Raw Reassurance
by Alexandra J. Campbell aka FuffyChick45
Rating: PG-13

Disclaimer: Not mine. Owned by Joss and Company.
Author's Notes: Set right after 'Chosen'.
Feedback: I'd love ya forever.

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CHAPTER 1: Something of Solitude

It seemed that the younger woman's presence was all that she had sembalance of behind her at this moment, her voice echoing the words she longed to hear, yet feared the most. "You're not the one and only chosen anymore, how does that feel?" Her face dropped at the irony of the statment cause deep down she knew, she never was.

All of the things in retrospect that could have flashed through her mind at this juncture and senior year became crystalized in her conciousness, times of trepedation, confusion, misfortune, and, in more ways than one, abandonment.

The buzz of the free-fall forwards leaving an unshaken-strong stance in the wake of the imploded hellmouth, no less intimidating, while she turned to the horizon and saw the sunset for what seemed like the first time, despite flecks of brown hair nearly blocking the view, creating a glimmer round the soft smirk of the other girl's face.

With a silent smile the blond shrugged enjoying the peace that could only be afforded once a lifetime, turning back to the hole as shadows spread across the deeper part of the chasm. While everyone made their way back to the bus Faith walked to the edge and looked down briefly, Buffy snuck up from behind...

"Thinking about jumping, it'd be a shame."

The brunette grinned thoughtfully swallowing down what she really wanted to say, 'not without you', and reveled in the playfulness.

"I ain't bout the big jumps, learned from that, baby steps will have to do."

"Even with a push and nudge..."

"One way or the other," she paused to crinkle in contemplation..."Got me sounding like Dr. Ruth."

"Wasn't she a sex therapist?" Buffy stifled a laugh, a sob forever hidden just below the surface, like so many other things.

A bit of burden lifted in the other's quiet company,the sense of solemnity stolen by the their mere presence. No pretense. No apologies til the younger more fearless, or perhaps foolish, spoke up nervously, digging into her pockets like she had the keys to the conversation, lost in looking down at the ground.

"Ever say sorry B?" Though she didn't want forgiveness, it only a guise for so much more when there was nothing else to be said. A sob strangled down of her own blinking out remnants of moisture gone dry too soon, but too dark to see anyways.

"Already gathered that." The shorter girl's weight shifted to the other heel uncomfortably, kicking stones soft beneath her shoes, crossing her arms to escape a sudden chill. To hear forgiveness was one thing, to feel it was another. The hum of humility set in and crumbled any last defenses with a verbal admition of wrongs that she, herself, questioned to admit...under the correct assumption the darker of the two had spoke for them both.

CHAPTER 2: Confessions of the Skin

An already sleepless night suspended by the wound welled up below her skin, Buffy lay in contemplation, it occuring to her she was completely incomplete, even after the trappings of responsibility had been lifted. Freedom felt little free, bound beneath was the urgency to know what lie ahead. She turned on her side, her face naked to the artificial light pouring through the window of the meager hotel, her hair rapped in a tight bun clutching onto calm and exposing her face to the air that wafted in.

Not but a room away Faith lay awake as well, turned the opposite direction, the opposite side of the bed, tracing her scar idolly, tabulating the losses in her head. 'Now I know why she never got close, they ain't like us.' Muddled pictures of the fight flashed rapid-fire, she cringed ever so slightly. There were no delusions of death and where it would have taken her, no flights of fancy to a heaven, or even of a hell, because she knew within every fiber of her being that she's been worse places.

The fated F*ck-up that were the years previous clashed with her conciousness in the lull of the one thing she'd never thought she'd be worthy of, peace, with herself, with the world, and when her eyes blinked back into the blur that, just yesterday, burned into reality, Buffy. It was all a sobering experience because with all the blond's supposed self-rightousness and lack of attainability the fondness of their possible friendship seeped through the cracks of an otherwise weary wisdom, for Faith too wondered, 'What Now?' but turned on her otherside to the wall and, unsurprisingly, fell fast asleep.

Any solitude was swallowed up by sunrise under the call to answer that very question. Having already dressed the cuts of the wounded a handful of potentials, Buffy, and Faith found themselves at the nameless town's hospital to check their efforts, as well as Principal Wood, while Xander, Willow, Giles, and Dawn were bust stocking up on supplies for themselves and the now, inseperable, band of slayers.

"God that gut of yours is worse than I thought." Faith winced comically, but no less concerned at her counterparts new bandages.

"This ol thing. A lil tape, some gauze, good as new."

"Yeah maybe, but stop to take a look what's underneath it." Pausing for a moment amidst the many implications of the statement she continued, "I was worried." The brunette momentarily thought about what Robin, who they had yet to visit, had said, but 4 days beforehand, and couldn't help but to go a faint flush by the truth.

