Cordelia felt the sun on her face before she opened her eyes. It felt good.
She opened her eyes. She was in her room, the window open to let in the summer warmth.
She looked under her blankets to check on her wounds, and they were all stitched and bandaged. She felt her nose. Even that had been fixed while she was out. ‘Score!’
Dawn came in then. Cordelia looked at her and smiled. “Hi” She said.
“Good morning sunshine!” chirped Dawn, “Good to see you up. That was a real nasty blow to the noggin you took.”
“How long have a been out?”
“Holy moly. How are you? You ok?” inquired Cordelia.
“Right as rain!”
“How did I get back here”
“I carried you.” Said Dawn, turning her face away, like she was embarrassed of it.
“Thanks Dawn.” Said Cordelia. “That must have been difficult. Carrying someone who is bigger than you is tough, let alone with its dead weight.”
“Yeah, you need to lose some weight fat ass.” Joked Dawn as she sat down on the bed next to Cordelia.
“What about Buffy?”
“I went back the next day.” Said Dawn, “She was gone. I think Faith probably came and took her.”
Dawn tried to turn away before Cordelia could notice the tears running down her face, but Cordelia caught her by the wrist, and dragged her down so she was lying down as well, facing Cordelia.
Cordelia dragged her closer still, and embraced her in a warm hug. Cordelia could feel Dawn’s shoulders moving up and down, sobbing quietly.
“That wasn’t your sister Dawny.”
“I know. I think I know. I don’t know.”
“Dawn. Listen to me. Your sister loved you very much. She made me promise to always take care of you with her dying breath. That shadow lady looked like your sister, but it wasn’t. Not really.” Cordelia lifted the blanket so Dawn could crawl in next to her, then she embraced her in a hug again.
“Do you stay with me because Buffy made you promise?” asked Dawn, tears still streading down her face.
Cordelia backed Dawn up to arms length so she could look her in the eye. The tears made her grey eyes so bright, thought Cordelia. She was beautiful.
“Dawn, After Buffy died, I moved in here at her request, yes. I didn’t really know you well then, and you didn’t know me. We didn’t get along at first, its true, but we were both going through a pretty rough time. Your sister and mother had died, and you didn’t have anyone. All my friends either died or left, leaving me to be a slayer all by myself. It was a hard time on both of us, and I’d be lying if I said I never thought about leaving. But I had made a promise.” Cordelia put her hand on Dawn’s face. “And I’m glad I did.”
Cordelia and Dawn never broke eye contact, their faces only inches apart. Light Grey into Hazelnut Brown. “Dawn. You’re my life. I’d be dead without you.” Cordelia continued, feeling a tear streak down her cheek. “Dawn, I love you.”
Dawn smiling, embraced Cordelia in a huge hug.
“Ouch! Not so tight!” laughed Cordelia.
“OH! Sorry,” exclaimed Dawn, backing up “I know your ribs hurt and stuff I was only…”
“Dawn. I was only kidding.” Said Cordelia, putting her hand on the back of Dawn’s head, she guided her under her own chin, and then put both arms around her neck. Dawn, relaxing again, closed her eyes and leaned her head into her friend’s chest, and draped her arm around Cordelia’s middle.
“I Love you too.” Dawn said.
Cordelia smiled to herself. She knew no matter how beat up she got, she’d be ok as long as she had Dawn. She closed her eyes, and enjoyed the closeness.
The two stayed there, not talking, just taking comfort in each other, for hours.
They can go back to patrolling and training tomorrow. Today was for them.