Jordan Baker as Sheila Rosenberg, Sam Waterston as Ira Rosenberg, Thora Birch as Tracey, Lexa Doig as Greet and Brent Spiner as Tram
Watchers Council – Kennedy’s Bedroom – Continuous
Kennedy sat up and rolled her shoulders, moving her neck from side to side. She turned to see Willow gripping the top of the sheet, holding it protectively up to her shoulders.
“Uh oh.” Kennedy grinned. “You’ve got morning after ‘oh god what have I done’ comin’ off of you in waves, Will.”
Kennedy slipped from the bed with a smirk and Willow quickly averted her eyes from the Slayer’s naked body. Kennedy walked to the dresser and tossed on a t-shirt and a pair of boxers before grabbing another shirt and returning to the bed.
Kennedy handed Willow the t-shirt. Although Willow took it, she didn’t move or say anything.
“You gonna put that on?” Kennedy asked. When Willow looked away bashfully, Kennedy sighed and turned around. “Okay, you’re safe now.” Willow pulled the shirt over her head and when Kennedy could hear the witch was finished she turned around. “Are you going to say anything this morning? I mean, we talked last night, and I don’t expect anything more.”
“No,” Willow said and then cleared her throat. “I just…yeah, I’m a little freaked.”
“Well, let’s go get some breakfast,” Kennedy offered.
“I’m really not hungry,” Willow told her.
“You gotta eat, Willow.”
“I don’t feel like eating right now,” Willow insisted.
“Yeah, but –”
“No yeahbuts,” Willow told her. She pursed her lips. “This is why,” she said, motioning her hand between them. “This is why it isn’t going to work.” Sadness filled her voice.
“Because you don’t like breakfast?” Ken asked, her face showing her confusion.
“Because everything is a challenge or a fight.”
“I’m not fighting,” Kennedy countered.
“Yes, you are,” Willow replied insistently. “I don’t want to eat.”
“Okay, then don’t eat!” Kennedy said, throwing her hands up in the air. After a few moments of silence, Kennedy spoke again. “I get the feeling, though, that this isn’t about not wanting food. It’s about the company.”
“That’s not true,” Willow told her. After a moment, she added in a mutter, “entirely.”
Kennedy smiled and reached over, taking Willow’s hands.
“Hey…we agreed last night, this was a one time thing only. It wasn’t going to happen again and we both needed closure. That’s it. Nothing more. I’m okay with that Willow, really. So don’t think that I’m going to expect anything.” Kennedy reached up and pushed Willow’s hair behind her ear. “I’m grateful for last night but I know now…you’ve got stuff to figure out. So don’t go worrying that I’m gonna start making demands on you or…wanting things that you can’t give,” Kennedy told her sincerely.
Willow looked tense, but nodded just the same.
“Now, let’s go to breakfast,” Kennedy replied as she held up a finger to prevent a retort. “I’m hungry, so I’ll eat and you can just sit and watch me. How’s that? We agreed that this morning, after we walk out that door, we’ll work on being friends, right?”
Slowly a grin came to Willow’s face and she nodded. “Before we walk out, though…can I kiss you?”
Kennedy began to grin wider and leaned over. “As if I would refuse.”
Softly their lips met. Kennedy pulled away slowly. “Thank you for giving me one more night, and thank you for explaining it all,” she said, just above a whisper. “I truly mean that.”
“Thank you for listening,” Willow replied. “About everything.”
Watchers Council – Slayer Dorms – Bonnie’s Room – Morning
Bonnie paced in the small space of the dorm room, cell phone to her ear. A voice on the other end of the line answered.
“Speak,” the gruff introduction came over.
“They’re here,” she said.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. I saw them with my own eyes, Larmin,” she replied, formally addressing the Engineer’s top minion. “Well, I saw one of the spawn, anyway. She seemed quite cozy, like they’ve been here a while.”
“We’ve had essence demons surveying the area,” the voice said.
“Odds are, the watchers saw that coming and had their witch put up a demon block. Guess you’re lucky to have an inferior human in the ranks who’s impervious,” Bonnie said with a chuckle.
“If what you say is true, is it too late to do anything?”
Bonnie rolled her shoulders. “Well, I’m the middle man and not the hit man,” she pointed out. “Besides, by eliminating them I would pretty much kill my chances of getting inside the Council again. I think it’s best I play it as I have and leave within the hour. Send some of your boys to case the place and see if they make a move.”
“Agreed,” the voice said. “Your presence there might be required in the future. Best not to raise suspicion. Thank you, Bonnie. Yet again you have succeeded where others have failed.”