"Such a softy." The blond smirked and a familiar silence set in, a thoughtful glance shared. Faith simply shrugged in defense as there was none and finally spoke again, changing the subject.

"But you got the natural tat on your tummy to remember we kicked some ass." A nervous grin appeared and tried to keep in tact the self-assurance.

"Yeah, I spose so," Buffy paused pensively, but continued, "And you to thank for being by my side when it happened." The smile dimmed and she looked on with serious gratitude as the taller of the two turned crimson releasing a sigh and soft smile, spite herself, well hidden but threatening to break the skin of her now well defined and aged features.

"No big B, Chosen Two and all." The orginal slayers gaze broke trying to squash the over-whelming urge to pull the other into an embrace of solidarity she'd always felt, but was always scared to, and as it fell her eyes couldn't help, but stop at the imprint she made on Faith's stomach, drawn to the scar that now mirrored her own.

CHAPTER 3: Minute Needs the Hour Hand

"So when is Robin getting out?" Buffy asked easing her way into the hot-tub, the one luxury in the otherwise cramped hotel, avoiding the chaos of the potential-filled pool nearby.

Faith's stomach lurched at the question, sinking deeper into the water, but perhaps it was with the expectation in Buffy's voice. It'd only been a week since the day and it seemed like the longest ever in some respects, all the ones having nothing to do with the man the blond asked about.

"Tomorrow....actually" she closed her eyes, dunked herself completely, and re-emerged from the suds slicking it back in avoidance.

"So are you,"...The older girls eyes ticked to the other girls, then looked away "Leaving?"

"Robin's right, he said..."

"Since when do you follow anyone's advice?" The blonde made light, feeling suddenly threatened and awkward.

"You didn't even know what I was gonna say dumb-ass," she continued with a smirk, "he was actually right about a lot of things.."

"Such as?"

"Not on your life B," she smiled sadistic, "Specifically though? He was just right when he said somethings take a lil time. His time is up. He was going back out east and wanted me to go back with him."

"And you saiiidddd?"

"Welllll, what do you think I said?" There was mischief in her eyes that for some reason or the other made the woman beside hers breath catch, but she only retorted wryly.

"That he looked sexy in his gerny?" They shared a laugh and it was one of many that occured that week, inside jokes and mature humour aside, the two were just accumstomed to the other's laughter being weaved through their own. Then she continued almost unwillingly, with a forced smile...

"Well I hope you..."

"I ain't leaving."

"Look, you don't have to....I can..." She trailed off receiving a look from the younger one who was, rolling her eyes, smiling, and shaking her head almost ironically.

"How many years you been alone? More importantly how many times *I* gotta imply you never were." With that and some minor huffiness the brunette attempted to get out, her skin already a steady simmer by the time she noticed she was being held back at the wrist.

"Faith..."

"Yeah." Her shoulders sagged in defeat, her back turned to the softness of the other girl's voice that would no-doubt be her undoing.

"Why...?"

She frowned, turned back, and twitched at the minor meltdown at the grip the other slayer had, hopelessly unsure how to answer as her face contorted involuntarily.

"Why you wanna know."

"I asked first." A bit of anger arose in Faith at that answer, that's what it was always about for her elder, concious or not, 'burden' or not, being first. The first one called. The first one to die. The first one to exist, but not being the one, for once, to first have blatent recognition of anything inside herself, clinging the the rest of the world like a safe-net instead of finally fucking breathing.

"Let go of me Buffy" she dropped her hand reluctantly at the request and was just about to speak when she was interrupted. "I don't think you want me to answer that," and she went on wondering what the hell had convinced her to say that in the first place, but accepted it with as much courage as she could muster, mummbling the rest under her breath, all the while knowing she'd catch the final quip regardless, "And I don't think you're ready" Faith walked off leaving Buffy frozen in the water.

CHAPTER 4: Some Closure in Chlorine

If it was possible the eldest of the two felt hypothermic in 90 some degree heat, all her insides were burning instead. She took a deep breath, submersed herself into the water completely and came back up. She looked out in a haze at the pool of the potentials, the even number of girls including her sister. It was ironic, for somehow each and everyone of them had found someone to latch onto, whether it was just friendship or otherwise. Someone to talk to, someone to trust and confide in, and suddenly that hot-tub felt much bigger, she looked wearily at her towel, stood up, rapped it around her now pruned body, and made her way to Faith's room.

It felt like a long walk. Random noises of the ice machion and the on again off again constant buzzing of the lights down the hall frying the rest off of her delicate brain, rapped in muddled up in thoughts. Her body left drip after drip on the carpet, after bi-passing the moment consideration of going first back to her room next door to change, wondering if she'd strike up the nerve to hit Faith's room afterword, or sit up right on her bed, and spend all night blinking the un-ease away, cursing the clock.

