Previously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Andrew killing Johnathan, Spike's blood opens the seal, Buffy and Dawn run across Principal Wood in the basement, Spike's chip episodes in the basement, Army dude telling Buffy the choice about Spike's chip, Giles discovers Robson as the bringer approaches.
"I understand, I'll take care..." Giles leans over Robson as the Bringer approaches from behind and raises his axe. But on the downswing, without flinching, Giles raises his left hand and catches the axe by the handle! He jumps up and punches the Bringer back, grabbing his axe in the process, and as the Bringer stumbles into a chair, Giles swings and kills the bad guy!
"It was extraordinary good luck..." Giles tells the tale of his near-death escape as he and a small group of Scoobies walk in a graveyard at night (during which we get a shot of a very large gravestone marked "Snyder"). Giles asks the newest Slayer in Training Chow Ann to keep up with them as Buffy, Kennedy, and Amanda listen intently to Giles' "dramatic" tale. Suddenly Giles is bulldozed to the ground by someone!
Spike and Giles both crumple to the ground, but quickly recover enough to both act surprised at the same time! "You're not the First!" Spike says. "Your chip didn't go off!" Giles says (both at the same time). Spike says that Anya told him Giles was the First and that he was supposed to be all go-throughable, which makes Giles question why Spike attacked him then. Giles is equally surprised and questions why Spike's chip didn't go off during the attack. Both Buffy and Spike beat around the bush a little, but eventually say there was a choice at the initiative and the choice was made to have the chip removed. This sets Giles off, but he is interrupted by Kennedy and Amanda questioning what the "chip" is. (in Subtitles, Chao-Ann says "I don't understand a word any of you are saying" as she looks around, confused but happy).
Opening Credits: Nothing new (is there ever recently?).
Buffy is finishing dressing as Giles approaches her, still not happy with her de-chipping of Spike. Giles asks her why on Earth she made that decision. Buffy chalks it up to instinct, like the instinct Giles used to detect the Bringer. Giles admits he made up his previous "heroic" tale, the truth being he detected the Bringer because his shoes squeaked! Giles expresses his concern about the dangers the Potentials are all facing and lists them. Buffy adds "and the Principal" as an afterthought, which Giles questions. Buffy says that the Principal was acting suspicious and she was keeping an eye on him. Giles turns the talk back to Spike, again expressing concern and doubt about an unchipped Spike, but Buffy tries to calm him down, saying that she has faith in Spike and that they have to give him a chance. Giles then tells Buffy he wants more for her and he can tell that she still has feelings for Spike. Buffy tries to reassure him that She and Spike aren't physical and that the chip was like a muzzle for Spike. She ends the conversation with, "You can't beat evil by doing evil"and walks out, as Giles says "I hope you're right. You're gambling with a lot of lives."
Daytime at a home improvement store. Xander and a bunch of other construction guys watch an employee cutting pipe during a demonstration and Xander turns briefly to see an uber-hot lady looking at a rope display. There is instant eye contact as Xander walks over and asks her if she needs help. She looked confused. Some small quips between the two (during which the suggestion of bondage is subtly hinted at) and she introduces herself as Lissa. Lissa finally says that she has a Kyak and is looking for rope to tie it up in her garage. Xander suddenly blurts out an invitation to Coffee. The sparks definitely fly!
Sunnydale High School. Buffy walks into Principal Wood's office and closes the door behind her. She looks through files, tries to be a little sneaky and search a little, and wonders "Now if I were a sign of being evil, where would I be?" She glances at a VERY large wooden wall cabinet and approaches it, but just as she's about to open it, Principal Wood catches her, standing in the doorway! Wood asks what she's doing. She nervously tries to pass it off as her looking for supplies and tries to rush out, but he stops her and and calmly asks her what she's doing that night. Buffy says eagerly she's preparing for tomorrow's counseling sessions, then admits "watching a reality show about a millionaire?" And then Wood asks her out to dinner! Buffy smiles and is a bit uneasily surprised, especially when he makes a bad joke about her not being obligated because of her job. She then smiles more and says she'd be happy to have dinner with him later that night. As she exits his office, Principal wood suspiciously closes the door behind her and pulls a blood soaked handkerchief from his jacket pocket, then unwraps it to reveal a knife! He wipes more blood from the blade as he walks over to the large cabinet doors Buffy eyed before. They open to reveal... a whiteboard! *gasp* But then he grabs the bottom of the whiteboard and it slowly slides up to unveil a weapons display. Twenty-one different types of swords, knives, and axes hang in the case as Wood delicately replaces the twenty second, the dagger.
