Chapter 31

This is so not fair. Stupid leg, if you didn't have to bleed everywhere I would not be stuck in this situation. I would have been able to turn the other way when they decided they wanted to have a Scooby meeting, skip out for a little while.

Now I'm freaking stuck here, in bed, while they decide to have the meeting around me. God damn it.

Stupid leg.

Stupid ancient vampire with its stupid ancient claws.

This so isn't fair. Way to kick a dog when she's down.

The grumpy brunette was reclined back on the bed, not even bothering to look interested in the people talking around her. She had managed to shower on her own without passing out from the pain, but after one look at her leg Giles had deemed her to bed-rest.

Slayer healing was a fickle thing. Yeah, the leg was clearly getting better, some of the tearing had healed, but the scraps of skin simply hanging from her leg still looked ripe and nasty. She'd nearly lost the little in her stomach just looking at it.

And it still hurt like a bitch.

So here they were; Giles, Buffy, and Andrew for some reason, scattered around Willow's room having a meeting and forcing Faith to be a part of it because she couldn't exactly make a break for it.

The topic of discussion: Slayer dreams.

Specifically, the Slayer dream-Buffy had had last night, what it meant, and how Faith had yet to tell Giles about the one she had had two weeks earlier.

"So you were standing where?"

"I don't know exactly," Buffy answered the Englishman's question. "It was… I'm not sure. A desert somewhere? There was sand."

"How does sand constitute desert?" The restless Slayer asked.

She received a bland look in return from Buffy, "A lot of sand."

"Lots of sand," Andrew repeated, scribing the important parts of the meeting in a notebook. Faith could come up with no concrete reason why except to make himself feel more included. Though, when was the last time she'd been in Sunnydale? Maybe times had changed and Giles had taken to makin' notes about important things. It would make it easier when doing research.

The brunette winced at the thought of having to do research on Buffy's dreams of Death Valley.

"Sineya was there."

Giles nodded, obviously understanding what Buffy had meant.

Faith, however, did not. "Who?"

"The First Slayer."

It's like talking to a wall. A blonde, preppy, tight-ass wall. Why am I here if they're gonna say things that mean absolutely nothing to me?

"Who?"

"Faith, the name is kind of implying," the blonde said with an eye roll. "She was the first girl to become a Slayer. Some bigoted old men fused her soul with a demon and let her lose on all the evil plaguing their village. When she died her power passed on to a new girl and our line was born."

Right, because I so knew that.

"Old demon chick, got it."

Andrew was still hunched over the notepad like it was a treasured possession, "First Slayer," he narrated. "Okay, do you know why this fair lass came to visit you?"

Buffy made an exasperated sound, rocking back on her heels, "She tends to come up in my dreams whenever she has something really important to say."

"And what did she say?" Giles prodded.

"Well, see, that's the problem." Giles gave her a very unimpressed look. After a moment Buffy whined, "What?"

"Buffy, the state of the world is at hand. It is imperative you remember exactly what she told you."

"It isn't my fault Giles! I've never been woken up early from a Slayer dream before! They end and then I wake up. That's how it goes. But one of the girls sleeping in my room went to the bathroom and when she came back she tripped over one of the sleeping bags and fell on all the other girls in the room. And there was screaming and yelling and I woke up. I tried going back to sleep but the dream didn't continue because I couldn't fall back asleep!"

"You were in the middle of conversing with the First Slayer when you were woken up?"

"Yes."

"What was she saying before the dream ended?"

"She was talking about power. She said my power wasn't focused yet. She was saying she wanted to show me the source before the dream cut out."

"That's all you remember?"

"I don't know, okay? There was a lot going on. Everything was blurring by really fast."

The blonde man spoke up, "Is that normal?"

"Well, no, not for Slayer dreams. Those tend to be… slower. Almost painful. This one wasn't very long either. Usually I wake up exhausted from dreaming for so long."

"And Faith, is that the same for you?"

The brunette perked up at the sound of her name. "Uh… yeah. Sure," she answered, having only been partially listening to the conversation.

"Buffy," the Watcher looked frustrated, "Is there anything else worthwhile that you remember?"

"Um…" she ran a hand through her honey-coloured locks, "I saw the army of übervamps under the school… nothing new there. Had that dream a few weeks ago. Did I already mention all the sand?" A beat, and then, "I think there may have been orange trees."

God, I am so glad I don't get the dreams as often as she does. She sounds like she's wasted; orange trees? What the hell?

"Oh," Buffy continued, beginning to pace the room, "And she had a weapon with her."

Giles looked sharply at the blonde, "That's new, isn't it?"

"Yeah… it was like a big, pointy axe thing."

Huh. Now isn't that interesting. Damn it, I thought we were done with my dream.

"What colour was it?" Faith asked her sister Slayer.

Buffy thought for a moment, "Red."

"Fancy blade, with a stake at one end?"

"Yeah," Buffy said slowly. "You saw it too?"

"When I had my dream a few weeks back, yeah. Some old crow was holding it."

Faith let her eyes roam over the room. Andrew looked very interested in what was going on, still meticulously taking notes. Buffy had been pacing in front of the door but had stopped now, focusing her attention on Faith. And Giles, as per usual, was giving her a disappointed look. "You didn't mention this earlier," he said flatly.

