Buffy Episode #115: "As You Were" Transcript

Written by Douglas Petrie
Original Air Date: February 26, 2002

Transcribed by Joan the English Chick (pisces@englishchick.com).
Transcriber's Notes:


GILES VOICEOVER: Previously...
Riley and Buffy in "Into the Woods"
RILEY: They want me back, Buffy. The military.
BUFFY: This is good-bye?
RILEY: Unless you give me a reason to stay, I'm leaving tonight.
Buffy walking away from Riley.
Buffy running up to the helipad.
BUFFY: Riley!
Riley in the helicopter flying away as Buffy stands on the ground underneath.
Spike and Buffy in the crypt.
SPIKE: Are we having a conversation?
BUFFY: What? No! ...Maybe.
Xander and Anya in the magic shop.
XANDER: We're getting married.
BUFFY: Congratulations.
Xander and Anya kissing.
Buffy in the Double Meat Palace.
BUFFY: Double meat is double sweet. Enjoy.
DAWN: Hey Buffy!
ANYA: We're here to support your subsistence-level employment. Bravo.


Teaser

Open on exterior shot of the Double Meat Palace, night.
TODD VOICEOVER: You see, Buffy...

Cut to inside. Close shot of the grill.

TODD VOICEOVER: ...the thing you gotta learn about the Palace, and this takes a while...

Pan over to where a scraper is scraping the grease from the top of the grill. A bucket of grease sits beside it. Todd, a young man about Buffy's age, is leaning against the wall nearby.

TODD: ...is that job security all boils down to one simple thing.

Reveal Buffy, doing the scraping. She looks over at Todd expectantly.

TODD: Politics.

Beat. Buffy resumes scraping.

TODD: Now, I'm not a political animal, but you learn fast around here or it's wham! Hello glass ceiling.

Buffy makes a face as she lifts a spatula-ful of grease. Todd tips the bucket so she can dump the grease into it. She resumes scraping.

TODD: I mean, it's not like we work at Burger World, or the Happy Bun, where the power structure is simple. No, here at the Palace, you gotta keep your friends close, but your enemies? Closer. (Buffy nodding, rolling her eyes) It's like Machiavelli says. (Buffy looks confused) You know Machiavelli, right?
BUFFY: Tall guy, bleached mullet, works day shifts?
TODD: (laughs) I'm sorry. My bad. I keep forgetting you dropped out of college.
BUFFY: I'm reapplying.
TODD: (patronizing) Good luck with that. Well, gotta motor! (picks up a backpack) Don't wanna be late for night school.
BUFFY: You go to night school?
TODD: I'm working on my MBA. Think I wanna spend the rest of my life cleaning grease traps? (shakes head) Ooh, don't forget to lock up before you go, and the gum under the tables? Be sure to give it a good scrape before you leave.
BUFFY: (sarcastic) May I?
TODD: (leaving) See you tomorrow!
BUFFY: (to herself) Yes, you will. And the day after that, (sighs) and the day after that, and the day after that...

Cut to the graveyard, later. Buffy walks along holding a small paper bag with the Double Meat logo. She wears a long caramel-colored coat over her clothes.

BUFFY: (sings) 'Get the double treat, that's the double sweet, oh it's hard to beat, when the meat meets-' Oh, why can't I get this stupid jingle out of my head?

A vampire jumps out in front of her.

VAMP: Least of your problems now, little girl.
BUFFY: Wait.

She turns to put the bag down carefully on a nearby headstone.

VAMP: Ooookay.
BUFFY: (turns back) Okay, let's do this. (points at him) Quickly.

The vamp swings at her. She ducks, then punches him. He reels aside and kicks her. He grabs her by the upper arms and pulls her toward him, moving to bite her neck as she struggles to shove him away.

Then the vampire pulls back, still holding her.

VAMP: What's that smell? (sniffing) Geez, Slayer, is that you?
BUFFY: I've been working!
VAMP: Where, in a slaughterhouse?!
BUFFY: (pouts) Double Meat Palace.
VAMP: Ohhh.

He lets go and backs away.

VAMP: You know what? Let's just call it a night. (Buffy looking surprised) If it's all the same to you, and you've been eating that stuff, I'm not so sure I wanna bite you.
BUFFY: You're dead! You smell like it! (vamp shrugging and nodding) How do you get to say I'm the one who's stinky? (pouting)
VAMP: Really, it's, it's cool, I'll just catch you next time.

A stake flies into the shot and into his heart. He groans and dusts.

Buffy looks triumphant for a moment, then lowers her head to sniff herself. She makes a face, picks up her take-out bag and walks off.

Wolf howl. Opening credits.

Special Guest Star Marc Blucas. Guest starring Ivana Milicevic. Written and directed by Douglas Petrie.


Act I

Open on exterior of the Summers house, night. Buffy walks up the walkway holding her paper bag, sighing.

She pauses right before the stairs.

BUFFY: Oh, for pete's sake. Spike?

She turns. Spike appears from behind a nearby tree.

SPIKE: Ah, it's a fair cop, you caught me, Slayer. However, in all honesty, I think we have to say this one doesn't count. After all, I wasn't exactly hiding. (walks toward her)
BUFFY: No, Spike.
SPIKE: No? What kind of answer is that, you haven't even heard the question yet.
BUFFY: I don't have to. We both know what you're thinking.
SPIKE: (grins) And we both know ... that I'm not the only one thinking it.

He puts his hand out as if to grab her coat collar, and leans in as if to kiss her.

Buffy slaps his hand away.

BUFFY: No! Not here.
SPIKE: Why not? (pouting)
BUFFY: Dawn. (looks toward the house) She's inside waiting for dinner, she's counting on me. I'm not letting her down by letting you in.
SPIKE: So it's the fear of getting caught, then, is it?
BUFFY: Reason number one on a very long list. (turns to go)
SPIKE: Needn't be an obstacle.

He takes her hand and pulls her toward the tree. Longer shot of the two of them moving along the side of the building.

BUFFY: (sighs) Spike, I mean it. Come on.
SPIKE: I hear you're serious. So am I. I want you ... you want me...

Cut to a closer shot as Buffy has her back up against the tree and Spike is right in her face.

SPIKE: ...I can't go inside, so ... maybe the time is right ... for you to come outside.

Buffy sighs, looks at the house, then back at Spike. He slowly leans in to kiss her.

Cut to a long shot again. They kiss, Buffy drops the paper bag on the ground, and Spike pulls her around so that the tree obscures them from our view.

Cut to inside. Buffy comes into the kitchen, holding the paper bag and putting her other hand to her forehead. She stops and looks surprised.

