Needing A Friend
Disclaimer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer belongs to Joss Wheldon, and Nip/Tuck belongs to Ryan Murphy. The songs Believe by Josh Groban (from the movie The Polar Express) and Where Are You Christmas? by Faith Hill (from the movie How The Grinch Stole Christmas) belong to the songwriters who wrote these amazing songs. Please don’t sue me, I’m completely and utterly broke and it’s for entertainment purposes only.
Timeline: Post season 7, Buffy, and post season 2, Nip/Tuck
Rating: PG for swearing
Main Character(s): Christian, Dawn
Pairing(s): Dawn/Christian (friendship)
Author’s Note: This story takes place six months after the events of Joan Rivers in the Nip/Tuck universe and two years after the events of the Buffy series finale Chosen in the BtVS universe.
Summary: Christian is forced to spend Christmas alone and just as he begins to sink into a depression; he meets a certain young teen (Dawn) who gives him the gift of friendship and the spirit of Christmas.
December 24, 2004
Dawn Summers walked alone carrying shopping bags just to get some last minute Christmas shopping done. Ever since she and the rest of the Scoobies had set up shop in Miami, life had been all work and no play due to teaching Slayers and finding those who had been activated as Slayers. Dawn had helped out numerous times with both the teaching and the recruiting. But it was never easy because she was still a teenager who needed an education and she juggled both school and work at the same time which proved to be difficult but in the end, Dawn managed to get her high school diploma and is now attending university in Miami studying psychology.
~And so far, I like it.~ She thought.
Suddenly wanting to rest her aching feet, Dawn went into a nearby park and sat down on a bench. After twenty minutes and when the pain in her feet went down to a manageable level, Dawn got up and was about to leave when she saw someone walk to the bench across from her and sat down. Dawn saw that someone was a man with dark hair and she could tell by the look on his face that he was upset. Then she saw him burying his face in his hands and his shoulders began to shake which indicated to her that he was crying.
~Poor guy!~ Dawn thought with sympathy. ~Sitting alone on a bench crying is not a way to spend Christmas Eve.~
Feeling sorry for the poor stranger and wanting to comfort him, Dawn got up ignoring the pain in her feet and walked over to the bench where the man was sitting and sat down beside him. Then before she realized what she was doing, she laid a hand on his shoulder. The man lifted his tear-streaked face and turned to face her. Dawn almost choked on her own spit when she saw the horrible scars on the man’s face. There were slash marks on both sides of his face and they looked like they were done to him quite recently.
~Oh, my God!~ She thought. ~Who or what could do that to him?~ Dawn’s train of thought was derailed when she saw that the man was crying again and she immediately knew why.
~Probably from me staring at him. I shouldn’t have done that. I want to help him not make him feel like a monster.~ Dawn didn’t bother to suppress pangs of pity, regret and guilt and she rubbed his back gently.
“I’m sorry.” Dawn whispered.
Where are you Christmas?
Why can’t I find you?
Why have you gone away?
Where is the laughter
You used to bring me?
Why can’t I hear music play?
My world is changing, I’m rearranging
Does that mean Christmas changes too?
Christian Troy walked slowly to a nearby park not caring who saw him. It had been close to six months since that horrible night back in his apartment. Since he was attacked and nearly killed by the monstrous serial rapist known as the Carver. He survived the attack but was both physically and emotionally scarred for the rest of his life. The monstrous madman had slashed Christian in the face leaving him horribly scarred. For six months, Christian relived the nightmare over and over again in his dreams. Not even being in the company of his best friend Sean could help him forget. He blamed him for the attack even though it wasn’t his fault but for six months, he had close off all of his emotions until today.
Unable to walk anymore, Christian sat down on a bench and buried his face in his hands. Then all of the emotions he had pent up inside of him for six months came forth and he burst into tears. Christian was crying so hard that he almost didn’t feel someone laying a hand on his shoulder. Once he did, he looked to see that someone was a young woman. She looked about seventeen or eighteen years old with long brown hair and clear blue eyes. Christian looked deep into her eyes and saw the look of horror in them. It then dawned on him that she had seen the scars on his face and suddenly feeling upset, he started crying again. Through his tears, he saw that the young woman had an odd mixture of regret and pity in her eyes and on her face and he felt her hand rubbing the back of his shoulders.
