leonhart_17: ([btvs] faith - made of sex...)
[personal profile] leonhart_17
Title: Something to Talk About pt XVII
Rating: NC-17 *Notice the rating change!*
Disclaimer: Not mine, don't sue...
Summary: “But a giant party? All your Slayers and my witches?! It’s going to be a mess!”

“And our private parties are much better anyway,” Faith pointed out.



Willow groaned, letting her head drop to solidly thump against the table. “Why did we let her talk us into this?” she asked, grumbling.

“She says we’re making up for all those years we weren’t married and couldn’t celebrate anniversaries,” Faith answered, clearing the dishes from breakfast. Their house was oddly quiet so early in the morning, all of their children more prone to sleeping in.

“We celebrated those anniversaries!” Willow protested. “We just celebrated them privately and in ways she doesn’t like to admit exist.”

Faith laughed, undeniably smug. “She even caught us celebrating one year,” she remembered. “I didn’t think her face would ever stop being that bright red color.”

“But a giant party? All your Slayers and my witches?! It’s going to be a mess!”

“And our private parties are much better anyway,” Faith pointed out.

“Sing it!” Willow still hadn’t lifted her face from the table and her voice was muffled. “But Buffy’s all excited about the party. I think our anniversary is just an excuse for her to relax.”

“B does need to take the stick out of her ass,” Faith agreed, grinning as Willow picked up her head to shoot her a look. “And we’re cooperating. So far.” She moved to the table and took a position right behind Willow’s chair so she could rest both hands on top of the witch’s shoulders. “It’s B’s party. We just have to not let it stress us out, okay?” Her hands rubbed lightly, drawing a groan from Willow’s chest. She leaned over to press light kisses to the side of her wife’s neck only to draw back suddenly and pull a more frustrated groan from the redhead.

“Faith…”

“B,” Faith said succinctly, cluing her partner in on her reason for stopping the contact. Their friend was infamous for her timing concerning their personal interactions. They both heard feet hit the floor overhead and she stepped back further. “And Joy.” They exchanged a look, both taking deep breaths. “Rain check?” Faith requested.

“You got it,” Willow agreed. “We’ll still celebrate our anniversary our way,” she promised.

The kitchen door opened and Buffy let herself in as Joy was padding down the stairs. “Morning!” Buffy greeted them cheerfully.

Her statement was echoed by Joy’s a moment later, the teen hugging both of her parents around their shoulders. “More party planning? How much could there possibly be left to do, Aunt Buffy?” she asked in disbelief.

“Amen!” Faith called, rolling her eyes at her counterpart. “What are you freaking out about this time?” she asked, trying to be accommodating. “The catering? The tents? What is it?”

Buffy shrugged, looking confused. “I can’t just come over?”

“Not for the last two months,” Faith groused. “It’s been one crisis after another every time you come through the door.”

“But we appreciate the party,” Willow said quickly, shooting a look at her Slayer. “It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

“And it’s this weekend,” Joy chimed in with a grin. “Hey, Mom, I wanted to ask you if my friend could come to the party too. Would that be okay?”

Willow nodded, shrugging. “Sure thing, sweetie. Invite whoever you want to.”

“Thanks, Mom,” Joy chirped happily, leaning over to kiss her mother’s cheek. “I’ll go call and tell him.”

She was up and moving but Faith grabbed her arm, the Slayer’s eyes narrowed. “What? Wait. Who’s this guy you’re inviting?”

Joy shrugged. “He’s my best friend. You’ve met him, Mama.”

Faith frowned, trying to think. “What’s his name? Is he that skinny little kid?”

“He’s on the football team at school now, but it’s the same guy,” Joy said, nonplussed by her mother’s sudden interest in her friends. “Mark,” she supplied, glancing at Willow in confusion. “So, can he come?”

“Of course he can, Joy,” Willow assured her, rolling her eyes at Faith. “You go call him, okay?”

Joy nodded slowly, giving her parents doubtful looks. “Alright.”

Willow and Buffy both turned to glare at Faith as soon as the teen was gone. “Seriously?” Willow demanded. “He’s her best friend! You’ve met him a dozen times! Where’s the uptight hostility coming from?” she asked, frustrated and amused simultaneously.

“She’s our daughter! And this Mark guy…”

“Is a guy and it’s got you freaked,” Buffy finished for her, smirking at her counterpart.

Faith didn’t flinch from the accusation, leaning forward to rest her elbows on the table. “He’s a fifteen year old guy. I stand by my so-called freak out,” she declared firmly. “Will, I’m not crazy! Guys can’t be trusted.”

“But Joy can be,” Willow reminded her gently, reaching out to rest one hand over her wife’s. “We raised her. She can take care of herself.”

Buffy laughed, nodding her head in agreement. “Joy’s the most capable kid I’ve ever known, Faith. She’s not going to let some guy get anything over on her. Besides, Mark’s harmless. I’d be more worried about Sam.” Faith and Willow’s eyes turned to her simultaneously and she took an unconscious step back.

