Buffy and Tara froze mid kiss, both stiffening
at the sound of Willow’s voice.
“Uh oh!” Buffy mumbled as she pulled back from Tara’s lips.
Tara whimpered as she leaned her forehead
against Buffy’s. “Did you forget to tell me it was your birthday? That’s usually the only time things go horribly wrong like this.”
Buffy laughed softly. “Life with the Slayer, get used to it.”
I seem to have found myself easily doing of late.’ Tara gave her a crooked smile and kissed her again softly before sighing.
“All we need now is Xander, Anya, and Dawn.”
“Don’t even jinx it by mentioning
their names!” Buffy growled softly as she tugged gently on Tara’s
hair, not remembering how or when her hand had ended up there.
Tara winked at her and quickly kissed her
again. “This should be fun.”
She rolled her eyes before turning her head after Willow called her name again, this time as a question as she got
a better look at what was going on.
“NOT!” Buffy mumbled before she also turned towards Willow, smiling and covering Tara’s hands as the Wiccan
kept her in her arms as they turned to face the redhead.
“New bets?” One of two pool players gleefully spoke a little louder than intended.
Buffy, Tara, and Cami all turned as one
to growl at the two bitches now making more bets on the outcome of the newest arrivals presence, which only got a shrug from
them before they continued their wagering.
Turning back to the others Tara raised a
brow at Willow, before glancing at Spike. “I smell a rat.”
Amy took a step back, bringing an arm up
to sniff. “Sorry, I’ve showered at least a dozen times.” She frowned as she looked quickly around to see if anyone else had notice the smell.
Tara frowned at the woman’s comment,
tilting her head as she studied the woman for a moment before her brows rose in understanding.
Willow had finally figured out how to bring Amy back. “No, Amy,
I’m sorry. It was just a figure of speech, I didn’t mean it literally.” She sent a snarl Spike’s way before turning back to Amy and smiling. “It’s nice to meet you. I’m glad you’re
finally back.” ‘Though you
could have been back two years ago, had Willow not been adamant about doing it on her own.’
Buffy smiled and shook her head as the shock
of seeing Amy wore off, stopping as she was about to speak when Tara apologized first.
“It’s good to see you again, Amy.”
“Hi, Buffy, how’ve you been?” Amy stepped closer to the group again, now that she knew she didn’t smell, or
at least they were too polite to mention it.
You?” Buffy felt Tara stiffen, arms tightening around her, and gently
squeezed her hands as she leaned back into her.
Amy nodded as if it was a daily occurrence
that Buffy was dead or had died. “A rat.
Caged… shavings… wheel… pellets… day after day after day…” She trailed off as the monotony of being a rat invaded her memory.
“Sorry about that, but you looked…
content.” Buffy smiled ruefully at the woman.
Amy blinked, coming back to the present
and focusing on Buffy, only nodding before her eyes darted around again, her movements jerky and wary.
“She’ll be fine.” Willow smiled as she looked from Amy to the group, standing a little taller and grinning. She was proud of herself for finally figuring out how to change Amy back, privately
hoping to have impressed Tara with that fact. “She just needs to, you know,
adjust. She’ll get over it and be fine.”
Buffy’s brows furrowed at the usual
brush off of how Amy was and would be, Willow having said the same thing about her on numerous occasions.
Tara growled softly as she sent a glare
at Willow, but kept her retort of ‘No one is fine after you’ve screwed with them!’ to her self.
Willow was oblivious to everyone’s
lack of appreciation to her prowess, having been looking at Buffy and Tara, or more importantly the way they were standing
closely together with Tara’s arms around the Slayer.
Cami had been watching and listening to
everything, her eyes opening wide at Buffy being dead, and Amy being a rat. She
decided that this was a good time for a drink, picked up the remaining shot and drank it down.
All eyes turning to her as she slammed the glass back onto the tray. “Sorry,
I needed that.”
Buffy and Tara smiled at the woman, Willow
frowned, and Spike smirked. Then Cami, Buffy, and Tara turned to see how the
bitches handled the information.
Sandi and Sue were whispering softly back
and forth as they started betting on the rat, still not quite comprehending what the hell the people were talking about, but
what the hell.
Buffy growled softly as she overheard a
comment by one of them about giving a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘getting a piece of tail’, and Amy being
ripe for the picking and money in the bank.
“Easy, Tough Stuff, we’ve got
bigger fish to fry.” Tara whispered softly, giving the Slayer a gentle
squeeze and a kiss to the temple before they turned back to Willow, Amy, and Spike.
“You were looking for me, because? As if I didn’t know.” Tara
directed her last comment to Spike.
“I thought…” Willow frowned as she looked from Tara to Buffy, her eyes once again dropping to Tara’s arms wrapped
around the Slayer. “He said…”
She glanced back to Tara in confusion before turning to Spike. “You
said she was waiting for me? I hurried to change into something she’d like,
and whooshed on over here, and now it doesn’t look as if she’s waiting for me, I mean… she looks…” Willow finally took a breath as she turned back to Buffy and Tara, eyes going from
one to the other in confusion.
Tara snorted softly. “And you believed him?” Tara shook her head as
Willow nodded slightly that she had.
