A Cup of Coffee and an Understanding
The world of Washington University seem unchanged to Willow’s
eyes. She was just a little disappointed. Why would the world stop
to acknowledge such a great change in just one person’s life?
She should be used to it being from Sunnydale.
The sun continued to shine brightly in the crisp autumn sky. Red
and golden leaves continued to fall gracefully from the trees
above. Students continue to hustle busily between classes. There
was nothing there to mark the scene of such a violent rebirth.
This was where Willow became something else. She was no longer just
a human or a witch. Now, she was also a werewolf. It was still
taking some time to get used to.
It had only been two weeks since the full moon. During that time,
Willow continued her tutelage with Sylvie and Gwen. She was
learning to cope with her lycanthropy. It was still so difficult.
She would occasionally succumb to violent imagery of tearing flesh,
spurting blood, and slaughter. Her beast would remind her that she
was no longer prey. Now, she was predator.
She talked on the phone with Spike and even Angel about the hunger.
They understood the temptation of being surrounded by all that
seething humanity and having to not give into the desire to take a
bite. She at least understood and appreciated her vampire friends
better due to these unfortunate circumstances.
She continued her normal student routine. She took her midterms.
She went to her classes and she studied. The only deviation in her
normal routine was the fact that she no longer tried to avoid
She didn’t need to attempt to hide. Michael was avoiding her
like she was Typhoid Mary. She wasn’t sure what his avoidance
stemmed from. Did he feel guilt for what he had inflicted upon
her? Had he been ordered to leave her alone? Or did he fear that
she might reap some vengeance upon him?
She really hoped that it wasn’t fear. She had enough of people
fearing her from her time in Sunnydale. She didn’t want to have
to deal with that here also. This was supposed to be her fresh
start. The thought that he might fear her tainted any peace she
She had to know why. She couldn’t move on. It was with these
thoughts that she cornered Michael after their class. He was trying
to rush off but he couldn’t entirely outrun her, not now. She
had her answer when she grabbed his arm. She could smell the aroma
of fear. It made her hungry and not for cheeseburgers. She shook
off any stray thoughts that might arise from her beast.
“Michael, please listen to me,” she pleaded. “I
don’t want to hurt you. I just want to talk to you. Please, can
we go somewhere for a cup of coffee?”
Michael lifted his head and nodded once. Willow continued to hold
onto his arm as they made their way to that café where her aunt
had taken her once. It was a short walk that was made in silence.
Willow was trying to figure out what to say and Michael didn’t
want to speak.
They walked into the Lunatic Café and the hostess seated them near
a window. The place wasn’t very full with it being morning and
all. Small groups of students were clustered around tables
attempting to cram some last minute knowledge into their brains.
Other patrons were leisurely reading newspapers and slowly sipping
They gave their orders to the waitress. A heavy silence descended
on their table. Willow decided that she would be the first to speak
since she was the one to push for this meeting.
“Michael, I’m not angry for what you did. I have to struggle
with the same urges that you do. It isn’t easy. I forgive you
for infecting me. I have no desire for revenge. I’m completely
out of the vengeance gig. I swore it off. It was bad for my
complexion.” She smiled at the last comment. Funny how becoming
a werewolf was helping her learn to forgive herself. Everyone
wrestles their dark urges. Some people like her just have a darker
shade to their urges.
Michael continued to look down at the checkered table cloth. He
spoke to the table instead of looking at Willow. “I am sorry for
everything getting out of hand. You didn’t ask to become one of
us.” He inhaled deeply and slowly let it out. “Willow how
did you stop me from killing you?” He looked up at her. “You
didn’t have any weapons.”
It was Willow’s turn to stare at the table. What was she to say?
No one in the pack knew her witchy status. She had learned to
shield her abilities from those that would sense it. At least she
thought she had. Was that what had drawn Michael to her?
Willow finally spoke, “Michael, I’m a witch. I protected
myself magically from you. I probably could have killed you but I
didn’t. I thought I had but I guess that preternatural
constitution of yours saved you.” She looked up at him and
showed him the fear in her eyes. “I could be sent to prison and
maybe even be put to death for doing what I did. Please don’t
tell anyone that I’m a witch. I didn’t mean to hurt you. I
just didn’t want to die.” Her eyes pleaded with him to
Michael gave a feeble smile. “Funny, here I was wondering if I
was going to die and you are worried about that too. Don’t
worry. I won’t tell anyone. You keep my secrets and I’ll
Willow gave Michael a patented Willowy smile in return. “Deal.
We didn’t get started off on the right foot. Want to start over
again? I make an excellent Willowy-shaped friend.”
They shared another smile. They blew off the rest of their classes
for the day and just sat and talked. They discussed where they both
came from, their families, their wishes, their hopes, and other
various parts of their lives. They decided that they would make a
regular habit of having coffee together. Nothing like having a
friend your own age who was also furry.