Disclaimer: Not mine. Joss, FOX, Darkhorse's. Yay them and such. I make no money.
Two months after moving out of Xander and Dawn's apartment, Buffy woke in a real bed that cost real money. This morning however, she woke so rested, she didn't immediately think about those payments she owed. More than rested, she felt...whole.
A rare good night's sleep apparently did do wonders.
Usually something was missing. Being sure that everyone could tell, her mood would almost always sour, and well-cemented walls arose. Usually she had to make an effort to smile.
Today, it was already there. Because for the first time ever, she was kind of at peace with herself. Today, she was wholly and completely, Buffy Anne Summers.
"I should've listened to all of me a long time ago."
She never expected one of her dreams to inspire such sudden hopefulness, but it did.
Not false hope. She didn't think she'd win her ex-soldiers over. She wouldn't, she accepted that. She wasn't going to try; she was just going to help. Whether anybody wanted it or not, however she could, because she could, and hope she made a small difference.
Maybe give some hope again. Yeah. Bring on the uphill climb that was her life.
Leaving her mattress behind, she walked to the open closet. As she reached for her robe, she experienced another realization. Her hand? Her hand with the practically brand new manicure, and absolutely no fur? Was now a hand and
An enlarged, clawed, still opposably-fingered, paw-hand. With fur.
Turning sharply, she appraised herself in the full-body mirror hanging on the inside of the door. She resembled a mountain lion, but halfway. She still had her hair, still wore her nightgown, and still kept what breasts puberty had bestowed a while back.
But then there were the whiskers, muzzle, flat, dark pink nose, and double pairs of scary-pointy canines in her mouth. She ran her tongue along them, wondering what the hell happened. Was she supposed to turn into Buffy the Anthropomorphized Vampire Slaying Cat? And why was she surprised?
Damn it, she thought her life was done being so literal.