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

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 Post subject: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:42 am 
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Ms. Moderator Fantastico
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Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 1:22 pm
Posts: 4177
Topics: 36
Location: Ireland
TITLE: Two For Joy

WRITER: Laragh

RATING: PG-13

DISCLAIMER: Willow, Tara and any other characters from the Buffy the Vampire Slayer franchise belong to Joss Whedon, FOX, ME and a whole host of other entities, none of which are me.

SUMMARY: Transform your pain. Release your past. And…uh…get over it.




Show me what I seek to see, through my eyes, so mote it be.




Willow woke up with a gasp; her last memory of falling backward.


She stared up at the ceiling as her breath caught up with her.


White.


Normal.


She blinked several times.


The spell mustn’t have worked.


Though it didn’t feel like she was flat on her back in her dorm room like she expected.


It didn’t even feel like her bed. This bed was big and ten times more comfortable than her dorm bed. And the pillow felt like it was made from an actual cloud.


Her head slowly turned and took in the room.


Okay.


Definitely not her dorm room.


Not normal.


Spell gone awry. Danger zone.


Or maybe she’d been knocked out and kidnapped?


Though her kidnappers had great taste in décor, she had to admit. Dark furniture, soft lighting, warm colors. Whosever bedroom she was in was very nice if a little bare. And she was…


…a little bare.


Her eyes widened in alarm as she peeked under the covers and found herself completely nude. As she looked down her hair fell into her face and down her shoulders, much longer than she’d had it in a long time. She grabbed the ends and stared at them like they were octopus tentacles, which they may as well have been such was the unfamiliar waves flowing over her palms.


“What the frilly heck is going on,” she whispered to the empty room.


Her eyes roved wildly around the room until she finally noticed a robe laying across the end of the bed. She quickly snatched it to throw around herself.


She felt unsteady as she stood, uneven on her feet like she wasn’t used to her own legs.


She went over to the closet, but one side was padlocked. Weird, but not exactly the weirdest thing to happen to her in the last few minutes.


A quick pull on the other door made it open but there was just empty hangers. A mirror on the door, too. That would do. She bent down to look in it and her eyes scrunched in surprise.


She was right about her hair; flowing past her shoulders but with bounce and volume that she’d never had time for before. Her eyes seemed like a darker green and her mouth looked thinner. Her cheekbones were more defined than she’d ever achieved without make-up. Her face had lines she didn’t recognize.


She was her but…not.


“Am I dreaming?” she said, touching her face and pushing it around as if it might suddenly distort back into the one she knew.


She tried pinching herself but that never really worked, so she kicked the door of the closet instead.


“Ow!” she yelped and grabbed her foot, bouncing around the floor as pain throbbed through it, “Okay, not dreaming. Going insane, possibly, but not dreaming.”


She quickly cased the room again but it didn’t help. She may as well have been in Timbuktu.


Oh god, she really hoped she wasn’t in Timbuktu.


She started to creep over toward the door, sitting ajar. Her kidnappers were either stupid or non-existent because they weren't working very hard at keeping her confined. But then how did she get here?


She poked her head out cautiously.


It appeared she was in…a house. A normal house with guest rooms and a linen closet. A big bathroom. She could see a huge tub in it, the kind with the faucet in the middle.


For two, Willow thought and resisted the urge to see how deep it was until she learned where on earth she was, At least I hope it’s Earth.


She moved slowly toward the stairs and peered down them. A foyer. Still, nothing that screamed illicit sex slave den or decrepit evil lair. Unless there was a demon that liked lilac-grey wool carpet.


It wouldn’t be the most unusual thing she’d learned about a demon in her time.


She found herself tiptoeing down the stairs and craning her neck to take in everything she could.


At the base of the stairs, she paused, looking through the window cut-outs either side of the front door.


The street looked nice; normal. Well-kept. Residential. Some couples were out for a walk, some kids were playing on their bikes. Two magpies glided through the blue sky in perfect sync with each other. It was picturesque.


Not Africa. Likely still Earth.


It could even be a quiet street in Sunnydale, except it wasn’t. Willow reckoned she must have run away from assorted evil down every street in Sunnydale at least twice, and she didn’t recognize this street, so wherever she was, it wasn’t there.


For some reason, she didn’t feel like running now.


Everything was so still wherever she was. Peaceful, even. It was just in the air.


That elusive feeling that she dreamed about sometimes when she was trying to wash the nth demon goo stain out of her favorite yellow sweater at 2 am because she wouldn’t have a chance between classes or when the next demon needed vanquishing.


Those moments when she didn’t tie every piece of her self-worth to being a slayer sidekick.


What she’d only started to feel recently; how she felt when she closed Tara’s dorm room door with both of them safely inside it.


Her heart started to beat a little faster.


Where was she?


And what if she never saw Tara again?


And what did it mean that that was her first thought when facing her possible mortality?


She looked left and saw a sparsely decorated living room with boxes piled against the walls like someone was in the middle of moving.


She moved in for a closer look. The boxes were open but there was little that was identifying. No photos for her to look at or anything that might reveal where she was.


The TV was huge though. The biggest she’d ever seen. And so flat.


The coffee table had some books on it; a notebook with three different colored pens attached, a book of constellations and a book of Sappho poems.


Great selection, Willow thought, but useless to her current predicament.


Beside the books she spotted what she thought was a laptop sitting next to them — she recognized the logo — but when she picked it up it was just a screen.


“What the—”


She turned it over again as if the keyboard might fall out, but suddenly her ears picked up a rustling sound and she nearly dropped the funny half-laptop.


She jumped on the spot at the unexpectedness of other noise. Her heart really did start to pound.


The first sign she wasn’t alone.


She looked around for a weapon but the best she could find was an umbrella leaning against the front door. She grabbed it with both hands and silently slid over to the open doorway. She peered in and felt her breath catch in her throat.


There was a woman standing in the kitchen with her back to Willow, her robe small and short and showing off every perfect curve as she swayed and poured coffee. Sun shined in on her honey-colored hair and lit it up like a halo.


Willow dropped the umbrella in awe of her form, which alerted the woman to her presence.


Tara turned around and smiled across the room, holding a mug between both of her hands. The sun hit her face in the same way and only heightened the angel effect.


“Good morning baby,” she greeted with a warm, crooked smile, “Were you jumping on the bed again up there? I know you love it, but you realize if you break it, we won’t have it anymore, right? We can’t afford a bed that expensive twice. And don’t deny it. I heard you hopping.”


Whatever had caught in Willow’s throat nearly came up spluttering.


“Tara?!”


If nothing else, Willow knew that smile. That slope of perfection which had invaded her dreams of late.


She didn’t know those curves, not yet, but that was Tara. That was definitely Tara.


Tara but…


Whoa.


Gorgeous. Sultry. Confident.


Different.


Older.


Oh no.


Older.


That’s why Willow looked different too.


She was older.


Her spell hadn’t failed.


It had worked too well.


“Shit,” she whispered, her eyes darting around the kitchen again as it settled in that she was in her kitchen in her house with—


“Our new drivers’ licenses arrived,” Tara interrupted Willow’s internal panicking, sliding an open envelope across the island to her and smiling sweetly from above her mug, “You were worried for nothing. You’re as cute as ever in your photo.”


Barely able to tear her gaze away from Tara, Willow lifted the license from the envelope.


She did look kind of hot actually. But more importantly…


“Ohio,” she read quietly.


