The Replacement

(August 10, 2000)

Written by: Jane Espenson

Teaser

INT. XANDER'S BASEMENT - NIGHT (NIGHT 1)

BUFFY AND RILEY, XANDER AND ANYA. Anya's arm is in a sling, but not a cast, following her adventures of the last week. The two couples are relaxing on and around Xander's sofa, watching movies. We can't see the screen, but Kung-Fu movie music and fighting thuds and grunts are heard. Buff has a history textbook, and is completely absorbed in it.

XANDER
Wish I had something foodlike to
offer you guys, but the hot plate's
out of commission.

ANYA
We think the cat peed on it.

XANDER
I do have Spaghetti-os. Set 'em on
top of the dryer and you're a fluff
cycle away from lukewarm goodness.

RILEY
I, uh, had dryer-food for lunch.

From upstairs we can hear a door slam

XANDER
Huh, guess the folks are back.

From upstairs there is a muffled sound of a fierce husband-wife argument, punctuated by the sound of a plate hitting the wall.

XANDER
(embarrassed)
No, No. I was wrong. Just
incompetent burglars

Another door slams and we hear a shouted fragment:

Man (O.S.)
…like I'm gonna listen to your
friends sober…

Something heavy hits the floor above them and dust shifts down from the rafters. The muffled fighting stops for now.

XANDER
Maybe it's time to start looking
for a new place… Something a
little nicer. Buffy, you've been to
Hell. They had one-bedrooms, right?

Buffy doesn't answer.

RILEY
Hey, Buffy…how's that book?
Full of zippy dates and zesty names?

BUFFY
(absently)
I'm fine.

Riley gently tugs the book away from her.

BUFFY
Hey! I was enjoying the studying!

RILEY
Who are you lately?
Give it up and watch the movie.

BUFFY
Well it has been a long hard day with the
crusades. Guess I could take a little break
from the violence for some….
(sees the screen)
Ooh! Fighting!

XANDER
Incompletely dubbed kung fu.
Our most valuable Chinese import.

ANYA
Much more durable than their hot plates.

RILEY
(to Buffy)
Watch the movie and relax. Here.

Riley moves Buffy around in front of him, starts to rub her shoulders.

BUFFY
Mmm. So good. More…

Xander sees the happiness that is Buffy and Riley. He takes the cue, starts rubbing
Anya's shoulders

ANYA
What are you doing? I have a dislocated
shoulder and I'm trying to concentrate
on the kicking movie.

Xander takes his hands away from Anya. Riley has been watching the whole rejection.
He stops rubbing Buffy's shoulders not wanting to flaunt their togetherness.

BUFFY
Hey! The rubbing went away.

RILEY
Um…sorry…got caught up in the action.

BUFFY
Yeah, it's pretty good-
(then, off movie)
Oh, give me a break! See you'd hit the
big guy first, a flying kick. Then clear out the
little ones - bam, bam! Oh! Now with the
flying kick?!

Riley's a little rankled.

RILEY
Hey, Buff. Maybe you oughtta leave the work
behind sometimes. You're not always a slayer
on duty, you know.

BUFFY
Well, it would drive you crazy if this was an army
movie and they were all, you know, saluting
backwards and, and… invading all willy-nilly.

Another door slams upstairs. Another fragment:

Woman (O.S.)
…gonna run away, huh?
'Cuz that's what you do best…

The muffled fighting starts up again. Everyone tries to ignore what they hear. Riley clears his throat loudly to try to drown it out. Buffy pipes up, trying to distract Xander, who is clearly squirming.

BUFFY
Anyway, you can't blame me for being critical.
Willow's the same way when we watch movies
about witches, isn't she Xander?

XANDER
(Still focused on fight)
What? Oh - yeah… She's all "What's that?
A Cauldron? Who uses a cauldron anymore?"

Xander tries to smile, but it's forced.

EXT. SHADOWY PLACE - NIGHT

A very tall and imposing demon, TOTH, stands in front of a bubbling cauldron. A hooded black robe hides his features. He pushes back the hood, revealing the strips of skin shedding from a black skull underneath. He holds something length-wise over the cauldron, letting the smoke curl around it. It's a black cylinder, about half the length of a baseball bat and inscribed with arcane symbols. Toth speaks in a deep and portentous rumble.

TOTH
The last step in thy forging is my pain.
The price with which I purchase the death
of the Slayer.

And he plunges the arm holding the cylinder into the cauldron up past the elbow and screams skyward in pain and rage.

BLACK OUT.

END OF TEASER
Act One

EXT. APARTMENT BUILDING - DAY (DAY 2)

Quite nice. To establish.

INT. HALLWAY - DAY

The hallway of a nice apartment building. Xander, Anya, Willow, Buffy, and Riley are heading down the hall.

WILLOW
(to Xander)
If you get the apartment, this'll be your hallway,
We'll walk down this hall going, la, la,
I'm on my way to Xander's.

BUFFY
Just warning you now, Xander.
I probably won't be doing that.

RILEY
Really? I will.

XANDER
Hey, we're just looking. The
rent's way high, so don't get
your hopes all carbonated.

ANYA
But you have references!

XANDER
No. I have Albert. Which is
me doing an important-voice.
(important voice)
Xander Harris? An excellent
tenant and a very nice - looking fellow…

Anya opens the door. Everyone follows her in.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS - DAY

Anya enters, followed by Xander, Buffy, Riley, and Willow. The apartment is great --well, it's not a basement anyway. A large living room - kitchen area, with a door to a bedroom. There is a dining table and a sofa in the otherwise unfurnished apartment.

WILLOW
Ooh. Big.

BUFFY
Nice. And not subterranean.
Very… above-terranean.

ANYA
I want it. Pay anything.

The BULIDING MANAER, a not-unattractive woman in her early 30s, steps out of the kitchen area and comes over to them. She looks at Riley and Xander. Riley is neatly dressed. Xander wears an untucked floral shirt. She shakes Riley's hand.

BUILDING MANAGER
Xander Harris?

RILEY
Oh. No. Riley Finn. This is Xander.

XANDER
Hey.

BUILDING MANAGER
Ah.

Xander wipes his hand on his shirt-tail and offers his hand. She shakes it, unimpressed.

XANDER
I brought my friends.

BULIDING MANAGER
I see.

XANDER
They wouldn't always be around.

WILLOW
But we're quite and clean.

Buffy and Riley exit into the bedroom. Willow heads into the kitchen area. Anya is looking around the living area.

ANYA
We could have Scooby meetings in
the living room. Giles can explain
the boring things over here.

WILLOW
Hey! There's a microwave in here!
It would be like having hot-and-cold
running popcorn. Only hot.

Xander starts looking around.

BUILDING MANAGER
Phone and electricity are hooked up.
There's a private balcony, ceiling
fans, closet space…

Xander opens the door to the bedroom. Buffy and Riley are kissing just inside the door. They jump apart.

XANDER
You guys. You can't save it
for the bedroom?

