Sharpie Pens And Green Tea

Xander swallowed it up and walked away from Cordelia, who was practically at the point of running him down and kicking him in the head until he told her what was up. Oz glanced back, whipping his body around as he heard Cordelia's squawking. He noted the dull pain in his stomach. Whatever he'd eaten that'd made him so full wasn't agreeing with him this fine morning.

Oz stood, excusing himself gracefully from the group. Their faces reflected a horror that he hadn't seen, and was glad he hadn't. From what he'd heard, Xander hadn't had the pleasure of wrestling with the multiple-headed demon either.

Oz had already decided that a snack was the worst thing for him at the moment, but a nice flavorful Frutopia might help get rid of the taste he still had in the back of his throat. It tasted like he'd eaten a dirty mop from the janitors closet, or something.

He saw Xander feeding a wrinkled dollar bill in to the snack machine, and groaning as it kept getting spit out. Oz grinned, and handed Xander a nice crisp dollar that he'd had in his shirt pocket. Xander nodded his thanks, handing Oz the crinkled bill that'd been bunched up in his jeans for five days.

"So, doesn't it feel a bit odd to be outside of the save the world group? For once I'm almost thankful for the full moon."

"Well, kinda. I had a pretty...uh, quiet night," Xander said, smirking to himself.

"I've thought about your thing," Oz said.

Xander's brow furrowed in confusion, an odd thought about what Oz meant coming to mind. "Huh?"

"Your thing...the one thing that makes you a cool way."

Xander nodded, relieved. "Ohhhh. What's my thing?"

"Well, it's not a big thing, it's kinda small...not really noticeable." Oz's brow furrowed, "You're the outsider. It's sort of my gig too, but you were the outsider before I came. The guy in the group of girls...the one to crack a joke when everyone's straight-faced."

"Really? You think the outsider is cool?"

"Outsider's are way cool. I mean, they're not loners, but that's why some of them stick out. They're surrounded by a completely different element. An element that blends together a bit more."

Xander just nodded, "I don't know what to think of you sometimes."

"You could think of me as the guy who let you trade in your crumpled dollar bill, for one that was nice and crisp. Like lettuce."

"Okay, lettuce boy. I'm forever in debt to you." Xander mock bowed, and took his small bag of Cheetos out of the bottom of the machine. Xander walked away from the redheaded slacker, and Oz followed him as he walked towards the quadrant. Xander turned to Oz, asking him, "Is there something I can help you with?" he paused, "Oh, wait, I never help anybody, I'm just a nuisance. You're going to tell me that, right?" Xander smiled lamely.

"Yeah, I'm following you because you annoy me. It's like the reason everybody used to follow Cordelia." Xander grinned. "I reinstate, is there something I can help you with?"

"I wanted to talk to you about pink kryptonite." Oz sat down next to Xander.

Xander sat down on the railing lining the colonnade. "Oh," he sighed, "this is the time of the day where we have an awkward talk about the past few weeks, while we end up deciding to stick to something more mundane, like music, or comics, or..." Oz placed a few fingers over Xander's mouth, silencing him. He withdrew his fingers, "Lunch is almost over, cut with me, I have to show you something." Oz jumped down from the railing.

"That's against the rules." Xander gazed at Oz, a look of confusion written on his face.

Oz nodded, saying, "and, if we're still stating the obvious, you can't walk when your sitting down." Oz looked at Xander expectantly. "Up."

Xander stood slowly, carrying along his still unopened bag of cheesy goodness. "I have Third World History. I like Third World History, it's chock full of videos of death and gore that the teacher gives you the choice of skipping out on. There isn't a lot of work then."

Oz smirked, "You can't fool me, Xander. Don't make me carry you along by your ear...or your hand. People would talk." Oz started walking out of the quad, to the student parking zone, confident that Xander was following.

Oz stopped at his van, turning to see Xander right behind him. "Get in." Oz went to the drivers side, getting in.

Xander got in on the passengers side, shutting the door behind him, "Where are we going?"

"Why question?" Oz started up his van, peeling out of the parking lot.

"I like to plan ahead. You never know when you're gonna find yourself somewhere, wishing you had brought a bathing suit along."

Oz just smiled, driving on.

Oz turned on to his own street, and turned into his driveway. He opened up the van door, jumping down off his seat. "Come on Xander, am I gonna have to give you step by step instructions on everything?" Oz opened Xander's door for him, reaching his hand out. Xander took Oz's hand, taking the other boy's un-needed assistance to get out of the van.

