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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 5:47 pm 
Ooh, really liking the start to this. Keep it up :D



-shuyaku

Oh God, Willow—you’re giving me the gift of Karen Carpenter. Just when I think I grasp the full extent of your love." - Tara

"Why do birds suddenly appear? It’s because, you are queer…" - Willow (Gods Served and Abandoned by AntigoneUnbound)



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 Post subject: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 6:38 pm 
Title:
Secrets and Spies



Author:
Tarawhipped (Cameron)



Email:
tarawhipped@hotmail.com



Rating:
PG-13 (possibly higher later, see chapter headings)



Disclaimer:
All characters are property of Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy



Feedback:
Yes please!



Distribution:
Sure, just tell me where so I can visit!



Summary:
Set in 1943, Sunnydale, CA. A leak is discovered within a top secret program during World War II, and suspicion falls on a young code analyst.A novice Military Intelligence Agent is assigned the job of confirming or denying the charge. Suspense and romance ensue (I hope).



Notes:
This story has a historical setting, and I tried to use as much real information as I could without doing loads of research.So while there was a VENONA program and many branches of military and government intelligence, I have no idea how internal investigations are carried out, etc.Basically I was going for atmosphere rather than accuracy.This story does take place in Sunnydale (because hey, why not?), but it is totally AU. No Slayer, no monsters, no magic, etc. Chock full o’ familiar faces, however.Enjoy!







Chapter One: The Situation



(note: This is a background chapter, but Tara and Willow will be showing up in Chapters 2 & 3, respectively. Promise.)






“Send in Agent Finn.”




At the sound of the intercom, Riley Finn stood up from his perch on the corner of the desk, smiled at that desk’s blond occupant, and straightened his tie.Knocking once on the door marked Commander Travers, he turned the knob and stepped inside.




“You wanted to see me, sir?”




“Have a seat, Agent Finn,” Travers responded, but made no move to look up from the open file on his desk.




“Thank you sir,” Riley replied, as he eased his large frame into one of two leather wing chairs facing the desk.As his new boss made no further acknowledgment of his presence, Finn found himself taking in the room’s décor.The furnishings were hardly ostentatious, but they were certainly not standard Government Issue, either.The oak desk, leather chairs, oriental rugs, and brass umbrella rack stood in marked contrast to the gray concrete walls, unadorned save for a picture of President Roosevelt, perfectly centered behind the desk.




Riley’s eyes settled on his new boss, still focused on the paperwork in front of him.Quentin Travers, like his office, was a study in contrasts.His gray tweed suit was impeccable, his collar starched, his tie and cuffs held neatly in place with matching gold tie tack and cuff links. Travers had an air of elegance around him, but from their previous, brief meeting, Finn had found him to be direct and unpretentious.The office suited him, Riley mused.Functional, but with class.




His observations were interrupted when he noticed that Travers had stopped reading and was now looking directly at Finn, with a barely discernible bemused smile on his face.Immediately flustered, Riley reached for his briefcase.




“I took the liberty of preparing a summary of current operations, along with expense repo—“ he began, but was cut off with a raised hand.




“That won’t be necessary at this time, Agent Finn,” Travers said.“You may leave your report, but we have a more pressing issue at the moment.There’s a potentially serious situation that we need to move on immediately.”




Finn sat forward in his chair to offer his complete attention.He was secretly relieved that the meeting was not to be one of pleasantries and administrative matters.He saw himself as a man of action first and foremost, and while he did not shrink from the more mundane aspects of his position, he did not actively enjoy them, either.Travers’ willingness to skip the chit-chat enhanced Riley’s opinion of him further.




Travers’ gaze returned to the file on his desk as he began to brief Finn on their assignment.




“Military Intelligence has learned of a leak within the code analysis program.They have intercepted messages that implicate two operatives, referred to only as The Brit and The Rose.The Brit is believed to have already established ties with the Soviet Intelligence community.MI believes that the Rose is someone on the inside of the VENONA project, and that she’s supplying the Brit with information.”




“VENONA sir?” Riley frowned.“I’m not familiar with—“




“No reason you should be,” Travers snapped.“Let’s just say that while we may be allied with the Russians right now out of necessity, we don’t trust them. And we’d like to know what the Soviet plans are when this damned war is over.”




“And VENONA is serving that end?”




“Precisely.Army Intelligence has given us some information, but not much.They have no solid leads as to the identity of the Brit, but they did name a suspect for the Rose.According to them she was a promising cryptanalyst who helped get VENONA off the ground.But several months ago she resigned without much of an explanation.Once the intercepted messages were translated, she became the primary suspect, but their investigations have found nothing conclusive.They cannot confirm her involvement, but they haven’t been able to rule it out, either”




“So they hand it over to us,” Finn concluded.




