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GILES VOICEOVER: Previously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer...
Spike and Buffy kissing.
SPIKE VOICEOVER: Buffy, I love you.
Spike sitting up in bed looking horrified.
Willow arranging stones on the floor in a square.
WILLOW: We conjure the goddess Thespia to help us locate demonic energy.
TARA: Are you sure we're ready for that?
Willow pouring herbs into Tara's hand.
Willow blowing herbs off her own hand.
Tara hiding her herbs under the bed and pretending to blow them away.
Willow looking confused.
WILLOW: Or not.
Glory talking to a monk tied to a chair.
GLORY: Tell me ... where ... the key is.
Monk talking to Buffy.
MONK: The key is energy. It's a portal. My brethren sent it to you.
BUFFY: Dawn. She's not my sister?
MONK: She doesn't know that.
Buffy brushing hair back from Dawn's face.
Episode begins. We see Willow and Tara's kitten playing with a small ball of yarn.
WILLOW VOICEOVER: Tell me a story.
TARA VOICEOVER: Okay. Once upon a time, there was, um ... a kitty. She was very little, and she was all alone, and nobody wanted her.
WILLOW VOICEOVER: This is a very upsetting story.
TARA VOICEOVER: Oh, oh, but it gets better.
The kitten runs offscreen. Cut to a shot of her trying to crawl under a bed.
TARA VOICEOVER: 'Cause one day the kitty was running around in the street and a man came, and swooped her up...
A pair of hands comes into the shot and swoops up the kitten.
TARA: And took her to the pound.
We see Tara sitting on the end of Willow's bed lifting the kitten into her lap. Willow is in the bed, under the covers.
TARA: And at the pound there were lots of other kitties, and there were puppies, and some ferrets...
WILLOW: (smiling) Were there dolphins?
TARA: (handing kitten to Willow) Yes. Many dolphins at the pound.
WILLOW: Or was there a camel?
TARA: (thinks) There was the front of a camel. A half camel. (Smiles)
WILLOW: (cuddling kitten) Did the kitty get chosen by some nice people?
TARA: Well, now you ruined the ending.
WILLOW: Mmm... (lets go of the kitten and it runs off) I'm sleepy.
TARA: Do you mind if I keep the light on? I was gonna look up some spells.
WILLOW: It's fine. (pouts) I don't need to be snuggled. (smiles)
TARA: (smiles back) Vixen!
Tara takes some books that are on the bed and piles them up on the floor.
WILLOW: You've been spell gal night and day lately.
TARA: Well, I just wanna keep up with you, and I'm ... well, I just like to be useful. You know, to the gang? (Willow looks concerned) I just ... never ... feel useful.
WILLOW: You are. You're essential.
Tara smiles. She comes over and gets under the covers with Willow, turning off the light.
TARA: Do you think Buffy found out anything tonight?
WILLOW: At the factory? I don't know. If there was something, I figured she'd call us.
Tara lies down, putting her head on Willow's shoulder, and they snuggle up together.
Cut to Joyce's house, night. Giles and Buffy sit in the living room. They talk quietly.
GILES: Uh, I don't know what to say.
BUFFY: Tell me about it. (looks toward the stairs)
GILES: She has no idea?
BUFFY: No. She thinks she's my kid sister.
GILES: Are you going to tell her?
BUFFY: How can I? (sighs, gets up) She'd freak, and that's the last thing we need.
She walks to the doorway and looks up the stairs.
BUFFY: (sighs) We have to keep her safe.
She turns and walks back into the living room.
GILES: This ... woman, this, uh, whatever she was... she knows you now. (Buffy sits) Should we be thinking about ... sending Dawn away?
BUFFY: Away where?
GILES: I don't know, uh ... your father's?
BUFFY: (scoffs) Yeah, he's, um ... in Spain, with his secretary. Living the cliche. (Giles looks sympathetic.) I called him when Mom got sick, he hasn't even...
GILES: I'm sorry.
BUFFY: When he bailed on us ... I remember, Dawn cried for a week. Except she didn't. She wasn't there, but ... I can still feel what it was like.
Giles puts his hand over his mouth and frowns.
BUFFY: They sent her to me, Giles. I think ... I have to take care of her. I want to.
GILES: Do we tell the others?
BUFFY: No. No one. They-they'd act weird around her, and it's, it's safer for everyone if they don't know.
GILES: Yes. (Stands, begins to pace) We have to find out who this woman is, and what she needs Dawn for.
Buffy ponders this.
GILES: I mean, if she comes after you-
BUFFY: She'll come. (Looks toward the stairs) She'll come for us.
Cut to a pile of rubble that suddenly explodes upward as Glory throws it off of her. She rises in the middle of the destroyed building, still wearing her red dress. She looks around angrily.
GLORY: Okay. Now I'm upset.
Wolf howl. Opening credits.
Guest starring Mercedes McNab, Clare Kramer, Charlie Weber, Amy Adams, Steve Rankin, and Amber Benson as Tara. Written and directed by Joss Whedon.
Exterior shot of UC Sunnydale, day.
Cut to inside dorm. Buffy is stacking some boxes in the hallway. Xander and Riley are carrying a mini-fridge out of a dorm room. Xander bumps his hand on the door frame.
XANDER: Ow! Thumb! Necessary opposable thumb!
RILEY: Sorry. Crybaby.
BUFFY: You know what, you guys, just leave it here.
RILEY: Got it.
He and Xander put down the fridge. Dawn emerges from another door, carrying a stack of boxes that obscure her vision.
DAWN: I don't need help.
BUFFY: Just be careful.
Buffy turns and enters through the door Dawn just exited. We see Willow, Anya, and Giles in a dorm room, surrounded by boxes.
ANYA: But we just helped her move the stuff in a few days ago... (turns and sees Buffy) ...and it was fun!
GILES: (reading a book) People help each other out, Anya. It's one of our strange customs.
BUFFY: Giles, I noticed you're doing the smallest amount of helping that can actually be called helping.
GILES: Well, I saw myself in more of a ... patriarchal sort of role. You know, lots of pointing and scowling. (Smiles. Looks to his left, points and scowls.) You two, stop that!
