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Title: Five Times They Don’t Make It (And One Time They Do)
Creator: drizzlydaze
Rating: PG
Setting: Post-series
Word count: 2147
Prompt: The course of true love never did run smooth.
A/N: They take turns shooting themselves in the foot.

I

They survive the LA showdown. Senior Partners rained hell, they stopped it. Great heroes, Champions, the lot of them. So there’s celebration, team hug and all that sunshiny rainbow stuff good guys do after they (inevitably) win, and then it’s business as usual. The fight never ends, after all.

Except it’s not (business as usual, that is), and it has (you know, the fight).

Because the big man, Angel, is a man now. He signed it away, and that meant some kind of twisty double reward for being all self-sacrificing and noble-like. (Spike thinks he knows the real reason. The PTB have another souled up vampire Champ to string along now, so they can spare a little charity and toss Angel a bone. Angel privately agrees.) The fight’s ended for him, not like he can do much as a puny human with no brains.

Not Wesley-smart. Not Fred-smart. Not Willow-smart, Angel corrects with a glare, but I do have brains.

He’s a bit useful on the demon identifying side, but he’s retired (a consultant, Angel corrects, and Spike admits that is a little more accurate). Anyway, the important bit is that he can’t fight.

Buffy agrees.

She’s overprotective as she’s prone to be over humans and the ones she loves. He tries to do some patrolling, but a few centuries of skill in a superhuman form does not adapt well to regular human speed and strength. He humbly accepts this and takes a backseat. Number one vamp now a sidekick. He’s not used to it. But he adapts. They live happily ever after.

She doesn’t know he’s alive.

Spike wants to keep it that way, thank you very much. Can’t stand watching them. Can’t stand knowing. Can’t stand it if she knew too.

He fights the fight in LA, and everything’s business as usual except now he’s the number one vamp in the gang.

II

He’s alive. She learned it from Angel one sleepy summer afternoon, with the sun high in the sky and them holding hands as she always dreamed and being happy and—Alive, Angel said.

I know you’re alive, she laughed. It’s everything we ever—

Spike. He’s alive—not like me, but… He’s in LA.

Now she stands there, glaring down Gunn and Gwen and Illyria, tapping her foot, arms crossed. Just waiting. Coiled up spring, wound up toy, coffee jittery. Waiting. For Spike. Till he comes. Not moving.

You are unreasonable, Illyria says. Incomprehensible. You tossed your two suitors around when they were both half breeds, but now relinquish your human toy for what you are designed to destroy. You continue this tiresome juggling routine even when you believe to have decided on a superior option. She does not specify what the superior option is.

Buffy ignores her. She’s been getting good at that, keeping her anger down. Tap tap tap.

The doors swing open. “I smelled the weirdest thing,” Spike begins, tracking mud through the hotel floor. Then he stops dead. “Huh.”

Gunn and Gwen tug Illyria away, and the three disappear up the stairs. Have fun, kids, Gunn calls out.

ldquo;So it’s true.” She walks towards him. He does not move, fixed in place. She tries to sound steely, to look steely, but she’s pretty sure she’s failing. He drinks her in, like he’s the one who thought her dead. “You’re really…” She lifts a hand to his face and moves it towards him infinitesimally—then she lets it drop down and lets out a shuddery breath. She really should punch him. She doesn’t. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“At first? Physically couldn’t. Then I got wrapped up in all this stuff, LA demons.” He lets out a small disbelieving laugh. “Too busy, bloody classic excuse. But true. Then after the battle… you got Angel back,” he seems to be struggling here, “and I figured he would say or you’d find out somehow, so I just… let it lie.” It sounds like a lie.

“Happily ever after,” she says. She’s sure Spike can hear her heart racing, see her thoughts written across her face.

“Yeah.”

“No,” she says, shaking her head. “We split.”

“Oh?” His tone is careful, but his eyes fill with wonder and hope. She’s surprised by how much restraint he has.

“Yeah.”

There’s an anticipatory silence that neither of them fill. She thinks of all those months mourning him, forcing everything down. Thinks of him palling around in LA then. Thinks of the unresolvedness between them now.

