Faith sat on the couch of the apartment that she, Buffy, and Dawn used to share as she waited for the blonde slayer. Things used to be different when they first arrived there. Now she sat, nervously cracking her knuckles, as she waited for Buffy to return.
She knew that the blonde slayer was out with HIM again. The Immortal. It made her sick. One moment, they were getting close, having an actual friendship, and then suddenly it all stopped. Buffy was never home, never talked to the other slayer, nothing, and it left Faith feeling alone again.
They had moved into the apartment together when they first came. Dawn was going to school, and the two slayers were taking in a new order with new roles as more slayers were found. After a while, Dawn moved out, and was now living in an apartment right off of where she was going to school. It was better for her that way. And Faith had helped her move. The two had become friends through their time there in the other country. And Dawn knew she could rely on Faith if she ever needed someone, and Faith was just happy to be there for someone.
After Dawn moved, it was just Faith and Buffy. Things went slow at first, but the two girls had formed a friendship. And were finally becoming closer. Something that Faith always wanted but would never admit.
Buffy was helping and keeping tabs on slayers in the area, as well as keeping in touch with the rest of the gang that was now spread out through out the world, doing the same thing. A new council was formed, and new leadership was appointed, and everything was different. But it worked for them. When they weren't out doing their jobs for the good of the world, they were friends, hanging out, laughing, and even slaying some nights together.
Faith's job was a little different. She helped all of the slayers that had problems. Those who couldn't handle being a slayer, those with regular problems, those with mental problems, all of them. It wasn't too common, but it would happen, and Faith was more than willing to help when and if she could. It was her way of making up for what happened to her in the past. The dark slayer had mentioned the idea to Giles a while back, and he liked the idea, sending her to various locations when she was needed.
One trip that Faith really wanted to make, was to retrieve Dana from LA. But the brunette slayer was already in Paris when the whole ordeal happened. And Faith was angry about not being able to go. She would have went in a heartbeat. Not to mention the fact that the ordeal was an emergency...but they hid it from her, never told her...that was until she returned. And that pissed her off. It was like they were doing the same thing they did to her in Sunnydale and she made sure she talked to Giles AND Buffy about how pissed she was...
It was then that Faith learned about the whole law firm ordeal and everything in LA...but it didn't change how she felt or saw the souled vampire and his crew. But she was to no longer have any contact with them...and that upset her as well...but there was nothing that she could really do. It was all rather confusing to the brunette. And it pissed her off as well to find out that Andrew was sent in her place with a bunch of slayers as back up.
It was around that time, when Faith had to make several trips outside of the country, did she notice a change in the other slayer. The other girl never seemed to be around. And if she was, she never really talked to her anymore. It was as though the other slayer didn't exist anymore. Faith never showed it, but it bothered her. This continued for several weeks. And each week that passed, the contact and communication between the two became less and less, leaving Faith to feel more lonely than she was. Then one day, after returning from a session with a new slayer in the area, Faith came back to the apartment to find Buffy with HIM...having a heated session on THEIR couch.
She had opened the door and froze, seeing them there, a pain going through her chest, as she quickly shut the door and left the building. She had made it subtle, she didn't even know if Buffy knew she had seen them or was even there. But she had to get away, had to get away from the reason that Buffy never spoke to her anymore or even acknowledged her anymore. She had to get away from the loneliness that she felt whenever she was near the apartment.
It was a week before the two saw each other again...and Faith could still recall their conversation. It had been a long trying week and Faith for her part had done a lot of thinking on top of everything that had happened during the week and was tired. The brunette came home one night, and Buffy was there, waiting for her. She gave a bitter laugh, covering what she felt as she saw the other blonde.
"What, no hot date tonight?" Faith had asked, closing the door and tossing the keys on a nearby table. Buffy had stood up from the couch and looked almost nervous...but it couldn't be. The other girl didn't care for her, Faith knew that.
"Where have you been?" Buffy asked as the brunette tried to walk into the hall.
"You know, around, doing my job. If you needed me, you knew where you could of found me," Faith replied, briefly looking at the blonde before walking into the hall and going towards her room. She missed the look of hurt on the other girl's face.
"Faith..." Buffy started, making her way into the hallway. Faith sighed and stopped in the middle of her doorway.
"Buffy, look, I was helping Andrew with a problem he was having and then his whole place went up in flames and rubble. I've had a long day, not to mention week, and I had spent the whole past few days looking for another apartment..." Faith had said, looking away from the other slayer as she said the last part.
The blonde stood before her, not quite understanding what Faith was saying. "You mean for Andrew right? Because he is going to need a place...and what happened anyway, you could of..." the other slayer started to say before Faith had cut her off.
"No B. You don't get it," Faith said, standing up a little taller and sighing. She was tired. Tired from the week she was having, tired from the lack of sleep she had had, tired of running her ass off all week, tired of Buffy and the hot/cold way she was treating her lately, tired of feeling like a pawn in the fight of good, tired of always trying so hard at things only to have it shoved back in her face, tired of feeling like she didn't have an actual real place in the world, tired of Buffy somehow hurting her...many things ran through the dark slayer's mind. She was like a puppy when it came to the blonde slayer. No matter how much Buffy hurt her, she would always come back. But not this time. Faith wasn't going to let the other blonde slayer hurt her anymore...she had decided, and knew what she was going to do for once in her life.
The brunette ran a hand through her hair before speaking again. "I told Andrew that he could stay here. He is in the process of getting together what survived and bringing it over. I told him that he could have my room and space...for I'm moving out..." Faith said, looking the other slayer in the eye.
A flow of emotions passed through the blonde's face. Sadness, hurt, and then anger.
"Oh, so that's it huh? I get no say in this? You just offer your place in OUR apartment without asking me about it?!" Buffy yelled, throwing her arms up. Faith knew she would be angry, but she had to do this. She had to get away from the apartment and the blonde and the feeling that they both gave her.
The brunette knew she was better than this. Better than the way Buffy, and even the others, treated her. There was nothing there for her, and it hurt to do it, but she needed to be on her own, helping people and fellow slayers like she had been. At least till she knew what she really wanted in life. Until she could truly stand on her own two feet again. As Angel had said, "Redemption isn't a destination, it's a journey." And Faith had worked so hard to get to where she was now. She had a job and duty to take care of. It might have started out as a good thing, it might have started out as a close friendship, it might have started out as something that the brunette had secretly wanted more than anything...but it was unrealistic. There was so much...so many reasons why the brunette should go...and only a few to stay.
"Buffy, I know you are upset..." Faith started. But Buffy's palm across her face, slapping her, cut her off. Faith was rendered speechless and was surprised as turned back to face the now pissed blonde as she lifted her hand to the side of her face that now stung.
"How dare you. I know what you are trying to do. You are trying to make me feel bad. You are again trying to somehow turn this on me, somehow making it my fault that you are leaving, somehow making me the bad guy. I waited up for you. I was worried about you! And now you dump this on me? Just like that? Dump something else on me that I have to deal with while you walk away? That's just like you Faith. To just run away from everything, without dealing, dumping it on me or others. I don't know why I even try...I knew you would some how end up disappointing me. Were you even going to tell me the reason? Or even tell me at all until I walk in to see Andrew placing Star Wars posters on the wall?!" The blonde yelled.
Faith looked at her sadly, pain screaming through her eyes in waves. But she never once showed it. What Buffy just said hurt her and cut deep. But she wouldn't dare show it. Not in front of Buffy, not in front of anyone. The blonde had been different lately...she wasn't the same Buffy she used to be before. The one that Faith loved to be around. The one that made her laugh and actually smile. The one that stirred a feeling so deep within the brunette that Faith couldn't help but want to be near her...but now...now she was different. And it wasn't the same. Again, Buffy managed to hurt her. Again, Buffy was jumping to conclusions, assuming that she was right. The brunette looked at the other slayer, masking how she felt as best as she could.
