Past Featured StorySummary: Updated!

Buffy finds out that Spike was dusted in the big battle with Wolfram and Hart. Angry, hurt, and determined, she finally agrees to take a daring risk with Dawn to go back in time and make sure Spike knows he’s loved even if it doesn’t change his fate. This is a story based on Javajunkie’s challenge, Whisper in a Dead Man’s Ear.
Story author: Sandy S. 
Mood board designer: Badwolfjedi
*Beautiful banner by Javajunkie247!*
Disclaimer: We own nothing. Joss owns all.

Categories: Season 6, Season 7, Post-Series, Challenge Response, Time Travel
Characters: Anya, Buffy, Clem, Dawn, Giles, Halfrek, Hank Summers, Jonathan Levinson, Lloyd, Original Characters, Riley Finn, Samantha (Sam) Finn, Spike, Tara, The First Evil, Warren Mears, Willow, Xander
Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama, Fighting, Romance
Warnings: Adult Language, Character Death, Sexual Situations
Challenges: Whisper In A Dead Man's Ear
Completed: No Chapters: 64
Word count: 209,155 Hit Count: 75,708 ePub Downloads: 828
Published: October 22, 2018 Updated: April 10, 2021

Print or Download Story: Printer Microsoft Word ePub eBook

Share Story:

View All Chapters

1. Chapter One, Making a Choice by sandy_s - Likes: 51 Comments: 47 Word Count: 2,408 Hit Count: 10,689 Published: October 22, 2018

This is a collaborative story-art venture between Sandy S. and Badwolfjedi...we hope you enjoy! 

The chapters will all be third person but move between Buffy and Dawn POV. 

Special thank you to Badwolfjedi for betaing this chapter! hug

Beautiful story banner by Javajunkie247!

2. Chapter Two, Tossed into the Past - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 44 Comments: 20 Word Count: 2,016 Hit Count: 2,337 Published: October 30, 2018

Thank you so much from both of us for your lovely words of encouragement so far and for reading/enjoying the art! 

So, I originally had both Buffy and Dawn parts in each chapter, but they started to get really long, so they'll be divided into two parts for ease of reading. First up is Buffy! 

3. Chapter Two, Tossed into the Past - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 41 Comments: 17 Word Count: 2,447 Hit Count: 2,107 Published: November 03, 2018

Thank you again for all the kind notes for the last chapter - for both art and story! Here is Dawn's jump. Hope you enjoy! 

And y'all!! The bottom right corner of the mood board. Omg... hearts The whole thing is beautiful but that image makes my heart ache.

4. Chapter Three, The Chips are Down - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 50 Comments: 28 Word Count: 2,264 Hit Count: 2,037 Published: November 09, 2018

5. Chapter Three, The Chips are Down - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 38 Comments: 17 Word Count: 2,424 Hit Count: 1,874 Published: November 14, 2018

6. Chapter Four, Creating a Shift - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 42 Comments: 17 Word Count: 2,862 Hit Count: 1,775 Published: November 21, 2018

We're starting with Dawn this time! I just love Dawn and Tara together, so here you go!

7. Chapter Four, Creating a Shift - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 40 Comments: 21 Word Count: 2,526 Hit Count: 1,732 Published: November 25, 2018

8. Chapter Five, A Hop, Skip, and a Jump - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 41 Comments: 23 Word Count: 3,285 Hit Count: 1,574 Published: December 05, 2018

9. Chapter Five, A Hop, Skip, and a Jump - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 41 Comments: 14 Word Count: 3,355 Hit Count: 1,581 Published: December 11, 2018

Badwolfjedi's mood board here really makes the story rich in such a beautiful way...

