Kelsey (kwritten) wrote,

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[fic] finding a balance

fic: finding a balance
rating: PG
characters: Tara/Buffy (Anya, Giles, Joyce, Dawn, OFC, OMC)
word count: 900
summary: au set in season 4 - with Willow, Oz, Cordy, Xander, Angel, and Giles gone - Buffy has to find a way to start college and not die
for: aaronlisa, who wanted Buffy, picking up the pieces, college, and AU in femslash_minis round 108

[drummers make good rebounds, don't they?]Willow goes to Oxford (because of course she does) and Oz follows her (because that’s where genius couples who are genius go to be geniuses together).

Xander goes on a roadtrip to find himself (because of course he does) and he ends up finding a girl with fake blonde hair and fake nails and a fake tan whose name is either Bitsy or Betty and he’s in love and now they live in Los Vegas together (her mother says he’ll be home by December, but the wedding photos look so … intimate… Buffy doesn’t think he’ll be coming up for air before next March at the latest).

Cordelia goes to Los Angeles to be a famous actress – and she probably will be (because wouldn’t that be just perfect).

Giles takes Olivia on a tour of the Western seaboard and sends postcards occasionally (with entirely unhelpful and unsubtle hints that she should finish reading the stack of books he left behind as a summer-crash-course in Slayers, as if she hasn’t been living it for the past three years) but doesn’t make it back in time to help her move into the dorms the way he said he would.

Angel leaves with a whirl of his coat (probably) because he’s being noble and sacrificial or something (because of course he is) (she’s seriously considering dating a drummer in a band this fall because she hears drummers are notoriously shallow and simple and generally bad news and that sounds like something she can handle right now) (she can’t).

And so Buffy Summers starts college alone.

The first week, a group of vampires fake her death and steal all her stuff (which mostly just pisses her off). The second week, Dawn gets kidnapped by a gang of slug demons and her mom refuses to pay for the dry-cleaning bill, since Buffy was supposed to be watching Dawn that night anyway. The third week, she figures out that her roommate is a demon and in the ensuing aftermath, gets a single and feels even more alone, but less grouchy. The fifth week, Xander’s pet demon Anya breezes back into town, buys the local Magic Shop and starts sending Buffy daily updates about the underworld dealings. The eighth week, one of Anya’s old flames shows up in town and turns out to be an ex-Watcher-in-Training, now rogue-vigilante. Which mostly just means that Buffy finally has someone to help her with patrolling in the evenings. And while Sam (Samantha – but don’t you dare call her that) doesn’t really get on with Giles, she laughs at Buffy’s jokes and holds her own in a fight (buys donuts and never eats the last jelly-filled-one), so Buffy isn’t complaining.

In the eighth week of the first semester Buffy receives a care package from Oz and Willow in England and starts crying in the middle of the third floor of the library on the east side of campus. Because Anya isn’t Willow and Sam isn’t Willow and Xander still isn’t back and drummers are somehow really hard to woo when you are a Slayer and a freshman and midterms are kicking her ass so she cries goddamnit.

And a girl with large brown eyes and soft blonde hair sits down next to her with a crooked smile and a latte, “I think you’re freaking everyone out.”

“Yeah well, they can mind their own business.”

“It’s just that it’s midterms for everyone and once one person starts crying up here, it catches like smallpox and the next thing you know…”

Just then a girl across the room gives out a little shriek before running towards the exit, her face in her hands and the unmistakable sound of sobbing coming from her blurred form.

Buffy watches with wide-eyed horror. “Oh my god,” she takes the latte and slurps down on it, though she really shouldn’t have coffee this late, “I just cursed the third floor.”

The girl laughs softly, “Well, it had to be someone, right?”

“I’m Buffy by the way, generally a curse-breaker and not a curse-creator.”

“Tara. Nice to meet you.”

“Thanks for the latte.”

“You owe me.”

Later, in the Silence, Buffy reaches out her hand in the dark and finds Tara’s fits into her own as if they were made for each other. They beat back the demons and Buffy screams because it’s what she was born to do and Tara fights the monsters back because it’s what she has chosen to do.

And in the aftermath of that scream, when they kiss for the first time, Buffy feels for the first time as though she really could be the princess in the fairy tale, instead of always coming home covered in slime – not much a knight, but always a bit of a warrior.

“An Amazon,” Tara will tease her over a history textbook, their legs intertwined on the bed while Sam plays with a kitten on the floor in the corner. “A warrior princess. You can be both you know?”

It’s a novel concept, but Tara is helping her carve out a way to find a balance.

(Eventually Tara finds them a drummer – he’s misplaced his band after they all turned into something icky and mostly dead and it’s a good thing Buffy doesn’t want him as a rebound guy anymore because he’s kinda gay, but he does take up being research-guy with relish.

And only sometimes eats the last jelly donut.)

{{I think I want to live in this au ...}}
Tags: fic happens here, fic: btvs, fic: femmeslash, series: balance
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