“Who’s Sam?” Faith demanded gruffly.

“Samantha Sam?” Willow asked, shocked.

“Samantha?” Faith asked, turning her eyes to the redhead. “Sam’s a chick?”

“You know her too,” Willow said impatiently. “You think Sam has a crush on Joy?” Sam was Joy’s other best friend, she and Joy and Mark pretty much inseparable at school. “Why do you think that?”

Buffy shrugged, smirking as she leaned back against the kitchen counter behind her. “I do have some experience watching girl crushes develop,” she reminded them, giving Willow a fond smile. “Most of the time it’s happened right under my nose, but I’ve learned the signs by now. Sam’s got a little yen for Joy.”

“Oh jeez,” Willow muttered, free hand rubbing her forehead as she felt a headache coming. “Has your shiny new gaydar picked up any sign that Joy likes her back?”

Buffy’s shoulders bobbed as she shrugged again. “Nothing I’ve noticed. But you can relax, Faith. I don’t think she’s got anything going for Mark either.”

Faith’s shoulders slumped in relief but Willow sighed sadly. “What? You’re disappointed that our kid’s not stuck in some weird best friend love triangle?” Faith asked incredulously.

“No, I’m not disappointed, but it sucks to have feelings for your best friend that aren’t answered,” Willow said, morose.

“Um, what?” Buffy and Faith demanded in unison.

Willow blinked at them both, frowning. “Uh, does no one remember when I was once in love with Xander?”

The Slayers exchanged sheepish looks, Faith biting her lip. “Well, I kind of like to forget that that was ever a thing,” she said hesitantly. “Thinking about it kind of skeeves me out.” Buffy just nodded silently, lip twisting.

“You thought I meant you, didn’t you?” Willow questioned, grinning at the blonde. “Buffy, you’re my very best friend and you’re a beautiful woman, but I’m really sorry to disappoint you…” She pointed to Faith. “That’s my Slayer.”

Buffy lifted both hands quickly, shaking her head. “And I’m completely good with that! That’s why we’re celebrating your anniversary in two days.”

“And we’re back to party planning!” Faith said, releasing Willow’s hand to lean back in her seat. “What do we have left to do?”

“Nothing!” Buffy insisted. “Except maybe make sure Sam got invited to the party.”

Willow rolled her eyes just as they heard their eight-year old son’s unmistakable steps on the floor above them. “Jack’s up,” she said unnecessarily as they all listened. “And there he goes.” They heard muted thumps as socked feet hit carpet then a familiar crash as his running momentum caused him to slip once the rug turned into slick hardwood at the end of the hall.

“Every day. Every single day,” Faith mused quietly. “Jackie-boy! You okay?!” she called, raising her voice.

“Oww!” he whined back and they could hear him picking himself up. “I’m okay.”

“Maybe he shouldn’t wear socks to bed,” Buffy suggested thoughtfully, familiar with her nephew’s antics.

Willow shrugged as their son pounded down the stairs. “We’ve tried. He says his feet get cold.”

“That’s because he kicks all the blankets off,” Faith said, taking a sip of her coffee.

The redhead stood up to get a bowl from the cabinet and Jack’s favorite cereal and she tousled the Slayer’s hair as she moved past her. “And I have no idea where he got that from,” she teased her partner affectionately. “Good morning, Jack.”

The little boy took a moment to survey the room, busy brown eyes jumping. “Aunt Buffy!” The blonde quickly stepped forward as he bolted to jump into her arms. His socks slid on the slick wood of the kitchen floor, but his aunt’s reflexes kept him from face planting again.

“How’s my guy?” Buffy asked him as he threw his thin arms around her neck.

“Good!” he answered loudly. “When do we get to fight again?” His favorite thing to do was wrestle with his aunt.

Buffy lifted a teasing eyebrow at him. “Oh, you think you can take me?” she asked, bouncing him in her arms. He was small and wiry from being born early, but he didn’t let it slow him down.

“I know I can!” he crowed as Buffy put him down in his chair while Willow gave him the cereal box. “Mama’s been teaching me tricks!”

“Oh, she has? You’re on then!” Buffy agreed. “Are you ready for the party?”

He nodded, already smacking away on his cereal. “S’long as I don’t have to dress up.”

Buffy gave Faith a smirk, the brunette shrugging. “He knows what he wants. You’ve gotta admire it,” Faith reasoned.

“He’s like you,” Buffy clarified pointedly, drawing a laugh from both Faith and Willow.

“She’s got you there,” Willow said, pressing a kiss to the top of Faith’s head.

Faith shrugged. “Hey, you must not have that big of a problem with it,” she reasoned. “You married me.”

Willow grinned, shrugging. “That’s true. I did marry you. Jack, is your sister still asleep?”

“She’s on the phone,” he answered, mouth full of cereal.