BUFFY: Dawn.

We see Dawn by the refrigerator, looking in. She closes it and turns to Buffy.

BUFFY: Hey, hi.
DAWN: Rough night?
BUFFY: The usual. I-I brought you dinner.

Buffy hands the paper bag to Dawn across the kitchen island, which is otherwise bare. Buffy sits.

DAWN: Oh, great. (opening bag) Oh.

Dawn takes out a paper-wrapped sandwich and smiles bravely.

BUFFY: I-I know it's not the most original these days, but ... I made it myself. I-I made hundreds, actually, but this is the, the very best one.
DAWN: It ... looks kinda squished.
BUFFY: Oh, well just, you know, just... (takes the sandwich and slaps it lightly a few times) give it a sec. (Dawn looking disgusted) Yeah, these babies really bounce back. Literally.

She gives the sandwich back. Dawn looks at it, then at her.

DAWN: Buffy ... it's not like I don't appreciate it, I do. It's just that ... (softly) I can't eat this stuff another night. I'm sorry.
BUFFY: (fake cheer) Oh! No, it, it's all good. I get it. (taking the sandwich back) Tell you what, tomorrow night, I'll, uh, I'll bring home the fisherman's nuggets with cheese.

Dawn looks less than thrilled. Willow enters.

WILLOW: Hey, workin' lady. Rough night?
BUFFY: Why does everybody keep asking me that?
WILLOW: Uh, no reason, I just ... thought you were busy with the slayage 'cause of that grass stain. (pointing to Buffy's jacket)

Buffy tries to look at the back of her jacket, looks upset, takes it off to look at it.

DAWN: Some vamp get rough with you?
BUFFY: (examining coat, muttering) He's not getting any gentler.
WILLOW: He?
BUFFY: (quickly) They. Them. You know. (Willow and Dawn looking at her) Vampires in the, in the ... general population sense. (looks at jacket, sighs) Now I'm gonna have to wash this.
WILLOW: (smiling) Ready for a bold suggestion? (smiling at Dawn, then at Buffy) Blow it off! Dawnie and I are headed out to the Bronze.
DAWN: Um, do I have your permission and wanna come along? (grinning) You like how I slipped in that permission request like that?
WILLOW: Very smooth.
BUFFY: You guys go.
DAWN: Really?
WILLOW: Buffy, are you sure? I-it might do you good to get away from the Double Meat lifestyle for a night. See your friends.
DAWN: Who'd love to see you.
BUFFY: I'm sure. I've seen enough action for one night. (to Dawn) Home by eleven?
DAWN: (smiles) On the dot.
BUFFY: Have a good time.

Dawn smiles, and she and Willow exit. Buffy picks up the still-wrapped sandwich and stares at it.

BUFFY: (to herself) Somebody should.

She sighs, puts the sandwich back in the bag.

Cut to the Bronze. Pan across various people drinking and dancing, bartender serving. Reveal Xander and Anya sitting at the bar eating chips from several bags. A notebook sits in front of them bearing the wedding seating chart.

ANYA: See ... this seating chart makes no sense. We have to do it again. (Xander nodding) We can't do it again. You do it.
XANDER: The seating chart's fine. Let's get back to the table arrangements. I'm starting to have dreams of gardenia bouquets. (winces) I am so glad my manly coworkers didn't just hear me say that. (eating chips)
ANYA: Will you stop wolfing down those chips? One more bag and you'll pop right out of your cummerbund.

She grabs the bag of chips away from him, looks in it and sticks her hand in. Xander looks upset.

ANYA: You're not even hungry, you're just nervous.
XANDER: (smacking the bar-top) Yeah! Wedding, one week! We have friends, family, demons flying in, a to-do list getting no shorter, and do NOT- (grabs the bag back) -take my chips.

They stare at each other angrily. Dawn comes over, holding two plastic cups.

DAWN: Hey guys! How's the soon-to-be-newlyweds? Nervous?
ANYA/XANDER: No!
DAWN: (dubious) Okay. I'll just be over here then.

Dawn goes over to where Willow is fiddling with pool cues.

DAWN: Your Arnold Palmer, milady. (gives Willow a drink)
WILLOW: Thanks. So how are Mr. and Mrs. High-Strung?
DAWN: I'm betting they explode.
WILLOW: You know, when I was little, I used to spend hours imagining what my wedding to Xander would be like. And now I look at them... (shot of Anya and Xander at the bar) I just think... (mocking laugh) "Nee-hee-hee!"
DAWN: (giggles) You're awfully chipper tonight.
WILLOW: (smiling) Can't hide it.
DAWN: Hmm. Big wedding coming up ... lots of date possibilities ... you and Tara are speaking again. You wanna call her? Invite her over?
WILLOW: Oh, no. Too soon for so bold a maneuver. (smiles) But if I did call? She wouldn't hang up on me.
DAWN: That's progress!
WILLOW: (smiling) Hence the happy.

Cut to: Buffy's basement. An old boom-box is playing a sad country song. Buffy is wearing an old t-shirt and has her coat on the ironing board, rubbing it with a rag. She pauses, looks at the grass stain, resumes rubbing.

Cut to upstairs. Buffy is asleep on the sofa, with the coat covering her. It's daylight. Sound of a noisy truck engine from outside. Buffy slowly wakes up.

BUFFY: Garbage! Uhh...

She leaps up, pulling the jacket on.

Cut to the street. The garbage truck is pulling away.

BUFFY: (OS) Wait! Wait up, guys!

The truck drives off, revealing Buffy behind it, running down the walk with a garbage bag in each hand.

BUFFY: Wait!

She stands there panting, watching the truck turn a corner.

BUFFY: (whining) Don't you want your garbage?

She sighs, pouts, turns and walks back toward the house.

Cut to the kitchen. Buffy enters through the back door, holding a pile of mail. She begins looking through it. We see Dawn standing by the island.

DAWN: Hey Buffy. Oh, don't forget, today's trash day.
BUFFY: (sourly) Thanks.

Dawn piles her books into her school bag. Buffy opens a letter.

Close shot of the letter.

Dear Ms. Summers,

We are sorry to reject your application for re-admittance to UCSD.
Our guidelines dictate that re-admission forms must be processed on or before January 15, 2002.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call my office during regular business hours, Monday through Friday.

Surrinda Blackmaster
Assistant to the Dean

BUFFY: (OS) 'Dear Ms. Summers, we are sorry to reject...'
DAWN: What's that?
BUFFY: (folding the letter) Nothing.
DAWN: Huh. Bronze was fun last night. In a total home-by-eleven-ish way. You should have come.
BUFFY: Well, next time. (looks at Dawn) Where are you going?
DAWN: School?
BUFFY: (duh) Oh. That's good. Uh, don't you want breakfast first?
DAWN: Already made it. See you this afternoon? Unless you're working. (coming around the island toward Buffy) Tonight then. Or, you know, tomorrow's cool. Don't work too hard.

