Disclaimer: Buffy, Angel, et al belong to Whedon and Fox. Mystique belongs to Marvel Comics. No money is being made from this work of fiction, nor is any intended to come from it.

Author's note: This got way longer than it should have. It started as a little joke for Jensilla, then got very long. I have the vague idea this is mid-5th season, before Into the Woods. But, looking back on some of it, it might actually still be 4th season. Not sure. Either way, it's Angel, before the End of Darla, but after the second season began. Which is screwy, yes.

Don't expect logic, or description. At all.

Dedication: To Jen Morrioghan, for always inspiring insanity.

Violence or Revenge
by Ana Lyssie Cotton

"I see things."

"Uhuh."

"The stars, they talk to me."

"My gun sometimes does that."

"She won. She always did. But that's okay. The stars tell me she'll die soon."

"Me, I'd just use a gun. Much simpler."

"It cried out to me. Would you like some tea?"

"Thanks, but I'm fine."

"Miss Edith would like tea. Wouldn't you?"

"Miss Edith?"

"My little girl. She's so good and happy. See?"

"Ah."

"Are you sure you wouldn't like some tea? Or, if you're hungry, I'm sure we could find someone for you to eat. Maybe a kitten?"

"No thanks."

"You're making Miss Edith sad."

"Really."

"Yes, and when Miss Edith's sad, I get sad. My head hurts."

"Take an aspirin."

"My head hurts, and I want my Spike."

"Sorry, no spikes here. Railroad or otherwise."

"My Spike is everything to me. But she won and now he's hers."

"Unrequited love. How cute."

"You're making fun. Miss Edith doesn't like that."

"How sad for her."

"Do you like your bed?"

"Not really, I never had a thing for chains and leather."

"That's not what the kitty cat told me."

"Creed was talking out of his ass. He does that quite often."

"The kitty cat was nice. He had such lovely blood. I think it sang to me."

"Knowing what he drinks, it probably did."

"But he said to catch you. So I did."

"How clever of you."

"But the stars talked to me. They said if I caught the kitty, he would help. And so I got you."

"Why did the stars say that?"

"To get my Spike back. She will die. And he will come."

"That's nice. If you can't have him, no one can?"

"He left me with that thing."

"I'm sure he did, honey. Look, will you untie me? If you do, I'll go kill her for you."

"Yes. Kill her. Kill the Slayer. And then I will be free."

"Where is she?"

"I will tell you, but first, you must stay with me for a while. I need a new playmate. And you'll be much happier here. Miss Edith said so."

"No I won't."

"You will. Now, don't move, I want to see how you taste."

"Get away from me."

"You're so beautiful. Almost as pretty as Miss Edith. You'll like it here."

"I--"

...

"You're so beautiful. My pretty Mystique."

"Thank you."

"She won't know what hit her, will she?"

"No, she won't."

"Good. Go and fulfill your destiny, my child."

"Yes, mom."

...

"Buffy!"

"Hey, Will."

"I'm glad I caught you. Giles left a message, he said something about the Council hiring assassins again."

"Great. I get rid of one, and I end up with another after me."

"Yeah. Bummer, huh?"

"Yeah. Oh well. First, I slay this Composition assignment."

"And tonight, a date with Riley. You're so cute. Hee."

"Thank God."

...

"Hello, Sailor."

"Actually, it's Riley. Did anyone ever tell you that blue skin is sort of noticeable?"

"No. But then... It isn't always blue."

"Oh my god."

"Goddess. And, good night."

"Ow."

...

"Oh, god, Riley. I'm glad you're here."

"Hey, honey. Bad day?"

"Yeah. You have no idea how bad. First, Spike wakes me up at four in the morning. Then Giles says the Council has assassins after me. Again. It's enough to split my hair."

"Aw. Poor Slayer, come here and let me kiss all the boo-boos away."

"Riley? Did someone replace your normal dinner with Moron From Mars?"

"Nope. I'm just a cute little army boy from I-Oh-Wah. Hyuk."

"That's it. I don't know who you are, but this isn't funny."

"Aw, honey, I'm just joshin' ya."

"See this? It's a stake. It has a pointy end. The pointy end will shortly be in your chest. Vampire go poof."

"You're so sweet."

"Die, you evil monster, die!"

"Ow. Now, Buffy. Honey. Dear. What makes you think that's where my heart is?"

"You're a vampire. Duh."

"I'm a shapeshifter, little Slayer. Die."

