The Road to Redemption
I've already posted some of this on Twisting the Hellmouth on but I thought I would post it here too and broaden my audience a little.
Sorry about all the 8's I couldn't get the page breaks and stuff to work right
Hope you like it!
Disclaimer: I own nothing. JK and Joss own the characters. Don't sue me. I'm poor.
Faith: The road to redemption is a rocky path.
Angel: That it is.
Faith: You think we might make it?
Angel: We might.
-Angel Season 1: Episode 19 "Sanctuary"
Faith Lehane was devastated. She felt as though her world was being ripped in two.
She would probably be on the ground balling her eyes out under different circumstances.
The only thing that stopped her at the moment was the fact that an ugly and very strong Lei-Ach demon was holding her up by the throat.
Faith had come immediately to Los Angeles after she heard the news, along with a few of the older slayers she had been working with in Cleveland. Faith had a few contacts with the local mages and witches in Cleveland and they had been able to transport her and the girls there directly. They didn't have time to get there the old fashioned way.
Angel had been trying to take down Wolfram & Hart from the inside. He had finally made his move and killed a few of the higher ups. This had apparently pissed off the wrong demons because now Los Angeles was overrun by a giant demon horde…real rain of fire shit.
Faith had known Angel hadn't turned evil. If he had lost his soul that would have been one thing, but according to Willow his curse was still intact and Angel hadn't gotten his happy on. Faith didn't really understand why the Scoobies had been so quick to think Angel had gone native. She might have expected it from Xander, but for all of them to be so certain he was playing for the other team well…well it was strange.
She had been too occupied with the mini slayers and stopping the newest Apocalypse in Cleveland to investigate.
And now, all those excuses Faith had formed for not coming sooner tasted like ash in her mouth.
She had found Gunn first.
He was bleeding to death in an alleyway, unable to stand. She and the minis tried to keep him awake and to keep him alive, but they had been too late.
She had seen Fred not long after that or whatever it was that inhabited her body now. Some being that called herself Delirium or something. They hadn't talked long and she had lost her somewhere in the fight.
But in the time Faith had spoken with her, she had mentioned Wesley.
He was dead too.
There had been a time in her life when she would have wanted the honor of killing Wesley herself, but now….now things were different.
He had been a pompous ass back in Sunnydale and they had both made mistakes back then.
Granted hers had been a bit more severe. But just like her, he had changed since then.
Faith and Wesley may have had a sordid history, but after everything that happened between them she thought of their relationship as something at least approaching friendship. If she were to ever again have a watcher Faith would have wanted it to be him. Which now was an impossibility.
A few demon decapitations and vampire dustings later after she had been separated from her sister slayers, she ran into Angel.
He had been fighting a dragon! A freakin' dragon!
And after the surprise wore off, she had helped him to take it down.
They fought together for what had felt like hours, demon after demon cut down by their swords.
It felt incredible to fight by his side; she hadn't done much of that. In the few fights they had been in together, which she could remember, they had been fighting each other.
There had been too many and they overpowered them. It all happened so fast. One had been about to deal her a killing blow with its rather large axe, while she had been fending off two other demons.
Angel saved her, gutted the demon before it could bring the axe down upon her. In that moment Angel left himself vulnerable for a fraction of a second.
A fraction of a second too long.
Then he was gone. Just like that. No warning, no slow motion realization of the inevitable.
Faith hadn't even seen which demon had done it.
His ashes were slowly settling on the asphalt of the alleyway before she even registered what had happened.
She dropped her sword. Faith lost herself in that moment. Forgotten was the battle and forgotten was the Lei-Ach demon and Polgara descending on her.
Her vision blurred and darkened around the edges. Faith wasn't sure if it was because she was blacking out from the demon strangling her or it was from the realization she would never see him again.
It was probably the strangling.
Angel had been the one to stand by her when no one else would. He believed in her when no one else believed she could be saved.
And now he was gone.
He was gone because he saved her.
It was her fault there was a hole in the world; a hole where he wasn't there. She didn't deserve such a sacrifice. It should have been her that was dead. Angel was the hero, the savior. She was the rogue slayer who couldn't be trusted.
Why should she live when he didn't?
Faith started to fade. This was the end.
That wasn't right. She couldn't let Angel's death be in vain. To have him save her life, only to just let some demon kill her. His death had to mean something.
But she was too weak to stop it now. She was too weak to struggle.
A guttural yell echoed from outside the alley and the sound of metal hitting flesh came soon after. Then pressure on her neck was gone and she was on the ground.
She let out a groan and struggled to take in a much needed breath.
"You know, for a slayer as long lived as yourself Faith, I might 'spect a bit more slaying and a little less letting demons strangle you to death. But, what the bloody hell do I know?"
The voice cut through her muddled thoughts.
Then confusion set in.