“Exactly.And it comes to my office because our suspect is right here in Sunnydale.Your orders are simple: confirm whether or not the suspect is the Rose, and identify the Brit, if possible.”




Finn furrowed his brow in concentration for a moment.




“All of my men are currently in the field, but I can do some shuffling and reassign—“ he trailed off as Travers’ hand again came up.




“I believe you have a new operative who
isn’t
in the field?” Travers asked with a raised eyebrow.




“With all due respect, Commander, considering the seriousness of this case, I’m not sure that she’s the right man—er, agent—for the job.”




Travers looked intently at Finn, whose own gaze faltered.




“According to her file she has an exemplary record, even if it is a bit short.”




“It’s not her record I’m concerned about, sir,” Finn stated, “it’s her manner—something bothers me.”




Travers again raised an eyebrow, and tried to suppress a grin.Finn, he knew, had been an excellent soldier, and was becoming an equally impressive agent, but he was still a young man.He had not yet learned to mask his emotions.




“What is it then, Agent Finn?Did she turn down the introductory dinner and drinks?”




Finn’s eyes shot up, then dropped again quickly, and Travers could see the young agent’s jaw clenching.




“Turned me down flat, sir,” Finn admitted, furious with himself for being so transparent.He didn’t know whether that was more or less embarrassing than the rejection by the pretty new agent.Finn had a reputation as a nice guy—a good buddy for the guys, and a good catch for the ladies.When the new girl had cut him off with a ‘no thank you, Agent Finn, I don’t date colleagues—why don’t you try the steno pool’ he’d been entirely at a loss.The fact that his new boss wanted to reward her with a plum assignment felt like a slap to the other cheek.




“Well, I guess the young lady has good sense as well as a good record,” Travers stated amiably.“Get over it, Finn.You’re an asset to this department, with a promising future.When your agents succeed it reflects well on you…and on me, of course.Besides, I insist.”




“It’s your call, sir,” Finn replied.‘And my ass if she screws up,’ he thought to himself.




“Excellent, then we’re agreed.”




Travers leaned forward and reached across his desk to depress the intercom.




“Miss Summers, would you please send in Agent Maclay.”




TBC in Chapter Two: The Assignment







What should I be but just what I am?
- Edna St.Vincent Millay


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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 7:31 pm 
I Agree This Is A Great Idea!....Agents Can Be So Hot! ;)

D2D





Dreams To Dream In The Dark Of The Night, When The World Goes Wrong, I Can Still Make It Right...- Dreams To Dream



Oh Now I Can Be Nurse Willow, Tara's Gonna Love That! - Willow In Chaos Bleeds



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 Post subject: Wow
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 7:57 pm 
Heh, great start... but you had to just stop!! See this is why I normally try to leave stories for a few updates so I'm not left hanging :( But it is REALLY good. Hope to read more soon.



Patricia

Okay, I may be short, I May have pointy ears, I may look like a really f**cked up impersonation of Link, but damnit I deserve some respect-- Hope



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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 8:34 pm 
Hey, ths is kinda cool....Hope you update soon and don't let this sink....

ladydameon

----------------

Goddess of Violence



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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2004 9:36 pm 
...when I say sink....I mean don't let the story disappear into the void that so many seem to fall into....

ladydameon

----------------

Goddess of Violence

Edited by: ladydameon  at: 8/9/04 1:36 pm


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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 7:06 am 
Hi there. I've got to admit, you had me at '1943' and 'codebreakers' - I adore Enigma - and the rest of the chapter did nothing to dissuade me. I love suspense: who is the Rose? It can't *really* be Willow, can it? And the Brit? Well, we know which name leaps to mind, but again... a spy? There must be more going on here, and I'm eager to find out what it is. Not to mention see Agent Maclay in action :)



If it's okay with you, I'd like to host this story on Through the Looking-glass (alia.customer.netspace.net.au/glass.htm ) - I promise a suitably Enigma-esque title banner :) And I hope you'll update soon. Thanks for writing.



Chris Cook

alia.customer.netspace.net.au/glass.htm

Through the Looking-glass: A Willow and Tara for every world.



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter One Feedback
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 7:12 pm 
Okay, first off, thank you to everyone reading this. Not that I'm paranoid :paranoid heh heh, but I had nightmares of 0 views. The response so far has been wonderful, and I appreciate it.:bigkiss



Shuyaku: My first feedback! Thank you thank you thank you!


