Love is Like...
April 6, 2005 8:41 AM
Hannah approached Mr. Giles' office, but slowed when she saw Anya. She had not interacted with the demon much. Hannah was not sure how to relate to her. She straightened herself and walked up to the other woman's desk.
"Hello, Anya. How are you today? Is Mr. Giles in yet?"
Anya was reading magazines daily, trying to catch up on news she'd missed while dead. "Oh my God! When did Jen and Brad break up?" She furiously flipped through pages, trying to take in all the details. "What the hell happened? Did everyone's love lives fly out the window?!"
"Well, he started shagging Angelina, and that's the way it usually happens. Men get bored and decide to trade up. I've seen it. I've been it."
The demon snorted. "Don't have to tell me twice. Although I think it's completely unfair that a damn siren broke up a perfectly legitimate marriage. That's just plain cheating."
"Well, she's strange, and I firmly believe she has Veela in her family tree somewhere."
Hannah smiled. She suspected Giles was not in yet, but that did not mean she could not have a conversation with Anya. It was about time she did.
Anya finally looked up from the magazine. "Nooo, siren. Are you deaf?"
She rolled her eyes. "What the hell is with you Brits and your lack of decent hearing? I don't know how I'm supposed to sign my way out of this one. Oh! Writing!"
Anya quickly wrote out she is a siren
one a post it note and held it up, sticking it to Hannah's sleeve with a grin.
"You're one to talk about being deaf," Hannah snapped. "You're so distracted by Brad and Jen that you never answered my question about Mr. Giles."
"I heard you. I just ignored you for more important matters." Anya picked up the magazine.
"You're terribly rude, but you know this. Perhaps people would want to speak with you more if you made an effort, but maybe you aren't interested? I could go if I am being bothersome. I thought we could talk since we haven't before. I don't know you. I would like to."
Anya slowly put down the magazine and looked up at Hannah with narrowed eyes. "Keep making an effort. I'm caught up." She tossed the magazine down. "So let's chat. Had any good orgasms recently?"
Hannah blinked. It was not her normal go-to topic, but Hannah pushed down her embarrassment and need for privacy.
"I normally don't discuss my love life, but the answer is no. The last man I dated thought I was too invested in what he considered a worthless job. He never even saw me naked. What about you?"
"Considering the last guy interested in me romantically made a chaos demon look tasty, hell no. I'm trying the single thing," she said optimistically. "So far it sucks, but I shall remain vigilant and be incredibly off-putting to any male who shows interest in me."
Hannah laughed at that. "Well, you shouldn't settle. Good for you, but not all males want to date, you know. Some of them might want to be your friend."
"Of course they do. They you can't deny the attraction between you and end up having gratuitous amounts of sex. When you face imminent death while battling a hell goddess, he'll propose and then leave you at the altar less than a year later. In your moment of weakness, you sleep with a vampire for payback and then you'll have odd flings in times of crises before you die only to be brought back to rule a demon dimension."
Anya looked up at Hannah. "Is that what you meant?"
"Not exactly," Hannah replied with wide eyes.
She had no idea how to respond.
"Not all men are the same, though. Some of them might find you in a weakened state after breaking off an engagement and date you just to get the sex then run off when you decide to try to make things more serious. Or get to be too..." Hannah considered her word choice. "Difficult to control."
Anya nodded. "Men suck. Too bad I don't see women like that. I could have one hell of a time with Willow." There was a chair by her desk and she nudged it out. "Tell me about this typical male you speak of."
"Oh that one is long gone. The one now... I'm not... he's unusual."
Her eyebrow went up. Hannah's voice gotten a strange tone she'd heard many times over her thousand years. It screamed that this new guy was uncharted territory, and more than a bit exciting.
"So tell me about Mr. Unusual."
"Well, he's completely wrong for me. He will break my heart, but the more I know him, the more I find layers of him to like. He has a great deal more dating experience than I do. His ex girlfriend is terrible."
Anya was torn. She was a vengeance demon, but did not carry the power of the wish. Despite the ritual used to bring her back, D'Hoffryn did not give her the full range of her powers when she returned. Threw a party for her, yes, give her back the ability to alter dimensions, no.
She was not used to giving advice about men. She was used to leading women into the "I wish..." part of the tirade.
"Okay, tell me a layer."
"He remembers his grandmother's recipes. She makes these amazing apples, and he'll only eat them like that. He's prissier than I am about his appearance. I got blood on him after being bitten by a vampire, and he started taking off his clothes and wanted them burned. He's completely ridiculous most of the time, and god help me, I think it's cute."
Anya plopped her elbow onto the table and leaned her chin on it. "You've got it bad, don't you? Because to every other woman that would be grounds for a spectacular break up that could possibly lead to name calling, the throwing of heavy objects, and wishing his penis to become a vagina."
"I believe I do." Hannah sighed. "I need to get over it. Even though I invited him to seduce me. I thought he was an empty shell, but he's not."
She glared at the witch. "You invited him to seduce you? Why not walk around naked and say 'take me, I'm easy'!" Anya blinked. "Wait, and he didn't come through? What an ass!"
Hannah started laughing. "He always seduces women, but I think I need to do something he would not expect. Only how on earth do you shock a manwhore?"
"That's simple. You don't. The term whore implies they've seen and done it all. Or have the wizarding equivalents of women who sell themselves for money in return for the sexual gratification for men finally died out?"
Hannah sighed in frustration. "He doesn't believe in love. That's beyond me. I've never had that sort of love, but it has to be out there. I refuse to believe it isn't."
"Oh trust me, it's out there, and it sucks just as much as the rest of the loves. I spent a thousand years listening to stories of falling out of a love and other broken romances."
"I know things break, but I think I'd rather risk heartbreak rather than wonder. Would you trade your being in love?"
Anya squirmed in her chair. "Well it hurts. It hurts just as much as getting your arm broken, if not more. At least when I was human I had the consolation that someday, this hurt would stop. Now I'm back, a demon, and it's like the emotion's ready to haunt me again. It's a lot easier to remember all the bad things than the good. So, in answer to your question, sometimes I would. On the bad days."
"Oh, Anya," Hannah said, putting a hand to her heart. "That's terrible. Would you be offended if I hugged you?"
It took a few moments for her to answer. She remembered the inclination towards physical contact and intimacy between people, even if for comfort. "I think the situation could call for a hug, if you're so inclined."
Anya oofed when Hannah launched herself. She hugged her tightly. "It makes me sad that sometimes you regret love."
She awkwardly pat Hannah on the back. "Oh everyone regrets love. It's the degree of regret that separates people."
"I don't think I would. I think love would be like standing on the sun and not getting burned. How could that be all bad?"
Anya pulled back and started at Hannah strangely. "If I was on the sun and not getting burned, my thought would not be 'oh this is like love' but 'how the hell did I get here and how do I get back to earth'."
Hannah laughed loudly. "You're funny. I know you don't mean to be, but you are, and that's quite nice."
"Well I'm glad someone thinks I'm humorous. I forwarded an email joke chain to Giles and he was not at all amused. Who doesn't think that a grown man sticking a bottle rocket in his ass and lighting it on fire isn't amusing?"
Hannah started laughing loudly again. "I think perhaps Mr. Giles has more discerning tastes in jokes."