Return to Stratagem Chapter Four



Stratagem
CHAPTER FIVE

Author: Willow Watcher
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: I don't 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 (copyright 2005 Robbie Kelly)


The night time was always frightening to Tara. Of all the unexpected things that lurked in the dark. What unexpected experience her father would subject her to. And now it was even worse because Willow was there and being put in danger as well.

The house was completely dark inside, except for the street light that illuminated through the windows. Tara crouched down in the floor of the living room, leaning up against the wall with Willow beside her.

"What time is it?" Willow asked breaking the silence.

Tara jumped, "Umm..." Tara pressed the light on her watch, "Almost t-ten thirty."

"Did he say what time he would be here?"

"He d-didn't say." Tara said. Paranoia had set in. She looked around, poking her head up to look out the window that was beside her.

Willow leaned over and kissed Tara as she got off the floor. "I'm going outside. I'll be back in a minute."

Tara stood up, "You aren't g-going to l-leave m-me are you?"

Willow stroked Tara's arm, "No. I'm just going to move my car. Tara, I would never leave you. Never." Willow kissed the insecure blonde.

Willow walked down the hallway out the front door. Tara sat down on the couch. She heard Willow's car start. It sounded louder than it did before. She heard the car pull up to the side of the house. Tara sat there pressing the light on her watch. She watched the seconds move across the face.

<Come on Willow. Hurry up out there.> Tara thought as she looked around.

The front door opened.

"You f-forgot to turn your c-car off, Will."

The light came on. Tara squinted at the offending brightness. She adjusted her vision. Her eyes widened.

"I didn't forget shit, you little bitch! Daddy's home!" James said approaching Tara. "Aww now. What's the matter? You didn't miss me?

Thoughts were running wild in Tara's mind. One thing in particular, "Wh-where's W-W-Willow?"

"Oh!" James laughed, "Yeah, she had a little accident. Her head got bashed against the steering wheel. It's a shame too. She's cute Tare. Did you and she have fun?"

Tara raced for the kitchen. She had to get something, anything to protect herself. <Get a fucking knife and stab his ass!>

James grabbed Tara around the waist and slammed her on the coffee table. He pulled her hair, and rapidly pounded her head against the table, stopping before she passed out.

"Oh no. I want you awake for this." He stood in front of Tara, pulled her pants down and undid his. He pushed himself inside her. Tara screamed out in pain.

"Get off her, mother fucker!" Willow ran in holding her head with one hand and a gun in the other. "I said get up you bastard!"

He stood with a shocked expression. Tara scurried off the table and huddled down in the corner of the room. Willow never took her eyes off the man.

"Tara, you alright?"

Willow heard a whimper from the corner. No real response to her question.

"You son of a bitch! How could you do this to her?" Willow pointed her gun in the direction of his head.

James smiled and shrugged his shoulders, "Can I at least pull my pants up?" he asked, carefully bending down.

Willow nodded her head for him to continue.

With the gun still pointed at James, Willow walked over to Tara, "C'mon, stand up."

Willow helped Tara to her feet. She brushed a stray blond hair behind Tara's head and looked over towards James, who was gone.

Willow heard the front door bang against the wall. She sat Tara down on the couch. She ran down the hallway and out the door.

James fumbled around in his pocket for his keys. When he pulled them out they fell out of his hands, which gave Willow the chance to tackle him to the ground. Willow turned her gun around, hitting him in the head with the blunt end of the handle. "How's it feel you fuck?"

All movement from the man ceased.

Willow checked his pulse and then pulled him by his arms back into the house. She looked around outside making sure no one had heard or seen anything. She closed the door behind her.

"Tara. Come on sweetie. Wake up." Willow said standing over the blonde. She gently patted her cheek.

Tara woke up startled, throwing punches. Willow grabbed her hands controlling her. "Tara! Tara, it's me!"

Tara heard the familiar voice and wrapped her arms tight around Willow's waist.

"It's O.K. Tara." Willow held Tara, stroking her long blonde hair. "C'mon I need your help"

Tara looked up at Willow.

Willow pushed Tara's hair out of her eyes.

"I need your help baby." Willow put her hands under Tara's arms and pulled her up slowly.

The pounding of her head rushed through her. Tara sat back down. "G-give me a s-s-second."