Dawn kisses Buffy on the cheek. Buffy smiles.

BUFFY: Bye.

Dawn exits. Buffy looks at the kitchen sink, piled high with dirty dishes. She stops smiling, makes a face, sighs. Removes her jacket and turns to the sink.

Cut to: close shot of the Double Meat grill with nine burgers cooking. A spatula flipping them over.

TODD: (OS) And that's where even your best political minds can drop the ball.

Reveal Buffy flipping the burgers, wearing the uniform, while Todd stands behind her eating one.

TODD: Zeitgeist! You're not taking the pulse of the public, the next thing you know you're LBJ handing the house keys over to Nixon. (turns to his work) Heard back from your college yet?
BUFFY: Yeah.
TODD: All right. You know, we're out of special sauce.
BUFFY: I'll get it.
TODD: No no. Your turn up front. I'll deal back here. You take the customers.

Buffy looks less than thrilled. She turns and walks off.

Cut to the counter. Buffy walks up to the cash register.

BUFFY: Welcome to the Double Meat Palace, how may I help...

She pauses as she sees who it is.

Reveal Riley, standing there dressed all in black with a bulletproof vest on.

BUFFY: You.

Closer shot on Riley. We see that he has a long scar running from his forehead across one eye and down his cheek. His expression is grim.

RILEY: Hey.
BUFFY: Huh?
Blackout.


Act II

Same scene. Buffy stares up at Riley.

BUFFY: Riley.
RILEY: Sorry to just drop in on you like this, Buffy.
BUFFY: It's you.
RILEY: It's me.
BUFFY: You're here.
RILEY: I know.
BUFFY: And ... were you always this tall?
RILEY: (leans closer) Look, this isn't the way I wanted it. But something's come up, something big. We don't have much time. You understand?
BUFFY: (nodding) Not a work you've said so far.
RILEY: Right. I should have known, anticipated. You're working.

Longer shot of the restaurant interior. There are a few customers waiting in line behind Riley. Buffy is the only person working the counter.
Cut back to close shot.

BUFFY: Well, just counter, not grill any more.
RILEY: I want to explain, I just don't have time. I've been up for 48 hours straight tracking something bad, and now it's come to Sunnydale.
BUFFY: My hat has a cow.
RILEY: (sighs) I know that I'm putting you on the spot, showing up like this, but ... but you know, here we are. I need the best. I need you, Buffy. (Buffy staring at him) Can you help me?

Todd appears, sticks his face next to Buffy's.

TODD: Hellooo, Buffy? People are waiting.

Buffy and Riley stare at each other, oblivious to Todd.

Buffy takes off her Double Meat hat, puts it down, grabs a black coat from under the counter, and comes out from behind the counter to join Riley.

TODD: Buffy, uh ... Buffy! Wait! Buffy!

Buffy follows Riley out.

Cut to the street. Buffy (wearing her black coat over her uniform) and Riley walk along.

RILEY: Look, I'm sorry this is all so sudden. You know, if we get a minute, I'd really like to sit down...

He stops as something on his belt begins to beep. He grabs it and looks at it.

BUFFY: What is it?
RILEY: Suvolte demon. Rare, lethal ... nearly extinct, but not nearly enough. (Buffy grinning) It's close.

Buffy starts to laugh.

RILEY: What?
BUFFY: Sorry. It's just ... you still carry around all that James Bond stuff.

Close shot on the device in Riley's hand. It looks like a flip-open cell phone except that instead of a digital display it has a red radar screen. Two large blinking red dots show the movement of the demon.

BUFFY: It's so cute! I forgot.

Riley puts the device away, gives Buffy a look.

BUFFY: Sorry. (fake-military) Carry on.
RILEY: (resumes walking) We've been tear-assing through every jungle from Paraguay up, taking out nests. As soon as we put one Suvolte down, a dozen take its place. They're breeders, Buffy. One turns into ten, ten becomes a hundred. This gets out of hand and there's a war with humans? Humans are gonna lose.
BUFFY: So they're like really mean tribbles. (Riley gives her another look) Sorry, I've been dealing with these, these geeks, it's, it's a whole thing.

Sound of demon growling. They both look up.

The demon, which looks like a cross between a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle and the alien from "Alien," is across the street knocking over some newspaper vending machines. People scream and run away.

RILEY: You ready for this?
BUFFY: Yes please.

They both start forward. Riley holds up a badge.

RILEY: (yelling) National Forestry Service, we got a wild bear! Everybody stand back! (pushes a pedestrian aside) Look out!

People run away as Riley approaches the demon. It hits him, slashing his arm with a claw, and he reels back clutching his arm. Buffy jumps up onto the demon's back and it flings her off against a wall, then it retreats into an alley.

A gun falls to the ground beside Buffy. She gets to her knees and picks it up. Riley comes over and grabs her arm to help her up. They look at each other.

Buffy turns and heads toward the alley with Riley right behind.

They walk cautiously down the alley, looking around. They reach a point where the alley widens.

RILEY: Split.

Buffy nods. They move off in different directions. Suddenly a garbage can flies into the shot, toward Riley, but he deflects it. Sound of the demon growling.

BUFFY: Riley!

Buffy tosses him the gun. He takes aim at the demon, shoots it. The gun shoots darts rather than bullets. The dart sticks in the demon's chest. It roars and flails its arms around. Buffy runs at it and one of its arms hits her. She reels back against Riley, who catches her. The demon leaps up to the roof of the building and is gone.

RILEY: You all right?
BUFFY: I'll feel better when we catch it. But it's too fast.
RILEY: I wouldn't necessarily say that.

Cut to the street. A very large SUV comes screeching around the corner. It is black, of course.

Cut to inside. Riley is driving while Buffy sits in the passenger seat.

BUFFY: Nice wheels.
RILEY: Came with the car.
BUFFY: (smiles) Know where we're goin'?
RILEY: Got an idea. The tag's on-line. We'll find it.

Shot of a GPS screen on the car's dashboard. It shows a blip for the demon and another one for the car.

BUFFY: How's your arm?
RILEY: It'll heal. How you doin'?
BUFFY: Complicated question.
RILEY: I just meant-
BUFFY: I know.
RILEY: I hear ya. Got some, uh ... big stories to tell you to. If we ever get half a second.
BUFFY: Did you die?
RILEY: No.
BUFFY: I'm gonna win.

