Author: Brandon <bmw9211[at]>

Stupid bunnies, attacking while I sleep.

Summary: Xander is given a second chance to fix things with Faith.

Couples: A/X (kinda), F/X

A/N: As stated above, stupid bunnies. Try and guess what scene was in my mind when I woke up.

Post Season 7, then Season 3

Chapter 1

On a bus to Cleveland:

Faith looked back, and noticed Xander curled up into a ball asleep at the back of the bus. He shivered a few times, then seemed to relax.


Xander's Dream:

"Xander, how are you?"

Xander spun around. "What? Who's there?"

Anya walked out of the mists surrounding Xander. "It's me."

"No, it can't be. You died. Unless you're a demon again? That's it, isn't it? You became a demon again so that you wouldn't have to die when Sunnydale blew up and you're working for D'Hoffryn again."

"No Xander, I didn't become a demon again. I actually did die. But since I died to protect Andrew, I was granted salvation because I knew it would kill me to protect him. I'm not here to talk about that though, I'm here to talk about you."

"What about me?"

"The connection you talked about with Faith, there actually was one. But she was able to press your buttons too well. It would have changed a lot if you been able to talk to her that night, instead of having sex with her."

"Ahn, if that's really you, I've got a question for you. You've never talked like this about sex and other things. What changed you?"

"My feelings as they happened as a demon were taken. I have the memories, and that is part of the reason I'm halfway in purgatory and halfway in heaven. I still need to atone for those mistakes. So I don't act quite the same way."

"OK, that makes a weird kind of sense. And why are you telling me about the connection anyways? It's not like I can change anything, she's with Wood now." Xander questioned.

"Yes, now, but they want to change that. The PTB want to send you back to that point to change things. They'll keep you from doing anything with Faith." She explained to him.

Xander looked at her suspiciously, "I'm part of your redemption, aren't I? You're not doing this out of any sense of decency, you're doing this so that you can get all the way into heaven."

Anya sighed. "Xander, listen to me. I love you. I want to see you happy. You are not happy right now, since I died. I want you to go back and be with Faith back then, so that you can both have a good life. If you don't want to go, I'll walk away right now and forget about it. My salvation would be a great thing to get out of this, but I want you to be happy. Your choice." Anya turned her back and began to walk off.

Xander stared at her disappearing back. "Wait Anya. You're not joking, are you? It just hurts to know you are actually gone." Xander slumped to the ground.

"I know it hurts Xander, but you need to get over me. If you don't go back, you will wander lonely for the rest of your life. Please, don't hurt yourself." Anya pleaded with him.

"Alright, I'll go back. But what will happen to you? We won't get together and you won't change enough to be like this again, will you?"

"I'll be ok. I'll go back knowing enough to play my part out. If… When this happens again, I will do my duty." Anya hurriedly corrected herself, "You won't know anything would be different about us."

"OK. Tell the PTB to do whatever they have too to send me back."

Xander closed his eyes.


Another time, another place:

Xander hit the demon with his car, and smacked his head against the steering wheel, and saw stars. He then got out of the car. "Faith, are you alright?"

Faith cut the throat of the last Jhe demon, and turned to him. "Yeah X, since you got that one." She smirked at him. "Come on, take me back to my place, I need to get cleaned up."

Xander nodded. "Alright, come on. You'll have to show me where you live though."


Faith's motel:

"So X, ya wanna play a little?" Faith leered at Xander. "Maybe get a little dirty and then get clean with me?"

A loud moan came through the wall, then giggling.

Xander shook his head. "I'm not here to do anything like that Faith. I wanted to make sure you got home safe and to make sure you're not hurt."

Faith sauntered up to him. "Oh come on, you know you want to. I'm not really hurt or anything, and besides, a little pain can make things better."

Xander flinched at that, and looked at Faith. "Trust me, I know pain doesn't make anything feel better. Listen, let's get you into bed ok?" Xander tried to lead her over to the bed.

Faith pulled herself away from Xander. "Oh, going for the 'I care about you, so let's go for a tumble' routine huh? Why not just jump straight to the good part and get into bed with me now."

Xander just looked at her. "Faith, I don't want to fuck you. Wait, nevermind. I do, but I don't want to just fuck you and leave you. Maybe a date or something, you are very beautiful."

Faith stared at him. "Fine, you don't wanna fuck, then get the hell out of here. All I wanted was a boytoy for the night anyways. Night then, it coulda been fun." Faith grabbed Xander by the shirt, opened the door, and threw him out bodily. <A date? Who the hell would want to date damaged goods like me?> Faith slammed the door and went back into her room.

Xander stood there, staring at the door. "Fuck, I screw up everything, don't I?"

Xander walked off.


In the boiler room under the library:

"Alright Jack, disarm the bomb."

