A Sudden Goodbye
Faith had walked into the Bronze, and looked around. She knew the other slayer was close by, she could feel her. That made the brunette feel worse, the knot in her stomach tightening more. As Faith stepped further into the club, a familiar song came over the speakers, In the End by Linkin Park. The other slayer almost laughed with the irony of it.
After moving around a few more dancing bodies, Faith found her. There she was, Buffy Anne Summers, sitting at one of her usual tables, in an armchair, with the Scooby gang. Faith stopped where she was and stepped to the side, out of the way of the dancers, near the back door. The knot in Faith’s stomach was getting tighter and she was beginning to fear her decision she made.
Buffy then started laughing at something Xander had said and the whole group joined in with her. Faith tried to push the sinking feeling away that started to come up like bile in her throat as she looked at the rest of them. Xander sat on a near by couch with Cordelia next to him, who had just playfully slapped him for something he said. Willow sat with Oz on the other side of them with Oz’s arm around her shoulders as they laughed.
Buffy was seated right next to them in the usual armchair she sat in. Buffy, herself may not have realized that she preferred sitting in that armchair but Faith did. Faith noticed lots of things. She watched as they laughed again, and this time, she let the hurt flow through her body, stinging her with the reality that she wasn’t welcomed by them...that she wasn’t wanted. That she was just something they could call upon when they needed something.
Buffy, finally noticing that her sister slayer was close by, looked around. Faith sadly smiled as she watched her. It didn’t take her as long to sense she was around this time. Faith’s smile fell again as Buffy focused back on what the others were saying to her. Again, Faith felt it. Felt what she always felt, the loneliness that was deep inside, and the hurt. But it didn’t matter.
//You kept everything inside
And even though I tried it all fell apart
What it meant to be, will
Eventually, be a memory of a time
When I tried so hard,
And got so far,
But in the end, it doesn't even matter
I had to fall, to loose it all
But in the end, it doesn't even matter//
Faith tried to block out the lyrics as she stood looking at Buffy. The one person she wanted more then anything to like her...love her even. But Faith knew that would never happen. She was a mistake, and even though she might be another slayer, she meant nothing to the blonde or the others. Faith had tried so hard to be her friend, to be one of them...they just didn’t care. They had cast her aside and ignored her, forgot about her, unless if they needed her. Didn’t they know what she had been through? What she still goes through? How she even lived to survive the day or even eat or even anything? Did they even care? Faith tried to push the hurt away like she did every other time, but she just couldn’t do it this time.
Why wasn’t she allowed in their little circle? Why wasn’t she good enough for them? Why did she have to love her?
Faith opened her eyes that she had briefly closed. It was true, she had somehow grown to have feelings for her sister slayer. Faith shook her head, refusing to think about it, to push it away like she did everything else. Faith looked up to suddenly make eye contact with her fellow slayer. Beautiful green eyes gazed at sad brown ones.
//I've put my trust in you
Pushed as far, as I can go
For all this
There's only one thing you should know...
I've put my trust, in you
Pushed as far as I can go
For all this
There's only one thing you should know...
I tried so hard,
And got so far,
But in the end, it doesn't even matter
I had to fall, to loose it all,
But in the end, it doesn't even matter...//
Faith was lost in the moment and the lyrics for a second as Buffy looked at her from across the Bronze. The moment was broken by Faith as she saw Giles walk in front of Buffy. A flash of hurt went through the younger slayer. Even the old stuffy watcher was allowed to be with them and she wasn’t...
Then remembering what she was doing, she looked back at Buffy, who had given her attention to Giles as he stood next to her saying something as the others looked at him. Faith sighed as she pushed the hurt she felt again off to the side. She had to hurry up and get done what she needed to do before she started having second thoughts. Second thoughts that would only be persuaded by a certain blonde. A blonde that Faith knew she would follow like a puppy. It wouldn’t matter how much the blonde hurt her, she would always come back.
Faith fought tears as she looked at the floor, trying to push everything she felt at the moment away and walked to the back door. How could she be so stupid? Someone like Buffy would never like her. Faith told herself long ago that she would never become close to anyone, not that her and Buffy were close at all, but the way she made her feel...
Faith stopped suddenly as she reached the back door, her hand lingering on the handle as she slowly turned her head to where Buffy still sat. The two made eye contact, and Faith felt as though everything stopped in that moment. And in that moment, Faith wished she could have told the blonde everything. But as fast as the moment came it was over. And Faith now gazed at slightly confused green eyes.
Faith had gazed at her a moment longer, remembering how beautiful she looked and how the light would reflect off her hair. The brunette took all of this in, giving one last sad look at Buffy before exiting the Bronze through the backdoor. Now she stood stock still, taking a few deep breaths before reaching down to a backpack that she had placed there before going through the entrance of the place. She slipped it on, then took one final look at the door, feeling the familiar warmth that was still spreading through her stomach whenever the other blonde slayer was around.
