DISCLAIMER: Buffy the Vampire Slayer is the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy etc. I just enjoy playing with the ladies.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

The Prodigal Slayer
By AnyaRocks


Faith sat in an LA bar with a beer in her hand watching the crowd dance to the music, play pool and just mingle. These were all things she used to do but that was a long time ago.

She ordered a bottle of whiskey and headed to her hotel room, another night of memories, another night to drown in a bottle of regrets.

If only she didn't leave Sunnydale three years ago, if only she didn't hook up with a gang and go on that stupid rampage and end herself up in jail for almost two years, if only she'd let her feelings show would she have won Red? Would she have been the slayer and not be hunted by the counsel who wanted her dead?

She'd been out of jail for five months now, slaying in LA, but mostly drinking and one night stands. She was just what her mother said she'd be, a worthless drunk with nothing, just like her mother. "Fuck it," she said putting down the empty bottle and kicking off her boots. "I won't be second choice slayer or second choice lover so I did the right thing." She lay back on the bed remembering it all.

ch. 1. (Sept. 1998)

The gang was in the lunch room, Oz not speaking to Willow because of what she'd done, Xander after keeping their fling hidden called it off and went back to Cordy who was flaunting it at Willow.

Willow knew some of this was her fault but she couldn't help but be depressed. Everyone was ignoring her, the preps teasing, it was getting bad.

She slipped out of the room walking down the hall where two girls cornered her. "Poor Willow, you thought you were cool enough to play the field," one shoves Willow laughing. "You're nothing but a damn geek and," just then the girl was tossed against the lockers and the other one kicked as Willow held back tears.

"Hey Red," Faith pointed to a storage room door and Willow followed. "You caught yourself a bad fix huh."

Faith was the new slayer in town who was called up after Kendra died. She was different from both Buffy and Kendra, had this free spirited attitude, dressed in mostly leather, was gorgeous and knew it. Yet no one knew who she was just yet or why she was there. All they knew is the struggles to keep the town in line were hard since Buffy ran away.

"I'm used to it," Willow said looking at the floor.

"Yeah, well, how about we see why?"

Before Willow could question or speak Faith pulled her close and drove her tongue into Willow's mouth exploring every inch of it as she circled it with her tongue while sucking on her upper lip. Willow instinctively reacted while thinking what am I doing as she sucked Faith's tongue in deeper.

In no time Faith had her backed against the wall groping her breasts feverishly and rubbing the pelvic area with her other hand. Willow's breathing became short and gaspy as Faith grew more aggressive. "I wanna fuck you Red, come on, lets get this stuff off," she says barely breaking the kiss.

She practically does the undressing, picks Willow up instructing her where to put her legs, leans her against the wall, steadies her with one hand, uses the dildo with the other, keeps her quiet by almost continuously kissing her and does fuck her hard till just ten minutes before school is to let out.

"Oh Goddess," Willow gasped in horror. "You're gonna think real bad of me doing that, I don't even know your name," she said as they dressed.

"Nah it's ok, I can tell you'd never done it before," Faith said pulling on her jacket.

"Oh I was that bad, I knew it," Willow blushed.

"You did fine, Name's Faith," she said extending her hand as they made a quick exit from the school building.

"I'm Willow Rosenberg," she said as they shake hands. "I guess we should've done this first."

"Yeah, um look, I have some things to do so I'm gonna jet," she turns to walk away.

"Hey, wait a sec," she jots down her address and phone number. "Maybe, well, only if you want to, you, um," she stammers still stunned as to what she did, at the non-caring attitude of the girl, the fact it was a girl and so on.

"Yeah ok thanks," Faith walks off.

Three nights later, after her third training session alone Faith had gone into the bronze and was dancing with a bunch of guys. The scoobies came in, got soda's and sat down. "Look, there's my new friend I told you guys about," Willow said joyfully, of course not mentioning the sex part.

"Sure looks like a friend," Cordy chimed in. "She didn't even glance at you."

"I bet she'll be a groupie," Oz said laughing. He and Willow could at least speak now and he'd thought he'd make her sweat awhile then take her back.

Xander and Cordy got up to dance and Oz followed dancing with some Veruca singer. Willow sat alone as even Amy was dancing with someone. She realized the girl hadn't even looked her way, her friends were ditching her and the sinking feeling crept up in her stomach. She got up and left the club.

As she rounded the corner a large vampire with cloven feet jumped her. She fought him but was quickly losing.

Faith faintly heard a scream and jerked away from the groping males racing out the door. She saw him as she rounded the corner, the one who killed her watcher. Both fear and anger flooded her. He'd killed the woman right in front of her, she was too late to try to help so just ran. Ran straight to Sunnydale in search of Buffy Summers, the legendary slayer for help but she seemed to be no where in sight thus far.

