Chapter 1: Who Is She?
December 14, 1995
Penny Halliwell stood in the attic of her spacious home. In the center of the large, unfinished room stood the shimmering figure of her deceased daughter Patty. In her arms was her newborn great granddaughter, wrapped in a yellow knitted blanket, a replica of the ones her mother and aunts had been wrapped in as infants.
Patty look down at her grand baby longingly. She wished she could hold the child, even if it was just for a moment. "Take her to Saint Anne's. The nun we gave Paige to found her a wonderful home, with wonderful parents. The baby deserves that too."
Penny looked down at the sleeping child. She was only a few hours old, but Penny could already tell that her great-grand baby was a fighter. Despite being a month early, she was fully developed, and had a set of lungs to prove it. She only weighed five pounds, but she was long. Twenty-one inches long to be exact. She placed a tender kiss on the child's head, and then looked towards her daughter.
"How is Prudence?" Patty asked.
"She's tired, but that's to be expected. Childbirth is taxing on grown woman, let alone a seventeen-year-old. I still think I should wipe the pregnancy from her mind."
"If you do that, she won't be ready when her daughter comes looking for her," Patty said.
The baby let out a soft cry and began wriggling her in great-grandmother's arms. "It's time," she said, and then picked up the bottle sitting on the table. "I'll take her to the church after she finishes this bottle. Her powers will be bound, and she will be safe from him. He won't be able to track her."
"And you're sure Piper and Phoebe have no clue about the baby?" Patty asked. The baby's safety depended on nobody finding out about her.
"Positive. I sent Prue away before she started showing, and she assured me that she hadn't told anybody. Which I verified of course."
"Of course. You wouldn't be you if you didn't double check everything," Patty said with a soft smile adorning her lips. "Give her a kiss for me and tell the girls I love them."
"I will, as always my dear," Penny said. "Blessed Be."
"Blessed Be, Mother."
Patty was gone in seconds, leaving Penny alone with the child. Sending her away was the best thing for everyone. The baby would be safe far away from San Francisco, and Prue could spend the rest of her teens, being just that, a teenager.
Once the baby had finished the bottle laced with the binding potion, Patty took her to the local church. The nun she spoke with was the same woman who Patty and Sam had given their daughter to just eight years before. Penny had only two requests. The first being that the family they found for her great-granddaughter be far from San Francisco. "Her life may depend on it," she told the nun. The second being that her name began with a 'P'.
With a final kiss, Penny turned and walked out of the church to return home to where her eldest granddaughter was sleeping fitfully. That night after Phoebe and Piper had gone to sleep, Penny snuck back up to the attic and lit a candle to guide the newest addition of her family to her new home. She said a pray for the girl to have a good life, and another for her granddaughter Prue.
Their paths would cross one day, and the evil that lurked in the shadows would return to claim what he believed was his. Penny only hoped that her girls would be strong enough to defeat him.
September 2, 2013
The house was quiet. Too quiet for Prue's liking. It had been a day since her sister Piper had orbed off into the heavens with her boyfriend Leo, leaving her and their younger sister Phoebe behind to worry about what had happened to her. Phoebe was at the club setting up for the band that was playing later on.
Prue was avidly flipping through the Book of Shadows looking for anything that could help them be prepared for when the Triad decided to send the next demon after them. Knowing that there was a purpose behind their fight had renewed her determination to be the best witch she could be.
She set the book aside when she heard a car door slam outside. Thinking it was Phoebe returning with her car, she stood up to greet her at the door. She wasn't expecting the knock that came as she neared the double doors, nor was she expecting what she saw when she opened the door.
Standing on her porch was a short, ragged looking white man who was wearing a green button up shirt, leather jacket, and a short-brimmed fedora. That, however, was not what was really unexpected. What was really unsettling about the strange man was the young woman he was effortlessly carrying over his shoulder.
"Do you mind?" the man asked, then before Prue had a chance to respond, he pushed passed her and into the house. He moved to the living room as though he had been there before, and gently placed the woman on the couch.
Prue was outraged at the audacity of the stranger, but that audacity was nothing compared to what she felt when she got a good look at the woman. Her beautiful face was covered in bruises and cuts, both old and fresh. She stepped close to her and pushed the man away from her. None too lightly either.
The man took a step back, raising his hands in defense, with each step. "Woah, I didn't do that to her. I just saved her from the people who did."
