Return to The Game of Love Chapter Thirty-Four

The Game of Love

Author: Shai
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Unfortunately neither Tara nor Willow are mine. Neither's anyone else in this fic for that matter!

The night went on, and more and more people started to join the group. The girls, who hadn't really bonded to a large extent during the tournament were now getting to know one another. While Willow enjoyed meeting new people, she also realized that it was taking up too much of her much in fact, that she wasn't able to talk to Tara much. The red head kept looking at the blonde, and quite often she would find herself looking into blue eyes that gazed at her as Tara spoke to someone else entirely. At times like that, a quick smile would be shared, before both girls looked elsewhere, their cheeks slightly flushed at being caught staring.

By 10 o'clock their group consisted of about 25 people, and was like a mini party zone. Willow had met quite a few people she knew, but realized that Tara, Anya and Cordelia were the most popular ones. The three had had more than half the people at the Bronze that night stop by to see how they were doing.

Right then Tara was having a conversation with a guy and a girl, who seemed very much to be a couple. Suddenly a slow number began to play, and the girl dragged her boyfriend to the dance floor. Seconds later Buffy and Zak were next to them, cuddling more and dancing less right there in front of everyone.

In the next few minutes their table was down from 25 people to 7. That was until Anya decided that she and Xander should dance to the slow romantic number, and they too, rose and walked to the dance floor.

Willow realized that there was no one between her and Tara, and smiling inside, she turned to the blonde, who was lighting a cigarette. "Quite a day huh?!"

"Oh you could say that!" the blonde grinned. Taking a pull of the cigarette, and then looking around she said "This place is packed!"

" come here often?" the red head asked.

"Well, it depends really. Anya and Cordy love the place, and so does Emily. For me its just a question of going with my friends. Although there was this party phase that I went through, where I was clubbing like 4 nights a week!" Tara laughed.

"Whoa! That must've taken some stamina!" Willow said, wide eyed.

"Stamina...and stupidity I'd say! It co-incided with the whole 'lotsa boyfriends in one year' phase!" Tara laughed again, shaking her head at herself.

Willow joined in the laughter, before she said "Why DID you have so many boyfriends in one year....?"

Tara regarded her with a thoughtful expression as she took another drag of her cigarette. "She's thinking of how to answer that" Willow realized, as she watched Tara's eyes.

Finally Tara blew out the smoke, and said "I just...I just went kinda crazy for a while..." She sighed, and seemed to consider something for a second. Willow waited patiently, not wanting to push Tara if she didn't want to talk about it. "I was an adult...and I'd never been in love, and I guess I didn't understand why I hadn't felt it yet..." Tara trailed off, looking thoughtful again.

"It?" Willow wondered what the blonde meant, before the realization that Tara was talking to her, actually TALKING to her hit her. She understood that this was a big deal for the blonde, and her heart did a miny salsa as she realized that Tara was REALLY TALKING TO HER! Again Willow sat still and watched Tara, not wanting her to stop opening up to her, and just as Tara was about to say something again, Willow's cell phone began to ring.

Tara immediately shut her mouth, and simply watched a Willow frantically looked in her small handbag for her cell phone. Answering it quickly, Willow said "Hello? Oz? Hi...."

Tara looked away, feeling slightly disappointed at the interruption. "What am I doing? I, Tara Maclay, the girl who doesn't talk to anyone, was about to explain myself to someone I barely know...." her own thoughts were interrupted as she felt a hand on her shoulder.

Looking up she recognized the person trying to get her attention. "Devon...Hi" she smiled.

"Hey Tara! How've you been?" Devon smiled.

"I've been good, what about you? I haven't seen you around in a while..." Tara said.

"Oh I've been cool too. Just busy you know, with college and stuff. I heard about the tournament! Congratulations!" he said enthusiastically.

"Thanks" Tara said, blushing at the compliment.

"Hey are you girl?" Devon was now looking at Willow.

Tara looked up to see that Willow had hung up with Oz, and was now putting her cell phone back in her bag. The red head smiled at Devon and said "I'm fine"

"You two know eachother?" Tara questioned, looking at Willow.

"Yeah" Devon answered before Willow had the chance to, and continued "She's dating a friend of know, Oz?"

Tara nodded her head, and sat back as the rest of the guy stated coming back to their seats, tired from dancing too much too fast.

"Anyway ladies, I'm gonna head over to my friends there" Devon said, pointing towards some students lounging around on the other side of the Bronze. "I'll catch up with you'll a little later", and giving Willow and Tara a small wave, he began to walk away.

Willow nodded her head and looked at Tara, who was now lighting another cigarette. The red head wanted to continue the honest conversation she was having with the blonde, but realized that everyone was back now, including Anya and Xander who were sitting between Willow and Tara now, and very openly falling all over eachother.

Letting out a sigh of frustration, Willow answered a question Samantha had asked her, as yet another person came up to greet Tara and Cordelia.

Continue to The Game of Love Chapter Thirty-Six

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