Author Notes: So I went on a trip that lasted almost two weeks, then I didn't feel like writing once I got back. It's been a while, hasn't it? Just a short chapter to get me going again.

We pick up our story with Buffybot in a women's shelter after being sent there after being arrested for prostitution.


Marta started her morning as she always did: she blew far too much money on far too little coffee at Starbucks, while being absolutely miserable to everyone she met until the cup was done. She was a slow drinker. Then she'd go to her job and begin being nice and helpful to people.

Until she needed more caffeine.

But anyway, it was a quarter past nine when she walked up the steps to the women's shelter where she worked as a case-worker for women who needed emotional and literal support. She had a new one under her care - a Buffy Summers, possibly psychotic due in part to her horrible parents who'd chosen to name her that. Oh well. At least she wasn't pregnant like so many of the others. And a non-smoker, so that's a plus.

Downing the last little bit of her coffee, Marta through away the cardboard cup, plastered her fake smile on her face, and gently knocked on the door of Buffy Summers' room.

"Who's there?" came a sweetly girlish voice from the other side.

"It's Marta, your case worker," she replied.

"'It's Marta, your case worker' who?"

Marta crinkled her forehead. "What?"

There was a few seconds pause while neither woman said anything. "I don't get it."

"Buffy, let me in." Immediately, the door swung open and she was greeted by Buffy's syrupy smile.

"Hi!" Buffy said, happily.

She honestly didn't know what she thought of Buffy. She was a weird one. Messed up for sure, but not in the same way that most of the other women here were screwed up; not cheated on by seedy boyfriends, running away from her problems, abandoned by loved ones, beaten... No... Buffy was just... peculiar... The petite blonde was always peppy and sometimes frustratingly oblivious, like she just wasn't quite a real human being. Of course, she was a real human being, so Marta had no explanations for why Buffy was like that.

But she wasn't a psychologist. It wasn't her job to figure out these things. She just had to get the girl back on her feet and back in control of her life.

She sat beside Buffy on her tiny little bed and discussed what they wanted to accomplish today, regarding getting a legit job and strategies for avoiding the problems of a troubled personal life. Buffy had listed serving fast food and killing things as the only occupations she had held, and Marta just couldn't tell if she was being serious or not. Either she was batshit insane or a fantastic joker. She appeared incredibly simple, yet could be devilishly clever. She was skeletally thin yet surprisingly strong. It was all so nonsensical.

She resolved herself to figuring this out as the day dragged on into the afternoon. "You wanna get something to eat?" she asked, hoping that Buffy would be more genuine over food.

Buffy smiled politely. "I don't eat."

"That much is obvious."