She waits anyway. For him to speak, because he hasn’t in so long. He doesn’t, still doesn’t.

“Well,” she finally says, a vice on her heart. “Glad to know you aren’t dust.”

And she leaves.

III

They meet again, because good guys always meet up when there’s evil arising. Spike mostly hangs with the Niblet, making up for lost time and ties. Angel is more sullen than usual. Buffy acts the part of general.

He avoids her, and he’s pretty sure she’s avoiding him too. Their last meeting is burned into his mind: the racing heart, rising hope, and silent rejection. But they still fight side by side, back to back. They’re the ones best in combat (Illyria has long left to another dimension), deadly slice-dice, and he forgets the important bits when he fights with her again. Important bits like heartbreak and rejection, which are hardly new to him in his entire unlife and life, but he’s hoping to be less pathetic.

He tells Dawn this one evening, when he’s battered and on the brink of sleep. He only realises Buffy was listening too when Dawn informs him the next morning.

All the more reason to stick to his resolve. Stop with the fool for love act and start learning to actually survive in the world. First things first, he tells himself, take back your dignity and have a real chat with her.

Buffy begins, unexpectedly enough, with an apology. And she’s looking straight at him, right in the eye. That casual but striking talk he has in mind flies out of the window, and he barely manages to keep a hold on his dignity. But he gathers his wits just before his silence becomes gaping. “Words, words. Sound nice enough. But very nearly useless.” He’s learned that the hard way, a long time ago. “Straight-up apology’s a step up from the usual punch or avoidance, I’ll give you that.”

She doesn’t back down, doesn’t miss a beat. “You want action? Not a problem.” And she steps towards him, too bloody close—he clumsily, stupidly takes a step back. He can’t read her expression.

His turn. “S-so, apology accepted.” He is saved the onus of saying goodbye when Giles enters the room to call them out into a meeting.

He’s had the talk just as he planned. Not a fool, then—but since when had he become a coward?

IV

She finds him reading in Giles’ library and smiles. She walks up as quietly as she can; he’s so engrossed that he does not hear her steps or smell her scent. Honey and vanilla, he once said. It’s probably orange and plum now, because she’s changed her shampoo.

It’s poetry. Flowery, flowing poetry. To her surprise, it’s one she knows: something about ships passing in the night.

She remembers that last year in Sunnydale, quiet nights and back porch company. She remembers when he found that old poetry book Angel gave her so long ago—Sonnets from the Portuguese, love poems pressed in the pages. He briefly mentioned Angelus, she briefly mentioned Angel, and then he lyricized, from memory:

Go from me. Yet I feel that I shall stand
Henceforward in thy shadow. Nevermore
Alone upon the threshold of my door
Of individual life, I shall command
The uses of my soul, nor lift my hand
Serenely in the sunshine as before—

She’s close enough now that he must know she’s there. “Poetry, huh? You never did tell me that particular story.”

“Story?” He doesn’t look up.

He’s not in a giving mood, but she didn’t expect him to be anyway. “You. Poetry. Story.”

He manages a stiff shrug. “Not really.”

Spike? Will’s calling from the corridor. Spike, where are you?

Buffy looks to him. He gives a slight shake of his head. “They want to take measurements for a bloody uniform,” he volunteers.

“Dawn’s idea?”

“Dawn’s idea of torture.”

Willow’s voice fades as she moves from the corridor.

“Library’s a pretty good hiding spot,” Spike says. “No one comes in here. And no one would think to look.”

She smiles. “Like in high school. The old, the original Scooby hideout was the library. Perfect spot, though I got conflicting reputations as delinquent and geek.” The labels coalesced nicely into weirdo. She sits on the edge of the desk, making it clear she’s not intending to go anytime soon.

He fiddles with the corner of the page for a few moments. Then, abruptly: “What do you want?”

“W-what?”

Now he looks at her. She’s not sure what she sees in his face, and that unsettles her. “Sometimes,” he says, “it takes more courage for words than action. So speak. Spell it out.”

She raises her eyebrows. “Someone’s singing a different tune.”

“Changed my mind,” he says unabashedly. “Actions are too muddy. Words, you get intent. The right words, anyway. So. What do you want?”

He’s right. Words are harder. The apology was easy enough, because she turned her wrongs over and over again in her mind till the guilt built up. The words he wants now… well, she’s very good at denial. Her intent is a careful mystery even to herself. “To… go back to what it was. We’ve been weird, and… avoid-y.” She wants to… Friends is on the tip of her tongue, should be perfect, but she can’t say it. Not that label.

“Done,” he says. “Anythin’ else eatin’ at you?”

She misses him still, and even if they fall back into comfortable companionship of Sunnydale, if they are friends, it won’t be exactly right. She wants to say it now. But that means thoughts in her head and everything out there, and she doesn’t do that. “No, that’s all.”

He’s walking to the shelf to put back the anthology. “Well, gotta go head off the Bit. See you later, pet.”

There’s something wrong with her, pushing everyone away. Spike used to get that, read her. He used to push back, and she wishes he would now.

She’s still holding back. She thinks he’s not waiting anymore.

V

They take turns shooting themselves in the foot.

Buffy runs up from behind him, catches him on the shoulder. He wonders if she has it in mind to break that particular pattern, but it’s his turn to self-sabotage.

“Words, actions, whatever,” she says. “You’ll just change your mind again.”

Before he can react, her arms are around him—one at the back of his head, one on his back—and kisses him furiously. He can’t help but sink hungrily into it. The world is drowned out and there is nothing there but her green-hazel eyes, her scent of citrus and plum, her soft gold hair, warm skin, Buffy. They break apart, Buffy gasping in a breath, and he murmurs her name raggedly, as a man starved.

He can’t stop himself. He’s not thinking, running on emotion—so he gasps out, “I love you.” His heart feels like it’s beating again.

And he steels himself for the rejection, because this is the self-sabotage he’s always drawn to, inviting pain in, never…

She’s looking at him with that look in her face, that look from the cavern in Sunnydale—eyes wide and wet, pinning him down more than sunlight ever could. “I love you.” A smile, blinding. “I love you.”

The world has stopped.

Then reality crashes in, harder than ever with piercing screams. Shouts. They know! They’re here! Buffy, Spike, we need you! A quick look at one another, then they’re racing down the corridor.

They take turns, they do. But Buffy caught him this time.

There’s a fight, big and bloody, and they’re unprepared. One of those final apocalypse-type things that roll around ever so often. Slash, magic, Buffy’s on the floor.

They take turns dying too, and she is overdue.

Their story is cut short.

and one time they do

They take turns coming back.

He thinks she’s a dream when she does. He’s spent months and months waiting. One hundred and forty seven has passed a long time ago. Three hundred and one is the mark now. Three hundred and two today, and she appears.

He stays stock still as she speaks. She touches him then, and he breaks down, leans into her, cries out, and doesn’t let go.

They fight demons and each other, save the world between doing dishes, and that is happily ever after.            

Comments

( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
spuffy_luvr
Jan. 5th, 2013 05:53 pm (UTC)
Hey, you never mentioned you were about to post this story! I would have stayed up to wait for it. :)

There I am laughing about Angel's brains and agreeing that he would handle becoming human far more gracefully than Spike and then BAM! Bangel and angst. Grr.

I like Illyria's assessment. And then hope! And Spike doesn't speak (yes, I read the title, but I still hope!).

Spike's "Words, words, words" surprised me (though I get why he said it), but then when he demanded words I thought, ah, there's Spike! Of course Buffy can't find the right words, and of course her intent is a careful mystery even to herself (love that phrase). So many feeeels about him not pushing back and her thinking he's not waiting anymore.

*snickers about the on-purpose changing of her scent from vanilla to something else*

Dead? DEAD? *RAGE* Oh, there's more words. Whew.

Lovely.
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 02:18 pm (UTC)
Hi there! I wasn't sure if I would finish it in time to post it that day, so I didn't mention it.

