Disclaimer: These are Whedon's, I'm taking them out for an experimental stroll.
Author notes: I saw a story like this once where the story was composed of single sentences, about fifty I believe, showing the relationship of Buffy and Faith (as lovers) in snapshots. I forget who wrote it or what it was called, but if you recognize this format and you're the one who wrote it, thanks for giving me the idea. I've been reading Giles and Faith stories lately and after I got over the initial ew I was intrigued enough to try one of my own in this style. The story/sentences takes place over many years time, showing the progression of their relationship. It also includes season eight canon. So if the pairing isn't for you (and I can understand why it wouldn't be very popular) then skip it.
1. She was sixteen- strong, healthy, undeniably attractive; he was 46, grieving, a Watcher whereas she was a new Slayer, a fascinating anomaly; nevertheless, whatever he firmly instructed himself, it was more than her shared status of the Chosen Two and her enthusiastic zest for the simple things in life that caught Giles's attention.
2. She gave him no last name by introduction- she was Faith, simply Faith, and it never occurred to Giles until nearly a year later to wonder why it was that he had never inquired further.
3. She winked at him behind his Slayer's back, her full lips curving into an impish, knowing, and deliberately seductive smile, and as she shifted her weight, leaning forward in such a way that her ample cleavage revealed itself further, Giles swallowed hard, hurriedly tearing his eyes away as he began to clean his glasses.
4. He found himself watching Faith as she flipped impatiently through a dusty old book, eyebrows drawn together in concentration, a furrow forming in her brow, her body sprawled casually with her legs apart in her chair, and in spite of himself, Giles smiled, amused by the blatant show of teenage attitude and boredom she displayed so skillfully without words needed to accentuate.
5. Giles watched Faith spar with Buffy and was stricken breathless with the display of raw power and force before him, the utter fierce ease with which the young women moved with each other…utterly stunned by the beauty that he was observing.
6. In the library one day, while the others were in class, Faith came to him with nervous eyes and stumbling words, her voice soft as she asked if she could speak to him; to this day Giles despises himself for asking her if it could wait until the meeting after school, a meeting she did not attend; to this day he wonders what it was that she had been working up the nerve to confide in him.
7. He saw Faith's expression one time, for just a moment, a flicker of strong emotion in her eyes when she watched Buffy's retreating back, and Giles wondered, but convinced himself that he was imagining things.
8. When Faith touched him once, her eyes boring into his as her fingers slowly ran up his arm, Giles froze for just a moment before extracting himself from her grasp, telling himself that she was a child, not allowing himself to wonder what might drive her to behave as one who had never known the meaning of the word.
9. Giles thought back then of Faith's infrequent loitering in the library during school hours, when no others were around, as bred from boredom, idleness, or an attempt to make him squirm; he cringes now with shame to realize that she had been wordlessly screaming for the care and attention of an adult to notice her silent signals.
10. The day he realized that she reminded him of his younger self, of the day when he was known as Ripper, Giles began to distance himself unconsciously from Faith; he realizes in retrospect she could not possibly have understood, could not have interpreted his reaction as anything other than rejection of her.
11. The first time he truly realized the full amount of rage in Faith's eyes, the fury that had finally drowned out the hurt and longing usually muted but present in their surfaces, Giles knew he had failed her, knew the child he had been entrusted with no longer was in existence.
12. He visited her once, in the hospital, forcing himself to look down on her weakened body, forcing himself to see what his blindness and neglect had brought forth, and any anger left him as he eyed the wasted frame before him; he could not bring himself to return.
13. Giles sent for Faith's background files from the Watcher's Council two weeks after graduation day, and what he learned made him rail furiously against a world that could allow such pain and cruelty in the life of one young woman- and the fact that it could be summed up in such few laconic sentences.
14. When Buffy came to him in Faith's body, confusion overtaking the moment, Giles was afraid not only for what she might do to him, but what it would do to her, if she were to succeed.
15. He thought about visiting Faith in prison, but in the end, he couldn't, and the long letter he wrote her he crumpled up, unable to find a way to apologize.
16. He could see how she had changed immediately when she first came back; whatever cover of toughness Faith put up, Giles saw her strength and sincerity, and in his heart, if not aloud, he welcomed her back.
17. When Faith took over the Potentials in Buffy's stead, with a serious maturity she had not possessed before, Giles saw her with a respect he had not held for her before- respect as an equal, a leader, as a woman.
18. Faith's head lolled back limply, her long hair trailing over his arm, the weight of her body solid yet light, and as Giles hurriedly helped Xander carry her unconscious form up the stairs, his heart pounded in fear at the possibility of losing her when he had only just began to see her clearly.
19. Giles did not have to watch the girls- the WOMEN, the Slayers, new and old- battle the minions of the Hellmouth at its close, but even though absent, he saw their fierce battle raging, could feel the adrenaline of the blonde and brunette working together with their newfound sister Slayers, and he smiled, vicious pride filling his chest.