“Happy you’re pleased. Now let me finish up here and I’ll report back later today.”
“Until then,” he replied.
“Yes, sir,” she answered, before shutting off the phone with a snap.
Watchers Council – Dining Room – Morning
Willow and Kennedy entered the dining hall, chatting with each other. All eyes at the long table near the entrance turned toward them. Silence quickly enveloped the room, except for Andrew dropping his fork on his plate.
“Oh God, it’s true!” he exclaimed. “You two really are back together?”
Willow looked at Kennedy who, in turn, looked at Andrew.
“Well, no,” the slayer told him. “Not that it’s anyone’s business, but Willow and I spent the night together…talking…and other stuff.” The last part was added in a low mumble.
Faith snorted before returning to stuffing her mouth with scrambled eggs. Rowena gave both Willow and Kennedy an appraising eye as they sat down next to each other. Rowena slid her chair out from the table and motioned to Willow.
“May I have a word with you?” the watcher asked the witch.
Not waiting for an answer, Rowena stood up and walked out into the hallway. Willow looked around the table for a moment, as if looking for support. Everyone else quickly went back to eating, without saying a word. She rose at that point and followed Rowena.
“What’s up?” Willow asked casually.
Rowena folded her arms across her chest. “What in the world are you doing?”
“Excuse me?” Willow asked, her eyes widening in surprise.
“Kennedy,” Rowena sighed, pointing back into the dining hall. “That girl has been through hell lately. I-I’m just getting to the point where I can speak to her without her thinking I have some ulterior motive… and for what? So you can confuse her all over again?”
“Why should you care? I don’t think that’s any of your business,” Willow countered.
“The hell it’s not,” Rowena hissed, trying to keep her voice low. “Didn’t you just give me the slayer-is-a-person speech not more than a week ago? This will affect what happens to her out in the field, Willow. As her watcher, I’m duty bound to tell you what I think. And you, your flip flopping back and forth, is going –”
“We’re not back together, and it’s her choice,” Willow answered, cutting Rowena’s rant short.
“But she just said you two –”
“And she didn’t lie. We talked and, yes, there were some…physical goings-on, but…it’s over. It was a clean break this time, and I think that’s what she needed. A-and it was something I needed, too. Besides, I was stressed out about my parents. She was feeling stressed over the fact I knew her birth mother better than she did and –”
Rowena closed her eyes and began to wave her hands. “Hold up,” she said, opening her eyes again. “Birth mother?”
“I figured out that Jenny Calendar was Kennedy’s birth mother, so last night, Giles and I talked to Kennedy –”
“Wait!” Rowena held up her hand to stop Willow. “Jenny Calendar, from Giles’s journals, was Kennedy’s mother?”
“Uh, yeah,” Willow said, her face pained at Rowena’s expression.
Rowena took a moment to absorb the information. “And where was I when all of this was going on?” Rowena finally asked, her voice strained.
Willow paused and then uttered, “Oops.”
Rowena released a sigh. “Wait here.” She then walked to the doorway and peeked around the corner.
“Mr. Giles, may I have a word with you?” she asked in a demanding tone that left no room for challenge.
“Uh oh,” Becca muttered before taking a drink of orange juice.
“Sounds like someone’s in trouble,” Faith said with a grin to Becca.
Giles wiped his mouth. “Excuse me,” he told the table. Then he stood and walked out to find Rowena standing next to Willow and wearing a scowl.
“It’s been brought to my attention that my slayer’s parentage came up,” Rowena told him. “It’s also been made clear to me by Ms. Rosenberg that the two of you discussed this information with Kennedy, without informing me of it first.”
“I didn’t feel it was the Council’s business, Ms. Allister,” Giles said sternly.
“Okay, let’s cut the formality,” Rowena sighed in frustration. She slapped Giles’s chest with the back of her hand. “How could you? Both of you! With something this sensitive, you should have consulted me. It wouldn’t surprise me if Kennedy hops the first plane to L.A. to even the score with Angel. Or did the both of you forget that he was the one who killed her mother?!”
Giles’s eyes darkened dangerously, but Willow spoke up before he could. “Look,” she began. Rowena turned in her direction. “We kinda omitted that part, just a little.”
“So, you lied to her?” Rowena asked.
“No, we…” Giles paused, as if considering what to say, “We told her that her mother was killed by a vampire and that Buffy slayed him, which is the truth.”
“Exactly,” Willow added. “Of course, we didn’t add the part that he got sent to a hell dimension and returned to being a good guy again but, y’know…it didn’t seem…relevant.”
