Author's Note: Spoilers for Faye's backstory!

This was written for the springkink prompt: "Cowboy Bebop, Spike/Faye: humor, heist gone sexy, perhaps intoxication - Bang bang / We're beautiful and dirty rich".

Beautiful, Dirty, Rich

The paper of Faye's cigarette crackles as she inhales, sharp and staccato as the sound of radio static through the communication chip in her ear.

"She's definitely in there," Jet's voice is tinny through the communicator. Faye hears a faint, muddled din of voices and music in the background; Jet's in the bar across the street, waiting for his cue for backup, and Faye can almost picture him there, probably nursing something stiff, talking down into his crossed arms and trying to look inconspicuous.

The sign on the wall of the dimly lit single-stall ladies' room says NO SMOKING. Faye frowns at it. "Any more info on how she looks?" Faye asks, observing herself in the mirror, adjusting her hair and the exact tactical positioning of her cleavage with her free hand. She smiles at her reflection, blows the smoke at her image in the glass.

"Blonde." There is silence.


"…Blonde. Well—" Jet clears his throat. "Well-endowed," he mutters, barely audible, sounding embarrassed.

Faye rolls her eyes. "So basically," she says, turning around to lean back against the edge of the sink, "she looks like every girl here."

Silence again, for a few moments.

"Well, yes."

"Are you serious?" Spike's voice erupts through now, backed with silence; he's probably smoking too, in the mens' room down the hall.

"Great," Faye sneers and flicks her cigarette butt through the open stall door in front of her. It hits the toilet water with a hiss.

"Listen," Jet continues, and there is a rush of sound and then silence, as if he's gone outside the bar for privacy. "She's got to be in there. Keep… asking around."

"It's kind of hard to pick up leads when you've got tits in your face," Faye says.

"Not hard for me," Spike says. Faye hears the flush of a urinal following the sound of his voice and groans in disgust. She smoothes on fresh cherry-red lipstick, unlocks the door, and exits.

Spike emerges from down the hall. He's wearing lipstick as well- a bright pink smear streaks across his cheek. It's been there for a while now, but Faye won't point it out on principle. Apparently the men's room is lacking a mirror. It's not surprising. Most of the men here are repulsive.

"So," Spike says, looking past Faye down the hall. "Ready for more?"

"No," she sneers. She leans closer to mutter harshly into his ear. "I'm tired, I'm starving, and I can't believe we're hunting an exotic dancer named Venus Bonanza."

"She's not just a dancer," Spike says, slipping his hands in his pockets. "She's a businesswoman."

"You would say that," Faye says. "Listen, go grab another girl. How much cash you got?"

"Not much."

"Me neither. "

Spike sighs. "Ladies first," he says, and Faye walks swiftly past him. She pushes through the beaded curtain separating the restroom hallway from the main room of the strip club, and the smell of stale alcohol and sweat gets stronger. The classily-named Jiggle Room is a dump—loud, vibrating with the heavy bass of corny pop and techno songs; garish and filthy. The makeshift stage in the center of the small room is scuffed and cracked; the sturdiness of the pole affixed from the ceiling to the stage's center looks dubious at best. There are no windows; only walls covered in girlie posters and graffiti, fluorescent lamps flickering as flies circle close in their glare. There's something like thirty dancers here and thrice as many men, clustered around in the small space, lounging on stained red couches around dirty tables, leaning on the damp bar.

Faye's endured two private dances so far; she imagines that Spike's probably had more, but she doesn't bother to ask. The point is that they still haven't found Venus Bonanza, serial strip-club-bandit. Conqueror of cash tills and tip jars and unsuspecting male wallets. Venus'd had more hair and eye colors than a rainbow and was apparently quite hard to nail down. But if the tip Ed picked up through the info-stream she'd hacked meant anything at all, Venus was currently plotting to rob the Jiggle Room.

Apparently, she also had a pierced tongue.