"Alright, you just sit there. I'll take care of it." Willow leaned down and handed Tara her jeans.

Tara heard Willow straining, stopping, breathing hard then straining again. Tara turned her head enough to see Willow dragging her father, on the floor by his hands.

Willow stopped, put her hands on her hips and looked over at Tara, "Got any rope?"

Tara raised her hand and pointed into the kitchen. Willow followed the lead and looked in every drawer. She found a nylon rope. She wrapped it around each hand, pulling on it to test its strength. She walked back into the living room and turned James on his stomach. She put his hands behind his back and tied the rope tightly. She picked up his feet, tying them as well. Taking the bandanna off her hand, she twirled it around and shoved it in his mouth.

Tara rose off the couch, "We c-can't just leave him h-here."

"I know. Do you have a basement in this house?"

Tara walked to a storage room beside the kitchen. She opened a door revealing stairs. Willow waked down feeling around on the wall for a light switch. The lights came on and Willow looked up behind her, Tara's hand was still on the switch. Willow descended the rest of the steps. She looked around and saw a stack of metal chairs leaned up against the wall. She picked one up and placed it in the middle of the room next to the furnace. She walked back upstairs.

Tara was in the living room, standing over her father. The look on her face was haunting with no color or expression. "Let's get him downstairs."

"Tara, are you sure you're alright?" Willow said with concern.

"Let's just g-get him downstairs." Tara said again in a monotone voice.

Willow walked over and picked James up by his shoulders, while Tara picked up his feet

Willow placed him in the chair and with the remaining rope she secured his feet to the metal legs.

Tara reached over and took the bandanna out of his mouth. "Dad, wake up!"

The man slowly opened his eyes.

"How d-does it feel to be helpless?"

"Tara, why are you doing this to me? I'm your father."

Tara drew back her hand over her shoulder and smacked him across the face, splattering blood on the floor.

"I know who the fuck you are! You just don't forget who I am! Isn't that what you told me last night before you raped me, AGAIN!" Tara smacked his face again. Tara looked up at the ceiling.

She bent down to where she was face to face with him, "D-do you think that g-god sees us right now, dad? Do you think he knows about all th-those years you b-beat me and r-raped me?"

Tara stood up right, raised her hands and turned in a circle, "Oh god, c-can you see us?"

Willow just stood there in silence, she knew that Tara had so much pain and anger to let out, she dared not interfere.

Tara bent down again and looked into his eyes, "N-not so tough now are ya? What's wrong, afraid of t-two little girls?"

"You little bitch! Let me go and I'll show you who's afraid!" He twisted in the chair and pulled with all his might at the ropes.

"You don't want to mess with us, James. And as far as letting you go, I don't think so." Willow took her stand beside Tara.

Tara reached over and pulled the gun out of the brim of Willow's pants. She aimed the barrel at her father's head and pulled back the hammer.

Willow quickly shoved Tara's arm and the gun fired, making a hole in the concrete floor.

Willow took in a deep breath and gently pried the gun out of Tara's hand. "This isn't the answer Tara." Willow was afraid how Tara would react if she had actually killed him.

Tara looked over at Willow and gave her a sad smile, "You're r-right." She walked over to her father.

She clenched her fist, pounding it into his face until he was unconscious again.

Willow walked over and put her arm around Tara, "Let's go upstairs."

Willow opened the door to Tara's bedroom, "You coming to bed?"

Tara stood at a door, across from hers, "I w-want to look in his b-bedroom first. There's s-something in there he doesn't want me to s-see. Why else w-would he keep this on here?" Tara pointed to the pad lock on the door.

Willow walked over to Tara. She looked around the door frame, "Stand back."

Tara stood far from the side. Willow walked back, kicked the door tearing the lock off.

Tara entered turning on the light. "Help me look."

"What exactly are we looking for?" Willow asked scanning the room.

"Anything th-that looks important." Tara sat on the bed and searched in the nightstand.

Willow opened up the top drawer of the dresser. She brought out a yellow folder that was laying under clothes. Willow opened the folder and skimmed over the pages.

"Hey Tara, look at this?"

Tara turned her head towards Willow, "What is it?"

"It looks like a will or something." Willow stood there still reading.

Tara crawled down the bed and stood beside of Willow. Both of them held the document.

