It's been six months now. She comes to me in dreams. Always soft, always so vulnerable, always asking, “Why?” And the truth is I don't know why. I'm just always there and then she's there and before I know it, it's like the room spins, all white and ethereal, and before I know it, we're both falling, writhing, our sounds echoing off the walls, all sighs, lips, moans, hands reaching, grasping, teeth nipping. It's all hot, wet, and never-ending.
We push and pull against the other, crying out into the haze, the white sheets wrapped haphazardly around us, backs arching, breasts jutting out, legs entwined.
We take each other over and over, again and again, biting, penetrating with fingers, tongues. It's slow, torturous, thorough. We're sweating one minute and fighting off chill bumps the next.
At first I didn't know who it was... but over time, when I was able to pull back a bit from the lull of the images, I was able to see her tattoo, that little indention on her lip, that scar on her abdomen and then when I finally realized who, I got it in full surround sound. And now, that's all I hear, awake or asleep. It's maddening.
All day, those images, those sounds, my body, heart and mind always taking me there. It's no wonder I jumped into bed with Satsu. I'd been on fire for weeks, even though I told her I could never love her, I still ended up hurting her. I don't have any regrets, well except one, that it was her and not the woman in my dreams.
I never told anyone this, but when I ended things with Satsu, we ended up having sex again and I still couldn't bring myself to do certain things to her, she was not who I wanted to consume. Anyway, I hurt her because when I finally climaxed I called out Faith's name. I've been crying ever since.
Not that I hurt Satsu, but because I betrayed my heart.
Faith knows: The first thing Kennedy did when she found out about me and Satsu was to tell her.
And then Faith told Kennedy everything that'd been going on between us for the last half of the year. The dreams, that when we'd wake up, we were covered in love bites, scratches, sometimes light bruises.
And Kennedy told Willow, who surprisingly didn't say anything about it.
I don't know what to do.
So now I've got two sad women, one here in my life, who I avoid and the other still visiting me in my dreams. Only now, when we're together, she cries. The dreams are still the same, still as erotic, still ethereal, glowing, bright, hot and we're still rolling and writhing, enveloped in some kind of white heat, and neither seems to know how to stop it.
She begged me last night to let her go but I didn't know how to and we didn't seem to be able to stop the momentum. We just cried and continued on. She broke my heart in two and I couldn't do anything but kiss her deeper, more passionately.
Afterwards, she sat on the edge of the bed, the sheet pulled around her and she sobbed. This is the first variation of the dream, the first time that this part has happened. It's always just been the light, the heat and us, all of us; sounds, touch, all five senses on overload. She didn't look at me, just sat there wiping the tears off her cheeks. “Please just make it stop.” She whispered. She finally turned and looked at me, her eyes red and swollen from crying. “Please.” She begged.
I moved closer to her and noticed the marks on her back where I dug in my nails, holding on while my body reached heights I'd never met before. I could see the bite mark where I claimed her as my own and I knew that I had one as well.
I reached out to touch her and I woke up.
I called her and this time, she didn't answer. We'd started talking after the dreams, not much at first but it's grown over the weeks. After she found out about me and my infidelity, we just sat with the phone between us, her in London and me in Scotland. Neither saying anything much or relevant , I mean what was I supposed to say, I'd slept with her in my dreams, dreams so vivid that we were waking up with the aftermath of things we did to each other displayed on our bodies and I'd went, in reality, and slept with someone else. Maybe it wasn't technically cheating but it sure felt that way, to her and to me.
I can say that I didn't like the way it felt and I certainly didn't like the way it made Faith feel. Especially since she's still hurting and crying and I can't get the images out of my head, or the sounds of her voice sounding so wrecked.
I don't have to wait til night anymore, I'm living the dreams now during the day and the only thing I can think of is how much I hurt her and how in the world can I get her back to the beginning where her smiles helped to light up that room we were in. I've never cried for her before but lately it's all I can do, my tears just slowly run down my face and I feel every hurt I've ever caused her.
I keep calling, even tried texting. I've looked online to see if she's on. I tried calling Angel, who lives in the flat in London with her, no answer.
