Buffy walked home in silence, Faith beside her the entire time. She didn't want to have a conversation with the other slayer, at least not right now, and she figured Faith could tell since she wasn't talking either.
She couldn't believe she'd offered to hang out with Faith let alone to have her meet her mother. She didn't know anything about her and didn't want to at the moment. Buffy was still embarrassed about the previous night and couldn't figure out why she'd acted the way she did. It was so out of the ordinary for her to act without thinking and it frustrated her that she couldn't explain it. What frustrated her even more was that Faith had yet to say why she did what she did.
Faith broke the silence as they neared her house. "Will it be okay with your mom that I'm coming?"
Buffy shrugged, not looking toward the other teen. "Shouldn't be a problem."
"Is it okay with you?"
Buffy kept staring ahead. "No problem."
"It looks like a problem."
Stopping, Buffy turned to face her and scowled, wondering why she had offered anything in the first place. "Why?"
Faith narrowed her eyes, probably not liking her tone. "Why, what?"
"You know exactly what I'm talking about," Buffy accused, letting out a breath. "Why?"
"No reason," Faith said with a shrug, looking away for a split second before making eye contact. "I saw you, we made eye contact. I saw you head for the bathroom so I followed. I thought you'd be into it." She paused. "And it looked like you were."
"I. Was. Not." Buffy gritted her teeth and stared hard at the other teen. "Don't ever think that I was."
"Whatever, B," Faith said and looked away from her, starting to walk again and leaving Buffy standing alone. After walking a few feet, she turned back to her. "Are you coming? 'Cause I have no idea where you live."
Buffy shook her head in frustration and walked up to meet her. "When exactly will you be telling everyone about last night?"
Faith raised an eyebrow. "Why would I and why would anyone care?"
"I don't know," Buffy sighed out. "I just don't know what to think anymore."
"No, I guess you don't."
Both slayers stared at each other, neither looking happy with the other. Buffy couldn't understand why Faith was even there, much less why anything had happened between them the previous night. More importantly, she didn't want to think about the previous night and why it happened. She wanted to forget it instead.
After staring each other down for a minute, Buffy broke eye contact and continued walking toward her house, Faith following behind her after a moment. They walked the rest of the way in an almost unbearable silence. Buffy was thankful her house was only a couple blocks away so it wouldn't last very long.
Once they reached the house, they walked in to be immediately greeted by Joyce Summers. She looked a little rushed and tired, maybe due to a hard day at work, but Buffy didn't have time to ask her about it. There was the matter of her not-so-welcome guest that would be of greater importance at the moment.
"Buffy, I thought you'd be," she started then stopped when she noticed her daughter wasn't alone. "Oh, hello. Buffy, you didn't tell me you'd be bringing anyone over." She looked toward Buffy for an answer, not angry only interested.
"Funny story, really," Buffy started, looking from her mom to Faith and back again. "This is Faith. She's . . . also a vampire slayer." She paused and looked away. "Not that funny really," she muttered at the end.
Joyce's demeanor brightened a little at the introduction, not paying attention to Buffy's last comment. "Really?" Buffy nodded. "Well, in that case, it's wonderful to meet you, Faith."
Faith smiled and shook her hand but Buffy thought she looked a little nervous. She wasn't sure why the other slayer would feel that way, her mother not being someone she thought anyone would need to impress, but didn't want to point it out or even ask her about it later. At the moment, she didn't even want to be in the same room.
Something about Faith rubbed Buffy the wrong way but she didn't think it had anything to do with the previous night, or hoped it didn't anyway. Right now, she hoped the reason was because she plain didn't like her. She felt bad about even thinking that but it was true. She didn't like the other slayer.
"Okay," Joyce said, getting Buffy's attention, "we'll need an extra place at the table for Faith. Buffy, I'll need your help in the kitchen."
"Okay, Mom." Buffy tried to sound upbeat but knew it probably wasn't working, especially with the look Faith was giving her. She ignored it though, only followed her mother into the kitchen, Faith again trailing behind.
"So is that club the only place in town worth my time?"
Buffy looked over at Faith, wondering if there was any hidden meaning to the question. They were walking through town on their way to the first cemetery on what Buffy thought might be a very long night. Faith was the only one trying to have any sort of conversation and was asking her all sorts of questions, most of which could thankfully be answered with short responses.
"Yeah, unless you like dive bars."
Looking straight ahead, she tried to remember to take her mother's advice when it came to Faith. Mrs. Summers had apparently picked up on her daughter's irritation with having Faith there and had given her a talking to on making sure she was nice and that if everything went well, maybe Faith could take over slaying and Buffy could go to college. She hadn't necessarily liked what her mother had said but knew she had a point. Of course, her mother didn't know Faith had made out with her one and only daughter.