“It’s official now,” Tara replied in a light, teasing tone that she accompanied with a wink, “I’ll make you a batch of buckeyes if you’re lucky.”


Willow felt her stomach somersault at that wink.


“You okay sweetie?” Tara asked, her brow creasing slightly with concern, “Need your first coffee?”


Willow could only nod, still stunned.


“Um, yes.”


“Thought so,” Tara smiled and turned to pour a fresh cup.


Willow’s eyes immediately dropped to the silk robe hugging Tara’s ass and every single inch of her skin flushed.


She reached out to grab the mug as soon as Tara offered it and drank back a gulp. It took multiple clearings of her throat to get it down.


“No good?” Tara asked, frowning into her own cup, which tasted normal.


Willow patted her own chest a few times.


“‘Lot strong than a mocha.”


“Mocha?” Tara laughed and it was a serene, free laugh that Willow had never heard from her before, “You haven’t had a mocha in years. Are you feeling old honey? Is it because of the new license?”


Willow smiled weakly.


“Definitely feeling…a lot older.”


Tara reached across and took both of Willow’s hands in her grasp. Willow felt a tingle rise through her fingers, spread over her chest and then shoot abruptly down between her legs. She took her hands back in surprise, but Tara didn’t seem to mind and walked over to the fridge.


“Hey, go grab a shower.”


“A shower?” Willow asked, eyes squinting in confusion.


“You’re not slacking off today just because it’s the weekend,” Tara replied pointedly as she threw a blueberry into her mouth and took out the milk, “We need to finish unpacking. We’ve been living out of boxes for too long. So go shower and I’ll make us all breakfast. Saturday special.”


“Oh,” Willow replied, reaching a hand behind her neck nervously, “Right. Shower. I’ll go… shower. Now. Okay.”


She turned and headed back out of the kitchen, stalling in the doorway to stare at Tara for another moment, then again at the foot of the stairs, a bit confused.


Well, what did she do now?


Showered, she guessed.


At least that would buy some time while she figured out her way out of this. She’d always done some of her best thinking in the shower.


She walked back up the carpeted steps on the stairs and passed by a room she hadn’t spotted before with a big laminated smiley face pressed onto it. Curious, she reached out and closed her hand on the knob but before she could open it her bladder suddenly throbbed insistently.


Her hand fell away and she hurried down to the bathroom; grateful she knew where it was.


As she sat on the toilet she found it oddly comforting that no matter what, the call of nature will always be there. Made things seem kind of…normal.


Kind of.


Because this was still nuts.


She finished up and walked to the big tub. She looked in and she had been right. Definitely built for two.


The shower, too. It was a big round one with a curtain that went the whole way and was raised off the floor so the whole place didn’t flood when the water was on.


I guess I do a lot of bathing…with Tara…who I’m with. Really with.


Her mind was swimming with the intensity of this new information. She had an image of her in Tara in that tub and it was almost too much.


So intimate.


It was like she was intruding.


But how could she intrude on herself?


She quickly turned her back and tugged the shower curtain to the side. She hung her robe over the rail and stepped under the nozzle. The spray hit her hard and startled her but she kind of needed the slap in the face to pull her thoughts back to the present.


…or the past.


…or the future?


This was confusing.


She placed her palms flat on the walls and let the water flow down her back.


Deep breaths.


Just think.


With the water hitting her head right below her ears, she didn’t hear anyone approaching until suddenly arms were sliding around her waist and pulling her back into a soft, warm body.


“Pancake batter need to rest…” Willow heard Tara whisper in her ear as her mouth dropped open in shock and her body flooded with all kinds of wild sensations.


She felt Tara kiss her neck and a moan left her mouth involuntarily.


It’s not as if she hadn’t thought about this, about Tara touching her. In fact, she often thought about it exactly like this, in the shower…


…but feeling it was so much more than she could have imagined.


Hands slid over her wet breasts and her nipples grew stiff like she’d never known them to before. She gasped as without her even feeling the shift in position, there was a nibble on her bottom and then she felt her hips being spun around. She looked down in time to see Tara’s head moving between her legs.


“Whoa!” she shrieked.


Too much.


Way too much.


Although as she looked down at Tara on her knees like that, she thought she could be convinced pretty quickly.


“Sssh,” Tara whispered, looking up with a smirk on her lips and a twinkle in her eye, “Do you need a little warming up first?”


She stood up from her knees, curved her hand around Willow’s hip and pulled her in close to kiss her.


Willow’s heart was hammering but she couldn’t help but respond. Tara’s lips always had that effect on her.


Tara slowly pulled away from the kiss and Willow’s eyes flickered open to find those deep blues staring back.


There was a moment of silence.


“Shampoo is out,” Tara said slowly, her gaze firmly fixed on Willow, “Could you grab a new one from the cabinet?”


Willow’s chest was still heaving; her mind clouded with every stray thought of Tara and her body, ironically making her lose the ability to think at all.


“Uh…yeah…” she replied dumbly, moving on auto-pilot to follow orders.


She stepped out from the shower and instantly heard the spray turn off. Before she could turn back to question it, she found herself being flung belly-first onto the cold tile, which almost made her hiss as it touched her scorching body.


Tara grabbed Willow’s arms and twisted them around her back while sitting on her buttocks to keep her down.


“What is this? Possession? Body double? …Vampire? Tell me!”


Willow groaned in pain. When did Tara get so strong and why did Willow like it so much?


“What?” she spat eventually as the words processed, “No! You think I'm that skanky pointy-toothed thing? Hello! Was just in that super-sunny kitchen with you! Skin isn’t burning!”


At least not from being undead.


From a certain part of her being very much not undead, maybe.


She could hear Tara breathing heavy on top of her and honestly, it wasn’t helping with the very conflicting sensations.


“Who are you?”


“I'm Willow!” Willow replied insistently, “Just Willow! Non-demonic, non-possessed, normal old reliable-dog-geyser-person Willow!”


She twisted in the hopes of being freed but Tara had a surprisingly firm hold.


“Did a demon create another ferula-gemina?”


“A who-what?” Willow asked, face scrunching up.


There was silence as something settled over Tara.


“It's not who or what, is it?” she said, slowly regulating her breathing, “It's when.”


She rolled Willow onto her back in another impressively dexterous manipulation of their bodies. Willow stared up at Tara’s naked body, still wet and straddling her and blood began to rush between her ears. It also reminded her of her own nakedness and reached up to cover each of her breasts with a hand.


“When are you from?” Tara asked, stony-faced.


Willow realized the jig was up.


“…freshman year?” she supplied with an awkward smile.


Air flew out of Tara’s nostrils angrily.


“Oh my god. Get up,” she instructed, pulling Willow up and thrusting her robe at her while tying her own one back around her body.


Willow barely had time to tie the sash before Tara was yanking her back across the hall to the bedroom she’d woken up in. She pushed Willow onto the bed.


“Sit. Now.”


Willow sat diligently. She’d never seen Tara bossy like this.


She liked it too.


She watched Tara pace for a moment before turning back to Willow.


“Have we even met yet? Do you know who I am?”


Willow nodded.


“Yes.”


Tara crossed her arms firmly over her chest.


“Have we kissed?”


Willow nodded again; shyly, happily.


“Yeah, we…yeah.”


Tara reached up to rub her jawline.


“Have we done more than kiss?”


“Well we nearly just did,” Willow replied with a hint of smug in her tone that made Tara’s eyes flame and not in a good way.


“By the way, it's not very nice to let someone touch you when they think you're someone else.”