"Buffy...haven't you noticed? You're never here, so don't assume that you know what's going on. I am not trying to dump anything on you or make you into the bad guy or anything that you just assumed as right," Faith said, seeing Buffy grow angry again. "I'm sorry that that's all you think of me. I'm sorry that you are upset. I don't know what happened, but the friendship that we had growing, the wonderful person that I enjoyed spending time with? It isn't there anymore. I know I've been traveling a lot and that hasn't helped either but...well...you are never there B. I'm just tired of feeling so alone in your company nowadays..." Faith was saying or rather trying to say. She was never good at talking about how she felt or sharing...but here she was trying.
"What are you talking about Faith? Excuse me, I didn't know I had to give every second of my attention to you. What brought all of this on anyway? Is it about last week? Is this about..." Buffy was asking as Faith cut her off.
"No, it isn't Buffy! See?! You are doing it again! Assuming!" Faith yelled, getting angry herself now. But the urge to shed tears was becoming great, yet she held it all in. "I like you B. I like hanging out with you, laughing with you, slaying with you...hell, I even like arguing with you about who bought the damn toilet paper last...but you aren't here anymore. And all those things I enjoy are gone too. And that's ok. I know you think very little of me, but I think highly of you. This isn't about trying to make you feel bad or any of the other shit going through that head of yours. We had a good thing going Buffy. Then I come back from one of my trips and notice it dwindling away till it was all gone. I don't know what happened or how it started and frankly, I don't think I really care anymore. In all of this, I have realized some things. And I'm sorry Buffy but I am moving out. You don't need me and you treat me like it. But I don't care. I'm moving because it is better this way, not because of you. I'm moving so that I can finally do something with my life and figure out who I am and what I want..." Faith was saying, using the last ounce of strength she had to push her through. She just couldn't be in the other slayer's shadow anymore. The younger slayer had her reasons for moving out and was trying so hard to explain it to the older slayer.
"Oh and I can't do that? I can't help you? I'm blocking you from doing all of that? How the hell can you stand there and tell me that you are moving out because of wanting to find your meaning in life when you have one!?! And after you just went on about me never being there!?! That's a load of crap Faith! This whole time I have been here with you and after everything we have shared and experienced the past few months you are just going to throw out the window? What..." Buffy was arguing, gesturing with her hands as Faith turned away from her, knowing that the older slayer didn't understand and afraid that the blonde would see the tears that were now leaking through her eyes, and walked into her room, Buffy right on her heels.
The blonde slayer's voice died as she fully entered the room. Faith quietly walked to the two bags that were on her bed, putting the strap of the one around her shoulder as she lifted the other bag up in her hand looking back at Buffy.
The other slayer looked around the bare room. Everything of Faith's was gone...and now that she really thought about it, everything else that was specifically Faith's was gone from the rest of the apartment. Except the things they had bought together, those were still here, and it was obvious now that the brunette wasn't planning on taking them.
Buffy finally looked back at the brunette seeing the hurt and pain in her eyes. Then she noticed the tears that were running down her cheeks. "Why worry about me throwing it all out of the window when you already have?" Faith asked looking around her room a moment before walking with her bags to the doorway, avoiding the blonde's eyes.
She...was right...and Buffy was speechless. She didn't even take notice to Faith moving out her stuff the past 2 days...
Buffy looked at the other slayer as she came to a stop next to her. "Faith..." Buffy said almost pleadingly.
"Buffy don't. Please don't. I...I-I have to go," Faith said walking past her to the front door. Buffy stood still for a moment then went after her, all anger gone from her mind. This couldn't be happening.
"Faith!" Buffy yelled as the brunette made it to the door. Faith stopped for a moment, not turning to face the older slayer. "You...you're right...I..I'm sorry," Buffy whispered.
The younger slayer turned around, sadness in her eyes and tears still streaming down her face. "I am too..." and with that, after a moment of the brunette looking at the older slayer, Faith was gone...