I’m so glad you’re okay, you scared the hell out of me.”

Willow didn’t have any memories of the last twenty-hours. Not until Buffy whispered in her ear the same words she had told her the day before.

Everything suddenly came rushing back to her. Being sick, her phone call to Tara, getting dressed and going out to get some air... “Oh God!” she gasped in horror.

The pain she was feeling was nothing in comparison of the one she remembered now, from when she had changed into a werewolf.

Buffy felt her best friend’s body stiffened as the flash-backs hit her hard. “Tara, she needs you,” the slayer whispered to the witch.

Tara put her hand on Willow’s leg, squeezing it gently to get her attention. “Will, honey, it’s okay, just breathe,” the blonde witch assured her as her hand moved to caress her back soothingly.

Willow took a shaky breath and released Buffy to glance at both women. “I-it can’t, I can’t be, is it some kind of sick joke?” she murmured, her eyes wide in shock.

“What do you remember now?” Tara demanded gently, briefly hesitating before wrapping her arms around
Willow. She sighed in relief when the redhead leaned into the hug and put her head on the witch’s shoulder.
“I turned into a werewolf.” She whimpered softly.

“I know it’s not easy honey, but do you remember anything else?” Tara pushed gently and smiled as Willow shot her a restless look.

“Isn’t it enough?” Willow replied, her voice deliberately slow as if to keep her from revealing the anxiety that was threatening to overwhelm her. The redhead didn’t move from her spot in the blonde’s arms, but still Tara felt her withdrawing herself from them. That was how Willow reacted when she didn’t know how to deal with a situation she had no control over; it broke the blonde’s heart to not be capable to come up with anything to soften the shocking news her girl had just received.

Tara and Buffy shared a concerned look as neither of them knew exactly what to do about Willow’s unusual quietness. Both almost exclaimed their relief out loud when the younger witch eventually voiced the thoughts that were running through her feverish mind. “I don’t get it…I wasn’t bitten, or scratched or anything, I can’t be a werewolf, right? It doesn’t make any sense…”

Tara ran a gentle hand through her partner’s hair, pushing a lock of soft red hair behind an ear so she could see her better. “Maybe you ran into somebody in school or on patrol and you didn’t pay attention back then?”

Willow sighed, frustrated from not remembering any details from the night before, but one look at Tara was enough to melt that all of anger away.

She wasn’t aware that she had began fidgeting nervously against her girlfriend until Tara tightened her hold on her and started to rub her belly in circular, soothing motions. “Apart from the school nurse, no one but Buffy or Dawn touched me since you’ve been gone.” She mumbled on her shoulder.

Tara flinched but didn’t let her previous decisions distract her from what Willow had just said. “School nurse?” She mouthed to Buffy, worry clouding her features. The witch pursed her lips grimly when the slayer mouthed back “bad day” to her.

“Buffy?” Tara asked as she seemed to be pondering something. “When you asked if I have seen a scratch or a cut that was different from the others on her, you already had something in mind, didn’t you?”

“Maybe...” Buffy hesitated. She watched Willow intently for a few seconds before sighing. “She’s sleeping,” the slayer whispered.

“I know,” Tara whispered back. Still she did nothing to put Willow back in bed, content to feel the redhead’s sleeping body in her arms. “I think I did see something odd.”

Buffy perked up immediately. “What? Where?”

Tara pointed towards Willow’s foot. “Check her right foot.”

Buffy raised an eyebrow but tugged on the covers to free them from under the bed before taking her friend’s foot in her hands, careful as to not wake her.

“See the scratch on the side? It looks older than the others.”

“Yeah, but that’s not it...She was barefoot outside last week and she tripped on the porch. It was a nasty scratch, I thought she was going to need stitches. Surprisingly enough, I had no idea feet could bleed so much,” Buffy recalled quietly as she heard the faint sound of the phone ringing downstairs.

The hurried footsteps they heard coming their way informed both girls who was on the other side of the line.

A short knock was heard a few seconds later, followed by Dawn’s muffled voice. “Buffy?”

The slayer put her friend’s foot back under the covers with care and stood up. “You should get some rest too, Tara, we might get another rough night tonight. Last night of full moon and all.”

Tara blanched and glanced at Willow. The blonde witch didn’t look up when Buffy left the room, or when Dawn tried to peek inside to see what was going on before being pulled back by her sister.