Buffy's fundamental error is, I think, words, or the lack thereof. So I tried to switch it around by making her actually make an apology, then Spike to reject 'empty' words, for the very sake of wanting to change from being... a pathetic sod. So yes, he does return to his usual state of valuing words, which is, I think, the right mindset.

(Hehe, vanilla. I always thought Buffy would smell like whatever shampoo or soap she used.)

Thanks! I love long reviews.
red_satin_doll
Jan. 9th, 2013 01:13 am (UTC)
a vice on her heart

I think you mean "vise"? (the tool you use to squeeze and clamp things together.)

So yes, he does return to his usual state of valuing words, which is, I think, the right mindset.

Agree to disagree? I adore Angearia's and gabrielleabelle's meta statements re:Buffy and Spike in S7 and the "five languages of love" which includes action. (Buffy is the Hand.) If anything, I think Spike, as a former poet, displays an over-reliance on words; and yet so often his "pronouncements of truth-telling" are full of illusions, projection and denial.

And in terms of words causing grievous harm, I think of Xander in Becoming and The Lie; or Spike's "You belong in the dark with me." etc. Willow's spells. Even saying "I love you aloud" can fall into this pattern - trying to change reality, change someone else to your liking, using words.

I would have really loved for the section as to how she came back to have been more developed as I have a kink for resurrection fic. (post The-Gift or post-series)
drizzlydaze
Jan. 9th, 2013 10:45 am (UTC)
Oh, it can be spelt either way. 'Vise' is the American spelling. :)

I haven't read those meta, tbh, so I can't address that specifically (yet. I'll read them when I've got some time; school's started D:). But my thinking was that S7 Buffy can protect and spend time with Spike all she wants, tentative touches and meaningful looks and the like, but what she really needs is words--which she only gets out in Chosen (well, if she were indeed telling the truth, which I honestly don't have an opinion on, although when I watched it I leaned on Spike's side). The conversation in End of Days exemplifies this--Does it have to means something? She's always avoiding pinning or committing herself. Actions, you can excuse (heat of the moment, didn't mean anything etc.). Words are a little harder.

Of course, it's a double-edged sword. You can be all talk and no action, which is what Spike concerns himself with in the 3rd section (and later backs out of). I say 'the right mindset', because I think how Buffy acts in the third section, honest straightforward apology and words, is exactly the way it should be.

I agree with that 'yet so often his "pronouncements of truth-telling" are full of illusions, projection and denial.' Spike is a truth seer, but when he's involved, or his love or projection of love on others... well, he's pretty much entirely deluded.

I didn't really want to expand on the resurrection because I had no idea why she'd come back. I have never tackled writing an original resurrection fic because I think a lot of it's already covered in S6--ripped from heaven, that I did not see coming. (Now, writing on Buffy's experience after heaven, I can see doing, although probably not to justice since there's already brilliant fic out there about it.)
red_satin_doll
Jan. 9th, 2013 03:11 pm (UTC)
oops, didn't know about any "alternative" spelling. (Are you in the UK? Europe?) I'm sure you know what "Vice" means in the US, so I had no idea. (And given the context and memories of S6, the association made it sort of funny in my head.) BTW I'm going to go backwards in response to your comment here, if that's ok?

I didn't really want to expand on the resurrection because I had no idea why she'd come back.

I woke up thinking about this story this morning, which has to say something about it, because that only very rarely happens that a fanfic has me thinking about it the next day: "She got ripped out of heaven again? Let's say Hell instead; being ripped out of Heaven twice would be unbearable." I can imagine Joss actually doing that, though. Why go for the kill when you can go for the pain? Better yet, go for both! (Which pretty much describes the spacefrak in S8. Certainly a "nightmare".)

Buffy's experience after heaven, I can see doing, although probably not to justice since there's already brilliant fic out there about it.)

Speaking of, I've just read a lovely little ficlet "Flying not Falling" by bruttii_ma_buoni, in which Buffy comes back from Heaven in S6 with wings - which is less cracky than it sounds.

I wasn't thinking you'd need to go to any great length there, btw; that last section felt just a bit 'rushed' and not as much of a piece with the rest; so I assumed you were trying to meet a deadline?

