Title: When She Came Back
Disclaimer: These characters are not mine and I make no money off this.
Summary: AU. Buffy and Faith had a short but intense and unstable relationship during Buffy's senior year. Faith never went evil but left the day after they defeated the Mayor. She comes back just as Buffy begins to start college.
"Buffy, don't you think you should register for classes at some point in the near future?"
"At some point, yes . . . yes, I will."
Buffy and Willow walked through one of Sunnydale's many cemeteries, going through the motions on the slayer's nightly patrol. It was one of her most important duties and one that was easier for her if it wasn't done alone, mostly so it wasn't such a lonely chore. That was Buffy's biggest issue and worst problem about being a slayer: she always felt so alone.
"Well, if you don't do it soon, all the good classes will be picked over." Willow looked at her best friend, showing the slightest amount of concern. "We won't be able to take any classes together."
Buffy turned to look at her quickly while scanning the area. The night had been quiet and she'd only staked one vampire the entire patrol. It wasn't all that unusual, at least not at the moment. Ever since she and the rest of the senior class had defeated the Mayor, activity on the vampire front had been way down and Buffy was fine with that. She thought she deserved the break.
"Fine, we can go back to my house and you can help me pick classes if it's such a big deal." She sighed, still looking around and not really feeling the need to patrol anymore. It hadn't been in her the last few weeks. "Night's been kind of a bust anyway."
"Yeah, no one wants to play with the slayer tonight." Willow paused as the pair turned toward the entrance of the cemetery. "Don't you think college is a big deal, Buffy? I mean, it's college, you know?" She waved her arms in the air for emphasis.
"Yeah, I know it is. It's just . . . everything's changing." Buffy kept her eyes on the ground.
Willow eyed her cautiously. "But that's good, right?"
"I guess so." She looked away, toward the many gravestones. She didn't want her friend to see all the doubt in her eyes and also needed to come up with the right answer. "So much has changed though. Xander left to find himself, Cordelia's in L.A., Angel couldn't stand to be near me so he's there, too, and Faith just left."
"I'm still here." Willow gave Buffy a weak smile.
"Hence your best friend status, Will," Buffy said with a smile in return. She continued to talk through the cemetery, Willow next to her, and hoped that was the end of the conversation.
"I never understood why Faith left so quickly after graduation." Willow looked thoughtful for a moment, breaking the silence. "Did you two have a fight or something?"
Buffy shook her head but still wouldn't look at Willow, not wanting to show any of her feelings. "No, we didn't have a fight or anything. We were getting along great, better than ever. She just left."
Buffy didn't want to get on that topic for any longer than the short answer she gave her friend. The rogue slayer was such a complicated issue with Buffy and the fact that Willow brought her up hit a sore spot for her. She hoped her short answer ended the topic once and for all. That topic wasn't something Buffy wanted to discuss with her best friend. It wasn't something she wanted to discuss with anyone.
Neither one of them said anything as they continued to walk side by side. They were close to the entrance when Buffy heard a small commotion off to her right. She tugged on Willow's arm and nodded to signal the movement. Willow nodded in response and they walked toward the sound and the sight of the vamp rising came into view.
"At least the night's not a total waste," Buffy stated in a matter of fact tone as she got her stake ready.
The vampire slowly made his way out of his grave, his burial suit covered with wet dirt. He looked around wildly, unaware of his surroundings, and pulled himself up and onto solid ground. His eyes moved in an almost panicked state, looking as though he didn't realize what was happening and hadn't figured out that he had been turned.
Buffy quickly moved toward the grave with a small smirk, gripping her stake in her hand, while Willow stayed behind to let Buffy do her job. She swiftly moved in, like she was stalking the vampire and waiting for her moment but as soon as she was about to leap at the newborn vamp, someone sped in from her left and tackled him, knocking them both to the ground. Buffy watched as the person, a woman, punched the vampire hard, nearly knocking him unconscious, before staking him quickly.
Willow ran up to Buffy as the woman stood up and brushed off her leather pants. Both of their mouths dropped, looking at each other quickly then turning back to the woman as she turned to face them.
"Hey, B . . . Red. How's it going?" Faith greeting them simply and as though she hadn't even been away. There was a sly grin on her face and she was breathing hard as the adrenaline from the slay washed over her. She was dressed entirely in black, from her boots to her leather pants and tank top, and her dark wavy hair was held back in a loose ponytail.