Tara kicked off her shoes and gently laid her girl back on the bed, making sure she was properly covered in the process. She then lay down next to Willow and pulled her close until she was in her arms again.

The digits on the alarm clock seemed to be mocking the blonde as she stared helplessly at them. ‘Eight hours before sundown,’ she thought anxiously. Pushing back any more distressing thoughts away, Tara tightened her hold on the redhead and kissed her on the forehead.

‘Eight hours.’


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 5:12 am 
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Dibs. Muhahaha.

Poor Doopey Wills and Upset Tara. Throw in some sympathy for the Buffster and Dawnie too, I guess. Loved the chapter once again it induced nonsensical babble. Lots of cuts and bruises for Willow, changing that not will not be of the nice. But then again I suppose it'd never be a basket of fun would it? Can't wait to find out how she got turned. Please keep up the frakking amazing work :grin

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 6:16 am 
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:) See? Everybody loves it! (do I get to say 'told you so'?) I'm having a lot of fun rereading these first few chapters! I had forgotten how intense everything is right off the bat. Love it!

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 12:03 pm 
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Wow!

Just caught up, so not good for Willow! :((

But good that Tara is back in her life! :applause :bounce :applause

This is intense! What an incredibly horrible thing to have happen to Willow.

On a story level, loved Tara's dialogue with Spike! :laugh Go, Tough Tara!!! :clap :clap :clap

And you really feel the friendship between the characters, that's a big deal for me.

So - you got me! Keep writing! :kgeek

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 9:51 pm 
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Their freak out seems kinda much. Lycanthropy is a hassle and painful, but better than some of the other hazzards of the Hellmouth. At least you keep your soul. Still, glad it brought Tara back to Willow.

Would mating with a werewolf possibly infect a human? And the disease lay dormant for some reason, maybe actively using magic kept it at bay, or something? Or Willow got infected somehow else, and doesn't remember cause she was messed up at the time? Or something even more clever?

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 1:01 am 
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Very interesting story so far; you definitely have me hooked. Looking forward to see what made Willow change into a werewolf.


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 7:15 pm 
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Hey...just got caught up and WOW I love it! I've never read a Wolfie Willow fic. I have to say, I prefer this over a Vampy Soul-less Willow.

So now the big question is...how? And why? A spell? Rack? :hmm

Can't wait for more!!!

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 5:41 am 
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vazy: lol, congrats on the dibs!
Yeah, I suppose things could be better, but it wouldn’t be the hellmouth, isn’t it? Willow’s life (and her friends’) is rough and kind of sucks right now, but things will eventually get better, because it can sucks forever! More info on that will come soon enough, so stay tuned!

Thanks so much for the feedback!

leonhart17: Yeah, I guess you do get to say it, lol. I’m glad you still love it! It does start pretty intense, but hopefully it will continue to be good. Thanks for still helping me out, you are awesome! (and I should have something ready this weekend if you want to take a look at it!)

Ariel: No, it’s not good for Willow right now, everything’s pretty harsh actually, but at least Tara is there to take care of her (FINALLY). What happened to her is something you don’t want happen to anyone but everyone will be there to help her throughout her ordeal..

I’m glad you loved it! Well, when something stands between her girl and herself, even a vampire is not enough to keep her away, lol. The characters’ friendship is one of the things that mattered the most in the show and it kind of went to hell in season 6 so I couldn’t do the same to them...

Thanks for the feedback!!

Promthea128: It may seem kind of much but, considering everything the group has already went through a few years back with Oz, the idea of Willow having to go through the same thing is not something anyone is looking forward too, especially since the truth was sprung on them like that. But, like you said, at least she still has her soul, which is a big plus, and it brought back Tara too...

Aww, I can’t answer that for now, lol. Everything will be explained in the meantime though, so you should get your answers soon enough.

Thanks for the feedback!

love_2003: thanks, I’m glad you like it! Things will be explained soon enough. I can’t say anything too specific or I would be revealing spoilers, lol.

Thanks for commenting!!

Finey_Mc_Fine: why thank you! Yeah, they aren’t too common, lol. I’m not a big fan of vamp fics (although there are some that are really great), so even with all the crap involved, being a werewolf is still better than a vampire.

Ahhh, that is the big question! Like I said to the others, it will all be explained in due time, so stay tune and you’ll learn the whole truth soon enough!

