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Subject:A small moment of normal…
Time:06:43 pm
”Willow, I can’t. I can’t watch you like this anymore.”

“Tara, baby.” Her voice was pleading with me. I can still hear it clear as day. “I know we can work this…”

“No, we can’t,” my tone was flat and no amount of begging was going to make me change my mind. I couldn’t do it anymore. I needed something stable. Dawn needed something stable and Willow and I together…that was far from stable.

“I’m…” I sighed, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. Dawn’s known Willow a lot longer than she’s known me. I could pack my bags before Dawn gets home and I’ll find an apartment close by and come check on Dawn whenever I needed – or well knowing me I’d be here every day – to make sure things got done…

Taking a deep breath, I finally spoke. “It’s over.”

It felt like years ago, but it’s been nearly two months. Things didn’t go how I thought they would, Dawnie asked me to stay and Willow was the one that left. After that it was just the two of us, Anya and Xander spent more and more time away from us, I wasn’t even sure if they were in town anymore.

That was then, this is now, and I was doing what I have been doing for weeks now; looking after Dawn, worrying about Dawn and taking care of the house. Now that Dawn was the only living Summer’s the house was hers and I lived here to take care of her, I did it because I wanted to, not because I had to. I worry that she thinks that I feel stuck here; I don’t. To be honest, I do get lonely sometimes and I miss having someone to share little things with; but I know what has to be done and what doesn’t and the things I do, I do because I want to.

Dawn is family and you take care of family. Even if I get scared watching her spiral into darkness on a daily basis. I know it’s been hard for her, I know that things have been so far from normal that I don’t think any of us remember what it’s like.

Love and support is all that I can give her and she knows that I will always be there for her – come heaven or hell. I just had to hope that she leveled out before things got really bad, all I can do is support and guide. But that doesn’t keep me biting my tongue all the time, she wasn’t eighteen yet and she had to have some rules, even if we both didn’t like them.

I wasn’t sure what time Dawn came home, but I heard her sneak upstairs quietly. I didn’t want to crowd her or have her think I was restricting her or anything, it was a weekend and I knew she knew how to be safe. It didn’t stop me from worrying quietly though and I did plan to have a talk with her in the morning, I bought her a cell-phone with the money I got after I returned all of my books and resigned from UC Sunnydale, she needs to use it now and then.

*~*~*~*

The sun crept up through the windows and started to pull me out of my sleep, nightmare dreams filled with memories of my mother, some good and some I just wish I could escape.

I couldn’t dwell on myself right now; I had Dawn to look after.

Stretching slowly I crawled out of bed and made my way into the shower, washing my hair and turning the water hot to wake me up. I brushed my teeth and washed my face before padding into my room in my robe to find clothes. I found a simple baby-doll shirt and slipped it on before pulling a pair of old comfortable jeans from the dresser and pulling them on as well.

I brushed my hair out and kept it loose down my shoulders and back before making my way down stairs. Peaking in on Dawn she was curled up in bed sleeping, her face was peaceful and relaxed; it made me wish she could be like that when she was awake. We were too haunted for that to happen.

Humming softly I made my way down the stairs to make breakfast, deciding to make eggs and pancakes like I did every weekend. I reached the bottom of the stairs and heard movement in the living room, biting my lip I tensed up and started to make my way in there slowly, grabbing an umbrella for protection before walking over the threshold.

“What…” My eyes were wide when I spotted Spike sleeping soundly on the couch, his clothes rumpled but still on. I blinked a few times and watched him sleeping, wondering how and when – not to mention why – he was here in the house.

I knew that Willow uninvited him months ago before he left after Buffy…after. I knew that Dawn must have invited him in and that was ok with me, he might be a vampire but it was Spike and he would never hurt Dawn; ever.

Sighing I put down the umbrella and headed into the kitchen to make tea for myself like I did every morning. I had a cup before I started making breakfast and hopefully Dawn would be up before noon; but she was out late so I doubted it. If anything it would be Spike and I for breakfast, if he woke up sometime soon.

After I poured the water for my tea I reached into the back of the fridge and pulled a container of blood and pulled the lid off slowly before setting it into the microwave and reaching up for a mug.

Pulling the container out of the microwave, I poured the blood into a mug before heading quietly out to the living room.

Spike was still sleeping on the couch and I set the mug down on the table, pausing and looking down at him. I know that vampires don’t age but he looked older since I’ve last seen him, even though it wasn’t that long ago. I guess we’ve all changed, I know Dawn has and I have since…since everything.

I’m not sure what brought him back here but it was nice to see a friendly – or well, a kinder face – around here in Sunnydale again.

With a sigh I walked over to the window and pulled the second set of curtains to make sure the light would stay out. Glancing around the room I turned and headed back into the kitchen to make breakfast like I did every morning, no doubt eating alone again as well.