"Faith," he shrieked as she stood there knowing either she had to overcome this fear fast or both she and the girl would die.

"That's me," she said sending a kick to the side of his face.

They fought and fought as Willow lay on the ground trembling trying to straighten up her spinning head. When she looked up she saw Faith pummeling the vampire like their was no tomorrow shouting at him. She didn't fight like Buffy, there was more of a raw edge to it, a street feel, an anger or rage.

Finally she dusted him with blood pouring from her nose and mouth as well as a few sore ribs. "Hey Red, you're ok," she walks over to her kneeling down.

"My God, you're the new slayer, Kendra's," Willow looks at her as she picks the girl up.

"How do you know about slayers?" Faith asked.

"I, I am a friend of one, Buffy Summers," Willow says nervously. "I helped her with things, research and such."

"Oh yeah, that's cool then. So where is she," Faith enquired.

"She ran off but I guess it's ok, I mean she's the slayer but isn't the called one now so she can, look, where's your watcher?" Willow asks as Faith carries her into a run down motel room putting her down.

"That vampire out there killed her. He's been chasing me ever since," Faith says cleaning her face up then checking Willow over.

"Oh, I'm sorry. Look, if you don't have anyone I can help you, I'll keep your secret. Buffy's watcher is off looking for her."

"You wanna help me huh," Faith asks gently rubbing the tender area on Willow's stomach where she saw the vamp kick her.

"Sure, I know how to do the training stuff although you'd kick my ass and I have access to all Giles' books and I'm good with a computer," she rambles.

"Giles," Faith asks. "Oh B's watcher. Well Red, I think we got a deal," she says getting up. "You hungry?"

"Yeah a little," Willow says as Faith pulls back on her leather jacket exiting the room.

Willow wonders how wrong it is of her to do this, not tell the others about the slayer, especially Giles but look how they were treating her and besides she could give the slayer the help she needed.

After they'd eaten and Faith told her a couple slayer stories from Boston the making out session was growing hot and heavy. "Hey, is their some sort of slayer, helper rule," Willow asked as Faith moved on top of her.

"I sure hope so because I'll have a lot of fun braking it," and the imagination can tell what comes next for the aroused pair.

ch. 2

Angelus slumped back in his chair from being out looking for the new slayer all night. He'd fool her into thinking he was Angel and was here to help then go in for the kill and wait for Buffy. Little did she know he had obtained a spell that would look like she killed him and he went into hell. It was all smoke and mirrors and the stupid slayer fell for it he laughed. If only she hadn't loved Angel so much she would have never been so easy to trick. He leaned back for sleep and thought maybe he'll mark Willow and turn her for his own also.

Meanwhile, on the other side of town, the mayor had his own agenda brewing, ascension day which was conveniently on graduation day several months away. A day in which he'd get to devour the citizens of this lovely town wiping its existence out totally.

Giles returned with no Buffy calling the gang into the library. After all the how are you's he began. "We've got a very smart vampire in town. Word is that he's fed off of several people. He hasn't killed them, just enough to make their families think they're crazy. All the people reside in the mental ward of the hospital. This new doctor, Dianne, who by the way is a highly trained witch, gave me the information."

"Well we all get together find and stake," Xander said confidently.

"Right we can work better in numbers," Oz added.

"I'm in," Amy's new muscle bound boyfriend called Gunn chimed in.

At the edge of dark the gang heads out to find the vamp. Willow had tried to find Faith but no luck.

Faith entered the mansion behind Angelus who'd been telling her about Buffy and how he'd helped her. He was highly aroused at the looks of the slayer but tried to keep his cool. She bated him however and while his head was tilted back in pleasure of her fondlings she knocked him cold with a slayer punch to the back of the head. "Fuck this," she said as she chained him to the wall and set out to find Willow.

No sign of Willow anywhere so she heads back to check her room and nothing.

Angelus has Willow stripped down in his mansion and Oz is knocked cold bleeding. "You will be all mine precious. Lets see how Buffy likes it," he touches her as she shakes in fear.

"No I won't," he hits her hard as the tears fall.

"You sure won't be his. I saw him trying to make up with you tonight. You think that other slayer is going to let you go do you? She's not good like Buffy, she only wants a screw from you, for you to be her property," he roars laughing starting to take off his clothes when Cordelia cracks him from behind.

"Run Willow," she shouts dragging Oz by the arm.

They're all safe at Giles apartment with the gang yelling at Willow for not telling them of the new slayer in town.

Giles is on the phone with the council, Oz is trying to comfort Willow and talk of getting back as the other four continue their berating of Willow.

