Act 1



Lacey Chabert as Skye Talisker, Gale Harold as Jim Pollan, Caroline Dhavernas as Grace Hatherley, Elijah Woods as Jeff Lindquist, Norika Fujiwara as Mia Nakata, Laura Pyper as Casey Pierce, T.R. Knight as Jackson App, Robert Picardo as Dr. Albert Miller, Robin Sachs as Ethan Rayne, Alexa Davalos as Gwen Raiden, Laura Prepon as Lori Carew, Cote de Pablo as Amira Aziz and Gary Oldman as Mr. Jason Felix

Guest Starring:
Marcia Cross as Autumn O’Mara, Morena Baccarin as the Voice of Hell, Elisabeth Röhm as Kate Lockley, Uma Thurman and Sofia Vassilera as Christabel, Annette O’Toole as Miriam and Kristy Swanson as Joan

Fade In:
Watchers Council – Buffy’s Office – Morning

While looking for her meeting agenda, Buffy was rattling off a to-do list for her assistant, Joan, who was dutifully taking notes. Joan stopped every few seconds and shook her right hand, as though it had fallen asleep. When she noticed Buffy’s still-ongoing and completely ineffective search, Joan stopped her note taking, went directly to a certain stack on Buffy’s desk and pulled out the item in question.

“Ah! My agenda,” Buffy said happily. “Just what I was looking for. Thanks!”

“Oh, I left you a reminder on your monitor,” Joan said, pointing to a yellow sticky note, “about my absence tomorrow.”

“Right, doctor’s appointment,” Buffy said. “You getting those tests run?”

Joan held up her arm. “Gotta find out if this really is carpal tunnel.”

“Well, I hope you get good news,” Buffy said encouragingly.

Soon after, the two finished their list-making, and Buffy started to head for her staff meeting, but she stopped at the office door and turned back to Joan.

“Oh, wait…who’s covering for you tomorrow?”


“Maxine?” Buffy whined.

Joan nodded ruefully. Buffy grumbled and trudged off to her meeting.

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Conference Room – Minutes Later

“Okay, next,” Buffy told the gathering in the meeting room, which included Faith, Kennedy, Rowena, Willow and Jim Pollan. “Jim, what’s the latest?”

He opened a folder. “Same ole, same ole,” he told them. “Most questions are about Hope’s passing and Faith…in general. I continue to tap-dance, but they’re not going to buy it much longer.”

“Like I said –” Faith began.

“No!” everyone in the room yelled at once.

“Man,” Faith muttered. “Maybe being trapped here with all of you, they’ll consider it as time served. Take a few years off my sentence.”

“Putting levity aside,” Jim continued, “we really need to formulate an official statement.”

“Okay,” Buffy told him. “I’ll start putting something together. I’ll have Rowena look it over, too?” She eyed the blonde watcher, who nodded in agreement. “We’ll send you a draft.”

“When?” Jim asked. “Each week it’s getting harder to face the press corp.”

“By the end of this week. I promise,” she answered. “Now, with Robin in Sydney working with their branch on some security issues, we’ve got Kennedy on security here. Any news?”

“Nope. It’s pretty damn boring actually.”

“Here’s hoping it doesn’t get interesting,” Rowena added. “We’ve got plenty to deal with now as it is.”

“I’ll second that,” Willow told her with a grin.

“Okay,” Buffy said, moving on, “what’s VOH mean?” she asked, looking at the agenda in front of her.

“V-O-H,” Rowena said, spelling out the letters. “Voice of Hell.”

“Oh,” Buffy remarked. “I get it. So what’s their story? Are we any closer to stopping them from killing us and making us look like fools?”

“Yes,” Rowena replied.

“Really?” Buffy asked hopefully.

“Please, Chairwoman, don’t sound so shocked we’ve gotten a break,” Rowena replied.

“I just thought this was a demons-only club. How did you get the info?”

“An associate of Brell’s, actually,” Rowena replied. “We’ve learned the location of the next meeting, but now we need a mole.”

“How about Brell?” Buffy asked.

“Too risky,” she told her. “He, like many of us, was featured in the CNN report. And his friend doesn’t want to touch anything with the words ‘Voice of Hell’ attached to it. He sees it as a demon version of The Sopranos, and I can’t really refute that at this point.”

“So what’re our options then?” Buffy asked.

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Cafeteria – Moments Later

“You’re kidding, right?” Skye asked, holding a fork perched near her lips. Dawn sat next to her, listening.

“Who keeps saying she’s bored here?” Rowena pointed out. “This is a chance for you to get out, mingle…do something worthwhile for the Council.”

