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The Princess of Denial

by Salix

"Love Games" Challenge:



Rating: NC-17
Summary: A couple years after Chosen, the gang has relocated to Cleveland. Buffy has a new boyfriend, and seeing them acting lovey-dovey stirs up some confusing feelings in Faith.

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Chapter One

"No, no, no, stop it," B says around a bunch of fuckin girly ass giggles. I look over from my spot on the floor and I can't stop my eyes from formin a glare. She's sitting in the cro-mag's lap and he's lightly tickling her ribs with one hand, and she's squirming around. Fuckin barf. If I have to sit through an hour and a half of this I might go all evil again. It's not like I don't like seeing Buffy happy, 'cause I do, but this is supposed to be a scooby movie night, and there's no fuckin way that douche-bag is a scooby.

"Tryin to watch the movie guys," I say and shove a handful of popcorn in my mouth. They quiet down a little bit but they don't stop completely. This is how it's been for the last month. B met this guy, Marcus, while she was on patrol. She saved him from a pack of vamps but he didn't just run off like most people do, and he wouldn't accept the whole 'gang members on PCP' bit either. So they went out for coffee, she explained a few things, he asked her out on a real date, and they've been like love-sick teenagers ever since.

"I'm not going to stop 'til you say it," the cro-mag says and I can't help but roll my eyes. Don't get me wrong, Marcus isn't stupid. He's got two Ph.D.'s and has a high payin job and all that shit, but this guy looks more like a caveman than Angel did. Angel was an old ass vamp so that's something at least, but what's this guy's excuse? I glance over at him out of the corner of my eye and as soon as I see them my eyes roll. He's still tickling her a little, her hand is wrapped around his fingers but she's not really trying to stop him or his fingers would be broken. He's also blowin on her ear. Her ears are super sensitive and she's trying pretty hard not to squeal.

How do I know all of this about B? Well in the two years since Sunnydale went ka-boom we've become really close friends. Like, really, really close. And what do really, really close friends do? That's right kids, they tell each other everything. Well, B tells me everything, but I keep some things to myself. Like how I think her boyfriend should be put on display at the zoo next to the chimps to visually show evolution is real. Yeah, I think I made a good choice keepin that to myself 'cause B still has some anger issues and one hell of a right hook.

"Ok, ok, I'll say it: you're hotter than Johnny Depp." And there goes my fuckin appetite. It's a shame 'cause I have a pretty good spread of junk food I was really looking forward to eating. She giggles again and then I hear the light smack of a kiss. I seriously think I might puke, and I already ate a lot of green and red gummy-bears, so I really don't want that to happen. I glance around at the other scoobs and they're blissfully unaware of the gag fest that's happening on the couch. They don't have slayer hearing and I kinda hate them for it.

"Seriously, B, I'm trying to watch this," I say, sounding a little more agitated than before. Willow's sitting next to me and she gives me a weird look. I know exactly what the look means but I ignore it. When Kennedy and Xander's girl, Chloe, aren't out on a secret mission they act pretty much the same way on movie night. I never say a word about it either but their girlfriends aren't annoying, know-it-all cro-mags. Well, Ken's a know-it-all, but she's hot so I let it slide.

"You don't even like this movie. You voted against it than complained for fifteen minutes when you lost," she says sounding a little defensive. Ok, so more than a little. It's no secret that when shit starts to go down between me and B we go from zero to a hundred in six seconds flat. I'm pretty much asking for a fight right now, but I don't care as long as it breaks up the love fest between her and Marcus.

"Yeah, and you're the one who wanted to watch a gay pirate movie that was made for little kids. So why don't you pay attention?" Oh yeah, I'm just asking for that right hook to the face. It's not like I got anywhere to be tomorrow so I can take it. I'm not only irritated because of that douche-bag on the couch, but I can only take so much of her bad fuckin taste in movies. Next she's gonna wanna watch Harry Potter or some retarded chick flick. I wanna watch a fuckin classic, the original 1974 Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and I get dissed on for 'not getting enough violence during patrol'.

"Wow, Faith, if I knew you were going to act like this big of a baby for not getting your way I would've let you watch your stupid horror movie, but no one else wanted to watch it either." Ok so she kinda has a point, but that doesn't matter now. I'm in a foul mood, and I have been since this morning so logic doesn't count. It's all the cro-mag's fault too. He stopped by for breakfast and ate the last of my cereal. The box had big bold letters: Faith's – eat and die. I guess B told him I wouldn't care 'cause there was only half a bowl left. Well I did fucking care.

And another thing that bugs me, why is he always hanging around here? Why can't they go over to his place and gross out his roommates for a while? If I didn't know any better I'd think he's doing this shit on purpose. Him spending the night every once in a while bugs me too. They haven't had sex. I know that 'cause B would've told me if they did, and our bedrooms share a wall so I would've heard it. Even if I wasn't a slayer I'd still have ears like a wolf. I look over at her to deliver my comeback but what I see makes my skin crawl. Marcus is gently rubbing his hands up and down her arms trying to calm her down. Why can't he just mind his own fucking business?

"Ya know what B, you guys enjoy your gay pirate movie and I'll go watch the grownup movies upstairs." Take that, ya fuckin bitch. It takes me exactly a minute and fourteen seconds to gather up all my junk food so my exit isn't as dramatic as I thought it was going to be. Xander, Willow and Dawn are looking at me like I grew a second head, but I could care less. Ok, that's a lie. I do care, and I feel like a jackass for makin a big scene on the one night we get to just chill out and relax together. It isn't completely uncalled for though, and I have my reasons for being so pissy.

I storm up to my room like a five-year-old drama queen and throw all of the stuff that barely passes for food on the little couch that Buffy said would look good in here. I practically slam my body down on my bed and stare up at the ceiling. I know I'm acting like some angsty teenager or whatever, but everything was going fine until that douche-bag came along. I honestly don't know what the fuck she sees in him. She's just doing the same shit she did with Riley back in the day; trying to be normal by finding a normal, all-American guy. Yeah, that worked out so well last time.

Anyway, back to the point: movie night is a scooby thing, and he shouldn't be here. B and I always sit on the couch together and eat a lot of junk food and mock whatever movie we're watching. Except for Casablanca 'cause that movie's the shit. And then her stupid boyfriend shows up tonight uninvited and she lets him stay. Like they don't spend enough time together. And I lose my goddamn spot on the couch so they can make moon eyes and slobber all over each other. What am I, a fuckin dog?

Yeah, that's exactly what I am. I'm the dog of the house who likes to be kicked. Not literally, but for whatever fuckin reason I can't seem to stop starting shit with B like in the living room just now. I'm not too worried though 'cause tomorrow I'll walk up to her with my head down and my tail between my legs and apologize for being a bitch. It was just really fuckin rude, ya know? She's the one who picked out that gay pirate movie and called for a vote when I wanted to watch something else. Then she doesn't even pay attention to the movie she wanted.

I sigh when someone knocks on the door but I don't say a fuckin word. I already know who it's gonna be, and I know that it doesn't matter what I say because they're gonna come in here no matter what. Sure enough, the door opens and I don't look away from the ceiling when Willow walks in. Yeah, that's right, I said Willow. Willow, Red, my partner in crime. Well, not really crime but you know what I mean. Red would never break the law, again, but we do get into trouble together.

