Title: Between Dreaming and Waking
Rating: R for language and sexual scenes
Warning: rape scene
Spoilers: Season 1 to 7
Summary: From Faith’s pov. This would be her autobiography, but not all is as it seems.
Dedication: Again for the love of my life, Dani… who started this fic and for whom I have completed, hopefully I have done her proud.
Disclaimer: Joss Whedon and Co. own characters, some plot lines and some of the words. I own what I own.
PART ONE: THE EARLY YEARS
The nurse told me to write about my life if I was so bored. I am really, really bored. Can’t walk at the moment, and there’s no one here to talk to… so this would be my life…
I was born in Boston and taken to New York when I was two… after my Dad left. I don’t remember him and there aren’t any photos around. So it was just me and my Mom. She teaches kindergarten kids, and is quite normal… typical Mom. Nags me about shit all the time, from school to eating to slaying. But she loves me, and that’s what important at the end of the day. Anyway, I had a boring childhood, nothing too dramatic, other than falling of a bicycle and out of trees. I had friends in school, one of whom I kept since I was three years old… Danny. He is my opposite in every aspect, he works and I don’t, he studies and I party… not that I’m bad with school… my SATs were great and now I’m in college… so I’m doing something right… Now you’re thinking so far so boring. Yeah, I guess you’re right… is kind of boring. But things changed when I was fifteen.
I was at a party with some friends and was walking home thinking of some excuse to give my mother for missing curfew again. Anyway, I walk straight into this guy called Peter Wallace. He freaks the shit out of me… I mean the street is dead except for him and he just stands in front of me. What freaks me out even more is when he says my name. I know I hadn’t done anything illegal, so the cops didn’t have anything on me… but I knew he wasn’t a cop. I mean he was British.
“In every generation there is a Chosen one. She alone will stand against the vampires, the demons and the forces of darkness. She is the slayer.”
Is what this guy in tweed said to me. My very intellectual response would have been.
This was followed by a
“Fuck off, you wacko!”
I can only say that today, my insults have improved. So I go on home, get into a row with my Mom and then sleep and have the craziest ass dream of my life. I mean seriously, fangs, claws, mirrors, water and some really ugly wacko. Needless to say I had really little sleep, so when my alarm went off the following morning I threw it against the wall to turn the damn thing off. What should have been a simple bang was a loud crash and a hole in the wall. The noise made me sit up and the hole made me mumble every swear word in the book. My Mom is up and is glaring at me through the hole. All I can do is grin and apologise.
So that night I meet the British guy again. His name is Peter Wallace, but to me he is just plain Pete, and this guy is to be watcher. Even now I’m not too sure what watchers do other than train me and watch me… but he tells me all this shit about vampires and slayers. I didn’t believe him until he told me to go to a grave-yard with him. I saw my first vampire that night, and I staked my first vampire that night… Real crazy! You know, I suddenly had this super power, and I couldn’t tell anyone. I would go to school by day, and stake vampires by night. Pete was great at the whole training because by the time I was eighteen I was fast, strong and one hell of a slayer.
Once I fell into the whole slayer thing and began to trust Pete… the latter was real hard. I mean, this guy knew everything about me, and I mean everything. He probably knew when I lost my virginity. Which to answer your thoughts was when I was fourteen. Some dude called Jake… not very memorable. Serious fumbling and grunting from him… I just lie there and think to myself ‘well, isn’t this just a big heap of fun?’ My first boyfriend, Denzil was much better… stuck with him until the slaying days took over my life. I mean he got himself in danger with some vampire chick, I saved his ass… and at the same time, saw that he was considering actually fucking this chick. He had to go… but I don’t believe in gentle dumping… so I made a complete fool of him in front of the entire school. Let’s say that it involved handcuffs, nudity, a chair, a bill-board saying “Scratch the Itch”… he never spoke to me again. But I don’t like being fucked with.
Now I’m going completely of the point. Let me tell you about Pete. Pete was British, in his forties and kind of like a Dad to me. He and my Mom hated each other, so he was never allowed in the house. If he phoned, my Mom would give some lecture about child labour laws and human rights before slamming the phone down. So he got me a pager…. Which I admit, I did crush with my boot after it kept going off. I mean I was about to get a lay when it went off about sixty-five million times. Anyway, he took care of me… when I was seventeen, I was in a serious accident… I got jumped by an army of vamps who for some weird reason were working with demons… they tore me apart. I mean broke every bone in my body, almost drained me of my blood… and left me. Why they didn’t kill me, I don’t know… I mean they could have killed a slayer. Pete reckons they got frightened off by something but he found me along with Kenny (He knew about me being a slayer at this point). I was in hospital for weeks, and I don’t really remember much about it. Muddled memories. But when I came round in hospital, he was there…. He never left my bed side. Nor did my Mom… Only afterwards did I realise how much he was worried about me… that I just wasn’t a slayer to him.
He even supported my decision to go to college, as long as it was local. It was around this time my Mom found out and she freaked out… She screamed at Pete and kicked him out… after that he never stepped foot into the house again. She then told me that I wasn’t allowed to slay anymore. We had a huge fight and I stormed out. I disappeared for about two weeks. I hitched a ride west and ended up in LA… there I meet some dude called Wesley, another watcher… he knew who I was, and said that I was needed back home… he made me feel guilty about my Mom, and about my duties, so back to NY I go. I save the world from some random apocalypse involving these knights of the round table kind of guys… Mom was attacked by one of them, and I kicked his ass to hell and back again, and to hell again before finally killing him. Man, I was so angry… I was so scared about losing my Mom that I tortured the guy before taking of his head. I don’t even use a weapon… I use my own hands. Mom was scared at first, I think it was of my strength but she came round eventually. She even said that she was proud to have a daughter who was a slayer.
Mom is cool… I mean, yeah she can be strict about certain things, and she always forces me to eat fruit… but she was always okay with the stuff I did. She knew that I was having sex, and gave me some talk about contraception… but she never tried to stop me… she did try and stop me smoking. I yelled at her, in fact I believe the conversation was something like her saying
“You will die from cancer, if you smoke them filthy things.”
My answer was of course in true style, forgetting about sensitivity and feelings.
“Who cares? I’m going to die long before the big C kicks in… I’m the god damn slayer.”
Mom slapped me across the face and I was shocked… She never hit me before, but she realised what she done and started to cry, apologising over and over again… telling me that she didn’t want to lose me. Mom and me are the opposites… We don’t look like each other… she has blue eyes and I have brown eyes… she has light brown hair and I have dark, wild hair… she is polite and well-mannered… I’m blunt but I do try and remember my P&Q with folks. That night I just sat with her, she was hugging me and telling me how much she loved me. I never quit smoking.
So I went to college while Danny fucked off around the world… last I heard he was in Japan… I haven’t seen him in a few years. When he told me that he was going, I was really upset. He was my only true friend. I mean everyone else dumps you for some reason or other. He never did that… he even saved my life a few times. He found out that I was a slayer about a year after I did, and he was so cool about it. He used to come with me on patrol and we would talk about anything and everything… from sex to books, from films, well back to sex again. We had both slept with quite a few people by the time we were eighteen, but never with each other… kind of like sleeping with your brother. Yeah, but I went to college and started a degree in psychology, doing my minor in English Literature.
In college I met Jules… she was hot, I mean really hot…. Long dark hair, to her waist… two tiny braids in her hair to mark her Native American heritage. A tattoo on the base of her back… real slim and toned…. The darkest eyes in the world… almost black…. And a gorgeous smile. She would walk into the room and everyone, male and female would look at her, I couldn’t talk to her only watch her… I mean she would just smile at me and I would turn to a nervous wreck…. This would ruin my reputation… I mean I was respected and no one fucked with me. Two months after I first laid eyes on Jules, she was attacked by a vampire, and who is the knight in shining armour? Moi! And to repay me, she kisses me and whispers into my ear,
“So this is how I seduce you? Try and get killed by a vampire?”
My wonderful and original answer was
How do you like that originality. She smiles against my ear, I can just feel it, then runs the tip of her tongue along the length of my ear. I thought my knees were going to buckle… you know movie style. She looks at me, and smiles that gorgeous smile. I am just standing there waiting for something. She gives me the something.
“So you are the slayer… the Chosen one… you are damn fine.”
Me being the witty me, can only smile at this. She then tells me that she studies Legend and Mythology and has heard about the slayer, and then she followed me once and saw me in action… I mean she followed me… she said she wanted me from the moment she saw me… It did make me nervous, not because she was a girl… I’ve slept with girls before her… but because I liked her, and wanted her… I was never for the relationship thing before her… so that night we fucked there in the alley way and then every night afterwards we fucked, with at hers or at mine, in the cemetery or in the alleys… slaying gets you hungry and horny and she was quite good at satisfying both parts. Mom freaked at first when she found out but she was cool when she saw I was happy.
I was happy with Jules, she knew about the slaying and she knew that I needed space, and she made me feel good. Did I love her? Yeah, I did.
Things got weird when I was eighteen… not only was I in college, and Danny had left, not only was I in a relationship… but I got probably the weirdest dream of my entire life.
There were drops of blood and then this shiny circle of light, a bolt of lightning, and the light becomes a portal, nearly the size of the sky… next thing this dragon flies out. Next thing I’m jumping into the portal and falling. I wake up sweating, I mean I bolted up with tears in my eyes. Jules jumps up and strokes my back, whispering soothingly into my ear. I’m shaking… because it felt real, incredibly real… I felt the pain, the fear, the determination, the sheer emotions… things I’ve never felt before shot through me in that dream. I could never explain it.
I told Pete about it… he said he would research it, but didn’t think that it was a prophecy of any time. I slowly forgot about the dream, when a few months later, I shot out of the bed, and I was severely shaking. I was terrified, even being awake, terrified me… there was nobody in my room, but my Mom heard me and came to check on me. She found me in a foetal position on the floor crying, sometimes screaming… she didn’t know what to do, so just held me until I calmed down. I didn’t know what the fuck happened… but I just suddenly felt scared and lost.
After that, life became weird. Before then I had accepted slaying as my duty… always figuring out that I would die before I hit twenty, so I never cared about anything too much… but one day, I decided I liked life… and then things just got weird. On my eighteenth birthday, I was tested… my powers taken away from me for twenty-four hours… it screwed about with my mind. I knew that I wanted my powers, and I wanted to be a slayer… When I hit nineteen… I was real happy with my life, despite the dreams… I just felt like I was missing something, but I always felt like I was missing something. When I was little I thought it was my dad I was missing… when I hit my teens, I thought there was something big missing… or that something was being hidden from me, like I was adopted or I had a missing twin… something stupid like that. When I was nineteen, I knew I was missing something bigger, and that I needed to find out what it was… but I didn’t know where to start… so I started reading the slayer diaries.
I read about every single one of them that was recorded, but none of them struck a chord with me… except one, Buffy Summers… why? I don’t know. I mean she was only a slayer for a year when she drowned at the hands of the Master… But her name meant something. After I read about her, I asked Pete about Sunnydale… I mean why wouldn’t the slayer be guarding the hell-mouth? Not that I wanted to move, but looking at the big picture it made sense for the slayer to be where the source of evil was. Pete said that it was closed and that some watcher called Giles was watching it…. If it was necessary, I would be sent there, but there had never been a reason for me to go. Pete would get uncomfortable when I asked questions about Sunnydale… I mean, he was so British sometimes that I would have to drop it… or I would be poisoned by an overload of tea.
Things changed drastically when I was twenty. Jules and I had gone to the movies… and she forced me to watch a re-showing of The Truman Show… I mean it’s an okay movie if you like that sort of thing… I’m more action movies… but this film…. It always made me uncomfortable… it is possible for people to control your life. Back to the point, Jules and I were walking back to my house, because I promised Mom I would crash at hers that night… I had moved out into an apartment with Jules… We decided to do a quick patrol on the way home… And I got jumped on by these guys with no knives… there’s about eight of them, and only one of them manages a scratch… I struggle to get rid of them, but it takes me a while, and in that while Jules got stabbed by one of the bastards. I freaked out… I mean she was the one bleeding and she called her own ambulance. She was trying to calm me down, but all I could think was that it was my fault… if I hadn’t decided to patrol, or if I had just run instead of being stupid enough to fight, or if I had not been the slayer, nobody would have attacked me… While waiting for the ambulance, Jules was trying to convince me that it wasn’t my fault, but I didn’t believe her. As the paramedics were putting her into the ambulance, she looked into my eyes, and stroked my face gently before kissing me softly on the lips… I guess she knew that she wouldn’t see me again… she knew it before I did.
If Jules being stabbed was bad, my night was about to get worse. I went straight to Pete after Jules was taken away… and his door is busted open, his place is completely trashed. I was about to leave when I heard a moan… thank God, for the hearing… Pete was lying on the ground, blood everywhere… I recognise the knife in his stomach, and I know that it’s one of the guys with no eyes responsible… I took out my cell phone to call an ambulance… I remember that part of brain was thinking that the emergency services were going to be suspicious of me… how fucked up is that? He grabs my arm with the cell phone and I can see in his eyes that he’s going to die… He gets me to bend over so he can whisper into my ear.
“Go to Sunnydale… Rupert Giles will help you.”
I just stare at him trying to figure out what the hell is going on. He smiles weakly and strokes my face with his finger tips, his voice is real croaky when he talks,
“If only you knew…”
If only I knew what? Still beats me… he never finished telling me… he died in my arms. And I cry… not just girly whimpers but loud, hard, angry screaming with tears… My life fell apart.
I left the following morning, leaving a note for my Mom, telling her that I love her and I will be back as soon as possible…. The mission is what matters, after all… except, I had no idea what the hell the mission was. I grab a few clothes, stuff them in my backpack and grab all the cash I possess,,, I think I took forty dollars out of my Mom’s purse as well. And I catch a train to Chicago, and then a bus from there to LA and then hitch my way to Sunnydale… which I might add is not the easiest thing to do. I remember the truck driver who got me past the welcome sign telling me about the ‘eerie happenings’ that happened in this town… He gave me a lecture about how I should be careful and that a pretty young woman like me shouldn’t be wandering the streets at night. All I can do is smile at him…
PART TWO: THE INTRODUCTION
First impressions, Sunnydale is dull… I definitely prefer the city.
I book myself into a motel, an absolute dump of a place… and then try to figure out what to do next… find Rupert Giles. The problem with this job was that I had no idea where to start… I had nothing on the guy. Instead I go on patrol…
There are times in your life when you have a defining moment… a moment where everything changes, where nothing is how you know it. For example, I thought life was easy, simple, uncomplicated until I was six years old… then this kid across the street was killed, murdered by some bastard. She was a year older than me. My Mom told me what happened in simplified terms, and gave me the whole don’t talk to strangers talk… but I remember her pulling me onto her lap, hugging me to herself…. I felt her tears fall onto my head. That was a defining moment, because death suddenly existed and the world wasn’t how I assumed it to be. I was to have another of these defining moments that night I was in the cemetery… yeah, that was the other thing that struck me about Sunnydale. For such a small town, it had shit loads of cemeteries.
Okay, so I’m on patrol… and I hear voices and I hide behind these trees. I can see these two young chicks, about sixteen years old creeping through the gravestones. They’re clutching onto stakes as if their lives depended on it, which I guess they did. Next thing they’re pounced on by this bleached vampire. I’m about to charge in and save the day when he looks up and I see there’s a group of girls around him. I can only see the back of them and all I’m thinking if that this is one serious fucked up underage orgy. The vampire then slips out of vamp mode and speaks.