So she went straight to her door instead, and stared at it for ten minutes, studying the wood, encrypted with light and dark strands melding into each other, and just as she was about to knock Faith opened it, for once in her life she looked like a deer caught in headlights.

"Hey" Buffy said softly.

"Hey."

"Where were you..."

"Headed?" It began soft and her defenses took over "What, you MY mother now too?"

"Don't."

"Don't what, get angry, sorry, been a life-long thing."

Buffy dropped her towel and bite her lip surpressing the urge to deck her, Faith tried to pass her by without another word when the blond placed her palms on both her shoulders lightly back her into the room and locking it without a second thought.

"What the hell do you think you're doing?" It was expressionless, weak, more than anything. Her touching her zapped every initial response in her body, just like it always has.

"Doing what should have been done a long time ago" she responded quietly.

"What the fuck might that be?" Her voice rose a bit, but not much as she wasn't even afforded the time to get livid, crossing her arms to hide how much her chest was heaving, with the response to it.

"You're cute when you're angry."

Faith was backed into a corner, the lil dent in her forehead increasing, trying to look anywhere, but into Buffy's eyes or lavish the rest of her body.

"Don't."

"Wow, sounds familiar."

Her breath was mere inches from her face now, ragged, tickling every nerve like she knew it would. Buffy searched her eyes, and Faith finally met them, knowingly, but apprehensive, letting the shorter women continue.

"And you say I'm not ready," she huffed "What a joke, you can't even look at me cause you won't look away." There was fire in her eyes, but her lips trembled, causing the other girl to melt and shake her head.

"Well you're cute when you pout, so we're even." Without thinking her thumb ran over Buffy's velvet glossed lips, the rest of her fingers cupped her chin. An unbroken gaze lingered between the two long enough to see within the flash of a millisecond what was bound to happen. Buffy's eyes fluttered closed with the contact, her whole body paralized and weakened. Faith's lips gently replaced the touch, grazing the blond's mouth which muffled back in gentle irony..

"We are, or always had been..." Further comment was lost in the wake of the kiss, lips pried and repried open with duel tongues sliding slow against the opposition, feeling each other out, hands hesitantly rapping around each other in embrace as the darker of the two backs out of her corner, walks them towards the bed and lays her counterpart underneath her, lost above in the feel of the still moist, thin, cloth of the 2 piece bathing suit below, hiding lil of the skin she's always craved.

The kiss deepens steadily. Buffy's hands taking time to explore her counterpart's every curve, gently caressing Faith's back, her sides, losing herself in her. Faith is no acception dangling a hand in her hair to keep her steady to the kiss while the other moves to grope a breast lightly over Buffy's bikini top, palming it suddely, delicately getting lost with the future urgency inside her to grab it harshly and squeeze it for what it's worth, but still taking time to let it finally drop underneath fabric, to take a breast full into her fingertips with a heavy breath, kneading it back and forth, and finally pulling away from the heat for just a moment to look at Buffy again. Before pulling Faith's lips back to her she looks back, hazily, reassuringly, the feel of her future lover's hand on her breast sending tingles through. With one hand behind Faith's head keeping her on her mouth Buffy's other hand wanders down to the back of Faith's low-ride jeans, wiggles beneath fondling her ass to grind her into her.

She shuts her eyes in defense, to reposition herself with the feel of Buffy's hands on her ass, pushing into the blond's leg that's now between her own, riding to the side of a hip, working up the warmth that's starting to seep through-out the body. The grip she has on Buffy's breast becomes harsher as time wares on. She pinches her nipples and groans into the kiss with the feel of fingertips digging into the skin of her backside. Gripping her butt Buffy breaks the kiss long enough to kiss along the sensitive skin of Faith's neck, sucking down softly, distracting the dark-haired beauty to move the other hand between them, breaking past zippers and panties, running her fingers across the slit of Faith's pussy, slicking it with juices, to rub it slow and gentle.

Attempting to compensate Faith sucks down on her lip, trying to ignore the sensation so hands don't drop completely and greedily ignore the body before her, a hand cascades down to Buffy's stomach, then to her bikini bottoms, sliding them down just enough to register the faint scent of clorine with her better half's far more obvious arousal, her digits mirroring her every move, working up her wetness, touching the throbing entrance making it as loose and swollen as the grind she has going on the other's digits, a syncronized flood in each of them. Buffy's breath catches at the feel of her fingers doing the same, their tongues starting to roll against each other's once again as, out of no-where, the anxious blond sits up. Faith's pants are dragged down and off along with her panties as Buffy kisses her deeply, using hands to do the same with her top, her bra, it being pulled up and over. Breasts are pulled out, a tongue rolled over one, swelling it up, while the other is massaged, leaving a trail of kisses as she decends down her stomach.