Everyone thought me and Xander were gonna be like best buds or whatever but it just can't happen. We have some stuff in common, we read comics and like Star Wars and we can go on and on about which superhero is better. I always say James Bond, and he always says Superman. I'll admit Superman is pretty cool. He can fly, can stop speeding bullets and all of that stuff, but there is one thing that James Bond has that Superman never does. James Bond fucks really hot women while Superman is holding out for Lois Lane who he'll never be able to fuck 'cause he'd kill her.

"Faith, are you ok?" Willow asks and sits down on the foot of the bed. I don't know why she's asking that. I thought she was going to come in here and bitch 'cause I ruined movie night. Yeah, I know, Willow doesn't nag at me like that, but I guess I still have an insecurity or two I need to work out. "I know the ceiling can be very interesting this time of night but I was looking for an answer to that question." That makes me laugh. Well, it makes me laugh while trying really hard not to laugh so it sounds like a snort.

"I'm fine, Red," I tell her and I know there's no fuckin way she's going to accept that answer. She can see through all my little white lies better than anyone can. I guess that just happens when you're friends with someone for a while. I'm sure B can see through my little white lies but she hardly ever calls me on 'em. Alright, she probably calls me on 'em more than I'm willing to admit, but I gotta keep some of my pride since most of it is bruised right now. I have no fuckin clue why it's so bruised but it feels like it just went three rounds with Mike Tyson and got its ear bit off.

"Yeah, you threw a Dawnie sized temper tantrum because you're so fine. Sorry Faith, that's not going to cut it," she says and lies down next to me on the bed. See, I told you she wasn't going to let me get away with that. She's using her elbow to prop herself up and I can feel her eyes looking at my face. Willow's pretty good at seeing through all my bullshit, and sometimes I really fuckin hate it. She's lucky I didn't retaliate for saying I threw a Dawn sized temper tantrum 'cause that's a pretty big insult.

"Nothing's wrong, Willow. Must be getting close to that time of the month," I tell her and again I know she isn't going to buy that shit. I don't know why I always do this. I don't know why I can't just let my walls down instead of playing this game. But every time I get upset about something, especially after I fight with B, I always play the bullshit game, and Willow always wins. Well, not always. The first couple of months she would back off 'cause she didn't want to push me too much. That's all out the fuckin window now, though.

"You really think I'm going to be believe that?" she asks and I just shrug. Again I know this is all completely pointless but it's part of the game and who am I to screw that up? I still can't believe how B was acting downstairs. Dawnie was in the room for fuck's sake. She's supposed to be settin a good example for the little brat. Well what kinda example is she setting by sittin in her boyfriends lap and letting him put his hands all over her while they're in front of everyone? "I know you too well, Faith. You don't get pissy like this around that time, you just get, like, mega horny." I chuckle a little 'cause it's true.

"Being mega horny with no release makes me frustrated and being frustrated makes me pissy," I say and that sounds pretty fuckin good to me. Maybe she'll buy it now. Nah, she's Willow, there's no way she's going to settle with that logic. Like she said, she knows me too well to fall for any of this. But the more questions she asks the closer she's getting to the ones that are gonna touch some sore spots and I really don't want that to happen. That's what this game is all about: avoiding the real shit.

"Well why don't you find someone to help you out with that?" she asks and I can't stop the smirk from breaking out on my face. I'm sorry, but I have to. She just walked right the fuck into it. I finally look away from the ceiling and into her eyes. I spread my legs a little and bring my left knee up, and I arch my back towards her. I know I look fuckin sexy right now and I can tell Willow really wants to run her eyes down my body.

"You makin an offer, Red?" I drawl out nice and slow. I lick my lips and bite my bottom one a little and I swear her eyes just dilated a little bit. It doesn't really have anything to do with me, though. It has more to do with the fact that her girl has been gone on a secret mission for a month and a half and won't be back for at least another two. This is just another game we play: gay chicken. I can't decided which is gayer: Red going down on another chick, or us pretending we're going to kiss each other than pulling back at the last second and giggling about it like twelve year olds.

"Stop trying to change the subject, Faith," she says and gives me a little smack on my thigh. She's trying to sound casual about it, but I can hear the bite in her tone. She really is sexually frustrated because her girlfriend isn't here but she's trying to be cool about it. I just give her a little smirk and wiggle my eyebrows. She's the badass Wiccan now but I can still get under her skin. I've always been able to do that. "If you don't stop I'm going to tell Kennedy you hit on me." That makes me stop laughing. Kennedy's one hell of a slayer and when it comes to protecting what's hers she's more of a hit first and ask questions later.

"There's nothing to talk about, Red. Buffy pissed me off. Like that's something new," I tell her and go back to staring at the ceiling. Her eyes are still on me and I don't like the feeling of it. It's almost like she's trying to read my mind. She could do it if she really wanted to, but she doesn't because that's a real fuckin violation of trust. The only time she ever reads my mind is before she orders out and she wants to know exactly what I want to eat. Whenever I feel the little prickle on the back of my neck of her working that magic I instantly think of some hot celebrity I'd also like to eat out and all of a sudden she'll scream 'dammit Faith!'. Yeah, I'm awesome.

"Oh please. Stop trying to sell me all this crap, Faith. You and Buffy fight over absolutely everything." We do. You should see it at dinner time when there's only one roll left. We might as well be starving out in the wild and fighting to the death over a deer carcass. "But you never get mad at each other, not like this. What's been going on with you lately?" Again she has a point. B and I fight over everything like little kids but then five minutes later we're back to being the best of friends. I don't know what the fuck has been going on with me. I've just been in a real sour mood.

"I don't know, Willow. I just…don't know." I know exactly what's wrong. I just don't want to admit it. I don't want to admit that I don't like the fact that Buffy isn't making time to hang out with me anymore. We used to hang out all the time and then she got a boyfriend. Now most of our hang out time has turned into sucking-face-with-Marcus time. I feel like a little kid who's big sister doesn't wanna play with 'em anymore because she's too cool to hang out with a little kid. Wow, I now totally understand why Dawnie is such a freakin brat. Trippy.

"Ok, well than I'll help you get a clue: you're jealous," she says and she sounds dead fuckin serious. I look away from the ceiling and both of my eyebrows are lost in my hairline. I don't think they're ever coming back which is a shame 'cause I love using my eyebrows to help express my smartass remarks. I stare at her for a minute and she's not backing down. She's really fuckin serious. She thinks I'm jealous? What the fuck am I supposed to be jealous of?

"What-the-fuck-ever. I am not," I tell her and I sounded winded. Probably because I was holding my breath without even realizing it. Don't ya hate it when that shit happens? I do, I always get a really bad headache. Anyway, Willow gets this little smirk on her face and I know it well. She usually gets it when we play poker and she knows I'm bluffing.

"Faith, I hate to break it to you." No she doesn't, she totally loves this right now. "But you're so jealous you could be the new ruler of the Emerald City." She's been on a Judy Garland kick for the last couple weeks. Kennedy really needs to stop volunteering for these secret missions 'cause they're really starting to go to Red's head. My eyebrows finally come out of my hair and they knit together really tight and it kinda hurts.

"You're demented. I am not jealous of Buffy-fuckin-Summers." Like I'd ever want to date a guy like Marcus. He's such a fuckin cro-mag. How long have I been bitchin to you about him? She thinks I'm jealous over that douche-bag, that's one the funniest things I've heard in a long time. I think it's right up there with a Richard Pryor stand up, and Xander burping the National Anthem.