I'm worried, worried that maybe this was all too much. Can't we just catch a break? Ever? Her words haunt me. “Please, just make it stop.” If I don't hear from her soon, I'm gonna have to go to London, talk to her in person, which if I'm honest, that should've been the first thing I did. Getting older, doesn't necessarily always mean growing up or getting wiser.
The best thing right now, I guess, is to back off, give her a bit of time, some space, okay, who am I kidding. I'm freaking out here. There's no way in hell I'm gonna back off... I'm gonna keep trying to reach her, try to get some sleep and If I can't reach her or Angel by sometime tomorrow, I'm taking my butt to London.
My minds made up, I'm going, we have to figure this out. Sleep is going to be hard to come by tonight but then again, maybe, just maybe I'll see her in my dreams and hopefully find out if she's okay.
Please God, let her be okay. I can't take her crying anymore. Please let me not hurt her, hurting her, hurts me.
I awoke to another day and find myself depressed and disappointed that my night was dreamless. That hasn't happened in months, we're together nightly, that's the one constant in all of this. I grabbed up my phone, texted, couldn't wait and called: Nothing.
I had Willow port me to her flat. I stood on the outside, hesitating forever. Afraid to knock, ashamed to have to look her in the eyes. The doorknob was broken and I swallowed, my blood pressure rising in my veins, my heartbeat starting to echo in my head. I pushed the door open and peered inside.
The room was shattered. A pile of dust just inside. Angel I thought to myself. No time to grieve. I moved stealthily, rolling my feet, listening, hunting. After clearing the living areas, I turned to the closed doors, my heart beating frantically in my head. I pushed, what I assume was Angel's door open and peered in, looking around, including under the bed.
Moving slowly, I made my way to the last door and hesitated. My hand shook as I grasped the knob, turned and pushed it open. The room was torn apart. Blood splattered haphazardly around the area, a splash on the wall, the lamp, bedspread. I looked, feeling, sensing and noticed a hand print on the doorway that led into the en-suite.
The mirror was cracked, the shower curtain torn and lying in the floor. There was blood against the tiled wall, and a smear where it slid down the wall to the floor, another smear, as if drawn by a finger and I followed it, leaning over to hunt for the clue she'd left me. There it was, written in her bloody fingerprints, the single word 'dream' finger-painted on the tile.
I blew out a breath and called Willow. Her and Kennedy appeared instantly and looked through the flat. “You think that pile of dust is Angel?” Ken asked.
I shrugged. “He loved Faith like his little sister... I can't imagine him not fighting to save her.” My voice calm, collected, void of emotion.
“I found this in the bathroom, behind the toilet.” I showed them the painted word, watching as Will leaned over touching it.
“It's definitely her and her blood.” Willow responded. She walked around, reaching outwardly with her magic. She looked up suddenly and walked quickly to a wardrobe and pulled open the doors. She yelped as three bodies fell forward and out onto the floor. Each of them with broken necks.
“She fought but they got the best of her and trussed her up.” She turned towards the living area and walked towards the dust. “I don't think it's Angel... but I think these guys had to be strong to bag them both.”
“What are they?” I asked, looking at the bodies.
“I'm not sure... Giles might know.” Willow stated.
“Can you track them?” I asked.
She smiled, her eyes flashing white. “Oh yeah. Most definitely.”
She cracked her neck and invoked a spell. There was a loud pop and Willow flew backwards and crashed against the wall. The room lit up, the bodies igniting, bursting into thin air.
Kennedy and I ran to her instantly, lifting her. “I'm okay.” She breathed out. “Just wasn't expecting them to be protecting their whereabouts.”
She sat up and gently rubbed her temples. “I can't feel her anymore.” She offered.
“Don't worry about that right now.” I retorted. “We'll find her.”
I heard her sigh against my neck, the sheets pulling as they tugged against our legs. “I wondered when you'd show up.” I stated, smiling as my mouth kissed along her arm. She smiled and arched into my body, her fingers tangling in my hair.
I worked my way to her lips and whimpered as her mouth melted against mine. Groans erupted from both of us as our bodies moved in unison: Heat touched heat, bringing forth wetness, arousal. Fingers trailed paths of fire, touching, tweaking. We rocked, breathing into each other, slowly, surely. Our bodies mixing, lulling, pulling each other closer.
