-BPOV-

I sat in class, my mind helplessly wandering to thoughts of my best friend. Naughty thoughts. Of my female best friend.

What's wrong with me? I never used to think like this before! Well, maybe sometimes, but it was always fleeting and I'm sure it never meant anything. Not like I know it does now. I mean, there's no way thoughts of her straddling me in my chair right here in nothing but a black lacy thong could not mean something!

I guess I should have known it would happen eventually... I mean we've always been so close, and I've cared for her so much... She's always been my whole world, from the moment we met. It's just weird how much worse these thoughts get as time goes by. They started pretty innocent several years ago, but now... Wow...

As I sat there, my naughty thoughts continuing and growing more intense, the source of said thoughts tapped on the window right next to me, surprising me so much I actually flew off the seat. Thankfully though the window was open, so she just reached in and pulled me back up before I could get too close to actually hitting the ground, therefore saving me the embarrassment. Though I think she knew she was going to scare me, why else would she have reacted so quickly? What a jerk!

"Faith, what on earth are you doing?" I whispered angrily, trying not to bring any more attention to us, though I'm pretty sure everyone's already looking. I think some of them were even waiting for it, because they seem too interested.

"School is boring. I decided we're gonna ditch today." She shrugged, as if it was nothing out of the ordinary. I guess for us, it isn't.

"We've already ditched twice this week, do you want to get us grounded?"

"Yes." She grinned, dimples on full display. I swear my heart just skipped a beat.

I love when she smiles at me like that, it's so cute! Wait... she just said something I should be mad at, didn't she?

"Well I'm not going to get in trouble - again, I might add - just because you're bored."

It's true, I can't even begin to count all the times me and Faith have gotten into some serious trouble just because she got bored. Or restless. Or whatever it is that makes her want to go out and cause some mayhem. And I always get dragged into it as her partner in crime, because for as long as we've been friends I just have never been able to say no to her. At least it's always fun... last time we snuck into a Freak Wharf concert, and she got me a shirt. I didn't ask how she got it and she didn't tell me. I think it's best that way.

"C'mon B, I know you're just as bored as I am! I'm doin' us both a favor here. Now hurry up, who knows when someone'll come in to call off the class!"

"What did you do this time?" I asked, eyes narrowing.

"We can talk details later. Now c'mon!" She urged, before disappearing. I rolled my eyes and grabbed my bag and quickly climbed out the window to catch her, trying to force the fantasies from my head before I wind up doing something stupid.


"That's your big plan, Faith? To sneak out of school so we could drink beer at the park?" I asked in disbelief as she sat down on the swings, a bottle in hand with a cheeky grin lighting up her whole face.

"Pretty wicked, right?" She chuckled, pulling off the cap and tossing it.

"Where did you even get it from?"

"My dad had a case stashed in the basement, all hidden and crap. Like he thought I wouldn't find it? Fuckin' moron."

I frowned, opening up my own beer but not taking a sip just yet, sitting at the swing next to her. I know she's never gotten along with her parents, which I hate. Whenever she brings them up I just want to do whatever I can to take the pain away. I know it isn't much, but just sitting at the swings with a beer with her will probably help, if only a little bit. Just hope I don't have to actually drink the stuff...

"Won't he be mad when he finds out it's missing?"

She didn't respond, just shrugged and took a few big gulps. I'm glad she had the sense to peel off the wrappers from the bottles and everything, so hopefully if someone comes by and sees it won't be too obvious. Or would it? I think it sort of just looks like she's drinking from a bottle of soda. Smelly soda... egh, how can she drink this?

"Gonna stare at the bottle all day, or ya gonna drink some?" She asked, smirking at me.

Guess I might as well suck it up and have a few sips. She did go to all the trouble to sneak an extra one for me, after all.

"Bleghehhh!"

I could hear Faith doing a spit take beside me, and didn't have to look over to know she's about to tear me a new one thanks to my reaction. I'll never hear the end of this.

"Shit, B! This ain't no bottle of Jack, it's the kid shit! Damn, what ya gonna do when I get somethin' stronger?"

"You're getting something stronger?"

Again she didn't respond, just chuckled and started to swing. I narrowed my eyes and started swinging alongside her, unable to help thinking back to the old days when we were kids. How if you were swinging side by side with someone, it meant you were married... I need to get the stupid smile off my face before she notices!

"So..." I started, realizing after I said it that I had no follow up. Okay, I officially cannot think around this girl any more. But she's looking at me now, in a way that suggests she knows what I said, why I meant it, and every little thing in between. She always has been able to read me like a book. "Um..." I continued, looking away from her piercing eyes. Since when have I referred to her eyes as "piercing"? "What made you decide to steal some beer now, of all days?" An excellent topic, if I do say so myself. Especially for something I totally just pulled off the top of my head!

"Just noticed it when I was lookin' through the basement for somethin', figured, yunno, why the hell not? He drinks enough of the shit anyways."

We continued to swing in silence for a few minutes then - well, except for whenever I would take a sip of the beer, and she would laugh at my reaction. I know it probably isn't very strong at all, in terms of the other stuff you can get, but I've never had any before! It takes some getting used to! I don't know how she can tolerate it so well. I guess she always has been the braver of the two of us...

-*FLASHBACK*-

"You're new here, right?" Six year old Cordelia Chase asked the blond girl, looking her over.

"Uh huh!" She answered excitedly, thinking she was about to make another new friend, after having met Faith earlier that day. "My name's Buffy, what's yours?"

"Cordelia. Cordelia Chase." She flipped her hair over her shoulder and crossed her arms, as her faithful lackeys stood behind her, waiting to see if they'd be called on. "You might wanna to remember it. I'm kinda the Queen bee around here. You don't wanna get me angry."