“I’ve given you blood, sweat and tears…literally, thanks to all those damn tests. Besides, why me?”

“You’ve got a great cover. Tell them you hate the Council and you have a way to bring us down from the inside.”

“Or,” Dawn pointed out, “they figure she’s a mole and dust her on the spot. No, it’s too dangerous.”

“We don’t have a demon I trust as much,” Rowena told them both.

“You trust me, huh? Does that mean I get to baby-sit again?” Skye asked.

Rowena looked away for a moment. “Will you help or not?” she asked.

Skye and Dawn looked at each other, but said nothing.

Cut To:
New York City – Apartment Building – Lobby – Same Time

Humming the tune of a church hymn, a primly dressed Christabel approached the front entrance of a very posh apartment building. Although she was on the tall side of average in terms of height, she had a way about her that made her seem small and petite. In her arms, she carried a large basket of individually wrapped snack cakes with church flyers tucked all around them.

When the doorman saw her, he immediately held up his hand and stopped her. “Sorry, lady, no door-to-doors allowed,” he told her.

“But I am about the Lord’s work,” Christabel stated matter-of-factly.

“Like I said, there are no –”

The doorman stopped mid-sentence, seemingly mesmerized by Christabel’s eyes. Then he stepped aside and opened the door, allowing her to enter.

“Where can I find Mr. Vassar?” she asked over her shoulder as she went inside.

“Penthouse. Top floor,” the doorman replied in a monotone, without even looking in her direction.

Christabel smiled and headed for the elevator.

As soon as the doors closed behind her, the doorman snapped out of his daze. He got a confused look on his face when he saw himself holding the front door open with no one around. He grumbled and shook his head, letting the door to the building close.

Cut To:
New York City – Apartment Building – Top Floor – Moments Later

When the elevator got to the top, it stopped and opened its door. Christabel calmly exited and scanned the floor until she saw an ornate doorway nearby.

She walked over, still carrying her basket of goodies. She rang the doorbell.

Cut To:
New York City – Apartment Building – Penthouse – Same Time

Inside the living room of the apartment, Mr. Vassar stood in front of a gilded mirror that hung on the wall above a mahogany accent table. The handsome thirty-something adjusted a silk tie in the collar of his crisply starched white shirt.

When he heard the doorbell, he glanced at the foyer, then walked over to his front door and peeked through the peephole. When he saw the pious image of Christabel with her basket, he cursed under his breath.

“I’m gonna get that stupid doorman fired…” he growled as he opened the door. “Look, whatever you’re selling, I don’t want any, so just –”

Just like the doorman, Vassar stopped mid-sentence, mesmerized by Christabel. Without another word, he stepped back and let her walk in. As she made her way over to the mahogany table and set down her basket, he locked the door and walked back into the living room.

When he snapped out of his daze, he was shocked to find Christabel inside the apartment and standing in front of him. “What the hell –?”

“Be ye afraid of the sword,” she quoted, “for wrath bringeth the punishments of the sword, that ye may know there is judgment.”

Before Vassar could make another objection, Christabel whipped out her butcher knife and attacked.

There was the sound of a blade slicing into and out of flesh, then of blood splattering against the mirror and the wall. There was a struggle and the beginning of a scream, then a crash and a thud, followed by the sickening sound of wet gurgling. But the stabbing didn’t stop.

Her face, arms and chest spattered with red, Christabel sat on top of Vassar, wielding her knife in a two-handed thrust as she sang one of her favorite hymns.

“Would you be free from the burden of sin?”


“There’s pow’r in the blood…”


“…pow’r in the blood…”


Fade To:
New York City – Apartment Building – Penthouse – Later that Day

Vassar’s apartment was now crawling with crime scene investigators as the medical examiner finished his initial inspection of the body. Nearby, a man in an FBI jacket waited anxiously. In his gloved hands, he held a large evidence bag made of clear plastic.

When the medical examiner gave him a nod, the FBI agent knelt beside the body. As the medical examiner rolled Vassar’s body onto its side, the agent looked underneath. When he saw what was there, he sighed. Then he reached over and carefully plucked out a blood-soaked newspaper clipping. He glanced at it briefly before dropping it inside the evidence bag.

“Got it,” he said, and the medical examiner eased the body back down.

The FBI agent turned the bag over to look at the front of the clipping. It was from the New York Times, and it showed a picture of Mr. Vassar smiling as he came down the steps of the courthouse. The accompanying article was about his acquittal in a recent rape/murder trial. Across the clipping was a word written, in big black letters: “JUDGED.”

