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The First Cut

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“Where’d you get that from?”

Faith stiffens against the laundry sacks; then pushes the girl’s head down. “Didn’t your Ma teach you it’s rude to talk with your mouth full?”

After that she can’t get off, can’t stop thinking about the damn scar.

Jostling in the lunch line Faith’s tray nudges against her belly and she feels cold steel, ripping pain. She can’t eat a thing.

Sweating over the steam press her shirt drags against that thin seam of skin until she’s helpless, laughing; breaking. Buffy’s smile bleeds through the heat haze.

In her empty bunk Faith dreams of falling.