Buffy and Riley gesture expressively around them at the bedroom. (There is a stripped bed there.)

XANDER
Okay, good point.

Xander heads back to the manager. Buffy and Riley follow him.

BUILDING MANAGER
I brought an application for you to fill out.

XANDER
An application? I can't just, like, tell
you my references? 'Cuz there's Albert-

BUILDING MANAGER
We run your credit check based
on the application.

XANDER
Oh, Credit check. Little check on the
credit. See how credible my checks are, ha ha.

BUILDING MANAGER
And we'll be asking for first, last, security
and a small cleaning deposit.
The total's at the bottom of the sheet.

Xander looks at the total. Buffy and Riley look at it over his shoulder. Xander does a good job of not reacting.

But Buffy and Riley exchange a look-Buffy shakes her head slightly. Anya joins them.

ANYA
He'll take it! Xander, go get the furniture,
I'll wait here.
(to the manager)
He lives in his drunken parents' basement
where something urinated on the hot plate.

XANDER
Um, let's talk quietly over there.
(to the manager)
Excuse us.

Xander pulls Anya to one side. Buffy, Riley are left smiling awkwardly at the Building Manager. Willow joins them.

RILEY
We…um…we like the ceiling fans.

WILLOW
Very, you know, kind of Old south.

BUFFY
(quickly)
But without unpleasant slavery associations.

Xander and Anya's talk in progress. Xander tries to talk softly, but Anya is loud throughout.

ANYA
But why can't we have it?

XANDER
I told you. The construction job is ending,
I'm not going to have any money coming in.
And, by the way, you do have your own place.

ANYA
So when I want to visit you I
have to be in that awful basement?

XANDER
Not forever. Just until things come together…

But Anya just gets more shrill and upset.

ANYA
Which is when, Xander? 'Cause
right now things are looking pretty
un-together and you can't expect
me to just wait around-

XANDER
Quiet, please. Anya, what is this?
What's going on with you?

ANYA
What's going on is my arm is hurt
and I'm tired and I don't really feel
like finishing the tour of beautiful
things I can't have.

With that she spins around and storms out. Embarrassed, Xander turns to the Building Manager.

XANDER
(forced smile)
Guess I'll just start on that
application. Think you'll like it.
I've been told I have lovely penmanship.

Looking very skeptical, the manager hands him the application.

INT. "THE MAGIC BOX" - DAY

GILES is alone in the closed shop, dressed down, sleeves rolled up for a day of inventory and clean-up. Most of the shelves are empty, but there are some dusty books, some jumbled vials of powder, etc. Giles rummages around in the contents of a cardboard box, hauling out handfuls of amulets, their chains all knotted together. On the side of the box is a black magic-marker scrawl: "Charms, Orbs, Misc. Curses."

GILES
"Miscellaneous curses." Brilliant.
Be lucky not to curse my hands right off.

Giles picks up the box, turns, and FINDS HIMSELF FACE-TO-CHEST WITH THE VERY TALL DEMON TOTH. Toth carries his rod-device.

GILES
Gahhhh!

TOTH
The Slayer is not here.

Giles holds the box with one arm and starts frantically pawing through it. He seizes on something, holds it up. It's a rabbit's foot.

GILES
Rabbit's foot. No, wait.

Giles comes up with a heavy sculpture of a deity just as Toth swats the box out of his hand. Giles holds the sculpture up in front of him.

TOTH
That is a fertility god. Feeble man,
you are not likely to strike mortal
fear into-

GILES HITS TOTH WITH THE FERTILITY SCULPTURE. Again and again! The beating drives Toth back for a moment. But he is more surprised than hurt. He swats Giles casually, smacking him against a wall.

TOTH
You are not the Slayer.
You do not concern me

Toth sweeps out, his robe all billowy and evil behind him.

INT. "THE MAGIC BOX" - LATER - DAY

Willow pages through some of the shop's collection of books. Buffy, Riley, and Xander watch as Giles demonstrates how he fought off the demon. Giles swings the sculpture wildly.

GILES
Like this… and this!

RILEY
That's thing's pretty heavy.

WILLOW
It's Oofdar, Goddess of Childbirth.
Got some nice heft to her.

BUFFY
How badly did you hurt him?

Giles sets down the sculpture.

GILES
Well, hurt… maybe not hurt…

WILLOW
(helpful)
I'm sure he was startled.

GILES
Yes, yes, I imagine it gave him rather a turn.

BUFFY
He ran away, right?

GILES
Sort of, more… turned and swept
out majestically, I suppose. Said
I didn't concern him.

BUFFY
So a mythic triumph over a
completely indifferent foe?

GILES
Well, I'm not dead or unconscious,
so I say bravo for me.

Willow hands Giles one of the books.

WILLOW
Good demons in this one. See if
your guy's in there.

Giles starts looking through it.

XANDER
So you bought the magic shop and
you were attacked before it even opened.
Who's up for a swingin' chorus of the
"We Told You So" symphony?

Riley is taking a few practice swings with the sculpture.

RILEY
Owning this place does seem
kind of dangerous.

Giles looks up from his book. He looks blankly at Riley.

GILES
Toth.

RILEY
What?

BUFFY
He called you a toth. It's a British expression.
It means, like, a moron.

GILES
(Patiently)
No. Toth is the name of the demon.
(consulting book)
Ancient demon… very strong… last
survivor of the Tothic Clan. It also says
that for a demon he's unusually sophisticated.

BUFFY
Sophisticated? I talk men's fashion
with him while I cut his head off?

GILES
They're referring to the fact that he
does not fight barehanded. He uses tools,
devices. He's also supposed to be very
focused. An since he mentioned "The Slayer"
I think we know what the focus is-

Riley turns grim.

RILEY
He mentioned Buffy? Where do we
find him and how hard can I kill him?

GILES
There's no mention of the types of
places he might frequent. But I have
an idea. He had a specific… olfactory presence.

XANDER
So it's off to the old factory. I hate that place.
(off there looks)
I'm joking. I know what it means. He smelled.

WILLOW
Some demon rituals involving
anointing with oils. Was it kind
of sandalwoody?

GILES
Hmm. Not even remotely. But it
was very… distinctive.

EXT. THE DUMP - NIGHT

That night. Buffy, Giles, Willow and Xander walk gingerly through the dump carrying crossbows and axes.

BUFFY
The city dump, where smells go
to relax and be themselves.

RILEY
People say they're recycling.
(sadly)
They're not recycling.

WILLOW
I found a spell so you can't smell
anything. But it does it by taking
your nose off. So, no.

The group rounds a corner, startling SPIKE, who is rummaging through some discarded items.

RILEY
What are you doing here, Spike?

SPIKE
Oh, there's a nice lady vampire
who's set up a charming tea room
just 'round the next pile of crap --
what do you think I'm doing?
I'm scavenging, ain't I?

Spike indicates a small pile of salvaged items. We can see a broken table and part of what looks like a mannequin. Spike holds up an attractive old oil lamp.