DreamsToDream: Thanks, and um, yes they can!


YunaMaClay:Thanks, and don't worry, more is on the way.


ladydameon: Thank you, and I will complete this. I agree with you that it's frustrating when you start a fic , get into it, and then find it inactive for months. I give you my solemn vow not to do that, 'k?:peace


Artemis: Chris Cook! Hell yes, you can host this. I love Through the Looking Glass, it's one of my favorite sites, and where I really discovered the world of AU W/T fic. Shadows is a personal fave, in fact.
As for the rest of your post, you'll get no information out of me!:devilish



What should I be but just what I am? - Edna St.Vincent Millay



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 Post subject: Chapter Two: The Assignment
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 7:21 pm 
Title:
Secrets and Spies


Author:
Tarawhipped (Cameron)


Email:
tarawhipped@hotmail.com


Rating:
PG-13 (possibly higher later, see chapter headings)


Disclaimer:
All characters are property of Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy


Feedback:
Yes please!


Distribution:
Sure, just tell me where so I can visit!


Note:
I will try to get Chapter Three up by the end of the weekend. However, my partner and I just bought our first home, we've moving tomorrow, and I don't know when we'll have the internet hooked up.






Chapter Two: The Assignment




Tara Maclay sat in her small apartment, mulling over the events of the previous day.When she’d been summoned to Commander Travers’ office and had seen Riley Finn waiting too, she’d been worried.Finn had completely ignored her presence, however, having been too busy flirting with Travers’ secretary.After he’d disappeared into the office, Tara had been able to hear muted voices, but had made no attempt to listen in on the conversation. Twenty minutes or so later she’d been called in as well, and had noticed with some trepidation that Finn did not appear to be leaving.


Tara had sunk into the unoccupied chair and steeled herself for the anticipated lecture on proper respect for one’s boss and being a team player.She’d known that she had been abrupt with Agent Finn—bordering on rude—but in her experience she’d found it the easiest way to avoid repeated attempts.


Tara absent-mindedly stirred her tea and grinned at the recollection of Finn’s expression when she’d turned him down.It was obviously not something he was used to.She could even understand why.Riley was tall, athletic, handsome in a somewhat bland, unassuming way, and he had an easy-going manner and a nice smile.She had noticed the way Travers’ secretary had practically swooned when graced with that smile.


Tara’s grin turned into a full-blown smirk at the realization that Finn would never fathom the reason why she was immune to his charms.The smile quickly faded, however, as the thought of what could happen if he—or any of her superiors—found out about her.


But there had been no lecture.


Tara let out a sigh as she turned her thoughts to her assignment.She had been extremely surprised when Travers had given it to her, as had Finn, from the look on his face.She knew she was only in the department because of Travers, and she was determined to prove her worth on this case.


Several hours had been spent poring over the information passed on by Army Intelligence.Riley had oh-so-helpfully suggested that her cover job should be as a civilian employee of the Army steno pool.Travers had accepted the idea at face value, and Tara had been too embarrassed to object.Thankfully she would not have to actually
do
the job, but if necessary there was now a desk with her name on it in the Special Information Branch office.


Once dismissed, Tara had gone home to read over the file in more depth.Travers had informed her that surveillance on the suspect indicated that she was renting out a room in her house.A quick phone call and Agent Maclay had an appointment to see the apartment the next day.


Tara frowned into her now empty teacup.She’d been surprised by the other woman’s voice yesterday.It was so open—not at all what Tara would expect of a Russian spy, no matter how experienced.The suspect had sounded exuberant, almost giddy, and kind of babbly.


Tara smiled as she picked up the directions she’d scribbled down.She didn’t need them—it was all in the file—but she could hardly refuse them when offered.Grabbing her purse and locking her apartment, she walked out to her car.


Fifteen minutes later she parked on the street in front of a small red brick bungalow.Pausing outside the car, Tara looked up at the house.She caught a brief flash of red in the front window before the curtain fell back into place.She made her way up the walk and onto the small front porch, glancing at her watch, which read 10:00 a.m.—right on time.Taking one last deep, steadying breath, she knocked on the door.


A startled “oh!” escaped Tara’s lips as the door was flung open almost immediately.While trying to regain her composure, she stared at the young woman standing in the doorway.She was around Tara’s age, and about the same height.Her short red hair was loosely curled, perfectly framing a face that had the biggest green eyes Tara had ever seen.


Tara stood like a statue on the porch, lost in those eyes.She was only vaguely aware that the woman was speaking when she heard her own name, followed by “Willow Rosenberg.”


Tara swallowed hard.She’d seemingly lost the ability to form rational thought, until one painfully clear one popped into her head:



‘Oh Goddess.This could be a problem.’






