To Live By The Blade



Rating : R (for violence)

Disclaimer : All characters are owned by Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy.

Distribution : BuffyWorld forums

Feedback : Bring it on

Spoilers : Buffy Season Three

Author's note : This fic was written for a BuffyWorld challenge. It had to be

Written from the perspective of the bad guy.

Pairings : None really, Season Three canon relationships feature

Summary : Faith's thoughts and activities on the countdown to the


Faith watched from behind a tree. Buffy was sitting all alone looking all contemplative. For once not surrounded by her adoring Scooby freaks, which made this the perfect time to go and confront her about a few things. That bitch had her knife, and she wanted it back.

Faith quickly scanned the area in front of the school. There were people wandering about but not a one of them were taking any interest in her or the blonde Slayer. Her right hand moved to the back of her leather jeans, to the stake she kept there. She liked to keep it handy, some of the bosses minions had been getting a little playful recently and she had a strict policy against boinking co-workers, the dead variety anyway. The Boss had warned she was strictly off limits but then they were vampires and most of the time that equalled stupid. She was used to guys drooling over her, but it kind of wierded her out when it was just because of the thought of Slayers blood.

Faith pulled the stake free and tested it's weight in her hand. She planned her move in her mind, rush Buffy, catch her off guard and hold the stake to her throat until she returned her knife. Faith had know doubt she'd have it on her, it was a sweet blade and no one, especially not a Slayer, would pass up the chance to have a little fun with it. Faith remembered the knife B had chosen at the sports store, yeah there was no way she could resist taking that baby for a test drive. If she didn't want to give it up, well Faith would just have to apply a little pressure to that delicate little throat of hers and change her mind.

Okay she was poised and ready to go. Just as she ducked out from behind the tree she spotted Willow bouncing towards her target.

"Damn!" She crouched back behind the tree again and watched as the red-head sat down next to the blonde.

They were chatting about something intense, Buffy looked all serious and Red was smiling at her. Faith felt a fresh wave of hate wash over her at the sight. God, how she wished she had last night to do again. The boss might not let her actually kill the little witch, but she could have at least made her bleed. Sent her back into the arms of her wolf covered in the red stuff, enough to make him lose his mongrel head to the blood-lust and rip her limb from limb, yeah that would have been cool. The look on B's face if she'd sent her precious best friend back to her with Faith's name carved into her ivory flesh would have been a sight to savour, for sure.

Oh well no point dwelling on the past, there might still be some time to do Red a little damage before the Boss ate her up. The witch's word's had hurt Faith more than she wanted to admit. After all she was only human, well no actually she wasn't, was she. She was a super human, but still, they'd had a little sting and Faith intended on dishing out a whole lot of payback when she had the chance.

She saw Buffy jump over Willow and hug her, they both rolled on the ground giggling. It made Faith's gut twist into knots. Seeing them happy and laughing when all she had was the anger and the bitterness to keep her going and the Boss of course, she'd always have him. Looking on, she could see all the reasons she had gone to him for employment in the first place, but enough with that. No dwelling, remember. Anyway she was better off now than those kids. She chuckled to herself, it was a grim sound, they were all a couple of years older than her and yet they were all so naïve. They still thought that it mattered whether you were good or evil, when really all it came down to was how much power you had.

She slipped the stake back into jeans and walked away. Buffy could wait, she wanted their confrontation to be a one on one affair. It would make Faith killing her more personal that way. Yeah, she was the one with the power, and she knew how she was gonna use it.

Faith checked her reflection in the big ornate mirror and then blew it a kiss.

"Okay Boss, unless you got anything else for me I'm heading out. You keeping me on this 'no slaying' diet is making me restless. I need to find the fun a little, blow off some steam."

"Faith, now you know the reason I don't want you slaying at the moment is because I don't want you killing off our friends willy-nilly. If it should come to one of our friends needing to be killed, you will be the first to know." Mayor Wilkins looked up from his paper work and gave her a big smile.

She felt herself smiling back without even meaning to. This 'no slaying' rule he had ordered was really pissing her off. It went against everything she believed in. You see a vampire, you stab it through the heart with a pointy stick. Not because they were evil but because they were the scum of the earth. Being around so many all night, every night was sending her Slayer senses crazy, but she abided by it because the Boss wanted her to. He'd been good to her and she didn't want to let him down.

