Review @ Jinxgirl
Story Three: Reactions
There was a moment or two of stuned silence after Buffy's hurried announcement; several jaws dropped, and there was an outbreak of rapid blinking and widening eyes, as well as a few shocked gasps. Beside Buffy Faith cringed, her face reddening, and the hand not tightly clinched in Buffy's was forming a fist at her side. Her face was slightly lowered, but she looked quite clearly pissed off, just as Buffy had known she would. If it was up to Faith, she suspected, she would have just let everyone think she was fat for as long as possible.
Buffy squeezed her hand, partly in support, partly in warning for Faith not to explode on the first person to react in some way more than gawking at her- well, other than Willow, who was half flinching, half smiling, and definitely avoiding Faith's eyes. Buffy knew full well that shock wouldn't keep them all quiet for very much longer.
Four seconds later, the chain reaction began.
"Uh…WHAT?" Xander blurted, his eye still wide with disbelief, and he gestured as if he couldn't connect his brain with anything that had been said. "WHAT?"
"Oh good Lord," Giles muttered, and his glasses were immediately in his hand as he began to polish them intently. No doubt the idea of a pregnant Faith, and the thought of his Slayers as mothers, was more than his mind could comprehend at this point- even if the baby hadn't actually come about from sex. Buffy had to smirk at that- some things never changed.
The other four's reactions were not quite so astounded and awkward. Willow smiled at Xander, nodding as she confirmed his question.
"You heard her, Xan…thanks to my overeager little blessing-"
"Or curse," Faith muttered darkly, shaking her head and glowering to herself, her body tense. Buffy knew she wanted to bolt away from all the attention they were giving her. Maybe this wasn't such a great idea after all, to tell them all at once like this…
"You're pregnant? Oh my god!" Dawn squealed, her eyes lighting up in excitement, and she beamed, launching herself at first Buffy, then Faith to hug. "That's so cool!"
"Hey, get off me already," Faith protested, trying to shove Dawn away, but Dawn tightened her arms around her as she bubbled over in enthusiasm.
"This is so cool..I'm going to be an aunt! I'm going to be Aunt Dawn…doesn't that sound cool? Do you know if it's a boy or girl?"
"Dawn, get OFF me," Faith said more sharply, but Dawn was oblivious.
"Oh, it'll be so cute! It should have Faith's eyes… and Buffy's hair…but not your nose, Buffy-"
"What's wrong with my nose?" Buffy said indignantly as Faith forgot to glare long enough to start laughing. As Buffy turned to scowl at her, and Dawn too, who was still hanging around Faith's neck, Kennedy smirked, looking between Faith and Willow deliberately.
"So…let me get this straight. My girlfriend knocked you up?" she asked Faith with a raised eyebrow, draping an arm over Willow's shoulders.
Willow flushed even more hotly than before, and both Buffy and Faith stiffened.
"Oh, screw you," Faith snapped, and Kennedy laughed.
"Nah, that's what Buffy did….apparently…"
"I INSIST you stop there," Giles said hurriedly, his voice rising, but Buffy was frowning now, worry coming into her eyes.
"Will…the baby IS mine…right?"
"Oh yes, it is- your genes, it's all you, Buffy," Willow reassured her. "Well, all you and Faith, of course. I just…caused it to come into being."
"So…you're sort of its mother too, then, in a way," Kennedy laughed. "Damn, this is gonna be one confused kid…it's gonna have THREE lesbian mothers."
"Again I say…WHAT?" Xander exclaimed.
Just then Andrew entered the room, looking around at everyone curiously and also with some hurt.
"I see that you have started a meeting without me, as usual… is there anything I should know?" he asked in a transparent attempt at seeming casual.
Buffy opened her mouth, but Kennedy, who seemed to be finding entirely too much amusement in the situation, beat her in explaining.
"Faith's knocked up… it's Buffy's kid, but Willow's the one who did the spell to cause it."
Buffy could almost literally see the sparks flying from Faith's eyes as she swiveled her head sharply in Kennedy's direction. Had Dawn not still been practically in her lap and Buffy's hand still gripping hers tightly, she probably would have punched her. As it was, Andrew's eyes went huge with awe, and he bowed to Faith reverently, his voice hushed.
"You are with child… oh, blessed being that is woman-"
"I am NOT a freakin' blessed anything- get the hell off me!" Faith shouted as Andrew tried to take hold of her free hand, and she stood up, violently thrusting Dawn and Andrew away from her in the process.
Buffy, realizing that explosion and/or fleeing was dangerously close to surface, jumped up, taking Faith's arm and stroking it soothingly but firmly as she looked around at the others meaningfully.
"Guys, back off… give her room to breathe."
"Yeah, she needs air… she's pregnant, I think I heard that, that pregnant women need air," Xander said, and Willow smiled.
"Not like the rest of us, huh?"