TBC in Chapter Three: The Housemate









What should I be but just what I am?
- Edna St.Vincent Millay


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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Two: The Assignment
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 7:37 pm 
Woo hoo another update already. Poor Tara in the Army steno pool - that had me :lmao for some reason.



Congrats on the new house. My girl and I just bought our first place a couple of months ago - it's totally a great feeling. Although (not to scare you) it took way to friggin' long to get internet re-hooked up. :rage those bastards. But it's fixed now and I'm over it (really I am... I think ;) )



-shuyaku

Oh God, Willow—you’re giving me the gift of Karen Carpenter. Just when I think I grasp the full extent of your love." - Tara

"Why do birds suddenly appear? It’s because, you are queer…" - Willow (Gods Served and Abandoned by AntigoneUnbound)



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Two: The Assignment
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 8:02 pm 
HEY! This is no way to end a chapter! You're going to update soon right?



So is Buffy the secretary? Where's Giles? Where's Xander? Will Anya be in this story?



They aren't going to have sex right away are they?



ladydameon

----------------

Goddess of Violence



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Two: The Assignment
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 9:23 pm 
hehehe...



Thats a great first thought.



Once again, Ive found an awesome AU fic.



If it werent for them, I might not have discovered BTVS...



But anywho...



Awesome job. The introduction of Riley Finn being upset about having Tara on a case because he was turned down by her got me hooked. Then there was the Willow/Tara first meeting. Overall Great Job.



Sincerely,

:flower BWR

***

If homosexuals dont reproduce, why are there so many of them?-Jim David



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 Post subject: Re: Secrets and Spies (AU fic)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 9:40 pm 
More? Please!



-LR



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 Post subject: more more!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:28 pm 
am loving this fic-AU fics are definitely my favourite, and this sounds like it could be a lot of fun! also kind of like the idea of tara going off to save the world, and buffy as a humble secretary :) more soon please!

cath x



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 Post subject: Re: more more!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 10:58 am 
Thanks :) The story's online now.



And yup, I agree with Tara, this will certainly be a problem. For her work, that is... then again, I'm sure before long Agent Maclay will be able to honestly report back to HQ that she's busily and thoroughly investigating Willow :) Seriously though, yup, definitely a problem, balancing the necessity to remain impartial in her investigation with her very un-impartial reaction to this potential spy.



Chris Cook

alia.customer.netspace.net.au/glass.htm

Through the Looking-glass: A Willow and Tara for every world.

Edited by: Artemis at: 8/11/04 2:59 am


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 Post subject: Re: more more!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 1:39 pm 
An interesting AU you've set up here. Tara's mission dictating that she has to share a house with Willow; well, at least she realises that her commitment to her job is about to be tested.



Oh, and evil little me thought it amusing that Buffy was Traver's secretary.



Nice start, looking forward to more from you.


Sheacht mh'anam déag do bhéal, do mhalaí's do ghrua



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 Post subject: Chapter Three: The Housemate
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 5:04 pm 
Howdy Kittens! Moving day! No time for individual replies, but I wanted to get this next chapter up before the computer goes away

.Thanks to everyone reading and taking the time to leave feedback (it's my new drug of choice!).


ladydameon
:
Quote:This is no way to end a chapter!
Ummm...get used to it!Seriously, I'm trying to write this in the spirit of the old timey matinee serials, so there have to be plot twists and cliffhangers galore. I'll try to make it up to everyone by posting regularly, okay?





Title:
Secrets and Spies



Author:
Tarawhipped (Cameron)



Email:
tarawhipped@hotmail.com



Raiting:
PG-13



Disclaimer:
All characters are property of Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy



Feedback:
Yes please!



Distribution:
Sure, just tell me where so I can visit!





Chapter Notes:
Thoughts in
Italics



Chapter Three: The Housemate




Willow Rosenberg wandered aimlessly around her living room, pausing now and then to straighten a picture or move a stray object an inch or two to the right or left.Sometimes both.Her nervous energy had made it easy to tidy up the small house, but now that it was done, she didn’t know what to do with herself.


So she paced.Several trips around the living room, down the hall, into the kitchen, back down the hall, past the bedrooms.She stuck her head into the spare room for the sixteenth or seventeenth time that morning.Frowning, she walked into the middle of the room and stood with her hands on her hips.