"So he asked you out to dinner?" Willow asks Buffy, smiling wide. Buffy and her do the girl-talk thing while Willow folds laundry in the living room. They talk about the Wood date-invitation, making the "he's hot for a principal" remarks, but then the suspicious talk starts, with Buffy commenting that he's there on the hellmouth all day every day, like he's being showered with evil... "but from underneath." "Not really a shower" Willow says. "Like a Bidet. A bidet of evil..." Buffy answers. Willow then asks if Buffy's... "interested." Buffy smiles and goes over his good points, saying he seems solid strong and normal, not full of "wicked energy." Buffy admits she thinks she likes him. Willow smiles at this and says it's good for her to move on. "Why does everybody in this house think I'm still in love with Spike?" Buffy snaps, but Willow backpedals, saying she meant moving on from being alone.
Xander bursts in the door, extreme with the happiness. He's gonna surprise them with his news of a date, but Willow beats him to the punch, surprising him with Buffy's Principal Wood date! Xander's bummed at his thunder being stolen. Buffy tries to comfort him by saying her date may be evil intentioned and aligned with the First. Xander comments that Wood is also 10 years older than her, which has Buffy and Willow comment about Xander's oh, so young 100 year old dates. Willow then starts jabbing at Buffy, saying she thinks Buffy and Wood are gonna start making out. Buffy jabs back, threatening Willow with information about hand-holding with her new girlfriend under the table at dinner. Willow quickly changes to Xander, asking if his date is evil. Xander says his date seems interested, so there's a good chance.
Giles now comes in the front door with armloads of shopping bags and Chao-Ann in tow. He complains about the busyness of the mall and the "sticky" food court as Chao-Ann stands silently smiling. Xander says it must be rough on her, bringing up the learning of her potential Slayerhood and being uprooted from her home. Giles says the language barrier is also making it tough. "I was concerned that my Mandarin was thin, but as it turns out she speaks Cantonese... which is... thinner." Giles then says she's happy though because Ice Cream is the universal language, which prompts Chao-Ann to say (in Cantonese, with English Subtitles) "Like many from Asia, I am lactose intolerant. I'm very uncomfortable." "What did she say?" Buffy asks awkwardly. "She's grateful to be in the land of plenty" Giles says as Chao-Ann smiles and nods. Giles and Chao-Ann depart upstairs to put away her new clothes as Buffy asks Willow to do a computer search on Principal Wood. Willow says no problem, then offers to do the same with Xander's date. Xander waves her off, saying it's ok, he's gonna go in blind on this one.
"Getting the most from your new microwave" Andrew reads from microwave instructions in the kitchen. He starts to look up instructions on how to set the clock when suddenly he hears "you don't need a manual, it's intuitive!" Andrew looks up to find... Johnathan! "There's a button marked 'clock set' for pity's sake. What kind of a nerd are you?" Andrew is scared and starts to back away from the visage of Johnathan/the First, pulling out a wooden cross and trying to "rebuke" the image. Johnathan/the First sighs and walks calmly up to Andrew. The First waves his hand right through the cross, sarcastically saying "ooo, ahhh, it burns as it ineffectually passes through me. I'm not corporeal, remember? Also... not a vampire, so... a cross?" Andrew, still shaken, asks very hesitantly "what do you want from me Johnathan-slash-the First?".
