Faith sat on the couch, staring at the TV. She wasn't even really sure what she was watching, but it was a much needed distraction. She didn't want to think about anything else at the moment.

Tara entered the living room, setting a blanket and pillow next to Faith.

"Are you sure it's okay? I mean, I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable."

"It's fine," Tara assured her. "Besides, Dawn's at her dad's and Willow went to tell Angel about... well, anyway, it'd be nice to have someone else in the house."

Faith nodded. "Okay." She directed her attention back to the television.

Tara headed toward the stairs.


The blonde turned to face the slayer. "Yeah?"

"Thank you."

The witch gave her a half smile and exited the room.


Faith woke up a few hours later to a dark room. As her eyes adjusted to the lack of light, she remembered that she was not in her cell, but in Buffy's living room.

Something creaked on the porch. Faith's slayer senses shifted into high gear, recalling the Tara said no one else would be home tonight. She peeked out the window. There was a figure moving up the porch, but not enough light to distinguish what it might be. If it was a vampire, it didn't matter, since it would have to be invited in.

The doorknob jiggled. Faith slipped up off the couch and hid around the corner. The door opened and the figure moved inside. As it headed toward the stairs, Faith tackled the form, pinning it to the ground. By now Faith could tell it was human... and a woman. The slayer was about to let the girl up, but the mystery woman uttered a few words and Faith found herself being flung across the floor by an invisible force.

The figure jumped to her feet and started up the stairs. "Tara?!"

Faith pulled herself up. "Red?" She flipped on the light switch.

Willow stopped midway up the stairs and turned. "Faith?" Her eyes widened. She rushed up the stairs. "TARA?!"

Faith followed her. "She's fine. She's sleeping."

Tara stepped out into the hall. "Was sleeping."

Willow embraced her girlfriend. "Are you okay?"

"I-I'm fine, sweetie." Tara reassured the redhead. "Everything's okay."

"She's supposed to be in jail." Willow turned to Faith. "You're supposed to be in jail."

"I know." The slayer leaned against the wall. "I don't know what happened, exactly. All I really remember is some big nasty hell beasts breaking though the concrete and everyone ran. I even had a friend run a check for me, but my record's gone. I don't know how, but it's gone."

"Hell creatures broke you out of prison? That's a good one." Willow thought a moment. "Actually, it is good. Since someone did open a portal to a hell dimension recently."

Faith began sliding down the wall. "That's when it happened, isn't it?
That's when she... she..." Tears slipped down her cheeks.

"Oh. Oh no." Willow kneeled down beside her. "We... she did it because she had to. It was for us. And for Dawnie."

"...Dawn..." Faith muttered between sobs. The poor kid had lost a mother and a sister. And all that after she'd been held hostage and threatened death by someone who had once been a close family friend. She mentally kicked herself, once again, for her past actions. "I'm sorry," she mumbled to herself. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry."