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Chapter Thirty Five

Ever since I became the slayer the number of good days I have in a year has greatly reduced. There's always something stressful only I can handle because of this gift. And 'm using the word gift very sarcastically. My grads have never been as high as I could get them before when I didn't have to worry about some random end of the world situation. My social life is almost non-existent, and things with my mom will never been the same. So it's safe to say that life has pretty much sucked since I was chosen to fight the undead and other nasties that wreak havoc on mankind.

All of that struggle, all of that loss, and stress and added pressure are totally worth it because I believe they all led to this moment. If I wasn't the slayer I never would have burned down the gym at my school. So we never would've needed to move to Sunnydale. And if all of that didn't happen then I never would have met Faith. And if I had never met Faith than she wouldn't have pressed me up against the counter and started kissing me, which led to this moment.

Right now she's on her knees giving me the best head she's ever given. Maybe it's the different angle that's making it so great, maybe it's the fact that we're in the kitchen, maybe it's that weird little fluttering things she's doing with her tongue, hell maybe it's all three, but this is by far the best. It's not like she's given me tons of it. She's only gone down on me a couple of times, but this is heaven. It's like she got the secret to great head from God and now she's doing her best to share the info.

"Faith," I moan and bite my bottom lip. I'm trying really hard to hold it all in because Samantha is asleep upstairs. I tighten my grip on her hair and grind my hips against her face. I don't know how she's able to do this. She must need to breathe, and her neck is probably starting to cramp but she's still sucking on my clit like it's the last piece of candy on Earth. She lets go with her lips and I groan in protest. Put the lips back! The lips are amazing! She starts doing that little fluttering thing again slowly all along the shaft of my clit and I barely bite back the loud scream.

"Oh God, don't stop. I'm so close," I say and my voice sounds so alien to my ears. It's deep and strained and kinda gravely and if anyone ever tried to describe how I sound normally those wouldn't be the words they'd use. I feel Faith's fingertips tease my hole and I have to bite down on my lip again. I'm surprise it's not bleeding. I look down at her and she's looking up at me. Her eyes are so dark, her hair is tangled in my fingers, and she looks so beautiful. I'm going to come looking into her eyes and that thought gets me closer.

"Buffy, I'm home. Buffy what are you doing?" I hear and instantly my heart stops. I whip my head up and I see my mom standing in the kitchen doorway looking very confused. Faith is off of me in a second and I don't know how she remembered since I'm silently panicking but she pulls my panties up instead of leaving them around my ankles. What am I supposed to say? How the fuck am I supposed to respond to that? "Are you alright, you look flushed." Of course I look flushed, Faith was just sucking on my pussy, but I can't tell her that.

"I'm fine," I say and my voice still sounds really deep and gravely. I cough a little and pray it goes back to normal soon. "I just got back from a job, so that's why I'm all flushed and kinda breathless." Please buy it, please buy it, please fucking buy it. From the loon on her face I think it's safe to say that she's not going to buy it. As subtly as I can I pull my skirt down and straight it out and hopefully she didn't notice. I glance down at Faith and she's trying to wipe my…fluids off her face.

"A job, in that outfit?" she asks and crosses her arms over her chest. I glance down at myself and I have to admit she's right. There's no way I'd ever go jogging in this top. No, whenever I go for a job I always put on sweats and pull my hair back. It was back but Faith took it down while we were making out. Why is this happening to me? She wasn't supposed to be back until tomorrow! This shouldn't be happening. Maybe it's just a nightmare and if I just stay still I'll wake up in my warm comfy bed with Faith snuggled against me.

"Buffy, what's going on?" she asks and she sounds like she's getting really agitated. I can't blame her. It's not like I'm fully participating in this conversation. "Is there someone else here? Are you…fooling around with someone?" How the hell does she know what? "Don't look so surprise, young lady, I was married, remember? I know what sex smells like." Oh shit.

"No, Mom, no one else is here," I say and I know how stupid that sounds. She thinks I have a boy here but technically I don't. She glares and the hair on the back of my neck stands up. I slay demons and vampires on a regular basis but 'the mom' look still scares me. How does that make sense? "Well Samantha is upstairs asleep and Faith is around here somewhere, but I don't I have anyone over." Her jaw sets in a tense line and she still doesn't believe me, but that's ok. As long as I don't panic everything will be fine.

"Dammit, Buffy, when is this going to stop? You've lied to me for years about what you really are. You kept me in the dark about all of the important parts of your life, but I thought we were passed that?" Not a guilt trip. I don't think I could take that right now. "Now you're sneaking people over while I'm out of town. I just can't trust you at all, can I?" My eyes water up, I can't help it. I'm over sensitive right now and I can't control my emotions very well.

