As Tara took her place in front of the class, she couldn't help but think back to the awkward exchange she'd had near the pencil sharpener with the red head. <I don't know why I was so nervous talking to her... It was probably just first class jitters... yeah... that's what it was.>
Tara then took note that the red head <Willow> she reminded herself, had situated herself near the rear of the room, and seemed to be carefully arranging her paint tubes. <probably by color...> Tara thought.
"Hi my name's Tara Maclay and I'll be your instructor for this course." Tara informed the room full of people. Seeing Willow look up at her, Tara shyly adverted her eyes, instead looking at a woman in the front row sporting a 'stylish' Beehive hairdo.
Through the course of the two hour class Tara had more than once found herself sneaking glances at Willow from across the room.<Okay... this is going to be fun... how are you going to teach the class how to paint anything if you cant stop ogling people. No, not ogling people as in plural, more than one...but more like... person.... as in one woman in particular.> Tara corrected herself.
Tara glanced at her watch. <Class is almost up.> She noticed. Tara hadn't saved Willow for last purposefully. That's just the way it happened, since the red head had sat so far back. And now Tara was more than curious to see Willow's painting style, She couldn't picture the red head as being too terribly artistic though, even from a distance Tara could see from the way Willow held her paintbrush; in that too tight; rigid; grippy kinda way that perfectionists have a tendency to do. <More book smart then art savvy I'm betting,> but she was curious none the less.
To say that Willow was obsessing would be putting it lightly, if truth be told she was so busy watching Tara that she only half knew what she was pretending to be so immersed in painting.
As the blonde made her way around to each person, Willow noticed how she would adjust a paint brush in someone's hand or comment on the context of what they were painting.
The first assignment Tara had given the class was to paint something that interested them. Willow had decided on a 'Willow Tree' because the blond had said it was her favorite kind of tree. Willow knew that Tara was probably just being nice by saying that she liked Willow's name... <you know as opposed to Wow... Willow huh? That's a weird name.> In any event, Willow had found the cliché passive/romantic gesture too good an opportunity to pass up.
<She's coming this way...> Willow looked anxiously at the 'Tree thing' all smooshy and unapologetic in its ookyness, just laying there mashed into the canvas. <Its awful... I can't possibly let Tara see it... quick... stand in front of it!... that's it... just stand there in front of the canvas, casually obstructing her view... here she comes... now smile!> Willow smiled. <Not all 32 teeth at one time Willow.> she admonished herself, instantly toning it down to an unoffending amount of pearly whites. <Wouldn't want to frighten her away.>
Willow watched out of the corner of her eye as Tara approached her from the right. Willow's pulse quickening, she upped her perpetration, Holding the paint brush stiffly between shaking fingers, Willow managed a few awkward brush strokes against the canvas, just as Tara came to stand beside her.
"Hi there..." Willow said, placing her backside in front of the canvas.
"Whatcha got there...?" Tara asked, seeing that Willow had planted herself seemingly permanently in front of the canvas. Tara was amused when Willow resorted to meeting her step for step as she tried to peer around Willow's body in order to get a look at the painting. <She seems to be doing that on purpose...> Tara thought. Coming to the conclusion that Willow definitely didn't want her too see the painting right now, Tara ceased her attempt at catching a peek. This seamed to calm the red head down and she appeared to relax a bit. <At least her shoulders have come to their normal resting place under her head instead of up level with her ears.> Tara was glad to see.
"Its... uh... nothing really... Its not ready I mean..." Willow mumbled as she packed the canvas into the leather portfolio she'd bought just for this class. Willow didn't even notice that the paint was still wet and was currently sticking to the inside of the very expensive case. <Get yourself under control man!> Willow told herself.
Tara didn't know why, but this red head definitely intrigued her. There was something sweet in the way her nose wrinkled as she fumbled to put the wet canvas into her carrying bag. <Maybe she's not doing anything tonight...> Tara wandered. <Who am I kidding...she probably has a boyfriend waiting outside for her right now in his shiny black BMW...> Tara concluded. <A beautiful girl like her wouldn't be single that's for sure.> Tara thought, deciding to drop the subject for now.
<Why don't you just ask her out for coffee Willow? You know you want to... go on... just do it... what's the worst that could happen?... She could be allergic to coffee... but she'll go out with me anyway just to be nice and then she'll probably get really sick and have to go to the hospital... she would have to stay for days because the caffeine had poisoned her blood stream... then she would loose her job teaching because of all the missed days... and it would be all my fault...?> Willow rambled. <oh would you just do it already?>
"Tara...? ...Would you like to..." Willow was about ask Tara if she'd care to chance her supposed allergy to caffeinated beverages, when she happened to look down and see a silver ring gracing Tara's left hand.
<Abort! Ring spotted on left phalange!> Willow stopped mid sentence.
"Willow...?" Tara questioned softly when Willow had stopped in mid-question.
"Would you like to... share this piece of gum with me...? Willow said pulling a stick of gum from the pocket of her skirt and offering it to Tara. <Nothing like drowning your disappointment in a piece of Hubba Bubba> Willow thought gloomily.
"Gum...? ...I'd love some," Tara said Taking the offered half and popping it into her mouth. "Mmm... Chewy..." Tara said as she rolled the piece of gum around her mouth with her tongue.
<She may not be single...But she can definitely work a piece of gum that's for sure.> Willow thought to herself.
Tara felt Willow's eyes on her as she chewed the piece of strawberry flavored gum. Not knowing what else to do Tara started to blow a bubble. It started out fine but as it became mid-sized Tara could sense the elastic walls stretching to their limits <It's time to pull this baby in.> Tara told herself as she started to bring her lips around the pink protrusion but before she could suck the air out of the bubble, it successfully popped. Tara was mortified to say the least, she had been showing off for Willow but it had blown up in her face <Literally.> Little itty bitty sticky pieces of chewed gum were currently stuck to Tara's lips. She chuckled, softly as she self consciously scrubbed at the mess
Willow had never seen anyone so beautiful as Tara was, standing before her with gum all over her lips. Willow couldn't help it as slim fingers made their way to Tara's bottom lip, Cupping the side of her soft face Willow used her thumb to scrub at a piece of strawberry stickys. Seeing the look on Tara's face brought Willow swiftly to her senses though as she apologetically withdrew her hand from its soft resting place.
Tara felt her cheeks flush as Willows warm hand came to rest against her skin. <Wow...> Tara fought the urge to turn her lips into Willow's palm. Unmoving she stood there as Willow's thumb came into contact with her bottom lip. But no sooner than it happened it subsequently ended.
"I'm sorry... I... didn't... I mean... I should probably..." Willow stuttered, picking up her things, she started to back away from the blonde, toward the door.
"Go... right... yes... me too..." Tara said, Her skin still felt warm where Willow had touched her.
"Goodnight" Willow said, turning the knob in her hand.
"Willow...?" Tara called out softly. "Are you coming back next week?" She finished, wishing with all her might that the red head would say yes.
Willow knew that she should say no... <It would be less complicated that way.> But against everything she knew in her head Willow followed her heart.
"I'll be back." Willow nearly whispered, so low she thought Tara hadn't heard her. Turning she exited out the door.
Tara had heard her though... "She's coming back..." she whispered to herself feeling warmed by the thought of seeing Willow again. Tara grabbed her stuff off the desk, and turning the light off, she left the room.