“You were the one getting all hands-y!” Willow defended, “And besides, I’m not…someone else. I'm…me.”


Both of Tara’s hands lifted to her temples.


“When Buffy asked us to guard this Hellmouth to make sure it didn't open again I thought okay, we may have to deal with the occasional misplaced vampire or break up a kitten poker ring or two…I didn't think my teenage girlfriend was going to take over my wife's body.”


“Wife??” Willow exclaimed, looking down and becoming immediately aware of a ring on her finger, which she started to twist around it, “Wow.”


She looked up sharply.


“Wait…how long has it…?”


Tara rested her back against the closet, needing the support.


“Ten years.”


“Ten years,” Willow said reverently, before continuing excitedly, “Does that mean it's legal now?”


Tara nodded slowly. She was still mad but Willow’s face had been so happy at the idea; it softened her for a moment.


“Getting there,” she replied, looking down at her own ring, “It was for a stint in California…we took advantage. Had a big day out in San Francisco. Buffy, Dawn, and Xander…even Mr. Giles came over from England.”


Willow frowned.


“Who’s Dawn?”


Tara waved a hand.


This was too much.


“Don’t ask.”


Willow ran through that guest list again in her mind.


“Did Xander finally stop thinking with his little brain and dump the demon?”


Tara’s face fell.


“Anya couldn't be there…” she said somberly, looking down, “We both wish she could have.”


Willow wasn’t sure what that meant but she didn’t care to give too much time to talking about her anyway.


“How’d you know I was…me?”


“Your kiss was familiar but…wrong,” Tara answered, then abruptly stood up straight, “Where did you send my Willow?”


Willow smiled unsurely.


“I…don’t know.”


“You don’t know?!” Tara exclaimed angrily, frightening Willow who’d never seen Tara so much as raise her voice an octave.


“I just wanted to…to see!” Willow protested, biting her lip nervously, “I didn’t think I’d actually BE here! I thought it would be like when we did the nether realms spell; I’d just…hover.”


“I’m guessing you didn’t make sure you had an anchor this time,” Tara surmised flatly.


“Well, it’s not like any of those wanna-blessed-bes would be any use,” Willow replied haughtily, then looked up at Tara, “Plus, y’know…you’re the only one I want to do spells with anymore.”


Tara shook her head.


“You didn’t ask her.”


“Her?” Willow questioned, lifting an eyebrow.


“Your Tara,” Tara clarified.


Willow felt oddly hurt about the differentiation.


“I couldn’t! I was asking about…about us! Our future, I…!”


Tara sighed deeply.


“What spell was it?”


“A little bit of this, a little bit of that…” Willow replied cagily, though looked contrite and explained further when Tara gave her a look, “I modified that soul removal spell you helped me finally track down to be a soul…supplemental spell and I combined it with connecting to your inner eye so that it revealed what was to come for me. Oh, and I drew on those taglarin mythic rites you’ve been teaching me. I thought I could use a little karmic kudos to enhance things.”


Tara was shaking at the list of dangers she could count off the top of her head but she didn’t have time for that.


“What did you use?”


Willow shrugged.


“Just a little twice-blessed sage, eye of newt, you know…the standard stuff.”


Tara crossed her arms over her chest again.


“You traveled through time on twice-blessed sage?”


Willow splayed her hands over her thighs and looked squarely down at them.


“…and your Doll’s Eye crystal.”


“I told you to use it for small spells only,” Tara snapped, throwing her hands in the air and then covering her face with them, “What am I doing? We’ve had this argument already.”


Willow looked up.


“We have?”


“I have,” Tara corrected and looked at Willow sternly, “Multiple times.”


“Okay wow,” Willow replied, feeling pierced in the heart at the way Tara was looking at her, “Apparently you hate me in the future.”


Tara closed her eyes for a moment and when she opened them again, they were glassy.


“I don't hate you, I love you. I love you so damn much,” she said, her voice quivering at the end, “I just know you so much better than you know yourself right now.”


Both of their hearts broke for a moment, for different and yet ultimately the same reason.


“I just wanted to know…” Willow started.


“What?” Tara prompted, staring right at her.


It took everything Willow had to not break that gaze.


“If I could ever be enough for you.”


Tara rubbed her hand over her mouth and finally came to sit beside Willow.


“The issue was never you being enough…it was you believing you were enough.”


Willow looked at her with a mixture of confusion and expectation. Tara sighed, though softer this time.


“I guess I can tell you since you’re going to forget anyway,” she said, sandwiching Willow’s hands in hers without even really realizing she was doing it, “You were always enough…for me, for Buffy, for everyone. You trying to be more did nothing but hurt us all.”


She reached out and cupped Willow’s cheek.


“The day you accepted you were enough was the day you became the Willow you’ve taken over. The Willow who I love. Who I married.”


Willow’s eyes grew dark with hurt.


“You didn’t love me before?”


Tara swallowed noticeably.


“Endlessly,” she said with a lump in her throat, “But I learned endlessly does not mean unconditionally.”


Willow’s brow began to slowly furrow.


“Wait…what did you mean…'forget'?


Tara’s hand dropped and she stood up again, tensing her hands and releasing them, getting herself back in control.


“We’re sending you home and then you’re going to do a forgetting spell on yourself,” she replied matter-of-factly.


Willow threw up her hands.


“But…but why?” she asked, looking at Tara as if she was crazy, “It’s obvious we’ve had some problems…just tell me. Just tell me and let me fix them before they happen and make you happy. I mean we have this amazing opportunity and—”


“No, Willow,” Tara interrupted firmly, “Everything has to happen exactly as it did before.”


Willow shook her head.


“I don’t get it. I can stop from hurting you, I can stop—”


“Do you think it’s fair to enter a relationship with all of this foreknowledge?” Tara cut her off but could already see the patented ‘I’m about to wiggle out of this’ face Willow was pulling and how could she be surprised?


“I just think—”


Tara put up a hand. There was only one way to end this.


“Okay. Let me make this easy.”


She marched out and Willow wasn’t sure whether to follow or not, but Tara returned moments later and answered her question.


Except she wasn’t alone.


“This is why.”


She ran a hand over the head of the little girl in her arms, no more than eighteen months old with silky red hair in fuzzy pink footy pajamas and nuzzling a sleepy face into Tara’s neck.


Willow leaned back, startled.


“Uh…who is that…and where did she come from?”


“The nursery,” Tara replied succinctly, gently moving her hand down in a patting motion on the baby’s back, “Or my womb depending on how far back you’re asking.”


Willow gnawed on her inner lip.


Damn, future Tara was sassy.


But Willow didn’t really have time to ponder another new surprise to the woman she’d been falling for because all she could do was stare at that baby as she began to fuss.


“You’re still sleepy, baby. That’s okay. Go back to sleep,” Tara comforted, “I’m sorry Mama woke you. It’s okay Joysie, go back to sleep.”


Willow slowly approached, peering closely at the baby. The baby started to reach out a pudgy arm but it dropped again.


“Mom-mee?” she asked with sleepy confusion, looking up to Tara with a pout that was oh-so-Willow.


“Close your eyes, Joy,” Tara encouraged and lowered her voice to sing softly, “A dream is a wish your heart makes when you're fast asleep…”


Willow looked between them, mesmerized by Tara’s voice and how it soothed the baby.


The baby that she could see without a shadow of a doubt came from her genes. It was surreal to see her own expressions reflected back on such a little face. Especially as she drifted off to sleep with a half-smile that was Tara through-and-through.


“She’s ours, isn’t she? Like, ours-ours. From both of us,” Willow asked, awed as she looked up to meet Tara’s eyes with that same thrilling burst she had when she'd first seen the ring, “Can they do that now?”


Tara looked down at the sleeping infant, whose thumb tip had made its way into her mouth.


“Magical mishap.”


Willow frowned.


“What’d I do?”


Tara couldn’t help but laugh.


“It was my fault actually…didn't double check the provenance on a statue I bought from eBay…”


“You bought magical supplies on eBay?” Willow asked, her face moving from surprise to pout, “Why didn't I ever think of that?”


Tara nodded softly.


“A trick Anya taught me.”


Willow pouted even more.


“Guess she had to be useful for something,” she muttered, but her voice softened again as she watched the baby, “What happened?”


Tara looked ahead, replaying it all in her mind for a moment.


“You had a cold that wouldn’t shift and we had…an event coming up so we thought we'd ask for some divine intervention…safely of course,” she added with some side-eye, “We forgot about it, honestly. Your cold cleared up with some rest and matzo ball soup and TLC and the statue was just in a bag under our bed.”


She raised her eyebrows.


“Turns out 'vitality and 'fertility' translate very similarly. A few weeks later I was throwing up all the time. We thought we'd passed your illness from you to me, but… no. You'd just knocked me up.”


Willow blushed and grinned all at once.


“Just like that?”


Tara shook her head.


“No. There were…circumstances. We have a ritual cleansing bath at least once a week to keep grounded and that night…well, we’d had one that night. It was a full moon, at the witching hour and our…hearts and bodies were as open to each other as they had ever been. A perfect, inviting recipe. And we made her…unintentionally but with nothing but love.”


Willow had to sit down again on the bed, imagining the kind of advanced magic they must have been playing with to create a whole new life. They must be so powerful. And their will must have been so strong.


“Were we already married?” she asked, immediately worried that Tara only married her because she had to.


“Yes,” Tara nodded wryly, “For about eight hours.”


Willow smiled as she realized what Tara was saying.


“Talk about a honeymoon baby.”


Tara’s head threw back and laughed, though she kept it quiet so as not to wake the baby again.


“You said the exact same thing once we got over the shock.”


Willow looked on at Tara holding their child.


She felt the enormity of that prospect.


Their child.


And all she felt was oodles and oodles of love.


And she didn’t even know how she knew that’s what it was, because she’d certainly never felt anything like it before.


But she knew.


“All of this should be terrifying me…but it isn't. I-I want this. I want you. I want her. I love her. I can feel it, for…for both of you.”


Tara came and sat with Willow again, careful to hold the baby to her with one arm while the other rested on Willow’s knee.


“Then you're going to go home and forget and you're going to have to earn us.”


She squeezed gently.


“You're going to go home and you're going to be brave enough to love me…her… back.”


Willow felt her eyes get wet.


“I-I have you now. Why can’t I stay?”


Tara exhaled softly.


“Because I don't belong to you. Your Tara does. And we need our Willow back.”


Willow blinked away a tear. She looked from Tara to the baby.


“Why'd we name her Joy?”


“Because she is,” Tara answered, kissing the baby’s head.


Willow just nodded.


She agreed.


“And Joysie? It feels more than just a nickname…it feels special.”


Tara smiled sadly.


“It's short for Joy Christina Emanuella.”


“That's a mouthful,” Willow said with raised eyebrows.


None were names she imagined she’d give a daughter.


“You thought you were very clever getting the last two initials to fit with the first name like that,” Tara replied fondly, "You wanted to brag to the gang but we were all just crying."


Willow tried to understand but remained bewildered.


“Huh?”


“Nothing,” Tara replied softly. That was too much to explain. And if Willow knew about Joyce…that was too much of an unpredictable curve ball.


Willow raised a hand above Joysie’s head and looked for Tara’s permission. Tara nodded and Willow tenderly stroked the little strands of hair that so closely matched her own.


“I have to forget…because if I don’t…we don’t walk the same path…and we don’t get her. Even if I do everything you told me about…any misstep…and it might not be her.”


Tara nodded and Willow nodded back solemnly.


“Okay.”


Tara’s body slumped in relief.


“I’m going to go put her back down.”


Tara brought Joy back to her crib and set her down. She popped the pacifier in her mouth and gave her a long kiss on the forehead before leaving again, trying to push away the nerves.


When she returned to the room, Willow was sitting pensively so Tara left her alone to process. She unlocked the magic closet and began to gather some things.


She made a sacred circle and lined it with what was needed. Thank the gods and goddesses they kept such a good supply these days.


For good measure, she got out the old Doll’s Eye crystal and placed it inside. Once she’d lined up some pillows she went over to kneel in front of Willow.


“It's time,” she said softly.


Willow met Tara’s eye, concerned.


“What about your Willow?”


Tara’s jaw tensed for a moment and she exhaled.


“I don't know where she is but I'll find her.”


Willow was still frowning.


“How do you know?”


Tara offered a small smile.


“Because we always find each other.”


Willow just nodded. She stood up and moved into the circle as Tara guided her.


“Can I ask one last question?”


Tara nodded and Willow lifted her hands and let them fall again.


“How the heck do we end up in Ohio?”


Tara smiled softly.


“By way of a coven in England and a lot of other places all over the world. Fighting with Buffy, wherever we were needed. Until we had a sudden need to settle down.”


She patted her stomach indicatively.


“I wanted to give birth in the coven and we stayed there for a while. Buffy suggested here after some of her girls closed the Hellmouth because it’s safe for Joysie but we can still do good work. A closed Hellmouth has a lot of energy that still needs to be displaced. Soil that can be harvested. Witches that can be taught how to safely utilize magic, the way we were in the coven.”


Willow looked around the circle nervously.


“Are you going to be my anchor?”


Tara nodded.


“Yes. But it’s not like the nether realms spell.”


Willow blushed. She may have been hoping just a little…


“What’s it like?”


“Well, you’re still in my Willow’s body,” Tara explained, “Over the years we’ve attuned to each other. We don’t have to work the anchoring thing anymore. We just…are. We ground each other. Always, without end.”


Willow brought her knees up and wrapped her arms around them.


“You’re sure this will work?”


“A lot surer than your hodge-podge spell,” Tara replied pointedly.


“Harsh,” Willow replied, scowling a little.


Tara took Willow’s hand.


“You think balance is like a weighing scales. This for that. That if you take something from both columns then they’re balanced again. But it isn’t. It’s about making sure everything is at peace with one another,” she said in an unequivocally sure voice which softened tenderly, “That’s something we learn together.”


She linked their fingers for a moment so their palms brushed.


“You’ll only really learn how to fight the good fight, Willow, when you stop fighting yourself.”


She held on tight.


“So trust me. Okay?”


Willow nodded.


“I do.”


Tara gazed deep into Willow’s eyes.


“And I’m trusting you too.”


Willow nodded again, keeping the stare.


“I promise, Tara.”


Tara tried to release all the tension she was feeling. She wasn’t successful, but she had a job to do. She’d just have to do it with tight shoulders.


“And I swear if you show up in another ten years…”


Willow ducked her head and laughed, then raised it again.


“Can I ask one really last thing?”


Tara got an affectionate look on her face that told Willow she was indulged often with this kind of thing. She lifted her hand under the ends of her hair and let it spring on her palm.


“How’d my hair get this bouncy?”


Tara smiled fondly.