10. Chapter Six, And Yet Some Things Remain the Same - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 39 Comments: 16 Word Count: 2,547 Hit Count: 1,626 Published: December 22, 2018

Happy holidays from both of us to all who celebrate! heartshugflowersheart

I'm a bit behind in posting this fic because I've been working on my Which Willow fic, which if you like Willow, check out all the stories this season! Mine's a Spike and Willow fic - not a romance; they're a fun pair to write. And I'm also working on a Christmas-y Spuffy fic for Noel of Spike! :o) 

Re: the mood did Badwolfjedi find that amazing ugly button up and the hand over hand image? *is blown away*

11. Chapter Six, And Yet Some Things Remain the Same - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 37 Comments: 13 Word Count: 2,615 Hit Count: 1,467 Published: January 10, 2019

Okay! I'm back on regular schedule to write and post. Daycare has been closed for three and a half weeks because it flooded and my family's schedule has been incredibly unsettled and wonky. Thank you for your patience! A structure is of the good. 

Also, this chapter took an unexpected turn with Xander, and I hope you like it. (It's been written for a while, but I haven't had time to write new chapters, which I like to do before posting new. I'm currently writing chapter nine.) 

Happy New Year! 

12. Chapter Seven, Screw-ups Ensue - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 37 Comments: 15 Word Count: 2,421 Hit Count: 1,431 Published: January 17, 2019

I'm so behind on replies but do know that we appreciate each comment and we will be working on replying to all of them! So thank you thank you thank you! hugI have been writing like crazy and am halfway through Chapter 10. 


13. Chapter Seven, Screw-ups Ensue - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 34 Comments: 16 Word Count: 2,861 Hit Count: 1,473 Published: January 20, 2019

Okay, I'm very nervous about this chapter. I love how it turned out but am not sure how it will be received. *runs around anxiously* 

The mood board is, however, absolutely gorgeous by Badwolfjedi! hearts

Special thank you to yellowb for her consultation on this chapter! hug

14. Chapter Eight, It's All About Communication - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 33 Comments: 14 Word Count: 2,742 Hit Count: 1,423 Published: February 03, 2019

Sorry for the delay in posting! RL has kept me busy! 

15. Chapter Eight, It's All About Communication - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 33 Comments: 14 Word Count: 4,048 Hit Count: 1,396 Published: February 06, 2019

Here's another chapter, but I got a little behind in posting so... Thank you from both of us for the delightful and kind comments for the last chapter! I wanted to go ahead and post this one, but we'll be replying to comments soon. I'm working on getting a cold from my son, so I'm all achy and just want to crawl under the covers. lol 

16. Chapter Nine, Reunited - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 33 Comments: 11 Word Count: 2,338 Hit Count: 1,429 Published: February 12, 2019

Thank you so much for your lovely comments and likes and support so far! Badwolfjedi and I are so grateful! And I just love her mood board here with the messiness that is starting to become evident with the jumps and the changes and the different but similar dynamics. The rain center image is perfect as you'll see! 

17. Chapter Nine, Reunited - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 37 Comments: 19 Word Count: 2,533 Hit Count: 1,382 Published: February 22, 2019

This chapter is rough and reactionary on both sides, but wait for the end there, okay? hug

18. Chapter Ten, Fitting the Pieces Together - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 31 Comments: 13 Word Count: 3,121 Hit Count: 1,294 Published: March 06, 2019

I'm so behind on responding to comments...but I will get to all of them. RL is still crazy, but I am still writing and am a few chapters ahead. 

I absolutely love the center image that Badwolfjedi has chosen for this mood board...also that last quote is incorporated because it plays a role in the next part, and I love that Badwolfjedi included it here. Btw, it's a really good short story, too.

Also, it's so sad that Luke Perry is gone. He was amazing on 90210, Buffy, and now in Riverdale. He was way too young. 

19. Chapter Ten, Fitting the Pieces Together - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 34 Comments: 13 Word Count: 2,427 Hit Count: 1,312 Published: March 11, 2019

This is one of my fave mood boards by Badwolfjedi...the lighting, the imagery, and the different references that make up the chapter! Hope you enjoy it... hearts 

Thank you for all the support so far! It means so much to both of us!hug

20. Chapter Eleven, There's Always a Reason - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 37 Comments: 14 Word Count: 3,876 Hit Count: 1,288 Published: March 24, 2019

This chapter got a little long-winded...sorry about that! 

I love the central image that Badwolfjedi chose here and the simplest of quotes from the chapter, but one of my faves. hearts Huge thank you to her for helping me brainstorm when I need a place to talk it out!