I wonder if she’ll like it?…it’s not a bad room…it’s roomy…it’s a roomy-room…heh, that’s funny…maybe I should have removed that old desk…what was I thinking?…it looks like a dorm room…and has that wallpaper always been this ugly?…it’s so old ladyish…it looks like an old lady dorm room…oh!—what if she’s an old lady?…not that that’s a bad thing to be…I’d like to be one myself someday…she didn’t sound old, but…



Willow’s brow furrowed and her internal babble-ogue came to an abrupt halt as she recalled the phone conversation the previous day



She didn’t sound old.She sounded about my age, in fact.She had a nice voice.Yep, definitely nice.



Willow smiled as she walked back to the living room.She checked the clock on the mantle—9:47.The momentary calm that had descended over the redhead disappeared in an instant.



Thirteen minutes!…she’s gonna be here in thirteen minutes!…maybe she’ll be late…oh no!…what if she’s early?!



Willow raced to the front window and pulled back the curtain.Her eyes darted up and down the quiet street, but she saw nothing out of the ordinary.



Okay, that’s good…I still have a few minutes to myself before I have to meet this strange woman who wants to move into my house.



Willow flopped down onto her couch and groaned.When her parents had suggested she rent out the spare room it had seemed like a good idea.She didn’t need the money, but Ira and Sheila had implied that she could use the company.Since moving from Washington, D.C. to Sunnydale several months before, she had met few people.When her best friend Xander had been stationed nearby, she’d been able to see him, but then he’d shipped out several weeks ago.


Willow had finally decided to do it out of civic duty.With all of the war industry in Southern California, Sunnydale had attracted a huge number of new residents, and builders were struggling to keep up with demand.When her ad for a housemate had been answered so soon, Willow had not been surprised.But it was only now that the reality of the situation was sinking in.



Some total stranger is going to be living in my house…what if she’s a slob?…what if she smokes?…what if she’s an ax murderer?…oh my God, she’s probably an ax murderer!…this was such a rotten idea…okay, calm down Rosenberg…when she gets here, I’ll just …hide!…I can hide!…no, that would cowardly—and rude…hmmm…oh! I know! I’ll tell her it’s already rented!…no, I can’t lie to her…can I?…
NO!
…wait, I’ve got it…I’ll tell her I changed my mind and that there’s no room for anyone who’s not me…is that a car?




Willow dashed to the window again and cautiously pulled back the curtain.She saw a dark green sedan pull slowly down the street and come to a stop in front of her house.She watched as the door opened and a dark blonde head emerged.



Oh my God, it’s Veronica Lake
, flashed through Willow’s head as she saw the long wavy hair that fell coquettishly across one side of the woman’s face.Willow pushed the curtain aside further in order to get a better view, but just as she did so she saw the blonde’s eyes turning towards her.


Willow dropped the curtain and jumped away from the window.She quickly bounced over to the front door and paused, her hand on the knob.



Okay, definitely not an old lady…no siree…and she doesn’t look like an ax murderer…what
do
ax murderers look like anyway…no—bad—don’t visualize…too late!




Willow’s mental frenzy had her so wound up that at the first soft knock on the door she jerked it open…


…and found herself staring into two extremely startled blue eyes.



Wow
, thought the redhead, as she stood in the doorway, eyes widening and a grin forming on her face.
Veronica Lake Schmake.



After a moment Willow realized she’d frightened the other woman, who seemed to be frozen in place.



Say something, Rosenberg!
Willow’s brain shouted at her.
Something simple, like ‘Hi, I’m Willow Rosenberg.You must be Tara Maclay.’
Willow took a deep, steadying breath, smiled, held out her hand, and in a calm, clear voice said:


“Hi!. I’m Tara Maclay.You must be Willow Rosenberg.”





TBC in Chapter Four: Getting To Know You










What should I be but just what I am?
- Edna St.Vincent Millay


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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Three: The Housemate
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 5:16 pm 
:lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao :lmao !!!!



That...



Was....



AWESOME!!



Willow's all mixed up!



Sincerely,

:flower BWR

***

If homosexuals dont reproduce, why are there so many of them?-Jim David



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Three: The Housemate
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 5:28 pm 
:lmao The ending was hilarious. I had to go back to the last chapter to see if I hadn't read it wrong. Great update!! And remember moving can be fun :D



-shuyaku

Oh God, Willow—you’re giving me the gift of Karen Carpenter. Just when I think I grasp the full extent of your love." - Tara

"Why do birds suddenly appear? It’s because, you are queer…" - Willow (Gods Served and Abandoned by AntigoneUnbound)



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Three: The Housemate
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2004 5:31 pm 
Lol!!!!:lmao :lmao



Oh my god. Thats.....let me catch my breath......!