20. Her eyes gleamed with satisfaction and excited pride as she gazed out with the others upon the ruin that was Sunnydale, dimples digging deeply into her cheeks as she smiled, standing over Buffy's shoulder, and as Giles watched his Slayers, he could not help but smile too.
21. Giles would never forget the look in Faith's eyes when he told her that he had had Willow clear her name, that she no longer carried a criminal record, nor would he forget the way she had blinked, her voice shaking slightly as she told him thanks.
22. Giles wasn't sure when it was that he had began to think of Faith not as a Slayer, but as one of his Slayers, but by the time the realization dawned, the thought had been present for so long that it was impossible to trace its origin.
23. It struck Giles one day as he watched Faith working with a fifteen-year-old junior Slayer, earnestly fielding the girl's questions, that she was strong in many more ways than physically, a thought that was astounding to him to realize that he had never understood about her before: that Faith was a survivor.
24. When Giles first realized what Buffy would become, and that only Faith could help him now, he could not sleep for days- not only for his dread of betraying Buffy, but also because of his knowledge that in order to do so, he would have to deceive Faith.
25. Seeing Faith in the expensive green dress she had begrudgingly settled upon, a dress suitable for both slaying courtesans and slaying rogue Slayers, Giles's breath caught, and he hurriedly removed his glasses in an attempt to blur in his vision the large amount of cleavage the young woman displayed, trying to keep himself from blurting out to the awkwardly scowling figure before him that she was beautiful.
26. The panic that rushed over him when Buffy informed him she had left Faith alone overwhelmed him, so that his blood pulsed heavily through his veins, his heart racing with fear of what might happen, how he could lose her to the mad, betrayed emotion of the Lady Genevieve, and Giles knew there was no option in his heart except to go to her.
27. You learn so much about a person from working with them, traveling and living with them as your sole companion and partner in often close quarters, and the more Giles learned about Faith, the more regrets- and respect- he held in regard to her.
28. Once Giles tried to apologize to her, on one quiet, reflective night, and when Faith protested, insisting upon her personal responsibility for her past, he was nevertheless sure that his words had impacted and healed some part of her from the slight softening of her features.
29. As Giles bandaged her ribs, his hands gentle, yet capable and sure upon her skin, Faith held very still, meeting his eyes, a seriousness in her gaze that made him wonder when it was that she could last remember someone providing her with physical care.
30. Giles had never seen Faith cry, and when he thought about Buffy, how many times he had held her in his arms and comforted her tears, he told himself that the day he did the same for Faith would be the day he could tell himself he had finally succeeded in fully earning her trust.
31. Sometimes Giles could not sleep, and he found his eyes drifting to Faith's curled form across the room, marveling that a woman of such power and strength could ever look so small, young, and almost sweet, even in sleep.
32. He told himself how inappropriate his feelings were, that he was her Watcher, she was his Slayer…but he was also a man, Faith was no longer a child, and Giles could not deny what he wanted.
33. The first time she kissed him, Giles's mouth went dry, his heart knocking wildly against the strong hand splayed across his chest, and his mind scrambled for the correct response; the second time Faith kissed him, he stopped trying to think and simply kissed her back.
34. Giles had considered himself to be an experienced lover, having gathered many conquests in his youth, but when he went to bed with Faith, he knew that in comparison with the woman's skills and knowledge, he was an awkward, adolescent virgin.
35. The first time Giles dared to reach for Faith's hand while walking in a public area, he fully expected her to sock him in the side, to stiffen and pull away; when she simply closed her fingers around his, fixing her eyes rigidly straight ahead, he felt his face flush with delighted astonishment.
36. Giles discovered that Faith's hair was her Achilles heel, and that simply running his fingernails lightly over her scalp or caressing the length of her locks with slow, gentle strokes could alternately cause her to melt with pleasure against him, or to excite her into providing him with ample proof of her appreciation…both were excellent rewards.
37. When the demon's teeth snapped and Giles saw blood, his stomach churned, a wild rage and sharp fear and horror arising, and he knew as he ran to Faith with clarity for the first time that he loved her.
38. He knew the others whispered and stared when they thought he wasn't watching, their expressions colored with shock, disbelief, disgust, and even anger, but as much as Giles loved them, he loved Faith too, and therefore he simply could not bring himself to care.
39. Giles asked Faith to dance with him alone in their apartment; when she was reluctant, her eyes guarded, he did not understand until as he held her in his arms and watched her face slowly soften into a peacefulness that was near awe, he realized that she had probably never been asked to dance with anyone in such a romantic and slow paced fashion.
40. When Giles finally told Faith that he loved her, one arm wound about her bare shoulders as his fingers lightly entwined in her hair, she did not respond, but when she did not pull away, he knew for certain that she loved him too.