Riley looks surprised.

Buffy takes off her coat, revealing the bright red-and-white DoubleMeat uniform.

RILEY: Here. (grabs something from behind the seat and gives it to her) No offense, but this is black ops, and you look like a pylon.
BUFFY: (looks at it) Ninja wear?
RILEY: Battle gear. Lightweight Kevlar, state of the art.
BUFFY: What a surprise.
RILEY: Boys like toys. Put it on, thank me later.
BUFFY: (smiling) You won't look?
RILEY: (staring at the road ahead) I'm a gentleman.
BUFFY: Okay. (begins unfolding the clothes) So ... the black-ops life, it's workin' out for ya?
RILEY: Don't suck.
BUFFY: They got dental?
RILEY: (smiles) Yeah, we're covered.

Beat. They both look pensive.

RILEY: You know, there's not many people I'd ask to risk their life for me, Buffy. It's really good to see you.
BUFFY: Thanks.
RILEY: You're welcome. And Buffy ... love the hair.

Buffy smirks a little.
Exterior shot of the car speeding down an otherwise empty highway.

Cut to exterior shot of a different highway, this one covered with cars bumper-to-bumper, barely moving. Horns honking.

ANYA VOICEOVER: I think we died in this car on the way to the airport, and now we're stuck in hell.

Cut to the interior of Xander's car. Xander is driving while Anya sits in the passenger seat. Numerous bags of chips are on the dashboard.

XANDER: The radio said no traffic. (reaching for chips)
ANYA: It's a hell radio, of course it said that. We'll never get to the airport in time to pick up your stupid uncle.
XANDER: It just gives my uncle Rory more time at the bar. Trust me, he'll be happy.
ANYA: (mouth full) Great. So he can sleep off his drunken stupor on our newly re-upholstered couch.
XANDER: He can't afford a hotel.
ANYA: Why are you defending him?
XANDER: I'm not. I hate my uncle. I hate my whole family. That's why I'm marrying you, to start a new family. Have children, make them hate us, then one day they'll get married, we'll sleep on their couch. It's the circle of life. (smiling)
ANYA: Well, the Gnarals are teleporting in in twenty minutes. If I'm not there to greet them? Somebody's getting incinerated.
XANDER: Why did we ever agree to have your friends, who are demons, and my family, who are monsters, stay at our place?
ANYA: Well, I can only do so much, Xander. Planning this marriage is like staging the invasion of Normandy.
XANDER: Without the laughs. We should have eloped.
ANYA: No! I've been through too much planning this wedding, and it is *going* to happen. It is going to be our perfect, perfect day if I have to kill every one of our guests and half this town to do it.
XANDER: Mm. (looks at her bag of chips) Cool Ranch?
ANYA: Cajun Fiesta.

Xander grabs the bag.

Cut to Riley's SUV screeching to a halt on a side road. It's mostly rock, a few scraggly trees. Riley and Buffy get out, come around to the front of the car and start walking. Buffy is wearing the black "ninja wear." Black long-sleeved turtleneck, black bulletproof vest, black pants, black tool-belt. Her hair is pulled back into a neat ponytail.

BUFFY: End of the line? (Riley shrugs) I don't see our demon.
RILEY: It's not here.
BUFFY: Let me guess.

They walk between some low stone buildings. Riley grins.

They walk over to a fence and look down. We see that they're standing at the top of a huge dam. Far below, we can see the water. Rough uncut stone walls surround the platform at the bottom.

BUFFY: Down we go?
RILEY: Looks that way. (doing something with equipment)
BUFFY: That's a big first step. So, Mr. Finn, got an extra jet-pack for a girl like me?
RILEY: Sorry, fresh out of jet-packs. Looks like we'll have to share.

Riley attaches one end of a rappelling line to the fence.

RILEY: This test line's built for one, so if we go together, we're not hauling any gear. Just be you and me.
BUFFY: I was never big on the hardware anyway.
RILEY: You hold onto me?
BUFFY: (flirty) If that's what it takes.
RILEY: Come on.

Riley lifts her up onto the fence. She looks into his eyes.

BUFFY: Ready when you are, Agent Finn.

She puts her arms around his shoulders and they start down.

Long shot of the two of them descending along the side of the dam.

They reach the bottom and stand on a stone platform with a low stone wall at the edge. Riley detaches the line from his belt. They both start looking around. They duck past a large pipe with a small trickle of water coming out. Past it, the stone ledge opens out into a wider space with a ladder at one wall.

Riley walks past a door and the demon comes out of it, tackling him from behind. He throws it off and ducks a swing of its arm.

Buffy attacks the demon and gets thrown aside. She leans against the stone wall and looks over her shoulder at Riley grappling with the demon. Buffy kicks back at the demon and gets it off Riley. He punches it, it hits him. Buffy kicks it again. It hits Riley and then Buffy, sending them both reeling back.

Riley attacks again and gets hit in the stomach. He leans over in pain.

BUFFY: Riley!

Buffy grabs him and uses him as leverage to lift both feet off the ground and kick the demon back. It falls to the ground.

Riley turns Buffy around and pushes her up against the wall. They both pant and stare deeply at each other.

Behind them, another black-clad figure rappels down from above, landing on the stone floor nearby. It's a woman with long dark hair in a ponytail similar to Buffy's. She looks over at them.

WOMAN: Hey.

Buffy and Riley break out of their moment, look at her as she approaches.

WOMAN: (to Riley) Hey there. (to Buffy) What exactly are you doing with my husband?

Buffy stares at Riley in surprise. He looks a little embarrassed.
Blackout.


Act III

Same scene. Buffy stares at Riley.

BUFFY: Husband?

Riley nods. Buffy looks at the woman.

BUFFY: Wife.

The woman nods.

BUFFY: And ... those aren't code names like Big Dog or Falcon or... (the others looking dubious) I didn't think so.
RILEY: Buffy, meet Sam. Sam, Buffy.
SAM: (sincerely) Pleasure.
BUFFY: Demon.

They all turn to see the demon behind Sam. It has gotten back up again. It snarls at them.

SAM: (grins) Mine.

Sam approaches the demon and grabs both of its arms, kicks it, takes one arm and hits it.

Angle on Buffy and Riley watching, as fighting noises and demon growls continue off-screen.

BUFFY: She's good.
RILEY: She's a special one. (shot of Sam punching the demon furiously)
BUFFY: How long have you been married?
RILEY: Four months almost.
BUFFY: Mazel tov. Any children?
RILEY: Buffy, I meant to tell you. When the time was right. She caught up to us a hell of a lot faster than I would've guessed possible. She does that. (shot of Sam kicking and punching the demon)
BUFFY: So, you-you guys do this often, you know, the whole ... husband-and-wife tag-team demon fighting thing?
RILEY: Yeah, it's what brought us together. I almost feel sorry for the Suvolte.

