Title: The Boyfriend Girl

Author: Brooke

Email: yabbadabbadome13@yahoo.com

Disclaimer: Joss, Mutant Enemy, UPN…I don't know who else, but they own 'em, not me.

Rating: I'll give it a PG.

Summary: Buffy's thoughts about her relationships through the years. Seasons 1-6 used. Rely on your own recollection of the past events because I didn't put in a lot of detail. Mentions of all of Buffy's relationships so there's B/A, B/P, B/R, B/Jeffery (I'm not writing B/J seriously), B/Billy Ford, and finally, the crowning piece of resistance B/X.

Distribution: Take it… (makes fist and glares angrily)…TAKE ITTTT!!!!!!!

Author's Notes: B/S happened, Anya and Xander called off the wedding, like in the show, and Anya still slept with Spike.

Buffy had realized something important about herself recently and despite her introspection she had yet to decide if the conclusions she had drawn were good or bad. One thing she knew about herself was that she hated to be alone – even though the title of Slayer stated that solidarity was its most important requirement.

But, because she was Buffy way before she was the Slayer, she figured that that particular trait was something distinctly her and not even a sacred calling could quell it. So, as result, Buffy had rarely been alone. Ever since she was a child, well, thirteen- but a child nonetheless, she had been in some sort of relationship with the opposite sex. The second thing she had realized about herself.

They were immature, selfish, fulfilling sometimes and physically harmful others, she had been in relationships her whole life…every one of them necessary. And she liked it…them…on a multitude of different levels depending on her state of mind at the time.

At her first high school all of her friends, for the most part, were girls- great for talking and laughing and gossiping with or about, but not what she needed, for a verity of reasons. So she had clung to her crush to her friend Billy Ford, who was perfectly happy to let her dote on him as long as she needed to while he remained completely unavailable beyond the realm of friendship; which turned out to be for the best because then she had Jeffery.

Jeffery was hot and popular and meshed completely with her life at the time; even helped propel her through the ranks by simply making out with her in the hall. And that was all they were. Two pretty people who had found each other just in time for Homecoming.

But she had been called as the Slayer and she had to give him up. Looking back, the things about the real world she had learned during those months when she was first called made her have to grow up. She had to outgrow the pettiness of them, so she was ready to walk away.

In the end, most of the tears she had shed over the breakup were not because she missed the deep meaningful conversation they shared, but because of the fear that if Jeffery was it for her, she had just lost him, and she would be alone forever.

That thought had been at the forefront of her mind more so than the arson charges she had faced or her expulsion from Hemery High when she, her mother, and sister had moved to Sunnydale, and she remembered looking for a connection similar to what she had shared with Jeffery, if for no other reason than to fill the void in her.

She thought that even though it might not be exactly what she wanted anymore, it would be something- and therefore, it would be better than nothing. That was what she had been looking for when she had run into Xander Harris.

Buffy admitted easily that he was cute when she first saw him- in a scruffy teenaged boy way that was the complete opposite for the Preppy Jeffery look. And Buffy, initially, let herself feel  a way for him…but then, he had wanted her too. Xander finally made Buffy understand how she must have made Billy Ford feel because the more he wanted her and let it be know, which was quiet a lot, the easier it was for her to push him into the category of 'very best friend forever', because with feelings like that, she was sure that he was not going anywhere.

So she did. And Xander didn't. She had his heart and his love and she knew it. She would never give it up because he offered another aspect of affection and emotion Buffy craved- something like a boyfriend, but less, and definitely more permanent in nature.

And she kept looking for more while relying on and coveting what Xander gave no matter what her actions were. She found other non-Jeffery's that she thought could fulfill her more sophisticated boyfriend requirements- like the poetic Owen Thurman and the extremely deep Scott Hope- both of which made Xander insanely jealous.

But nothing like what had happened when she had been ready to settle with one of her options…when she hadn't been looking.

That was the first time Buffy had fallen in love.

Angel- a vampire with a soul.

Angel made Buffy understand how Xander felt about her. The blinding love in seeing the utter perfection that was the object of your desire.