“Don’t talk with food in your mouth,” Faith reminded him. “And I think Mom meant your other sister.”

“Oh.” Jack swallowed a big bite. “Yeah, Hope’s sleepin’ still.” Their youngest, six year old Hope, was capable of sleeping through even the loudest storms (and one demon attack in the street outside the house). Jack looked up at his parents, pleading pout already in place. “Can I go to the playground?”

Faith nodded immediately, eager to get away from any more potential party planning. “Sure, bub. We’ll go once your sister wakes up, okay?”

He huffed impatiently, but nodded. “Thank you,” he said dutifully.

“You just want to play on the monkey bars,” Willow teased her partner, poking her in the side as she leaned over to rest her head against the top of Faith’s hair.

“They’re fun,” Faith didn’t argue, grinning at her son as she caught Willow’s hand against her stomach to keep from being poked further.

Willow sighed, pinching instead of poking. “Just don’t break your neck,” she requested. “Even you couldn’t make traction look hot, babe.”

Faith smirked, winking whenever Buffy grimaced. “I don’t know about that, but I’m always careful, Will.”

“Five-by-five, Mommy!” Jack contributed helpfully, the declaration drawing laughs from all three of his elders.

“Best boy ever!” Faith praised, exchanging high fives with her son.

Joy returned with her arms full of squirming sister. “Look who I found,” she said, tickling the youngest redhead in the family. Hope shrieked with laughter and Joy deposited her little sister in her seat at the table.

“Is Sam going to be able to come to the party?” Willow asked, smiling at her daughters as Joy helped Hope steady the carton of orange juice.

Joy nodded, snagging a slice of toast from the center of the table. “Yeah. She says thanks.”

“What about Mark?” Faith questioned, ignoring Buffy’s rolling eyes at her lack of subtlety.

Joy quirked an eyebrow at her mother, but shook her head. “No. I asked him, but he’s going to his dad’s house this weekend.”

“That’s too bad that he can’t make it, but I’m sure he’ll have a nice weekend with his dad,” Willow said, smiling. “I’m sure you’ll see him once he gets home.”

Joy nodded, grinning. “Yeah, we’re going to the game at school Monday night after he gets back.”

Willow’s head turned to lean her cheek against Faith’s hair, arms curling around her wife’s shoulders. “I’m sure you’ll have fun.”

“We’re going to the park, Joy-rider. You want to come, or are you too cool to hang out with us?” Faith asked, teasing.

Joy shrugged, smiling fondly. “Sam’s got to study, so I’m free. Let’s do this!” She slapped hands with her brother and Willow smiled at the emotions that flew across Faith’s expression, the minute flickers in her eyes that only the redhead herself could detect. Joy found her shoes by the doorway and the witch kissed her wife’s cheek softly.

“She’s sixteen, babe,” Willow whispered. “It’s rough on all of us.”

Faith nodded without turning her head. “I don’t have to like it, do I?”

Willow’s lips curled against the brunette’s skin. “No, sweetie. Just never forget that she loves you, and me, and her brother and sister, and everybody else. No matter how moody she is, or if one day she doesn’t want to go to the park with us.”

Faith look a deep breath, eyes sliding from Joy to Jack and Hope. “We’re going to have to do this two more times?” she asked in disbelief. “What were we thinking?!”

Willow laughed, unable to help herself. “Well, by the time Hope’s this age, we’ll be old pros at this, right?”

“We can only hope,” Faith said quietly, one hand curling up to cover Willow’s arm across her chest. “We’re strong, capable women, though. We got this.”

Willow nodded, kissing behind the brunette’s ear. “We got this.”

*****

Slamming doors were nothing out of the ordinary around the Slayers, especially when they forgot their own strength. Joy slamming a door drew Willow’s head up from her book in surprise, though. Her face was furious, wavy brown hair framing her head like a thundercloud. Her daughter let out a groan of frustration at the sight of the redhead at the kitchen table and she started to dash up the stairs.

“Hold it,” Willow called her back, the teen’s shoulders rising around her ears. “What’s wrong?”

“She’s being so pushy! And stubborn! It’s driving me crazy!” Joy answered heatedly, not turning to look at her mother.

Willow frowned at the vague answer, pushing her reading glasses up to rest in her hair. “Who’s stubborn? Sam?”

“No! Mama!” With that, Joy stomped upstairs, leaving Willow gaping after her in complete shock. Ever since she was little, when they’d rescued her from vampires, Joy had idolized Faith. Of course, she was sixteen now and of course they’d had their fair share of head butting, but Willow had never seen their daughter so upset with the Slayer.

Rising from the table, she retraced Joy’s entrance, spotting Faith pounding blows into the punching bag she kept suspended from a tree in their yard. “What happened? Did something happen at the park?” Willow asked as she approached, keeping her distance cautiously. Faith continued landing hard, blistering blows. “Honey, please don’t break your hand again.”