That was great. great job.







brittney









~Kiss this axe, bitch!---Tara "Bargaining part 2"~



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Three: The Housemate
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 9:35 am 
Oh god, that last line had me laughing out loud :) I loved Willow's 'internal babble-ogue' as well. That nails it, she's no spy - or, if she is, the Russians must be very confused.



Chris Cook

alia.customer.netspace.net.au/glass.htm

Through the Looking-glass: A Willow and Tara for every world.

Edited by: Artemis at: 8/12/04 1:36 am


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 Post subject: Re
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 12:22 pm 
I can so easily see Willow as being a nervous pacer, and her babble about the room was adorable. Loved what her first sentence to Tara was - it made me giggle.



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 Post subject: Re: Re
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 12:48 pm 
OH that was great, the name switch....tee hee



So, Agent Maclay as a house-mate? Mmmm, did they have inside connections at the newspaper about the ad? Did Willow's parents set up their daughter?



What about the Rosenbergs being Jewish?



What about the name "Rosenberg"??



So many questions, so short chapters!!

ladydameon

----------------

Goddess of Violence



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 Post subject: Re: Re
PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2004 4:07 pm 
OHMYGOD!! How funny was that! You've totally nailed Willow babble. The way she would jump from one thing to another so quickly and completley off topic. She got from ugly wallpaper to Tara being an old lady in less than a sentance! Very funny My head is totally spinning after all that babble..........but in a good way, you write it so well.



You've only posted three updates and already i'm hooked! I can tell that you'll no doubt be driving me insane in the future with your naughty cliffhangers which will lead to lots of and me being unable to interact with society................because i have no hair left!



So please be nice with the updates, i don't want to lose the only little piece of sanity i've got left. I'm told i need it!



Wicked writing, i love it. More please.



Michelle.x



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 Post subject: Re: Chapters 2 & 3 Feedback
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 12:43 am 
Hello kittens! I'm back! Funny how I survived quite well for thirty years without the internet, yet now I'm deprived for two days and I freak! *sigh* Oh well. Without further ado, here's the feedback I've neglected. Chapter 4 will follow.



Shuyaku: Thanks for the encouragement--both on the fic and the move. Moving's only fun when it's OVER (which it thankfully is)


ladydameon: Yes, Buffy's the secretary, and the others will either appear or be mentioned.
Quote:
they aren't going to have sex right away are they?
Ummmmm...no
I'm glad you mentioned the coincidence of the name Rosenberg. The idea for this fic developed as I was reading Sam Roberts' The Brother, which focuses on the role played by Ethel's brother, David Greenglass. There's no connection made in this story, however. As for Willow being Jewish, it will play a small role in the story, but it's not related to any suspicion of her. Can I vague that up any more for ya?:p


BurningWhiteRose: Thanks for reading. I have mixed feelings about Riley (is he a nice guy, annoying, or a big doof?), but he makes a good plot device, especially in this setting. BTW, you might want to pace yourself--at this rate you're gonna run out of ass to laugh off:wink .


My Always: Of course there'll be more! Thank you.


dreamcatcher: I love AUs too--they open up so many possibilities, and it's great to see what people come up with. Also glad you liked Buffy's role--I had to fit her in somehow!


Artemis: The recognition of the need for balance will be addressed very soon. I have no intention of glossing over the difficulty Tara will face between doing her job and having personal feelings for Willow. I'm glad the last line was such a hit. I really didn't mean for this to be a comedy, but I find it hard to NOT write Willow funny. Also, thanks for putting up the story--I love the banner!


mollyig: Thank you so much. There will definitely be conflicting emotions r.e. job/feelings.

Quote:
I can so easily see Willow as being a nervous pacer
I've been watching season 1 again, and realized how much I like goofy, spazzy Willow, so I'm writing a bit of that in. I'm glad you found it believable


amazonaa: Thank you, I'm glad you're liking it!


veiled isis moon: Thanks Michelle. So many people have done Willowbabble so well that I was hesitant to try it for fear of not measuring up. I really appreciate your encouragement. Try not to shred your head too much, okay? I can't handle the guilt:wink .



What should I be but just what I am? - Edna St.Vincent Millay



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 Post subject: Chapter Four: Getting to Know You
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 12:53 am 
Title: Secrets and Spies


Author: Tarawhipped (Cameron)


Email: tarawhipped@hotmail.com


Rating: PG-13 (possibly higher later, see chapter headings)


Disclaimer: All characters are property of Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy


Feedback: Yes please!


Distribution: Sure, just tell me where so I can visit!






Chapter Four: Getting to Know You



Note: Thoughts in
italics





Willow mentally smacked herself in the forehead.