"Oh... okay..." Buffy frowned, not really sure what to make of this girl. Why is she talking to her if she doesn't want to be friends? Or maybe she does... "Do you wanna play with me?"

Cordelia and her lackeys all started to giggle, shooting each other looks. It did nothing but confuse the poor blond even more.

"Please." Cordelia scoffed. "Why would I wanna to play with you. You don't even have anythin' to offer."

And with that, she shared another look with her lackeys, and pushed Buffy out of the way to get past her. The blond fell to the ground and skinned her knee, causing her to start to cry. Why were those girls so mean? What had she done?

"Hey!" A familiar voice shouted angrily. "Leave her alone, 'Smell-delia'! She didn't do nothin'!"

"Faith?" Buffy sniffled, sitting up to look at her savior. Sure enough, it was the brunette girl she had met that morning before leaving for school.

"Back off, baby." Cordelia glared, though her voice wavered, showing her fear at seeing the younger girl. "You don't even go here. Go back to baby school before they notice you're gone, an' call your mommy!" Her group started to giggle again, impressed by her quick wit.

"I'll go when I'm done." Faith shrugged, taking a few steps closer to the older girl. Her friends backed off, obviously not willing to take a beating from the young girl.

"I'm not scared of you!"

"Ya should be."

Without any further ado, the young brunette reached up and punched the older bully square in the face. Cordelia's lackeys immediately scattered, either to get help or just to get away. Probably the latter.

"Ugh, you stupid baby! Go back to the baby school, poop head!" Cordelia cried, running away with both hands covering her now bleeding nose. "I'm gonna tell my daddy on you!"

"Faith!" Buffy gasped, looking up at her friend in shock. "Why did you do that?"

"'Cause nobody picks on my friend." The brunette shrugged, as if the whole thing was no big deal. "Now c'mon, i'll walk ya to see the nurse." She offered, holding out her hand to help the older girl up.

"Thank you..." The blond blushed, allowing the younger girl to help her up and wrap an arm around her. "But... what are you doin' here? You don't go here?"

"I know Cordelia, an' she's just mean an' stuck up. I figured she'd pick on you, so once nap time rolled around I came here to make sure you were okay."

"So you did all that for me?"

"'Course I did." Faith shrugged. "You're my friend."

-*END FLASHBACK*-

"What are you laughin' at?" Faith asked, looking at me curiously.

"The day we met." I grinned, unable to help it. It was such a sweet memory. "Remember when you showed up at my school?"

"What, when I clocked Cordy right in the face?" She laughed. "God, that felt so good. Bitch deserved it, nobody fucks with my best bud."

I nodded, laughing along with her. "Cheers to that."

"Cheers." We clinked our bottles together and she continued to watch me, waiting for me to take a sip.

"Bleghehhh..."


As I crawled into bed that night, thinking about Faith as has always been usual, I could hear something familiar coming from next door - lots and lots of shouting.

Oh boy, her dad must have found out about the beer! I hope she can get away before he hits her... again. I thought bitterly, vowing to one day find a way to get revenge on the old bastard. She deserves so much better than this.

I waited a minute for a door slamming shut, then the distinct sound of her climbing up to my bedroom window, thankful that I developed a habit of keeping it open after the first few late night visits I'd gotten so long ago, to make things easier, and to make her feel more welcome. Really, I wish she would come over every night.

"B?" She whispered, peeking her head in. "You still up?"

I rolled over to look at her, unsure of if I wanted to act like I was just sleeping or not. She might be embarrassed if she knew I heard the fighting. Well I have to answer or she might leave!

"I'm up. Come in..." I whispered, sitting up a bit while trying not to blush. She's made late night visits like this all the time since we were little, but ever since I started to realize I care for her as more than a friend it's seemed a little more... well, just different, in all the obvious ways. I have to stomp down all the dirty thoughts in my head as hard as I possibly can, but still they refuse to leave completely. I feel every bit like a confused, sexually frustrated teenage stereotype. "Is everything okay?"

"Is it ever?" She grumbled, climbing in and walking over to my bed to sit down. Already I can see the unshed tears in her eyes and it's tearing me apart. "I can't wait for my birthday. I'll finally be 18, so they can't do shit about me leavin'. Not that they would anyways..." I got out from under the covers to sit down beside her, taking one of her hands into my own in a way that I'm hoping can be passed off as a friendly gesture. Thankfully it seemed to relax her more, as she leaned on me and let out a little sigh. "I don't know what I woulda done if you hadn't moved in next door. You're the only thing keepin' me sane."

My heart swelled at the admission, though I know she didn't mean it in any kind of a romantic way. I'm her best friend, she cares for me like a sister, and I'm so thankful for that, to have her so close in my life. Though I just can't help but wish for just a little bit more...

"Come on Faith..." I whispered, giving her a little smile. "Why don't you just take your shoes off and climb into bed with me."

That's a perfectly innocent suggestion, right? I mean, we always used to do it when we were kids, so why would it be any different now? I hope she didn't notice the way my voice cracked halfway through the sentence... I don't want to freak her out.

Thankfully though she didn't seem to think it was weird, just took off her shoes and climbed in under the covers, leaving a little space open for me. I took a deep breath, crawled in beside her, and she automatically wrapped her arms around me, pulling me in close.

"You've always been so good to me, B." She grumbled as she snuggled into my side. I tried to control my breathing, her close proximity firing me up to an embarrassing degree. "You're my best friend."

Friends... I thought, unable to resist pressing my nose up to the top of her head to sniff her hair. That's all we'll ever be...