[Open for Spike, Dawnie later]
comments: leave me lying here Previous Entry Share Next Entry


sired1880spike
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Time:2006-04-17 11:39 pm (UTC)
When I woke up it was daylight. Not that there was much light in the room; I can just tell. Almost smell it, even indoors. The world is different in the sunlight. Doesn't belong to people like me.

For a minute I was confused about where I was. Oh, right. Dawn's sofa. I sat up and ran a hand through my hair, thinking about the previous night.

Bloody weird. It was so strange being back here. And the way Dawn and I had talked... God, that was strange. I'd been such a bastard. I felt sort of guilty about that, and also sort of not. The Bit was fucked up, that was clear. A savage part of me was a bit pleased that someone else besides me was suffering. And the... I dunno, more human part of me was pissed off with myself for being such an arsehole.

I wondered why Dawn hadn't let me sleep in Buffy's room. Then again, I'm not sure if I was her I would have liked it. It'd be a bit bloody creepy, I suppose. I wonder if Willow ever rebuilt the Bot. Was it lying upstairs in Buffy's room, quietly recharging? I hoped not. That ruddy machine did my head in, looking so much like her. I wished I'd never had it made. What an idiot I was.

I looked at the table and saw a cup of blood sitting there. Surprised I hadn't noticed it by the smell; must be cos my head was so full of thoughts. I picked it up and sipped it. Still warm. Someone must have microwaved it for me. Dawn? I doubted she would have wanted to after the nasty stuff I said to her. But would Tara really be that welcoming? I grimaced slightly, cos it was pig's blood, but come on, it wasn't like they'd keep human blood in the house. And it was breakfast.

I wandered in to the kitchen, wondering if I'd find Dawn there. Instead Tara was there at the stove. She'd kindly pulled the blinds, presumably so I wouldn't dust, which would certainly put a dampener on my visit.

"Er, 'lo there," I said, slightly awkwardly. "Thanks for breakfast," I added, nodding at the mug. I stayed in the doorway, not sure how she'd react to me.
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-04-18 12:38 am (UTC)
Things were quiet in the kitchen, save for the radio I had on low. I hummed softly as I moved around the kitchen, getting things ready for breakfast. Reaching over I took a sip of my second cup of tea before moving over to the sink to finish off the few dishes that were left from last night.

"Er, 'lo there...Thanks for breakfast,"

I heard his footsteps before he spoke, I paused for a moment before closing my eyes and taking a deep breath. "You're welcome." Licking my lips I looked at the closed curtain to the kitchen window. "It's really sunny out..." My voice was low and I gripped onto the sponge as I cleaned one of the last plates from the night before. "If you hurt her again Spike, if you make her cry like last time..." I let the threat hang in the air and I felt everything inside me shake. I didn't know I was going to say that, I wasn't even sure if I could do that but the idea of seeing Dawn hurt like that again...I couldn't watch it again. She wasn't the only one hurt by all this, nobody was uneffected by what happened with Glory, nobody.

"Welcome back, Spike." I turned and smiled at him, wiping the dishwater from my hands. "There's food if you want anything..."
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sired1880spike
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Time:2006-04-18 12:44 am (UTC)
"If you hurt her again Spike, if you make her cry like last time..."

I gaped slightly. Never heard Glinda say anything like that before. Guess the white witch has got a bit of brass to her, after all. She was threatening me! William the bloody! Course, she didn't know that my chip wasn't working and that if I wanted I could breakfast on her brains, but still. Took guts to say something like that.

She turned to me and put on a bright smile.

"There's food if you want anything," she said.

"I'll have one of those pancakes if you're giving them away," I said cheekily, looking into the pan and then slinging my leg over one of the stools at the breakfast bar. I looked her up and down. She looked different. Sadder, but stronger somehow. I wondered how I looked to her. Had I changed? Weird thing, not being able to see your own face.

I sipped my blood.

"Wasn't exactly my choice," I pointed out, "the making the Dawn cry thing, I mean. Seem to remember that your girlfriend had a lot to do with it. Her and that git Xander." I folded my arms. "I was right glad to look out for Dawn, but Willow and Xander said they could take care of her themselves. Well, I got a taste of how well that's worked out when I saw her in the Bronze last night." My jaw was clenched hard. "Not blaming you, pet, sounds like you do what you can, but those bastards..." I paused. "Sorry," I said. Not like me to apologise, but Tara doesn't seem like the kind of girl you should swear in front of.
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-04-18 01:38 am (UTC)
"I'll have one of those pancakes if you're giving them away,"

Nodding I smiled and went into the cabinet to pull out a plate for him, putting two pancakes and handing it to him along with a fork. "If you need anything let me know."