"That's good," she says that like a total smartass. I think we've been spending too much time together. "Because I wasn't saying you're jealous of Buffy." I let out a little breath of relief. As long as we got that straightened up. I know B is pretty cool but there's no way I'd ever be jealous of her. Except for that one time back in Sunnydale when I was all jealous and went crazy and tried to kill her. But other than that there's no way I'd ever be jealous of her. "You're jealous of Marcus." The sound of the air leaving my body sounds like air hissing out of a punctured tire.

"Why in god's name would I be jealous of that tool?" I ask and I practically shouted the question. Kinda surprising considering I didn't have any air in my lungs, but whatever. I hope no one downstairs head that 'cause I'm already in trouble with B. I don't need her hearing me callin her boyfriend a tool 'cause that would just piss her off even more. Willow gives me this look like I'm the one who's been smoking crack and it makes me wanna smack her. I don't, which is pretty big of me if you think about it.

"Fine, you live in denial all you want." What the fuck is she talking about? I am so not in denial. "But the truth is you're in love with Buffy." You wanna say that one more fuckin time? My eyebrows shoot back into my hairline and now I don't think they'll ever come back down. "You always have been. That's why you get cranky whenever Marcus is around." Really? I thought I got 'cranky' 'cause the douche eats all my food and never fuckin leaves. The look on Red's face goes from amused to dead fuckin serious. It's creepy how fast she does that.

"But if you don't pull yourself out of denial soon and tell Buffy how you feel before it's too late than you're going to be the bitter drunken bride's maid at the wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Tool," she says and just keeps lookin me dead in the eyes. I can't fuckin breathe because everything she said is just so fucking crazy. There's no way I'm in love with Buffy. There's just no goddamn way I can be in love with her. Red really needs to lay off the romance flicks 'cause they're really starting to warp her sense of reality.

Buffy's an annoying, high maintenance, bottle blonde who pouts whenever she doesn't get her way. She always uses the last of the milk and just puts the container back in the fridge. She's constantly hiding my cigarettes to try and get me to quit smoking and when I ask her where she put 'em she says anti-cancer fairies stole them. She's uptight, a total pain in my ass, loves hearing the sound of her own voice, and there's no fuckin way I'm in love with her.

"You really need some help, Red. I don't know what the fuck you've been smoking, but it's fuckin your brain up big time," I tell her and sit up in the bed. I don't wanna deal with this shit right now. My mood is getting even worse and if she doesn't stop I might slam my fist through the wall. Yeah Xander's good at the construction stuff but that doesn't mean he does it without bitching about it. Willow sits up too and I can tell just by the look on her face that she knows I'm getting close to the edge of doin something violent.

"Faith, just think about it, ok?" she asks in that tone of voice that sounds like she's talking to a cornered animal that's about to make a run for it. She puts her hand on my knee and I think she's using magic because it's calming me down a little bit. Normally when I'm freaking and someone touches me it makes me wanna turn tail and run. "A lot of bad things have happened to you, and it makes you feel like you don't deserve to be happy but everyone deserves a chance."

I glance over at her and I can tell just by the look on her face that she believes every word that just came out of her mouth. She leans in real close and leaves a little kiss on my cheek and gets up. I watch her walk outta the room without another word. Who the fuck does she think she is to just come in here, turn my fuckin world upside down, and then just walk out? Fuckin witch thinkin she can just do whatever she wants 'cause she can kill us all with just one look. Then again that is a pretty good reason.

But what-the-fuck-ever. I thought she was my friend, ya know? I guess not. Friends don't tell their friends that they're in love with someone just to mess with their heads. I'm not in love. I've never been in love and there's a good chance I'll never be in love. It's not like I can't get a boyfriend or girlfriend, if I wanted to put up with the baggage that goes along with one of those, but I know what loves gets you and I don't want it. I don't wanna have my heart metaphorically ripped outta my chest.

Well, I'd rather have it metaphorically happen then physically happen, but you fuckers know what I mean, right? Goddamn, I need a cigarette really fuckin bad. I don't care if they're bad for you, or if they're gonna give me cancer one day, I really fuckin need one. I get off the bed and walk over to my dresser. Man, could this day get any fuckin worse? I don't think so. Today has just been a weird day for me. It started with the last of my cereal being eaten, then I lost to Vi at a sparring match, then Dawnie kicked my ass at chess, and now this bullshit.

Maybe Red kinda has a point. Maybe I am jealous of Marcus. Not in the way Red was goin on about earlier, but ever since they started dating B hasn't been hanging out with me as much. All I wanted back in Sunnydale was for us to be friends, and now that we finally are I guess I'm jealous that she's spending more time with him than me. I dunno. That sounds pretty retarded but at the same time it doesn't, ya know? Red told me one of the reasons we didn't get along back in the 'Dale is because she was jealous of me takin B away from her like that.

I open up my jewelry box and pick my lighter up. Man, I fuckin love this thing. Xander gave it to me for my birthday. It's a Zippo that he got custom made just for me. It's chrome, and on one side it has the logo for the Red Sox, and on the other is has a little green four leaf clover. He told me if I keep it in my pocket and take it everywhere I go it'll bring me luck, but I don't wanna do that 'cause I'm too afraid of losin it. I open up the little drawer at the bottom of my jewelry box and lift up the false bottom. When I see it's empty I get this fucked up feeling in my chest and I wanna scream. Why the fuck can't Buffy just leave me and my cigarettes the fuck alone?



Chapter Two

"Come on, babe, just calm down," I hear Marcus say through the wall. Man, I should really talk to Red about putting up some kind of silencing spell around my room. I really don't wanna hear his fuckin voice right now. Or ever, but that's beside the point. The movie can't be over yet, I haven't been up here that long. So what the fuck are they doing in her room? "It wasn't that big of a deal." I hate the way he talks to her sometimes. It sounds like he's talking to a kid or something.

"Were you not in the room? Of course that was a big deal. It was a very big deal," Buffy says and she sounds like she always does when she rants: like the world revolves around her. I roll my eyes and sit down on my bed again. The bitch stole my cigarettes, again, and hearing her voice soundin like this is just making the craving worse. "Faith has been walking around acting like someone killed her puppy, that's a huge deal." Can you fuckin believe that shit? She's talking shit about me behind my back to her stupid fuckin boyfriend. God, I can't believe this.

"You guys are friends, right? Just wait until you're both calmer and talk to her about it," the douche-bag says and I can tell by the sound of his stupid voice that he doesn't really know what to say. I don't really blame him though. When B gets that's pissed off there really is nothing to say 'cause she doesn't want a solution to the problem, she just wants to rant. She's a woman, that's just what we do.

"I've tried talking to her about it, and she won't tell me what's bothering her." That is total fuckin bullshit. She's never tried talking to me about it. What a fuckin liar. I know that B can exaggerate sometimes but I didn't think she'd outright lie like that. "She keeps everything bottled up all the time, and it's not good for her. It's not good for any of us." I roll my eyes again and get up from the bed. I have too much fuckin energy to just lay there. I start pacing around my room but it doesn't help shit.

"If I could just figure out why she's so mad then maybe I can help her," B says and she sounds really sad. I have no idea how to feel about that. Should I be happy that she's a little sad because it means she really cares about me, or should I be pissed because she basically pities me? I have no fucking clue and thinking about it is making my headache worse.

"Maybe she's jealous of us," I hear the regional captain of the dorklords say and my whole body freezes. What the fuck did he just say? Did Red say anything to him? If she did she is so fucking dead. I don't know why the fuck she'd say anything to Marcus, not that there's anything to tell, but if she did I'm gonna kill her. And why would I be jealous of them? The world doesn't fuckin revolved around the two of them. Maybe someone needs to remind him that.