“I mean, I’m Willow,” the redhead stated, “And you must be—“


“Tara Maclay,” the blonde finished, as she reached out shake the offered hand, totally unaware of the cause of the other woman’s consternation.


The two women continued to gaze at each other intently.After several long moments had passed, each became conscious that they were still holding hands, but neither seemed willing to break the contact.Just as the intensity of the silence was becoming uncomfortable, the shrill bark of a dog down the street broke their reverie.


Tara jumped at the sharp noise, causing her hand to at last drop from Willow’s.


“It’s nice to m-meet you Miss Rosenberg,” Tara said, determined to regain her professional demeanor.She frowned slightly at her stutter.
Hmm…haven’t done that in a while.Must be big-important-assignment jitters.



“Please call me Willow,” the redhead replied with a dismissive wave of her hand.Having noticed the blonde’s frown, she added “don’t worry, this really is a quiet street.Lady Macbeth must have spied the postman.”


“Lady Macbeth?”


“The dog,” Willow clarified. “So, would you like to come in?Cause I suppose you want to see the room, and it’s inside…well, I guess that it goes without saying—though here I am saying it—but it’s in the house, ‘cause who’d want to rent a room that
wasn’t
in a house?That’s be like a shack, or a shed, and you don’t look like you’d want to live in a shed.So would you?”


Tara looked at the redhead with wonder.
If her mind moves as fast as her mouth…oh boy…bad thoughts.



“Would I like to live in a shed?” she asked as seriously as possible.


“Oh!No!Would you like to come in?I didn’t mean to—hey!You knew what I meant, didn’t you?”Willow accused as Tara’s grin threatened to overwhelm her face.


“Yes,” Tara laughed, “and I’m sorry for teasing you but your ah, thought process is a little umm, overwhelming.”


“That’s okay.Actually, I’m surprised you could follow it.Most people just tell me I’m babbling and look at me like I’m nuts.”


Willow smiled sheepishly as she ushered the blonde inside.Her panic at having a stranger move into her home completely forgotten, she proceeded to lead Tara on a grand tour of the house.


“Well, I guess
grand
was a bit of an overstatement,” Willow remarked apologetically when five minutes after they had begun they were standing in the spare room.“There’s not much to tour.This is the room, though.It comes with the furniture, but if you have your own I can get rid of this stuff.That desk can go if you don’t like it.And I’m
so
sorry about the wallpaper, but it can be painted over.Oh! I meant to put some flowers on the dresser but I forgot.But I can get some.”


Willow paused for a breath before adding in a small voice, “that is, if you decide to take it.”


Tara stood quietly throughout Willow’s appraisal of the room.Of course she would take it—that’s why she was there.Infiltrating Willow Rosenberg’s home was just the first step of her assignment.Agent Maclay knew how important her work was, but she couldn’t help feeling a little conflicted as she approached the successful completion of stage one.Were it just the obvious and immediate physical attraction she’d felt for the redhead, she would have thought nothing of it.It would be uncomfortable, yes, but it would not affect her ability to handle the case.What she had been totally unprepared for was how much she
liked
Willow.As a person she gave Tara the same impression her voice had: open, exuberant, babbly.Tara knew she could not allow any feelings of affection to cloud her judgment in the investigation.She also knew that the investigation would proceed with or without her.Well aware of how Travers had gone out on a limb for her, Tara was determined to earn that trust, and prove herself to Riley and the rest of the boys’ club as well.


“I l-love the desk,” Tara began, “and I was hoping it would be furnished.I just moved here and I’ve been staying in a hotel.The wallpaper…well, I’ve um, seen worse.”


Willow cringed and opened her mouth to protest, but before she could speak Tara continued.


“It actually kind of reminds me of my grandmother’s house.I don’t m-mind it, really.And um, if it’s okay with you, I’ll take it.”


The redhead had stood nervously waiting as Tara silently took in the room.Unable to read the other woman’s expression, Willow had determined that the blonde was trying to figure out how to politely decline.Whereas half an hour earlier she had been convinced that a housemate was the worst idea ever, Willow now found herself inexplicably anxious for Tara to move in.When she heard ‘I’ll take it,’ the redhead bounced over to the other girl and gave her a quick hug.


Tara stiffened at the contact, but Willow had already stepped away and was too lost in her own excitement to notice the blonde’s reaction.


“Why don’t you have a seat in the living room and I’ll make us some tea,” Willow’s voice called out from halfway down the hall.




Once the tea was prepared and the women were comfortably seated on Willow’s couch, they discussed the particulars of the living arrangements.Rent was agreed upon and keys handed over.Tara provided several references despite the redhead’s protestations that they were unnecessary.Somewhat nervously, Willow broached the subject of house rules.


