Title: Let Go

Rating: PG

Distribution: I doubt anyone will want it, but please just let me know!

Feedback: Down on my knees begging.

Disclaimer: Not mine.

Summary: Goodbyes and revelations on a deathbed.

Her small heels clicked on the smooth floor of the corridor. The acrid smell of disinfectants got into her nose and gave her the urge to sneeze. She tucked a loose tendril of shiny hair behind her ear and checked the bit of paper she had in her hand again. 'Room 42' was scrawled across in blue ink.

Only one nurse was on duty at the nurse's station when she got there. She put down the Vogue she was reading.

"Can I help you?" she asked with a friendly smile.

"Can you tell me where room forty two is please?" she asked, in a strained tone.

She pointed with a manicured finger nail, "Just to the left there."

She nodded her thanks. The door was closed when she got there and it opened with a small click.

He was lying in the middle of the white bed. Why were they always white? Too clean, too sterile. Why not warm colours like yellow?

He awoke as the door closed. His hair was grey; he had never looked so old.

"Buffy?" he whispered in a hoarse voice.

"I'm here." She said, sitting down softly in the hard seat next to the bed. She took his hand in her own.

"I'm so glad you came." He said, with a small smile.

"Of course I came." She informed him. Her eyes filling with unwanted tears.

"It's okay." He said, squeezing her hand.

"Oh don't." she answered, wiping a tear away, "I'm supposed to be comforting you."

"I don't need any comfort Buffy; I know what I'm here for."

That did it, the thin line that was keeping her from snapping broke.

"Giles." She sobbed into her hands, "You can't leave me. Please don't. I can't do it without you."

"You will be fine." He answered, touched her hair gently.

"You were fine when I was living in England, were you not?"

"No!" she protested, drying her tears. "Tara died, Willow got addicted to magic, all sorts of bad things happened."

"That was years ago. You have all grown into wonderful, adults now. And I being there wouldn't have stopped Tara dying."

"I know…I just. Please don't die Giles." She pleaded.

He took a strained breath. "You are the daughter I had never had. And if I could have one wish, I want you to be happy."

"I am…" she objected quickly.

"No. You're not. We aren't that blind Buffy." He said, with a fatherly smile. "Now listen..." She leaned back in her chair.

"When Willow cursed Angel the second time, she left out the curse."

"Oh." Buffy managed, "But he loves…her."

Giles shook his head, "Cordelia? Not now. He lives alone in LA. Still runs the agency with Wesley and two others."

He took another forced breath, which Buffy winced at. "Do you want me to call a doctor?" she offered.

He shook his head.

"How do you know this?" she asked.

"I have exchanged a number of emails over the years with Wesley." His head slowly rolled onto the pillow.

Everything was becoming harder now, Buffy observed. She took a deep gulp of air, trying to hold herself together for longer.

Flowers and cards were lined along the window.

Giles looked at them, before looking at Buffy.

"Thank you Giles." Buffy said.

"For what?"

"For being there. For putting up with me. For being the most amazing father anyone could ask for."

He smiled and stroked her cheek softly. "Thanks for just being you." He forced out, in hushed tones. "You are the most remarkable woman I have ever met. Never change Buffy. And remember what I said about Angel."

"Like I'd forget." She smiled. She laid her head tenderly on his stomach and closed her eyes.

"Goodbye." She whispered as he took his final breath.