Faith stopped the bag with one hand, the knuckles red and swollen. “Your daughter is stubborn.” Willow pursed her lips to hide a smirk, biting back the urge to laugh. Faith and Joy couldn’t be more similar if they tried.

“My daughter…right,” Willow murmured, shaking her head as she moved forward to examine Faith’s hand. “You’re both stubborn. Now, what happened?” she queried, looking Faith in the face.

The Slayer shrugged, frustration obvious. “We were goofing around on the playground and I asked one little question about the Mark and Sam situation and she bit my head off. She just went nuts on me!”

Willow sighed, light touch dragging over the Slayer’s knuckles. The skin wasn’t broken, but there would be some light bruises. “Would you have taken advice from your mother when you were sixteen?” she asked gently, eyes amused. Faith blinked at her, shaking her head mutely. “Well, as much as you claim she’s mine when she acts like this, Joy is your daughter, Faith,” Willow reminded her.

The Slayer sighed heavily, dragging both hands through her hair wearily. “I guess I should go talk to her, huh?”

Willow smiled fondly. “We’re a team. I’ll come with you.” She glanced around the yard. “Um, babe, you didn’t leave our other children in the park alone, did you? Because they’re a little young…”

Faith sent her a look, eyes narrowed. “Of course not. Dawn has them at Giles’. We’re eating dinner there tonight.” Her gaze shot toward the upstairs window that belonged to their oldest daughter. “If Joy’s speaking to me by then.” She groaned, banged up fist knocking against her forehead. “I’ve never seen her so mad at me before.”

Willow curled an arm through Faith’s and laced their fingers together. “I do not understand girls,” Faith grumbled as she let the witch pull her along.

The redhead laughed, hugging her wife’s arm. “I’m going to tell you a secret, honey. No one understands girls. And teenage girls are the worst. We’ve just got to love her. Because she’s our daughter.”

Faith nodded resolutely, readying herself mentally as though she was going into battle. She exchanged looks with Willow, one hand raised to knock on Joy’s door. Her voice was sullen, but the teen called for them to enter.

Willow stayed near the door, amused by Faith almost hiding behind her, the Slayer edging into the room but staying behind her shoulder. “Joy, sweetheart…”

“Mom, don’t,” Joy cut her off. Her eyes were narrowed at Faith. “I told you there’s nothing going on! With Sam or Mark! You won’t listen to me, so why should I keep fighting you about it?!”

“Joy…” Faith spoke up slowly, not sure how to keep the fight from escalating. She’d never fought with Joy before. It was something completely beyond her experience and she didn’t like it. “I’ve never done this before, you know…”

“What? Freaked out about something for no reason? Gotten really paranoid? Been way overprotective?” Joy quizzed demandingly, voice sharp and short.

“I know you’re annoyed, but watch the attitude when you’re talking to us,” Willow chided her quickly, leaning against the doorframe. Joy’s defensive anger wilted somewhat and the teen took a deep breath.

Faith swallowed hard, grimacing apologetically. “Listen, Joy… I guess you’re right about me, freaking out and being paranoid, or whatever, but I’ve never been a parent before and if it makes it any better, I’m the same way with your mom, and when Jack and Hope are your age, I’ll probably be worse with them…” Willow snorted to hide a laugh, and Faith rolled her eyes. “I’m sorry, Joy. I pushed it, and I’m sorry,” Faith offered earnestly. “It’s just because I…you know, love you guys.”

Faith was as awkward as ever when expressing emotion vocally and Willow and Joy exchanged fond smiles. “I don’t mean to be a jerk, it’s just that I get crap all the time at school about Sam and Mark, so getting it from you too…”

Willow looked between her girls, pleased smile on her lips. “Everyone better?” she asked mildly.

“Yeah,” Joy confirmed, nodding from her spot across the room, her crossed arms relaxing. “And Mama, once Jackie and Hope are sixteen, I’ll be old enough to be in the overprotective adult club with you,” Joy said reasonably, sighing. “So you’ll have backup.”

Willow blinked, brow furrowing. “Joy…does it bother you that you’re so much older than your brother and sister?”

The teen shook her head and Willow could feel Faith stiffen behind her. “Joy?”

“It doesn’t bother me!” Joy denied, straightening. “Really, it doesn’t. I love them, you know that.”

“Of course we know that,” Willow agreed quickly, her frown still in place. “But you’re older than they are and that can’t be easy, sweetheart.”

Joy frowned, chewing on her lip. “They’re my little brother and my little sister. And you’re my parents. That’s all there is to it.”

“And Sam and Mark are your best friends,” Faith added, grinning to break the fresh tension. She didn’t know exactly where it had come from, but she could feel it nonetheless.

“Right,” Joy agreed with a decisive nod, returning her mother’s grin. “Thanks Mama.”

*****

Faith turned as she felt a hand on her shoulder, instinct making her tense before she consciously remembered that she was at her own anniversary party, completely safe.