Thanks a lot for commenting!!

Update directly below


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/15/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 5:49 am 
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“Can I start again, with my faith shaken? ‘Cause I can’t go back and undo this; I just have to stay and face my mistakes, But if I get stronger and wiser, I’ll get through this” –Get It right, Glee cast original song

************

“Well, good afternoon, sleepy head.” Dawn commented dryly as soon as Buffy made her way into the kitchen almost four hours later.

The teenager watched her sister grab a carton of orange juice from the fridge and smirked when the older Summers drank half of it directly from the container. “You know you just created a precedent, right? Next time you yell at me for not using a glass I will remind you of this day.”

Buffy shot her sister a look that sent the teenager shrinking in her chair. “But it’s fine because you’ve spent the night searching the town for Will and then you fought a werewolf, and talked on the phone for hours with Giles trying to figure out something about what is going on and you’re exhausted and I’ll be shutting up now,” Dawn finished her rambling sheepishly.

“I didn’t mean to fall asleep, Dawn. It snuck up on me.” Buffy admitted with a huge yawn, stretching her arms and shoulders to loosen them up.

“I know, I was just kidding. So, what did Giles say?” Dawn demanded eagerly, half-excited and half-scared to know about their conversation.

Buffy rubbed her face with tired hands. “He’s confused and shocked, just like the rest of us. He’s going to research and talk to someone he knows and get back to us later.”

Dawn’s eyes narrowed as she scrutinized her sister. “There’s something you’re not telling me.”

The slayer’s guilty look sent shivers down the teenager’s spine. “Oh my God, what is it? You can’t not tell me!”

“There’s nothing else to say, Dawnie, I swear. Giles has no clue of what can be the cause of Willow’s shifting last night. I may have asked him to come though,” Buffy admitted with a small voice.

Dawn’s eyes widened in surprise. “Giles is coming? When?”

“As soon as he can. He needed to find some books and talk to his friend first. You’re not mad I asked him for help?” Buffy asked, uncharacteristically shy.

“Why would I be mad? I was pissed when he left but I think we really need him. I’m scared, Buffy. Why is this happening to Willow?” she wondered with a sad voice. “And what’s going to happen tonight? It’s still the full moon, right?”

“Yeah. I don’t know, Dawn, I really don’t know what we’re going to do,” Buffy whispered, upset. She glanced at the clock and sighed.

‘Four hours.’

****************

Both Summers girls raised their heads when Tara slowly made her way into the kitchen forty-five minutes later.

“Hey.”

“Hi, how are you? How’s Will?” Buffy asked gently.

Tara smiled weakly and leaned against the counter. “She’s still sleeping. I was thinking about getting her something to eat before waking her up, we don’t even know when was the last time she ate.”

The witch frowned as Buffy and Dawn exchanged a glance. “What, what is it? Oh, did Giles say anything?” she demanded quickly when she remembered the watcher had called a few hours earlier.

“There’s nothing new, Tara, I’m sorry. But-”

“Buffy asked him to come,” Dawn interrupted her sister, ignoring the annoyed glare she received for it.

Tara crossed her arms on her chest and swallowed hard. “You a-asked him to c-come? So it’s that b-bad, huh?” she spoke with a pained voice.

Buffy hesitated briefly before walking to Tara and take her hands. “I asked him to come because we’re too close to the problem to see clearly. He’ll have a more objective view of the situation when he’ll get here, okay?”

“So you d-didn’t asked him because you were f-freaking out?” Tara pushed, challenging the slayer.

Buffy leaned closer and hugged the witch tightly. “I am terrified of what’s happening to my best friend. But there is nothing I won’t do to help her and try to make everything better for her and you guys,” she whispered in Tara’s ear just loud enough so Dawn couldn’t hear.

“There’s some soup left in the fridge, you should bring Will that. She won’t want to eat so you’ll have to insist until she caves, okay?” Buffy added quietly after releasing Tara.

“Buffy?” Tara asked as the slayer was putting on her jacket to go out. “We’ll need to figure out something for tonight, don’t we?”

The short blonde nodded weakly after glancing between Dawn and Tara. “I’m on it. I’ll be back in an hour, tops.”

Tara watched the slayer leave with a sense of dread numbing her from inside.

‘Three hours.’