“Okay, these two are dead. Why?”
“Cos the black chick always gets it first?”
I had to chuckle. Man, this chick had attitude. Then came the moment.
“What was that Rona?”
I look at the face of the woman who spoke, and I’m suddenly hit by sheer agony… I mean this piercing ache going throughout my body, like volts of electricity. I fall to my knees and I scream. I think I blacked out, because next thing I know is that I’m looking into the most beautiful green eyes I have ever seen. Yet, the eyes have fear and confusion in them. I back away, sliding my body against a grave stone and just stare at her. This woman, young, blonde, slim, toned…. Just beautiful. She stands up and glances over at the vampire who shrugs. I think I must have pounced at him on instinct… slayer kills vampires kind of instincts. I’m beating the shit out of him, until I feel these arms wrapped around me and pulling me off… this little woman was damn strong. I just look at her in the eyes and she can see that I’m confused. I don’t know how long there was silence, but one of the younger chicks looks at me.
“So who are you?”
I just look at her, she’s this spunky chick, younger than me by a couple of years, but hard. I don’t know how the hell I managed to say a word that night, because I was so overcome by everything, Pete being dead, Jules being stabbed, being here, seeing this woman, not having a clue about anything… not being in control… being on the other side where nothing makes sense… and suddenly, I’m angry and I lash out, punching this woman… I get her with a upper hook but she kicks me behind the knees causing me to fall onto my knees. I lean backwards and trip her, she tumbles on top off me and punches me… knocks me out cold.
I wake up, and my head hurts. I look around and see that I’m in somebody’s room, and it’s not mine. I sit up quickly which causes a head-rush. I moan which in turn causes someone to walk over to me. I am already to defend myself when his face comes into light. He’s old… Pete old, not pensioner old… and he smiles at me… I recognise it straight away… and ask to prove I was right about him.
He nods, and seems confused… trying to figure out the hell how I knew who he was, so I save him the question.
“You look British, and British equals watcher… and I’m guessing being in Sunnydale and you being the watcher here, makes you Rupert Giles.”
He seems genuinely surprised by the fact that I have brains. He sits on the bed and speaks in that English accent, which I will admit can be sexy sometimes.
Now, I am wanting to know how the fuck he knows who I am. He sees that and saves me the question this time round.
“I hear that you have slayer abilities… and you fit the profile… so I’m making a guess.”
I just nod, and I sit there. I then see that he’s waiting for me to speak.
“Yeah… sorry, Pete told me to come here and find you… said you can help… you know, with these guys with no eyes.”
“How is Pete?”
I’ll give him this much… G-man didn’t bother with the comforting, something I was really glad about, because sharing emotions with strangers isn’t my scene. But it doesn’t stop him from speaking.
“I’m guessing the bringers killed him.”
“The bringers? They would be the guys with no eyes.”
“Yes, that would be them… Faith, as we understand it is, well, the First Evil is trying to bring an end to the slayer lineage by ridding the world of the potential slayers…”
That explained the young girls in the graveyard.
“… as well as their watchers… we have managed to gather some of the potentials and bring them here, but some have already been found and murdered… Once they rid the world of the potentials, they will come for you and Buffy…”
Has your brain ever paused and then taken the rewind effect. Where you just processed new information and it doesn’t quite fit with what you already know… yeah, well, that’s what happened here. I interrupt G-man.
“Buffy? As in Buffy Summers? Isn’t she already dead?”
It then looks like his brain is having the same trouble I’m having.
“I take it Peter never told you… Buffy Summers lives. She was brought back by her friends, just over a year ago…”
My brain is seriously going into overdrive here… What!
“What! She drowned… about five years ago… she did drown?”
“Yes, but Xander revived her… that death called Kendra, and when Kendra died, you were called.”
I’m seriously having a problem trying to process all this information. It’s crazy, but I guess I should be used to crazy.
“So Buffy is the invincible slayer?...”
He doesn’t say anything. Then it dawns on me.
“So is there another slayer? I mean one called after Buffy died the second time.”
“No… you carry that line now.”
Gee, pile on the pressure… I’m already scared at this point… not showing it though… but this guy really can scare you just a tad bit more, when he is inadvertently telling you that you should die.
“So how long have you known about this… the First?”
“A couple of months…”
He stops speaking and I can see in his face that he knows where I am going with this. He braces himself for my next question.
“Something’s killing girls all around the world, trying to end the slayer line. Thing like that, figure I might get a heads up.”
“Faith… it wasn’t like that… we thought you would be safe…”
“Yeah, whatever… safe! Seriously… what the fuck! I’ve got to get out of here… clear my head out…”
I know that he wants to stop me, but he’s clever enough to know not to try… but instead the bedroom door opens and this red-head comes in. She is watching me carefully, like she’s expecting me to slit her throat or something. She is carrying a tray, with soup and bread on it. I look at the bed and at G-man and then back at her. I’m guessing the food is for me and I realise that I’m starving. My stomach decides to voice this and Red smiles slightly. I take the tray and sit on the bed and eat.
When I wake up, I realise that I’m sleeping in the same room again… I tried to recall the previous night and I remember G-man telling me about the first and that Buffy the slayer was in fact alive and kicking… and Red telling me about how the Watchers’ Council is no more… not that I cared… after the whole eighteenth birthday present, I didn’t like them much… I can remember Red telling me about the ‘Scoobies’ as she calls them… and how Spike, the bleached vampire has a soul and a chip in his head… I mean this is how far some go for redemption… I’m still suspicious about it, but I remember being told about Angel, another souled vampire. Red also told me that she was witch and how she brought back Buffy… I guess I induced babble mode from the girl because she gave me enough background information on this group.
So here I am lying on the bed, trying to figure out what to do next. I know that I will stay and fight the good fight… the question was could I trust these people. I knew that I wouldn’t trust them… but I’m guessing I can fight by their side, win and then go back to New York and get on with my life, or what little remained of it.
I didn’t see the famous Buffy until later that evening, so I spend the day isolating myself from the group… I can see that Summers Jr. is fascinated by me as is Kennedy, one of the potential chicks… who is also screwing or wanting to screw Red… Fucked up little circle here, but I’m guessing with all those women in the house, somebody’s bound to be getting all lesbian style. Anyway, I ignore them… and just train. I know that G-man is watching me, and I can see in his eyes when I stop that he is impressed. Remember when I said I felt that I was missing something…. Yeah, well with these people the feeling was getting stronger… I felt like they knew something that I didn’t.
Anyway that night, Buffy comes in with Spike after a patrol session… He smiles at me… not in a leering manner which I am used to from men… but in a way of respect. He just walks past me and down into the basement. I look at Buffy and she looks at me… I know that she is trying to read me through my eyes. I know this because I am trying to do the same. She then speaks.
“You were never told about me? I mean you knew nothing about me or us?”
I just nod and she seems to relax… what’s the big secret? She smiles at me, and I can feel my heart skip a beat…. I begin a mantra inside my head. “Jules, Jules, Jules, Jules, Jules.” I must have closed my eyes because when I open them, she’s gone.
Now let me tell you about these people… Buffy and Spike had something going on between them… and she got his chip removed, something I was slightly relieved about because his screaming was doing my head in. When I questioned her about the safety in doing that, she swore to me that he was safe… I saw in her eyes that she believed this so I went along with it. Red and Kennedy finally got it on, even though it took her turning into some dude called Warren. Jesus, did that scare the shit out of me… I was in the bathroom (I had moved into Rovello Drive… it was cheaper than the motel and definitely not as boring as the motel) and I had just gotten used to the people here. I walk out and I slammed into this tall, dark-haired dude who looks scared… he just runs past me and so I follow him downstairs and into the living room where everyone else jumps away from him. Red/Warren explains the situation… within 24 hours she’s back to being Red, not too sure how she managed that. But what a head-fuck? To be in the body of the guy that killed the love of your life… man, makes me happy with my own body.
Red and I tolerate each other… she’s strange but she’s decent… she’s got shit loads of darkness inside her but she controls it… I remember Pete telling me about the darkness that exists in everyone… that it’s about self-control… learn to control it and you’re five by five… I know that I feel rage every so often, I mean when someone I care about gets hurt I generally want to rip the head of the person responsible, but I control it… I’ve not killed anyone… yet.
Then there’s Xander… he like most of them seemed really wary about me, like he can’t trust me…. Which is something I seriously don’t get. X-man and I didn’t get a chance to bond or whatever the term you have for it until he had a date…. Buffy went on a date with the Principal from the school she worked at, pretty cute too…. I will admit that I was a but jealous… and X-man hooked up too… we were doing research, well they were. I was training potentials in the yard, when Red’s phone goes off. X-man is in trouble and Buffy can’t be found… Spike decides to get her… I just look at them as if they all have three heads. I mean, hello, me… a slayer.
“I’ll get him…”
“Faith, are you sure that’s a good idea?”
“Look, G-man… I’m a slayer… it’s what I do.”
They always flinch when I give them nicks but I honestly don’t give a shit.
“Yes, Faith… go and save my Xander.”
I don’t need to be told twice so I grab some weapons and go and save the day. Thank you Anya for the back-up… I mean poor old Xander… go from one demon to the next… some people just don’t have any luck. I get to him, and I will admit the demon was damn fine… but I kill her anyway… I untie Xander and bring him down. He’s uninjured and he thanks me… I smile, because it’s genuine… the first time I smiled in fuck knows how long… Anyway, Buffy, Spike and the principal arrive, while me and Xander are chatting about comic books… they look really confused so me and Xander just laugh. After that, Xander and I get on better…. There’s still no trust on either side, but it suits me down to the ground.
Oh yeah, this principal guy… he’s the son of a slayer… Wow! Buffy told me about that later that night, and both of us were pretty surprised by that… I think we just sat outside on the porch for hours just thinking about that and what it meant for us… what sort of life we could have… but we couldn’t have too much hope… I mean she did die when he was four and we are about to fight the greatest battle of all time.
PART THREE: FALLING
Buffy and | didn’t really talk until after all the first slayer history… She jumped through this portal… and this demon came out… so Spike and I got the demon and she came back, pretty shaken up too. I walked past her room as I was going to bed,,, I shared a room with Dawn… which was better than sharing with a bunch of potentials…. I mean these girls had far too much Starbucks in their system…. They were spazzing constantly. Anyway, back to the point… yeah, and Red is leaving Buffy’s room so I pop my head in and ask if she’s okay. She invites me in and so I close the door as I walk in. I sit beside her on the bed. And she tells me how she refused the demon powers she was offered. I frown and tell her that I probably would have done the same… she seems shocked by the answer. She leans back on the bed and pulls the comforter around her. And then the conversation takes a complete turn.
“So tell me about New York?”
“What’s to know? Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building…. A bunch of shops… the usual ins and outs you get with a city… why? You planning a trip?”
She smiles at my crap joke… and I smile because I made her smile.
“No I mean tell me about your childhood, your life…”
“Only if you tell me about yours… I mean all three times you got to live…”
“What do you want to know?”
“Just me and my Mom, who is probably really worried about me… but she knows about the slaying and I think she accepted it. She’s a teacher… My dad, I never knew him… he left when I was two… which is when we left Boston and moved to New York… and I don’t have any brothers and sisters… You?”
“hmmm, oh right… well, it’s just Dawn and me… and the gang, I guess are family. Mom died from an aneurism about twenty months ago and Dad… well, who the fuck knows where he is?”
“I guess Slayers don’t have dads…”
“Yeah, I guess… Okay, what about school?”
“Gee, you do go for the boring questions don’t you… truth and dare must have been real dull when you were playing…”
As predicted I get a dig in the ribs, but I’m enjoying this, just lying on the bed with Buffy and talking about things that are not related to evil. So I tell her about school.
“I went to elementary then junior high then high school and then college… studying psychology and English Literature… I started college late because I had a slaying accident not long after my seventeenth birthday… knocking me out of action, slaying and living style…”
I see her cringe at this information and I’m trying to figure out what she is thinking… maybe she felt it, or something… the accident I mean… maybe, that’s what… and it hits me… the dreams.
“Shit! That’s what it was… you. Fuck! Well, now I know…”
“I mean… you dying… falling through the portal… I felt it, and then when you were brought back… I felt it too… I had no idea what it was until now… I knew they meant something… the dreams I mean… I dreamt it… you get me?”
“Yeah… I get you.”
She speaks so softly, it’s really comforting. I lie down to make myself comfortable and we just talk about when we found out we were slayers, stupid thing we got up to as a child… first kisses. She tells me about Angel… who works with this dude, Wesley… coincidence or what? I tell her that I met him and all she can say is
I badger her about Spike, just teasing an answer out of her… she tells me, that they were once but not anymore… I figure she has a thing for vampires but when she tells me that Spike got the soul after the boinking, I’m genuinely surprised… that’s love. I tell her about earlier relationships and flings, but not about Jules… Jules doesn’t belong to her world, just mine.
Next thing I know is I’m waking up and I can feel the sun on my face, and a body half on top of mine. Buffy made herself comfy during the night, using me as a pillow… and I liked it… I liked it a lot. Her head was resting on my shoulder, I could smell her shampoo… her arm was thrown over my waits, and her leg was over mine. My arm was wrapped around her back, holding her. I really didn’t want this moment to end… but like all good things, there has to be an end. She woke up and we pulled apart.
We had this deal with Andrew, a really annoying, hidden deep inside the closet kind of guy. He would go round with his camera all the time, filming everyone and everything. One day he was filming me while I was doing some solo training outside in the yard. I didn’t notice him watching me, until my hearing caught his narration.
“Faith. Her name alone invokes awe. Faith. a set of principles on which you are willing to devote your life. The dark slayer. A lethal combination of beauty, power and death. For year and years – or to be more accurate – for months, Faith fought on the side of good, terrorising the evil community. But like so many tragic heroes, Faith was seduced by the lure of the dark side. She wrapped evil around her like a large, evil Mexican serape. She became a cold-blooded killer. Nobody was immune to her trail of destruction. Not family, not friends.”
I think I flipped out at this point, as I was trying to pretend that I wasn’t listening… at first I thought it was funny, the whole bad slayer shit… but then when he said about hurting my friends and family… well, that got to me. I stormed over to him and grab his camera, and smash it of the wall… strangely the cassette was undamaged… anyway, he looked terrified. I pushed him against the wall and shouted at him.
“What the hell are you fucking talking about?”
He’s just shaking like a leaf, or maybe I was shaking him… can’t quite remember.
“I… I… I….”
“Yeah, you little fuck… listen to me, I would never hurt anybody I care about… I would never stab my best friend, but you did… maybe I should just kill you now…”
I turn to the door and Buffy standing there, walking over to me, and grabs my arm, I didn’t even notice that I had raised my fist to Andrew. She pulls me back gently… and just glares at Andrew. I’m guessing she heard quite a bit of what I had said.
“What’s going on?”
But obviously didn’t catch the provocation. She seemed scared by outburst and was still holding me while watching Andrew.
“This little shit is fucking about…”
“It’s what he does… and I’ve told him to stop… what did he say?”
“About me being evil and killing people.”
I think I must have been real emotional, because she was holding onto me tightly. She doesn’t take her eyes of blondie and the blonde idiot is really scared now… messing with two slayers can do that to you. I can sense that Buffy is angry, her voice states as much.
“Andrew… you know maybe, we should just kill you… I mean what possible good are you… Faith, what do you think?”