Johnathan/the First says he has an assignment for Andrew. Andrew says he's trying to redeem himself for killing Johnathan. Johnathan/the First wonders if Andrew really thinks Buffy will let him into her gang with him being a murderer? Andrew says that others in the group have killed too, mentioning Spike and Anya. Johnathan/The First then tries to coax Andrew towards his side, saying there's a fight growing and Andrew can be at his side. Andrew thinks and says not-too-convincingly "Sounds nice." Johnathan/the First says all he has to do is kill all of the girls, not including Dawn, Anya, Willow, or Buffy. Just all of the Potential Slayers. Andrew is horrified at the thought, but Johnathan/the First keeps talking, saying the girls must die. Andrew says he can't do that, he didn't like the stabbing when he did it before. Johnathan/the First says he doesn't have to stab, that Willow brought something into the house that Andrew can use. Andrew with a Vanna-esque flourish says "the new microwave?" Johnathan/the First rolls his eyes and says no, the Gun. He wants Andrew to try and remember where they put the gun...
In the washroom, Anya tries to rub out a stain from a shirt as Buffy watches her as they talk about the uncertainty of Buffy's date really being a "date." Anya admits defeat at the stain (either blood or pizza, can't tell) and hands the shirt to Buffy (who is standing in a frilly lacey thing). Anya then starts to rant about the "sham" date of Xanders. Buffy says it doesn't appear to be bothering her, but Anya says that it of course bothers her a great deal. Buffy then takes that moment to get the heck out of there. She hits the hallway and runs right into Spike, who very gentlemanly looks at her and around her, but not AT her, as she is just a tad awkward at her appearance and debates whether to cover herself with the shirt. Calmly, nicely, Spike says she looks nice and says he hears she's got a date. Buffy says that it's unclear what it is, whether it's a promotion or checking up on the principal or what, but Spike can sense her avoidance of the real subject and he says it's alright, he's not being noble or anything, everything is fine with them and the fact that she's going out on a date. Buffy then suggests he try it himself, going out and having fun, and remembers his date to Anya's Wedding. Spike says the gal wasn't his type really. Buffy then says she has to get ready a little anxiously and walks past Spike, who stares off with a distant look in his eye.
8:30 at night, Xander is sitting at a table in a coffee shop, waiting for Lissa. He's a bit nervous, drumming his fingers on the table. She arrives and the date starts, the two talking coffee. Xander says he ordered a "Red eye" (black coffee with a shot of espresso) but when Lyssa grabs his cup and sniffs, it turns out to be hot cocoa. Lissa smiles at Xander's embarrassment, then goes ahead and orders a Red Eye herself, saying it sounded good.
Night-time in the Summer's dining room has Willow at her laptop with Dawn and Amanda seated at either side and Kennedy hanging over Willow's shoulder. They are researching Principal Wood and not coming up with anything, only recent having-moved-to-Sunnydale stuff. Anya walks in, a disgusted look on her face, with Giles trailing her, telling her "Calm down, they're educational." Anya presents a stack of papers to the ladies at the table and they start to look at them. They are Flash Cards, reminiscent of the overhead slides Giles showed in "Hush", showing stick-figure scenes of a Bringer's attack, a Vampire's attack, and "the Slayer" (with a Buffy stick-figure standing with a bloody stake). Giles explains that he was trying to show Chao-Ann the importance of the situation as Willow asks him in a surprised voice if he showed her those. Dawn grabs one and spouts "Holy Crap!", showing them all a picture of a stick-figure Turok-Han and its ripped-in-two bloody victim.
Willow asks Giles if he wants to help with the research into Buffy's date. Giles is surprised and a little disgusted and asks "Buffy has a date?" Anya chimes in with a hint of jealousy, saying that Buffy has a date and Xander has a date and Willow has been making out with Kennedy. Willow says that Buffy is actually investigating Principal Wood and it only "might" be a date. Giles is put back a little by the news, thinking everyone silly for worrying about their social life when such primal evil is around.
From the shadows, Andrew watches the group suspiciously...
In a back alley, Buffy looks around a little nervous as she and Wood walk towards an out of the way restaurant he knows. He assures her it's just up ahead, but suddenly it's a Vampire attack! Three from ahead, two from behind! The battle commences and three vampires attack Buffy. Wood disappears into the background as Buffy dusts one quickly, then she dusts the other two after a series of kicks and punches. Buffy looks pissed and looks for Wood, calling out "you set me up you sonofa..." She is surprised to see Wood very competently battling the remaining two vampires! He's got the moves down and knows how to fight, quickly dusting one and then the other. Yep, he's got a stake too, which he twirls a second then holsters in his belt. He walks over and helps a confused Buffy to her feet, saying "I think we should talk..."