**********

Willow moaned as she stretched her sore body under the covers. She tentatively opened one eye and exhaled dejectedly when she found herself alone in the room.

‘I was dreaming. None of this is real,’ she thought hopefully. The redhead knew she was disillusioning herself though. She wouldn’t be feeling so horribly if it was only a nightmare.

‘But Tara wouldn’t be here if it was real.’

“Sweetheart good, you’re awake.” A warm voice snapped her out of her reveries.

Willow cringed and dug her head in her pillow, a keen whimper coming out of her throat.

Tara froze in the middle of the room, not knowing what to think of Willow’s reaction. She tried to not it as a form of rejection, but the gesture stunned the witch. She was debating whether approaching her or not until she noticed tremors wracking the redhead’s body.

“Oh, honey.” Tara rushed to the bed, quickly putting the small tray of food on the floor before sitting next to Willow and running a soothing hand down her arms. “Sweetie, come on, talk to me.”

Willow calmed down when she felt a familiar and comforting hand on her skin. Blinking tears away, she slowly turned her head and choked down a sob when she saw Tara by her side. “You’re here?”

Tara frowned. “Of course, sweetheart. I just went downstairs a few minutes to g-grab something for you to eat. What’s going on?” She talked in a low voice, scared to upset the redhead even more.

“I, I thought I had dreamed it all. I thought none of it was real,” she sobbed quietly.

Tara felt her own tears threatening to fall when she heard the distress in her girlfriend’s voice. “Come here.” She motioned Willow to sit up.
Once the redhead pushed herself up with the help of the blonde, Tara snaked an arm around Willow’s waist to keep her close. With a gentle but firm hand Tara cupped Willow’s face, leaving her no choice but to look at the woman in front of her.

“Willow, love, I am so sorry that this isn’t just a horrible nightmare, but I am really here. And not just for today. I’m sorry I left, sweetie, but I am not going anywhere anymore,” Tara revealed, knowing her partner was already thinking of possible arguments to debate her decision.

“But-”

“No.” Tara stopped her before she had the chance to babble herself to death. “We can discuss it, in fact we will have to, but not now. We have more important things to take care of right now,” Tara reminded her gently as she brushed her fingers on the girl’s waist.

Tara smiled but got nervous when Willow didn’t answer straight away and was only staring blankly at her. “Right. Shifting into a werewolf,” she finally muttered, her voice hollow and aloof.

“Will...”

Willow shook her head, her eyes pleading with Tara to let the subject go.

Tara perfectly knew her girl’s body language so she grieved to see so withdrawn and defeated. She didn’t think avoiding the subject was a good idea but she respected her decision for now.

Determined to keep her distracted until the last minute, Tara put on a brave face and smiled coyly at her girl. It took about a minute for Willow to notice, which caused her to glare somewhat unconvincingly at the blonde. “What are you smirking about?”

Tara raised an eyebrow suggestively and leaned towards Willow. “Care to put some clothes on or do you want to keep giving me a free show?”

Willow’s eyes bulged out of her head as she glanced down and hurriedly brought the sheet up higher around her. Her cheeks burned as they got as red as her hair and she stared incredulously at Tara, too shocked to talk. “You, you perv!” she finally exclaimed in a shrilled voice.

Seeing Willow being so...Willow again sent Tara in a fit of laughter, which only grew louder when the younger witch displayed a monumental pout.

“That’s not funny! You could’ve said something!” Willow glared at the still laughing blonde, although she was more embarrassed than angry.

“Well, what can I say, I was enjoying the show,” Tara teased but managed to calm down a little. “Aww, sweetie, come here.”

Tara didn’t wait for Willow to comply and instead closed the remaining space between them.

The older girl softly brushed her lips against the redhead’s, her heart skipping a beat as she felt her lover’s slightly chapped lips on hers after being apart for so long.

Tara was about to pull back when Willow hesitantly responded to the kiss.
Smiling against her girl’s lips, the blonde gently opened her mouth and caressed Willow’s bottom lip with her tongue, teasing her until she felt them parting.

“Mmm, Willow...need...e-eat,” Tara mumbled after several minutes and regretfully pulled back from the kiss.

“Huh? Um...Tara, no...” Willow pouted when Tara moved away. She was breathing hard but it didn’t keep her from scowling at the tray the blonde had just picked up and put on the bed. “I’m not hungry.”

