grief of losing my sweet Minx.
Set during Intervention, where Buffy admitted her fears of turning
to stone to Giles.
As usual, thanks to my betas Stalwartsandall and Twinkles for their eagle-eyes
Please note, as always, comments are always welcomed.
Banner by Twinkles
It had been a long day, and the night held no promise of relief. Buffy had tried talking with Giles about her fears: that she was becoming emotionally petrified, losing her capacity for love. She could tell he was trying to be supportive, but there was no way he could truly understand.
He had options. Even though it was a cover, he was a qualified librarian. And before that, he’d been a museum curator.
All she would ever be was the Slayer. And even that wasn’t a long-term gig. Buffy felt her expiration date galloping closer and closer – the energy stampeding up her spine – telling her the end was nigh.
Maybe numb was the best she could hope for.
She growled softly to herself, kicking at stones on the ground, as if they’d gotten in the way of her feet on purpose. With a deep sigh, Buffy looked up into the emptiness of the night sky. It was just beginning to lighten –the deep navy blue giving way a few shades – enough to lessen the ‘danger, Will Robinson’ vibes Sunnydale nights always exuded.
“Time to go home,” Buffy sighed aloud. Not that there was any comfort to be found at Revello Drive. Not for her, at least. Dawn would be glad to see her – would want to spend time with her… even at this hour. She wasn’t sure she could handle even that small interaction.
Buffy had just cleared an alley, when a plaintive meow sounded loud in the quiet of the night. She stopped for a moment; the next meow was louder and more desperate.
“Buffy, the kitty rescuer, that’s me,” she said, feeling somewhat put upon, one more thing needed her attention.
She found the cat huddled underneath some stacked cardboard. It tottered towards her on unsteady feet and meowed again. Buffy could tell it wasn’t a youngster, and definitely wasn’t in the best of health; its coat was lank and greasy-looking, its eyes glassy and unfocused.
“What’s the matter, little one?” Buffy cooed softly. She sat down on a relatively clean piece of cardboard and crossed her legs, which the cat obviously took as an invitation. It crawled into the space Buffy provided, rolling over and showing… her belly.
She was so thin! Buffy could feel the sharpness between the shoulder blades and every single knob of her backbone. “I wish I had some food to give you,” Buffy sighed, stroking the cat’s body gently. But even as she said it, she knew it was a futile wish: the cat was beyond food. “Looks like you haven’t lived an easy life, either,” she commiserated.
The cat had quieted, settled into a soft purr as Buffy continued to comfort her. With a subtle shift of her body the cat had nestled into Buffy’s arms, seemingly content.
Buffy sat still, listening as the cat’s breathing began to hitch, and her body began to twitch slightly. She just couldn’t find it in herself to put the cat down on the ground and continue on homewards.
After a particularly loud gasp and full body shiver, the cat calmed once again – still for the jagged rise and fall of her chest. Buffy felt the stuttering breaths one-by-one.
“It’s okay to let go, little girl,” she said softly. “I hope you find peace at last.”
And just like that, the struggle for life was over. The cat lays limp in Buffy’s arms.
And the heart Buffy thought hard and frozen broke like crystal, and she cried silently into the night.