Buffy looked around the school hallway trying to remember what her next class was, but she didn't have a watch… or her clothes.
"A naked in school dream? Really?" she asked, rolling her eyes.
"Looks like it," Xander agreed unconcerned and also unencumbered by clothes as well.
"Xander? When did you get here?" Buffy asked.
"Is that a philosophical question?" he asked, confused. "I'm pretty sure we'd have to ask Giles if we wanted a good answer to that and since we're all naked, I'm not sure I really want to run into him."
"I meant physically," Buffy corrected him, "and I'm right there with not wanting to see a naked Giles."
"Well, this is a dream, so I'm not really here physically," Xander said, "meaning I never got here, because I'm not really here at all."
"So you're my dream representation of Xander rather than the real thing," Buffy waved it off. "My question still stands."
"Oh, then the answer is the moment I started speaking," he replied. "Is this a sex dream?" he asked hopefully.
"Feels like a Slayer dream," Buffy replied.
"How can you tell the difference?" he asked.
Buffy shrugged. "I just can. Normally I don't notice until I wake up, but since I know I'm dreaming this time it's as good as being awake."
Xander slowly nodded. "So what happens now? I mean, do we just wait for a vision of the future or do we search for a movie theater and watch the coming attractions trailer?"
"I wish," Buffy grumbled. "No, what happens is a bunch of strange things occur, none of them making any sense, and I tell them to Giles who does his best to translate them into something vaguely useful and most of it still won't make sense until after everything has already happened."
"You should write a sternly worded complaint," Xander said as the bell rang and the hall was flooded with students, all of them naked, but acting as if it was normal.
"Who would I even send it to and how?" Buffy asked as the students streamed by.
"No idea," Xander replied distractedly as the cheerleading team passed by. "Are we sure this isn't a sex dream?"
"No, it's the standard naked in school dream," Buffy told him.
"I'm pretty sure the standard naked in school dream has the dreamer naked while everyone else is dressed," Xander argued. "It's supposed to symbolize fear of exposure or something."
"Probably," Buffy agreed, "but it reminds me of stage fright and the best way to get over that is to picture everyone naked, so that's what I do."
"When you wake up, be sure to tell me about that, because this is a lot more pleasant than how these dreams are supposed to go," Xander said.
"Sure," Buffy agreed as the students rushed off to class.
"So now what?" Xander asked as he looked around the empty hall.
"I generally just wait and all the strangeness will come to me," Buffy replied with a shrug. "Angel waltzing with a hippo while his chest is a cake with a slice removed. You dressed as a Nazi clown carrying a cross. Giles dressed as a pirate with a fish on his shoulder."
"Seriously?" Xander asked. "I know I'm just a figment of your imagination, but that's beyond bizarre!"
"Are you sure I can't talk you into a sex dream?" Xander asked.
Buffy sighed. "No, I have to make sure I see everything so I can tell Giles."
There was a 'WARK' noise and the sounds of flippers flapping against the ground, causing Xander's eyes to widen as he quickly grabbed Buffy and pulled her into a corner. "Don't make any threatening moves and stay very still!" he hissed out as penguins began to flow into the hallway, marching in single file.
Buffy listened to him and after a few moments the waterfowl had all departed and he let out a relieved sigh.
"Okay, what was that about?" Buffy asked.
"Listen Buff," Xander said seriously, "when threatened, all animals fall back on fight or flight reflexes and penguins…"
"Can't fly," Buffy said with a groan. "Dream logic. I am so going to tease you about that when I wake up."
"I'll just point out that I'm a figment of your imagination so it was all in your head, not mine," Xander pointed out with a smirk.
"I'll do it anyway and you'll find it charming because you love me," Buffy said smugly.
Xander opened his mouth to argue, considered it, and then nodded. "Yeah, you've got me there."
A pair of massive humanoid animals dressed in police uniforms burst into the hall, dragging Principal Snyder away in chains.
"I'm not some kind of mythological creature," Snyder yelled, "I'm a human being!"
"Tell it to Shredder," the warthog man said while the rhino man chuckled.
"Rocksteady and Bebop just kidnapped the principal," Xander said numbly. "Is that the kinda weirdness you were talking about?"
"Maybe," Buffy said with a shrug, "I'll let Giles figure it out."
A tall blond man entered the hall, followed by a bunch of children in vampire costumes. "The seeds of Dawn have been planted as the sun rises, by midnight we need never fear anything ever again!"
"What about spiders?" a little girl lisped out, her plastic vampire teeth making it hard to talk.
"Well obviously we should still fear spiders," he said as they vanished around a corner, "that's just common sense."
"And snakes?" a little boy asked.
"Goes without saying," he replied as their voice trailed away.
"That was probably significant," Buffy said, before letting out a small moan that was sexual in nature.
"Okay, I felt that," Xander said, eyes lighting up, "Sex dream here we come!"
"Nope, time to wake up," Buffy gasped out as her hips twitched.
"-fuck," Xander gasped out as Willow ground herself against him.
"Ahh!" Buffy hissed out as Willow's fingers found their target. "Mom hearing," she warned them.
The three finished their now familiar wake up routine, leaving Buffy's sheets in dire need of cleaning as was the girl herself.
"I'm going to need someone to wash my back," Buffy said.
"I'd volunteer, but we better not push it," Xander admitted. "I'll change the sheets while you two shower."
"Have I mentioned I love you lately?" Buffy asked with a smile.
Xander leaned over and kissed her, smooshing a giggling Willow between them before they turned on her and made sure she felt loved as well.
"Giles, got a Slayer dream for you," Buffy announced as they entered the library.