“You started using volumizer because Joy wouldn’t stop eating your hair. The taste deterred her. And you grew it out because, well…” she dragged her teeth along the corner of her lip seductively, “I like to pull it a little.”


Willow’s eyes grew as wide as Tara had ever seen them, and that was saying something after their decade together.


“Okay then. I… think I’m ready.”


To learn all of these things about Tara again.


Tara reached for a little sprig she’d left to the side and closed the Lethe’s bramble into Willow’s hand.


She nodded and Willow nodded back.


Tara stood and drew the curtains. She came back over and kneeled reverently as she lit the candle sitting at the base of the circle. The room grew from dim to dark with just the flickering flame lighting up the area.


Tara looked at this Willow, at those eyes one last time with both tenderness and melancholy.


“Goodbye Willow. Be brave.”


She leaned in and kissed her for one sweet moment, pulling back with a whisper.


“Revertere.”


She blew out the candle.


A circle of light rose from the floor and Willow fell back onto the cushions, her back arching.


Tara’s instinct was to jump in to help or comfort but she knew she had to stay where she was. To get Willow home and to bring her Willow back, the circle had to complete.


Finally, there was a silent, almost sonic boom. The circle disappeared and light flew into the room as an invisible force threw the curtains open and let a ray of sun hit the circle. Willow’s body was still for a terrifying moment in that burst of light then she gasped a huge breath of air.


The sun passed by and then everything was at peace once again.


Tara scurried over and grabbed Willow by the cheeks, planting her mouth on her and kissing her fervently.


Willow’s head reeled and her eyes rolled back into her head, but it still only took a second or two for her to respond. They were Tara’s lips, after all. You couldn’t just resist them.


Willow’s body went from rigid to limp and she released a breath into Tara’s mouth. Tara pulled away slowly, pulling Willow’s lip with her and finally rested their foreheads together.


“There's my girl,” she breathed.


Willow’s eyes glanced around the room.


“…what happened?”


The last thing she remembered was falling asleep in post-coital bliss.


“Just you being the precocious brat I fell in love with,” Tara answered and helped pull Willow up into a sitting position.


Willow’s eyes settled on Tara.


“…oh. Okay.”


Tara let out a deflated breath and Willow waited patiently for her to tell her what was going on.


A few rushed lines in, Tara’s eyes suddenly widened and she jumped up.


“Joy!”


Willow sat there in a daze, processing the snippets of what she’d been told for the minute or so it took Tara to return. The color was back in her cheeks as she held their little girl, awake now and twirling Tara’s hair in her hand.


It only took Willow a split second to piece together why Tara had panicked like that.


“Oh god,” she said as the weight of the consequences hit her and she jumped up to stride over to them, “Is she okay? Is she—”


“Her?” Tara asked.


Joy reached out to Willow with no hesitation.


“Mom-mee!”


“Yeah, she’s her,” Tara continued, happily passing her over to Willow, who bounced her in her arms.


“How’s my little girl? Huh? How’s my baby? Mommy loves you.”


She stopped for a moment to look at Tara.


“Hey, I know you talked about unpacking today but do you think it could wait? I kinda feel like I need to lie down and I think you might too.”


Tara just laughed. Of course Willow would use this as an excuse not to unpack.


But truthfully, unpacking was the furthest thing from her mind. The boxes would be there later. So would the pancake mix. They hadn’t had breakfast for dinner in a while. She had no intention of doing anything but hugging her girls for a very long time.


Joy started to smack her lips together.


“And it looks like she’s hungry,” Willow said, giving her a last big hug and squeeze before handing her off to Tara.


They sat back on the bed together with the soft pillows at their backs and Joy happily chomping on Tara’s breast.


When they had settled and had a little family cuddle, Willow wrapped her arm around them both and looked at Tara.


“Tell me the story?”


Tara rested her head on Willow’s shoulder and started again, giving her all of the details.


Willow cycled through any and all emotion but by the time Tara had finished, she couldn’t stop laughing.


“So wait, wait…you’ve gone through this entire thing, this whole drama…in that skimpy little robe that I bought you?” she asked, almost crying through the laughter as she let the silk run through her fingers, “And…and you tackled her naked after trying to get busy in the shower?”


She swiped at her eye.


“I’m touched you knew me by my kiss but…oh man…poor confused baby gay Willow mustn’t have known what hit her.”


Tara smirked a little.


“I did use that cuff maneuver you like to restrain her.”


Willow returned the smirk.


“I bet she squirmed.”


Tara ran her hand down Willow’s thigh.


“I’m used to you squirming.”


She squeezed and Willow leaned in to kiss Tara softly. She sighed when she pulled away, coming down for a moment.


“God, I wish I knew…I wish I could remember when.”


Tara shrugged one shoulder.


“Sometime between when we first kissed and when we first made love.”


“You didn’t ask a date?” Willow pouted.


“It wasn’t high on my priority list,” Tara replied with a ‘really?’ look.


Willow sat back and crossed her hands behind her head.


“Okay, so it was sometime in those few weeks…”


“We’d done the nether realms spell,” Tara supplied, knowing it would bug her wife if she couldn’t figure this out.


“Narrows it done a bit more,” Willow nodded as she wracked her brain, only to be flooded with a sudden memory, “Wait. Wait, I…”


Her eyes grew bright as she replayed the memories in her mind and realized they all fit together.


“Yes…yes, I remember this one day…night, actually…waking up on my bed and I couldn’t remember going to sleep. But when I woke up I had this feeling…like I had to see you. To kiss you. Right that second; it was so overwhelming. It was like all of these feelings I’d been trying to quash…they just bloomed. I couldn’t stop it. It was powerful.”


She stopped, eyes moving back and forth.


“It was the night,” she continued excitedly, placing her dates in her mind, “The night before…”


She paused, a little somber and shared a gentle smile with Tara, taking her hand to squeeze.


“The night before we first talked about getting Miss Kitty.”


“Right,” Tara replied with a soft nod, appreciating what wasn’t being said, “That night. I’m sorry, I don’t remember it much.”


“I just remember…I kept thinking over those whole few crazy days after…with everything that was happening and how confused I was. But it was there, always, deep in my gut…that if I could just push myself to be brave enough to love you back…that it was going to be magic.”


Tara blinked several times but almost immediately she saw Willow’s face fall.


“What is it?” she asked softly.


Willow looked away.


“Cleaning out my dorm when the semester ended a couple of weeks later…I found burned Lethe's bramble under my bed. I thought Buffy must have brought it back from somewhere. I put it away to research it later and found…found that spell.”


Tara felt her heart clench.


Willow’s eyes shut tight and a tear escaped.


“Tara, I’m so sorry.”


“Hey…” Tara said gently, maneuvering to hold Willow without waking Joy who was snoring with a mouth around her boob.


Willow brought her knees to her chest and wrapped her arm around them, as her younger self had done earlier.


“I’m sorry for everything. I’m sorry about the spells and the magic and…and that day. When you and Buffy were hurt by that asshole and I was so consumed I just…left you. If Dawn hadn’t found you and called an ambulance…and if Xander hadn’t found me to tell me you were alive. I would…I would’ve…I was so close.”


She paused to take in a breath.


“I know this is ancient history, I just…this really brings it all back. I was so lost after all of that stuff and when you showed up at the coven and told me we were in this together…that was when I finally realized that you actually loved me…me…and not the magic. If I could have just realized that sooner…”


She hiccupped in a breath.


