Disclaimer: I own nothing; just borrowing a while.

Part 6

As Buffy drew closer to Willow and Kennedy, she saw that where Willow had previously been nuzzling her face into Kennedy's chest before, it seemed that she was using tongue and teeth now, and Kennedy's hand marked her an active and enthusiastic participant as they ran up and over Willow's shoulders, back, and backside, fingers digging in hard enough that she was likely leaving marks.

Normally Buffy would have been flabbergasted and mortified enough to cry out and cover her eyes, if Willow and Kennedy hadn't been performing even half of the actions they were engaging in. But now she was feeling anger more predominantly than disgust or even shock, flaring up strongly enough inside her to narrow her focus and crowd out all other emotion. All she wanted to was to have it stop, ALL of it, and as she stood over the tangled couple, similarly paired bodies writhing on all sides around her, Buffy raised her voice about everyone else's, trying to get through their frenzy and catch their attention without resorting to having to touch them in all their half-clad non glory.

"Willow!" she yelled, waving her arms above the women's heads. "Willow! Stop it!"

Chest heaving, her breath coming in rapid pants, Willow lifted her head from Kennedy, still lying down full length across her. Her eyes glittering with pleasure, pale skin flushed, she smiled at Buffy with a slow, knowing seductiveness that unsettled Buffy to her core.

"Hey, Buffy…you look lonely, standing there all by yourself. You want to join? There's plenty of room for three…"

She extended her arm to her, and Buffy shook her head hard, eyes widening as she took another fast step back. Oh my god…was everyone she knew a secret sexual wild cat, were they all secretly in love with her?

"What? No, NO!" she sputtered, and Kennedy turned her head too, smirking up at her.

"Willow always wanted to try with a third…come on, you know you want to…"

"I always got off on the thought of how much endurance a Slayer must have, even before Ken," Willow added, starting to sit up, still smiling with much too much interest than Buffy could accept now…or ever. "I mean, you're such a tiny thing, Buffy, but you're so strong…I bet you keep up with Ken and then some, huh…I'd love to watch you two going at it all night long…"

"Stop it!" Buffy yelped, immediately assuming a combative posture and rapidly shooting glares of intense warning towards a few couples who were also now eyeing her with rising interest in the same vein of Willow's and Kennedy's. "If any of you touches me I'll start breaking fingers, and that is NOT just a threat, that is a fair advance warning. Willow- Kennedy- oh for god's sake, stop it, put your clothes on!" she almost shrieked as Willow and Kennedy sat up more fully, shirts- and bras- hanging wide open, and she half covered her eyes, taking a deep breath as she partly turned away.

Stop thinking about how Willow doesn't have freckles on her breasts…stop thinking about Willow's breasts…stop comparing the size of your breasts to Willow's and Kennedy's breasts…

God she was scarred. What if they infected her? What if she got infected with their current skankness, or their lesbianness, or both…oh god, maybe she should just run for it.

"Willow…Willow, this is a spell," Buffy tried to say with logic and control, at least as much as could be managed while still half covering her eyes and turning her head. "Remember what you said about doing a spell? For open spirits or something…remember? Well this is it…this is what's happening! So close them!"

"Oh, don't be such a spoilsport…listen to yourself…listen to what your body needs," Willow nearly purred, and she stepped towards Buffy with a predatory smile that made the blonde Slayer throw up her hands, intent on blocking any further advances. "Listen to what it wants-"

"It wants you to back up. It wants you to put your shirt back on- it wants you to undo this friggin' spell!" Buffy said hurriedly, even as she caught herself peeking towards the half-dressed women again before abruptly tearing her eyes away, sickened by the low-down stirring inside her. "Willow, is this PERMANENT? How long will it last?"

"Only for tonight…shh, Buffy…you look all tense," Willow mock pouted, and her voice dropped lower as she began to stroke a hand up Kennedy's side once more, eyes still on Buffy. "We can help you relax…"

"I'm relaxed, very, very relaxed, no need!" Buffy hastened to assure her as both Willow and Kennedy reached out for her, barely avoiding their grasping hands and colliding into another very "open" couple nearby. "Very relaxed, but look, look what this is doing- look at Andrew!" she said in desperation, as the man in question enthusiastically thrust his hips forward on the counter, rapidly, pulling his discarded shirt up between his legs.

