Forgiveness

By

Anessa Ramsey

Disclaimer:  I own nothing.  Everything belongs to Joss Whedon, though I wouldn't object to owning Wesley…and Spike…and Angel.

Spoilers:  None really.  Obviously it takes place after Tomorrow. 

Author's Note:  After watching last week's episode of Angel I was inspired to write a Wesley/Faith fic.  I can actually see them working now that he has some stones.

         Faith stared at the gate looming in front of her.  It seemed a mile away.  She wanted to walk through it more than anything, but her feet felt like lead and she wasn't completely sure she knew how to live in the real world anymore…not that she had before prison.  She knew that there wouldn't be anyone waiting on the other side for her.  It was the middle of the day so Angel obviously wouldn't be there, not that he wrote or called much.  After the first few months of incarceration the letters and phone calls were longer in coming until they stopped altogether.  And there was no way any of the other members of his little group set foot near her or this place.  She didn't care though.  She'd survived on her own her whole life.  She didn't need anyone now that she was out of prison.  If Angel didn't care so be it.  "I don't need anyone," she mumbled softly, trying to convince herself of that, right as the gate opened.

         With a sigh both of hesitation and elation she stepped through the gate, giving one last glance at the prison that had housed her for the last few years.  She glanced up and down the long stretching dirt road, dreading the walk to the city.  'Should have called a cab,' she thought sullenly, before noticing the man standing across the street by a sleek black motorcycle.  She didn't recognize him immediately, but as she stared at him it came to her.  "Wes?"  She walked across the dusty road and stood in front of him.

         He smiled slightly and she couldn't help but wonder what had happened to him.  Stubble covered his entire jaw and he wasn't wearing those glasses that she despised.  He was dressed in a pair of jeans, a black t-shirt and and a black leather jacket finished the ensemble.  What the hell had happened to her sissified Watcher?  Was he trying to be Angel?  "Hello Faith.  How are you?"

         "Glad to be out and kinda wonderin' if you're here to kill me."  Another smirk and a slight chuckle that caused his adams apple to bob, drawing her attention to the puckered white scar on his neck.  Someone had slashed his throat.  "Jesus, what happened to you?  The clothes?  The hair?" she asked, gesturing to the dark brown locks that seemed to stick up in all directions.  "Angel envy finally get the better of you?

         He flinched and she knew immediately that it certainly had nothing to do with Angel.  "I got my throat cut.  Other than that it's a fairly long story.  And I'm not here to kill you.  Doing that in front of a prison would hardly be getting away with murder.  I'm here to offer you a ride and a place to stay."

         "Why?"

         "Why not?  You do need a place to stay right?"

         "Yeah.  Didn't wanna stay in that halfway house my parole officer suggested."

         "I have an apartment with a spare bedroom.  It's yours if you like."

         "I'm not going back to the Council.  I don't work for them anymore."

         "Neither do I if you recall."

         She recalled all right.  She knew that when she tortured him.  Another reminder of just why he shouldn't be here.  "You shouldn't be here Wes.  Remember the whole torture thing…"

         "I remember vividly.  I still have scars.  It doesn't matter now.  You've done your time and are trying to find your way.  I've forgiven if not forgotten the pain.  So if you'd like a ride and a place to stay…" he trailed off and swung his leg over the motorcycle.  Faith glanced down the road.  It'd be a long walk if she didn't accept his offer.

         "So this is what forgiveness feels like?" she asked him, concerned about the slightly squidgy warm feeling in her stomach and her heart.

         "I wouldn't know, but whatever it is, don't try to overanalyze it.  Just go with it.  Now do you want a ride?"  

         Smirking she draped the strap of her duffel bag across her shoulder and climbed on behind him.  "You know me Wes.  I'm always up for riding a bike…or a biker," she said, laughing as he smiled, gunned the engine and took off down the road, kicking up a cloud of dust in their wake.  Her hair flew out behind her and the wind rushed around her.  She clung tight to Wesley, her arms draped around his waist.    Something was happening here and she liked it.  He was a different person and so was she.  Maybe there was hope for them both.  She'd take it slow and not rush him, or herself, too much. She just wanted to find out about this new person he had become and what had happened to change him.  Teasingly she ran her hands down his chest and felt him stiffen against her.  This was going to be fun.  She smiled and in that moment she knew that she'd never give up freedom willingly again.