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Part One: My Sweetest Friend

Restoring Angel's soul was absolutely the right thing to do, there was no question about that. No soul -- psychopath on a killing spree. Soul -- Buffy's hunky love-muffin. It was a no-brainer. And, yeah, it was technically dark magic -- 'cause, hello, Gypsy curse -- but that didn't matter. After all, how could doing something good be a bad thing?

Then the power exploded through her, filling her up, making her all breathless and tingly. God, what a rush. She hadn't known magic could make her feel like that.

She hadn't expected it to taste so sweet.


Part Two: Liar's Chair

Tara just didn't understand. She'd learned magic at her mother's knee, studying not just spells and the uses of power, but also philosophy and ethics and blah, blah, blah, whatever. Willow hadn't had that luxury. She'd come to magic late, out of necessity. She called it Wicca, but it wasn't a religion to her. It was a tool, like a stake or a crossbow. And tools were meant to be used.

But Tara didn't see it that way and she probably never would. Willow just didn't feel like arguing about it. Why couldn't Tara forget about it?

She wondered what casting a memory spell would feel like, and shivered.


Part Three: Empire of Dirt

Tara's blood was on her shirt. Willow could feel the stain.

The dark magic from the books was singing through her veins, whispering promises into her ears, helping her feel -- not better. She'd never feel better again. But powerful. Focused. In control. All the things that had disappeared when Tara's body hit the floor and didn't get up again. She needed those voices. She needed the hot sting of the power.

She needed to make them pay.

"One down." But it wouldn't be one for long. She could feel it, just like the stain on her shirt. Willow was going under, and this time Tara wouldn't be there to help pull her out of the abyss.

That was okay. She didn't want to come back. What would be the point? If Tara wasn't there, Willow wasn't going.

She was going down, and she was taking the world with her.


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