Title: "Borrowed"
Author: Mala
Spoilers: "Restless".
Rating/Classification: PG-13, Tara fic, W/T, slash implications, angst.
Disclaimer: Grrr. Aargh.
Summary: Tara was borrowed...but from *where*? Does *she* even know?

Buffy: "You're not in my dream."
Tara: "I was borrowed."
--"Restless."

The desert is vast and arid. She cannot see an end to the golden brown sands, or the impossibly wide sky, and, when she blinks, her eyes cry out for tears to soften their dry sockets.

The horizon is a distant, dark line, drawn as tight as the grooves on her brow. She knows not what she seeks--only that it must be found, here, in the center of nothing.

But she has no feet, so she cannot move forward.

She has no voice, so she cannot scream and follow the echo.

And she has no future, so she has nothing to grasp at, to guide her.

She can only stand still and stare across the broad expanse of tomorrows that will never come.

She is the ageless rock of kings. She is the unyielding peak of destiny, of legend.
***

Burnished hair against her skin makes it look all the paler. All the more lifeless and translucent. She is often caught by the wonder of the reds and browns and oranges of her lover's hair and can stare at it for hours...marvel at the hues and the facets of something so simple. Hues she, herself, lacks.

She lets the strands spill through her fingers like silk, catches her fingertips on the curls that have been there of late, and she inhales the scent of bergamot and clove and cinnamon that rise from peach-tinged skin and parted lips.

She clings tight to flesh and the dampness of secret places shared. She clutches what's solid, and real, and warm, and pulsing. She holds on, knowing that if she lets go, she will fall.

And she will hit ground.

She will hit ground and grow roots.
***

They come to her for blessings and for counsel. Across the seas, the verdant hills...even across time and space. She is their link to the otherworld. To visions and fantasies and other things seemingly intangible.

She walks in webs and tangles and thorns...and, thus, her feet have worn away to nothing. She is a voice for spirits...and, thus, she has none left for herself. She foretells their weeks, their years, their failures, their successes...and, thus, she has none of her own.

She can only stand still and stare across the broad expanse of tomorrows that will never come...for *her*.

She is the ageless rock of kings. She is the unyielding peak of destiny, of legend.
***

Sometimes she sleeps and dreams.

Of hair, of skin, of kisses, of softness against her cheek. Of Willow red, of Willow hands, of Willow mouth, and Willow love.

More often than not, she is awake and has nightmares....flashes of cold, black, nothing, brilliant blue sky, and golden dirt that squelches between her toes. And she wants to sob that she isn't real, that she cannot move or cry or breathe, and does not know why.

But the words never come. The tears never flow. To let them out would mean to give name to her fears, to her visions, to her certainty that she does not belong.

She curls into her lover's arms, and counts the shades of fire in her hair, pretending that granules of sand do not cling to the soles of her feet. That echoes of another life not truly lived do not cling to the souls of her memory.
***

She is the ageless rock of kings. She is the unyielding peak of destiny of legend.

She is still.

She is mute.

She is now.

But she is not deaf and she can hear the whispers meant only for her.

*"You think you know....what's to come...what you are? You haven't even begun."*

She is borrowed.

But her own time will come.

--end--

February 2001.



"BTVS" Fanfic "LFN" Fanfic "Roswell" Fanfic