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In Pieces

By Ariel Dawn

Summery: Some conversations with the men in her life.

Disclaimer: I don’t own the Buffyverse. Sometimes I wish I did. They would have had a happy ending if I did. There would also have been a lot more smut.

Author’s note: Have I mentioned lately just how much I love BTL?

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Chapter 3: Faithness

Buffy ran, and ran and ran. As she kept herself moving, she couldn’t imagine why it was so necessary to run.

What was she running from?

Buffy came to a halt just outside the cemetery, looked back and turned to look at the sign. She sighed.

She couldn’t figure it out. Why she was feeling all these not so mean feelings towards Spike. Was it Faith’s contribution? Why was she feeling so conflicted?

Buffy held her face in the her hand a moment and breathed in and out. Glancing around her again, she looked back into the cemetery before heading back in the direction where she had left Spike.

“So what would you say if I did?” she asked, looking a little sheepish.

“Did what?” he replied, confused, pulling the cigarette from between his lips as he eyed her wearily.

“Want a relationship,” she whispered, extremely nervous.

Spike stared back at the Slayer like she had grown another head. “You’re bloody pulling my leg.” Not only she had actually come back but now...

“I’d like to be pulling something else,” she responded, her voice sultry, a complete change of mood. “God!” she screamed into the night sky. “I can’t control it!”

“Control what, pet?” he inquired, his eyebrow raised.

“Her! That little bit of Faith still stuck in my body,” growled the chosen one. She tugged at her brown hair a little with emphasis.

“You’re not in control then?” He stepped into her personal space, pressing as close as he dared.

“Not so much,” she sighed, instinctively stepping back as he moved closer.

Spike watched as it seemed like there were two personalities in conflict in that tiny, beautiful blond, turned brunette.

“Maybe you could try to control me?” Buffy suddenly said, interrupting his thoughts.

Another mood swing.

Spike stepped back from Buffy. “I think you have to get control of yourself before you start offering up control to the likes of me.”

“Arrrgh!” she screamed into the night air again. “I feel like I‘m losing my mind.”

Spike looked around him for a moment, before giving in to his poncy old fashioned tendencies.

“It’s time to take you back to your nice, warm girly bed,” he said offering her his arm like a gentleman.

“Are you being all sweet and un-vampire like?” she asked. “The big bad is a gentleman.”

“Surprising, isn’t it?”

Buffy’s hand hooked around his arm.

“The dorms, luv? Or your mum’s house?” he asked as the two of them started to walk out of the cemetery, Buffy quite content holding onto his arm.

“Dorms. I don’t think my mom could deal with me like this right now. The nose would really throw her off.”

Spike laughed. “It’s right disconcerting is what it is.”

“You don’t like my Faith nose?” she asked with a fake pout.

“No,” Spike admitted freely. “Liked the original.”

“Thanks,” she whispered, blushing. “I don’t want to keep it. Just like I don’t want to keep the intruding Faithness. I also hate the fact that I have this urge to say five by five a lot.”

“Glad you’re keeping that one in,” he remarked. “What does that mean?”

“Hell if I know.”

They walked in silence for a few moments before Spike spoke again.

“You gonna pop me in the nose once you get all normal and bitchy again?”

“There is a high possibility of that,” she admitted. “Ugh with the honesty. Please stop me when I do that.”

Spike chuckled. “Now why would I want to do that?”

Buffy shrugged. “Chalking it up to Faith again. The honesty thing. And the whole hitting on you thing...”

“All Faith?” the vampire asked.

Buffy looked at her walking partner and smiled. “Maybe not all Faith.”

“No?”

“Everyone already knows I’ve got a thing for vampires. There goes the honesty again. You know if, I don’t know, say Dracula showed up I’d probably have repressed thoughts of him being hot too. Unless he’s fugly. Is Dracula ugly?”

“You think I’m hot?” asked Spike, amused.

“What? No, I don’t. I don’t,” she tried to correct but Spike wasn’t hearing it.

“You think I’m hot,” he gloated, a satisfied smile fluttering over his face.

Buffy rolled her green eyes. “Just answer the question.”

“Drac? Nancy boy poofter, if you ask me. I’ve had dealings with him. Pillock owes me eleven pounds.”

“What for?”

“Staked him at poker.”

“Well that’s a boring story. I thought it’d be all exciting,” she added as they approached her building.

“I’ve got stories that aren’t so boring. Of ‘course I might offend your righteous slayer ears.”

“Might, might not. Nothing you do surprises me anymore.”

He stopped with a start and turned towards her.

“Is that so?” he asked.

“Nope. You just escorted home your sworn enemy. Never expected that from the big bad.” Buffy removed her arm from his and patted his leather encased arm. “Or you know, that you just had a totally acceptable and kinda normal conversation with said enemy...An enemy you were kinda engaged to. God, you’re weird.”

“Vampire, luv,” he replied in response to her accusation.

“Well, that explains that.”

Buffy looked up at her window, which was still darkened, indicating that Willow hadn’t come home yet.