She nipped the skin on my neck, tonguing the pain away, claiming me, marking me and I returned the favor ten fold, digging my nails in, holding on, pushing against her harder, centers merging, mingling, the most intimate of kisses, pulling back and merging again and again, over and over. We clung and pushed onward, higher and higher until nothing but breathy gasps of air escaped our lips, our eyes heavy lidded.
We burst upward and cried out, gasping in air as our nails dug deep and held firm. We smiled, laughed and cried as our bodies worked to try and piece themselves back together.
I snuggled into her. “Where are you?” I asked.
“Where you put me.” She stated. Her face contorted. “I'm sorry.” She hesitated. “I didn't mean to come here and do that.”
I smiled and moved closer to her. “Well we kind of started in the middle, so it's not like we had very far to go.”
She frowned, her face showing consternation. “We need to stop.” She looked at me. “Others won't understand.” She sat up, pulling the sheet around her and suddenly she wiped a stray tear from her cheek. “You're going to be the death of me you know.”
“I wouldn't hurt you.” I palmed her cheek with my hand.
“Wouldn't you?” She whispered. She turned her face to me and darkness settled over her features.
“Living things can't survive in the dark.” She looked off somewhere and started to fade.
I called out to her, my heart hammering as she left my sight.
I told Will about our shared dream. Okay, I confessed to having steamy dreams with Faith, dreams that'd been going on for months, with outcomes that somehow managed to bleed over into reality. She pretended to be shell shocked for a minute or two but then shook it off, admitting that she'd known for a while. “Well you two have been throwing off vibes for years, it was bound to happen in some way, shape or form.”
She was very interested in the word choices used by Faith. I gotta say that if she was giving me clues, well lets just say I wasn't good at receiving them. I mean, she's where I put her. I'd hurt her. Others wouldn't understand. And living things couldn't survive in the dark. Willow seemed to think it was metaphors for our secret dream love affair and the fact that I'd been sleeping with her, albeit in dreams for over half a year, keeping it hidden in the dark, secretive while out in the light I'd taken another and that subconsciously, we'd created this.
So if that's true all I had to do was bring her into the light, right? But what about Angel, what's his part in this?
Who benefited from her disappearance?
I was gonna have to bite that old proverbial bullet. So I called a meeting, just the ones that needed to know and I told them everything that had occurred. I leveled myself as I took all their looks and stares and I guess judgment.
Silence ran rampant. Crickets, really. I was not only embarrassed, I was outed, well I was outed again and with another failure of my past. I mean they were not only judging me for Faith, but with Angel and Spike as well. I just could not catch a break.
Thank God for Giles, who seemed to move everyone forward. “Yes, well, this is a most puzzling predicament.” Giles assessed. “I'm going to assume that by your actions that you've removed her from reality and put her into the dream realm.”
I scoffed. “My actions?” I stood up. “What did I do that was so wrong?” My voice getting louder.
“Well lets see.” His voice also raising an octave. “You've pulled her into your world where you've been having sex with her for months.”
“My world?” I spat out.
“Well yes.” He gave me a look that pinned me on the spot. “Well, yes you insinuated that she was the one always fading away, therefore I can only deduce that you were the one doing the pulling and she was the one being pulled.”
He cleared his voice when I didn't respond or have anything to offer to his conclusions. “Therefore,
She had no say so about what you two did there. You used her, kept her a secret and while doing so... got involved with someone else in the real world, thereby putting her in a certain place.” He pulled his glasses off. “Angel probably tried to stop her from being taken and got pulled into the nether realm with her.”
“I didn't do it on purpose.” I stated. “I mean, it wasn't like I was controlling it at will. I thought they were just dreams, only when I started waking up with signs of being together... well that's when I thought that something might be going on.”
“How do we get her back?” I asked, worry evident.
“Tell me about the dream.” Giles put his glasses back on and stared at my horrified face. He rolled his eyes. “Not the details.” He shook his head. “When do you realize it's a dream or rather when do you wake up in the dream.”
I blew out a breath and looked at the floor. “This is extremely personal, Giles.” He nodded, letting me know that he understood. I sucked up my vulnerability. “I think we both wake up in the dream during the... culmination of the intimacy.” I breathed out another shaky breath. “Then we talk for a few minutes and then she fades back to....”