"What? Why would Faith be jealous of us?" B asks and she sounds totally fuckin confused. She's probably makin that face where her eyebrows are all scrunched up, she gets that little wrinkle on her forehead, and her eyes get this faraway look in them. Yeah, so I know a lot of about B's facial expressions, that doesn't mean shit. I know a lot about Red's expressions too. It's just what happens when you're friends with someone for a long time.

"Not of us, specifically, but she's the only one in the house who's single. Maybe she's jealous that we're in a relationship and she's not." Oh please, that doesn't even make any fuckin sense. I don't do relationships. Never have and never fuckin will. I hear B laugh a little bit and I don't know why but it makes my blood boil. What the fuck does she think she's laughin at? It better not be me or I'll kick her goddamn teeth in.

"You don't know Faith at all. Faith doesn't like relationships. God love her, but she's too afraid of that kind of commitment." When I hear those words slightly muffled through the wall my breath gets caught in my throat. Afraid? Afraid? She thinks I'm afraid of a relationship? God that makes me wanna do something violent. Like pull her hair, and kick her shins, and punch her face in. I would never do any of this because I'm not all psychotic…anymore. I don't go around beating people up just because they say shit I don't like…anymore.

"That could be part of the problem. She wants intimacy but she's too afraid to try so she gets mad and lashes out at you because you have it," he says and if I were retarded that would've made perfect sense but I'm not so everything he says sounds so fuckin stupid. And the way he made that sound: I get mad and lash out because Buffy already has it. What are we, five years olds fighting over a toy? I don't fuckin think so.

"That makes sense," Buffy says, and as soon as I hear the words my hand automatically smacks my forehead. Ya know, Homer Simpson style. I even let out a little d'oh under my breath. I make sure not to say it too loud 'cause the second B remembers I'm up here the conversation will end. It's not that I like spying on her, but they're talking about me so I think I have a right to know what they're saying. "So should we stop acting all coupley in front of her?" Wow, I really didn't think B would change what she does to try and help me. That's something new.

"That would probably help," the cro-mag says. Yeah right, what the fuck does he know? His Ph.D.'s are in math and engineering not psychology. Even with one of 'em was he'd still be dead wrong. He doesn't know me. I've gone out of my way to spend as little time around him as possible. Ok, so I do have some problems sharing my stuff. I didn't grow up with much and now that I have the things I need I don't like other people trying to take them. Like my fuckin Apple Jacks. Seriously, who eats the last of the cereal when it's not at their house? A fuckin douchey cro-mag, that's who.

There's silence from the other side of the wall for a few minutes. My ears are pounding and my temples are throbbing and none of it is good. Normally when random body parts are throbbing it's because I just had a huge orgasm. Weird how the same shit happens for pleasure and pain. I go back over to my dresser and pop some Tylenol in my mouth and down it with some water that I keep in the mini-fridge. Yeah, I have a mini-fridge in my room. Maybe I should get Xander to build a cupboard so I'll have a place to put my cereal have breakfast on a regular basis.

Since B and her boy are done talking about me I go through the normal shit I do before bed. Brush my teeth, wash my face, and change into a baggy t-shirt and fresh pair of panties. It's not like the ones I had on were skanky or nothin, but I can't stand going to bed in the same underwear I've been sportin all day. Reminds me of all the time I didn't have clean underwear to put on and then I can't sleep. Yeah, I still have some issues, but I'm workin on 'em.

Anyway, my normal routine is totally fucked over when right when I turn off the light. At the exact moment the room goes dark I hear a moan from the other side of the wall. Did that really just fuckin happen? I could be imagining things. I haven't had sex in a while so my mind and hormones have been going kinda crazy. I listen for a second but I don't hear anything. Damn, I really need to get laid. Ever since I got my self-respect back I can't just pick up some random person and fuck 'em 'til the itch is cured. I tried and it made me feel like shit afterwards.

"Ooooh god," I hear B moan on the other side of the wall. It's official, I'm in hell. I guess god decided he didn't wanna wait until I die to send me there so he brought a little piece of hell to me. Wow, don't I feel special. Let's all watch while I jump for joy. About a minute after the moan I hear the very distinct sound that as soon as you hear it you know exactly what's going on. It sounds exactly the same as macaroni and cheese being stirred. I wonder how pissed B would get if I pounded on the wall and said 'don't eat too fast, ya might choke'? "Ooooh, oooooh, right there. Oh god yes." Yeah, she'd probably kill me.

I start to get this really fucked up feeling in my chest. It's almost like someone dumped a bunch of rocks in there and then lit them on fire. My jaw clenches and bile starts to rise in my throat. Why the fuck am I getting so pissed off? I've heard people in the house havin sex before. Red and Ken go at it like rabbits whenever she gets back from a mission. And they're loud enough for the whole house to hear. B is trying to be quiet but even if I didn't have slayer hearing I still have ears like a wolf.

Her sighs and moans are starting to get closer together and for whatever reason I have tears stinging the corners of my eyes. They're hot, and feel like lava sitting there just waiting to let loose. I hold 'em back though. I hate crying like a sissy girl, especially when I have no clue why I'm crying. Sure, I haven't had sex in a couple of months, but I'm not getting so desperate that just the sound of someone else getting some makes me see red, does it? I think I might be getting to that point, but I don't wanna think about it.

I grab my Blackberry off my nightstand and turn it on. Giles hooked us up with cellphones so he'd always be able to get a hold of us if he needs to, but I usually keep mine off. I dunno, the thought of him being able to get a hold of me any time he wants is a little disturbing. It's not like I'm ever doing anything I'd be ashamed of. Well, I take that back. If anyone saw me doing the dance from the Single Ladies video I'd fuckin kill 'em, or die of embarrassment. That's a total rep killer, ya know?

Anyway, I turn my phone on and check my twitter account. I know it sounds retarded, but it's pretty cool. This way the slayers who are undercover can let us know they're still alive without getting a hold of us specifically. It's pretty genius actually. But mostly I just fuck around on it, and post pictures of the weird shit I see on patrol. I scroll through some of the older stuff that I posted until I find what I'm looking for. It's the very first thing that Buffy posted on her page.

She wrote: first date with Marcus is perfect! I couldn't help myself so I replied: @thelatemrgordo get laid; use a condom. She shot back: @hungry_horny666 I don't put out so soon…like some people I know. I don't know why but it really hurt when she wrote that. B always gives me shit about the days back in Sunnydale when I'd brag about fuckin all the hot guys in the town. It usually comes after me telling her to loosen up and pull that stick outta her ass every once in a while. But when she wrote that it felt like she was calling me a whore without actually saying the word.

"Oooh, uuuunnnnnggghh, don't stop," she moans and her voice sounds really fuckin strained. I guess she finally took my advice and got rid of the stick. And she was totally fuckin wrong. They've only been seein each other for a month so by her standards she's putting out too soon. I'm not tryin to call her a slut or anything but B and I had this conversation a while ago and she said that it's good to wait for about three or four months before you sleep with someone because that's enough time to judge if they're worth having sex with. So Buffy's judgment has gone deaf, dumb and blind 'cause Marcus is a total douche and B is the only person who can't see it.