The demon hits Sam across the face and she goes down.

RILEY: But not quite.

Riley moves forward, picking up a taser(?) from the ground. He catches the demon's arm as it prepares to hit Sam, hits it in the stomach with the taser. Sam crouches on the ground, kicks the demon back.

Buffy stands there looking pensive as the other two continue fighting the demon.

The demon flings them both off and Buffy wakes up, rejoins the fight. Sam is holding the demon's arm and kicking it. Buffy grabs the demon by its head.

BUFFY: Call this your wedding gift.

She twists the head, snapping the demon's neck. It falls to the ground.

Riley moves forward as if to stop her but sees it's too late. Sam looks shocked.

BUFFY: (panting) So, guess that's mission accomplished. (turns away)
RILEY: (kneels by the demon) She killed it.
SAM: Oh, honey ... (putting a hand on his back, panting) That's okay.
BUFFY: (turns back) Okay? Wait ... you guys have been tracking this thing as a couple for two days straight, and you ... did want it dead, right?

Riley stands up again next to Sam. They look at each other nervously.

BUFFY: Oh.
SAM: Let me guess. Captain Can-Do over here (pointing her thumb at Riley) forgot to mention that this was a homing operation. (Riley looking embarrassed, getting something from his belt) But it's nice to finally meet you, by the way. Knife.

Sam puts out her hand without looking, and Riley gives her a large knife. She kneels beside the demon.

BUFFY: What is a homing operation?
RILEY: It's my fault. I should have explained.
BUFFY: That would have saved me some ... trouble.

Sam slices open the demon's stomach with the knife. Thick yellow blood oozes out.

SAM: Damn.

Buffy makes a disgusted face. Sam stands up.

SAM: We're too late. Finn ... how could you recruit the Slayer without filling her in on the objective?
BUFFY: That'd be my question.
SAM: (teasing) If we weren't under severe time constraints I'd seriously think about ripping you a new one.
RILEY: (smirking) Stand down, soldier.
BUFFY: He's your boss, too?
SAM: (smirking) Oh, he wishes. We better regroup. Buffy, I hate to impose further, but ... you got a safe house?
BUFFY: I, I have a house. I-I think it's safe. Sometimes you can't even leave.

Buffy grins. The others look confused.

RILEY: (to Sam) I know the way. (to Buffy) And I'll fill you in. On everything.

Buffy nods.

Cut to the Summers house, foyer, night. Buffy enters through the front door, followed by Sam and Riley.

BUFFY: Sorry the place is such a mess. I haven't had a chance to give it a good cleaning.

Reveal Dawn standing in the living-room doorway, arms folded.

RILEY: Hey.
DAWN: Agent Finn returns.
RILEY: Dawn. Geez, look at you. I think you grew a foot and a half.
DAWN: (sullen) A lot can happen in a year.
RILEY: (chastised) Well, it's good to see you.

Willow and Xander appear from the kitchen.

XANDER: Hey, there's the man! Life taker, heartbreaker. (shakes Riley's hand) You know, figuratively speaking.
RILEY: Xander, Sam. Willow...
SAM: Hi. (all waving at each other)
RILEY: Hi. (hugs Willow)
WILLOW: We got your call.
XANDER: We're here to help. Just like old times. Except, with you being all big with the married life.
RILEY: Hear you're getting hitched yourself. Believe me, you're gonna love it. (Sam smiling at him)
WILLOW: Congratulations, really, both of you.

They all move into the living room. Buffy hangs back, and Willow goes to her.

WILLOW: (softly) Just so you know? I'm prepared to hate this woman any way you want. (shot of Riley and Sam talking closely)
BUFFY: Thanks, but no. I don't wanna seem all petty.
WILLOW: Well, that's the beauty! You can't, but I can. Please. Let me carry the hate for the both of us.

Another shot of the Finns. They are laughing together, touching each other lightly.

BUFFY: Go nuts.

Buffy and Willow exchange a nod, proceed into the living room. Dawn and Xander remain standing by the doorway. Dawn still has her arms crossed and her expression says that she is still mad at Riley.

DAWN: So. What brings you back to town after you left suddenly with no word?

Riley, Sam, Buffy, and Willow sit.

RILEY: Sam and I have been tracking a Suvolte demon through Central America. Killing machine. Nearly mature.
SAM: Yeah, three months old and growing fast.
RILEY: These things start to kill the minute they're hatched. And leave a real clear trail.
SAM: Yeah. Just follow the villages with nothing in them but body parts.
RILEY: Uh ... Dawn, are you sure you wanna be around hearing all this?
SAM: Oh, come on, Finn, she looks all grown-up to me. (to Buffy) That is, if it's all right with you.
BUFFY: Uh, sure, yeah, it's fine.
DAWN: So, this demon shredded your guys, and now you're looking for a little payback?
SAM: (shakes head) No. It came here to the Hellmouth to, to spawn. (sighs) But we think it already hatched its eggs somewhere.
RILEY: And the plan was to track it. Let the demon take us to its nest.
DAWN: And ... now they're gonna hatch a bunch of ... baby demon things?
SAM: Unless we stop it.
BUFFY: Which means we have to find the nest, and fast, before Sunnydale turns into the Trouble Meat Palace.

Beat. Everyone looks at Buffy.

BUFFY: I wish I'd said something else.
XANDER: Okay, so we track down the demon, find the nest, Mr. and Mrs. Finn here make with the killin', and everyone goes home happy. (sits on the sofa beside Sam) But seriously, married man. If forced to choose between a photographer and place settings-
BUFFY: We can't track the demon. (they look at her) I killed it. (chipper) So! Who's hungry? We got, uh-
DAWN: Ice cubes.
BUFFY: All you can eat.
SAM: Buffy? It's good that you killed the Suvolte before it killed us. (to Xander) Disposable cameras.
XANDER: Di - wah?
SAM: Yeah, you, you know, little plastic ones, ten bucks a pop. You arrange them like table settings, guests snap photos...

Buffy looks at them. Close shot on Riley's hand resting on Sam's knee. She puts her own hand over Riley's, lacing their fingers together.

SAM: ...breaks the ice, and when the wedding's over, you get to take home the pictures.
XANDER: (grinning) I like it!

Shot of Willow and Buffy. Buffy stares at the floor while Willow makes snide faces at Sam.