"What do you make of it?" Willow asked.

"I d-d-don't believe it! It's m-my moms will!" Tara exclaimed taking the paper out of Willow's hand.

Tara flipped the page over, "Sh-she left everything t-to me?"

Willow traced down the document with her finger, "That's not all!"

Willow began to read:

I give and bequest all my interest and the following to the persons or entities to the following:
The sum of $2,000,000.00 invested in Certificate of Deposits. These deposits were made on my daughters 7th birthday. I leave all to my daughter, Tara Beth Maclay.

Willow traced down the paper:

If the beneficiary is under the age of 18 at the time of my death...

"Blah, blah, blah," Willow said going over the legalities. "Here's what we need to know.

...to be held in trust until such beneficiary reaches the age of 18. In the event the Executor elects that such assets are to be held in trust for benefit of such beneficiary, I hereby nominate Ann Fields to serve as the trustee of such Testamentary Trust."

"O.K. W-Will, Laymen's terms here. I d-don't understand the legal mumbo jumbo." Tara said running all the terms in her head.

"Well, it means that when you reach 18 then you find this woman, Ann Fields and you and her go to the lawyers and get your money. It's probably more complicated than that, but I'm sure you get it." Willow explained then smiled.

"I w-wonder where my mom g-got all this money?"

"I don't know where but I know who has it now. Tara, you're a rich woman!"

"Well, n-not exactly y-yet, I w-won't be until the twelfth of this m-month."

Willow looked at Tara, "You can't wait three days?"

"Oh god! I t-totally forgot. It's the ninth." Tara said excitedly.

"Um...yeah." Willow said confirming

Tara sat on the edge of the bed. Her shoulders dropped.

"Tara? What's wrong?" Willow asked concerned. She sat down on the bed beside the distressed looking blonde.

Tara flopped back on the bed. "Oh My God! I am free!" She grabbed Willow's shoulder and pulled her down on the bed. She kissed Willow passionately. She started running her hands over Willow's stomach, her sides and caressing the side of her breast. Willow let out a long moan. She wrapped her arm around Tara. Their legs found their way between each others. Tara starting grinding herself on Willow's leg, moaning. She pulled back from the kiss, "Oh god Willow." She breathed out.

Willow stopped her movements. <Not now Willow!> Willow gently pushed Tara off her. She rolled off the bed and stood.

Tara looked confused, "Willow? D-did I do something wrong?"

"No baby. It's just I don't think you are ready and I don't want you to do something you'll regret. I mean sure, I would because hello sexy goddess right in front of me. I just want us to take our time. I don't want just sex Tara, I want love and the time for that will come soon. I promise."

Tara stood in front of Willow. She closed in for a tender kiss. She pulled back and laid her forehead on Willow's. "I understand. B-but I w-want you t-to know that t-time will come sooner than you think."

Willow gulped, "Uh...O.K." <Stupid thing to come back with Rosenberg. Babble queen my ass!>

Tara giggled. <Speechless Willow. Huh. That's interesting.>

"You wanna look around some more. There could be something else here." Willow stood awkwardly moving from one foot to the other.

Tara giggled again and shook her head.

"Great!" Willow turned and started searching in the closet.

Tara headed over to the chest of drawers.

Willow found a silver brief case. She placed on the floor, popped the locks and searched the contents inside. There were road maps, planners and office supplies. She looked in the pocket located on the upper part. She pulled out a badge. She recognized it right off. She held it close to her chest, looked around to see where Tara was. She quickly put the badge in her pocket. She picked up the case and sat it down on the bed.

"Here's some stuff." Willow said, her voice cracking with emotion. She cleared her throat as Tara approached.

Willow dumped all the contents. She sorted through all the different items. She picked up a lock of blonde hair that was tied with a pink bow.

Tara pulled the lock out of Willow's hand. She felt the softness. She put it to her nose trying to get the sent from it. Tears streamed down her face.

"Tara, what is it?" Willow asked.

"It's m-m-my mom's h-hair. This is the r-ribbon she w-wore all the time." Tara ran the hair over her cheek.

"Tara." Willow whispered out, "I'm sorry sweetie."

Tara wiped her eyes with the back of her hand. "It's O-O.K. I j-just wonder w-why he has this."

