Joyous New Year
by Palaskar

Disclaimer: These Characters do not belong to me. They are property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, WB Network, and whoever else that has rights to BTVS.

 Cordy gets all introspective at Vail.

 Spoilers for season 3 relationships, and end of a Buffy Christmas. Oh, and feedback! I love that.

      I used to love this time of year. Not only did it mean Christmas and my Dad actually paying some attention to me, even   though he would always say, "Why don't you pick out something you like?" and shove his Platinum card in my hand; not only did it mean vacation and Vail or Aspen; it meant new beginnings. A chance to do things better than last year. A      chance to erase all those little mistakes, and make something worthy of your life.

     God, do I ever need that now.

     I mean, could I be in worse straits? I'm so low on the social pecking order, that compared to me, Buffy is cool. Hell, Willow is cool compared to me.

     And we all know whose fault that is, don't we?

     The ski lodge breaks into another round of "Auld Lang Syne." "Lest auld acquaintance be forgot/And never brought to mind..." I want to forget, so I wrap Brad, or whatever his name is, I wrap his arm around me a bit tighter.

     Wouldn't it be nice if we could wipe away all our mistakes, and just start over? Just forget all our problems, forgive all our enemies. Isn't it pretty to think so? It's like snowfall; just takes one good snow and everything's virgin powder again, untouched whiteness.

     Sunnydale got snow on Christmas. Think of it! The nation's number one town for bright skies and undead horrors, all wrapped up in a blanket of pure forgiveness.

     I want to forgive him. I tell myself I do, that's how much I love him. I want it to snow, and everything to smooth out back  to the way it was, to untrammeled, virgin white.

     It hasn't snowed here the whole time I've been here.

     No, we've had to make our own snow. Plentiful, perfect, and utterly false. Just like me. Maybe that's why he left me for her. Even at age seventeen, she's still essentially honest, essentially innocent. And she hasn't covered up a thing of  who she is. Me, I...I hide all the stuff I know, all the stuff I am. The insecure, intelligent girl who long ago decided she'd be Well-Liked and Important, who decided she'd take no guff from anybody, no matter what. Not even the only man she
ever trusted.

     And all it'd cost her was her soul.

     Gah, better not think that. Knowing me, it'll come true.

     The lodge breaks out into "Auld Lang Syne" again. I sing along, not really meaning the words, and sip my hot toddy. And I look out through the window at all the tracks of skiers and 'boarders and those geeks on snowshoes, and everybody else. Life's full of mistakes. Sometimes, they're too big to fix or forgive or forget and erase; sometimes, you just have to move on, somehow.

     "Joyous New Year," What's-His-Face tells me. He must be French Canadian. He looks into my eyes, inquisitive.

     I get up, stretch my limbs. Tomorrow I have to go.