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Coma Dreams

by Anne
Rating: PG-13

Disclaimer: Joss Whedon and any others who own the characters of BtVS, I'm just dabbling. Don't sue, I'll admit that they're yours.
Spoilers: Graduation Part 2.
Author's Notes: When I saw the dream in Grad II I was sure that they had worked things out, and then Faith came back all bitter and twisted etc etc. So I wanted to make damn sure that they sorted things out properly this time...
Feedback: I would love feedback if you think it's worth it!

It felt so real, but Buffy still knew that she was in a slayer dream. All the detail was just too vivid to be a regular dream. And there was something else. The feeling that she always had when these things were happening. Part of her knew that she was not alone. Though, by the boxes that were littered around the apartment, Faith was about to go any time soon. A cat jumped up on the bed. And she realised that she did not even know that Faith had owned a cat. Wasn't it a puppy that Faith always wanted? "Who's going to look after him?" She said it knowing that Faith had finally put in a show.

"It's a she. And aren't these things supposed to take care of themselves?" Faith's voice came behind, and Buffy knew that she was close. It sounded pretty light-hearted from someone who had just been put in a coma.

"A higher power guiding us?"

"I'm pretty sure that's not what I meant." Faith kept on walking, past Buffy, towards the window. Something felt really weird about this whole thing.

"There's something I'm supposed to be doing." By the sound of it Buffy wasn't too clear either, though Faith could remember her being fine when she fell off the roof. So she must have taken her place.

"Oh yeah. - Miles to go - Little Ms. Muffet counting down from 7-3-0." It wasn't much of an answer, and Faith wasn't entirely sure what she meant when the words came out of her mouth. The fall must have hit her harder than she thought.

"Great. - Riddles." Buffy knew that it did not make sense, and found it funny somehow. They were both here together at last in some no mans land where anything was possible, and they couldn't understand themselves, let alone each other. She shook her head, trying to make sense.

Faith was apologetic. "Sorry, it's my head. A lot of new stuff." Her head still hurt worse than any hangover, and she thought she could remember B killing her. Looked like it hadn't worked though. Through the haze it suddenly hit Faith. Slayer dreams. Only coma-induced this time. "I get it." She said more to herself than to Buffy.

"Get what?"

"This," Faith turned, gesturing around the room. "All in the head. Took me a little longer to realise it this time though. Guess I'm not up to full strength B. So are we here to do it again? 'Cause this is way better than playstation if we are."

"You never stop with the jokes do you Faith?" Buffy knew that the other slayer was just fooling around. "I don't think I could do it again even if I wanted to. Which, by the way, I don't."

"Me neither B. Nice sharing this with you though. Always wondered when it would happen. I mean, I heard from my watcher that you did the dream thing too."

"You never wanted to let me in before though, did you Faith?"

"Too much to hide. So much you weren't supposed to see. Guess it doesn't matter any more. You're in now B, have a look around." She was starting to feel more like she understood things, yet part of it made less sense than before.

"So what were you hiding Faith. The fact that you loved me? 'Cause I saw through that one the moment you asked me to homecoming."

"What the!"

"And the hungry and horny thing! Faith, your come-ons are way obvious!"

There was a pause as Faith smiled her half smile and raised her eyebrows. Here comes the challenge thought Buffy. Faith's 'I dare you' face. "Well, from what I remember B, we had one hell of a fight tonight. So I must be wicked hungry. But there's probably a drip in my arm pumping me full of nutritious shit. Which just leaves..."

"Faith, if you're going to make a play for me, just do it. Either of us could come round any minute, and I don't want to wake up with a bad case of the what if's." Buffy couldn't help herself this time.

She had wanted so much for her and Faith to get along. Wanted so much for...

"Jeez B, this time you really are dressed up in big sister's clothes. Well, I better see if you can get undressed in them too." Faith crossed the room and put her hands on Buffy's waist, pulling her gently towards her. "You know what B. I wanted this the moment that I saw you. And now I finally get it and it ain't real. Justice huh?"