"I don't know. He's a fucked up pervert anyway. Let's just leave it at that." Willow looked at the contents on the bed. She picked up a sonogram film. "This must be you." Willow held the picture to the light.

Tara looked at the film. "I d-don't think so. This w-was taken seven years after I w-was born. Look at the date."

Willow calculated the numbers. "Huh. Well, wonder whose it is?"

Tara shrugged her shoulders. Willow put the paper down on the bed.

Tara picked up an address book. She thumbed through the pages. Every page was blank except for one.

"This is strange, Ann Fields a-address and phone n-number." Tara put the book in her back pocket.

Willow picked up various items and ran across multiple hotel receipts for the Reston Hotel in Medford, Oregon.

"Interesting." Willow commented.

"What?" Tara asked while looking through the briefcase.

"Some hotel receipts. The last one is dated for yesterday and there's at least fifteen more here."

"That explains the out of town trips h-he always takes."

Willow put the slips of paper in her pocket. She stretched out and yawned.

Tara yawned as well.

"I'm pretty much exhausted how about you?" Willow took Tara's hand into her own.

Tara shook her head.

"Well, let's get to bed then, O.K." Willow said.

Tara and Willow settled down in the bed. Willow's ears picked up on a repeated noise.

Tara rose up, "What's that?" She whispered.

"I'll be right back." Willow picked up her gun and walked out of the room.

She followed the noise down the steps. She carefully walked through the dark house. Turning the light on in the living room, she heard a cry for help.

She walked in the storage room and opened up the door. She cringed hearing the loud voice echo off the concrete walls. She ran down the steps.

James sat there screaming, until he saw Willow. "Let me loose, now bitch! Either you let me loose now or I swear to god I will kill you."

Willow walked closer. She reached in her pocket and brought out the badge she found and held it up for James to see, "Where did you get this?"

James smiled but didn't answer.

Willow approached closer. She pulled the gun out of her waist band and held it to his head. "I asked you where you got this."

"Oh my!" James let out a deep laugh. "You're the little brat. I should have recognized you right off."

"I'll ask one more time. Where did you get this?" Willow pushed the badge right in front of his face.

"I took it off his dead cold body after I..." James was disrupted when Tara came down the steps.

"Willow? Is everything a-alright?" Tara asked in a small voice.

Willow put the badge back in her pocket. "Yeah Tara, everything's cool."

"Oh Tara? Maybe you ought to ask you're little bitch here..." James started to say until Willow drew her fist back and punched him in the jaw.

The man's head flopped over to the side. Blood was dripping from his mouth and nose onto the floor.

Willow looked around at Tara. She was standing there with her arms wrapped around her.

"What w-was he talking about, Willow?"

Willow shrugged her shoulders. "I have no idea."

She put her gun back in her waistband. "Let's get you back upstairs."

Willow smiled and took Tara's hand and led her up the steps. Tara turned out the light and closed the basement door.

Willow walked into the bedroom and laid down on the bed. Tara turned on the light.

Willow sat up, "Tara? What's wrong?"

"Willow, I w-want to g-go."

"Go? Go where?" Willow stood up and made her way over to Tara.

"I j-just have to get out of h-here." Tara pulled the address book out of her pocket and flipped through the pages. "I w-want to go here." She handed it to Willow.

Willow took it and looked at the page Tara had opened. "Are you sure? I mean, sure you're sure cause you wouldn't have mentioned it unless you were. I mean, hey, it is late and you know it'll take us a good while to get there. We're talking about driving all night and maybe into tomorrow." Willow fidgeted with the book in her hand.

"I just c-can't stay here knowing I'm s-so close to g-getting away from him." Tara pitched her thumb over her shoulder.

"Well, if you're sure baby."

"I am." Tara moved in closer to the redhead.

"Then I shall be your personal chauffeur." Willow said in a seductive voice.

"You are, ya know." Tara whispered moving even closer.

Willow could feel Tara's breath. Smell that wonderful smell of arousal that lingered in the air.

"What, baby?" Willow brushed her lips against Tara's.

"Mine." Tara kissed Willow slowly, enjoying the feeling.

