DISCLAIMER: See Part 1
Two roads, one path
By Christopher Andrews
Chapter 51Forgotten Conscience Remembered
"Faith are are you okay?"
"I'm five by five B, how about you?"
Oh my god. What did she say?
"That's my name B, don't wear it out. In fact, don't say it at all."
She gets off me and starts to leave.
Okay move Buffy go after her. You can't just let her go you have to go after her. GO for GOD'S SAKES GO!
I finally get up in time to see her walk out the gym doors.
Faith please don't go "
I run after her, throwing the doors open and I keep going. I catch up to her and stop her.
"Faith wait, stop "
"I don't think I'm gonna be doing that any time soon, course that'd work better if you got out of my way."
"Faith we have to talk about this."
"No actually what we need to do is forget about this. That would've been easier if you hadn't given me my memory back."
"Me? How'd I give YOU your memory back?"
"What the hell else do you think happened back there?"
I feel my heart breaking.
"What happened? We, we kissed."
"Okay first off we're gonna get this straight. You kissed me."
"Uh Faith you weren't the one with your hands pinned above your head."
"You took advantage of me, B, and after all that useless talk about doing the right thing."
"All right look Faith; YOU kissed ME, not the other way around."
"Yeah but you put me up to it."
"Okay WHERE are you getting this from?"
"Oh come on, you never thought about it?"
Thought about what?
"Thought about what?"
All right THINK about it last thing I remember is falling off a two story building, next thing I know I'm running for my life and have no clue who the fuck I am. Then all of the sudden, you come along you save my life, and offer to help me. What am I gonna say?"
I feel tears in my eyes.
"Well I "
"You give me a place to sleep, food to eat and you expect me not to be grateful?"
"I I'm sorry Faith I "
"You should be, and then you have the audacity to tell me you're in LOVE with me?"
"I, I didn't mean to "
"You did though I did what I did because you made me feel like I had to so I could thank you for it. Come to think of it The person who kissed you wasn't me. She wasn't anything like me. As far as I'm concerned, it was just a kiss."
No no it was more than that.
"So thanks for the saving my life and all that but now that I have my memory back, I'd prefer it if you'd just stay the hell away from me."
She she doesn't meant it, she doesn't.
She starts to walk away and I go after her.
I can't let her leave, she might never come back.
"Faith please don't go!"
She turns around with a right cross and it knocks me flat on my face. I turn over on the ground and look around.
She She's gone NO! I'm never gonna see her again. I-I have to find her . I can't live without her. But how do I find her? G-Giles, he'll know what to do, he always does. I have to go see Giles.
I try and get up but I collapse instead, breaking out into tears as I do.
She didn't mean it, she didn't mean any of it. She does feel something for me she admitted it, there has to a part of her that still feels it inside. There has to be, there just has to be.
The tears keep coming and I can't stop them.
I don't want to stop them. I don't care that I'm in the middle of campus, I don't care that there are people walking by who aren't even stopping. All I want to do is cry. I know all it was, was just one kiss but it was more than that. We kissed and I knew that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. One kiss and she made me feel like I was made for more than just killing and death. Like I was made to love her. I have to find her again.
I look up but my eyes are filled with tears and I can't se them. I wipe my eyes and I can see them more clearly.
"Riley, what do you want?"
"I was on my way to class, hoping you'd be there and I found you here. Are you all right?"
I answer without even thinking.
I'm not fine. I won't be fine until I find her again.
"Buffy you're crying. I've never seen you cry, tell me what I can do to help."
"It's it's just "
I can't talk about this right now. I have to go find her.
I finally manage to get up.
"It's all right, I'll be okay."
I wipe the tears from my eyes.
I'll never find her if all I'm gonna do is cry.
"Well, whatever it is I want to help just tell me what I can do."
"Nothing there's nothing you can do."
I start walking away, trying to remember how to get off campus.
"I may not be able to help right now but I'm sure there's something I can do. I'll go to Giles, you can go get Faith and "
All of the sudden, something snaps inside me. I turn and grab Riley by the neck, pushing him up against a nearby lamppost.
"I told you there was NOTHING you could do. Now I'd prefer it if you'd just STAY THE HELL AWAY FROM ME!"