Shot of Xander and Riley grappling, bent over at the waist. Xander has Riley in a headlock.
RILEY: He started it.
XANDER: He called me a bad name. (Tara looks at them and grins) I think it was bad. It might've been Latin.
GILES: Stop it, or you're going to break something.
BUFFY: Or I'm going to break something.
The guys suddenly let each other go and straighten up.
We see Willow and Tara folding clothes, smiling at each other.
XANDER: Still can't believe you're giving up this cherry corner suite.
ANYA: (re-entering from hallway) Just a few days after we moved you in!
BUFFY: (shrugs, tries to look casual) It's no big. (Giles looks up from his book) You know, with Mom not being well, I'm hardly ever here. (Picks up a pile of clothes to put in a box) Just figured I'd ... save a little cash for this semester, that's all.
WILLOW: I think that's smart.
XANDER: Still, it's hard to give up. You've got the two entrances (pointing to the two doors to the room) lot of opportunity for bawdy French farce, and everybody loves bawdy-
BUFFY: Where's Dawn?
RILEY: I think she just walked out. (Points out one of the doors)
BUFFY: (hurrying forward) Dawn!
Dawn re-enters and breezes past Buffy.
DAWN: Some of your CDs are my CDs.
BUFFY: I know. Come help me fold.
Tara smiles at them. Everyone returns to packing and carrying (and reading in Giles' case). Willow takes a suitcase and leaves the room.
Buffy bends over to fold something and grabs her lower back with a sigh.
RILEY: Starting to feel that fight?
Buffy and Dawn fold a sheet.
BUFFY: Nothing like gettin' your ass kicked to ... make your ass hurt.
DAWN: You'll totally take her next time.
XANDER: 'Cause you'll have backup, baby. She's messin' with all of us.
GILES: Yes, uh, we'll, we'll, uh, find her weaknesses, and then, uh-
TARA: Yeah. You learn her source, (grins) and, uh, we'll introduce her to her insect reflection.
Everyone looks at her in confusion. Tara stops smiling.
TARA: Um ... that, that was funny if you, um, studied Taglarin mythic rites... (softly) and are a complete dork.
RILEY: Oh, then how come Xander didn't laugh? (Tara takes a box and exits)
XANDER: (not realizing he's been insulted) I don't know that Taglarin stuff.
Cut to Tara walking out into the hall, shaking her head. Willow approaches.
WILLOW: Hey. You wanna start taking stuff down to the car?
TARA: (nods) Yeah.
Willow goes back into the dorm room. Tara walks off with her box.
TARA: (whispering to herself) Stupid...
Cut to Willow re-entering the dorm room.
WILLOW: Okay. Guys, now remember, you have to be at the Bronze by eight.
Everyone looks blank.
WILLOW: Tomorrow night! Tara's birthday!
BUFFY: Right! Right.
ANYA: (to Xander) We have to bring presents, right? Birth is a present thing?
XANDER: I got something ... picked out, yeah.
WILLOW: (anxious) You-you guys can all still come, right? I mean, I know there's ... this new evil and all, but...
BUFFY: No, no. We'll be there. I could definitely use a break from all this craziness.
Cut to a woman in a hospital gown, being wheeled on a gurney through a hospital hallway. Hospital noises. Camera pulls back and we see a male intern pulling the gurney. Ben approaches.
BEN: What's the story?
INTERN: Another crazy. Got her family out there. (nods toward waiting room)
BEN: OK, let me guess, no history of mental problems.
INTERN: Yeah. That makes like five this month.
BEN: Ah, they told me Sunnydale was gonna be interesting.
INTERN: (chuckles) Yeah. Aren't you off?
BEN: (looks at watch) Yeah, as of now. Have fun.
He turns and walks off.
Cut to hospital locker room. Ben enters, walks past two rows of lockers, opens a locker, begins taking his clothes off and putting them in the locker.
Pan back across the two rows of lockers. A Lei-Ach demon comes into view. It has gray skin broken by red bloody-looking sores, and dark sunken eyes. It opens its mouth and puts out a thick, black, forked tongue. Its nose twitches as it walks forward, putting out its tongue again with a hissing noise.
Glory comes into the shot, putting one hand over the demon's mouth, the other hand on the back of its head.
GLORY: I need a favor.
She pushes the demon backward out of the shot.
Cut to the magic shop. Anya hands a paper bag to a customer.
ANYA: (smiling) Thank you for coming. We value your patronage. (Yelling after the departing customer) Please come again for more purchases!
Giles comes into the shot and puts a box on the counter.
GILES: Could we please be a little less effusive, Anya? Don't want to frighten the people.
ANYA: I'm just so excited. They come in, I help them ... they give us money in exchange for goods ... you give me money for working for you ... I have a place in the world now. I'm part of the system. (smiles widely) I'm a working gal.
GILES: (smiles) Yes. Well, why don't you start organizing the shipping orders. (Takes the box and starts to walk off)
ANYA: Oh, no, that's boring. I just want to do the money parts.
Buffy and Xander enter.
BUFFY: Well, sure I forgot about the party. I mean, there's kind of a lot going on. And it's not ... you know ... the most thrilling social event of the season.
XANDER: (nods) Yeah ... it's a big deal for Willow, though. I mean, you are gonna be there?
BUFFY: Yeah. (shrugs) Barring monsters.
ANYA: Hey, hi. (Leans over the counter toward Xander)
XANDER: Gimme sugar. I've come to buy sugar.
He puts his hands on Anya's face and they kiss.
ANYA: Mmm. We value your patronage.
BUFFY: (to Giles) So, any breakthroughs on the identity of Miss Congeniality?
GILES: Well, I have narrowed it down somewhat.
He looks down at a table. The camera pans out so we can see the large assortment of books spread out on the table.
BUFFY: Your definition of narrow is impressively wide.
GILES: Well, you didn't give me much to go on. She-she looks human, so the mug shots aren't any use, and, uh, you can't be more specific about what she's like?
BUFFY: (ponders) She was kinda like Cordelia, actually. (Giles nods thoughtfully) I'm pretty sure she dyes her hair.
GILES: Right! That one, of course. Our work is done.