"Right, she's getting mad… oh, I bet she's going to be even more pissy than usual now, aren't you, Faith?" Dawn laughed. "All the hormones. Pregnant women get really crazy with them, don't they? Oh, and the puking- are you puking yet, Faith? And having to pee all the time, and crying all the time-"
"I am NOT going to be crying!" Faith yelled, and Buffy decided it would be wise not to mention that Faith had already cried twice today, once because she had run out of her favorite kind of cereal.
"Dawn…come on," Buffy said sternly, even as she tried not to smile.
"Yes, PLEASE let's focus on…something else," Giles muttered, his glasses still firmly in his hand, before he put them on and attempted a brave smile. "Well…congratulations, Buffy, Faith…this is certainly a surprise."
"You're going to be a grandpa, Giles!" Dawn said cheerfully, grinning at him now, and Giles looked horrified at the thought, nodding quickly.
"So you're really… having a baby," Xander repeated, shaking his head, as if this could not quite register, and Faith snapped at him.
"What, you need to clean out your ears or something?"
"This is unprecedented," Giles continued, a familiar gleam of intrigue coming into his eyes slowly now. "Not only the child of two females, but also of two Slayers…why, there's no telling what she might become…"
"It's just a kid, okay, don't write out its life story before it gets here," Faith said quickly, raising her chin in defiance. "Damn, you'd think no one had ever got pregnant before, the way you don't shut up over it."
"Well, YOU haven't…I think. Right?" Xander asked, and Kennedy joined in.
"And a woman's never gotten pregnant by another woman before because of the spell of a third woman."
"And they're both Slayers-" Dawn interjected, and Faith growled, cutting her off.
"Fine, we're freaks, now shut the hell up and get outta my way."
She pulled away from Buffy, starting to storm out the room, but Xander's voice caused her to pause.
"All those women making a baby without a man…what are you trying to make us totally useless?"
"Already there, Xan," Faith shot back, slamming the door behind her, and Giles sighed as Buffy passed him, starting after her.
"This will be a long nine months," he muttered, and Buffy had to agree.
But it was worth it. Even now, she knew it was worth it.
Story 4: Told you so
"I want it," Faith repeated, as stubborn and insistent as a child, sticking out her chin in an unconscious show of defiance as she glared at Buffy, crossing her arms over her still-mostly-flat stomach. "You can't stop me from having whatever I want, Buffy, you're not the fuckin' boss of me, alright?"
"No, but I apparently have a better memory than you, even though it's YOUR body that suffers the consequences of having your way with this kind of thing," Buffy leveled back at her, hands on her hips as she eyed her evenly.
"You're not my mother! Stop treating me like I'm some stupid little kid!" Faith growled, eyes flashing, and Buffy, despite knowing she shouldn't, couldn't stop herself from snapping back.
"Well stop acting like one, Faith, and maybe I won't have to!"
"Stop being a bitch and I wouldn't have to!" Faith shot back, her voice rising, muscles tensing, and Buffy sighed, turning away slightly to compose herself before replying.
Faith was almost eight weeks along now, and she seemed to grow moodier and moodier as time passed. Almost everything Buffy did or said seemed enough to provoke her into battle, or else tears. Buffy didn't know which was worse- the moodiness, the emotional meltdowns, or the current focus of their fighting, but the thought of seven more months of it was terrifying.
She took a deep breath, trying to bring herself to a calm, logical tone of voice as she turned to Faith again, renewing her addressal to her.
"Faith…I'm not trying to act like I'm your mother, and I'm not saying you're stupid or need my advice. I don't want to fight with you, and I understand that you get cravings. I'm the one who drove all around at midnight to get you a pineapple and anchovy pizza, remember?" she told her, struggling to keep her voice soft and patient. "But you know what happens when you eat Mexican now- or pineapple and anchovy pizza, too, for that matter. And you know who has to be there too when it happens," she said pointedly, indicating herself as she looked Faith in the eye. "Come on, why don't you have a nice salad or-"
"I don't want a fuckin' salad, B- what, are you trying to starve me?" Faith snapped, and she snatched Buffy's purse, with her wallet inside, off the coffee table, heading for the door with barely a glance behind her. She was almost visibly bristling with anger. "Look, I don't care okay, I want some chalupas and enchiladas and I want them now. I'm going to La Hacienda, whether you're coming or not, so are you coming?"
Buffy sighed, her shoulders slumping, in decided unenthusiasm as she followed the brunette to the door. She gave it ninety minutes, tops…dammit. Why was Faith so stubborn?
Oh yeah…because she was Faith. Buffy could only hope the kid was more like her…whatever her mother had said, she was sure that she had been a very nice, quiet baby.
Sixty-two minutes later Buffy knelt beside Faith on their bathroom floor, holding her hair back with one hand and rubbing her back soothingly with the other as Faith shuddered, trying to catch her breath. Exactly, of course, as Buffy had predicted. However, as Buffy whispered comfort, continuing to caress Faith's back, she thought it wiser not to say "I told you so," as badly as she wanted to. At least not until Faith's stomach had settled and she had a less icky weapon to use against her if she so chose.
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