I hear B let out this loud, high pitched moan and I can hear how hard she's breathing. The moaning lasts for a few more seconds and then everything goes quiet. Well, not totally. I can still hear her breathing all heavy, but the bed isn't squeaking anymore and all the moaning and groaning has stopped. I should be happy for her, right? Or at least happy that she got off and I can finally get some sleep 'cause they were going at that for forty-five minutes. So why does my chest feel like it's on fire? If I'm this fuckin jealous 'cause she just got off and I've been goin through a dry spell then I seriously need to get laid.

"Are you ok? You haven't moved for five minutes," the cro-mag says and that fire in my chest burns a little hotter. That smug sound he always has in his voice sounds even worse and I really wanna punch him until his face is nothing but one big swollen bruise. The urge to do something violent to him is nothing new, but it's never been this strong before. I guess a part of me feel like if anyone should be getting head in this house it should be me. Sounds selfish, but it's been a while and the frustration is clearly making me irrational.

"I'm fine. That was just…wow. I mean, really wow. Just gimme a minute or a hundred," B says and she has this little giggle to her voice. Those lava tears that have been burnin my eyes leak out and leave molten trails down the side of my face and get lost in my hair. Seriously, what the fuck is the matter what me? I've never been like this before. Sure, it's been a while since I've gotten laid, but I've gone a long time without it before. I hear the douche laugh a little bit and the sound of it makes my hands ball up into fists. Seriously, what's my fuckin problem?

"Ok, take all the time you need," he tells her, and things go quiet again. Alright, so let's just entertain Red's idea and say hypothetically that I'm jealous of Marcus. That doesn't make any sense. Sure, B's great but I'm not in love with her. She annoys the shit out of me most of the time, even when we are hanging out and having a good time. She can never just relax, ya know? She's always worrying what other people are going to think of her, especially out in public. God forbid she doesn't wear makeup outside or the "beauty" police are gonna come throw in her jail.

Guess it bugs me so much 'cause she's hot without the makeup and she just can't see that. Yeah, I'm willing to admit that Buffy's hot. I swing both ways and I wouldn't mind tapping that, but there's a huge difference between fuckin someone a couple of times and being in love with them. Red's just going fuckin crazy. She's been watching way too many romantic comedies, which if you ask me is kind of a retarded genre. Since when is romance funny? I'll never understand how people can watch that shit.

Anyway, why the fuck would Red think I'm in love with B? Sure, sometimes I go out of my way to make Buffy happy. If she had a crappy day at work I'll dig into my secret stash of candy and give her the Hershey bars 'cause those are her favorite, but that's just bein a good friend. So we have friend-love or whatever, but Red and B have that too. Maybe Red is the one who's in love with her but she can't admit it so she's projecting it onto me. Nah, that sounds stupid. Red can't lie about shit like that. She just isn't capable of it.

I hear B giggle again, and I roll my eyes. Are those two ever going to shut up? I would like to get some sleep tonight. I don't have anything to do tomorrow, but that doesn't mean I wanna be up all night listening to this shit. See, this is what bugs me about B. She can be so fuckin selfish. Last time I got laid I went over to the guy's house and we fucked so no one here would have to listen to it. But does B give us that same consideration? Fuck, no. She just makes the rest of us suffer so she can get some.

"Do you have a condom?" I hear B ask, and she whispered it so softly if I didn't have slayer hearing I know I wouldn't have heard it. Oh fuck no! There's no way in hell I'm going to listen to that shit. I can stand the thought of that cro-mag going down on her, but listening to her get pounded by that asshole is something I don't wanna listen to. And I'm not fuckin jealous. I just hate the bastard and don't wanna hear him get lucky. On my top-ten list of things I never wanna do, listening to him get off is number three. It's right after getting eaten by a bear, and before fuckin a vampire.

"Yeah, just wait a sec," he says and my eyes start burning with more tears. I hear some shuffling around and he's probably getting his wallet out of his pants. Since there's so much noise his pants were probably off already and thrown on the floor. I can't believe this is happening. This has gotta be one of my ten worse days, ever. It started out bad and it's ending really fuckin horrible. Who woulda thought this was gonna happen? This morning the douche ate the last of my cereal and now he's about to fuck my friend. Not to sound all dramatic, but my life is so unfair sometimes.

I just fuckin lay here and listen 'cause there's not much else I can do. I'd give anything to have my iPod but I let B borrow it a few days ago. Hers got smashed when she was patrolling. She had it in her back pocket and she got slammed up against a wall by a vamp. She swears he did it on purpose but I highly fuckin doubt it. She just doesn't wanna admit she should've left it at home. Back to the point: since I don't have any music to listen to I'm forced to listen to their moans, and the squeaking of the bed. Those tears are falling almost nonstop and I really wanna punch the fuckin wall, but I'm afraid my arm will go all the way through.

I don't know how long they go at it, but it feels like fuckin forever. B just had to date a guy with stamina. Out of all the guys in Ohio she had to find one who can keep up with a slayer. It's not like I don't want Buffy to be happy but listening to them is driving me kinda crazy. The tears have finally stopped. I guess I ran out or something 'cause I don't feel any better. Hearing her come again and then hearing him come right after definitely isn't making these fucked up feelings go away. Like I've been saying, it's not because I'm in love with her because I'm not. I just really need to get laid and they're basically rubbing that in my face.

I thank all the gods and goddesses out there for the silence that's coming out of her room right now. I know B is definitely the kind of chick that likes to talk after sex, she's told me so, but hopefully they'll skip that shit. If I have to listen to the post-fuck chat I might kill myself. Or her. Probably him. It's kind of a tossup right now. I hear someone moving around in her room and I scoff a little. I knew that bastard just wanted in her pants. He fucked her and now he's gonna leave. Yeah, real classy, dude. I know I do the same shit, but I don't date the people I fuck. They don't think I want them for more than what's in their pants so no one gets hurt.

My bedroom door opens and my heart stops for a second. Ok, so I guess Marcus isn't the one who left. I glance over at the clock on my bedside table and I sigh. It's two in the fuckin morning. I glance at the doorway and see B sneak in here. This happens all the time. It's why I'm only kinda surprised. Buffy and I don't really get to hang out during the day all that much. Between work and training the newbies there wasn't much friend time to slip in. Then she started dating Marcus and the time she used to spend with me she now spends with him.

Since we're slayers and don't need as much sleep as normal people she sneaks into my room at night and we talk and just hang out. To be honest it's my favorite way of spending time with her. She's always less guarded and more honest with me about stuff. I like it when she just lets go of her trust issues and tells me about the things she doesn't tell everyone else. It makes me feel special or whatever. I didn't think she was gonna do that tonight though, since she just got laid. That's weird, right? I mean, shouldn't she be cuddled up to her boy right now?

"Hey Faith, you still awake?" I hear her whisper and it makes me smile. She knows I hate it when she asks that question so she always says it when she comes in here. She likes messing with me. She used to be all uptight whenever I would tease her, but now that we're friends she gives it back just as good. I don't say anything though. I'm afraid of what my voice will sound like if I speak. I quickly wipe the tears off my face as she walks over to the bed. She lies down next to me and as soon as I smell her I wanna cry. She smells like Buffy and sex and Marcus.

"Faith," she whispers with a big fuckin smile on her face. I roll over onto my side so I'm facing her. Even though the smell of her is making my stomach hurt in all kinds of wrong ways, seeing her smile makes me smile too. B doesn't smile very often anymore, the weight of being a slayer for so long kinda takes that outta her, but when she does smile it kinda lights up the room, and it's totally infectious. "Faith, there's a boy in my room." I chuckle a little bit to cover up the urge to vomit. It didn't really help though.

