Randon Acts of Romance
She glanced over at her mom driving. She still could not believe her mother had dragged her to this whole in the wall town. She had been quite happy in LA but her parents divorced and she was now stuck in the middle of Podunk City. She wanted to stay with her dad but her parents wouldnít let her. But at least she got to spend the summer in LA. She had not arrived in snoresville until yesterday.
As the car stopped in front of the school entrance she glanced toward it and the students milling around. She took a deep breath and reached for the door handle.
Joyce: Buffy, it will be fine. Youíll see. You will make lots of new friends.
Buffy just nodded. She knew better than to say anything else. The decision was made and her senior year was taking place here. Wherever here was. She climbed out of the jeep and headed for the school.
As she moved up the walk she could feel all the curious stares. She took another deep breath and told herself it would be okay. It helped until she saw the three girls clustered together. Each of them wearing their cheerleading outfits. Buffy wanted to cry. This was her senior year and if she was in LA she would be prancing around in her own cheerleading uniform. She gritted her teeth in frustration and marched into the school and toward the office.
Buffy sat staring at the man as he printed out the paper from the computer.
Mr. Flutie: Here you go Buffy. I am sorry that you are not completely pleased with the schedule but seeing you are registering so late there is only so much we can do.
She just nods and takes the paper. He leads her out into the hall.
Mr. Flutie: I think you will like it here once you get settled
She just nods as he scans the hall.
Mr. Fluite: Harris, come here.
The gangly boy hurries over.
Xander: Yes sir, Mr Flutie, sir.
Mr. Flutie: What did you do go to military camp over the summer?
Xander: No, I was trying toÖÖÖ
He stares at the petite blonde. Flutie waits for him to continue then speaks.
Mr. Flutie: Well I need you to show Miss Summers to her homeroom.
Xander: Sure. This uh, well this way Miss Summers.
Buffy: You can call me Buffy.
Xander: Uh right, uh Buffy.
They walk down the hall and Buffy hands him her schedule.
Xander: Well if you are an S then you will be in senior homeroom three.
Buffy: An S?
Xander: Summers. Homeroom is by last name. Iím in homeroom one.
Xander: You will be in with Willow.
Xander: Willow Rosenburg. Sheís a friend.
Xander: No way. Just a buddy.
Xander: Library science?
Buffy: I know, lame but late registration had to take what I could get.
Xander: No, not at all. Willow is taking it too. She loves the library.
Buffy rolled her eyes knowing that this Willow was sounding boring already. She glanced over at another group of cheerleaders and her heart twisted. The brunette appeared to be holding court. Buffy knew from the small pin on her sweater, that she was the captain. Buffy wondered if she had stayed in LA if she would have been chosen captain.
Xander: Here we are.
He hands her the schedule and she compares the room number.
He walks away and waves. She looks around the hall once more and notices the cheerleaders staring at her. She forces a smile on her face and enters the homeroom.
She steps into her second class after wandering through the halls. She stands looking for an empty seat and walks to the only one she sees on the front row. He eyes glance behind her at the others. She notices the cheerleading captain and smiles. The girl smiles back as the teacher greets the class. Buffy turns around and forces herself to listen as the teacher drones on about the books and term papers they will cover during the year. She nearly bolts when the bell rings.
Escaping to the hall she stops as a hand touches her arm. She turns and looks into the green eyes of the cheerleading captain.
Cordelia: If you donít know, I am Cordelia Chase.
Buffy: Iím Buffy Summers.
Cordelia: Well Buffy, welcome to Sunnydale High.
Buffy: Thanks I guess.
Cordelia: You are from LA right?
Cordelia: So what brings you to our little slice of nothing.
Buffy smiles at the euphanism.
Buffy: My mom. She wanted a fresh start after the divorce.
Cordelia: Parents, always thinking of themselves.
Buffy: Donít I know it.
Cordelia: So why your mom pick here?