21. Chapter Eleven, There's Always a Reason - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 42 Comments: 24 Word Count: 3,219 Hit Count: 1,270 Published: April 02, 2019

I'm super behind on responding to comments but we want you to know that we appreciate every one! 

Hope you can bear some of Agent Finn in this chapter. He was bound to turn up in the fic...stupid Suvolte/As You Were. It will turn out very differently... hearts This is a Spuffy light chapter but a significant and important one for them despite Spike not appearing in it. 

Check out the beautiful mood board by the talented Badwolfjedi!!! hearts

22. Chapter Twelve, Rolling with the Changes - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 34 Comments: 21 Word Count: 3,304 Hit Count: 1,193 Published: April 27, 2019

Sorry for the delay! I wrote my EC chapter one week, and the last two weeks have been so busy! My car A/C went out and in order to see if it's still under warranty, I have to go through the insurance because it was replaced after my wreck last year. In any case, they said it would take 1-2 business days but I still haven't heard from them after several days. It's already HOT in Texas and my commute is at least an hour each way. Haha. So I've been exhausted and too tired to write. That and the usual RL stuff. Don't we all have it? Can I have a boring week please? ;o)

In any case, hoping that I'm back on posting track now! Yay! The banner badwolfjedi made for this chapter is super fun! I had a great time writing Spike, Dawn, and Anya in this one. Hope Anya's voice feels right! 

23. Chapter Twelve, Rolling with the Changes - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 31 Comments: 15 Word Count: 2,891 Hit Count: 1,141 Published: May 04, 2019

I'm back to being four chapters ahead, so here's another for you! Thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts for the kind words and likes that you've been leaving our little project! *big hugs* 

Love all the images Badwolfjedi chose to illustrate this chapter... the hands! hearts

24. Chapter Thirteen, Confrontation - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 30 Comments: 13 Word Count: 2,810 Hit Count: 1,082 Published: May 16, 2019

I'm currently sitting in the kitchen with OffYourBird, yellowb, and amidtheflowers! hearts We are all commiserating about fandom writing. It is one of the most delightful and fun things I've done in a long time! 

So, I was determined to put a chapter out there while in NY. hug I will catch up on replies soon...but know that all your comments are incredibly appreciated. hearts 


25. Chapter Thirteen, Confrontation - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 36 Comments: 21 Word Count: 3,858 Hit Count: 1,219 Published: May 23, 2019

I know, I know, I'm super behind on comment replies! They are coming; I'm finally settling in after the NYC trip (I still feel like I'm there...ahhhh!). And my muse had me writing chapter 15 (both Dawn and Buffy parts), but I promise that badwolfjedi and I cherish each note and will respond soon! Just thought you might want something to read this week.

For reasons you will see, I love this chapter...and it turned out very different than I expected. Expect little Riley. He's here but mostly done for this segment of the fic. Expect Sam. She came out of left field for me. Hope you like it and hope she feels right. I rewatched to see how she was but added a little more to her character to hopefully feel more human. 

Badwolfjedi did a beautiful job of capturing all the seemingly little but very significant bits of this chapter and for that I'm incredibly grateful! 

26. Chapter Fourteen, Hazards Ahead - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 35 Comments: 17 Word Count: 2,571 Hit Count: 1,143 Published: June 06, 2019

Sorry for the posting delay! I decided as the story is getting more complicated that it needs a beta. Too many details to keep straight between Dawn and Buffy's skips. So it took me longer than normal. 

So, I owe a huge thank you to amidtheflowers for being willing to take this on! I asked her in NY and she said sure! I appreciate it more than you know! 

Also the mood board by Badwolfjedi is phenomenol! I love the quotes she chose and the images. I forgot just how green their dresses were! Omg. 

27. Chapter Fourteen, Hazards Ahead - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 32 Comments: 19 Word Count: 3,693 Hit Count: 1,185 Published: June 11, 2019

Special thank you to Badwolfjedi for the beautiful banner for this chapter! Hope that the chapter lives up to its beauty! hearts

Extra big thank you to amidtheflowers for betaing this chapter (*big hugs*), which I later tweaked even more. New mistakes are all mine.

