After twenty-some-odd reviews packed with ideas, some of which overlapped and many of which I hadn't even considered… Faith now has a backstory. An alien backstory, as suggested by Meneldur, skychan (sorta), and laoshi. While I was leaning toward tchizek's suggestion of Faith the Valkyrie… laoshi tossed out an idea that was too good to resist. I totally dug tchizek's idea, though, so we might see another Scooby analog at some point who's a dís in this world.
"Sup?" Faith nodded to Dawn before turning her attention to Carol. "So, can you at least do Dunkin Donuts with her? I've got a few bucks I wanna toss your way, because a Boston kreme or three would be wicked awesome right about now."
Carol looked down at herself, then back up at Faith, and then down once more at the mix of greenish-black skinsuit and white armor that adorned her body. "Oh sure, I'll just run out and do that for you right away. I'm sure that'd end spectacularly for me." Closing the distance between them, she reached down and yanked a wallet out of Faith's pocket, flipping it open and rifling around inside. "I've got a better idea." Pulling out a blue card with a red stripe running along the top edge, she pushed it into Faith's hand before returning the girl's wallet to her pocket. "I'll stay here, shut down my power suit, and get dressed… and you can take our guest here out for all the donuts you two can eat on Obama's dollar, Rainbow Brite."
The affronted expression on Faith's face - and distinct difference in nomenclature - made Dawn ask the obvious question. "Rainbow… Brite?"
"You can call it a 'post-human name' or a callsign or a codename or whatever… all of SHIELD's field agents have them, because yelling out your coworkers' real names in the middle of a fight isn't the best idea in this business." Faith jerked a thumb in Carol's direction. "She's Agent Mahr Vehl. Her father's last name and her current rank. I wanted to call her Warbird because she looks all fierce and dangerous like a fighter jet, but nope. Then we have Black Widow and Mockingbird. They're the best parents a girl can ask for, at least if you ask me. Nat's in her eighties and so she's seen and done it all, which makes her really hard to freak out. Bobbi was really cool back when they first hooked up, but she's been getting more and more by-the-book as she gets older. I think it's because she realizes that there would be people left behind these days if she died from some of the crazy shit she used to pull back in the day."
Dawn nodded. It was a lesson that Buffy had sadly never learned, leading to her swan dive off the tower and subsequent resurrection. It was one thing to be selfish and self-destructive, but when you were serving as someone's surrogate mother… there was more than just your future hanging in the balance when you made decisions. "So are you and Kate related? Because I never knew my Faith's last name, and you two kinda look alike now that I think about it…"
Glancing back over her shoulder at the closed door, Faith chuckled before turning back to Dawn and shaking her head. "Total coincidence. By the way, digging Kateniss. Think I'll use that to tease her from now on, because she's wicked obsessed with those books. Anyway, where was I? SHIELD agents, codenames, subtle 411 on people you might meet in the future… I know I didn't mention Ant-Man and Wasp because the less said about those two freaks, the better. I still can't get a straight answer on whether there's domestic abuse going on there or if they're just into some wicked kinky shit. Stay away from them if you value your sanity. Um… oh! Kate, obviously. She's not actually an agent yet, but she's already got a name. Hawkingbird is a portmanteau…" Dawn's eyes widened. "You know, a word that's made from two other words?"
"Oh, I know. Just kinda surprised you do." Dawn knew that she should really be treating this girl like Vampire Willow, at least insofar as not expecting her to be like the Slayer she'd met. But it was hard, even with the definite physical differences: this version was a good two years younger - at a minimum - than Faith had been when she first arrived in Sunnydale, with longer and lighter brown hair and a bit more meat on her bones. Probably because she ate well and regularly, and wasn't on the run from a master vampire. "My Faith… err, my world's Faith? She's smart in her own way, but she's not really intelligent. Street smart, not book smart."
Turning her head to the left, Faith did a slow and methodical survey of the room, even peeking back over her shoulder for good measure. "And since I'm not her and she's not here? Why don't you save shit like that for when you get home and treat me like what I am: this world's Faith." Dawn held up her hands in surrender, making Faith scoff before continuing. "Like I was saying, Hawkingbird is a combination of Bobbi's codename and Hawkeye, which is the name of another agent she spends a lot of time with. Considering she's been Nat's daughter for ten years and Bobbi's for only four, I don't why there's not a 'Black' or spider reference in there, but whatever."
Dawn nodded; she didn't exactly get why the people in question had the names they did, but the point was that everyone at SHIELD seemed to have one. Gotcha. That still didn't answer her actual question, though. "So why do they call you Rainbow Brite?"
"Because I'm surrounded by wicked fucking dumb people who are like, twelve on the inside." Faith tossed her credit card in Dawn's direction; the blonde lunged forward to grab it but missed as a bright pulse of light made her cry out in pain. Stumbling backward, Dawn tripped and fell onto her ass, staring upward in amazement at… "Yeah. I'm a flying girl made of rainbows. Wanna make something of it?"
Not really, no. Mostly because it was awesome. And really pretty. Dawn approached Faith slowly, reaching out to poke at one of the glowing tendrils of multicolored hair that were floating around Faith's face. While they were slightly translucent, they were very much solid and a bit warm too. "How come Hallie didn't give me a mutant power like this?"
"Fuck if I know. Who's Hallie?" Faith held her hand up as Dawn opened her mouth to reply. "Rhetorical question. I don't actually care. Now, do you want some donuts or not? Because I'm hungry and I think Bluebell needs us to leave so she can put her real people clothes back on."
Dawn shot a glance over at Carol, who nodded before turning a bit to reveal the black garment bag she'd thrown over one shoulder. "Well, I ate on the way up here… but I guess I could go for a snack." Faith made a vaguely approving noise as she slipped a chunky metal bracelet onto her left wrist, her body solidifying and retaking a fully human appearance as she dropped the two or three inches to the floor with a thump. "So, this might be a dumb question, but since I've never been… does Dunkin Donuts do low-fat donuts? Because I had a lobster roll for lunch and I'm trying to watch my figure."
Chuckling, Faith wrapped her right arm around Dawn's waist before sliding her hand down to rest on Dawn's ass. "Girl, as someone who's watching your figure?" The hand roamed around a bit before giving one cheek a firm squeeze, making the blonde squeak and jump a bit. "You could use a dozen donuts or so. Minimum."
While she'd never been able to get a straight answer - pun fully intended - from her sister nor had Faith been especially chatty when it came to her feelings, Dawn had always gotten the feeling that at least Faith was bi from the way she eyed Cordelia and interacted with Buffy. That being said, she still hadn't quite seen this particular plot twist coming. "…your powers aren't the only reason they call you Rainbow Brite, huh?"
"Nope." Faith offered her a grin and gave the blonde's ass another squeeze. "Problem?"
Peering back over her shoulder at the roaming hand, Dawn thought for a moment before shrugging. It was a little weird on account of her past with Faith, but this wasn't her reality's Faith - as Faith herself had quite emphatically pointed out - and she was awfully cute. And evidently willing to flirt too, which would make things a lot more fun than the one-sided flirting Dawn had been engaged in all morning. "Nah. Just out of curiosity… I'm also guessing you're incapable of lying?"
"Can't deny it."