Author: Lysa <lysaharris[at]fsmail.net>

This is another W/X piece which is mostly a friendship fic, with romantic hints towards the end. I wrote this after seeing the first four or five eps of season seven, and I was severly disappointed with the lack of scenes between W/X after the whole 'Grave' thing. It's kinda hokey, but it needed to be written.

Also, I have a question. I just wrote an NC-17 fic, my first, and I was wondering of it was okay to post here? I don't wanna go breaking any rules or anything.



Rating: PG

Feedback: Always appreciated

Distribution: If you want it, ask first.

Pairing: Willow/Xander, mostly friendship

Spoilers: Same Time, Same Place

Summary: This is a little bit of a friendship fic, but with some romantic notes later on. It's a conversation between Willow and Xander after Willow gets back. It's set directly after the scene with Willow and Buffy in Willow's room at the end of Same Time, Same Place.

Disclaimer: Everyone knows that I don't own it, so I'm not gonna claim to. All the characters mentioned etc. are the property of Joss Whedon/UPN/Mutant Enemy and anyone else involved in the production of the show. No copyright intended.

Notes: I REALLY wanted some kind of conversation or interaction between Willow and Xander about what had happened. But Joss, in all of his infinite wisdom, left it out. So, this is my take on it, and I've added the romance to satisfy my own selfish obsession. There could possibly be a sequel if anyone's interested, but I need encouragement to do it.

Xander stood at the door to Willow's new room, the one that used to belong to Buffy, and watched his two best friends sat with their eyes closed and hands linked, and smiled with a little relief. The smile quickly faded, however, when he saw the pained expression cross Willow's features, and the faintest of tears spring into the corners of her eyes. He inwardly cursed himself that he hadn't known what was going on, and for the fact that he thought she had been to blame for the dead guy. Sure, it had probably been some kind of spell that had made it all happen, although who and how was still a mystery, but he felt he should have known. When they had been able to see her in that cave...it nearly broke his heart to see her that way, to see her so glad to see them after thinking they didn't want to be around her. Maybe if he had known she was there, he might have been able to stop that demon ripping strips off her body like it was bacon. 'How could you have stopped him?' A voice asked inside of him. 'It's not like you could stop Warren'. He put his head down in frustration and turned to leave.

"Where do you think you're going, mister?" a voice asked.

He turned back around to see Willow, her hands still linked with Buffy's, with one eye open and the other clenched shut.

"Nowhere," he said innocently.


Buffy's eyes opened and her hands dropped from Willow's onto the bed as she turned to face him. "Come on in," she told him a she yawned. "I was just gonna leave."

"Why?" he asked in a whiney voice. "How else am I gonna get to see you two in bed together?"

"Xander!" Buffy exclaimed loudly. "We're ON a bed, not IN it."

"Same thing to a guy," he told her with a shrug as he approached the end of the bed.

"Yeah, well," she said as she stood up, "I'm sorry to shatter this delusion, but I have to go and make dinner. Are you staying?" He looked at her with a blank expression and she rolled her eyes. "Why did I even ask that question? I already know the answer. Do you actually buy food or just come and eat here?" she shook her head as she walked out.

Xander waited for her to leave, and looked at Willow with softened eyes. "How are you?"

Willow gave him a weary smile. "Why are you all the way over there?"


"Come sit with me?"

There was something about that look in her eyes that put him at ease instantly, and in one swift movement he was on the bed, lying to the right-hand side of her, his back to the window and his arm propped up on the cushions.

"Okay, ow," she said as the bed bounced under her, and she put a hand to the dressing across her stomach.

"Sorry," he told her sheepishly.

"It's alright," she told him. "Just no more sudden movements, okay?"


She shifted her position uncomfortably, using her hands on the bed to support herself and she took a deep breath as the pain bit into her body.

"Here," he said soothingly, instantly moving to help her. He used his own strength to support her as he placed his hands on her back, easing her body back slowly so that her head was rested on his chest, and he relaxed into the cushions behind him.

"Thanks," she told him, almost breathlessly, as the strain of the past few hours spent trying to heal herself took its toll on her.

"No problem," he said as he innocently kissed the top of her head.

"You shouldn't blame yourself, you know," she said suddenly, bringing him abruptly out of the last few moments of silence.


"You're blaming yourself for what happened to me with that demon," she told him. "And you shouldn't. You didn't know."

"But I should have done," he said seriously. "I mean, I even thought that--"

"That I was to blame for that guy?" she interrupted. "I know. Everyone did, and I don't blame them after what I did."