Huge thank you to everyone who is reading and enjoying the story! I'll be hopefully catching up on replies soon. Husband was sick this weekend and I didn't have much downtime with the little one.

28. Chapter Fifteen, Truth Matters - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 32 Comments: 18 Word Count: 3,583 Hit Count: 1,049 Published: June 21, 2019

Thank you so much for all the likes and comments! *big squishy hugs* We appreciate every one of them!

Special thank you to amidtheflowers for the amazing beta job and making sure that I'm always thinking about important!

This chapter was such fun to write because I love everyone being together even if writing group chapters is tough because it's hard to make everyone have a place in the chapter. There are so many moving parts and a lot of little details packed into this little part. 

Badwolfjedi's notes: I know I have used the Family quote once before but it felt like it belonged to this chapter as well. hearts

29. Chapter Fifteen, Truth Matters - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 31 Comments: 14 Word Count: 3,680 Hit Count: 1,012 Published: June 23, 2019

So, I told myself that because I wrote a chapter this weekend and if I could reply to all the wonderful comments, I'd post the next chapter this evening. Hope you enjoy!

Special thank you to amidtheflowers for all her encouragement and for betaing this chapter. She helped a lot with some key turns of phrase!

Badwolfjedi's mood board is a beautiful companion board to the one from the last Buffy chapter! hearts

Artist notes: I have been saving the “demons” quote for a while and knew this was the chapter for it. Also had to include this particular Keats poem as Spike likes Keats, right? (That’s canon I'm sure, and if not, OYB made it so for me in ADKoH.) Hope it all works for you!

30. Chapter Sixteen, What's to Come - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 36 Comments: 17 Word Count: 2,712 Hit Count: 1,019 Published: June 28, 2019

Thank you so much for all the likes and wonderful comments for our little collaborative story-venture! 

We're getting close to the end of season heads up!

Special thank you to dear amidtheflowers for her lovely beta work and help with turns of phrase or phrase turning...definitely turns of phrase. hugYou know what I mean!

I love badwolfjedi's mood board here, too. She captured the emotion perfectly!


31. Chapter Sixteen, What's to Come - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 35 Comments: 20 Word Count: 4,801 Hit Count: 1,095 Published: July 10, 2019

So, we're super behind on comment replies, but I will get to them soon! Life has, and I really wanted to post a chapter on my birthday. We appreciate each and every comment and like so much...more than you know!

Special thank you to amidtheflowers for her generous and rapid betaing! She really helps with the little details...which I so appreciate. And I must say she was very kind about allowing me to keep a scene that probably didn't need to be there but I really wanted it...with breakfast food and family. 

Badwolfjedi's mood board is lovely here! She packed a LOT in given how much is in the chapter. I don't know how she does it! 

Just a little note: the demon Buffy and Spike fought in the last Buffy part was a kind of demon from AtS. 

32. Chapter Seventeen, The Universe Asserts Itself - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 34 Comments: 25 Word Count: 3,522 Hit Count: 931 Published: July 15, 2019

Okay. I'm terrified to post this chapter. Terrified. 

But first, I can't thank amidtheflowers enough for her beta job here! She is a comma fiend.

And badwolfjedi's board is perfect for the chapter. 

There is a soundtrack for this chapter and the next. I plan to post both chapters fairly close together as they go together. I can't remember where I heard this originally, but I've been planning this crossroads for a while, and this song kept popping up over and over. The song is called Experience by Ludovico Einaudi: 

Hang in there with me. Please. This story is about healing, but big moments come. It's what you do after that counts. 

33. Chapter Seventeen, The Universe Asserts Itself - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 33 Comments: 20 Word Count: 2,226 Hit Count: 994 Published: July 18, 2019

TRIGGER WARNING: There is talk of bullet wounds, violence, and blood in this chapter. 

Special thank you to amidtheflowers who corrected all my wayward conjunctions with aplomb! What would I do without her in this highly emotional chapter?

The mood board is fantastic...badwolfjedi did a wonderful job. See her note at the end about the board.

34. Chapter Eighteen, Aftermath - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 31 Comments: 18 Word Count: 2,974 Hit Count: 917 Published: July 27, 2019

Thank you for all the likes and comments and for hanging in there with the last two chapters! Lots more emotion to come...