I busied myself around the kitchen a bit, putting the unused batter into the fridge till Dawn got up. I poured another cup of tea before sitting down and letting Spike's words sink in.

"Wasn't exactly my choice, the making the Dawn cry thing, I mean. Seem to remember that your girlfriend had a lot to do with it. Her and that git Xander. I was right glad to look out for Dawn, but Willow and Xander said they could take care of her themselves. Well, I got a taste of how well that's worked out when I saw her in the Bronze last night. Not blaming you, pet, sounds like you do what you can, but those bastards...Sorry,"

"Shouldn't be sorry for the truth, Spike," I admitted softly, picking at the pancake on my plate. "Everyone was hurting and..." I sighed heavily and bit my lip. "They meant well, but they thought selfishly and didn't look past their pain."

I looked down at my plate and took a few bites of my pancake before setting my fork down and looking over at Spike. He was different...I just couldn't figure out how. "I-I'm sorry about before...I just. There's so much hurt and we c-can't take anymore. None of us can." I paused and waited for him to look at me. "Are you here to stay?"
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sired1880spike
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Time:2006-04-18 01:43 am (UTC)
Tara is being surprisingly kind to me. Dunno why. Not that she was a mean bitch before, far from it. She was always a nice bird, though she never talked to me - or anyone - much. But I didn't expect her to be this nice. It hurts me a bit. I'd prefer it if she was nasty and then I could hate her along with the rest of them.

"Are you here to stay?"

"I dunno," I say uncomfortably. "It - I guess it depends on Dawn. And you, 'course," I say hastily. "I came back cos of her. But I dunno if she'll want me around, or if I can be any good for her now." I don't know why I'm telling her this. I don't know her at all. I try to change the subject. "Pancakes are good," I say, shovelling a forkful into my mouth. "Not had home cooked food in... Dunno when." I put down my fork. "I'm sorry, by the way," I add after a minute. "About Willow. I heard... enough from Dawn. I reckon it wasn't a surprise to you. Girl was always going to end up that way. But still, can't be nice." I reckon I owe her a bit of sympathy in exchange for the warm welcome. Least I can do, really.
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-04-18 02:22 am (UTC)
"Well, pancakes are always available here. Along with whatever else I cook." I smiled and took another bite of pancake before reaching over and taking a sip of my juice.

He mentioned Willow and I felt everything tense inside me. I took a few deep breaths and looked to the closed window. "It's ok, it...it was coming. We w-weren't blindsided like..." I cleared my throat and tucked my hair behind my ear. "It's still better, Dawn and I have been looking after each other."

I glanced over to him and noticed he was giving me a look. "I know, she's...she's changed, we all have. She's taken it hardest and...I know I'm not h-handling it well...But she needs me, I know that."

Things got quiet and I stood to clean off the plates. I stopped and looked over at him, my hands fiddling with a dishtowel. "I know she'd want you to stay, it's nice to have a f-friendly face around here...I wouldn't mind."
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sired1880spike
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Time:2006-04-20 12:12 am (UTC)
"It's ok, it...it was coming. We w-weren't blindsided like..."

My heart, dead and useless bloody piece of crap that it is, cramps when she says that. She doesn't even have to say her name. God. God. Is it always going to be this hard? I wish I had a drink. I need a drink. Bet Tara doesn't keep booze in the house, though. Wonder if Dawn has any? I cramp my fingers into my palms and try to listen to Tara.

"Dawn and I have been looking after each other."

Yeah, right. They've obviously been doing a bang up job of that. She tries to explain it to me, but I hardly hear her. The pain is rushing through my whole body now. Sometimes it just hits me like that. Grief.

"I know she'd want you to stay, it's nice to have a f-friendly face around here... I wouldn't mind."

I bark with laughter at that.

"Friendly? Yeah, right," I say. I take a cigarette and light it, breathing the smoke in hard. I don't care if Tara doesn't want me smoking in here. If I can't have booze, this will have to do. "Can't say the Bit and I had the friendliest of meetings last night," I explain. "I... It was weird, seeing her again. Seeing her like that. And I've changed, 'n all. Everything's changed," I finish softly.
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-04-28 06:59 am (UTC)
[Sorry! Sorry! Sorry! *facepalm*]

"Considering...you are a friendly face." I don't know why but I have always had a small soft spot for him, I've seen good in him. It's hard to see good in anyone or anything as of late...

Spike lit his cigarette and without a word I moved over to the stove and turned on the air vent, it would get rid of some of the smoke and smell. I wasn't about to tell him he couldn't smoke and with the sun out he was more than a bit stuck here.

I walked over to the dishwasher and turned it on, the quiet hum filling the room as I came over and sat near Spike, twisting a napkin in my fingers as we sat in silence.