She had given him her heart, even though she was destined to be his sworn enemy; and selfishly thought that between Angel and Xander she would never be alone again. And through the burning passion that was her three year relationship with Angel, she used Xander to fill the daylight void that was left by her 242- year old boyfriend's vampirism.

Buffy had everything she had always wanted…she was loved and lusted and needed and placed on a pedestal the likes of which she didn't think had ever been constructed and she was happy.

Until Angel left.

Oddly enough, he left because they loved each other too much…and, just her luck, it could lead to the end of the world. And when Angel had left, he had taken her heart with him. She had thought at the time that if she let him have it he would someday be back to return it…he would come back to her. But that didn't happen. And all the while, just because her love had gone, Xander's stayed- and it stayed for her.

Buffy needed that from him, and he willingly gave it. It was around that time when she gave up on the whole situation. She vowed not to look for love anymore- not to let herself be open enough to get hurt. If it came to her, great. If not, even better. By the end of the year Buffy was single and not looking and starting college, which was when all of her friends romantic attachments; Willow and Oz, and Xander and Cordelia, started screaming at her again that she was alone. Painfully destined to remain that was forever, it seemed, because even her constant, her Xander, now had his attention divided. 

So then she was left with the task of having to fill his place and Angel's…and she found a cute scruffy looking boy to do it with. Parker. He had talked to her, shared things, just like she and Xander had, only he kissed her like Angel. He was the one who could substitute two- or so it seemed at the same time.

Until he used her for sex and then left her. Something either of the aforementioned two would never do to her. But even though it hurt, it was easier to get over than before…it wasn't love. It wasn't even close. It was based completely on the fact that he was hot, at the time, and she wanted him, wanted it. Buffy figured that if he wouldn't have turned into a huge ass, she would have happily done him again a few more times.

The thought of just bedding random guys led her to another conclusion: Buffy the Huge Slut was not a good thing. So upon careful consideration and the arrival of an interested in her, built, TA, demon hunter, Riley Finn, Buffy decided to go back onto the boyfriend market again.

It almost worked out too. Riley loved her. Buffy loved the feeling of being loved. Too many psychology courses left her blaming her absentee father for that quirk, but that was just another multi-faceted reason for her woes.

She and Riley had a good relationship. He could act like Xander since he had turned his attentions, after years of Buffy ignoring them to Anya, and he could act like Angel with the snuggles and touching. But because he loved her, Buffy needed to be able to see him as more than a filler- and she couldn't. She only got to that point where she could when he was leaving her.

She didn't want to be alone again and was willing to make herself love him the way he loved her. She was willing to do anything to keep him from walking away from her…to keep his arms around her…but she was too late. Riley left and Buffy was sure, then more that ever, that she would die alone.

In fact, not long after that, she did. She died alone- but only in her self assured emotional sense because her friends brought her back. Willow and Xander tore her from heaven, thinking she was in hell, to be with them, and she had hated them for it. When she was dead she had felt a love so pure it rivaled what she had felt for Angel…made her question if she had just felt a childish lust for him, and she hadn't been alone anymore.

But her friends took that from her and the hatred she felt for them, she figured at the time, was the closet emotion to the absolute love she had previously experienced that she would ever feel again. It was easier to hate things so much that it consumed her whole and it was that which led her to Spike.

Buffy loathed him.

Her being with him, accepting his love and torment, could numb her anger and act as the perfect penance for her friends' betrayal and thoughtlessness- so she was.

Buffy engaged in the lowest most degrading and demeaning relationship of her short life with Spike. But when she was with him- her private portal back into the darkness, which was lit by his warped unconditional love, even thought it was death wrong- she wasn't alone anymore. But soon she realized that hiding in Spike wasn't the way to change, and it was, certainly no way to live out the rest of her life. And she and she alone made her break it off.

Since she was thirteen she had been single for a grand total of about a year and a half. Buffy was twenty-one now and used the word single because no matter the lack of official title or the state or validity of any relationship, even with Spike, she had only been with that one person. It still could be classified as a faithful relationship, no matter how self destructing the circumstances, and she had never cheated.