A knock is heard, Cordy gets it to find who she figures is the new slayer standing there. "Red in here," Faith asks pushing by Cordy.

"Oh you must be Faith," Oz stands. "I'm Willow's boyfriend."

"Yeah whatever, come on Red," she gets Willow's arm leading her out as the others stand there looking.

She gets her to her room sitting her down with a soda. "What's up Red, you been fucking me while you got a boyfriend," she smiles at her. "So what happened to you tonight?"

"Angelus, he's a vampire, he used to be Angel, the one I told you Buffy loved and killed only she didn't kill him. He tried to, um, get me."

"I saw him, came looking for you. Did he screw you Red?"

"No but he was gonna, Cordy saved my ass. He tried to tell me you were bad."

"I've been told I can be," she pulls her close kissing her. "But, I think you like my kind of bad Red," they have sex with Faith purposefully putting hickies all over Willow. Of course Willow has no clue she did it on purpose.

She'll make her never want that wolf back she thought as she made her juices flow like never before.

Willow lay in Faith's arms when they were finished looking into her big brown eyes. She had a feeling this was just a game to Faith but didn't care right now. She gave her attention and only her, like no one else had done before. She also knew she was falling hard for the slayer who kissed the tip of her nose as Willow felt herself drifting off to sleep.

"Wills look," Xander began as the gang minus Faith who was up dancing sat at a table in the Bronze. "You're fooling yourself. She doesn't like you. You know how Oz feels and he's ready to forgive and try again. I mean you two been together a long time. This isn't Buffy Wills, she's nothing like her."

"Agreed," Cordy adds. "She's got this fire thing in her eyes, I don't fully trust her."

"She looks pretty chummy with those two guys," Gunn points out.

"Wills, we had a fight, I love you and you do me. Can't we just fix this," Oz asks quietly.

Willow watches the slayer dancing on the floor with an ever growing crowd sadly. They're right she thought, she doesn't like me, she just wants to sleep with me. She doesn't dance with me, hardly talks to me in public and so on.

Faith glanced over and noticed the sad look on Willow's face. She walked off from the guys towards the door motioning Willow to follow. "Don't Willow, show her you're done," Oz pleaded but Willow followed.

"What's up Red," Faith said putting her arm around her.

"Um, I don't want to make you mad, it's ok," Willow had seen the slayer's short fuse before and didn't want on the receiving end of it.

"Come on Red," she kisses her gently rubbing her shoulders.

"Do you even like me or are you using me for sex and why don't you um, well we never dance or sit together like Cordy and Xander and Amy and Gunn. I know you took me dancing at that club out of town but why not here?"

Faith thought damn, her friends are pushing her into wanting more, more that Faith didn't think she truly had it in her to give but she could fake it well enough. "I didn't know you wanted this in front of your friends so I figured I'd stay out of the way. If that's what you want it's good with me."

"That's really the only reason," Willow asked.

"Yeah Red and yeah I like you," she picks her up kissing her and within seconds they're making out big time.

After moaning how good that feels with Faith's hand between her leg she tries to get out that they can't do this here but Faith has her pants undone and is pumping hard with three fingers, then four, then is fisting her hard with Willow digging hard into her shoulders.

Oz came back to the table. "Xander we've got to do something. She's doing Willow in the alley. Why can't she say no to her," Oz asks rather upset.

""Maybe some spell or something," Gunn chimes in.

"It's the whole bad boy image," Amy says. "When the novelty of it wears off Wills will be ok."

Just then Buffy walks in the door and everyone leaps to hug her. "Hi guys," she says. "I'm home, wasn't really gone. I've been hiding out hoping to catch Angelus, he didn't fool me. What the hell is Willow doing with a girl in the back alley. I mean you can't see her but the girl has her face berried in, well, oh my God she's doing a girl."

"Buffy," Cordy raises a hand to quieten her. "That's Kendra's replacement. She's one of these bad ass acting girls and she's jerking Wills around bad, do something."

"Uh, sure but not right now. I need to find Giles. Tell Wills to call me," she heads back out.

After a long while they finish and Faith has walked Willow home. "Red, sorry you're sore," she kisses her.

"That's ok, it, was, um," she blushes. "Well you always surprise me, it keeps, um, it keeps getting better," she looks at the ground bright red as Faith pulls her close kissing her for the longest time.

"One day Red, I'll be able to let you really know me. Just give me time and trust me ok?"

"I will Faith I promise," another kiss and she goes inside.

ch. 3

Three weeks later the hunt for Angelus was on furiously giving the mayor ample opportunity to form his plans unnoticed. Giles had called Willow in to the library.