"Mom, that's not what happened," I say and she lets out an angry sigh. "Can we go into the living room and talk about this?" I take a step forward but she doesn't move. I think she looks even angrier. I don't really see why she's getting so upset. It's not like I'm a virgin and she knows that. I really don't think saying that out loud would be a good idea if I want to keep, you know, breathing and stuff.

"No, Buffy, we can't. Tell me, who is it? Who do you have over that you don't want me to see?" Oh shit, oh fuck, oh fucking shit. This is not good. She takes another step towards me and I have no fucking clue what to do. Should I tell the truth? It's not like I know a spell to make Faith disappear. Maybe I should ask Willow about that since she's starting to pick up on the magic. "Is it Scott Hope? Did you two get back together while I was gone?" Is she on drugs?

"No, it's not Scott," I say and just saying his name left a bad taste in my mouth. I glance down at Faith. She looks as panicked as I feel but there's nothing we can do about it. This is happening even if we pray to all the gods and goddesses out there it's not. Mom starts to walk around the side of the center island but before she can get too close Faith springs up from the floor with a guilty look on her face like she was caught sneaking a cookie before dinner. Or, you know, sneaking nookie in my mom's kitchen.

"Hey, Mrs. S," Faith says and she couldn't look more guilty right now unless she was wearing a t-shirt that says 'I heart Buffy'. I glance from Faith over to my mom and she looks shocked and stunned. Although I think those are synonyms so that might have been redundant, and I need to stop showing up for English class since I'm actually starting to learn. "How was your trip? Bag any new clients?" Smooth, Faith, very smooth. I don't think that's going to go over very well.

"It was fine," Mom says and she sounds a little out of it. I guess she's still trying to wrap her mind around what she's seeing. "I have some prospective clients but nothing official. They want to take a look at the gallery first." Oh yeah, totally out of it. I watch the emotions play across her face as she goes from looking confused, to more understanding, to really pissed off. I don't think this is going to end well for anyone and I'm starting to panic. I just need to stay calm. That's all I need to do and everything will be fine. "Buffy, you want to tell me what the hell is going on?"

"Mom, Faith and I," I say and look over at Faith. She's looking at me with big scared eyes but I have to do this. I've been wanting to tell my mom and about us for a long time now. My mom was right when she said that I never really shared anything important with her. I want to be able to share things about my relationship with her. Not the gory details, obviously, because that would be wrong. But I want her to know when Faith is treating me like a princess, and I want to curl up in her lap when Faith makes me cry. "Faith and I we're…." I have no idea how to tell her. How the fuck am I supposed to tell her this?

"We're together, Mrs. S," Faith says and steps closer to me. She holds onto my hand and I try really hard not to panic when I feel her hand is still kind of…sticky. She really should wash those just in case my mom finds out. "I'm sorry we didn't tell you but I was scared you would kick me out if you knew. I made B promise not to tell anyone, so don't be mad at Buffy." Yes, great idea, don't be mad at Buffy. Why didn't I think of that? I think Faith needs some more practice at this whole 'dealing with my angry mom' thing. Just because you say 'don't be mad at Buffy' it doesn't mean it's going to work.

My mom doesn't say anything right away. She just stands there looking shocked and pissed. I'm kind of shocked at what Faith said. I thought that maybe she would deny that we have feelings for each other. I thought maybe she would have blamed what happened on biological needs or whatever, but I never thought she would tell my mom we're a couple. Well, an almost-couple. Real couples go out on dates and aren't afraid to be seen in public. I glance back and forth from Faith to my mom and it's like they're having some weird stare down. Ok, does someone want to fill me in on what's happening?

"Buffy, go upstairs. I need to talk to Faith in private," my mom says and my jaw drops. Literally, my jaw just dropped and it takes a second for me to close it. I go to protest because there's no way in hell I'm about to let Mom just tear into Faith without sticking around to defend her but I guess she doesn't care about any of that. "Buffy Anne, don't you dare argue with me right now. Get up to your room, young lady, and you stay there until I tell you to come down." Wow, I never thought my mom would go back to the days before she knew I'm a slayer but hello déjà vu.

"B, just do what your mom says," I hear Faith whisper softly to me and I look over at her. I can't believe she's taking my mom's side. This is bullshit! But I don't want to argue and act like a spoiled three year old. At least not in front of Faith. I nod my head a little and give her a kiss on the cheek. Maybe that was pushing it but I don't care. I need her to know that I love her and if it made my mom glare at us like she's trying to set us on fire with her eyes, which she totally is by the way, then so be it.