WILLOW
Very pretty.

BUFFY
Spike, we're looking for a demon.
Very tall, robe, skin kinda hanging off,
deep voice…

SPIKE
What, you mean a great tall robe-y
thing like that one?

The Scoobies turn and look behind them. TOTH LOOMS OVER THEM from a nearby hill of garbage, holding the black rod from the teaser.

TOTH
Die well, Slayer

Toth rushes forward as Giles and Riley circle around behind him, axes ready as Toth raises the rod.

SPIKE
Hey, big guy! Kick 'er ass!

Buffy sees the rod in Toth's hand - a fighting staff? She picks up a length of pipe. But Xander sees that Toth is aiming the rod at her.

XANDER
Watch out!

A BLAST OF SPARKS ERUPTS FROM THE ROD AND A PILE OF GARBAGE NEXT TO BUFFY EXPLODES!

RILEY
Take cover!

Riley grabs Willow's arm, pulls her away from the action. TOTH FIRES THE WEAPON AGAIN. SPIKE'S NEW LAMP IS HIT, SHATTERING IN HIS HAND.

SPIKE
Oh, very nice. I was on your side!

Toth has Buffy in his sights. Xander knocks Buffy aside just as a blast of magical force erupts from the rod. THE FORCE HITS XANDER. HE IS FLUNG TO THE GROUNG IN THE SHADOWS.

BUFFY
Xander!

The gang run to Xander.

RILEY
Man, you okay?

Xander struggles to his feet. Buffy looks around for Toth, but he's gong. Xander allows himself to be supported between Buffy and Riley. The group moves away slowly. As they go, and the others ad lib concern…

XANDER
I'm okay…I'm fine…

The dump is empty now. Except that something lies half-buried in garbage, unnoticed. We push in.

It's Xander, still lying unconscious where he fell. So who just went off with Buffy? Stay tuned. For this in only the…

BLACK OUT.

END OF ACT ONE
Act Two

EXT. THE DUMP - MORNING (DAY3)

The sun is up. We hear the cheerful early-morning rustle and squeak of the local rodents. Tucked in amid the debris is Xander. He stirs, yawns, sniffs, his eyes still closed.

XANDER
(half asleep)
Anya? Are you trying to use
the hot plate again?

He opens his eyes, wakes up. Looks around.

XANDER
Uh-oh.

EXT. THE DUMP - MOMENTS LATER - MORNING (DAY)

Xander, rumpled and stained, picks his way across the dump.

XANDER
So, you take the bullet for the swinging
Scooby-friends and what do you get?
A pat on the head? A tasteful medal?
No! You get left for dead under a light
layer of moldy socks and banana peels!

He slips as he says the last word and falls out of frame.

EXT. XANDER'S HOUSE - DAY

Xander trudges down the outside stairs to the basement door.
He tries it, but it doesn't open.

XANDER
Anya! Ahn?!

He rattles the lock. Nothing. He kicks the door. Hurt his foot. Hops up and down.

EXT./INT. XANDER'S HOUSE - BASEMENT WINDOW - DAY

Xander has to lie on his stomach in the dirt to look into the ground-level window basement. He uses his hand to clean a patch of dusty window. He is startled to see…

HIGH ANGLE ON : XANDER INSIDE THE BASEMENT

Combing his shower-damp hair. This is XANDER- DOUBLE.

XANDER (O.S)
Oh my god.

ANGLE: XANDER

Outside. Taking it in. Watching himself. He blinks. He touches his own face, astounded.

XANDER
What - - No way! Who is … me?
What am I doing in there?

XANDER-DOUBLE

searches through Xander's drawers, pulling out shirts. He pulls on a shirt, finds a billfold, takes money out, puts it in his pocket.

XANDER

Watches with dawning horror.

XANDER
Buffy. Need Buffy

Xander scrambles to his feet, turns to run, trips on his shoelaces and falls down.

EXT. PHONE BOOTH - DAY

A corner phone booth near Xander's house. Xander searches his pockets as he talks to the operator.

XANDER
No, it ate my quarter… Uh - huh.
But, see, I'm having this sort of
aggressively bad day… Ohh!….
I found a quarter! I found a quarter!…
Well, ma'am, for me it is worth getting
excited about.

He breaks the connection, dials a number.

XANDER
Come on, Buffy.

As he waits, Xander-Double walks right by the booth, not spotting Xander. Xander-Double looks good.

Work clothes, but nicer than jeans. Everything is clean, tucked in. Even his posture seems better. Startled, Xander puts up a hand to hide his own face. The phone's still ringing and he's torn -- hope Buffy picks up or follow his double. He hesitates, then hangs up, follows Xander-Double.

INT. BUFFY'S HOUSE - DAY

Buffy and Riley in her bedroom. Buffy hangs up the phone.

BUFFY
They hung up.

She goes back to loading weapons into her weapon bag.

BUFFY
Okay, the guy wants to fight with weapons,
I've got it covered from A to Z. From ax to…
ze other ax.

She smiles at Riley. He forces a smile back at her.

BUFFY
Relax. Another day, another demon.

RILEY
(unconvinced)
Right. It'll be good.

She kisses him. He kisses back. Right away, the sweet moment is spoiled by vigorous off-screen gagging noises. Riley and Buffy look over to see DAWN, standing in the doorway.

DAWN
My friend Sharon's older brother knows
a girl who died 'cause she choked on
her boyfriend's tongue.

BUFFY
Go away, Dawn.

DAWN
I'm not in your room. I'm in the hallway.
The hallway doesn't belong to you.

BUFFY
Get out of here!

JOYCE passes by, and DAWN stops her.

DAWN
Mom, I can stand in the hallway, right?

BUFFY
She's watching us like a big freak.

Joyce rubs at her forehead.

JOYCE
This must be my two-teenage-daughters-
in-the-house headache. I thought it felt familiar.

BUFFY
Good work, Dawn. You gave her a headache.

DAWN
I did not. Did I give you a headache, Mom?
I'm sure part of it is Buffy's.

BUFFY
But part of it is Dawn's.

JOYCE
(small smile)
It's so nice you've learned to share.
Now, you girls solve this yourselves.
It's good for you.

Joyce moves off

DAWN
She didn't say I couldn't stand here.

Without taking a step, Buffy reaches over, swings the door closed in Dawn's face.

DAWN (O.S.)
Ow!

Buffy and Riley are alone again.

BUFFY
I guess I should go. I'm thinking
maybe the guy actually likes smelly
places. So I'm going to do a whole tour
de funky, starting with the sewers.

RILEY
I'm coming with you.

BUFFY
Um….

RILEY
I never told you this about me, but
I love the sewers. Probably get a
place there when I retire.

BUFFY
Riley, this Toth guy walks softly and
carries a big blasty rod. He almost hurt
Xander - I'm not going to let him hurt you.

RILEY
I don't know. I don't like you facing
off alone with these creeps who come
gunning for you. I mean, first it was Dracula-

BUFFY
Dracula wasn't the first guy to come
Buffy Hunting. Lots of baddies want
the slayer trophy kill. I can handle it.