“Not relevant or too relevant?” Rowena asked the pair. “Did either of you consider what happens when she finds out you didn’t tell her the whole truth?” Willow and Giles looked at each other and took a sudden interest in their shoes, trying to avoid eye contact with Rowena. “Oh boy,” the blonde muttered. “Is there anything else I should know about last night?”
“No, I think that about covers it,” Willow told her.
“If you remember anything that might be of importance, or do another end sweep around me –”
“That’s not what it was,” Willow insisted.
Her comment was lost when Rowena continued to talk, ignoring her and finishing with, “…by all means, inform me.”
Giles and Willow looked at each other as Rowena began to walk up the hallway in the opposite direction.
“Aren’t you going to finish breakfast?” Willow called out to Rowena’s turned back.
“Tell Andrew I lost my appetite,” she replied without facing them. She stormed out the double doors at the hallway’s end.
Watchers Council – Slayer Training Area – Later that Morning
Kennedy peeked her head inside the shooting range to find Rowena reloading a crossbow and taking aim. She fired, but the arrow missed the bullseye and shook her head in frustration.
“You’re holding it wrong,” Kennedy called out.
Rowena turned sharply toward the noise. “Sorry, I didn’t hear you come in,” she said as Kennedy made her way down the steps.
“Mind if I show my watcher a thing or two?” Kennedy asked with a smirk.
“By all means,” Rowena said, handing the crossbow over to Kennedy. She walked over to the target and began to remove the practice bolts.
Kennedy watched as Rowena violently pulled the projectiles from the rubber backing in the wall.
“I sense a bit of tension here,” the slayer ventured, calling out across the space between them.
Rowena let out a ragged sigh as she walked back over. “Yeah, just a little.”
“Well, it’s my life, you know? I can sleep with who I want,” Kennedy countered, anticipating what had Rowena upset.
“It’s not just that and I do realize it’s your life,” Rowena answered, trying to sound diplomatic.
“I feel a but coming on,” Kennedy responded with a slight grin as she took one of the bolts and reloaded the weapon.
Rowena cracked a small grin too, and shook her head. “You don’t seem too upset about, you know…a one night stand with Willow.”
“No, I’m not upset,” Kennedy answered. “But you seem to be. Care to share, since we’re all with the touchy-feely right now?”
Rowena gave a slight chuckle at Kennedy’s comment before turning more serious. “I don’t want Willow to hurt you again. And there’s a part of me that doesn’t want her to get hurt, either. Regardless of what you might think, I do respect you both.”
Kennedy snorted, “Hmm, I’m touched.”
“No, honestly,” Rowena answered. “I know you probably don’t believe it but…I lost one slayer and I don’t want to lose another one. You were reckless after the first break up, and after what transpired yesterday, I’m…”
“Concerned I’ll get unruly and out of control? Leave the girls hangin’ on patrol? Get sucked by a vamp?” Kennedy shot out at a rapid pace.
Rowena shrugged. “Yeah, all of the above.”
“Been there, done that, over it,” Kennedy told her. “Besides, what happened with me and Willow last night, it…it was a letting go more than anything. We both needed comfort, we both needed to…express ourselves…physically, so we did. And now I realize something I didn’t before.”
“Willow does love me,” Kennedy answered with a sad grin, “but she loves the memory of Tara more. And as much as one part of my brain thinks I should be angry, the other part…it really feels for Willow. I thought if I showered her with attention and affection I could make it all go away, but…I was wrong. This is something she has to do on her own. But last night…it was like she really let me in for the first time, and because of that, I could let go. That doesn’t make any sense, does it?”
“Sorry, not a lick.” Rowena shrugged.
Kennedy chuckled. “I probably wouldn’t have understood it either if it hadn’t happened to me but…Willow loves me. She wants me in her life. But she can’t give all of herself to me because we just don’t fit. Add to that the fact she’s not quite sure that she can fully move on from Tara and it makes us kinda doomed as a couple. And now that I’ve had time to get over being mad about it, I understand what she means when she says she left because she does love me. She wants me to find someone who will let me inside her soul. It’s kinda like a puzzle,” she rationalized.
“Yeah. Have you ever put a puzzle together and you’ve got only two pieces left? Both look almost identical, but the first piece you try just doesn’t quite fit. It’s got all the same edges almost but it’s just not a match. You can always shove it in that space and try to make it fit, but it never truly does. Tara left behind an empty space inside Willow that I just can’t fill. And I can push and prod and wiggle my way inside but in the end it’s still going to be ‘off,’ and the puzzle will never be finished.”
“So, things are okay then?” Rowena asked. “You’re alright with not being the missing piece?”