The FBI agent leaned closer to get a better look at the clipping. There was the shadow of another picture and headline, as if there were another clipping tucked behind the first.

He turned to the NYPD officer guarding the scene. “Get the Chief!”

As the officer moved to the front door and called into the hallway, the agent returned to his examination of the clipping, his eyes narrowing.

Fade To:
New York City – Motel Room – Same Time

Christabel stood at the sink outside the bathroom, checking her reflection in the mirror. She had showered and redressed; there was no longer any evidence that she committed a bloody murder earlier in the day.

Satisfied with her appearance, she walked to the small table near the door and picked up a manila folder. She sat down on the edge of the bed and opened the folder, revealing a small stack of newspaper clippings inside.

As soon as she opened the folder, alarm came over her face. She touched the top clipping with her fingertips, then quickly leafed to the next piece of newsprint. It too was apparently not what she was looking for. She frantically flipped through the remaining clippings, then searched all of her belongings. Nothing.

A frightening look entered her eyes, a mixture of fury and fear. She snatched up her motel key and rushed out of the room.

Cut To:
New York City – Motel Front Desk – Moments Later

The manager on duty had his copy of the morning edition of the New York Times laid out on the counter and was lazily perusing its contents. He didn’t even look up when Christabel stomped up to the front desk.

“Where is it?” she demanded.

“Where’s what?” the manager inquired wearily.

“It’s not there,” Christabel said. “Someone here must have taken it.”

The manager finally took his eyes off his paper. “What, like your cash or something?” the manager asked. “Look, it says right on the wall, we ain’t responsible for stuff left in the rooms.” He pointed emphatically at the sign next to the desk.

“No, not money,” Christabel replied. “The newspaper clipping!” she nearly shrieked.

“Newspaper clipping?” the manager shot back. “Why the hell would anyone take that?”

Getting more and more upset, Christabel continued to insist that her newspaper clipping had been stolen, ignoring any attempts by the manager to reiterate the policy. After enduring over a minute of the crazed woman’s ranting, the manager hurriedly closed up his newspaper, scooped it off the counter and shoved it into Christabel’s hands.

“Here…you want a newspaper? Take this one. You can snip and clip all you want!”

At first, Christabel refused to be placated, but then she glanced down at the front page. When she saw what was there, her eyes changed, and her look became one of relief and elation. She touched the paper as if it were sacred, then turned and walked away.

The manager just shook his head and murmured, “Nut-job.”

Fade To:
Watchers Council – Slayer Gym – The Next Morning

As voices from the television mounted on the wall droned about the morning news, Buffy and Faith circled one another on a sparring mat. Buffy was in full concentration mode, but Faith’s eyes kept flickering over to the television.

At one such flicker, Buffy made her move, rushing forward and initiating a quick one-two punch. As Faith’s eyes snapped back from the television, she easily deflected the jabs and then came back with several of her own, forcing Buffy to move back.

On the last punch, however, Buffy stepped to the side, grabbed Faith’s arm and wrenched it, forcing Faith to her knees.

Faith laughed and said teasingly, “That’s how you like me, isn’t it, B? Down on my hands and knees?”

“Shut up, Faith,” Buffy growled, rolling her eyes.

Faith twisted out of the hold and swept her legs out to knock Buffy onto her back. Before Buffy could recover, Faith was on top of her, pinning down her arms.

“Or maybe like this?” Faith said, grinning down at the blonde.

“Or not,” Buffy countered. She wedged her leg between herself and Faith and kicked the dark-haired slayer away.

When Buffy hopped to her feet, she didn’t waste time renewing her offensive. Faith was still smiling as she deflected and dodged all of Buffy’s punches or kicks.

Suddenly, Faith’s attention was drawn to the television once again, and in the split second of that distraction, Buffy landed a full punch to Faith’s jaw, sending her to the mat.

“Oh my god, Faith, I’m so sorry,” Buffy said, reaching down to help the brunette to her feet. “I was sure you were going to block that…”

“It’s okay,” Faith said, rubbing her jaw as she got up. “Luckily, you still punch like you used to.”

Buffy gave her a brief mock glare and then said, “Come on, let’s take a break. You can tell me how you’re holding up while your ‘love machine’ is away in Australia.”

“I’m doing just fine, thank you very much,” she said with a mock glare of her own. “He’s only been gone a couple of days. And contrary to popular belief, I can go without sex for more than a week.” She gave Buffy a sly glance as she added, “I may have to borrow some of your batteries to do it, but I can do it.” She laughed when Buffy elbowed her. Soon Faith sobered, though, and she shrugged and looked away. “‘Sides, Ace is probably glad to get away from me for a while. I haven’t exactly been fun to live with lately.”