She leaves me go and I shove Andrew against the wall, I hold by the neck, applying just enough pressure to scare him, but not to hurt him… well not hurt him badly. He has tears in his eyes and I’m pretty sure he was about to piss himself. I whisper into his face.
“I could slice and dice you, twist and snap your bones, make stew with your organs, drain of you of your blood… and you would live through most of it… but I won’t because it’s wrong.”
I think I smiled then, and let him go… he ran into the house, and generally kept out of my way after that. I turn and look at Buffy, she looks like she’s trying to control her breathing. I can see the lack of trust she has for me… she thought I would actually hurt the twirp. I was hurt.
“Hey B, I don’t kill humans.”
She looks up at me, and gasps. Her eyes lock with my brown eyes, and I see something, I’ve never seen before… recognition.
“What did you call me?”
“B… I can call you Buffy, if you want…”
“No… no… I like it when you call me B.”
She has my hand in her own and our fingers are entwined. Next thing Red calls her in… they figured out that Andrew, the useless twirp, actually could do something, like close the seal. So we let go off each other’s hands, and another moment is gone.
There was this deal with Spike, where the First had a trigger in his head… turned out to be a song his Mom sung to him. Anyway, G-Man and Robin (cute Pricipal) set up this trap to kill him… you know that Spike killed his Mom after all… anyway, B found out and went to find that Spike was cured of his trigger and that he had beaten the crap out of Robin… it shook her up because she no longer trusted G-man and it shook me up, even though I wasn’t there… because I realised that I missed my Mom… I had been gone for a few months. So l at five in the morning, I phone Mom. She sounds so relieved when she heard my voice, and then ordered me to come home, and told me how much she loved me and was proud of me… I guessed it was a ‘goodbye’.
“Yeah, Mom… I’m eating fruit… Mom, how’s Jules?”
“She’s okay… wants to know where you are… Faith, come home.”
“Mom, you know I can’t.”
“I know… I just needed to make sure… Faith, honey… I am proud of you and I love you… no matter what happens remember this… I love you. You’re the best thing in my life.”
I can feel tears in my eyes, and I can sense B is behind me… so I shorten the conversation.
“Mom, I got to go… you take care.”
“You be careful…”
“Yeah, I will… goodbye Mom.”
“Oh… Mom… Shit.”
She hung up… I never got to tell her that I loved her. I start to cry, you know shaking your back, silent tears kind of way. I can feel Buffy wrap her arms around my shoulders, from behind me. She sits on the step, and pulls me in between her legs, holding me as I cry.
Buffy, she was a character of complexities. I never got what was going on inside her head… She adored her friends and her kid sister, but didn’t seem to trust them… She treated the potentials like they were lower than her… yet, she treated me with care. I didn’t know if it was because I was a slayer as well or because there were feelings… I mean she was weird around me… She didn’t look like she trusted me, but sometimes she would watch me to make sure I wasn’t hurt. It seemed that she was recording all the information I gave her about me… if I told her something good about my life… like my fourteenth birthday, when my Mom and I went to Disneyworld and neither of us liked the Disney scene but went for the other person. We laughed when we realised this, but we had a great time… I was happy, as uncool as it was for a teenager to be with her Mom, but I was happy then. Anyway, I told B this she would smile, she always seemed genuinely relieved or happy. In fact I once heard her say.
“I’m so glad you were happy.”
Anyway, B was tense… we all were, I mean this was the First Evil we were facing, and we had no starting point on how to win… Everyone tried to be optimistic, but we were all terrified. I think I came to realise that death was eminent so I just focused on training and getting myself stronger. I just wanted to protect her… I realised I wanted to be with her… but I would never do anything about it.
PART FOUR: BLINDNESS
After that, things got even stranger… B was on a power mad thing and Red took me away… Angel became Angelus and she needed extra man-power to help her restore his soul. I didn’t want to go, but nobody else would… B had her battle in the Dale and Spike would never leave her side. I was jealous of their relationship, even though she claimed there was nothing between them… I could see that he loved her, and would do anything for her… I would have done anything for her too, but she wanted Spike. So, it only left me, and I was really shaky about it. In fact in the car with Red, I expressed this shakiness. I mean seriously vampire.
“Red, how safe is this curse?”
“As long as he doesn’t get the big happy… he’s fine.”
“So it’s never concrete…”
“What you getting at Faith?”
“I mean this guy, can become Angeles, like for example now, and kill many people... why take the risk? Why don’t we kill him? Make the world is a safer place…”
“No! We can’t… “
“What I’m saying is, no matter how good you are and how guilty you are… you don’t refuse a happy moment… everyone wants to be happy…”
“Faith… there are some things you don’t know… Angel gave up his happiness… he chose to continue redemption. Buffy was his happiness, and he left so to not to be tempted… we will not kill him.”
I’m surprised. Man, this guy left Buffy… did B have this huge radar which attracts everyone… I mean, everyone is watching her back, taking care of her, loving her.
“I guess there’s a lot I don’t know.”
Wesley is cool for British… he always seems guilty when he’s around me… but he respected me. Red was working on the spell, while the crew tried to find Angel after his alter-ego successfully beat the shit out of me. While I was recovering, Wesley decided to talk to me.
“Faith, how are you feeling?”
“Five by Five… you?”
“Fine… Willow says you will be going back to Sunnydale to help them against the First…”
“Yeah, I’m all about fighting the good fight..”
“And afterwards, you will go back to New York…”
I hadn’t thought about what happens next so I just shrug.
“I guess… don’t know.”
“I think you should go back… there is a purpose for you there…”
“Yeah, yeah… Wes, what aren’t you telling me? Is everyone okay? Is my Mom okay?”
“Yes, nothing has happened… Faith, just be careful… and don’t believe everything you hear.”
I would have asked him more, but we were interrupted by Red, saying that the LA crew have found Angeles… the plan, was he would feed of me while I was drugged up… that way I didn’t kill him… it was risky, and Red hugged me tight before I left. Man what a fucked up trip I was on? I know why people get hooked to drugs now, tripping is wicked… up to a point.
The first thing that annoyed me is that he had to bite me, so now I’ve got teeth marks in my neck… the badge of a vampire slayer, huh? It’s weird being drained… it’s kind of erotic… I mean teeth plunge into my pulse point, which in itself is sensual, and a growl that accompanies it, which really turns on the ears… you can feel your body slowly emptying and you feel all sorts of sensations, from pain to pleasure, from fear to release. Very weird, really nice until you realise you’re dying and then, well it sucks. There was a problem, Angeles took too much and I had too much of the drugs in my system, causing me to fall into a coma, I had a fucked up mind-walk with Angel then.
You know that when you know you’re going to die, you start thinking about everything… well, there’s only one thought in my mind… B.
Back to the mind-walk… I’m in his mind and walking through his memories with Angeles… and we’re watched his alter-ego Angel… I mean, it was whacked up. It’s probably because he spoke to me like he knew me. When he started talking about murdering… me and murdering, not him and murdering. He said something like it when we were fighting, but I was too busy trying to get the punches in that I wasn’t really listening, but when you’re stuck inside someone else’s head, you have no choice but to listen. The weird thing was, I knew what he was talking about, I got it… redemption.
“I did my time.”
“Our time is never up, Faith. We pay for everything.”
“I know. I know.”
Now tell me is that fucked up or what? Next thing, I’m awake and I run down to the lobby where I see Red doing the restoration spell. I just stand at the top of the stairs, feeling pretty spaced out. I felt like I had done mushrooms and had gotten eaten by a bear. Man, I felt rough. The crew and Red are all looking at me real concerned. Next thing, Angel runs up the stairs from the basement with Gunn… he looks around, and when they see it’s him they relax… the evil has been beaten again. He then stops and looks at me… his dark eyes meet mine, and it happens again. My head is screaming with pain, I mean full on agony… electricity speeding through my brain. I collapse and end up falling down the stairs, screaming and clutching my head. The gang are crowded around me, Red pulling me into her arms, Angel on the other side of me, trying to soothe me.
I must have blacked out, because next thing I know, I’m on the couch in the lobby. Angel is sitting opposite me. His face is filled with concern.
“Are you okay?”
“Five by Five.”
“Faith, thank you… for what you have done…”
“No problem… you’d help me, wouldn’t you?”
He nods. I don’t know why I asked him that… but I believed his answer.
So back to SunnyD… I felt like my life suddenly turned into this giant road trip… and now it was time for the big bad.
Red and I picked up a Potential, lying on the street looking pretty messed up, and from her we learnt that there was a new player in town, goes by the name of Caleb. Had a message for B… now B was not thinking straight, so when she heard this, she was all ‘Let’s hunt this bastard down and kill him,’ and honestly, I was with her… how the hell were we to know what was to happen next?
The rest of the gang were so against the plan, convinced it was a trap, but B wasn’t listening to anyone, she was scared but refused to show anyone this. So she and I do some recon, following one of these bringers to their leader. It gave us another rare opportunity to talk.
“No eyes, but look at him go. He got sonar or something.”
“Or something, I guess. Pretty good when they attack… he looks like he wants to be found.”
“Lends weight to the whole “it’s a trap” theory.”
I thought B was going to hit me. She was raging.
“I’m through waiting around for people to attack us.”
“Hey, I’m with you, B.”
She looks happy with that answer, and she smiles softly at me. We stop walking and just stand there looking into each other eyes. I love her eyes, it’s like watching the sea through its several motions. I put a comforting hand on her shoulder, and she just watches the hand for a second before looking back at my face. She strokes my cheek with her finger tips, and I involuntarily lean into the touch.
“I’m glad you came back Faith.”
She pulls me into a hug and I wrap my arms around her.
“What? I was only away for a few days B…”
She pulled away from me and begins to walk again. I follow her and hell, am I confused. She starts asking about Angel, and I guessing that her feelings for him are still strong. So I tell her about the fight and she just listens. We then come across the hornets’ nest and it’s type for action.
When I ran into the vineyard, the first thing I saw was B lying against the vats. I lose it, and charge towards the preacher, giving him my everything while he’s yapping about Cain and Abel but he still manages to fling me across the room. Next thing I’m being half-carried and half-dragged across the Dale back to the house. When I come round, I ask what the hell happened and where was B? Kennedy tells me that she’s at the hospital, X-man had his eye gouged out. I was fuming and really worried about B… it was a trap and she’s paying the price.
PART FIVE: PAIN
I don’t see her again for another day and me and the girls are getting mega-stressed so I decide to take them to the local hang-out, The Bronze. Not a bad joint, decent music, cheap alcohol… some eye candy. Yeah, the potentials got a little drunk, but it wasn’t like they were in any danger… but B flipped out on me, and I lost my temper with her.
“What is this?”
“They needed a break, all right? They’ve been running themselves into the ground. Things just got out of hand.”
“Taking a break is one thing, but they were drunk! What were you thinking?!”
“Seemed like a good idea at the time.”
“Yeah, what if someone got hurt?”
“Faith, I need to know that these girls are gonna be safe when I’m not around.”
“No one got hurt, B. Look, you don’t even know these girls. Maybe you should have a little more confidence in ‘em, let them mess up sometimes, you know, get down and dirty. How the hell else are they gonna learn?”
“Learning from your mistakes is one thing. But you don’t throw children into –“
“They’re not children.”
She just stares at me and then walks away.
“That’s really isn’t the point.”
And enter my temper.
“Yeah, what about the vineyard?”
“How safe were they when you dragged them into meet Caleb?
And what does she do, she punches me, and I drop down to the ground. I’m really pissed off now. I just watch her go, reeling and next thing a pain flashes across my stomach… just a twinge. I ignore it as I’m watching B walk away… I think she had lost it by then, and my mood wouldn’t be improving the situation.
The madness of B ensues, when she tries to convince everyone to go back to fight Caleb. Obviously everyone including me are against this plan, and she decided to pull rank. Suddenly everyone is shouting her down and she is doing the same to them. It’s insane and I can’t really keep up because I am just focusing on her, my temper being replaced by my concern. Next thing I know is that the potentials put me in charge.
“What? Whoa, whoa, whoa. So not what I meant. I’m not in charge chick, it’s B’s town. I think B here needs to just… chill out for a little bit, take a siesta or something. But I’m not the one…”
“Maybe we need a vote… to see who wants Faith to have a turn in charge.”
That would be Red’s chick. And B is so anti-this, hurts me and my mood is turning again.
“No. You don’t get to vote until I’ve had my chance to pal around, you know, get everybody drunk. See, I didn’t get this popularity contest. I should have equal time to bake them cookies, braid their hair-“
“Learn their names?”
I just couldn’t help it, she had that one coming to her. She just looks at me and laughs harshly.
“You’re loving this, aren’t you?”
“You have no idea what I’m feeling.”
“Come in here, take everything that I have… You did it before. Did you them that? Did you tell them-“
“Buffy! That’s enough!”
G-Man was not happy about this and I was just reeling from emotions, anger and confusion. I just bit back.
“I didn’t come here to take anything away from you, but I’m not gonna be your little lapdog, either. I came here to beat the other guy, to do right, however it works. I don’t know if I can lead. But the real question is… can you follow?”
“So we vote.”
With that Robin sealed the vote… B was evicted from her own home by her own family, while Robin had confirmed he liked me through his defence of me. I was worried about B, so I ran after her.
“Hey, Look, I swear I didn’t want it to do this way-“
“I mean it, I-“
“Don’t… be afraid to lead them. Whether you like it or not, their lives are yours. It’s gonna get harder. Protect them….”
Man, she’s crying and my heart is breaking, I just want to comfort her, take her, protect her. I walk towards her and here her finish her speech.
She turns and walks away but I grab her and twist her around. She looks confused and slightly scared. I put my hand behind her neck and pull her head towards mine. I kiss her hard, with everything I’m feeling. She doesn’t respond for a few seconds but when she does, the world feels invisible. We pull apart and she just looks at me, before she pulls away from me and runs. I just go back inside.
Now, we were being attacked by First, who apparently everyone has met, except for me. The night after B’s eviction, I was graced with the company of the First, and that was scarier then anything else I had seen to that moment.
I was preparing myself for bed after spending the day with the freaked out girls, coming up with a plan. I can hear somebody from behind me, and so I turn around in defence mode.
“Jesus B… you scared me, shouldn’t creep up on people like that… are you back?”
“Look’s like it… you’re doing just great Faith… better than I could be doing.”
“Nah, B… it’s not like that… are you okay?”
“Yeah fine… or five by five.”
She was grinning at me… I knew there was something wrong but I ignored it… I just wanted to see her. So she’s just grinning at me and I’m just watching her.
“What do you want, B?”
“I want to seduce you…Faith, I know you want me… and you can have me, if you do one thing.”
Cue my shocked face… I had no idea how to handle the situation so I just let her talk.
“I mean you already have taken my friends, my family, my town… so why not have my body too. Oh yeah, you already had that.”
“Oh, poor Faithy… doesn’t know what’s going on, does she?”
“Give the girl a gold star…”
I charge at her and end up falling through her, flat on my face. I roll over and look at her from the ground. She’s laughing. I flip myself up. She… I mean It keeps talking.
“You are an idiot, aren’t you? You don’t know what is to come. Well, you’re in for one hell of a ride. Oh yeah, you could never touch me, as in me the First or me Buffy… I’m above you in so many ways… but the point of my visit. These people around you, they don’t care about you... you’re just a statistic… you will always be alone… and you will never know what is hidden from you, but I know what you are and you are nothing, before and now… always will be… Alone!”