Willow pressed her tongue inside Tara's mouth. Tara moaned at the contact. Her hands instinctively moved up and down Willow's back pulling her shirt up slightly and placing her palms against the hot skin of the redhead. Willow took in a quick breath from the feeling. Her hand moved to the back of Tara's head, pulling her closer. Willow moved her other hand on Tara's hip jolting them together. Tara's legs were getting weak. She could feel the wetness growing, soaking her panties.

<Warning! Warning! Warning! Stop now! Don't do it!> Willow's mind was screaming. Willow reluctantly pulled her lips back, placing her forehead on Tara's shoulder.

Tara sighed at the lost contact.

"Umm...I say if we're gonna go, we best go now." Willow said breathlessly.

"Go.", were the only words Tara could get out. Her head was buzzing and her skin was on fire. <Damn it! I had to come up with the idea to leave. Sometimes Maclay, you're a moron.>

Tara stepped aside and reached under her bed for an overnight bag.

"Well, while you pack some things, I'm gonna go smoke." Willow said as she headed for the door. She turned around, walked back over to Tara and gave her a quick kiss.

Tara smiled and watched the redhead leave the room.

Willow walked outside and stood next to her car. She reached in her pocket for her cell phone.

"Giles, hey I know it's late but I have some news. I have James Maclay in the basement over here tied up."

Willow lit a cigarette.

"As far as I know he's alright. Still breathing n'all. How long is it going to take you to pick him up?"

Willow waited for the response.

"Five hours out, huh? Well, I don't think he's going anywhere. Just get you're boys together and round him up. Tara and I are leaving town."

Willow held the phone away from her ear at the screaming man on the other end.

"Giles calm down. She wants me to go to Baker City and find that woman Ann Fields. It's all about her mom's will, remember?"

"Well, you can advise me to not go all you want but I'm going. This is far from being over Giles. I told you what I have to do. Now if you aren't behind me in this, then back the fuck off!"

Willow saw the lights in Tara's room go off.

"I gotta go. Are you with me on this or not?"

"Good. I'll keep in touch." Willow hung up the phone

Willow walked back in the house. Tara was walking down the steps with her bag and her father's brief case.

"You ready to get outta here, sweetie?" Willow asked taking the brief case.

"Yep." Tara swung her bag over her shoulder.

"Well, go ahead and get into the car. I'll be there in a sec. Have to set up a few things." Willow put the case beside the door.

Tara walked out of the house. She walked out to the car and loaded her bag in. Suddenly she heard the faintest sound of music coming from the house.

Willow came walking out. She threw the case in the back seat of her car.

Willow started the car and pulled out of the driveway. "I need to stop off at my apartment and pick up some things, O.K."

"O.K." Tara said putting her seat belt on.

Willow pulled up to her apartment building.

"You wanna stay here? I'll just be a sec. I'm just gonna grab some clothes and my laptop." Willow said turning to Tara.

"I'll stay h-here." Tara said giving Willow a kiss on the cheek.

Willow patted Tara's leg and exited the car.

Tara leaned the seat back. <God I love that woman. I love kissing her and holding her. I'm going to make everything perfect for us.>

Willow quickly went into her apartment and ran into her room. She pulled open her drawers and pulled out some clothes and packed them in a gym bag. She opened up her closet and reached on the top shelf. She pulled out a box of bullets. She loaded her gun. <Good thing I didn't have to use this earlier.> She stuffed the box in the bottom of her bag. She walked into the living room and carefully packed her laptop in a black case. Willow walked around making sure that she had gotten all she needed and she left.

Willow opened the door to the car. "Well, next stop..." She looked over at Tara who was sound asleep. Willow smiled and brushed a strand of blonde hair to the side. She bent over and gently kissed Tara on the cheek. Tara whimpered and turned her head.

<She is just so adorable. God I love this woman.> Willow smiled, started the car and pulled out.


"Tara. Tara." Willow gently shook the blonde. "Tara, sweetie?"

Tara took in a deep breath. She opened her eyes trying to take in the surroundings. She looked out the window at a tall illuminated sign that read Reston Hotel. "Where are we?" Tara asked in a raspy voice.

"We're in Medford. I thought I would stop so we can rest somewhere other than this car." Willow exited the car and went inside.

Tara sat the seat upright. She opened the car door and took her time to stand up. When she got to her feet, she staggered but caught herself by holding the door. She stretched letting her muscles regain their feeling.

