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Chapter Nine

Huh. Morning again. This time I don't hesitate when I open my eyes. This time I'm not wondering what the fuck is goin' on. This time I'm just…gonna take a leap of faith. Heh. The gray dewy light lets me know it's not quite sunup yet. Well that an' the chill in the air. Damn. It's fuckin' cold. I scoot in a lil closer to B's body and almost instinctively she moves back in to me. I give a deep sigh of contentment before snakin' a hand around her waist. Buffy mumbles a lil before rolling over and snuggling down lower against my chest. She's gonna suffocate in there if she doesn't stop burrowin' soon.

 "Morninf." Heh. I stroke her hair gently tryin' not to wake her more than she already is. "M'hunfry." Yeah me too. I chuckle at that an' look down when she finally pulls her head away from my chest. "And from the sound of your belly you're hungry too." 

"Lil bit yeah." That's a big fat lie an' my stomach calls me on it with another big rumble. Buffy laughs an' drops her head to my belly to whisper at it. I have to lean down a little bit to catch what she's sayin'.  

"I know you're grumbly but you're just going to have to wait a little longer. I promise the works later." Later huh? A smile curls my lips as she pushes me on to my back gently an' straddles my waist. "Did you know that you snore like a bear when you're worn out from a night of intensely satisfying sex?" I do not. I give her a growl at that.  

"Liar. You were the one snorin' your face off. Honest ta God, B, it was like bein' in a wind tunnel." Buffy gives me a horrified look before sneakin' in her clever little hands to tickle me. I try to squirm but she's got me pinned tightly down with her thighs.  

"I. DO. NOT. SNORE." Ha. Yeah right. Bet I'm not the only person that's told her that too. My laugh comes out an actual laugh instead of a sarcastic chuckle. Buffy leans down, body pressed against mine and gets comfy. "Well. Maybe a little. But only to drown you out log sawer." 

Well. Maybe I was snorin'. A little bit anyway. "Not my fault ya had me screamin' until three a.m." Her eyes get bright at that an' I smile. Fuck yeah. I like it when she looks all lusty like that over me.  

"You were the one that asked me to take you home. A little late to complain about the ride now." Ha. Like I'd be complain' about that really.  

I growl at her again but this time it's more of a playfully sex growl. "Mm. This is me not complain' about the ride. See? Faith behave. That's me." 

She laughs at that and kisses the tip of my nose. That's…weird. But I don't say much about it 'cause it was the kind of weird that isn't bad. It's the kind of weird that I think might be good if I let it be. "That's what I like to hear." I raise my brows slowly.  

"The screamin' or the lack of complaint?" 

"Both." And then she bites me. No fuckin' shit. She bites me right on the collar bone. I hiss but my hips jerk up hard in to hers and she moans low and deep in her chest. "Urk." Urk? I blink my eyes a few times an' look down at her in confusion. "If you knew how badly I want you right now…" So what's the problem? A knock on my door is the problem. I sigh heavily an' give Buffy a pleading look. Don't answer it. We can still be asleep. It's early.  

"Um…Faith? You wouldn't happen to know where Buffy is do you?" Motherfucker. I sigh.  

"No." I can hear Willow hesitate on the other side of the door before starting to shuffle away. Buffy pinches my nipple hard and sits up.  

"Wait! Give me a second Wills." The footsteps on the other side of the door stop. There's a sigh and the sound of someone sliding to the floor by the door. Well if she wants ta hear what we're about to do fine by me. I look at Buffy with a question in my eyes. She shakes her head. "Sorry. I can't just…ya know with someone outside the door." 

Fine. I grumble and sit up as Buffy starts tugging on some clothes. She gives me a look and I just shrug before stretching out on the bed to get more comfortable. Like hell I'm gettin' outta this bed before I'm good and ready. Buffy huffs, yanks the sheet off my body and drops her head to my lap so fast it makes me levitate a few inches off the mattress.  

Her tongue slips between the suddenly slick skin between my legs and I groan. But that soft warm pressure is gone almost as fast as it was there. Buffy slides up my body, hands caressin' an' teasin' everywhere they can. "Jesus B ya tryin' ta kill me here?" 

Her lips quirk. "Nope. Just giving myself something to be smug about while I'm having coffee with Willow." Oh. Well. In that case. I give her a grin.  

"I fuckin' love you." Her grin grows at that an' she nips my lower lip. "You better go see what she wants or you're gonna find yourself ass up with me fuckin' ya hard from behind." 


Yeah. I have to go. Like nowish. I give Faith a shuddery sigh of anticipation and literally run for the door. Honestly. I almost didn't care that anyone was on the other side of the door. And really? Why didn't I tell Willow to go away? At least for another couple of hours while we wake up?

 I know why. I didn't tell Willow anything because the truth is that she wouldn't be looking for me this early in the morning if it wasn't important. I give my best friend a half smile that probably should be more repentant than it is. "Hey. What's up?"

 Willow struggles to her feet with a mild blush. I just wait as she dusts imaginary dust off her pants to buy herself some time. "So. I figured you'd be here when your bed didn't look slept in." I don't say anything to that. I think it's pretty obvious what I was doing in Faith's room.

 "Got anything for me?" Willow nods and hands me a file folder. I flip it open and scan the lines and lines of information. "Okay. What's the short version? I haven't had coffee yet." Willow and I jog down the stairs in tandem.

 "Last night Satsu had a pretty good question. Which led to a good lead." Uh huh. And the question would be what exactly? "She wondered why you got pulled in to this particular dream." Oh. I blink at her and nod. I think I know why.

 "Because of the guilt I assume." She shakes her head.

 "Yes and no I think. At least. Yes she does feel guilt but no that's not the only reason you were there." It's not? I blink at her but keep my feet steadily toward the mess hall. I really don't want to try and process all of this without some other stimulant besides lust in my body. "You see, I think that whatever has been using Faith's guilt to weaken her, has only been doing it to get to you."

 Why am I not surprised? The bitter rich scent of good old Columbian ground coffee beans stings my nostrils as I grab a mug and settle at a table. "Get to me why? And how exactly?"

 Willow settles in next to me with her hands wrapped lightly around her tea mug. "I think they were hoping to use that guilt against you too. The problem is…Faith is much more stubborn than they realized. I think this has been going on for almost a year." Wow. Since it happened. Faith's been living in fear of herself for a year. I blink as I process that.

 "That's hinky."

 "Yeah in the big premeditated magic kind of way." I pause with the mug halfway to my lips. What? "Magic like that doesn't come without a price Buffy. Whoever, or whatever is interfering with Faith's dreams has been waiting for a break for awhile. You don't just gather that kind of power without taking time and effort to control and contain it."

 Okay so that means what exactly? That all of this pain and suffering was intentional? That someone is purposely trying to hurt Faith and through her me? Not surprising. What is surprising is my reaction to it. I set my mug down softly on the table. "Who?" The one word leaves ice on my tongue with it's coldness. I will KILL whoever is doing this. Willow shifts nervously in her chair before resting a hand on mine.

 "I'm not sure. But I will find out. We'll get them Buffy. I swear it." I know. I know she wants that. But no one wants it more than me. No one needs it more than I do. I look away from her concerned eyes knowing that there's nothing soft or gentle in my gaze right now. I doubt there is anything soft or gentle about me period at the moment. "She's kept them from you, you know." My head jerks up at that. Willow sighs softly and glances in to her mug. "I thought she was so selfish for leaving you. Leaving us. I thought…I thought she didn't deserve you. I didn't know how hard she was shielding from you."

 My own head drops at that. I didn't know either. "She loves me Willow. As much as she hates herself she loves me. She never wanted me to see this. I'm sure of it." Wills nods and sips her tea more. We're silent for a long time before she clears her throat.

 "I know." A knot of tension releases itself from between my shoulder blades and I sigh. Thank God she knows. "I'll have your information tonight." And in the blink of an eye she gets up and leaves me to my thoughts. Faith loves me so much she'd let herself be tortured to protect me. Even if she didn't know she was doing it. I sigh. Now that I have her, I'm not going to lose her. Not again. My resolve strengthens and I smile to myself as I sip down more coffee. Faith is mine. And I fucking damn well intend to keep her.

Chapter Ten

Look. I'm not stupid right? I mean. Okay I know it's always our bad luck that we keep getting interrupted but there's still somethin' going on. I pad down the halls and corridors, lettin' my hand trail along the stone walls. I know B is around here somewhere but I've been tryin' ta give her some room to move. Mostly because I'm tryin' really hard not to freak out at the idea of having something more with her.

I mean. I want that yeah? I want that with her. But if she's gonna be hiding shit from me then…I dunno. This is the second time I've gone down this hallway in the last two hours. If I come back this way again people are gonna start to wonder if I'm nuts. "Hey Psycho." I pause and look over my shoulder at Satsu. See? Told ya people were gonna wonder. "You know if you come this way again it's totally going to qualify you for stalker status right?"

My brows crinkle. "Yeah? Who'm I supposed to be stalkin' exactly? You?" The question catches her off guard an' I follow it up with a searching gaze. It makes her squirm, which under normal circumstances would make me smile but I was kinda hard on the kid before. So I'm gonna try and behave.

 "Me? Uh. Hardly. I don't think anyway. Unless you're looking for me to tell me more fascinating stories of Jesus and his bloody killing rampage." Heh. I shrug at that. "I didn't think so. I'm thinking you're trying not to stalk Buffy but being you…well…" Stalkin' just happens I guess. "I know you can track her just fine. So what gives? Why the avoidance?" God, she's a nosy lil bitch.
"Just givin' her time to do whatever it is that Buffy does in a place like this." I wouldn't know 'cause I've never been here for longer than a few days at a time. And well the last time I was here it was kinda disaster central ya know? "Figured she'd come find me when she wanted to." Satsu narrows her eyes at me before nodding once.  

"She's probably not that busy Faith." Yeah probably not. It's not like she wouldn't wanna see me. I think. I mean. She was gettin' real close an' comfy with me since that night I asked her to stay in my room. So maybe she's not the one doing the avoiding here. I give Satsu a nod 'cause I'm just standing here like a retard tryin' to figure out what the fuck my problem is. "You're not going to be all…broody and dark for the rest of the day are you? Because if you are I'm going to need to go in to town until you go away."  

Hrm. I think…that was her actually teasin' me instead of bein' mean. But I can't tell. "You're a real pain in the ass, you know that?" Jesus Christ. She's fuckin' grinning at me.  

"Sorry. It's just that I didn't actually expect to see you this way." What way? What's she talkin' about? I glance around then down at my body before lookin' back to her with a question in my eyes. "Oh come on Faith. We all know all about your history with Buffy and the Gang. You don't honestly think that people aren't going to boggle at the sight of you looking all sappy and unsure, waiting around for Buffy?" Okay that's it.  

I reach out a hand and drag her close to me so fast that her breath doesn't have time to escape her throat. My nose grazes the high slope of her cheekbone. Everything stops for a second an' I tighten my grip to keep her from tryin' to squirm away. "You wanna be real fuckin' careful what you say to me kid." Okay maybe I'm not so tough around Buffy but this kid doesn't know shit about me. An' I really don't like her thinkin' she can take the piss outta me in the hall like we're buddies. "Let's make this real clear here okay? I'm not your friend. I'm not your bitch. And I'm not here for anyone but her. She likes you a lot an' that buys you a get outta jail free card with me but you're skatin' on thin fuckin' ice. You don't know me an' you don't wanna know me. Let's just keep it that way."  

I push her back with a snarl and brush past her. Okay. Probably that wasn't my best move. Probably someone, maybe Satsu, will tell B that I'm an asshole and I'm threatening people again. Probably B will get mad at me. Might even cause a fight. Shit. A knot balls up in my gut an' I take the next flight of stairs down so I can follow B's progress. Fuck this. I'm tired of waitin'. I wanna know what's going on an' I kinda wanna head off any fight that might come up. So much for tryin' to behave myself. The closer I get to Buffy the more clear my head gets. It's like I'm all stuffed up without her around.  

My hands rest on the solid wood of the door to a study before I push it in. Buffy glances up from her maps and smiles at me. So…what was I all pissy about before? Oh yeah. Being kept outta the loop. "Glad you wandered in here. Got some news." Oh. Hrm. "I thought you'd find me sooner or later." I just have to nod my head and move up close to look over her shoulder.  

"What's up?"  

Buffy unconsciously moves closer to me with a smile. I can't help it. Pissed off as I am, I smile back. We bump shoulders lightly as I look down at the map she's lookin' at. "Willow came up with some info on these dreams your having." Uh huh. I knew she was still on it with those. I give Buffy a slightly exasperated sigh.  


"Just hear me out Faith." How can I say no to that? It's only fair right? Plus. It's really fuckin' hard to say no to her. I give another sigh but she smiles her thanks at me. "Okay. So Willow did a little probing around your aura." Hrm. Should I make a dirty comment at that? "Don't go there." Okay maybe not. My lips curl in to a grin but I give Buffy my best innocent face. Which isn't very probably. She gives me a long suffering sigh that she doesn't really mean, and nudges me with her shoulder again. "Anyway…there's a disturbance in your aura." 

Heh. "Uh huh." I've got a disturbance in the Force. Xander would be laughin' his ass off if he were here right now. "So what's all that mean?"  

"It means that it needed further investigation. Looks like someone is trying to hurt you. And through you, me." Okay. Well now I'm all pissed off. My nostrils flare slightly an' my eyes narrow.  

"Who?" Buffy's hand is warm on mine when she gives it a squeeze.  

"Twilight." Motherfucker. I'm gonna kill those stupid fucking assholes. I don't even realize it when my fist comes down on the table, crackin' the hard ebony surface. "Easy baby. We'll get them."  

Baby huh? I smile a little at that. Wha? So I'm a fuckin' sap. So what? "What's the plan then?" Yeah notice how I'm not tryin' ta take over? See I can play nice. "We're gonna kill 'em right?" Just wanna make sure. I hate it when people try an' fuck with my mind. Buffy gives a short nod at that.  

"Yep. We kill them deader than dead." Her finger stabs down on the map right on a faintly reddish gold glowing orb. "Looks like Willow was finally able to tag the magical signature. Neat. Looks like we're going to Amsterdam." Shut up. I blink at Buffy before turning on a heel and pokin' my head out the door to whistle high and loud. I come back to the table with a smirk. "Do I want to know who you're whistling like a dog for?" 

My mouth opens but I don't even gotta answer 'cause Xander trots in to the room. "You rang??" 

"Pack your shit boyo, we're goin' ta Amsterdam." Xander's eyes get big an' bright.  

"For business or pleasure because I've heard good things about you know. Red lights." Of course. B an' I roll our eyes at that.  

"It's work. But I wouldn't say no ta trollin' the cafes." Buffy's pale brows come up at that and she looks from me to Xand an' back again. 

"Is this about you guys going to smoke weed?"  

"Uh…yeah?" I hate it that I made that a question. Xander starts to laugh but B, cuts him a look that makes him nearly swallow his tongue. 

"So what am I supposed to be doing while you two are getting stoned?" She could just get stoned with us. It's not like she's never done it before. I remember her an' Willow talkin' about magic weed before. An' it wasn't really magic. But hey who am I to push?  

"Well what do you want to do? An' don't say shoppin'." B gives me a lil frown at that. Aw fuck me. I sigh an' shrug. "Fine, I'll let ya drag me around for part of the day. But then ya gotta hang with me an' Xand. Deal?"  

She's thinkin' about it. "Yeah Buff, come hang out with the cool kids. It'll boost your popularity rating you know." Yeah right. That only works if she's hangin' out with me. I give him a look an' he shrugs. "Okay hanging out with Faith will boost your rating but it's me. Loveable happy Xander. What's to think about?" Heh. He's got a point. 

"Fine. I'm in." Sweet. "In the mean time I think we need to find out exactly what we're up against. Xander, deploy a recon team to this location. Pick girls that are good at blending in." That's not enough. I open my mouth but close it with a click 'cause this ain't my show. "You have something to add Faith?"  

"No." I tuck my hands in to my back pockets an' rock on my heels a lil bit. There's a moment of silence before Xander breaks it by clearin' his throat.  

"You have good instincts Faith. So lets hear it." A sigh escapes me. Alright. It's probably stupid anyway. 

"Maybe it'd be good to get some of the older Slayers out there. A couple of moms, a few twenty somethings, an' a couple of teens mixed in with Xand's support crew. I dunno about Twilight but if I went out for a cigarette an' noticed a lot of hot girls runnin' around I'd be thinkin' 'trap'."  

Oh…kay. The silence is gonna kill me. "Do it Xander." He nods an' backs out of the room leavin' me with Buffy. She's just lookin' at me for a long time before movin' in close an' leaning against my body. I like that. She's all nice an' warm. I put my arms around her an' nuzzle the soft strands of blonde at the top of her head. "You've got to learn to trust yourself Faith."  

Yeah well that's gonna be a problem. Just 'cause once in awhile I get good ideas doesn't mean I should act on them. The last bright idea I had made me hurt someone real special to me. "How about I just trust you an' we go from there?" She gets real still in my arms an' I'm wonderin' if I said something wrong. Bright greens peek up at me. 

"Do you? Trust me I mean?" Well. Yeah. I thought we went over that already.  

"Nah I'm just sayin' that so you'll put out." That earns me a hard pinch to my ass an' I jump. "Hey! Don't bruise the merchandise."  

I'm kinda likin' this. The playin' around an' shit. Like. It's not too much 'cause it's not all serious an' shit. We can just be around each other without being pissy over every little goddamned thing. "How much do you trust me?" Um. A lot? 

"Why? Ya gonna propose somethin' scary?" Which probably won't matter 'cause I'd do it anyway. Mostly.  

"I want to fuck you." Uhh…whaaaaaa? Not that it's surprisin' 'cause c'mon this is me we're talkin' about here. Who doesn't wanna fuck me? But the fact that Buffy says it so…forcefully steals the breath right outta my lungs.  

"Didn't ya do that last night? Or was I just dreamin' it was your face I was riding?" That gets me another pinch. Alright already! Jeez. "C'mon B, ya had me plenty last night. What's with the askin' today?" Because really she doesn't hafta ask. I'm all here for the takin'. 

"Okay…A: Yummy and B: I meant something else." Both my brows come up at that. "I want to you know…really do…that." I blink. A second ago she's spittin' out the fuck word, now she's hardly able to spit it out. What the fuck is she askin' of me? 

"You mean like…hardcore fuckin'. You, me an' a cock?" Probably not the way she'd explain it but she nods. So. I get the hesitation now. Mostly 'cause now I'm hesitating myself. "I dunno B. I don't like not bein' in control…" But then doesn't she deserve that? To be in control? An' she wouldn't hurt me right? 'Cause it's Buffy. That's not how she works.  

"Okay. Nuff said." I blink again. That was a quick response. I grip her tighter tryin' to think of a way to explain things without havin' ta actually explain things. "Don't worry about it Faith. It's totally okay. We never have to do anything you aren't okay with." See. I never gave her that option. My face pales an' she catches it before I can hide it. "Don't do that Faith. We're moving past that. This has nothing to do with that."  

"Yeah but B…" This time she cuts me off with a deep kiss. Yeah I'm okay with that. 

"Faith, you're just going to have to trust me on this." Hrm. Fine. Can't argue that. "Now give me a hand rolling up these maps? We have to wait for the initial recon reports to come in but that means we have a little time to kill."  

Uh. Huh. I think that's my cue to rock her fuckin' socks. I smirk an' yank the maps off the table an' roll 'em more in to a ball than a tube. "Done. Let's go get naked." Yeah. That tiny exasperated sigh was so just for show 'cause she's already practically skippin' to my room. God, I love that girl. 


I didn't really expect Faith to want to let me do that for her. Or with her. God, or just to her. I bite my lip and squeeze my legs together a little. Just the visual gets me wet. But. Faith isn't ready for that and I'm not going to be that person to her. You know. The person that pushes and pushes what they want on her. I know she took it wrong at first but…I'm not going to do to her what everyone else in her life has. Not this time. 

So I'm sitting here with Willow right now. Instead of sitting on Faith. Who probably wouldn't mind much. Okay. I know for a fact she wouldn't mind me sitting on her. Which does nothing to soothe the raging fire of lust I'm currently feeling. Damn. Okay. Lets not think about Faith. Or the fact that I can feel her heavy gaze on me right now. "Okay, Vanessa just reported in. I don't think they know we're on to them." I raise my head from the magazine I'm pretending to look at.  

"What does that mean for us tactically?" Xander took the question right out of my mouth. But hey if he's being all talky man then I don't have to. Which means I can sit here and think about the way Faith looks first thing in the morning. Or the fact that I get to know what she looks like first thing in the morning. I smile at that.  

"It means there's only minimal security. If I'm right it takes about six to raise that level of power." We all look at Willow until she blushes. As if any of us doubt her estimations. "So, with what the team has sent us it looks like an easy job." Except. I wait for it. "Except that it's magic so it's never really easy." I knew it.  

"Yeah but we got a whole team out there right now right? So just drop me, B, an' Action Man here in the middle of the action. Six barely makes it worth it anyway. I mean…what's B supposed ta be doin' while I'm workin'?" What?!  

"Oh please. I'll have all six buttoned up before you even stop puking your guts out." The tension level in the room rises. But the only thing that's rising on me is the temperature. Faith gives me a predatory grin as she makes this a challenge. Great. Now I'm horny and afraid. Which isn't fucking helping!  

"You wanna make a bet on that B?"  

"Why? You'd just lose anyway." Her eyes narrow at that. "Besides you don't have anything I want so winning wouldn't be any fun."  

"I don't?" The way she says it sends chills down my spine. Please do not give me the look. Please. I gaze at her and her brow quirks quickly as she stretches her long legs out making herself look like she was just poured in to that chair. Fuck. Me. I'm screwed. "You're lookin' a lil lost there B. You okay?"  

I swallow hard and blink a few times before nodding. "Yep. A-OK here. What were we talking about?" Xander snickers and it reminds me that we are so not alone here. Crap.  

"We're talkin' about what you're gonna owe me when I take out more bad guys than you." Oh. Right. Wait. What? I'm winning this fucking bet.  

"Should I even ask what you want from me?" Her gaze goes inward as she thinks about it. God, I could just jump on her right now.  

"Hey okay, Xander, lets go do that thing we were talking about doing with the other thing." What? Faith and I blink at Willow and frown simultaneously. She grabs Xander by the arm and tugs him out of his chair. I think we might have made them a little uncomfortable. I'm okay with that.  

"So how about it Faith? What do you want from me if you win?" Tick. Tick. Tick.  

"I want ya to come away with me."  

Silence. Dead silence.  

"Where?" As if that's important.  

"Any where. Just not here."  

"Done." She blinks at me once wondering if I've lost my mind. "What? You think I'm going to argue? If you've got it on your mind that you're getting away the least you can do is take me with you." Because if she didn't I would find her and do something really drastic once I did. Not like…Britany Spears drastic, because, hair. It's a good thing. But I'd do something I'm sure.  

"B." Faith looks away before sighing heavily and trying again. "Buffy. Don't just answer. Think about it. 'Cause leavin' is just that. Leave here, leave your family. Even for a little while it's still gone time." My gaze holds hers for a very long serious moment.  

"-Our- family will miss –us-. And we'll miss them. But you're my heart Faith. I'll go where ever you take me." I don't think I've seen her at a loss for words before. In fact. I don't think I've seen her this side of hopeful before. She wants this. She wants us to be her family. I get out of my chair and crawl over to her so I can kneel down and look up at her as she hunches over staring at her feet. "You okay?"  

"Little overwhelmed here B." Yeah. I can understand that.  

"You want me to leave you alone for awhile?" I don't even have time to blink, let alone breathe when she pulls me up in to her lap, curling around me.  

"Nope. Never leave me." Done deal. 




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