She then vanishes and I’m in complete confusion and I’m terrified. Next thing I feel an arm on my back and I spin round, fist raised, ready to punch out the fucker. It’s Robin and I yell at him about sneaking up on people. He’s all apologetic and then concerned.
“What happened? Are you sure you’re all right?”
“What? You want to rap about my problems now? You looking to be the guy who puts “pal” in principal for me?”
“Okay, you know what? I came here to talk about weapons.”
“Sorry. I don’t know what I’m doing, I’m just…”
“Listen, I’m going to leave you alone. I didn’t mean to intrude.”
When he said that word alone, I freaked even more. I mean I was shaking. So I tell that it was the First and he comes in and sits with me. We discuss the First and the Achilles Heal shit before I decide that I didn’t want to be alone that night. Jules is gone from my mind… B is gone from my mind. I just wanted a mindless fuck.
“So tomorrow, then?”
“Forget about tomorrow. This is tonight.”
I take his hand and place it on my cheek. He is just looking at me, so I kiss him. He responds which believe me saved his head, because rejection was not in question… I needed a fuck. I push him back onto the bed and straddle him, asking him to touch me…. And sex ensued. Man, it was good sex. He knew what to do, and he lasted as long as I needed him to do so… but he didn’t fill the emptiness I was feeling… there was only one person who could do that right now and she was shacking up with a vampire. No, Robin was just a ‘get some, get gone’ situation. I told him that later, and he wasn’t happy about that… Don’t quite blame him, nobody likes being used.
PART SIX: DÉJÀ VU
You know what sucked… the bomb sucked. We hatched a plan to find the bringers’ arsenal and attack them there… apparently, they had something we needed. So I take the potentials there and it’s a trap, we get hit by a damn bomb… It was such a stupid trap and I’m the one who brought them there. I was out for a count… I woke up and I had been cleaned up by somebody and was in B’s bedroom, in her bed… which would have been great if not for the circumstances… I feel like crap, but I look around and I see B sleeping in the armchair, holding onto this weird scythe. I make noise as I try to move from the bed. She jumps up to catch me and put me into bed.
She sits on the bed beside me and pulls up the scythe and hands it to me.
Man, this weapon is powerful… It has this wicked weird energy going through it… Felt like it was mine. I told B this and she agreed. I then give it to her… I screwed up and she was right… I mean this slayer was unstoppable… she deserved it more than me… I told her so. She’s telling me it’s not my fault, but man, I felt guilty… one of the potentials died in that blast and some were still injured… yeah, it was my fault, no matter how many times she says that it isn’t. I still don’t know if I can trust her and it’s like she knows what I’m thinking.
“Faith, you can trust me.”
My head twinges slightly… wicked weird, Déjà vu.
“Wicked déjà vu going on here… B… I mean I’ve been a slayer for five years, and I’ve never killed another human being… man, this is too much… you on the other hand… hell, you can even survive death!”
She smiles and takes my hand… she keeps telling me it’s not my fault. She climbs further up onto the bed so she’s lying beside me, and she pulls me up, so I can rest on her chest. She is running her hands down my arms, and I am really liking it.
“Faith… what was the accident?”
“You said that you had an accident when you were seventeen, what was it?”
“Man, B… who cares, it was three years ago… okay fine, if you need to pull the puppy dog eyes… Honestly, I don’t remember everything… I guess my memory is like someone who has been abducted by aliens. You know something has happened and that something was done, but you don’t know what it was… All I know, there was a demon with these giant tentacles, and man, it’s strong. No matter how many times I get it, stab it, it keeps coming back at me… in the end it had battered me… I mean I don’t think I had a skeletal structure anymore… last thing I remember is well… being in a church, but I think I may have dreamed that part. Next thing, I wake up in hospital and my Mom, Pete and Danny were there… apparently I had been out of it for a couple of months… took me a while to get back on my feet… because seventy bones take a hell of a long time to heal… Now, all I’ve got left is a single scar. Mad, huh? Because I don’t remember being stabbed… must have gotten me after I passed out.”
I can feel B tense behind me, and she seems to hold me tighter. She kissed the top of my head, and I seriously don’t know what’s going on here.
“Can I see it?”
I’m kind of surprised by the request but I can feel her finger tips run down my arms, and then she’s idly tracing the outline of my tattoo. So I sit up and she comes round to my front. I pull up my shirt to reveal the crescent shaped scar on my abdomen. She straddles my shin and crouches over it to look at it properly. She then kisses it, and I lie back on the bed. I can hear her whispering.
“I’m so sorry.”
“Hey B, not your fault… you didn’t stab me.”
She looks at me, and I’m lost in her eyes and I know she is in mine. She starts to climb my body, until her whole body is covering mine. She then lowers her head and kisses me lightly, But I deepen it. Once her lips touch mine, I beg for entrance into her mouth with my tongue. She grants it, and I explore her mouth with my tongue. It soon becomes a duel of tongues, and both our desires are growing. My hands are running up and down her back, before entangling themselves in her hair, which deepens the kiss. I hear her moan and I smile. Her hands are running the length of my body. She slips them under my shirt, and I start to lean upwards so I can do the same. Next thing, someone is yelling for B and she sits up, breaking the kiss. And I crash back to earth. We’re both panting and just staring at each other. She looks guilty as she leaves the room. I just lie back… I don’t know what the fuck is going on, all I know is that I’m in love.
B went to fulfil a mission involving the scythe and Caleb… I didn’t know this until Dawn let it slip. I didn’t give a shit about my injuries and I charge towards the vineyard. I stop short at the door. I can see Spike on the staircase, behind a pillar and through the crack off the door I see B kissing Angel. Then came the worst agony I’ve ever felt. I grab my head with both hands and fall on my knees… It’s too painful to even scream… everything goes white, eye-sore bright white and then it goes black.
When I came round, it was early morning… just before dawn, and I’m surprised that I still have a heartbeat, considering I’ve just been unconscious in a cemetery…. Easy food for the vamps. The pain is gone, but the memory of B kissing Angel is still in my head. I walk back to the house. Everyone is asleep or at least trying to be asleep when I get through the door. G-man hears me and takes me into the kitchen. He looks really worried about me.
“Faith, are you okay?”
“Five by five, G… where’s B?”
“She’s asleep in the basement, with Spike.”
“Oh… I’m wiped, I’m going to go get some sleep.”
“Faith, are you sure you are okay? You look like…”
What? That I just had my heart ripped out by this bitch, who you adore… yeah, I’m five by five. That’s what I tell him, not the heart-break but the five by five bit. I can see that he doesn’t believe me but he let’s me go to bed anyway… not that I really slept anyway. Just got images of Angel, Spike and B going through my head… but I can tell you this I could make some damn good erotica.
B comes into the bedroom the following morning, telling me she had a plan… I’m too pissed off to talk to her. But she grabs me and forces me to look at her.
“Where were you last night? I was looking for you.”
“Didn’t look that hard… did you? B… let go off me.”
“Faith, listen to me… after this is all over… you and me, we’re going to work something out.”
“Listen to me… I am not going to share you with two vampires… if I have you, it’s to be only me that has me…”
“You never change… you’ve always been jealous of Angel.”
“What the fuck are you talking about B?”
“You, jealous of me…”
“I don’t know what put you on such a high pedestal, but you don’t know me… I mean, seriously, I only met you four months ago… you don’t know me… and when this is over, I’m going back to New York… back to my life… because I can’t stand being around you.”
We’re both pretty pissed off by now. I shove her off me and walk towards the door. I look at her. She walks past me and calls up the scoobies… she just watches me as I lean against the doorframe and cross my arms. I glance across the room and study the photos in the frames, of her and her friends and her family.
Her idea was a damn good idea… everyone was impressed by it and we started to prepare ourselves for the action that would take place the following day. That night, I don’t think anyone slept… I spent the night chain-smoking on the window-sill of B’s bedroom. I could sense that B was below me, sitting on the porch. As the sun rises, I climb back inside and study B’s photo. Her life was similar to mine… Decent Mom, cool friends, a good watcher and a complicated love life… Probably why we couldn’t get along. Too alike… yet, we both don’t belong in the world… not at the same time… after all we are meant to be alone. I decided that night that if I survive I’d go back to NY and return to my life. I pull off the photo of her and her Mom… as I lift it off…. Something else catches my eye.
The next day was to be the day that everything changed. We all headed to the High School to open the hell-mouth and beat the crap out of evil. B tried to speak to me but I kept pushing her away. The mission first and then conversation… I still had questions.
So we fight, we lose some… like Anya and Spike, and some potentials too… who are now slayers… it’s no longer just me and B. While we were fighting, B got stabbed and fell to the ground. I forgot everything and ran to her… she gives me the scythe and tells me to ‘hold the line’. I was torn between her and the mission. But I see in her eyes that she needs me to do this… so I fight with everything that I am made of. I fight for her. But as I said B is unstoppable… she’s up and fighting again which in turn gives us all renewed strength. Spike blows up into this ball of light so we have to run… I get everyone out but B stays with Spike. I feel jealous and I call for her, but she ignores me, so I leave her…. Don’t worry, she got out in time and landed on our getaway car… a school bus.
When we climb out of the bus, we see that Sunnydale has been swallowed whole by the ground beneath it. After the impact of what has happened occurs to us, we drive towards the hospital. The uninjured check into a motel, courtesy of the dead Council. I can hear Xander weep through the paper thin walls… he is weeping for his loss. I can hear tears surround me and I’m overwhelmed. I light a cigarette and just lie back, thinking about what to do next. There’s a knock on the door and I know it’s B.
“Hi… are you okay?”
“Five by five.”
She walks over to the bed and sits down on the end of it. She seems worried.
“Faith, we need to talk…”
“Yeah, we do… what do you want to talk about?”
“Well, I don’t want to talk about that B… I want to talk about this.”
I throw the piece of paper at her. She picks it up, and she looks scared by its content. I sit up on the bed and glare at her profile. She lifts her face, and her eyes make contact with me… this time there is no drowning in them, because I am totally confused, not by my emotions or by the events that have just taken place, nor by what the future held. No, I was confused because of that piece of paper she held in her hands. I mean why the hell did she have a photo of me and her… when we were about sixteen.
So this is my life… well, it was my life but B changed that.
PART SEVEN: TRUE OR FALSE?
I would have been quite happy with my life if I had never found that photo… I know that now… but you always find out these things too late don’t you? B just sits there, glancing from the photo to me and back to the photo again. I can see that in her mind, she is trying to think of some excuse. To be honest, I didn’t want one… I just wanted her to tell me that she loves me… but that wasn’t going to happen, so the photo was the next best thing.
“Faith… whatever I told you, you wouldn’t believe me, but trust me when I say that you don’t want to know… you don’t need to know… you’re too good a person to… I don’t know… but I can’t give you the answers you’re looking for.”
She stands up and walks to the door. I jump up from the bed and block her way. She tries to push me out of the way, but I kick her in the torso, knocking her backwards. I had kicked her where she had been stabbed earlier. She falls backwards onto the bed. I leap on top off her and straddle her. I grab her wrists and hold them above her head. We’re panting hard, and her eyes won’t leave mine. I know that I have anger dancing in my eyes, but in hers, well it’s calm. She sighs.
“Faith… please, don’t… I care too much about you to lose you… I’ve lost you once, I’m not losing you again… Faith, I love you… I always have and without a doubt always will…”
I’m convinced that there is only so much a human mind can take… I mean, we can only take so much hurt, confusion, anger and fear… but since I walked into Buffy’s life I have received overdoses of these… all the damn time. I wanted to be five years old, and in my Mom’s lap, having her read to me, and kiss me goodnight and tuck me in. I wanted that again… that innocence… but I’m an adult. So when B tells me that she loves me, a huge part of me is happy and all I want to do is take her there and then… but the other part of me wants answers. While my brain is debating with itself, B has managed to entwine her fingers with mine, and she squeezes them gently. I look at her and all I see is me in her eyes…. I did the only thing I could do. I kissed her.
I leave go of her hands so I can caress her body, I let my hands roam down the sides of her body, dragging her top upwards. She sits up to allow me to remove her top. She grabs the hem of mine and rips it off and over my head,… clothing is taken off within seconds. We rarely allowed our lips leave each other, only for oxygen. I cup her breasts, not to gently and she arches and moans into my mouth, sucking onto my tongue. I roll her nipples between my fingers and I feel her nails dig into my back, breaking the skin and then I moan. I rip my mouth away from her and latch my mouth onto a nipple, and suck and tease… constantly, switching from one to the other. Her moans are becoming more constant and she is saying my name. I let my tongue slide down the length of her torso, while she opens her legs for me. I inhale her scent and blow onto her sex, causing her to shiver, I lick the length of it, before sucking and flicking her clit… she squeals… yes, squealed. I plunge two fingers inside her and she screamed out my name. She grabs my head with both her hands, and tangles her fingers into my hair. I’m circling the clit with my tongue, and thrusting with my fingers. I add a third and she pulls my head up and drags me up to meet her. I continue thrusting with my fingers as she finds my mouth and kisses, breathlessly. I curl my fingers, and I feel her tighten around me… with one more hard and quick thrust, she screams as her orgasm floods through her… and she screams my name.
After what I could call the best sex of my life, we are lying in each others arms, the sheets tangled around us, sweat glistening of our bodies. Her head is on my chest, directly above my heart which is just becoming regular again, and she is idly stroking my scar with her finger. She looks up at me and kisses me softly before resting her head back down on my chest… but I still have to know.
“B… tell me, I need to know… where did the photo come from?”
“A past life.”
She rolls over and props herself on her elbow, she stokes my cheek with her hand and looks into my eyes.
“Faith, baby I promise tomorrow… tomorrow, you will know… but can we just have tonight?”
I nod. I’m guessing it’s not going to be a happy ending. When her lips meet mine and her hands begin to wander… I forget about everything. All I think about is her.
The following morning I wake up and I feel B behind me, her arms wrapped around me. I roll over and smile as I remember what happened between us… she loved me… she throws her arm across my waist and nuzzles her face into my neck which I know still have bruises from where she marked me. I kiss her on the forehead before slowly pulling myself up and out of bed. I see the photo on the floor and pick it up. I study it carefully…. I’m wearing a dress, and I look pretty hot. My hair is up, some curls around my face, decent make-up and a gorgeous dress…. I look damn fine. B on the other hand, her dress is ripped and she has scrapes on her body… but we’re both grinning at the camera, arms wrapped around each others’ waists. We look happy… but I needed to know where it came from. So I wake up B and tell her that I want answers. She mumbles something about Giles and so gets dressed and goes to fetch him. Meanwhile, I get showered and dressed.
It’s about two hours before there’s a knock on the door. I open it and it’s Giles and B. I let them in and sit on the chair at the desk. G-man just stands against the door, while B sits on the bed opposite me. They look scared, and I know that whatever they are about to say… well, it wasn’t going to be good.
“Faith, Buffy tells me that you found a photo and that you are wanting answers… I just want to tell you this much… you won’t like it…”
“Yeah, I kind of guessed that… just tell me.”
“About three years ago, you were taken by the council, where they proceeded to replace your memories…”
I didn’t expect that… I don’t know what I expected but that wasn’t it… I was thinking more like stalking and faking the photos… bet you, they wish that they had thought about that for an excuse… anyway, this was a bit too much to accept…
“Faith, what you remember, what you think you know, what you experienced… it doesn’t exist… only the last three years are real.”
“Whoa! What the fuck are you trying to say?”