"Willow," he said motioning to the tall woman next to him. "This is Dianne, the doctor I made mention of. I've told her about your strugglings in the craft and eagerness to learn. She wishes to speak to you."

They shake hands as Willow fidgets nervously. "Look, what we don't want is the witches council finding out about you. If indeed you are a powerful witch, they like to harness those kind in order to get them to do as they wish. Now, unfortunately I'm one they found years ago so I won't be able to be the one helping you but can oversee it. Call me the renegade council member I guess."

"Then who will," Willow asked nervously hoping she could trust this new lady whom Giles had seemed close with.

"I can't be seen around her much for fear a council member is near," Dianne said handing Willow an address. "Her name is Tara Maclay, she's a freshman at UC Sunnydale. She'll be expecting your visit. She's a very shy pleasant girl and is glad to help."

"Very good then," Giles says standing. "Now, we have a dinner engagement Willow so do be careful and let us know how it goes," they all leave with Dianne giving Willow her number.

On the way to the campus Willow wondered just what this was going to entail, if she was finally going to learn how to use magic good enough to really help, if they'd found Angelus and if she should let Faith know she may not be over tonight or would Faith even notice she wasn't around.

Tara sat in her room wondering how this was going to work, she'd never tried to teach someone the craft before and hoped she could do as good of a job as her deceased mother once did with her.

The knock at the door startled her out of her thoughts. She answered it quickly extending a hand. "Hi, I'm Tara," she stammered.

"I'm Willow," Willow answered feeling a strange electrical type sensation when she shook Tara's hand and looked into her striking blue eyes.

The girls got acquainted for the next two hours, talking of school, Willow's poor use of magic, music etc.

"Willow, the first thing is you've got to believe in yourself," Tara began shyly. "I can see your aura, you're or you should be really good at this. I mean, you have a special glow about you. You care and want to help others tremendously, maybe to much and you get all tensed up or something."

"Yeah I do plus they all don't let me forget it probably won't work," she looks at the floor.

"Well hopefully I can help you get confidence in your magic," Tara says smiling. "We can start whenever is good for you."

"Tomorrow is good," Willow said quickly excited about it all.

Three nights later Willow sat in her living room very excitedly. Tonight her and Tara had floated rose pedals and changed their colors. Tara was so kind to her, telling her she was a special person, she was equal to everyone else and so on.

Faith got up from the ground rubbing her head where Buffy had kicked her then ran off with Angelus bound up and Xander's help. Damn bitch, Faith thought. Since when does one demon who she saw turning a young girl get favoritism. Faith was pissed for sure not to mention she hadn't found Willow around in a few days.

Willow opened the door to let Faith in hoping she'd understand why she hadn't been around much but saw some angered look in her eyes and feared she was about to be on the bad end of the dark slayer's temper. "Hey, I'm sorry I," Willow looks at her. "Um, do you want something to drink and what's wrong?"

"Sure," Faith sits down as Willow gets her a Pepsi. "Nothing' wrong Red. Where you been?"

"Well Giles hooked me up with this really smart wiccan and she's been trying to work on my magic so I can use it better. I hope you're not mad, I, am sorry I didn't let anyone know and what happened to your forehead?"

"Why should I be mad Red. We're not in some big thing," Faith said knowing it wasn't a relationship but also knowing no one was going to sleep with Willow till she was done having her fun but somewhere buried deep inside a real feeling tried to get out but she kept it hid away. "Angelus was killing this girl, I stopped him and was about to stake him and B kicked me between the eyes then took off with him, called me a stupid idiot. You know what, I'm not stupid and if I catch him again before someone finds a way to help him I will stake his ass because it's my duty and demon's don't get favoritism. Can you handle that one Red?"

"Of course I can," Willow says looking into Faith's eyes wondering what it was she was seeing. "You're the chosen one now, she just has the powers. That makes you the law of the demon world and he's a demon. He's my friend but I know if he can't get fixed back to Angel he'd rather be dusted."

Faith pulls Willow into her lap kissing her. "Do I still have permission to do this Red?"

"Why wouldn't you," Willow says her mind all confused but knowing she can't say no to the slayer.

"You tell me, you sure smiled a lot when you talked about the witch, then there's the wolfman," Faith kisses her neck rubbing her tummy.

"I've only been with you," Willow says her breath shortening from what Faith is now doing to her and of course they have sex, rough long sex.

"Faith, will you stay with me please," Willow asks trying to find a way to get close to the slayer. She was caring for her more and more but feared her too then there were those dancing blue eyes that cropped up in her mind more and more.