Prue kneeled next to the couch and inspected the girl's cuts. Somebody had abused her to the point where she was barely recognizable. "Who is she?"
"You already know who she is," the man said cryptically.
Prue looked over her shoulder and gave the man a withering glare. "Who are you, and why did you bring her here?"
"The names Whistler, and I'm only doing what I was told to do," Whistler said.
"Told? By who? Who is she?" Prue fired off rapidly.
"The PTB wanted her returned home. Her destiny is far greater than she knows, and she wasn't fulfilling it where she was."
"PTB?" Prue asked softly, and then quickly stood up. She advanced on the man with a hard glare. "Quit being cryptic. Who is she? Who are the PTB, and why did you bring her here?"
"Sorry. I'm a higher power slash demon hybrid. Cryptic is what I do," Whistler shrugged his shoulders as he spoke. "She'll explain everything once she wakes. What she knows anyway. The rest you'll have to figure out yourself. I did what I was supposed to do. Delivered her home again. The rest is up to you."
"Can you at least give me her name?" Prue demanded.
"She goes by Faith Lehane," Whistler said as he walked towards the front door. "I'll be around. Oh and she'll probably sleep for a while but she's not in any immediate danger. They made sure of it."
"They who?" Prue asked, but Whistler was already out the door. She moved to the window and watched the man leave in irritation. She looked back at the young woman asleep on her couch. She looked young, late teens perhaps. She was taller than her and skinny. Too skinny. The hospital style scrubs she wore hung loosely off her body and were stained with dirt, blood and tore in places. Her skin was pale, her eyes were dark and sunken in. There was a general look of despair to her.
There was also something familiar about her, but she couldn't quite figure it out. She didn't have time to question it though. She had to call Phoebe and decide what they were going to do. She kept the call brief, telling her they had a non-demonic related situation and she needed her home. Once she had hung up, she went to retrieve their first aid kit and a basin of water to clean and bandage Faith's wounds.
In the twenty minutes that it took Phoebe to return home, Faith had not moved or made any sounds as she continued to clean the caked blood on her delicate skin. Prue kept checking her pulse to make sure that she was still alive, not entirely trusting the man's words. She let out a breath of release each time she felt the steady pulse.
"So, what's going on?" Phoebe asked as she hung up her sweater. Fall seemed to want to come early this year. She froze when she saw the girl lying on her couch. "Who is that, and what happened to her?"
"Her name is Faith, and that's all I know. The demon who brought her here was cryptic and wouldn't answer anything."
"A demon brought her here?" Phoebe asked. The confusion had only set in, and she had a feeling that it was only going to get worse. "Leo," she yelled, and waited expectantly. She huffed when no orbs appeared.
"Yeah. I tried that already. Several times in fact," Prue said annoyed.
"What's the point of having a whitelighter if he whisks our sister off without a word for days?"
"Maybe they're testing us," Prue suggested.
"Testing what? To see how well we fair without Piper. I thought we already passed that test." Phoebe turned to look at the girl. She stepped closer, and then kneeled next to the couch. "Why would a demon bring her here?"
"He said that he was just doing what the PTB wanted him to do," Prue answered.
"He didn't give you any idea who she is or why she is here?"
Prue's eyebrows furrowed. "When I first asked who she was, he told me I already know who's she is, and then as he was leaving, he said that they want him to deliver her home again."
"Cryptic much," Phoebe commented. She brushed a lock of Faith's greasy, unkept hair behind her ear. "Goddess. Who did this to her?"
"Only she can tell us that," Prue said. She closed the book and sat it on the end table. "I'm going to call Darryl and see if he can run a check on her. Maybe he'll come up with some answers."
"Should we take her to the hospital?" Phoebe asked.
"No," Prue said solemnly. "He said she wasn't in any immediate danger. Besides, we may not know what it is, but there is a reason she was brought to us. She may not be safe in the hospital."
"I'll get her settled then. There is no reason why she can't be comfortable," Phoebe said.
As Phoebe retrieve blankets and pillows for the young woman, Prue went into the kitchen to call Darryl. Their call was brief, and Darryl assured Prue that he would get back to her as soon as he knew anything. She hung up with him and called Piper's cell phone. She knew it was a long shot, but she was hoping that the call would reach wherever Piper and Leo orbed off to.
Prue slammed the phone onto the counter in frustration when the call went straight to voice mail. She flopped into a chair at the table and sighed heavily. There was a strange girl asleep on her couch, her sister was missing along with their whitelighter, and she had to decrypt what little a demon had told her.
