Return to Desert Heat Chapter Three

Desert Heat

Author: Willow Watcher
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters of BtVS, they all belong to Joss Whedon and those others out there who have a claim in the series and all other things dealing with Buffy, but I wrote this story. The other characters are mine.

Tara looked around at the art that decorated the walls in Willow's living room. One in particular caught her attention. She placed her hand over her chest as she approached the framed painting. She held her other hand out and gently took her finger and traced but not touching the brush strokes.

"That's my favorite piece." Willow said leaning against the door frame. "When I was looking at the art gallery, I don't know how to explain it but I was instantly drawn to it."

Tears sprung to Tara's eyes as she turned to face the redhead.

"Wow, I've never seen that reaction to a painting." Willow walked closer and placed a hand on Tara's shoulder. "You O.K.?"

"That...that..." She tried to speak around the constriction in her throat.

"That's a Rose Wilson original." Willow walked around Tara and stood looking at the painting. "The way she caught the woman and child in this piece; it almost looks like a photograph instead of a painting." Willow looked long and hard at the painting. Her eyes widened as she looked from the art work over to the teary blonde that stood there speechless. Willow giggled. "If I didn't know any better I would say that the child in this is a younger version of you."

"It is." Tara said almost in a whisper.

"What?" Willow asked totally taken back.

"That's my mother and me. Rose Wilson is or...was my mother." Tara wiped the tears that trickled down her cheek. "She died when I was seventeen. I miss her so much."

"I'm sorry." Willow whispered not really knowing what to say in this situation.

"That was one of her earlier pieces and I couldn't imagine anyone else who deserves this," She looked into Willow's green eyes. "more than you."

The blush that rose on Willow's face matched her hair. "I...I just...I don't know what to say, Tara."

Willow's heart clinched seeing the saddened look on Tara's face. "I...I want you to have it."

"Willow no, I couldn't. This is yours. I have my own collection."

"But Tara, your Mom painted it and this is the ONLY painting. I don't feel comfortable in keeping it." Willow approached Tara and placed a hand on her shoulder. "Please. It would make me feel better."

Tara saw the look on Willow's face. 'How can I deny her anything?' She thought. A smile crept on her lips. "Thank you."

Willow bounced on her feet. She went over to the wall and removed the painting.

"But..." She smiled seeing Willow turn around. "you have to do something for me."

"As long as it doesn't involve petting horses or touching frogs, I'm all for it." Willow saw Tara's confused look. "Pony and frog fear." She said with a short explanation.

Tara giggled. "Nothing that complicated I promise. I would like a kiss."

Willow smiled and carefully placed the painting on the floor. She sauntered over to the blonde. "I think I can handle that."

She wrapped her arms around Tara's waist only to have arms wrapped around her shoulders. She moved in closer and the soft touch of Tara's lips immediately caused her eyes lids to close.

Tara thought she had died and gone to heaven. Willow was so beautiful and kind, she couldn't resist in asking for the mild intimate touch.

As the kiss intensified, Tara and Willow's legs started to become weak. The stumbled until they both collapsed on the couch. Without breaking the kiss, Willow moaned as she felt Tara straddle her.

Pulling back, Willow looked into Tara's eyes. "Well would you look at that?" She said motioning at their current position. "All snuggly on my couch."

Tara smiled with a seductive grin that took Willow's breath away. Tara leaned in to whisper into Willow's ear. "I know somewhere else I'd like to get snuggly with you."

Willow put her finger on her chin. "Now I wonder where that would be. The kitchen counters? No. Those are hard and kinda cold. Oh, how about the kitchen table? I could put a table cloth on top so we won't get a chill. Humm, maybe the floor? Carpet's all nice and soft but lying on something where people tread in dust might not be a good idea. There's always..."

The redhead's babbling was cut short with soft luscious lips on her own. Tara pulled back a little. "I was hoping for something softer like a bed."

Willow grinned. "That would have been my next suggestion."

Their lips moved in closer together. "Tara?"

"Tara? Are you alright?" Willow walked closer to the blonde and placed her hand on her shoulder.

"Huh?" Tara looked around. She shook her head trying to get the effects of her mini dream out of her mind. She shifted her hips around to shake off the feeling that had moved south.

"I was telling you about my pony and frog fear and you kinda spaced out for a minute."

"Oh, sorry. My mind wonders away from me sometimes." She blushed and lowered her head a bit.

"You too. My mind goes gets on a one way track sometimes and I end up...uh..." Now it was Willow's turn to blush. She smiled sheepishly and took in a deep breath.

