"They're special, no doubt. The amazing thing is, not one of them will ever know. Not even Buffy."

"Know what?"

"How much harder it is for the rest of us."

"No way. They've got..."

"Hey Dawnie," 21-year-old Dawn looks up as her sister walks into the kitchen with several slayers-in-trainers trailing behind.

"Oh, uh, hey," Dawn quickly shakes herself out of her silent reverie.

"Whatcha up to?" Buffy questions grabbing a yogurt drink out of the economy sized fridge and moving to allow the other slayers access.

Dawn glances down to remind herself of what she'd been looking at, "you know, researchy stuff. Did you guys have a good night."

"Bagged three vamps," 15-year-old Maddie was a new slayer living in new Watcher's Council Headquarters. "It was awesome."

Dawn offers a forced smile, "great."

"We're going to do some training to cool down." Buffy states.

"A slayers' work is never done," Dawn mumbles.

"Seven years Dawn. Working with the slayer. Seeing my friends get more and more powerful. A witch. A demon. Hell, I could fit Oz in my shaving kit, but come a full moon, he had a wolfy mojo not to be messed with. Powerful. All of them. And I'm the guy who fixes windows.

God it felt like decades ago that Xander had revealed his feelings about being the "normal" one in a group full of special people. It had only been five years since Xander said the words that had made Dawn feel more connected to one person then she ever had up to then and since, and it had been four years since she had seen the person who had said those words. And now she was in the exact same position Xander had been in for so long and Dawn knew how truly lonely it was.

Buffy had given up on her vacation time in Rome a year and a half ago and decided to move back to England to help Giles run the new training school. Dragging Dawn with her, and out of the life of normalcy she held. And now here she was, living in a world where being "special" was the norm.

"You thought you were special. Miss Sunnydale 2003. And the minute you found out you weren't, you handed the crown to Amanda without a moments pause. You gave her your power."

"The power wasn't mine."

After talking with Xander that night Dawn had felt a sense of peace about her purpose in the group. A purpose that had last her up until about six months ago the big bad that had brought them to England in the first place had been defeated and life settled into perfecting special skills.

And everyone was special. There were constantly new girls coming with people training them before sending them out in their groups of three, a watcher, wicca and slayer in each group to each assigned spot. There were no Xander's or Dawns in the group a powerful special trio that had no use for normal.

"They'll never know how tough it is, Dawnie, to be the one that isn't chosen. To live so near the spotlight and never step in it. But I know. I see more than anybody realizes because nobody's watching me. I saw you last night. I see you working here today. You're not special."

Xander had assured her right before he left for Africa that you didn't need to be special to make a difference in the world. He'd told her in confidence that, that was the reason he was going to Africa, so he could make a difference without being special. But with nothing for her to do but research nothing in particular day after day Dawn was starting to wonder if her place was in this group any longer.

"You're extraordinary."

Dawn shivers as the words echo through her head and she can almost feel like the gently pressure of his lips on her forehead. She missed him, there was no getting around that. She was painfully tired of feeling so alone and she knew that if he were here it would be okay, she wouldn't feel so alone. But he wasn't here and no amount of hiding behind unnecessary research so she could daydream about when he would come back would change that. With a sigh Dawn rests her head on her crossed elbows, her eyes slipping shut in a light sleep filled with dreams when Xander Harris would come home.


So I left the last word that way to kind of leave it up to everyone if I should make this a one shot or if it should be all about a Xander/Dawn relationship? Anyway read, review and let me know what you think!

P.S. I don't own the words in italics!