Chapter 29: Yea, I Can Run….

Disclaimer: I do not own any of the recognizable characters contained within.

That would be Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, etc….

Here it is the final chapter. Thanks to all who took the time to read and to all reviewers.

Special Thanks to Jinxgirl for all the help!!!!!!!!

The Scoob's hung out most of the day. I asked Joyce to go home and get some sleep, she looked like she'd been up for a year. Giles had left earlier, but now he's back. Woo-fucking-Hoo. He's being real quiet, only talkin when asked questions or for his opinion. And I keep shooting daggers from my eyes at him when Red and Xan aren't lookin. Oh yea, G-man knows there's something up and he sure as shit better know it's not gonna be good.

When they all finally decide to leave I call out to Giles as he gets to the door. "Giles, Could you stay for a minute?" He looks like he aged about twenty years, but tells Willow and Xander to go on without him. He turns back to me and I can see that he knows what's comin. I gotta give him props though, he doesn't try to run.

"Yes Faith?" he asks and he's lookin everywhere but at me.

"How much does Joyce know," I ask. I'm keepin my cool here for now, cause I need to know what Joyce has been told. Let me tell ya, if this British bastard told her everything and that poor woman had to grieve her daughter again, I'm gonna get outta this bed right now and use his blood to paint the walls.

"Nothing really," he says and I sigh out in relief. "I told her that you were fighting a demon down at the docks and somehow were knocked into the ocean. It's not really that far from the truth actually." He's still lookin nervous, he's gotta know he's not gettin off that easy. "Was there something else you wanted?"

There's venom dripping from my voice when I say, "Oh, I think ya know what I want. Ya shoulda told me about Red's spell. Ya coulda givin me some hope. Instead ya just left me hanging, thinkin I was on my own, that I didn't have any choices. We were supposed to be tight. Ya were supposed to have my back. Instead ya cut me off. I wanna know why and I wanna know now."

Giles slowly walks closer to my bed. If he had any real sense he woulda kept as much distance between us as the room would allow. I guess he didn't figure on how quickly I was recoverin my strength. Like I said, slayer healin, ya gotta love it.

"Faith," he starts to explain, "I didn't know what you were going to do until I read your journal. That was after you had already left. Believe me I acted as quickly as I could once I did know. As it turns out, with the spell not working, you did the right thing and I'm very proud of you."

I'm staring at him and the tears are startin to blur my vision. My voice is cold as ice when I say, "I killed Buffy. Don't you get it? The spell fuckin worked! It was Buffy on that pier, not some gaddamn demon. It was B."

His jaw dropped and he starts stammering, "But…but… you told Willow it didn't work. How can you say this now?"

"Willow doesn't deserve to hafta carry that guilt," I tell him and my voice is getting louder as I let some of my pain and anger out. "None of them deserve to carry that guilt. But you do. You deserve to suffer every minute of every day, knowing that if you had just gotten off your high and mighty Watcher's horse, maybe she woulda lived."

He staggered from my words and the hate that was behind them. "Faith, please, I couldn't have known. I'm so sor…….."

I cut him off and hiss out, "If you DARE try to apologize to me, I will beat you to death!"

"Please let me explain," he starts pleading.

"No Giles. We're done. We are through," I keep talkin over him cause I know if I let him speak he's gonna say the wrong thing and I really will beat him to death. I don't want him dead, but yea, I do want him to know how bad he fucked up. "You and me? We're over. I don't ever wanna see or hear from you again. Ya said ya had to do CPR on me? Good, great, then there's another slayer called out there somewhere and I'm sure your buddies at the Council will find her and send her here. And if they don't, well that's just to fuckin bad. I'm outta here as soon as I can get some clothes. And Giles?" He looks up at me. "I mean it, don't you even think of tryin to find me, got it?"

He hangs his head and nods. "Faith, I need to……………," he starts to say and I cut him off again.

"Save it, I don't care and I don't wanna know. I just want you to get out," and now my voice is getting softer. I just can't deal with this anymore. Giles is still standing there lookin lost. "Didn't ya hear me? Get out. Get. The. Fuck. Out!" So much for not screamin anymore, but he moves over to the door and leaves. Hey, I finally got something I wanted.

A coupla days later I'm sittin in a box car headin north, to where I don't know or care. I hear Seattle's nice. I roll my head back against the wall and remember earlier today. I was at the pier, yea the one where my life ended in more ways than one, just starin out over the water as my mind wanders over everything that happened. I dunno, maybe I was tryin to see if I coulda done something different, changed the way it ended. But I didn't come up with nothing, nothing except Giles tellin me Red was gonna do the ensouling spell. That's the one thing I keep comin back to. If I had known I coulda played along with B, wasted the whole day, while waitin for Red do her mojo and by nightfall I woulda had my B back. The real B, the one I first fell in love with.

I'm standin at the rail where it all ended and I here soft footsteps behind me. I know who it is without even turnin around. "Hey Xand," I say. "They send ya to track me down?" Xander and I got a closer as I healed up at the hospital. He understood what it was like to be in love with Buffy and he's the only one that seemed to get why I made the decisions I did. No questions, no accusations. Plus, he brought me my clothes so I could get outta that lame ass hospital gown. That got him major points.

"Nah, they don't even know I'm here. I just thought you might wanna talk some more," he says as he comes up and stands next to me.

"Nope," I tell him. "Talkin's done. Time to move on."

"Where you going to go?" he asks.

"Anywhere that's not here," I reply. "I just can't be here anymore, Xand. Too much sun, too many blondes with green eyes….." I let my voice trail off and Xander puts an arm around my shoulders. I told ya he gets it.

I shrug off his arm and give him a kiss on the cheek. Then I turn to go.

I get a few steps away when Xander calls out, "You can't run, Faith." I just smile at him over my shoulder and keep goin.

That's what got me here. Thinkin about what he said, but Xand was wrong. Yea, I can run, I just can't hide.

Yea, I Can Run