Willow and Kennedy's eyes shifted towards him calmly, and Kennedy smiled.

"Nice abs…maybe he would be our third…"

"You have to undo this!" Buffy cried out indignantly, violently shoving aside a random hand reaching out for her and attempting to keep a wary eye about her on all sides, even as pleaded with the redhead still eyeing her as she might a particularly sprinkle-covered donut. "Willow, we can't let this go on all night!"

"You don't sound like you're having fun…" Willow mused, shaking her head, then looked at Kennedy. "Baby, she's not having fun…"

"No! No, I'm not!" Buffy said quickly, shaking her head. "So whatever you said, why don't you undo it and then-"

"We can show her fun…" Kennedy murmured, and smiling at Buffy wickedly, she began to undo the zipper of her pants.

Giving up entirely now, knowing this could only escalate further into badness on all levels, Buffy turned rapidly, deciding that her only option was to escape. She could not watch all these people at once, could not fend off all of them, if they all suddenly decided she should join an orgy or something…and it looked for the most part like most were fine with staying right where they were, so they wouldn't be driving or running around aimlessly in this state. They weren't hurting each other, at least, not enough to be of the involuntary, nonsexual type of hurting…and weak a reason as it was, Buffy couldn't stand to witness much more of this. Maybe if they were lucky, the spell would stop affecting them after midnight, if Willow's words that it would only last "tonight" could be taken literally…

Stopping first by Xander on her flight towards the doorway, Buffy paused only to wrestle his keys out of his back pocket, fending off the advances of Xander and all three of the Slayers attached to him in order to do so. Heart slamming against her chest, cheeks heated, both panic and what she was horrified to recognize as building reluctant arousal swirling itself in her chest, Buffy continued to squeeze her way towards the front door, towards her escape-

Only to be stopped by a hand catching hold of her wrist, and an all too familiar voice saying her name. Well, part of it.

"Beeee….I thought you said you liked me…"

For one terrible moment Buffy was unsure whether she was going to whirl around and slug Faith, or else give up, give in, and let her drag her away to do whatever she wanted to her…give herself over to her…

But instead, she turned and grabbed Faith's shoulder, spinning her around rapidly, straight into Vi and Rona, the first two people she saw nearby. As Faith careened into their heavily embracing forms, knocking them to the ground, Buffy didn't' pause to look behind. She couldn't hear or see Faith struggling up to follow her, and she hoped the Slayers had become so distracted with one another that Buffy was forgotten entirely.

What kind of sick situation was this that Buffy would pray for a threesome, particularly one not involving herself?

Not that she wanted one! Of course not! Not with them- or anyone- or ever- probably…

God she had to get out of here.

As Buffy sped down Club Maui's front steps, searching with darting eyes for Xander's car, she was disturbed by a question that occurred to her as to why she was the only one somehow not affected by Willow's spell. What could that mean that she would somehow repell a spell for openness? Was she not open somehow, in some way? Was she so closed she could never be open?

But even more disturbing to her was the tiny part of her that sort of wished she had been, a part that whispered she would have then at least been able to be a part of them, to maybe bridge some of their growing distance. And that maybe, just maybe, it would have felt good.

Buffy heard the first few coming into the sleeping sections of the Slayer headquarters somewhere between 12:30 and 1:00. At first she tensed, listening for signs of continued "open spirits," but when no one came pounding on her door, giggled and moaned loudly, or turned on music at top volume, she figured that perhaps her hope had come true, and as soon as Buffy's birthday was officially ended at midnight, the spell had worn off. Eventually she drifted into a restless sleep, though her dreams were plagued with lurid, strange envisioning, involving lots of nudity, that caused her to awake, sweating, nervous, and infuriatingly breathless.

The next morning was more than a little awkward. Buffy was not surprised at the utter silence of the halls; if anyone was even awake, they were likely too sick and hung over to move. If they remembered what had happened- the way they had behaved, and what they had done, not to mention what they had seen, the night before, they were likely also too mortified to step out and look anyone in the eye.

Buffy knew she was. She couldn't even think of anyone without immediately envisioning them in the unclad, lusty state they had been in the night before. She would have seriously considered asking Willow to modify her memory, if she wouldn't have had to look her in the face to do so.

As it was, the need for food and a bathroom eventually caused paths to cross, with much flushing, averting of eyes, and scurrying away, and by mid afternoon Buffy had run into Willow. Immediately the Wiccan turned crimson, beginning to stammer.