RILEY
I know... And if you want me to stay
out of it, that's cool. But you can't
blame me for worrying. Your job makes
you a target. I mean, who knows how
many bad guys are out there just waiting
for their chance.

INT. SPIKE'S CRYPT - DAY

Spike is concentrating on something out of frame. ANOTHER ANGLE REVEALS that he's trying a halter top on a mannequin. Actually it's only the top half on a mannequin. It sits on top of a short stone pedestal. Spike puts a blonde wig on the mannequin. He steps back to admire.

SPIKE
Very posh.

He brushes the blonde hair out of the mannequin's face, almost tenderly, then he turns to walk away. He takes a few steps, then without warning he spins and kicks viciously at the mannequin. The head and torso fly apart.

The torso slams into the opposite wall of the crypt. The wigged head falls, rolls, stops at Spike's feet. He picks it up, holds it in front of his face, addresses it. (If possible, could he maybe get his foot under the head and KICK IT UP INTO HIS HANDS?)

SPIKE
Oh, Slayer. One of these days.

EXT. CONSTRUCTION SITE - DAY

Xander-Double arrives at a construction site on which the job is clearly almost complete. A row of hardhats is set up, names affixed to most of them with tape. Xander-Double finds the one labeled "Harris." He puts it on, picks up a nail-gun and goes to work. The FOREMAN approaches.

FOREMAN
Harris!

Xander-Double doesn't react. Maybe he doesn't recognize his own name. Or maybe he just can't hear over the nail gun.

FOREMAN
Harris!

Xander-Double stops work.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Harris. Sorry. Yeah?

FOREMAN
In my trailer, okay? I'm talking to
all the guys today. Job's winding down.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Yeah. Right with you.

ANGLE: XANDER

Standing half-hidden by a porta-potty. He watches as Xander-Double heads away, following the Foreman.

XANDER
Welcome to payback, mister evil-plan
face-stealer. You take my life, you get
my being-fired absolutely free!

ANGLE: XANDER-DOUBLE

Xander-Double heads toward the Foreman's trailer. Xander-Double neatly avoids the hazards of the site, ducking under boards, jumping over tools.

ANGLE: XANDER

A WORKER EXITING THE PORTA-POTTY OPENS THE DOOR AND WHACKS Xander on the head. Xander doesn't exclaim... he's used to it by now. He just rubs his head.

WORKER
Harris? Where's your hardhat?

INT./EXT. FOREMAN'S TRAILER - DAY

Xander-Double takes off his hardhat as he enters the cramped trailer. The Foreman sits behind a cluttered desk.

FOREMAN
Sit down.

Xander-Double sits.

OUTSIDE THE TRAILER:

Xander arrives under a window in the Foreman's trailer. The window is too high to see in. Xander jumps, can't see in.

Out of breath, he realizes this isn't going to work. He quickly rigs a platform: particle-board over some planks. He gets on the platform and looks into the window.

INTERCUT WITH:

INSIDE THE TRAILER:

Xander-Double faces the Foreman across the desk. Xander-Double is playing with something in his hand -- a flat silver-colored disk. He turns it casually in his fingers.

FOREMAN
How long you work here, Harris?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Huh. I'm not sure.

FOREMAN
Three months?

XANDER-DOUBLE
I guess-- yes.

FOREMAN
And you haven't done much
construction before this, is that right?

Xander-Double is still playing with the metal disk.

OUTSIDE:

Xander watches, cringing.

XANDER
I knew they were gonna notice that...

INSIDE:

Reflected light glints off the disk in Xander-Double's hand... shines onto the Foreman's face...

FOREMAN
I gotta tell you that's surprising,
'cause your work's been first rate.
We've got another job lined up in
Carleton when we finish here. You
ever think about staying on full time?

OUTSIDE:

Xander reacts with shock.

XANDER
What? Why isn't he firing me-- him?

INSIDE:

FOREMAN
I was thinking I'd have you head up
the interior carpentry crew. See how
it goes. It's more responsibility,
but the pay is better.

XANDER-DOUBLE
(pleased)
That would be great.

XANDER

Standing on his platform. He's heard it all.

XANDER
A promotion?! But he... I mean, I didn't -
Doesn't he see the shiny thing?!

Agitated, he moves a little too much. The platform breaks under him. He falls to the ground.

XANDER-DOUBLE AND FOREMAN

Xander-Double and the Foreman stand, shake hands.

FOREMAN
Good. Congratulations Harris. You and
your girl should go out and celebrate.

XANDER-DOUBLE
I already have an idea how.

Xander-Double smiles slyly to himself.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

The nice apartment Xander couldn't afford. Xander-Double is standing at the kitchen counter with the Building Manager, signing a lease. He is still in his work clothes, but he has added a casual sport coat -- he looks very put-together.

BUILDING MANAGER
I was going to call you, Mr. Harris.
Let you know your credit checked
out fine. But I really didn't think
you'd be back.

INT. HALLWAY - SAME TIME - NIGHT

Xander is on his knees at the apartment door, ear pressed against the door, listening.

XANDER
'Mr. Harris'? Yeah, right.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS - NIGHT

Xander-Double finishes signing the lease.

BUILDING MANAGER
I'm sure you'll like the building.

Xander-Double takes the shiny disk out of his pocket, starts to turn it in his fingers.

BUILDING MANAGER
I think someone said you're currently
in your parents' basement?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Right. And there's just a point where
you either move on or you just buy
yourself a Klingon costume and go with it.

She laughs, charmed. Light glints off the disk, reflects onto her face.

BUILDING MANAGER
Well, I hope you'll be happy here,
Mr. Harris. We're certainly happy
to have you.
(moving closer)
And if you need anything, day or night,
please call me. I... um... I'm leaving
my home number here...

XANDER-DOUBLE
Thank you.

BUILDING MANAGER
Call me. Even, you know, for non-business
stuff... we could maybe do something...

INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT

Xander continues to listen, appalled.

XANDER
She's coming on to me! Him! Please lady,
that is so not me! He's too clean for one
thing and his socks are all matchy and-

He'd go on but the door starts to open right in front of his face and he tops over backwards onto his butt. The manager hesitates in the doorway, giving Xander time to get away.

BUILDING MANAGER
(calling back in)
Remember... any time!

Xander has to scuttle ungracefully backwards and then get to his feet and down the hall before the manager sees him.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

Xander-Double has just finished dialing.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Anya? You there?
(then)
Look, I know you're still mad.
But I figure you're probably sitting
there, pretending you're not home,
but listening anyway...

INT. ANYA'S APARTMENT - THE SAME TIME - NIGHT

Only a tiny glimpse of Anya's apartment, a corner with a short cabinet with an answering machine on it, and a few ancient Eastern ornaments on the wall. Anya stands next to the answering machine, listening as Xander leaves the message.

ANYA
(to machine)
Am not.