“Goodbye Buffy,” Faith whispered to the door as she turned around and walked away.
Approximately a week later...
Buffy made her way up to Faith’s motel room. They were having another apocalypse problem and needed the other slayer’s help. Buffy stood in front of the other girl’s room and played with her hands for a moment before knocking on the door. Faith made her nervous sometimes. Buffy always ignored it but she couldn’t help but feel a small shiver that rain up her spine every time she saw the other girl, and it confused her as well as scared her a little bit. Faith just plain confused her at times. So in the process of ignoring her sister slayer half the time, she didn’t usually sense the other slayer right off the bat as much...but then Buffy realized it...in fact...she didn’t sense Faith at all at the moment... There was a sound of a door closing and Buffy looked to her left to see the manager of the motel looking at her strangely.
“Are you looking for that young girl?” he asked looking at her. Buffy just looked at him a moment before shaking her head yes. A feeling of dread started to form in the pit of her stomach. The manager then shook his head. “She wasn’t kidding when she said she really didn’t have any friends,” the manager stated. Buffy looked at him in confusion as he looked back up at her. He noticed the look on her face and his face fell, feeling a little guilty, “Uh...you...you won’t find her in there...you better come with me, she left you something,” the manager tried to say, avoiding the girl’s face. But he chanced a look at her.
“W-what do you mean?” Buffy asked as she stepped down a few steps toward the manager, her hand holding tightly onto the railing. The manager winced a little at her facial expression and turned his back on her. But then he remembered that this wasn’t his problem...that some things just happen...that he did a favor for the young brunette that was previously in that room.
“Just come with me. You won’t find her here...your name is Buffy right?” The manager asked, his back still towards her as he walked down a few steps to the main office. Buffy’s head was spinning. What did he mean that she wouldn’t find Faith here? Buffy then realized that the manager had stopped and was looking at her, like he was waiting for something...right! He asked her if she was Buffy.
“Yea...I mean yes, I’m Buffy,” the blonde got out, lost in her own thoughts for a moment. Why was acting like this? This was Faith, she is just wandering around living large and just switched rooms or something. The manager noticed the display of emotions that played across the blonde’s face and he felt bad again. He then cursed the brunette for having him do this. He walked into his main office, the blonde right behind him, as he walked to his desk, pulling open a drawer. “Um, sorry, I’m just a little confused...but uh, where is Faith?” Buffy asked feeling the dread spread inside her, not sure if she wanted to hear the answer. The manager looked up at her with a sympathetic expression as he pulled an envelope out of the drawer.
“Look, that young girl, Faith, left a week ago,” the manager stated. Buffy stumbled a bit as she neared his desk.
“What?” The manager sighed looking away from her.
“I’m sorry to have to tell you this. She didn’t have the money to stay in that room. I already let her stay a few days without payment till she could get some money but...” the manager was saying.
“What? No, no there must be a mistake...” Buffy was saying. She then noticed that her hands were trembling and her heart was racing. Faith gone? She couldn’t...she wouldn’t...Buffy didn’t understand.
“Hey, look, I don’t like it that I have to be the one to tell you but she’s gone. To tell you the truth, I don’t even know how the girl ate or even survived if you ask me,” the manager was saying looking at Buffy again. Images flashed through the blonde’s head. The time Faith was over at her house, eating all the food on the table. Faith a few times at the Bronze, munching off her food...similar images came across the blonde’s mind. Her head was spinning again and she sat down in the chair by the manager’s desk. “I asked her if she had any friends she could stay with, or even help her out, but she said she didn’t have any...” the manager stated without really thinking. As he looked over at the blonde girl he regretted saying it. Not only did she still looked shocked but now he could see traces of pain and hurt on her face. “Uh...s-she gave me this,” the manager stated as he walked over to Buffy and handed her an envelope. “She said that if anyone came by, to make sure that a girl named Buffy got this...I’m sorry,” the manager said, not sure of what else to say. He didn’t want to say anything that would upset the girl. Buffy looked up at him and looked at him for a moment, thoughts still racing through her head, before she got up and took the letter.
“Thanks...” she replied, barley above a whisper.
“Uh...look if there is anything I can...” the manager was saying, feeling a little guilty. Buffy just looked back up at him.
“No, that’s ok...I better go...thanks again,” Buffy interrupted turning slowly and walking out of the office. The manager watched her walk away. He felt bad and guilty but not as bad as when he saw the other younger brunette leave a week ago. That girl looked crushed when she left...and he knew...just knew...that that girl had no where to go.... He heard the door shut to the entrance of the main desk and he sighed, sitting back in his chair for a moment. Why should he feel bad for the blonde anyway? If she was really the young girl’s friend, then where was she all this time?
