Willow and Buffy pulled in the parking lot of Charzolla's at 7:45.
"I can't believe that cop! He pulled me over and I didn't even do anything!....Willow, you can uh.... let...go...of the arm rest now."
Willow looked at her hands and saw how hard she was gripping the rests. She let go and flexed her fingers trying to restart the circulation.
"Buffy, you ran two red lights...in a row." The blonde crossed her arms and countered almost childishly "That's not that big of a deal." Willow looked at her astonished and continued.
"Then, you almost hit the cop that pulled you over!"
"Yeah, well he could have let me off with a warning." Buffy mumbled as she got out of the car.
The red head looked incredulously at the recently vacated seat next to her.
"Is the night over yet?" She sighed as she opened the car door and got out.
Just glancing at the restaurant from the outside, you would wonder who in their right mind would eat there; once you entered you would wonder who in their right mind wouldn't.
The over all atmosphere of the place was inviting. People were chatting and laughing, ordering food and drinks. Some women sat at the bar sipping gingerly at their drinks, while some men ogled them from afar. The delicious smell of authentic Italian food seeped into every corner of the room, and invaded every nostril, including those of the new arrivals.
As the girls entered the restaurant, they were greeted with a warm male voice thick with accent. "Welcome to Charzolla's! It would be my pleasure to seat you." Buffy grinned at the adorable waiter. "Actually, we are supposed to meet a couple of friends.." She scanned the room for a familiar face and upon seeing it she said "And I think I just spotted him."
"O.k. Well if you need anything please do not hesitate to ask." He said as he smiled and walked over to a nearby table.
"Buffy, why do I have to be here? Why couldn't you meet with Xander and his friend. I bet he is creepy, and smelly. Like that guy Xander used to work with. Tim. He called you non stop after meeting you for like two minutes, and he smelled like putrefied meat and..."
"O.K. Willow, I'm only gonna tell you this once; First off, it's not a guy, it's a girl. Second off she is new here in town and doesn't have that many friends from what I understand so we are gonna make her feel welcome, and third off I'm not leaving you in your room all day and night just to sleep and wallow in depression. You're here and you're gonna have a good time damnit!" She stormed off in the direction of the table where Xander was sitting, leaving a surprised Willow in her wake.
When the two got to the table, they were greeted with Xander's usual salutation for when they were supposed to be somewhere at a certain time. "Hey Buffy. Hey Will. What kept ya?"
Willow sat down across from Xander as Buffy sat down beside him. "We just kinda got...held up...ya know traffic." Buffy said not looking over at Willow.
"Yeah. Traffic." Willow said half laughing. Buffy kicked her under the table and Willow mouthed "OW" in her general direction.
"So where's Tara?" Buffy asked changing the subject.
"She went to the bathroom." Xander said looking at Willow as she half disappeared under the table to rub her shin.
"Will are you O.K.?"
"Yeah. Fine." She said reappearing to answer the young man. "So where exactly did you meet this girl?"
"Well I--" He was cut off by the waiter.
"Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen. What can I start you off with tonight?"
"There is another girl here but she is in the bathroom, but never fear she told me what she wanted to drink. A glass of Malyessia." He said as he looked at the waiter proud that he could actually remember what she had said. The waiter looked at him like he had grown an extra head. "Um.. Xander... do you mean Malvasia." Willow asked trying to hold the laugh in.
"Yeah, That." He said pointing at the red head.
As the rest of them ordered their drinks, they were joined by the blonde. Xander met her as she got to the table and introduced her.
"Guys this is Tara Mclay. Tara these are my best friends Willow Rosenburg and Buffy Summers." He said as he pointed to each of the girls as he said her name.
"Hey Tara. Nice to meet you." Buffy said as she held out her hand for the blonde to shake.
Tara grinned "You too."
Willow sat spellbound for a moment. Wow. Was all she could think as she stood up and shook the blonde's hand.