Wednesday's Child

Wednesday's Child

I came to rage, to scream, to accuse, at least that's what I thought until I got here.

I heard you before anything else, your voice is unmistakable to me and even though I couldn't understand your words, over six years as the Slayer has taught me to recognize Latin when I hear it.  As I came sight of you… you didn't see me, didn't even sense me, I want to be hurt by that, but you've got reason… I saw you cross yourself and realized you'd been praying.  Does it hurt you to do that, I wondered even as I recognized how little the pain would mean to you.

Your hands and face were covered in dirt; I guess digging a grave is every bit as tough as digging out of one, and I'm not just talking physically.  The tear tracks that mark your face attest to that.  My hands were torn and bleed, under the dirt I see yours are blistered and burned.  I didn't understand why until I saw the cross painstakingly carved into the makeshift headstone.

You don't have the benefit of magic to make this secret grave seem more respectful… more of a true memorial, but you're doing the best you can.

"You were born on a Wednesday, and never was a child more appropriately born," you say, your voice heavy with regrets.  "Conceived in despair, come to term in strife, born in desperation and lived… lived for so very short a time… in shame and hate.  I'm so sorry Eoin…"

Wednesday's child is full of woe… I knew that nursery rhyme was old when Mom read it to me but I never guessed that it was old enough that you would know it too.

Conceived in despair… what happened that night Angel?  All I know, all anyone knows is that you had sex with her, with Darla.  That much was undeniable, and no one cared to know more.  Why did you sleep with her?  What were you thinking?  What did you want that night?  No one knows the whole story.

Come to term in strife… that's easy, Darla made it well know the lengths she went to to terminate the pregnancy.  You may have called Giles to try to learn how it was possible that she was pregnant when Wesley failed to find an answer, but she called as well, to tell him all she cared about was the fastest way to get over it, and oh yeah, threaten him with a painful death if he didn't help her.  I drug every last detail out of him, out of all of them, before I came.

Born in desperation… you were running weren't you?  Your history with Holtz was one of the things I dug up.  He hunted you and Darla across Europe while the two of you were still the worst of the worst.  What else could you of done?  You're Angel not Angelus so killing him wasn't really an option and Darla wasn't exactly in fighting prime even if you would have let her kill him, cause, well, Holtz was some guy who's family you ate and  not a lawyer.

Lived in shame and hate… I didn't get that, but you explained it:

"You weren't just a mistake, or evidence of crime, even if that's how my actions were scene by my friends, former friends.  But you weren't to blame for the circumstance of your conception, and you were not an abomination either, no matter what anyone says.  You were just a child.  My child and I loved you Eoin.  I can only hope you knew that."

Until that moment, when you called him a child, I hadn't realized that: a child, your son, Eoin.  I didn't know that.  When they told me where to find you they called him an it.  "You were burying it," that what they said, that's how I saw things.  I saw what Holtz did as getting even.

That's not what he did was it?  What he did was murder a three-month-old baby named Eoin, and there is no justification for that.  Those that seek retribution against Angelus rarely look for anything resembling justice; all they want is vengeance.

If the gypsies had wanted justice your soul would have been left in peace.  The first thing I was ever taught about vampire is that they aren't the people that died.  Their souls leave and a demon takes their bodies and their memories.  It isn't fair that your soul bears the weight of the demon's crimes.  It isn't fair that you're the one who has to make amends, but it's the only way you can free yourself from the guilt you feel. 

I doubt you understand that what the demon did wasn't your fault, you're too close to see what they did was just vengeance and never justice.  You didn't deserve this.

I thought I came here for cathartic anger, the chance to lash out at you for what happened between you and Darla; I'm not.  Sometimes forgiveness is just as healing as venting, more so really.

Yes it hurt to learn you'd had sex with Darla and that she had a child by you.  But it's not like I haven't had sex since we broke up… okay it's not the same thing; you left me!  But now's not the time and like I said earlier, there's more to the story than you having sex; I know you well enough to know that much even if I don't know what.  The thing is you didn't love her, you never loved her not like you loved me, your soul would be gone if you had. 

You made a mistake, I've made mistakes too, everybody does. Remember my eighteenth birthday and Giles drugging me?  I forgave him, and I'm forgiving you too, because everyone deserves to be forgiven every now and then.  Even you, even though you'd never agree with me if I told you that, especially now, you're hurting and I won't add to that.  I died before I let Dawn be hurt, I would have let the world be destroyed before I let her be hurt, so I think I understand what your feeling.

Some of things you've done regarding this… situation weren't a mistake.  That you loved and did your best to protect Eoin, even when that meant protecting Darla too, wasn't wrong and I won't ever hold that against you.  As for the other, I can forgive that.

I realize somewhere along the way I picked some wild flowers.  I walk up beside you and place them on the grave then slip my hand into yours. 

"Buffy, you're here," you say surprised gratitude filling your voice.

"Of course I'm here."

Author's Note: I'm being a little hard on the Fang Gang, maybe.  Last year they were SUCH great friends to Angel when it came to understanding his empathy for the then human Darla.  I fully expect them to be equally understanding when it comes to her pregnancy.  (Yeah right.)