"Fine, I'll go to my room," I say and I sound totally calm and casual. I look my mom dead in the eyes and I can feel all of my anger and fear bubbling just under the surface. Why is she acting this way? It's not like we were doing anything wrong. Ok, so maybe we should have kept it in the bedroom and not a communal space but that doesn't mean she has to over react like this. "The conversation is about me, but that doesn't mean I need to be here for it, right?" I storm passed her and I hear her let out a little sigh.

I know I said I didn't want to throw a tantrum in front of Faith but I couldn't help myself. This is so stupid. Why does she need to talk to Faith alone? Is she going to kick her out of the house because we got caught once or are they going to decide how many goats I'm worth? Either way it's stupid that I'm banished to my room like a four year old in a time out while Mom and Faith talk about…whatever it is they're going to talk about.

When I make it upstairs I slam my door and lay down on my bed. I'm going for the stereotypical 'I'm a teen and my life is going to hell' and I think I'm pulling it off really well. I try as hard as I can to concentrate and focus my slayer hearing to downstairs but I can't hear a word they're saying. They're not yelling, which is good, but that could also mean that Faith isn't going to fight for me, which would be bad. This whole situation is just so fucked up and I hate it. I hate that things keep going wrong right when they starts to get good again. I mean, when am I going to catch a break?

As soon as I feel the hot tears start to build up in my eyes I hear the door slowly open. I glance up but I don't see anyone there. I sit up a little higher and I see Samantha slowly walking towards the bed and she's holding something in her arms. When she gets to the edge of the bed I see that she's holding Mr. Gordo. Why the hell does she have my pig? When did she even take it, she never got a chance together to sneak into my room. Hmmm, I think I'm going to have to put a lock on my door. I can't be mad at her, though, because she looks really scared.

"Hi," I whisper and she looks into my eyes for the first time. She's been staring down at her feet since she walked in here. She's toying with one of Mr. Gordo's ears so she must be really nervous. I hope I'm not the reason she's so afraid. Have I made too big of a deal about the pig? Because I don't want her to be afraid of me.

"Hi," she whispers back after a few seconds and looks down at her feet again. She looks so adorable right now all shy and cute and I want to hug her so bad right now. But I want to see what she wants first. "I tooked Gordy when I got sad but now you're sad so you can haved him back." I can't help but smile at that and I can't believe anyone would ever hurt this little girl because she is so damn sweet. And she's only three. Imagine what she's going to be like when she's older.

"Thank you," I say and she gently places the toy on the bed. I wrap my arms around it. She's looking at me like she already wants to take him back but since she looks so sad about it I'll let the face that she called him Gordy slide. "Do you want to lay down with me for a little while?" She nods her head yes and I help her climb onto the bed. Sometimes when she can't get to sleep Faith will lay with her because it's comforting.

She snuggles up really close to me and I breathe in that addicting baby smell. Sometimes when I need comfort I'll pick Sam up and hug her close to me and just breathe deep. I know that may sound a little weird but it's true and it never fails to calm me down and right now is no exception. I hear her let out a tiny exhale and her whole body just relaxes and sinks against me. I feel her tiny little arms reach out and she very slowly steals Mr. Gordo away from me and I let her. Mostly because he's not the one bringing me comfort and partly because I'm too emotionally worn out to care.



Chapter Thirty Six

"Buffy," I hear someone whisper and I groan in protest. It's too early to get up. The sun isn't even out yet. This is southern California, if the sun isn't out it's too early to be awake. "Buffy, wake up." The voice is a little louder now and I can tell that it's my mom trying to wake me up. Why can't she just let me rest? What is she, the sleep Nazi?

"I don't want to go to school today," I groan and roll away from the hand gently shaking my shoulders. Apparently there is no getting away from her because now she's rubbing my back and I groan again. "I can't go. I have a temperature." I hear her laugh but this isn't funny. I was having an amazing dream and she ruined it. I was on a beach and Faith was there and she held me in her arms and we stared at the water until the sun went down. Then we walked back to this little hut right there on the beach and we made love for hours and listened to the sounds of the ocean.

"Buffy, it's seven at night and it's Saturday. You don't have to go to school, so drop the act, ok?" What, it's seven o' clock at night? Why was I sleeping? My eyebrows furrow together when the day rushes to min my. Mom walked in on me and faith in the kitchen and she totally wigged over almost nothing. I roll over onto my back and look up at my mom and she doesn't look angry anymore. "Hi, sweetheart, did you have a nice nap?" I nod my head a little but I don't say anything. I'm not sure what to say.