Spike is a truth seer, but when he's involved, or his love or projection of love on others... well, he's pretty much entirely deluded.

Total agreement, yay! I'd say that is true of any character (as well as RL.) Xander thinks he's Perspective guy"; sometimes yes, sometimes no. Like Spike he overestimates that in himself, or fails to see his self-deception. And Giles and Joyce and Willow and so on, while Buffy, who gets the brunt of "Queen of Denial" (on the show and in fandom) can be extremely perceptive and clear-sighted at times.

Of course, it's a double-edged sword. You can be all talk and no action

Agreed - I think few human beings are all one or the other and certainly Buffy and Spike aren't. They definitely have a lot to apologize for to each other IMO, but what they need or want from each other is another matter.

Actions, you can excuse (heat of the moment, didn't mean anything etc.). Words are a little harder.

I can see what you're saying in context of the story, but I very VERY much disagree. And If you wish to skip the rest of this comment I understand completely btw.

In my opinion, words are extremely easy to misuse, intentionally or not; easier to pull out words in the heat of the moment than a gun or knife, or throwing a punch. Most communication is actually miscommunication, or communicating at cross purposes - did the words you said (what you meant) and the words I heard (what I interpreted) match up? And of course tone, context, personality and emotional states are as important as the actual words.

Hence the whole "did she mean that she loved him or not in that last moment, did she REALLY mean I love you or I'm in love with you...or was it just pity?" etc that makes me kind of headachy and just goes in endless circles. (Which I why I shouldn't have gone there in the first place, right? I admit it, I'm a dope.) We all have different readings of it, but Buffy is damned if she says the words and damned if she doesn't, so either way she's screwed. (And not in the sexy-funtimes way.)

I can definitely see your points re:Buffy. I don't think her phrase in EoD is well-chosen (no pun intended), but I take her at her word in Chosen. Lostboy-lj and the_royal_anna have written very good meta on the purpose of Spike's words there (to deflect her declaration so that she'll go on without him - and that's what their faces were telling me.)

But I still like to default to my original theory: Joss is a bastard. When has he ever allowed his audience or his character to completely luxuriate in simple, uncomplicated satisfaction in terms of romantic couplings? Never. (That, and - he already knew that he'd be bringing Spike to AtS, and had originally wanted Sarah to make at least one appearance so - big time drama.)




drizzlydaze
Jan. 10th, 2013 08:31 am (UTC)
(Are you in the UK? Europe?)

South East Asia; we use British spelling and pronunciation here.

I wasn't thinking you'd need to go to any great length there, btw; that last section felt just a bit 'rushed' and not as much of a piece with the rest; so I assumed you were trying to meet a deadline?

I rushed to finish it, yes, mostly because I just wanted to publish it and start on another piece.

In my opinion, words are extremely easy to misuse, intentionally or not; easier to pull out words in the heat of the moment than a gun or knife, or throwing a punch. Most communication is actually miscommunication, or communicating at cross purposes - did the words you said (what you meant) and the words I heard (what I interpreted) match up? And of course tone, context, personality and emotional states are as important as the actual words.

I suppose, like everything, it depends on the circumstances. Just personally, I find it more difficult to straight out lie when I speak. Twisting words, I can do, but I consider that fair game and pretty straightforward. Anyway, I suppose I partially agree.


purpose of Spike's words there (to deflect her declaration so that she'll go on without him - and that's what their faces were telling me.)


I haven't read the metas, so just ignore this if I'm taking the wrong point out of it--I assume that means Spike's words were to... convince her to leave or something? If so, I disagree completely, because the point was that by Chosen, Buffy got the fire back. She definitely wouldn't have stayed down there even if he had accepted her words. If, however, it means that Spike's words were to give her closure or release her from some kind of obligation, I question what closure it would give her. But again, I haven't read those metas, so I don't know if that's what they were asserting.
red_satin_doll
Jan. 11th, 2013 09:20 pm (UTC)
Just personally, I find it more difficult to straight out lie when I speak. Twisting words, I can do, but I consider that fair game and pretty straightforward. Anyway, I suppose I partially agree.