“Faith, you were in need of help… the council believed that it was in your best interest, so they fabricated your memories… I’m sorry.”
G-man sat down on the other end of the bed, and took of his glasses and cleaned them… B was leaning against the wall and there were tears in her eyes… what the fuck did he mean by fabricated?
“Okay, G-man… this is kind of insane… so what you’re telling me is that the first seventeen years of my life aren’t in fact what I think they are.”
“No Faith, none of it was real…”
I think that a really long silence took place after that, none of us able to maintain eye contact with the other. They are both waiting for me to say something, and I don’t think I have anything to say. I mean, where do you start.
“Why did I need help?”
“You were unstable… you hurt some people, disobeyed rules and caused damage… you had to be stopped so the council decided to catch you and help you… everyone involved thought it was for the best.”
“The best? Right… yeah, fuck around with someone’s head is always for the best… You do know that I don’t believe any of that shit you are saying… it’s impossible.”
“I know that this is hard to digest.”
“Hard to digest? It’s not fucking food… it’s fucking stupid… and cruel… and bullshit.”
Just so you know I’m really angry here. I’m on my feet and I’m shouting at G-man… he just sits there and looks at me, as is B… I run my hands through my hair and then punch the wall, creating a nice little hole through it. The girls on the other side are pretty shocked. I turn and look at Giles again flexing my fist.
“Prove… I can’t… all the books were in Sunnydale, lost forever now… Faith, I would advise that you forget about it. You have come so far… there is no point in dredging up the past.”
“Forget about it…”
I laugh at this.
“G, I can’t just forget something like this… I want you to prove it to me.”
Again the silence falls upon us… and we’re just waiting for a solution. I’m just staring at the wall opposite me. There’s a knock at the door and it’s Red. She comes in and she can immediately sense the tension… she heard the punch through the wall story and came up to see if we were okay. She looks at Giles and then at me, and I think she guessed what had happened… I mean did everyone know but me… not that I believed them. Not really.
“You told her.”
They nod and I just stand up again, I look at the three of them and then walk away. I really needed to clear my head… I just walk out, and I can hear B shouting after me and Red telling her to give me some time.
Honestly, I have no idea where I went that afternoon… Man, I didn’t even know where the hell we were. But I didn’t give a damn. I just walked aimlessly trying to get it in my head that my life was a lie… it just wouldn’t settle, because I didn’t know where to start with the thoughts. I needed proof. It was dark when I got back to the motel, some of the bedroom lights are on. B’s light is on, and so is mine. I walk towards the door and I hear someone moving around, so I pounce on him. I wrap my fingers around his throat and then recognise him…. I look Xander in the eye, and then there it is again, that agony, shattering my entire nervous system. I leave go of him and clutch my head, and I fall to the ground screaming.
When I come round, I’m in my bed. B is sitting beside me, looking really concerned. Giles, Willow and Xander are sitting there watching me. Xander has bruises around his neck and I immediately feel guilty. I sit up and look at him directly. He seemed to be scared of me, but his eye was mostly dead with feeling… Man, he did lose the love of his life a couple of days ago.
“Xander, I’m so sorry… I didn’t know it was you… you know I wouldn’t hurt you… you do know that don’t you?”
He just shrugs and looks away… he doesn’t believe me. I can see that B is glaring at him. Giles clears his throat and I look at him, waiting for him to speak.
“Faith, we need to figure out what is going on with these unconscious spells of yours… you’ve had a few here… do you always get them?”
“Nope… just got them since I arrived in this part of town. I blame California.”
“When was the first time?”
“When I first saw B… then when I saw Deadboy… and then now with Xander…”
“Just three cases then?”
I nod… I don’t want to tell them about Angel and B kissing… I don’t want to have to say the words. I lost track of the conversation but Giles is still speaking, so zooming back to reality.
“… it appears to be a trigger of some sort… reminders of your past, that the council has suppressed… Buffy, Angel, Xander…”
“Whoa! I’ve seen Xander everyday for the last four months… why today?”
“Because you were strangling me Faith.”
You know when I said earlier about the human brain can only accept so much before it explodes, well my brain is on a rapid count down to the big bang now. I just stare at him, while G-man seems to be getting excited.
“That’s it… what triggers it off, is things that had an impact on you back them… things that changed or altered your destination, for example… Allan Finch.”
And I’m out of it again… but that pain was the worst so far. And probably the most confusing so far.
I didn’t wake up for almost two hours, and the lights are off. I can feel B in the room, she’s on the other side of the bed. She’s awake and knows that I am. She sighs before standing up. I grab her hand and she looks into my eyes.
“Help me B… please, help me.”
“Faith… I wish that you never found that photo… I wish that you didn’t want to know… I wish that we didn’t have to tell you… but you said you want proof… do you still want proof?”
“Yeah… B, I’m not ready to accept that my life has been completely fake yet.”
“Okay, Giles said that your passing out is due to reminders… well, he has two options for you… take the risk again to have a severe headache or forget about it… and I only have to look at you to see that forgetting about it is out of the question.”
I’m not really listening to her, I’m only thinking about Xander. I pull her down so she is sitting on the bed. I speak in a whisper… my voice is that extra bit husky because I am nervous.
“B, did I try to strangle Xander?”
She sighs and nods. I groan and swear incoherently under my breath.
“B, what did I do to you?”
“Faith, it doesn’t matter… I want you now… I don’t give a fuck about what happened in the past… I fucked up too many times myself to care about your mistakes… can we please just drop it? I love you Faith… even back then, I loved you… you had a happy life, and I want you to keep that… please… I love you so much, it hurts… and in a good way too.”
I can sense that she is smiling in the darkness… I do love her… I fell for her the moment I heard her name from Pete. I know I can’t just forget about this, but for her… I can pretend… in time, things would get back to normal… whatever the fuck that was. So I just sit up and wrap my arms around her, kissing her on the cheek. She holds me tightly and is crying softly into my shoulder. I am doing the same. She pulls back and I kiss her with as much passion as I could muster… B was a damn good kisser.
PART EIGHT: UNFORTUNATE CIRCUMSTANCES
There was always the question about what to do next. Man, my head was still screwed up over what had just happened, but I never let it on… I didn’t want to worry B. I wanted her to think I was okay. I mean I would kill just to see her smile, just to see her laugh…. When she smiles her eyes sparkle. When we are alone together at night, in bed, she always pulls me to her… she’s always touching me someway. When I fall asleep, I can feel her and usually when I wake up I can feel her. I love that… I love her. She tells me every night that she loves me… I find it really hard to believe her.
One of these nights, I made her tell me everything about her… I wanted it all. She told me that she hated Dawn when she first came into her life… and was constantly pissed off by her existence until she found out that she was the key. She told me that she loved Mr. Gordo and missed him terribly. She told me about Angel, and how he made her feel… she told me that a part of her would always love him. I asked her once if he became human would she go back to him… She never answered. That hurts, but who can step in the way of real love. I feel real love for her but it is obvious that she doesn’t feel the same for me… that slowly began to kill me, worrying about whether she was thinking about him, or that she was wishing I was him… I couldn’t live like that so I started thinking about leaving. Going back to NY and finishing college… I didn’t want any of that, I just wanted B… but I wouldn’t take her if she didn’t want me in the same way.
So back to the point, what we did after the swallowing of SunnyD.
Well, Giles decided that a new Council had to be set up and that someone had to help out with the new potentials and all that, so the plan was for B and Dawn to stay in the States so Dawn could finish High School, not that she wanted to but it was at B’s request. Giles and Andrew would go to England and start on the Council, why always in England? I don’t have a clue but it was Giles order and he’s a watcher so he can have it his way. Red and Kennedy would travel down into South America before heading west towards the Far East. Xander didn’t want any of it anymore… he said that it was the end of his days as a slayorette but after losing Anya, he changed… he became quieter, more serious… he went to New Orleans or something like that and started his own construction company… he was the first to leave. It was sad but I didn’t really know him. But B was devastated. I held her that night as she cried. She didn’t try to stop him from leaving, he had to… but she still missed him. Considering what they had been through for seven years, kind of hard not to blame her.
So everyone left, as in the Potentials, Red and Kennedy… G-man and Andrew hung round for a bit longer, settling the Summers in I guess. On their last night we stayed in for dinner before G-man made me follow him outside for a talk.
“So Faith, what are you going to do now?”
“I don’t know, hang out here for a while… I have nowhere to go really.”
“I was thinking that but school doesn’t start up until September so I’m in no rush.”
“What about your mother?”
“Yeah… I’m going to visit her next week, prove that I’m alive and all that… and re-enrol for school… and try and figure out a plan.”
“Faith, you are a good slayer… and efficient and effective slayer and I think your skills and knowledge could be useful to the potentials throughout the world. I was going to ask you if you would consider, training them… you will of course be paid.”
“Wow… wow… and again wow…”
“You don’t have to answer now of course… and now that you are involved with Buffy it makes it more difficult, but I believe that you are the best for the job.”
“Why me and not B?”
“Because Buffy has Dawn to consider and you have…”
“No one… how long before I have to give an answer?”
“As long as you like… but the sooner the better.”
I was real happy that he asked me to this, but I wanted to be with B… so I said nothing to her. It went from so many to just three and we were okay with this. B and I were doing fine, just getting to know each other and forming a friendship… I was always thinking about what they told me at the motel and Angel and G-man’s offer… I remember the morning I left for New York, B and I had a fight. I guess my insecurities got the best of me. She was sitting on the bed watching me pack some clothes. We had woken late so I was in a hurry and I was just stuffing anything my hand fell on into my bag, not giving a shit what the hell it was.
“So when you coming back?”
“I don’t know… when things get sorted out I guess.”
“What things? In a week?”
“Huh? Things, B… just things.”
“Fuck B, no need to shout… I need to spend some time with Mom… haven’t seen her in six months, and calling in for a cup of tea is not enough these days… also, I need to sort out school so I can start again in September… and I have to see Jules.”
I don’t think I even realised that I said Jules until B said it.
“Jules? Who’s Jules?”
“By the look of your face, she seems to be more than just a friend.”
“She’s just a friend… B, I’m going to be late.. we’ll talk about this when I get back, okay?”
“No, no, no! We will talk about this… Faith, I thought you trusted me.”
“Jesus B… what the hell do you think she is? Tell me, you obviously think she’s something more important… so tell me, what is she?”
B went real quiet and obviously guessed that she over-stepped the mark… because my temper was about to break lose. I was breathing real hard and glaring at her.
“You go on about how I should trust you and you don’t even trust me B… Jules was my girlfriend okay and she got stabbed by a bringer… happy now?”
B had tears in her eyes and I hate to see her cry, but she pissed me off. She still doesn’t speak, so I just grab my bag and go out the bedroom door, I’m about to head out the front door when she shouts after me to stop. She’s right behind me and she’s saying my name, she says it softly, the way I love hearing my name spoken. I don’t turn around, because if I do, I know I won’t leave.
“Faith, I’m sorry… please look at me. It’s just… I don’t know… I get jealous… I do trust you Faith… you believe me, don’t you?”
Now, this is the moment that I decide… decide whether I stay or go, I decide in this moment, my future. I turn around and there are tears streaming down her cheeks. My arms are fighting to hold her but my brain won’t let them. I stare into her eyes and I think she knew what I was going to say before I even spoke. She dropped to her knees and I follow her down because I won’t have her beg for me… I can’t stand that. So we’re both on our knees, and I speak slowly, quietly and huskily.
“B… I can’t stay with you because I don’t trust you.”
I grab her neck and kiss her forehead before standing and leaving with a twinge of a headache… I could hear her crying for a long time afterwards… just inside my head.
Trust is vital to any relationship, parent and child, husband and wife, between lovers and between friends…. Trust isn’t anything that can be taken for granted…. You can love someone with everything that you are… doesn’t mean that you can trust them. That’s how it was with me and B… I loved her, so much that it hurts to breathe sometimes yet how could I trust someone who was holding something back from me, how could I trust someone who knew more about me than I did, how I could trust someone to love me when they loved someone else even more?
Then New York, New York…
What I like about New York is that you are invisible, nobody notices you… you’re just another face, forgotten within seconds. I get back home at night time, and out of habit I patrol on my way there, staking three vamps… Mom was asleep when I got in but she must have had a sensor or something because she was down the stairs in seconds, her arms thrown around me, telling me how much she missed me. I was wicked tired so after telling her about the hell-mouth and the gang and the whole potentials are now slayers I went to bed…. She was real happy about the last bit of news and went on about now I have a normal future and could do everything I wanted to do. So I waited until the next day to tell her my decision.
She was angry, and I mean really angry when I told her about Giles plan, and how I was going to travel to train slayers and stuff.
“Faith! What about your future? You can do anything you want now, you don’t need to slay anymore…”
“Mom, I like slaying… it’s who I am, it is what I am and it is what I want to do…”
“No, you are much more than that… you are so much more… they didn’t think you could be who you are now.”
“Who didn’t think this, Mom? Who!”
She was quiet only for a second, scared for that second… but it was only a second.
“Your teachers… you know that you were a trouble-maker and they thought that’s all you would be… but…”
“Shut up! Just shut up…. Is it true?”
“Is what true?”
“That none of this is real?”
It went real quiet for a moment as Mom looked shocked. She breaks eye-contact with me.
“I don’t know who has been sticking these thoughts into your head…. Faith I love you, you know that?”
“Mom, I’m not talking about this anymore… I need to do this, not just for slaying… but I need to be alone and think… you know make some decisions.”
Mom was really upset about this and we didn’t really speak much afterwards… it really hurt me for a while. But I just hid it… a new skill, hide your true thoughts and feelings… Jules was more supportive, and thought it was a good idea… I told her about B, and that I loved her… I knew Jules was upset about it but she was cool… I had changed a lot since Sunnydale and she saw this, and saw that I could never go back to my old life… I also told her about what the gang said… about my life being a memory. She said
“That’s impossible… that’s like The Truman Show… it’s impossible… and cruel… Faith, you remember everything because they happened.”
“Yeah, but I don’t remember the accident much…”
“Faith, listen to me… and looks at me… Jesus, I want to see those brown eyes I love… you are a beautiful, wonderful person who is brave, funny and caring… you have given me some great memories and they are real… but Faith, you are you… not because of the life you lived but because it is who you are...”
I know I have tears in my eyes, because I have to blink them away. Jules wipes them away for me and strokes my cheek. She smiles at me.
“Oh yeah, you’re great in bed too.”
I laugh and kiss her, softly on the lips before pulling away… I look into her eyes, and I know it’s going to happen, so I initiate it.
“Really, want to go again? For old times’ sake.”
She laughs and kisses me.
“Ever the romantic, Faith.”
I smile and she takes my hand and leads me to the bedroom.
PART NINE: DISCOVERING
I always knew that I didn’t possess patience… In fact I am far from patient. When I want something done, I need it done… I was also impulsive… always have been… never think before I do… foot in mouth kind of person. This is why I shouldn’t train potential. Man, I have more respect for watchers now… you try and tell someone that vampires and demons do in fact exist… not easy… especially when they don’t speak the same language as you… Man, I’ve picked up so many words, I don’t have a clue what most of them mean though.
The deal was that Giles would tell me where to find a slayer, and I would go and find her, tell her the story and train her the basics for two weeks before a watcher could be found, this usually would be longer than two weeks… Now, I’ve been doing it for six or seven months… school kind of went out the window. Mom didn’t speak to me when I left again, just a goodbye and be safe… I know she needs time to get used to the fact that I need to do this… she calls it suicide but I call it duty… or running away.
