Later, the gang is throwing an impromptu engagement party at the Summers's house. Buffy apologizes for the lack of preparation, and Tara promises that for the next party, they'll have decorations. Shrugging, "Why wait?" Willow casts a spell that festoons the room with crepe paper and glowing orange lanterns. Tara and Giles share a concerned look. Later, Willow fills a chip bowl in the kitchen while Tara protests that they could have just bought decorations at the grocery store. "Why use magic when you can do something naturally?" Willow doesn't get it -- she uses magic to fight monsters, so why not use it for other things? Tara tries to explain her concerns, but Willow accuses her of "always coming down" on her for using magic that "couldn't harm a fly." Not a fly, maybe, but I'll bet Giles didn't enjoy being blind that one time. They continue to bicker, but are interrupted by Dawn. In the living room, Buffy gives Xander a super-strong hug and expresses amazement at his wedding plans. Blah blah blah Dawn wants a tattoo. Nobody cares. I actually liked the Dawn character last season. What happened? Then Dawn's all like, See ya! and Buffy's all like, What? and Dawn explains that she's sleeping over at Janice's. She is apparently going there without a jacket or an overnight bag, which perhaps should set off alarm bells in the Buffster. Buffy can't decide if she should let Dawn go, in light of the engagement party, and tries to defer to Giles, who defers back.
Looks like Buffy decided to let Dawn go. She's walking down the street, now wearing a jacket but still with no overnight bag or even one of those cute little sleeping bags you can buy kids for sleepovers. I still have mine -- it's all soft and cottony and yellow with tiny flowers. I've been refraining from commenting on the clothes in this episode (my patented Clothes Insult Generator is in the shop), but I sure don't like Dawn's boots. They're knee-high and all loose around the top. Anyway, Dawn gets a sneaky smile and takes a detour down an alley. She hears scary noises, but then runs into her friend. They establish that they've tricked their respective guardians; each parental type thinks their hormonal little darling is staying at the other girl's house. Bored now. I hope something awful happens to Dawn because she, of all people, should know better than to pull a stunt like this. And unlike teen Buffy, Dawn can't even protect herself. Dawn and her large-foreheaded friend vamp around 'cause they think they're so bad-ass, and I weep with not caring.