I started out writing this for my Get Connor Laid Now! project, because... that boy needs to get laid, now. Somehow, out of that, it developed into a Faith character study. I take no responsibility.
All the characters and so forth belong to Joss, the lucky bastard.
This story is set some time between "Spin the Bottle" and the upcoming Apocalypse.
by Maya Tawi
Faith is guarded, tense, circling the boy like he's a fresh kill. Only not, because he's returning the favor. She likes the feral look in his eyes. Caged but still wild.
Faith knows from caged.
When he speaks, his voice is surprisingly low for what she presumes is his age, but with enough boyish lilt that her presumption is vindicated. "Who are you?"
"That was my line," she says, and then coming up the walk from behind her, she hears Angel say, "Rather help you move than Cordy. You should see the boxes -- "
He stops, just inside the open door, and he and the boy share a look. Faith grabs the box of her worldly possessions from Angel's loose grip. "I was gonna get that," she says defensively.
"Uh-huh." His eyes don't leave the kid's, and then he says, not to her, "I know why you're here."
The boy shifts, looking uncomfortable. Squirmy. "So?"
Faith slams the box down on the sofa, and they turn and give her identical wary looks. She smiles sweetly at Angel and asks, "Who's the boy wonder?"
His gaze skitters away like he's not 240-plus years old. "My son," he says, and Faith sighs.
"Ask a stupid question."
She hefts the box again, aware of the boy's eyes on her, enjoying it. Suddenly feeling every minute of her self-imposed exile from human contact.
The lobby stretches out in front of her, and beyond that the sweeping staircase and countless empty rooms. She cocks her head, furrows her brow. Playing up to the audience.
"So. Which one's mine?"
He comes in as she's unpacking. She has precious few belongings; he didn't wait very long.
After a few silent moments, she says, "Long as you're staring, you might as well feed the animals."
"Animals?" His eyes dart around the room in a wholly familiar manner, and she finds herself sighing again.
"Never mind. Come on in, why don'cha?"
He ignores her, standing in the doorway for another minute before blurting out the same question: "Who are you?"
Faith frowns. "Angel didn't tell you?"
And his mouth twists, disdainful in a minimalist sort of way, and oddly sexy besides. "We don't talk."
She holds his gaze a little longer, until he looks away, looking squirmy again.
"Faith," she says, trying not to smirk.
Faith manages not to roll her eyes. "It's my name."
And damned if the kid doesn't look her dead on and say seriously, "Faith is a good thing to have."
She feels her own mouth twist bitterly. "You're a fan club of one, Robin," she says, and slams the last drawer shut to hide her emotions. Sneaky little fuckers. She can never quite keep them in check.
"My name's not Robin," the kid says, and Faith sighs, "Of course not."
"Connor," he says, with visible reluctance.
Faith narrows her eyes. Angel'd told her about his bouncing baby boy. Then one day he never mentioned him again.
But all she says is, "How ethnic," and then she smiles.
"Connor," she says, "you wanna get out of my room now?"
He retreats, face impassive, except she could've sworn she saw a flicker of hurt in those dark, dark eyes.
Faith doesn't dwell on it. She closes the door after him and sits down on the bed to think.
"So. You still a psycho?"
"Cordelia Chase," Faith says, and to her surprise she feels a genuine smile curving her lips. "You look." She pauses. "Wow. What the hell'd you do to your hair?"
"Oh, don't you start," Cordelia says, rolling her eyes, though Faith sees a fleeting hint of chagrin. She's paying closer attention to people now. It's a thing.
"You should dye it back," she presses. "It was real pretty, dark like that."
Cordelia stares at her for another moment, then announces, "I'm still not giving you any weapons."
And so Faith apologizes, and means it. It's another thing. But it's getting easier.
By the time she's apologized to everyone she's hurt, she'll be a pro.
Cordy's different, and it's not just the hair. She seems older. Softer. And, somehow, harder.
Hard and soft. Strength and give.
She doesn't want to see Wesley, but she knows she'll have to eventually.
He's in the doorway again, and Faith says, "You don't give up, do you?" without even breaking the flow of movement.
