Disclaimer : Nothing's mine. Just playing.
This is the second story. Like the first one, it had been betaed by isugirl. So you have to thank her for reading something English ^_^¤
It wasn’t her problem anymore, she thought as she left the dead man behind. It seemed like the man had aged suddenly, so what? What could she do? Nothing. It was over and she wasn’t the Slayer anymore, she was done with it. She had given enough, lost enough. Angel’s face flashed through her mind, her chest constricting suddenly and her eyes burning. She wiped away the tears angrily. She had killed him because she had to and she had had nowhere to go. Her mother had been clear and going to her friends? How could they understand her? For them, she had just killed a monster. Oh, how it would have been simpler if she had killed Angelus. She had been as ready as she could have ever been for that. But it had been Angel in front of her, her sweet Angel, looking at her completely lost and trusting her. And she had killed him, losing a part of herself at the same time.
She had thought that coming to LA was the best option. No one knew anyone, she could walk through her life, sulking, without anyone bothering her. She wanted to be left alone, to not be Buffy anymore. Fate had other plans and she had to run into Chanterelle, the crazy girl who wanted to become a vampire, and her boyfriend had to disappear.
The tattoo came back to the front of her mind and she wondered how the old man she had seen could have been the laughing boy in the café not so long ago?
“This is harder than you thought, isn’t it?”
She nearly jumped out of her skin, her hand going for the stake she didn’t have before she realized who she had in front of her. She hadn’t seen him in years, even convincing herself that she had created him in a moment of need. She could recognize his pointy face anywhere.
“Good, you remember. I was afraid I had to re-introduce myself again.”
She stepped closer, “I thought you were just…”
“A figment of your imagination?”
“Yes,” she breathed out.
“Nope, I’m not. I’m real, Buffy, or should I call you Anne? I hear you’re going by that name these days. I have to say, it’s really too common for you. Anne? You’re not a Anne. A Anne is too nice, too conventional. Buffy, now that’s a brilliant name for a brilliant girl.”
“I don’t want to be that girl anymore.”
“The problem with what you want is that you rarely get it.”
She glared at him, “What are you doing here?”
“What are you doing here?”
“Oh God! You are so frustrating!!”
He grinned and she wanted to slap him. Instead, she turned away and ignored him when she heard him run to her side.
“Just answer one question first.”
She sighed exasperatedly and turned to face him, arms crossed over her chest, staring at him, “What?”
“Can you walk away from him and still look at yourself in the mirror?”
She didn’t answer that because she didn’t like the answer. She would like to say that yes, she could walk away and forget about him, about her duty, about Buffy, and just be Anne. She wanted to be a regular girl. The truth was that she couldn’t. She knew it; she was just fighting against it because it was unfair! This life was too painful, too cruel. It was taking everything from her and she was afraid of what she would become. At first, the vision of that statue of herself was her reason to go on, because it was proof that she could do good and live for a longer time than other Slayers. But she had died at sixteen and life had kept throwing things at her. Angel had been the last straw. She couldn’t take it anymore. She had done a great job trying to be normal, until Chanterelle.
“You can’t walk away and you know it,” he said. “Because you’re the only one who can fight. It’s more than your duty, it’s who you are. You can run away as fast and as far as you want, but you’ll always be you.”
She glanced at the house in which Chanterelle’s loved one was laying dead and she thought of the other victims and she knew what she had to do. She looked at the Doctor.
“How can you know exactly when I’m losing myself?”
“I’m old and I…lost someone too not so long ago. For me anyway. I know the feeling.”
His eyes had an expression that mirrored her own. She knew that pain and she suddenly felt closer to him than she had been to anyone for a long time. It was like she didn’t have to voice her feelings because he knew all of them.
“She was my companion. She’s gone…”
He cleared his throat, “There was this battle, at Canary Wharf… It was… Never mind.”
“How do you go on with your life?”
He smiled sadly at her, “Who said I was going on?”
“Well, you’re here.”
“My life is all about running away. I hope you have the bravery to stop doing it.”
“Why should I?”
“Because one of us has to be brave and has to step up.”
“Why me then?”
“You are destined for a great future. All I have is the past.”
“Maybe I don’t want a great future.”
“Well, the thing is, it’s never about what we want.”
“Even for you?”
He got a sad smile, “Even for me.”
She looked back at the house where Lilly’s boyfriend was. He was right, she could try but she couldn’t run away from what she was. Something weird was going on here and her Slayer senses had never been wrong before. She turned around and looked at the Doctor.
“You didn’t answer me: how do you know when I need you?”
“You’ll have to discover that one by yourself young lady. Just be attentive to what I’m saying and remember something.”
She waited but he didn't finish his sentence, turning around and walking away instead.
“Hey! Where are you going? What am I supposed to remember?”
“What comes first: the chicken or the egg?”
"Gosh! Why are you always talking in riddles?"
He didn't answer, waving at her instead, not even turning around to look at her. She saw him enter his strange blue box and wondered how she had missed an English blue police box in the middle of a Los Angeles street. She stared at it as it started to fade away, with the same strange music as before. One day, she would understand who he was and how he appeared exactly when she needed someone to put her back on the right track. Whoever he was, he had the right surname as far as she was concerned.