Faye's feeling a pretty heavy buzz; she's running on an empty stomach and almost-empty pockets. She thinks about Venus Bonanza, tries to picture this elaborately named creature in her head, but all she can envision is food. Steaks, lobster, hell, even a bowl of crappy stale cereal

"Faye," Spike says, again, and Faye snaps out of it. He's nudging her in the arm, handing her another whiskey.

"Ugh," Faye mutters. "Hey, are you hungry?"

"Starving. And you're welcome. For that." He nods his head in the direction of her glass and takes a sip from his fresh one, eyes scanning the room over the rim.

"You're supposed to be spending that money on lap dances," Faye snarls.

Spike shrugs. "Speaking of which," he says, and Faye turns her head to follow his gaze.

There's a stripper making eyes at Faye. Faye straightens her posture and smiles. She feels her lipstick crack where it's become dry.

"Why do they go for me," she mutters out through her smile, tilting her head towards Spike so he can hear.

"No idea," Spike says nonchalantly before taking a large swallow of his whiskey. "You're definitely creepier than most men."

Faye grits her teeth, stifles the urge to throw her drink in Spike's face and feels her lips twitch as the stripper approaches. She's blonde, slim, with huge breasts, wearing a two-piece outfit consisting of a g-string and a tank top torn off at the bottom so that the lower half of her stiff, perfectly globular breasts are exposed, just below the nipple. She smells like cheap perfume and her makeup looks as if it's been slathered on with a paint scraper.

"Hey there," the stripper says.

"Hi," Faye says, and smoothes her smile out into something more seductive. She cocks her hip out to the side. There is an awkward silence as Faye feels the effect of the alcohol start to flit through her brain. "Hello," she repeats, and takes a sip of her drink.

"You're cute," the stripper says, with all the bravado of the best B-movie actress. She runs her finger along Faye's collarbone and Faye fights the urge to recoil at the sweaty touch.

"So are you," Faye says abruptly. She can almost feel Spike's stifled laughter as he turns away from them, staring into his drink as if it's the most interesting thing in the world.

"So… do you, can I get a private dance session?" Faye sputters out, because the girl is, after all, blonde, and well-endowed, and she looks like the type of gal who's got an eye out for cash.

"Of course," the stripper hisses, with a slick timbre as practiced as a serpent's. She bites her lips, looks at Spike. "I've got just one request."

"Uh huh?" Faye says.

"I want your handsome friend to come too," the stripper says, and Spike turns around, wide-eyed.

"Oh, he's just… I don't know him really… we don't do things like this together—" Faye's tongue feels thick and awkward; the remedy, of course, is another large swallow of whiskey.

Or not.

Faye sways a bit when the stripper brushes past to grab Spike's tie. Spike manages to keep his stoic, disinterested expression straight, even when she pushes her breasts against his chest and brings her face close to his. "How 'bout it?" she says. "I'll make it memorable."

Faye looks at Spike and he looks at her. Eventually he shrugs.

"Fine," Faye says, and they go.

"This is fucking awkward," Faye mutters to Spike as they follow the stripper to the private room. Though "room" is a gracious term; the private areas are merely sectioned off cubicles of couches and mini versions of the stripper stage and pole along the far wall of the club, surrounded by screens and curtains.

Spike just frowns and swallows the last of his whiskey.

"Faye-faye!" Ed's shriek through the communicator causes both Faye and Spike to jump awkwardly as they walk. Spike curses. The ice clatters in Faye's glass and some of the whiskey spills down the side of her hand.

"What," Faye murmurs, and looks around, thankfully that nobody noticed their synchronized spasm.

"Ed has a visionnnnnn….."

Ein barks in the background.

"What?" Spike says angrily. "Get to the point—"

Jet's voice comes through again now. "Ed found another tip. Venus is definitely here. And her former alias was Butterfly."

"And that helps us how?" Faye mutters. A corpulent man in a suit bumps into her, his drink spilling over the side of his glass.

"Sorry baby," the man says, loud and drunk, and pats Faye on the ass.

Spike swiftly wraps a firm arm around Faye and pulls her away from Fatso before she can retaliate in the worst way possible. "What the fuck," Faye erupts.

"Sorry—" Jet begins as Ed chirps out "Curses, curses!" and the muscles in Spike's arm tense against Faye's shoulders. It's not because he's trying to pull her closer. It's because he wants to rip his own ears off.

"Not you," Faye says, directed at Jet, and gives Fatso a murderous glare as she and Spike enter the private booth.

"It's just some info," Jet says. "Better than nothing. And let me know when you need me."

"Yeah," Faye says. The stripper turns around.

"What's that?" the stripper asks. She's giving them a strange look.

"Oh nothing," Spike replies. "We were just… talking."

Faye roughly shrugs Spike's arm off of her shoulders and sits down on the fuzzy red couch. Exhaustion starts to seep into her skin, but she shakes it off, downs the rest of her drink. She crosses her legs and arms and Spike sits down a fair distance away from her.

"So," the stripper says, "You know the deal?"

"Yeah," Spike mutters, and looks at Faye.

"What are you looking at me for," Faye says. "You pay, 'handsome friend'."

Spike rolls his eyes and digs into his pocket for what's almost the last of his cash.

"Can I get you two some drinks?" the stripper asks.

"No," Faye says. She's already drunk.

"Two-drink minimum for private dances with two customers."

"What?" Spike says.

"I'll choose," the stripper says with a smile. She pokes her head around a screen to signal for a waitress. When she pokes her head back in, she smiles at Faye and Spike. "Two doubles," she says, "For the both of you."

Spike groans. Faye leans over, almost tipping horizontally on the couch in her effort to speak into Spike's ear. She shoots an arm out to brace herself. "Are you drunk?" she asks him.

Spike looks at her, then crosses his arms and looks at the stripper.

He's drunk.

The stripper wastes no time getting to work. She slinks over to Faye, climbing over her on the couch. She pushes Faye's legs apart from where they are crossed and straddles them, winding her body and running her hands over Faye's arms. Spike watches with an expression of disinterest that gradually grows more intent. The stripper rubs her body against Faye's, tilts her head back and closes her eyes as she moans. She threads her fingers up along Faye's neck and into her hair, and Faye frowns before looking at Spike. His brow is furrowed and he's staring as if he's trying to memorize something important. Faye's expression shifts to indignant disgust and then the stripper speaks.

"You like to watch?" the stripper says, smiling at Spike. A waitress pops in for the briefest of seconds to deposit two double shots of whiskey on the table; Spike grabs his a little too fast and takes a large swallow.

"Ugh," Faye mutters, leaning back and rolling her eyes. "What is wrong with men," she says, and the stripper answers. "Nothing, honey," she says to Faye, "as long as they've got money."

Faye frowns, and then smiles with inward amusement. "Well then," she says. "You're looking at the wrong guy." She holds a hand out towards Spike. "Pass me my drink."

"What's that supposed to mean?" Spike asks, an edge in his voice.

Faye just tilts her head back and laughs, feels the cold smooth surface of the glass against her hand as he passes it to her regardless and brings it to her lips for a sip.

Spike pulls out a cigarette and lights it; the stripper looks as if she is about to reprimand him before having second thoughts. She reaches out and takes it from him, inhales a long slow drag and puts it back into his mouth. "You like what you see?" she says to him, and then arches backwards to put her hands on the floor as she grinds her crotch against Faye's lap.

"Oh," Faye says, trying not to look down at what the g-string is barely covering. She takes a gulp of her whiskey and some of it spills down the side of her mouth, splashing onto the stripper's thigh. The stripper twitches. "Hey," she says, "Don't get sloppy alright?"

Faye feels her face flush with embarrassment. Spike has a shit-eating grin on his face, but Faye can tell by the glaze starting to settle on his eyes that he's feeling the whiskey just as strong as she is. Probably a bit too strong; how are they going to get the job done like this?