Buffy looked up at Faith’s motel room door...or rather what used to be. The wind seemed to kick up at the moment and Buffy’s hair swirled against her face. She reached up and removed it from her eyes as she started down the street, Faith’s letter still in her hand. Emotions, memories, images...everything was playing across the slayer’s mind. Suddenly, she became angry. Angry at Faith for picking up and leaving. Angry at the other girl for not even saying a word to her. Angry that she abandoned them all...that she abandoned her... She clenched her fist tightly as she came across the park, the stars shining through the trees, lighting up the place. Buffy then looked at her enclosed fist, forgetting Faith’s letter was in her hand. Sighing, Buffy sat on a near by bench, and slowly opened the letter.
Wow, I got to say I am impressed. How long did it take you to come down to my poor side of the town? Sorry, bitterness can be a bitch. Hey, I’m no poet, so don’t expect anything fancy in this little letter I’m drawing up. Hey look! I can write! Bet you didn’t know I could do that did ya? Yeah yeah, I’m avoiding the point, so sue me. I was never a cornflake girl, you know? I’m not that original...at lest I don’t think I am... Great, now I am sounding like Red. Look, this isn’t easy for me to write. And like I said, I’m no poet... I had to leave Buffy. I’m sorry. Although I really don’t know what I am apologizing for... I couldn’t stay here B. And I couldn’t stay for several reasons. Some in which I am ashamed to even admit. Although, I bet the manager told you...am I right? Heh, figures... But it wasn’t just that. I couldn’t stay and sit around, waiting for you to...notice me. Yeah...I knew I wasn’t part of the “gang.” I never was. I was just something that you guys turned to when you needed a little extra fire power. I don’t want to sound all stupid and cliché’ in this thing. I hope I don’t... Like I said, this is actually kind of hard for me to write... I can’t tell you how many times I waited for you. How many times I sat in the graveyard or in my motel room, alone, waiting for you...yet you never came. Even when I knew you wouldn’t, I still waited... I kept telling myself that you cared...that you were just running late, or that you were busy...I told myself lots of things... I was an idiot... Yeah, for all I know, this is amusing you...but I don’t care anymore. I am not physically in front of you for you to judge me anymore. You and your little “Scooby gang.” I’m sorry Buffy, but it hurt. It hurt to go on patrol and then to see you with them when you said you were having a “family dinner.” It hurt to see all of you smiling, to see you smiling, accepting even Giles and Cordelia in your little stupid gang, yet I wasn’t worthy. It was like being rubbed in my face how worthless and unwanted I was. It was as though you were embarrassed of me or something... I don’t know, I don’t know what the hell I am even saying and I sound pathetic. This is why I don’t write letters...
Sometimes...words are written but never said. I guess I have my chance to do that now... But sometimes, things can’t be said in a letter...and I won’t do it. I’m not going to sit here and try to explain myself to you, because I don’t have to...and I just won’t do it. I tried Buffy. I tried so hard to be good enough. I tried so hard to be your friend. But I guess you just didn’t want me... Yeah, I’m Faith, the big strong girl who holds her own and takes care of herself... But I have feelings too, just like you...I mean I am only human... I don’t know why I wanted you, of all people, to notice me, to like me, to be my friend. Seems stupid I guess. I don’t know. Call it our “slayer connection.” I just thought we had a bond, you know? The chosen two. Slayers. This was your town, not mine. I don’t have a place in it. Like I have said, I am on my side and that’s enough. I’m a very protective person. I do my own thing most of the time, I’m cool with that, I’ve had practice and experience being alone. I can be secretive too...about things I never want people to know about me...about my past, what I‘ve been through... But for some reason...I felt that it was different with you...that it would be ok to share those things with you...to take a chance with you...
You don’t know me. You never tried to know me. Did you ever care Buffy? Sorry, the world has made me bitter, made me who I am.
I never write things like this...they make me feel...vulnerable. I almost feel as though you can still hurt me by reading this or something...stupid huh? But it doesn’t matter. None of it matters anymore. I’m not going to say anything else, I think I’ve said too much already...and I if I keep writing...keep thinking...
I might reveal something or say something that I’ll regret later, or something along those lines...
You wouldn’t believe how many times I have written and rewritten this stupid thing. Kind of funny actually. This time though, was going to be the last one...whatever I put down was going to be it...no turning back.
So...this is it. I’m sorry I disappointed you. I’m sorry that I wasn’t good enough for you. I am sorry that I wasn’t what you wanted...I’m sorry...for being me.
Buffy set down the letter in her lap, the words still in her head. She could almost hear them in her voice...
Buffy closed her eyes and then lifted her hand up to her cheek and brought it back, looking at it. Her fingertips were wet. She didn’t even realize she was crying. Then the image of Faith came back into her mind. The last night she saw her, a week ago. The other slayer seemed so sad...so hurt...
Buffy understood now. And understood how it must of felt to be her, standing there, watching them and not being included. More tears ran down Buffy’s face remember all the times she was with Faith...and Faith had been right. She did come off that way...but she was wrong...she DID care...