"So did you kick Faith out?" Or maybe I do know what to say. She lets out a little sigh and now she has a serious look on her face. She doesn't look mad but she does look like I'm not going to like what she has to say. I tense up a little bit and prepare myself. There's no way in hell Faith would've left without saying goodbye. Unless Mom wouldn't let her but I doubt even she's that heartless.

"No, I didn't. I'm not going to lie, I thought about it for a second but then I took a breath and realized it would have been a huge mistake," she says and lets out a little sigh and she gently brushes some of my hair out of my face. "Besides, I'm not about to let that little girl go back to living in shady motels because of her mother's mistake." She gives me a look and I have to fight the urge to roll my eyes.

"So, that's what you think, that Faith and I being together is a mistake?" I ask and my voice sounds calm and not agitated like I thought it was going to. I guess I must be too tired to be mad right now.

"No, that's not what I meant. I meant the two of you…being intimate in the kitchen was a mistake." I can feel my neck and face heat up in a huge blush and I was really hoping she wasn't going to bring that up but I guess I've run out of luck. "Faith explained the situation to me." She did what? "She told me how you fell for each other and you're a big reason why she didn't take Tanner back when he showed up here, and you're a big part of why she's trying to turn her life around." She said what now?

"I had to help her, Mom," I say and my voice just cracked a little. Thinking about what Tanner did to her, the things he said to her, always makes me a mix of sad and angry. Mom softly rubs my arm a little and I hold back a sob. "I love her so much and I couldn't let her go through that anymore." A tear slips out of my eye but before it can get too far Mom brushes it away.

"I know, sweetie, and you did the right thing," she says and I feel a 'but' coming on. Hopefully it won't be too bad. You know, nothing like 'but I don't want you two together and I forbid it under my roof'. Anything with that general theme would really suck. "And if the two of you love each other and she makes you happy and treats you right then I don't have a problem with you two dating." It cannot be that easy. There's no way I'm getting off the hook like that. "But I don't want you having sex, and if I catch the two of you in the act again you'll be grounded until you leave for college." This time I don't fight the urge to roll my eyes and she lightly smacks me on the arm.

"Ok, ok," I say and look her in the eyes. "I won't break your precious delusion that I'm still your sweet, innocent little girl even though I'm almost eighteen and will technically be a legal adult." She gets this little glare on her face that totally says 'you're not funny, young lady' but she's also fight back a smile so I don't think she's too annoyed with me right now.

"Thank you. I appreciate that," she says and leans down and gives me a kiss on the forehead. What is it with moms and kissing their children's foreheads? Faith does it all the time to Sam. Even when Sam says she's too big for kisses. Well, sometimes she says that. Other times she accepts Faith's affection and demands more because she isn't getting enough love. Trust me, it only works if you're Sam. Maybe I need to get some tips on pouting form her. Crap, that reminds me.

"Where's Sam?" I ask and sit up a little. She was right here when I feel asleep but considering my mom isn't having a panic attack and Faith isn't tearing the house and neighborhood apart I think it's safe to assume she's safe. Mom gets an amused smile on her face but I really don't see what's so funny. It's not like my voice sounds weird or I'm panicking 'cause she's not hear.

"She's downstairs with Faith. She came into the kitchen about two hours ago and said it was your nap time," she says and now I understand the amused smile. Whenever I think about something Sam has done or said I get a smile like that on my face. Her expression changes, though, and now she looks more serious. Damn, I hope she's not about to change her mind about being ok with Faith and me 'cause that's just not fair.

"I understand that Faith is important to you and being with her means taking on a lot of adult responsibilities that, if I had my way, you wouldn't be taking on for another ten years." Great, this doesn't sound good. She doesn't want to be a mom yet so she doesn't want me to see Faith. That is so stupid and I can't believe she's acting this way. "I'm not sayin g I'm going to stop you from being with Faith, so don't give me that look, but I want you to go to college." Oh, it's one of those speeches. "If you're going to be part of a family, Buffy, you need to be able to provide for them and going to a good college and getting a degree is your best chance." Hmm, I never thought about it like that before.

"I get it, Mom, I do. It's just with Faith and Sam and slaying I don't think I'm going to have enough time for school. I barely have enough time now and my friends are starting to get suspicious because I barely have enough time to hand out with them anymore," I tell her and I didn't mean to but my eyes are starting to water. I guess my mental stress is starting to catch up. She gets that sympathetic 'mom' look on her face and wraps me up in a big hug. This is what I've wanted to be able to do for a long time. Since I became the slayer, if I'm being completely honest with myself. I wanted to be able to open up and tell her my problems so she could wrap her arms around me and make me feel safe.