“I’m so sorry I’ve made this road so hard for us.”


Tara brought Willow into an embrace and kissed her forehead.


“Willow, my love…all roads lead to here.”


She closed her arm around Willow, holding the three of them in a circle.


“And here is exactly where I want to be.”





Willow woke up with a gasp; her last memory of…


She had no idea, actually.


Huh. That was weird. She must really have been out cold.


She sat up. Her dorm was empty.


Buffy still out with Riley, undoubtedly and Willow was here alone, with a faint smell of burning.


The assholes next door were probably smoking again.


Willow didn’t really care though. She didn’t care about any of it. Her mind was focused and it was focused on one thing. Or rather, one person.


She jumped out of bed and quickly checked her appearance in the mirror. She ran a hand over her hair and frowned a bit at its flatness before quickly grabbing the closest sweater; a grey one with a flower design along one side. It was late, it would be cold.


She left the room in darkness and skipped across campus to Tara’s building. When she got to Tara’s room, she knocked three times and waited politely, if not a little impatiently.


She just…god, she just had to see her.


After at least four agonizing seconds, the door opened. They both stared at each other grinning for a moment before registering the need to move.


“Willow. H-Hi,” Tara greeted, stepping aside to let Willow in, “It’s so nice to see you.”


“Hope it’s not a bad time,” Willow said, walking in and turning to face Tara as she closed the door, “I haven't seen you since the whole Lowell House…unpleasantness.”


Tara’s face contorted uncomfortably and she pulled her sleeve down over her wrist.


“Willow, I h-have to apologize—”


“No, you don’t,” Willow shook her head, somehow sure that their little encounter on the stairs was nothing despite remembering feeling quite insecure about it the last time it had crossed her mind, “It was the house. I know. I do.”


Tara’s face flooded with relief.


“I’m so glad. Because I’d never ever think you were…” she stopped herself and looked down, smiling awkwardly and tucking a piece of hair behind her own ear, “Um, did you want to do a spell? I'm a-all out of candles.”


Willow shook her head and reached out to take Tara’s hand.


“No. I just wanted to see you.”


She took a step forward and both of their breaths quickened. Tara felt her stomach tighten and ran her fingers down Willow’s arm.


“I… like your sweater.”


“You do?” Willow asked, looking down on it for a moment, then back up at Tara, “You can borrow it sometime if you want. It’d look great on you.”


She discreetly licked her lips.


“Everything looks great on you.”


Tara blushed furiously but the smile almost broke off of her face. They both sat together at the foot of Tara’s bed and Willow began playing with Tara’s fingers.


“I wanted to say about, um, everything you’ve been helping with. On the Scooby front. It’s so great to have you fighting the good fight alongside me. I mean, um, us,” she correctly shyly, “And I wanted to see if you wanted to come to a Scooby meeting tomorrow? Y'know, officially?”


Tara inhaled a soft breath.


“Officially?”


“Yeah, as an official Scooby,” Willow replied brightly.


Somehow, more smile managed to reside on Tara’s face.


“I'd love that.”


Willow smiled and nodded.


“Well, it’s late. I should, um, go. I said I’d help out with patrol,” she said, biting her lip for a moment as her eyes dropped and drank in Tara’s body, noticing the swell of her breasts peeking out of her top and the bulge of her thigh and how her hip curved so perfectly, “I'll, uh…I’ll come collect you in the morning?”


“That would be great,” Tara nodded eagerly.


Willow stood up and Tara stood with her. Willow turned her body so that it was almost touching Tara’s.


She placed a palm on Tara’s shoulder and let their gazes settle on each other. Her hand slid behind Tara’s neck and she leaned in, pressing their lips together. Tara’s hands settled on Willow’s hips and Willow threw her other arm around Tara’s neck.


Tara’s hands rose up Willow’s back and Willow was immediately floored with the intensity of her body’s response to Tara holding her like that; tight on her back and tight to her body.


“Tara, I…” she breathed, stopping herself just short but only just.


“Yeah?” Tara replied softly.


Willow slowly swallowed, feeling her tongue heavy in her mouth.


“I can’t wait to see you tomorrow.”


“Me too,” Tara smiled patiently.


Willow headed towards the door and Tara held it open for her.


“Be brave.”


Willow stopped; a flash of recognition on her face.


“Sorry?”


“Be brave,” Tara repeated, then further clarified, “On patrol. I know you always are.”


She smiled bashfully and Willow nodded slowly.


“I will. I’ll be brave.”


She looked up and down the hall, then leaned in again and stole another smooch.


Tara ducked her head as those lips spread on her face and waved until she closed the door between them.


With her back against the door, Willow touched her lips and smiled.


Tara liked her sweater.


She’d have to wear it more often.


On the other side of the door, Tara went to her closet to pick out what to wear to such an important invitation.


She held her favorite purple tie-dye shirt up in front of her mirror and for the first time in forever didn't shy away at the reflection looking back.


She liked that smile on her face.


She liked even more who put it there.


And Willow had asked her to an official Scooby meeting, not just as a tagalong. She wasn’t sure she felt like one yet or if she even ever would, but this was a big step and she was so ready to take it.


She wandered back to her bed and looked around, feeling a little lonely from Willow’s absence.


She’d only been here a few minutes but her presence had lit up the room.


Lit up Tara.


Tara chastised herself for expecting too much.


Willow was such a cool monster fighter; she couldn't be here all the time.


But Tara didn’t know how long they had. At most, until her next birthday. If nothing happened before that, if Willow didn’t get bored of her or if he…


Tara shook her head of that thought.


She went to her desk to retrieve one of the magic books she'd begun hoarding. At least that was something she could try to control.


Her hand paused on the cover of her book and she looked back over her shoulder in the mirror.


Maybe she could make this happiness last. Maybe she could even make Willow happy along the way.


She remembered Willow’s smile. She looked at her own smile. It dawned on her that they matched.


She touched her lips.


I wonder if Willow likes cats?

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:14 pm 
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AAAAAAaaaaaaaaahhhh!!

Oh gosh, it's been ages since I squealed like this at a fic! I missed this feeling so very much. Your story was such an absolute and utter joy and such incredibly good timing in the year of our lord 2019, having come back to W/T and Buffy again recently.

Wow, okay. First of all, sweet premise, but executed masterfully. A story like this is usually much too saccharine and unrealistic for my taste and I tend to Nope out of them pretty fast. But you struck a fantastic balance with Willow's voice and enough hints to keep the reader going. And Tara. Oh gosh, your Tara. My heart is so full. She's perfect. Her sweetness and strength, intuition and sharp perception, sass and patience. I laughed and I damn near teared up.

Lines that punched me in the gut:
    “Then you're going to go home and forget and you're going to have to earn us.”
YES! Fuck yes. I love Willow with all my heart, but babygirl had a lot of flaws to work through and I never get tired of hearing that recognized, not only by fandom but more importantly by Tara. To hear her get to say these lines to Willow is extremely cathartic.

    “You’ll only really learn how to fight the good fight, Willow, when you stop fighting yourself.”

These is such a beautiful, succinct summary of Willow Rosenberg, I'm kicking myself for not writing it myself :P
    "So trust me. Okay?”
    Willow nodded.
    “I do.”
Such a sweet echo of that moment in 'Who Are You?' before the Nether Realms spell.
    “Cleaning out my dorm when the semester ended a couple of weeks later…I found burned Lethe's bramble under my bed. I thought Buffy must have brought it back from somewhere. I put it away to research it later and found…found that spell.”