Tara sighed but refused to back down. “Will, you have to eat something. Come on, it’s just soup and crackers. You won’t get sick eating that.”

“No.”

Tara rolled her eyes in exasperation. “Willow...Okay, this is how it’s going to work,” Tara declared as she received nothing more than an annoyed glare from the redhead.

“I’m not Buffy so I won’t be pushy or force you to eat, but right now you have two choices. You can either p-put some clothes on and then eat the small bowl of soup that I brought you, or stay as you are and eat the soup. Your choice,” the witch finished firmly but not unkindly.

She waited for Willow to react, hoping she hadn’t been too harsh with her. Tara relaxed when the redhead glanced at her timidly and let the sheet drop in her lap. “Clothes first. Please.”

Tara smiled gratefully and grabbed the pajamas she had put on the edge of the bed earlier. She helped Willow into her top and pants and then watched as the younger girl begrudgingly ate half of the soup and two crackers.

Willow was rubbing her eyes in an effort to remain awake when Tara, after putting back the tray and its content on the floor, surprised her by giving a small but sweet peck on the lips.

“Thank you. For eating,” Tara added when Willow only eyed her curiously.

Both girls remained silent after that, knowing what would be coming next. Willow was resting her forehead against Tara’s when she saw the time on the alarm clock from the corner of her eye.

“Tara?” she whispered.

“Yes, sweetie?”

“Are you guys going to chain me up in the basement or in Oz’s old cell?”

Tara’s head snapped up as she gaped at Willow, flabbergasted. “Willow!”

“What? You were the one who wanted to talk about it!” Willow replied, confused.

“Talking about it doesn’t mean you deciding about getting chained up in O-Oz’s old cell. It requires actual talking about what we should do.” Tara argued patiently.

Willow crossed her arms against her chest and narrowed her eyes. “It’s like you don’t take this seriously. How can you take this lightly? You don’t even know what it’s like to witness a shifting. Believe me, you don’t want it to happen in a house full of people.”

“I witnessed Oz doing it once years ago, Willow. I know I don’t have your experience in the matter, but it doesn’t mean I will let myself being pushed away.” The blonde kept her ground, refusing to let the redhead win without a fight.

Willow paled and looked at Tara, the memory now clear to her too. “God, Tare, I forgot, I’m so sorry! But it’s still not a good idea.” The redhead continued. She had to make her partner understand the danger of what she was insisting to be a part of. “Baby, it’s just, I’ve seen him changed quite a couple of times and it just about killed me every time. I don’t want that for you. I’m not worth it.”

“That’s enough!” Tara cut the redhead off before she had the time to say any more absurdities. “I am not chaining you up, and you are so not going to O-Oz’s cell. And,” She warned sternly as she stared at her girlfriend, “don’t you ever dare saying you are not worth it again. Am I clear?”

Willow opened her mouth to answer back but thought better of it. Her shoulders slumped and refused to meet her lover’s eyes when Tara called her name. “Willow, I’ve asked you question, please answer it.”

Tara watched Willow as she stretched her now healed hand carefully, moving her digits and flexing her wrist to test its strength. “It wouldn’t be the same if the situation was reversed.” She finally murmured.

“Why would that be, exactly? It’s not because of Oz, I know it’s not. I know you Willow, there’s something you’re not telling me. You’ve always talked to me before, please don’t stop now.” Tara pleaded with her.

“I, I…” Willow began but choked on her words. “Willow…” Tara hushed and cupped the redhead’s cheeks. The blonde kissed her with the same passion as earlier today, letting her lips linger on Willow’s a few seconds before placing gentle kisses on her cheeks. “Just let it go honey, this is your safe place, remember? You can tell me anything when we’re here.”

Tara slowly pulled back when she felt warm tears on her lips. “Sweetheart?”

Willow was trying to stop the tears from falling but it was a lost cause. “I…I don’t think I have a safe space anymore.” She admitted with a sob.

“Love…listen to me, okay?” Tara spoke to her with a soft but firm voice. “You need to stop wracking that big brain of yours with crazy scenarios. No matter what happens, I am not leaving again. I promise you.” She finished by putting her hand over Willow’s heart. “Buffy took care of you when I couldn’t but I am back so I’m taking over now. So consider today the day your safe space is being officially back.”