Buffy and Wood continue walking as he points out to a still-stunned Buffy where the restaurant is.
Lyssa and Xander continue their date over the coffee and cocoa, but the talk is of Xander and Anya's past relationship. Xander says that he's on her mind a lot lately because it's their anniversary, or would have been. After some kind words from Lyssa about his situation, Xander apologizes for the current "date" they're on. Lyssa smiles and says she can think of something fun for them to do...
In an elegant fancy French Restaurant, Buffy and Wood sit at a cozy table and Buffy is instantly questioning him on how he "did that." Wood calmly says he's never taken on two vamps before, but he's been known to fight a demon or vamp here or there. Buffy hints that he may know who she is. "You're the Slayer" he says calmly. She smiles and shakes her head in disbelief, still not sure what to make of things. Buffy wonders why he took a job above the Hellmouth. Wood says he does like the Principal job, but he knows that something big is going down and he needs to be there when it happens. He admits to not being ready to reveal himself to her until he was ready to face the fight himself. It is then learned that he knew who she was before he was even hired. She wonders how he knows about Slayers. "Ok... see, when I was a little boy, my Mother was one. THE one actually, the Slayer." Wood admits. This news hits Buffy hard with surprise. She still tries to wonder how a Slayer could have a son. Wood says he doesn't know of any other Slayers with children, and that his Mother was killed when he was 4 years old. Buffy beats around the bush for her next question, wondering what killed his Mother. "A Vampire" he tells her. He says he did the avenging son thing in his 20's but eventually learned he may never find the vampire that did it, so he just continues to fight the fight, hoping to come across the one who killed her sometime. He admits to not being popular with the Vampire population, reasoning that's why they probably got jumped outside.
Buffy continues her curiosity, asking Wood if he has any special Slayer-like powers? He admits he doesn't. No mystical calling or such. He learned how to fight by being taken in by his Mother's Watcher and being taught. Buffy then questions him on his venue for revealing all, the dark, cozy restaurant. He admits he's not sure how that happened, but yep, it happened. They both smile at each other. There is a slight spark...
"Did you find the gun?" Johnathan/the First asks in the living room of the Summers home. Andrew says he found it in Buffy's underwear drawer and commented on her having nice things. The First asks to see, and Andrew says he didn't take any of the underwear. "Show me the gun" the First corrects him. Andrew holds out a large paper sack and inside is the gun. The First tells Andrew that the Potentials are going to panic when the shooting starts, so he should try and trap them in the basement first. Andrew questions why they're killing the girls, to which the First says if the Potentials are killed, the Slayer line is gone. Andrew acts like he understands, asking more questions. He wonders why the First doesn't just have Spike do it. The First ominously says "It's not time for him yet."
Andrew then "nonchalantly" asks the First if he has any weaknesses. The First questions why he's asking. Andrew says it's not a big deal, then asks about the First's existence, thinking it has something to do with the evil impulses in everyone. Johnathan/the First is suspicious and asks why Andrew's asking so many questions. Andrew is now very awkward in his answer, clearing his throat a lot, saying that he simply wants to be better able to serve the First by understanding things better, like when they're going to kill Buffy. "Are you wearing a wire?" Johnathan/the First asks.
Willow jumps suddenly, earphones falling off her head, a nervous look on her face. She is seated at a table in the basement with Kennedy, Dawn, and Amanda seated near, recording equipment at her side.
Johnathan/the First now confronts Andrew, saying that he has control over Andrew and he should not take it lightly. "I hold you Andrew. I made you do this..." the First says, taking his hands and placing them on his chest, then showing them to Andrew to reveal them covered in clotted blood. Andrew looks on, getting more scared as Johnathan/the First continues to talk at Andrew, blaming him for Johnathan's death at his own hands, saying that Johnathan now suffers an eternity of pain because of what Andrew did. Johnathan/the First's image slowly changes. His face becomes pale, sweaty, and dirty. He slowly begins to get more oozey and death-like. The First says that Johnathan's death sent Andrew down a path and now he has to keep going, but Andrew now becomes confrontational, telling the First to stop looking like his friend Johnathan. He's good now and he's not going to shoot the innocent girls. He then says when the fight is over he's going to pay for killing Johnathan. Johnathan/the First says that he'll pay alright, because now the First is pissed at him!