"That's a gun. You can't shoot me in the middle of the campus, people would--"

*blammo*

"Silly brat. They all think I'm Riley. Bye bye."

...

"How could you?"

"I didn't."

"Don't lie to me, Riley. The campus police saw you."

"How is she?"

"Wouldn't you like to know how your handiwork came out? That would make you happy, I'm sure."

"Willow, I didn't--"

"Shut up!"

"But--"

"No. You listen to me, Riley Finn. You may have destroyed the best friend I ever had. But I will destroy you. What's that phrase the Klingons use?"

"Wi--"

"Oh, yeah. 'Revenge is a dish best served cold.' Ever been to the North Pole, Riley?"

"Willow, you've got to help me, I love Buffy, I didn't DO anything to her. WILLOW!"

"Save it for the judge. Murderer."

...

"She's gone. Just like that..."

"Yes."

"I can't believe it. I never... I never even got to tell 'er..."

"Spike, would you quit whining?"

"No, Giles. I can't. I felt for 'er, y'know. She was... She was so... sexy. She could kick my ass, and I'd feel like a million dollars."

"Oh, god..."

"And, y'know, she wasn't like Dru. She wasn't crazy. Her head was on 'er shoulders right good. Y'know?"

"Spike. Stop drinking, and go away."

"But who else am I going to talk to about 'er? Willow? Red's feeling all guilty and sad. Xand? The boy can't stand me. Besides, Anya's with him. But you, Giles, you're like, an older brother t'me."

"Oh, lord..."

"And, man, you're so wonderful, and great, and..."

"Give me that beer, Spike. You've gotten maudlin and drunk."

"I have to. It's the only way I can tell people how I feel."

"Fine. Then I'm getting drunk, too. Give me the beer."

"Here."

...

"The stars sang to me that you'd call now."

"I'm sure they did. Mission accomplished."

"You must bring my Spike with her."

"But of course. How could I forget the blond bimbo..."

"My Spike is not a bimbo!"

"You're right. That was Buffy. Don't worry, he'll be coming back with me. Even if it's in a box."

"You will not hurt him."

"That's your job."

"Miss Edith wants chocolates with her tea. You must bring some with you."

"Grocery list made up."

"Don't forget fizzy water."

...

"Oh, shoooow me the way ta go hooome, I'm tired and I wanna go ta beeed..."

"Spike! Where the hell have you been?"

"Hallo, Pun'kin."

"Oh, ew. You're drunk. What have you been doing? Oh my god. Did you hear? Some army boy shot the Slayer! We're safe! Isn't it great?"

"Now, you lissen 'ere. You aren't fit to touch 'er boots, you little bimbo-tramp!"

"OW! Spike, you're hurting me!"

"Shutup, and lissen. You will never speak of Buffy again. Is that clear?"

"Yes. Now let me go. You big bully. Besides, I don't know what your damage is, it's not like it's bad for us that she's gone."

"Stupid bint. I'm going out for some cigs."

"It's not like you don't already have enough of them! Fine! Leave! Be that way! See if I care... I do. He's left. Stupid Spikey left me."

...

"Hello, blondie."

"Who the 'ell are you?"

"Raven. Wanna go for a ride?"

"Fuck off."

"Oh, I'm afraid I can't do that. You see, a very good friend of mine wants to talk to you. And she'd be very disappointed if you didn't come."

"Alright, who sent you?"

"We're going to play twenty questions... Riiight. You'll come with me, or I get to leave you staked out for the sun in the morning."

"Animal?"

"I'd say so."

"Look, I'm only coming with you, 'cause, that's a rather large gun, and I don't need to be in pain."

"Poor baby, does it frighten you? I could just shoot off a toe or two, then make it all better with a kiss."

"I dunno. A kiss might be nice."

"Yes. It would. But first. Do you want me like this? Or, should I look like this?"

"Buffy..."

"Or would this be better? We could be dumb blondes together."

"Harm. What are you?"

"But really, I like this shape the best."

"Dru! She sent you, didn't she? What are you, some sort of shape-shifting demon?"

"Give the boy an A. He's actually smart. The stars are singing to me, Spike. They tell me that you've been bad. This makes Miss Edith very unhappy."

"Now, look, I--"

"And I don't think you're going to get any chocolates with your tea. Not for a long, long time."

...

"She brought you back to me. My Spike. The stars are ever so happy."

"Yeah. Dru, love, could you untie me please?"

"No."

"Why not?"

"Miss Edith says you've been bad. She said you must be punished."