She that was the last thing she said to me.
My hand starts to shake against his neck.
"I I "
I let go of his neck and start running away.
I have to find her, no matter what it takes.
They say fear can make you do some crazy things, but what about love?
Stupid bitch, I can't believe she would do that.
I slow down when I realize she isn't chasing me.
Scratch that, I can believe that she would do that. She never thinks about anyone but herself. She suddenly decides that she's in love with me and I'm just supposed to start feeling that way too? Bull whatever I was thinking, whatever I was feeling; it was because of the amnesia nothing else. It wasn't anything more than that; it couldn't be anything more than that.
Just because I kept kissing her after that surge of energy went through us and I got my memory back it doesn't mean anything. I was in the moment; I do it all the time. Just because it happened to be with Buffy doesn't change a thing.
I turn a corner and keep walking.
Besides which, I'm not into girls. I mighta experimented a little before but it never really went anywhere so I just stopped experimenting. I'm not looking to rehash the past. Wait, where am I?
I look around.
Wait isn't this ? I'm only a few blocks from that's where I'll go.
I walk past an alley.
I stop and look down the alleyway.
"Are you Faith?"
"Who wants to know?"
I start towards the demon.
"I have something for you it's from "
I don't give him a chance to finish, I kick him in the stomach and he doubles over. I move behind him, putting my arm around his neck and pulling him upright as I do. I use my other arm to snap his neck. I drop the body on the ground and stare at it. My hand starts shaking and I can't stop it.
Oh god what have I done? I killed it I killed him, I I Stop it, you gotta stop it. It was a demon; it was a soulless, evil THING. Stop acting like you give a damn. You're a killer, killing things is what you do, STOP caring.
I kneel down next to the body and start searching for whatever he had for me.
He was just a demon, he doesn't matter.
I feel something weird in his inside jacket pocket.
I bet that's it.
I open his jacket and rip the flap from its stitches. A package falls on his chest.
I pick it up.
So then the question is what the hell is it?
I hear footsteps getting closer.
I'll figure it out later.
I run to the end of the alley and scale the ten foot wall at the end of it. I perch myself on top of it for a moment and look down at the body I'm leaving in my wake.
I can't just leave the body like that can I? He's a demon Faith, leave him rotting like that. What the hell do you care?
I hear the footsteps get closer.
I drop off the edge of the wall and break into a run.
He can help, I know he can.
I walk up to Giles' front door and go right in without knocking.
The whole gang's here, good, that'll make it easier to find her if we're all looking.
"Ah Buffy, it's good that you're here. I've spoken to Wesley and we have a problem "
We don't have time for that now.
"We have a bigger problem."
"What kind of problem?"
"That's sorta the problem."
"What do you mean?"
"She she's gone."
"Gone? What do you mean she's gone?"
"She left "
"Where'd she leave to?"
"If I knew where she was I'd be there right now."
"Right, duh okay well, do you know why she left? Maybe that would help us figure out where she went."
"We she I it's my fault."
"Your fault? How is it your fault?"
Don't tell them about the kiss. That'll just raise more question than I can answer right now.
"I we we were training at the gym and and then all of the sudden she just, spaced out for a second and when she came out of it she she had her memory back?"
I turn to Willow. Tara's just sitting there beside her with a look of concern on her face.
Does she know?
"I-I'm not sure. One second she was almost catatonic and the next she was the old Faith."
"What were doing?"
I look over at Giles.
"Buffy as I said, no slayer has ever lived to regain her memory. Clearly something must've happened that has never happened to any slayer before."
This isn't getting us anywhere, she could get attacked by those vamps, or worse, she could be on a boat out of here.
"Look how it happened isn't what's important, what's important is finding Faith."
"Buffy is right, we can worry about the specifics later. Right now our priority is finding Faith before it's too late."
Spike stands up out of nowhere.
I didn't even notice he was here.
"Jolly good then, let's break into teams and form a search detail and all that good stuff."
"Spike, what the hell are you doing here?"
"Well when you told me about Faith I figured there must be some evil brewin' and with this soddin chip in my head evil action is the only action I'm gonna get so I thought I'd try and help."
"All right whatever. Giles, you keep researching. Xander, Anya, you check the docks and the bus station in case she tries to skip town. Willow, Tara, you guys check the motels. I'm gonna check back at the dorm and her old apartment in case she went back to get some things before she skips town."
"Okay let's go."
I turn to leave and my friends follow.
"Wait what do I do?"
Oh right, Spike.
"Uh, help Giles "
"Oh bloody hell, you want me to hang out with Marry Poppins' dad and sift through useless books while you go off and have all the fun, bugger that."
"Shut up Spike. Faith is human you can't hurt her without a massive migraine. Besides, Faith is a slayer and she knows you're a vampire you'd get a stake through the heart before you could say 'Oh dear god please don't hurt me'. You wanna help? Stay here and help Giles."
He sits down.
"Okay good, let's go."
I start towards the door.
I can't have him out there searching for her if he's working for those vampire cult guys.
Xander and Anya go through the door but Tara stops before leaving. She puts her hand on my shoulder.
I put my hand on hers and there's only one thing I can think to say.
She smiles at me before leaving with Willow.
If she doesn't know what happened she certainly knows what I'm feeling.
"I'll be back soon, Giles."
Hopefully with Faith.
Shadows and dust from your past
I open the package. There's a tape inside, I take it out and put it in the VCR. There's also a box inside, I set it down on the table next to me. The TV comes on and Mayor Wilkins appears.
"Hello Faith. If you're watching this tape, it can only mean one thing. I'm dead and our noble campaign to bring order to the town of Sunnydale has failed "
" utterly and completely. But on the other hand. Heck, maybe we won. Heh, heh, heh, heh. And right now I'm on some jumbo monitor in the Richard Wilkins Museum surrounded by a bunch of kids sitting Indian style and looking up at my face filled with fear and wonder. Heh, heh, heh. Hi kids. Heh, heh, heh "
He always did have a twisted sense of humour.
"But the realist in me tends to doubt it. Now, Faith, as I record this message you're, uh sleeping... and the doctors tell me you might never wake up. I don't' believe that. Sooner or later you will wake up, and when you do, you'll find that the world has gone and changed on you "
He cared about me and he's gone.
"I wish I could make the world a better place for you to wake up in. But tough as it is to accept, we both have to understand that even my power to protect and watch over you has its limits. See, the hard pill to swallow here is that once I'm gone your days are just plain numbered. Now I know you're a, you're a smart and capable young woman in charge of her own life. But the problem, Faith is that there won't be a place for you in the world anymore "
She he She made him gone.
"Right now, I bet you're feeling very much alone. But you're never alone. You'll always have me. And you'll always have this. Heh, heh, heh, heh. Go ahead open the box "
I step forward and pick up the box and look at it.
"Don't worry it's not gonna bite. That's my job. Heh, heh, heh, heh. Go ahead, open it."
I open up the box.
"Surprise! See, you don't get these in any gumball machine. When you've been around as long as I have, you make friends. And some of them "
I take a weird metal thing out of the box, with two rings attached to it.
" Forge neat little gizmos like the one you're holding right now. And here's the good news just because it's over for my Faith, doesn't mean she can't go out with a bang."
He made sure I'd have this so that I would be okay. He wouldn't have had to if it hadn't been for Buffy it's all her fault.
I hear someone behind me.
I turn around.
It's all her fault.
"What did you do?"
"Faith wait, we have to talk about this."
I walk towards her.
"You killed him "
It's all her fault.
"Faith I "
The closer I get to her the more she backs off.
"He was the only person who ever really cared about me and you killed him."
"I had to, he was gonna destroy the town. He didn't give me any choice."
"H-He, he cared about me "
"No Faith, he didn't."
I get close enough to take a swing at her and I do.
I miss completely.
"I'm not going to fight you Faith."
He never would've died if it weren't for her.
"Well that's too bad because I'm itching to kick your ass."
I take another swing at her and this time she actually has to block it.
What's wrong with me? I should be killing her by now.
"He didn't care about you."
Yes he did, he did care about me.
I feel this hole in my stomach.
"No, he didn't. No one who ever really cared about you would ever ask you to kill for them."
What about the box?
I show it to her.
"H-He left me this. He wanted me to be safe."
"What does it do?"
"He wanted to protect me."
"Do you know what it does?"
"No, I don't."
"For all you know it could kill you."
"N-no, he wouldn't do that to me."
I take another swing at her but there's no force behind any of my punches.
"I know he meant a lot of you Faith but but you have to understand, he was evil. He did horrible, evil things to a lot of people "
I stand still and my knees get weak.
"No matter how good he was to you, he was still evil."
I drop to my knees, trying not to break down and cry.
"I you're he "
I can't breath.
I fall on all fours trying to get air into my lungs.
I feel her hands wrap around me. Something about the feel of her touch helps me breath.
"I know it's hard, but you will get through this."
She sits next to me and I lean against her, my head against her shoulder.
"I-I-I don't think I can "
It's too hard.
She lifts my head to look her in the eyes.
"I'll help you I'll do whatever it takes to help you."
Something about the way she says those words just makes me feel better.
And then like I'm moving on automatic, I lean in and kiss her. She kisses me back and I lean against her a little more.
What am I doing?
I break the kiss to prop myself up on my knees. She opens her mouth to say something but nothing comes out.
I don't want her to ruin it so I put my hand on her chest just below her collarbone and push her on her back, climbing on top of her as I do. I kiss her again and I feel her hand press against my back.
Oh fuck it, if this is what she wants then this is what she gets.
I grind my hips against hers as I reach down to undo my pants. I struggle with the top button and Buffy tries to say something between lip lock.
"Faith mmm "
I can't get my pants open.
"We mmm "
Why is this so hard? Taking my pants off with one hand is something I do all the time.
"I we mmm "
I stop working on my own pants and try and undo Buffy's.
Her button comes undone in a snap and all of the sudden she pushes me away.
The waiting is the hardest part
"We, we can't do this."
"Why the hell not? I thought this is what you wanted."
I try and lean onto her but she puts her hand up to stop me.
"I no I yes I I do want you Faith."
I move her hand away and press my body against hers.
"Then what's the problem?"
She pushes me away again.
"We can't do this, not like this."
"Like what? I thought you wanted me."
"I do but, but not now. Not like this."
I move off her.
"Geez B, you tell me you want me and then when I try and give you what you want you don't want to. What gives?"
"Faith you're in pain.
I get up and readjust my clothes, they got a little frazzled.
"That's funny, up until a few minutes ago I was feeling really good."
"That's not what I meant. You're hurting you're grieving over losing the one person you ever believed cared for you."
"Yeah and I was trying to make myself feel better."
"Us making love isn't gonna make things better."
Whoa okay, this is gonna stop RIGHT now.
"Hey, let's get something straight. What just happened had NOTHING to do with love and it never will."
I head over to the fire escape window as Buffy gets up and does up the button on her pants. I sit on the window sill.
"And if you can't give me what I want then I'll go find someone who will."
Not gonna happen babe.
I lift my leg over the window and slide down the fire escape ladder. I land on the ground and it takes me a second to absorb it through my shocks. I start walking out of the alley. I look up at a noise just in time to see Buffy jumping out the second story window after me.
Damn it, she doesn't give up, does she?
I turn around to face her.
"You don't give up do you?"
"No I don't, you can't just decide that what just happened wasn't about more than just sex."
"Oh please, could you just try and get over yourself?"
"But I "
"Did you ever stop and think that maybe the reason I got my memory back when you kissed me was to stop us from making a big mistake?"
"What? I no I what do you mean?"
"Oh come on, you make the stupid mistake of kissing me cause you decide you're in love with me so the boys upstairs let me remember how much I hate you so it doesn't get any worse."
"I no it's not like that. We're, it's more than that."
"Get it through your thick skull, we're not in love and we never will be."
"I can't believe that you didn't feel something."
"Hey, just because I don't like you doesn't mean I won't fuck you. Ask Xander, he knows it first hand."
"I know you felt something because I felt it too."
"Don't tell me how I feel, B."
"Fine then, but like it or not it takes two to kiss and whether you admit it or not you were kissing me back."
"Now you're telling me what I do? Lame B."
"Lame or not I don't care. Just admit that you felt something."
Weren't ready for that were you?
She grabs me and kisses me hard.
It's hot and it's passionate and it makes my toes curl and I do feel something.