The genuine laugh that came out from the redhead was pure joy for Tara’s heart and soul. “There’s my girl.” She grinned happily.
Willow sighed and brushed her thumb on her girl’s lips, smiling when it got kissed and tickled by Tara’s tongue. “Tara, can you promise me something? Please?”

Tara reached out and took Willow’s hand, knowing what the redhead was going to ask. “Don’t ask me to leave you alone tonight, I can’t do that.”

Willow frowned, but she wasn’t surprised at Tara’s refusal. “Fine, but at least let me use Oz’s cell.”

“No! I am not d-dumping you in a dirty cell across town!” Tara repeated again, internally groaning at Willow’s persistence.

“Why not? It’ll be safer for everybody. And that way none of you will have to deal with wolf me tonight,” Willow pursued stubbornly. “I can’t just stay here and be all ‘la la la’ while waiting to turn into a monster with you looking at me and get disgusted by what I’ll become!” Willow rambled impatiently.

Tara took a deep breath, not letting her own emotions take over. “Sweetie...” the blonde tried to calm her down.

“You’re going to leave me again!” Willow shouted, her voice echoing in the room and throughout the house.

Willow had tried to control herself ever since she’d woken up but she couldn’t take it anymore. She didn’t want any of this. She didn’t want to be a werewolf. She didn’t want to change and become something she had come to loathe after her painful breakup with Oz.

She didn’t want Tara to be there with her because it would wreck the image the blonde had of her since they became lovers. It was bad enough that Willow wasn’t practicing magic anymore, there was no way Tara could love the magic-less, furry monster she would be now.

Willow burst in tears, cringing away from Tara’s touch when the blonde tried to comfort her.

Tara froze, her hand still in the air. She was hurt by Willow’s rejection but made an effort to not take it personally. She remembered how she’d felt years before when she thought she would become a demon the day of her twentieth birthday.

She thought her life would be over back then, but her worst fears never came true.

It did for Willow.

Her heart broke as she watched her partner sobbing miserably, her head tucked between her arms and her knees folded against her chest.

“Hey, what’s going on?”

Tara jumped at Buffy’s voice. She hadn’t heard her coming in but, the witch reminded herself, the slayer could be too sneaky for her own good when she wanted to. “She’s f-freaking out and she d-doesn’t me to t-touch her,” the witch stuttered hopelessly.

Buffy frowned at her friend’s stuttering. “I heard her shouting from outside,” the slayer told her, concerned, as she walked cautiously to the bed. “Will?”

The younger witch winced but didn’t shy away when Buffy sat by her side and softly rubbed her back. “Please look at me?”

Tara couldn’t help but feeling jealous when after a few seconds Willow raised her head to shot the slayer a distressed look. “Buffy...”

“I know.” Buffy moved closer and gathered her in her arms, noticing Tara’s pained expression when Willow didn’t resist. “Tara...”

“No, it’s f-fine.” Tara shook her head. She needed some fresh air. She needed to get out of the house. “Stay with her, I-I’ll go take a walk
for a while.”

Tara left before Buffy had time to react and hurried down the stairs where she ran into Dawn. “Oww! Dawnie, hey. You okay?”

Dawn grinned at the blonde as she rubbed her shoulder. “It’s okay, you barely touched me. Are you okay?” The teenager inquired, seeing that Tara looked pale and was shaking a little.

“Yeah, I just, I need to go for a walk or something,” Tara explained quickly as she tried to get to the door, but Dawn put herself in the way.

“What’s going on? I heard yelling upstairs but Buffy told me to stay here. Is Willow okay?”

“She’s fine, Buffy’s with her.” Tara muttered in an odd tone.

Dawn frowned and stared at her friend. “Why are you saying it like that? You make it sound like...Oh my God!” the brunette shrieked when
Tara refused to meet her eyes. “You’re kidding, right? You can’t honestly be believing that Willow and Buffy...That’s just stupid!”

“Is it?” Tara shot back, upset. “She s-started crying and I couldn’t even touch her but B-Buffy came in and she almost j-jumped in her arms. I was gone for months-”

“Tara, I love you, but you’re being ridiculous. You are the one Willow loves like that,” the teenager chided her as she grabbed Tara’s hand, dragging her to the couch and making her sit. “Willow’s had it pretty rough ever since you left so she had to rely on Buffy to help her, even when she didn’t want to. That she wouldn’t let her touch you doesn’t mean she doesn’t love you.”