For a few brief moments she considered her options and the warring voices in her head.

There was part of her that didn’t want to leave Spike at the door. She wanted to bring him up to her room, have her way with him,. She automatically labelled it Faith.

“You, uh, wanna...” she started but he cut her off.

“Don’t go there, luv. Not going to happen. Not with that nose,” he chuckled, stepping back and turning. He walked off into the night, leaving her mouth open in shock, standing in front of Stevenson Hall.

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“Tell me you can fix this!” Buffy whined as she strode into her watcher’s house the next day. Willow hadn’t come home that night, presumably researching how to fix her friend.

Giles looked up from his morning cup of tea with a tired and forlorn face.

“Sadly, we have not had much luck,” sighed the watcher, setting down his tea and inviting her to sit down on the couch with a wave of his hand. “Willow and Tara do have a few ideas to pursue, I doubt you will remain like this for much longer.”

“Thank God!” she sighed leaning back against the couch. “What about Faith? Any watcher’s been around looking to take her back to England?”

Giles shook his head. “No, curiously they haven’t been here. I don’t know what I’d actually do if they did show up. Willow’s put a cloaking spell and a glamour on my bedroom.”

“Where did you sleep?” Buffy asked raising an eyebrow.

“The couch,” Giles defended.

Buffy nodded. “And is the ho bag Slayer still making with the unconsciousness?”

“I am keeping her effectively sedated, Buffy. I don’t think you need worry about Faith escaping.”

“I do worry. She’s a boyfriend stealing murdering...I won’t be happy until she’s got her own nose and hair and whatever weird personality quirks back and then locked up behind magically enforced bars.

“I suppose that’s a fair sentiment. However, it’s not as if you have a boyfriend for her to steal now is there?” he said with a chuckle.

“Giles!” Buffy exclaimed, shocked.

“Oh, forgive me, that was unkind.”

“Yes, let’s make fun of Buffy with the weird nose. Everyone join in.”

“Any plans today?” asked the watcher again sipping his tea, hoping to change the subject.

“Other than trying to be inconspicuous while I attend my classes and avoid the Faith sleeping with ex boyfriend?”

“We will certainly let you know of any developments here,” explained Giles.

“Are you sure I’m not needed here to, Faith watch or something?” she inquired, eagerly looking for a reason to stay.

“You don’t want to go to your classes?” he asked.

“With Faith’s nose? Everyone would be talking about me, instead of listening to the professor.”

“So no then?”

“With many exclamation points, possibly underlining.”

“Why don’t you just stay home?”

Buffy sighed. “Then there would be the guilt. I should go.” Buffy stood up and stretched. “I don’t need guilt on top of whatever the hell is going on in my head.”

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Buffy stalked into her psych class, clad in a turtleneck sweater and was very clearly using that particular feature of the sweater to hide her nose. Buffy sat down in her usual spot and waited for Willow to show up.

Eventually Willow plunked down in the seat next to her and sighed.

“When I walked in I saw this chick with the brown hair sitting in your seat, I was gonna let her have it. But then of course, it’s you.”

“Me,” she whispered, through her sweater.

“What did you do last night?” asked Willow. “You didn’t come back to Giles’ last night.”

“Patrolled. Got tired. Went back to the dorms. Slept. You didn’t come back last night. Did you sleep at Giles’?”

“Shhh, class time...” avoided Willow.

She didn’t have time to deal with Willow’s avoidy. As soon as class was over, Buffy found herself face to face with her psych TA, who also happened to be her ex boyfriend.

“Hey, uh, Buffy,” he started nervously. “I, uh, didn’t think you’d be coming to class today.”

“What? ‘Cause I have a new nose?” she asked annoyed, as she sat up from her seat, negotiating notebooks and textbooks.

“That’s not what I meant.”

“No?” she queried, pushing past him and putting herself between him and the door.

“I just thought you would be trying to fix this, get back to normal.”

“I have people looking into it,” Buffy responded.

Willow came up behind her.

“I would be one of those people,” noted a cheerful Willow. “And I’m not supposed to like you right now.”

“Why is that?” asked Riley, confused.

“I am the best friend,” Willow said with a smile. She turned to Buffy and rubbed her friend’s shoulder.

“Excuse me?” he asked.

“It’s a girl thing,” noted Willow. “Beware mister solider man,” she said with a glare and she walked off.

Riley watched her go with a shiver. Buffy smiled, Willow was scary when she wanted to be.

Riley turned to face Buffy again and placed his hand on her arm. “Can we talk about this? About us?” he whispered.

“No.” Buffy shook her head emphatically. “I don’t want to talk about it Riley. You slept with Faith! And then you still didn’t know me and you hit me!” she almost shouted, drawing the attention of the other students in the lecture hall.

“I said I’m sorry.”

Buffy ignored him and carried on. “So no, we can’t talk.” She turned away from him and started to walk out of the classroom.

“Buffy!” Riley shouted out after her, following her to the door.

Without stopping to look at him, she lifted up her hand over her head and waved her middle finger back at Riley.

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tbc...

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