“Has she said anything that's relevant to what's happened?” He queried.
“She's cried and begged me to stop, to let her go.” I whispered. “But I didn't know I was doing anything. I just thought we were both causing it to happen.” I wiped my face. “And now she's disappeared.... and I'm scared.” I wiped a few errant tears.
I ran into Satsu in the hallway. She tried to talk to me, to get us back into that intimate mode. I pulled away from her and told her that there was someone else, that there'd always been someone else and that I was sorry. I was honest, upfront.
I pulled away from her but turned and told her it might be best if she went back to Japan, because I obviously wasn't single and hadn't been for a long time.
It was kind of easy to walk away from her, not that I didn't care... it's just she wasn't a priority and truth be told... it was time I put my priorities in order. I could be honest with everyone or I could let Faith pay the price. I might be the slayer, but it was obvious I'd been chicken shit. Time to grow up.
Willow found me sitting in the commons, staring out the window. “You okay?” She asked, taking a seat next to me.
I shrugged and continued looking out the window. “You want to try something?” She asked, getting my attention.
“What?” I asked.
She smiled. “How bout we send you to her for a change?”
I sat up, my attention front and focused. I didn't ask any questions, just got up and followed Will blindly. I was willing to try anything.
I woke up in darkness. I saw feint lights in the distance. I felt her and I turned and followed the feeling. As I eased into the light and adjusted my eyes I could see someone lying on the ground covered by a sheet. I walked silently over towards her and stopped in my tracks. She was asleep.
I tried to rouse her but couldn't. She was unconscious, naked and slightly cold. Her body was adorned with bruises and cuts. Blue veins ran her upper arms and lower legs as well as underneath her eyes. Her lips were tinted bluish purple.
“Buffy.” I heard him.
“Angel?” I turned and ran towards his voice. I flung white tapestries out of my way and stopped as I got a good look at him. He was beaten and chained.
“Break the chains and I'll wake up.” He informed.
I nodded. “What about her?” I questioned.
“She's not trapped, she was put here.” He looked up at me. “You put her here didn't you?” He accused. I looked down at the ground, nodding. I heard him take a deep unneeded breath. “Only you can pull her out.”
I nodded and broke the chains, feeling scared as I was alone again. I ran back to Faith and knelt down beside her, pulling her up into my arms and against my chest.
“Please wake up.” I whispered, feeling a buildup of tears behind my eyes.
“Faith.” I patted her face gently. “Faith, you've got to wake up and come home.” I didn't know what to do. I remembered the fairy tale about Sleeping Beauty and I leaned in, desperate and kissed her lips, several times. “Wake up... please just wake up.”
I ran my fingers through her hair. “I told everyone about us Faith. They all know.” I looked at her, my fear building at her lack of responsiveness. “You've got to come back to me.”
I held back a sob and looked around. I wrapped my arms around her, wondering if I could carry her out with me.
I felt it before I saw it. I looked at the approaching darkness, growing bigger the closer it got. I felt the tendrils reaching out for us. I pulled us backwards into the light and away from the blackness. I remembered she said living things couldn't survive in the dark.
I kept moving us away from the encroaching dark. I'm not sure how long I'd been inching us back away from it. I was tired and her body was losing what little heat it had. She was getting paler.
I was almost out of light. We didn't have much time left. I looked into the blackness approaching.
“You can't have her.” I rasp out between gritted teeth.
“She's mine.” It's voice sent chills along my spine.
I put myself in front of her, still clinging onto her. “Take me instead.” I pleaded, my tears flowing now.
The darkness flung itself at her, clawing a path over her. I could feel and smell the blood as it trickled from her. I pulled her closer towards me, tighter, pulling us away from it. “Take me instead.” I cried out. “Don't hurt her! Let her go!” I put myself in front of her. “Please just take me.”
“You don't belong.” It's voice cut through my mind.
“I'm not leaving her. You'll just have to take us both.” I closed my eyes and pulled her tighter against my chest. I put my lips against her ear, whispering to her as I felt the cold of the dark ease it's way over us. “I'm here.... you're not alone Faith. I'm not gonna let you go.” I pulled in a shaky breath. “I love you...I do.... and I'm so sorry.. I'm so so sorry.”