“Mama, you know Sam,” Joy introduced them politely, gesturing to the taller blonde girl at her side.

Faith nodded, seeing her daughter’s smirk as her friend spoke up. “Thank you so much for letting me come, Mrs. -”

“Oh, hey, just call me Faith, okay?” the Slayer requested quickly. Willow was chatting with a few of her witches on the far side of the tent, the flowing sundress she was wearing swirling around her knees. “Having fun?” she asked, snapping her mind back to the pair of teens in front of her. “It can’t be too thrilling to hang out with the old folks.”

“You’re not old,” Joy denied, lifting her cup to avoid her soda being spilled by Jack and Hope, the pair chasing each other in the maze of legs.

“Slow it down or go outside,” Faith warned them, tapping each of her younger children on the head as they passed her. She took a sip of her own drink. “You guys can go if you want, you know. You don’t have to stay, Joy.”

The teen shrugged easily, exchanging glances with her best friend. “We’re good,” she said. “If we get bored we’ll go shoot hoops at home.”

Faith took another pull off her beer as she looked around. “I might go with you.”

Joy shook her head with a laugh. “You can’t skip out on your own party, Mama. Mom would kill you.”

“And B,” Faith agreed, spotting her fellow Slayer across the tent.

“Well, it’s a fun party,” Sam said, smiling over the lip of her plastic cup. “Want to dance?”

Faith kept her expression neutral when Joy glanced at her, merely lifting her eyebrows at the look. The teen nodded, shoving her soda into her mother’s hands. “Sure,” she agreed, bobbing her head to the upbeat music.

Faith didn’t jump as Willow’s arms curled through hers, just put Joy’s soda down on the nearest table. “Dancing, huh? You’re not worried that Sam’s hands will wander?” Willow teased.

The Slayer snorted, rolling her eyes at her wife. “You’re hilarious,” she said dryly. “Really, very funny.”

Willow giggled and stole the beer from Faith’s hand. “Well, how about we dance and my hands will wander?” she suggested cheerfully. She stood on her toes to kiss the Slayer’s neck behind her ear. “Come on, it’s our anniversary party and I’ve barely seen you.” Faith leaned toward her just slightly and the witch grinned, knowing she was close to getting what she wanted. “It’ll drive Buffy crazy if we get all flirty and hands-on in the middle of her party,” she coaxed in a whisper.

Faith groaned, lacing her fingers through Willow’s in surrender. “You’re mean, babe,” she said, letting Willow pull her to the dance floor, the redhead curling her arms around her wife’s hips and dipping into her on the beat. “So mean,” Faith said lowly while Willow just laughed.

“Come on,” Willow answered, smirking. “It’s fun.” She slid back to dance goofily, whooping when Faith spun her obligingly.

“It is fun,” the brunette agreed, watching Willow shaking her butt to the music and giving her a look over her shoulder. “But you’re still mean,” she contended stubbornly. “Because we’re supposed to celebrating our anniversary, but we’re in a giant group of people so we can’t celebrate the way we do best.”

Willow let Faith pull her in again, the witch delighting in shimmying in tighter against the Slayer’s body. “Our anniversaries are always getting interrupted by something or other,” the redhead offered reasonably. “Some demon, or vampires, orphans in the sewers…”

Faith smiled at the reference to finding Joy, spinning Willow out to get relief from the grinding her partner was tormenting her with. “Do you think she wants to find her parents?” The question was out of her lips before she realized it, Willow going stiff in her arms. “I meant…”

“I know what you meant,” Willow said, turning around to look at her, catching sight of Joy and Sam goofing off on the far side of the dance floor. “Did she say something to you?” One hand settled on Faith’s shoulder, the other on her hip and started them swaying slowly, face to face.

Faith shook her head, swallowing hard. “I was just thinking, you know. You asked if being so much older bothered her… It just got me thinking, that’s all. She’s a teenager now, and going through all the stuff that comes with that. It has to be something she’s thinking about, right? I mean…she’s gotta be curious, right?”

Willow sighed as they danced. “We’ve always been honest with her, about what happened, how we found her. The orphanage didn’t even know who her father was…”

“You could find him, though,” Faith countered that. “You’re a whiz with that stuff, Will.”

The witch nodded. “I probably could find them,” she agreed slowly. “But I don’t want to start anything Joy’s not ready for.”

Faith frowned, head shaking from side to side in denial. “Of course not, but if she brings it up, we should be ready, don’t you think?”

Willow took another deep breath, leaning her head against Faith’s shoulder. “Yes. I’ll see what I can find out.”

Faith kissed the side of her wife’s head, drawing her chin up with two fingers. “Hey. We are her parents. We raised her. Remember, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t love us. She’s got a right to know where she came from, though. And she deserves better than a vamp attack in a sewer.”

Willow blinked, nodding. “She does. But Faith, she was left all alone in that place. The odds aren’t great that any story we find for her isn’t going to be too much better.”