"You think you're so smart." the voice of Johnathan/the First comes over the headphones to Willow, but Kennedy says it's not the headphones, they all can hear it. The ghostly image of a rotting, decaying Johnathan appears to them out of nowhere, saying "so many dead girls... so many..." then it vanishes just as quickly.
"See? I knew it. I just knew it..." Xander says. Yep, he was right. Another demon date. Xander is tied to the familiar circular rack, suspended above the seal of Danzathar, no shirt, with Lyssa standing off to the side, pulling on the new store-bought rope to rais the rack even further above the seal. "It can't just happen. It can't just keep happening that demon-women find me attractive!" Xander quips as he starts to get a little nervous, hoisted directly above the seal now.
Dawn slowly peels the taped microphone off of Andrew's chest as Spike and Giles have joined Willow, Kennedy, Anya and Amanda in the living room. Spike asks why they tried to record the First, noting that it would just further piss it off. Giles asks the same question of Willow. Willow says they wanted to study it and gather information because they have no information. Spike asks why it appeared to Andrew, wondering why it didn't appear to him. Andrew says it told him it wasn't time for Spike yet. this gets a worried look from Spike and Giles. Andrew complains about the tape but Dawn says he did a good job. Andrew thanks her as Anya asks what the First wanted him to do. Andrew says it wanted him to shoot all the girls, which gets a worried look from Dawn, but upon clarification that he meant all the potentials, Dawn relaxes. Giles then starts off on a rant, saying this proves his point that they should be concentrating and not going out on dates. He wants to get a hold of Buffy. Spike offers to go and get her a little eagerly and starts to head out, but Willow says she can call her.
Just then Willow's phone gets a text message from Xander! She tells the others that they worked out a system of codes for emergencies and such. She then says she can't remember if that specific code is "I just got lucky, don't call me for a while" or "I dated a demon who's trying to kill me." Dawn says they should play the percentages and all assume that Xander is in danger. Andrew says that Buffy will know what to do, which once again has Spike offering to go and get Buffy. Willow halts him, saying she can still call Buffy, but upon dialing, they hear Buffy's phone ring nearby. Willow picks it up off a table and all know she can't be reached. Spike now says he'll go and get Buffy, he can still track her scent, and he heads out the front door with a "look" from Giles.
"oh my god! That might be the best thing I've ever had in my mouth" Buffy says as she bites something off a fork. Wood smiles and says they take the pears and dip them in brandy as he slowly, flirtatiously feeds her a sample from across the table off of his fork. Buffy then looks up and is surprised to see Spike standing over them, a very serious look on his face. Wood asks if there's a problem. Buffy asks what he's doing there. "It's Xander" Spike answers her.
Now suspended directly above the seal, Xander is a bit paniced, trying to explain to Lyssa what will happen if the seal opens. Lyssa knows though. "The seal opens and a vicious feral vampire comes out!" she gleefully exclaims. Xander asks her why she thinks that's a good idea. Lyssa says she knows the end is coming and it's time to choose sides and get help. She then reaches over and grabs a large, ornate dagger, and looking back at him, we see her eyes have turned a cat-like yellow. She sticks the dagger into Xander's side and he cries out as blood start dripping down the blade. "Couldn't have done it without you Xander. Thanks for the great date!" she exclaims.
Driving down the street (in what looks like a Dodge Durango), Principal Wood drives with Buffy riding Shotgun and Spike in the back. Buffy asks if Spike is sure Xander is at the high school. Spike tells her that Willow did a locator spell. Wood says he's not surprised, the school is the center of everything. A few awkward moments of silence, then to break the silence Wood asks how Spike and Buffy know each other. Buffy blurts out they work together... in the struggle against evil. "hmm... cool." Wood answers. More awkward silence.
