TITLE: It happened in Istanbul
SUMMARY: Response to FFA pairing: In Istanbul, Will and Oz reunite - Faith is unimpressed. Faith meets John Constantine and is unimpressed by him as well.
DISCLAIMER: The characters from BTVS and Angel belong to Joss Whedon the characters from Constantine the movie belong to Kevin Brodbin. December 14 2005
Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar the Kapali Çarsi, was a Covered Market. Faith felt positive that Buffy and Dawn would have been the better choice to send to a place that had forty thousand shops, not Faith and Willow.
Faith and Willow wended their way through countless stores offering beautiful Turkish carpets, glazed tiles and pottery, copper and brass-ware, apparel made of leather, cotton and wool, meerschaum pipes, alabaster bookends, ashtrays, and all sorts of other interesting things.
“Once we get this damn prophecy book, I might go back and have a look at some of those nifty oriental rugs.” Willow mentioned to Faith, as they pushed their way through the thronging mass of Turks and tourists.
“What, now you have to furnish a new apartment, seeing how you and Kennedy finally broke up?” Faith twisted her mouth sardonically. “I thought you intended to stay in Giles spare room for the rest of your freaking natural life.”
Willow glared at Faith in irritation. She and Faith never got on, they never really would. They were just too different. Willow found Faith crude, slutty and always with an undercurrent of potential violence Willow found disturbing.
Faith sensed Willow’s angry gaze on her back and wondered if the witch was going to flay her alive in the middle of the market place. Faith grinned, like Willow would ever have the balls to do that these days.
Faith did not have much time for Willow either. As a teenager Faith grew jealous of Willow’s friendship with Buffy, and Willow’s comfortable two parent home. Faith found Willow's bleating about her mother being too busy for her, pathetic. Willow’s mom a university professor, ran in and out of the house at the peak of her academic career, she left a lot of housework and childcare to her husband Ira.
Willow should have tried living with Faith’s violent alcoholic mother, and her series of scumbag boyfriends. Then Willow could have something to actually complain about Faith always thought.
As adults the two women shared an uneasy truce. They were both murderers after all. Faith found Willow’s risqué innuendo funny sometimes. Willow could occasionally understand where Faith was coming from in a way Buffy never could.
The two young women made their way to an antique bookshop, surrounded with thick curtains. Faith pushed quickly through them, stepping into the musty smelling shop.
A horned demon stood behind a counter, attending to a honeymooning Japanese couple.
Faith went up to the counter at the same time as a tall dark and handsome American did. The man was wearing a black suit, white shirt and black tie. In his late thirties, he must have escaped the Memo that the MIB look was passé. Faith smirked. She stared him up and down like he was a piece of meat automatically.
Constantine glanced at the attractive young woman beside him. She was young, wearing a black wool trouser suit and burgundy headscarf. She was probably a local college student, messing with magical things she shouldn’t. He previously noticed her in the market walking in front of him with her red headed friend.
Constantine stepped in front of Faith rudely he was in a hurry.
“The Flanders Grimoire.” Constantine ordered the demon behind the counter. “I’ve got it on hold.”
“Hey!” Faith indignantly pushed beside Constantine glaring at both him and the demon. “I have that book on hold.”
“I was here first, sweetheart, bad luck.” Constantine told her abruptly. The girl was American like him he noted in surprise.
“You mean ya pushed in front of me.” Faith contradicted him pissed off.
“No, you dragged your feet waiting for your friend to join you.” Constantine paid for the book. “Excuse me, kid, I’m in a hurry.” He patted her on the shoulder patronizingly as he left. “This book is for the grown ups anyway.”
Faith restrained herself from punching him in the mouth, and knocking out his front teeth. The downside of being reformed.
“The New Watchers Council of Great Britain is never patronizing your shithole store again.” Faith fumed at the helpless demon clerk in frustration.
She turned around searching for Willow, where was the stupid bitch? It was true Faith had been hesitating waiting for Willow to join her in the book shop. It was why that handsome asshole in the black suit gained his three second advantage over Faith.
Feeling more irritated with Willow by the second, Faith marched outside the shop. Peering round the bustling market, worried about her absent companion.
There in the middle of the Market place stood Willow, holding hands with Oz. Both slightly breathless, they appeared to have recently finished kissing.
Just great, thought Faith, noticing peoples disapproving glances in Willow and Oz’s direction obviously caused by the red headed couples Western decadence. Just treat every other foreign country as your own little patch of the fucking USA, Wills, why don’t you?
Faith walked over to them swiftly. Oz swung his head round at her familiar scent.
“Faith, long time no see.”Oz greeted her.
“Hey, Oz,” Faith returned disinterested.
Faith frowned at Willow. “Where the Hell were you back there? I just lost the damn book!”
“Well with Oz, silly,” Willow put her arms round Oz’s waist in ecstasy. “We always said we’d run into one another one day, and here we are in Istanbul.”