I felt the icy blast from the darkness and I screamed.
The light was white hot. I closed my eyes, my body moving on it's on accord. I felt her beneath me, her body warm, almost liquid as it moved against me. I smelt her perfume as it embedded in the sheets and I sighed, reveling as the sigh was echoed.
We rolled, hands grasping and clawing against each other. We nipped and tongued skin as we pushed our bodies together. Her fingers found a nipple, pulled, rolling the hardened bud. I felt a hot trail of moisture as her lips made their way to my breasts and laved first one, then the other.
I rolled us back over and trailed kisses down to her breasts, nipping, tugging, watching as they darkened. I gave a few more nips and eased down, her body urging me on.
I felt drunk, buried, under water... something, I was lost in her. Almost to the point of passing out. Our sighs were mingling and growing louder second by second. Her nails were like aphrodisiacs, scraping against my skin, torturing me, building up my anticipation.
Her wetness drug across my skin. I could smell her and I lost all rational thought. She moved against me and I lowered myself fully, taking her in. My lips eased over her and against her.
She grasped me, hanging on and I groaned, my body on overdrive, the sensation, the sounds, the taste, all of her edging me forward, upward, right along with her.
I pushed inside of her, my tongue laving a warm path along her folds, against her swollen nub. She pulled me tighter, her legs gently squeezing against me. I smiled against her, reveling in her sounds, her movement, her taste.
The friction built and I climbed with her. Faster, deeper, harder I thrust; my tongue and mouth matching my strides, building, slowly floating higher; our breaths short, staggered.
We moved rhythmically, her center, my mouth, colliding and pulling apart only to do it again, over and over.
We ignited as one, our bodies crying out, coming undone, spent.
Our hearts beat wildly, our breaths labored, staggered. We basked, waiting for our bodies to calm.
Finally, when I could move, I nipped her skin as I crawled up her body, my fingers gently disengaging her core. I slid against her, my lips finding hers. I sighed as she sucked on my tongue, arching as she scratched her nails up my back.
We laid there, clinging to each other. “This is new.” She muttered, her voice filtering through my subconscious.
I sat up, alert and looked over and there she lay next to me. “This is real.” I smiled, looking at her. I moved suddenly, checking her body over for all those wounds she had. She furrowed her brows and looked at me weird. “You were covered in bruises and cuts.” She nodded, looked around the room and then looked me over.
She ran her hands through her hair and sat up all the way. I followed suit, mimicking her actions only reaching out to her and holding on tight.
“I'm back?” She asked, looking around. I smiled.
“Are you okay?” I asked, moving closer.
She did a body check and panned the room again. “Well... other than I'm naked in your room in Scotland and my clothes are back in London... I think I'm okay.”
I laughed. “We'll find you some clothes... hell I'll take your shopping... well after we find you some clothes.”
She pulled the covers around her. “Do you think I could maybe get some food and a hot bath.. I'm starving and freezing.”
“Absolutely.” I stated, jumping up to run her a bath. “You get in and I'll run get you something to eat.” I smiled at her again, relieved and happy.
I came back with some sandwiches and water. I knocked and sat them inside the bathroom, leaving to give her a bit of privacy.
It felt like I'd been waiting forever. The door finally opened and she eased out. “Feeling better?” I queried. She nodded, closing her eyes. I handed her some clothes and turned while she dressed.
“I'm sorry.” I whispered, turning to look at her.
She sighed, nodded and sat on the bed, relaxing back against the headboard. I eased down next to her, sitting close. I reached out hesitantly and touched her leg. “I didn't know it was real at first...” I squeezed her leg. “When I realized it was... I didn't know how to stop it. It's not an excuse, mind you... I just want to be honest.... finally.”
“Honest would be nice.” She rasped out. I nodded, feeling a tad contrite.
She looked into my eyes. “Buffy”
“Yeah?” I asked.
She sighed, smiled and squeezed my hand that was resting on her thigh. “Do you think reality is better than dreams?”
I blushed just a bit, nodding. “Yes, I do.. I'm certain that reality is way, way better than dreams.”
She half smiled. “You're gonna have to prove it.”