Buffy: She always wanted to own an art gallery and she found one for sale here. The guy died or something. My dad helped her finance it and here we are.
Cordelia: So she bought the Anderson Gallery. Well she will get to know my dad real well. He is constantly buying more artwork for the house and his office.
Cordelia: Love the shoes. Italian leather, right?
Buffy: Yeah. I kinda burned up dadís credit card this summer to pay him back for this little move.
Cordelia: Got to make them pay.
Buffy: I guess. Well I need to find my next class.
Cordelia: What is it?
Buffy: Library Science.
Cordelia: You have to be kidding.
Buffy: Not my idea. Principal said everything else was taken.
Cordelia: Well let me guide you to the library.
Buffy: I guess I canít put it off any longer. I have to face my terrible fate.
Cordelia: You just hang with me and mine and it will be okay.
They stop outside the library and Cordelia moves off. Buffy takes a deep breath and pushes open the massive door. She steps in and looks around the dark dreary room. She notices the sole occupant. The red-head seems embroiled in her computer. Buffy moves closer:
Buffy: Hi, I am guessing you are Willow.
Willow: Yes Willow, that is me.
Buffy: Well I am Buffy and I guess we are the class.
Willow: You are taking library science?
Buffy: Donít ask
She glances around the room againd.
Buffy: So where is the teacher?
Willow: Oh that would be Mr Giles, the librarian. He is off trying to track down a shipment of books that never got here. Seems some of the teacher are getting upset.
Buffy: Oh so we just sit here?
Willow: Well you can help me. I am trying to input the card catalog into the computer. Mr Giles hates computers but we are trying to get him into the new age.
Buffy: Stone age type?
Willow: Not that bad but close.
The doors swing open and Xander saunters in.
Willow: Xander, what are you doing here. Shouldnít you be in class.
Xander holds up a pink piece of paper.
Xander: Li-Brar-Y Pass.
Willow: First day of school and you already suckered a teacher out of one?
Xander sits down straddling the back of a chair.
Xander: Nope. Actually, Miss Sutters asked me to come down and check on her order of Shakespeare books.
Willow: Well I suggest you forgo that little inquiry and head back to class.
Buffy: Seems to be a sore subject at the moment.
Xander: Ah gotcha.
Giles steps out of his office.
Giles: Xander, donít call me that and why are you here?
Xander: Just leaving, just leaving.
He takes off out the door.
Willow: Giles, look, we have help.
Giles: Ah, well you must be Miss Summers. Mr. Flutie informed me to expect you.
Buffy: Thatís me.
Giles: Well, uh Willow can show you what she is working on and we will discuss your duties later.
He walks back to his office.
Buffy: Is he usually so stiff?
Willow: Heís British. I think that is just how they are.
Buffy: Hmmm. Well I guess you should give me something to do.
She turns on the other computer and shows Buffy how to enter the cards. Buffy sighs.
Buffy: Well at least this will not strain my brain too much.
They sit quietly keying.
Willow: You going to the Bronze tonight?
Buffy: The Bronze? Whatís that?
Willow: Oh itís the local club for the high school and college crowd. They are having a live band tonight because of the first day of school and all.
Buffy: You going?
Willow: Xander wants to so probably.
Buffy: He says you are just friends.
Buffy: But I kinda sense you want more.
Willow: God, am I that transparent?
Buffy: No, I just recognize the signs. Iíve been there.
Willow: You? You could have any pick of the guys.
Buffy: Not quite. I wanted this one guy Tyler for so long and he never even noticed I was alive. Well until recently that is
Willow: So what happened?
Buffy: I moved here.
Willow: That has to suck.
Buffy: You are telling me. So this Bronze is the place to go?
Willow: Oh yeah. Everyone goes there.
Buffy: Well I might have to check it out.
She stands looking through her closet.
Buffy: Hi Mom.
Joyce: What are you doing?
Buffy: Looking for something to wear.
Joyce: You going out?
Buffy: Well I was going to ask you of course. The kids said there is this club and they have a band tonight. A sorta welcome back to school thing.
Joyce: The Bronze?
Buffy: You heard of it.
Joyce: A couple of my customers have mentioned it.
Buffy: Does that mean no?
Joyce: Actually no. They say it is a safe place for you kids.
Buffy looks at her.
Joyce: Oh not too safe mind you. But well no alcohol or drugs. You now what I mean.
Buffy: I do. So can I go?
Joyce: Long as you are home by curfew. It is a school night.
Buffy: I will, promise.
Buffy enters the dark noisy club and looks around. She walks slowly around the place. She glances at the band and then looks over toward a pool table. A group of college age guys are playing and she pauses to watch. As she observes a blonde setting up his shot, she feels eyes on her and looks over at one of them. His brown eyes seem to penetrate her skin and she quickly turns away. She scans the crown and sees Willow perched on a stool nursing a soda. She hops up beside her.
Willow: You came.
Buffy: Uh huh.
She looks around the club.
Buffy: So where is Xander.
Willow: Not here yet.
Buffy: You thinking he will show?
Willow: Not sure.
Buffy: Donít tell me you are going to sit here all night on the happen stance he wanders in.
Buffy: Come on. You want Xander, you have to go for it girl. Let him know you want more.
Willow: Is that what you did with Tyler?
Buffy: Actually no. But he had a girlfriend. There isnít another girl is there?
Willow: With Xander? Nope. No girl.
Buffy: Well then what are you waiting for?
Buffy: Make the first move. When he shows up, ask him to dance.
Willow: Xander dance?
Buffy: Hey all guys can slow dance and if he wonít then ask another guy. No quicker way to get a guy to notice you than to seem to notice another.
Willow: You think it will work.
Buffy: Not promising, but this sitting here is not working either.
Buffy: Well I need a drink. Be right back.
She hops off the stool and walks to the counter and gets in line. She stands waiting and looking around. Her eyes land on the guy she caught looking at her earlier. She now takes the opportunity to look him over thoroughly. Continuing to stare at him, she doesnít notice Cordelia.
Cordelia: So what has got your attention
She glances in the direction as Buffy diverts her eyes.
Cordelia: Or should I ask who? Hmm. College guys.
She looks at Buffy.
Cordelia: So which one you want?
Cordelia: Come on. I know that look. So tell, which of them is it.
Buffy: They are all kinda cute.
Cordelia: But there is one cuter than the rest.
Cordelia: The blonde?
Buffy shakes her head.
Buffy: The one in the burgandy shirt.
Cordelia: I knew it.
Buffy: You did not.
Cordelia: Yes I did. Every girl in here has the hots for Angel.
Buffy: You too?
Cordelia: Not hardly. Hey Angel!!
Buffy: What are you doing?
Cordelia grabs her arm to hinder her escape. Angel looks over irritated.
Buffy: Let me go. You are embarrassing us.
Cordelia crooks her finger and Angel saunters over. Buffy tries to hide behind her.
Angel: What do you want Cordelia? Canít you see weíre playing?
Cordelia: I just wanted to introduce our new classmate. She just moved here from LA.
She pulls Buffy forward and Angel smiles broadly.
Cordelia: Buffy Summer, this is Angel Chase.
Buffy turns her head and looks at Cordelia.
Cordelia: Yes as in my annoying older brother.
Angel: Hi Buffy.
Buffy: Uh hi.
Angel: I noticed you earlier. I was trying to think up away to introduce myself.
Cordelia: Well see I can be helpful.
Angel gives her a withering look.
Cordelia: On that look I am leaving.
Buffy watches her leave and her mind spins on how to get away and hide somewhere, anywhere.
Angel: Wanna dance?
Buffy looks up into his warm brown eyes surprised.
Buffy: I thought you were playing pool.