"Shut up and kiss me Faith." Buffy tilted her head up, closing her eyes as she did so. Moments later she felt Faith's lips on her own, so very gentle, not pushing too fast, even though she knew that she would be met with no resistance. Slowly but surely they deepened the kiss, their breathing becoming hard and fast as they gave in to the thing that had been haunting them in the months since the second slayer had come to town. Buffy felt Faith's arms wrap even tighter around her and she moaned a little as their hips pushed together.

"Wait B." Faith nibbled Buffy's lower lip slightly as she pulled away. "There's not enough time." That voice returned again, the Faith that was talking in riddles, the Faith that had first walked into that dream room. But the bit of Faith that was playing along with Buffy was still there too. "Not now. But sometime, I promise. I might be here for a long time. But this isn't over. Wait for me." Things were slipping away. She was losing it. She was losing Buffy.

Buffy was smiling when the cat disappeared from the bed for the briefest of seconds. Buffy thought that she saw Faith lying there, but she could not be sure. The real Faith, not this mind Faith. That one was still holding onto her. Buffy wondered if that meant that she was coming round. Then it hit her. She was not sleeping, she was unconscious, but why?

"They are never going to fix this, are they?" Buffy looked to where Faith pointed and saw where they had thrown each other through. That had been some fight. It was the first time that neither of them had pulled their punches. A fight to the death.

"What about you?" Buffy could hear the concern in her voice and hoped that Faith could hear it too.

"Scar tissue. It fades. It all fades." Faith knew that here it already had. Buffy reached up and touched the face in front of her, feeling nothing but soft skin where she knew blood and cuts should be. Somewhere out there was Faith's body with fresh scar tissue building up on old, but this Faith was already healed.

Strange. Faith had always wanted to be able to bring B back here, even though she had sided with the Mayor. Always wanted to be able to share this with her. A decent place of her own for the first time in her life, and all she had really wanted was someone to share it with. Catch 22. And now with the Ascension, what was going to happen to her anyway? Either way she would be stuck in that body for a while. No slayer, no slayer dreams. No life. Just a hell of a long time with her own thoughts for company. Nothing to remind her that Buffy would be waiting for her on the other side. It was a choice, but it was no choice at all. She took a deep breath. "You want to know the deal? Human weakness - never goes away. Not even his."

"Is this your mind or mine?" Buffy laughed when she realised she still didn't get it.

"Beats me. But don't worry B, you'll understand when you need to." Faith stroked a wisp of hair away from Buffy's face. "Getting towards that time." Faith was feeling less and less certain that she could hold onto things.

"How are you going to fit all this stuff?" Buffy looked around, amazed at how much Faith had for someone who wandered, had no real roots, no real home.

"Not gonna. It's yours." Plenty of stuff but nothing that she needed. She had herself and that was the best thing that she could have. So everything that was up there in her mind-room Buffy could have. Use it for the fight. She was sure that there was something in her apartment that would be useful. Part of her felt like a traitor, but this was all in her mind. There were no rules. No consequences except for those they made themselves. Unless Buffy really did win. Would she wait?

"I can't use all of this!"

"Just take what you need." She reached up and touched Buffy's cheek, knowing that at least this way, there might be the chance that things could be better. She wasn't one for long goodbyes. "You're ready?" In a blinding flash that hit the back of her eyes the moment she left Faith, Buffy woke up in the hospital. She still felt a little light headed and confused. There was so much to think about, and so little time. And she was sure that she could somehow taste Faith on her lips. She eased herself off the bed, and walked around to the next cubicle. She was sure that Faith was there. Which she was. Covered in bruises that she had inflicted. Buffy suppressed a smile when she saw the drip in Faith's arm. The hungry was taken care of after all. She leant forward and placed a kiss gently on Faith's forehead.

"I'll be waiting," she said in a whisper.

Later:

"Faith told me to play on his human weakness."

"Faith told you? Was that before or after you put her into a coma?"

"After."

"Oh."

The End

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