Buffy nodded knowingly as she followed Faith’s gaze to the television.

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Headquarters Sign – Same Time (On Screen)

The television showed Fox 8 news reporter Leonard Lance standing outside the Council headquarters, holding up a copy of Blood and Darkness: The Real Story of Superstar Slayer Faith Lehane by John Harriman.

“The California State Attorney’s Office has stated that it is looking into the allegations made in Harriman’s controversial tell-all book,” Lance stated. “In spite of growing pressure, however, Miss Lehane has yet to make any public comment regarding the book and its claims.”

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Slayer Gym – Same Time

As Lance rattled off the last few lines of his report, Buffy glanced at Faith, who was still staring at the screen with pain-stricken eyes. Buffy reached out and took Faith’s arm, then deliberately steered her off the mat and away from the television.

“This’ll all blow over soon, I’m sure of it,” Buffy told her.

Faith gave a huff of disgust. “Yeah, right.”

“Look, I know it seems like you’re never gonna get past your…well…past, but you will. I know it. Trust me, it’s not always gonna haunt you.”

Faith started to say something, but stopped when something across the room caught her eye. Her shoulders sagged as she grimly said, “Is that so?”

Buffy turned to see what Faith was looking at. It was Kate Lockley, Faith’s former arresting officer in Los Angeles, walking directly toward them.

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Dawn and Skye’s Apartment – Same Time

“I still don’t like it,” Dawn said as she paced.

Rowena and Willow sat on the sofa, while Skye sat in a chair across from them.

“I promise you,” Rowena stressed, “we will do all we can to ensure her safety. You have my word.”

“It’s not your word I doubt,” Dawn told her. “Of all the people here, including my often misguided but well-meaning sister, I trust you two the most when it comes to Skye. It’s the demon element I don’t like. We don’t know what they’ll do.”

“What do you think?” Willow asked Skye.

The vampire shrugged her shoulders. “Valentine’s dead, other folks too…and it’s because of this group. Who’s to say someone in this room might not be next?”

“What are you saying?” Dawn asked, stopping at her side. “You’re not seriously considering this, are you?”

“No,” Skye replied. Rowena looked defeated, while Dawn looked optimistic. Then Skye said, “…and yes.”

“Which is it?” Dawn asked.

“I need to know more,” Skye said, addressing all of them, before turning to Rowena. “You said that you’ll ensure my safety, right? Just how do you plan on doing that?”

“Several ways, actually,” she answered.

“Then start running them down,” Skye said, with a motion of her hand.

“I don’t believe this,” Dawn sighed.

“I just want to hear them out,” Skye told her.

“And what am I supposed to do for all eternity if they fail, huh? My long-term romantic options here are rather limited, y’know?”

“Is that the only reason you’re with me?” Skye asked, rising to her feet. “Convenience?”

“Of course not,” Dawn replied, with a hint of anger. “How can you think that?”

Willow and Rowena shared an uncomfortable look. When Dawn and Skye both began to talk at once, their words mixing, Rowena cleared her throat loudly and asked, “Should we come back later?”

“No,” they both answered.

“I love you, Skye,” Dawn continued. “I don’t want to spend forever without you – not now, not ever.”

“I get that,” Skye answered. “Believe me, I do. But what happens if this group finds a way to take you away from me? Or what if they kill one of them?” she said, motioning to Willow and Rowena. “Do you want Alex or Jen to grow up without their mom?”

Dawn hung her head and looked away. Skye pulled Dawn into her lap as she took her seat again. Then she turned back to the woman on the sofa. “I’m not saying yes or no. Just tell me – us,” she corrected, tightening her grip on Dawn. “…what do you have planned? Once I hear it, I’ll let you know if I’m in.”

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Slayer Gym – Resume

As Kate slowly but purposefully strode toward them, Buffy turned to Faith.

“Don’t worry,” she reassured her. “The Council will take care of this.”

Faith didn’t hear Buffy’s words. She stared off, her mind clearly elsewhere.

Flash To:
Los Angeles 2000 – Angel’s Place – Living Room – Night

Faith watched in shock as her own picture appeared on the television screen. She could hear a female announcer doing a voiceover.

“Los Angeles police, in conjunction with federal authorities, are looking for this woman tonight,” the announcer said, “a felony suspect from the California town of Sunnydale. The young woman has fled to Los Angeles in recent days. Eyewitnesses identified her as being involved in several recent assaults. Police want your help in finding her. A press conference was held earlier.”