She sat at the table for a few minutes going over everything Whistler had told her. It made little sense to her. Not coming up with anything on her own, she decided to return to the book to keep searching for anything about the PTB.
The next morning Prue was jolted awake by loud knocking. Banging really. Groggily she rose from the chair she was in, tossing aside the blanket that appeared on her during the night. She glanced over at Phoebe who was curled up on the love seat. They had taken turns checking on Faith and flipping through every magical book they had in their position. She checked on Faith, before finally making her way to the front door. She opened the door to reveal Darryl standing there. He was carrying a police file, and he looked as though he had yet to sleep.
"Is that girl still here?" he asked quickly as he walked past Prue.
"Yeah, Darryl. She's on the couch," Prue replied sleepily, randomly pointing over her shoulder. She followed the man into the living room, to find him pulling his handcuffs out. "What are you doing?" she yelled, and then moved in between him and Faith.
"Cuffing her. This girl is dangerous," he replied.
"This girl has been asleep since she was dropped off," Prue stated. "People aren't much of a threat when they're in a coma, Darryl. So, why don't you tell me what you found out."
Darryl looked at Faith unsurely for a moment, clearly weighing his options between doing his job, or conceding to Prue. In the end Prue won out. He handed her the files he had deposited on the coffee table.
"She's a convicted murderer," he said.
Prue looked at him in surprise, and then looked down at Faith. She looked too young, too innocent to be a convicted murderer.
"She's dangerous," Darryl said.
"How dangerous can one girl be?" Prue sat down in the armchair and read through the police report. With each page she turned a sinking feeling settled in her gut. She had been convicted for two murders, several attempted murders, a string of robberies, and the assault and battery of a couple of police officers. "Okay. So, she is pretty dangerous."
"Who's dangerous?" asked Phoebe sleepily.
Prue nodded her head towards Faith, and then handed Phoebe the file. Phoebe sat up and thumbed through the thick file. "It says here that she exhibits unusual strength, the kind you would see with drug use. Maybe that strength is because she's a demon, and Whistler brought her here for us to vanquish."
"I'm not a demon."
All three of the room's occupants jumped at the groggy voice and turn to face the speaker. Faith's eyes were still closed, but she was attempting to move.
"I am a murderer though," Faith stated sleepily. She fidgeted slightly before drifting off to sleep again.
"I think she's asleep again," Phoebe stated quietly, then shooed Prue and Darryl into the conservatory. "She was sent here for a reason, and until we figure out that reason, we need to keep her here."
"I can't do that," Darryl said. "I have a legal obligation to bring her in."
"Well she obviously didn't escape prison herself," Phoebe retorted.
"She wasn't in prison," Prue said.
"What? I thought you said she was a convicted murderer?" Phoebe asked.
Prue took the file back from Phoebe and thumbed through it until she found what she was looking for. "It says that she was sentenced to a high security mental health facility until such a time she was deemed fit to reenter society. Which apparently only took a few months." Prue looked at them. "She was released into the custody of two of her uncles after only being in there for three months. That was two months ago."
"That seems a little fast," Phoebe said.
"It is," Darryl replied. "It usually takes years for a patient to be released back into society after committing murder, if ever." He peeked through the window at Faith. Some of those bruises and cut look to be about six weeks or so old."
"That means they are probably the people who did this to her," Phoebe said.
"I know you girls don't want to hear this, but I have to take her in. Her uncles reported her as a runaway over a month ago. The judge issued a warrant for her arrest. Besides," he said solemnly, then hesitated. "She's obviously been abused by somebody. She needs to be seen by a doctor to make sure she is okay, and a police report needs to be filed."
"We know," Prue said. "Please just give us a few days. There is a reason this girl was brought to us. We just have to figure out what it is. Do your detective magic and find out more about her. If nothing pans out, then you can take her?"
Darryl looked through the glass doors at the sleeping girl again. "I'll see what I can find out, but if nothing pans out in two days, I am taking her."
"Fair enough," Phoebe said.
Darryl pulled out his cuffs and tried to hand them to Phoebe. "Take these just in case she wakes up and isn't in the mood to stick around."
"Darryl, we're witches. We can handle one mentally unstable girl." Phoebe said.
"Even still," Darryl said, and then pushed the cuffs into Phoebe's hands. "I'll feel better if you can restrain her. I'm going home to catch a few hours of sleep."