"Yeah, I heard you guys," I tell her and I try to sound as unaffected as possible. B is one of my best friends so it's normal that she wants to talk about this with me. Doesn't mean I wanna talk about it with her though. I mean, do I ever tell her about the people I fuck? No. Mostly because she always says I deserve better. Whatever, the point is I gotta act like this isn't eating a hole through my insides and keep up appearances. The last thing I need is Buffy trying to dig into my feelings 'cause I still don't know what the fuck I'm feeling.

"I think people in China heard you guys." She wasn't that loud but I might as well mess with her a little. She blushes and then rolls over onto her back and looks up at the ceiling. She always does that when I make her blush. She still hates the fact that I can get under her skin so easy. I don't know why she told me that 'cause now I do it more often. "So, did lover boy fall asleep right after or does he think you're in the bathroom?" He's probably one of those loser guys that falls asleep right after. She looks over at me again and I'm glad because for whatever reason I really missed looking into her eyes.

"He didn't fall asleep right after, but he's asleep now," she says and she has the cutest little smile on her face. It's one of those little smirks that someone gets when they have something they wanna say but they don't wanna say it. Most of the time it's annoying, but it's always cute when Buffy does it. "I wore him out. He said I'm like an energizer bunny or something." The smirk is a little bigger now and we both laugh a little. Sure, I'm laughing and smiling on the outside, but I think my soul is dying listening to her talk about him. The fire that's been burning in my chest starts to spread, and I feel like lashing out.

"Maybe he's not the guy for you then," I tell her and try as hard as I can not to sound pissed off. She gives me a confused look and it makes me wanna smile. I don't, though. I don't think I could smile right now even if I tried. I'm getting sick and tired of having to try. Like I said before, this is my favorite way of spending time with Buffy, but right now I wish she'd just go back to her boy toy and leave me alone. "I mean, if he can't get the job done then what's the point of seeing him?" She gets another little smirk on her face and I really wanna smack it off. I know I said it's cute when she does it, but not right now.

"Oh, he got the job done a couple of times." A couple of times? This guy made her come a couple of times? I know he made her come when he ate her out and then she had that second big one when they were fucking but no one uses the phrase 'a couple of times' to describe just two things. So he made her come more than twice. God, I really wanna kill that bastard. Why'd I have to make a promise to never kill a human ever again? "I'm just not tired enough to sleep." I keep looking into her eyes for a few seconds and then I roll over onto my back and stare up at the ceiling.

"Hey Faith?" she asks after a few minutes of silence. I don't say anything. I just glance over at her. I really hope she doesn't ask why I'm being so quiet. Normally when she sneaks in here we talk for an hour or two and then she goes back to her room. Or sometimes she falls asleep in here. Normally I hate sharing my bed with other people, but B and Red are the exceptions. And get your mind outta the fuckin gutter. I've never had sex with either of 'em. But I wouldn't say no if they offered. They're both pretty hot. "Why did you get so mad earlier? We always talk during the movie." Ah, I should've known she was gonna bring up that shit.

"I dunno, B," I tell her and she gives me a skeptical look. What can I say, she knows me better than I'd like to admit. Maybe she'll buy the shit I tried to tell Red earlier. Ya never know, B is easier to lie to than Red. "Guess it's just getting close to that time, ya know? Always get a little agitated a couple days before." I can tell just by the look in her eyes that she doesn't believe me, but I don't think she's going to press the issue. She hardly ever does most of the time.

"So why don't you meet someone to help you, ya know, work out the frustration?" she asks and she blushes nice and deep. I laugh a little and it's genuine. She just got her brains fucked out but she's too embarrassed to say the actual words when she's talking about me? That's kinda fuckin priceless.

"Just haven't felt like going out. You guys are always busy and partying by myself just isn't fun anymore." That wasn't a lie at all. That was the god's honest truth. I hate going out to the clubs by myself. Before it was just fine, I preferred it even, but now that I have real friends I feel like I loser when I go out by myself.

"Well, we can all go out," she says and I don't like the look she has on her face. She looks like she's plotting something. Usually when she gets that look on her face she convinces me to go to the mall with her and we shop for six hours. Most of the time she even gets me to carry the bags for her. I do it without too much bitchin, 'cause that's what good friends do, right? "We'll go to the club this weekend, it's always packed on Saturdays. We'll be your wing-people and find you a boyfriend." I can't help the internal groan.

"B," I say, but it sounds more like a whine. Shut up, I do not whine. Sometimes I throw tantrums like a little kid, but I don't whine like one. Buffy has this look on her face like she can't wait for that shit to happen. It's almost like she wants to wake everyone up and drag 'em all down there now to see if there's anyone left for her to interrogate.

"Or a girlfriend. I'm ok with either." Yeah but I'm not. But this conversation isn't really about me, it's about her. See, B's been trying to hook me up with people for the last four months. She thinks I'm lonely and need someone to be with. I keep telling her dating just isn't my thing but she's all determined. I don't know how she got it into her head that she's cupid but she's always introducing me to people she thinks I'll fall for.

"B, I don't know. I didn't like any of the people you tried to hook me up with before," I tell her and she rolls her eyes a little. To be honest I didn't really give them a chance. As soon as I found out B was trying to set me up with 'em I lost all interest. Two of them I bumped uglies with but they knew it was only gonna be a onetime deal. They didn't really get the job done though. I got them off a few times but I didn't come once. Only time in my life I've ever faked it.

"Please Faith. I hate that you're all alone. Everyone deserves someone, and I know you say that dating isn't your thing but you'll never know if it is or not unless you give it a try." I hate it when she gives me the pout and looks at me with those baby doll eyes. She knows I give in almost every time. "Come on, I trusted you when you told me to find the fun, why can't you trust me with this?" Oh fuck, I can't believe she's guilt tripping me into this. Wait, I can totally believe she's trying to guilt trip me into this. I let out a big sigh and she flutters her baby doll eyes.

"Fine, we'll go to the club this weekend," I tell her in the driest fuckin voice in the history of the world. She lets out a big squeal and she hugs me. Yeah, she's fuckin huggin me. Normally it wouldn't be a problem because we hug sometimes, but she still smells like sex. She smells like Buffy, sex, and Marcus. My stomach ties itself into knots and I force the tears in my eyes back into their ducts. I don't want her calling me out on it.

"It's going to be so much fun. You're not going to regret it, I promise," she says and she sounds really excited. The hug continues for a minute and I have no idea why. Normally when we hug it's quick but this is different. I don't know how but it's totally different from all the other hugs we've ever shared. Fuck, maybe I am going crazy. I mean, just an hour and a half ago I was crying because she was getting laid. "I better get back in case he wakes up. Goodnight, Faith." She leaves a little kiss on my cheek and she practically skips out the door. I let out a huge sigh and stare up at the ceiling. How do I get myself into these fucked up situations?



Chapter Three

"No Faith, don't wear that. It's too slutty. You don't want to send the wrong message," B says and I roll my eyes. This is the forth outfit that I've tried on and all of them have been 'too slutty'. A couple days ago I told B she could try to hook me up with someone at the club we go to and I think it's gone to her head. We aren't leaving for two hours but she wants to make sure I'm not going to try to do my usual thing. Ya know, the whole get some, get gone thing. Nah, she wants me to find Mr. or Mrs. Right.