Riley and Sam smile at Xander, turn back to Buffy. Willow makes an innocent face.

BUFFY: So, demon eggs. Any timetable on when they're gonna hatch?
RILEY: Hatching's not the problem.
SAM: We think they're gonna be sold on the black market. There are some foreign military powers that would love to have their own Suvolte. You could never train it, but drop it on an urban population...
RILEY: And it cleanses the area.
DAWN: Is that a nice way of saying it kills people?
SAM: Lots of 'em. Money's been exchanged. There's a dealer in town, calls himself the, The Doctor. Willow, you think you can help with a little locating spell?
WILLOW: (quietly) I can't do the magicks.
SAM: Oh, Riley says you're comin' on as one major-league Wicca.
WILLOW: I got addicted. The way addicts do.

Willow exits toward the kitchen. Sam looks upset.

RILEY: Two teams. No civilians. I'll, uh ... I'll go out and look for our Doctor. You two find that nest.
BUFFY: Me and Sam together?
RILEY: You come across a Suvolte nest, you're gonna want backup.
SAM: You know, I don't wanna be dragging down the Slayer. (to Buffy) You've got speed, and power I can't even-
BUFFY: Let's go. Xander, are you okay to stay with Dawn?
XANDER: Yeah.
RILEY: I'll check out some bars. Willy's, some, uh, crypts that I know.

Everyone gets up.

Cut to the kitchen. Willow sits by the island looking pensive. Sam enters.

SAM: Hey Willow. I'm sorry, I think I really ... stepped in it in there. (Willow not looking at her) You know, back in the jungle ... we had not one, but two hard-core shamans working for us ... they were working the dark magicks, and ... got addicted. And now they're gone. (Willow turns to look at her) Gone ... as in ... there's nothing left. I've never met anyone with enough strength to quit before.

Willow continues looking at her, says nothing.

SAM: I'm just saying.

Sam turns and leaves. Willow watches her go, smiles a little.
SAM VOICEOVER: Thanks for letting me tag along.

Cut to the graveyard, night. Sam and Buffy walk along, still wearing their all-black outfits.

BUFFY: No problem.
SAM: Maybe not for you. I gotta tell you, Buffy, I'm a little bit intimidated. I mean, patrolling with the real live Slayer, you're like ... Santa Claus, or Buddha, or something.
BUFFY: Fat and jolly?
SAM: Legendary. And it's not just slayer status I'm talking about. It's you.
BUFFY: Riley talks about me?
SAM: He didn't say anything for a long time, but I could tell. He was ripped up inside.
BUFFY: Good thing he has you.
SAM: More like miraculous. I went down to Central America with the Peace Corps. One night, my entire infirmary got slaughtered by... (shakes her head) I didn't know what they were. I got saved, quit the Corps, joined the squad. My first firefight, I met Riley. (smiling) We started talking, you know, first about tactics, missions, stuff like that. And then about you.
BUFFY: He thinks ... I let him go.
SAM: (stops) Do you wish you hadn't.
BUFFY: (softly) I wish things were different. I-I'm not trying to ... I don't ... uh, you know. (resumes walking)
SAM: I didn't mean to put you on the spot, Buffy. There's no bad guys in this one. The only thing that could ... help Riley work it out was time. Lots of time. Took him a year to get over you.
BUFFY: I'm glad he's over me.
SAM: So, you seeing anyone new? Someone special?
BUFFY: You know, I just take my time, you know, I don't ... I don't wanna jump right into anything, don't wanna ... you know ... be defined by who I'm with.
SAM: Yeah, better no guy than the wrong guy, that's for sure.
BUFFY: (suddenly) Sam. You know what? Um, I think we should split up.
SAM: (upset) Oh, I'm slowing you down. I knew I would, this was just selfish of me.
BUFFY: No, it's not, uh ... there's this guy, uh, an informant, but he's twitchy. I show up with company, and, and we get nothing.
SAM: Cool. I'm guessing Finn needs me about now. (looking around) He's probably off somewhere gettin' his ass kicked. (grinning) You know how wild he gets. (backing away) Don't worry about Rye and me, we're good.

Sam turns and walks off.

BUFFY: (to herself) I noticed.

Buffy walks off in the other direction.

Cut to Spike's crypt. Spike sits on top of a coffin reading a book. The coffin is made up as a couch, has a blanket covering it and a throw-pillow on it. Sound of the door slamming open. Buffy strides in.

SPIKE: Buffy. Hey now. (puts the book down, stands) If I'd-a known you were coming, I'd-a baked a cake.

Buffy walks over to stand in front of him, pulling off her black gloves.

BUFFY: I need information.
SPIKE: Well, suppose I could be helpful. If the price is right. (Buffy putting gloves down) I'm not sure I'm selling out at Double Meat Palace wages, though.
BUFFY: I need to find a guy. Dealer. Calls himself The Doctor.
SPIKE: Human?
BUFFY: His traffic isn't.
SPIKE: Clock ticking?
BUFFY: Whatever he's doing, he's doing it soon.
SPIKE: (looking her up and down) Soon but not now?

Beat. Buffy just looks at him.

BUFFY: (quietly) Tell me you love me.
SPIKE: (surprised) I love you. You know I do.

She takes a couple of steps closer.

BUFFY: Tell me you want me.
SPIKE: (whispers) I always want you. In point of fact-
BUFFY: Shut up.

Buffy moves as if to kiss him, but instead she hooks her hand around his neck and pulls him down onto the coffin-couch.

Buffy lies down on her back with Spike on top of her. She begins unbuttoning his shirt. Spike pulls at the fastenings on Buffy's bulletproof vest. She stares at his face, pushes the partially unbuttoned shirt down on his shoulders, then uses it to pull him down for a kiss.

Fade to later. Buffy and Spike lie on the crypt sleeping with some blankets covering them, not touching each other. One of Buffy's bare legs is exposed.

Sound of the door bursting open again. Spike stirs, lifts his head to look. Buffy looks too, gasps and sits up, holding a blanket over her breasts, pulling it over to cover her bare leg. Spike chuckles, props himself up on his elbows.

SPIKE: Well, looky here. I don't usually use the word delicious...

Shot of Riley standing there looking at them, large gun in hand.

SPIKE: ...but I've gotta wager this little tableau must sting a bit, eh? Me and your former? Must kill. What can I say? Girl just needs a little monster in her man.

Buffy stares at the ground looking upset.

RILEY: That's not why I'm here ... Doctor.

Buffy looks shocked, turns to stare at Spike, then back to stare at Riley.

Blackout.


Act IV

Same scene. Buffy looks from one man to the other, still holding the blanket against her body.

