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Disclaimer: All names of people, places, things, literary and creative works of art are used lovingly in this work of fiction. None of them belong to this author, and no profit is derived from this use.
Note: Thanks to everyone for sticking with me this far, and thank you dearly to all those who left wonderful comments – I hope you’ve enjoyed it!
The Rocky Harbor Weekly
May 20, 2008
Amid the rubble of a ruined town, love endures
SUNNYDALE CRATER STATE PARK — Over a year since the town of Sunnydale sank into the earth, most evacuees located their friends and family and moved on. Buffy Summers and William Jennings however, could not.
The two became separated during the evacuation effort from Sunnydale – Summers said that Jennings was determined to finish helping others evacuate. They figured they would meet up when Jennings evacuated. But in the wake of the town’s destruction, that moment didn’t happen. Not yet.
“I didn’t think he was dead,” Summers said, as the two contemplated the Sunnydale crater in the late evening. “Even when all signs kind of pointed to it, it felt wrong. And hey, I was right!”
Prior to the town’s collapse, Summers and Jennings had been involved in a “kind of on again, off again” relationship, according to Jennings, a martial arts instructor. Summers, a guidance counselor at the local high school, said that from the first moment they met, the two did nothing but fight.
“We actually hated each other when we first met in high school,” said Summers.
“You hated me,” replied Jennings. “I just found you pretty… and annoying… and I couldn‘t stop thinking about you.”
After evacuating, Summers said that she and her sister waited at a nearby motel and combed the local evacuee shelters in the area, without luck. After several weeks, and no sign of Jennings, Summers took her sister to live with their uncle in Great Britain.
Unknown to them, Jennings had made it out of the collapse, but said that he headed for Los Angeles instead of looking for Summers among the evacuee shelters. After finding work in the city, Jennings elected to stay, though he heard about Summers’ travels from others.
Why did Jennings choose to stay away from Summers for so long?
“Because he’s an idiot,” said Summers, glaring at him. “More specifically, his idiocy is only dwarfed by his ego, in thinking that I’d love him better dead than alive.”
“We had reached a point where we loved each other, but I thought she would be better off without me, that I’d hold her back or tie her to things she didn’t want – it’s complicated, and kind of personal,” said Jennings. “No excuses – I was a sniveling coward about the whole thing.
“But,” he continued, glancing over at Summers. “She’s forgiven me worse.”
Summers rolled her eyes and kissed him briefly.
After a mutual friend slipped and revealed that Jennings was alive, Summers flew back to the United States, “in a rage.” She went to Los Angeles to try and find him, only to discover that he’d left the apartment some time before, with no forwarding address.
“He was alive,” said Summers. “I wasn’t going to let an address change stop me.”
Going back to the scene of their separation late one evening, the two met by complete chance at the Sunnydale Crater State Park Overlook. Jennings said that he “just stood there,” and Summers said that she “kept pinching” herself.
“This wasn’t your Disney-sap reunion, and it wasn‘t that picture where the sailor bloke bends the girl back and kisses her,” said Jennings. “We started arguing, and she hit, I mean I thought she was going to hit me in the nose. We kept arguing, then we started talking, and then we realized we’d been standing there for several hours.”
After a few more days of arguing, Jennings agreed to return to Great Britain with Summers. By that point, Summers said, “we were on again.”
Returning to the Sunnydale Crater for the fifth anniversary of its collapse, they still are, apparently, very “on.”
Originally posted at http://seasonal-spuffy.livejournal.com/285557.html