I do not own any of these characters, though names are rarely mentioned.  Joss Whedon owns everything Buffywise.  I am but a poor college student, writing to run away from the horrors of unending homework.  Anyway, this is my first Buffy fic, though I am writing a Buffy/Blade crossover.  Hope you enjoy!

A/N – This takes place at the beginning of season 6, right after Buffy was resurrected.  This is a very short little story about Buffy's thoughts and feelings after being resurrected.

Who Am I?

Who am I?

I know I used to be someone, before, but that seems so long ago now. 

They don't understand – they never will.  That's a fact that I have to accept.  I'm different.  They're not.  They're the same people I knew before.  But I've changed too much.

It wasn't that long ago when I could laugh with them, hang out with them.  I was their friend, their protector.  I was connected with them in a bond so strong that I believed nothing could break that.

But the girl that believed that is gone.  The girl they knew, the girl that they loved is gone.  In her place is an empty shell, a stranger.  I am in her place.  I have her memories, her passions, her regrets.  I have everything that made her Buffy, that made her the Slayer, but I'm not her.

Buffy was a self-confident, strong, selfless, and sometimes shallow.  Worrying about her family, her friends.  Afraid that they might get hurt or worse, that they might die.  Always being the one in charge, the one with the power.  Always doing her job, even if it hurt her.

That girl is gone forever.  She gave up her life, her dreams, her hopes for the future in order to save the world.  In order to save those that she loved from hell.  And she was in peace.  She was happy.  She was finished with the work.

But she was torn out of there.  And now, this is what Buffy has become.  I am what Buffy is now.  Lifeless, dreamless.  Cold, listless, unfeeling.  Everything here is harsh.  It hurts my eyes, my ears.  It drills on my bones and in my head.  I am alive but being alive is only suffering.  Only pain.

I don't know who I am.

I was once the Slayer, the Champion of the Powers That Be.  I defended humankind with my specials superhuman strength and abilities.  I was a little egotistical at times but I was human.  When it came down to it, I was able to put everything – and I do mean everything – on the line to save the world.

That strength is gone.  It left me, just as my love for life left me.

I am weak now.  I do patrol but it's not the same.  It will never be the same.  It is even more of a chore now than ever.  Before I could always think of a witty little saying before I destroyed them.  I always had something to look forward to.

Not now.  Now, it's just destroy, go home, hate life.  That's all it is now.

There is no joy, no peace, no happiness.  There is listlessness, despair, pain.  With every passing day on this Earth, I die a little more.  This life is slowly eating away at me but I don't care.  The sooner I die, again, the sooner I can get away from this misery.  The sooner I can get away from the harshness, the brightness.

But I don't know who I am.

I used to be Buffy the ordinary girl, Buffy the airhead.  All I cared about was fitting in, wearing the right clothes, and dating the right guys.  Nothing else in life was important – all that was important was that I had fun.

But that all changed when I found out who I was.  What I was.  I was the Slayer.  And then I became Buffy the Slayer.  Suddenly, I was sucked into a world of death and darkness.  But I dealt with that.  I moved to a new town and made new friends.  Real friends, not like the fake ones I used to have.  I was happy.  I was a teenager who didn't like her calling but liked her friends and yes even school.

Being the Slayer made me grow up.  I loved, I lost.  I had to send my boyfriend to hell.  But I still was able to move on.  It took me awhile but it got easier.  And I was happy again.  I hung out with friends, went out with guys.

But Glory came and my world came crashing down.

She took my sister, a sister that I was never suppose to have, and tried to kill her to open the gates to hell.  I saved her but not before the gate was opened.  Dawn wanted to jump but I wouldn't let her.

So I jumped.

Jumping was the most painful thing I've ever done.  That portal seemed to open up every single cut that I received while I was a Slayer.  I remember screaming, but no sounds came out.  And then –

There was peace.

I was free.  I was no longer Buffy the Slayer.  I was just Buffy.  I was happy.  I was free.  I was at peace.  My job was done and now I could leave my friends to fend for themselves.  I had taught them all I could about holding their own in battle.  They could go on without me.  I was happy.

But they tore me out.  My friends, people I had loved dearly, betrayed me in the worst way.  They pulled me out of my happiness, into this harsh world.

And now, I don't know who Buffy is anymore.  I'm not Buffy the airhead or Buffy the Slayer.  I can't be just Buffy – she was left behind in that place full of happiness and love.

Who is this girl, the one that stands before a mirror, looking at the despondency in her own eyes?  The pain in her own eyes.  How can her friends miss this?  How can they not see what they've done to her, to me?

I'm dying before their eyes and they don't see it.  But before I do die, I want to find out this one thing…

Who am I?