Amidtheflowers is an amazing beta...thanks to her, I wrangled my tenses!

And Badwolfjedi's mood board is so emotional for this chapter...the still images of the hospital equipment (wow) and the image of Spike all bruised up...just perfect. 

35. Chapter Eighteen, Aftermath - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 34 Comments: 20 Word Count: 3,367 Hit Count: 1,029 Published: July 30, 2019

Huge hugs and thank you to amidtheflowers for helping me sort out this chapter. I think at times, I was as confused as Buffy waking up after being in ICU. Oh, boy. Hopefully, it reads properly. I re-read it many times and even changed some things from when amidtheflowers read it, so all mistakes are most definitely mine.

And omg, Badwolfjedi creates the best Spuffy boards. So evocative. The unique screencaps of Spike all bruised are from after his torture by Glory and are when he and Dawn are in a cave. Badwolfjedi made them herself.

One author note: I don't think ICU nurses are unobservant at all...Spike is just spouting off here. 

36. Chapter Nineteen, A Letter to Past Selves...and Giles by sandy_s - Likes: 25 Comments: 14 Word Count: 626 Hit Count: 939 Published: August 07, 2019

Thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta! I changed some things since she betaed it, so mistakes are mine. :o) And love this change of pace mood board by Badwolfjedi!

This is a short, short one. Longer chapters coming...I'm 4 ahead of this one. 

37. Chapter Twenty, New Beginnings - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 29 Comments: 17 Word Count: 4,299 Hit Count: 971 Published: August 10, 2019

Special thank you to Badwolfjedi for her lovely Dawncentric mood board! I love the emotional tones of this board...just lovely. Somehow even with the chapter being quite long and very packed with loads of little details about what's happened since the shooting, she managed to capture everything just beautifully. 

And thank you to amidtheflowers for her tireless beta efforts! :o) She always asks the good questions. 

I'm woefully behind on responding to comments again...but I promise we appreciate all comments and likes and even if you're just reading along and don't want to say a word. Thank you! hearts


38. Chapter Twenty, New Beginnings - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 30 Comments: 13 Word Count: 3,353 Hit Count: 988 Published: August 18, 2019

Thank you to amidtheflowers for her tireless beta efforts and recommendation for a character name! 

Thank you to everyone for your kind comments and thoughts about the story and mood boards so far! Badwolfjedi and I really appreciate it! hug



39. Chapter Twenty-One, A Thing Worth Saving - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 25 Comments: 12 Word Count: 2,700 Hit Count: 899 Published: August 31, 2019

Huge thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta with everything she has going on! *hugs*

And the mood board by Badwolfjedi captures everything just perfectly...she did such a beautiful job with the mixed emotions of the chapter. 

Huge thank you to Holi117, DeathTheKat and Pixiecorn for their help with flooring facts in the Summers household! 

40. Chapter Twenty-One, A Thing Worth Saving - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 31 Comments: 21 Word Count: 3,419 Hit Count: 919 Published: September 06, 2019

Well, we made it to chapter 40! Gosh, this little fic has just grown so big. Thank you to everyone for reading, for liking, and for commenting! Badwolfjedi and I appreciate all the love! *big hugs* hearts

Thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta! 

At long last, Spike returns to the story...

This mood board by Badwolfjedi is stunning! The quotes are gorgeous and she chose each image with such care, really capturing the chapter. And the center image is just a lovely choice tying it all together. 

Also, sorry for any confusion with the alternating chapters. Dawn and Buffy each have their own timeline, and when they're skipping separately, Dawn is consistently behind Buffy in time. It was easier to tell when the chapters had strong anchors in the show with particular episodes. I know without that and with the spacing of the chapters from one week to the next, it could get confusing. In this chapter from Buffy's POV, Buffy and Dawn are back in Texas hunting down Spike with Freeda's help. 

41. Chapter Twenty-Two, The Complexity of Forgiveness - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 30 Comments: 16 Word Count: 3,170 Hit Count: 808 Published: September 16, 2019

So, this chapter is back to Dawn in the timeline before they go to Texas, sets up some things for future chapters with Giles and Anya, and hints at some of Buffy's difficulty with killing. This will be addressed more in the next Buffy chapter, which will be a lot more Buffy and Spike again. 