"She does, does she?"

"She does. And then you will be my Spike again."

"Yeah. Whatever."

"You don't like me? Oh, the stars are crying, my Spike. You must make them stop, they hurt so."

"I can't do anything tied up."

"Yes, you can. I will have my pretty Mystique hurt you, and you will scream and scream louder than the cock crows. Would you like that?"

"No, I don't, love. Now, about these ropes..."

"You are being bad, my Spike. And you must be punished."

"Now, Dru, honey, I--What is that?"

"Fizzy water. It will cleanse you, my Spike, and you will be better."

"Fuzzy--Oh, shit! Dru! OW!"

"Ah, my Spike, it stings, but it is only to help."

"Dru, I--"

...

"How is it going?"

"My Spike is asleep. The fizzy water made beautiful swirls all over. And then he cried. He has been very bad."

"Miss Edith said so?"

"Yes. And lust--he was lusting after the Slayer. My Spike, who loved me..."

"Awww. Come here, my pretty Drusilla."

"My beautiful Mystique."

"I can be others, my dear."

"The stars sing sadly."

"Like this. I can be--"

"My Spike! But, you are not him. You are only you. *giggle* My pretty blue."

"My lovely doll."

"You shall have chocolates with your tea."

"And do I get you for dessert?"

...

"My Spike, are you bored?"

"Yes, pet. I'm hungry, too. Maybe I could eat some of your blue lady."

"Now, now, my Spike. Miss Edith says you were bad. Punishment is good for the soul."

"I don't have one."

"My daddy does."

"Yeah, and we hate that, don't we."

"Miss Edith is very cross. The stars won't sing to her anymore."

"Really."

"The blue lady is very tasty, but we want daddy. And the stars want him too. They whisper to me, my Spike."

"Do they, pet. Can I be unchained?"

"Yes. My Spike shall be unchained, and he will help me."

"Indeed. I take it you want to kidnap 'daddy'? Great. It took long enough to get the poof to go away before."

"Now, now.... Don't be like that. We shall have lots of fun. And cakes with tea. My pretty Mystique brought me a nice little girl for dinner. Will you share her?"

"Sounds tasty."

"Lovely. Tea for four! We can use the good china."

...

"Angelus."

"Darla."

"You've come back to me, my love."

"Of course, my beloved Goddess. How could I not. You made me what I am today."

"Such sweet words from lovely lips. Kiss me, and then I have a present for you."

"A present?"

"Yes. A lovely girl. I thought you'd find her to your taste."

"Why thank you. I shall, since my taste is yours."

"I've taught you well, my Angel."

"Indeed, my lovely--"

"ANGEL! WAKE UP!"

"Mrph--Wha?"

"Oh, thank GOD. Angel, I've been trying to wake you for at LEAST a half hour. Spike is in town."

"Okay..."

"I had another vision. He was in it, but, there was this other woman. She was blue, and... Angel, be careful, okay? You've been sleeping REALLY badly. And you don't need anymore--"

"Cordelia."

"Fine, fine. BE Mr. Stoic Unflappable. See if I care."

"I'll do that."

...

"Here little vampire-gone-bad. Come to Mystique. And hurry it up, since I get to be free of her if I--ah, there you are."

"Drusilla?"

"Hallo, Angelus."

"What're you--"

"Never mind that question, I think it's time we had a chat."

"I have a stake, and I'm not afraid to use it."

"..."

"That sounded as corny as I thought it did, didn't it?"

"Yeah. Look, lover-boy. I'm not Drusilla."

"You're... blue."

"Exactly. Dru wants you. I deliver. I go free. FINALLY. Not like I don't like my Parental Unit, but, y'know, she's a bit dicked in the knob."

"I'm afraid I can't do that."

"Oh, I don't think it matters what you want."

"She's right, 'dad', it really doesn't matter."

"Spike. Just what this party needed."

"Hey, blondie. Pull up a chair."

"I'll just watch."

"Well, if you two will excuse me, I've got better things to do."

"Not so fast, Angelus. Drusilla wants you, she gets you."

"You tell 'im, pet."

"Bite me, Spike."

"Gladly. Dru says you taste quite lovely."

"Shit. He's getting away."

"On your head, blue."

"Fuck you, blondie."

"I don't think you're quite to my taste."

"Keep up with me, then."

"Keep up with me."

"Angelus!"

"DARLA??"

"My love, I've waited for you to realise you love me still. But I grow tired."