Faith's eyes are closed in reverence. She throws her head back to not acknowledge how she's being completely taken-over, trying to control of all the ways she hopes to touch her back. Eyes dart to the two piece that's constrictive enough to make Buffy feel the difference, she uses it to her advantage once she realizes she's completely and utterly bare-assed and naked in front of the other woman. Pulling her up and tipping her body back down the brunette only gets lost in each kiss long enough to afford herself the chance to get even while pressing her firmly back to the bed. Their bodies mould to each other's, Faith's consuming hers from the top, throwing it into the matress. Her hands grab Buffy's, slides them along her own volumptous body tauntingly, and finally pushes their palms above their heads...

"Bet you wish you were naked too," the taller of the two purrs within in a whisper, sucking the shell and licking the lobe of her counter-parts ear.

Buffy grins seductively looking Faith's naked form over, licking her lips in utter anticipation, "Hell yeah."

"Ok then." After sucking on her mouth Faith obliges, sliding her hands down her body slow, keeping constant eyecontact. Stripped and now soaked for reasons besides the hot tub, the bikini top is thrown across the room, replaced with kisses, sucks, and licks down Buffy's frame, hands forming to her sides. Attention is drawn to the stomach, kisses are dotted, as hands finish the job, disregarding the bottom half of the ansemble, sliding it completely off her body.

With a squeeze of the ass she crawls back up, giving her a full-body caress long enough to let her hands roam aimlessly, to dip in and out of every curve and crevice avaliable before palming her most prized posession, a soft kiss placed to her face, a soft grin of contentment.

"That better?"

The blond can't help but to smirk in response, kissing her softly, "Yeah." And as the kiss deepens Buffy, rolling them to the side, raps a leg around her pushing her onto her back. Breast to breast she kisses down her again, licking every inch of salted skin, trailing her tongue across. Her hands fall back against her flesh, still decending, placing kisses along her stomach, to her hips, a pussy parting for Buffy as she parts the thighs concealing it.

Ragged and rampant Faith bites her lip in frustration, exasperated just melting against her mouth and wanting... no *needing* to melt into it, ever so much more than gratefully about to. Her thighs are slicked and soaked. Drunk and dripping on every ounce of her love a breath is sucked in, a lidded look thrown, a sexy smile, a nod, but then softly just above a whisper and admitance that comes as natural as everything else seemed to be doing so. With a look of adoration Faith let's go of the enivitable....

"Love You Baby." A hand reaching down to find her hair, caress her face gently.

Buffy smirks in response, dipping into lick full along her slit, creating a suction on the folds of her pussy lips. Just poking the tip of the entrance she drags her tongue up and down, worshipping it while watching Faith's reaction, loving every single minute of it before shutting her eyes in concentration, eating at her, rolling that skillful tongue along every inch.

Faith's not just biting, but gauging her lip while thrusting against Buffy's eager mouth. A cut is brought on, droplets of blood are sucked down. Opening herself further, a deep hum rollin' in her body, she loosens up, but tenses by the force of the throb. So caught up in every lick a hand reaches down to hold her there almost harshly as the other hand reaches behind and clutches the wooden bed-posts behind them in response to the manuvers of her mouth, her body slip-sliding along the length of the force of it.

Buffy lavishes her, grinning sadistically, loving the wiggle beneath, she picks up the pace of her tongue and lip together. Two fingers dip in to tease Faith's entrance, only slightly, while her tongue continues to work her clit. She pushes her digits in hard, pumping in time with the pulse against her mouth.

The headboards rocking now against Faith's hands, she's squeezing hard around the fingers inside her tight, trying not to pull her hair out in the process or squeeze Buffy's head like a melon between her thighs. Meeting each thrust core on she rides out the rhythm, heart beat runnin' down the rest of her body, her chest and pussy about to burst at any moment, when Buffy meets her face to face and crushes her mouth against her lips to let her taste herself.

Air becomes essential along with the desire to watch her come, Buffy pulls back to survey the scene. Her fingers work harder pumping in and out of her core, the heat of it melting her fingers, waiting for the grip of the muscles. Faith losses control. It didn't matter if it was the feel of her mouth back on hers, the taste of her all up on her lips, or one two many strokes, but she pops, spills, and spasms to run far past the inside of herself and down Buffy's palms, trembling all over she's far beyond feverish with the feel of Buffy above. Her whole body goes goo, overwhelmed by the climax, seeping in into the bed-spread where it feels like her body once was. Faith, to no avail, attempts to catch her breath, with a buzz and tingle all over.

Buffy's grin reappears, but her trade-mark smirk over-takes her, watching her flustered Faith. "I love you."

There's a suddel groan beyond satisfaction in response, and finally a weak smirk with her eyes still closed, cradling Buffy's body against her and kissing her instinctively on the forehead...she repeats...

"I love you too B."

The End

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