Author: eddy29456 <tc40sbenn[at]>

Setting : AU fourth season

Spoilers : To fifth season

Pairing : NA

Disclaimer : This is neither endorsed by nor approved of by Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, or anyone else with a legitimate interest in Buffy.

Feedback : No. Feedback would be pointless. This was in my head, and I wrote it down to make it leave. It only came in, I think, because I skipped my anti-depressants.

Rating : R

Category : Angst (Skipped anti-depressants).

Dear Tara,

I'm really sorry about this. I wish things were different. I want you to know, I really do love you. Yes, Willow's spell was the catalyst. I wouldn't have met you if not for her, and I wouldn't have gotten to know you without her around. But to use a cliche, to know you is to love you.

I know Willow regrets the spell. I do too. You have to understand, Willow has always had issues with needing people to love her. Loss of love terrifies her, and she was devastated when Spike turned Buffy into a vampire. So when she introduced us she was terrified that we wouldn't get along. So she cast the spell. It was only intended that we feel friendly and accepting toward each other. I don't think you got a good look at Willow's face when she came back from the bathroom after she cast it, but I can assure you, she did not expect to find us making love on our table in the Bronze.

She was deeply hurt. Yes, she could have confessed immediately, taken responsibility, and maybe we could have gotten the spell reversed quicker. She panicked. Yes, she left us thinking we'd betrayed her, and left us with a great deal of guilt. I understand how you must have felt about it, if she'd cast a spell that had me and Giles making love, I'd have gone ballistic. I'm still mad that I lost Anya. I can understand how Anya, coming into the Bronze to meet me, Willow, and a new friend of Willow's would get really upset finding me making love on a table with a girl she didn't know. Especially since she asked me to a week or so before that and we had a really pointed talk about public vs. private behavior. I can't really blame her for leaving with no forwarding address.

I could forgive Willow the loss of Anya. If it had happened, I could forgive Willow the Giles thing, I think. But, I've tried and tried, and I have an issue I can't forgive Willow for.

I've never told anyone this, but when I was younger, and my father was drunk he would - sex between him and Mom was not entirely mutually agreed upon. I swore I'd never do that. And I didn't. When Willow and I got to the age where I was starting to notice girls, I did notice she was pretty. I'm stupid, not blind. But I knew if I asked Willow out or anything that she would say yes even if she didn't want to because she couldn't hurt me by saying no. And if the other person can't say no, it's rape.

But with you, well, while Buffy was holding me hostage, she pointed out that, well, you're gay. If I'd been paying attention, I'd have realized that you really were not into what we were doing, and that I blinded myself to that so I could feel better. And that the spell would make you pretend to be enthused if you thought that was what I wanted. And that taking advantage of that as I did made me what I really didn't want to be.

I haven't forgiven Willow. I don't think I'll ever forgive Willow. And Willow won't ever be happy unless I forgive her. Willow knows when I'm lying. Willow will be unhappy until she dies. It's because I can't forgive her. I'll be unhappy until I die. Because I've made Willow unhappy.

This is why I had to kill her and myself. You'll read of it in the newspapers. I feel bad asking this, but I need three favors.

First, look after Giles. Since we healed Faith to slay Spike and the Buffy vamp he's gone downhill. I wish you could have known him before the drinking started, he was really special. Losing Buffy really hurt him.

Second, look after Faith. Buffy and Faith had a history, I don't think staking the Buffy vamp did much for her psychologically.

Finally, look after yourself. I really do love you, even with the spell broken, and so does Willow. You're a special person, and you need to recognize that and appreciate that.