"It's not too slutty," I tell her and she just sighs. I can't believe I let her talk me into this. I agreed to let her be my wing-woman. I never said I would be her personal Barbie. But then she knocked on my door and asked if she could help pick out my outfit. At first I told her hell no fuckin way, but then she fluttered her eyelashes and teared up her eyes and she knows that always gets to me. I can't stand to see her cry, even if she's doing it on purpose. "Besides, B, it's not like we're going to my arranged marriage. Unless there's something you really need to tell me."

"Oh please, like I'd ever try to force you to do something you don't wanna," she says, and I raise one of my eyebrows at her. She can see it in the mirror and she just rolls her eyes. "This doesn't count. I need to make sure you aren't misrepresenting yourself and what you're wearing when you make a first impression is important." My god, could she be any more of a girl right now? All I've been hearing for the past twenty minutes are the dos and don'ts of what to do on a date. Sure, some of the shit has been helpful, but not that.

"B, you know I always make a good first impression," I say and give her a little wink. She blushes and walks back into my closet. Ok, so why does she think this dress is too slutty? She thought it was nice when I bought it a couple months ago. Sure it's short, I have t-shirts that are longer than this, but I have great legs and wanna show 'em off. Isn't that how you pick people up in clubs? She totally has me confused and I hate it. I'm the one who's supposed to get under her skin, not the other way around.

"Here, try this." She hands me a skirt and a top and then sits down on my bed. Yeah, she's making me change and she isn't giving me any privacy. I guess she thinks I'll pick out something else if she looks away. I've changed in front of Buffy before, especially at the mall when there's only one changing room left and we share. It's a tight squeeze, but it's never been awkward or anything. But the past twenty-five minutes has been fucking awkward, and I don't know why. Before I even get the dress off she's up and walking towards my dresser.

"You'll need a different bra. You can't wear white with black it'll totally show," she says as if I didn't already know that and opens up the drawer. I haven't let her look in it but there was no stopping her this time. I just couldn't react fast enough. Probably because she's totally getting to me and I hate it. Mostly I hate the fact that I don't know why she's getting to me like this. "Woe." She sounds a little shocked and I blush. Yeah, I'm fucking blushing, how weird is that?

"Since when do you wear stuff like this?" she asks and she sounds kinda shocked. I really wanna jump all over that, and call her out on the fact that she thinks about what kind of panties I wear. I'm kind of afraid of her response though. Since Red had that psychotic episode and told me that I'm in love with Buffy, which is total bullshit, things have been a little weird between me and B. Mostly because I can't relax around her and it sucks like hell. Anyway, she picks up the pink lace boyshorts. There's only one way to get her to back off.

"Who says they're mine?" I ask all suggestively. Her eyes go wide and she instantly drops 'em like I told her they got the plague. They are mine, but I'll never admit that. B and everyone else think all I wear is black or red, but my wardrobe goes beyond that. Well, at least my selection of underwear is wider than just black or red. I do like wearing things that are a little more girly. Not very often, but it's nice sometimes.

"Why would you keep someone else's underwear?" she asks and grabs a black bra and tosses it to me. I'm surprised she's still willing to touch anything in that drawer. I let out a little sigh it's because now I have to change and she's still watching me. She isn't going back over to the bed where all she'd get is a good look at my ass. Nope, now she's gonna get full frontal Faith. A few days ago this wouldn't have been a problem, but now I feel like an awkward teen changing in a locker room full of older, hotter girls.

"Haven't you ever heard of a souvenir, B? She was really fuckin hot. I wanted to keep a little reminder." Maybe if I gross her out enough she'll leave me alone. All she does is roll her eyes and watch me change. I really wanna call her out on it but I really don't want to have the conversation that follows. Even though I'm friends with B I still have a hard time reading her and right now I'm too on edge to downplay anything.

"Wasn't there something else you could have taken, a piece of jewelry, or a watch maybe? Stealing someone's underwear is just…icky," she says and shudders a little. She told me that Spike used to steal her clothes and the thought of it still freaks her out. I just laugh a little and shake my head. I keep my eyes down on the floor as I change into the black bra, the black top and brown leather skirt. Not the first thing I'd pick to go dancing in, but it looks pretty hot.

"It's not like they still smell like her snatch, B. I washed 'em," I tell her and look up after I zip the skirt. She's walking towards me. Her eyes are doing that whole elevator thing that get people thrown into sexual harassment seminars. I know she's only doing it to check out the outfit though, which is a shame. I cannot believe we're having an argument about a pair of underwear that I didn't steal from anyone. This has got to be the dumbest situation I've ever put myself in.

"Do you have to be so crude all the time?" she asks and she sounds irritated. I know she isn't really irritated. She asks me that question at least three times a day and she always says it in the same tone. We like to mess with each other, and that includes picking at each other's supposed flaws. I don't think being crude is a bad thing. It's better than sugarcoating shit, that's for fuckin sure. Sugarcoating is just another way of lying.

"Do you have to be such a prude all the time?" I ask and raise an eyebrow. Normally whenever I ask that she'll say something about her mother raising her to be a lady, but right now she isn't saying anything. Her cheeks turn pink in a light blush, she gets a smirk on her face and she breaks eye contact with me. That can only mean one thing: she's thinking about Marcus. More specifically, she's thinking about the sex she's had with Marcus. Why do I suddenly have an urge to run my fist through a wall?

"So what do you think, B, too slutty?" I ask and pray that she won't call me out on the subject change. On any other day I would've jumped all over her non-response, but right now I just don't have the emotional control to call her out on it and not get pissed off when she answers. I've barely been able to keep it together as it is. It isn't just the Marcus thing that's throwing me off, it's the fact that tonight she's going to be practically pimping me out. I'm having a hard time stomaching that.

"No, I think this is the one. It's sexy, but not too obvious. All the others either showed too much cleavage or too much leg." She walks back into my closet and grabs a pair of shoes. I don't have anything too girly shoe wise. I have some heels but all of them are comfortable enough to dance in. At the time, at least, the next morning is a whole different story.

"Gotta disagree with you, Twinkie. There's no such thing as showing too much leg," I say and I am dead fuckin serious. The more leg the better, especially if they're as rockin as mine. Buffy just snorts a little laugh and picks out a pair of boots. She grabs the only girly boots that I have. All my other ones are a little more butch, and I wear them when I patrol. B got me these ones for my birthday last year. She said that every woman needs at least one good pair of sexy boots, and I hate to admit it but she's right.

"Whatever, Faith. I'm trying to find you a boyfriend or girlfriend. Not someone who's only interesting because they're hoping to get a free lap dance." I laugh because that was pretty good. Ok, so sometimes I dress kinda slutty. There are only so many years I have left when I can still pull it off without looking like a desperate freak, I might as well take advantage of that. I guess little miss tightly wound doesn't think so. So walks back over to my dresser and starts going through the box I keep my makeup in.

"Uh, B, what are you doing?" I ask as I sit on the bed and slip the boots on. God these things are so comfortable. B had 'em custom made just for me so they hug my feet just right. They're also really grippy on the bottom. I could probably run as fast as I can on a freshly polished floor and not slip, that's how awesome they are.

"What's it look like I'm doing, playing soccer? I'm going to do your makeup." Ok, the clothes I can handle, trying to find me someone she thinks I'll connect with I can kind of handle, but her doing my makeup I cannot handle. I never let anyone touch my makeup, and Brat had to learn that the hard way. She borrowed my mascara one day and woke up the next morning screaming 'cause I threw a bucket of ice water on her face. And before you ask, yes I let the ice melt first. I wasn't trying to hurt her, just punish her.