“She’s got the better now,” Faith reminded her. “She’s got you for a mother, and me, and a brother and sister who love her, and the rest of our weird little family.” She tried a smile. “Right?”

“Right,” Willow confirmed. “When did you get to be the reasonable one?”

Faith smirked, puffing out her chest just slightly. “I’ve been married to this really smart chick for about five years now. I guess she’s rubbing off on me.”

Willow’s grin was wide and pleased. “That’s a good answer.” The music changed to a slower song, more suited to their swaying dance, and they looked over to see Joy at the DJ’s station. She caught their eyes and grinned, shooting them a double thumbs-up across the crowd.

Faith shrugged as Willow looked back at her, the Slayer noticing that the dance floor was clearing. “You up for it?”

The redhead smiled, nodding. “Of course I am,” she murmured, moving both arms to rest on Faith’s shoulders. “I know we weren’t thrilled about the party, but you’re having fun, right?”

Faith’s head bobbed, eyes catching sight of Joy and Sam ducking out the back of the tent. “Yeah, sure I am. I’m always up for a party, you know.” She dipped Willow playfully, gratified to get a laugh in response. “Listen, you know I didn’t mean to be all serious in the middle of the party, about the Joy stuff, I mean.”

“I know that, sweetie,” Willow assured her. “You’re looking out for our daughter. It’s sweet.” She smiled softly. “And you know I’ve always found your protective thing really hot.”

Faith grinned. “Well, then I’m glad I didn’t sneak out with the girls to play basketball.”

“Excuse me?” Willow asked with raised eyebrows, her smile still on her lips. “You were going to skip out on our party to play basketball with our daughter and her friend?” Faith shrugged, grinning apologetically. Willow rolled her eyes as Faith steered them through a turn. “I guess that would kind of be hot too, though. In a different way.” Faith cocked a brow at her and smirked, questioning. “Mom you is very hot, Faith,” Willow informed her, shrugging unapologetically.

“Good to know,” Faith mused, chuckling. Her eyes darted around the large pavilion tent at all their guests, grateful to notice that the attention on them as the couple of honor was waning. “How long until you think we’d be able to get away with sneaking out?” she questioned. “Because, as fun as this is, you still owe me a rain check for some celebrating and I think I want to collect.”

Willow giggled, taking her own look around. “Well, the house is empty,” she prompted teasingly, lacing her fingers with Faith’s as the Slayer’s hand shifted to catch hers.

“Let’s go,” Faith growled, tugging Willow along with a glance over her shoulder for Buffy, wary of her fellow Slayer and her knack for catching them.

They escaped the tent without being noticed, Willow’s hands snaking their way underneath the hem of Faith’s buttoned-down shirt before they’d even crossed the street toward their house. Joy and Sam were playing one-on-one basketball in the driveway under the light of the spotlight mounted on the side of the garage, and Faith guided them around the far side of the house so they could sneak in through the backdoor.

Willow giggled as they stumbled into the kitchen table, Faith lifting her mouth from her partner’s neck to glare at her narrowly in the dark. “What? I thought you were supposed to have supernatural reflexes.”

Faith sat down on the corner of the table, hands guiding the witch onto her thigh. Willow’s eyes closed hard, her breath growing shuddery. The Slayer smirked, one hand sliding up Willow’s back to find her dress’ zipper at the back of her neck. The fabric loosened as she tugged it down, mouth back on the column of Willow’s neck. “Cute dress, by the way, babe, but it’s better like this,” Faith said after a moment, hauling Willow up with her as she stood up and letting the dress drop from Willow’s body to the kitchen floor.

Willow let Faith move them toward the stairs, laughing. “You know Buffy’s the one that’s going to find that, right?”

Faith leaned her head back to grin, winking. “I hope she does. Serves her right.” Willow’s hand slid across her neck and into the back of her hair, drawing her into a slow kiss, their bodies pressed together from chest to knees. Faith groaned as she tore herself away reluctantly, forcing her hands not to stop as she slid down the smooth miles of Willow’s back and butt to hook the back of her thighs and pull her up closer. Willow took the prompt and curled her legs around her wife’s hips, grinning down at her. “You know, you could have told me you weren’t wearing panties,” Faith chided.

“I am wearing panties,” Willow countered as she scattered light kisses across the brunette’s neck, looping her arms around Faith’s shoulders as the Slayer carried her up the stairs.

Faith shook her head in denial, one hand clapping lightly to a bare cheek. “Barely,” she countered back, tweaking the slender fabric that held the tiny scraps of cloth to Willow’s body.

“Does that mean you like them?” Willow teased playfully. “They’re new.”

