It’s harder than you thought, walking from the battle at the end of time and down a street that reeks of entropy and fire and spilled lives. Your eyes aren’t dry. Neither is the alien sky. Your shoulders ache and your stomach hurts. Blue woman, blue woman, the chant runs through your head as you limp toward a portal’s bright mouth. You’re leaving, but you intend to return. You have allies yet.
Sf/slipstream: what to do when the end of the world comes for you. Thanks to Keilexandra, Moira, and Oyce. Published in Clarkesworld Magazine. To be reprinted in Time Travel: Recent Trips, ed. Paula Guran.
This story owes a lot to my impatience with suicidal last stands in Angel, as much as I love that TV show.