XANDER-DOUBLE (V.O.)
(on machine)
...But I have something to show you.
Meet me at the apartment. You know
the one. Nine o'clock.

We hear Xander-Double hang up. Anya considers what he said.

INT. APARTMENT HALLWAY - NIGHT

Xander-Double emerges from the apartment and heads down the hallway, tucking lease papers into his inside jacket pocket. Xander jumps from behind, knocking him off balance.

XANDER
Yaaaa!

Xander-Double shakes him off -- Xander collides with the hallway wall, hitting his leg. Xander-Double turns, ready to fight. He sees Xander for the first time, and freezes. Then he hauls off and decks Xander. Xander goes down, but is not knocked out. Xander-Double stands over him -- ready to move in for more violence? But a noise further down the hallway startles him, someone may be coming. Xander stirs, starts to get up.

XANDER
I won't let you do this!
You can't do this to me!

Xander-Double turns and runs. Xander collapses flat on his back on the ground again.

XANDER
Oh man. I need Buffy.

EXT. GILES' COURTYARD - NIGHT

It's dark and it's RAINING. Xander, now limping, stumbles toward Giles' apartment. He looks in a window when he hears his own voice.

XANDER-DOUBLE (V.O.)
No, no. He looked exactly like me!

Xander slumps against the wall, next to the window and listens...

INT. GILES' APARTMENT - NIGHT

Buffy, Giles and Riley listen to Xander-Double. Buffy's weapon bag lies nearby and a map of the sewers is pinned to the wall -- looks like a strategy session got interrupted.

XANDER-DOUBLE
It stole my face. We have to fine it
and we have to kill it!

EXT. GILES' COURTYARD - CONTINUOUS - NIGHT

XANDER
She sees it's not me.
(prayer)
C'mon Buffy... resist his spell... do this for me.

Xander hears them continue:

BUFFY (O.S.)
Don't worry, Xander. Whatever stole your face --
it has to deal with the Slayer now.

Xander reacts -- Buffy has deserted him.

BLACK OUT.

END OF ACT TWO

Act Three

EXT. CAMPUS - NIGHT

It's still dark, it's still raining and Xander is still limping and wet and rumpled and confused. And now he is also lost. He looks around at the campus buildings.

XANDER
Stupid dorms, all sitting there, being all
the same looking. Where are you, Willow?

Just above him on the second floor, warm and dry inside the glass lobby of the dorm, Willow passes by, carrying a few books. He turns and spots her.

XANDER
(yells)
Willow!

She doesn't hear him of course, and continues to walk. Xander runs, trying to catch her attention. But the glass wall is long and he keeps tripping over rocks and shrubs.

XANDER
Willow!

INT. WILLOW'S DORM ROOM - NIGHT

Willow enters her room, puts down her books. Suddenly Xander bursts into the room, dripping wet and generally yucky.

XANDER
Don't be scared, Will. Just listen.
It's me, Xander. And I can prove it.

WILLOW
Um... okay.

XANDER
Let's see... stuff only you and me know.
Okay, for my seventh birthday I wanted
a toy fire truck and I didn't get it and you
were really nice about it and then the house
next door burned down and real fire trucks
came and for years I thought you set the fire
for me. And if you did, you can tell me.
(beat)
And for a while last year I thought I was
lactose intolerant but it was just some bad brie.
And, by the way, if I had time to prepare, I'd
have way better material than this.
(beat)
Oh! Every Christmas we watch Charlie Brown
together and I do the Snoopy dance!

Still dripping wet, Xander starts to do a Snoopy dance.

WILLOW
Are you just going to keep going?

XANDER
Yes!! Yes! I will keep going until I have you convinced!

WILLOW
Xander, stop dancing!

He stops dancing.

XANDER
A-ha! You called me Xander!

WILLOW
Xander, shut up. Why wouldn't I think you were Xander?

XANDER
Oh. Huh.

WILLOW
What's going on?

XANDER
Okay. I woke up in the dump this morning--

WILLOW
The basement isn't a dump.
(trying)
It's more like a really nice... hovel.

XANDER
No. The dump. The city dump. Got hit last night.
Fell down boom. Woke up in the morning.

WILLOW
Nuh-uh. We walked you home last night, remember?

XANDER
(scared)
You walked... Will, did I do anything weird?
Did I wave any shiny things around?

WILLOW
Shiny things? What are you talking about?

XANDER
Last night. That wasn't me. There's a double
out there. Some... thing that's stolen my face.
It's going around pretending it's me and it's
hypnotizing people. It even got to Buffy and
Giles and Riley. It's with them right now and
they have no idea.

INT. GILES' APARTMENT - NIGHT

Giles and Xander-Double and Riley talk. Buffy sits quietly apart, thinking.

GILES
What's intriguing is that there are any number
of demons with the ability to mimic a simple
form, but this sounds like more than that--

XANDER-DOUBLE
Hold up. Do we really have to figure out
what it is? Let's just go kill it.

RILEY
Yeah. When the imposter is killed, the body'll
probably turn back into whatever it really is,
and then we'll know.

BUFFY
(interrupting)
Toth. The demon with the creepy-stick.

Xander looks up quickly. Shoots a hard look at Buffy.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Toth

BUFFY
It's gotta be. He hit you with the blast and
somehow that allowed him to take your form.
Giles, couldn't that be what the stick-thing did?

GILES
I suppose... yes, it makes sense.
A shape-shifting device.

XANDER-DOUBLE
(carefully)
It does make sense. It must be Toth.

30 THRU 32 OMITTED

INT. WILLOW'S DORM ROOM - NIGHT

Xander and Willow sit and talk. Willow has spread newspapers on the bed and wet Xander sits on those, wringing out his socks into the trash basket.

XANDER
It's a robot! An evil robot constructed
from evil parts that look like me and
are designed to do evil!

WILLOW
Uh-huh. Or, it's Toth.

XANDER
Or, it's Toth!

INT. GILES' APARTMENT - NIGHT

Buffy, Giles, Riley and Xander-Double continue...

BUFFY
Well, I was looking for Toth anyway.
I guess now I start, you know, looking
for you.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Should I go with you? I told Anya to meet me.
I'd feel a lot better knowing she's safe from this creep.

BUFFY
Go be with her. If you were running around looking
for the double too... well, let's just say I don't want
to run into you and kill the wrong one.

Xander-Double is already up and heading for the door.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Good thinking. When you kill the guy you'd
better make sure you've got the one who's actually-

INT. WILLOW'S DORM ROOM - NIGHT

Xander is pacing listlessly now, flapping his wet shirt-tails to dry them. Willow flinches occasionally as if water drops are being flung onto her.

XANDER
A demon. A demon has taken my life from me.
And he's living it better than I do.

WILLOW
But we're working on it. There's go to be
a way to get to Buffy, to un-hypnotize her.
I'll find a spell to snap her out of it.

XANDER
(numbly)
Right. Whatever.

WILLOW
Xander, you sound a little-- You have
to help me figure this out, you know.

