Disclaimer: Joss Whedon is an evil bastard, but he owns the lot. I'm only borrowing them, and not making any money. The title comes from Gravity Kills' "Falling".... Love that album. Must find it.

Spoiler Alert: This is set probably the day after 'Tabula Rasa' I think. Not really sure. It's definitely before 'Wrecked', 'Smashed' or 'Gone'. Er, that's sixth season, for those who don't remember episode titles.
Rated PG13 for language.

This one is for Kossie.

I Don't Know Who I've Turned Into Now
by Ana Lyssie Cotton

A dark alley, in the middle of the night. Two Slayers stand at its mouth, investigating the sounds of a fight...

Two men argue within, and they stand back and watch, letting nature take its course. Neither was bigger, and it would be a fair fight. To Faith's disappointment, the two men seemed to make up amicably and left the alley.

"Damn. All that posturing." Faith dipped her hips, "Unh. Gives me that warm itchy feeling, B."

"That's the ointment talking."

"You wish." She smirked at the blonde Slayer. "Because if I get it, I know you have to. I know you feel it, B."

"Fine." Buffy stopped walking, her face calm. "I feel it. But that doesn't mean I act on it, or do anything--gross."

"That's sad, B. Sex after Slaying is about as orgasmic as it gets."

"I'll take my, uh, orgasms, normally, thank you."

Faith snorted. "You've never wanted to boink on that fighting high?"

"Nuh-uh. I'm usually busy cleaning up."

"Cleaning up?" With a shake of her dark hair, Faith sauntered off up the alley. "B, you need a life. Big time."

"Well, I could just kill you again, but that would take the fun out of life."

Faith turned, hands on her hips, "I know you couldn't take me."

"You're right." Buffy stalked her, eyes dark with amusement. "Not."

"Even when I was alive we were evenly matched."

"As if." Buffy rolled her eyes, "Faith, when you were alive, I killed you."

"B, when I was alive, I killed your boy."

Anger glittered in Buffy's eyes. "Yes, you did. Funny, though, he's still up and walking around. Oh, I heard he was breathing last I checked, too."

"Those Powers, they're funny things. They keep me dead, but they bring back the Big Bad."

"No, that would be Spike. Only, he isn't the Big Bad." Buffy shivered as the alley slivered away into a graveyard. She turned from Faith, staring into the dark woods.

"Yeah. Willow brought the Big Bad back, didn't she." Faith stepped up to Buffy, leaning into her back. "You've gotten tired of being good. Hell, you don't even know what good is anymore."

"I do!" Buffy whirled, her hands shoving the other Slayer back. "I do. It's laughter and love and light and--"

"But you can't have those anymore, B, remember? You saw Heaven. And now it's all Hell for you."

"Life's a bitch." Buffy whimpered, tears in her eyes, frog in her throat.

"And then ya die."

"No. And then I become you. Isn't that what you want me to say, Faith? I become you. You win. Evil triumphs."

"Don't you get it, B? There is no Good. No Evil. There just is Life."

"No. There has to be something Good out there," the pain in Buffy's voice yearned to be filled. A chasm that stretched eons, spanned centuries. Every Slayer had lived this. Every Slayer had reached this moment. And they died.

But Buffy came back.

"There isn't."

"There IS!"

Faith shook her head, smile unchanged, "You're lying to yourself."

"I'm not." Buffy stamped a foot into the earth, feeling it give. She swiped at a tear. "I have seen good. I have felt it--Xander, Anya. What the two of them have, that's good."

"That's sex."

"It's. Love." Buffy snarled.

"Lust. Sex. Love. They'll all the same, B."

"You keep saying that!"

"Because I'm right."

"I know you're not." Buffy gestured at the graveyard. "This isn't life. This is death. This isn't the end."

"Oh, but it is--"

"NO!" Buffy swung, her fist connecting with Faith's cheek. The dark-haired Slayer crumpled easily, surprise on her face. "It's NOT." Buffy dropped to her knees next to the other Slayer. "It can't be. There has to be more." She whispered, fingers sliding through Faith's hair. "You're not dead. I am..."

