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

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 Post subject: Twice Remembered - 07/17/2021
PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:36 pm 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2008 10:37 am
Posts: 609
Topics: 8
Location: Maryland
TITLE: Twice Remembered

STORY RATING: Mainly pg13-R. Maybe a little sprinkle of NC17 here and there.

SUMMARY: Willow makes a rash decision to bring Tara back.

FEEDBACK: Absolutely!

NOTE: My take on how Tara could have been brought back to make season 7 bearable.


Chapter 1:

Willow shuffled anxiously off the plane, her subconscious desire not to brush up against any of her fellow passengers making her extremely twitchy as she hugged her arms tight around her chest. As if the initial flight from Heathrow to Los Angeles International hadn’t been long enough, she had to wait an additional three hours before loading the tiny puddle-jumper plane that took her the last leg of the journey back to her hometown; Sunnydale. She now stood in the car rental line behind a bickering couple as she waited to sign out the gray Nissan Versa she had reserved. It would have taken less time to get a taxi back to the Summers household, but she had been to detached when making the arrangements to realize the inefficient flaw and avoid it. But now, she was thankful for the oversight.

Giles had repeatedly assured her over the course of the previous week that she could do it. That she had learned enough during her time in England, both personally and magically. That she could face her friends; her family. Not that they, her friends, would let her, necessarily, but that she should trust herself. And here she was, back in her hometown; Sunnydale. Almost. But the thousands of miles she had just flown seemed like nothing compared to the short distance that remained between her and home. Was it home? Was she allowed to call it that anymore after what she had done?

She felt so isolated and cold. She ached with a need to talk to someone. To confide. To be comforted. But the person she wanted to turn to most for those things was gone forever, and the others … Willow doubted whether she’d even be able to meet their eyes when she arrived, let alone have deep, soul-baring chats with them. Giles had been cautiously supportive, and they had conversed many times over tea during the long summer months of her … rehabilitation? Ostracism? Mourning? But he was still in England, and too busy with Council matters to give her moral support now. Not to mention that it was currently some ungodly hour of the morning there, and an uplifting pep-talk was not best served by those who were sleep deprived from being rudely awakened. Still, the tightness in her chest would not go away, and it was becoming unbearable. She needed to talk to someone before she could face her friends.

While churning through her gloomy thoughts, Willow had been staring vacantly ahead of her, unaware that the line had moved. It wasn’t until there was a gentle tap on her shoulder did she snap out of her thoughts. Looking over her shoulder, she came face to face with an elderly woman, her blue cotton candy hair in a state of disarray.

“It’s your turn, dearie,” the old woman crooned sweetly as she pointed toward the unoccupied clerk. Wrinkling her weathered skin together, the older woman peered up at Willow when she failed to move, noticing the young woman’s red, tear rimmed eyes. With the same gentle tone, now laced with a bit of concern, “Are you okay, sweetie?”

“No,” Willow whispered out before she could censer herself.

“Oh, sweetheart,” the elderly woman husked out in response; her lips instinctively puckering in melancholy. With motherly love, the elderly woman looked up at the redhead standing before her, taking in the woman’s bleak expression. Her hunter green eyes were soft, tenderized by pain and much remorse. Placing a reassuring hand on the quivering girls arm, “Why don’t we step out of line for a bit, huh? If you want, you can tell me what’s bothering you. Or we can just sit in silence. You’re choice.”

Nodding feebly, Willow allowed the elderly woman to steer her out of line and to a row of worn down armchairs up against the far wall.

“I’m Beatrice, sweetie,” the woman said softly as she motioned for Willow to take a seat, following suit shortly after. Pulling her purse to her lap, Beatrice dug through the contents until she located the un-open packet of tissues. Handing the travel size tissue container over to the redhead, she smiled approvingly when the girl accepted. “What’s you name dearie?”

“Willow,” she replied through sniffles as she dabbed at her nose.

“Well, Willow,” Beatrice started, “it’s a pleasure to meet you. Although, I do wish the circumstances were different for you, whatever they may be.”

Willow didn’t answer. Instead she sat with her head bowed, her hand clutching the crumpled up napkin to her nose.

“Now like I said, we don’t have to talk about it,” Beatrice stated soothingly, “but sometimes getting things off your chest can be cathartic … especially when speaking with a stranger who’s unbiased.”

“I’m scared …” Willow finally got out after a long moment of silence.

“Of what?” the older woman asked perplexed. “The rental car?”

“No,” she choked out. “Of going home.”

“Whatever for?”

“Because I have to face my friends … and she won’t be there,” Willow said as she looked up at the flickering florescent lights, desperately willing her tears to stay at bay.

Beatrice waited a few seconds before speaking; wanting to make sure that Willow had ample time to formulate her thoughts. When the redhead showed no signs of continuing, Beatrice took a deep breath before providing her impute. “I’m sure whatever it is that happened with your friends, you can work it out.”

Willow shook her head in response. “I said … I did awful things to them. Something horrible happened and I didn’t handle it well.”

Questioning hazel eyes skimmed over the redhead’s profile, unsure of what to make of the woman’s statement. Sympathetically she ventured, “bad breakup?”

Unconsciously, Willow scoffed. Biting on her bottom lip as tears welled up, “the love of my life died.” She sniffed back the snot running from her nose as hiccups ransacked her body. “She … she was killed right in front of me.”

Gasping in shock, the blue haired woman instinctively reached a hand out, gripping the redhead’s wrist. Unsure of what to say to help alleviate the redhead’s pain, Beatrice spoke the only question floating through her mind. “When did it happen?”

“Four months ago,” Willow croaked out; her breath hitching as she tried to rein in her hiccups. “After it happened, I was filled with so much rage and grief and …” she trailed off. “I never went to her funeral. I was scared that if I saw her in the cask- … if I went to the chu- …“ she gulped audibly as she struggled to get the words out. “I was a coward and I left; hopped on the first plane to England.”

“Being overcome with emotion and grieving the tragic loss of someone you love does not make you a coward,” Beatrice replied; her soft voice stern as she emphasized her words. “It makes you human."

“But I never said goodbye to her,” Willow cried freely. Desperate to stop the tide of tears, yet constantly feeling the smoldering soul fire of Tara Maclay, the ache that rose within her could not be extinguished, and Willow began to weep, her breath pouring forth in hitching sobs. Her throat constricted and her eyes throbbed as lines of tears furrowed down her face. Latent pain ebbed and flowed so fiercely through her body that Willow could do naught but cry. “I just left her there. Alone. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forgive myself for that.”

Pulling the quivering redhead toward her, Beatrice wrapped her arms around the young woman, embracing her in a protective hug. “You should go talk to her,” Beatrice said soothingly as she gently rocked the crying woman back and forth. Mumbling into Willow’s hair as she rubbed soothing circles on her back, “when my Bernie died, due to the carelessness of a drunk driver, I had so much resentment towards him and God and the doctors. I was angry that he left me. I was angry at the Doctors who couldn't save him. I was angry at the man who took him from me. I was just angry and took out my frustration on anyone near me. I sulked for weeks afterward, swallowing my misery with countless bottles of vodka, before I finally went to his grave site.”

“Did it help?”

“Surprisingly, yes,” she replied. “I told him everything I was feeling. How much his death hurt me. How much I loved him. How I would always love him. How I didn’t think I could carry on without him.”

“When did the pain go away,” Willow whimpered as she clung desperately to the elderly woman. “When did it stop hurting?”

As tears welled up in her own eyes, Beatrice blinked rapidly to clear them away. “It never does sweetie. I’ve missed Bernie every day for the last 18 years. You’ll always carry the pain, but eventually, it gets easier to manage.”

“What if I can never manage?” she said through sniffles, her mouth muffled by Beatrice’s thick, tear dampened, pink sweater. "What if I can't live without her?"