XANDER
But I never help. I get in trouble and Buffy saves me.

WILLOW
That's not true! Sometimes we all work together to save you!
(trying to fix it)
And sometimes you're not in trouble.

XANDER
(tired)
I'm just... another great humiliation. And this
time it's even worse. This demon, he's like,
taking my life and, everyone's treating him...
everyone's treating him like a grown-up. Well,
I'm starting to feel like...

WILLOW
Like what?

XANDER
Like, it's doing everything better, it's smarter
and... I don't know. Maybe I should just let it
have it. Take my life, please.

WILLOW
Xander, no! You're just tired and all soggy,
that's why it seems so hard. But you can't let
him take your whole existence!

XANDER
Why not? It's not like I was doing anything
so great with it. When I get to the pearly gates,
I don't think the guy's going to go - "What
a kick ass comic book collection, come on it!"
(then)
What have I got that's even worth...

He stops as it hits him.

XANDER
Anya.

WILLOW
You think he's after her?

XANDER
She won't know, he can just...
(rallying)
No. No way. He can take anything he wants,
but not her. I need her.

WILLOW
(wrinkling her nose)
Really?

XANDER
He could be with her now...

He gets up.

XANDER
Figure out a spell. Something revealy.
I gotta find her.

WILLOW
Xander, you already knew he was taking
over your life. You didn't think about Anya
'til just now?

As Xander exits:

XANDER
Hey, wait 'til you have an evil twin,
see how you handle it!

Willow is left alone.

WILLOW
(to herself, meekly defensive)
I handled it fine.

INT. ANYA'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Same small view of a piece of Anya's apartment. Xander enters, sweaty and frantic.

XANDER
Anya? Ahn?

She's not there. He sees the light on the answering machine signaling there's a message. He hits play and hears:

XANDER-DOUBLE (V.O.)
--Meet me at the apartment. You know
the one. Nine o'clock.

Xander is genuinely shaken. He starts searching for something... pulling out the drawers in the cabinet, rummaging around.

XANDER
Gotta be here. Where is it?

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

Xander-Double and Anya are standing in the middle of the new apartment. She still wears her sling. Champagne is chilling in a bucket on the counter next to a picnic basket. A blanket is spread out on the floor. Anya is looking around her, trying to absorb what Xander-Double has just told her.

ANYA
You're lying. It's a trick.

XANDER-DOUBLE
No. Trust me.

ANYA
You really got this apartment?

XANDER-DOUBLE
I really did. And you know why?

ANYA
The ceiling fans? They're very attractive.

XANDER-DOUBLE
No. It's because I knew you wanted it.
It's all for you.

He moves closer. She smiles. He kisses her.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Anya? You didn't see me today, did you?
I mean, we didn't talk?

ANYA
What do you mean? I got your phone
message, that's all.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Good

More kissing. Xander sits on the picnic blanket, takes Anya in his arms.

ANYA
So what happens next?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Well, at some point we take our clothes off.

ANYA
I mean, what's next in our lives?
When do we get a car?

XANDER-DOUBLE
A car?

ANYA
And a boat. No, wait. I don't mean a boat.
I mean a puppy. Or a child? I have a list somewhere.

XANDER-DOUBLE
What are you talking about?

ANYA
Just, we have to get going. I don't have time
to just let these things happen.

XANDER-DOUBLE
There's no hurry.

He pulls her in for another kiss, but she squirms away.

ANYA
Yes, there is. There's a hurry Xander. I'm dying.
(beat)
I may have as few as fifty years left.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Fifty-years-- what is this... oh, wait a minute.
This is about this.

He touches her sling.

ANYA
What? About the sling?

XANDER-DOUBLE
You haven't been hurt like this since you
became human. Maybe it's finally hitting
you what being human means.

ANYA
That's not it.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Yes, I think it is. You were going to live for
thousands more years. Now you're going to
age and... die. It must be terrifying.

ANYA
You don't understand what it's like.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Being suddenly human? I think I can get
what that would be like. And, I think that
we can work through it.

ANYA
You can't make it any different. I'm going
to get old and you can't promise you'll be
with me when I'm wrinkly and my teeth are
artificial and stuck into my wrinkly mouth
with an adhesive.

XANDER-DOUBLE
I can't promise that. But it doesn't sound
terrible, and that's saying something.

Anya kisses him. He kisses back.

XANDER-DOUBLE
I promise you, Anya, very soon you won't
be thinking anymore about getting older...

The kisses might turn into something more, but... Xander bursts into the room.

XANDER
Get away from her!

ANYA
Xander! Xander?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Get out! You don't belong here!

She takes a tentative step toward Xander. Xander-Double grabs her by her uninjured arm and pulls her back.

XANDER
Anya! It's me!

XANDER-DOUBLE
(to Anya)
It's a demon. He stole my face.
He's trying to trick you.

Anya looks back and forth between them, uncertain.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Anya... you know I'm me, right?

XANDER
No!

Anya makes her decision. She runs to Xander-Double.

ANYA
(to Xander-Double, re Xander)
What is it? Make him go away!

INT. GILES' APARTMENT - NIGHT

Buffy lifts her weapon bag onto her shoulder as Riley looks at a map of Sunnydale and Giles pages through a book.

RILEY
So you're thinking we split up.

BUFFY
Right. You hit all the places he might
go to blend in as Xander. I'll keep checking
out the places Toth might hang--

Willow bursts in, out of breath, able to do nothing but pant for a second.

GILES
I swear, that time I know I had that locked.

WILLOW
Buffy! Toth looks like Xander!

RILEY
We know it already. We're on our way--

BUFFY
Wait. Willow, how do you know about this.

WILLOW
He came to me. I mean, Xander did.
He's in terrible shape. We need to help him!

RILEY
He came to us, too.

WILLOW
No! We each had a Xander. I mean you
didn't have a Xander! You had a demon
in a Xander-suit!

BUFFY
But, wait, what make you think yours
was the right one?

WILLOW
He knew stuff. He did the Snoopy dance.
Buffy, it was Xander and he needs us!

Giles looks up from his book.

GILES
Oh dear lord.

The other ignore him.

RILEY
Buffy... Our Xander. Did he seem a little...

BUFFY
He was kind of... forceful and confident.

WILLOW
That's not Xander!

GILES
I said oh dear lord.

BUFFY
You always say that.

GILES
Well, it's always important! Neither
one of the Xanders is a demon.

WILLOW
Um... is one of them a robot?

GILES
What? No. The rod device, it's called a
Ferula-gemina. It splits one person into
half, distilling personality traits into two
separate bodies. As near as I can tell
Toth was attempting to split the Slayer
into two different entities.

RILEY
Two Buffys?

GILES
Yes, one of them with all the qualities
inherent in Buffy Summers. The other
with everything that belongs to the
Slayer alone: the strength and speed,
the heritage. When it hit Xander, I think
it separated him into his strongest
qualities and his... weakest.

RILEY
But which one is the real one?