"Hey, blondie, some blonde chick is talking to him."

"Oh my god. It's Darla. But--Angel killed her a few years ago."

"And he did such a great job, didn't he."

"Yeah. Not that this makes a problem. We still grab 'dad'."

"Right. I'll shoot her, you knock him out."

"Are you nuts? He's stronger than I am."

"Fine. We shoot them both."

"You again."

"Yeah. Life's a bitch, y'know."

"And then you die. Who is she, Angelus?"

"Don't worry, Darla, I'll--"

"Hey! You--"

*blammoblammo*

"Very nice. Should I be applauding?"

"Shut it, blondie, and help me get him back to the car."

"Yes, mistress. What about her?"

"Leave her for the wolves."

"You're so kind."

...

"My Spike, you're back!"

"And I brought you a present, pet."

"Oh, the stars will sing tonight. My Angel is back."

"Hey, Drusilla. Mission accomplished. Can I get my money now?"

"Spikey, my pretty Mystique wants to leave me."

"We can't have that now, can we, my pet."

"No. Miss Edith will cry if she goes."

"Whatever, you two are cute, but, byebye."

"You can't leave, I shall cry."

"I've got better things to do, and if you're not paying me... Dammit."

"Don't leave me."

"I wouldn't leave 'er."

"This is ridiculous."

"My blue is leaving me, and she tastes so good, Spikey."

"Pet, I can't exactly stop her when she's holding a gun on me, now can I."

"You have to."

"Oh, try, blondie, do."

"The stars are NOT liking you, Mystique."

"The stars can bill me. Ah-ah-ah, blondie. Stay where you are, or I'll shoot you like I did Angelus."

"Spike--"

"Hush, pet. We'll get her back another time."

"She left me!"

"You have old Angelus to go play with now."

"My Angel is back. Yes. I think I shall have tea with Miss Edith."

"You do that, pet."

...

"I can't believe we brought that poof back."

"Daddy is happy being back."

"Right, pet. That's why you brought him. Me, I'd just as soon kill him."

"You can't kill daddy. Or I shall pout and pout. You already let my Mystique go away."

"Sorry, love. Tried to stop her, but she did want to go badly."

"Yess... But I have my Spike and my Angel. Happy."

"Dru, love, there's a bit of a problem. See, I don't like sharing you. And I know that the poof means more to ya. So, I propose this: I leave. You keep the freak."

"Don't want you to leave. Want it like it was before. My Spike and my Angel and me, together, as we tore the world apart."

"You're forgetting Mummy Dearest, pet. Old Darla the Wise, who let her baby Angel stake her."

"Grandmother. Yesss. She is missing. Have you seen her, my Spike?"

"Yeah. Your Mystique shot her when we got the poof."

"Grandmother was shot. Tee hee. She used to drink so much. She shot the cat."

"Yeah, whatever. Look, pet, I'm gone. Places to see, people to kill."

"Miss Edith shall be very cross if you leave."

"Let 'er. I've got better things to do than pal around with the poof."

...

"I can't believe she's gone."

"You've said that five times in the last ten minutes. I'm getting bored. When will these archaic funeral rites be over?"

"Anya. Buffy was one of my best friends. Shut up and let me grieve a little, OK?"

"If you wish to. I think it's silly. I'm sure she's in a much better place now. After all, she's not out there killing demons anymore, is she."

"What part of shut up missed your brain?"

"Well, if you're going to be like that, I'll just leave."

"You do that."

"Although, I don't know why I should. You're mine, not hers. If *I* were the one dead, would I be subjected to these silly rites, or would I be mourned and worshipped as the lost goddess that I am and graced with lots of monetary offerings, or--"

"Anya."

"Going, going. Men."

...

"Mrs. Summers--Joyce, I don't know what to say. I'm sorry."

"She's dead, Mr. Giles. I'll never see my baby again. And it's your fault. You and that Watcher's Council trained her, but you never protected her."

"It was an assassin. Possibly sent by forces of darkness. No one is too clear on--"

"What does it matter? They've won. They tried for so long to take her away from me, and she's gone. Gone forever."

"Joyce... She's the Slayer, it's her... No, I won't spout this ridiculous nonsense. You silly woman, they took her from me, too. You think I didn't love her? You think my training her--after they'd fired me, I might add--was just a duty?"

"I..."

"She was like a daughter to me. And now she's... she's dead."

"Oh, Rupert."

...

"Jagged bones, slit flesh, dangling intestines..."

"Dru..."

