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Wish You Were Here

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This story is No. 11 in the series "But Never Broken". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Faith never expected she'd miss her more than anyone else. Written for Fic A Day.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Star Trek > Star Trek 2009grundyFR131995193,12124 Aug 1124 Aug 11Yes
Disclaimer: Buffy belongs to Joss. Star Trek is Gene Roddenberry's creation, though this particular flavor owes much to Abrams, Orci, and Kurtzman. I just like to play in their sandboxes now and then. Also, the lyrics belong to David Gilmour and Roger Waters.
Author's Note: I don't often do songfic, but the song came on and it made me think Faith for some reason.

So you think you can tell
Heaven from Hell,
Blue skies from pain.
Can you tell a green field
From a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil?
Do you think you can tell?

Now that it was time, Faith wasn’t sure she could actually face it. Earth. After all those years. After all those deaths. There was a time she would have killed to get back here. Now it held nothing for her. She had kept her vigil at the window in Sickbay, using the view as a focus point for meditation until the nurse came for her. She let Dr. McCoy steer her through the corridors to the shuttlecraft without really seeing anything. It wasn’t until she was strapping in that she realized who the other passengers were.

Kirk. The ‘hero’- not that she hadn’t heard that newscasts planetside were already calling the entire crew that. And they were, really, these young officers who had saved the world. But Jim Kirk still had a lot to learn about heroism, even if he didn’t know it yet. How to live with it, for a start. He thought the hard part was over. He was about to find out it only got harder. Funny thing about saving the world- once you do it, you end up having to keep saving it. And it never got easier.

That sunny smile of his would turn into armor at some point. Maybe it already had. She wanted to talk to him eventually. When she was ready. When he knew not to mention Ayel again. When Starfleet finished debriefing her about just what the hell she was and where she had come from.

Did they get you to trade
Your heroes for ghosts?
Hot ashes for trees?
Hot air for a cool breeze?
Cold comfort for change?

Starfleet’s youngest captain wasn’t the only one aside from the prisoner transfer detail on this shuttle flight. Across the aisle from him was Spock, who was not the Spock Nero had hunted down. Not that it mattered- neither of them were guilty of genocide.

Romulus hadn’t been a casualty of malice, but of unlucky chance. The universe was just like that sometimes. Pike had explained the whole story to her. She’d felt marginally better when she realized Nero and Ayel hadn’t lied about Spock- they had just misinterpreted his actions. Grief could make a being do funny things. Unfortunately, Spock might have failed his mission, but her guys had succeeded at theirs. They hadn’t lived to see it, but there was still a chance their actions might rip the Federation apart.

Holding it together was going to be one of the tasks for the Enterprise and her crew of heroes. Faith was sorry she couldn’t go with them. She might actually be able to do something good for a change. Something right. It had been a long time since she was on the right side.

Did you exchange
A walk on part in the war,
For a lead role in a cage?

Starfleet was probably going to keep her in custody. Indefinitely. And not for whatever crimes she imagined she’d committed, as Dr. McCoy had haltingly explained. They had already determined from the preliminary reports that she was at worst an unwitting accomplice, and were more inclined to class her as a victim of the Narada. The admirals felt a human agreeing to destroy Earth was highly unlikely.

No, they wanted to jail her because of what she was. Because of what she could do if she chose. Because she was a Slayer, even a fallen one.

As she’d guessed, there were no Slayers here, at least not anymore. Maybe there had been once. But history here had run differently. If there had been Slayers, they had either fled or died long ago, when humanity had wiped out the Augments.

She’d almost howled when they’d told her about it. She could picture it all too well- girls who had no choice but to fight. They had no choice about becoming Slayers, though they might choose not to fight vampires and demons. But when humanity had decided that different was dangerous, that stronger and faster was a threat, they’d had no choice about fighting to survive.

It had done her no good to protest that wasn’t how it had happened at her end of history. Starfleet wanted to find out all about when she was from, but they didn’t feel it was a mitigating factor.

The results of McCoy’s scans were enough to condemn her. The gifts of the Slayer showed as genetic anomalies that Starfleet determined meant Augment. Unless they could prove she hadn’t been genetically engineered, she might spend the rest of her life-which would be a very long time- in a fancy prison cell.

How I wish, how I wish you were here.
We're just two lost souls
Swimming in a fish bowl,
Year after year,
Running over the same old ground.
What have we found
The same old fears.

Sure, Dr. McCoy was game to try. He had already been calling up all available files on the banned technology and its history. He didn’t hide from her how long the odds against her were. But he was coming with her, as both doctor and advocate. She was grateful for the kindness, but she really wanted someone else, though she’d never say it out loud.

If she could have picked, the person she’d want in her corner was another Slayer. One who had looked down losing fights more times than any other One in history and still somehow managed to pull out a win. Buffy would be furious if she knew what was going on here, and she’d find a way to make Starfleet eat its fancy words and the threat behind them.

Wish you were here.

The End

You have reached the end of "Wish You Were Here". This story is complete.

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