A/N - FINALLY! I'm sorry this update took so long. I really wanted to get something up so I randomly decided to write this chapter tonight. This one is thematically similar to the last chapter and I hope you like it. I love reviews, they really encourage me. Don't forget that you can leave one with suggestions for future chapters. Or you can PM me, either way. I also love favourites and follows. Enjoy!
Every single time Buffy got angry at Dawn she said she was sorry.
The very first time this occurred was the time Dawn decided that only she would play Wendy in one of their pretend games. Buffy had stalked off rather sulkily after calling Dawn stupid. Later that night she had come and given her little sister a hug to say she was sorry.
Several times later she had yelled at Dawn for trying to colour in Buffy's Book of Bedtime stories with markers. When Dawn protested that she was only trying to make the stories colourful Buffy called her dumb. Later that night she gave Dawn one of her colouring in books to say she was sorry.
Several months after Buffy had crawled into Dawn's bed to apologise for their growing distance with a bedtime story, Dawn found herself inside Buffy's room alone.
Dawn had actually never been in Buffy's room alone before. She had been in Buffy's room playing pretend games when the walls were pink and covered with fairies and mermaids. She had been in Buffy's room talking to Buffy when the walls had been completely blue and bare. And she had been in Buffy's room trying to get her sisters' attention several months ago when the walls had been covered in drawings.
Today everything was different.
When Dawn stepped into Buffy's room she found herself staring at posters. There were posters everywhere. Pictures of groups of girls that Dawn didn't recognize, even a pinup of a boy or two. It was a completely different universe. Strewn across the floor lay magazines, books and paper and Dawn almost tripped over some coloured pencils as she made her way inside.
Somehow Buffy's world had changed entirely without her realizing it.
The reason Dawn had ventured inside this room while her sister was at gymnastics was because she was searching for something. Only yesterday had she remembered the book that Buffy had said she might read to her. It had been called Little Women and since the eldest Summers had chosen not to read it to Dawn, she decided she would try to read it herself.
So here she was to search for a book without her sisters permission. But Buffy wouldn't mind because she had said she would read it to her anyway. It wasn't as if Dawn was doing anything wrong.
"Where are you, book?" Dawn wondered aloud as she sank down to her hands and knees. It was impossible to find anything in the clutter and Dawn ended up sitting on her bottom, rifling through papers and moving magazines out of her way.
After fifteen minutes of searching Dawn let out a groan. Why couldn't Buffy just keep her room tidy? Joyce was always telling the two girls to clean their bedrooms. With one hand she swiped some papers out of the way in annoyance and something beneath them caught her eye
BUFFYS DIARY, it said on it in bold letters.
Dawn recognized this. At the beginning of the year Buffy had asked her parents for a diary. When Dawn had asked what one was her sister had told her that it was a book.
"You write stories in it, sort of" she had explained. "Stories about your life and stuff. Or you could write songs or something. Whatever."
So here was Buffy's story book. Buffy's Little Book of Life Stories? What had she been writing? Had she written about Dawn? Maybe she had written down the rude thing that their father had let slip at dinner last week. That word had earned him a death glare from Joyce.
Of its own accord her hand reached out to grab the diary. Since Buffy wasn't reading her Big Book to Dawn these days Dawn just wanted a glimpse into the Little Book. All she wanted was a story. That's what she'd come here for.
Five minutes turned to ten and then to twenty as Dawn sat in the mess reading Buffy's stories. Some of Buffy's words were hard for Dawn to understand and mostly she simply got the gist of what was being said. However, she still found herself laughing and gasping out loud. Once Buffy had used the word 'crap' and Dawn almost dropped the book in astonishment and horror.
When twenty minutes turned to thirty Dawn heard footsteps making their way towards the door. Naturally she made no move to place the diary back down or perhaps leave the room. Instead she sat contently waiting for Buffy to enter so she could ask her what 'infuriating' meant and why it had been used to describe her in this book.
But when Buffy had opened the door and seen her sister in her current position Dawn realized that maybe she should have made herself scarce sooner.
"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING WITH MY DIARY?" Buffy squealed, a look of horror crossing her face. Never had Dawn heard her sister use the word hell and never had she been yelled at quite so loudly. Immediately she shrank back, hiding her face with the small book.
Fuelled by anger, Buffy strode in and snatched the diary from Dawn's grip. Now the two were forced to look at one another and all Dawn wanted to do was turn back time, or at least close her eyes.
The look in her sister's eyes was venomous. "Who said you could come in my room anyway?" she snapped. "You're not allowed in my room. You're not allowed to touch my things. And you're not allowed to READ MY DIARY. You shouldn't do any of these things without asking and you shouldn't even ask to read my diary because It's PRIVATE!"
Dawn simply couldn't find the words. "I-I-I just wanted..." she stammered, "You-y-you said…that i-it was stories and I missed your…s-st-stories…"
Had she expected Buffy's gaze to soften? If she had, she would have been wrong.
"Not stories for you to read!" Buffy fumed. "Don't you know that diaries are personal? God Dawn, you're such an idiot!"
Stupid, dumb, moron, baby, silly, whiny, lazy…idiot. All the words Buffy had ever called her came rushing back with that one word and it felt as if her sister had called her all of them at once. Dawn's eyes began to water, filling to the brim with tears and over flowing.
"I didn't" she insisted. "I didn't know!" And I'm not an idiot, she roared inside her head but she didn't say it. Right now all she wanted to do was run away.
"Yeah, well…" Buffy huffed. "Just get of my room. Go away!"
Dawn did what she was told immediately. She dropped the diary, didn't even ask about Little Women, and scurried away to her own room.
She lay on her bed for the next few hours.
She went out to dinner and ate macaroni and cheese with the family.
She stood next to Buffy as the two of them cleaned their teeth that night.
And she lay awake waiting. Hours of simply waiting for Buffy to come and apologise. She waited for a hug. She waited for a colouring in book. She waited for a story.
This time Buffy Summers did not apologise.