"But I should've known it wasn't you."

"It doesn't matter. I'm sorry I put you through that."

"Put me through what? It wasn't you."

"Part of it was," she admitted. When there was no response, she winced at the thought of having him mad at her. "I mean the whole us not seeing each other thing, not the flaying thing."

"You cast a spell?"

"Not intentionally. It's just...I was so scared about coming back here after everything I did. I didn't know if you guys would want me back here after that."

"Are you kidding?" he asked, almost incredulous at the thought. "I know I can't speak for Buffy or Dawn...but *I* wanted you back here. I don't function that well when you're not around, you know that."

"You seem to have coped."

"Maybe," he said seriously. "But I didn't want to."

She let a small laugh escape her. "You always know what to say to make me feel better."

"Well, it comes from years of practice. I'm trying to make up for all the times I hurt you." He waited a moment. "Why did you cast the spell?"

"I didn't," she told him. "I just remember thinking I was ready to you see you guys, and then poof! It happened."

"Well, don't be thinking about doing it again. I need to have you where I can see you."

"Okay," she said with a smile. Her hands came up to the hem of her shirt and she began fidgeting with the material.

"What is it?" he asked lazily, knowingly. "Something else?"

"Yeah, there kind is..." she looked up at him. "...Thank you..."

"What are you thanking me for?"

"For what you did."

"I didn't do anything," he told her as that guilty feeling came back into his stomach. "I ran my mouth off, like I always do. If I'd been any kind of a friend, I would have been able to stop Warren from--"

"Don't," she interrupted. "Don't blame yourself for that either. God, Xander, I know you did what you could that day, but if anything had happened to you..." tears sprang into her eyes of their own accord, and she brushed them away as discreetly as she could. "...there wouldn't have been any coming back for me...not from that. Anyway, I knew your lame jokes would come in handy one day. You saved the world with them."

"Thank you!" he said loudly. "Finally someone else gets it!"

She laughed to herself, before the mood darkened again. "I learned a lot from the coven, and from Giles...it's amazing how I can still learn from him. After all this time, I thought we knew everything there was to know about him, but he's just like this big font of knowledge about everything - except synchronized swimming."


She sensed his confused expression and shrugged lightly. "Anyway, getting back on topic, I learned that, as hard as it is to accept, it was Tara's time. That doesn't make it any easier to deal with, but I know that Tara's in heaven somewhere, getting all mad that I've been mopey and depressed. It made me see that everything happens for a reason in this life. Everything's destined before we've even been born. And this power that I have...if I try and give it up completely there's no way I'd make it. It's always going to be inside of me, no matter what. But if I try hard enough, I can control it, and not let it control me. I just have to find the balance."

"Miss Calendar has a lot to answer for," he remarked.

"It's no one's fault, Xander."

"But if she hadn't left all that pagan stuff on her computer and left that spell to restore Angel's soul none of this would have happened."

"It would. That's what I'm trying to say. But if I want to find that balance, I'm going to need you," she told him as she brought one hand up to touch his chest with the back of her hand. "I need you to be my best friend again, the one I had in high school who called me everyday just to say hi, even if we were going to see each other in a couple of hours, and who called me every night to say goodnight. I need Buffy, too, but it's not the same. I mean, I'm not saying that you have to do all that stuff again, cos I don't want to fall in love with you again..." she had expected a laugh from him, or some kind of joke. After all, she had meant it as a joke...hadn't she? She shrugged off the frightened feeling inside with a nervous laugh. "That was a joke, Xander. Like that would actually happen..."

"Oh, yeah," he said uncomfortably as it felt like a knife had been stuck in his gut, making it feel all the worse because he hadn't expected this feeling. He laughed uncomfortably. "I know that..."

"But, I do need you to be my friend again. We both know that you were the only one who knew how to stop me, and I thank you for that."

"I didn't know how to stop you."

"But you loved me enough as your friend to try anyways."

"I'm sorry..." he said hoarsely.

"Xander, no more 'sorry's, okay? No more wishing and thinking what might have been. Deal?"

"Deal," he confirmed as he squeezed her gently. "I did mean it, you know. I do love you."

"I know you do," she told him, "and I love you. I'm sorry I couldn't say it then."

"That's okay. You were too busy wiping snot all over my shirt."

"Well, I never did like it that much. I'm sorry that I, you know, slashed your chest and everything."

"What did you just make me promise? 'No more sorry's', remember? That means both of us. And by the way, that other stuff about us being best friends again? I'd like that."