"Faith told me it's been hard for you, for the both of you," she says and gives me a little kiss on the side of my head. "It will get easier, sweetheart, once the secrets come out and everyone understands what you're going through." No one ever understands what I'm going through. I'm alone, I'm always alone. At least I was until Faith came along and now my life doesn't feel so lonely. It's kind of amazing how loved and safe she can make me feel.

"Are you thinking about Faith?" she asks and I pull back from the hug to look at her. How the hell did she know that? Maybe she somehow got some demon blood on her and now she can read minds. She chuckles a little bit and starts playing with my hair a little. "I used to let out little sighs like that whenever I thought about your father." I sighed? Weird, I didn't even notice. "I could tell there was something going on between you two. I just didn't realize you were this smitten for each other." She knew there was something between us? Why didn't she say anything before?

"How did you know?" I ask and she lets out a little sigh. I thought we were covering things up pretty well. Yeah, Tanner was suspicious but he's a freak, and Willow got upset because I was spending more time with Faith but she didn't think there was anything romantic going on. I can tell Mom is trying to pick her words carefully. Her lips are tight and she looks thoughtful so I guess she doesn't really know what to say. I hope she doesn't say 'it's just a mom thing' because that is such a cop out.

"The little things you two did gave it away," she says and I get a confused look on my face. "The way you would watch her when she left the room and the swoon you would get was kind of a giveaway. The way she look at you whenever you played with Samantha gave away her feelings too. Even when it was obvious you were mad at each other you always got those swoony looks." Swoony? I think she's starting to talk like me, which is a scary thought. "I just didn't realize you two were aware of your feelings and had acted on them." I blush and break eye contact. I really wish he would stop bringing that up.

"I've never felt like this before about anyone," I say and I feel like we should be wearing pajamas and eating ice cream. Speaking of which, I'm going to have to plan another girls' night with Will because even though I've been making more of an effort she's still jealous I'm spending most time with Faith. "It wasn't even like this with Angel." I look up at her and study her face. We haven't talked about Angel since the night she found out I'm a slayer. She looks a little upset but she doesn't look angry, and I'll admit I'm testing her. She's being really cool about everything but everyone has a limit and I want to see what hers are.

"Being with someone can be very intense," she says and I nod my head in agreement. Both of my relationships were intense, that's for sure. "It was like that in the beginning with your father. He could make me feel like the only woman in the world who's ever been loved, and the next day he could drive me so crazy I thought maybe twenty-five to life wasn't such a bad thing." I laugh a little bit and pick at imaginary lint on the bed. Mom hadn't talked about Dad like this in a long time. She used to tell me stories about how they met and where he took her for their first date. I never really paid attention but now I miss hearing her talk about it.

"Do you still love Dad?" I ask and look up at her. At this point I don't know why she would. The things he said to her when they were fighting…let's just say I'm kind of surprise she isn't serving twenty-five to life right now. She lets out a little sigh and she looks thoughtful again. I don't think I can handle the silence this time. "He was so awful to you before you split up so why would you still be in love with him? That's just crazy, right?"

"It is crazy," she says and starts playing with my hair again. See, I was right. Loving someone who's really awful is totally crazy. "But he gave me you, so a little part of me will always love him." That makes sense I guess, but the situations are totally different. She was with Dad for years so I get how that could leave behind some residual feelings. "Do you still have feelings for Angel?" Ok, so maybe I wasn't being as subtle as I thought. I really need to get better at that, take a drama class maybe. "Sweetie, it's ok if you do. He was an important part of your life and those feelings aren't going to just disappear because he's gone." I get tears in my eyes and she wipes them away while they fall.

"I know that, but I feel so guilty about it," I say and sniffle. I really wish I could stop crying. I've cried a lot today and I really want it to stop. "Faith is this amazing person and I feel like I'm cheating on her whenever I think about Angel and how he made me feel. But then I think about how Faith is making me feel now and it's a million times better." She wraps me up in a big hug and she kisses the side of my head the way moms do when their babies are in turmoil.

It felt really great getting that off my chest but I still feel guilty about the way I feel about Angel despite the bad he caused. I know I shouldn't feel guilty. It's not like I'm the only one who's trying to get over someone else. Faith still loves Tanner, even if the only reason is he gave her Samantha. The thought of her having any types of feelings towards that creep other than hatred drives me a little crazy but I have to keep that to myself. I'm sure it would do nothing but drive Faith away if I talked about it.