"Yeah Red," she picks Willow up carrying her to her bed, laying next to her and kissing her before Willow drifts off to sleep in her arms. Faith lay awake awhile longer becoming more enraged with every thought of Buffy.

Willow had just finished telling Tara about the Angel/Angelus mess wondering if she knew of anything to help. "I suppose we could look," Tara says. "Maybe try a mind control spell but that's dangerous."

"How so," Willow asks?

"Well, it won't last forever using light magic and I won't use the dark," Tara began. "If it comes undone before we fix him he'll know who to come looking for."

"I trust you," Willow says looking into Tara's smiling eyes.

"Look, to do this, one who knows him is going to have to astral travel and you need an anchor for that. It can be taxing on the body and dangerous."

"Tara, I trust you, you'll bring me back. So lets go get the stuff and get started," Willow says smiling.

Across town Faith had just finished off Trick, the mayor's right hand vampire and was now standing in front of the mayor. "Now slayer, I could kill you but I think I like you. You have guts, determination and look out for number one, meaning yourself. I happen to know how they think of you, how they treat you as less of a person, so do you want to show them who's number one or do you want to die," he said cheerfully.

"Look, number one, I'm not going to die, number two slayers kill evil things and number three, Red likes me, that's enough," Faith says.

"Really, look here," he shows Faith Tara kneeling down beside Willow holding her hands not bothering to let her see the purpose of why they're like that. "Look at that peaceful look on her face."

"I'll show you all who's number one, I'll get the girl and you," Faith says angrily.

"Wouldn't you like to get Buffy," he asks smiling. "You help me and I'll help you but we must hurry. Now Faith," he hands her $100. "I do like you, let me help."

"Deal," they shake hands.

"Good," he hands her a small box. "Now, you let Angelus knock you out after I help get him loose. With any luck he'll get Buffy turned before you get up and stake him. This box contains the powder that will protect you for only twenty minutes then it will dissolve and all traces of the box will disappear. Now go quickly dear," he laughs as she leaves.

Angelus is loose and fighting with Buffy when Faith comes in. Willow is watching from her projected state ready to start the spell.

Angelus gets Faith knocked out as Buffy gets him from behind. He shoves a stake into Buffy's gut and is preparing to bite as Faith opens her eyes.

Tara has had to bring Willow back as her heart was racing. She's shaking and trembling as Tara holds her. "He, he, he's going to kill or turn Buffy. I froze, oh Goddess," Willow babbles as Tara wipes the tears.

"It's ok Willow, she'll make it, ssshhh, you got the stuff sprinkled and I finished the chant."

"Oh no, that means it's on you and not me. He'll come after you," Willow exclaims fearfully.

Across town the fight is on, Faith shoves Angelus towards Buffy's stake but Buffy moves it kicking him in the head. "We're not killing him," she shouts.

"You stupid bitch," Faith yells. "Let him turn your ass then and I'll stake you both," she leaves angrily as Buffy gets Angelus knocked out.

Faith goes to the library where Tara is still trying to calm Willow down. "Oh thank God," Willow says. "Is Buffy ok?"

"Physically she is but mentally she's the stupidest person I know," Faith says. "So what's up here?"

"Faith, it'll work out, we're doing, well we did a spell to hold him hopefully till we can find a way to get Angelus back," Willow explains.

"Yeah," Faith glances at the pair. "So he can do it again?"

"There's nothing wrong with trying to help him," Tara says. "Willow can do this or at least try then she'll know she tried."

"I'm not doubting red Blondie. I'm not gonna let that damn vampire try to rape her again not to mention what he was gonna do to B but," Tara stands up.

"Look, they want to help him, just let them do it, if it's a mistake it's theirs and they'll fix it. Everyone is worth helping," she says.

"Sure if they're alive and don't have a damn demon living inside them," Faith says her anger becoming apparent. "Let me tell you what Blondie, if Angelus hurts red here I'm gonna hold you responsible and I'll kick your fucking ass from here to the east coast. How do you fucking like that," Willow is now standing up not quite knowing what to do as Faith is very angry now.

"I'll be glad to take responsibility and will rationally find a way to help her which you seem to have a problem with," Tara says getting angry also.

"What the hell do you know," Oz is now standing in the door laughing.

"I'm backing her all the way. If Willow has to be with a girl she's a much better choice," he says.

"Please stop," Willow says. "Guys she's only trying to protect me and she's the slayer, it's her job to kill them and Faith, they're only trying to help me save Angel. I told you it's ok to stake him if you have to so please don't fight with her guys," Willow says.

"See Faith, she's afraid of you," Oz begins. "She's trying to get us out of trouble because she fears what you will do to us. Now, doesn't that show you she's only with you out of fear?"