I’m in Prague, training a fifteen year old who has some English… thanks be to the powers that be… I’ve been here for a month when it happens… The Czech kid I’m training is beautiful but that’s common with European women… not only has she got beauty but she has brains. When I told her she just accepted what I was saying and told me that she saw ghosts… Man, you walk around Prague at night... it is a ghost town. Now, she decided to do some of her own research and when we went patrolling she would tell me what she found out, about SunnyD or the Council or Slaying and I would just nod.
One night… she was yapping at me in broken English about fuck knows what and then next thing I know she’s talking about giant snakes. I’m telling her to shut up and concentrate but she just loved the sound of her own voice, so she just talks anyway… Man, sometimes I wanted to rip her vocal chords out.
“Yeah…. The school had a bomb… the mayor was a snake… and the slayer put bomb in school to kill him.”
I had absolutely no idea what the fuck she was talking about but then again I’m busy staking a vampire because she’s too busy fucking talking to be bothered… Man this girl should be a watcher not a fucking slayer… I mean all she did was watch. So the vamp is dust and I glare at her but she talks just a bit more.
“But this mayor… he lived for long time… years and years and years… he had the same name all the time and nobody understood that he was older than them… he was a new type of vampire… Faith, do you think there are others like him?”
“Huh? What? Like Who?”
“Like Richard Wilkins.”
And then there was blinding agony, brightness and then darkness.
When I wake up, I am completely lost. I can feel a needle in my arm and I can hear a machine beeping. I feel like shit to put it plainly. I try to sit up but I feel a hand on my shoulder pushing me back down gently. I look up and it’s a woman wearing a nurse’s uniform and she’s look really caring… but she’s speaking a language I don’t understand and it wasn’t Czech. She starts injecting some shit in my arm and I’m out of it again.
I come round in the morning, and I see Giles by my bed… Fuck! What the hell happened? He sits up when he sees that I’m awake and smiles weakly. I ask him what happened and he tells me that I collapsed on patrol in Prague…. And now I was in hospital in Rome… I was really worried now… how long had I been out of it?”
“For six weeks… we didn’t know if you would ever wake up… Faith, what happened?”
My memory was still pretty fucked up so it takes me awhile to answer.
Giles looked scared and then worried. He stands up and starts pacing. Watchers and pacing, goes together like salt and pepper… I ask him to stop and tell me what is going on.
“Faith… the last headache you had nearly killed you… your heart stopped beating for twelve minutes… when I heard I flew out to Prague and brought you here… Faith, if you have another headache like this one it will kill you.”
Holy Fuck! My life was so simple two years ago… why can’t I have that again? Mom, Pete, Danny and Jules… normal life… why can’t I have that? Now Giles is telling me that I could die… I don’t want to die… not yet… man, now I have a chance to live a long life, I don’t want to die… Don’t I wish I had listened to Mom now. So I ask Giles about what we do now.
“We’re looking into that… Willow, Buffy and I have been researching… why don’t you get some rest now? You can come home tomorrow, okay?”
I just nod and watch him leave. He kissed me on the forehead before he went and once he left, I had tears streaming down my face. This was bad… really bad… I’m going to die, and B was back in town. I hadn’t seen her in months and I was really nervous about seeing her again. Did I rest? Nope… I just stood up and put the clothes that were on the chair on. The nurse was yelling at me in Italian but I just ignored her and kept walking.
Rome is a beautiful place, and I recommend that you see it… I spent the whole day and night walking through the city just thinking about what Giles had said and I was thinking about B… more about B. I missed her and I knew I wouldn’t leave her again if she let me back into her life. I wanted her back. I loved her…. But would she love me again.
I was sitting on a bench watching the sun rise behind the coliseum and it was beautiful… that’s where I was when B found me. I could feel her before I saw her. She spoke quietly, my back to her.
“Faith, we’ve been looking for you… we were worried.”
“Nothing to worry about… everything is five by five.”
“Faith… I know you’re scared, so am I. I’m scared I’ll lose you.”
“B… I am not going anywhere… just tell me where you’re staying and I’ll come find you… I just need to think.”
“Faith… we have found something that could help you… come home, so we can help…”
“B… just give me time, okay.”
I spin round to look at her ready to shout, but just seeing her made me close my mouth again… She was pale and thinner than I remember. Her eyes held fear and worry in them… She looked real scared. My heart broke when I saw her like this… what had happened?
“B, are you okay? What happened?”
“You… I was so worried about you, so scared that you were going to die… I love you so much that just knowing that you are alive is enough to keep me going… Then Giles told me that you were ill… and I was so scared.”
Wow! I didn’t expect that… that openness about love… scared me somewhat though. I stood up and pulled her into a hug, she wrapped her arms tightly around me. If I wasn’t a slayer, I’d have broken ribs. We pull apart and I just drown in those green eyes yet again.
“B… tell me where you’re at and I’ll come by later.”
I turn to walk away but she grabs my arm and pulls me back.
“No Faith… you’re not running away again.”
“Look B! Two years ago, life was fine… everything was as close to normal as they could possibly be… now everything is totally fucked up… I have headaches that could kill me, you tell me my life is fake, and you stole my heart, it may not sound much to you but its too much for me… so I need to think about everything… about you, about the future and about me… so don’t you fucking talk to me about running away… I’m trying to fucking face the shit going on but you keep trying to stop me… I need to find my damn place in the world, or some fucking crap like that… I don’t need you telling me that you love me, but also telling me that you still love Angel…”
“You’ve always been jealous of me and him?”
“What! Just figure out what the fuck you want and then tell me…”
“Faith, I want you… I love you… not Angel, you!”
“B, just leave go of me… I’ll see you tonight.”
She lets go of me and hands me the address of where she’s at and then walks away, tears in her eyes. She says that she loves me… I do believe her, but first thing first… my headaches… how do I get rid of them? Aspirin didn’t seem to be working… right, the first one was when I saw B, next one was Dead-boy, next one was them two kissing… Fuck, that hurt… attacking Xander, some name Giles said and the last one was this mayor dude… It meant fuck all to me, except B and Dead-boy kissing… that hurt no matter what it means… If I was with B, would I always be worried about him… him coming back to her… I think I would be and I would never be comfortable with B… I think her leaving me would kill me… that’s why it’s easier to leave her… it still hurts, but I’d rather that then seeing them two together.
I got to the apartment complex late that night, probably because I went out of my way to find vamps. They were still up when I got there, and we had some small talk before I went into the shower and changed my clothes. When I came out, I was towel drying my hair and I could see concern in their faces, so I did the first thing I could think of, and that was to smile. They all returned the smile… which soon became contagious laughter… Eventually, after food was demolished by me, we settled down to business. I asked Giles, what was to be done? While voiding eye-contact with B. He cleared his throat and leant forward on his chair, elbows on the table and looked directly into my eyes. I like that when someone looks at you when they have something to say… it makes you know that they are serious.
“The headaches are spurned by events that defined your life… that changed you… for example, Buffy played a huge part in your old life, as did Angel… and so did Mayor Richard Wilkins… you only need to have it mentioned once to cause the seizure as it would be.”
“So what can I do to stop it?”
“You have two choices; the first is to leave slaying, cut off all contact with the world that is slaying, cut yourself from all of us and to stop living as a slayer.”
“Not gonna happen. What’s the other choice?”
Slaying is all I have, all I know… it’s the only thing that is real for me. They go really quiet and Giles is looking like he is trying to find his tongue… he eventually gets it out.
“The second choice is to have all your memories restored.”
Right… well, I guess now I will know what has been missing all these years, I will now know what is real or not… now I will know if the bullshit that they have been saying is true or not. Still, I’m kind of scared… I just look at them. Red is watching me, Giles is looking down at the table and B, well… she’s trembling but her eyes haven’t left me since I arrived. When I finally look into her eyes, I see pain… I know that these memories are going to be rough, I mean they had to be if they needed to take them away from me… but seriously, how bad can they be?
“Fine… we’ll do that then.”
“Faith, it’s more serious than that… these are traumatising events that will resurface… I’m not too sure you will be able to cope with this.”
“Listen to me, G… I am not quitting slaying, it’s all I have… and I’m not doing it… and I’m not leaving B… not again… seriously how bad can it be?”
It’s not like I killed anyone.
“I mean it’s not like I killed anyone…”
All three of them gasped and looked away… trying not to look at me. Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! A new mantra inside my head… No way! I could never do that… but I knew just by looking at them that it was true… I did, I killed someone. I just stood up and ran out of the apartment. I could hear B shouting after me… but I kept running, and she was running behind me. She eventually catches me, and pushes me to the ground. She jumps on top off me and straddles me, my arms and legs tightened together by her knees. I was trapped and I was crying, so was she.
“B, tell me it’s not true… I didn’t kill anyone… please, tell me that it’s not true…”
“Baby… I’m so sorry…”
“No, I don’t believe you… I would never do anything like that… never!”
“Baby, listen to me… I want you to quit slaying… I want you to keep the happy memories and live the long happy life… please do it for me.”
“B, I can’t… you are what I’ve been missing and I can’t just walk away from you… not again… so it’s not going to happen… you are my life… get that!”
She just nods and stands up. She gives me her hand to pull me up, and she hugs me. We pull back and I kiss her. I had wanted it to be a soft kiss, but it was soon passionate and desperate… I shoved her against the wall of the alleyway, not breaking the kiss. She’s tugging at my pants, opening them. My hands are roaming underneath her top, squeezing, fondling her breasts before venturing down to the waistband of her trousers. She breaks the kiss for air and arches her head back against the wall as I push my hand inside her panties. She is stroking me and I’m stroking her. I push her upwards for better access and she wraps her legs around my waist and I use the wall for support, leaning her against it, her hand is between us still stroking my sex, then she enters me hard as I did her… my knees buckle as I try to hold her up. Her other hand is digging into my shoulder, my lips are on her pulse point and are fingers are driving hard and fast into each other. We come quickly and hard… panting against each other. She slides down of me, and we both adjust our clothing… She holds her hand out to me and leads me back to the apartment.
Before we walk inside, she stops me and looks at me, and she holds my face between her hands and kisses me softly on the lips.
“I do love you Faith… Remember that, no matter what, I am sorry and I do love you… I will always love you.”
PART TEN: REMEMBERING
When we got back to the apartment we were still holding hands. G and Red were still waiting for us, looking concerned and afraid. Man, I either wanted to wake up and pretend it was a dream or go to sleep and pretend that I never had to wake up. Okay, so now I know the worse… I killed a man… Fuck! It was a lot to take in… too much even. Anyway, Red had marked a circle in which I had to sit. She put some shit on my forehead… blessing me, kind of.
Next thing she’s chanting in Latin or some other language I don’t know… and I’m just staring into B’s eyes… neither of us blinking… seriously our eyeballs should have gotten dusty.
Bang! Loud crash and I blink…. Everything went crazy! Things flying of the wall, lightning, wind, screams and shouting, my head was spinning and everything was real bright. In one moment I thought Red fell of the wagon and had gone evil… in another moment, when everything was still and everything was silent… it was only bright and I saw nothing but white… I thought I was dead… A moment afterwards, when the brightness had turned into darkness, I thought I was asleep… The next moment changed everything.
I wrote to you what was my life would have been but that was all a lie…
We all wish for a better life, no matter what our circumstances are… we could be rich but we would want more, we could have love but we would still want more… it is what makes us human, to strive onwards to get the better life… for that ultimate happiness. What I have told you is what I would have wished my life to be when I found out the truth.
So what now? Well… I don’t think I’m going anywhere in a hurry so you want to know how my life was and is…
This is how my life really is.
I was born in Boston to Jack and Lucy… My Mom was sixteen when she had me… my Dad was twenty four… seriously, that’s illegal right. Anyway, Jack was a mechanic and an alcoholic… he fucked off when I was four years old and to be honest I was happy to see the back of him… Mom was his punching bag and I was his football… broken ribs are something I became used to quickly… I swear my ribs spend more time broken than fixed. Mom was nineteen when he left, and worked as a waitress so food could be brought… She met Benny when I was five and I hated Benny… I was a quiet kid who was the loner in school. The kids thought I was a freak, because I never had clean clothes or even clothes with no holes in them. I used to run away from school all the time… and you know what sucked the teachers never noticed.
Anyway, Benny was cool when he first came by… he would smile at me and tell me I was pretty, even though I was a skinny little kid. He used to let me sit in his lap when he had his mates over for poker, and he used to kiss me on the cheek all the time and tell me that I was his special girl. Mom started drinking when Benny came into her life… so she would pass out fairly quick. I loved when she was sober, and Benny was gone… because I loved my Mom… she was mine, she was crap at being a mother but she was still my Mom. When it was just the two of us, I would run around the place, playing stupid games with her. I was her firecracker. But Mom never could protect me, like Moms should protect their kids.
When I was seven, Benny came into my room and sat on my mattress (I never had a bed as a kid, nor did I have toys) He started stroking my face… and telling me I was a pretty little girl. He then kissed me and rammed his tongue down my throat… I struggled, but he was huge… He climbed on top of me and held my tiny hands in one of his huge hands and told me to shut up or he’ll kill me… Man I wish he had killed me… He took of his belt and pulled down his pants. With his belt, he tied my wrists together, really tight that they started to bleed… I was crying but he just slapped me… With the other end of the belt, he tied to the window latch behind my head. He pulled up my t-shirt and started stroking me down there, he then took my legs and put them astride his hips and thrust into me hard, breaking me, tearing me, bleeding me… I couldn’t scream, the pain was too much… and he just kept thrusting hard and fast until he came… he then stood up and pulled up his pants, kissed me again and left. I was still tied up and I had tears streaming down my face… I could feel the blood seeping from me, and the pain that riddled my body. This became ritual until I was fourteen years old.
I was no longer his little girl but his little whore… From the age of nine, he didn’t have to tie me up any more, because I knew the ritual. He would come into the room and I would just remove my night clothes and lie there.
Mom died when I was fourteen, the same day my Chem teacher decided that I should be his whore too… He came to me at lunch where I was sitting outside the school smoking a cigarette. He said that he wanted to speak to me in private and brought me to an empty class room. Man, I was so fucking gullible… I should have read the signs, he was constantly staring at my cleavage… I developed real quick. He closed the door and locked it and told me that if I was going to dress like a whore I might as well be a whore… He pushed me against a desk, groping at me, grabbing my tits, and trying to kiss me. I knew the score… Benny taught me well… Let him have it and you will live… so that’s what I did…. I let my Chem teacher fuck me…
I got home that afternoon after showering in the gym… and I found my Mom on the couch. At first I thought that she had passed out, but when I walked closer I saw that her eyes were open and that she was dead… she was only thirty. I knelt beside her and closed her eyes and kissed her forehead. And then I cried.
Benny came back, and saw Mom. He swore and punched the wall. He looked at me and hit me… He never hit me before… he did many things but he never hit me.
“Get out you whore… get out and never come back! I never want to see your ugly fucking face here again,”
He threw a twenty at me and I left… that day I was fucked by a teacher, orphaned and homeless. So I thought that I might as well drop out of school… seriously, what was the point. I spent days roaming the streets of Boston, waiting for something… either a miracle or death.
I had learned the skill of never letting go, long ago… never give anything that is yours, never give what’s in your mind…. That way being a living dead person was easier…. Nobody would ever understand me.