"They can serve a purpose."
Buffy looked at her with a furrowed brow, too lost in her own thoughts to comprehend the response. "Huh?"
Faith grinned. "Ya know, for info and stuff." She paused. "Or if you wanna pick a fight."
Buffy shook her head but smiled, becoming more relaxed with their banter. "I fight enough as it is."
The other slayer nodded with a smile. "Yeah." She let out a breath. "What about guys?"
"I thought . . . I mean . . ." Buffy couldn't help but stutter, not knowing how to respond given the events of the other night.
The other teen only laughed. "I can take 'em or leave 'em, B. I'm strictly get some and get gone."
Buffy didn't know how to respond to that either. She'd always strived to be the exact opposite of that, wanting to find that one perfect guy. In fact, the way she saw it she couldn't be any more different from Faith if she tried. The way they acted, how they looked . . . everything about them was the exact opposite of the other.
"What about you? I mean, you and that vampire . . . what was that like?"
Buffy avoided looking at Faith, the question bringing feelings to the surface she didn't want to feel. "I'd rather not talk about that."
Faith gave her a confused look once she saw Buffy looking her way again but didn't say anything else about Buffy's answer. Instead, she simply looked ahead to the cemetery now in view. "You know, I think I have a pretty good handle on the layouts of the cemeteries. I've been through them already. We can split up."
"Why didn't you tell Giles that?" Buffy asked, trying her best not to sound angry but knew she came off at least a little annoyed.
"Thought it'd be cool to hang with you," Faith responded with a shrug, hands in her pockets. "But you're wound a little too tightly."
"I am not."
"Yeah, you are. You need to let loose a little. Find the fun."
"There's no fun in slaying," Buffy said quickly, not looking at Faith.
"It can be if you do it right," Faith said, letting out a sigh. "Slaying's what we're made for, what we're all about. You should get some fun out of it." Her eyes quickly left Buffy for a second, staring over her shoulder instead. "Move."
"What?" Buffy asked, confused but only had a quick moment to think about the demand from Faith before she was jumped by a vampire. It caught her off guard but threw the vamp off as she saw two running for Faith, who was eagerly awaiting them.
She tried to concentrate on her own fight during her battle but kept looking over at Faith as she handled the two vamps attempting to attack her. Buffy could easily see that the other slayer did in fact enjoy slaying. Her grin became wider with each hit she delivered but unlike anything Buffy would have done, she wasn't ending the fight when she should. Even though she had several opportunities to stake both vamps, she continued to beat up on the pair until they were barely conscious.
Feeling a blow land to her ribs, Buffy snapped out of watching Faith and quickly finished her own battle, staking him in less than a minute. Once he was dust, she wiped herself off and turned to where Faith was fighting. She saw that even though the other slayer had staked one, she was still beating the other one senseless.
"Faith, just stake him!"
The other girl wasn't listening at all, seeming to only be concentrating on what she was doing. Buffy quickly ran over and pulled her off the vampire, who was lying on the ground in the small pool of blood and was most likely unconscious. Once she pushed Faith out of the way, she staked the vamp quickly, watching him turn to dust before turning to Faith.
"What the hell was that?" Buffy asked angrily.
"Me doing my job," Faith replied as she brushed herself off and scowled at her. "What did it look like?"
"Careless slaying. While you're beating on some vamp you could have already staked, another one could have come up and caught you off guard."
"That's what you think," Faith said as she walked up to her, scowl still present. "It'll never happen."
"Okay, what about having my back?" Buffy asked, getting increasingly angry with each word but couldn't understand why aside from the fact it wasn't what she would do. She didn't think the way Faith slayed would have any real affect on her but it did.
"You looked like you were doing fine."
"Did you even notice?"
"Yeah," Faith answered, crossing her arms over her chest and staring at her angrily. "If you needed help, I would have been there."
Buffy shook her head. "Whatever." She started walking again but Faith rushed after her and grabbed her arm.
"When do you think you're gonna stop judging me?" she asked, keeping hold of her arm. "'Cause I wanna be prepared."
"I'm not . . ." Buffy started before stopping quickly, thinking about her actions and knew Faith was right to an extent. She had been at the very least critiquing the way Faith did everything, making a point to examine and criticize whenever Faith did something she would never do.
"Yeah, right," Faith said with a sigh, running a hand through her hair. "Let's just get this over with."
She started to walk away, moving deeper into the cemetery, and Buffy only watched her for a few seconds. She knew she should apologize but couldn't quite get the words out. Her problem still was that she thought Faith had other intentions about what happened the other night and she wasn't telling her.