"End up where?" Tara asked cocking her head to the side.

"Uh..." Willow looked around frantically. Her eyes landed on her 'old faithful'. " computer!" She dodged around Tara and sat down at the desk and booted up the machine.

Tara shrugged and pulled up a straight back chair at the right side of Willow.

"Would you like to see some of my designs? I normally don't show anyone but in this case, I'll make an exception." Willow grinned as Tara nodded her head.

After a few seconds and menus brought up, Tara was in awe of the intricate details that were shown to her on the monitor. "I have never seen anything like this before. It's a complete walk through. How did you do that?"

"Oh, it's simple really." Willow clicked on a few icons. Words, numbers, signs and symbols littered the screen. Willow scrolled down and pointed at one part. "See that right there."

Tara arched her brow. "Yes. The middle of garble compacted among other garble."

Willow rolled her eyes. "Just watch." She typed in the blonde's first name. Clicking some more icons, Willow returned back to her 3D program. She reached over and turned her speakers on.


"Cool!" Tara exclaimed bouncing in her seat.

Willow pointed at the mouse. "Take a look around."

"Oh no. I couldn't. I'm not all literate with the computers and I might mess it up." Tara said as she looked over at the redhead.

"Nonsense. I guarantee it is totally safe. Just push the mouse forward to well go forward and if you want to go to the side, just push it to either side you want. Go back, pull the mouse back." Willow said as she demonstrated.

"O. K." Tara took control of the mouse with shaking hands. She pushed the mouse forward too fast and the picture on the monitor went totally white. "Oh God! I told you I would mess it up."

Willow giggled. "You didn't mess it up. You just ran into the wall. Here let me show you." Willow placed her hand over Tara's on the mouse. Both women closed their eyes but opened them looking at the monitor.

Willow pushed the mouse backwards gently and led Tara through the computerized home. Tara's eyes reflected sheer amazement. She grinned more and more as the screen moved into another room. After ten minutes of totally exploring the home, Willow clicked on the mouse a few times and the program ended.

"THANK YOU TARA FOR EXPLORING THE ORIGINAL ROSENBERG DESIGN. HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY." Willow's voice came through the speakers followed by soft music.

Tara sighed and removed her hand from the mouse. "That was so cool."

"I'm glad you enjoyed it." Willow shut her computer down and turned to face the blonde with a smile. "Maybe one day you will want me to design a house for you. Free of charge of course."

"Oh I couldn't ask you to do that. You've already given me so much." Tara pointed at the painting leaned against the wall.

Willow smiled brightly. "It would be my pleasure. Just let me know what you want and I could mail the program to you in a week. I'm sure someone in California can help you with the computer stuff."

"I'll think about it." Tara blushed and lowered her head.

Willow put her finger under the blonde's chin and raised her head and their eyes connected. "Do you know how beautiful you are?"

Tara swallowed the lump in her throat. Words wouldn't come out of her mouth so she settled for shaking her head.

"Well, I'm here to tell you that you are." Willow leaned forward and placed a small kiss on Tara's cheek.

Tara smiled but without warning she had to stifle a yawn. "Excuse me."

"Yeah, it's been a long day and night for you. Go and get some sleep and I'll see you tomorrow. Maybe we can hang out a little before you leave out." An ache ripped through Willow's chest.

"I'd like that. If it's not too much trouble can I use your phone in the morning? I need to call my friend." Tara asked. Surprisingly to her, sorrow filled her heart. She didn't want to leave Willow but she knew there was no way she could stay. "I'll pay whatever the cost is."

"Totally complementary. It comes with the room." Willow giggled a bit.

"Thanks." Tara sighed. "I'd...I'd better go." She pitched her thumb over her shoulder towards the door.

Willow stood up followed by the blonde. The redhead opened her door and Tara stepped around and stood outside.

"Thank you for tonight. I really had a great time." Tara said wrapping her arms around herself to keep from pulling Willow to her and kissing her wildly.

"I'm glad. Maybe sometime you can come back and we can do it again. I'm sure Xander would love it." Willow laughed followed by the sound of Tara's laughter.

"Yeah, I would like that." She couldn't help but reach out and rub Willow's arm. "I'll see you in the morning. Goodnight Willow."

"G'night. Sweet dreams."

"You too." Tara smiled sweetly and walked to her room.

Both women looked at each other for a moment standing in the doorways. Smiling, Tara entered her room and closed the door with an almost silent click.

Willow closed her door the same way.

Both women walked over and placed their hands against the wall mirroring the exact same spot. Sighing they both pulled away at the same time.

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