Pairing: Buffy/Faith
Blind faith and false prophets: from Helpless to Consequences, bypassing The Zeppo.
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It started with a needle.

His betrayal to her was written all over his face. He explained tradition, he explained protocol and he explained the failed test. She was the sacrificial child as a sign of faith, yet there was no ram to replace her.

She swore at him, sick of listening to his rational behind his actions. Nausea consumed her as she sat in front of him, reason was lost to her as hatred and disgust engulfed her. Her hands were shaking as she bat his away from her, she threatened him though she doubted her own abilities because of him, because of tradition and because of the needle.

As he continued to speak to her, begging her to listen with excuses and justification she felt the poison coursing through her veins. The flu, he'd said, it was just the flu.

The door swung open. The return of the prodigal slayer, the girl announced to the two before considering whether she could be defined as prodigal as such. The girl stopped talking as she looked between the Englishman and the crying child. She frowned at them both opening her mouth to question before silenced by the warrior's simple action of getting up and heading out of the library.

He'd called out to her, told her she wasn't safe. That's when she spoke to her, she asked her to walk her home. The visitor to the room sent the Watcher a fleeting glance before nodding and following the lost girl out.

The girl didn't ask what was going on, she merely pursued her dutifully. She fell to her knees when the other girl finally broke down. She fell to her knees wanting to comfort the girl on the floor, she wrapped her in her arms and tried to pick her up as she had done for her.

The cloven hoof, ancient evil, ancient power. Original sin, the apple from the tree the betrayal of man by the woman and the snake. Back to the poison, to the Watcher and his Council. Back to the girl.

She was lost, helpless and unsure of everything she knew, of everything that had come before this moment. She choose her sanctuary carefully. Where she would run to a loved one, she felt she had no one. Not sure who would betray her next she chooseher sanctuary carefully as she found herself in the arms of someone new.

So she lost her faith.

Powers returned, place in life certain.

She had a point, she had reason, she had a destiny. That's what they'd told her as they stripped her of her youth, of her innocence. The Chosen One, they'd called her. And yet there were two.

Turning away from tradition, shunning protocol, ignoring everything she'd been told. When the poison left her body she abandoned all she'd attached herself to before. Though the poison was gone, fear still coursed through her veins. Scared of another betrayal she started again; new allegiances, new beliefs, new reasons and rationalisations for actions.

Though she turned away from leadership she found herself still being led. She followed the other one dutifully, mirroring her actions until they were almost one.

The smile covered her face. She explained another theory for the existence of slaying. It was unlike anything she had ever heard before. She listened as she explained being chosen, about fun, about design and then there was grunting. Take. Want. Have.

She had power, now it was hers. The Council had issued what had seemed like 613 rules and orders to control her, to control her power. The power was hers though. She was going to use it. She showed her how. If you're not enjoying it, you're doing something wrong she'd said.

She had been sleep walking through her destiny, now she was going to control it. She'd been given free will by some higher power. Faith showed her how to use it.

Friendship developed. What had started as rebellion and mutiny to the cause and to the elders was pushed aside by lust, by passion, by sex.

The more time she spent with her, the more she understood her. Hungry and horny she'd originally laughed. A low fat yoghurt she replied. And yet after fighting by her side she found herself repeatedly battling for dominance with her, weapons abandoned, clothes made redundant as their actions made them almost one.

She was more than a sanctuary. More than a walk home. She became so much more, so quickly. Poison gone, fear gone. Original sin forgotten. There was only her and this new faith she so willingly worshipped, following dutifully.

It ended with a stake.

He lay there bleeding where there should be nothing. A stake to the heart. Quick. Painless. From dust to dust, ashes to ashes. The way to kill the dead.

He lay there bleeding, his eyes crying out to them to help him. Blood ran from his mouth as he slowly died. Consumed with pain and fear; death engulfed him.

She pulled her away before disappearing. The stake killed her, left nothing behind her eyes. She found her and searched behind them, looking for a sign that life remained within her. Yet she was unrepentant and that was ultimately what destroyed her.

Finding nothing she was forced to return to the garden, no longer innocent she clothed herself in guilt. Craving reason, rational, anything that could explain to her what had happened and to make the pain go away. The apple was forgiven as she fought off the pillar of salt.

She had replaced one poison for another. She barked orders at her friends, at those she made her council, determined to save the snake she had replaced the betrayal with.

Yet she would not be saved instead choosing to find a master. A serpent she could follow dutifully hiding from crime, from guilt, from the one who had called her sanctuary. Hiding from the one who had called her Eden before she had offered her an apple which she dutifully bit.

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