“You’ll find a way my dear. You’ll find a hobby, something to help pass the time, like travelling.” She patted the suitcase next to her right leg. “I take pictures wherever I go and when I return home, I go straight to Bernie to tell him all about them.”

Willow stayed silent as she soaked in Beatrice’s words. She didn’t know how this woman had managed to go 18 years without her husband. She hadn't even gone half a year and the pain inside of her was so numbing she was beginning to feel hallow. As a single thought swept through her mind, new tears trickled down her cheeks as Willow finally wept for herself. For the anniversary she would never celebrate, for the family she would never have, for the stark emptiness of a future devoid of love.

888

She had planned to drive back to the Summers residence. She had planned to confront her friends and her fears as she had discussed in length with the widow at the airport. She had planned to grovel and make things right again. She had planned so many things, over and over again in her head. But all those plans, those painstakingly long internal dialogues as to what she would say and do flew out the window when she veered right onto Maple Ct. in the direction of one of Sunnydale’s many cemeteries. The thought of stepping foot onto the hallowed land had plagued her for months. But at the sight of the vast landscape adorned with gray slabs and Beatrice’s words ringing in her ear, something called to her. Tara called to her.

Pulling her car to the shoulder, she peered up at the rough Iron Gate, the name Maple Field Cemetery glaring back at her. With nimble fingers, she reached for the silver handle, popping the door open. Heaving a heavy sigh, her chest tightening as tears threatened to escape her closed, swollen eyelids; Willow took one step out of the rental vehicle. Before she could talk herself out of entering the cemetery, she slammed the door closed behind her and shuffled forward. The painstaking task of moving one foot in front of the other was proving to her how weary she had become during her time in England. The restless nights consumed with nightmares followed by lingering days spent forcefully detoxing had left her body frail and on the verge of emaciation.

She didn’t know how she was able to navigate through the dense cemetery so quickly, finding her beloveds tombstone without having ever seen it before. She assumed it had to do with them being soulmates; their souls internally entwined together even in afterlife. As if compelled by an unseen force, Willow had dazedly walked towards Tara’s grave, never once stopping to check if she was in the correct location.

Kneeling before the stone slab, she hesitantly reached out her right hand. Her nimble fingers shaking uncontrollably as she traced the engraving. “Hey … it’s me,” she said tenderly as she placed a rock, the edges smoothed from years of erosion; on top of the headstone with her other hand.

“I’m sorry I couldn’t come sooner,” Willow dejectedly said as she continued to trace her beloved’s name. “I … I had to go. I did something horrible, Tara. When you di –“ she faltered over the words, her chest constricting as silent sobs threatened to take over her body. “W-w-when Warren took you from me … I let my rage consume me. All I could see was red. All I could taste was red."

Re-positioning herself so that her back now laid flush with the cold marble, she wrapped her arms around her knees in a faux bravado of warmth. Tears started to stream down Willow’s cheeks as she filled her beloved in on the warpath she embarked on upon her death. Of how rage bubbled through her body, burning like fire in her veins as she mercilessly took her anger out on their friends. And of how grief and despair eventually consumed her to the point where she almost ended the world.

“I’m not a perfect person, Tara” Willow admitted as she used the side of her palm to brush away tears leaking down her cheek. “There’s many things I wish I didn’t do.”

A new wave of tears threatened to spill from her eyes as she took in a raged breath. As sobs consumed her, her words became weaker and harder to get out. “I’m … I’m sorry that I hurt you.”

Lolling her head backwards so that it rested against the headstone; the rough textured edge pressing against the base of her skull. “It’s something I must live with every day.” Shaking her head from side to side, she recounted the last few months of their relationship. “I never meant to hurt you Tara.” She gulped down a strangled sob as she continued speaking. “But I did and I can’t take that back. I can’t make it up to you. I can’t forgive myself for being the reason you died.”

“Oh god Tara, how am I supposed to go on without you? We promised each other forever baby … and I’m struggling.” Slowly, Willow unwrapped her arms from around her quivering knees, and traced the outline of a small object in her front pocket that she picked up from a gas station near the airport. “I’m struggling to last that long because you’re not here and life just doesn’t seem worth living without you.”

Lowering her head, she rested her forehead, face down on her knees. She continued to cry silently, her body shaking uncontrollably as tears steadily cascaded onto her denim. “I’m so hollow baby,” she mumbled into the fabric, “I’m so hollow.”

The sound of her name came softly, almost as if the whispered word was being carried by the wind, gently caressing her soul. She rejoiced in the syllables as they assaulted her ears, the tone low and sensual. “Tara?” Willow husked out hopefully as her name was called out to her once more. Lifting her head, Willow gazed around the vacant graveyard in search of her lover, her eyes pleading for a sign of the brunette in the vast emptiness. “Tara?” Willow choked out once more as she gazed over the lifeless plain of still graves.

“Willow,” the voice came again but stronger this time, it’s silky tone familiar but painful all the same. Clenching her eyes shut, Willow internally berated herself for thinking Tara would come back to her; especially after all of the horrible things she had done. Looking over her shoulder, Willow took in the wrong brunette’s appearance, a small grimace flickering across her features.

Standing behind her in a red sundress, Anya stood uncomfortably, her arms hanging limp at her side while her head tilted sideways; watching Willow in apprehension.

“What are you doing here Anya?” Willow asked snidely as she once again rubbed her hands against her bloodshot eyes, smearing tears and mascara across her temples.

“You called me,” Anya said bluntly as she took a hesitant step closer. After her encounter with Willow at the Magic Box a few months back, the brunette wanted to be cautious around the redhead.

“You,” scuffed the redhead in disdain. “Why would I call you?”

“You’re pain. You’re anguish,” reiterated the bottled brunette. “It called to me.” Stepping around the headstone, Anya positioned herself in front of Willow, a crestfallen look adorning her features. After several long moments of silence, Anya tucked her dress to her thighs as she slowly slinked to the grass.

Scooting over, so that her back rested against the cold stone, Anya sat shoulder to shoulder with the grieving hacker. Slowly, she lifted her hand, awkwardly patting Willow’s shoulder in an attempt to show comfort. After several years as a human, Anya was still learning about basic human interaction; comforting others was still incomprehensive. Not wanting to give in to the reassurance she was sure she didn’t deserve, Willow stiffened her body before shrugging off the other woman's hand.

“I don’t deserve you sympathy.” Willow stated flatly as she stared off at the tombstone next to her, unable to bring herself to look at her best friends ex. “I don’t deserve anyone’s sympathy … I’m a murderer.”

“True, you are a killer,” Anya replied honestly. “But I understand your feelings. They're mortal and stupid, but I know what you’re going through.”

"How could you?” Looking at the brunette disbelievingly, Willow snarled at the woman, “Tara was the love of my life. You don’t know anything!”

“She may have been the love of your life,” claimed Anya as she tilted her head to look at Willow, “But she was my best friend … my only friend.” A tear rolled down Anya’s cheek before she had a chance to brush it away. “And it's stupid that she's gone and I miss her terribly.”

“Ahn,” Willow said softly as she looked at the other woman who had befriended her girlfriend in the early stage of their relationship. When no words were forthcoming, Willow settled for placing her hand on the other woman’s leg reassuringly, squeezing her knee lightly. The two sat like that in silence, each drifting off into their own daydream as they thought of better times.

Eventually, the silence was broken by Anya as she shuffled her position. “Do you plan on using that?” she questioned as she nodded to an object sprawled out on the grass beside Willow’s left thigh.

Opening her eyes slowly, Willow first looked at Anya before turning her head to look at what the shopkeep was referring to. A small twitch emerged at the corner of Willow’s lip as she stared down at the navy blue pocket knife; the blade flipped open. Reaching out tentatively, Willow traced one finger over the sharp blade, realizing she had pulled the weapon out of her pocket sometime during her conversation with Anya.

