Dueling Dancers

Summary: To defeat Sweet, Buffy's allowed to call in a champion.

Warning: I don't know; maybe language and innuendo somewhere along the way.

Timeline: season 6 'Once More With Feeling'.

Challenge: none, just heard Fred singing 'Putting on the Ritz' and it made me wonder.

A/N: No offense to Sweet; I loved the guy!

Disclaimer: BtVS characters belong to Joss Whedon / Mutant Enemy. Songs are from 'Blue Skies' which belongs to Paramount Pictures. I claim no rights to any copyrighted material. Please do not copy or take this story without my permission. Dialogue from .

The Bronze

Buffy just finished singing her big secret about being in heaven, and almost went up in flames dancing, until Spike stopped her. She smiled at the 'bleached menace', half-grateful and half-sad for the intervention that saved her life. Then she turned to glare at the latest threat to Sunnydale and her sister. "What do we have to do to get rid of you?"

Reaching for Dawn's hand, Sweet answered, "I'll just take my little missus and be on my way."

"That's never going to happen," Giles growled. He wasn't sure how they'd stop him, but they'd find a way.

"She summoned me; she's wearing my talisman, so that means she's mine. Them's the rules," Sweet said in mock helplessness.

Dawn's eyes welled up in tears. "But I just picked it up at the store! I didn't summon anyone!" she practically shouted, hoping her sister would believe her.

Sweet seemed surprised by that, but shrugged his shoulders and reached for her again. "Huh, doesn't matter…you're the one wearing it now."

"Still not gonna let you take her," Buffy proclaimed, stalking towards the stage.

"The only way to stop me – other than offering yourself in trade – is to have a champion beat me." Sweet grinned evilly at the Slayer. "And I hate to tell you, darlin', but you ain't it. You almost went up in flames after just a few minutes."

Knowing what her sister would do, Dawn quickly cried out, "You can't leave me again, Buffy!"

Despite her earlier song, Buffy knew that wasn't really an option anyway. "Guess we have to go the champion angle then. What are the rules?" she asked.

"Very simple. You pick your champion, and he or she and I will have a sing-slash-dance off. Last one standing wins," Sweet explained. This didn't happen often, so he was a little surprised that she picked it. He had no illusions what the Slayer would do if he won instead of her champion. A Slayer as his queen could prove to be very useful.

Suddenly everyone was calling out their choices: 'Brittany Spears! John Travolta! Beyonce! Billy Idol! Gregory Hines! J-Lo! Baryshnikov!'

Buffy raised an eyebrow at the last one and looked at Anya for answers.

Feeling totally justified in her choice, Anya just retorted, "What? Have you seen him in a leotard?"

The Slayer just shook her head at the ex-demon. She needed somebody incredible – at both parts. Suddenly a wide smile appeared on her face. "Anyone? Dead or alive?" she asked Sweet.

Something in her eyes warned him he might be walking into a trap, but he still answered honestly, "You name 'em, and I'll bring 'em here."

She quickly tried to remember the date she needed. It was something like 10 years before her mom was born, if she had the dates right. "Okay, then…I want Jed Potter from 'Blue Skies'," Buffy hurried to specify, since she didn't want the actor who played him to be too young or too old.

Sweet felt like applauding the Slayer's ingenuity. However, he'd always wanted a chance to go head-to-head with the man, so why not? "Done!" he replied with a snap of his fingers.

And just like that, Jed Potter (Fred Astaire) appeared on the dance floor with Buffy, who filled him in on the situation. Whether he already knew about demons, or he just thought this was some kind of joke/dream/movie idea didn't really matter; he still agreed to help out. Instantly, he was decked out in a tux with tails and white spats on his feet.

It was like 'dueling banjos', only with singing and dancing. Song after song, they attempted to out-dance each other. Finally, it was Jed's turn again to choose a song, and he picked 'Putting on the Ritz'. When Sweet started to slow down in his answering movies, Jed moved straight into 'A Couple of Song and Dance Men'. Sweet held up his hands in defeat. Jed tipped his top hat to Buffy, then disappeared.

Once he got his breath back, Sweet smirked at the crowd, mockingly praising them, "Big smiles everyone! You beat the bad guy." The music swelled one last time, and he started to sing:

What a lot of fun
You guys have been real swell
And there's not a one
Who can say this ended well

All those secrets you've been concealing
Say you're happy now,
Once more with feeling.
Now I gotta run
See you all...

in heeeeeeell!

A/N: I just couldn't kill Sweet, even if he lost to Fred.