And what is this terrible song? Faye catches some lyric about sugar daddy kisses thrown in to the sloppy dance beat, but she can't make out the rest. It sounds a little too fuzzy.

Everything is a bit fuzzy.

The stripper pulls back up, pushes her breasts against Faye's face. Faye clenches her empty fist and stifles a startled noise.

"Come here, honey," the stripper says to Spike, and reaches for him. She places a hand on the back of each of their heads and pulls Spike in close for the most awkward three-way kiss Faye could ever imagine. There Is an awkward mess of mouths and tongues—someone's tongue, probably the stripper's—and Faye keeps her eyes open, sees in her blurred vision the stripper's face and Spike's eyes—no wait, one eye, blurred, this up-close, wide and staring back at her.

And then, she feels it. The press of metal—a cold nub there touching her lip. She hears it click against Spike's teeth, sees the flicker of surprise and recognition that flashes into the blurred mess of his eyes.

The stripper finally pulls away, breaking the tongue torture, and Spike slides the rest of his body over, close to Faye.

"You been here long?" he asks the stripper, leaning back. She moves off of Faye and climbs onto Spike's lap, now, gyrating against him, tossing her hair around. He flinches as it whips him in the face.

"Couple weeks," she says.

Faye sways a bit. "Yeah?" she asks. "You planning on… staying long?"

"Why?" the stripper asks, looking over at Faye as she runs her nails down against Spike's chest, hard so that he can feel it through his clothes. Spike's face is starting to get a bit red, and Faye notices his embarrassment.

"Yeah," Faye snaps at him, "How's it feel when someone watches you?"

"Don't mind her," Spike says, slightly muffled against the dangerously huge breasts. "Total brat."

"A brat?" Faye squeals.

The stripper laughs, shrill and tinkling and fake as she wiggles her ass on Spike. The sound infuriates Faye even more. How dare she? Venus Bonanza was going to get a boot up her shapely little ass if she didn't cut the shit. When the stripper gets up off of Spike's lap to grab onto the nearby pole, she turns her back to Faye and the sentiment nearly becomes reality as her derriere hovers dangerously close to the toe of Faye's shoe where her foot dangles, crossed over her other leg.

The stripper grabs onto the pole, hooks a leg around and swirls, spinning around it, tipping her head back so that her hair dangles and flows. She starts to hump the pole in mid-air. It's certainly a spectacle, though far from arousing.

To Faye, at least. She leans over and punches a slack-jawed Spike in the arm. He seems to snap out of it. "What," he says. He leans closer to her, cups his hand around her ear and says in what he thinks is a whisper "I'm gathering information."

"You're whisper-screaming," Faye growls, and pushes him away. The stripper is watching them again. "Information?" she asks.

"Yes," Spike replies. "My friend here wants to know if you've any open positions."

"Oh, my God," Faye says through clenched teeth, and knocks back the rest of her whiskey, which is quite a mouthful and causes her stomach to lurch for a moment. She composes herself.

"I don't… talk business in the private rooms… you can ask the bartender if you want," the stripper says, awkwardly breaking character.

"Been any theft around here?" Faye interjects.

"Plenty," the stripper says. "Men are gullible, you know," and there goes the tinkling fake laugh again, like nails on a chalkboard as the stripper slips back into her act. Faye and Spike exchange a glance, the both of them too drunk to understand that what they're doing here is not accomplishing anything.

The stripper steps down from the pole. She leans over Spike and Faye on the couch, putting a hand on one each of their thighs. She leans close.

"How about you two kiss for me," she purrs.

"Hell no," Spike and Faye say in unison.

"Oh, come on," the stripper says, wiggling her ass in the air. She slides her hands further up their thighs. "Please? It would turn me on soooo much…"

Faye's blood is beginning to boil. She's hungry, she annoyed, she's got this hideous thing touching her and worst of all trying to convince her to kiss Spike- and speaking of which, she's never actually really thought about that before. She turns clumsily, her limbs feeling a bit rubbery at this point, and stares at Spike's face closely with narrowed eyes.

