Disclaimer: I own nothing…

Summary: Faith reminds Buffy what it is to love…


Spoilers: "Chosen"


Rating: PG


Author's Notes: My first Buffy/Faith fic… Not sure why, but lately I've really been getting into the Buffy/Faith ship… Not that I'm abandoning Spuffy (as you can probably see)… I will warn you, this hasn't been proofread or anything… I just kinda wrote it and I haven't quite gotten around to making revisions yet… I'll do it eventually… I just figured it was about time that I got something out… If it doesn't make sense, I'm sorry… And yes, this is another Martina McBride songfic. The lyrics that inspired it are at the end of the fic… Hope you like it and thanks for taking the time to read it…


Distribution: If ya want it, take it, just give me credit… And, if ya could, let me know where it's going.

Feedback: You can send it to brock3005@aol.com or otownfan1520@yahoo.com.

~*~*~*~

Learning To Fall:

"I'm scared…" the tiny blonde Slayer murmured, her eyes brimming with tears as she stared after the irate brunette.

That was all it took to stop the younger girl in her tracks. After taking a moment to gather her bearings, Faith turned slowly to peer at a terrified Buffy, and all her anger was suddenly replaced by the desperate urge to gather the girl into her arms and hold her there forever… But Buffy wasn't the type to let anyone in, much less another woman. Since the day she had lost Spike, she hadn't even let Angel into her heart. She'd blocked everyone out, and Faith knew better than anyone that she was the least likely person to break down those walls.

"Of me?" She couldn't help the pain that crept into her own voice as she forced the words from her throat, her eyes shining with confusion.

"No…" As a single tear slipped from the corner of her eye, Buffy shook her head, eyes locked with Faith's. "Of love…"

"Why?" The desperation in her voice was obvious, and she no longer tried to hide it. She had to find a way to get through to Buffy… Some way to make her see that she wasn't alone. That she never had been.

"I always lose the ones I love…"

The whispered words hit Faith like a ton of bricks, crushing her heart and breaking her soul. How was it that Buffy Summers, one of the most beautifully innocent people on this earth, had suffered through so much in her short life? She hadn't deserved a second of it, but she was right… Everyone she had ever loved, she had lost.

In a second, Faith was at her side and Buffy was in her arms; the tears she had been trying to hold back suddenly flooding from her in a fit of pain filled sobs. For as long as she could remember, Faith had never seen Buffy so broken. Losing Spike had been the equivalent of losing herself. All Faith could recall from those few weeks following the destruction of the Hellmouth were the tears that Buffy had cried. At the time, she had been terrified that the blonde Slayer wouldn't make it through… That she'd do something stupid and rash. And when she had finally unlocked herself from her room, she had no longer been Buffy. Not in the ways that counted anyway. She had lost her passion, her ability to love… She had closed herself off. Never once after those first few weeks had she shed a tear… For anything…

Until now…

Gently, Faith stroked her hair, whispering soft words of comfort against her ear as she cried. More than anything, Faith wished she could take away the pain that the older girl was feeling. If anyone deserved happiness, it was Buffy Summers… And yet, she was the one crying these endless tears. It was true, life really wasn't fair…

After a few moments, Buffy's sobs slowly began to dissipate and she found the strength she needed there in Faith's arms… She had never once told anyone what had happened in those last few moments she had spent with Spike, but now, as she stood there in the younger girl's arms, she knew she had to tell someone… And that someone was Faith. Because it was Faith who made her feel safe and protected. Since Spike's death, no one had made her feel that way… And she had been beginning to believe that she never would again…

"I loved him… so much…" she murmured quietly against Faith's shoulder, holding tight to her only source of comfort. "I told him… That day, when we closed the Hellmouth, I told him… And he didn't believe me. He thought I was just saying it out of sympathy… That I didn't mean it… But I did, Faith… God, I love him so much. And now he's gone, and he'll never know… All because I waited too long to let him know…"

Desperately, Buffy clung to her, and Faith held her close, tears of her own beginning to fill her eyes. Gently, she pulled back just enough to allow her room to look into Buffy's eyes. Pushing a strand of hair behind Buffy's ear, Faith smiled sadly as she let a tear slip. "He knew…" she whispered softly, her thumb making gentle circles on the soft skin of Buffy's cheek. "Baby, he knew…"

It took a moment for Buffy to grasp exactly what had been said… Mainly due to Faith's casual use of the word 'baby' in reference to her. However, once the words had finally sunk in, she shook her head almost violently in denial. "If he knew, he wouldn't have said what he did…"

"Of course he would've…" Whipping away the tears that were still falling from the blonde's eyes, Faith smiled lightly at the sudden confusion she saw reflected back at her. "Buffy, he loved you more than his own life."

"Then why didn't he believe me?!"

Her voice was desperate and pleading… Exactly the opposite of what Faith was used to hearing. Seeing Buffy so weak; so frightened, was something Faith had never thought she would ever see… But she was glad she was. Because it meant that Buffy trusted her… Only a select few were allowed to see this side of the legendary Slayer, and before now, Faith had believed she would never be one of them… But she was…

"Would you have gone if he had let on that he believed you?" That one had struck her speechless and Faith smile once more, her fingers still gently caressing the blonde's skin. "See? You would've stayed with him. You would've died trying to save him. Buffy, he knew he wasn't getting out of there… He loved you. He couldn't let you die. The only way he knew to make you go was to make you angry. All he was doing was keeping you safe… He was protecting you because he loved you."

"But I wasn't angry with him…" Buffy murmured, moving to rest her head on the brunette's shoulder, while Faith gently stroked her hair and rubbed slow, comforting circles along the small of her back.

Glancing down into Buffy's sad eyes, Faith let another sympathetic smile slip onto her lips. "Heartbreak always makes you a little angry… Even if you don't realize it. Spike did… He said it to save you…"

"I miss him so much." Buffy told Faith, snuggling closer in the process; her tears slowly beginning to dry.

"I know you do. And you have every right to… But that doesn't mean you should shut yourself off to love." Faith told her, eyes soft and understanding. "Honestly, buffy, do you really think that's what he'd want for you? Or do you think he'd want you to be happy?"

"When did you become logic girl?" Buffy pouted, her hand finding Faith's and carefully entwining their fingers.

Heart expanding at the gesture, Faith could barely contain the love she was feeling for the delicate blonde in her arms. With a smile that could have lit the night sky, Faith gently squeezed Buffy's hand. "Let's just say I've learned a thing or two about love this past year… And if the one you love doesn't love you back, then you let her go… Because that's what love is… Sacrifice and pain…"

"What if the one you love feels the same way?" Buffy asked, eyes fixed on her fidgeting hand, which was currently playing with the hem of her shirt. After a moment of silence, her eyes lifted to Faith's; large with hope and fear. "Could there be happiness?"

"Don't know. Haven't gotten that far yet…" Faith told her, eyes locked with Buffy's as she pulled away just slightly, her fingers gently stoking down Buffy's cheek and moving down her neck before moving to rest lightly over the blonde's heart. "But I'm willing to give it a shot…"

"I think you should know…" Buffy breathed, eyes moving to Faith's once more. "Loving me is dangerous…"

With a delicate smile, Faith leaned in to capture Buffy's lips with her own. After a moment, she pulled back just slightly, their fingers locked tightly together. "I'm willing to take the risk…"

~*~*~*~

I was alone in the dark
Never let down my guard
Closed the curtain on my heart
So the world could not see
All the demons in me
Told myself I was free

Then you showed me how wrong I could be

Now I'm standing on a mountain of rubble
That once was a wall
Took years to build around me
And you came along
And you tore it down
Like it was nothing at all
Now it's a little scary
Learning to fall

When you looked in my eyes
Past the fear and false pride
You saw goodness inside
I can't believe how I feel
I believe love is real
And I'm ready to heal

You show me how right I can be

Now I'm standing on a mountain of rubble
That once was a wall
Took years to build around me
And you came along
And you tore it down
Like it was nothing at all
Now it's a little scary
Learning to fall

I was holding on, now I'm letting go
I was holding on, now I'm letting go
I was holding on, now I'm letting go

Now I'm standing on a mountain of rubble
That once was a wall
Took years to build around me
And you came along
And you tore it down
Like it was nothing at all
Now it's a little scary
Learning to fall

~*~*~*~