GILES
They're both real. They're both Xander.
Neither of them is evil. There's nothing
in either of them that our Xander didn't
already posses.

RILEY
I still don't get the original plan. Why do it?
The Slayer half would be like Slayer-concentrate.
Pretty unkillable.

GILES
But the two halves can't exist without the other.
Kill the weaker Buffy half and the Slayer half dies.

BUFFY
So, same thing for the Xanders, right?
Both of them need to stay alive or they both die.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

The two Xanders face each other warily. Anya stands at Xander-Double's side.

XANDER
He's the demon! Or possibly a robot!
Look at me Anya! Look in my eyes!
Can't you see it's me?

Anya hesitates. She thought she was sure, but...

ANYA
I don't know.

XANDER
(desperate)
Please! Look at him! Listen to him!
He's all smooth! You have to know me!

Xander-Double pulls Anya in closer, possessively.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Don't worry Anya. I'll get rid of this thing.
(to Xander)
I'm thinking this is gonna last about fifteen seconds.

Xander-Double releases Anya and takes a threatening step toward Xander.

XANDER
I'm thinking less.

As he speaks, XANDER PULLS OUT A GUN AND POINTS IT AT HIS DOUBLE.

BLACK OUT.

END OF ACT THREE
Act Four

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

The two Xanders and Anya where we left them: Xander with his gun leveled at Xander-Double.

ANYA
No! Don't shoot him!

Anya rushes at Xander, KNOCKING HIS ARM ASIDE. SHE AND XANDER GRAPPLE OVER THE GUM

OMITTED

INT. GILES' NEW CAR - NIGHT

Riley and Buffy in Giles' car, racing to Xander's apartment.

BUFFY
Can't this thing go any faster?
Ultimate Driving Machine my ass.

RILEY
We're pushing seventy.

A beat.

BUFFY
Hey, Riley. Do you wish --

RILEY
No.

BUFFY
No? You don't even know what I was going to say!

RILEY
Yes, I do. You wanted to know if I wished
you got hit by the Ferula-gemina. Got split in two.

BUFFY
Well, you have been kinda rankly about the
whole "Slayer" gig. Instead of Slayer Buffy
you could have Buffy Buffy.

RILEY
I have Buffy Buffy. Being the slayer is part
of who you are. You keep thinking I don't get
that, but --

BUFFY
I just know how unfun it can be.
Bad hours, frequent bruising, cranky monsters-

RILEY
Buffy, if you led a perfectly normal life,
you wouldn't be half as crazy as you are.
I gotta have that. I'm talking toes, elbows,
the whole bad-ice-skating-movie obsession,
everything. There's no part of you I'm not
in love with.

Buffy thinks about his answer. After a quiet beat... she allows herself a little smile. Then:

BUFFY
We better get there soon.
If Xander kills himself, he's dead.
(thinks)
You know what I mean.

INT. NEW APARTMENT - NIGHT

Xander-Double looks on as Xander and Anya grapple over the gun.

XANDER
(to Anya)
Let go! I have to kill the demon-bot!

Anya wrenches the gun from his hand and it falls to the ground. Xander-Double scoops it up. He points it cooly at Xander.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Anya, get out of the way.

Startled by his cold determination, Anya steps away. Suddenly, Buffy and Riley burst in! Riley is carrying Buffy's weapon's bag.

BUFFY
Xander!

Both Xanders turn and look.

XANDER-DOUBLE
It's all right Buffy, I have him.

XANDER
No! Buffy! I'm me! Help me!

ANYA
That's my gun! He has my gun!

RILEY
You own a gun?

BUFFY
Xander-- Gun-holding Xander.
Give it to me.

Xander-Double hesitates, his finger hovering over the trigger. Finally he flips the gun expertly in his hand, expelling the bullets onto the ground and handing Buffy the now-unloaded gun. Buffy hands it to Riley who tucks it into his waistband.

ANYA
Buffy! Which one's real?

XANDER
I am!

XANDER-DOUBLE
No. I am.

Xander, infuriated, launches himself physically at Xander-Double. Buffy grabs him mid-launch and throws him up against a wall.

XANDER
Ow!

XANDER-DOUBLE
Thank you!

She grabs Xander-Double, puts him up against the wall next to Xander.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Ow!

She holds them both pinned motionless against the wall with a hand on each chest. She looks back and forth between them. Riley comes up behind her, looks too.

RILEY
Wild.

BUFFY
Yeah. Okay, look, Xander...s. You've been
split in two. You're both Xander. And you can't
kill each other. I mean you can, but it would be bad.

The Xanders look at each other.

XANDER-DOUBLE
No way.

XANDER
He can't be me. He's all... fancy.

Buffy cautiously steps away, unpinning the boys.

RILEY
We can prove you're both Xander.

BUFFY
Yes! How?

RILEY
(stumped)
Well, there has to be a way.

BUFFY
What number am I thinking of?

RILEY
I don't think that's how to--

XANDER/XANDER-DOUBLE
Eleven and a half.

BUFFY
Wrong. Oh! But, see?!

XANDER
No. We're not the same.
We're all different.

RILEY
Different properties went into each of you,
but you're both Xander.

ANYA
Different properties?

XANDER
What different properties?

BUFFY
(covering)
Oh... um... sense of direction,
good night-vision, stuff like that.

XANDER
But he has a thing! In his pocket!
A shiny disk that stuns and disorients!

Xander-Double pulls the disk from his pocket.

XANDER-DOUBLE
What disk? This?

Xander screams and clamps his hands over his eyes.

XANDER
Cover your eyes! It'll melt your brain!

Buffy takes the disk from Xander-Double and pries Xander's hands away. She shows him the disk.

BUFFY
Look.

XANDER-DOUBLE
It's a nickel someone flattened on a railroad
track. I found it on the construction site and
I thought it was cool. It's not magic.

Xander takes it.

XANDER
No! It-- Huh. It is kinda cool. Washington's
still there, but he's all smooshy. And he
may be Jefferson.

ANYA
Isn't anyone going to tell me why there are two Xanders?

BUFFY
We'll explain on the way to Giles--

Suddenly, TOTH BLASTS INTO THE ROOM, using the rode device to blow open the door with a CRASH. He sweeps in through the resulting smoke.

TOTH
I will not miss again, Slayer.

BUFFY
Oh great. Rod boy.

Xander quickly steps behind Xander-Double.

XANDER
The gun! Pick up the little gun-pieces!

Toth aims the rod at Buffy and fires. She FLIPS out of the way and the blast leaves a harmless charred area on the rug.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Hey! I just made a small cleaning deposit!

Toth is aiming again when Riley comes out of nowhere and jumps his from behind, attempting to disarm him. Toth throws Riley aside easily, but the distraction allows Buffy to catch him by surprise. She catches him with a flying kick, follows up with punches... and finally sweeps his feet out from under him.

BUFFY
Sword!

Riley is at her weapons bag. He opens it and tosses her the sword.

ANGLE ON: THE XANDERS

Wincing at the off-screen stabbing.