The Slayer kicked their door closed behind them as they reached their bedroom, one hand twisting the lock prudently. “They’re like the dress, Will,” she said, dropping the witch gently in their bed. “I like them, they’re sexy as hell, but,” she leaned back to drag the underwear down the redhead’s toned legs, “personally, I like them better on the floor,” she finished, tossing them over her shoulder as she leaned in to reconnect their bodies. “The bra needs to go too, babe,” she requested, kissing Willow before she could answer.

The redhead arched her body into Faith’s, breathing hard through her nose when the Slayer’s leg pressed between her own firmly. “Nhng.” Her unintelligible noise broke the kiss and she pushed up on Faith’s shoulders with both hands. “You’re still wearing all of your clothes,” she reminded her lover. “Let’s see some turnabout.” Her hands slid under the open collar of Faith’s shirt, the pressure causing another button to pop. “A little help here?” she requested breathlessly, pushing against Faith’s chest again.

The Slayer sat back on her knees immediately, both hands working on the buttons of her shirt. Willow sat up with her and went to work on the belt and button on her slacks. Faith rolled her shoulders and the shirt dropped down her arms only to be caught up at her elbows where she’d folded the sleeves up. “Oh, come on!” she grumbled to herself, losing her breath as one of Willow’s hands took advantage of the opening she’d made in Faith’s pants. “Willow!”

The redhead just shook her head, hand continuing on its path while she leaned forward to scatter kisses across the top of the brunette’s bare chest. “Don’t tear that shirt,” she requested as Faith struggled with the trapped cloth. “I like the color on you.” The shirt was a dark red wine color that worked well with Faith’s dark hair and eyes.

“I can get another shirt,” Faith grumbled, sucking in a short breath as Willow’s mouth found her collarbone, the witch’s fingers moving under the waistband of her underwear. “Oh jeez,” the brunette groaned, eyes closing in a snap. “Will…” She freed one arm and used it to rip the other side free of her stubborn shirt.

Willow shoved her back suddenly, surprising the Slayer. “Lose the pants, Faith,” she directed forcefully, shucking off her bra as she spoke. Faith took a moment to stare, mouth hanging open, before Willow kicked her with one foot. “Come on,” the redhead whined. “It’s really sweet and everything, especially after so many years…”

“Shut up,” Faith interjected, standing up to shimmy out of her remaining clothes. “You’re gorgeous, Willow.” She smirked, gesturing toward the nightstand on Willow’s side of the bed, the top of the furniture covered with books, a pair of plastic framed reading glasses on the top of the pile. “I even think the glasses are cute, babe.”

Willow rolled her eyes, smirking over her shoulder at the books. “The librarian thing, huh?” she teased, squealing in surprise as Faith’s arms suddenly dragged her down onto their bed, the Slayer stretched out beside her.

“Well, that is pretty hot on you, but I’ll take anything you’ve got,” Faith assured her, nuzzling into the freckled neck and trailing kisses across her chest, shifting herself up to look down into her wife’s face. “Hey.”

Willow laughed, leaning her head up. “Hey,” she answered, amused by the conversational tone when they were both naked and meant to be celebrating their anniversary. “Faith, will you do something for me?”

“Anything in the world,” the Slayer promised without a second thought.

“I love you, and the sweet, sensitive thing is wonderful, but you left my dress on the floor in the kitchen, remember?”

“I’m aware,” Faith agreed, smirking as her intuition hinted at what her lover’s request might be. She could already feel her body heating up in anticipation. When she was young, she never would have expected that she’d end up like this - living with the same person for twenty years and married with three kids. But that was Willow’s way, she’d learned - sneaking in all cute and charming and making herself completely impossible to live without. And, she could acknowledge that the sweet nerd she’d first met had grown into a smoking hot woman.

Willow smiled devilishly, knowing that Faith was ahead of her already, just waiting on her to say it. “You know what I want,” she said softly. “And I know what you want, so - Faith, I need you inside me.” She leaned her head up further as the Slayer’s hand skated down her chest and stomach in response, immediate obedience. “Now,” Willow directed, both hands pulling Faith into a hard kiss as strong fingers rolled her clit and made her groan.

Faith didn’t enter her though, keeping her fingers focused on the witch’s clit. The touch kept Willow’s hips jumping, their kiss breaking to let the redhead catch a breath. She whined the Slayer’s name and Faith’s kisses ran down the length of Willow’s neck. “I’ve got you, Will. I’m with you,” Faith said into her skin, smirking against the flush.

Willow’s back arched and she lifted one hand to grip a handful of lengthy brown waves, dragging Faith’s mouth from her skin. “Faith,” she said warningly. “Stop teasing.” She pulled the brunette’s lips back to hers, tongue exploring between her teeth eagerly. Faith’s thumb pressed against her clit and two fingers slid home, Willow’s tense body freezing before she broke the kiss to moan her pleasure. Faith knew exactly how to touch her. The fingers inside her curled and she knew it wouldn’t take long.

“You’re really worked up, babe,” Faith noted breathlessly, a bit surprised and proud of the startling heat she’d stoked between her lover’s legs. “So hot. Will, you’re so hot.”