"You don't have to feel guilty about it, sweetheart. I'm sure Faith will understand if you tell her." Tell her, why in God's name would I tell her? I don't get mad at Mom for saying that. Instead I hug her a little tighter before I let her go. I don't want to hurt her and I'm so strong I always seem to hurt people when I hug them. You know, people who aren't slayers or vampire types. "I need to go. I told Faith I would get Sam ready for bed. She wants to make sure you're ok." That's kind of bold. I'm surprised Faith would ask to be alone with me after what happened in the kitchen. Mom gets a very serious look on her face and I can tell it's a warning.

"Buffy, leave the door open," she says and gives me another kiss on the side of the head before she gets up and leaves the room. I let out a big relieved sigh and lie back against my pillows. I can't believe how well that went. My mom and I had a conversation about the two people I've ever really loved and it didn't end in a fight. Sure, there were a couple of embarrassing and kind of tense moments but there were no angry words or harsh tones. No phrases that resembled 'I'm so disappointed I don't know what to think' and best of all she isn't going to kick Faith out and she's not going to stop us from being together.

I get a big, dopey smile on my face when I feel the bed depress and someone starts crawling towards me. I know it's Faith and seeing her crawl up the bed like some kind of exotic jungle cat would be all kinds of sexy, which is why I can't look. If I do I won't be able to resist and I don't want to break Mom's new rules five minutes after she left the room. That would be really bad. So I'll just have to settle for wrapping my arms around her and holding her while she rests her head on my shoulder.

"So your mom is the coolest person on Earth," she says as she wraps an arm around my stomach and I can't help but chuckle. That's the understatement of the year. "I really thought she was going to kill me down there. I've never seen anyone glare that hard before. Except maybe you when Xander eats the last doughnut." I laugh and she places a couple of sweet kisses on my neck. I guess my libido remembers that I didn't get to come earlier because my body comes alive at just that simple touch.

"What can I say? I learned from the best," I say and she kisses me a couple more times. Ok, now she's not being fair. "I'm sure Mom explained the new rules, Faith. We're not allowed to do anything or I'll be grounded until graduation. I really don't think what you're doing is a good idea. Especially since she's right now the hall and my door is open." Faith laughs a little and sits up just enough to see my face and she has that little twinkle in her eyes that means she's up to no good. I gulp and try not to look nervous but I don't think it's working.

"Come on, B. I can be quiet. I'm sure if you try hard enough you can be quiet too," she says and slowly moves her hand across my stomach and lightly scratches my skin. My flesh erupts in tons of goosebumps, and I suck in a deep breath. I hate that she has so much control over me, my mind, and my body. I put my hand on her wrist and try to pull her hand away but she's persistent. She's looking in my eyes and that twinkle in hers is getting stronger. I must look frightened because she has a little smirk on her face now.

"Don't worry, B, I'm just messing with ya," she says with a chuckle and lays her head on my shoulder again. It feels really great being able to hold her and be so open about it. I don't have to worry about Mom walking in and seeing us like this, and wigging out. At the same time it's kind of awful we can cuddle and maybe get away with some light petting but never really getting to connect? This is going to be hell.



Chapter Thirty Seven

"Buffy, if twenty-five over x is equal to thirteen over thirty-five than what does x equal?" Willow asks but I haven't been paying attention to a word she's been saying all day. I'm in love and I've got it bad. Things are finally starting to look up for Faith and I and is it really a bad thing if I'd rather think about how happy I am instead of studying for this math test? Sure, the test is tomorrow but I'll just sit next to Willow and everything will be fine.

"Will, I'm not getting this at all. I think I might be one those people that are un-tutorable. I think maybe we should take a short break and study more in the morning before the test." There's nothing like an early morning cram session to completely fry my brain. She gives me a very disapproving look and I look down at the table. I'd rather stare off into space than see her disappointed slash resolve face.

"You can get this. You just have to focus your mind instead of letting it wonder and think about another certain slayer that's always on your mind these days," she says and I look up at her again. She looks a little hurt and I have to stop myself from sighing because she's already annoyed with me and I really don't want to make it worse. I don't know why she gets so put off and hurt. Maybe it's because I'm paying more attention to a girl who isn't her? God, I hope not because the image of giving her the same type of attention is just…traumatizing.

"She is kind of…distracting," I say and Willow nods her head a little. Ok, so I guess it's time to give her the attention I've been withholding and my God that mental image is terrifying. Willow's like a sister to me so hopefully all of these sexy thoughts aren't some weird feelings I've been burying. "Oz is distraction worthy too. How have you two been?" She gets a little smile on her face and she doesn't look as upset now. I really do need to start spending more time with her if that one little question is enough to cheer her up.