BUFFY: There must be something on her. (sits at table as Xander approaches)
XANDER: (melodramatically) The answer is somewhere here. (stares at the book-covered table) It's right in front of us and we're too blind to see it! (Slams his hand down on the table)
Buffy gives him an exasperated look. Giles rolls his eyes.
XANDER: I'm helping, I'm reading, (sits, whispers) I'm quiet.
Giles takes a box and begins climbing some stairs to the loft. Buffy and Xander sit at the table looking at books.
BUFFY: So ... what'd you get her?
BUFFY: Tara. You said you got a present already.
XANDER: Yeah, that was a tangled web of lies, sweetie. I'm not really sure what kind of thing she'd ... I mean, I don't really know her that well.
BUFFY: (nods) I know.
XANDER: (quickly) I mean, she's nice.
BUFFY: (quickly) Yeah! Yeah, nice ... nice. I-it's just, I-I sort of...
XANDER: I don't necessarily get her ... but she's really nice.
BUFFY: Yeah. There's ... just that thing.
XANDER: (agreeing) That thing.
BUFFY: That ... thing of not understanding-
XANDER: Half of what she says?
BUFFY: As for example. But she's super nice.
XANDER: You betcha.
They continue looking at books.
BUFFY: Think there'll be a lot of Wiccas there, heavy Wiccan crowd?
XANDER: Well, that's sort of her deal. Her and Willow are all Wiccie. Swingin' with the Wiccan lifestyle.
BUFFY: Which is cool.
XANDER: Well, yeah.
BUFFY: I just hope we fit in, not awkward.
XANDER: With Willow it's like, she's got this ... whole new thing in her life. But she's still Willow, so I can always figure her out. But Tara, I just know she likes Willow, and she already has one of those.
Buffy groans and slams a book shut.
BUFFY: Ugh! I have a present-buying headache. Tara's damn birthday is just one too many things for me to worry about.
XANDER: Relax. You should take a few minutes. (jerks his thumb toward the training room in the back) Train or stretch out. You should do something to ... work off the tension.
Cut to Buffy punching Spike in the face. Then she kicks him. We see they're in his crypt. Spike kicks Buffy in the stomach, then punches her in the face, once, twice, thrice. On the fourth swing Buffy grabs his arm and punches him with her other hand. She lands a roundhouse and then an uppercut. She kicks Spike in the stomach and then does a backflip, kicking him in the jaw.
Spike spins, tries a circle kick but Buffy ducks it. She blocks a punch, then he grabs her by the throat from behind, holding one of her hands. She kicks him in the face over her shoulder, twists out of his grip and throws him. He lands sitting on his armchair and it slides backward until it hits the wall. Buffy leaps up to stand on the two arms of the armchair, punches Spike in the face four times. He pushes her legs apart and she falls onto his lap. Spike grabs her butt and Buffy wraps her legs around his neck as he stands up. Then she flings herself backward, landing with her hands on the floor, and uses her legs to flip Spike over by the neck. She lands on top of him. Spike throws her off and she slides against a wall. Spike stands up. Buffy crouches, panting.
SPIKE: You want me, Slayer, come and get me.
BUFFY: Oh, I'm coming. I'm coming right- (lunges up toward him)
Cut to Spike and Harmony in bed.
Spike is on top of Harmony, covered by a blanket, both of them naked and panting. Harmony caresses Spike's face.
HARMONY: What are you thinking?
SPIKE: All about you, baby.
HARMONY: Aww. (Pulls Spike's head down to her shoulder) You're my little lamb.
Cut back to the magic shop. Giles comes back down from the loft.
GILES: Come up with anything yet?
XANDER: Well, candles, maybe, or bath oils of some kind.
BUFFY: I saw a really cute sweater at Bloomy's ... but, I think I want me to have it.
GILES: And you are talking about what on earth?
BUFFY: Tara's birthday. We're at a loss.
GILES: You're in a magic shop, and you can't think what Tara would like. I believe you're both profoundly stupid.
XANDER: Well, we don't really know ... the kind of things witches like. What, are we gonna get her some cheesy crystal ball?
GILES: Bloody well better not. I've got mine already wrapped.
A youngish guy with blond hair and a beard (Donny) is looking at the shelves. Now he turns and looks at the books on the table in front of Buffy and Xander.
DONNY: Uh, are all these magic books?
GILES: Uh, private collection. Uh, books for sale are against the walls over there. (gestures with his coffee cup, then walks toward the counter)
Donny continues looking through books on the table.
DONNY: So all these books got spells in 'em? Turn people into frogs, things like that?
Everyone looks dubiously at him. We see Anya behind the cash register.
XANDER: Yeah, we're building a race of frog people. It's a good time.
DONNY: So, uh... (gestures at them) You all witches? Hey, don't do a spell on me now. (Laughs)
GILES: Was there something in particular you were looking for?
Donny continues chuckling. The door opens and Willow and Tara enter, laughing.
WILLOW: Her insect reflection. That is so good.
TARA: I just thought that'd be funny, you know, if her center of power was-
DONNY: Whatta you know.
Tara sees him and stops laughing, looks alarmed.
DONNY: What's the matter? You don't have a hug for your big brother?
Willow looks surprised. Tara looks upset. Blackout.
Fade in on the same scene. Tara still looks upset. Willow looks at her.
Shot of Buffy and Xander still sitting at the table, watching.
TARA: Willow, this is (stutters) Donny.
Willow walks forward. Tara follows, looking uncomfortable.
DONNY: (shakes Willow's hand, smiling) Nice to meet you.
TARA: And, uh, these are my-my friends.
Donny looks back at the others, who nod and wave.
DONNY: What, uh, all of you hang out? Wow. That's more people than you met in high school. (Gives Tara a friendly punch on the arm)
TARA: How did you fi - I, I mean, how come you came?
DONNY: Well, duh, birthday girl. Uh, we came down in the camper, been all over the campus.
Tara and Willow turn as the door opens and a man walks in (Mr. Maclay), followed by a girl about Tara's age (Cousin Beth).
DONNY: Look what I found! (gesturing at Tara)
TARA: Uh, Dad, hi. (walks forward. Willow watches)
MR. MACLAY: Well, here's my girl.
Tara hugs her dad awkwardly. We see Giles walking forward, as the others watch the reunion scene.
TARA: S-such a s-surprise.
TARA: Cousin Beth.
MR. MACLAY: One of your dorm-mates said I might ... find you here. (looking around)
TARA: Oh. Oh, um, (turning toward the others) these are, these are friends. Um, this is Mr. Giles, um, he runs the shop.
Shot of Willow smiling.
GILES VOICEOVER: How do you do?
MR. MACLAY: Pleasure. Well, I, I don't mean to interrupt your plans, I know we've come on you kind of suddenly, but I thought we could have dinner.
MR. MACLAY: Why don't I pick you up at six, And we'll ... (glances at the others) do some catching up.
TARA: Yes, sir.
MR. MACLAY: (to the others) Forgive me for running out. We're double-parked.
Giles gestures with his coffee cup like "that's okay". Mr. Maclay, Cousin Beth, and Donny leave. Tara watches anxiously.
DONNY: (waving from doorway) Nice to meet you all.
Willow waves and smiles back.
Tara walks farther into the shop, toward Willow.
WILLOW: That's so weird. Your ... whole family.
TARA: (smiles nervously) Yeah.
Shot of Buffy and Xander exchanging a look.
WILLOW: (OS) They seem nice.
TARA: You know, they-they're okay. Families are always-
WILLOW: (understandingly) They make you crazy.
TARA: Usually. Wanna get into research mode?
They move off.
Cut to: interior foyer of Joyce's house, day. Buffy enters through the front door, tossing her keys onto a table.
BUFFY: (calling) Honey, I'm home.
RILEY: (coming down the stairs) Did you have a good day at work?
BUFFY: It's a rat race.
RILEY: I squared away the rest of your stuff. Wouldn't even know you ever left.
BUFFY: Oh, you're a god. You're like the ... god of boyfriends.
RILEY: Nah, I just like it when you owe me favors.
BUFFY: Well, this earns you a big favor. There could be outfits.
RILEY: Ooh. Be still my heart.
They kiss again. Dawn emerges from the other room, carrying a bag.
DAWN: See ya later.
BUFFY: Whoa! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, where do you think you're going?
DAWN: I'm going to Melinda's for dinner.
BUFFY: Since when?
BUFFY: You can't. I-it's not safe for you to walk there.
DAWN: It's just across the street. What is the big deal, I'm just gonna go-
BUFFY: No. It's family night. (glances at Riley) And besides, Melinda's a bad influence. I don't like you hanging out with someone that ... short.
DAWN: (annoyed) I am so glad you're moving back into the house. This is the source of my gladness.
She stalks off. Buffy sighs.
BUFFY: She makes me crazy. (Walks past Riley into the living room)
RILEY: That's ... kinda the word I was searching for.
BUFFY: (sits on sofa) What? She shouldn't be going over there.
RILEY: Yeah, a lot of young people nowadays are experimenting with shortness. Gotta nip that in the bud.
BUFFY: She ... can't be running out whenever she'd like.
RILEY: (walks forward) It's more than that.
BUFFY: What do you mean?
RILEY: (sits next to her, shakes his head) You tell me.
BUFFY: We all have to be careful. This ... demon chick is ... exciting and new. I don't know what I'm up against.
RILEY: If we're in trouble here I could contact Graham, maybe get the government boys on it-
BUFFY: No! No, I-I-I don't want them anywhere near this.
RILEY: (annoyed) Just a suggestion.
BUFFY: Look, the fewer people that are involved, the safer I will feel.
RILEY: Every time I think I'm getting close to you ... (shakes head) I gotta take off. (Gets up)
BUFFY: (gets up to follow) Wait! What?
RILEY: (walking toward front door) I'll call you later.
BUFFY: Riley! (He stops walking) I *want* you to help. I'm not-
RILEY: Yeah. Know you got a lot on your mind. You decide you wanna let me in on any of it, (opens door) let me know. I'll come running.
He exits. Buffy looks troubled.
Cut to exterior Sunnydale dorm, day.
Cut to inside. Tara enters her room, stops when she sees her dad standing there. He has his arms folded, staring at her roomful of witchy stuff.
MR. MACLAY: The door wasn't locked. I was a little early. (looks around) I suppose you ... wanted me to see all these ... (picks up a large crystal and examines it) toys. (puts crystal down) You don't even try to hide it any more. I'd hoped maybe you'd gotten over the whole witchcraft thing. That if we let you go, you'd ... get it out of your system. (puts hands in pockets) Then they told me to look for you in ... (disgusted) that store.
TARA: I didn't - I, I didn't kn-know that you were coming.
MR. MACLAY: Of course we came. We haven't heard from you in months. Your birthday's getting closer and closer. You know what that means.
TARA: (upset) I don't think it's ... (stammers) it, it won't mean that-
MR. MACLAY: You're turning twenty. (walks toward her) It's the same age your mother was when she... Do your friends even know?
TARA: (softly) Y-yes.
MR. MACLAY: Are you lying to me? (Tara looks down) Tara, you're coming home with us. You know it's the only way.
MR. MACLAY: You can't control what's going to happen. You have evil inside of you and it will come out. And letting yourself work all this magic is only going to make it worse. Where do you think that power comes from?
TARA: It ... it doesn't feel evil ... sir.
MR. MACLAY: Evil never does. (Tara looks down, upset) I don't feel much like eating right now. (Starts to walk past her) I'll give you some time, but we need to be gone by morning. (Walks to the door. We see him unfocused in the background; in foreground Tara looking sad) Your family loves you, Tara, no matter what. How do you think your friends are going to feel when they see your true face?
Cut to the Lei-Ach demon asleep or unconscious. Something hits its face and it begins to wake. The camera pulls back slowly and we see that the demon is standing, chained to a clothes-rack, surrounded by fur coats. Its nose twitches. A shoe flies into the shot and hits the demon in the face, and it growls.
GLORY: (OS) Finally. I thought you were gonna nap the whole day away. (Demon growls and struggles) Stop whining.