“I was,” she replied honestly as she continued to touch the blade. Tilting her head back to look at Anya, “I miss her, Anya. I just want to be with her.”

“And you think killing yourself will accomplish that?” Anya said frankly.

“It’s worth a shot,” came the dejected voice as she picked up the knife. She twirled the pocket knife around in her hand as she absently looked down at the weapon, her eyes glazed over as she vacantly stared, contemplating her next move.

“What about Tara?” Quipped the blonde, “Do you really think she would want you to end your life at her expense?”

The knife was on its fifth rotation when Willow spoke again, her voice low, almost undetectable. “No …”

“Willow?” Anya called out trying to get the redheads full attention. When Willow finally lifted her head, locking eyes with the vengeance demon, “It’s not your fault she died.”

“So I’ve been told,” Willow said dismally. “But if I had just listened to her. If I wasn’t so stubborn and had quite the magic when she asked, there wouldn’t have been a reason for us to be having make up se… we wouldn’t have spent the whole morning in bed.”

“You don’t know that,” Anya replied as she looked pointedly at the redhead. “You two were like cats in heat … and I’m not just talking about the sounds. You were always pawing at each other and making lame excuses to be alone.”

The tiniest of smiles graced the redhead’s chapped lips as she took in Anya’s lewd statement. The smile quickly faded as dark thoughts crept back through her mind. “I still can’t help but to think what would have happened if we never broke up … or if he had been stopped sooner. If Buffy had …” Teary eyed, Willow locked gazes with the brunette once more. “I will always pay for what I did, a day won’t go by that I won’t think of the way I brutally murdered him. But sometimes I just ... I wish he died sooner, that he died way before he ever had a chance of shooting Buffy … of killing Tara.”

Anya’s face instantly sank as she stared at the redhead, the young woman’s words penetrating deep inside of her. “You don’t really wish that do you?”

Tears started to flow freely down Willow’s face as she grimaced, her thoughts darkened by that one thought that has been plaguing her for months. Swallowing forcefully, she looked at the vengeance demon and shook her head yes, confirming the other woman’s fears. “I do. I wish he died a long time ago.”

“Dammit Willow,” Anya replied tersely as she let out a long sigh. Squeezing her eyelids together tightly, Anya grimaced as she internally debated with herself. “I can give you what you want,” she finally admitted “but things will be different … there’s ramifications for wishes like this.”

“What are you talking about?” Willow asked perplexed.

“You wishing Warren died before any of this...” she waved her arms around out to the side, flailing her wrists “...happened. I can make that happen.”

“What?” Willow asked, her voice raising an octave as she shifted her position slightly to get a better view of the faux haired brunette. Looking hopefully at her best friend’s ex-girlfriend she stopped spinning the knife in her hand, “Will she be alive?”

“Yes,” Anya replied softly. “But you and her are ... you’re not together… she’s still not your girlfriend.”

“That’s fine!” Willow said enthusiastically, the knife falling to the ground as she twisted her body to look at Anya fully. “We worked it out once we can do it again.”

Anya gave her a demure look before speaking again. “You really need to think about this Willow,” Anya said in a soft yet firm tone. “You’re altering time lines.”

Hesitatingly, Willow scrunched her eyebrows together as she took in her estrange friends words, “Wait, I’m not gonna be a vampire am I?”

“No” Anya reassured. “You will be among those living.”

A small smile graced Willow’s lips as she pushed herself to her knees, her jeans smudged with dirt as she rotated her position to look at Tara’s grave once more. Leaning down, she placed her lips over the engraving, kissing her beloved one last time. “You hear that baby, I’m coming for you.” Straightening out her posture, Willow rested on the heels of her boots as she took a large inhalation of breath.

Breathing out slowly, she turned to Anya and croaked out. “I wish Warren Meares died before he ever had a chance to kill Tara.”

Anya let out another long sigh as she shifted into her demonic form. Turning her head to look at Willow, her face devoid of skin; showing off hollow muscles, red ligaments and blue veins, she replied in a menacing tone, “Wish granted.”

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I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


Last edited by mmmh-Hot-Sauce on Sat Jul 17, 2021 1:02 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2020 4:00 pm 
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5. Willowhand
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Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2016 9:37 am
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I am very intrigued!!

Quote:
Desperate to stop the tide of tears, yet constantly feeling the smoldering soul fire of Tara Maclay, the ache that rose within her could not be extinguished,


I love this line

Quote:
“Because I have to face my friends … and she won’t be there,” Willow said as she looked up at the flickering florescent lights, desperately willing her tears to stay at bay.


Quote:
Lowering her head, she rested her forehead, face down on her knees. She continued to cry silently, her body shaking uncontrollably as tears steadily cascaded onto her denim. “I’m so hollow baby,” she mumbled into the fabric, “I’m so hollow.”


:(( :(( :((

So thankful for Beatrice, sometimes grace comes from the kindness of strangers.

I am very interested to see where all this goes, Anya seems to able to see the world Willow is asking for and it doesn't sound like it will be full of hugs and puppies, although for Willow, I can see how any other world will be appealing. There are a lot of implications, namely the Buffy bot, that will come of Warren not being around- depending on when he dies

It was nice to see some commiseration between Anya and Willow, they both love Tara in their own way

I am so impressed by how prolific you are!! And I am really excited about this story!!

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 4:37 am 
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6. Sassy Eggs

Joined: Sun Jan 19, 2014 6:01 am
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I'm thrilled about your new story! :applause :banana :bounce
Very promising start.

So kindhearted of Beatrice to reach out to and comfort a total stranger - not many people would have done the same.
It's sad though that the emotional breakdown Willow suffered and the comfort Beatrice gave her didn't really help Willow but instead lead her to consider suicide.

Quote:
Scooting over, so that her back rested against the cold stone, Anya sat shoulder to shoulder with the grieving hacker. Slowly, she lifted her hand, awkwardly patting Willow’s shoulder in an attempt to show comfort. After several years as a human, Anya was still learning about basic human interaction; comforting others was still incomprehensive. Not wanting to give in to the reassurance she was sure she didn’t deserve, Willow stiffened her body before shrugging off the other woman's hand.

“I don’t deserve you sympathy.” Willow stated flatly as she stared off at the tombstone next to her, unable to bring herself to look at her best friends ex. “I don’t deserve anyone’s sympathy … I’m a murderer.”

“True, you are a killer,” Anya replied honestly. “But I understand your feelings. They're mortal and stupid, but I know what you’re going through.”

"How could you?” Looking at the brunette disbelievingly, Willow snarled at the woman, “Tara was the love of my life. You don’t know anything!”

“She may have been the love of your life,” claimed Anya as she tilted her head to look at Willow, “But she was my best friend … my only friend.” A tear rolled down Anya’s cheek before she had a chance to brush it away. “And it's stupid that she's gone and I miss her terribly.”

“Ahn,” Willow said softly as she looked at the other woman who had befriended her girlfriend in the early stage of their relationship. When no words were forthcoming, Willow settled for placing her hand on the other woman’s leg reassuringly, squeezing her knee lightly. The two sat like that in silence, each drifting off into their own daydream as they thought of better times.

I like how those two try to comfort each other, even if the attempts are a bit awkward. Their "relationship" was always difficult, but I would have liked it if they had had the chance to become something like friends. Maybe you'll give them the chance in the altered timeline?

Like Willow right now I fail to imagine catastrophic changes to the timeline Warren's earlier demise could have caused, even considering they might not have had the Buffybot at the end of season 5 and beginning of season 6. From what little Anya told Willow (that she and Tara are both alive, but still not together) I assume that they were stll able to stop the apocalypse caused by Glory and that they still resurrected Buffy which lead to Willow's magical addiction and their breakup. But I'm wondering how Warren's earlier death will have stopped them from making up already like they did in canon...
I'm really looking forward to the next chapter.