I guess I partially agree in return? I came from a family with a lot of dysfunctional dynamics, a lot of yelling, words used in twisted horrible ways, misunderstandings, and as a kid you learn to lie just to survive. I also wonder if cultural differences come into play?

Agree to disagree with you on Chosen. I don't like the way Joss went about it - I think he could have left off that "no you don't bit" but he HAD to be clever about it. Lostboy says it's a nod to Empire Strikes Back. So I can be convinced as to the intentions without liking the result.

the_royal_anna comes from a more lyrical, poetic perspective; she wrote some meta about Buffy and Spike ten years ago when the show was originally ending that are still some of the best Buffy and Spike meta I've seen.

Anyway here's the links if you like:
http://lostboy-lj.livejournal.com/32079.html
http://the-royal-anna.livejournal.com/1340.html?page=3
http://the-royal-anna.livejournal.com/2878.html#comments
drizzlydaze
Mar. 6th, 2013 03:05 pm (UTC)
Late reply! But this thread is interesting.
I guess I partially agree in return? I came from a family with a lot of dysfunctional dynamics, a lot of yelling, words used in twisted horrible ways, misunderstandings, and as a kid you learn to lie just to survive. I also wonder if cultural differences come into play?

That could be it. I come from a very stable, rather straightforward household, milder. I think it's also personality differences. I find outright lying a bit... hard, weird. Being vague or twisting words like 'I can do it' rather than 'I will do it' for a rather mild example is acceptable to me because I wouldn't abuse it. I demand clarification and clear communication, and when someone doesn't give it, I just dismiss them as illogical, avoid the topic with them.

Agree to disagree with you on Chosen. I don't like the way Joss went about it - I think he could have left off that "no you don't bit" but he HAD to be clever about it. Lostboy says it's a nod to Empire Strikes Back. So I can be convinced as to the intentions without liking the result.

the_royal_anna comes from a more lyrical, poetic perspective; she wrote some meta about Buffy and Spike ten years ago when the show was originally ending that are still some of the best Buffy and Spike meta I've seen.


Agree to disagree, indeed. I read them and yeah, part of it is because Joss is being clever--but I love Joss being clever. I love that line so much, the subversion. (And as I said, I think I believe Spike in that line. One thing for certain to me: there's no way Buffy would have stayed down there even if he had not denied. Anyway, feel free to ignore this point since we did agree to disagree, but I'm just curious why someone would think Buffy would've actually stayed in the cavern.)
red_satin_doll
Mar. 6th, 2013 09:00 pm (UTC)
Re: Late reply! But this thread is interesting.
Anyway, feel free to ignore this point since we did agree to disagree, but I'm just curious why someone would think Buffy would've actually stayed in the cavern

It never occurred to me that she would stay in any case, honestly because I expected her to be alive at the end of Chosen (without being spoiled for it at all). I think it would have surprised me if she'd died because - been there, done that (The Gift) so I expected Chosen to reverse that.

But in terms of "why someone" would think that, the best explanation I've seen is Emmie's angearia (whom I don't always agree with in the finer details but her observation about Buffy always move me greatly):
It's difficult to define commitment when it comes to Buffy and Spike, especially in that moment, but I think she was so caught in this overwhelming tide of emotion that she would've kept holding Spike's hand as the world fell down upon her. She ignores Faith's cries to follow, and she doesn't want to die anymore, but that moment there--I think that's when she's fully in love and loving with an open heart, loving the person she knows, not the person she imagines him to be. Clear eyes and an open heart and a commitment that cannot be shaken by the end of the world -- she's burning with him, alight with love, lost in a world set apart and so painfully true that I feel it goes beyond merely saying she's in love. This isn't just being in love, this is effulgent love, this is transcendent love.