"Thanks Darryl," Prue said.
"What are we going to do?" Phoebe asked once Darryl had left.
Prue looked through the glass door. "We need to try and wake her up. She must have to use the bathroom by now, and she should eat something."
Faith was surrounded by darkness. She could hear people talking around her, washing her bloodied face, shaking her, and trying to coax her to wake up. She tried to wake up, to respond to the voices, but the darkness consumed her. She couldn't move or speak. It was causing her a great deal of anxiety.
She was curious about the women who were trying taking care of her. They seemed nice and caring, even if the one called Phoebe was cautious of her. She wanted to wake up and tell them that she was fine. That they could stop worrying about her, but as hard as she tried, the most she had mastered was a few moments of consciousness. Just enough to reassure them that she wasn't a demon, but to still be weary of her.
Several hours later, Prue sat at the island reading Faith's file as she waited for the frozen lasagna to finish baking. Thank god Piper had several pre-made meals in the freezer just in case she didn't have time to cook. Once Piper returned from wherever the hell her and Leo went, she would tell her how much she appreciated everything she did.
Faith had yet to wake, and Prue's worry was mounting steadily. The maternal instincts in her were telling her to take her to the hospital, but her witch instincts were telling her that would be the wrong decision. Before she became a witch, she wouldn't have second guess herself. Now however, she knew there was a greater risk to Faith if she took her to the hospital before they had the full picture. All Prue knew for sure was that it was her job to protect Faith.
Phoebe had called a few minutes before to tell her she would be home in a little while. Once she did, Prue was going to attempt to wake Faith again. Until then she was studying Faith's file for anything that would help explain why she was sent to them. The file unnerved her, and not just because of the violent acts depicted upon the pages. There seemed to gaping holes in the file. Like how the Sunnydale Police department even had Faith on their radar as a suspect when there was no evidence against her. No DNA, no eyewitness, there wasn't even a connection between Faith and the two Sunnydale victims. They had her gold to right on the mugging of the man at the bus station, and the breaking and entering of his home, but the conviction they got on the rest of the charges were only achieved because of her confessing. Faith's full confession was in the file, but even that had holes. There were no reasons why she killed those people, only how. It was a troubling case.
"Figure it out yet?"
The groggy voice startled her. She looked behind her to find Faith leaning up against the wall, watching her with big brown eyes. She was momentarily stunned by her appearance. She looked much younger than the file said she was. "How long have you been awake?"
"A few minutes," Faith replied gravely. "Can I have some water?
"Sure." Prue slid of her stool and grabbed a bottle from the fridge. She handed Faith the bottle, and watched as she struggled to open the cap. How did this girl manage to do all those things?
Faith greedily brought the bottle to her lips, and down the contents in one go. She sighed softly as she lowered the bottle. Prue took the bottle from her before she had a chance ask where the trash can was. "Where am I?"
"San Francisco," Prue relied.
Faith looked around the kitchen curiously. "What is the date?"
Faith looked sharply at Prue. "2013?"
"Yeah," Prue told her.
"Good. The last time I was in a coma I woke up in a new year," Faith said lightly.
"The last time?"
"It doesn't matter," Faith mumbled. "You're Prue, right?"
"Yeah. You could hear us?"
Prue went around to the other side of the island. "Why don't you sit down?" She said, gesturing to kitchen table. "Dinner's almost done."
"I'd rather you call your cop friend to take me back to Atascadero," Faith stated.
"Darryl gave us a few days to figure out why you were brought to us," Prue said.
"I know, and I'm telling you I want nothing to do with whatever they want from me," Faith grunted. She grabbed her ribs and bent over slightly in pain.
"Come on sit down," Prue insisted. She touched Faith's shoulder to help guide her to the table, but Faith shook her off. "Please. I'll feel better if you were sitting."
"Why? You afraid I'm gonna attack ya?" Faith took an uneasy step forward, and practically fell into the chair waiting for her. "There, you can chill now."
"I wasn't worried about you attacking me," Prue said.
"I would be if I had just gotten done reading my file," Faith proclaimed.
"You can try, but I'm not easy to get the jump on," Prue stated.
"When the drugs wear off, and my strength returns, we'll spar."
Prue laughed. "You have the wrong sister. Phoebe's the one who fights. I just wave my hand and make them go flying."
"Then I'll give Phoebe a go," Faith smirked. "So, when you gonna call your cop friend?" She insisted.
