Title: "What I'm Here For."

Author: A.M. Glass

E-Mail: glasswrks@yahoo.com

Rating: PG-13.

Copyright: May 11, 2002

Disclaimer: The characters from Buffy The Vampire Slayer belong to Joss Whedon, et al. The story belongs to the author.

Spoilers: None.

Timeframe: Takes place during the fourth season of Buffy, prior to Tara and Riley's appearance.

Feedback: Up to you.

Distribution: Feel free to take it.

Thanks: To my friend Debbie who allowed me to use her as a sounding board.

Author's Note: This hasn't been beta'd, so if there are any mistakes, feel free to point them out. Also, it's angsty, which is really nothing new for my stories if you've ever read them.

Willow looked up when the door to the dorm room opened. She smiled when Buffy walked in. "Hey Buffy. everything go okay?" she asked.

"Same ol'. same ol," Buffy replied as she took off her leather jacket and tossed it onto her bed before grabbing a bottle of water from the mini fridge they had.

"Did something happen?" Willow asked as she shut her history book and sat up on the bed.

"Mmm. what?"

"Buffy what's wrong?"

Seeing the concern etched on Willow's face, Buffy's heart ached once more. She couldn't tell Willow what had happened. She'd want to make it better, that's the way she was. Willow was always trying to look out for her, it was one of the reasons Buffy loved her.

She sighed.

Buffy had thought about her feelings for the redhead and recognized them for what they were: love.

She was in love with her best friend.

The person who made her want to make the world a better, safer place.

However, there were times when Buffy couldn't care less...

When she was tired of being the Chosen One, but a single glance in Willow's direction gave her the determination to continue the fight night after night.

Clearing her thoughts she answered shrugging her shoulders, "There's nothing's wrong Will. I'm going to take a shower and turn in if you don't mind." She finished her water, grabbed her things and left the room, leaving behind a slightly confused friend.

Heading down the hall Buffy knew she had to think of something to say when she returned. If there was one thing she knew about Willow, it was that she wouldn't leave her alone until she'd found out what had happened.

Reaching the bathroom, she undressed, stepped into the shower stall, and turned on the water to let it beat down upon her.

Perhaps it would wash away what she'd done.

She couldn't believe it herself...

How could she tell Willow...

Tell her that the last vampire she'd slain had made comments.

Infuriating remarks about Willow.

How she'd snapped.

How she hadn't merely staked the vampire, rather she'd taken her time beating him unmercifully, until the vampire had actually begged her to stake him.

Even that she did slowly.

Pushing the stake into him, inch by inch until she finally shoved it through his heart.

How she laid face down on the grass, gasping for breath, struggling against the urge to vomit in response to her behavior.

How was she supposed to tell Willow that?

Tears coursed down her face, her body, finally swirling down the drain, uselessly.

"Umm. Buffy."

"I. I'll be out in a minute Will," Buffy called out as she hurriedly scrubbed her body.

"It's okay Buffy."

"Will. what are you doing?" Buffy asked as she turned around to see Willow standing there clad in pajamas. "I'll be right out. Why don't you go back to the room," she said as she reached out to turn the water off, only to feel Willow's hand on hers. "You're getting wet." she stated, blinking as the water ran into her eyes.

"I know. and it's okay," Willow replied as she stepped closer. "Buffy. what ever happened tonight. it's okay." With those words she wrapped her arms around the other girl, heedless of the fact she was being drenched.

Unable to withstand the flood of emotions washing over her, Buffy's legs gave way. Sinking to her knees, her body shook as she could no longer hold back the tears, she clung to Willow like a lifeline.

"Whatever happened it won't change a thing. You're still my best friend. next to Xander of course," she added as she whispered into the blonde's ear. "I still love you Buffy. always."

"Oh God Will. don't let go. please," she pleaded, as she held onto Willow's body.

"Never. I promise." Willow replied earnestly. She held on to Buffy, letting the tears run their course, after a few minutes she cleared her throat. "Umm Buffy."

"Yeah?" she sniffled.

"Getting kinda cold. not to mention clingy pj's."

Buffy couldn't help but laugh, "I guess we'd better get back to the room."

"That sounds like a great idea," Willow replied. "Do you think you can stand?" she asked.

"I think so. I. I may need some help."

"That's what I'm here for."

They stood up slowly, once Willow was sure Buffy was able to stand on her own, she turned the water off. Reaching for the towel Buffy had brought with her, Willow began to dry Buffy's hair before wrapping it around her friend's body.

"Thanks," Buffy told her.

"You're welcome. let's get going. I'm starting to puddle," Willow replied as she looked down to her feet and saw the growing wet patch.

"I'm sorry."

"Don't be. I'm not," she said grabbing her hand and leading her from the shower and back to their dorm room.

Once inside, Willow led Buffy to her bed and sat her down.

Buffy watched as Willow grabbed a towel and began to undress, she averted her gaze as she heard wet clothing hit the floor. She was still looking down when she noticed Willow's bare feet.

"Time for Slayers to get dressed for bed," she stated, holding the pajamas Buffy had decided to wear.

Nodding, Buffy stood up lifting her arms as Willow first removed the towel, then gently lowered the pj's over Buffy's head, down her arms and the rest of her body. Buffy allowed Willow move her as the redhead pulled the blankets down and patted the mattress.

Smiling, Buffy sat down and slid her legs underneath. "Will?"

"Scoot over."

"O-kay," Buffy said as she moved over.

"Ah. better," Willow said as she slipped underneath the covers.

"I'm okay now Will. you don't need to stay with me," Buffy said as she turned her head to the right.

"Indulge me. I need to be here," Willow said softly as grabbed Buffy's hand and squeezed it. "I'm not going to ask you what happened. Obviously something bothered you, and when you're ready to talk about it I'm here. And even if you're not. I'm still here for you Buffy," she said as closed her eyes.

Buffy blinked a few times as her eyes burned, "Thanks Will." she said haltingly.

She watched as Willow smiled.

Perhaps she'd tell Willow what happened tonight.

Or not.

But for the moment, she basked in the love she felt from her friend.

Whether or not she'd ever acted on her feelings was up to her...

But she knew that Willow would be there for her.


The End.

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