"Can't do it Xander, I'm getting paid well to do this. Why are you here anyways? Leave and I will. Neither of us will end up getting hurt. You'll die if you stick around."

"I know the people fighting up there. I call them friends. Even though the keep pushing me away. And you know what? I could care less about dying, if it protects them. Not to mention turning down having sex with a girl because I wanted to go on a date with her first. Even if I die, you'll live right? But the bomb will blow you into a whole bunch of pieces, so I doubt you'll be able to enjoy the cash. So then, we're back to my original question. Are you going to disarm the bomb, or not? Because frankly, I'm starting to not care."

Jack O'Toole just stared into Xander's eyes, noticing that there was no humor in them, and he didn't seem to be bluffing. Reaching between them, he pulled a wire. The bomb stopped ticking with 3 seconds to go.

"Good. Now, disconnect the bomb part and give it to me and I'll walk off. I won't tell anyone about you being a zombie, and we'll keep this to ourselves, alright?" Xander just looked at O'Toole, waiting.

"Fine, fine." Jack disconnected the bomb portion and handed it to Xander. "Don't drop it, it is volatile."

"You mean drop it and it goes boom? Nah, don't think I wanna do that. Thanks for the new toy." Xander walked out of the boiler room, leaving O'Toole behind him.


The next morning, in the library:

The gang was gathered around one of the tables, discussing the events of the previous night.

Xander stormed into the library. "G-MAN, where are you?!?!?"

Giles walked out of his office. "Xander, what can I do for you?"

"You can start by answering a question for me. Do you know where Faith lives?" Xander looked at Giles angrily, just as Faith walked into the room behind him. Xander didn't notice her.

"Well, I have a phone number to contact her, and her address to go to her if need be, why?" he calmly replied.

"Because she lives in a rat hole of a little pimped out motel. She's our age, so she can't have a job, right? Do you give her money? Or do I have to guess what she has to do to pay the rent on that little shit hole? Frankly, I'd try to get her to live at my place, but I don't think she'd trust me. Even if she did, I wouldn't want her there because it's just as bad at my place as it is there. So what are you going to do about Faith, huh?"

Everyone gaped at Xander. Faith just let out a little whimper, "X?" that no one heard.

Giles took off his glasses and started to rub them.

"Don't fucking stall. I want to know. Did you know that she was there? Tell me god damn it. Not speaking of anything else that's happened, that's seriously fucked up."

Giles looked shocked and sighed. "No Xander, I did not." He turned to Faith. "Faith, I am sorry for not checking up on you. I have a spare room and bed in my apartment. Would you care to use it? No rent, no bills, or anything like that. I can even arrange for you to have an allowance of sorts."

Xander spun around. "Oh shit, Faith I didn't know you were here." Noticing the other Scoobies, he groaned. "Oh man. I didn't even know the rest of you guys were here. Faith, I really, really didn't mean to announce that with them here."

Faith just stared at Xander, ignoring Giles. The rest of the gang silently made their way out of the library. Xander started backing away. "Uh, Faith. Don't hurt me?"

Faith jumped at Xander and enveloped him into a hug. She whispered while buried in his chest, "Someone actually cares about me." She looked up at Xander with tears in her eyes, "You do care about me, right?" Her voice quivered as she pleaded.

Xander smiled at her gently. "I told you that you're beautiful, didn't I? I said I'd like to take you out on a date, right? Everything I said last night still stands." Xander hugged her back and smiled a goofy grin. "Now, I really think you need to answer G-man's question."

"Huh? Oh yeah. What'd you say Jeeves?" Faith turned around addressing Giles, never leaving Xander's embrace.

Giles just shook his head, and repeated his earlier statement.

"Hmm, free food, free bed, and money? Sounds good. But what are you getting out of this, to all of a sudden be warming up so fast?" Faith just stared at Giles suspiciously.

"Oh bollocks. Faith, I'm your Watcher. Unfortunately I haven't been a very good one, but I'd like to make it up to you. I promise you that nothing will happen to you while you are under my roof." Giles looked at her.

Faith looked back at him, and then looked to Xander. He nodded. "Alright, but you have to do one thing first."

Giles nodded and asked, "What do you need me to do?"

"Get another cot or something for Xander."

"Wwwhat? You want Xander to be with you in your room? Don't you trust me?" Giles stammered.

"It's not a matter of trust Jeeves. Actually, it is, but not just that. He said that he would let me stay with him at his parents, but it was just as bad there as it was at the motel. Trust me, if it's even half as bad there, he doesn't need to be there."

Xander looked chagrined at being caught out.

Giles looked at Xander. "Is that true? Your home is that bad?" Xander didn't answer, and looked away. "I see. You are welcome at my home for as long as you like Xander. Not on a cot in Faith's room though. I can get a bed and find room for it. Does that suffice for your requirement?"