"You're probably the only person in the world who wants to be locked away," Prue commented. After checking the lasagna, she looked hard at Faith. "I'll make you a deal. Why don't you go upstairs and take a shower, change your clothing, and after dinner if Darryl still has not called, I will call him."
"And you just trust me to go upstairs by myself. What If I take off?" Faith snarked.
Prue smirked. She walked over to the table, reached out and plucked a few hairs.
"Ow. What'd ya do that for?"
"Now I have a piece of you to scry for if you do leave," Prue told her. She pulled a sandwich baggy out of the draw, and placed the hairs in.
Faith looked at Prue in confusion. "Scry?"
Prue slide the baggy in the drawer. "It's a way of magical tracking people."
"So, you're a witch?"
"Yeah. Me and my sisters are all witches." Prue smiled lightly and then gestured for her to follow her. "Come on. I'll show you were the bathroom is."
Faith stepped into the shower unsteadily, grunting softly with every motion. The stream of hot water flowed over her body causing the healing cuts covering her body to sting. She looked down to inspect the damage that still plagued her body. Bruises covered nearly every inch of her body in various stages of healing, and there were shallow cuts and tears in random spots, leaving her body looking like an ugly rainbow.
It had been about two months since the abuse started. Since they began injecting her with the drugs that muted her slayer abilities. In some ways she wished the drug would wear off, so she could heal, and get back to her regular strength, but in other ways she relished in the weakness. She couldn't hurt anybody while she was like this. This was the Higher Powers' way of punishing her for going evil and abusing the powers bestowed upon her.
She was okay with that.
Every day that she sat in isolation the guilt she felt for killing Finch and the Professor grew. It was like the anger she had felt in Sunnydale slowly leaked out of her heart. The visions she had of stabbing or strangling the people she was around slowly began to stop as well. She would never admit this out loud, but she was scared shitless the visions and thoughts would start again. The quicker she could get back to her room at Ata, the happier she would be.
Still, it was nice to have a hot shower for once. For just a little, she would allow herself to enjoy it.
Prue was pulling the lasagna out of the oven when Phoebe ran into the kitchen in a frantic. Fearing there was a demon on her tail, she tossed the baking pan onto the counter, and flung the oven mitts over head as she got into fighting stance.
"She's gone," Phoebe shouted.
Pure relaxed as she threw her sister an annoyed looked. She turned around and picked up the oven mitts. "She's upstairs taking a shower."
Phoebe looked at Prue as though she lost her mind. "Alone?"
"Yes alone," Prue said.
"What if she tries to leave?" Phoebe asked.
"Then we'll scry for her using the hair I plucked from her head," Prue told her. "Besides. She's eager to get back to the mental institution, so if she does leave, we'll know where she will go."
"Nobody is eager to get locked in a mental hospital," Phoebe said skeptically.
"Well she is. I had to practically force her into the shower, so she would stop pushing me to call Darryl."
Phoebe grabbed plates and silverware for them and sat down at the table. "What do you make of her?"
"I don't know. She didn't say much, except to tell me to call our cop friend, and that she was in a coma before. I feel like there is a lot that doesn't add up. There are gaping holes in her police file. There is no reason for the Sunnydale PD to even look at her for the murder of the Deputy Mayor or the Professor, and yet they were."
"The Sunnydale PD are jokes," Faith gruffly said from behind them. She leaned up against the doorway tugging at the clothing Prue had loaned her. After months of not eating properly, they hung loosely from her body. "The only reason they were onto me was because Wilkens had them in his pocket."
"The Mayor, right?" Prue asked as she grabbed Faith's file off the island. She flipped through the file to looking for the page that the mayor was mentioned. "Wilkens spoke to the police on your behalf after the deputy mayor was murdered. Why would he tell them it was you, only to vouch for you afterwards?"
"Because we were a threat to him," Faith said, and then stepped towards the table. She slumped into the open chair near the mud room door. "I'll tell you what you want to know, as long as you promise to call your cop friend when were done."
Prue sent Phoebe an 'I told you so' look, and then looked back to Faith. "I'll promise as long as you promise to eat."
Faith eyed the lasagna eagerly, her stomach grumbling its agreement. "Deal," she said, and then passed her plate down the table.
As Prue dished out a heaping pile of lasagna onto Faith's plate, Phoebe went to the fridge to get them drinks. She asked Faith what she wanted, who grumbled that she didn't care. She poured everybody a glass of tea. When she sat Faith's glass in front of her, she did so hesitantly.