--

"...am." Fist slammed into stone, sending the owner of the fist awake and tumbling to the floor, gasping for breath, adrenaline rushing through her like a fire. The floor was cold, the concrete bruising her bare legs. Faith winced, her mind already telling her what she should have remembered.

There was nothing there, except a roommate who snored, a security camera, and bars. Concrete, wood, metal. She was locked in and there was no escape. She grimaced at the finality of that thought and slowly pulled herself back into bed.

"Second time this month. Bloody dreams." She muttered, curling up again and closing her eyes.

--

Buffy stared up at the ceiling. It was almost dawn, now. Her sister would be up, Willow would awaken. And they'd all have to remember, to deal with it all. She didn't want to.

She never wanted to.

Life wasn't fair.

"No, it isn't." She whispered at the ceiling, "Riley left. Mom died. I died. And life goes on. It isn't fair, and it isn't right." A tear slid down the side of her temple. "And I go on. For I am the Slayer."

--

"So."

"So."

"I hear you died."

"I hear you grew a beard."

"Nah." Faith caught herself reaching up for the split lip and shrugged, "Just some dirt."

"Oh, that's really what it looks like."

"There a reason you're here, B?"

"There have to be one?"

"Would be nice."

"But I'm not nice. I'm the Slayer." Buffy shrugged at Faith, imitating her. "I don't have to do anything but save the world a lot."

"You have to live in it."

"Why should I? You don't."

"Nah. B, that's where you're wrong. See, I live in this world every day."

"You're locked in a prison, Faith. That isn't the world."

"Isn't it? Don't psychologists say prisons are their own little microcosm of the universe?"

Buffy shrugged, eyes tired. "Are they?"

"Hey, B, y'know, those psychologists would do great on you."

"Like they did on you?"

"Nah," Faith smiled, "I was already fucked in the head. You're just sliding."

"Sliding?"

"What happened, B? You were the perfect Buffy, the perfect Slayer? Did death get a little too boring for you? Too exciting?"

"More like too peaceful."

"B, peaceful isn't what Slayers get."

"I won, Faith. I beat the bad guy. I died. I shouldn't have to be here dealing with Hell."

"So that's why you're so fucked."

"Fuck you."

"Oooh, B. Anger, an emotion. You sure you're allowed to show that?"

"I'll show you anger."

Plexiglass shattered, shards hitting the back wall of the room. Up and down the rows, convicts and their relatives, friends and lovers turned to stare at the blonde girl as she dragged the brunette into the civilian side.

"What is this, B, death therapy?"

"You shouldn't exist!"

Her fist crunched as it slammed into the side of Faith's head. Bone shattered, shards messily grating on her knuckles as she drove in, reaching for the grey matter inside.

"It's not fair."

"B, you keep saying that like it has an effect on anything."

The room had disappeared. Cemetary again.

"It should. It should." She sank to her knees on top of the freshly dug mound. 'Buffy Ann Summers' read the headstone. 'She saved the world. A lot.' "I'm not supposed to be back."

"Another Slayer called, yadda yadda. I know the drill, B."

"I died. Kendra came."

"Kendra kicked the bucket, and you got me."

"But I died again. Where's the end?"

"You died twice, B. You don't get two Slayers."

She looked up at the brunette through her tears. "The world needs a Slayer."

"Don't look at me, B. Not the hero-type, remember?" Faith bent over, her lips twitching into her carefree-fuck-me smile, "I like it too much."

"But I can't do this."

"You did it before."

"But it ended!"

"Welcome to real life, B."

--

"I don't want it to be real life."

"Buffy?"

The Slayer blinked out of the daydream and stared at her sister over the island that graced the kitchen of the Summers' residence. "What? Dawn?"

"Are you going to give me my lunch or just stare at it for hours?"

"Oh. Sorry." She handed over the paper bag. "Hope you still like peanut butter and jelly."

"Of course, even when there's way too much of it."

With those the young girl tripped out of the kitchen, heading for the front door and school.

Buffy Summers, Slayer, blonde, and current Guardian of her 15-year old sister, felt like she needed sleep again. Dreams were... not comforting, she thought, remembering a flash of the one she'd had the night before. Blood and pain and so much death. Glass on her hands, knives in her hair. She shivered.

