MsGiles - February 20, 2004
As the brightness faded, Willow found she couldn't bring herself to approach Buffy, lying so still, though she felt perhaps she should. She could feel, somewhere deep, that her friend was gone beyond her calling. She went instead to the fractured bot, lying in bloodless pieces at the base of the metal tower, and began pushing the pieces together. It had fought well, she thought, with the part of her mind that was still working. They ought to keep it. She could mend it. She was good at mending things. Making things right. Patching the holes in the fabric of the universe. Buffy was gone, through a hole she hadn't been able to patch. Too little, too slow. The big exam, and she had fluffed it. Nothing left but broken stuff, inanimate, meaningless. Nothing left to fix. It couldn't be so! She thought. Not that quick. I didn't get a chance, I can't fail yet. The exam isn't over, it can't be. I'll get the answer, I swear I will. In the meantime, there was the bot. Perhaps I can answer this one.