"This is your house," Xander paused, "But, then, you knew that."

Oz smirked and led Xander through the front door of his house, all the way through the nicely decorated and spaced living room, and up the stairs to his own room.

When Xander entered Oz's room he was stopped from the, at first, blinding sight of pristine white walls with splotches of black ink all over them. Xander made those splotches out to be words with a second glance, and he faintly wondered how in the world Oz's parents let him get away with doing that to his walls. If Xander had ever actually done anything to damage their house...well, he shuddered at the thought of what his dad would do to him.

"Come in, and don't trip over my bean bag." Xander entered the other boys room, in awe of the eclectic diversity of everything in there. He noticed that one of the walls was covered with neon script, opposed to black. It had a black light over it.

"Go ahead and sit down, I've got more places in this room to sit down than there are in a chair store. Wow, that was a lame simile." Oz's brow furrowed as he crossed the room, taking something out of a drawer.

Xander ignored Oz's request, instead staying to one of Oz's script covered walls. He began to read some of the quotes written down. "'Heaven sent...but I haven't gotten a return receipt.' Where did you come up with this stuff?" Xander read on.

"Thoughts, quotes of songs, movies, poetry...whatever strikes my fancy, I write it down."

"'Like a cloud dropping rain...I'm discarding all thought.' You know, Oz, If my parents saw something like this on my walls they'd...they'd not like it."

Oz shrugged, and handed Xander a Sharpie Pen. "Write something."


"On the wall, write something on the wall. I've had two other people write on the wall. Willow, and Devon."

"What did they write?"

"Willow's quote is next to the Tori Amos poster, and Devon's is near her's." Xander crossed to a wall where it was covered with posters, quotes squeezing in between the spaces, and some even completely framing the poster. He read Willow's, ' L'hippo a pique' ses pantalons.' He read Devon's, a few inches over, 'What do you add to powdered water?'

"Hmm." Xander turned to Oz, holding up the marker. "Do you want me to sign by theirs?"

Oz shrugged. "Wherever you want to sign."

Xander nodded, and crossed to the other wall, seeing a nice space open, next to a scripty entry by Oz that read 'Being stuff gets you good.' He wrote,

'-Only two things are uncertain to me. You, and green tea. You're a nice forte.-' -- Xander

He handed the marker back to Oz, and stood back, waiting for Oz to read it, and for his reaction.

Oz leaned forward. "I like it. I get your point about green tea, also." Oz smiled, "I've never heard anyone directly called a forte. Could become the newest thing."

Xander nodded, surveying the rest of Oz's room. Mattress on the floor, desk with a computer on it, a stereo hooked up right next to the PC. There was also a nightstand with several books, and even some bottles of nail polish strewn across it.

Oz looked at Xander, a calm unreadable look, but the eyes questioned Xander. Xander knew this as Oz's extremely indirect way of asking him what he was thinking. But Xander didn't want to tell Oz, or anyone about the feelings being summoned in him as he stood in his best friend's boyfriend's room, the haunting yet calm face staring him down. He was torn between hitting Oz, running, or even kissing him. The latter the most disturbing, and most tempting.

Oz could read it. It was some uncanny skill that he possessed to read people like open books. So, Oz reached out, softly grasping on to Xander's gently dangling arm. Everything on Xander froze as Oz reached up, placing a fairly chaste kiss on Xander's lips. One thought surfaced in Xander's head, something he'd said the previous night, . Xander pressed his lips against Oz, tilting his head slightly. Xander pulled away as quickly as he'd returned the kiss offered up by Oz.

Xander rubbed at the back of his neck nervously, "So, how do you think Willow would react if she knew you'd kissed me, uh, twice?"

"I'm kinda banking on her thinking it's cute."

"Y-You don't know Willow that well then."

"You're right."

"But you know me?"

Oz nodded slowly, his jaw slightly clenched.

Xander mumbled something, then said, "I should go, Third World History may be skipable, but I'm failing Algebra."

"Okay. I'm gonna go ahead and duck out on the rest of the day, but do you need a ride back to school?"

Xander shook his head, and gave Oz, and his room one last nervous glance before turning around jerkily, and walking out. Oz heard Xander going down his stairs loudly, like he was taking them five at a time, and then he heard his front door close quietly.

Oz glanced out his window, watching as Xander walked down the street quickly, his hand fiddling with his neck and mouth, then he was gone, around the corner.

Oz sighed, and turned back to his wall, looking at Xander's bold sprawling text. 'You're a nice forte.'