SFX: DYING GURGLE FROM TOTH

WIDER:

Out of breath and victorious, Riley crosses to Buffy. The demon Toth lies dead at her feat, the sword imbedded in it.

XANDER-DOUBLE
Oh yeah, that cleaning deposit's gone.

XANDER
I was thinking the same thought.
(a brand new thought for him)
Hey-- do you suppose we're both Xander?

INT. "THE MAGIC BOX" - NIGHT

Giles, Buffy, Riley, both Xanders, Anya, Willow. Giles is drawing a pentagram on the floor with chalk. Everyone else is looking at the two Xanders. Xander-Double has put on the duplicate of Xander's outfit, and is just finishing buttoning his shirt. Buffy and Willow examine their faces close up, comparing.

XANDER
(jovial)
Look and admire, ladies.

BUFFY
It's like... there's a little scar here,
then there it is over there.

WILLOW
It's all doubled. This zit, and this kind
of funny dippy place and this weird little
hair that grows the wrong way--

XANDER
(same jovial tone)
Okay, back off, ladies.

RILEY
Psychologically, this is fascinating. Doesn't it
make everyone want to lock them in separate
rooms and do experiments on them?
(then)
Just me, then.

ANYA
So, you Xanders, you really do have all
the same memories, all the same... physical... attributes?

XANDER-DOUBLE
We're completely identical.

XANDER
Yeah, we checked over some stuff
in the car on the way over.
(quickly)
Fingerprints.

ANYA
Maybe we shouldn't do this reintegration
thing right away. See, I could take the boys
home, have sex with all of us, then we could
just slap ‘em back together in the morning.

XANDER-DOUBLE
(smoothly to the others)
She's joking.

XANDER
No she's not! She entirely wants to have sex
with us together! It's wrong, and, and... it
would be very confusing!

Giles finishes the pentagram and stands up.

GILES
Now, we need to arrange the candles. Also, we
can continue to pretend we heard none of this
disturbing sex talk.

WILLOW
Check. Candles and pretense.

Willow, Buffy, Anya, Riley and Giles each take a candle, light it, and place it on a point of the pentagram during the following.

ANYA
(to herself)
It's not like it'd be cheating.
They're both Xander.

Everyone pretends they didn't hear her. As the candle-business continues, Xander turns to Xander-Double.

XANDER
Now, hold on a sec. If you weren't putting
the whammy on people with the shiny thing?
How did you do it? How'd you get the promotion?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Well I'm good at that stuff.

XANDER
I am?

XANDER-DOUBLE
Yeah.

XANDER
(smiling)
Hey, how about that girl, the apartment manager?

XANDER-DOUBLE
How weird was it when she called me ‘Mr.'?

The group has completed the candles.

WILLOW
We're ready. We should do it now.

ANYA
What do we do if it doesn't work?

XANDER/XANDER-DOUBLE
Kill us both, Spock!

They laugh, cracking each other up.

BUFFY
(aside, to Giles)
They're kind of... the same now.

GILES
Yes. He's clearly a bad influence on himself.

XANDER
(to Willow)
Summon the goddess, chant the chant. Let's do it.

WILLOW
Actually, it's not that hard. See, your natural
state is to be together. Toth's spell is doing all
the work of keeping you apart. I just have to
break it. You two stand here. Side by side.
Don't want you to end up with two fronts, do we?

The Xanders stand where she positions them.

XANDER
You sure you know how to do this?

WILLOW
Here we go. Brace yourselves.
"Let the spell be ended."

XANDER
You've got to be kidding. "Let the
spell be ended"? That's not gonna work! Oh.

Xander looks at himself. Looks around. There's only him.

ANYA
I liked it the other way. Put ‘em back.

INT. XANDER'S BASEMENT - DAY (DAY 4)

Buffy, Riley and Dawn are helping Xander pack his things. Anya, not wearing her sling for the first time this ep, is sitting on the workbench, watching the activity. Incidentally, Xander looks a lot like Xander-Double in this scene, clothes and hair at their best.

Buffy, carrying an armload of clothes, approaches Xander. Dawn is packing a box in the near b.g.

BUFFY
You look good, Xand. Clothes, hair...
I think you came out ahead in this whole thing.

XANDER
Will, I got a job and an apartment. If the hair's
grooving along with the new vibe, I'm okay with it.

BUFFY
I guess maybe we shoulda kept both of you ‘til
we had all the heavy lifting done, huh?

XANDER
Yeah. But, really... it was too weird. And my...
Um... less cool half... a sweetheart of a guy, but
still, just on the clumsiness issue alone, I don't
think anyone would've wanted him around much.

Riley carries a heavy box by, and Xander helps him. Buffy also moves off. Dawn is left...

DAWN
(wistfully to herself)
I would've wanted him.

Dawn picks up her box and exits. Riley and Xander carry their box to the bottom of the stairs (to be carried up later). Xander looks around the near-empty room.

RILEY
Getting nostalgic?

XANDER
I don't know. At first it's just a place,
and then you start to make memories
and then it's like... that's where Spike
slept, and there... that's where Anya and
I drowned the Separvo demon and right here,
here's where my heart got all ripped out...
I really hate this place.

Over by the workbench:

BUFFY
Hey, Anya, I see you've joined the
not-sling-wearing crowd.

ANYA
Yes. I'm feeling better and I anticipate
many years before my death, excepting
disease or air bag failure.

BUFFY
Ah. That sounds... good?

Buffy exits as Xander comes over and hands Anya a box.

ANYA
Oooh, a present!

XANDER
Not unless you want my collection of
Babylon 5 commemorative plates.
(beat)
Which you cannot have. I just thought
you could help carry a little.

ANYA
Me? Buffy has super strength, let's just
load her up like one of those little horses.

XANDER
Anya. Please.

ANYA
Fine. I'm just your slave.

Anya exits. Xander turns to Riley, smiles wryly.

XANDER
How is it that she can always make me feel like
Suave Xander has left the building?

RILEY
You two have your friction, but she digs the
whole package. It's obvious.

XANDER
Still, I do envy you sometimes. I mean,
for the sanity. Not that I'm still into Buffy.
Not that I ever was.

Riley smiles.

RILEY
Hey, I'm well aware of how lucky I am.
Like, lottery lucky. Buffy's like nobody
else in the world. When I'm with her, it's
like I'm split in two -- half of me is just on
fire, going crazy if I'm not touching her.
Other half is so still and peaceful, just
perfectly content. Just knows: this is the one.

He pauses in his reverie, turns to Xander.

RILEY
But she doesn't love me.

He says it without bitterness, merely with quiet acceptance. Xander doesn't know what to say.

Buffy and Dawn reenter, Dawn going for a nearby box as Buffy moves to Riley.

BUFFY
(to Riley)
You got more for me to carry?

RILEY
You can help me pack this.

BUFFY
Sure.

Buffy gives Riley a quick casual kiss and then they pack the box together. Xander watches.

BLACK OUT.

END OF SHOW