Buffy didn't let Faith get too far before catching up with her. She looked over at her, hoping she wasn't too angry but saw the opposite of what she hoped. "I don't mean to sound like I'm judging."
"Yeah, you do. You're just too high and mighty to admit it," Faith said as she kept up her stride, not looking at her.
"Fine, I'm sorry." Buffy tried to sound as sincere as possible but knew Faith probably wouldn't believe her anyway.
Buffy reached out and put a hand on her shoulder. "Seriously, I'm sorry."
Faith looked down at her hand then at her. Buffy had to stop a shiver as a response to looking into them. They expressed so much but she still couldn't read much in them. It frustrated her a little but decided to give up on trying to dig into what Faith was all about. Right now, she only wanted to get the night over with.
"Fine." She sighed. "Let's get this over with."
Buffy couldn't help but feel the same way.
The next morning came with Buffy feeling tired and frustrated with her fellow slayer. They'd covered over half the cemeteries in Sunnydale and unfortunately for Buffy, it lasted much longer than her normal patrol. Now she was feeling way too sleepy and not looking forward to staying awake in her classes. She already had more caffeine than she'd care to admit but it wasn't helping this morning.
The two slayers didn't really talk the rest of the night, only comments here and there. She could tell Faith was irritated with her and Buffy was feeling exactly the same. She didn't think they had anything in common aside from being slayers and was struggling not to jump on everything the other slayer said or did, not always with the best of success.
Nevertheless, Buffy got up when she was supposed to and found herself arriving at the library even before she normally would. She immediately saw Faith in a chair, feet up on a table and looking asleep. Buffy smiled, first thinking the other slayer looked kind of cute asleep then thinking it was weird she thought that, and walked over to her. She reached out to wake her but nearly jumped as Faith grabbed her hand.
"Trying to sneak up on me?"
Buffy kept her smile. "No. Only testing your reflexes."
Faith raised an eyebrow. "I'm sure."
Buffy shook her head slightly and took a seat across from her. She took a moment to look at a book that was on the table and another couple near Faith before saying anything. "Studying up on demons?" she asked, nodding toward the book Faith had been resting her arm on.
She looked down at the book then at Buffy with a smile. "Nah, this was here when I got here. I'm not big on the studying."
"When did you get here?"
Faith looked up at the clock. "About twenty minutes ago. I'm waiting for the G-Man to figure out I'm here."
"You haven't told him?" Buffy asked, a small smile beginning to appear on her face.
"Nah," Faith said as she shook her head, smirking. "He can figure it out . . . and I can sleep while he does." She paused. "It was a late night, didn't get much sleep. Couldn't even cure either of the double H's."
"The what now?" Buffy asked, a confused look on her face.
The other slayer laughed. "Hungry and horny, happens every time I slay. You've had to have felt the same. I'm sure it's a slayer thing."
Buffy looked down, cursing herself for the slight blush she knew was on her face. She thought for a moment before looking back up. "I sometimes crave a nonfat yogurt."
Faith laughed. "That's crap."
"Oh, you're both here," Giles said as he walked out of his office and toward them, causing both slayers to jump slightly in surprise and making Buffy relieved he interrupted their conversation. "I didn't expect either of you so early."
"Couldn't sleep and you said to be here in the morning," Faith responded as she narrowed her eyes a little. "Thought we'd be training or something."
Buffy leaned back in her chair. "You know why I'm here."
"Yes, well, how was the patrol? Buffy, did you show Faith most of the cemeteries?"
"As much as I could while still attempting to get enough sleep to function in my classes," Buffy commented. She turned to Faith who at best looked disinterested at her response.
"Unfortunately, that is the price one must pay in order to save the world from unspeakable evils," their watcher said, not paying much attention to either of them for a minute before finally looking over at the pair. "Did something happen last night?"
"Nothing but the normal slayage," Buffy stated, looking to Faith to see if she would say anything else. All she saw, however, was that Faith was looking away, not paying attention to either her or their watcher.
Giles nodded. "Then you should continue covering the rest of the cemeteries tonight. Once Faith is comfortable with the area, we can split patrols and cover more ground."
"Faith is a big girl, Giles. I don't think I need to play tour guide again. They're just cemeteries." She looked at the other slayer. "Faith . . . little help?"
"Huh?" Faith blinked a couple times and shook her head before turning her attention back to the pair. "Oh, yeah, what time do I need to meet up with B?"
"Faith, have you even been listening?" Buffy asked as she scowled slightly, wishing Faith would help her out given how the night before had gone.