Faith leaned closer to the television, as the image of Detective Kate Lockley behind a podium appeared on the screen.

“Anyone with any information about the whereabouts of this subject,” Kate announced, “should get in touch with law enforcement immediately…”

Flash To:
Sunnydale 1998

Series of Shots:

– Faith accidentally staking Deputy Mayor Allan Finch in the heart.

– Finch grasping at his bloody chest while staring at Faith.

– Faith smiling as she examines the fancy dagger that the Mayor has just given her.

– Faith shooting an arrow into the back of the man delivering the Mayor’s box.

– Faith standing over the delivery man’s dead body, flashing her new dagger, before bending down to sever his cuffed hand from the box.

– Faith stabbing the volcano expert, Professor Lester Wirth, in his home.

Flash To:
Los Angeles – Angel’s Place – Living Room – Night

Faith continued to stare in panic as Detective Lockley concluded her speech.

As Kate spoke directly to the television audience, her expression was serious. “Do not approach her. She is violent and unpredictable.”

Kate then turned to the reporters near the stage. “I’ll take a few questions.”

Cut To:
Watchers Council – Slayer Gym – Resume

As Faith popped out of her reverie, Kate arrived on the scene.

“Detective Lockley,” Buffy said coldly. “To what do we owe this honor?”

Kate ignored Buffy’s sarcasm and said, “It’s Special Agent Lockley now.” She flipped open her ID and showed them her FBI badge. “Chief Investigator, actually.”

Buffy merely shrugged at Kate’s ID. “Guess the FBI’s taking anybody these days. Well, Chief…you haven’t answered my question. Why are you here?”

Kate snapped her ID shut and put it away, before saying, “I’m here on business.” She looked pointedly at Faith.

Buffy stepped protectively between Kate and Faith. “No. You are not taking anyone out of this council.”

“Buffy…” Faith interjected weakly, before the blonde cut her off.

“No,” Buffy said to Faith, “let me handle this.”

Faith shut her mouth and dropped her gaze to the floor. Buffy turned back to Kate, who just crossed her arms and waited.

“Look, this woman has paid enough,” Buffy stated firmly. “She’s risked her life more times than I can count to save lives and to save this world. She even lost her life in the process. She got it back only because of a miracle, and I’ll be damned if she or anyone at this council is gonna spend the rest of that life behind bars!” She punctuated her final line with a dramatic finger-point in the vague direction of California.

Even after Buffy’s ardent speech, Faith didn’t look up. Kate, however, had a completely shocked expression on her face. Her eyes were wide, and she actually pulled her head back in a ‘wowed’ gesture. She looked back and forth between the two slayers and then shook her head, chuckling slightly.

“I guess the tabloids were right about you two…” she commented.

Faith’s head instantly popped up, while Buffy’s mouth dropped open.

“What?” they both objected, speaking at exactly the same time. “No!”

The two glanced nervously at each other before Buffy turned back to Kate and said, “A-A-Absolutely not.” She gave Faith a nudge. “Right?”

“Absolutely!” Faith answered. “Not, I mean. What she said.” She rolled her eyes at her own pathetic response.

Buffy began over-gesturing between herself and Faith. “We are just friends. Just two good friends. Just two very good friends. That’s all.”

Faith’s forehead creased a bit at that, and she looked over at Buffy. “Well, not ‘very good friends’,” she told her. She thought a second more and frowned again. “Not even good friends, really. Are we?”

Buffy pouted. “We were kinda starting to be,” she said in a hope-filled voice. “At least I thought we were.”

Faith gave a shrug and a nod as she considered this. “I guess…”

Kate cleared her throat, drawing Buffy and Faith’s attention back to her. Then she held out her hands and just stared at the two slayers expectantly, as if she were saying, “Are you two finished now?”

In response, Buffy stood up tall and pulled her shoulders back and announced, “I am not now, nor have I ever been, involved in a romantic or sexual relationship with Faith Lehane.”

Faith couldn’t help but grin and snort. “Been practicin’ that much?” she asked.

“A little,” Buffy admitted. “You know…in case we ever make a public response to the tabloid spread? Did I sound convincing?”

“Ahhh…no,” Kate interjected.

Buffy looked disappointed. “But –”

Kate waved off Buffy’s reply. “As fascinating as your non-relationship is, can we get back to business?”

Buffy immediately turned hard again. “Like I said, you’re not taking her.”

Kate sighed heavily and then said, almost reluctantly, “I’m not here to arrest Faith. I’m here to protect her.”

Buffy and Faith both did a double double-take and said, “Huh?”

Black Out



End of Act One

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