"Xander!" Buffy calls out as she bursts open the door to the basement seal area. She immediately attacks Lissa along with Spike, but Lissa is stronger than she appears! She throws Buffy off then attacks Spike and pins him, choking the vampire! This of course pisses Spike off and he goes into vamp mode, which a nearby Wood sees. "A vampire..." Wood says to himself as the battle continues. Wood rushes over and starts to cut Xander down with a knife, but it's too late! Xander's blood has dripped onto the seal and started to activate it, the triangle bits folding up and around, light shining from within! A long, gangly claw comes out from one of the triangle openings... a Turok-han-d! (ha ha). It grabs at Wood's leg, but just then Wood sets Xander free and kicking the hand off, moves Xander clear of the seal! Without the blood flow, the Seal's parts close up with a slam and they chop the exposed arm off!
Now almost unconscious, Spike is out of it as Buffy takes on Lyssa. The two struggle for Lyssa's dagger for a while. Lyssa throws Buffy off as Spike joins the fight once again. Punch-kick-punch, then Spike is battered aside and it's Buffy's turn. Buffy gets the upper hand, swings the daggger, and whops off Lyssa's head! As her body and head fall to the ground, both morph into a quasi-demon-humanoid creature.
Spike struggles up as Buffy goes to help him, with Wood looking on in a cold manner. Buffy then gets up to go to Xander as Wood rises and stands away from Spike a little, saying that their friend is going to be ok. "Hey, Xand... I'm here." Buffy smiles. "So how's your date going?" Xander asks Buffy, as cold glances are exchanged between Wood and Spike.
With Dawn at watch at the open front door, Anya paces nerviously, wondering where Buffy and Xander are, thinking that the "slut" ate Xander up. Andrew says that he understand's Anya's fear because he "enraged that primal force." Giles walks in with a glass of milk, wondering if they're back yet. In walks Chao-Ann, who says (subtitled) "Why is everyone up? Are the flashcard monsters attacking?!?" Giles incorrectly translates for her, saying that she said she can't sleep. He then offers her the glass of milk to help her sleep. (subtitled) "You're trying to kill me!" Chao-Ann shouts and barges up the stairs. "She's shy" Giles tells the others.
Dawn gets excited, saying they're back. Anya asks if Xander looks ok. Dawn says she thinks so. Anya is mad that he is. And finally in walk Xander, Buffy, and Spike. Xander's shirt is open and his side is bandaged. "I've decided I'm turning gay! Willow, come on, Gay me up!" Xander is now determined not to have any more bad demon dating luck. "Just tell me what to do. I'm mentally undressing Scott Bakula." Andrew sighs "ahh... Captain Archer..."
"Come on! Let's get this gay show on the gay road!" Willow looks on in slight shock as Buffy and Dawn start joking around, saying that Clem always liked Xander. The mood just starts to turn light until Giles silences everyone, wanting to warn them of the seriousness of the situation. He says there's no time for fun and games and quips about orientation. He holds up his flashcards to prove his point, saying the girls are going to die, and they may also. "it's time to get serious."
Alone on the Couch, Buffy sits in thought as Spike approaches. He asks if anyone told Buffy what happened at the house that night. Buffy says Willow told her that the First is back. Spike tells her about the revelation that the First still has plans for him and he suggests he should move out and leave town. Buffy says he has to stay. Spike says he can leave cause they've got lots of help, but Buffy says that's not the reason. Spike asks her why then. "Cause I'm not ready for you to not be here" she says. Spike asks how the principal fits in? Buffy doesn't answer...
Principal Wood washes his face in a sink, breathing a sigh of relief at a tiring day. He looks up in the mirror to see an African-American woman standing behind him. "you look good" she says. "You're not my mother." he replies coldly. The woman chastises him for his rudeness, but he tries to be strong in front of the affecting image, turning and walking straight through his mother's form. He then turns and faces off against her. "So you're the First." he says, then wonders what the First is doing here now, appearing to him? His Mother/The First says he's coming up in the world and it was about time. Wood says he has no use for her and turns to go, but he is halted in his tracks when she says "Would you like to know who killed me?" The First knows what he's been looking for and says it can help. Wood asks flatly who it is.
"You know him... you've met him... you've fought at his side" she says.
"Spike" Wood mumbles.
"Now, what do you say?" The First says in a Motherly tone.
"Thank you" Wood whispers.