She shrugged. "If we're not doing any training, I'm gonna bail. This is majorly boring," she said as she got up and started to walk toward the door.
"Faith," Giles called out, making her turn around. "Come back after Buffy's classes today and we'll do some training."
"Cool." Faith nodded at him then walked out of the library.
Buffy watched her go then looked to her watcher, a not so happy look on her face. "You have yet to explain why I need to escort Faith again."
Giles sighed. "I do not wish to repeat myself but I want Faith to be familiar with Sunnydale, the cemeteries in particular. You are the best person to accomplish this task."
"Yeah," Buffy agreed and looked down, thinking about everything and deep down knew Giles was right. She hated him for that. She thought for a couple seconds before she thought of something and looked back at her watcher. "How long will Faith be around for anyway?"
"The Council didn't get into specifics," Giles answered as he gave her a look of both seriousness and slight confusion. "I don't think they've quite encountered a situation like this before."
"So it'll be awhile."
The pair looked away from each other, Giles going back to some sort of paperwork at the counter and Buffy began to flip through one of the demon books at the table. Actually, it was the one Faith had been resting on. She wondered if the other slayer had really been reading it before she got there and was simply hiding it from her.
Once she breezed through a couple pages, she realized it wasn't even a demon book as much as a type of an introduction to all things dark and nasty. It had been flipped to the vampire section and Buffy scowled as she flipped back to the page it'd been on when Faith was there. It was opened on an entry dedicated to Angelus.
Buffy became instantly furious though she didn't quite know why. She wasn't sure if Faith had even been reading up on Angel's dark half. It could have been Giles' doing but Buffy couldn't think of a reason why he would. For some reason, she instantly thought it was Faith and the only thing she wanted to do was find her and give her a piece of her mind. The school seemed to have other ideas, however, because the shrill sound that was the bell rang furiously, telling her she needed to get to class.
She sighed dramatically and gathered her books, angrily shutting the one that contained a list of Angelus' misdeeds. Once all her classes were done, Buffy knew she would be having a talk with Faith and she knew it probably would not end with just words.
Buffy rushed into the library looking for a fight. The whole day all she could think about was how Faith might have been invading her privacy. She had just been itching the entire day to find the other slayer and have a discussion about staying out of her business.
Of course, she knew she was probably overreacting and Faith was most likely telling the truth when she said she'd been sleeping while waiting for Giles. Buffy didn't care though. At this point, she simply wanted another reason to dislike her and as soon as she walked through the doors Faith was the first person she saw . . . and then Giles.
"Buffy, I'm happy you're so anxious to train." He looked from Faith to her while adjusting his glasses. "I was thinking with Faith here you can do some sparring. The both of you can better perfect your fighting techniques against each other than with me."
Buffy scoffed, not paying attention to Faith only her watcher. "I think I do fine with you. You wear pads."
"I still bruise."
"What's the big, B? 'Fraid you can't take me?" Faith asked, smirking.
Buffy finally turned to Faith, trying her best to remain civil while Giles was with them. "That's the last thing on my mind. Nowhere near my mind actually."
"Then let's get to it, girlfriend."
Buffy's mouth hung open for a moment, not expecting that word to come out of Faith's mouth. The other teen smirked, the glint in her eye showing she knew what Buffy was thinking. Buffy recovered quickly, however, and smirked right back.
"Let me change and then it's on," she said, accepting Faith's challenge.
She quickly walked into Giles' empty office so she could change into more comfortable sparring attire and quickly reminded herself how angry she was. It was easy to forget, especially when she was doing something she actually liked, fighting, but it was in the front of her mind once again. She always had to be careful with Giles but had a feeling she didn't need to be with Faith. Since she was already mad at her, it would be pretty easy to try and get the better of her while sparring.
Buffy walked back into the room to see Faith had moved a table aside and was doing what only could be described as psyching herself up. She turned to Buffy as she walked toward her and grinned.
"Ready to get your ass kicked, B?"
"Don't think so," Buffy responded and turned to Giles, who was standing behind the counter doing what Buffy could only think was more boring school paperwork. "Do we have rules here, Giles?"
He looked up from his paperwork and at the two slayers. "Well, the purpose of any sparring exercise is to perfect your fight techniques, not kill each other. Remember that and you'll do fine."
Faith nodded sharply. "Weapons?"
Giles shook his head. "Not today. Hand to hand combat is most important while slaying and both of you will do well to remember that."
"All this remembering . . . are we fighting or what?" Buffy looked from him to Faith, seeing she was already getting into a fighting stance but didn't pay as much attention to it as she probably should.