Willow gasped, fisting a hand in dark hair. “Why do you think that is?” she ground out, her hips rocking to the rhythm Faith’s fingers set inside her. The plunging thrusts moved deep, Willow’s body clinging to them on every withdrawal. Sweat beaded on the back of the witch’s neck, Willow squeezing her eyes closed as Faith drove her closer to the edge. “Oh my God! Faith, there, there, right there,” the redhead pleaded, surprised that she could speak at all.

The Slayer laughed throatily into Willow’s chest, drawing a nipple between her lips. “I’ve got you, Willow. Just let it go, baby.” Her fingers pressed in deeper, gasping when Willow’s muscles tightened around her. “Love you, Will.” The low, hoarse declaration drove her over the edge, Willow’s back arching with a groan.

Her body went limp as she slowly came down, Faith withdrawing and flopping onto her back beside Willow. “You’re good at that,” Willow praised, her sweat slicked chest rising and falling as she tried to catch her breath.

Faith turned onto her side and slid one hand across Willow’s flat stomach. “I’ve had lots of practice over the last few years, remember?”

Willow laughed, her hand finding Faith’s and pulling it up to kiss the back of it. “Happy Anniversary, Faith.”

“Happy Anniversary, Will,” Faith answered, leaning up on her elbow to smirk down at a still breathless Willow. “You doing okay, babe?” she asked, laughing.

The witch nodded, her loose red hair moving against the pillow. “Oh yeah,” she moaned as she stretched languidly. “How about you?” She blinked and her eyes were clear and dark with want. “Didn’t I owe you a rain check?”

Faith’s smirk grew and she suddenly reflected that she couldn’t have made a better decision than ditching her ‘get some, get gone’ lifestyle. Nothing in her life had ever come close to how Willow made her feel. She tried to imagine what she’d have thought if she’d known all those years ago in Sunnydale that she was going to marry her rival’s best friend, and the mental image of her own expression made her laugh, Willow using her distraction to shove her onto her back in the bed.

“What are you laughing about?” Willow questioned, following her partner and laying stretched out against her side.

Faith was still chuckling and she curled one arm behind her head. “Us in high school. How I’d have reacted back then if I’d known we were going to end up here,” she said, gesturing around them at their bedroom.

Willow giggled herself, leaning further into Faith’s chest, her hair hanging and trailing against the Slayer’s face. “You never would have believed it.”

“Oh, because I don’t remember you hitting on a bunch of girls back then, either,” Faith countered with a smirk as she reached up and pushed strands of Willow’s hair back. “But you’re right,” her arm curled and a hand trailed across Willow’s bare back, “I never would have believed it could work out so well for me.” She turned her head and they could both see the glow from the tent of their party across the street. Her eyes stayed trained out the window. “Some mornings I wake up and it doesn’t seem real, like it couldn’t have happened like this for me. You, the kids, our life, in the few seconds before I open my eyes, it seems like I couldn’t possibly have this life, like it’s a cruel dream mocking me for who I used to be.”

Willow’s lips pressed against her bare shoulder drew her out of her musings, the witch’s eyes shining in the dim darkness of their bedroom. “I know exactly how you feel,” she whispered softly. She nuzzled into Faith’s neck with her nose. “Every day I wake up and you’re there, though.” She kissed the skin under her mouth, lips dragging. “Whatever we’ve done, we’re here now, all these years later. Not a dream.” She laughed quietly. “I bet Jack’s little bony knees snap you out of it pretty quickly every morning anyway,” she teased.

Faith’s laugh was louder and she grinned. “You’re not kidding,” she earnestly agreed. “He’s got some knobby knees!” Their son had a tendency of launching himself into their bed on the few rare mornings where they slept later than he did. His target was frequently Faith, not that Willow minded missing out of that particular display of affection from their little boy.

Willow let her hand slide across Faith’s ribs where Jack frequently landed, touch trailing over one of her few ticklish spots, the redhead smiling when the Slayer sucked in a quick breath. “Will,” Faith started, warning edge in her tone. Then Willow’s hand moved up across her chest to palm a breast and she groaned instead of protesting. “Don’t stop.”

“Not planning on it,” Willow promised, whispering against the brunette’s skin as she let her kisses trail down her wife’s chest.

[part 18 here]

Date: 2011-09-01 10:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ladycallie.livejournal.com
WHOA! How did I miss this update? My bad!

I admit, I felt a little gypped at not seeing Hope's birth but this chapter more then made up for it. And there was a little smut too! Very nice, very them, very fitting to the story.

I love your dialogue, it always reads so naturally and in character.

Date: 2011-09-02 12:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] leonhart-17.livejournal.com
:) No worries. You found it!

I tried and tired to come up with something for Hope's birth and I just couldn't come up with anything I liked! I'm sorry! Glad this one kind of made up for it, at least.

Thanks so much! It's really great to hear that!

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