Chapter Twenty-Seven: Change of Game
Previously in Diamond From Black Dust...
"Am I dead in your future? Is that what you're so afraid to tell me?"
Future Tara stared at Willow in silence, tears sliding down her cheeks as Willow yelled at them for answers. She wasn't sure how to answer the redhead's questions, but she knew as the expression on Willow's face changed that Willow had gotten her answer. Knowing there was no point in hiding it from the redhead anymore, Future Tara closed her eyes and took a deep breath before reopening them to look into Willow's green eyes.
"Willow..." Reaching out, Tara rested her hand on the stunned redhead's shoulder hoping to comfort her. However, as soon as Tara's hand touched her, Willow jerked away from the touch and looked back and forth between the two Taras.
"I'm dead? I die in the future? How?" Willow asked, tired of the lies and secrets.
"I can't tell you that," Future Tara said, watching Willow with a sadness in her blue eyes.
"Right...more secrets. I'm not going to just stand here and let you two speak in code around me. I'm leaving," Willow told them, before taking the last few steps to where Karen was standing. "Get me out of her, Karen."
Karen nodded in response and orbed away, bringing Willow with her even as Tara tried to stop them. "Damn it," Tara mumbled, feeling her anger rise slightly at Willow's disappearance.
"I'm sorry. I can't tell her how she dies. She shouldn't know her own destiny," Future Tara explained, feeling guilty.
"But I can know mine? My mother and aunts can know theirs?" Tara challenged, turning to glare at her counterpart.
"You all need to know your future because you can work together to stop it from happening. Willow's future is set in stone. You can't stop her death, Tara. She'll either die by the hand of the same person who made me what I am, or she'll die from some demon attack," Future Tara told her, keeping her blue eyes locked with Tara's.
"You don't know that. I could change it. I could stop her death," Tara argued, looking around the room at her family. "My choices affect my future, right?"
"It's not just your choices. Only Willow can change her future, Tara. Just like only you can stop yourself from killing our family," Future Tara explained, hating having to give the blonde such bad news. "We can't stop Willow's death."
"But she can, right?" Tara asked, hopeful.
"Yes, but only by her own choices. I can't chance telling her how she dies, Tara. If I do, it could set our path in stone. It could even make things worse than they already are," Future Tara disagreed.
"She's right, Tara. If you tell her what will happen to her, too many things could go wrong. She might even turn dark and lead you on your path of destruction like you saw in your dreams," Phoebe pointed out.
Tara just nodded in response, knowing her family and future self was right. She couldn't tell Willow anything else about her future without making things worse. "So what do I do to stop things from happening? How can I stop your reality from becoming my destiny?"
"Be on guard. Don't trust anyone but your family. Trust in the Power of Three," Future Tara said, giving Tara a sad look. "I can't tell you more than that."
Tara nodded once more and looked at her parents and aunts before turning back to herself. "I'll have to work with what you can tell me. I won't let someone push me to kill them. I won't let the darkness have me," Tara promised. "Hopefully I can stop it."
"You can. I know how stubborn we can be when it comes to protecting our family. After all, it took being trapped with a demon in a dream dimension to even acknowledge that Willow wasn't a monster," Future Tara reminded her, causing Tara to smile at the words.
"You're right. Thank you for warning me. I'll do what I can to change the future."
"I know," Future Tara replied, before turning to her family. "I'll see you again soon."
With that said, the dark haired witch disappeared, leaving everyone standing there in silence. They were all lost in thoughts about their future, worried that Tara would still trust the wrong person.
"Tara?" Melinda whispered, walking into the room and seeing her cousin standing on the stairs, looking worried.
"What is it, Sweetie?" Tara asked, lifting her eyes to look at her cousin.
"Are you okay? You look upset. Everyone actually looks upset," Melinda said, frowning as she looked around the room at their family.
"We're fine. Just trying to figure something out. Hey, why don't you go get Henry and I'll take you two out for some ice cream or something?" Tara offered, needing to get her mind off of what she had just learned.
"Okay," Melinda replied, her voice low and still full of concern as she walked from the room.
"Is that okay?" Tara asked, looking at her mother and aunt standing across the room.
"Of course it is. Why wouldn't it be?" Paige wondered, frowning at her daughter in confusion.
"Because I'm suppose to kill everyone in the future," Tara reminded her mother, dropping her gaze. "I didn't know if either of you no longer trust me."
"Tara, you are still you. Just because someone from the future said you were going to become a monster doesn't mean you already are. We trust you, and we're going to help you fight this," Piper said, walking over to rest her hand on her niece's shoulder. "We're the Charmed family. No one can tear us apart."
"I wouldn't be so sure of that," a familiar voice said, causing everyone to turn in the direction of the voice.
Tara stared in surprise and horror at the sight of Willow standing before her. Her red hair was once again black and her beautiful green eyes were gone, replaced by the coal color that she had when Tara first met her.
"Willow?" Tara whispered, stunned by the sight before her. "Why?"
"Aww, does it break your heart to see her like this again?" Karen asked as she walked from behind Willow. "It destroyed me to see the good side surface. I'm happy to see my girl back in control though. I'll need her when I destroy you and your family."
"But why? Why change Willow back?" Tara demanded, anger filling her.
"Because the game has changed. You now know my original plans to destroy your family. Hell, the visions I gave you were being ignored and it was pissing me off. Figured, I'd have more fun with Willow if I forced her to accept the dark energy again. Now she's mine once more and powerful enough to take all of you down."
A/N: Thank you Gimpy72 for all the help with this story and all my others.
A/N2: I know it seems strange having Willow go evil again after she just became good, but hopefully you'll like my plans for doing so. Please stick with it. The story is coming to an end soon.