"You make a pretty picture, my Angel. Miss Edith is worried, though. She thinks you shall surely die if we don't fix you. But we don't think that, do we, pet?"

"Ow."

"Oh, my Angel. I'm so sorry. But my Spike has left, and my Mystique, and I am sad."

"Drusilla, please..."

"Hush. Or Miss Edith won't be happy with us. You must scream, the water must bubble so. For there won't be cakes with tea unless the water is hot."

"Auuuuuuuuuughhh...."

"Yess. Boiling water for tea. Miss Edith shall be pleased."

...

"She's gone."

"I know."

"Oh, Oz, I don't understand this. Why her, why now?"

"Maybe it was for the best. Hasn't Giles said that Slayers don't live very long?"

"Shut up."

"I'm sorry."

"No... it's not your fault."

"I didn't think you'd mind me..."

"I don't. But this isn't a good time. I mean, there's me, and... and the Wicca stuff. And, well..."

"And you don't have time for me. I get that."

"I'm sorry."

"Don't be, Will. I'll.... This sounds so stupid. I'll love you."

"Goodbye, Oz."

...

"What do we do?"

"Do? We kill him. Something. Them!"

"Them who?"

"The them Them. The ones that killed Buffy. Riley. The Initiative."

"We don't know, Xander..."

"He did it, Will. You know he did."

"Yeah."

"Well... You could do something to him, couldn't you?"

"Like what?"

"Magic. Make him sick. Or in pain all the time. Something."

"That's black magic, Xander, I..."

"He killed Buffy."

"....I know."

"Can't you go all Evil Willow, or something?"

"I saw Evil me. She wasn't nice."

"What if they don't have enough evidence? What if he goes free?"

"Then... we'll see."

...

"Yo."

"Hey."

"Speak. You only have ten minutes."

"You're... looking..."

"Bad. I know, Giles. I know."

"Are they--?"

"Not really. It's just... I'm locked up. Away from society."

"Safe."

"Yeah."

"There's..."

"She's dead."

"Yes."

"I saw it. In a... a dream. I thought it was so stupid. Army Boy. Shooting her. Didn't feel real."

"It was."

"And so you're here."

"We need your help."

"Hah. I like it too much. You know that."

"The world needs a Slayer."

"And I'm It."

"Much as we'd like you not to be."

"Way to inspire confidence."

"She..."

"She'll be a hard act to follow. Yeah. Got that."

"Sir, your time is almost up."

"Yes. Thank you. Faith, we'll talk tomorrow."

"What is this, counselling sessions before you let the dangerous criminal back on the street?"

"Yes."

"I'm not worth it."

"She thought you were."

...

"...the investigation is on-going, police remaining baffled as to the cause of death. The only leads..."

"Why'd you turn it down?"

"I feel so... guilty."

"Why guilty?"

"I... I think we should tell Giles."

"Oh, yeah, that'll go over well. 'Hey, Giles. Willow and I sent Riley to the North Pole, but we botched it and froze him to death.'"

"Well... we did do it."

"And he shot Buffy. And I am *so* not caring."

"Ok. I..."

"Let's change the subject. I saw Oz last week. How is he?"

"Fine."

"Only 'fine'? Are you two dating again?"

"No. We're... we're past that."

"Oh."

"So..."

"Yeah."

"How's Anya?"

"She's... gone back to her demon ways, apparently."

"Oh. Nice to think she's doing something with her life."

"Yeah."

"Is she happy?"

"She gave me boils last week, what do you think?"

"Oh."

...

"Owwwww."

"It hurts, doesn't it, my Angel. That is good. Now you can't ever go away from your Dru."

"Dru--"

"Shhhh. No speaking. Bad little boys who have their souls get no cookies and milk."

"Well, pet, how is our boy?"

"Shiny."

"Ah. Nice set of burns there, Angelus. Bet the crows would love to pick your skin off for their treasure troves."

"Bite me."

"Naughty daddy."

"Dru, love, don't you think a gag would be more useful."

"Miss Edith likes to hear him scream."

"Ah. So, Angelus--"

"That's not my name--AUUUUUUgggggggghhh!!!!"

"Whoa, Dru, go easy on that stuff. I want him conscious."

"And what is my Spike going to tell daddy?"

"Just a little thing about a little town called Sunnyhell."

"Ooooo! Will there be blood and cake?"

"Probably. Y'see, Angelus, old boy, your precious Buffy is dead. Shot through the head, her blood spilling all over the floor."