“One, no smoking.”At Tara’s nod she continued.“Two, no um… well errr, no visitors of the uhhh, male type persuasion, you know, umm…overnight.”


Tara would have burst out laughing if she hadn’t seen the pained expression on Willow’s face and the blush creeping up past her ears.


“It’s just that, well, the neighbors are kind of nosy, and people talk, and I know it’s stupid, ‘cause come on people, it’s 1943 already, and I don’t want you to feel like you’re living in a convent, but—“


Tara gently laid a hand on Willow’s arm and gave it a light squeeze.


“Willow, it’s okay.I understand and you don’t have to worry.I promise—no men.”


Willow let out a sigh of relief.Quickly changing the subject, she told Tara to feel free to move in any time.


“I’m at school most days until five, but if you need any help after that, I’d be happy to assist.”


Tara hastily replied that she had very little to move, and could easily gather it all herself that afternoon.The blonde agent then inquired about Willow’s studies.


“I just transferred to UC Sunnydale in the fall as a junior.I did my first two years in D.C., but took a year off to work.”


Willow went on at length about the engineering classes she’d taken, the lack of women in the program, and how excited she was about her new college.Tara noticed that the redhead did not elaborate on her work—but it was top secret, of course.


“So you want to be an engineer?”


Willow shifted on the sofa, unwrapping her legs from where they’d been curled underneath her.The redhead stared off into space for a long moment before fixing her gaze at a spot on the floor by her feet.


“Well, uhhh, maybe?I’ve kind of been…I haven’t decided if…it’s not that I…,”Willow struggled to find the right words before giving up with an exasperated sigh.She sat forward and reached for her teacup, draining it’s contents and looking into it as if to see her fortune.“I guess I’ve just been…heading in another direction lately.It makes me think that I’m meant to do something…different.”


Willow stood suddenly and moved to take the tea set into the kitchen.The shift in her demeanor was palpable.Gone was the bubbly energy and chattiness.Despite only having known her for several hours, the sight of Willow agitated and silent disturbed Tara.


“Look, I hate to rush off, but I really have to get to class.”


Tara watched Willow’s profile intently.She reflected on the fidgeting, the furrowed eyebrows, the carefully chosen words that said little.



She’s definitely hiding something
, Tara mused,
but who isn’t?






TBC in Chapter Five: The Investigation Begins (or, Getting into Willow’s Drawers)



Endnote: Lady Macbeth was my parents' dog, who barked through every phone conversation we had for ten years. She's been gone for a few years, but for some reason I was thinking about her.







What should I be but just what I am?
- Edna St.Vincent Millay


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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Four: Getting to Know You
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 1:10 am 
Oh come on, I want to get into her drawers NOW!!! Somehow I don't think Willow would leave anything just lying around unless she wants it to be found....



Update soon, please...

ladydameon

----------------

Goddess of Violence



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Four: Getting to Know You
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 3:58 am 
Babbly Willow is just too damn cute! I'm really looking forward to finding out what she's hiding and if that involves Tara pilfering Willow's drawers - well so be it :D



-shuyaku



ps: glad to hear the move went okay.

Oh God, Willow—you’re giving me the gift of Karen Carpenter. Just when I think I grasp the full extent of your love." - Tara

"Why do birds suddenly appear? It’s because, you are queer…" - Willow (Gods Served and Abandoned by AntigoneUnbound)



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Four: Getting to Know You
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 8:10 am 
Cant wait to see what babbling Willow is hiding...



Babbling,



Sneaky,



CUTE



Sincerely,

:flower BWR

***

If homosexuals dont reproduce, why are there so many of them?-Jim David



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 Post subject: Re: Chapter Four: Getting to Know You
PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2004 9:18 am 
Who isn't indeed? :) Obviously it's perfectly natural for a codebreaker not to go into great detail about her work to someone who, so far as she knows, works in the steno pool - not exactly 'need to know'. Then again, a good spy would seem nothing like you'd expect a spy to be - sure, we know Willow really is a mile-a-minute babbler, but Tara must be wondering whether it's a cover. The way she carries on, her superiors are probably just grateful she doesn't babble to everyone about her code work whenever she figures out something clever, who'd suspect she could be hiding a deeper secret? Then again, one must worry - if Willow isn't the Rose, who is? And what are they doing, while all Tara's attention is on Willow? Not that you have to answer any of those questions of course, I just like to look like I'm being a useful reader and all that :)

Chris Cook

Through the Looking-glass

A Willow and Tara for every world.



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