He doesn't say anything for a while, just watches, and Faith focuses her attention once more on the form. She started these in prison. Psychologist's idea. Since you're so physical, he said. Connect to yourself with physical exertion.
It does relax her, though, and when Connor says quietly, "That was pretty," she's almost forgotten he's there.
"Yeah," she says, and pulls the elastic out of her hair, shaking it back. Feeling the weight of it settle, heavy and damp, on her neck. Maybe she should cut it. "Angel tell you if I'm grounded or not?"
"We don't -- "
"Don't talk," Faith finishes, in unison with him, and he frowns, looking annoyed. "Right. You mentioned that."
He shrugs and keeps staring at her. He does have pretty eyes.
"I'm going out," she says, turning away from the doorway, grabbing her leather jacket from the bed and slipping it on over her sweaty clothes. Dirty, but Faith doesn't feel like changing. It's a feeling of vindication, like not shaving her pits: I'm living for myself, fuckers. You can't touch me.
Connor's still in the doorway when she turns back around, and she smiles.
He fights like a dancer. Not some pussy ballet, twirl the sword, en garde kind of dance, but like the way she dances -- blood and guts and muscles pushed to aching, the whole body caught by a visceral beat.
It's beautiful and it's vicious and she feels graceless and ugly, like a killing machine, as she fights beside him. Not killing. Slaying.
Faith smashes a fist into the vamp's face, a left hook that vibrates all the way to her spine. She feels something crunch under her knuckles and it's gratifying and it's terrifying and she can feel herself starting to freeze.
Slayer. Killer. Murderer.
And the vamp's lunging at her and she stares back at it blankly, and then dust is shimmering in her eyes and up her nose and clogging up her throat, and as she heaves a great sneeze-cough Connor just stares at her with those dark, fathomless eyes.
The other vamps are all gone. Dusted.
Faith stares back at him, her mind still a blank, feeling the familiar adrenaline surge as her body takes over. She doesn't want to think.
Doesn't want to.
She almost died.
Connor blinks almost in slow motion, thick dark eyelashes lowering over deep dark eyes, and just as he starts to turn away Faith grabs him and slams him up against the wall.
Lips and tongue and God how she's missed this, this dark and gritty place with blood pumping and juices flowing and a pliant body under her hands and hips and how long's it been? two years, three? and she fists his hair, horrible shag cut, ragged between her fingers, and holds tight --
And when they part, lips still brushing, gasping for air, Connor looks dazed, utterly poleaxed, and he breathes, "What are you -- "
"Shut up," Faith growls, and she takes his mouth again.
He's definitely willing, hips jerking gracelessly and finally, here, he's inelegant. Here she takes the lead, hands shoving under his shirt, tearing the thin cotton as they push up and "Wait," Connor gasps, pulling back and smacking his head on the alley wall; and then, petulantly, "Ow."
Faith's hand slips down the front of his jeans, grabbing him through the denim with unerring accuracy. Once a pro, always a pro. "I don't think you want me to wait," she purrs, and he thrusts up into her hand with such a look of wonder on his face, such bliss, that all of a sudden she understands, and through no small effort she manages to extricate herself, to pull away.
She's not a good first time for anyone.
"If you don't," she begins, and Connor grabs her shoulders and his eyes fly open, no longer fathomless but suddenly all too readable -- bereft and desperate and bewildered and --
Vicious little innocent.
Then, "Don't," he pleads, and everything's gone but the desperation. "Please." And his hands slide down to her wrists and he brings her hands back to the front of his jeans.
Faith feels a dark smile spread across her face.
She slams him back up against the wall.
His eyes remain fixed on her face, wide and wondrous, like a religious experience or something, and it's not a look she likes so she crushes his mouth with her own. His lips move uncertainly under hers, tentative and unpracticed. Has he even done this?
Her hands are busy all the while, deft, unbuttoning the top of his fly and sliding the zip down. They meet short, soft hair. Denim on bare skin. She moves her mouth across his jaw, down his neck, as she unbuttons her own black jeans, shimmying so they slip down her legs. They pool around her ankles and she's wearing sneakers instead of boots for once, low-maintenance don't-give-a-fuck, and she can slip them off and kick her jeans away without breaking contact.