"Good," she said with a smile.

"Hey," he said with a smile as he nudged her back with his arm. "Do you remember the last time you and I were this close on a bed?"

Willow couldn't help but roll her eyes, but the smallest of laughs escaped her. "Yeah, and look how that turned out." She told him flatly.

"Hey, I wasn't that bad a kisser was I?" he joked.

"No," she said as she tapped his arm gently. "In fact, you were..." she stopped as her face reddened.

"What?" he asked curiously. "What was I?"

"I mean, not that I had all that much experience, just Oz, but...wow."

"Really? Wow?" he asked with a self-satisfied grin. "Better than Oz?"

"I'm not answering that question on the grounds I may incriminate myself."

"I was the best," he said to himself with a happy smile. The smile faded. "I should have known back then that I'd never have a relationship that I didn't screw up."

"I, um...I spoke to Anya."

"Well that's more than she'll do with me."

"Yeah, she kinda told me you guys weren't getting along."

"That's an under statement," he told her bitterly. "She's demon again, and it's my fault."

"Again with the self pitying," Willow said loudly.

"Will, I'm not--"

"Yes, you are, Xander," she told him sternly. "You're blaming yourself again. You did what you thought was right. Okay, yeah, when she was just about to walk up the aisle probably wasn't the best time to tell her, but you *did* tell her. What about if you had got married? What then? One day it would all have become too much for you, and you'd probably either leave and end up hating yourself, or stay and hate both of you. She made a conscious decision to become a demon again. Anya's hurting, but she will see it from your point of view eventually."

"Maybe," he said with a sigh. "After all, who can't love the Xand-Man?"

"Exactly," she said as she snuggled into his chest, the pain from her injury somehow easing in his arms. "You're preaching to the converted here, mister."

He grinned as the moment grew silent. "Willow, there's something you should know," he began hesitantly. "When we were in high school...I did love you, you know, and I'm sorry that I never told you. But for me, I had loved you for so long, it took almost losing you to make me relies it. I couldn't remember a time when I didn't have all these feelings inside of me, and realizing what they meant scared me to death. When all that stuff happened after the Fluke and everything...God, it was like someone turning on a light and I could see something so clearly that had always been in the dark to me. When Oz and Cordelia found out, I know I should have told you how I felt. But that look in your eyes when you saw Oz in the factory...it was like you were ashamed. I didn't want to be the cause of you feeling like that, and I knew that I could never be what you needed. All through my life...you've always been there for me. You've been like this guiding force in my life, always supporting me, being there for me..." he took a deep breath. "So, I guess what I'm trying to say to you is that...I think I still am. In love with you, that is. I know that you stopped feeling like that a long time ago, and I can't blame you for that, but I've known you long enough to know that you deserve the truth. You're probably thinking that this is some pity thing or something lame like that, and I don't want you to feel uncomfortable around me or anything like that, because I would never want to make you hate me by acting on it - although you probably already do - and when I told you on the Bluff that I loved you, I did mean it. I don't want you to think it was some big declaration of my feelings, because it wasn't, and I wasn't trying to let you know that I meant it this way, but I do. I'm not going to be all dramatic about it and say that I'll love you forever, but I will, and I already have. I just realized that in all the time I felt guilty for loving you at the same time as Anya. You can love more than one person in this life. I think that a part of Xander Harris's heart is always going to belong to Willow Rosenberg, and that's it'll always be. Wow, do you have any water?" he asked as he looked around the room. He nudged her a little. "Do you hate me for telling you that?"

There was no response from her except a light, sleep-induced breath that escaped her mouth.

Xander laughed gently to himself as he carefully and gently moved his arm from around her body, resting her on the plump cushion behind him. She rolled onto her side, and he winced at the thought of waking her. When she didn't stir, he carefully climbed over her and knelt at the side of the bed. He brushed a stray strand of red hair from her sleeping face, and kissed her forehead. "Why is it that you're always unconscious when I bare my soul to you? The coma, now... I guess you were never meant to hear me, huh?" he stood up and gazed at her sleeping form, and took a blanket from the chair behind him to cover her. "I love you..." he whispered again before he left.

Willow's eyes opened as a slow smile spread across her face, and the warm feeling inside her grew. "I love you..." she whispered as she closed her eyes again, knowing she would sleep sounder than she had in months. Suddenly, her eyes opened again, wide with shock and confusion. 'Wait a minute,' a voice inside her said. 'What did he say? Unconscious...? Coma...? It was him!'

Possibly to be continued...