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:45 pm 
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3. Flaming O
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Interesting start. Obviously any re-write to S7 is an improvement, especially if Willow and Tara end up together which we all know will happen since you're posting on the kitten board. I'm intrigued to know how this story will pan out to create said happy ending.

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2020 1:15 am 
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4. Extra Flamey
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Ooo, I'm intrigued!

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2020 10:20 am 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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shirrey wrote:
I am very intrigued!!


:applause I hope the story keeps you interested throughout.

Quote:
So thankful for Beatrice, sometimes grace comes from the kindness of strangers.


She was a small beacon of light that Willow definitely needed at the moment.

Quote:
I am very interested to see where all this goes, Anya seems to able to see the world Willow is asking for and it doesn't sound like it will be full of hugs and puppies, although for Willow, I can see how any other world will be appealing. There are a lot of implications, namely the Buffy bot, that will come of Warren not being around- depending on when he dies


Willow has some tunnel vision going on, her sights set on seeing Tara again and may not be listening to Anya. And with Anya being a demon, a time/world bender at that, she knows what's in store for Willow.

Quote:
It was nice to see some commiseration between Anya and Willow, they both love Tara in their own way


Willow and Anya always clashed in my opinion because they're both similar in the fact that they loved so fiercely. I always thought that they could be friends or at the very least civil with each other if given the chance.

Quote:
I am so impressed by how prolific you are!! And I am really excited about this story!!


Thank you! :blush I really hope this story doesn't disappoint. It's far from what I normally do and has been kicking my ass over the past year compositionally.




Will's redemption wrote:
I'm thrilled about your new story! :applause :banana :bounce
Very promising start.


Thank you, thank you. :bow

Quote:
So kindhearted of Beatrice to reach out to and comfort a total stranger - not many people would have done the same.
It's sad though that the emotional breakdown Willow suffered and the comfort Beatrice gave her didn't really help Willow but instead lead her to consider suicide.


In Willow's state of depression, she probably was already considering suicide. Getting comforted by/Speaking with Beatrice lead her to Tara to give her a proper goodbye as she skipped out on the funeral.

Quote:
I like how those two try to comfort each other, even if the attempts are a bit awkward. Their "relationship" was always difficult, but I would have liked it if they had had the chance to become something like friends. Maybe you'll give them the chance in the altered timeline?


I always thought these two could have been friends if given the chance. They're two very stubborn, strong-headed women, which causes them to clash, but if they were to put their ego aside they'd see that they could confide in the other.

Quote:
Like Willow right now I fail to imagine catastrophic changes to the timeline Warren's earlier demise could have caused, even considering they might not have had the Buffybot at the end of season 5 and beginning of season 6. From what little Anya told Willow (that she and Tara are both alive, but still not together) I assume that they were stll able to stop the apocalypse caused by Glory and that they still resurrected Buffy which lead to Willow's magical addiction and their breakup. But I'm wondering how Warren's earlier death will have stopped them from making up already like they did in canon. I'm really looking forward to the next chapter.


All great assessments, but I don't want to give anything away. It'll all start making sense soon ... hopefully. I hope you enjoy this next chapter!


*WILLOW* wrote:
Interesting start. Obviously any re-write to S7 is an improvement, especially if Willow and Tara end up together which we all know will happen since you're posting on the kitten board. I'm intrigued to know how this story will pan out to create said happy ending.


Glad that you like it so far. I have to agree, S7 was a complete shit show and anything would be better. I'm not claiming this will be a great story, but hopefully with a happy W/T ending, it'll make up for it. Hope you enjoy the next chapter.



leftindust wrote:
Ooo, I'm intrigued!
[/quote]

:banana yeaaaah! Hope this next chapter doesn't dissapoint.

_________________
Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered
PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2020 10:46 am 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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CHAPTER 2

She awoke with a start, bolting upright in her bed, a thin blue blanket falling to her waist. Panic stricken, she scanned the sun-drenched room, her blurry, sleep riddled eyes slowly adjusting as she took in the familiar shapes of bedroom furniture. Heaving a sigh of relief, she fell back to the mattress, one hand reaching up to rub at her forehead. Images of a veiny monster still flickered behind her eyelids, reminding the redhead of the vivid nightmare she just had. Cranking her neck to the side, she peered at the flashing red numbers illuminating her alarm clock. 10:58.

She couldn’t remember the last time she had slept in so late. As a child, she had always risen with the sun, eager to get to school. As she got older, her desire to learn never waned and the sound of the alarm clock was always a welcoming noise. It wasn’t until recently that waking with the sun had little to do with learning and more to do with nightmares and the overwhelming sickness they ensued.

Thinking back, the last time she had slept passed nine o’clock in the morning was when she and Tara had made love into the wee hours of the morning, their fatigued bodies succumbing to sleep near dawn.

As thoughts of the brunette flittered through her brain, Willow bolted upright once more. “Tara!” As if peeling back a foggy film, Willow recalled her encounter with Anya and making a wish to the vengeance demon.

Flinging the comforter off of her body, Willow jumped out of bed. It wasn’t until her feet hit the plush, carpeted floor that she realized she wasn’t in her bedroom. Or at least, wasn’t in her correct bedroom. Blinking several times to try and clear the remainder of sleep from her muddled mind, Willow looked around at her childhood bedroom, observing the pile of thick college textbooks on her desk and the empty fish tank by the window. She had no recollection on how she wound up in her parents’ house.

Walking over to the floor length mirror, Willow took in her complexion, noticing that the dark circles that had been haunting her eyes were not as prominent as she remembered them to be. Her eyes then flickered up to the crown of her head; her hair was cut and cropped exactly how it had been, signaling no physical changes. A frown formed on her forehead as her eyebrows pulled together as she looked at her neck next, noticing that the scar she had obtained from Harmony years prior was no longer there. Instinctively, she raised her hand to her throat, rubbing at the smooth skin in befuddlement.

“Where’d it go?” she asked perplexed as she examined her neck. As soon as the words left her mouth, a throbbing, pulsating pain erupted behind the redhead’s eyes, the intensity blurring her vision. Gripping her head with both hands, Willow bent over at the waist; her back sloped as she moaned incoherently with the pain. As her eyelids rapidly flickered, images began to pour forth at an alarming rate, memories that never happened shifting around inside of her hippocampus as if they’ve been there all along.

Pulling her jacket closer to her body, fighting off a cold gust of air, Willow stepped out of the night club into a dimly lit parking lot. Looking first left and then right, she shoved her hands deep inside of the wool coat as she headed off in the direction of campus. As she neared the edge of the parking lot, the street lights growing faint, a figure slowly emerged from the shadows. Startled, Willow hopped backward, her wide eyes taking in the stranger’s appearance. His body was adorned in tethered clothing, his knee length coat covered in multiple stains while his unruly hair and beard sprouted out in every which direction

“Well look what we’ve got here,” the man hissed out as he cocked his head to the side, sizing up the redhead’s petite frame. Before she had a chance to scream for help, his gloved hands reached out for her, gripping a hold of the white wool lapels on her jacket. Pulling the redhead towards him, his nose brushing against her throat, he inhaled deeply as he sniffed her hair, grinning as she struggled in his grasps. “You smell divine.”

“Hey!” Came a loud booming voice from behind them. Within seconds, a tall, raven haired girl was standing beside them, her right arm stretched out. “Let her go or you get a face full of pepper spray.”

Snarling, the homeless man looked toward the adamant woman, her thumb resting on the nozzle of the can. Blowing out a breath of air in aggravation, he slowly released his hold, pushing the redhead away from him in the process. Raising his hands in surrender, the drifter slowly stepped backward, distancing himself from the two women until he was far enough to run away.

“Hey, are you okay?” The raven haired girl asked as she turned to look at Willow, noticing that she had a hand pressed firmly against her chest.