BUFFY: Oh god.

She gets up. Spike sighs.

SPIKE: Here I thought we'd run you out of town, mate.

Buffy crouches down, scooping up her clothing, scowling at Spike. She goes off somewhere to get dressed.

SPIKE: Last time I saw you, if memory serves, you were getting the juice sucked out of you by some undead ladies of very questionable reputation.

Spike sits up on the coffin, naked with his knees pulled up and open. Riley averts his eyes.

SPIKE: Now, be a good tin soldier and, uh... (makes a "go-away" gesture)
RILEY: Where are they ... Doctor?
SPIKE: Where are what, and why do you keep calling me that? (begins putting on pants)
RILEY: Glad to be back in Sunnydale. The locals all speak English, and I know who to beat for information. It's all brought me here.
SPIKE: Look, crew cut. (fastening his belt) She's not your bint any more. And if I can speak frankly, she always had a little thing for me, even when she was shagging you.
RILEY: Nice. That's very distracting. (walks closer) Now tell me, before I get unprofessional... (pointing his gun at Spike) ...where are the eggs, Spike?
SPIKE: Eggs? (scoffs) You're off your nut. It must be those drugs they were keeping you on. I did warn you.
RILEY: Okay. We can do this the hard way, or we can do this the fatal way.

Riley punches Spike in the face, just as Buffy reappears, fully dressed.

RILEY: Where are the eggs?
BUFFY: Look, the Doctor, it can't be Spike.
SPIKE: No need to defend me, luv.

Buffy punches him in the face as well.

BUFFY: Look, i-it can't be, okay? He-he's too incompetent. (Spike glaring at her) It's just Spike, Riley.
RILEY: Right. Deadly ... amoral ... (Spike smirking) opportunistic. (quietly) Or have you forgotten?

Buffy glares, but has no answer to that. She turns away.

RILEY: I'm taking this place apart until I find that nest.
SPIKE: Over my dead body.
RILEY: I've seen enough of your dead body for one night, thanks.

Riley uses the barrel of his shotgun to shove Spike aside. As he passes, Spike grabs his shoulder.

SPIKE: Well, you're not gonna-

Riley shoves him back. Spike stumbles back against a pillar. Riley starts down the ladder to the underground part of the crypt.

RILEY: (OS) You coming?

Buffy looks up, looks at Spike. He stares back at her. She follows Riley.

SPIKE: (angry) Oh, this is ... unconstitutional, is what it is! (grabbing a shirt, putting it on) Here!

Cut to below. Riley and Buffy reach the ground.

SPIKE: (OS) There's nothin' to see down there!

Buffy hurries after Riley as he moves through the underground rooms.

BUFFY: Riley, look, I'm not saying that he's good, okay, I'm just saying that he's not capable of something as-

She stops as they round a corner and come upon the demon eggs.

The eggs are about the size of beach-balls but brownish-grey and scaly. There are at least ten, possibly more.

Riley cocks his gun.

Closer shot of the eggs, surrounded by yellowish goo the same color as the demon's blood.

Spike runs in, wearing the shirt (unbuttoned).

SPIKE: I can explain.
RILEY: We're gonna need more weapons. Spike screwed up. You didn't keep 'em frozen, did you ... Doctor?
SPIKE: You can stop calling me that any time. If I may, the thing of it is, I'm holding these for a friend, who-

Buffy punches him in the nose again. He falls down on his butt, his nose bloody.

BUFFY: No more games.

Spike gets to his feet, angry.

SPIKE: Well, that's bloody funny coming from you! No more games? (Buffy rolling her eyes) That's all you've ever done is play me. You keep playing with rules you make up as you like. You know what I am. You've always known. You come to me all the same.
RILEY: Can you shut him up?
BUFFY: Not so far.

Spike exits.

RILEY: You better get outta here.

Buffy backs away. Riley stands staring at the eggs.

Suddenly one of the eggs bursts open and a baby demon pops out, screeching. It looks a bit like a crab or a very large cockroach.

RILEY: On second thought, stick around.

Riley tosses his gun to Buffy and pulls out the taser. More baby demons pop out of the eggs and move toward them, fast. Riley and Buffy back away.

BUFFY: Riley, I-
RILEY: Aim high, plenty of lead.
BUFFY: I'm not exactly gun girl.
RILEY: You wanna live, learn fast.

Buffy fires the gun randomly. It hits a stack of LP records, shattering them. Another shot hits a pillow on the bed; feathers fly. A third shot destroys a lamp.

BUFFY: These things? (uses the gun to club a demon as it flies at her) Never useful.

She tosses the gun away. She and Riley look around.

Several of the babies are scurrying across the ceiling.

RILEY: We have to pull out.

One demon falls onto Riley's shoulder. He grabs at it, pries it off. He and Buffy begin to run for the exit. The baby demons pursue.

Buffy looks around. The baby demons are crawling across every bit of ceiling and wall. She runs for the ladder.

Cut to above. Buffy emerges as Riley is lying on the floor just next to the opening to below.

RILEY: We need a way to contain these things-
BUFFY: Riley!

Buffy grabs Riley's belt, detaches it. There are several grenades on it. She pulls the pin on one, and drops the entire belt down into the hole.

RILEY: Get down!

Buffy lies down on top of Riley, shielding him.

Shot of the belt lying by the base of the ladder as the baby demons move around and past it.

Wide shot of the underground part of the crypt as the grenades go off. Fire bursts across the cavern and engulfs the eggs.

Wide shot of the above as a fireball shoots up from the opening, while Buffy and Riley lie on the floor cringing.

The fire subsides and Buffy lifts her head. She and Riley are both panting. She lies fully on top of him.
ANYA VOICEOVER: You know, if you love Riley Finn so much, maybe you should just marry him.

Cut to close shot of Xander.

XANDER: He's taken. And that's not the point.

Cut to wider shot. We see Xander sitting on the edge of the bathtub and Anya sitting beside him on the closed toilet. Faint sounds of angry voices in background.

ANYA: So you think that their marriage is better than ours, is that it?
XANDER: No! But granted, I have a hard time imagining Nick and Nora Fury hiding out from their own relatives in the bathroom.

Sound of crashing and banging from outside. They both look toward the door in alarm.

XANDER: (sighs) And I have no idea what Riley and Mrs. Riley's wedding was like.
ANYA: Well, you haven't shut up about them.
XANDER: Well, they have a great marriage! And it bummed Buffy out, but I can see it. And Anya ... I really have no clue what their wedding was like.
ANYA: So our wedding... (Xander nodding) ...is not our marriage. (smiles)
XANDER: Separate things. One fills me with a dread akin to public speaking engagements.
ANYA: And that would be the wedding.
XANDER: Which will be over soon.
ANYA: But our marriage...
XANDER: That lasts forever.