"Whenever you're ready," Giles responded, not paying much attention to his two slayers.
"I guess that means 'go'," Faith said quickly and didn't wait for Buffy to ready herself, instead quickly striking out and aiming a kick to her left side.
If Buffy hadn't been so quick with her reflexes, she knew she would have been working on a major bruise right now. Lucky for her she blocked Faith's foot before it could make contact and as soon as she steadied herself, she attempted to strike a blow with her free hand but the other slayer blocked it easily. Almost too easily Buffy noticed and suddenly realized she'd have her hands full with this fight.
That's when the back and forth began. For what seemed like forever neither one of them landed a single blow. Buffy tried looking for any opening she could, any one spot for her to strike, but Faith was doing better than she expected at defending herself. From the look in Faith's eyes, she knew she was thinking the same thing about her.
Faith let out a quiet grunt as Buffy blocked another kick. "Thought this would be a little easier."
"Giles did say to hold back," Buffy almost grunted out in response.
The other slayer jumped up, her kick going for Buffy's head this time, but she was denied once again. "Maybe you shouldn't. G-Man went into his office a couple minutes ago."
Buffy had been concentrating so much on Faith she didn't even realize he wasn't watching them. Knowing she could do what she really wanted to now, she dropped her fighting stance and rushed Faith, pinning her down against one of the tables.
"Now that's fighting a little dirty, don't you think, B?" Faith asked, breathing heavily in an attempt to catch her breath after being pushed into the hard table.
"I think we need to have a little discussion, F," Buffy said, gritting her teeth as she scowled down at her. "You need to stay out of my business."
Faith stared at her angrily before bucking up into her and successfully pushing Buffy off. She exhaled sharply and straightened her tight top. "What the fuck is your problem?"
"You're my problem," Buffy answered and began to pace a little, the anger in her rising. "What, I won't tell you about what went down with me and Angel so you have to read up on Angelus? Are you trying to find something to use against me?"
"That is the most insane thing I've ever heard and I've heard more than my share of bullshit, B." She took a step toward her. "I have no idea what you're even talking about."
"The book on the table this morning? The one that you weren't reading? Ring a bell?"
"Yeah, I remember not reading it," Faith answered.
"Whatever," Buffy gritted out, sneering at her. "When I don't want to talk about something it does not give you permission to go behind my back and find out all about it."
Faith gave her a look like she thought she'd lost her mind before rushing at her herself, pinning Buffy against the library cage. "I think we need to get a couple things straight here. One: I did not read up on your precious Angel. I don't care all that much. Two: that is not the real reason you're all hot and bothered and you know it."
Buffy pushed her away. "I am not hot and bothered."
"Yeah, ya are." Faith smirked. "I bet it's all you can think about."
"No, it's not. It was a lapse in sanity on my part. That's all."
Faith took a step toward her with what a look that was a combination of anger and what could have been a slight amount of hurt. "You keep tellin' yourself that, B." She took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "Look, I know you don't like me. I get that, really. But shouldn't we be working, I dunno, as a team?"
Buffy looked away from her for a minute. She knew at some level Faith was right. They were on the same team and she also knew she should be happy about that. She wasn't the only one out there, the only slayer. She had help and she knew she should be grateful for it.
The only problem was that she didn't want to be grateful. As selfish as she knew it would sound, Faith's presence made her calling as slayer less special and she didn't like that. Deep down, she liked being the chosen one. She didn't know if she could deal with simply being one part of a slaying team. Her mom always told her she had trouble sharing and this was no exception.
"B?" Faith waved a hand in front of her. "No witty response for me?"
"No," Buffy said with a sigh. "Yeah, we are supposed to be a team."
Faith scoffed and shook her head angrily. "Then fucking act like it." She walked toward Giles' office, stopping at the counter. "G-Man, I'm outta here. I'll meet up with B later for patrol."
Without another look at Buffy, Faith quickly walked out of the library. Buffy simply watched her go, not really wanting to make her stay. A few seconds later, Giles walked out of his office.
"Did Faith just leave?"
Giles looked Buffy over, probably trying to figure out what just happened between his two slayers. "Why?"
"I think we did all we needed to," Buffy answered and put on a smile, hoping Giles wouldn't call her on what was very obviously a lie.
He looked at Buffy for another moment before shaking his head and taking off his glasses. "I'll have to have a talk with her about more extensive training."
"I don't think that's necessary, Giles. We were done."
"All right," he replied, putting his glasses back on and looked at her seriously. "You will show Faith the remainder of the cemeteries tonight, won't you?"
"Yes," Buffy answered and sighed quietly. "I'm looking forward to it."