“Y-yeah, thank you!” Willow replied gratefully as she looked up at the green eyed woman.

“You’re not from around here, huh?” She asked even though she already knew the answer. “You gotta be careful, some of these homeless people have psychological issues,” she stated as she tapped a finger to her temple. Dropping her hand, she jutted it out toward the redhead. “I’m Samantha by the way. I think we have Mathematical Engineering together.”

“Willow,” she replied as she shook Samantha’s hand firmly as her racing heart slowly resumed to a normal rhythm.

“Let me give you a lift back to campus, Willow.”


Her eyes sputtered open as a head splitting migraine emerged. “Oh god,” Willow croaked out as she slowly straightened out her posture, a sensation of nausea coursing through her body. Leaning against the desk for support, her legs weak from the sudden onslaught of imagery, Willow took in several deep breathes as she tried to regain her composure. “What the frilly heck is going on.”

Blinking back confusion, Willow tried to decipher what just happened to her. She couldn’t explain the memories currently implemented in her mind. She was positive they never happened. Her recollection of that particular day was vastly different but for some reason the original memory and the new one were clashing, creating a muddled mess.

Straining, she tried to remember what Cordelia had once said about her trip to a parallel universe, how there had been slight altercations to the timeline with their actual reality, but wound up aggravating her headache further. Unable to come up with a logical explanation for the distorted memories she pushed off of the desk.

Heading across the room, she pulled open her armor in search of clothing. She needed to find Buffy. She needed to make sure that the Slayer was okay and that their friendship was intact. She needed to find Xander and thank him profusely for always being there for her. But first, she needed to find Tara. She needed to make sure the wish really worked.

Looking through her clothing options, Willow groaned in protest as she pulled out several fuzzy shirts. Apparently, the Willow of this universe also had appalling taste in clothing growing up. Tossing the items back into the drawer, she opted to stay in the plain hunter green sweatshirt she was currently wearing. Moving onto another drawer filled with trousers, she pulled out a pair of form fitting jeans she had acquired while in high school. After slipping on the denim, she shoved her feet into a pair of red Adidas. Not worrying about her mismatched clothing, she headed for the bedroom door, only stopping when the red flashing light from her alarm clock caught her attention.

“What the,” she muttered as she picked up the plastic device, scrutinizing the numbers flashing at her mockingly. 12:43. This can’t be right, she thought to herself as she leveled a glowering look at the clock, it had been 10:58 merely minutes ago. After several long moments, Willow finally replaced the alarm clock back onto the nightstand, deciding that she must have misread the time when she woke up due to her disorientation.

Exiting her room, she skipped down the staircase, scantly noticing that some of the pictures adorning the wall were unfamiliar. It wasn’t until she reached the last step did she stop, a picture of her from graduation day catching her full attention. There, with cheek splitting smiles stood her parents, a look of absolute pride on their faces as Willow stood between them in her cap and gown, a diploma held tightly in her hands. She stood captivated by the photo, the rarity of her and her parents together in a picture bringing a smile to her face. She didn’t remember taking the picture, or of her parents staying longer than five minutes at the ceremony, but the sight of their proud, beaming smiles brought warmth to her heart.

Hopping off the last step, she headed for the front door, pulling on a brown leather jacket over her grey sweatshirt as she exited the house.

As she trotted down the cobblestone steps leading to the driveway, the small smile that had graced her lips quickly subsided at the sight of the gray Nissan rental car parked in front of the garage. Automatically, her hands slipped inside the front pockets of her jacket, absently searching. Within seconds, her right hand brushed across a small metal ring; a plastic fob attached. Gulping, Willow removed the key from her pocket, her thumb positioning over the unlock button on the device. At the sound of the electronics unlocking inside the car, Willow squeezed her eyelids shut, a single tear escaping from her left eye.

_________________
Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2020 12:44 pm 
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8. Vixen

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Oh, dear be careful what you ask for. I am figuring that Warren had a much bigger effect on Sunnydale than Willow initially thought. Looking forward to reading more.
:banana

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2020 8:55 am 
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Woah, when did Willow end up? So many little and big things seemed to have changed, it's fascinating. Looking forward to the next chapter!

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2020 7:12 pm 
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Excellent start,.....continue,..PLEASE!! I eagerly await the 'other' changes to Sunnydale.
Blessings

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2020 4:43 am 
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Quote:
A frown formed on her forehead as her eyebrows pulled together as she looked at her neck next, noticing that the scar she had obtained from Harmony years prior was no longer there.

Quote:
There, with cheek splitting smiles stood her parents, a look of absolute pride on their faces as Willow stood between them in her cap and gown, a diploma held tightly in her hands. She stood captivated by the photo, the rarity of her and her parents together in a picture bringing a smile to her face. She didn’t remember taking the picture, or of her parents staying longer than five minutes at the ceremony, but the sight of their proud, beaming smiles brought warmth to her heart.

From these hints I suspect that in this "wish universe" there was no attempted ascension of the mayor and battle to stop it on graduation day. If so I wonder how an earlier demise of Warren could have prevented these events.

Quote:
“You’re not from around here, huh?” She asked even though she already knew the answer.

So in the alternate universe Willow doesn't go to college in Sunnydale but somewhere else?

Quote:
Her recollection of that particular day was vastly different but for some reason the original memory and the new one were clashing, creating a muddled mess.

I'm confused as well because I can't remember a scene even remotely close to that "new" memory from canon which Willow could refer to as the "original memory"...

Quote:
she opted to stay in the plain hunter green sweatshirt she was currently wearing.

Quote:
pulling on a brown leather jacket over her grey sweatshirt as she exited the house.

I'm wondering if the change of the colour of the sweatshirt from green to grey is just an error in writing or a hint that this "new" universe isn't stable (yet) and some conditions are (randomly?) changing?

Quote:
As she trotted down the cobblestone steps leading to the driveway, the small smile that had graced her lips quickly subsided at the sight of the gray Nissan rental car parked in front of the garage. Automatically, her hands slipped inside the front pockets of her jacket, absently searching. Within seconds, her right hand brushed across a small metal ring; a plastic fob attached. Gulping, Willow removed the key from her pocket, her thumb positioning over the unlock button on the device. At the sound of the electronics unlocking inside the car, Willow squeezed her eyelids shut, a single tear escaping from her left eye.

Why is Willow reacting so sadly? I'd say the fact that she drove in a rental car to her childhood home doesn't indicate that she only dreamt her encounter with Anya at the graveyard and the changes she noticed already. But I am curious what other changes Willow will have to face in the next chapters - and when and under what circumstances she will meet Tara for the first time in this "new world".


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2020 8:00 am 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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taranwillow4ever wrote:
Oh, dear be careful what you ask for. I am figuring that Warren had a much bigger effect on Sunnydale than Willow initially thought. Looking forward to reading more.
:banana


A much bigger effect! She'll find that out soon enough.

shirrey wrote:
Woah, when did Willow end up? So many little and big things seemed to have changed, it's fascinating. Looking forward to the next chapter!



Same year, just a vastly different universe. Hope you enjoy the next chapter.


MotherD wrote:
Excellent start,.....continue,..PLEASE!! I eagerly await the 'other' changes to Sunnydale.
Blessings


Sorry for such a long delay, hope you enjoy the next chapter.


Will's redemption wrote:
From these hints I suspect that in this "wish universe" there was no attempted ascension of the mayor and battle to stop it on graduation day. If so I wonder how an earlier demise of Warren could have prevented these events.


The story line/alternate universe is almost identical from season 1 - 3. There will be minor changes however which will be covered later on.


Quote:
I'm confused as well because I can't remember a scene even remotely close to that "new" memory from canon which Willow could refer to as the "original memory"...


Season 4 episode 3 "The harsh light of day", instead of Willow running into Harmony after leaving the club, she encounters this man.

