I can’t take the pain anymore, I can’t take this feeling. I can’t take being so in love, yet feeling so pointless. I’m through with struggling. With putting on a brave face. With trying to be the Faith they all expect me to be, or want me to be.
I’ve been in Sunnydale long enough to know I’ll never be good enough. I’ll never make the grade. I’ll never make the grade with her. She’ll always want things from me that I can’t give. She’ll always expect, but I’m too flawed. I’ve gotten too many scuff marks on my way through life. I have too much baggage. Too much inside that eats away at me.
There’s nothing left to eat. There’s nothing left to give. I gave it all, but it was thrown back in my face. It wasn’t up to scratch.
Hell, I tried to fit in. I did what they asked and expected. I slayed. I sat at meetings. I did my bit in the ‘good fight’. What did they give me in return? They excluded me when it mattered. They pushed me out when I needed them. When I was willing to let down my walls. When I was willing to be me. . .they punished me for it. They saw it as worthless. My efforts were worthless.
I’ve had that all my life. I let people in and they don’t like what they see, so they turn on me. Try to mould me. Try to make me how they want me, but I can’t be changed. I can’t be manipulated ‘cause I’m set in stone. I’m set by years of feeling worthless, so what’s a little more? What’s a little more pushing? A little more. A little more.
I’ve reached the edge now, I have nowhere else to turn. Nowhere else to be pushed to. I can’t do it anymore. I can’t take the words and the looks, I can’t take the knowing, I can’t take the expectations I will always fail at. No matter how hard I try. . .I fail.
I fail to show them. I fail in me.
So last night I slayed, for the last time. I watched Buffy disappointed in me for the last time. I allowed my heart to break. . .for the last time.
I can’t do it anymore.
This life isn’t for me. No life is. I have failed at everything I’ve tried, and I’m done.
I tried to get Buffy to love me. To like me for who I am. To know me for who I am. But all she wanted was what she thought she saw. All she wanted was the good parts. The parts that made her feel good about herself. The untainted parts. The parts that make up less of me than the rest.
The rest is pain. It’s fear. It’s hurt and aching, and longing and needing, and most of all. . .those parts are the parts that need understanding.
It’s easier to push them aside than understand them though, and that’s what Buffy did. That’s what they all do. I weaken and they push it aside.
I need and I’ve failed.
Sometimes I stand on the cliffs that cradle the sea here, and wish for the wind to take me. I close my eyes and hope to land somewhere nice. Somewhere I can be me, with no barriers. Nobody’s expectations or pressure. Nobody wanting me to bend and strain to be what I’m not.
The wind never takes me.
So I took a decision. No more feeling. No more knowing my own worth, or worthlessness. No more of anything. If my efforts, my pain, my heart, my tears and my pulsing blood isn’t enough. . .then nothing will ever be enough.
I’m a slayer, but the pills I just took should do the trick.
I’ve left a note. Nothing fancy. Nothing elaborate. Just a few words. Words that have more meaning to me than anything I’ve ever known in my life. I’ve simply said “I love you, Buffy.”
I know that’s not enough. I know my love isn’t enough. Nothing ever will be enough. But it’s how I feel. I feel it with every breath. With every beat of my heart. With every tear that falls from me now.
She had my love from the start. Unconditionally. I fell, gave up my rights to my heart, gave up any hope in ever being free from the pain it would bring me. I took the pain like a beating. Everyday wanting, needing, hoping more than I could stand. . .for the same in return.
I think I had it, but it was buried. Buried under layers of Buffy’s coping mechanism. It was easier for her to ignore it. To switch it off. Yet she used it against me. Every day she used it. To twist me into shapes I didn’t fit into. To train me to be a better person. A better reason for being alive. She said she saw that in me.
I’m not a better person, though. I never will be. I don’t know how. I tried. . .but I couldn’t do it. I can’t.
The room is getting dark now, the note before me is blurred. All I can see is the word Buffy, and it cuts. It cuts me in two like a scalpel. Like a blade I’ve sharpened myself.
I try to say the words, “I love you, Buffy,” but it comes out wrong. It mocks me. It burns.
I reach up to touch my lips as I speak again. “I love you, Buffy,” like a sting to my fingertips.
There is blood on them. My blood as I retch, as I feel my stomach being eaten away by the pills and alcohol. By the fear I couldn’t live with. The fear that I would never, not once, be enough for Buffy.
It’s easier this way. It’s cowardly but easier. I can just lay now, right here with my hand clutching my last words. With my back to the door. To the world. The last feeling in my soul one of pure love. Pure, shining, unworthy love for the girl that once lifted my soul in ways I didn’t understand.
My heart is now heavy, thudding slower. I can hear every beat. The rushing of blood making a deafening swoosh in my ears. Slower every time. A little darker every time. A little closer to being set free every time.
Somewhere in the background I hear a door. A crash. I feel a tingle that my stomach swallows up.
I force, with my last piece of will, fight and energy I have left. . .I force my eyes to open from the darkness. I see her face. I see her eyes full of unshed tears. I see her mouth, her lips moving so slowly.
I can’t hear her. I can’t
A second of clarity, and it’s there, “Don’t leave me, Faith. Please.”
“Stop hurting me,” I say, but the words are internal. They’re choked by the vomit and the blood in my mouth.
I have to leave. I have to rest.
I can’t fail again. I can’t.