    Tara felt her heart clench.

    Willow’s eyes shut tight and a tear escaped.

    “Tara, I’m so sorry.”
The way you connected this was absolutely exquisite, I don't think I've seen something in fic be sewn into canon so seamlessly and perfectly. This was where I actually gasped out loud and had to clap a hand over my mouth.
    “Willow, my love…all roads lead to here.”
Wise, darling Tara. She reminds me so much of one of my other favorite fic-Tara's (in LipKandy's Tempus Fugit S7), but older and more mature. God, what a line. You've made it really hard to find another way to say the same thing, it's superb.

Thank you for this, Laragh. I'm going to be returning to this gem often.

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:24 pm 
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Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
AAAAAAaaaaaaaaahhhh!!

Oh gosh, it's been ages since I squealed like this at a fic! I missed this feeling so very much. Your story was such an absolute and utter joy and such incredibly good timing in the year of our lord 2019, having come back to W/T and Buffy again recently.


It's always so nice to hear someone has found their way back! Welcome back!!

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
Wow, okay. First of all, sweet premise, but executed masterfully. A story like this is usually much too saccharine and unrealistic for my taste and I tend to Nope out of them pretty fast. But you struck a fantastic balance with Willow's voice and enough hints to keep the reader going. And Tara. Oh gosh, your Tara. My heart is so full. She's perfect. Her sweetness and strength, intuition and sharp perception, sass and patience. I laughed and I damn near teared up.


I can definitely be guilty of overdoing the saccharine so it's very nice to hear you found this balanced. I always felt (apart from the obvious) Tara not getting to say her piece was one of the biggest betrayals the show did for her. People talk about season 4 having Tara be a sitting duck for Willow's development but season 6 exploited this way too much IMO

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
Lines that punched me in the gut:
“Then you're going to go home and forget and you're going to have to earn us.” YES! Fuck yes. I love Willow with all my heart, but babygirl had a lot of flaws to work through and I never get tired of hearing that recognized, not only by fandom but more importantly by Tara. To hear her get to say these lines to Willow is extremely cathartic.


Thank you so much because that's exactly how I feel!

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:

“You’ll only really learn how to fight the good fight, Willow, when you stop fighting yourself.”

These is such a beautiful, succinct summary of Willow Rosenberg, I'm kicking myself for not writing it myself :P


You are too kind.

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
"So trust me. Okay?”
Willow nodded.
“I do.”

Such a sweet echo of that moment in 'Who Are You?' before the Nether Realms spell.


Ironically, I feel it would have been that spell that inspired Willow to try this one!

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
“Cleaning out my dorm when the semester ended a couple of weeks later…I found burned Lethe's bramble under my bed. I thought Buffy must have brought it back from somewhere. I put it away to research it later and found…found that spell.”

Tara felt her heart clench.

Willow’s eyes shut tight and a tear escaped.

“Tara, I’m so sorry.”


The way you connected this was absolutely exquisite, I don't think I've seen something in fic be sewn into canon so seamlessly and perfectly. This was where I actually gasped out loud and had to clap a hand over my mouth.


I just...that's stunning to me.

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
“Willow, my love…all roads lead to here.”
Wise, darling Tara. She reminds me so much of one of my other favorite fic-Tara's (in LipKandy's Tempus Fugit S7), but older and more mature. God, what a line. You've made it really hard to find another way to say the same thing, it's superb.


Mind blown at even being midly compared to that fic and writer...definitely one of the very best in the fandom.

Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
Thank you for this, Laragh. I'm going to be returning to this gem often.


I'm so very touched you enjoyed this so much. Thank you so much for reading.

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:16 pm 
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Laragh this was a joy to read. What a lovely surprise to check into the site and have a fully formed story waiting for me. I'm a fan of the Confidentials and this writing is just as good. What a great idea for a story and so well executed. Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:42 am 
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NorthernLass wrote:
Laragh this was a joy to read. What a lovely surprise to check into the site and have a fully formed story waiting for me. I'm a fan of the Confidentials and this writing is just as good. What a great idea for a story and so well executed. Thank you.


Thank you so much, your words mean a lot to me!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:04 pm 
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Absolutely awesome. Can't wait to read more of your stories.

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2019 8:10 am 
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zampsa19752001 wrote:
Absolutely awesome. Can't wait to read more of your stories.


Thank you so much! I have another, longer fic in the works that I hope to finish up in the next few months!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:30 am 
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You know, if this story were a pupper I met at the dog run, I'd be giving it tasty treats without asking you. Also all the ear scritches.


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2019 2:59 pm 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
You know, if this story were a pupper I met at the dog run, I'd be giving it tasty treats without asking you. Also all the ear scritches.


This story accepts the tasty treat of your comment and thanks you with a wet nose in the face!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2019 9:01 pm 
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Laragh that was just so lovely. Both future and past Tara's were so completely the Tara we know and love. This was precious. Thank you!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 3:59 am 
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shirrey wrote:
Laragh that was just so lovely. Both future and past Tara's were so completely the Tara we know and love. This was precious. Thank you!


Thank you so much :)

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:32 pm 
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Aww...my JMT...what a sweet little one shot. I remember you saying once that you didn’t do stories about magic because you felt you couldn’t do them justice. Well I say, piffle! Because you did a great job with this one.

At first, I felt bad that Willow wasn’t going to remember anything, I was hoping maybe she could spare Tara some unnecessary heartache. Of course, I realized, about the same time as Willow that nothing could change. All roads lead to here.

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 10:48 am 
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Finey_McFine wrote:
Aww...my JMT...what a sweet little one shot. I remember you saying once that you didn’t do stories about magic because you felt you couldn’t do them justice. Well I say, piffle! Because you did a great job with this one.


Aww, JMT! Thank you! I'm always wary of canon because there's so much I didn't watch but this was a brain worm that wouldn't go away.

Quote:
At first, I felt bad that Willow wasn’t going to remember anything, I was hoping maybe she could spare Tara some unnecessary heartache. Of course, I realized, about the same time as Willow that nothing could change. All roads lead to here.


It is bittersweet, but I think ultimately healing, which was the entire point really.

Thanks for your feedback :)

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:01 pm 
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Hey there, and sorry I'm replying late :brr (I know technically that's the 'it's cold' smiley, but it looks appropriately sheepish to me as well... anyway). I did actually read this as soon as it was posted - and it was a great trip. The description of Tara being 'mature' really stood out, and rested over the whole story for me - not just her, but the story as a whole. Even time-displaced Willow, despite being the 'not yet mature' one in the scenario, wasn't childish or clueless, just... not yet with the benefit of all the life experience her older self has. (I feel like a lot of young adult tv and film could take that lesson to heart.) That brush with maturity for young Willow - this may be the Trekkie in me talking, I love predestination paradoxes - maybe even though she didn't keep the memories of what happened, some understanding did settle inside her, and just help to nudge her in the right direction even when things were at their worst - not to say anything changed, but maybe this was how it always was. (Speaking of, very deft handling of the 'unpleasantness' of season six, to get our gals through it without just erasing events.)

