Story Code '7ABB08'
by David Fury
and Jane Espenson
Buffy wakes Xander with the news that Spike has been killing again; elsewhere, in an abandoned basement, Spike buries the body of his latest kill. Xander is appalled to learn that Spike is back to his evil ways as the vampire has been staying with him; he and Buffy begin to argue about Spike’s current status. In a house in London, a man discovers the dead body of a young girl, but is then attacked by a robed figure. Back in Sunnydale, Spike returns home, unaware that Buffy and Xander have decided that Anya should keep an eye on him. Buffy arrives at her house and is told by Willow that Dawn saw their deceased mother; Buffy then resolves to find out what Spike has been doing. As Spike lies sleeping Anya sneaks into his room to search for clues to prove that he has been killing, but the vampire wakes up and grabs her. Anya bluffs her way out of a confrontation using sex as her excuse, and Spike leaves. Anya calls Buffy to let her know Spike’s movements; the Slayer follows Spike and sees him chatting up a young woman, but then loses sight of them both. Spike takes the woman into an alley, but as he is about to bite her he sees a vision of ‘Buffy’ - actually the First Evil - who encourages him to kill. Later that evening, Buffy manages to catch up with Spike, but when she confronts him over his actions, Spike refutes Buffy’s claims that he has been killing, instead remarking that she is jealous. Buffy brings up her encounter with the newly-risen vampire Holden, who claimed that Spike sired him. Spike is confused and denies all knowledge, but does admit that his memory is hazy. The next evening, Xander attempts to stop Spike leaving the apartment, but the vampire simply knocks him out and storms off. Arriving at ‘The Bronze’, Spike meets another vampire who offers to help him pick off the crowd; when he refuses she attacks him, insisting that as he sired her, he should help her. Utterly horrified, Spike stakes her. Meanwhile, Buffy questions the bouncer standing outside and he confirms that Spike has left with a different girl every night. Spike calls Buffy on her cell phone, telling her that he needs to see her as he has started to remember doing some very bad things. Later, in the basement of an abandoned house, Spike shows Buffy where he has buried his kills. Unseen in the background, the First is standing on the stairs wearing the guise of Spike, and ‘he’ begins to hum a tune; as soon as Spike hears it he goes crazy and attacks Buffy. As they fight, the dead bodies begin to rise from the ground; these newly-risen vampires grab Buffy and wound her; Spike licks the blood from her arm, but at that instant the memory of all his recent crimes comes rushing back to him, and he jerks away in horror. Buffy stakes all of the vampires while the First whispers to Spike, telling him that as he has failed, Buffy will kill him. Spike is distraught, and is ready to die just so that he can be free of the demon’s taunts; but instead of staking him, Buffy sits beside him. Spike breaks down in tears and begs Buffy for her help, and as the First looks on in disgust Buffy agrees to take Spike home so that they can learn everything they can about the demon. Back in London, Giles bursts into the house and finds the bodies of the dead girl and the stabbed man. The man’s eyes snap open and he manages to whisper “It’s started…” before a robed figure appears behind Giles and swings an axe straight at his head…
Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy Summers), Nicholas Brendon (Xander Harris), Alyson Hannigan (Willow Rosenberg), James Marsters (Spike), Emma Caulfield (Anya), Michelle Trachtenberg (Dawn), Anthony Stewart Head (Giles), Robinee Lee (Bronze Vampire), Rob Nagle (Watcher), Lisa Jay (Linda), Kevin Daniels (Bouncer), Stacey Scowley (Young Woman), Linda Christopher (Nora)
Directed by Alan Levi
TX (US): 19th November 2002
*Featuring Buffy, Xander, Willow, Anya, Dawn and Giles