“One minute we’re there, the
next we’re here!” Amy added as she swept her arms out to indicate
the Bronze, smiling in awe of Willow’s powers. “It was so awesome...
and unsettling.” Her brows furrowed as the smile turned to a frown, her
hand rubbing her stomach.
Buffy growled as her eyes narrowed on the
Tara stiffened, blowing out a breath and
frowning as she mumbled. “You’re still borrowing power, Willow.” Tara sadly shook her head, leaning into the Slayer as she tightened her arms around
her. “Have you learned nothing?”
Buffy’s brows furrowed as she turned
to look at Tara, having heard the Wiccan’s whispered words.
It was just a simple…” Willow shut her mouth at the look of
anger in Tara’s eyes.
“Don’t!” Tara growled angrily as she leaned around the Slayer a bit to glare at Willow.
oh, she’s pissed!’ Buffy
had to smile at the force of the gentle Wiccan’s rebuke, deciding to keep her mouth shut to see where this led. But she was curious about the ‘borrowing
power’ Tara mentioned. ‘Willow
stole some of Tara’s memories, could she have stolen some of her powers, too?’
“I mean… I only…” She looked around for help, not finding any from Buffy, Spike, or the waitress, and
then frowning and shaking her head trying to stop her as Amy jumped back into the conversation.
“Simple? No way, that was some really powerful stuff! I’ve never…” Amy was cut off as she cheerfully began expounding on the spell Willow had done to
get them here in a flash.
Umm… let’s not go there. ‘Kay?” Willow glanced nervously from Amy to Tara, flinching at the look from Tara.
Amy’s eyes quickly flitted back and
forth between everyone, closed her mouth and took a step back at the anger radiating from everyone but Spike, who just looked
somewhat smug. Willow had briefly explained to her what had happened to him with
the Initiative and the chip they’d implanted in his head.
“You’re never going to get it,
are you, Willow?” Tara shook her head sadly at her ex-girlfriend. Turning her eyes on Spike, she didn’t miss the smirk quickly change to a look
of innocent dismay.
“I was just tryin’ to help…” Spike reached for the invisible hand that now had hold of his neck, a look of surprise
as he felt the fingers begin to tighten. “What the fuck?!”
“And you were hoping to accomplish
what, Spike?” Tara turned her anger on the neutered vamp, a spell to crush
his throat now in place.
Buffy looked from Spike to Tara and back
again as her eyes opened wide in surprise. Tara wasn’t actually touching
him, just holding a hand out as if she were gripping his neck. She felt a shiver
run up her spine with the power she felt coming from the Wiccan. Something she’d
only felt when major mojo was happening, but had brushed it aside as an errant Slayer sense they hadn’t told her about.
Spike suddenly found himself moving across
the floor, led by the hold on his throat as his back slammed into the wall. Apparently
he’d underestimated the woman. “Come on now! I just…” He trailed off with strangled sounds
as Tara’s hand closed a bit more, effectively crushing down harder on his neck.
Cami stepped aside as the vamp flew past
her, making a quick grab for the two glasses as she swung the tray out of the way.
She’s… Shutting up, now!” Amy quickly stopped speaking and closed her mouth, making a zipping motion across it and stepping back
a step as Tara’s head snapped her way.
Buffy nodded at Amy before smiling and kissing
Tara’s cheek as the Wiccan turned her head back to glare at Spike, softly whispering as she did. “She’s right.”
Tara barely nodded acknowledgement, but
her fingers lightly brushed on the Slayer’s stomach as her eyes drilled into Spike.
“Tara?” Willow took a step towards her ex, hesitantly reaching out to place a hand on her arm, but stopping as
Buffy sent a glare her way.
“Shut up, and don’t touch!” Buffy growled at Willow, gratified when the redhead snapped her mouth shut, quickly
dropped her hand, and stepped back from them. “I’m sure we’ll
get back to you in a minute.” She turned her head towards Tara, but her
eyes never left Willow, once again whispering out the side of her mouth for Tara’s ears only. “Right?”
Tara chuckled softly at Buffy’s now
uncertain question. “Yes, we will.”
Her lips turning up in an amused smile as she turned and softly kissed the Slayer before glancing back to a struggling
Spike. All the while ignoring Willow, as Buffy had that under control. “But first I have to teach Spike a thing or two.”
“Good.” Buffy laughed softly as she turned to smirk at Spike, who she knew had heard them, and smiling at the wide
eyed Cami that had just shuffled closer to them. “This should be fun.”
Cami only nodded as she stared in wonder
as the man struggled to break free from the invisible hold. She’d been
uncertain what had happened back at the bar before they’d come to rescue Buffy a few moments ago. Mike had said something about Tara being a witch, but she’d just thought he’d been joking. As in it being the polite way of calling her a bitch, because Tara had been picking
on him about something asinine that he’d done. Now she knew he wasn’t
kidding, whether he knew it or not.
Buffy sent another growl towards the gambling
duo as they were now betting on bloodshed and hospitalization versus death. “Have
you two ever thought about Gambler’s Anonymous?” Which only made
them smile and shrug. Shaking her head Buffy turned back to check on Willow before
turning to Spike as Tara started in on him.