by Kimber
Author's Note: The song is called 'Don't Give Up On Me Baby'. Words and music by Emily Saliers of the Indigo Girls. No copyright infringement intended.
Dedication: To Angela who is the reigning queen supreme of SongFics. I only hope I can live up to the standards you've set.

Willow was packing up the last bits of her freshman year in college. Finals were over, Adam was fertilizer and the gang decided that they would spend the summer together. She put tape across the last box and walked over to her desk to see if she'd forgotten anything. There amongst some papers she was going to throw away was a cassette tape she recognized almost immediately. Buffy made it for her after they graduated high school. Willow smiled at the sentiment and decided to pop the tape in her radio for old times sake. Her smile grew even broader when she recognized the song.

Don't give up on me baby
Though we've seen shaky times
there's still solid ground to be found

They had both seen their share of shaky times in the past few years. Looking back on it, Willow could hardly believe everything they'd gone through but still managed to survive. Buffy 'dying', Angelus terrorizing them, losing Miss Calendar, the huge mayor snake who was currently extra crispy on the floor of Sunnydale High School, Angel leaving after graduation, Oz leaving, Willow's new relationship with Tara, then Oz coming back and then finally defeating Adam. It was all enough to make her head spin and not in a good way. Through it all, she and Buffy had been each other's solid ground.

I said don't
don't give up on me baby
though I may seem strong
it's only because
cause you're around

Buffy had gone to her the day Angel decided he was leaving Sunnydale. She was totally devastated and heartbroken over it. Willow stayed with her the whole day and even spent the night with Buffy in her room comforting her and being a shoulder to cry on. Later on, they had a very interesting argument. Buffy told her that she was strong because Willow was there to help her be strong. Willow disagreed and told Buffy she was the one who made her strong, not the other way around. Finally they both relented and decided that together, they made the strongest of all.

you know me better than I do
you know how things go to my head
I said a few things to you
things that were better left unsaid

Willow smiled when she though about all the time and effort she and Buffy have put into their relationship. After all, the words "best friend" cannot be said lightly...they knew each other inside and out and Willow swore that Buffy knew her better than she knew herself sometimes. Willow frowned for a moment recalling the big fight she had with Xander and Buffy before they went to fight Adam. It was like she had no control over the things she said and the words just flew out of her mouth without any warning. It was the worst two days of her life not speaking to Buffy. She was so glad when they finally made up.

but don't
don't give up on me baby
cause you know I love you
and I always
I always will

Buffy told Willow that she was her best friend and that she loved her. That's all she ever really wanted in life. Wasn't it? Someone to depend on and an ear to listen and a shoulder to occasionally cry on. Well, that and someone to have chocolate sundae binges with. She felt a little foolish buying into the things Spike said. She knew Buffy loved her and she was disappointed in herself for doubting it.

now love
love's a sweet kind of pain
it can give you wings to fly
then it drags you on down
but darling
I'll never love this way again, no
you're the sweetest, sweetest, sweetest love
I've ever found

It wouldn't have hurt so much when she and Buffy were fighting if they hadn't really loved each other to begin with. Willow knew that. She knew how much it hurt when Oz never would have made her feel the way she did had she not truly loved him. She realized how lucky she was to have Buffy in her life and knew that she'd never find a friend like her again even if she tried.

you know me better than I do
you know how things go to my head
I said a few things to you
things that were better left unsaid
but don't
don't give up on me baby, no
cause I love you
and I always
always will

Even with everything new in her life, Willow realized that it was always the best comfort to keep something old. Buffy was now her oldest friend after Xander and she was grateful for it. Willow smiled thinking back on all the time they spent together in high school. Those were truly the best of times. She felt as if, when she looked back on it, that it wasn't even her she was looking at. So many things about her changed, good things, and it was mostly because Buffy had come into her life. Willow chuckled to herself remembering the secret crush she had on the Slayer. How could anyone not? She was so full of life and would do anything to help anyone of her friends in an instant. Buffy even put up with Cordelia when she and Xander were together for that brief period when he lost his senses. It was ironic now in a way too. Here she was, in a relationship with a girl...and it was Buffy who was the first girl she'd had a secret crush on. It's funny how some things work out in the end.


Willow turned around and smiled. "Hey yourself."

"Where did you find that old thing? It must be a hundred years old by now. I didn't think you still had a cassette player anyway." Buffy smiled.

"Oh stop, it's not that old. You gave it to me our junior year." Willow ejected the tape from the radio and placed it in her bag. "Besides, I get warm fuzzy feelings listening to it. Gives me big happies even."

Buffy raised her eyebrow. "Big happies, huh Will?" She smiled. "That's why I gave it to you. I'm glad you still like it."

"I do. Really. I was just thinking...about stuff..." She trailed off.

Buffy approached her and poked her in the side. "Come on, spill."

"I'm just...lucky, that's all. Lucky to have you as my best friend. I guess we both took it for granted this year, huh?"

Buffy nodded in agreement. "Yes, that we did. But no more granted taking this summer. We're gonna have a blast. You almost done packing?"

"Yeah. Two more boxes to go then Xander should be here in an hour to help us move out."

Buffy walked over to the window and looked out for a few moments a little lost in thought. Willow approached her.

"Buffy? What is it?"

"Nothing. I was thinking about what you said. How you feel lucky." She turned to Willow. "I'm lucky too you know. Even luckier that I realize we could have done some serious damage to our friendship."

Willow smiled. "But we didn't so that's a bonus." Willow put her hand on Buffy's shoulder. "You're my best friend, Buffy. Sometimes it scares me what my life would have been had you not come into it." She pulled the Slayer into a hug. "I love you."

Buffy smiled and hugged her back tightly. "I love you too Will."

"Always have." It was said so low that Willow hardly heard it herself.

They broke apart grudgingly, knowing that there was still packing to be done before Xander got there. Willow finished up her side of the room and started to help Buffy finish packing.

"You thirsty?" Buffy stood up and dusted off her pants.

"I could go for a nice cool beverage, sure." Willow smiled.

Buffy started to walk out of the room then stopped herself at the door. She turned back to Willow. "Hey Will..."

"Yeah, Buff?" She turned around.

"About before...what you said?" Buffy seemed to be searching for the right words. Then she whispered. "I know." She smiled. "And I always have too... loved you I mean...and, maybe not now but..." She shrugged. "Someday. I promise." She smiled at Willow again and walked out the door.

A very bewildered but ecstatically happy redheaded Wiccan hacker sat in the middle of the floor of the dorm room she shared with her best friend with a silly thousand watt smile plastered across her face. "Someday."

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