Buffy the Vampire Slayer
All characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer are a figment of your twisted imagination
A sad Xmas tale with a Shakespearian bent
Tara lay back on her bed, trying to relax and make herself comfortable. It wasn't easy, what with having to crane her neck to look at the clock every half an hour or so. The young witch was both bored and agitated. After so many years of abuse, locked inside her own mind and totally alone, to be so loved and to love so much was like some terribly addictive drug. But Willow was away, and Tara's craving for her lover's touch was getting under her skin. She looked at the little Christmas tree, decorated now with her customary fairy lights, and smiled. They were looking forward to their first Christmas together as a celebration of their love, happy to admit their indifference to the 'true' meaning of the holiday. Christmas was about smoochies and fine food and the ritual of going to Xander's to watch 'Charlie Brown's Christmas'. This year Willow and Xander's solitary Christmas habit would be shared with their respective lovers. Then the four of them would get a little drunk and play Christmas games. Like a regular family. Tara slept
'Mom, can you get that?' Buffered hollered, all eyes on the TV. Silence, except for the trilling phone.
'Mom, I'm trying to watch Dark Angel!'
Buffy sighed and went to answer the phone.
'Yo and a ho!' she said merrily.
'Buffy, it's Angel.'
She heard it in his voice, cracked and unstable. It chilled her blood.
'What's wrong, Angel?'
'I don't know how I can tell you this. There's been an accident. Willow.'
'I'm on my way..'
'Willow's dead, Buffy.' He fell silent, lost in grief.
'Angel?' Buffy's voice was a sob of disbelief.
'Cordy took Will shopping. There was a smash-up on the freeway. They died, Buffy. I-I only just heard.'
Buffy heard herself saying, 'I'm coming Angel.'
'Yeah.I think I need you here. But you have to tell the others. It has to be you.'
'Yeah?' Strangled with tears.
Buffy looked around Giles apartment at her gathered friends. Like so many scooby meetings before. Except..
Giles and Olivia, Xander and Anya, Tara.oh God, Tara. Buffy wrung her hands together.
'I'm afraid I have some very sad news. It's important that we're here together, we're all going to need each other very much over the coming weeks and months. Umm. This afternoon Willow and Cordelia were involved in a serious automobile accident.'
Buffy began to lose it, and her last words were in tears. 'And they were both killed.'
Through her tears, Buffy could see only the pale oval of Tara's face, broken and disbelieving.
Tara ran for the bathroom.
Xander lay flat on his back, staring up at the ceiling. His mind was unable to form concrete thoughts, just a dark well of pain and confusion. He was dimly aware of Anya's small body trying to console him. But nothing could.
Giles finally gave in to tears in the early hours of the morning. He hadn't cried since Jenny died, had thought he could never feel that bad again. But he did.
Tara had cried herself dry in Giles' bathroom. Now she lay in a tight ball in the darkness of her room, breathing raggedly. Everything was gone. Her happiness already seemed like a distant dream. At first she had been desperate, going over every possible means of undoing this horror. But there was nothing, no spell, no magic potion. Then she had tried to relive every last minute of their time together. And when that was over, she tried to console herself in the knowledge that their love would never, ever die. And that had finally brought her to the only possible conclusion. She got up off the bed and went and turned the Christmas tree lights on. Then she went to the cabinet where she kept all of her potions and magical ingredients, and from deep within she drew a vial of clear liquid.
'I love you.'
The silvery fluid trickled down her throat.
Willow groaned in pain as her whiplashed neck tormented her. It was miraculous that they had survived at all, let alone that she would be able to go home already.
The statuesque brunette caught sight of her friend as she crossed the waiting room.
'Willow! Oh my God you're hurt!'
The two young women embraced gingerly. Cordy touched Willow's neck brace gently. 'Ew, that's not what you asked Santa for. I see large lawsuits coming down the chimney.'
'I just want to go home.'
'Of course you do. Angel seems to have got the phone off the hook.'
A young doctor approached, a clipboard under his arm.
'Miss Bryant and Mrs King?'
'Miss Chase and Miss Rosenberg, actually.' Cordelia said caustically.
The man went white. 'Are you sure?'
'Of course we're sure!'
'Oh God, there's been a terrible mistake!'
Willow thanked Angel for dropping her off at the University, but all her thoughts were focused on sweet Tara. All the other scoobies had been alerted to the horrendous mistake the hospital had made in mixing up the identities of the freeway victims. But Tara had her phone of the hook.
Willow found her room open, the glow of the Christmas tree lights providing the only illumination. Tara lay on the bed in a beautiful white gown that Willow had not seen before. A strange peace descended over Willow. She knew that Tara was gone, and she knew what must be done. We each have our own paths we must follow. Willow stripped off her clothes and donned her own nightwear. Slipped onto the bed and took her love in her arms for the final time. Tara's eyes were closed, and she had never looked so beautiful. Willow stooped to kiss her, tasting the poison on her lips. It would be enough.
For the second time in as many days, Buffy faced the tragedy ravaged Slayerettes in Giles apartment. But this time they knew.
'Willow was more than just my best friend.' Buffy said. 'I loved her. I've come to realise that I was actually in love with her. I think we all were. Look into yourself and you'll know its true. Willow was the heart of us all. I can't promise that we'll get by without her. But we will try 'cos she is with us.'
Angel stepped up to join Buffy. 'I didn't know Tara. But I've never seen Willow so happy as the time she was with me. I believe she was meant to be Willow's soulmate in Eternity. They were in love unconditionally. And few of us can truly say we've experienced that.'
A cooling breeze began to whip through Giles' apartment. They all looked around, trying to trace its origin, but found none.
The lights in the room began to extinguish, 1 by 1, until darkness fell. Everyone felt rooted to the spot. The lights on Giles Christmas tree illuminated suddenly, bathing the room in an eerie light.
The large star on the top began to glow then, a beautiful incandescent red. The sorrow and the pain lifted from those gathered in the room like a veil. The scoobies would never be alone. And neither would Willow and Tara.