We see that they're in a large walk-in closet with clothes racks on all four walls. Glory stands in the middle of the room, now wearing a shiny green (leather?) dress. She has her previous red dress on a hanger, which she now hangs up.
GLORY: You know, I remember when the Lei-Ach were a proud warrior race, not sneaking around hospitals looking for weak sickly types to suck the bone marrow from. (Demon growls and struggles) But ... let's talk about my problems for thirty seconds, if that's perfectly all right with you.
She walks toward the demon and we see a vanity table against one wall. Glory kneels on the chair, leans her hands on the table and talks to her reflection in the mirror.
GLORY: Blonde ... short ... strong for a human ... (turns back around, sits on chair, speaks angrily to demon) and massively rude! Broke my shoe, took my monk, do you have any idea who I'm talking about?
The demon growls and grunts.
GLORY: A slayer?? Oh god, please don't tell me I was fighting a vampire slayer! (Puts one hand to her forehead) How unbelievably common! If I had friends, and they heard about this ... (Shot of the demon looking like it's going to fall asleep again) and you know she's going around telling everybody, I mean she probably just- (leaps up and grabs the demon by the throat) Pay attention! I am great and I am beautiful, and when I walk into a room all eyes turn to me, because my name is a holy name, and you will listen! (Removes her hand from demon's throat, strokes his hair with both hands) Get your friends ... find the girl ... kill the girl ... okay baby? (Demon nods. She smiles and looks closer at it) You have the cutest little suppurating sores! Has anyone ever told you that?
Cut to: some sort of irregularly shaped crystal ball. Camera pulls out and we see Tara sitting in her room, staring sadly at the crystal. Behind her the door opens and Willow enters. Tara doesn't turn.
TARA: (turning) Hey.
WILLOW: Was dinner fun?
Tara stands, nodding.
WILLOW: Well, there's Scoobyage afoot. Giles called a meeting about our spankin' new menace.
TARA: Oh ... y-you should go, they don't need me for that. You can fill me in.
WILLOW: (walks toward her) No, no, you have to come. This demon chick is supposed to be really powerful, and I was thinking. Maybe we could try that, that spell, you know, the one to find demons?
TARA: That didn't work.
WILLOW: Yeah ... but we only tried it once, and I-I think I got some ingredients wrong.
TARA: Well, I-I'm tired. Maybe we can do it tomorrow?
WILLOW: You sure you don't wanna-
TARA: Look, my family's here, okay, I can't just- (pauses) Not everything is about your friends and stuff.
WILLOW: (makes a face) Sorry. (Backs away from Tara, starts walking to the door)
TARA: No! No, I mean... (Willow turns back) There's just so much ... going on. It's just ... I'm, I'm really tired.
WILLOW: (nods) Okay.
TARA: I'll see you in the morning. You can fill me in.
WILLOW: Great. We'll be demon hunters. (Leaves)
Tara turns, hunts through some books, picks one up and leafs through it, frowning. She finds what she's looking for and looks up with a calculating expression.
Cut to magic shop. Buffy, Anya and Xander sitting around the table. We see Dawn in the background looking at a bookshelf. Willow enters.
WILLOW: Hey. Am I late? Did I miss any exposition?
GILES: (enters the shot from the right) No, no, no, no, nothing earth-shattering to relate. (leans his hands on the back of a chair as Willow sits) I just have a few thoughts, and, uh, wanted to make sure that we were all on the same page.
DAWN: Can I buy one of these?
BUFFY: (OS) No.
DAWN: With my own money?
BUFFY: (OS) I let you come, now sit down and look studious.
Dawn looks annoyed, walks toward the table and out of the shot. The camera pans past the bookshelves and around a corner.
GILES: (OS) Well, first of all, I want to talk to you about ... safety. Um, this creature could be-
We see Tara hiding around the corner, listening.
BUFFY: (OS, fading) Will be.
GILES: (OS, fading) Will be coming after Buffy, and possibly all of us.
TARA: (whispering) Blind Cadria, desolate queen, work my will upon them all. Your curse upon them, my obeisance to you.
She holds up her hand and blows on it. Red dust (?) flows out of her hand. Cut back to the other room, where Giles is sitting down with the others around the table. We see the tendril of red floating into the room from Tara's hiding place, toward the table.
GILES: Now, I may have a lead on this monk that Buffy spoke of. There, there are a few orders that I-I've read up on-
The red dust turns yellow and floats into the middle of the table, then sends out shoots, one for each Willow, Buffy, Dawn, Giles, Anya and Xander. It hits them in the eyes and they all simultaneously flinch back. A pause, then Giles continues, looking confused.
GILES: I-I'm sorry, where was I?
BUFFY: The monk.
GILES: Yes, um, I'd like us all to start looking at these orders, I-it's possible whichever one this monk belonged to was wiped out entirely...
His voice fades out. We see Tara retreating backward, watching them. Blackout.
Fade in on interior of Willy's Bar. Pan across various people and demons drinking at tables. Pan over to the bar. The bartender (not Willy) paces behind it.
BARTENDER: You shouldn't be coming in here. (Turns and takes a glass from a shelf) You got a rep with these monsters. (Puts glass on the bar, shakes head) But you come in here... (turns and gets a bottle) night after night. (Pours into the glass, looks up at the customer) Are you lookin' to get killed?
Shot of Riley sitting on a bar stool, watching the bartender pour.
RILEY: I come for the ambiance. (picks up glass, looks around) What can I say? This place just reeks of class. (Drinks the shot)
BARTENDER: Yeah, well, if Willy was here-
RILEY: Well, Willy's not here. (puts glass down) Hit me.
Bartender scowls and pours.
FEMALE VOICE: Drinking alone?
A woman with long dark hair and a low-cut blouse (Sandy) walks up next to Riley.
SANDY: It's not a good sign. (Sits on the stool next to him)
RILEY: So they tell me. (looks at her) I buy you a drink, neither one of us has that problem any more, now do we? (Sips his drink)
SANDY: Vodka tonic.
RILEY: (to bartender) Vodka tonic.
Bartender puts a napkin in front of Sandy and walks off.
SANDY: (to Riley) I'm Sandy.
