Commercials. Where have all the good ones gone?
We're jarringly dropped into the middle of a fight. Buffy grapples with a demon in Anya's apartment as Anya crawls through the debris on the floor and yells, "Maybe I'm not even the right Anyanka," and something else about D'Hoffryn that I didn't catch. Buffy takes the demon down with a well-placed throw of the axe and helps Anya up. She expositions that it's good that she stopped by and heard the screaming. I'll bet that promising to check up on Anya is how Buffy talked Xander into letting Spike stay with him. Anya goes to fetch some ice and thanks Buffy for saving her from one of D'Hoffryn's minions, but then asks her to leave. She insists that she doesn't "want to need anyone's help." Buffy "gets it," but doesn't leave. She explains that there's a dark moon on the rise and she doesn't want "her friends" to be alone. Mollified, Anya allows herself to save some face, saying, "I guess you guys could use my help," considering that Dawn is "not really good for anything" and Willow is a bit weak on the tactical planning when she's not a stupid plot device -- er, I mean, "evil."
SHS. Dawn nervously paces and wrings her hands at the bottom of the stairs as she practices her rico y suave pick-up lines. I hate people who stand right at the bottom of stairs all involved in their own personal dramas and not noticing that they're blocking the way of people trying to descend and get around them. She turns the corner and approaches the bland and completely unjustifiable object of her affections, who is deep into a conversation with two cheerleaders and a teammate. She breaks into their conversation with "Hey RJ!" startling the popular crowd and causing them to exchange "Why does this girl think she can talk to us?" looks. I have to admit that I'm simply unable to watch this scene a second time. I cringed through it the first time, but now I have a fast-forward button and there's nothing in my contract that requires me to relive adolescent trauma, so I'm just going quickly sum things up: Dawn makes a total and complete fool of herself, until the jocks and cheerleaders just walk off and leave her standing there. Burn.