"Oz and I have been doing pretty great," she says and she gets that dreamy look in her eyes. That makes me smile. Willow is such an amazing person. I'm glad she stopped fawning over Xander and found someone who treats her right. My smile fades a little when she gets a little blush on her face followed by a very shy expression. And now she's having trouble keeping eye contact for more than ten seconds. I know this look very well. She always gets it before she asks a question about sex. I kinda thought these days were over since I'm dating a girl. I guess I was totally wrong.

"Does Faith ever go, you know?" she asks and I give her a blank look. Almost every single conversation with Willow on this topic starts out this way. She asks a very vague question that I'll never be able to answer, then she says what she really means and it's normally very personal and kind of invasive. Her blush gets a little stronger because she knows she needs to be more detailed in the question. She lets out a little sigh and stares down at her fingernails.

"Has Faith ever…," she says and I think her ears are about to burst, they're so red. "Has she ever gone down on you?" I'm so glad I'm not eating or drinking anything or I would be choking on it right now. She's never asked me a sex question about me. It's normally the guy anatomy that she's curious about and I really hope she doesn't ask for very specific details because I might die of embarrassment.

"Yeah, she has," I say and my face is burning from the blush that's now painted on my face. I think every time I see her from now on I'm going to blush really hard at the memory of this conversation. Willow looks just as uncomfortable as I feel but at least she wasn't stuttering or rambling because that might have made this even worse. Why, I don't know, but I just think it would have.

"Well when someone does that is it worth all of the awkwardness and embarrassment? Because Oz and I were in his van the other night after a date and we were kissing and he wanted to do that to me but I got really nervous and started rambling and I don't know if something like that is worth the trouble or not," she babbles at warp speed and my blush starts to go away. Thank God she didn't ask for specifics about me or I would've died.

"Yes, Willow, it's totally worth it," I say and she finally looks up into my eyes again. She looks embarrassed and a little freaked but also kind of curious. "It's a little weird at first and I'm still not used to it completely. I get really self-conscious when she starts moving…towards that area, but once she's doing it, it feels amazing and all I can think about is how great she's making me feel." A little blush creeps up on my face but I fight it off for the most part. She blushes too but not as bad as before.

"So what's Faith like when no one else is around? Because sometimes when she's around us she acts like a person I really don't think anyone should be dating," she says and she has that curious look on her face again. It's true that Faith can be a little defensive and since we're hiding our relationship she can be a little cold sometimes because she doesn't want anyone to be suspicious. Considering my track record with dating I doubt Xander and Giles are going to think there's anything going on.

"She's completely different when it's just the two of us. She's so sweet and she treats me like a princess," I say and get a little smile on my face just thinking about her. Her treating me so good might not be such a good thing, though. She's going to spoil me. "It's intense but it's different than it was with Angel. She doesn't make me miserable. Well, at least not all the time. But it isn't her that's making me sad and gloomy when I am. It's the situation because I want everyone to know about us but she's not ready."

"Faith wants to keep something a secret? I didn't think that was possible. She's always bragging about the boys she sleeps with," she says and her eyes go really wide like she said something wrong, like I'm not in the room when Faith brags about the guys she never really slept with. "Not that I'm calling her a hussy because this is the twentieth century and women can do with their bodies as they see fit even though many groups say otherwise." I smirk a little but she still looks really freaked out and I can't blame her. I haven't exactly been the poster child of emotional stability lately.

"It's ok, Willow. Faith doesn't actually sleep around. She says that so you guys won't bug her about her love life. She saw how hard you guys pushed me to be with Scott and she didn't want you to do that with her," I say and her eyebrows furrow a little. I guess she's starting to realize that almost everything out of Faith's mouth has been nothing but lies. I hope she doesn't hold that against her because things are tense enough between the two of them without Willow holding some kind of grudge.

"We just want you to be happy, Buffy, and Scott is a nice, normal guy who's had a thing for you for a long time. Ok, sure he isn't being so nice now that you're broken up but who really believes the rumors that people spread? And besides, it's not really a rumor because it's true," she babbles and my eyebrows furrow. Scott Hope is spreading rumors about me? That little weasel. I cannot believe I ever considered going down on that guy. Thank God I didn't or I'd be really upset about this.