“Maybe...” Tara said dubiously.

“Did she say or did anything to make you believe she didn’t want you by her side?” Dawn demanded to Tara.

Tara bit her lips and shook her head. “No, not exactly.”

“Did you guys talk or touch or anything since this morning? I saw her in your arms this morning,” Dawn continued, grinning when she saw
Tara starting to blush.

“She may have slept in my arms and we k-kind of kissed.”

“What?” Dawn squealed excitedly. “How many times? Who initiated it?”

Tara found herself grinning upon seeing how happy Dawn seemed to be. “I kissed her first but she responded. And it may have been a couple of times.”

Dawn smiled and wrapped an arm around Tara’s shoulders. “See? She wouldn’t have done that if there was anything between her and my sister. And, besides, the idea of them together is as silly as the idea of Willow being with Faith,” the teenager finished with a laugh.

“Willow is scared that you’re here only to even the score, because she took care of you when you couldn’t.” Dawn admitted nervously. “That’s not what it is, right?”

“Dawn, of course not, and you know it! I told you I would call her or come over to talk to her this week, didn’t I?” Tara admonished her. “Everything just got out of control.”

“Yeah,” Dawn whispered and rested her head on Tara’s shoulder. “I’m scared about tonight,” she confessed quietly.

Tara sighed and put her head against Dawn’s. “Me too, sweetie,” the witch whispered worriedly as she glanced at the time on the VCR.

‘Two hours.’


Last edited by Gaga01 on Fri May 27, 2011 7:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/20/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 6:22 am 
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20. Not one Much for the Timber
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DIBS!


Oh the angst and uncertainty!! Great job on building up the tension with a countdown to sunset. Couple that with Willow's confusion and Tara's jealousy and you have a whole host of problems with no time to solve any of them.

I'm interested to see exactly how they plan on containing Werewillow come sundown. Shackled in Buffy's basement? Tossed in Oz's old cage? Whatever they decide, it's really going to upset Tara.

Can't wait to see what you have in store for us!!

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Shelby - Racing The Rain (IN PROGRESS) / Baby Makes Three (IN PROGRESS) / The Santa Line / Everything She Does...Is Beautiful / Calfornia Grass

"Transform your pain. Release your past. And ... uh ... get over it."
~Willow, Where The Wild Things Are


Last edited by Finey_McFine on Mon May 23, 2011 5:34 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/20/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 6:36 am 
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5. Willowhand
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Location: Maryland
Damn it I thought I was going to get dibs on this. Stupid work making me do my job. Great update. I missed commenting on the last few but I'm really liking this story so far. Great idea with making Willow a werewolf. I never thought of that idea. You're really tugging at the heart strings though. Poor Willow. Poor Tara. I hope you make it all better soonish.

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Anya: I don't like the sound of this. They don't sound very ex-demon compatible.
Tara: Are you sure they're English? I thought English people were, um, gentler than uh... normal people.

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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/20/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 11:53 am 
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4. Extra Flamey
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Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 4:27 pm
Posts: 205
Location: Canada
I just caught up on this, and I have to say I absolutely love what you're doing with it so far! You have a creative plot twist with Werewillow, the angst and conflict of the Williw and Tara break up and reconnection, and a believable character development and depiction going on for everyone. I think you've really captured Willow, Tara and Buffy perfectly so far. Tara has her strength of canon that she developed through the break-up, but her insecurities still burn through occasionally, and I think that's key to her characterization here.

I'm really loving the Buffy/Willow friendship, too. I didn't really enjoy Buffy's canon character in season 6, and your changes and tweaks makes her a much more Buffy-esque character in my mind.

I'm a fan of the angst in general, and you're doing a spectacular job of keeping it effective and realistic.

Can't wait for more!

C.


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 Post subject: Re: When It Don't Come Easy 05/20/2011
PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 1:12 pm 
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10. Troll Hammer

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As always, they're tripping over their preconceptions every time they turn around. Saddening.

I can see Tara's points on neither liking the chains (plus Joyce's left-over chains probably aren't made for holding against werewolf strength *weg) nor Oz's old cell but seriously, I'd like to know what restraints she had in mind for WolfWillow.

I once saw a Wolfie Willow fic (I barely remember it, it was well over a decade ago, plus it was "Buffillow" slash.)

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