That's why when he smiled at her so kindly and genuinely it was all but impossible for her not to feel better.

"Sure thing Boss." She made her way to the door.

"Oh and Faith, don't stay up too late tonight. I know your nearly an adult and can look after yourself, but I'm just saying we have a big day ahead of us this weekend and I want you in tip-top form. After all, you want to look your best up on that podium, don't you."

Faith gave him another smile and nodded her head. On her way out the door, she gave a little wave and he smiled fondly after her.

"She's going to be playing merry heck with all the boys mind's tonight, I just hope they don't try and lead her astray." He told one of his vampire lackeys.

Faith left City Hall still smiling. Sothis was how it felt to have someone care about you, well it was pretty cool. The boss may have been a slight pain in the ass, with only letting her slay on command and constantly going on about drinking her milk and eating her greens, but it was worth it to have an apartment and a play station and someone who actually cared enough to give her greens to eat. Plus he took her to crazy golf. She'd never been before and she'd always treated anyone who did go as a complete loser, but she'd loved it, every single second. They'd played two rounds and she'd won them both, due to Slayer skills probably, because the only use she'd ever had for a golf club before was to beat someone over the head with it. Then he had taken her for ice cream. She couldn't remember any other day in her life being that much fun, and all they'd done was kids stuff.

He was comforting to be around too, the way he spoke reminded her of the old black and white movies she used to turn up real loud to drown out the sound of her mother slurring her way through 'Somewhere over the rainbow' or the sound of the headboard banging against the wall as she entertained another of her men friends. She didn't need the movies anymore because now she had him as her security blanket and being with him drowned out all the pain in her life.

However, having respect for an authority figure was something that Faith still found hard, no matter how much she truly cared for him, which was why she was cutting out tonight.

She felt like Bronzing it. Maybe find some guy to take home with her. She'd do things to him that would make his head spin on his shoulders. Not literally. Hell, why not. The Boss said no killing vamps and demons. Didn't say a word about dumbass high school jocks, and with all the people at Graduation his demon tummy wasn't gonna get all rumbly because of one.

The Bronzewas dead, pretty much literally. There were a few vampires at the bar, they regarded her with an air of equality, which she hated but could do nothing about. There was only a small number of humans in the club, all of them deadbeats that Faith had no intention of wasting her night on.

She walked back out the exit. The bouncer was stood there looking totally bored. He was cute, a bit thick set for her usual tastes, but then if that applied to all of him he might be worth a go.

"So where is everyone? I mean I know this place is a dump but it's the best dump in town." Faith leaned her shoulder against the door post as she spoke to him.

"Probably where you should be. It's hard to believe that someone like you couldn't get a date, but if that's the case, I'll happily close this place up and come with." He leered at her, his eyes travelling over her body. "You'll have to put that hot body in a dress though, don't really like my women butch... Oooph!"

Even as Faith's left fist was retracting her right hand came down into the back of his hair and yanked his face down to meet her rising knee.

"Guess you won't like me much then."

He was still doubled over, his face in his hands and blood dribbling through his fingers from his busted nose.

"You bitch!" He spluttered.

She grabbed him by the shoulders and pushed him back against the wall, hard.

"You really need to learn how to speak to women, pal." She stomped on his foot, she could almost hear the bones breaking, but he chose that moment to scream and it drowned it out.

"Where should I be, where is everyone else, come on it's obviously something big if every pimply faced teen is there right now."

"Bitch." He said again but with less conviction.

She fitted her hands around his thick throat and began to squeeze. "I ain't letting go until you tell me."

He withheld her for about twenty seconds, that's when her nails began to really dig into his windpipe.

"They're at the prom, senior prom, it's at the school." He rushed in a squeaky pitch.

"Thank you.Now co-operation wasn't so hard, was it."

She didn't wait for an answer. She backhanded him across the cheek, putting all her force behind it, she was satisfied to see a couple of teeth fall out. She dragged him away from the wall by the front of the shirt and swung him around, when she let him go he flew across to the other side of the alley and smashed into the wall. He slumped to the ground dazed but not unconscious.

"Please, Please, Please, I'm sorry, I'm sorry." He muttered over and over. At least that's what Faith thought he was trying to say. The blood and the swollen tongue were making it hard to understand.

She strolled almost casually after him and stomped on his knee. It crunched and he yelled, she kept stamping and kicking him until he was crying, his face screwed up in pain and just generally screwed. He tried to roll into a ball so she switched to kicking him in the back. When he finally lay still and quiet, only his raspy breathing giving away the fact that he was still alive she stopped, bent double to catch her breath and then sprinted off in the direction of Sunnydale High.

"Thanks for your help." She shouted back to the inert form on the ground.

She crept in unnoticed and stayed in the shadows at the back. She didn't have a plan but she'd felt compelled to come here. To witness her enemies enjoying another happy high school milestone that she would never get.

She spotted Red first, dancing with Dog boy. They made quite the cute couple in a sickly, stick your fingers down your throat way. Then that chump Wes was dancing with Queen C. Faith couldn't stand her either but at least she had the balls to stand up and be a bitch when the occasion deserved it. She saw Xander dancing with some chick she didn't know, he looked bored to Hell. Well what did he expect, he'd never meet anyone that came even close to topping what Faith had given him, and this time she wasn't thinking about the finger marks on his neck, although they had looked pretty good too. She'd never really wanted to hurt Xander, the guy was to pathetic to waste time on, but she knew that to take Xander out would have given Buffy years of guilt and tears and, well an opportunity like that doesn't arise every day.

Finally she spotted Buffy herself. She was stood off to one side talking to Giles. She held some stupid umbrella ornament. Faith shook her head, that girl was so lame. As Faith watched, running through her head all the things she'd do to her blonde counterpart when their confrontation finally came, Angel walked up to her and took her hand.

Faith tensed, in her seething turmoil she hadn't even wondered where the dark vampire was, but of course he'd be here somewhere. Buffy wouldn't have gone to the prom without her Prince Charming. Damn she wished she'd brought her longbow, one arrow and she'd be dancing with dust.

The reason for all the pain and humiliation she'd suffered from these people was not even ten foot away. God, she hated him, even more than Buffy and her tag-alongs. He shouldn't even still be on this earth, Buffy had sent him to Hell, she made her decision, the guy should have moved on. No, he comes back and makes Buffy's life Hell again and hers in the process. Back when Faith had first got to Sunnydale every time her and Buffy had fallen out it was over the dumb vampire, if he'd just stayed gone things might have worked out differently.

Not that any of that mattered now anyway. She was happier with what she had now, more than she ever had been before. Let Buffy and Angel have each other, the losers suited each other. Actually, a wicked smile adorned Faith's features, let's not.

She pulled the stake from the back of her pants with her right hand and watched as Angel's back was turned to her in the course of their dance. She raised her arm and took aim. Just as she was about to let fly with the pointy wood a hand grabbed her wrist. She turned sharply, instinctively lashing out with her other hand, but her invader quickly stepped back.

She recognised him immediately as one of the Boss's boys.

"Carl, what are you doing here?" She asked annoyed.

"You think the Mayor would let a party like this happen in his town without making sure there was a few chaperones." Carl told her. He was quite good looking for a vampire, although his cold touch repulsed Faith. He had been about eighteen when he had been turned, which meant that as long as he kept out of the Slayer's radar he could fit into his surroundings quite well.

Faith nodded, she should have realised. "You shouldn't have stopped me Carl. The Boss would have been over the moon to have that brooding hunk of dead meat out of the game." She looked back over at the happy couple, wishing her eyes were enough to make him burst into flames.

"No he wouldn't. The Mayor has plans for Angel, he's got an important part in the ascension, you kill him now, you'll be up to your neck in it. Don't think you'd last as favourite for much longer."

"Yeah whatever." Faith sneered, but inside she felt a little uneasy. If it was such a big plan why hadn't the Boss told her about it.

Carl smirked. "Yeah Slayer, it's only a matter of time until the Mayor gets sick of you. Super human you may be, but the operative word is human and soon the Mayor isn't going to be. What use do you think he'll have for you then? Except as a snack of course." The Vampire turned away laughing.