Quote:
I'm wondering if the change of the colour of the sweatshirt from green to grey is just an error in writing or a hint that this "new" universe isn't stable (yet) and some conditions are (randomly?) changing?


Nope, that was just an oversight. Thank you for noticing, going to fix it now.

Quote:
Why is Willow reacting so sadly? I'd say the fact that she drove in a rental car to her childhood home doesn't indicate that she only dreamt her encounter with Anya at the graveyard and the changes she noticed already. But I am curious what other changes Willow will have to face in the next chapters - and when and under what circumstances she will meet Tara for the first time in this "new world".


She had rented the car from the airport after returning from England. To her, if she had the car that meant the wish didn't come true.

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Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2020 9:47 am 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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CHAPTER 3

A feeling of dread had consumed her the moment her hand clasped around the keys to the rental car. Her hopes and dreams crumbling once more. After several long minutes staring forlornly at the rental vehicle, Willow broke out of her trance and headed for the driver side door, a single destination in mind. As the car engine sung to the lone back roads, softly splashing droplets of water hit the windshield, mimicking the tears dripping off of the redhead’s cheeks. The shifting ashen sky provided an ominous feel, the clouds pale gray color suggesting a long, mild storm.

As silent tears raked her body, Willow’s hands gripped the steering wheel tighter, her knuckles whiting under the intensity. The closer she got to the graveyard, the tighter her chest restricted, her heart fighting to beat. It came down to this, one headstone, which would dictate the outcome of her life. One headstone which would tell her whether the wish had come true, if the world had been altered and the love of her life was alive.

Pulling up to the iron gates of the cemetery, Willow looked at the plaque adorning the cobblestone wall absently. Her thoughts raced through her head, mulling over the worst case scenario on what she would find on the other sign.

A sense of deja-vue overcame Willow as she reached for the handle of the car door, pushing it open. Heaving a heavy sign, her chest tightening once more, her heavy eyelids drawing close; Willow took one step out of the car. Wearily she approached the gate, standing at the threshold of the cemetery anxiously, waiting for the instinctual pull she had felt the last time. When none was forthcoming, she took a hesitant step forward, followed by another one, the drizzle dampening her clothing barely noticeable in her state of anxiety. She felt nothing. No pull. No magnet. And worst of all, no magic.

Swallowing back the lump formulating in the back of her throat, her green eyes scanned over the boughs of the cemetery, noticing how they twisted like contorted bones, writhing in a silent scream. Moss-laden marble pillars stood as despairing guards on either side of the main entrance. Behind the ancient wrought-iron gates were rows upon rows of crumbling gravestones, their engraved epitaphs bathed in light split by a diluted sun peeking through ashen clouds. The place echoed with painful grief and the emptiness of heartfelt loss. A grimace over took Willow’s lips as she proceeded forward.

Slowly, she made her way up the path leading toward the rear of the cemetery where the newer residents had been laid to rest. She scanned every row as she walked past, her face motionless as she took in the names of loved ones long gone. Off in the distance was an elderly groundskeeper, his age weathered hands nimbly pulling at the weeds sprouting between tombstones. Willow contemplated approaching him, asking the man for directions to her lover’s grave.

She took several strides forward, closing the gap between her and the groundskeeper before a chill ran up her spin, settling at the base of her neck. Instinctively, Willow looked around her, her body spinning in a slow circle as she observed her surroundings. Her eyes eventually landed on a tombstone a row ahead, a prickling of tears threatening to shine through.

The gravestone, once an expertly engraved monument to a beloved father had crumbled with centuries of weathering. Ivy crept over its face in a last insult to his memory, casting him deeper into the murky oblivion of unrecalled history. At the sight of the marker, Willow let out a grief soaked chortle. Her hand flew up instantly to her mouth, covering the incongruous outburst. Her mirth continued to grow, her smile spreading past her palm as she looked at the semi familiar headstone, the one she had focused on so intently while speaking with Anya. Carlos Thistle. His gravestone, unkempt and weathering had been next to Tara’s immaculate resting place.

The rough marble stone that had marked her lover’s existence, positioned into the newly healing earth was no longer present. In its wake was a small plaque, an unknown woman’s name etched into the wooden surface as her loved ones waited for a proper headstone to be created.

“She’s not here,” Willow said quietly to herself as she peered down at the wooden slab, her rain dampened hair sticking to her face. Removing the hand covering her mouth, Willow moved to a nearby headstone, then to another, reading the names.

“She’s not here,” she said again, this time louder. Spinning around, a full blown smile on her face, Willow enthusiastically shouted, her voice echoing throughout the vacant landscape. “She’s not here!”

Walking back over to the wooden plaque, Willow dropped to the ground, her knees sinking into the rain drenched soil. The tension in her back that had been weighing her down dissipated, the weight of the world seemingly lifting from her shoulders. Tears of happiness flowed freely down her cheek as her heart swelled. “She’s alive … she’s not here … she’s alive.”

“Ma’am, is everything okay?” came a gruff, age battered voice, the peculiar behavior having drawn the groundskeepers attention. “Are you looking for someone?”

Jumping at the sound of the unexpected voice, Willow peered into the face of the concerned groundskeeper; her sparkling green eyes met his dulled blue ones. Scrambling to her feet, Willow raced to the man, grabbing the elderly man and pulling him into an unexpected hug. She held on tightly momentarily to the stunned man before pulling back, her hands firmly wrapped around his frail biceps. Shaking him slightly, Willow beamed ecstatically as she proclaimed once more, “She’s not here!”

She didn’t wait for the confused man to respond. Instead, she released her grip on his arms and spun around, her feet carrying her as fast as they could to the nearest exit, completely forgetting she had drove to the cemetary. She had to go home. She had to find Tara.

_________________
Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2020 3:33 pm 
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5. Willowhand
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There is something eerie and stark about this- like Willow is in a ghost town- maybe that's just my perception but it adds an aura of tension.
I expected Tara not to be in her grave, at least now there, but I get this butterfly effect feeling about it all- there are so many possibilities with this story, looking forward to where you take it!

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2020 12:28 am 
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6. Sassy Eggs

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Quote:
Season 4 episode 3 "The harsh light of day", instead of Willow running into Harmony after leaving the club, she encounters this man.

And instead of getting rescued (or just accompanied to the dorm) by Oz, she gets rescued and escorted home by this girl? That indicates that Oz wasn't her boyfriend back then in the alternate universe.

I kind of hope that Samantha won't turn out to be Willow's girlfriend in the alternate present because then the poor girl would have to face the heartache of losing Willow to Tara (whom the Willow of the alternate timeline hasn't even met before perhaps?).

Quote:
Her thoughts raced through her head, mulling over the worst case scenario on what she would find on the other sign.

Quote:
Heaving a heavy sign

You meant "side" and "sigh", didn't you?

Quote:
Slowly, she made her way up the path leading toward the rear of the cemetery where the newer residents had been laid to rest.

Quote:
The gravestone, once an expertly engraved monument to a beloved father had crumbled with centuries of weathering. Ivy crept over its face in a last insult to his memory, casting him deeper into the murky oblivion of unrecalled history.

If Tara's grave was in the "newer" part of the cemetery then how is it right aside a monument from the earliest days of the town (which was founded at the beginning of the 19th century if I recall correctly)?

Quote:
She had to go home. She had to find Tara.

I suspect she won't find Tara at "home" - which for her is the Summer's home. I'm wondering if Buffy and Dawn even live there in the alternate reality.


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2021 7:37 am 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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Ugh, so my computer completely crapped the bed and I lost basically this whole entire story which I was nearly finished writing. I was able to recover a portion of it (mainly the first 5 chapters) but I was/am so annoyed I didn't even want to look at it until now. I'm trying so hard to remember what I wrote and in what order but to be honest, I have no clue, I was "in the zone" when writing 80% of this story and I don't believe I'll be able to recreate what was lost ... but I'll try.

Anyways, here's the next chapter. Not great but it's better than nothing, right?!

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I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 11/05/2020
PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2021 8:04 am 
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Her legs pumping, a burn tightening her chest with every breath she took, Willow continued to run. The thought of seeing Tara again the only motivation she needed to keep moving. As she neared the Summers house, cutting through downtown, her momentum came to a sudden halt.

Bending over at the waist, her hands resting on her bent knees, Willow sucked in a lungful of air as she stared at the 'closed' sign hanging on a familiar white door. Pushing off of her knees, Willow rested her hands on her hips as she stared in amazement at the Magic Box. Smiling broadly to herself, her heart racing for a new reason, she took in the building. The structure of the building was intact, the front bay window gleaming from previously being polished and the exterior walls promoted a fresh layer of blue paint.

“It’s still here,” she wheezed out in amazement, her smile never faltering. “I didn’t destroy it.”

Spinning around, she looked at the remainder of the street, noticing that none of the buildings had changed from her dimension.

Gleefully, she carried on her way, walking at a more sedate pace as she took in her hometown, rejoicing in the notion that she never turned evil here. As she neared the end of the block, the Expresso Pump came into view, the busy coffee shop bursting with customers. It wasn’t until she noticed a familiar face standing outside of the establishment did her speed pick up again.

Her heart thumping vigorously, her smile reaching ear to ear, Willow waited impatiently at the crosswalk, mentally urging the light to switch. Jittering her leg impatiently, Willow watched Tara’s every movement, falling in love all over again with the woman’s gracefulness. As the crosswalk sign counted down from ten, Willow’s smile dissipated with the rhythmic clicking. Her heart went from thudding aggressively in excitement to sinking into her stomach in trepidation as she watched a ombre haired woman approach Tara.

Time seemed to slow down as she stared in horror as the somewhat familiar woman wrapped one arm around Tara’s waist and planted a chaise kiss on her cheek. It wasn’t until Tara smiled delightedly at the woman did Willow feel lightheaded. Pull it together; they're just friends, Rosenberg. Tara wouldn't lie to you, Willow thought to herself. Swaying, tears of jealousy filling her eyes, Willow took a shaky step off of the curb.

Distraught by the view in front of her, she crossed the street without checking for oncoming traffic, her eyes trained solely on the brunette. It wasn’t until she was on the ground, her palms scraped by the asphalt did she realize she had stepped in front of a bicyclist. In a trance like state, she looked up at the cyclist, his hands moving frantically as he cursed her out vigorously for not watching where she was going. Too in shock to move, she sat on the pavement, oblivious to the small crowd gathering around her.

It wasn’t until she heard her name being called did she snap back to reality. Turning her head slowly to the left, she watched as a light haired brunette emerged through the throng of people, peering down at her with a puzzled expression.

“Willow,” the woman said again as she pushed the irate bicyclist away from the injured redhead.

Kneeling down by her side, the mahogany haired woman reached out a hand, gently cupping Willow on the shoulder as she grimaced at the small seeping wound on the redhead’s forehead, “are you okay?”

“Am I dreaming?” Willow asked, her features distorted in anguish.

Removing her hand from the redhead’s shoulder, she forcefully pressed her thumb to the small seeping wound on Willow’s forehead. Pulling back from the prying digit, Willow hissed in pain. Squinting, Willow gingerly raised her own hand to her head, wincing when she made contact with the abrasion.

“Doesn’t look like it,” snickered the woman. Standing up, she brushed her blood stained finger off on her jeans before offering the same hand to the redhead, pulling her up off of the roadway. “Alright people, nothing to see here,” she hollered as she guided Willow to the sidewalk, sitting her down on a wooden bench.

Swiveling her head from side to side, Willow frantically tried to glimpse a sight of Tara through the departing crowd, desperate to get to her departing lover. As her neck was on its third rotation, she noticed her girlfriend heading south toward campus with the woman she vaguely remembered from the brunette's Art History class. As if she felt the presence of eyes on her, the wiccan casted a quick glance over her shoulder, her ocean blue eyes locking with glistening greens. At the sight of the redhead, a pang of recognition shot through Tara, her mood souring as she turned back around.

Helplessly, Willow sat on the bench as the love of her life walked away with someone else. Tears of remorse trickled down her cheeks as she stared watery eyed down the street in the direction where Tara had vanished around a corner. As nausea swirled unrestrained in her empty stomach, Willow felt as if the blood in her heart had turned to tar as it struggled to keep a steady beat. Ripping her eyes away from the vacant corner, Willow looked up at steeply arched eyebrows.

“What are you doing here, Willow?” the tone was harsh, almost threatening.

Like earlier in the morning, a blinding white pain erupted at the back of her skull and skyrocketed forward. Her body went limp as her eyelids convulsed, flickering open and closed at an alarming rate. At the sudden, uncontrollable electrical disturbance in her brain Willow started making halting noises deep in her throat. Visions began to emerge, slow at first like a projector slide showing still photos. The process soon sped up to the point where the images were in motion, rapidly flicking as if she was watching a movie.

“Mom, please pick up the phone,” Willow said in anguish as she spoke into a landline, tears streaming down her cheeks. Sitting on her dorm bed, Willow begged into her phone for her parents to answer as her legs bounced up and down, “Mom, I really need you.”

The sound of a click resonated over the answering machine, indicating someone had picked up the other line. Groggily, the sleep laced voice spoke into the receiver. “Willow?”

“Mom,” Willow exclaimed as she breathed a sigh of relief.

“Willow, honey, what’s wrong?” Sheila asked worriedly, her sleep muddled mind clearing instantly at the sound of distress in her daughter’s voice.

“I need you mom,” Willow said again as she clutched at the smooth plastic of her phone, her irregular sobs making it hard for her speak. “Can I come home?”

“Of course sweetie,” Sheila replied instantaneously, her concern for Willow intensifying. “You don’t ever have to ask. What’s wrong?”


Stultified by feelings of grief and sorrow, Willow flopped backwards on the bench, her chest pumping like a jackhammer as she blankly stared ahead of her. Squeezing her palms against her temple, Willow tried to dampen the mind splitting headache as memories forcefully wedged themselves into existence in her brain. As a pair of hands gripped her shoulders, shaking her softly, Willow snapped out of her trance. Confused, she looked up at concerned dark almond eyes fearfully as she tried to comprehend what just happened.

“What’s happening to me?” Willow whined out pathetically as she shook her head, uncertain what to make of her current predicament. "My head doesn't feel right."

"Probably because you just hit your head pretty hard, you might have a concussion," the woman stated as held up three fingers on her right hand, "how many fingers am I holding up?"

"Three," Willow got out slowly, her eyes straining to focus.

"Good," cooed the other woman as she gingerly pulled the redhead off the bench into a standing position, "and where are you?"

"Sunnydale,"

"And my name?"

"Cordelia," Willow said dryly. "My head hurts, I'm not brain damaged."

"Wouldn't that be a shame," Cordelia snickered as she ushered the redhead down the street towards the Expresso Pump. "Come on then, you need ice for that cut."

_________________
Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 06/16/2021
PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2021 5:54 pm 
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3. Flaming O
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SORRY,...I have been woefully lax in posting feedback/comments, I'm working on it. Please keep writing and working on this story.
excerpt from: Twice Remembered........ “Willow,” the woman said again as she pushed the irate bicyclist away from the injured redhead.

Kneeling down by her side, the mahogany haired woman reached out a hand, gently cupping Willow on the shoulder as she grimaced at the small seeping wound on the redhead’s forehead, “are you okay?”

“Am I dreaming?” Willow asked, her features distorted in anguish.