"You're gonna fear me wolfboy," she fists him hard. "Fuck this, I ain't playing these games red," she walks out.

"I'm sorry Willow," Tara says looking into her eyes. "I, I, was only trying to help."

"I know," Willow says growing more confused over her feelings by the second.

ch. 4

Three weeks later, Willow sat in the bronze with Tara. They'd not yet gone out but were getting very comfortable with each other.

Willow hadn't seen Faith but thought of her often. She was growing to like Tara very much but couldn't get the dark slayer, who'd obviously left the good fight, out of her head. This is why Tara suggested they wait before going out. She wanted to make sure Willow knew what she wanted.

Part of Willow wanted Tara to hold her and make all this trouble go away, to make her feel loved and cared for and she had all confidence Tara could do this. While another part of her wanted to go find Faith, to have her kiss her and make her feel like she had so many times before although reports from the streets indicated Faith was helping someone in a dark plan and she knew the slayer was still after Angel, who they didn't know for sure if he was fixed yet or not.

Just then Xander came racing in with Cordy in toe. "Faith and Buffy, they're fighting on the bridge," he yells as the girls jump up and follow him out.

Angelus comes up knocking Tara in the head grabbing Willow. "Xander," Cordy yells but it's to late, he's gone.

"Stay with Tara," Oz yells. "Xander come with me."

The two men race to the fight where both slayers are hurt badly. "Stop, Angelus has Willow," Oz screams.

"See Bitch," Faith yells shoving Buffy off the bridge into the water and racing off.

"Xander get Buffy, I'm going to go see how I can help," Oz shouts running off.

Angelus has Willow stripped and has beat her pretty badly laughing. "You will be mine, stupid good slayer has to much faith in Angel and the other slayer is playing both sides," he smacks her hard crawling on top of her preparing to finish the deed.

"No," Willow yells. "Faith will save me!"

"Why so she can have a meaningless fuck," Angelus hits her again. "It is my name you will scream not that bitch slayers."

Just then he's ripped off of Willow and thrown to the ground. "You sorry excuse for a vampire," the fight is on as Willow lays sobbing.

After a short time Angelus manages to get free and takes off. "See Red, you'll learn," Faith shouts going after him.

Oz finds Willow and they head after the others with her wrapped in his coat. Angel is out now crying as Faith pounds on him and Buffy yells to stop as does Cordy. "Fuck it, fang you're gonna go back to the dust, now say good-bye to this sorry bunch," she drives the stake in his chest as Buffy kicks her between the eyes and Tara lays in a pool of blood.

"She saved me," Cordy says sobbing pointing at the dying witch.

"Come on lets see if we can help her," Xander yells as he and Cordy get her into the car racing off.

Willow stands in shock, not knowing what to do as Buffy looks at her. "Wills, he was changing back, it was working, she knew it. She just wants to hurt me," Buffy puts an arm around her. "I'm so sorry things have gotten this bad."

Faith opens her eyes and gets up. "Is Blondie ok," she asks.

"What is it to you," Oz shouts, all the hard work we put in on helping Angel is gone and it's all your fault."

"You'll never lay another hand on Willow," Buffy adds dangerously.

"Don't please guys," Willow says still shaking. "Please go check on Tara and let her know I'm coming. I want to talk to Faith."

They begrudgingly go as tears fall from Willow's eyes and Faith puts her arm around her wiping the tears. "So Red, you wanna tell me to fuck off too," Faith asks.

"I don't think I could no matter how hard I tried. Would you please just hold me for a minute, I need to know it's ok."

Faith sits down beneath a tree pulling Willow into her arms. "Red, I know you got feelings for Blondie, so what's the deal here?"

"I know you're not good for me Faith. You have a terrible temper, you're not on our side anymore and maybe you were pushed away but I don't even think you care for me. But, I can't, I, I can't get you out of my head and honestly I wish I could. Tara is so unlike you, she's nice, caring, loving, warm, she's such a good person. She won't even go out with me because of you."

"Red, if you don't want to play anymore just tell me to get lost, hey, I can deal, it's all good," Faith says putting up her tough act wall.

"God Faith, I didn't mean it that way, you're nice to me, you show me attention," she cries harder. "What's wrong with me. I think I'm afraid of you, what you might do to me, I mean you might use me then leave me. I don't want to hurt like that Faith. Everyone hurts me," Faith looks into the pretty girl's eyes.

"Red, I won't hurt you. I just wanna kiss you, see your smile and feel something. I've never known love red. I don't know how to show it but if love is the nice feeling I get when I look at you or wake up with you in my arms then I like it. I told you I'd tell you someday, I'd let you know me someday. Now the problem is, I'm not into sharing, either you want me or you want Tara. You can't have us both Red. I'll tell you she'll be the easier road for you. I got a lot of baggage including a temper, not knowing how to express myself and more. Apparently she has none, so if you want bliss and the easy way, you go on and get Tara."