Spike looks at her. "Don't even think about it," he says.

"Oh come on," the stripper pleads, "Isn't she sexy? If you kiss her, I'll kiss her too…"

"Actually," Spike says, his voice authoritative and slightly slurry, "I'd say that you are the sexiest woman in this room."

Faye is so beyond furious she can't even react. Her mouth falls open. Her face gets hot. What a dick.

That terrible laughter comes again. "Well honey, that's what they pay me for," the stripper says, lifting her hand from Spike's thigh to caress his face, leaning in closer. She looks as if she's about to kiss him, but she pauses, surreptitiously wipes the pink lipstick off his cheek with her thumb. Spike looks confused.

"That's it," Faye says, standing up. The room spins and she staggers a bit, grabs Spike's shoulder for balance. "You," she says, pointing at Spike, wobbling and pressing her finger against his forehead, "are not sexy at all."

Spike pushes the stripper away from his face, leans back with an indignant expression like what Faye just said is some really unbelievable shit. "What?" he asks. "Seriously? Hey Faye, are those even real?" he asks, poking her in the breast with a finger. They stay like that for a moment, prodding one another.

"Oh," Faye says, "now you've gone and done it."

The stripper backs away a bit. "Um," she says, "are you guys messing around? I don't really want to call security."

"Don't play games with me," Faye says to Spike, and collects herself before slightly staggering over to the pole. "Look," she says, wrapping a leg around it awkwardly. "I can do this too. I can do that… spinny thing."

Spike just sits back and crosses his legs, grinning like he's anticipating a really good show.

"We're not responsible for any personal injury here," the stripper mumbles, sensing, it seems, that the situation has finally gone to an absurd level beyond the control of her charms.

Faye thinks she's swinging on the pole in a seductive manner, but she's actually just kind of swaying back and forth with an angry expression on her face, glaring at Spike, the leg she's got around the pole slipping down in staggers until both feet are flat on the ground again.

"Don't know what you're doin'," Spike says, pointing at her with the hand in which he's holding his drink. He tilts the glass as he gestures and some of it splashes onto his leg; he stares down at it as if he has no idea what just happened.

Faye turns back to the couch, places her hands down on either side of Spike and leans her forehead against his, more out of a necessity for balance than an actual desire to do so. They stare at one another for a moment.

"You're an asshole," Faye finally says.

"An asshole you wanted to kiss," Spike says, frowning. Faye can smell the whiskey on his breath. "The fuck was that about."

"I didn't want to kiss you," Faye says. "You're projecting."

"Projecting what?"

"Your own… your… sick, twisted, evil desires," Faye slurs.

"Crazy bitch," Spike mutters.

"Fucking asshole," Faye growls. And then she slips, or something, because her mouth is pressing against his, and it's really only because when she closes her eyes she realizes he smells really good, and feels good too, but only because her eyes are closed and therefore can ignore the fact that he is, in fact, Spike Spiegel. Obviously.

There is an awkward mesh of mouth against mouth but Spike doesn't fight it, and Faye straddles him awkwardly, presses her tongue into his mouth; oddly enough she feels his arms come up around her, his hands sliding up and down her back, his mouth yielding, giving back. She exhales hard through her nose and he grunts against her mouth, biting her lower lip. She lets a noise out, in spite of herself, and pulls back for a second. "You oweme for this," she says against his mouth, and instead of a reply he presses his mouth to hers again, tasting like whiskey and smoke and something strange and alien yet familiar all at once.

"Uh," the stripper says, somewhere behind them.

Spike and Faye both ignore her. Faye grinds her hips against Spike's lap; he grabs her ass and pushes his hips up against her, becoming more aggressive, digging his fingers into her flesh. He pulls away to kiss along her jaw and down the side of her neck; she drunkenly swings her arm up, lands her hand in his hair, grabs and pulls. He groans and tilts his head in the direction of the force, pushes his hips up again, and Faye feels something hard pressing against her inner thigh.

"Shit," Faye says. "That's not your gun, is it."

"Uh," Spike says. "Maybe." But then she feels his hair against her chin as he kisses her clavicle, sternum, down to her cleavage, lifts a hand as if he means to grab one of her breasts but pauses for some reason, puts it on her shoulder instead and squeezes before lifting his head back up towards hers and pulling her back in for another kiss. It feels good, so good—too good; but the fact remains that it felt better before the sound of his voice jarred her into a reality beyond the whiskey-fueled haze that has her enraptured. This is Spike, she thinks to herself. I can't stand Spike. But the thrill of the situation is enough of a distraction, though somewhere inside a nagging voice tells her to stop kissing your partner in crime, wait-partner? Faye, how drunk are you? and her hands slide over his chest, down over his stomach; feels the taut muscles there and something jumps in her breath. She's seen him near naked plenty of times; they've all seen each other near naked at this point—it's just a casualty of living together on a ship like the Bebop. She never really thought about it before, his body, how… nice it is. She's never thought about him like this before at all, because she can't stand him half the time, really, and the cocky bastard must be like that to everyone because she can't remember ever seeing him with a woman, and if Spike fucks around at all Faye's got no knowledge of it, though she wonders now if he's any good— but never mind that- Spike is like her friend, or something. Like her roommate.

Her hot roommate. The whiskey—it speaks.

"Your hair," Faye slurs, "is green".

"I'm from Mars," Spike says, and licks at her mouth.

"Does that mean… it's green down there too?" Faye asks in awe.

"Spend your days pondering my pubes?"

"Fuck off."

They are kissing again, hands everywhere, and Spike is warm and hard, the green hair is softer than Faye ever would have imagined and his mouth is softer still, wet and hot and oh-so-perfect right now. Faye hasn't done this in so long, longer than she cares to remember; although she doesn't remember much anyway when it comes to who she was, and she remembers the first time she kissed Whitney after the accident, how she didn't even know if it were her first; whether or not she'd ever been in love; if she was a virgin.

Something dark stirs in her mind and her eyes sting as a dark, unrecognizable weight flows over her, she pushes it away and focuses instead on Spike, the way he smells, the way he feels; all of the things about him she could never even fathom eventually experiencing, and lets herself find comfort in the familiar, this constant.

This annoying constant.

She feels the pulse between her legs, the tension there; she rubs against him, more insistent now. She wants to come. On Spike Spiegel.

Holy fuck, I'm drunk.

The moment is broken when Faye almost falls off Spike's lap as Ed yells through the communicator. "Kissy kissssssyyyyyyy! Faye-faye! Really?"

"Ed," Spike says, "stop listening-"

"Really, you two?" Jet says. Spike rolls his eyes, and Faye near collapses against him. "Jet," Faye says, "This… is business." She growls as she rips the goddamn communicator out of her ear and tosses it somewhere behind her. Spike looks concerned for a moment—but only a moment.

"Really?" Jet says. Only Spike can hear him, now.

"Something like that," Spike says.

Faye is breathing against Spike's face, her hand tangled in his soft, strangely sweet-smelling hair, and Jet is freaked the fuck out. "What are you doing?" Jet asks. "Did you find her?"

"Maybe," Spike pants. "Give me a minute."

"Stop messing around," Jet growls. "Do you want to eat?"

Spike pulls his own communicator out of his ear and lets it drop somewhere besides him and Faye on the couch.

"Yeah," Spike says, to no one in particular.

"What is his problem," Faye says, tossing her head back. "Needs to get laid—"

"What is wrong with you people," the stripper finally asks. "Are you guys on something? Who are you talking to? This has to stop right now." She pulls her top off to expose her breasts, anything to get the attention of these two drunk wierdos and get them off of one another before they fuck all over club property and her pay gets docked to clean up the mess.

She's got a giant butterfly tattooed across the top of her breasts.

Faye's eyes widen. "Do you like butterflies?" she asks, trying not to slur, and failing. She feels Spike breathing heavily beneath her, his taut abdomen rising and falling against hers.