"Ooooo. My Mystique did that."

"Yeah. Except, she did it looking like ol' Army Lad. And he's now in jail. Isn't it funny, Angelus? The man you hate is on trial for the murder of your love."

"Not really."

"Aw, you look almost sad. Gonna cry, Angelus? Big bad evil vampire all upset over his hot little honey being blown away. Got news for you. She wasn't yours in the end. She was mine."

"You're lying."

"Not at all. She came to me, asked for my story. And then she kissed me. Oh, yeah, she was all mine."

"She never---AUuuuuggh! You would have *gasp* been the last person she would have turned to."

"Maybe you're right. But you'll never know, now will you."

"I am--AAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaauuuuuuuuuuuugggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!"

"Awww. Poncey Angelus has passed out."

"Bad Spike."

"Now, pet, he'll come round again."

"Spoilt all our fun. And left none for Miss Edith."

"Oh, don't pout, love, I'll find some cake for you. Promise."

"Promise?"

"Yep. Back in a jig."

...

"I can't believe this."

"Why?"

"You're helping them get her out of jail."

"We need her, you idiot."

"No--"

"What, you think you and your mismatched crew of miscreants will survive with Angel gone?"

"You don't know that he is, and--"

"Face it, Wesley, you're up to your ears in evil, and you *need* a Slayer."

"But why her?"

"I don't see any others popping out of the woodwork, do you?"

"That's--"

"Excuse me. Not to interrupt you two great Watcher types, but there's a phone call for you, Giles."

"Thank you, Cordelia."

"So, Wes, what's the verdict?"

"He's getting Faith released from jail."

"Doesn't he remember the whole 'She's a Psycho' part?"

"He says we need her."

"Well, I say, we don't."

"I agree."

"So... what are we going to do about it?"

...

"What have you found for us?"

"Here, pet. I thought you'd like her."

"Ooooooo. Mmmmm. She's so pretty and dainty. Almost like Miss Edith."

"Except she's got real blood to drink."

"Yessss. Does my Angel want a taste?"

"No."

"Poor daddy. Stuck in his high chair with no bib."

"Can I help, pet?"

"Give her to me."

"Please...."

"Hush. Drusilla will make it all better. And you'll dance in starlight under a full moon."

"I... Uuuuuhhhh..."

"You're so sexy with blood all over your mouth, pet."

"Do you want a taste, my Spike?"

"Thanks, but I already ate."

"Grrr. Bad Spike. Lying to Mummy."

"Ok, so, I didn't eat. But I'm not hungry."

"Poor Spike, can't eat, and he looks so skinny. Might wanna throw him back, Dru."

"Ssssss. Silence, daddy."

"Yeah. Shut up, ya big ponce."

"No. Either kill me and get it over with, or--"

"Kill you. Now, see, I like that plan. It's quick, it's clean. Sadly, Dru here doesn't agree with me, do you love."

"No. Daddy must be made to pay. And then the moon shall shine on their graves."

"Great. So, she's boring as well as insane."

...

"Nothing."

"Bullshit."

"It's nothing."

"It's NOT nothing."

"Yes, it is."

"Don't give me that crap, girl."

"You can't do anything about it, Gunn. So don't even try."

"Fine. I'm gone. Tell Angel to give me a call when he resurfaces. Maybe I'll come. And maybe I won't."

"Sure."

...

"I don't think we should do this."

"You were all gung-ho before."

"That was before I remembered that my shoes are more expensive than your hairpiece."

"What does that have to do with anything?"

"It doesn't. I don't think. But, look, this isn't a good idea, Wes."

"But it must be done."

"How do you know that?"

"Don't you think so?"

"No... Maybe. I don't know. But, look, shouldn't we ask someone else. Like, say, Angel?"

"He isn't here."

"Duh."

"Which begs the question, where is he?"

"I don't know. Out angsting and brooding, probably."

"Have you had any visions recently?"

"No, and I am *so* glad. Do you know what they do for skin tone? Washes me all out, it's SO not good."

"Look, Cordelia, we--"

"No. No, we don't need to do anything. I need a facial. You need a chillpill."

...

"And so it begins."

"What?"

"It's a figure of speech."

"Yeah, but I don't see why you had to say it, Will."

"It felt the right time for something all mysticall-y."

"Uhuh."

"Don't be pouty-Xander. Be... Happy Xander."

"Yes, boss."

...finis...

In the end, whether I've caught them properly or not, it was fun. It was never supposed to be this long, though.