“How romantic,” Faith made a mental note to herself not to vomit. Faith folded her arms hostilely. “God, go get a room, Willow, you and wolf boy’s beautiful PDA reunion is offending everyone in the whole damn market place. I’m gonna try and get that book. I’ll see you back at the hotel.”
Faith spotted Constantine move down the central aisle of the marketplace, and raced after him. She caught up in a few minutes.
“Look.” Faith said to Constantine, grabbing his arm to slow him down. “I need that book, bud, I’ll double the price you paid. I’m good for it, I belong to the New Watchers Council of Great Britain.”
Constantine shook his head, removing her hand from his arm firmly noting her strength. “Aren’t you a little long in the tooth for a slayer? I thought you were all cute little teenage girls with short lives?”
“My life span is probably still gonna be short, 'specially if I don’t get that book of prophecy.” Faith snapped at him insulted. “Who the hell are you, anyway?”
“John Constantine and I can’t give you the book, kid. I’m trading it for something else I need.” Constantine glanced down at Faith speculatively. “However if you want to pay me double the price of the book, you can do what I’m going to do now.”
“Which is what, be an arrogant bastard?” Faith stretched her stride to keep up with Constantine’s quick pace down the market’s aisles.
“Play nice or you don’t get the information the book has.” Constantine warned her. “I’m photographing every page, before I hand the book over to an Orthodox Bishop who has a medallion I want. You got a digital camera on you?”
“Double the price for photographs?” Faith had a camera on her, but god damn. “What are you, a supernatural rip off artist?”
They had reached the street, Constantine put his hand out for a cab.
Constantine considered her question. “I’m an exorcist mostly. I‘m going back to my hotel you can come with me, or stay here and buy a hookah for the mantlepiece back home, your choice.”
“What makes you so sure I won’t roll you for it, once we're back at the hotel?” Faith asked him curiously.
Constantine regarded her with jaded amusement. “I can recognize when bad girls are trying to be good.” He opened the cab door and got in first, “You coming or not?”
Faith scrambled in beside him, doing up her seat belt automatically from having lived in the U.K. for the past two years. “I’m coming.”
They entered his hotel and went up to his room together. “This is a better set up than the Flag Inn I’m staying at in the merchant district.” Faith commented with envy.
Constantine laid the book down on the double bed and took his digital camera out. “Turn the pages.” he told her curtly. “It’ll get it done faster.”
Faith turned the pages carefully, not letting her anger damage the precious old book. Inwardly she was seething, at being spoken to so rudely.
It took them an hour to photograph every page of the book. “Okay, your turn.” Constantine told her, visibly relaxing, the tension leaving his body.
Faith retrieved her camera out of her bag, pleasantly surprised that Constantine turned the pages for her unasked.
It took her an hour to photograph the book as well. Faith stretched uncomfortably, her neck and shoulders were killing her. Faith took her scarf off, shaking her long dark hair free.
“You’ve got nice hair, you shouldn’t cover it.” Constantine told her unexpectedly, rolling his shoulder blades.
“When in Rome, lover.” Faith shrugged, months of solitary confinement in prison cured her once and for all of looking for trouble. She reached into her purse for payment.
A knock came at the door, Constantine opened the door to a black robed Serbian Orthodox priest.
“Who is she?” the priest indicated Faith suspiciously.
“An old friend,” Constantine lied effortlessly. “I have the book, now where’s the medallion?”
The priest inspected the book carefully and then reluctantly put it in his brief case. The Serb handed Constantine a silk wrapped object. Constantine took out the medallion and bit it, checking to see it was solid gold.
“Till the next time.” The priest looked at Faith disapprovingly. “She’s a bit young for you isn’t she, Constantine? What happened to Angela?”
"Angela decided to become a nun.” Constantine got out a packet of cigarettes from his jacket pocket. “You remember where the door to leave is, don’t you?”
The priest laughed knowingly, and left.
Faith handed Constantine the money for the photographs. “Bum a smoke off you?”
“Yeah sure, there’s beer in the fridge have one before you go knock yourself out, kid.” Constantine stretched again walking over to his motel bar fridge. He opened the fridge door and threw her a beer.
Faith drank the beer thirstily. It had been a tense two hours. “Not that you obviously give a shit, but my name’s Faith, Faith Lehane. You could use it instead of kid.”
“Okay, 'Faith'.” Constantine nodded, lighting her cigarette. “I’ll bear it in mind. So what now for you, back to London?”
“Yeah,” Faith sighed relaxing, inhaling her cigarette gratefully. “But first I hafta go back to my hotel room, and tell my traveling companion I’ve managed to photograph the book. I’m probably gonna be walking in on her screwin' a werewolf as well.”
“Sounds a riot,” Constantine opened his own bottle of beer.
“Yeah, well thanks for the beer and cancer stick, Johnny.” Faith wrapped her scarf around her head.
“Thanks for the exorbitant amount of money you just paid me, Faith.” Constantine took a sip of cold amber fluid.
Faith chuckled and left the room.
They both felt that they’d see the other again somehow.