Angel: I would much rather dance with the prettiest girl here.
She feels herself blushing. He holds out his hand and she lays hers on it. His long fingers wrap around her small tiny hand. He leads her toward the dance floor pausing at the pool table to hand his cue stick to a friend. His friends smile at his conquest jealously.
On the dance floor he pulls her into his arms and they gently sway to the music. She lays her head on his chest and quietly listens to his heartbeat. As the song ends, she lifts her head and looks up into his face.
Angel: Would you let me buy you a soda and maybe sit and talk.
Buffy nods her agreement. As the music tempo picks up he finds an empty sofa in a corner and places her there. She watches as he walks away and smiles. When he is out of sight she looks around. She notices Cordelia and her friends looking her way. When Cordelia sees her looking she smiles and Buffy smiles back. Buffy looks around and sees Willow still sitting alone. She moves to get up and go to her when Angel appears in front of her.
Angel: You leaving?
Buffy: Oh, no. I just saw someone sitting alone.
Buffy points to Willow.
Angel: Willow? Want me to invite her over?
Buffy: No, I guess not.
She sits back down and takes the drink.
Buffy: You got through the line fast.
Angel: What line? I just went behind the counter and made them myself.
Buffy: You did?
Angel: My dad owns the place. Well actually he owns most the places.
Angel: So you are a senior?
Buffy: Yes. And you?
Angel: Also a senior, but at the University.
Buffy: That makes you what twenty-one?
Angel: Yes, ans you.
Buffy: Seventeen. Well until January that is.
They spend the rest of the evening talking and dancing. She learns about his mom and her obesession with aerobics and what companies his dad owns. She also learns where to go and where. He learns about her time in LA. And about her parents. When she mentions the gallery his face lights up.
Angel: I love that place.
Angel: Yes. I like art. Your mom has a sculpture I really want but I havenít saved enough yet.
Buffy: Your dad wonít buy it.
Angel: Oh he probably would but I prefer to buy things like that myself. Makes them even more special.
Buffy: I guess so what is this sculpture of you want?
Angel: A Griffin. It.is from greek mytholgy . It is a part lion and part eagle.
Buffy gets a confused look on her face.
Angel: Let me show you.
He turns around and looks over his shoulder.
Angel: I usually donít take my shirt off when I first meet someone.
She smiles as he unbuttons and lowers the right shoulder of his shirt. Her fingers cautiously reach out and trace the black lines. She lowers her hand and he turns around.
Buffy: I like it.
Cordelia: Showing off the tattoo after what two hours?
Angel: Cordelia, donít you have someone elseís life to invade?
Cordelia: Nope. Yours works fine for me.
Angel: Buffy, would you like to dance?
Buffy looks at her watch.
Buffy: Sorry but I need to be heading home. Almost curfew.
Angel: I can drive you home.
Buffy: Uh no thanks. My mom would have a fit.
Angel: I see. Well let me walk you outside.
He takes her hand and they walk into the balmy night.
Buffy: I had a nice evening.
Angel: Me too.
She turns to leave.
She stops and turns back.
Angel: I want to ask you something.
She waits patiently.
Angel: There is a party Friday night.
Angel: At my fraternity house. Would you like to go with me?
Buffy: Uh, I canít.
Angel: Oh. Well okay.
He turns to leave.
Buffy: Not that I donít want to.
Angel: But you have plans.
Buffy: No, no plans. Just a mom who would never let me go.
Angel: I understand.
Buffy: Uh I could well I could not tell her.
Angel: You will not start lying to your mom. If she says no than we donít go.
Buffy: Well I can at least ask her. All she can say is no.
Angel: Do you think she might say yes?
Buffy: No way. But never hurts to try.
Buffy: I will talk to her tomorrow afternoon and let you know.
Angel: I can wait.
He leans down and kisses her cheek. She turns and walks home. A smile plastered on her face. Maybe mom was right. Maybe it will be okay here.