With not another word she picks Willow up carrying her to her door. "Have a good one Red," she walks off.

Faith is at the door of the mayor's office knowing she just had one day before the hundred days in which he couldn't be hurt. She lit the fuse and tossed it in catching him off guard blowing up the building with him in it. "See dick, I told you I'd win. Shows what they know about me and what side I walk on," she heads for the bus station.

Tara finally woke up with Willow pacing nervously in the room. Willow rushed to the bed smiling down at her. "Oh I'm so glad you're awake. I was so scared I'd, well you wouldn't make it."

"I'm ok Willow," Tara touches her hand smiling. "Look, I know this is hard for you and I don't want involved in causing you any pain so if you want to give it a try with Faith I'll still be your friend."

"I care for you both Tara," Willow begins. "I don't know what it is that draws me to her but theirs something powerful when I'm around you. I can't walk away from it. So if you can understand I'll always care for Faith, I'd like to see where the road takes us."

Tara's blue eyes sparkle as she leans up kissing Willow on the cheek.

"Ok just let me go tell Faith while you rest. She won't hurt me I don't think," a quick kiss and she leaves.

Willow gets to Faith's place finding it empty and rushes to the bus station. She sees the slayer leaning against a window seal and tears form. She knew in her heart Faith did the right thing by staking Angel, she finally put him out of his misery. She knew this was Faith's way of saying good-bye but wondered if she could ever forget the volatile slayer. As she turned to walk away something inside her begged her to go stop Faith, to have Faith hold her, kiss her, to make it all seem right like she had so many times but she didn't do it.

ch. 5 (July 2001)

Faith woke up about noon, showered, ate and headed out. She'd taken a security job part time at a local department store. It wasn't bad hours considering she stayed in and out of sleep most nights remembering the happenings in Sunnydale or her suck ass childhood before she had the bad times there.

She finished her shift at 7 pm and headed for the bar. Same ole routine, work, drink, sleep but there was a cute little blond over in the corner so maybe she could score.

She walked up to the woman offering her a drink of which was accepted with a smile. "I'm sort of looking for someone," the woman began. "It's an emergency and I think she's the only one that can help but I don't know her."

"How can you find someone you don't know," Faith sits down figuring no score tonight unless she plays it just right.

"Well my fiance and friends are in trouble," she begins. "They don't know I'm looking but this big city is the last trace I could find of the girl on the computer. Unfortunately in jail but they said she was released."

"Yeah, what kind of trouble," Faith asked rather uninterestedly.

"I shouldn't say but probably lives depend on it," the woman said somberly.

"Oh yeah," Faith got two more drinks quickly and sat back down. "What's her name?"

"Faith, um, I don't know her last name," the woman said fidgeting. "Some bad stuff happened and she left a long time ago but we really need her help. By the way my name's Anya and I'm from Sunnydale."

"I'm Faith," she smiles at the big eyed blond. "So what's up?"

"It's a long story," Anya says. "Can I tell you on the way to Sunnydale?"

"No," Faith says leaning back in her chair. "I have no desire to go back there so it better be good if you want my help."

"Fine," Anya said. "Shortened version for now. Buffy is dead, she died saving Willow and the world from her girlfriend Tara, some witch named Dianne and a hell Goddess named Glory."

"B's gone," Faith said with a little sadness in her voice. "What's this about the girlfriend?"

"She was sent there by Glory to scope out the town to find the key who was sent to Buffy by some monk guys in the form of her sister. It was all lies and tricks, they suckered Willow right in and now she's in a wheelchair," Anya states.

Faith gets up without showing any emotion. "Wait here, twenty minutes," she said walking out to pack.

Dawn is sitting with Willow around midnight, both sad and empty inside. Xander and Spike were out on patrol and they had no idea where Anya had gone earlier in the day. All they knew is they felt their lives were over and they were fighting a big losing battle of evil.

As they sat silently Anya came in. "Hey guys," she said rather chirpily. "I got us some help, we'll solve this mess."

"Oh really," Willow said. "You run off to find some other demon to help us and we sit here coming up empty on research."

"Don't be so angry Wills," she said smiling. "I know you're hurting over Buffy and the betrayal of Tara but if we want to live we've got to fight."

"Anya leave her alone," Dawn says angrily as Faith comes through the door.

"Hey Red," she looks at Willow who just looks down remembering the last night she saw her. "So you all need some help," she walks over shaking Dawn's hand then stands beside Willow. "Well I got a room so I guess we can start tomorrow."

