Even with her natural Slayer stealth, Buffy tip toed through the darkened room to the bed and the figure sprawled across it. Dawn was laying arms and legs akimbo, her brunette hair spread across the pillows. Even back to actual size, Dawn was amazingly long limbed and Buffy had to stifle a bit of pique at the monks for making Dawn so leggy.
Buffy eased closer, retrieving the blankets from the floor and the sheet from the end of the bed and gently tucked them around her sister. She stared long moments at the peaceful, contented look on Dawn’s face; the expression wasn’t one Buffy was used to seeing, well not directed at her anyway. Lately, the only expressions Buffy seemed to see on Dawn’s face were irritation, scorn, or worse supreme disinterest. She wondered briefly if all mothers, or mother figures, caretakers of teens had the same looks directed their way. It was heartbreaking and maddening.
Buffy bit back her sigh and tamped down on the brooding trying to rear its ugly, gelled head and gently kissed Dawn’s forehead. She quickly retreated to the doorway as Dawn stirred. She knew she’d never hear the end of it if her sister caught her tucking her in and stealing a good night kiss. Dawn would lash out; feeling like Buffy was treating her like a child.
“Sweet dreams, Dawnie.” she said as she gently and quietly closed the door behind her. Not even her Slayer hearing caught Dawn’s softly whispered, “Sweet dreams, Buffy.”, after the door closed. Always kiss your children goodnight, even if they're already asleep. - H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
The only thing worth stealing is a kiss from a sleeping child. - Joe Houldsworth