About seven months after this happened, I met my Watcher. I had been living in a hostel, run for the homeless… and I was earning money the only way I knew how, by being a whore… This British chick came up to me and asked me to accompany her to her place, so I did… Man, I screwed woman and men, anything for a decent meal.
Her place was fucking wicked, I mean seriously… mega wicked. When I went inside I took of my leather jacket and started to take of my top but she stopped me.
“Hey, what’s the waiting for? Let’s just get down to it… I’m not much of a talker, more of a doer.”
How the fuck did she know my name?
“How the fuck do you know my name?”
“Faith, do you believe in vampires?”
I was seriously freaked by her… I mean, what sort of sick fantasy did this chick have?
“Faith, you are a slayer…”
“In every generation there is a Chosen one. She alone will stand against the vampires, the demons and the forces of darkness. She is the slayer.”
So she gave me this crap about slayer, vamps and demons… Man, I didn’t believe a word she said, no amount of books or pictures were going to make me believe it… but she said that I could live with her, I had my own room with a double bed and I didn’t have to fuck her… I had three squares a day and she trained me to fight… it was good for the short time that it was.
Then I was called… I felt it, a rush of this amazing sense of power. I was strong and fast. Man when I first staked a vampire, it was the best feeling I ever had, not just the rush of adrenalin because that itself was wicked but just knowing I actually had a purpose, I had a reason… I was meant to be here, and I was a hot chick with super powers. Seriously, how fucking wicked is that?
But all good things come to an end… Jane, my watcher and me got on well, she respected me and I respected her so when Kakistos decided to drop by and torture her and then kill her in front of me, I just ran… he had taken the only solid thing in my life from me and I was terrified. So I hitched my way to Sunnydale where I knew of another slayer, Buffy Summers.
PART ELEVEN: THE BEGINNING OF THE END
It took a while but B and I got on well… not great but okay, she was really wound man, and I was her complete opposite. But I fell for her the moment I laid eyes on her, she was pouting and suspicious of me but I still fell for her. I obsessed over her. We slayed together and we fought evil together, and man, I tried to get her into bed… This was the first time in my life that I actually wanted someone, but whe was too wrapped up in Angel to give a flying fuck about me. Gwendoline Post, as much of a psycho that she was, opened my eyes to one thing… and that was the B would never trust me… she never opened up to me about anything, she never told me about Angel being back from hell, she would only take me out for slaying….
But we got used to each other… Homecoming was a blast! I got dressed up for her and damn, I looked hot… I did that for her, but she got caught up in some whacked out slayfest and so when she finally arrived, she ignored me pretty much and went home. So I took her ex, Scott and fucked him senseless… it’s weird, but she had him so I wanted him…. Thus the start of an obsession… Faith for B.
I wanted to fuck everyone that was in contact with B, so when Xander came by in that car, I just took him, fucked him and threw him out… I didn’t give a shit about his feelings or anything… Man, I took his virginity… but when I think about how I lost mine, how he lost his doesn’t seem like a big deal… he fucked a slayer. How many people can say that? Okay, in my lifetime a lot.
Then came the night… B and I were wicked as a team.
“New Olympic Category”
Demons and vamps feared us, but B was still a little to wound up for me, so I decided to give her a walk on my side of the track… a bit of want, take, have attitude. It started out well, except with the cops catching us, but getting away by kicking the front seats of the car was fun. We were on fire, staking and dusting vamps like they were dominoes or something and then Allan Finch came into my life, and took it away… A defining moment that changes your life forever. I honestly didn’t know it was him, I didn’t know it was a human.
“I didn’t… I didn’t know. I didn’t know.”
“We need to call 911, NOW!”
B is trying to apply pressure to his wound but I knew he was a goner… I’ve seen dead eyes before… I’ve seen them on my Mom. The worst thing that happened that night was that B and I split up… she went with Angel and I was alone as usual… I went back to the body and I couldn’t believe it… I touched his blood, and I just couldn’t believe it… it was the worst thing I ever felt, and then I died… emotionally I died, I no longer felt anything… I just got rid of his body. He was now just another notch on the crappy life that is mine.
To take someone else’s life… it’s a strange thing because it doesn’t feel real yet it’s the most real thing in your life. You can feel the life being drained out of him, the air, the pulse, the thoughts, the feelings…. And you can feel the darkness settle… because it also settles onto your life.
B came round the next day to ‘talk’ but I didn’t want to talk about it, I just wanted to forget about it… it never happened.
“Faith, we need to talk about what we’re gonna do.”
“There’s nothing to talk about. I was doing my job.”
“Being a slayer is not the same as being a killer…”
You don’t say!
“Faith, please don’t shut me out here. Look, sooner or later, we’re both gonna have to deal.”
“We can help each other.”
“I don’t need it.”
She’s going on about the body and how they will find it and so I put her straight and told her that the body was gone… she was real pissed off about that.
“Faith, you don’t get it. You killed a man.”
“No, you don’t get it. I don’t care!”
That was the biggest mistake B ever made… blaming me. She was there, it could have been her as much as it had been me, but as far as she was concerned she was the squeaky clean good slayer and I was the evil slayer… if that’s what she thought, I was going to be evil…
Mayor Wilkins was decent to me, yeah he tried to end the world… but he was decent to me… the only man ever to be decent to me… like a dad to me… a real dad… he was nothing like my dad or Benny… he was good to me… when I saw him, I didn’t see evil I saw love… and that was love for me… he never wanted sex, he wasn’t like that… he just wanted me happy, and so when he gave me that knife I was real happy… it was my first ever present… I’ve never had a present before… yeah, sure B gave me one that Christmas, but she took it of her desk and wrapped it before giving it to me… I didn’t say anything at the time but I always knew… The Mayor, he went out of his way to buy me a present… and that made me happy, made me needed, made me loved… I wasn’t alone. So obviously I was going to make him proud.
So I didn’t let them on, they thought that they were helping me to come to terms with the fact that I was a murderer… it’s such a cruel word isn’t it? Murderer, but hey that’s what I am… I killed a demon for books I killed a professor for documents… I was a murderer and there was blood on my hands… The worst thing that they did was trick me… make me believe that Dead-boy was Angeles… that hurt big time… I hated B… I hated her because despite everything I still wanted her… I hated her for making me want her…. I HATED HER!
You know she started to talk me down that night… pull the superior card, and tell me that she was better than me… she was right, she was better than me… but why her? I mean why did she get the fucking good life… and I get the shitty one… WHY! It’s not fair… didn’t I deserve some good… I made a mistake and then I’m Satan… I’m sure B made mistakes, but she’s perfect and I’m scum… the accident, should never have been born,. God damn lack of contraception!
B was my challenge… I hated her and I loved her. I wanted to kill her and kiss her… this one night, on the docks she came to find me and tell me that she wasn’t giving up on me and how she wants to help me, save me from hurting myself… I told her what I thought, that we are better than everyone else, that we are the law… next thing we’re fighting and shouting when this crate comes down… B pushes me out of the way and gets hit herself. Trick and his minions decide to make their presence known and launches an attack… he nearly has her, nearly kills her… but I wasn’t having any of that shit… Nobody was going to kill B… she was mine! So I stake Trick… and I look into B’s eyes, she seemed surprised but relieved that I did save her… there it was that flicker of emotion… I ran off, and sat in the same spot where I killed Finch and cried… cried because I was raped, cried because I was beaten, cried because I was fucked, cried because I was alone, cried because B would never want me.
But I still wanted her… she was to be my Everest!
They went through this whole let’s save Faith session… Dead-boy nearly got somewhere with me but the Council under the wonderful guiding fucked that up… I lost all sense of trust that day… I tried to strangle Xander, he thought we had a connection because I used and abused him… I held Red at knife point… I hit dead-boy with a poisoned arrow… with the intention of killing him… the slow and painful way… I wanted to make her suffer by getting her through her weakness… her friends and her lover-boy.
The night I held Red at knife point, was the same night I almost stayed with B… we did this trade where the Mayor got his really freaky spiders that were later his dinner, and the Scoobs got Red back… when we leaving, I remember just looking into green eyes, and they were pleading me to stay, and I hesitated. It was so intense I could see my own brown eyes in hers. But then I just remembered what Red had said earlier.
“Oh yeah, give me the speech again. Faith, we're still your friends. We can help you. It's not too late.”
”It's way too late. You know, it didn't have to be this way. But you made your choice. I know you had a tough life. I know that some people think you had a lot of bad breaks. Well, boo hoo! Poor you. You know, you had a lot more in your life than some people. I mean, you had friends in your life like Buffy. Now you have no one. You were a Slayer and now you're nothing. You're just a big selfish, worthless waste.”
That was a real low blow, Red hit me to hard with those words so I just hit her… how the fuck would she know anything about pain. She doesn’t know what it’s like to be out of control…. None of them do! I know that I’m a god damn worthless piece of shit. Been told this since the day I was born, doesn’t mean I like hearing it.
I went to the Prom just to watch B, I wanted to see her dressed up… I want to see how beautiful she was, and she was gorgeous. When she arrived, all eyes were on… but mine never left her. She didn’t know I was there but I watched her receive the stupid looking umbrella, and I knew she deserved it. She was the better slayer… and I watched her dance with Angel. I remember just thinking that that should be me, not him…. ME! And I wanted him gone. I didn’t give a fuck if he tried to help me… I wanted him gone and I wanted no one to have B… She was mine, whether she knew it or not… she belonged to me, because even if I never admit it to her, I am hers.
PART TWELVE: THE MOMENT
Life is filled with moments when everything changes, moments when you reach an understanding, moments when you feel an emotion so strongly that you temporarily forget everything else… watching Angel and B dance… I felt rage and jealousy, nothing else just that. So I loaded up a bow and arrow ensuring that the arrow was poisoned… I knew what the cure was… I knew he would have to drink a slayer’s blood to survive but I also knew that him being him would never do it, and that B being B would never kill me….. How wrong was I?
When she came to my apartment, her green eyes were dead, and she was having a moment… she felt nothing but hate, and I felt nothing but love… I didn’t give a fuck if she killed me because then it would all be over… then there would be nothing! When we fought, I held back and she gave everything…. I wanted her to kill me, I wanted to take the pain away from her life… I was that pain!
We were on the roof when it happened… she pulled out my knife, and I couldn’t help but smile inwardly… wow, poetic justice, getting stabbed by my own present… my only present.
I think she knew that I was going to let her kill me… I saw that understanding pass through her eyes when I said,
“Man, I’m going to miss this.”
Then she stabbed me… slid the knife into my abdomen as easy as sliding a knife into melted butter…. And she looked shocked, scared and hurt when she did it…. Emotions flew through me and through her…. But when we finally laid eyes on each other all we conveyed was love…. How fucking shit is that? But she did it…
“You did it…. You killed me.”
But there was no way in hell, I was going to be fed to Dead-boy… no way! So I fell from the roof onto a truck…. As the world went black, all I remembered was her eyes, her wordless declaration of something other than hate for me…. Love that never had a chance to be displayed.
The weirdest thing was feeling life been taken from B… feeling her being drained even… I knew in my crazy ass coma way that she fed herself to Angel and I was pissed off…. Because I never wanted her to die… But I didn’t feel her pass so I had to make a decision… I knew the deal with the Mayor.
I loved the Mayor, like he was my Dad… but when faced with a choice, him, the guy I didn’t want to fail, the guy who wanted me around, the guy who loved me for who I was… or her, the girl I already failed, the girl who didn’t want me around, the girl who hated everything that I was…. I chose her because I loved her… and even if I never had her I knew she was to live… and do the things that I was meant to do.
The greatest thing about being a slayer and one half of the Chosen Two is dream sharing…
"There's something I'm supposed to be doing."
"Oh yeah. - Miles to go - Little Ms. Muffet counting down from 7-3-0."
"Great. - Riddles."
"Sorry, it's my head. A lot of new stuff."
"They are never going to fix this, are they?"
"What about you?"
"Scar tissue. It fades. It all fades."
"You want to know the deal? Human weakness - never goes away. Not even his."
"Is this your mind or mine?"
"Beats me…. Getting towards that time."
"How are you going to fit all this stuff?"
"Not gonna. It's yours."
"I can't use all of this!"
"Just take what you need…. You're ready?"
I touched her cheek and let her wake up and fight the good fight, you know when she woke up and I stayed sleeping… I saw everything that was to happen to her…. Everything! How freaky, and I could never warn her…. Which sucked, so instead my brain was filled up with the Mayor being all forgiving and telling me how much I cared, and every time he came into my head, B was out to kill me, B still hated me.
So I saw Adam, I saw Glory, I saw Dawn, I saw the fall from the tower, I felt the death, I saw Red and Tara, I saw Tara being shot, I saw the fucking geek trio do their deeds and I saw Red get fucked up on magic, I saw the First, I saw Joyce Summers die, I saw Anya die, I saw Spike explode in flames… I saw everything! At the same time, I had the Mayor pop up for visits and he made me believe that B would never love me… that only he would love me… so what could I think but that I hated her…. I mean, after helping her out with killing of the Mayor, that surely should have won me some sort of credit but she still hated me…. That’s what I believed.
So when I woke up from the longest sleep in my life-time… eight months, I was real confused… I had no idea where the fuck I was, last thing I remembered was being in a park with the Mayor and B coming at me with a knife after killing him… I was seriously pissed off…. I think a part of me believed that she and I were sharing the dreams and she was controlling them…. That she enjoyed killing me over and over and over again.
Next thing I knew, I was in a hospital and I had missed eight months of my life… I needed to find B. She was the only thing that made me live… I only lived because she did… Two halves, the Chosen Two. I needed her gone, and out of my life… I needed her dead and then I could die…. So where to find B?
Her house…. Mrs. S. was surprised and kind of happy to see me until I hit her… I guess she never knew what happened. I tied her to the bed and threatened to kill her, but she kept telling me that B would save the day… that B would help… that B was better than me…. Why couldn’t she have been my Mom? I would never have killed her… I didn’t want to kill anyone again, only B….
B came crashing through the window and we started fighting again, kicking and punching the shit out of each other… things kind of got blurry after that, because between B and me shouting and fighting, G turned up with a bunch of tweed guys… there was some sort of hospital room and some lab-coat had a needle and was ramming it in my arm I heard a voice,
“And she won’t remember anything?”
And then everything went black!
PART THIRTEEN: CONSEQUENCES
I sat in the circle in that apartment in Rome and opened my eyes, I had lived my life again in only a matter of moments, but I felt every single second of my life… The council had removed my memories and replaced them with my ideal world…. B’s life in a weird sense.
I was shaking, and crying and collapsed onto the floor curling myself into a foetus… I could feel G and Red watching me and I could sense B walking to me, and place a comforting hand on my shoulder. I pushed her away and shoved her against the wall.
“You killed me B!”
“Faith… I know, and I’m so sorry for stabbing you… I’m so sorry… I’m so sorry…. Please forgive me!”
She’s crying hard at me, and letting me punch her…. I feel Red hit me with magic and pull me off… She threw me against the opposite wall… I hit it hard and felt blood seeping from my head. I touch it absently just staring hard at B. She’s watching me with the same amount of feeling… confusion and fear.
It was too much for me to take… the memories, the emotions…. The realisation!
“My Mom… she’s not my Mom…”
“No Faith… she isn’t. She was employed by the council to act as your mother… I am sorry Faith.”
“Pete, was he real?”
“Yes, Faith… he was real and he was your watcher…. He was very proud of you. He would keep me regularly informed on you and your progress. Only the first seventeen years in your life have been fabricated… the last five years are real.”