Then Christian heard her say in a soft whisper. “I’m sorry.” At that point, he couldn’t control himself anymore and he began sobbing without self-restraint or control over his emotions.
Where are you Christmas?
Do you remember
The one you used to know?
I’m not the same one
See what the time has done
Is that why you let me go?
As he sobbed on her shoulder, Dawn slowly wrapped her arm around him and then she guided him into her arms holding him tightly and never letting him go. She began whispering words of comfort into his ear in an attempt to comfort him. After close to three hours, she remained with him until he couldn’t cry anymore. Then he slowly pulled away and smiled a tiny smile at her.
“Thank you,” he said in a hoarse voice. “I needed that.”
Dawn smiled at him back. “You’re welcome.” She said. “You looked like you really needed a friend and plus, I felt sorry for you.” Then she held out her hand. “I’m Dawn. Dawn Summers.”
“Christian.” Christian said. “Christian Troy.” he took Dawn’s hand and shook it gently. Then he let go and stared at her.
“So, finishing up on Christmas shopping?” Christian asked.
Dawn’s smile turned into a grin. “Almost.” She replied. “I was actually on my way home when I stopped here in the park but when I saw you on that bench crying, I couldn’t leave without at least trying to help.”
Then she added. “I have to admit, I was shocked when I saw the scars on your face.”
The instant the words were out of her mouth, Dawn regretted them because she saw the pained look in Christian’s eyes and he let out a sob. Feeling slightly angry with herself and very sorry for Christian, she took his hand and squeezed it.
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that.” Dawn said. “If it upsets you a lot then I won’t say anything about it …”
“No, it’s okay.” Christian said in an attempt to reassure her. “I should talk about this to someone even if it’s a total stranger.”
Dawn was slightly confused. “You mean, who or what gave you those scars?” she asked. Her sympathy for Christian grew when she saw tears in his eyes again and his nod.
“It’s okay, Christian.” She said gently. “I’m here. Just tell me what happened to you.” Christian took a deep breath and began to tell his story.
“I was at home when it happened.” He said. “I was in bed. The bastard who did this to me, he was able to break into my apartment without me knowing about it.”
Christian’s voice broke as he spoke again. “He drugged me and I couldn’t do anything to stop it. I couldn’t move or even scream for help. I was helpless. Then he slashed me in the face and then he …”
Christian couldn’t bear to finish but Dawn already knew what had happened next and it made her feel sick to her stomach thinking about it. She was shocked and horrified over she had heard and the story shook her to the bone. Hearing Christian’s story had Dawn thinking about her own life and about everything she went through when Buffy was the only Slayer.
~Losing friends to things that go bump in the night, watching your sister die, seeing your friend turn to the dark side or battling an ancient evil isn’t the same as letting some human monster do things to you that would make your stomach turn.~
But Dawn knew that there was one thing that both she and Christian had in common. They both experienced horrors in their pasts. Horrors that everyone else in the outside world could scarcely imagine. Suddenly she was pulled out of her thoughts when Christian spoke again.
“When people look at me now, they don’t see the real me.” he said tearfully. “They see these scars and they walk away like I’m nothing and sometimes I wanted to end all of this pain. How can you live with this knowing that you would never be the same? How could …?”
Dawn suppressed a pang of sadness as she spoke to Christian in an attempt to comfort him. “Sometimes, people can be ignorant of other people’s inner pain and not realize that what they do is the wrong thing to do. The people who pass you in the street, they may not see the real you, Christian.”
Dawn barely kept the emotion out of her voice when she spoke her next words. “But I do. I see the real you.”
At point, Christian couldn’t hold back the tears and he started crying again this time out of an odd mixture of pain and happiness. Dawn was also crying when she took him into her arms. For a while, they held onto each other crying tears of joy and friendship as the magic of the Christmas spirit did its work.
Christmas is here everywhere
Christmas is here if you care
When there is love
In your heart and in your mind
You will feel like Christmas all the time
I feel you, Christmas
I know I found you
You never fade away
The joy of Christmas
Stays here inside of us
Fills each and every heart
Where are you Christmas?
Fill your heart with love