"Whatever, B. I've been doing my own makeup since I was twelve. I don't need your help." She clearly doesn't think so because she doesn't stop what she's doing. She keeps digging through until she finds what she's looking for. I sigh and walk over to her, hell bent on putting everything back and kicking her out of the room.

"You don't wear makeup, Faith. You wear a mask of eyeliner and mascara to make yourself look tough. Tonight isn't about looking tough, it's about meeting people and looking like a sad clown hooker isn't going to help." What the fuck did she just call me? Both of my eyebrows knit together, and she finally finds what she's been looking for.

"Alright, fine. But only because that's possibly the most original insult you've come up with." A sad clown hooker, how does she think of this shit? She gets a little smile on her face and grabs onto my hand. She walks us over to the bed and we both sit down. "Please tell me you aren't going to make me look like a regular hooker, 'cause there's only so much I can take tonight, B." She scoffs and rolls her eyes.

"I'm not going to make you look like a hooker, of any kind. I just want to use some more natural colors," she says and starts applying the foundation. I don't know why she won't let me do this part myself. It's not like my arms stopped working, or I hit my head really hard and forgot how to put it on. The look on her face is pretty cute though. Her lips are parted just a little and she has this deep look of concentration. Alright, so I guess I'll let her do this, but I'm not going to stay silent about it. That's just not my style.

"B, I'm not deficient. Just show me what you want me to use, and I'll put it on," I tell her and she looks into my eyes with a look that I know all too well. She's annoyed but she's trying to hold it back. She does that all the time, especially when I'm being all bratty like this. I can't just let her get her way. She might think I'm going soft or something. Faith Lehane ain't no fuckin marshmallow, that's for damn sure.

"I know you're not deficient, but you're stubborn. The problem isn't the colors. It's the amount you use. If I let you put it on you'll just cake your face like you always do." I do not cake my face in makeup. She's totally exaggerating. Sure I used to do that shit when I was a teenager but I don't do that anymore. Ever since I started buying my makeup instead of stealing it I try to stretch it out for as long as possible. "So will you please just let me do this and stop complaining? You're starting to sound like Andrew." Low fuckin blow.

"That was cold, B," I say but she just smiles a little bit. Things go silent between us but they don't get awkward. Well, at least they don't get awkward at first. But having B so close to me, being able to smell her perfume and that unique Buffy smell, and her touching my face so softly is starting to do some weird shit to my body. I'm getting turned on, and normally I'm not the kinda person who gets turned on while getting a makeover. I'm normally not the kinda person who gets a makeover but that's not the point.

"It really is a shame you wear so much makeup all the time. You're such a natural beauty, Faith, you should show that off more often." Great, now she's being the pot calling the kettle black. I'm always telling her she doesn't need to wear makeup every second of the day because she has a pretty face. But whatever. If I bring that up it'll just start a fight, or make her think that I'm trying to start a fight. What she just said finally sinks in and I get a little…shy. Buffy thinks I'm beautiful, when did that happen?

"Whatever, B. I'm hot and sexy as fuck, but I'm not beautiful," I say and she gives me an irritated look. At least she does at first. But then she looks into my eyes and sees that I'm not saying it just to make her made and her expression softens. She puts down the foundation and picks up the blush. Great, why did I even buy that?

"Faith, not to go all Kodak-moment on you, but you're one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen." I can't help the little smirk that forces itself onto my face. I guess she just realized what she said and her eyes get kinda big. "In a totally non-gay way. Ya know, like how everyone in the world, straight and gay alike, think Angelina Jolie is the most beautiful woman on the planet." I let her slide, mostly because she just picked up the eyeliner and I don't want her getting all stab happy with it.

"Whatever you say, B." The smirk won't leave my face and she looks a little embarrassed. So Buffy thinks I'm one of the most beautiful women she's ever seen? I have no idea what to do with that little piece of information. Normally I'd tease her about it, say maybe Red is starting to rub off on her, and milk the blush for all its worth. With the way I've been feeling over the last month or so, especially the last couple of days, teasing her about that just feels wrong.

"Raspberry Freeze," she says, reading the bottom of the lipstick tube. "I will definitely be borrowing this in the near future." We both chuckle a little bit and I part my lips a little so she can put it on. I get this weird fuckin feeling while she's applying the lipstick. It's like the air in the room changed. Things get really quiet and calm and it's getting a little awkward but not like it was before. Ya know that feeling you get when you really wanna reach out and touch someone even though you don't really know 'em? That's the feeling that I'm getting, but it's weird because I know her pretty fuckin well.

She pulls the tube away from my face and I rub my lips together to make sure it's even and all that crap. I look into her eyes and it's like I've been hypnotized. I can't look away even though the air between us is starting to get thick, like there's electricity crackling and waiting for a weak spot to hit. The look in Buffy's eyes changes too, and that urge to reach out and touch is starting to get a little overwhelming.

So I slowly reach out and touch her arm. The small touch snaps her out of whatever little moment we were just caught in. She stands up from the bed and clears her throat. She only does that when she's nervous or she got caught doing something she wasn't supposed to. What the fuck is that all about? She starts picking up the makeup from the bed and takes it back over to the dresser. If I thought things were awkward before then I clearly had no idea how tense they could get. Hindsight's a bitch.

"We should do your hair. Curls maybe. I know you like going for the wild, unruly look, but I think maybe some soft curls would look nice," she says and her voice sounds hella fuckin strained. So I guess it wasn't just me who got caught up in that little…what the fuck just happened. She looks at me through the mirror and I'm trying as hard as I can to keep my breathing under control. I cannot believe this shit is happening. You know when your best friend gives you a makeover and you get really fuckin turned on, that it's time to get laid.

"Um, nah, not tonight, B. Maybe next time though," I tell her and she looks a little relieved. I can't blame her. The reason I turned her down is 'cause the thought of her running her fingers through my hair and touching me anymore tonight is unsettling. It's not like I hate it when B touches me, but when I'm this turned on any touch is gonna get a reaction that I know she won't want, and my scalp is super sensitive.

"Ok, well we're leaving in…" she looks down at her watch and lets out a little sigh. I dunno if that's a good sigh or a bad sigh. Normally I can tell but this one sounded pretty neutral. Is there such thing as a neutral sigh? "…forty-five minutes. Xander's driving tonight, he promised to be the designated. Don't make fun of him too much. You know how whiney he can get when you challenge his manhood."

"Yeah, totally," I say and she just gives me a look. I didn't mean for that to sound so sarcastic but I couldn't control it. I have all this fucked up energy that I need to get out of my body and until that happens some things might be a little out of my control. "I promise I'll lay off him. No teasing of the bitch-boy tonight." She smiles for a second but then gives me a disapproving look. Oh come on, that was kind of funny. Xander is more of a woman than half the chicks who run through this house.

"Well, I need to go get ready," she says and there's a really long awkward silence. I have no idea what to say to her. I have all these thoughts running through my head of what I want to say to her, but I know I shouldn't say them. The number one being 'hey B, it's been a while, think you could just hold still for a sec? This shouldn't take long'. Could I be any more of a weirdo perv? I think not. "So I guess I'll see you downstairs." I just nod and give her a forced smile.

She walks to the door but pauses in the doorway. She turns for a second like she's gonna say something. I hold my breath for a few seconds and wait. I have no idea what she's thinking and I'd give anything to know. I don't know why it's so important to me, but it is. She doesn't say anything though. Her mouth opened and closed a few times, but no words came out. She turns around and leaves and shuts the door behind her. What the fuck was that all about?


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