I liked too that the story didn't remain solely on Willow - it feels like it could've, but the extra perspectives outside of what young Willow experienced really made a huge difference, made the future wholly real in its own right, rather than just 'an experience Willow had'. I think that helped offset the loss of Willow's memory of the events, and that it meant all the struggles she and Tara are going to have to face are still going to happen - because we got to see their future (Joy in particular of course, but also that reality as a whole) as a tangible thing, not just a glimpse Willow had of what might be. Contrasted to how a jump-forward time travel story could be simplified to just 'Willow goes forward, sees hot lady Tara, has to go back without memories, but it'll be okay in the end', that choice to keep showing the future in its own right, and link it back not just to young Willow but young Tara, felt like a huge win in terms of how the story turned out. :applause

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2019 12:34 pm 
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Artemis wrote:
Hey there, and sorry I'm replying late :brr (I know technically that's the 'it's cold' smiley, but it looks appropriately sheepish to me as well... anyway). I did actually read this as soon as it was posted - and it was a great trip.


That's okay! I often marinade on things for a while or like to read them again a little apart to see what new things I pick up.

Quote:
The description of Tara being 'mature' really stood out, and rested over the whole story for me - not just her, but the story as a whole. Even time-displaced Willow, despite being the 'not yet mature' one in the scenario, wasn't childish or clueless, just... not yet with the benefit of all the life experience her older self has. (I feel like a lot of young adult tv and film could take that lesson to heart.) That brush with maturity for young Willow - this may be the Trekkie in me talking, I love predestination paradoxes - maybe even though she didn't keep the memories of what happened, some understanding did settle inside her, and just help to nudge her in the right direction even when things were at their worst - not to say anything changed, but maybe this was how it always was. (Speaking of, very deft handling of the 'unpleasantness' of season six, to get our gals through it without just erasing events.)


This was exactly how I wanted this to come across, that it had always been this way and in fact is because of it that they end up exactly where they're meant to be.

Quote:
I liked too that the story didn't remain solely on Willow - it feels like it could've, but the extra perspectives outside of what young Willow experienced really made a huge difference, made the future wholly real in its own right, rather than just 'an experience Willow had'. I think that helped offset the loss of Willow's memory of the events, and that it meant all the struggles she and Tara are going to have to face are still going to happen - because we got to see their future (Joy in particular of course, but also that reality as a whole) as a tangible thing, not just a glimpse Willow had of what might be. Contrasted to how a jump-forward time travel story could be simplified to just 'Willow goes forward, sees hot lady Tara, has to go back without memories, but it'll be okay in the end', that choice to keep showing the future in its own right, and link it back not just to young Willow but young Tara, felt like a huge win in terms of how the story turned out. :applause


Thanks so much for your considerate feedback, it really makes me feel like I achieved what I set out, and especially coming from you, the master of weiving Willow and Tara into worlds and timelines and universes afar. Thanks so much for reading!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 12:46 am 
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I LOVED this one-shot. I generally love all your writings. It’s been awhile since I have read them. I love the idea that they accidentally create a baby. Are you the one who wrote this into existence? So glad to see you are still in the forum. It seems that a lot of the “old timers” have disappeared. Well, thanks for writing.
-Taranwillow4ever

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:15 pm 
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No, but on a serious note, I thought the characterisation of the two Willows and of Tara was very well done. And it was a very neat execution of the temporal paradox.


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:39 am 
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taranwillow4ever wrote:
I LOVED this one-shot. I generally love all your writings. It’s been awhile since I have read them. I love the idea that they accidentally create a baby. Are you the one who wrote this into existence? So glad to see you are still in the forum. It seems that a lot of the “old timers” have disappeared. Well, thanks for writing.
-Taranwillow4ever


It's been a while since I wrote posted anything! I also love the idea of them accidentally creating a baby. I've been obsessed with how I could do it for years and this just happened to make it work without getting too bogged down in the details (I'm definitely not the first to do it though, Creation Myth has done it most famously)

Unfortunately, a lot of people have fallen out of fandom, or never realized we came back after all the glitches of a few years ago or moved on to pastures new but as long as this board stands tall in this corner of the internet, I'll be here :)

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:41 am 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
No, but on a serious note, I thought the characterisation of the two Willows and of Tara was very well done. And it was a very neat execution of the temporal paradox.


Thank you so much! :blush :)

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:39 pm 
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:bigwave I reread this wonderful story a few days ago and realized I didn't comment on it before. So let me tell you now how much I loved it (better late than never, right?).
I loved your portrayal of mature, wise Tara and of young, "inquisitive minds want to know and magic is a great tool"-Willow. I was glad to read that although older Willow is a wife, mother and responsible, matured witch now she still jumps like a little kid on their new bed, showing that in spite of all she's been through she kept a part of the childlike innocence I so loved in the Willow of the early seasons of the show. And I loved to witness the moment at the end of the story in which young Tara allows herself to hope for the first time that her relationship with Willow could really last.

Rereading the other comments and your replies I perked up at this:
Quote:
I have another, longer fic in the works that I hope to finish up in the next few months!


So, a few months have passed since then...is there any chance that you'll start posting your new story soon?
I'd be thrilled to read more about the wonderful big family of the confidential world or our beloved florist and her biologist of the love-series. If it's another story in the canon-verse or something totally different starring our beloved couple I would love it too, I'm sure, because you are such a wonderful writer! :bow


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Thu Aug 08, 2019 7:08 am 
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Will's redemption wrote:
:bigwave I reread this wonderful story a few days ago and realized I didn't comment on it before. So let me tell you now how much I loved it (better late than never, right?).


Thank you so much! Feedback is accepted at all times and at all hours here :)

Quote:
I loved your portrayal of mature, wise Tara and of young, "inquisitive minds want to know and magic is a great tool"-Willow. I was glad to read that although older Willow is a wife, mother and responsible, matured witch now she still jumps like a little kid on their new bed, showing that in spite of all she's been through she kept a part of the childlike innocence I so loved in the Willow of the early seasons of the show. And I loved to witness the moment at the end of the story in which young Tara allows herself to hope for the first time that her relationship with Willow could really last.


I'm so glad this played out for you how I pictured it in my head. The sort of interconnectedness and roots of their relationship still strong even after being strained and hacked at and new roots being laid down. I guess what I really wanted was for all the crap they went through to have meaning. In reality, sometimes shit just happens but in fanfic, I can do whatever I want :kdevil

Quote:
Rereading the other comments and your replies I perked up at this:

So, a few months have passed since then...is there any chance that you'll start posting your new story soon?
I'd be thrilled to read more about the wonderful big family of the confidential world or our beloved florist and her biologist of the love-series. If it's another story in the canon-verse or something totally different starring our beloved couple I would love it too, I'm sure, because you are such a wonderful writer! :bow


I will be posting it soon! It's in the very final stages of editing (a few chapters left to send to my beta). It is a whole new verse, though now I've finished it up I've been working a little in the confidential verse again :) Thank you so much for your feedback, it was delightful to get an unexpected comment on this when I woke up this morning!

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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:19 am 
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I'm looking forward to your new AU-story and also thrilled that we might get some news from the confidential-verse in the not too distant future! :bounce :eatme :dumbo


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 11:18 am 
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Definitely agree with the above comment. Love, absolutely love the confidential series. I reread this and it was just as fun and rounded the second time round.


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 Post subject: Re: One-Shot: Two For Joy [PG-13]
PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:05 pm 
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Will's redemption wrote:
I'm looking forward to your new AU-story and also thrilled that we might get some news from the confidential-verse in the not too distant future! :bounce :eatme :dumbo


NorthernLass wrote:
Definitely agree with the above comment. Love, absolutely love the confidential series. I reread this and it was just as fun and rounded the second time round.


I'm hopeful that by the time I've finished telling the new one, the next confidential!verse fic will be ready or almost ready to go :)

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