Oz stared at Spike, and Spike smirked at Oz. After a minute of the kid staring incredulously at him, Spike couldn't take it anymore and decided to speak first. "You on the outs with your bird? Noticed you were looking a bit down." Oz looked confused. "Red?" he prompted. "Oh," said Oz. "Not yet."
Oz looked at the ground, then back at Spike. "Does, uh...does Buffy know you're around?" A pained grimace spread across Spike's face, which he tried to cover quickly by scoffing. "Bint wouldn't know a Chirago demon if it sat on her face!" Oz took this to mean Buffy didn't, but wasn't sure what to say next. He didn't really want to keep sitting with Spike, but he also wasn't ready to head up to Buffy and Willow's room. Both men gazed out over the quad and sighed.
Spike pulled out his lighter so he would have something to do with his hands, fiddled with it for a moment, then stole another glance at his benchmate. Maybe this was a chance to get the inside scoop on the Slayer and her pals, find out more about that floppy-haired idiot the Slayer was flirting with the other day. "What does 'not yet' mean anyway? You planning to get into trouble with your girl?"
Oz frowned. He opened his mouth like he was about to reply, then closed it, then surprised Spike by asking him a question in return. "You ever meet someone who likes both parts of you equally? Demon and human?"
Spike's jaw nearly hit the bench - likes both parts equally?! He had never met anyone the past twelve decades who liked his human side, with the exception of some musicians in New York twenty or so years ago, and none of those blokes knew he was a vampire. His vampire family had done everything possible to discourage his human side, from burning his books of poetry to repeatedly making fun of his ideas about love and fidelity. "No," he replied honestly, choking up a little. "Not a one."
Suddenly it occurred to Spike that Willow would never in a million years be the person who accepted both parts of Oz equally. Tolerate? Sure. Accept? Not hardly. "What's your new lady like then?"
"Well," answered Oz, "she's not really my lady. But she's kind and quiet and gentle, you know? And she has the best smile."
Spike glared at him. "Oi, 'm a demon, not a soddin' fairy princess! Tell me something important about her."
Oz was taken aback. "Like what?"
"For starters, what does your demon think about her? What does she smell like?"
"Oh," said Oz. "My wolf side feels really calm around her for some reason. But umm...also excited a bit? And she smells sort of like henbane, chamomile, and beeswax." Another witch, thought Spike. What is it with this kid and witches? "And," continued Oz, the tips of his ears turning a bit red, "the wolf likes that she smells fertile." Spike guffawed. "Not that that's important!" Oz hastened to add. Spike cackled some more.
Oz felt embarrassed, but also grateful to have someone to talk to about this. "What do you like about your lady, then? he asked Spike.
Spike mused on Drusilla's best qualities. Fiendishly evil, of course, but so playful sometimes, too. He loved her smell of candied violets, dark currants, and warm blood. What he found himself saying, though, was how much he admired his lady's courage and strength. How watching her fight got him hard. How she smelled like vanilla and sunshine and freshly mown grass. Wait... that wasn't how Dru smelled. Hold on a tic, he thought, but before he could pursue it Oz distracted him.
"The new girl? She teaches a yoga class for demons if you're interested. It meets tomorrow morning at sunrise."
Yoga for demons! Sounded like something his poncey grandsire would attend, and yet Spike found himself agreeing and arranging to meet Wolfboy in the morning, then leaving his bench before he'd gotten a glimpse of the Slayer for the evening.
Oz sat on the bench for another second, not quite believing that he'd had a nice conversation with Spike. He shook his head, grabbed the strap of his backpack, and headed to the girls' dorm. And how weird was it that Dru smelled just like Buffy? He was never sharing that tidbit, because Buffy would absolutely freak.