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June 7, 2003

Dear Diary,

I had the dream again last night.

I'm in our house in Sunnydale. Mom is in the living room with Xander and Anya.  She's laughing because Xander tried to tell a joke and Anya messed up the punch line. Giles and Willow are sitting at the dining room table playing Scrabble.  Tara and Buffy are standing behind them offering silly suggestions for words that don't mean anything.

I watch them for a while and then I hear something in the kitchen.  I ask Buffy about it and she says it's just the cat.  Only we don't have a cat. Since everyone else is interested in the game, I go to see what the noise is.  I smell cigarette smoke and notice the back door is open, but no one's there.  When I close the door, I realize I can't hear the others anymore.  I hurry back to the dining room only it's deserted.  So is the living room.

Then, for some reason, I go over and open the front door and walk outside.  That's when I realize that everything is gone and that our house is sitting at the bottom of a big hole.  For as far as I can see, there's nothing but dirt and a few piles of rubble.  No streets or trees or people or even birds.  There's just me.

I turn around and the house is gone and I start falling and falling and falling.

That's when I scream.

The first night it happened, I scared Buffy half to death. She pulled Mr. Pointy from under her pillow and was out of bed before I could draw enough breath to scream a second time.  Then Giles came running in from the next room carrying this wicked looking sword.  (Which I definitely don't remember him having when we checked in.  Wonder if there's a 24-hour Swords-R-Us nearby?)  I tried to explain that it was just a bad dream and I was fine and didn't need to talk about it.  I don't think they believed me.  Not sure if it was the sobbing or the throwing up that made them doubt I was telling the whole truth.

Neither one of them tried to make me tell about the dream.  Still, I could tell they didn't believe that I was ok because they gave each other these looks.  It's like they mind-meld or something.  (And the fact that I even know what mind-meld means is a clear warning sign that I've been spending way too much time with Andrew.  If I'm not careful I'll soon be writing these entries in Klingon.) Anyway, I've seen Buffy and Giles have an entire conversation without ever saying a word.

It used to make Riley crazy when it happened.  Not that it was just Giles.  Riley didn't understand half of the things that Buffy talked about with Willow and Xander either.  He didn't even like it when she and Mom would joke around.




Everyone tried really hard to include him, but he just never fit in.  I think everyone except Buffy could see that he was Rebound Guy.  I mean, I was created from green, glowy energy by a bunch of MONKS and I knew they weren't right for each other.

I know.  I know.  All of this has nothing to do with my nightmares.  But if you think I'm just using it as an excuse to put off having to think about them well ... you're right.

In spite of the fact that Buffy still treats me like I'm a six-year-old, I understand a lot about dreams.  Tara was interested in dream interpretation and loaned me a couple of her favorite books.  The disappearing people actually being a fear of abandonment was pretty easy to figure out.  The cat thing took a little longer.  I finally realized the cat was actually my feeling that Buffy and the others never tell me the truth about anything.  Even the stuff that doesn't matter.  Their motto seems to be, "Why tell Dawn the truth when we can lie to her."

I think that's changing.  Since we've been here Buffy has actually been talking to me rather than just barking out orders like an army general or something.  I guess she finally realized how bad things had gotten and is trying to make sure it doesn't happen again.  When she invited me to the Scooby meeting, she actually listened to what I had to say.  For the first time I felt like I belonged there, rather that just being included because I'm the Slayer's little sister.

It's late and I guess I should be going to bed.  Or not.  If I don't sleep then I don't dream.  Sounds like a fair trade-off.

More later.

(I know just how he feels)