I do see her taking his hand as a way of saying goodbye. But I see her forgetting to let go as a sign that she's so in love with him that the world nearly crashed down upon her. She ignores Faith's calls to leave, she makes no move to leave on her own -- she's so committed to that moment of loving him with every fiber of her being, consumed by that fire, gripped by it to the very core of her. That? Feeling that takes ALL the commitment in the world because it is a total abandonment of fear on her part.</i>
http://angearia.livejournal.com/247276.html
I mean, if anything I'm tempted to argue she loved him TOO MUCH than not enough. Because she nearly loved him to the point that she died with him. And it's only him forcibly ordering her "Now go!" and gently deflecting her love declaration that sets her running away from imminent death.
http://angearia.livejournal.com/247276.html?thread=7011564#t7011564
red_satin_doll
Jan. 9th, 2013 01:14 am (UTC)
*snickers about the on-purpose changing of her scent from vanilla to something else*

Yup, right there with you sister. (I like "citrus and plum" - and yes, just today I found at least three more fics that mention her smelling like vanilla, some going back ten years.)
drizzlydaze
Jan. 9th, 2013 10:35 am (UTC)
I heard the whole 'vanilla scent' thing started because SMG mentioned she used vanilla scent perfume. Or she advertised it.
exposeyou
Jan. 5th, 2013 06:36 pm (UTC)
This is lovely. I mean that. Lovely. I'm not even a big Spuffy shipper, but I love the way you handled it, I really liked the way you wrote Angel, and Illyria's lines had me laughing out loud.

Best of all, I like the little touches of 'real life' you slip in there, 'saving the world between doing dishes', Buffy's shampoo. This is a romance story that feels realistic, grounded. It stops it from being a cloying love story and makes it into something much better and much more moving.
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 02:09 pm (UTC)
Phew, I'm always worried when I write Illyria, so that's a load off. Spuffy writers don't do Angel enough justice, I often think.

I'm very very flattered that you liked this even though you're not a big Spuffy shipper. :D Thank you.
3hours
Jan. 5th, 2013 08:43 pm (UTC)
Loved it :D It started out pretty angsty (for me anyway) but slowly there was hope, and it rose and it rose and of course not even death could stop them ♥ when did it ever?
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 02:04 pm (UTC)
If it were up to me, they'd stop dying so much. Angsty start, happy end! Thank you.
lookingforoctober.dreamwidth.org
Jan. 5th, 2013 11:28 pm (UTC)
I really like the different varieties of silences in this. That, just as much as what was said, kept me reading.
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 06:05 am (UTC)
Thanks, I was a bit worried the silences would be too repetitive.
brutti_ma_buoni
Jan. 5th, 2013 11:37 pm (UTC)
Oof. I'm glad 5 was the last one, so we can read the kicker and pretend it's all part of the same story. Otherwise *sniff*
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 06:05 am (UTC)
Maybe I'm doing the five-times-and-one-time format wrong, but it is the same story, not... alternate worlds. Thank you. :)
waddiwasiwitch
Jan. 6th, 2013 01:35 am (UTC)
Oh this is fantastic. That last line was a perfect ending.
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 06:02 am (UTC)
Thanks!
kikimay
Jan. 6th, 2013 12:14 pm (UTC)
My emotions! ç___ç Beautiful post-NFA story. I loved every bit, especially the ending when Buffy comes back, because it's perfect and so emotional and I loved how you manage to be faithful to both characters, trying with the writing to describe their emotions and (wrong) decisions. Beautiful.
drizzlydaze
Jan. 6th, 2013 02:02 pm (UTC)
Thanks! It's always nice to hear praise for characterisation.
slaymesoftly
Jan. 6th, 2013 02:30 pm (UTC)
Ripped my heart out and then patched it up - well done!
drizzlydaze
Jan. 7th, 2013 08:12 am (UTC)
Thanks!
spuffy_luvr
Jan. 7th, 2013 09:12 am (UTC)
http://buffyversetop5.livejournal.com/339137.html

I included your name on this list and thought you'd like to know!
drizzlydaze
Jan. 7th, 2013 01:49 pm (UTC)
Wow, thanks!
cherrytargaryen
Apr. 10th, 2013 02:09 pm (UTC)
This is so very like them. Very glad they (eventually) managed to wrangle a happy ending out of it.
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )