I probably shouldn't have been so cocky the second time around. 'Cause let me tell you something, it wasn't B who ended up on the floor that time. And it certainly wasn't B who is now the proud owner of a brand spanking new black eye. That bought my ego down a notch. Not much, just enough to not go bragging about kicking her ass anymore. The attention she gave me afterwards was worth the pain though. It definitely wiped the smug look off Willow's face after she saw me get beaten down. So, like I said: worth it.
Now, I'm standing on the doorstep of the Summers' residence. B's mom invites me around a lot for dinner and stuff 'cause she knows the type of food that I'll eat if left to my own devices. Like I'm gonna say 'no' to a home cooked meal. I never even had one of those when I was actually living at home. So, it's all good.
I knock and wait for the inevitable scrambling that I know I'll hear in a second. Yep, there it is, like clockwork. I wonder if Buffy and her sister both run for the door every time someone knocks. Or maybe I'm just special. You gotta feel sorry for their mom. They're a handful when they both get together.
"Dawn, get off... Mom!" I can see them through the glass both pushing at each other. I sigh and lean against the doorway. Sometimes, this takes a while.
"Ow, Buffy! Move!!" I hear a dull thud. Finally, the door opens. Looks like Dawn won this round. B's rubbing her shin, while Dawn jumps into my arms. It's a good thing I've got Slayer strength 'cause I swear she gets bigger every time I see her. "Faith!"
"Hey, SunnyD. Pulling out the big guns, huh?" I grin, referring to her kicking B. I place her gently down onto the ground.
"Yeah. It was a stretch to get 'round her gigantic ass. But, somehow I managed." She sticks her tongue out at Buffy, who reaches out to grab her. Little Dawnie's quick, she takes off in the direction of the kitchen. Buffy's still rubbing at her leg.
"Hey, Faith. Come... Oh God." She looks up at my eye. I didn't even bother trying to cover the bruise, it's huge. She cringes a bit, reaching out gently to stroke my cheek, just below the damage. "I'm so sorry."
"Why? I think it looks cool. Battle wounds and all that." I try for a grin, but instead flinch when her thumb rubs over a sensitive spot.
"Ooh, Sorry." She looks at me sheepishly, dropping her hand and moving to the side so that I can come in. Man, if I lived in this house I'd never leave it. Maybe B will let me move in with her some day. Yeah, and maybe she'll let me stick my hand between her thighs. I've got wishful thinking down, all the way. It's a nice thought though.
"Hi, Faith." Ms Summers walks into the room, wiping her hands on a dishcloth.
"Hey, Ms Summers." Appropriate reply, check. Out of all the authority figures I know B's mom is definitely the coolest. She always buys extra food for me when she goes shopping. Stuff that I'll actually like as well. I think she must have asked B 'cause I never told her what kind of food I eat. She always asks me how I am and it's like she actually cares. I wish she were my mom. But, then B would be my sister and that's just kinda gross.
"Oh my. What on Earth happened?" She tilts my chin up to look at the huge bruise on my face. She really does look concerned. I don't want her thinking I got into a fight or anything. So, I tell her the truth.
"Monkeys?" She looks startled by that. No wonder Buffy could keep her mom in the dark about her night job for so long. Everyone in this town is so naïve. They'll believe whatever you tell them.
"No, I just got carried away when I was training. No big." She looks so relieved that there's not some crazy face-punching monkeys running around that I can't help laughing. Both Summers' women join in after a moment.
"What's so funny?" Dawn enters the room, eating some chicken. Her mother does not look impressed.
"Nothing, Dawn. Go wash up." She gives her a stern look, until Dawn rolls her eyes and runs upstairs. "Dinner will be ready in about ten minutes, girls."
She heads back to the kitchen. B drags me over to the couch by the hand, pulling me down next to her. I'm almost sitting on top of her, but she doesn't move, so I just stay where I am.
"Monkeys, huh?" She smiles at me.
"Yeah. Just one. You shoula seen it, B. It was a mean one." She gives me her trademark Summers' glare. Is there like a school where they teach that? Along with the infamous pout? Or is it strictly a genetic thing? I smile at her. "Kinda cute, though."
"Oh, yeah?" She murmurs all sexy like. Does she even have any idea what she does to me? 'Cause if she does that's kinda cruel. "Well, I..."
She breaks off when Dawn jumps onto the couch next to me. I love B's sister to death, but I really wanted to hear what she had to say just then. I immediately stop the annoyed _expression that's threatening to break out on my face.
"Oh, my God. Could you guys sit any closer? And quit hogging Faith, Buffy."
"Faith is my friend." That's B's 'I'm warning you' voice. It doesn't really affect me. I guess it doesn't affect Dawn either.
"I'm very sorry for you, Faith." Dawn looks at me sympathetically. I can't help laughing. Buffy just glares at me until I stop.
"Dawn, go away. Faith is my friend and she came over to spend time with me."
"Yeah, but she likes me better." Uh-oh. I sigh and look up toward the ceiling.
I cough, nervously. They're both staring at me now, expecting me to agree with them. I look at Dawn first. She's doing her little girly pout bit. Inwardly, I groan, before turning to B. She's pouting too. Damn it! B narrows her eyes after I hesitate for a moment.
"Uh... I think your mom needs some help in the kitchen." I smile weakly. Then I do the only thing I can do in that type of situation: I get my ass the hell out of there.
Okay, it's official. My mother is in love with Faith. Then again, I don't think my mom has actually met Faith. Whenever she comes over it's always: 'Yes, Ms Summers. No, Ms Summers. I'll do that for you, Ms Summers.'
It's actually kind of cute. Considering I never get to see her like this any other time. And it's not just because my mom's an adult or anything. Faith has no problem telling anyone where to go, regardless of age. It's probably a good thing she wants to make a good impression. If she treated her the same way I've seen her treat other people, I doubt she'd be allowed into the house.
"Thanks, mom. I'm gonna go now." Dawn takes her plate into the kitchen. She makes a lot of noise in there just to get some attention. I can't believe she's actually my sister. Must be adopted, we don't even look anything alike. Maybe mom was too embarrassed to tell her, wanted to spare her feelings about the whole situation.
"Where's she going?" I try, but I just can't disguise my feelings for cute little Dawnie. Mom gives me a look off the tone in my voice.
"She's going to her friends house. I beg you to be nice to your sister, Buffy."
"What?" Why is everything always my fault? Mom sighs, deeply. Faith begins to take a great interest in her food. Well, more interest anyway.
"You're the older one. You're supposed to give in to your little sister, sometimes. Remember when you were that age?" She laughs a little bit, looking at Faith. "Oh, it was so funny when you..."
"Okay, mom. I get it. Buffy bad, Dawn good." I cut her off before she can start telling stories again. Faith knows more about my childhood than any of my other friends. And, damn has that girl got a good memory. She hasn't forgotten a single thing my mom tells her and finds countless ways to embarrass me afterwards.
"Will you girls be okay cleaning up? I have to go in to work for a while." Mom stands up.
"What? You worked last night."
Mom rolls her eyes, with a slight smile. "New girl that hasn't quite got the hang of inventory, yet. I shouldn't be too late. Be good. Faith, you'll make sure she gets home safely?"
"Will do, Ms Summers." Faith nods, solemnly. Mom kisses the top of my head. I wait until she's gone, before turning back around.
"Will do, Ms Summers." I mimic her, rolling my eyes. She scowls at me for a moment. She's so easy. Dawn comes back into the dining room, carrying a bag.
"Okay, I'm going now. I just wanted to say goodbye to you, Faith." She looks at me, pointedly.
"Well, if you forget the way home. Don't worry about us. We'll be completely fine without you. Feel free to never come back."
"That was totally lame, Buffy." She shares a small smile with Faith. I'm seriously reconsidering my I don't kill humans policy. I'll be more than happy to begin with Dawn. I'll do it with a smile and everything.
"I'll see you later, squirt. Have fun tonight, huh?" Faith wiggles her eyebrows. I think Dawn's a bit young to be having that kind of fun.
"I will. I'm just sorry that you have to spend the whole night with Buffy." She shakes her head, sadly. Then runs out of the house before I have the opportunity to break the law.
"You're sister is a hoot and a half." Faith chuckles, piling more food onto her plate. I wonder where all that food goes. It's not a slayer thing that's for sure. If I ate as much as she does I'd have to spend all day, every day working it off.
"Yeah, she's great. Want her?" I ask sweetly. Faith thinks about it for a moment. I can almost see the wheels in her head turning.
"Can I choose any Summers' sister?"
"No." What was that supposed to mean?
"Motel's probably not the best environment for a teenager." She says after a while, looking down at her plate. Yeah, that place is pretty crappy. Hey! Wait a minute... Faith's a teenager too. It's sometimes easy to ignore that little fact. Especially considering if she's not acting like she's five years old, she's acting like she's 35. A complex character, indeed. That's why I like her though. Life never gets boring with Faith around.
"No, it's not." I agree, tilting my head to the side.
She must hate it there. I feel bad that I never really thought about it before. I wonder what mom would say if I casually bought up Faith moving in with us. Mom hates the idea of that motel, too. We don't have any spare rooms, but I'm sure if someone accidentally murdered Dawn then that would free up some space. Or we could just lock Dawn in the attic, feed her bread and water, and make her sleep in her own filth. She does that last part anyway. Not literally, of course, but you should see her room. I saw mould growing on the walls the other day.
Faith clears her throat. "So, you wanna clean this up and get going?"
"Actually, I was thinking we could blow it off tonight. Watch a movie here or something?" She looks really surprised by the suggestion. Now, there are a million reasons why that would surprise her and none of them good. Does she only want to do slaying related activities with me? 'Cause apart from her spending quality eating time at my house that's all we ever do. "Uh... you know... if you wanted... or we could do a sweep. That's cool too."
"No. Movie's good. Sorry, you just surprised me is all." Duh. "So, yeah. We'll clean up and... we'll hang."
"Great." I can't help the huge spazzy grin that breaks out on my face. "Hey, wait a second. Why were you surprised?"
She immediately jumps up and begins clearing the table. "Surprised? No... no reason."
She sighs, sitting back down. "It's just, y'know... You're Buffy I'm-so-gung-ho-about-slaying Summers. So when you said 'blow it off' I thought I fell asleep or something."
Oh, come on. I'm not that bad. Am I?
"I'm gung-ho about slaying?"
She grins, sheepishly. "Well, you know... I meant the duty part of slaying. Not the actual slaying itself. 'Cause we both know I'm all for that."
"I am entirely capable of blowing off responsibility if and when the need arises." I fold my arms across my chest, giving her my superior 'so, there' look.
"I can see that." Faith grins "You, rebel, you."
"Fine, mock me." I slump back in my chair, pouting. I think Faith's immune to it though 'cause she has the hugest grin on her face.
"No! I didn't mean that. I meant you're not allowed to mock me. At any time or for any reason."
"Damn. It's a good thing you made that clear. Now I won't ever make fun of you, B." She widens her eyes, with an exaggerated innocent look.
"Good. Just so you know." I give a slow, deliberate nod. I wait for the smart-ass comment, but it never comes. She's just kinda looking at me for a long time. Like how she was in the library today. I would sell my sister to know what she's thinking right now. Actually, I would sell my sister for a quarter. It's a little bit unsettling, really intense. I look down at myself, just to make sure I haven't spilled anything. "What?"She shakes her head slightly. "Nothing. So... what movie are we gonna watch?"