"Buffy! Buffy- I'm sorry- the spell- I didn't think it would turn out like- I should have- I'm sorry, it was just, your birthday, and you're so stressed lately, I know, and I just wanted you, for all of us, to-"

"It's okay," Buffy rushed to talk over her, having to fight not to close her eyes, to recoil away from the other woman in her attempt to banish from her mind all the images cropping up of Willow sitting up with her shirt open, bra hanging loosely, of Willow's lips curled into a feral, lusty smile, Willow's face between Kennedy's breasts as her nails tore scratches into Kennedy's skin…and the unsettling, queasy-yet-not-quite-pleasant sensation it invoked in the pit of her stomach.

"It's okay…those things happen, they happen, and it's my birthday, and it always happens on my birthday, so probably not your fault, just the standard Buffy jinx…"

"Maybe. Still…I'm sorry, it wasn't supposed to be like that! And all the, the reaching, and the talk- I don't think that, you know I don't think that!" Willow said desperately, her voice shrill, pleading, and Buffy nodded hurriedly, still studiously avoiding looking at her straight on.

"No, no, of course not- spell. All spell. Spells can be bad, very, very bad."

"Very!" Willow nodded fervently, her features strained in her discomfort, and she glanced hurriedly down the hall. "Uh- I gotta go- I, I should-"

"Go- go, yes, go, I go, I should too," Buffy rushed to agree, and as the women hurried past each other, both avoiding looking at each other again, it occurred to Buffy that she didn't know what to be horrified over Dawn for…and she wondered whether this was a good thing or not.

She didn't see Faith until early evening. The brunette was emerging from the bathroom, her hair tangled, curls wildly disarrayed, eyes bleary and bloodshot, her face pale and creased. She had likely been sleeping or passed out until recently, and she looked so ill and exhausted that Buffy wondered if she had just finished vomiting.

For a moment, as their eyes met, both women froze. Buffy could not immediately make herself drop her eyes, though every instinct told her to do so. For just a moment Buffy saw emotion flicker across the surface of Faith's eyes, so quickly she could not quite label it. And then Faith's eyes blanked over quickly once more, and she shrugged, letting her shoulders fall heavily, and spoke in a raspy near croak.

"Sorry if I skipped out early on your big birthday bash, B…I got kinda wasted, don't remember jackshit about anything from last night. Woke up, and I was here, so I guess it all turned out alright, huh?"

As Buffy continued to meet Faith's eyes with hers, a slow certainty came over her that Faith was lying. Willow had remembered…Willow had obviously known and been horrified by all that she had done the night before. Admittedly, she had not been as drunk as Faith…but even so, Buffy was sure that Faith did remember.

Why would she lie now…Faith, who was never embarrassed and rarely shamed, Faith, who regularly behaved in a sexual manner and deliberately set out to embarrass Buffy by it at times? Why would she not use the events of the night before to needle and harass Buffy for the rest of their existence? Why would she look Buffy in the eye and deny it had happened?

Unless…unless there was something at stake for her by doing so…unless what Faith would risk, what she would then have to acknowledge, was not embarrassment…but rejection.

Was it possible that what Faith had been saying…the feelings she had been declaring..whether brought out by the spell or not…what if they were true? What if Faith did want Buffy….what if she did love her?

As these thoughts slowly settled into Buffy's mind, she knew that this was the moment, the possible turning point in both their lives. If she called Faith out now, if they talked this out…if they acknowledged the truth, and began to feel out what had happened, to feel out who and what they really were to each other, who and what they wanted…

If Buffy did this now, maybe they could be helped. If she did this, maybe they could draw closer in a way they never had before, gain an understanding of each other they had never thought possible. If she did this, maybe Buffy could feel more connected, more a part of things, close in on what she had once had with others, who she had once been…

Maybe if they did this, they could both be happier than they ever could be before. If she did this.

But what Buffy did was nod slowly, still meeting Faith's eyes…and what she said was, "Yeah, Faith…I guess it all turned out alright."

Neither woman spoke as they both turned away. Neither looked back as they walked apart. But both women's hands trembled, forming hurried fists, both's shoulders rounded in, and though both strode with confidence, both's stomach twisted into painful contortions with the knowledge of the distance growing between them in more than feet and inches.