She breaks the kiss and looks me in the eyes.
"You can't tell me you didn't feel anything there."
"So what if I did? Hun?"
Just because I felt horny when she kissed me doesn't make it any more than that.
"If we feel something for each other then we have to find out how far it goes."
"It doesn't go anywhere B. You make me horny; it doesn't make you any different than just about anyone else I've ever met."
"I don't believe that, there's something between us and I think I know what it is."
"Don't kid yourself babe."
She better not say what I think she's gonna say.
"Faith, don't you understand, I think I love you."
"If you ever, EVER say anything like that EVER again, I'll kill you."
I look her straight in her eyes as tears start to come. The horrible anger burning inside me gets a little less.
"Faith I I'm sorry I I didn't mean to "
"Yeah well, you did. Now would you GO AWAY?"
"Faith I NO! I won't leave you alone. Whether you care about me or not, I care about you "
"Yeah, so you keep saying."
"And I'm not just gonna let you walk out of my life."
I get up close to her and she wipes the tears out of her eyes.
"You really believe you could stop me?"
She tries to put on a brave face but I can see she doesn't have the heart.
"I've done it before."
"Well, let's go at it then."
I take a step back and punch her in the face, knocking her on her ass.
Sometimes you just have to fight it out
She hit me. She HIT me.
I look up at her.
"What did you do?"
"Um I'm pretty sure I hit you."
I feel the urge to break out into tears again, but I hold it back. I get up and go nose to nose with her.
I don't want to do this but if this is how she wants it
"Well if you wanna fight, then we'll fight."
"Oh come on, you actually think you can win with all those "
Her hands graze my hips before she grabs my ass and pulls me against her body.
" Warm and fuzzy feelings of yours."
I get over the feeling of Faith's hands on my ass. I shove her away from me and follow with a mean right cross which sends her to the ground.
"Just because I want you, doesn't mean I won't fight you."
"You finally grew a pair did you?"
"Yeah I guess I did."
"Well then "
She flips herself up on her feet.
" Let's see how well you taught me."
She throws a quick jab but I step back and manage to avoid it. I come back with a left hook which knocks her back a few steps. She responds with a roundhouse kick which I block. I follow with a flurry of jabs which she dodges. I side step a left cross and grab her arm, twisting it behind her back.
This is my chance.
"Faith, we can do this if you want, but I don't think it is what you want."
She elbows me in the head.
She hits me in the head again.
"The hell "
She hits me again.
"Do you get this from?"
She hits me with an elbow again and it sends me crashing into a bunch of crates.
I try and get up but the pain of hitting the crates shoots through my body, paralysing me for a moment. She comes at me just as the pain disappears and I kick her in the stomach. She stumbles long enough for me to get on my feet and into a fighting stance.
"Where do I get this from? From our connection."
She rolls her eyes at me.
"Could you BE any more pathetic?"
She throws a flurry of punches and half of them connect.
"I don't mean the feelings between us I mean the connection between us, the slayer connection."
"Isn't it one in the same?"
"Aw come on B, didn't you always sorta have a thing for me?"
"Faith this "
"I saw the way you used to look at me after a good slay. Didn't you ever wonder what it might be like ?"
I let my guard down as she gets closer. My breathing gets heavier the closer she gets.
" you and me ?"
I hold in a deep breath as I feel her hand on my nether regions.
"Don't tell me you never thought about it."
She's got this smile on her face I've only ever seen after slaying.
"Faith I "
All of the sudden her left hand grabs my shoulder and a knee hits me in the ribs. I grab my ribs and she backs away.
I think she used her whole slayer strength because I think she cracked one of my ribs.
I fall to my knees.
"God B, you're such a push over."
I look up at her as the pain weakens. She's backing away with a look of fear on her face; she looks like she's gonna bolt.
"F-Faith Faith don't don't go "
I manage to get out between painful breaths. I try and get up but the pain shoots through my body again. I drop to all fours to try and block out the pain. My breaths get fewer and far between.
What did she do to me? She's never been this powerful before. I don't know what to say so all I get out is
"I love you "
I drop to the ground and can't get up. I think I cough up my own blood as things start to fade in and out. I feel something touch me as everything goes black.
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