We hear the bartender pouring Sandy's drink.
SANDY: This place is such a dive.
RILEY: No no, it's great. You just have to close your eyes, (Sandy chuckles) plug up your nostrils, it's fine.
SANDY: We ... could go somewhere else. Someplace more ... private.
RILEY: (sighs, stares off into the distance) Ohhhh, Sandy, Sandy. It's no good. My heart belongs to another. Besides, (looks at her again) I don't go out with vampires.
Sandy narrows her eyes in annoyance and uses her straw to stab at the ice in her drink.
RILEY: (to bartender) Never interested in my intellect.
Cut to interior of Spike's crypt. Spike sits in his armchair holding his mannequin head with the long blonde wig, caressing its cheek. The door opens and he quickly hides the head under his chair as Harmony enters, carrying several shopping bags.
HARMONY: Hi baby!
SPIKE: (bored) Hello, sweetbreads. Have fun?
HARMONY: Uhh, it was so exciting. You wouldn't believe it. I went to April Fool's, and absolutely everything was on sale.
SPIKE: You *paid* for it?
HARMONY: (unpacking bags) Oh, no. I just killed the clerk. Still, a bargain's a bargain. (Spike frowns and shakes his head) Oh, I ran into Carol Beets. You know. She sired Brandon, Brandon from the sewer gang ... and she said, the Lei-Ach demon... (happily) was recruiting his brethren to kill the slayer!
SPIKE: (suddenly paying attention) How's that?
HARMONY: Apparently, he got recruited by some big nether-wig and now he's on a mission. (Spike looks thoughtful) You think they might actually do it? Kill her?
SPIKE: (pondering) God, that would be ... pleasant.
HARMONY: Well, if they do, I think we should do something. (Spike jumps up) Like a gift basket or something. (Spike grabs his jacket) Where are you going?
SPIKE: To get a decent seat. (puts on jacket) If the slayer's gonna die ... I'm gonna watch. (Exits)
Cut to Tara walking across campus. It's dark. She looks over her shoulder several times. Then she sees Cousin Beth approaching. Beth looks surprised and pleased.
TARA: Beth, what are you-
BETH: I-I was looking for you.
TARA: I'm sorry we didn't get to have dinner.
BETH: I just ... wanted to see if everything was okay. (Tara smiles) See if you needed any help with anything. Packing.
TARA: (stops smiling) Beth, I'm not, I'm n-not (stutters) coming back with you.
BETH: You're not?
TARA: I-I don't think so.
BETH: You ... selfish bitch!
BETH: You don't care the slightest bitty bit about your family, do you? Your dad's been worried sick about you every day since you've been gone. There's a, a house that needs taking care of ... Donny and your dad having to do for themselves while you're down here living god knows what kind of lifestyle. (Tara looks upset) I can't wait till your little friends find out the truth about you. And they will, you know. No matter how innocent you act, they'll see.
TARA: (firmly) No they won't.
BETH: They will. Unless you ... do some kind of spell on them .... (sees Tara's face) You did!
BETH: You did something to them. I'm telling your father.
She starts to turn away. Tara grabs her arm.
TARA: No! No, it wasn't anything!
BETH: You think you can just go around cursing people? Your dad's gonna pop.
TARA: It was just so they wouldn't see. So-so-so they wouldn't see the demon part of me. (teary) Please don't tell Dad. It's harmless.
Cut to Buffy in her workout room, doing some stretches on the floor.
Cut to Willow in the magic shop, taking a book off a shelf. There's a knock on the door.
Willow goes to the door and opens it. We see three Lei-Ach demons standing there, snarling. Willow doesn't see them. She looks around the doorway in confusion, then closes the door and turns away.
WILLOW: (to herself) I thought I heard something. (Shrugs and walks off)
Shot of the lead Lei-Ach demon grinning. Blackout.
Fade in on UCS campus, still night. Tara sits on a bench while Cousin Beth scolds her.
BETH: Don't you see how out of control you are? You've been lying to these people for a year, and now you've put a spell on them, is that right? (shakes head) Is that a human thing to do? Now I'm telling your father. If he doesn't force you to come home, and I think he should, I know he's going to tell your friends the truth. If I were you, I'd tell them first. And then I'd tell them good-bye.
Cut to magic shop. Dawn is playing with a glass snow-ball, shaking it to make the snowflakes move. A Lei-Ach demon comes up right behind her, but she doesn't notice. Another demon walks across the foreground, toward the table, where Anya is stacking up some books.
ANYA: Do I get paid overtime for this? (Gets up and walks right past the demon, not noticing it)
GILES: (OS) Certainly not. (comes into the shot, walking past the demon as a second demon joins it) Dawn, would you close the door?
We see Willow and Xander sitting at the table, studying books as the two demons walk past them, staring at them.
DAWN: (OS) I didn't open it.
The lead demon turns, sniffing, and extends its tongue as it moves off toward the back.
Cut to Buffy in the workout room, punching a punching bag. She pauses to do some arm stretches. We see the demons walk in behind her. Slow eerie music. Buffy frowns and looks toward the door.
Shot of the room from Buffy's POV: it's empty, no demons.
Buffy turns back to the punching bag, doing some shoulder rolls, making a face as if she's sore. We see the lead demon coming up behind her.
Suddenly Buffy whirls around and blocks as the demon tries to grab her. The music changes to fast fight-music. Buffy falls to the floor with the demon on top of her. We see a second demon standing beside them.
Shot of Buffy with her hands in front of her, pushing at the demon, but we don't see the demon.
Shot of Giles getting up from his desk as Buffy yells.
BUFFY: (OS) Something's in here!
Shot of Xander getting up as well. Xander rushes toward the back. The third demon stops him before he reaches the doorway, grabs him by the upper arms as he struggles.
Shot of Willow getting up, staring in confusion.
Shot of Xander struggling against what looks like empty air.
Dawn runs up behind Giles.
Xander flies backward as the demon throws him. He lands on his back on the floor, grabbing at his neck, trying to grab the demon's hands as it chokes him. Anya turns from the bookshelf and comes forward.
Willow grabs a chair. Anya grabs something else from the counter (a crystal ball?).
Willow uses the chair to whack at the area on top of Xander (we still don't see the demon). Xander sighs as the demon lets go of his neck.
ANYA: Where'd it go??
Willow looks around, suddenly goes flying backward.
Giles pushes Dawn toward his desk.
GILES: Under there, go.
DAWN: Willow? (crawls under the desk)
Cut back to Buffy still wrestling with the first demon. The workout room door opens and Spike enters, grinning. Buffy breaks out of the demon's grasp and shoves it backward, off of her. As she stands up, the second demon grabs her around the waist from behind. Spike stops grinning as the first demon gets up. Spike rolls his eyes in exasperation and hurries forward. He tackles the first demon and pulls it aside, landing on the floor on his back with the demon on top of him.
Buffy punches the second demon over her shoulder, then flips it, grabs it and shoves it against the wall. It slumps down and is still.
Shot of the workout room from Buffy's POV: it's empty. She rushes toward the door. Shot of Spike still on the floor with the demon in a stranglehold.
SPIKE: You're welcome!
The demon punches him in the face.
Buffy enters the main shop area and runs forward.
ANYA: Where'd it go?! (swinging her weapon around randomly)
Shot of Giles suddenly reeling backward as the unseen demon punches him.
Shot of Buffy looking around.
Anya retreats behind the counter and lifts her weapon cautiously.
XANDER: It's over there!
GILES: How many are there?
ANYA: I've already been injured once this month!
BUFFY: Shut up! (Music stops. Silence as Buffy looks around.)
The front door opens and Tara enters. She walks forward a few steps, looking anxious.
TARA: Buffy, behind you!
We see a demon standing immediately behind Buffy. She turns just as it grabs her and throws her onto the table. She rolls off the other side of the table onto the floor.
Cut back to the workout room. The demon punches Spike in the face several times; he flies backward and hits the wall. He notices a rack full of weapons hanging on the wall and grabs one. It looks a bit like a scythe, only with a short handle. The demon rushes at Spike but he kicks it and it falls to the floor. Spike lifts the weapon and chops downward.
Cut back to the shop as Buffy stands up.
BUFFY: Tara, where is it? (looking around) Can you see it?
TARA: Oh, god.
Tara comes forward as the demon punches Buffy in the face. Punching noises continue as Tara rushes into the middle of the room and stops, looking down to concentrate.
TARA: (panting) Blind Cadria, lift your veil. Give evil form... (The demon turns away from Buffy to glare at Tara) ...and break my spell.
We see a light flash in Buffy's eyes and suddenly she can see the demon, which is rushing at Tara. It hits her in the face; she goes down. The demon turns back to Buffy. She punches it, then it grabs her arm and throws her to the floor. She rolls over several times.
Tara's dad enters, followed by Donny and Beth.
The demon stands over Tara, who is still lying on the floor.
MR. MACLAY: Tara!
The demon looks up, rushes toward Mr. Maclay. He falls backward onto the floor. Buffy, still on the floor, trips the demon and it falls on its stomach across the three steps up to the higher store level.
Buffy flips up to her feet and puts one foot on the back of the demon's neck, gives it a shove. We hear the crack as the demon's neck breaks.
Shot of Mr. Maclay sprawled on the floor staring.
Shot of Dawn peeking out from under the desk. Giles gives her his hand and helps her up.
MR. MACLAY: What in god's name is that?
Spike enters from the back.
SPIKE: Lei-ach demon. (Everyone looks at him) Fun little buggers. Big with the marrow-sucking.
Mr. Maclay gets up. Shot of Tara sitting on the floor, looking guilty.
MR. MACLAY: I don't understand.
BUFFY: (arms folded, looking down at Tara) I'm not sure I do either.
TARA: I'm sorry. I'm s-s-so sorry. (sniffling) I was, I was trying to hide.
Willow comes forward and kneels by Tara.
TARA: I didn't want you to see ... what I am.
WILLOW: Tara, what?
BUFFY: What do you mean, what you are?
Tara tries to speak but can't.
MR. MACLAY: (OS) Demon. The women in our family... (Everyone looks up at him) have demon in them. Her mother had it. That's where the magic comes from.
Tara looks down, then looks up at Willow, who stares at her.
MR. MACLAY: We came to take her home before... (sighs) well, before things like ... (points at the dead demon) this started happening.
GILES: You cast a spell on us, to keep us from seeing your ... demon side. (to Buffy) That's why we couldn't see our attackers.
Buffy looks behind her at Dawn.
BUFFY: Nearly got us killed.
TARA: I'll go. (scrambles to her feet. To Buffy) I'm very sorry.
MR. MACLAY: The camper's outside.
WILLOW: Wait! Go? (grabs Tara's elbow) I, she just did a spell that went wrong. It-it was just a mistake.
MR. MACLAY: That's not the point and it's not your concern. She belongs with us. We know how to control her ... problem.
Willow looks at Tara in distress.
WILLOW: Tara ... look at me. (Tara does.) I, I trusted you more than anyone in my life. Was all that just a lie?
TARA: (teary) No!
WILLOW: Well, do you wanna leave?
MR. MACLAY: It's not your decision, young lady.
WILLOW: (sharply to him) I know that! (more softly, to Tara) Do you wanna leave?
Tara shakes her head, crying.
MR. MACLAY: You're going to do what's right, Tara. Now, I'm taking you out of here before somebody *does* get killed. (Tara wipes her face on her sleeve) The girl belongs with her family. I hope that's clear to the rest of you.
Willow looks anxiously at Tara.
BUFFY: (OS) It is.
Shot of Buffy narrowing her eyes at Tara.
BUFFY: You want her, Mr. Maclay? You can go ahead and take her.
Shot of Tara looking sad, as if that's what she expected.
Shot of Mr. Maclay nodding in satisfaction.
Shot of Buffy whirling around to face Mr. Maclay, putting her hands on her hips.
BUFFY: You just gotta go through me.
Tara looks up in amazement as hope begins to grow.
MR. MACLAY: (OS) What?
BUFFY: (OS) You heard me.
Shot of Buffy staring him down, looking very tough.
BUFFY: You wanna take Tara out of here against her will? You gotta come through me.
DAWN: And me!
Dawn walks up to stand beside Buffy. They both give Mr. Maclay the same steely glare.
MR. MACLAY: Is this a joke? (steps down one of the stairs) I'm not gonna be threatened by two little girls.
DAWN: You don't wanna mess with us.
BUFFY: She's a hair-puller.
Giles walks up behind them.
GILES: And ... (puts on his glasses) you're not just dealing with, uh, two little girls.
Tara smiles even more.
XANDER: You're dealing with all of us.
SPIKE: 'Cept me.
XANDER: 'Cept Spike.
SPIKE: I don't care what happens.
MR. MACLAY: This is insane. You people have no right to interfere with Tara's affairs. *We* ... are her blood kin! Who the hell are you?
Shot of Giles, Dawn, Buffy, Willow, Tara, Xander, and Anya all standing together in a group, with Spike in the background.
BUFFY: We're family.
Tara smiles through tears. She looks at Willow, who smiles back.
Mr. Maclay looks angry.
DONNY: Daaad. You -- you gonna let 'em just... (stomps forward) Tara, if you don't get in that car, I swear by god I will beat you down.
XANDER: And I swear by your full and manly beard, you're gonna break something trying. (Donny looks cowed)
BETH: Well. I hope you'll all be happy hanging out with a disgusting demon.
The same shot of the whole Scooby gang spread out in a row. Anya, farthest back, raises her hand.
ANYA: E-excuse me. What kind?
ANYA: What kind of demon is she? There's a lot of different kinds. Some are very, very evil. And some have been considered to be useful members of society. (Smiles proudly. Xander turns to smile back at her.)
BETH: Well, I-I ... what does it matter?
MR. MACLAY: Evil is evil.
ANYA: Well, let's just narrow it down. (Xander nods)
SPIKE: Ohhh. (looks around) Why don't I make this simple.
Spike walks forward and taps Tara on the shoulder. When she turns, he punches her in the face.
Both Tara and Spike reel backwards in pain. Tara grabs her nose, Spike his head.
WILLOW: (angry) Hey! (suddenly realizing) Hey...
TARA: (both hands over her face) He hit my nose!
WILLOW: And it hurt! Uh, him, I mean.
Tara looks at her in surprise.
BUFFY: (to Mr. Maclay) And that only works on humans. (Willow smiles)
SPIKE: There's no demon in there. That's just a family legend, am I right? (Mr. Maclay looks angry) Just a bit of spin to keep the ladies in line. (smirks) Oh, you're a piece of work. I like you.
TARA: (softly, to Willow) I'm not a demon.
WILLOW: (smiling) You're not a demon.
TARA: He hurt my nose.
SPIKE: (still rubbing his forehead) Yeah, you're welcome. (Stalks off)
Tara and Willow smile hugely at each other.
Shot of Buffy and Dawn in identical poses side-by-side, with their arms crossed, their heads cocked at the same angle, and the same steely glare on both their faces. Giles stands behind them.
GILES: Mr. Maclay, I would say your business here is finished.
MR. MACLAY: Tara. (Tara looks at him) For eighteen years your family has taken care of you and supported you. If you wanna turn your back-
TARA: (walking forward) Dad ... just go.
Mr. Maclay scowls, turns and heads for the door. Donny follows. Mr. Maclay pauses at the door.
MR. MACLAY: (disgusted) Magic.
Beth gives Tara a very dirty look.
BETH: Are you happy now?
A slow smile spreads across Tara's face as fast rock music begins.
Cut to the Bronze. A montage of scenes of the whole group wearing party clothes, talking and laughing in different groups. Xander giving Tara a drink. Buffy talking with someone. Willow laughing at Xander's joke. Dawn racing through the crowd and Buffy stopping her. Willow blowing bubbles while Tara opens her presents, admiring the crystal ball from Giles. Dawn running up to Tara, holding a broom with a bow tied around it. A bunch of them hanging out, talking, playing pool.
Cut to Buffy leaning against a pole, watching the action with a smile. Behind her the door opens and Riley enters, with a gift box under his arm. He goes up to Buffy.
RILEY: Sorry I'm late.
BUFFY: (smiling) You came.
RILEY: Of course I came.
Cut to Tara talking to Anya, who wears a party hat.
TARA: No, see, 'cause your insect reflection represents your insignificance... (Anya nods) in terms of the karmic cycle.
Anya nods to show that she understands, then ponders it for a moment.
ANYA: But it's still not funny.
Cut to Xander, Buffy, Dawn and Giles talking together. Riley comes over with three blue plastic cups, gives one to Buffy and one to Giles. We see that Xander already has a cup.
DAWN: (with her back to the others, watching the crowd) This place is so cool. (looks at hand) 'Cept I have to wear this stupid stamp on my hand.
XANDER: That's to keep you from boozing it up.
DAWN: Oh please. Only losers drink alcohol.
A beat as the others take this in. The cups they're all holding are prominently visible. Dawn is cheerfully oblivious.
Cut back to Tara and Anya.
ANYA: So what's an eagle reflection?
WILLOW: My dance?
She takes Tara's hand and leads her onto the floor as a slow song starts. They begin to dance. Willow has her hands on Tara's waist; Tara's hands on Willow's shoulders.
WILLOW: Good birthday?
TARA: Best birthday.
WILLOW: I still can't believe you didn't tell me about your family and all that.
TARA: I was just afraid if you saw the kind of people I came from, you wouldn't wanna be anywhere near me.
WILLOW: See ... that's where you're a dummy. I think about ... what you grew up with, and ... then I look at what you are ... it makes me proud. It makes me love you more.
TARA: Every time I- (takes a deep breath) even when I'm at my worst ... you always make me feel special.
TARA: How do you do that?
They embrace, putting their heads on each other's shoulders and swaying to the music.
SINGER: I can't take my eyes off you.... I can't take my eyes off you....
(this line of song repeats several more times as they continue slowly moving to the music and the camera moves around them. We see them slowly rising upward.)
Long shot of Willow and Tara, surrounded by other couples who are also dancing. But Willow and Tara are floating several feet above the floor.