Willow walked out of the hotel registration office and walked over to Tara. "You feel alright?"

"Yeah. I'm j-just real tired a-and I smell b-bad and I must l-look hideous. I n-need a shower."

Willow closed the distance between them. "You could never smell or look bad. I personally think you are the most perfect woman I have ever met."

The two kissed gently and pulled back. Willow reached in the backseat for their belongings. She handed Tara her bag. She locked the car and the two walked inside.

They entered the room. It was efficient to their needs for their one night stay. Tara headed for the bathroom. "I'll b-be out in a little b-bit."

"Take your time baby." Willow plopped down on the bed.

She heard the sound of the water running so she reached in her pocket for her cell phone.

"Giles, sorry it's so late but Tara and I are at the Reston Hotel in Medford room 214. We stopped to get some rest. I found receipts in James' belongings that he stayed here. You might want to check it out. If he is broke like he claims, then he's getting his money from somewhere. This place is pretty high class."

Willow looked around the room. Her eyes widened when listening to the man on the other end.

"Uh, Giles what do you mean he was gone when you got there?"

She waited for the response.

"Oh god! She's dead." Willow whispered. "How did it happen?"

One hour earlier at the Maclay house.

Ms. Day had heard commotion coming from outside. She had dressed and made her way over to the house next door. Getting closer to the door, she heard music from inside. She rang the doorbell and waited but there was no response. She rang the doorbell again and knocked with the side of her fist. Still no response. She turned the door knob and found it unlocked. "Hello. Hello? Hello!" She yelled out but all she heard was the music playing. She walked further into the house. "Mr. Maclay? It's Edna Day from next door." She walked over to the stereo. "Devil music." She said turning it off. She heard a faint cry for help. "Is someone there?" She followed the sound into the kitchen and then into the storage room. She opened the basement door, "Hello?" She called.

"Help! I'm down here!" A man's voice reached her. Edna turned the light on and made her way down.

"Oh Lord!" She exclaimed sprinting towards James.

"Help me, please?" James said in a weak voice.

Edna made quick to untie his bounds. "Pastor Maclay. Who did this to you?"

She asked helping the man to his feet.

"Thank you." He said. He grabbed her by the shoulder, twirled her around. "Thank you so much." With one swift move, he snapped her neck, letting the body fall to the floor.

He reached into her pocket of her dress and found a set of keys with a keychain that said 'JESUS SAVES'. He ripped it off and putting in his pocket. "Hope you're right, Edna. You'll need all the saving you can get."

He walked out of the basement throwing the keys over his shoulder.

"Do you have any idea where he's headed?" Willow asked.

"Well, try and find out. We don't need anything fucking this up."

Willow heard the water shut off in the bathroom. "Hey I have to go. I'll call tomorrow. Bye" Willow said in a whisper and hung up her phone.

She reached over and picked up the remote and turned on the television.

A few minutes later Tara walked out of the bathroom with a towel wrapped around her hair and another around her body.

<I love hotel towels. Shows more Tara skin.> Willow thought as she watched Tara walk over to her bag.

Tara bent down revealing more skin. Willow tilted her head. Tara turned around. She raised one eyebrow and smiled, "See something you like?" <Oh, I am racking up on points here.>

"Uh huh." Willow squeaked out.

Tara pulled out a pair of boxer shorts and a tee shirt from her bag. She turned her back to Willow and pulled her boxers on under the towel. She walked away further, pulled the towel off.

Willow watched in awe. Her goddess stood there, half naked, just a few feet in front. Willow resisted with all her might not to go over and touch the angel's skin. To make love to her gently, sensually, beautifully, without hate, fear or anger.

Willow was brought out of her thoughts when she looked in the mirror on the wall. She saw the side view of Tara's breast. Willow felt her heart skip a beat. She watched as Tara took the towel off her head and the wet, dark blonde hair flow over her shoulders. Willow swallowed a lump in her throat. Tara pulled her tee shirt over her head and down. She looked over in the mirror and watched Willow quickly divert her eyes around the room. Tara smiled.

"Willow?" Tara said breaking the silence.

"Uh huh." Willow responded almost in a whisper.

"Are you g-going to take a shower?" Tara asked.

"Uh huh." Willow stood and made her way to the bathroom.