There had to be something she could do, something she was good at that would earn money. Why did Giles have to leave her? Why couldn't he have stayed, and made things better?

She sighed, swiping the dishcloth over the counter again. Best not to ask that. Best to ask where she could go to apply for a job today.

--

The room looked almost the same. Of course, this time it was real. Wasn't it? Angel was with her, too, a silent presence that gave her comfort. Which was odd, since nothing else gave her comfort these days.

Of course, the guards were different. The convicts different, too. Some weren't as hopeless as she'd thought they'd seem. Plexiglass seperated them from their visitors, and Buffy felt obscurely grateful. Why she should when it was Faith who should be worried, she didn't know.

"Miss?"

"Oh. Sorry." She sank into the chair and waited for them to bring out her requested prisoner.

Faith was looking thinner, but less haunted. As if being in jail had sent her into a sort of zen state. She seemed startled to see Buffy, but a glance at Angel reassured her, and she sat, waiting.

"Hi."

"B, you always used to be the conversationalist. What happened?"

"A lot."

"So I've... heard."

Buffy glanced up at Angel, startled. He shook his head. He hadn't said anything. "How?"

"I hear things, you know, that good old jail grapevine, B." Faith leaned closer to the glass and smiled, "You're looking ragged around the edges, hon. Spike keeping you up too late?"

"Spike?" Buffy stared at her, "What does he have to do with anything?"

"She speaks. C'mon, B, don't he have a chip in his head now?"

"Yes. But--"

"Doesn't it just make you wanna pounce him, grab those shoulders and ride hard?" Faith tipped her head to the side, eyes glittering, "I've seen your dreams, B."

"I hate Spike. I loathe Spike. I--"

"B, you wouldn't know what to do with a good fuck if it came up and knocked a house on you."

Buffy stood, "This was a mistake. I'm going." Angel caught her as she turned, "Let go of me."

"Your hands are shaking." There was no judgement in him. Just a sort of matter-of-factness. As if he could get by with the thought of her and Spike...

"So what?" She yanked them out of his, shoving past him.

"B, you can't escape your destiny."

"I can! I can!" She whirled, glaring with hatred at Faith. "I'm not supposed to be here."

"But you are." Faith had stood, and was pressed against the glass, her face somber. "B, you are the only Chosen One. Deal. Move on. Kill things. Fuck Spike into oblivion. But, god, I can't believe I'm helping the queen of perky peroxide, MOVE THE FUCK ON!"

"But it's not fair." Buffy whispered.

"Life isn't supposed to be fair, B."

"I--" Buffy shivered, her voice cracking. "I can't do this alone."

"You aren't alone, B. I'm sure that Scooby Gang of yours is tagging after you like always. Xander, with his cute smile and gorgeous abs. Willow and her witchie stuff. And Giles and his--"

"But he's gone."

"So? You don't need him, B. You threw them off a long time ago. The Council kisses the asses you walk on."

Buffy stared at her, startled, "Faith that is a really disgusting thought."

"Good." The brunette smiled, appearing satisfied. "Now that we've decided that, could you maybe stay out of my dreams, B? The nightly murder sessions are hard on my morning yoga."

"Dreams?"

"Yeah, you know, you close your eyes, go into a little REM sleep, dream of killing me? It's old, we've done it, we've moved on."

"I moved on."

"I went to jail."

Buffy began to smile slowly, "You're insane."

"Thank you."

"Miss? Your fifteen minutes is up." The guard was smiling calmly at her, as if people ranting at each other through the glass partitions was normal.

"Oh. Thanks." Buffy stepped up to the glass and stared at Faith for a moment. "I am not boinking Spike."

Faith smirked, "That's sad, B. That's just sad."

"I bet he isn't even a real blond."

Angel snickered from behind her. "He isn't."

Buffy sniffed. "I thought so." She turned to leave at the gentle reminder from the guard again.

"Hey, B..."

"Yeah?" Buffy glanced back at Faith, waiting.

"I.... Come see me again?"

"When I'm not out saving the world."

"And getting your ass kicked." Faith replied.

"I could always kick yours."

"In your--er, never mind. Keep the faith, B."

-finis-