"Faith . . . you're here." Willow's eyes were wide with some shock, not having seen the other slayer since the fight with the Mayor.
"In the flesh." Faith continued to grin as she looked at Willow briefly before focusing her attention on Buffy, looking her up and down quickly. "Cat got your tongue, B? Surprised to see me?"
"You could say that." Buffy's shock quickly left as a scowl formed on her face, remembering the events that had led up to the other slayer leaving. "Did you get bored and just decide to stop by?"
Faith walked up to them slowly, her hips swaying as she did. "Pretty much, yeah."
"How long have you been in town?"
Faith continued to look at Buffy for a few moments before turning her head to Willow. "Just got here a couple hours ago . . . only had enough time to drop my bag at my home away from home here in Sunnyhell before wanting to get out here." She grinned almost happily. "I was just itching to slay, you know?"
"We were just leaving," Buffy said, the scowl not leaving her face. Even though she didn't want it there, she knew the anger could easily be seen on her face. She wanted to at least mask it from Willow and she hoped her friend couldn't see it. She knew if she could Willow would be sure to ask her about it.
"Yeah, Buffy's finally going to pick her classes for Fall Semester." Willow looked from one slayer to the other, an eyebrow raised.
Faith nodded. "Cool. I'll catch up with you later then." She moved to walk past them but paused her stride as she passed Buffy. "I'll stop by tomorrow."
Buffy only nodded and turned to watch Faith walk away, trying not to overtly stare at her ass. She knew Faith could tell and was making a show of it, too, making the swagger in her step all that more obvious. She managed to look away as Willow turned to face her.
"Buffy, are you okay? You look a little weird."
Buffy took a deep breath and tried to compose herself before responding. "Yeah . . . this just isn't how I expected the night to go."
Buffy spent most of the next day fidgeting around her house, trying to keep her mind off of anything and everything.
She was up late due to Willow refusing to leave until she picked out all of her classes and that ended up to be more drawn out than she wanted. She ended up not being all that happy with all of them but at least she could say it was done and she wouldn't have to think about it. Even better, Willow would stop talking about the whole thing now.
Because of all that, Buffy didn't wake up until late in the morning and not at all in a good mood because of what she needed to do. She spent the rest of the morning and afternoon slowly gathering things together for her move to the dorms in a couple weeks. A move that she wasn't looking forward to since she thought it gave her less control over her life and a slayer needed total control.
That total control she craved was always lost with Faith and it wasn't always in a good way. When she first came into her life, the younger slayer always made her so angry and frustrated but the anger left quickly. After awhile, the frustration even left and Faith became more than a fellow slayer. Before she left, she even became more to her than Buffy could even think possible and it was those moments she most liked.
Over the last couple months, she had forgotten about those moments and how she felt when Faith was around. Now the feeling was back and Buffy was totally unprepared for it. It almost made her feel panicked and that wasn't how she wanted to face Faith so the entire afternoon she tried to calm herself.
At about four in the afternoon, she heard a knock on the door and sighed. She took a deep breath in order to help prepare herself for the encounter. She walked over and opened the door, an almost sad look on her face since she dreaded what may or may not happen next.
"Hey, babe." Faith walked through the door with a cocky grin on her face. "Faith." Buffy shut the door and turned to face the other woman, trying to show as much anger on her face as she could muster. She was angry but never knew how to show it when it concerned Faith in the last few months. It always came across as hurt instead and she didn't want that to show. It made her feel weak.
Faith leaned in to give her a kiss but Buffy backed away, moving her lips out of reach. Faith scowled at the action. "What's the deal, B? Where's my welcome back kiss . . . or more?" She waggled her brow suggestively and leaned in again.
Buffy pushed her away and walked angrily into the living room. "You have some nerve, you know that, Faith?"
"What?" Faith followed and put a hand on her shoulder once she stopped, turning her around.
"'What'? That's all you have to say?" Buffy's voice grew more angry with each word, feeling it flow through her. "Over two months, Faith. You've been gone over two months."
"So I traveled for a while." Faith took a step closer. "I needed to clear my head, you know?"
"So you felt the need to leave without saying anything to anyone? Without saying anything to me?"
"I didn't think I had to answer to anyone." Faith folded her arms across her chest and looked Buffy in the eye.
Buffy looked into Faith's eyes and had to remember her anger before continuing. Those eyes always seemed to get to her, no matter how she felt. They made her forget everything, forget what she was doing and thinking. "You didn't think to maybe mention it to me?"