"What?" the stripper says, stiffening.

"She knows," Spike slurs.

"Butterflies," Faye says, angrily, glaring at the stripper. "You like them. Your name… was Butterfly."

"I don't know what the hell you guys are talking about," the stripper says, nervously putting her shirt back on.

"Listen honey," Faye slurs. "We're looking for Venus Bonanza."


Spike sinks back into the couch and mutters a stream of curses as Faye continues. "Just tell us where she is, alright? Don't play games. I'm sick of this porno shit." Faye pushes herself off of Spike, almost falls over but keeps steady on her feet. She pulls her blade out from where it's been tucked flush against her thigh beneath her clothing. "And don't scream."

The stripper freezes, then drops to her knees.

"What do you freaks know about Venus Bonanza?" the stripper asks. Faye doesn't notice how the stripper slides closer to the couch, reaches an arm underneath.

Spike starts pushing his hands down between the crusty, sticky cushions of the faux-velvet couch, clumsily trying to find the tiny communicator. "Hellooooo," he says to the couch. "Hello?"

"Don't move!" the stripper yells, and pulls a shotgun out from under the couch. Faye freezes, and the stripper stands and fires at the ceiling in a movement so swift Faye can't even comprehend it in her current state of intoxication. Plaster and wood crumble to the ground around the three of them, and a loud commotion rises beyond the screen, even louder than that terrible, horrible music. Spike instinctively covers his head with his arms and rolls off the couch to the floor, throwing his body into the stripper's legs. She loses her balance and lets out a yelp as she falls against the plastic base of the pole, and then Faye is on her, clumsily wrestling the shotgun out of her hands. Faye's drunk, but the stripper is caught by surprise, and Faye gets an advantage, pulling the weapon away and tossing it across the room. More gunshots sound around them in the club amongst screams and the breaking of glass. Spike's already back up on his feet and has his derringer out, pointing down at the stripper's head.

"Cut the shit," he growls. "Venus Bonanza. By the way, you're a terrible pole-dancer."

Faye holds her knife against the stripper's head. "Don't make me cut off this cheap-ass hair," Faye snarls.

"Who the fuck is with you and Venus Bonanza?" the stripper yells. "Get the fuck away from me! You're crazy!"

"No," Spike says. "We're just sexy."

"And rich," Faye says. "You're worth a lot, darling."

"I'm not Venus Bonanza!" the stripper screams. "Who would want to be that bitch? I'm trying to make honest money! Leave me alone!"

"Jet," Spike says. "Hello?" he says again, and then remembers that he's lost his communicator. "Oh," he mumbles.

"What?" Faye asks. Her expression falls. "Oh."

The screams and commotion are deafening; the club has erupted into a full-scale riot. A man falls through the screen set up around their private room, blood darkens the front of his jacket. Faye, Spike and the stripper all jump; the stripper uses the distraction to run, and in a second she is lost in the crowd. "Hey!" Spike yells after her, but Faye can't make out anyone in the din right now. Apparently Spike can't either.

A bullet whizzes past Faye's head and she drops low to the ground. Spike follows suit, pointing his derringer out at the main room.

"Thanks a lot," he says to Faye, sneering.

"You started it!" Faye yells.

"I don't even want to know," Jet says. They're back on the Bebop, after Faye and Spike made their way out of the Jiggle Room, ran into Jet with his gun drawn on the way out the door, yelling for them through their discarded communicators.

"She started it," Spike says, as Faye simultaneously says "He's a snake."

"If you kept the damn communicators on you would have heard me. Venus Bonanza isn't a dancer there. She's the hostess."

Faye is speechless. Even Spike just stands there, mouth hanging open.

"The hostess," Faye growls, "was not blonde."

"Tooooooooo much kissy kissy!" Ed yells, and Spike collapses in drunken defeat on the couch. Jet just shakes his head.

"I think I've just lost my will to eat," Faye says, despite the aching rumble in her stomach. "Forever."