"Let me get a notepad," Giles said, vanishing into his office for a few seconds before returning.
"Okay," Buffy said as he sat down, "it started as your typical naked in school dream."
"Classic nightmare," Willow said with a shiver.
"It's supposed to be but I found a way around that," Buffy said, "I treat it like stage fright and picture everybody naked and since it's a dream, they are."
"And with everybody naked, no one is," Xander replied with a nod.
"Metaphorically anyway," Buffy agreed. "Xander showed up and I had to tell him he was a figment of my imagination."
"How'd he take it?" Willow asked, concerned.
"He was pretty chill about the whole thing, more amused than anything," Buffy assured her. "Kept asking if it was a sex dream."
"We were both naked in a dream, of course I asked," Xander said.
"The bell rang and all the naked students flooded the hall. Xander told me to tell him about my little nudity trick so he'd never have to worry about the naked in school dream again," she explained.
"And thank you for doing so," Xander told her.
"Happy to help," Buffy said with a grin, knowing they were annoying Giles. "Anyway, we talked about Slayer dreams and how I should register a complaint for them being so unhelpful. Then Xander hears something and pulls me into a corner, telling me to be as unthreatening as possible and a row of penguins marched through the hall as we hide in the corner."
"Penguins?" Giles asked doubtfully.
"Hand to god," Buffy promised. "Xander was terrified." She turned to Xander to tease him but he had such a serious look on his face she just stared.
"Penguins are one of nature's most deadly predators," Xander said solemnly, "because when the fight or flight reflex kicks in… they only have one option!"
"And then he said that!" Buffy exclaimed, wide eyed.
Xander burst out laughing. "It's an old joke but a good one. Also, you missed a couple of things in your dream."
"I did? Wait, how did you know?" Buffy asked.
"I was there," Xander replied, "though I thought I was just a figment of your imagination at the time."
"You shared a Slayer dream with Buffy?" Giles asked, a bit of excitement in his voice.
"Apparently," Xander agreed. "Two things Buffy missed was Harmony pulling Willow into the girl's bathroom and the fact that her shadow was a person."
"My shadow was a person?" Buffy asked. "How does that work?"
"No idea, but she was mid to late teens, dark skin, dreads, and carried a spear," Xander said with a shrug.
"It sounds like one of the Slayers from past centuries," Giles said. "Continue."
"Two animal men that Xander said were Rocksteady and Bebop dragged off Principal Snyder who was yelling about not being a mystical animal," Buffy explained.
"Rocksteady and Bebop are two types of jazz music," Giles noted.
"These two were named that by the writers of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon," Xander explained.
"Teenage what?" Giles asked.
"Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," Xander said slowly, emphasizing each word.
Giles stared at him, speechless.
"It's a popular children's cartoon, the two characters were deliberately named after jazz styles, so it's likely unimportant," Xander explained.
"Yeah, I think the important bit was Snyder being kidnapped while yelling about being human," Buffy said.
"I'll make a note," Giles said as he scribbled down his thoughts on the matter.
"Now this part is definitely important," Buffy said firmly, "a tall blond man being followed by a bunch of children in vampire costumes said, 'The seeds of Dawn have been planted as the sun rises, by midnight we need never fear anything again."
"This is bad," Giles said, getting up to pace back and forth.
"They could have gotten some of your hair from the trash outside your home last night," Willow pointed out, "that means they'd only need a descendant of a troll."
"And they grabbed Snyder," Xander said with a grin.
"And that's a good thing?" Buffy asked. "I mean, maybe a little."
"He's still a human being," Giles chastised Xander.
"Which is my point," Xander said. "They made the same mistake you almost did and assumed he was at least part troll, but he's human. You did the test."
"Ah," Giles said, eyes lighting up. "Yes, that would certainly throw a wrench in things and perhaps even cause the spell to have the opposite effect."
"Did we even find out what the spell did?" Buffy asked.
"Partially," Giles said. "While the exact details of the spell's effects are unknown, it is believed to neutralize one or more of a vampire's traditional weaknesses."
"So, immune to sunlight and holy water?" Willow asked.
"That's the belief, yes," Giles agreed.
"Does it make their skulls unbreakable and their skin impervious to blades?" Xander asked.
"No, that is far beyond the scope of the spell," Giles said confidently.
"Then even if it worked its no big deal," Xander said, "a couple of Molotov cocktails and a fire axe would still get the job done."
Giles nodded thoughtfully. "The main danger would be the fact that it would allow them to blend in with the general population, walking about during the day and attending church like your average person, but as they seem to have made an understandable but catastrophic error in their choice of reagents for the spell… they should be easily dealt with."
"And they should be because clever vampires are dangerous vampires," Buffy said firmly.
Willow's watch beeped. "Time for a shower you guys," she said.
"We just had a shower a couple of hours ago," Buffy pointed out.
"Yes, and it's time for another one," the red head said intently.
Giles rolled his eyes. "I'll go over what you've told me and see if I can come up with any alternative explanations, you all go and… shower."
Xander looked confused. "I think he thinks shower is a euphemism for sex."
"No we are actually going to shower," Willow said, "in… the girls locker room."
"Ah," Buffy said as she recalled what they'd promised Harmony the day before.
"Still not a euphemism for sex, but it is tangentially related," Xander told Giles who removed his glasses and pinched the bridge of his nose.
"Please, just go," Giles begged, sighing as they left. "Bloody American teenagers, almost as bad as I was at their age."
He put back on his glasses and got a thoughtful look on his face. "I wonder if Sunnydale has a Jazz Club."
Typing By: Abyssal Angel