Buffy and Wood walk down a dark alley. Wood must've studied dating techniques with Giles! Buffy is wearing an entirely rational outfit of leather jacket and jeans, plus some black lace curtain she wrapped around her waist. Did she have a fight with a goth chick's interior decorating scheme on her way to meeting the principal? Wood promises that they are on their way to a little-known delicious restaurant just around the corner. Whoops -- vamp attack! Has Principal Wood betrayed Buffy? Buffy fights and successfully dusts a number of vampires, and we can't quite see what the principal is up to. Buffy finishes off her opponents and yells at Wood for setting her up when she realizes that he too is under attack. Well, that could be a ruse to gain your trust, Buffy. Wood does a little kung-fu fighting and stakes his two attackers as Buffy looks on, surprised. He comes over to help her up, stowing his stake in a little holster at his back. "I guess we should talk," admits Wood.
Buffy gazes at Wood in shock, but he's all cool and collected, telling her that the restaurant is just a few steps away. She looks at him as if to say, "Did you see me in that camisole earlier? You think I'm going to ingest food?" Either that or she's still surprised that, despite collecting her merry little band of evil fighters over the years, encountering a governmentally-funded secret ops unit that did the same, and knowing about Angel's group in L.A., there are still normal people who are capable and willing to fight evil in Sunnydale. Twit.
Coffee shop. The Date of Humiliation continues. "And you still hafta like see her every day?" inquires Ashanti. Ah, yes. No dating strategy is more effective than whinging to your new flame about your old one. No wonder Xander always ends up nearly eaten or tortured on a big wheel thing. Maybe it's his own freakin' fault for being such a crap date. Ashanti is glad that Anya and Xander didn't marry each other, if only because things turned out well for her. Xander has a moment of clarity as he realizes, "I should have taken you on a nicer date than this." Ashanti coyly suggests that she has something "fun" in mind. Poor Xander.
At the restaurant, Buffy and Wood scrutinize the menu. "This place is nice," offers Buffy. She quickly adds, "How the hell did you do that?" in a very "how the hell did you do that?" tone. Wood chuckles and says that he's "had a little practice." "So you're freelance," surmises Buffy. Buffy is gazing across the table at Wood with huge awestruck eyes, which I kinda don't get considering that over the years she's seen many, many civilians successfully take on vamps. Buffy's next questions establish that Wood was aware of her status as the Slayer, and their mutual presence at SHS is not in any way random. Wood says with striking conviction that they're "headed for something big, really big and I need to be here when it happens. I wanna help." What does Buffy get out of this moving message? A fear that he "didn't hire [her] for [her] counseling skills." Wood's response, a hearty chuckle, endears me to him forever. "They're…valuable too," he finishes lamely. Buffy wants to know why Wood didn't come clean with all of this information a little earlier. He replies that he wasn't sure if he was ready to "jump into this fight." Hmm. Sounds suspicious. He's so adamant about needing to be in Sunnydale when everything goes down, but he wasn't sure that he was ready to take part in the fight? I'm catching a faint whiff of fish here.