42. Chapter Twenty-Two, The Complexity of Forgiveness - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 29 Comments: 17 Word Count: 4,649 Hit Count: 874 Published: September 22, 2019

Badwolfjedi and I are so grateful for your support in reading and commenting on the story and mood boards! Thank you so much and Happy Sunday! 

Huge thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta on this chapter! She's a rockstar!

We're back in Texas this time after Buffy brought Spike up from the basement. hearts Hope you enjoy this Spuffy chapter...

43. Chapter Twenty-Three, Rehabilitation - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 13 Word Count: 3,429 Hit Count: 880 Published: September 29, 2019

Thank you for all the love for our little story-art venture! hugThis chapter marks that I've posted over 1,000,000 words on EF. Never thought I'd ever say that! hearts 

Special thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta and pointing out that I didn't put where Dawn dropped something. And I added some things and changed a few things since she betaed, so any mistakes are mine. 

I love BWJ's mood board here...the darkness and ominousness are palpable. 

Just a reminder that Dawn has skipped ahead here! 

44. Chapter Twenty-Three, Rehabilitation - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 21 Comments: 14 Word Count: 3,570 Hit Count: 770 Published: October 08, 2019

First, I want to apologize for being so behind on comment replies! I took a new job and we're suddenly moving to a brand new city (for me anyway), so life has been hectic and super stressful. Thankfully, I have Spike and Buffy to keep me going through the stress! 

Badwolfjedi's mood board this time is stunning. I say it almost everytime, but this one is one of my faves. 

Thank you to amidtheflowers for her fab help in betaing this chapter and for not thinking this was a crazy direction to go.  

This is just after Buffy jumps following Lloyd. She's still ahead of Dawn.

Just a heads up, there is talk that may be sensitive for certain people. This chapter addresses a concern I had in even writing this fic. How do I handle future Buffy having sex with Spike and influencing her past self? It's a big intimate thing to do...maybe not for everyone but for Buffy for sure. And I think also for Spike. If I handle the consent issue clumsily, I apologize. 

45. Chapter Twenty-Four, Staying Ahead of Evil - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 21 Comments: 14 Word Count: 3,130 Hit Count: 767 Published: October 13, 2019

Special thank you to amidtheflowers for the beta! *big hugs to you*

And I love Badwolfjedi's mood board here...the awesome red potion and everyone's pensive expression. She commented that she needs to find more Bringer pictures. Oh, boy. Here we go. Season seven, First Evil re-write. lol 

Previously in Dawn's jump, Dawn and Spike almost got sliced and diced by a Bringer, and Dawn called Buffy to come help. 

46. Chapter Twenty-Four, Staying Ahead of Evil - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 27 Comments: 15 Word Count: 3,938 Hit Count: 825 Published: November 11, 2019

Love Badwolfjedi's mood board for this chapter, capturing the essence of the therapy session! The center image is perfect!

And special thank you to the lovely amidtheflowers for her excellent beta help!

I've written variations of the Buffy-Xander talk. Or someone hashing it out with Xander. It was Spike in Taking Chances in Giles's bathroom and Buffy and Xander outside the Hyperion briefly in Setting Up House. But both of those were shorter and less direct. This is the first really long talk between them I've written. And it's a therapy session, which I do for a living so there's that. lol I named the therapist after my three-year-old son's pediatrician because we're moving soon and I'm sad about leaving her. She takes good care of my little guy. Also, I prescribe self-care. It's my thing. 

47. Chapter Twenty-Five, Weapon Getting and Reconnecting - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 22 Comments: 9 Word Count: 3,169 Hit Count: 725 Published: March 07, 2020

I've been gone! But my husband, son, and I moved cities and upended my life and career and son, and then, he started a new daycare, and I got really sick when he got really sick. New daycare = new set of germs, but the good news is that my commute is no longer two and a half hours to three hours a day and is now 30 minutes. And apparently, being sick builds up antibodies which they think is making kids less susceptible to severe coronavirus experiences. So, yay? My husband, however, is screwed. ;o)  

This chapter has been written a while and just a head's up that we are in Dawn's timeline this time around...the First Evil is targeting Dawn and she's terrified. So, she broke down in the last part of her timeline and told Buffy and Spike about the scythe, and in this one, they're going to look for it. 