“So why G-man? Why the fuck did you do it? Why did you make me forget all the shit I did?”
“Because you were unstable and dangerous… and you needed help… The council offered me a choice, to either have you dead or treated… this was your treatment. I chose your treatment obviously…. I never would have thought that this would have happened.”
I think at some point during G’s explanation I lost it… I mean they just took everything away from me…. They took my life away and gave me what was real… I didn’t want to know what was real but I knew that this was… I walked slowly over to him and lean close to him and whisper into his face.
“You should have killed me!”
Then I leave, and walk away from them…. Walk away from everything that is my life! Walked away feeling guilt for the deaths I caused, pain I evoked, and hurt I inflicted. Walked away feeling anger with the confusion caused by what was real for not, anger with my unreal mother, anger at been hidden. Walked away with a broken heart and loss of faith (Excuse the pun). Walked away dead.
So now you’re wondering how the hell I ended up here… in a hospital, yet again! Bed-ridden at that… and writing what is the basis of my life.
When the Mayor was alive he would tell me that he was the only one in my life, and I guess he was right… because I had two lives, the real one I spent alone and hated, rejected and heartbroken… and in the fake one, none of it was real… none of it! It was the Truman Show in reality. The Mayor was the only one that accepted me, took me… yeah, he was an evil man, but he loved me.
Jules… she knew what I was, and for I know she was paid by the Council to be with me… everyone else was. B, well she did it out of guilt, as did all of them… they all knew and hid it from me… rather than let me find redemption, they took everything away from me… gave me a sense of false hope, shattered it and then, well, now I am alone again!
With the comeback of the memories, came the return of all the emotions, anger, rage, hate! I had to leave them all… I had to leave everything… so I did what I had been doing ever since the day I was born… I ran away. Maybe I couldn’t face the fact that I was a murderer, maybe I couldn’t handle the pity I received from the scoobs, perhaps…. Perhaps, it was B. Perhaps that’s why I ran away.
I spent a year or so, not really keeping track of time just slaying my way around the world. I stole from the vamps I staked to keep alive, and I spent a lot of the time sleeping on the streets. It was my life, I was robotic, zombified even…. Dead to the world, I felt nothing, physical or emotional…. Nothing.
I think I was in Israel when it happened… when I had the dream.
I was lying on a private beach, hidden from civilisation by caves just watching the stars… I must have fallen asleep because when I wake in the dream I see B. She’s smiling at me as she is building sandcastles. I stand up, and lose my balance in the rush. She giggles as I regain my stance. I just watch her as she grins at me. She still is beautiful… and I have seen nothing of her, not even in my sleep for over a year. All I see when I sleep is the bad things that filled my life. This made for a different change.
She’s finished the sand-castle as she places my knife… the knife on top of it… Blade facing into the castle… kind of like the sword in the stone shit. She then watches me carefully as I pull it out and twirl it in my hand.
She stands up to face me, and puts her hand on my hand holding the knife then she smiles at me… she’s still smiling as she plunges the knife into her stomach using my hand… There’s a single tear streaming down her cheek as she closes her eyes. Then I woke up and all I saw was the sun rising and I felt my own tears.
I whispered “B” and let my tears continue fall as the day started… that was the first time I used my voice since the day the truth made itself present.
My favourite moment of the day would be that moment when you just wake up, when neither reality nor fantasy is coherent enough for you to care, when you don’t need to understand or even think…. B took that away that morning, because she was all that I thought about from that dream onwards.
Something had happened to B and I needed to find her, so what does one do in a country where one does not know anyone, speak the language or have any money?
Police stations do have their uses, and so I gave them a bull-shit story about losing my tour group, being robbed and needing to use a phone.
Angel was surprised to hear from me, to say the least.
“Faith, where are you?”
“Dead-boy… you owe me a favour.”
“….. okay, what do you need?”
“A plane ticket to wherever the hell B is… and as soon as possible”
“Faith… it’ll be too late… she’s…”
“Angel, just do it for fuck sake… just fuckin’ do it…”
“Okay, okay… calm down… where are you?”
Next thing I know, I’m on a plane back to the states… Boston even, how fucked up was that… I recognised every single turn, every street as I made my way to the hospital… I can sense B from outside the ugly building… have you ever seen an attractive looking hospital? I make my way through the hospital ignoring the staff and I see G and Dawn in a waiting room… Dawn’s eyes are red from tears and G doesn’t look any better… Xander was walking towards me, pale from lack of sleep… he stops me in my steps and just looks at me. He smiles weakly.
“I hate hospitals.”
I had to smile at the statement, and he leads me to the waiting room where G is surprised to see me.
“G… I just want to see her… where is she?”
“Faith… there’s nothing left that we can do for her… the damage is too severe.”
“God Damnit! Just tell me where she is…”
He takes me to the private room where B awaits. I gasp in horror at the sight of her, there were tubes and machines everywhere, synchronised orchestra of beeps. B was pale, her face…. O God! Her body… she had been torn apart, stitches everywhere, a long scar down the length of her cheek, a patch over her eye to match that of Xander, another scar from her jaw to underneath her gown… I didn’t see the damage underneath the gown, but her arms were tattooed with stitches and bruises… but she was still beautiful.
G was talking as I walked over to her and sat down beside her and took her hand, kissing it lightly.
“Faith… there isn’t long left until she passes… I will leave you alone.”
When I heard the door close I started to cry. I bent my head to rest it by her hand and I sobbed until I was dry of tears. Then I looked at her face.
“B, they say you’re going to die… you know that you can’t do that… people need you to live… I need you to live… I am so sorry for leaving you alone, but… you know why I had to leave… don’t you?”
I fell asleep and was woken up by Red shaking my shoulder gently. Red looks as bad as the rest of them, her face etched with fear and worry. I looked at B who looked the same as she did when I first arrived… She was fighting… everyone had lost hope in her but I hadn’t… I knew that B was a fighter. Red gave me a cup of coffee and sat opposite me on the other side of B.
“Red, what happened? What did this?”
“The Immaculate… that is what he is known as… he took Dawn and Buffy went to rescue her… She got Dawn out but he caught her… and did this to her… we found her and O God! She looked… I thought she was dead.”
I just nodded… and felt Red’s eyes on me as I watched B sleep. I looked up at her and made eye contact with her.
“Faith, I’m so sorry about… everything…”
“Red, you didn’t do it… you didn’t take away my memories… so, not your fault… I just needed to deal, okay?”
“Faith… you’re a good person.”
We sat in silence just a bit longer, then I stood up and went to leave.
“Faith, where are you going?”
“To kill something… where is this Immaculate guy?”
“Faith… he’ll kill you.”
“Red, I’ve been dead for years… I’m doing this for B… Now where is he?”
PART FOURTEEN: THE BATTLE
I had a picture of B inside my head the entire way to the sewers which would lead me to some underground church where I’m going to find the bastard and kill him. I just kept remembering the dream… Did she blame me? Was it my fault that she is how she is? Is it my fault that she is going to die? Was she trying to tell me that if I never had ran off, she would be okay? Yeah, it was my fault… I got so wrapped up in my own crap life, that I abandoned the one thing I loved, B… I loved her with everything that I am… and because of some crappy life, I threw her aside, I blamed her… I let her know that I blamed her… I even hated her… It was my fault, and she’ll never hear me say I’m sorry.
I reached the church and I saw a little man, and was wicked confused… okay where was the monster that did this to B? He looks at me and smiles…
“Faith… another slayer, but by far the most interesting of the slayers. Kennedy paid me a visit yesterday and she certainly had an attitude, but you I believe can surpass her…”
“Dead… or almost dead… I don’t like to kill my prey… what’s the fun in that? Let them suffer… so how is Buffy?”
“Ah-ah… wouldn’t want to provoke me… I watched an interesting film today… The Passion of Christ… Passion, a good word isn’t it… because we all have it… every living or non-living being has an essence of passion. Listen to me and my lack of manners… would you like a drink?”
“I would like you dead.”
“I’ll take that as a no then… what was I saying? Passion… Love, now that’s an even better emotion… so most confusing and irrational of emotions… I can see it in your eyes… you’re here out of love and out of passion… well, isn’t it a pity you won’t be leaving?”
I don’t think I bothered listening to another word he said, I just charged towards him and stabbed him in the heart with a knife, but the wound just healed. I knew this was trouble… he grabbed my arm and twisted it until I heard a snap. I screamed from the pain, but before I had a chance to recover he had thrown me against a wall where my head slammed against it. He walked over to me and pulled me up by my neck. My feet were off the ground as he hauled me to an altar, piercing the skin of my neck with his nails… I could feel my blood streaming down from the different punctures… It was a deep wound, but not enough to kill me. I knew I was to die… but not without a fight. I could see Kennedy’s body on the ground, blood surrounding her… but I knew she was still alive… barely. We slayers can feel each other die… that’s how I knew Rona was dead, as well as five others.
I screamed again as I felt my knees give way. I tried to look at him, but instead felt the crunch of both my knee-caps. He had shattered them so I wouldn’t be able to stand. I twisted my body so I can look at him and grabbed his arm. I pulled him towards me and spat in his face, before biting hard on his wrist… he screamed as I continued to sink my teeth into his flesh. He backhanded me with his free hand and hit me continuously until I no longer could move… I felt him tie me down and then I felt the nails… He drove a nail through each of my palms so I could not move… I had no energy left to scream, I had no energy to even feel the pain.
“I love torture, don’t you? I know you do… pity you never got a chance to try out your abilities. The Passion of Christ had a good torture scene… scourging, and then there’s Braveheart. Do you think Mel Gibson has a dangerous obsession with torture? I would go with old-fashioned flailing but that would kill you, and what’s the fun in that?”
I yelped when I felt the first whip, I hissed each time after that… then I felt the blades of his next whip pierce my body, removing some skin from me… I was nearing death. I could feel it. I closed my eyes and pictured B’s face… her smiles, her eyes, her laugh, her hair, her body, her hands, her fingers… and I saw myself in that picture… Me in my leathers, her in her pastels… me with my wild, unkempt dark hair, her with soft, straight light hair… my dark brown eyes and her bright green eyes… we were smiling, our hands in each others, our fingers entwined. I opened my eyes with new-found strength as I looked into him… My body was riddled with damage but he had stopped when he saw my eyes.
“I’m a killer.”
He laughed when I said this and shook his head, stepping away from me.
“No, you’re not a killer… sure you have taken lives, and you have caused pain… but you are like all other humans… you believe that your past shapes who you are… maybe it does to a certain extent, but you are not anything, only Faith… You are Faith filled with rage, Faith filled with love, Faith filled with hate, Faith filled with guilt… Faith filled with emotions. Events cause these emotions but nothing causes you to have them… You are Faith…”
“Blah, blah, blah! You preachers and your fucking sermons.”
I sat up and ripped my hands through the nails, wincing at the pain. I stood at fell to the ground due to the lack of knee cap situation. He laughs and walks to me. When his feet are at my hand, I dug the nail that was embedded in my hand into his foot. He screamed as I pushed it into the ground, causing him to stop moving… I knew I only had a few seconds until he moved again so I had to be quick… I stood up, willing my knees to give me this second… they did, agonising me all the same… I grabbed the whip from his hand and wrapped it around his neck and pulled until his neck snapped, but kept pulling until his head came off. It felt like it had been minutes but it was in a second or two that he had died. I then collapsed to the ground and his head was in my viewpoint. I closed my eyes and let death take me.
I was sitting on a wall looking over a crater. The sun was setting behind it… it was SunnyD. I lit a cigarette and smoked it. I felt someone watching me from behind and I knew that it was B. I felt her sit beside me, and the two of us watched the sunset. I threw away the cigarette and lit another one. Exhaling the smoke, I listened to her breathe and then she spoke.
“I never stopped looking for you Faith.”
“I never stopped loving you.”
“I’m sorry for everything.”
I heard her laugh and I couldn’t help but to smile. I looked at her and she was beautiful, no scars, nothing… just B… and her eyes met mine, and she was still smiling.
“Am I dead?”
“Are you dead?”
“Not yet… this is a productive conversation.”
“Yeah, B… I’m sorry for leaving you.”
“B… why did you agree with the erasure of my memories?”
“Because I thought you forgetting me would make it easier for me to forget you.”
“And did you?”
“No, I remembered your smile, your dimples, your hair, your leather clothes, your laugh, your sarcasm, your innuendoes, your beautiful brown eyes, your husky voice…. I remembered you every time I woke up and every time I went to sleep…. But I would rather you live and not know of me than dead…. Because without you, there’s no point in me.”
“Isn’t that kind of wrong…. Heavy dependence?”
“Yeah, I guess it is…. Doesn’t change anything though.”
“I guess not.”
“Faith, I am sorry… I love you.”
“I never stopped loving you… I couldn’t stop loving you even if I wanted to.”
“Do you want to stop loving me?”
“No B… I’m happy to live as long as you live… and if I could do it all over again… well, that’s pretty stupid… I’ve had two lives, and look how they worked out… I left you every time… I’m not worth it.”
I felt her hand on my cheek, turning my face to hers, and then I felt her lips softly touch mine. She pulled away and looked into my eyes. Tears glistened in her eyes.
“Faith, baby… you are worth everything to me… now wake up!”
I woke up and groaned as the pain shot through my body. I saw the white walls and knew I was in a hospital, I felt the IV needle in my vein, and I heard the machines beep. I saw G standing at the window. He turned when he heard me groan and came to my side.
“Faith, thank God! Don’t try to move… you are in hospital, and you’re lucky to be alive.”
He then tells me of my injuries, he said that the wounds in my hands are healing nicely, the scarring from the whips are healing in time, some still in existence but my legs are out of use… My right knee cap wouldn’t heal even with slayer healing… and it may be months before I was walking again. He took one of my hands…
“Faith… I am so sorry…”
I didn’t give a fuck about his apology… I just wanted to know one thing.
“She’s alive… fighting… she is off the ventilator and breathing on her own… Faith, she won’t die… she is wanting to live.”
I smiled at that… we were going to live for each other… Life was pointless otherwise. We would never have normal lives, and after everything we had been through we didn’t want to live without the other… we were two halves.
I slept for most of the week. When I woke up on my eighth day since regaining consciousness Kennedy was by my bed. She smiled at me.
She told me that Red found us and got us to hospital… that she had suffered from blood loss but she was fine now and could go home tomorrow… she told me that she owed me one now that I had saved her life.
I slept again a bit longer, and felt my strength returning. B remained asleep. The nurse would take me to see her everyday for the next month. Her scars have faded and her beauty still shone through… each day, more life was filling her body but she stayed sleeping. G is going to take me back to his apartment in London after B is transferred there. I am walking with a cane but my knee still hurts like hell. I am alive, I am a slayer, I am in love and I’m learning to be patient… waiting for B. We leave tomorrow.
So there you have it… my life until this moment. The preaching Immaculate and Jules were right about one thing, my past doesn’t make me Faith… I am Faith no matter what. I don’t have hate for anybody anymore, no blame anymore… no rage. So this story, the nurse can have as it was her idea for me to write it… I don’t need a copy… I have it inside my head… Now, I’m going to go see my B, and watch her sleep…
In my dreams we kiss and we make love… She is using my chest as a pillow and tracing the outline of my tattoo while I twirl loose strands of her hair. We lie in the aftermath of our lovemaking with smiles adorning our faces, in a comfortable silence…. In love.
In my waking hours, I tell her this and I know she’s listening to me… so I will just wait for my B to wake up.