Notes and disclaimers: all characters not mine, owned by large corporate entities. no profit garnered ever over here. Title from the Mountain Goats. Thanks to Mosca for super duper quick beta action.



WATCHING STRAWBERRIES LOSE THEIR SHAPE


"It's probably still the curse," Buffy said. But she wasn't rushing to get her underwear back on.

"Sure, sure," Fred said. She was also not rushing to do anything. Or move.

"But you were upset about breaking things off with Wes."

Fred moved then, she slapped the bed. "He dumped me. He called me up and told me it was over. My own boyfriend. Would rather stay in Los Angeles. Just like Charles. Who also broke up with me, now that I think about it. Well, that was more mutual. Not that I have only had two boyfriends in my life, because I haven't. I've had three just since I got back from Pylea. Poor Knox died when that vampire from the submarine broke in to get back at Angel. Though I guess I shouldn't say poor after what the autopsy revealed. Did I tell you about that already?"

"You did," Buffy said. She was staring at Fred's naked left breast which was the one closest to her. Nipples were so individual, Buffy thought. And nipple was one of those weird words that sounded almost obscene but wasn't, describing something that was definitely nice and only obscene depending on who had them. And how old they were. "Not that it wasn't a super interesting story."

"You're just being nice," Fred said. "I know I babble."

"Me, too! I'm Babble-Girl." Buffy smiled. She said, "Which would seem to indicate maybe we're not still cursed. In that way we're compatible. We babble at each other!"

"Funny curse," Fred said. She had a really nice accent. It was Texan, but not harsh or hick-like, it was more pleasant like a taco. Buffy decided not to say that out loud because it made no sense. Since Fred was super smart, she would expect Buffy to at least be able to make sense. Most of the time.

"You know?" Fred was looking at her.

"I wasn't listening," Buffy said. "I was thinking about, um, tacos. I'm a little hungry."

"Oh, that's fine. I was just saying it's a funny curse. Make your enemies so interested in having sex that they retreat before you're killed, gives you time to run away. What if you came up against some kind of demon that didn't have sexual instincts? Some demons reproduce asexually and don't mate at all."

"Maybe all the demons around when the curse evolved didn't do that asexual dance. Or lack of sexual sexy dance. So it never came up," Buffy said. She really was hungry now. They had energy bars and chips and water in their packs. But none of it was actually yummy. Definitely not yummy enough to make Buffy get out of bed. There had to be a restaurant nearby. "Do you think there's a restaurant around here?"

"Sadly, I think the only ones that are that I saw are all closed. Since it's 4 am in the morning. Maybe we can find an IHOP? Or Waffle House, I'd love a Waffle House. Have you ever been to Waffle House?"

"One time when I was looking for a Slayer in Seattle, I went to a Der Waffle Haus, but I don't think that was a chain. But it was open all night."

Fred said, "Yeah, I was thinking of the chain of restaurants. Sorry. But now I really want a waffle. I was thinking about tacos since you mentioned them, and now I'm thinking of waffles. Was Der Waffle Haus good?"

"Yeah," Buffy said. "So we've drifted away from the subject of us just having sex. Really good sex, I'd like to add. You were very good. With your hands."

"So were you. Wow, I can see why Slayers have that reputation. Not slutty reputation, I mean, that reputation of being excellent in bed and not asexual at all. The stamina and flexibility. But I do think it was a curse. That we initially started it. That's what those demons do," Fred said.

"Yeah, but maybe it's not now. If we wanted to do it again," Buffy said. "If you wanted. Or I wanted. Because I do think it's worn off. Also, I've dated women before. Not just dated."

"That would be Faith, right?" Fred was sitting up a little now, even frowning. Faith always left a good impression, Buffy thought.

"Well, sure. But there was others, too. There was one other. Just last year. I'm very flexible. And carefree in my romantic life," Buffy said. She was just repeating the kind of things she said to Dawn and it still didn't sound convincing. She said, "Did you believe me there?"

"Sorry, not really." Fred smiled. "I believe you've dated two girls. But the carefree part didn't even sound like you believed it. There's nothing wrong with just wanting one person and settling down and picket fences and puppies. I think there isn't."

"I totally agree," Buffy said. "But I wanted to give us an out. You know, two footloose and fancy free girls who won't be really affected if nothing else happens. Won't bother us."

"It would bother me, a little." Fred shrugged. "A little. I'm not very good at putting on that don't care face."

"Me neither," Buffy said. "See how not convincing I was?" Buffy sat up. "Hey, a little? Did you say a little?"

"Yes," Fred said. She hadn't sat up but she was definitely staring right at Buffy. Or Buffy's breasts. Buffy would be happy with either. This was good news, at least a little.

"See, that makes me happy," Buffy said. "The curse was just all, ooh, I wanna sex you up. But not happy."

"Exactly," Fred said. "But, it might be the second part of the curse. After sex comes affection and need to be with each other to keep people attacking the demon from coming back after they finish having sex. We can't be sure."

"How are we supposed to tell the difference? I feel like I just plain like you. And I really liked having sex with you," Buffy said quickly.

"I feel the same! But I don't know how we tell the difference. Probably waiting it out, I think that would be best. That would be the smartest. After all, if we really like each other, we'll still really like each other next week. Or tomorrow morning if you'd rather just wait that long."

"I hate waiting," Buffy said. "I mean, really, once you've had sex because of a stupid demonic curse, does it really matter if you do it again? While not knowing if it's worn off?"

Fred looked like she was thinking. She was really cute when she was thinking. They'd been traveling together all this time and Buffy knew for a fact this was not the first time she'd noticed how cute Fred was. She'd noticed a lot while they were tramping up and down America, looking for demons and whatever this month's stupid mission was. It wasn't stupid at all, but right at that moment, Buffy really wasn't that concerned.

"You're drifting again," Fred said. "I said you have a good point. Even if I'm just saying that because of the curse."

"Good point about," Buffy said. "OH! Yes, I have a good point." Buffy sat up and moved so she was straddling Fred's hips. "I had a really good plan. And point. And things we're doing to do."

Fred smiled. "I think I agree a lot."

THE END


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