Tara continued getting ready for bed. She heard Willow singing in the shower. Tara giggled listing to the off tune version of 'Singing in the Rain'.

Tara heard a tweeting noise coming from the bed. She walked over and picked up a cell phone that was lying there. <Who would call at four in the morning? And when did Willow get a cell phone?>

Tara flipped the phone open, pushed a button and watched the display screen. The words SPEAKER ON flashed.

"Hello?"

"Willow?" A male British voice asked.

"Willow's in the sh-shower. M-may I take a message?" Tara spoke at the phone.

"Thank you dear. Tell her to call Giles as soon as she can."

"Sure. Any th-thing else?"

"No. That will be all." Giles said and hung up.

Tara flipped the phone shut and laid it on the night table beside the bed.

Tara dried her hair and waited for Willow to come out of the bathroom. Tara flipped through the channels on the television and found nothing to her interest to watch. She heard the knob on the bathroom turn. She quickly turned the television off, laid down and closed her eyes.

Willow walked out of the bathroom with a towel wrapped around her body. She looked around the corner and saw that Tara was asleep. Willow took her towel off her small frame body. She looked again to make sure Tara's eyes were closed. She reached in her bag and brought out a Bugs Bunny night shirt and panties to match.

Tara opened her eyes just enough to look at Willow. She knew that in the darkness Willow wouldn't be able to see clearly enough to see if her eyes were shut or not. She watched as Willow took her towel off and exposed her naked body. <Oh my god! Look at her. She is so beautiful.> Tara had to stifle a giggle when Willow pulled out her nightshirt. <Big bad Willow in Bugs Bunny night clothes? Now that is cute.>

Willow put her clothes on and combed through her wet hair. She flipped the light off and made her way over to the bed. She slowly slipped in making sure she didn't disturb Tara. Tara rolled over and put her arm around Willow's waist and straddled her leg. Willow breathed in deep and her eyes went wide. Tara's hands roamed under Willow's night shirt. <Oh no! This is not good.> Willow moaned when the blonde's hand reached under her breast. <O.K. It's good very good but the wrong time.>

"Uh Tara."

"Mmmm." Tara mumbled still trying to pretend she was asleep. She ran her thumb over Willow's hardening nipple.

"Tara sweetie, wake up please." Willow pleaded in a high pitched tone.

Tara kissed Willow's pulse point on her neck. Willow's eyes rolled back in her head.

"Oh God!" Willow whispered taking in the feel of Tara's touch. "I get the impression that you're definitely not asleep."

"Caught me." Tara said as she pulled back from the aroused redhead.

"You are so busted!" Willow giggled. "Did you enjoy my little striptease?"

"Very much so." Tara whispered in Willow's ear then sucked on her earlobe.

Tara's hand moved down Willow's stomach to her hip down her thigh then back up again.

Willow's hips bucked. "Uhh...uhhh T...Ta...Tara?"

"Yessss." Tara hissed into her ear. It sent chills down Willow's spine. Goosebumps rose up on her skin.

"You c-cold baby? I can warm you up." Tara cupped Willow's breast massaging it.

"N-n-no pretty warm here. Kinda hot actually. Very...oh god...extremely hot!" Willow babbled out weakly. "As much as...as I'm en...oh god...enjoying this..."

Tara moved her hand down to Willow's cotton covered crotch. Her thumb ran over the redheads clit.

Willow sprung off the bed. Tara sat up, "I'm s-sorry. I d-d-didn't m-mean...W-Willow?"

Willow ran her hand through her wet hair. "It's alright Tara. Believe me when I tell you it's not you. It's all me. Nothing to do with you at all. I want to; I do, but now is not the time. You understand?"

Tara's face was red. Tears streamed down her face, "I'm s-s-sorry."

Willow slipped back into the bed. She pulled Tara's head on her chest. "Shh. It's alright. Don't you be sorry for anything. Just go to sleep, baby." Willow put her arm around Tara and held her tight.

Tara snuggled up tight. <I shouldn't have moved so fast. I just want to show her that I love her.>

Willow rubbed her hand up and down Tara's back. She kissed the top of her head. <I want her so bad. All I have to do is wait. Wait just a few more days.>

"Good night baby." Willow whispered out.

"Night." Tara said sadly.

They both fell asleep.


Continue to Stratagem Chapter Six


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