"I'm sane today," Faith stated, as she grasped the glass eagerly. She took a few gulps, and then set the glass back down. "But don't let your guard down," she said quietly. She hesitantly took a bite, and a burst of flavor hit her like an orgasm. After months of eating tasteless hospital food, follow by two months of just enough scraps to keep her alive, this was a gift. It was then that she realized how hungry she was. She had been starving for so long she had grown used to the pains of hunger.
Phoebe and Prue watched Faith in interest, and a fair amount of concern. After that first hesitant bite, Faith began shoveling the delicious food into her mouth faster the she could chew it. The sisters shared a concerned look. Prue turned to Faith. "Slow down Faith. There is plenty of food here."
Faith looked up at Prue and gave her a sheepish look. "Sorry. It's just really good. I haven't had food this good since I was still invited over to B's house."
"Who's B?" Phoebe asked.
"Buffy," Faith replied. "Her mom is an awesome cook."
"Why'd you kill those people," Phoebe asked bluntly.
"Phoebe," Prue said sharply.
"It's cool," Faith told her and then looked at Phoebe. "I didn't mean to kill Finch. B and I were out patrolling, and I thought he was a vamp. It wasn't until I staked him that I realized he was human."
"What are you? Magically speaking."
"B and I are slayers," Faith answered, and then countered with, "What are you?"
"Witches," Phoebe stated. "I read about slayers in the Book of Shadows. I thought there is only one slayer at a time."
"B drowned a few years ago but was revived. The slayer line was passed to Kendra, and then to me when she died." Faith paused to take a bite.
"I take it the Mayor was a demon," Prue stated.
"Not yet. That happened later. He was a human, who was slowly becoming a demon. That's why he needed me and B out of his way. So, we wouldn't screw up his plans."
"If he had you distracted by the cops then why did he vouch for you," Phoebe asked.
"Because I gave in to the evil and went to him." She began shoveling food into her mouth again.
"Why did you kill the professor?" Prue asked, almost fearful of the answer.
"He knew how to kill Wilkens once he ascended, so Wilken had me off him," Faith stated.
Phoebe scoffed, "You say that so casually."
"Because it was at the time," Faith stated. Before she could stop the words, she blurted. "Wilkens was good to me. He treated me like he actually cared about me. Like it was his choice to have me there, not me being forced on him."
Faith froze, realizing she had told them something too personal. "Look I told you what you wanted to know. Call your cop friend."
"Wait, you still didn't explain why you even went to the Mayor, or why you turned yourself in," Phoebe said.
"No. Call your cop friend," Faith insisted. She had enough of their sad glances, and prying. She didn't know these people, nor did she owe them any explanations. When neither Phoebe nor Prue made any moves towards the phone, Faith stood up and said, "Fine. I'll walk."
Faster than she'd been able to move for weeks, Faith darted towards the kitchen doors. Even with her speed boost, Prue and Phoebe were faster. Her way was blocked, so she turned around and darted for the open mud door. Unfortunately for her, she was running away from a witch. Prue lifted her hand and magical shut the door. Faith slammed into the door, expecting it to open, but it wouldn't budge.
She turned around to face the sisters once more, weighing her options. She could admit defeat and sit down and finish her amazing meal, or she could fight like hell to get out of there. Sitting back down to finish her meal was temping but came with a downside. They would insist on hearing more of her story. She had already told them more than she wanted. Getting out of there was a long shot without the use of her powers, but she felt the overwhelming need to try. She needed to get safely behind bars before her strength returned, and she lost control again.
Throwing caution to the wind, she gathered every ounce of her strength and speed she had left and barreled her way through Prue and Phoebe. Unfortunately, the sisters were ready for her, and caught her as she tried to pass. Fear crept into Faith's chest, making her panic, then in the blink of an eye she was on the floor just inside the dining room. Before she had a chance to comprehend what happened, her body exploded in pain, causing her to scream out in pain.
Prue and Phoebe were looking were trying to figure out what had just happened. One second they were trying to calm the struggling woman, and the next she disappeared and reappeared in the dining room screaming in pain. They moved to Faith's side just as the woman's screams died.
Phoebe knelt down and felt for her pulse. "She just passed out," she assured her sister.
"What the hell just happened?" Prue asked.
Phoebe looked down at the woman, and then back up to Prue. "It looked like she blinked," she sighed. "How is that possible. She's bleeding. Warlocks can't bleed."
