It hadn't taken very long before Faith began to feel restless and a growing bit of frustration over wanting to know who it was exactly that awaited her at the mine that had been mentioned but not explained by Vi. With a bit of effort she forces herself into a calm, still feeling like an emotional teenager despite now being twenty-two. The slayer knew full well she would have to adapt and catch up quick if she was going to have any chance at surviving this, not to mention helping these people, and her sister slayer.
Letting out a muted sigh, Faith allows her awareness to return and for the first time, the still-recovering slayer takes notice of the odd vibes she was getting from the pair of apparent brothers in the driver and passenger seats. She also glanced at the Latino woman for a brief moment, and aside from the bit of unease Faith feels creeping on her over the fact that the woman was a cop, she didn't seem to be anything more than a mere human.
"So, uh.. You guys all been together this whole time?" the slayer finally speaks up, breaking the mildly uneasy silence inside the car and drawing the attention of the others to her all at once.
"At the mines?" Vi questions in reply, the redhead giving Faith a sideways glance as she spoke, and the raven haired slayer gives a nod. "Not the whole time, no. We've sort of filtered in over the past ten months, started off with a bunch of Sunnydale refugees, but most of them left or got bit since then. Buffy didn't want to have the new slayers all condensed in one area when the world needs us, now maybe more than ever."
The redhead pauses for a moment, motioning with her hand at the pair of brothers in the front so Faith could see. "The Foley's here, James and Phillip joined us about six months ago, along with the Fitzpatricks, all of them are werewolves."
Faith's gaze shifted between the two men as both seemed to shift with a bit of nervous tension, and then Phillip turns back to give a faux-glare back at Vi for a moment before he suddenly adopts a light grin and shakes his head.
"Probably different to any werewolves you might have encountered in the past Lass." The sandy haired Foley tells Faith as he gives her a once-over that she is fully aware of him doing. Rather than tell him to knock it off, Faith opts to simply give him a smirk. There wasn't much of her.. more appealing parts visible anyways with the armor she wore. "Willow Rosenberg did our kind a lot of good before she..."
Phillip trails off suddenly and Faith looks from him to Vi after a moment, catching a seemingly silent conversation occuring between the red slayer and the wolf.
"We're not going to discuss Willow right now, it's too damn early to dredge all that up." Vi intones, in a dark tone that Faith wouldn't have expected from the fox-faced and up-till-now bubbly girl, though then again Faith barely knew the other slayer so she isn't overly surprised that her first impression might have been a bit off.
"Right." Phillip replies in a more subdued tone. "Anyways, when the walkers first started popping up, [i]She[/i] and a few of the witches in the area got the idea that werewolves with control would stand a better chance of survival and also be of help in ensuring humanity's continued survival in the world as it is now."
Faith was silent for a moment, and then speaks up. "Meaning what, exactly?" The dark slayer inquires, her gaze shifting from Phillip to James as the latter picks up where his brother left off.
"Meaning that those affected by the curse that were within the radius of the spell can now change at will with the human mind remaining in control." The driver of the car replies, giving a brief glance back to Faith through the rearview mirror. "As far as we know, with the amount of firepower the witches had behind them, might encompass the entirety of the country if not further."
"Wow." Faith replies with no small amount of shock that Willow had gotten so powerful. "I missed a lot..."
"Well you're back now and alive, every day we're still breathing is a good thing." Vi cuts in as Faith trails off, and the raven haired slayer turns to look over at the redhead, finding her with a small smile once again before the younger slayer speaks again. "Anyways, the nice police lady on your other side is Ana-Lucia Cortez, formerly of the LAPD. She and a couple refugees from the city found us about five weeks ago after their camp was attacked by DuLac's raiders."
"Managed to take out all of the bastards that he sent, but all but a handful of my group were killed in the process and the motel that we'd fortified got burned down." Ana Lucia says in explanation, and Faith took note of the bitter tone in the cop's voice.
"Who is Dulac?" Faith asks, hating suddenly that there was so many questions that she had to ask, with three new ones popping up for every one she did.
There is silence in the car for several long moments, the only noise being the rumble of the engine as James continued to drive in the direction of the mine, and Faith glances at each of the other occupants with a confused look on her face.
"He's..." Vi finally speaks but then trails off for a moment, seemingly trying to find the right words. "He's someone that we used think was a friend... Until it was discovered that he'd been working with the First Evil the entire time. He killed four people and slipped away before we could stop him. After that we decided that Sunnydale was no longer safe, and came to the mines, about eight months ago."
"The graves behind Buffy's house." Faith says in realization, drawing a sharp look from Vi who then gives a tight nod.
"Yeah." the younger slayer confirms verbally and then looks away from Faith to glance out the front. "We're almost home." She adds, her words serving as a distraction to the Boston native as Faith turns away to look out the front again, taking sight of the fenced off group of buildings up ahead in the distance. It was built up against a large hill that Faith suspected the mine was built into, and the fence travelled all the way up to the top of the hill before circling around to come down on the other side. It looked pretty well fortified for the chance that the zombies might show up en-mass. Against them, Faith was fairly certain it would hold, but against invaders of the demon, or human kind if this Du'Lac guy was a real problem, she was less sure.
"I picked one hell of a time to wake up, huh?" The raven haired slayer remarks to no one in particular as she leans back into her seat and then falls silent, keeping her gaze upon the enclosure they were closing in on.
A few minutes later, James was pulling the car to a stop at the closed gates, and as Faith watches from her spot in the middle of the backseat, the driver picks a walkie-talkie up off the seat and into view as he holds it to his mouth and speaks.
"Nate, Shane, whoever's on gate duty open up." The older of the Foley brothers orders into the reciever, and a couple moments later, Faith watches as the gate begins to pull to the side along the metallic track. James drives the car past the fence and then pulls to the side to park among a small grouping of other vehicles. "Home sweet home, eh?" The driver speaks up again, and Faith gives him a look for a moment and then a slight nod before everyone begins to get out of the car.
"Come on Faith," Vi tells her, giving a slight nod. "Got someone who'll want to be seeing you, probably waiting by now."
Seeing little reason not to go along with the redhead slayer's suggestion, Faith falls into step behind the younger woman, the pair of them heading up the hill to the main grouping of buildings as the Foley brothers and Ana Lucia go off to do their own thing. The dark slayer just hoped that whoever this secret old friend is, was truly a friend and not one of her many enemies pretending to be.
All she could do at this point though was to wait and see.
To Be Continued...
Author's Note: This chapter brings a Lost char officially into the mix, being as with the plague kicking off in 2003, the doomed flight from Austrailia to Los Angeles will never happen. The Foley brothers are of my creation, and in this are represented by James Duval (James) and Tom Guiry (Phillip).