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Coming Out Is Hard To Do

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Dawn went on a walk, not really letting anyone know where she was- she knew she should have, especially with everything going on, but then someone would have insisted on coming with her and she couldn't handle anyone coming with her. Even Willow, maybe especially Willow. It felt horrible, because Willow had been a mom to her, or maybe just an older sister, but every time she looked at Willow she could only see Tara.

Tara had been... Everything, kind of. The only person who bothered checking up on her, taking her to therapy- someone who knew about the supernatural- making her pancakes, just... being there. Buffy had always been busy, or saving the world, or... gone.

Before Dawn knew it, she was at Tara's grave, and she sat down, her legs crossed, facing Tara's gravestone. "Hey, Tara. Sorry, it's been a while since I came here, hasn't it? I know you wouldn't really mind, but I hate not coming to talk to you. Evelyn- the therapist, remember?- ended up leaving. She couldn't risk staying any longer. The world might actually end this time, Tara.

"And... I realized something about myself. I think you knew already, though." She laughed, kind of sadly, "I'm a lesbian. I don't- I don't know what to do. Dad... I mean he's okay but he's- well, you remember. He wouldn't like it if I was a dyke, but I am and I don't know what to do. I just. I need you to come back, Tara, please." Dawn had tears streaming down her face, and she moved to lean against Tara's gravestone, "I don't know what to do.

"Willow's moved on, and in love with a Potential, her name is Kennedy and she's- okay, I guess. But she's not you, and I can't do this without you, Tara. I'm so lost and tired and confused and- I'm just so- I don't know how to do this. Mom died, and Buffy died, but she came back but she's still not right, and you died, and Willow left, and then came back, but then Giles left and he came back but he doesn't care anymore, and Angel's gone and something's wrong with Xander and everything's falling apart, and Cordelia invited me to the hotel and if I could? If it didn't mean leaving you... I would accept. I'm ignored all the time, and Buffy's falling apart and Anya's... She's trying her best but she's overwhelmed. I just don't know what to do anymore, Tara!" She slumped against Tara's gravestone tiredly, "And Faith is back, which I guess is good but all I can see when I look at her is blood and Buffy screaming and everyone hurting.

"And I think Buffy's still in love with her. Which is funny, because Buffy aggressively defends her straightness but she's very bi-ness and god, Tara, I'm so tired." Dawn said, before letting herself fall asleep on Tara's gravestone, pretending that Tara was holding her again.

The way she would when Dawn woke up from a nightmare about Buffy's death, screaming, or crying, or not able to breathe.

When Dawn woke up again, she was in her bed, and she got up to make the Scoobies and Potentials pancakes, hoping that it was Xander who brought her home, but when she met eyes with Faith, the older woman just nodded at her, before Faith went back to- whatever she was doing, with the oldest Scoobies.