"She's changed and you're right; we all have." My voice dropped as well as my gaze. I could feel his eyes on me and my mind started to catch up with something he said about his meeting with Dawn last night. "What...what happened with you and Dawn last night? Is? Is she ok?"
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sired1880spike
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Time:2006-05-05 03:19 pm (UTC)
I listened to the thrum of the dishwasher and looked at Tara roll a napkin between her fingers. There was something soothing about the domesticity of it all. Wasn't quite the same without Joyce, o'course, but I liked this kitchen. Almost made me feel like a grown up, which was amusing considering I had decades on anyone who'd ever lived here.

"What...what happened with you and Dawn last night? Is? Is she ok?"

I sighed, blowing smoke through my nose. Ash fell from the tip of my cigarette onto the counter. I rubbed it away with my thumb. Everything gets rubbed away.

"She's alright, I reckon. As alright as she has been lately, anyway, so far as I can tell." There's no condemnation in my voice. I don't reckon it's Tara's fault that Dawn's the way she is. "We just..." I shrug. "I dunno. I was mean to her. Couldn't help myself. Saw her... Well, you know how she looks now. I said a couple of nasty things. So did she." I sighed again. "I so wanted to see her, y'know? I missed her, those months I was away. But now I dunno if I've done the right thing, coming back." I spread my hands wide in a gesture of confusion. "No idea whether I can help her, or if I should even try."
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-07-14 11:04 pm (UTC)
I sighed softly and nodded, brushing my hair from my face as I looked around the room, remembering how it was months ago when it was filled with the people that loved each other and this unspoken support system that we relied on more than we knew then.

Turning back I looked over at Spike and started to reach my hand out before stopping and making my hands busy again with the napkin. "If you don't try then you'll never know and then it's another battle lost," I murmur softly. "I know that it's...it's not much or anything but I'm glad you came back. I know that even if she doesn't say it that she's glad too."

Chewing my bottom lip nervously I uncross and recross my legs, smoothing out my skirt and looking back up at him. "Maybe you're the right person for her to vent to, we talk but...but sometimes I don't think it's enough. I don't think I'm the right person for her to turn to. To be honest, I want to help her, I want to make it all workk but I just don't know sometimes, I don't know how else I can help her."
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sired1880spike
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Time:2006-07-17 07:41 pm (UTC)
I can see how worried Tara is. Almost instinctively I put a hand on her shoulder, a moment of comfort. I dunno that I've ever touched her before - 'cept when I punched her to prove she wasn't a demon. Simpler times.

"Maybe you're the right person for her to vent to, we talk but...but sometimes I don't think it's enough. I don't think I'm the right person for her to turn to. To be honest, I want to help her, I want to make it all workk but I just don't know sometimes, I don't know how else I can help her."

I laugh, a short, sad laugh.

"Wish I knew what to advise, pet, but I've never been very good with the advice. Funny thing is that I've lived longer'n you and been dead a hell of a lot longer, but I don't think I've got much wiser." I cross my arms. Angelus was always mocking me about that. You never learn, boy, he said when I found him once again up the hilt in Dru. I suppose I never do. I should just learn to not care about people... But I keep getting sucked back.

"I care about the Bit," I say. "I want to be here for her. But anyone can see that you're the most like a parent here. I'm... glad she's got you. Your head's on straight. Hope you don't mind me sayin', but Red and Xander weren't exactly the most sensible pair." I tilt my head to the side. "P'raps... We can be a team. Help each other out. Be a..." I almost say family, but I choke off the word. Any family I've ever had has ended up in death. "Team," I say instead, lamely. "I'll try to reach Dawn, if I can. Problem is that I don't even know if I can help myself."
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magick_goddess
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Time:2006-10-09 02:45 am (UTC)
Spike talks about his age and that it really doesn't matter how old you are to make you wise, and I get that. It's true in a way, I feel like I've grown more than my ears at times.

Shaking my head slightly, ridding myself of the suddenly deep thoughts I was having and turned my focus back to Spike.

"I care about the Bit, I want to be here for her. But anyone can see that you're the most like a parent here. I'm... glad she's got you. Your head's on straight. Hope you don't mind me sayin', but Red and Xander weren't exactly the most sensible pair."

It didn't take someone who knew all of us to know that Spike did care about Dawn and what happened to her. It was a comfort, especially now, to know that there was someone else on my side.

"P'raps... We can be a team. Help each other out. Be a... Team, I'll try to reach Dawn, if I can. Problem is that I don't even know if I can help myself."

A smile comes to my lips and I nod, feeling positive for the first time in a long time. "I'd...I'd really like that Spike. It will do Dawnie a lot of good. I think..." Looking down my voice lowers. "It might be g-good for all of us." I know I wouldn't mind having some support from someone now.
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A small moment of normal… - In your favourite darkness
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