Title: Best of Intentions Author: Luisa Email: leyjd@hotmail.com Pairing: B/G and a teeny bit of B/S, X/A Rating: PG-13 (language) Distribution: Dword, Kattie. Dee, Gabi and TL, if you want it. Any one else - just let me know where. Disclaimer, notes, thanks and dedications as per the prologue

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~ Epilogue ~

Buffy sat alone at the bar, staring into space. She couldn't believe it.

Giles had gone.

The man who was once her everything: her friend, her guide and protector, her mentor, rock and foundation. The man she had loved more than life itself had flown to the other side of the world because he didn't love her enough to stay.

*No...* she corrected herself, *he said he loved me too much to stay.*

The thought confused her and she shook her head slightly to clear it. In doing so however, her thoughts instead returned to the memory of watching him board the plane to England. It was enough to make her want to cry; in fact her soul was aching for some sort of release for her pent up emotions. Instead she simply let out a long breath and wondered where on she had gone wrong, as the singer's words ran through her mind:

"I've been searchin' deep down in my soul

Words that I'm hearin' are starting to get old ..."

Tears sprung unbidden to her eyes, and she fought to hold them back as the truth of the words threatened to cause them to spill over. How many times had she heard people who she cared about promise never to leave her, only to have her heart broken? She had always thought that Giles would remain the one constant fixture in her world.

After several long moments of painful reflection, she felt the presence of someone approaching her from behind, her spidey senses confirming that it was a vampire.

*Spike*

She could only sigh in annoyance at the way he continually followed her around and look at him in disbelief that he couldn't take the hint to stay away, especially at a time when she so clearly wanted to be alone.

He ignored the meaning of the look and moved as if to touch her, to console her, but she shrugged his comfort off, moving away from him. He raised his eyebrows in response, part genuinely concerned and part silently communicating that he knew what she needed and that he could give it to her. Disgusted, she turned her back on him once more.

Shrugging his shoulders in confusion, Spike could only stare at the Slayer in hurt and bewilderment before stalking to the rear of the Bronze.

As the singer continued, Buffy made a decision. If she could just be with someone who would be there for her, despite knowing that she had no feelings for them, then maybe it wouldn't hurt so bad when they left - as she was undoubtedly sure they would. She turned her head slightly in the direction of Spike's exit. He had offered without need for words to give her what she needed. She moved to the edge of the stool, hesitating as snatches of the song flitted through her mind:

"It hurts to want... everything and nothing at the same time... you were the one I loved... the one thing that I tried to hold on to..."

Decision made, Buffy slid off the stool and headed toward Spike, allowing him to take her in his arms and kiss her deeply. She kissed back with equal fervour, desperate to feel something... anything. But nothing changed, she still felt hollow inside; her heart still breaking as the singer continued.

"Goodbye to you... goodbye to everything I thought I knew..."

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END