Faith looked in Xander's eyes. "You gonna accept? If you don't, I won't. I won't live better than the guy dating me." She whispered to him.

Xander looked at her stunned. He looked at Giles and just nodded.

Giles smiled, "Good then. Faith, let us go get your things out of that motel."

Faith grabbed Xander's hand and shook her head. "Not without Xander. I won't go back there without him."

Xander looked stunned. "Why do you need me to go with you Faith? Not that I mind, but I do have school here in just a bit."

Faith just looked down. "I understand, I'll get them."

Giles shook his head. "No Xander, you're coming with us. I'll keep you out of trouble with Snyder if something comes up. Faith seems to trust you quite a lot, and we'll need to pick your stuff up from your house as well."

Xander grinned. "Got it G-man. No school for me today." Turning again to the girl in his arms, "You ready to go then? We'll make a quick stop at the motel, a quicker stop at my house, then get you settled in at G-man's place."

Faith gave him a slight smile and nodded.


A couple of weeks later, Buffy and Faith on patrol:

"Damn, a group of them." Buffy charged at the vamps, Faith right behind her.

After a quick battle, Buffy was looking to see if there were anymore. Suddenly a hand grabbed her shoulder. <SHIT> Grabbing the hand, she quickly threw the person over her shoulder at Faith. "Faith!"

Spinning around, Faith held her stake at the ready for the vamp flying at her that Buffy had thrown. All of a sudden, her mind seemed to scream at her <NOOO, HUMAN. DON'T!!!!!> Twisting her hand at the last second, the man's chest flew into Faith's closed fist, instead of the stake that had nearly pierced his heart.

Buffy stared at Faith. "What? He's a vamp, stake him!"

Faith shuddered. "No, he's human. Look."

Buffy ran to the guy and looked at him. "Oh shit. We nearly killed the guy. Come on, let's take him back to the library."

Faith nodded, shaken.


A few minutes later, at the library:

"We were fighting a group of vamps, when this guy suddenly walks up on me and grabs me by the shoulder. I threw him over me at Faith thinking he was a vamp. She nearly staked him." Buffy explained to Giles.

Willow was applying a bandage wrap to the man in question, who was at the moment unconscious. She turned around and stared at Faith. "You nearly STAKED a human?!?"

Xander looked up from where Faith was laying in his lap on the verge of tears. "Yeah, but Buffy threw him at her. Had it happened, Buffy would have been just as guilty as Faith because she reacted without thinking." He quietly explained to the hacker.

"Oh, yeah."

Giles nodded. "Yes, but we are thankful nothing did happen. "If you two," he nodded at Xander and Faith, "want to go ahead and go, do so. I know you had plans for tonight. The man that you brought in will be out for quite some time, so go ahead."

Xander and Faith smiled at Giles in relief. "Thanks" they both said to him and got up to leave.


Kingman's Bluff, early the next morning:

Xander sat on the blanket, with Faith leaning into him. Both were waiting for the sunrise in a few minutes.

"Thanks." Faith whispered to him.

"For sticking up for you at the library? You know I would have." Xander told her.

"No, not just that, but for rescuing me from myself a few weeks ago at the motel." Faith snuggled closer to Xander, shivering at the cold pre-dawn air.

"I couldn't let you stay there, not knowing what I did. I just felt like I had a connection to you." Xander leaned down slightly and kissed the top of her head.

"A connection huh? You sure it wasn't just skin deep that night? Or are ya talking about the never ending love, like we're supposed to be soul mates or something?" Faith half teased, half questioned him.

"I don't know what it was, but I don't think it was soul mates. I don't believe that two people are destined to be together, but can grow to love each other enough to be like soul mates. I know that's how I feel about you at least."

Faith turned slightly and looked up at Xander, all of her barriers dropped. "I think I feel that way about you too." She kissed him gently, pouring her emotions into it. Pulling away, smiling at the stunned look in his face and the love for her in his eyes, she turned back around and lay against Xander's chest again. Both then watched the sunrise come up over them, making it look like there was an aura around them.


In heaven:

Michael looked down on the couple at the bluff and turned to the woman standing next to them. "You did it Anya. You've earned your redemption. You gave up everything in your mortal life, both good and bad, and have now earned your place in heaven."

Anya turned and looked at him. "I didn't do it for my redemption. I loved him too much to give him up for that. I did it for him. I couldn't let him live out the rest of his life in that timeline without any love. I'd rather give up his love for me and have him happy."

Michael smiled at her. "And that is why you truly earned your redemption. Because you did not do it for yourself, you sacrificed your happiness for his. I grant to you, all the love that he had for you in the time you knew him. Be at peace child, and join your family. They are waiting for you."

A glow surrounded Anya as she beamed at Michael, and turned and ran to the gates, which opened in front on her. She ran to her family that she saw and joined them in Heaven.

The End