Willow sat at the register of Mr. B's and played with some toys they had on display. She had finished her homework and accidentally forgotten her book so she had little to do besides play with the $5 novelty toys. She had arranged the troll dolls in true marching band fashion, checking to make sure the lines were perfect as she hummed their field show tune. She heard the phone next to the register ring looked to see it was coming from Tara's house.
"Hi Honey." She greeted with a smile on her face.
"Hi Sweetie. Having fun?"
"Yeah, boring night, I forgot my book." Willow pouted.
"Aww, poor thing. Whatever will you do, work maybe?" Tara teased.
"Hey no fair, I am working, it's not my fault the store is spotless and I haven't even seen another human for going on 45 minutes. What are you doing?"
"Just finished my homework and am now sitting in my room listening to music."
"What are you listening to?"
"The radio. 93.3"
"Cool, that's my favorite station."
"Yeah mine too. I asked my parents about tomorrow and they are cool with you coming over."
"Good, um, that's good." Willow said a little nervous about tomorrow.
"Are you sure, you sound nervous." Tara questioned.
Willow smiled, it seemed like Tara knew her a little better than she knew herself sometimes. "Yeah I guess a little, I mean meeting the parents is kind of a big thing. I mean it's kind of fast and all, are we going too fast?"
"Willow you don't have to do this if you don't want to. And as far as the fastness goes, I guess it is kind of fast, but I know how I feel and I want my parents to meet you because you are such a great person and a big part of my life now. But, whenever you are ready I don't want to push."
"No I want to, I guess I'm just scared. No one has ever had me over to meet their parents before. Oh hey look I see some humans." Willow pointed out.
"In your store?"
"Yep, they went to the back, probably for some late night gummy goodness."
"Ok well I'll let you get back to work."
"OK, will I see you 2nd hour?"
"Yeah I might be a little late, I need to talk to Mr. Anderson about something."
"Ok see you tomorrow."
"Sweet dreams Willow." Tara said before hanging up.
Willow removed her troll marching band from the register in preparation for her customers.
"Hey Wills." Xander said stepping into the store with Oz on his heels.
Willow whipped her head around to see her two friends enter the store. "Hey guys, what are you up to?"
"Not much, guess what." Xander said obviously overjoyed at something.
"What." Willow played along.
"Guess who just flirted with me?"
"Um, I really don't think so." Willow smirked.
"She did, didn't she Oz?"
"Um, not really. She did say hi to us in passing." Oz replied.
"Dude, back me up bro." Xander said obviously disappointed.
"She basically acknowledged our existence." Oz said.
"Still a plus, she's friends with that Anya chick, I need to get me some of that."
"Ugh gross." Willow made a disgusted face.
"What she's not gross." Xander defended her.
"No I mean you and her going out gross. Plus she's kind of a B." Willow said.
"Hey that's not nice to talk about your girlfriends friends like that." Xander pointed out.
"You're right, I don't really know her so I shouldn't say that."
"When do you get off?" Oz asked.
"9, I am finished cleaning the store so just waiting for 9."
"We're going to have a jam session at Oz's, you should come by." Xander said picking up a troll doll and making it walk across the counter.
"Ok, I will. I finished my homework so I'll swing by when I'm finished here."
Willow finished up with everything a little before 9, she prayed no one came in during the 10 minutes she had cashed out and 9 o'clock. No one did so right at 9 she shut the bars to the store and walked to her car. She pulled up to Oz's house a few minutes later, but didn't see Xander's car. She approached the backdoor that lead to Oz's room and lightly knocked. Oz opened the door and ushered her in to his room.
"Where's Xander?" Willow asked as she looked around the room. It was a little dark and being in the basement didn't help.
"Oh, um he had to go somewhere so looks like it's just us." Oz said.
Willow felt a little weird, there were no drums out, there was soft music playing in the background and little red Christmas lights were strung around the room.
"Where are your parents?" Willow asked staying close to the door.
"They are gone for the night. Come here." Oz said holding out his hand. Willow didn't take it, but walked more fully into the room. She was well aware that Oz had a crush on her, but he was giving off some freakishly weird vibes tonight. She had never actually been alone with him before, it was always a group of people.
"Where are the drums?" Willow asked.
"Oh, um, I thought maybe we could just talk. Get to know each other." Oz said taking a seat on his bed and patting the side next to him.
Willow was getting seriously freaked out. "Maybe I should go." Willow said backing toward the door.
"No wait." Oz said jumping off the bed and grabbing Willow by the upper arm.
"Oz, get off." Willow struggled out of his grasp.
"No, I'm sorry I just...don't leave. I just want to talk, like friends, we are friends right." Oz said having loosened his grip and stood a few feet from Willow.
"What do you want to talk about?" Willow said now standing against the wall with her arms crossed. She wasn't sure if she was just making all this up in her head. She got the feeling like Oz didn't really want to talk, but she felt bad for overreacting, but the pain in her arm told her to get the hell out.
"How are you and Tara?"
Willow furrowed her brow. "We're fine." She said cautiously.
"Have you guys done it yet?" Oz spat before he could censor himself.
"I don't think that's any of your business." Willow stated angrily.
"Come on we're friends right?" Oz said stepping closer. "Xander and I talk about our love life all the time." He said stepping closer again. He placed his arms on the wall, one on each side of Willow's head trapping her. "Who wouldn't want to make love to you, you are so beautiful Willow." He said looking in her eyes. "If you give me the chance, I can show you love like you have never known." He removed one hand and brought it up to her hair and ran his fingers over the locks. This gave Willow the chance to escape. She ducked under his arm and made a break for the door and ran upstairs and out to her car. She fumbled with her keys and tried starting her car, but it wouldn't start. Damn piece of Swedish engineering. She cursed in her mind as she saw Oz appear from around the house. She opened the door and got out of her car and started running. She heard Oz call after her.
"Willow please stop, I'm sorry." But she kept running, she had no idea where she was when she finally stopped. Her heart pounded and she felt weak, she broke down and started to cry. She reached a pay phone by a bus station and dialed Tara's number.
Tara sat on her bed in her pajamas reading the latest article in American Cheerleader when the phone rang. She saw it was Willow and a smile graced her face.
"Hey you." She answered.
Willow had tried to control her crying enough to make the call, but when she heard Tara's voice she broke down again. "Tara..." She managed to get out before sobs took over.
"Willow." Tara said now sitting up in bed completely alert and scared for the redhead. "Willow what's wrong."
"I...I need...a ride." Willow said between sobs.
Tara was now in full freak out mode, she grabbed her shoes and rushed out of her room. "Willow baby, where are you?"
"I...I don't know." Willow sniffed and looked around, she was in some parking lot with a bus station. "I'm on Easter, there's a church and a parking lot, I'm close to the mall. I was at Oz's and my...my car...so I just ran...I was so scared"
"Baby it's ok, I'm on my way. I think I know where you are. Are you safe there?" Tara asked throwing on her jacket.
"I...I think so." Willow said looking around and wiping her nose on her sleeve.
"Just stay there, I'll be there in 5 minutes." Tara said before hanging up the phone.
She entered her mom's office when she saw the light still on.
"Mom I have to go pick up Willow."
"Tara its 10:30." Her mom replied.
"I know, she's really freaked out and her car wouldn't start, she doesn't even know where she is, I have to go." Tara said getting more and more scared.
"Ok, just call me and let me know what's going on."
"Ok." Tara said running out the front door.