Beautiful mood board by the lovely Badwolfjedi! 

48. Chapter Twenty-Five, Weapon Getting and Reconnecting - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 16 Comments: 11 Word Count: 4,011 Hit Count: 641 Published: May 03, 2020

Sorry for the long long long delay. After I moved to a new city and started a new job, COVID-19 hit and I work in healthcare and my husband is essential, too, as part of the news media, so we've been navigating lots of changes and trying to protect our son whom we finally moved out of daycare. Going to do my best to get back to and finish this fic. I still love this little fic!

And I know Badwolfjedi has had lots of changes, too, around the same time. *big hugs* She's been such a trooper, helping me with a beautiful new board for this chapter! As usual, her art really adds to the chapter! 

I'm still four chapters ahead. :o)

49. Chapter Twenty-Six, Coming Together - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 9 Word Count: 3,485 Hit Count: 569 Published: May 26, 2020

I am several chapters ahead now but life has been crazy. Wrote this a while back! This chapter follows the last chapter in which Dawn, Buffy, and Spike find the scythe in the vineyard in future Dawn's timeline and in which Buffy and Spike have a cuddle before spending the evening with a very disgruntled Anya and apologetic Xander in future Buffy's timeline. Buffy also received a phone call from Freeda about the Council. Both Dawn and Buffy skipped ahead...let's see where they landed!

Also, as you can imagine, the real-life apocalypse we are all in the middle of affects everyone at different times, and Badwolfjedi is taking a needed break. She'll be back with boards for these chapters when she can! 

50. Chapter Twenty-Six, Coming Together - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 17 Comments: 11 Word Count: 3,398 Hit Count: 630 Published: June 01, 2020

Dawn and Buffy are together!  

To anyone struggling right now, *big hugs*. My husband and I are trying to decide whether to send our son back to daycare as our state opens up. It makes me anxious...with the new COVID complication for kids. It's so hard to know what to do. We are lucky to have work, but I look at his little face and worry (he's three). 

Also, we're at chapter 50! hearts Thanks for hanging in there, y'all!

51. Chapter Twenty-Seven, Shifting Sands - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 10 Word Count: 3,325 Hit Count: 606 Published: June 28, 2020

There was a slight delay because I had to write my Exquisite Corpse chapter, and things are becoming more complicated for this fic and though I'm well ahead, it's requiring some more finagling and planning than at first. But I'm back! 

Badwolfjedi is still on break. Send her loving vibes. 

If you remember, Buffy and Dawn are together and they're about to go confront D'Hoffryn. Hope you like how it plays out. 

52. Chapter Twenty-Seven, Shifting Sands - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 22 Comments: 12 Word Count: 3,782 Hit Count: 518 Published: July 30, 2020

I know I'm incredibly behind on comment responses...with my current new pandemic work schedule, I work all day and come home and my husband goes to work while I care for our kiddo. If I'm being honest, I barely get time to write except for about an hour after my son goes to bed and some days my brain is too fried. I'll get to replies soon; please know that I appreciate each and every one of them! *big hugs* I'm also four chapters ahead still and this next chunk of chapters after this one is intense and important to get'll see! 

53. Chapter Twenty-Eight, Lost - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 17 Comments: 10 Word Count: 3,447 Hit Count: 473 Published: August 08, 2020

If this chapter feels abrupt, it's supposed to. I know there was a cliffhanger with Robin, but the choice to veer away from that is purposeful and a plot point as you will see eventually. 

This next part involves Dawn and some elements of torture...just to give you a heads up. 

54. Chapter Twenty-Eight, Lost - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 16 Comments: 12 Word Count: 3,533 Hit Count: 490 Published: August 18, 2020

Thank you so much for all the kind comments on the last chapter! I did allergy testing this past five days were prep and somehow I managed to eek out a later chapter, so that means I can post this one! Yay! Staying ahead is nice because I can correct and add little details as I go to fit with future things. So this chapter has been written a while. 