Faith's bare under denim too.
Connor groans as she rubs up against him, sounding equal parts gratified and amazed, and a sudden wave of longing makes her ache. So wild. So vicious. So innocent.
She shouldn't be doing this.
It's never stopped her before.
Faith buries the thoughts deep in Connor's mouth even as she pushes him around, switching places so she's the one up against the wall. She pulls away long enough to whisper, "Ready?", and all of a sudden he looks terrified.
She smirks, braces her hands on his shoulders, and lifts up and thrusts.
He slides into her like the missing puzzle piece and oh God it's been that long, so long, too long and the terror's turned to ecstasy, all the dark clouds lifting and God he looks so fucking young.
Her legs tighten around his hips and he bucks, pushing in even deeper. She snakes one hand down the back of his jeans; her finger finds just the right spot and she slips into him, a reward for being inside of her.
It doesn't take very long. She didn't think it would.
Connor scrabbles at the brick wall behind her as he comes, eyes wild and unseeing. One final thrust and he whispers, "Faith," and on his lips it sounds like a prayer.
Then he slumps against her, pinning her to the wall, and Faith carefully unwraps her legs from his hips, lowering her sock-clad feet to the ground. Connor's resting his head against her cheek, drowsy but not yet gone, and she pushes down on his shoulders -- gently at first, then harder when he resists -- until he sinks down to his knees.
Puzzled, he blinks up at her. He looks adorably unfocused, fuzzy around the edges.
Faith spreads her legs open wider and says harshly, "Lick."
Connor looks doubtful but he gives it a try, small pink tongue flicking out like a cat's. Then he pulls back, making a face.
She grabs his hair again, guiding his face back to her crotch. "Keep going," she orders, then, almost as an afterthought: "No teeth."
His licks are as artless as his kisses, but Faith instructs him, her voice getting more and more ragged as she gets closer to the edge. And then her thighs are clenching around his head as the shudders begin deep and red in her gut, spreading outwards like shockwaves, arching her back and slamming her skull into the brick wall that's suddenly the only thing holding her up.
She doesn't say anything as she comes. She just screams. Primal. Wordless.
I live in the action of death. The blood cry. The penetrating wound.
Faith has never been a heavy sleeper, but tonight is worse than most. She drifts off and then jerks back awake, working too hard to stay asleep and drained by the effort as soon as her eyes open again.
Once when this happens she sees Connor in the doorway.
"You," she says, without enthusiasm.
He does an odd shuffle away from her, looking down at his feet, and Faith suddenly realizes that he's --
-- of all things --
-- shy, like a schoolgirl working up the nerve to ask her to the prom.
She bites back a caustic remark and instead says nothing, because something about his face, the raw, unguarded neediness of it, touches these new humanitarian instincts she's been developing, for better or worse. Suddenly she doesn't want to be the one to disillusion him.
Connor opens his mouth and then shuts it again, and abruptly he mutters something that sounds like "Sorry" and makes to scurry away.
She's fed a puppy and now he's followed her home.
Faith sighs -- she's been doing that a lot, lately -- and says, wearily, "Stop."
"Fuck's sake," she says, and sighs again, pulling back the covers next to her. "Get in."
The smile he gives her is achingly, hearbreakingly sweet. He clambers over her and practically dives under the covers, snuggling immediately up against her side, and all the while Faith stares at the ceiling and wonders just what the fuck she's gotten herself into. Keeps seeing that smile.
She could have died.
She still can't sleep.
Connor's gone when she wakes up.
Tact has never been one of Faith's virtues, but she instinctively knows to keep her mouth shut about this one. Angel's gone way above and beyond for her and she's already feeling the guilt. So no. She won't say a word.
She only hopes Connor has sense enough to do the same.
Faith closes her eyes again, remembering the boy breathing deeply beside her, the slow and steady thump of his heart against her side, and tries not to think of the Apocalypse.