Kennedy considered the question for a moment. “Yeah, I am.” She nodded. “In fact, I’m better than alright, because I get it now. It wasn’t me – it was about ‘us’. I don’t want to shove myself into someone’s life. I want to slide in and just connect, so all the pieces can come together, and the only way that’s going to happen is if she feels the same way as I do. Willow doesn’t but…but that’s okay. Because I see now that she’s got things she’s been dealing with, things that, as much as I’d like to help her with, I can’t. So I had to make a choice – accept the loss of a lover and keep a friend, or grow to be a bitter, old woman. I realized I’d rather keep my friend.”
Rowena began to smile. “That’s very mature of you, Kennedy.” She paused for a moment, then took a deep breath. “And how are you feeling about the news of your mother?”
Kennedy sighed and gave her classic shrug. “I never knew her,” she began. “So it’s not like I’ve lost anything that I had before. But…”
“But…?” Rowena prompted.
“I’m glad I found out,” she said, looking up at the watcher. “She dedicated her life to the same fight that I have, so I feel we have something in common. I’m…I’m proud of her, y’know?”
“Yeah,” Rowena said softly. “You’ve come a long way, Kennedy. I’m proud of you.”
Kennedy chuckled slightly. “Does that mean I get my watcher’s gold star for the day?”
Rowena nodded toward the target ahead. “Gotta hit the bullseye first,” Rowena teased.
Kennedy casually held the crossbow up and fired at the target from about 500 feet away, hitting the red center. “Lay it on me, Baby.”
Rowena looked slack-jawed at the target, then at Kennedy. “Damn,” she muttered.
Kennedy reloaded the crossbow and handed it over to the watcher. She stepped behind Rowena, leading her arms and putting the butt up to the Watcher’s shoulder. Practically cheek-to-cheek, Kennedy whispered near Rowena’s ear.
“Keep it steady,” the Slayer told her. She tightened her grip on the watcher’s wrist as her hand held the stock. “Take your time to set your sights. Now, squeeze.”
Rowena pulled the trigger and, although the bolt didn’t hit the target as dead-on as Kennedy’s had, it was much closer than her original shot.
“Okay,” Rowena said, pulling away and turning around. “We have to try that again. How did you learn to shoot like that?”
Kennedy shrugged. “My watcher. He was good, but I was always better. Well, except for one time when I shot him in the butt,” she remembered.
“You shot your watcher?”
“It was an accident,” Kennedy insisted. “I was nine and he stepped in front of the target as I was reloading. The bolt kinda got away and boom, there he was, face first, ass in the air. Feathers kinda made him look like a chicken.” Kennedy and Rowena both began to chuckle. “I think what really pissed him off was the clucking noise I’d make every time after that when he brought out the crossbow to practice. He’d get that watcher look – you know the look because you do it too – but I could also see him trying to hold back a smile.”
Rowena began to laugh. “Promise me, no poultry noises of any kind should I meet a similar fate.”
Kennedy shook her head. “Nah, I don’t like to make promises I can’t keep.” Kennedy grinned, but the smile began to fade. Sensing the slayer’s mood shift, Rowena didn’t say anything. Instead, she just waited. “I really miss him sometimes,” Kennedy added quietly. “And I wonder if he knew…I mean…I gave him so much grief over all the exercises, all the training he put me through but…I think he’s the reason that I’m still here. And I never got the chance to say thank you…And I never got the chance to save him.”
Rowena gently touched Kennedy’s arm. “I think he knows how you feel. And if not, you just told him.”
Watchers Council – Slayer Kitchen – Later that Morning
Tram’s family sat in the kitchen with Andrew, finishing off their breakfast, when they heard voices down the hall.
“Oh, your daughter goes to school here?” Andrew heard a female voice ask someone.
“No, she’s a teacher – Willow Rosenberg,” Sheila answered.
Andrew darted up and began to shuffle the demons toward the other exit when Tracy walked inside, talking as she entered.
“I left early today, Andrew, so I would make it here on…” Tracy stopped mid-sentence when she saw the family trying to hide behind Andrew and failing. “Okay, this cannot be another costume party,” she accused, pointing to the family. “What is going on?”
Hearing the door on the other side open, they all turned to see Bonnie, Sheila and Ira standing in the other doorway. Upon seeing Bonnie, the demon children screamed.
The sound startled Sheila from her surprise and, in shock, she began to scream, too. The sound also startled Tracy and she darted out the door. Sheila ran from the room on the other side, with Ira chasing after her. Bonnie began to slowly back up until her back was against the swinging door, and then she too darted away.
“Well,” Andrew said, turning to the family that stood quaking beside him. “That went well, wouldn’t you say?”
End of Act One