Faith's right hand lunged upwards and the laughter turned into a poof. "Oops slipped." She scolded herself and then quickly left before anyone told Buffy some kid had just disappeared right in front of them.

Faith was juiced. She sat up on the roof of the late professors apartment and she could feel the blood tingling in her veins. This was what being alive was supposed to feel like.

If before someone had asked her how she'd feel if she ever killed someone, she'd have probably told them 'bad, sick, guilty.' What she wouldn't have thought of was 'buzzed.' That was how it was though, not with Allan Finch, because she hadBuffy breathing down her neck the entire time about how bad it was, how Faith had to own up and take her punishment like a good little Slayer. Yeah right. Now she'd shaken off that annoying little external conscience things were good. After all, she had her own internal one and that was saying she was doing just fine.

The only thing that could have made doing the professor even better, would have been using her own blade to do it, but Miss Holier – than –thou still had it. She missed that knife, she hadn't even got a proper feel for it yet. Why did she have to use it to kill the Gavrok, what did she care if it killed the lot of them. She was showing off, that was all and it cost her the only present any one had ever given her. She was gonna get it back though and soon, because she had a present now, for Angel, and when she gave it to him, it would give her plenty of time to locate her knife. Then while Buffy was all wrapped up in mourning her boyfriend for the second time, Faith could use her knife to slowly peel the skin from the bitch's body. She wondered idly if she'd be able to do it in one long strip. Probably not if she was alive because she'd be squirming to much. Faith sighed.

This was a stroke of luck though, she'd been tracking Angel all night, waiting for the perfect moment to drop him and he shows up at the same place Buffy is at. Double the fun. She shifted away from her vampire companion and trained her gaze on the street below.

"What's wrong?" Asked Jake, another of the Boss's minions.

"Nothing, just wishing I'd worn a polo neck that's all."

"You scared of me Slayer?"

"No, I just don't want to have to dust another of my fellow employee's for looking at my neck. The Boss says he wants a happy working environment. If you know what's good for you, you'll keep that in mind."

Jake started to say something else, but Faith shhed him.

"They're coming." She whispered.

They were stood arguing in the middle of the street. It was like they knew what she was doing and they were trying to make it easy for her. Well, she was never one to pass up a golden opportunity. She took aim and fired. The arrow travelled straight and Angel fell forward onto Buffy. Faith kissed her longbow, it wasn't as cool as her knife but it was damn well close.

"You missed the heart." Said Jake, stating the obvious.

"I meant to." Faith replied with a smug grin. Life was so cool right now, and come tomorrow, it was only going to get cooler. "Come on, let's go see the Boss. Hopefully he'll have someone else for me to kill."

The buzz hadn't left her. In fact having nothing constructive to do was only making it worse. She turned her music up loud, what did she care about the neighbours. It's not like she could hear them shouting at her to turn it down anyway. She chuckled and went to her bag of candy, selecting a stick of liquorice she danced around the room for a bit. She'd spent an hour on the punch bag earlier, but that hadn't relieved any of the tension in her body. She hardly wanted to admit it even to herself, but she was nervous, about tomorrow.

The ascension was a big day for the Boss and he wanted her up there beside him for all of it. Including his speech. He'd brought her a floaty pink dress, which she knew would look better on Buffy, but had resisted shredding it because it made him so happy to see her in it, and some little white sandal things. She'd probably break her neck in them, the heels weren't high but they were so dainty. Slayer grace or not she figured she'd walk funny in them. She'd have been much happier in her leathers and boots, but it was his big day and the outfit made him happy, and she wanted to make him proud of her.

Shesmiled at the thought. There was one saving grace to the whole thing though. The Scoobies next high school milestone was gonna turn into horror and bloodshed and she was going to be there to witness it all.

She danced her way over to her comics and selected one, then she jumped on the bed belly first. She could kill a few hours with the X-men, because she was certainly too pumped to catch any z's tonight.

She wondered how Buffy was coping, was she crying over her dead, undead lover's ashes right now, or was he hanging on by the skin of his pointy teeth. She would love to see B's face right now…

Suddenly the music stopped.

She turned around on the bed and there stood Buffy. Faith gave her a big grin. Oh this was exactly what she needed. This night just kept getting better and better.

The End