And despite all that Buffy like it that way…she like having someone all he own. She realized after so many years that she needed the protection just as much as others needed to protect her.

Others like Xander.

He had fallen in love with Anya, and even though it was brought to the light of day out of his own fear of loneliness, like Buffy was prepared to do for Riley, it was true, like how she had felt about Angel. Buffy had known before, but now was experiencing and understanding that when Alexander Harris loved he loved with everything he was.

That was why; he had told her recently, he didn't have enough left to give to keep Anya. To be completely with her. That despite everything- all the time and people, rejection and hurt- Buffy, she Buffy, still had too much of his heart. And as a result Anya had left him, and Buffy had found him…vowed to herself that she would never be alone again, and neither would he.

She knew that what she felt for her old friend was true because, like with Angel, she hadn't been looking for it. She figured that if she had been it would have been forced, but it wasn't. By the time she noticed that it she was bordering feeling like she did when Angel would surprise her- full of giddy anticipation- and like when she was in heaven- blinded by the warm light of completely pure love.

Buffy had been blindsided by it. She didn't have to talk herself into seeing Xander as a boyfriend this time either, she just did. She just saw him as more than just a friend…how could she not after all they had been through?

One day, as a friendly gesture, he had grabbed her hand and held on while they were walking. The warm, slightly damp, rough pressure of his palm against hers. Their fingers intertwined…it was everything about having a boyfriend that Buffy loved and it had just, literally, been placed in the palm of her hand. So she held onto it. And Xander became her boyfriend. And she had finally taken her heart back from Angel, despite whether he knew he had it all this time or not. And she had given it to Xander, fully this time, for him and him alone to protect.

Buffy didn't even think of him as replacing Angel because she couldn't…he couldn't. Xander brought something else entirely. Every hug, every hand hold, every whisper of eternal devotion and future plans, and hair brush, every kiss…every time he would call her his. It was all completely new.

Buffy realized that, now that she had some experience to rely on, his was exactly what she wanted to be. It was her most favorite title; mostly because it was the one she was still working to be worthy of. Of course, to Xander her worth of the title was a given, she had been born for it, but Buffy was confident that she could be more.

So she had been what she dubbed, a 'Boyfriend Girl'. She had always wanted one, and had always had one in some way shape or form, and she was alright with that now. She had Xander to thank for the fact that she wasn't one anymore, because she, as far as she was concerned, was with the last one she ever wanted. Now, she could make that title a thing of the past because being with Xander took away the nagging worry of being alone. He would never let that happen.

"Whatcha thinking about Babe?" Xander's raspy 'I just woke up' voice sounded, and Buffy felt him reach over her side, enveloping her with one long arm and weave his fingers through hers over the back of her hand- just the way she knew that he knew she loved.

Buffy sighed against his chest, her back pressed firmly against it when he pulled her to him. "Us," she told him, a smile he couldn't see gracing her face.

"Oh yeah?"  Buffy giggled as he kissed a spot behind her ear before speaking into it softly, "What about us?"

"Stuff," she answered back coyly.

Xander's fingers slide down her side, tickling her in mock frustration and Buffy laughed squirming in his hold. "What kind of stuff?" he pressed, his voice sounding more awake and boyish.

Buffy broke his hold suddenly and flipped over onto her other side to face him, "Good stuff," she assured him with a bright smile, "The best stuff."

Buffy watched Xander's eyes smile, the warmest chocolate brown that pulled her in every time she looked at him, even as he wore only the tiniest grin on his mouth. He shrugged and pulled her closer murmuring, "As long as its good," as he pulled her to him.

"Always," Buffy promised him as they fell into a kiss. Always because she had to show him how grateful she was for him. Always because she had to make up the past to him. Always because he had saved her life in so many ways and because she loved him for it. And always because, now, Buffy realized, she wasn't a 'Boyfriend Girl', she was Xander's girl. She wouldn't ever be alone.

===

The End