Faith paused then shrugged. "Not really. I figured I'd be back eventually so it wouldn't make much difference."
Buffy gave her a hurt look even though she tried not to let that show. She wanted to be angry, not hurt. "It meant nothing, didn't it?"
"Of course, it meant something." Faith moved closer. "That's why I'm back." She leaned in and softly kissed her.
Buffy backed away after a couple seconds, proud she was able to do so. "You came back to get laid, didn't you?"
Buffy pushed Faith away roughly, anger and frustration etched on her face. "You suck."
"If you gave me a chance, yeah, I would." Faith continued to grin, showing off her dimples.
"You just don't get it," Buffy sighed. She was becoming more and more frustrated with the other woman and was trying to find the right words to tell her. She just needed a little time to think of some but Faith wasn't giving her that chance.
"Baby, come on," Faith said almost sweetly, slowly walking over to Buffy again and gently putting her arms around her. "No, I don't get it. I never do, you know that. I always was a little slow but . . . lets go upstairs." She lightly kissed her ear.
"My mom will be home soon." Buffy smiled slightly as Faith placed light kisses behind her ear. She always knew just what to do to get to her and for a moment, forgot she was supposed to be angry.
"I'm thinking we can get in a quickie." Faith moved her lips to Buffy's neck, continuing to place feather light kisses on her skin. "Then we can go to my room and get to know each other again."
At the mention of Faith's proposal, Buffy's brain seemed to turn on and she backed off quickly, cursing herself for letting Faith even get that far. "If you think you can just come back here and things would go back to what they were before, you're crazy."
Faith ran a hand through her hair, frustrated, and paced a little before facing her. "I don't get you, B. I know you want this just as much as I do."
"Obviously, you don't know a whole lot," Buffy spat out, trying to go back to being angry so she wouldn't have to think about anything else, especially how turned on Faith had just made her.
"I know enough to see you're being a real bitch right now."
Buffy took a few steps forward so she was only inches away from the other woman and glared. "You wanna know why I'm being a bitch? Maybe it's because we have sex, a lot of sex, and then you just leave without saying a word." She let out a breath that almost sounded like a sob. "The day after graduation I went to your room and you weren't there."
She stared at Faith and neither said anything for a minute. Their eyes locked, each daring the other to say the next word. Faith leaned in a little, making their lips closer. Buffy broke the stare at this action and looked down at her full lips. Faith ran her tongue along her bottom lip and leaned in to close the distance when they heard the front door open.
"Buffy, are you here?"
"In here, Mom." Buffy quickly stepped back and away from Faith. The other woman only put her hands at her sides and kept her eyes on Buffy, not looking away.
Joyce Summers walked into the room with a smile that turned quickly to slight shock when she saw Faith. She looked from her to Buffy and back again. "Faith! Honey, when did you get into town?"
"Last night." Faith looked away from Buffy to Joyce and gave her the smallest of smiles.
"It's so good to see you." She walked over and hugged her.
Faith's body went rigid for a moment, not looking like she was used to having someone hug her, before relaxing just enough until Joyce released her. "Good to see you, too, Mrs. S." She gave her another small, uncomfortable smile.
Joyce took a step back from Faith, smiling warmly, before turning to Buffy. "Honey, I bet you were happy to see Faith was back."
"Overjoyed," she said dryly, trying to appear disinterested and only half succeeding.
Joyce went over to her daughter and put an arm around her. She looked at Faith, unaware of the tension between the two slayers. "Faith, Buffy was so sad when you left. She stayed in her room for days."
"Mom!" Buffy turned to her mother with wide eyes and tried to hide her embarrassment. That was the last thing she wanted Faith to hear.
"It's true." Joyce looked down at her daughter then over to Faith, who had raised an eyebrow at Joyce's last statement. "Will you stay for dinner?"
"Actually, Mom, Faith was just leaving when you got home," Buffy voiced before Faith could respond to Joyce's offer. "She just came over to say hi."
Faith narrowed her eyes at Buffy as both mother and daughter looked to her for a response. "Uh, yeah . . . just came to check out the house before B moves off to that cozy dorm room."
"Okay, but remember you're always welcome." Joyce continued to keep a smile on her face, still oblivious to the tension between her daughter and the other slayer.
Faith smiled and walked toward both of them, her eyes only on Buffy. "Thanks, Mrs. S. See ya later, B."