Anya smiles, looking relieved.

ANYA: Ah, well. That works out nicely, then.

She leans over to kiss Xander. Another loud crash from the apartment. They both listen, looking unperturbed.

Cut to: exterior of the magic shop, night. Buffy and Riley emerge onto the street, walk along the sidewalk.

BUFFY: So, are you and Sam headed back to Central America? Or, is that classified?
RILEY: Nepal.
BUFFY: Sounds fun.
RILEY: I'll send you a postcard.

They both stop walking and speak at the same time.

RILEY: Buffy-
BUFFY: Riley-
RILEY: By mission parameters I'm done here. But I have authorization to take the Doctor out. (pause) Do you want me to do that?
BUFFY: (shocked) Do I want you to... (looks away) How can you ask me ... I'm sleeping with hi-him. (carefully) I'm sleeping with Spike.
RILEY: I had actually noticed that.
BUFFY: And then you come back ... and did you wait until your life was absolutely perfect and then send that demon here so you could throw it in my face?
RILEY: Look ... you think this was easy for me?
BUFFY: Yeah! I think it was a rollicking adventure, fun for the whole family.
RILEY: I was terrified about seeing you again.
BUFFY: Well, I'm sure my incredible patheticness softened the blow for you.

Riley looks annoyed, fidgets a bit.

RILEY: I don't know what you're talking about.
BUFFY: Riley, please don't patronize-
RILEY: Hey! You want me to say that I liked seeing you in bed with that idiot? Or that blinding orange is your very best color? Or that that ... burger smell is appealing?
BUFFY: (upset) You smelled the smell?
RILEY: Buffy, none of that means anything. It doesn't touch you. You're still the first woman I ever loved ... and the strongest woman I've ever known. And I'm not advertising this to the missus ... but you're still quite the hottie.
BUFFY: You know, it goes away after many bathings.
RILEY: (laughs) This isn't about who's on top. I know how lucky I am right now. I love my work, and I love my wife.
BUFFY: I know. And I kinda love her too.
RILEY: So you're not in the greatest place right now. And maybe I made it worse.
BUFFY: No.
RILEY: Wheel never stops turning, Buffy. You're up, you're down ... it doesn't change what you are. And you are a hell of a woman.
BUFFY: (deep breath) Riley, that night... (Riley just looking at her) I never got the chance ... to tell you ... how sorry I was. About what happened between us.
RILEY: And you never have to.

The door to the magic shop opens again and Sam and Xander emerge, followed by Dawn and Willow.

SAM: Well, the wedding itself was held in a military chopper just before a hairy night drop into hostile territory.
XANDER: Huh! And just curious, what's a chopper rental run these days?

Riley and Buffy exchange an amused look.

SAM: Oh, well, actually, we commandeered it from a local guerilla squad, so ... cheap!
XANDER: Oh!
SAM: Yeah.

The others join Riley and Buffy where they're standing.

SAM: (to Willow) You have my email, you promise you'll keep in touch?
WILLOW: You won't get traced? I don't wanna lead the bad guys to your location by mistake.

Sam and Riley smile at each other.

SAM: Our line's secure.
WILLOW: (smiling) Oh, huh, duh, of course it is! I keep thinking of you like regular people, but no, you're not.
SAM: Oh, right, like demon-hunting is all exotic to a girl from Sunnydale.

Dawn confronts Riley as we see Sam hugging Willow and Xander in background.

DAWN: So you gonna say goodbye this time, or just ... split all secret-agenty like last time? (sound of a helicopter)
RILEY: Depends. I warrant a hug?

Dawn doesn't smile, but she steps forward and hugs Riley. Then he pulls back to look at her face.

RILEY: Goodbye, Dawn.
DAWN: I thought it would suck less this time. It doesn't.

Riley smiles fondly at her.

SAM: It was really nice meeting you all. (taps Riley on the shoulder, moves away) You ready for Nepal, agent?
RILEY: (to Xander) Soldier.

Riley follows Sam onto the street. The helicopter noise is louder and we see its lights shining on the group.

Riley and Sam move a bit away from the others.

RILEY: (to Sam) Fire-fights, bug hunts, big body counts ... yeah, I could use a break.

A thin wire drops down from the copter. Riley attaches it to his belt. He and Sam put their arms around each other, and Riley tugs on the line to signal the copter.

Long shot of the two of them rising into the air as the others stand watching. Buffy stands a little ways off from the others. Willow waves.

WILLOW: Bye!
XANDER: Bye! Bye Riley! Bye Sam!

The helicopter moves away with Riley and Sam still dangling from it.

Angle on the others watching. Dawn and Xander turn and walk off left, out of shot. Willow moves right, over to Buffy, still waving.

WILLOW: What a bitch.

Willow turns and follows Xander and Dawn away. Buffy watches her go, then looks back up at the departing helicopter, pensive.

Fade to Spike's crypt. Spike stands there looking at the mess. His furniture and possessions, bits of demon, all scattered around everywhere, burnt and charred. He nudges a bit of rubble with his foot, sighs, stares at the floor.

Buffy appears, stops a little ways off. Spike doesn't look at her.

SPIKE: So she's back. Thought you'd be off snogging with soldier-boy.
BUFFY: He's gone.
SPIKE: (looks at her) So, you come for a bit of cold comfort? (sighs, gestures) The bed's a bit blown up, but then, that was never our-
BUFFY: I'm not here to-

She breaks off. Spike just looks at her.

BUFFY: And I'm not here to bust your chops about your stupid scheme, either. That's just you. I should have remembered.
SPIKE: So this is worse then, is it, this is you telling me-
BUFFY: It's over.
SPIKE: (smiles, moves closer to her) I've memorized this tune, luv. Think I have the sheet music. Doesn't change what you want.
BUFFY: I know that. (pauses) I do want you. (Spike looking surprised) Being with you ... makes things ... simpler. For a little while.
SPIKE: I don't call five hours straight a little while.
BUFFY: I'm using you.

He stares at her.

BUFFY: I can't love you. I'm just ... being weak, and selfish...
SPIKE: (moves even closer) Really not complaining here.
BUFFY: ...and it's killing me.

Spike frowns.

BUFFY: I have to be strong about this.

He continues staring at her.

BUFFY: I'm sorry ... William.

She turns and walks off, leaving Spike looking stricken.

Cut to above. Buffy walks out of the crypt into sunlight.

Blackout.
Executive Producers: Joss Whedon and Marti Noxon.

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