The next evening Faith went to the Summers house finding Willow alone trying to do her therapy. "Hey Red," she looked at her burying emotions from long ago in her mind. "Need some help there?"

She knelt down massaging Willow's legs for a minute trying to help relax her muscles. "So you want to tell me what we're dealing with here," She said standing up.

"Buffy, she died stopping the blood flow to send Glory home. We don't know for sure if Glory made it home or died and, Tara, she was helping her. She," tears flood her eyes as she speaks. "She drained my powers so I couldn't help Buffy. Buffy cried hard when she, thought she could kill her but Tara was a human and she just couldn't do it so Giles did it then ran off to England once Buffy died. The other witch, Dianne, she got away and is probably still after me."

"B was a true hero," Faith said thinking back to all their fights. "She tried to see the good in everyone only I didn't understand back then."

"Their was good in Tara," Willow says crying harder. "Sometimes when she'd look at me I could see the love so strong in her eyes so we never got to find out why she did it. She, at the end, begged Buffy to kill her so I believe something or someone made her do it."

"So how'd you get in the chair," Faith asked.

"I tried to stop Buffy from jumping off the tower but I started to fall and hit my back and on her way down she grabbed me and threw me back up. I messed up some nerves, muscles and such in my lower back. Giles wanted Dawn to be the sacrifice but of course Buffy wouldn't hear of it now this town is crazy with demons and stuff."

"I bet it is," Faith looked at her thoughtfully wondering what it would've been like if she'd stayed and fought for Willow. Maybe Buffy wouldn't have to die.

Just then Xander, Dawn, Anya and a blanket covered Spike come in. "Faith meet your patrol partner Spike," she just glances at him as Xander smiles knowing she doesn't like him either.

"We got food then you guys can get started cleaning up the town," Dawn says rather excitedly.

After a short time of no kill the two run into a large number of vampires. "Look, the prodigal slayer is home," one shouts laughing.

"She always returns," Spike growls as they defeat the vampires with ease.

"So let me guess," Faith says tossing her cigarette to the ground as they walk home. "You loved B too."

"Didn't everyone," he adds contorting his face strangely. "She only loved one person though outside the family and that isn't Angel."

"Yeah I know," Faith adds knowing Buffy hid herself behind Angel because she was afraid to openly love Willow, they'd shared a dream on it during her jail stay.

"So since we've been second choice to everyone we care for," he lifts his eyes while speaking. "What say we have a shag or ten, everyone needs a playmate."

She looks at the vampire and laughs. "If I wanted you I would've had you," she walks into the house leaving him to find his own release for the night.

She checks Dawn's room to find her sleeping then Willow's. Willow looks up at her from another sleepless night on her bed. "Sorry Red," she says walking closer. "I was just checking to see if you all are ok."

"I figured you'd do that so I left the door unlocked," Willow says.

"Yeah well that isn't safe you know," Faith says smiling at Willow through the dim light of the lamp that sat on her dresser.

"You're never gonna let me back in after what I did to you are you," Willow asks in a shaky voice.

"No Red, I don't do second choice well," Faith said wanting to take the girl in her arms and hold her but no way she was going to be number two. "I told you one day I'd let you know me, you couldn't wait so that's life."

"Faith," Willow speaks in her high pitched soft voice and looks at the slayer with pleading green eyes. "I know you won't believe me but I'd told Tara I was going to go tell you I wanted to date her to see what happens. When I went to the bus station I saw you there and wanted to stop you from leaving, to have you make it all ok again. I didn't want to let you go but I did and that was the biggest mistake of my life. I let you walk away knowing my heart was telling me to make you stay with me, to believe in you, I let those blue eyes lead me off the right path but I never stopped loving you nor sometimes late at night wishing you were kissing me or teasing me to rile me up. Yes I cared for Tara but she couldn't make me stop loving you. I wrote you letters but nowhere to send, I even told Buffy many times how much I missed you."

Faith somehow knew the woman was telling the truth, that she did care for her and she remembered what she told the mayor about getting the girl and him. "Damn it Red," she puts her arms around the girl making Willow cry even harder. "I can't just let you back in because I won't let myself trust you this easy even though I want to. We can start over though, I mean, I didn't let you in really before and just when I was ready to Tara came. So if you can wait on me to open up and let you in I'll give it a go."

"Does the telling me stuff someday still apply," Willow asked smiling.

"Yeah Red," Faith said pulling the redhead into her arms and kissing her. "We got a lot of bad stuff to deal with like the council and this witch that's after you but we'll do it."

"I'm so glad you're home Faith," they kiss a lot before making love.

The End

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