Removing her hand from the redhead’s shoulder, she forcefully pressed her thumb to the small seeping wound on Willow’s forehead. Pulling back from the prying digit, Willow hissed in pain. Squinting, Willow gingerly raised her own hand to her head, wincing when she made contact with the abrasion.

“Doesn’t look like it,” snickered the woman. Standing up, she brushed her blood stained finger off on her jeans before offering the same hand to the redhead, pulling her up off of the roadway. “Alright people, nothing to see here,” she hollered as she guided Willow to the sidewalk, sitting her down on a wooden bench.

Just have to say, this may be the kindest 'rendition' of Cordelia Chase in any fic I've read....
OKAY, that said, I Really hope you're going to keep posting new chapters, AND frequently! I can't wait to see what the changes are in this new Sunnydale Willow has found herself in.
Blessings

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 06/16/2021
PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2021 6:06 pm 
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5. Willowhand
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I am so sorry to hear that you lost so much of your story!! That must have been heartbreaking.

I am glad you decided to continue posting nonetheless.
Poor willow is in a world of hurt, she was warned that things wouldn't be the same but agreeing to that and experiencing it isn't the same. Looking forward to more!

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 06/16/2021
PostPosted: Wed Jul 07, 2021 5:35 pm 
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3. Flaming O
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Helllloooooo,.......me again. Great update, keep 'em coming!
I reread all the chapters that are up so far, and for the Life of me I cannot figure how the life OR death of Warren Mears (ooh, Yuck, and {spit sound} patooey) could have made that great of a mark on Sunnydale.
I Shall continue to follow your story to find out, however........But I am NOT a patient person!!! (begging and groveling)
Blessings

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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 06/16/2021
PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2021 12:46 pm 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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Thank you both for baring with me while I frequently disappear from posting. I've been working to try and piece this story back together and its finally starting to fall back into place. Sorta. Slowly but surely, I hope to have it completed enough to start posting regularly.

Thank you again and I hope you enjoy the next chapter. :)

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Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 06/16/2021
PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2021 1:01 pm 
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7. Teeny Tinkerbell Light
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“When did you get back?” Cordelia asked as she handed over a cup of coffee to the dreary looking redhead.

“This morning, my flight from …” she faltered slightly, her eyebrows pinching together as she tried to recall where she had flown in from. “It was a long flight … I was coming from-“ again her mind went blank, unable to process the events that took place earlier that morning. She tried blinking her eyes repeatedly , hoping to clear away the fog that felt oddly familiar to the time she woke up from anesthesia after getting her wisdom teeth pulled.

“You’re good,” Cordelia said flippantly with a wave of her hand as she resumed her seat at the table. “I’m not really all that interested.”

“What… what are you doing her Cordy?” Willow asked, one hand clutching a small bag of ice to her forehead while her other hand nervously flexed around the Styrofoam cup. “I thought you were in LA helping out Angel?”

“Uh, yeah, like two years ago,” huffed out the brunette in exasperation. “I moved back shortly after the start of freshman year, you know this.”

“I do?” Willow said more to herself, her face masked in confusion. She tried to process the information, to think back on the last time she saw her former classmate, let alone spoke with her, but the pain radiating throughout her skull was too fierce to allow her to concentrate. “Why? Why did you come back?”

“Uhh, Adam,” Cordelia replied back snarky before taking a sip from her coffee. “Haven’t we already gone over this?” She dismissed the self-asked question casually with another wave of her hand. "Jinxed kiss. Powers blessed upon me, blinding vision of a murderous reject science project, help Buffy save the world yet again, yadda yadda yadda.”

“No, that’s not … I was there for that,” Willow replied weakly, her own tone not sounding convincing.

“Nooo,” insisted the brunette slowly through slotted eyes as if she was talking to a mentally impaired individual, “Buffy tried contacting you but after the accident … you were kind of hard to reach.”

“Accident?”

“Yeah, accident. How hard did you hit your head?” Cordelia grouched, un-amused with the redhead’s antics. “I don’t have to take you to the hospital or something do I?”

Instinctively, Willow reached a hand up to her forehead, hissing as her fingers brushed over the aggravated wound not yet completely numb from the ice. “No. No, I’m just …everything’s so different from ...”

“I know you’ve been gone for a while but seriously, catch up.” Cordelia cut in harshly, rolling her eyes in the process for emphasis.

“I wasn’t gone that long,” the redhead said softly as she shook her head from side to side.

“Yeah, okay, keep telling yourself that,” Cordelia replied mockingly. “We haven’t seen you in like forever, not that anyone really cares anymore.”

“What? They … they don’t want me here?” Willow said puzzlingly as she shook her head more vigorously. “No. No, that’s not … that’s not true,”

“You must’ve been living in la-la-land if you think you can just come back here and everything would be forgotten.” Remarked the former cheerleader sardonically. “Buffy and Xander, they’re done with you.”

“That’s not true!” she said even louder, her hands jutting out to shove the bistro table away from her. Seething, her lips turning into a snarl, “you’re lying. They love me! I may have made some mistakes but they wouldn’t just abandoned me.”

“Woe, Willow, chill out,” Cordelia said as she reached out a hand toward Willow’s wrist, attempting to calm down the flabbergasted redhead. “You’re causing a scene.”

“Where is everyone? Where’s Buffy? Xander? I need to speak with them, to explain” Willow rattled off, her voice quivering. “Everything’s supposed to be better now. We’re all supposed to be happy.”

Cordelia cocked her head to the side, a stunned expression gracing her elegant features as she looked at the redhead in deep contemplation. “I don’t know what story book you’re reading from… but we’re all far from happy.”

“What?” she half whispered, hoping she misheard Cordelia. “But … ”

“There are no buts,” Cordelia interjected, her voice bleak. “Welcome back to the hell mouth, where every day you are doomed a slow, inevitable march toward death.

“I need to go,” Willow replied briskly as she stood up from her seat. Shakily she backed away from the brunette, her eyes wide like a deer caught in headlights. “I … I need to find Tara … find Buffy. You … you don’t understand."

“Willow, wait, let me at least …” the words died on her lips as she watched the redhead bolt from the coffee shop. Breathing deeply through her nose, Cordelia let out the breath in a long drawn out huff, exasperated by the redhead’s flair for the dramatics. Casting her glance to the left, she caught the attention of a waiter wiping off the table nearby, “Can I get a scone?”

_________________
Alyson, oh, Alyson why don´t you join my band? So you could play the flute like this one time in band camp.
I Am Forever / A Special Christmas of Sorts / Maybe It's Just Me / Honeysuckle Rose /Blackouts and Breakthroughs / When Love Arrives


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 07/17/2021
PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2021 2:02 am 
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6. Sassy Eggs

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Dibs! :whip
I'm sorry that you lost your story and have to rewrite it but I'm glad that you make the effort and don't give up on the story.

Poor Willow really has stumbled into a strange alternative world. If I understand Cordelia correctly then Willow hasn't been in Sunnydale since before the "showdown" with Adam at the end of canon season 4? The big question is why and what the hell that has to do with Warren? And if she has been gone since sometime in season 4, did she and Tara even were in a relationship before she left?

Quote:
“I don’t know what story book you’re reading from… but we’re all far from happy.”

“What?” she half whispered, hoping she misheard Cordelia. “But … ”

“There are no buts,” Cordelia interjected, her voice bleak. “Welcome back to the hell mouth, where every day you are doomed a slow, inevitable march toward death.

That sounds over-dramatic, from what we've read of this world until now it doesn't sound like some kind of "Wish"-verse were demons rule the town or something.

I'm really curious how the story will unfold (and how you will achieve the much needed happy ending for our couple).


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 Post subject: Re: Twice Remembered - 07/17/2021
PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2021 10:47 am 
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5. Willowhand
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My heart! Poor poor Willow- it doesn't seem fair that a person like Warren would have so much effect, but it's not really about fair I guess

really intrigued by what is happening

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