This is Buffy figuring out what's happened to Dawn. The timeline is vague on purpose. 

55. Chapter Twenty-Nine, Gathering Clues - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 19 Comments: 10 Word Count: 4,071 Hit Count: 428 Published: August 28, 2020

Hurricane Laura shifted east and hit poor Lake Charles and my hometown didn't get the brunt of it, so I feel hopeful for my parents' home tonight but still on edge...just that old icky feeling from the past creeping in. My fandom people on LJ were so kind when I went through all the Katrina and Rita stuff 15 years ago, and I will never forget that. Makes you realize the power of fandom to take care of each other. No matter what you're going through, know that I'm sending you love and strength. This is such a hard and crazy time for everyone. If any of you were in the path of Laura, know that I'm thinking of you and saying prayers.

Also, this is Dawn's part of the chapter...this was a really rough chapter to write. Caleb is ugh. lol But it was a lot of fun piecing together these four chapters that make up this arc despite my dislike of the character. There were lots of little details to put together...more than the other jumps so far. Sorry in advance for Caleb. 

56. Chapter Twenty-Nine, Gathering Clues - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 17 Comments: 10 Word Count: 6,738 Hit Count: 526 Published: September 08, 2020

Apologies for this chapter being quite long...I just really wanted to put an endcap on this piece. :o) Hope you like how it goes down. Be prepared for some more violence. 

57. Chapter Thirty, Recovery - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 10 Word Count: 3,727 Hit Count: 438 Published: October 18, 2020

Sorry for the long delay. I'm still four chapters ahead but I took the time to read the whole fic from start to now so that tying things up feels organic and ties things back to these later chapters. Hoping to be wrapping up this story in the next ten or so chapters. Last time, Buffy led a big fight to get Dawn back from Caleb in which Dawn was virtually torn in half. So, this is Dawn waking up. 

58. Chapter Thirty, Recovery - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 21 Comments: 12 Word Count: 4,880 Hit Count: 418 Published: November 15, 2020

Long delay...I know! Writing my Trapped and Seasonal Spuffy fics took up time and then the US elections and more pandemic. I'm going to finish...I promise! I hope you and yours are well and safe. Everyone is having a hard time at the same time. *big hugs* 

59. Chapter Thirty-One, Plunging Deep - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 18 Comments: 10 Word Count: 4,325 Hit Count: 373 Published: November 28, 2020

Okay, this chapter is. . . different. It's not at all how I expected this to go, and I swear I've read it over and over and added and removed details to it, especially after my giant re-read. Hope you enjoy it. 

60. Chapter Thirty-One, Plunging Deep - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 23 Comments: 10 Word Count: 3,827 Hit Count: 404 Published: December 31, 2020

Happy Holidays! I'm almost done with this fic...just an epilogue left to write, but until then, there are three regular chapters (1.5 total) left to post. Hope you enjoy this one and stay safe! 

61. Chapter Thirty-Two, The End of the Road - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 9 Word Count: 4,154 Hit Count: 370 Published: March 02, 2021

This fic is officially finished...all the writing is done! Including this chapter, there are six left. Hope you enjoy. I'm going to post them all fairly soon. 

BadWolfJedi is back with a beautiful mood board this chapter!

62. Chapter Thirty-Two, The End of the Road - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 20 Comments: 8 Word Count: 3,196 Hit Count: 392 Published: March 06, 2021

The last chapter before the Epilogue, which is four chapters long. Hope you enjoy! Thank you for all the comments so far on this fic...the little fic that could. They mean a lot...more than you know during this pandemic. *hugs* 

63. Epilogue, Finding the Way Home - Buffy by sandy_s - Likes: 21 Comments: 11 Word Count: 2,290 Hit Count: 353 Published: March 18, 2021

There are four chapters left including this one. Hang in there. I haven't gone this long to not have a happy ending. 

64. Epilogue, Finding the Way Home - Dawn by sandy_s - Likes: 21 Comments: 10 Word Count: 3,187 Hit Count: 202 Published: April 10, 2021