"What rumors? I haven't heard any rumors about me," I say and Willow looks down at her math book with a guilty look on her face. Why she looks so guilty I don't know but I really want to find out what this is all about. "Willow, what rumors has Scott been spreading about me?" My tone is firmer, a little clipped, and it sounds the exact same way when Sam does something she knows she's not supposed to do. Great, now I'm using my 'mom voice' on my friends. That is so not the issue right now.

"He's telling people you dumped him because you're gay and you only dated him to make people think you're straight," she rushes out and it sounds like it physically hurt her to say that. Ok, how long has he been saying stuff like that and how come my so called friends never told me? "Don't be mad. It's not his fault that he's right." I can't' believe she's defending him.

"No, but it's his fault that he's telling people this. How does he even know? He never saw me with Faith except when we would spar and he'd stick around," I say and trust me I sound really mad. Willow looks up at me and her expression is different now. She's giving me that 'you can't be that blonde' look and I don't like it. What else is she keeping me in the dark about? I think I kinda know how she feels now and I really need to open up to her more often because this feeling is fucking awful.

"You can't tell me you've never noticed the way you and Faith spar," she says and I give her my confused look. You know the one: head slightly tilted, eyebrows so furrowed they're almost touching, plus patent pending. I try to think back to all of the times Faith and I have spared but I probably shouldn't focus on those thoughts for very long because the thought of Faith wearing nothing but cut off shorts, a sports bra, and being all sweaty and pressed up against me is making me feel things I shouldn't feel with Willow in the room.

"Well, I guess we can get a little rough sometimes because we don't have to hold back and we're both competitive. But I don't see how he would have come to that conclusion just from watching us spar," I say and Willow let's out that little sigh that says 'the hair dye is melting your brain'. Ok, so maybe I project a lot of my insecurities into her sighs and facial expressions but everybody does so whatever.

"Buffy, when the two of you spar everyone can feel the sparks between you two. Most of the time Xander has to leave to have some alone time in the bathroom." Ew, why would she tell me that? "It even makes Giles turn extra British and hide in his office until you two are finished. I'm kind of surprised Scott didn't start saying anything sooner." Great, so she's on that weasel's side.

"Ok, so things between us can get a bit…charged and steamy but how come no one has said anything?" I ask and I can't help but pout. If my friends already know without me having to say anything it would make things so much easier. Except for the part where Faith has a kid, I'm practically a step-mom, and they've been living me with for a couple of months now. I think that band-aid isn't going to be ripped off without a fight.

"What are we supposed to say, Buffy? 'Hey, I think you and Faith might be gay and secretly sleeping together, what are your thoughts on that? And could you maybe try to tone down the steaming sparing because Xander is starting to get carpal tunnel.'" "Ok, so maybe she has a point that can't really be denied.

"You're right, I probably wouldn't have reacted well," I say and look down at the table again. Why does everything have to be so complicated? I just wish I could be at a scooby meeting and treat Faith like I want to treat her around my friends. I want to hold her hand, and give her the occasional kiss on the cheek just like I've done with all the other people I've dated. This whole ban on PDA's is stupid and I need to talk to Faith about it because it's starting to bother me a lot more than I thought it would.

"Don't look so sad, Buffy. We just didn't know how to ask you about it. We don't think there's anything wrong with you being with Faith, you know, romantically. In fact, Xander said that when you two finally fess up and start holding hands in public it should be declared a national holiday," she says in that tone of voice she uses when she's trying to cheer people up. Wait a second, what?

"Did you guys have a group meeting to discuss whether or not you should ask me if Faith and I are a couple?" I ask and I don't sound very happy about it. The guilty look on her face mean I'm totally right and I cannot believe my friends did this. Why would they actually meet up and talk about me behind my back? This is ridiculous.

"We just didn't know how else to handle it, Buff. It's not every day you think one of your best friends might be gay and dating another one of your friends. But the important thing is we're all here for you and we love you. Besides, you came out to me already so it's not like you're completely in the closet," she says and I guess she's right. They were acting creepy because they care. "If you do finally tell Xander just be prepared. He might faint or zone out for a long time or ask for details. Just remember that he cares but in his own icky boy way." I can't help but smirk at that and she's right, Xander can be kind of icky sometimes.

"I'll keep that in mind," I say and pick up my pencil. I think this break has been long enough. I've definitely learned a lot tonight. Not about anything that will help me on the test tomorrow but at least now I know how great my friends are. I know they're not going to freak when I tell them that I'm in love with Faith and she loves me too and we're a couple. Sure, Xander might drool, Giles will probably clean his glasses to death, and Oz will be all zen and mysterious but at least after the dust settles they'll be supportive. That's all anyone can ever really ask for, right?



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