"Yeah, well, it was a while ago. I don't remember everything. And I told Red about it when we were on the plane, I figured she'd relay the important things to you," she blew out a hard breath, "And how was I supposed to know some fancy piece of metal was important."

"We don't," Buffy cut in. "It's likely though, if we both dreamed about it, but we don't know for sure. You said an older woman was holding it?"

Faith nodded, trying to picture the dream in her head. The image was faded and fuzzy around the edges. "Yeah, she was… old."

"That's a remarkable description, Faith." The Slayer hadn't known it was possible for Giles' voice to drip with that much sarcasm.

"She was an old lady, holding an axe, talkin' to me about a tree. That's all I got."

"A tree?" Andrew repeated.

"Uh huh. Real interesting." She shifted her position on the bed, ignoring the sudden flare of pain that shot through her lower leg. She was growing restless. Being confined to staying in bed for however long her leg needed to heal was not her idea of a party. Nowhere near, actually. If it were up to her, she'd be downstairs, working some more with the Rugrats to help them prepare for what they all knew was coming.

Damn it, you know it's bad when I'd rather be training the brats. I hate sitting still. I need to move.

"Do you remember any of the dialogue, what she was telling you about the tree?"

"Look, G-man, it was two weeks ago. Two long weeks ago. The only way I'm going to remember exactly what she told me was if I had the dream again."

She turned away and glanced out the widow, pleased with her comeback. She knew he was trying to help, but the Englishman's fixation on anything and everything relating to the Slayer was beginning to grate against her the wrong way. How did Buffy stand it?

When she looked back, she felt a stab of dread.

Oh, fuck. What did I say?

Giles was looking curiously at her. Buffy was looking like she was going to praise her for kissing a baby or something. Andrew was scribbling in the notebook furiously.

What did I do?

All I said was the only way I'd remember everything was if –

Oh, come on!

No, no way. They… they can't do that? Can they?

Ugg, of course they can. They're the Super Friends.

Nice going, Lehane. This one is your own dumbassed fault.

"You know I was kidding, right?"

But her plea came too late. Buffy looked over at her mentor, "Can we do that?"

"Dream-walks are extremely risky business. I know a few members of the Coven in Devonshire that perform them; usually Seers who only receive their visions in dream form. It is very dangerous though, treading the fabric of this realm and the one of dreams. Often those inexperienced get tangled in their own webs, getting caught in the threads of the past and unconscious. Buffy, I'd be much more comfortable if you both just focused more on your abilities and tried to remember what you saw, rather than relying on magic to help you."

But Buffy was clearly in her determined mode now, "But Giles, this could be the break we're looking for! Even if Faith and I remember our dreams, we won't remember them all perfectly. Slayer dreams are prophetic; they can foretell what's going to happen. Doing this could give us a clue to help us stop The First."

I am just lovin' how this conversation is going on without me. Did I suggest doing this because I wanted to? No. I said it as a way to be funny and get Giles off my back.

But now these two are twisting my words and makin' it into some big deal.

Right about now would be when I'd sneak out of the room to go have a smoke; come back when the argument's blown over.

Watcher and Slayer continued to butt heads.

"Buffy, these things are very dangerous. And time consuming. We don't know how long the two of you would be out of contact with us. And with Caleb and The First drawing-in more forces, it's highly likely they could plan an attack while you two are unreachable."

"It's not like we're going to tell them that! 'Oh, hey, Caleb? Yeah, Faith and I are going to be asleep for a few days, feel free to drop by and massacre us all.' Giles, come on."

"Buffy, with the two of you gone the house would be nearly defenceless."

Did they always used to argue like this, or is this a new thing?

Are they still pissed at each other because of the whole Giles and Robin trying to kill Spike thing Red mentioned?

Fuck, why can't I leave the room? Now I have to listen to them fight it out like two dogs in a pit.

"We were fine while Willow and Faith were in Boston."

"That was before Caleb had re-opened the Seal of Danthaz. And Xander nearly lost his eye while they were gone."

"Giles, we're doing this. It's the only way we can get information. The First Slayer only comes to me when she has something really important to say. Clearly a psychotic preacher and some smoke demon trying to destroy the Slayer line are important."

"Buffy, you easily remembered what she told you when you spoke with her before Glory-"

"That wasn't a dream though, that was a vision quest! Andrew," she barked. The young man looked up from where he'd been doodling on the notepad. "Go get Willow and the others. Fill them in on what's going on and get Willow ready to do a spell for us. We'll need her to lead us into re-living the dream."

Have I even said I'm cool with all this?

Not that I won't, she looks like she's about to piss a billboard. Not really in the mood to lose my other leg.

But still, did I even agree to doing this?

The young man left the room quickly; babbling about how the re-living dream thing was just like some episode of some geeky show the brunette had never seen.

Giles and Buffy continued to have their staring contest while Faith sat there awkwardly, trying to come up with something smart to say that wouldn't further piss them off. She didn't come up with a whole lot.

God, she hoped Buffy knew what she was doing.