"I don't know Phoebe. We should get her off the floor, and then we'll figure it out." Together they moved Faith to the couch and got her situated again.
"Maybe we should take her to the hospital," Phoebe suggested worriedly.
"I don't think that's a good idea," Prue said equally as worried. "She used magic. The last thing we need is a repeat of what happened to Piper."
Phoebe looked like she was going to argue with Prue but stopped at the look her sister was giving her. "Fine. I'll look in the book for any healing spells." Under her breath she said, "And for any reference to why she could blink."
Prue was no longer paying attention to her sister. Her full attention was devoted to Faith. The cut above the woman's right eye had reopened, blood was slowly leaking from the wounds rolling down her bruised face. Prue fetched the first aid kit from the wardrobe in the foyer, and carefully cleaned and sealed the cut. She brushed aside the woman's hair and watched her carefully as she slept.
There was something inside of her that was drawing her to Faith. It was this overwhelming need to make sure she was okay; to protect her. She didn't understand it. All she knew was that there was use in fighting it anymore. She had been trying since Faith had first crossed her path, and so far, it had been an utter failure.
Prue sat down next to Faith on the floor and laid her head next to Faith's hand. A little while later Phoebe returned with the book and an arm full of candles, to find her sister sleeping peacefully. Despite her unease about the situation, she couldn't help but smile. It was a quant picture.
She laid the book on the table and began placing the candles around the couch. She had found a spell to speed up the body's natural healing abilities. It wouldn't work as fast as if Leo had been healing her, but it would help. She just had to wake her sister up, because only Faith could be inside the spell's barriers.
Half an hour later, both sisters were sitting in the armchairs watching Faith sleep beneath a glimmering yellow bubble. Phoebe was casually flipping through the book looking for any reference to magical beings that teleported the way Faith had. She had already read the entry dedicated to slayers, which made it clear the slayers powers were more passive, instead of active.
A little after two in the morning, both the sisters were abruptly woken by banging on the front door. Prue groggily check on Faith's who was still sleeping peacefully under the shimmering bubble. Prue looked at Phoebe questioningly.
"It's the spell. It keeps her asleep as she heals," Phoebe reassured her, and then went to answer the door.
Darryl stood on the other side of the door, looking more ragged then she had ever seen him. He was still wearing the same clothing her was in the last time she saw him, and he looked as though he hadn't slept in day. In his arms were three large files.
"Please tell me she's still here," he begged, sounding exhausted.
"She's asleep on the couch," Phoebe told him. "What is it Darryl? You look like crap."
Darryl passed Phoebe the files. "I found her," he said, and then walked into the living room. He paused when her saw her sleeping beneath the bubble. "What's around her? Is she okay?"
Prue answered him. "She's fine. The bubble is just helping her to heal. Are you here to take her into custody?"
"No," Darryl said. He turned to Phoebe and took the top file from her. "I couldn't find anything for the first name Faith, last name Lehane from before her time in Sunnydale. So, I broadened my search. I searched all girls born with the last name Lehane in 1990. There were several hits, but none matching Faith's description. So, I broadened the search to girls Lehane's born between 85' and 95'. It took me all night to go through the files, but I finally got a hit. Paulina Faith Lehane, born on December 14, 1995 here in San Francisco to an undisclosed family, and then adopted a few days later in Boston."
Darryl's words sent shockwaves through Prue. It couldn't be her, could it? She looked to Faith and then to Darryl. She snatched the file he was reading from. "Are you positive Faith is this girl?"
"I'm positive. There are several pictures of her in the files. Faith's real name is Paulina."
Prue looked at the first page of the file. There, staring back at her from a photocopied black and white photo, was a younger version of Faith. There was no denying those big brown eyes. Next to the photo was her birth date. December 14, 1995, the same day her baby girl had been born. She collapsed into the chair behind her and read through the first page as fast as she could. Faith had been given to a nun at Saint Anne's in San Francisco, and later adopted by the Lehane's.
"He said I already knew her," She said softly.
Phoebe looked up from the file she was reading. "What was that honey?"
"He said they wanted her returned home," Prue said to herself.
Phoebe was more confused than before. "Prue honey, you're not making any sense."
Prue looked up at Phoebe with tears welling in her eyes. "He said I already knew who she was," She repeated. "He said they wanted her returned home." She turned to look at Faith. "They wanted her returned home, and she is. She's home."