Previously on Buffy: Buffy's the Slayer, Spike can't hurt humans but can hurt demons, Willow and Tara hold hands a bunch, Riley leers at Buffy.
We start with a close-up of Willow, who is imploring "Neisa, blessed goddess of chance and fortune" to "send [her] the heart [she] desire[s]" as Anya looks on intently. The camera pulls back and we see that Willow, Anya, and Xander are playing cards in the Basement of Debasement. Xander tells Willow that using magic during a poker game is cheating, but Willow insists that she was just praying. Only forty seconds into the episode and we've already racked up two serious crimes against good taste: Willow's puka shell necklace and the one-hundred-percent polyester, robin's-egg-blue shirt Xander is wearing. Only Anya seems to have escaped the wrath of the costume department, but I'm sure she'll get hers later. Xander looks very muscly, in a yucky cartoon way, in his two-sizes-too-small shirt. Anya asks for five cards but Xander patiently explains that "four's the max and only if you have an ace." Shout-out to my recapping partner? ["If only!" -- Ace] Anya tries to bluff her way into getting four cards, but Xander calls her on it and gives her three. Anya bitches about the fact that they're only playing for little plastic discs, and Xander bemoans his lack of money, but he claims that all that will change once his "merchandise hits the street." Xander explains that he's going to be selling "Boost Bars," which are nutritional health bars. He offers one to Willow, who declines because she finds that power bars usually leave a "bad after-tastelessness." Anya interrupts this conversation to say, "C'mon, somebody bet already. I've got three ‘K’ cards." Willow and Xander fold and Anya collects her chips. Xander wishes Buffy could have been there, Willow says, "You know how it is with a spanking new boyfriend," and Anya smugly replies, "Yes, we've enjoyed spanking." Xander fumbles the deck of cards. Ho ho. Yawn. Willow looks amused rather than disgusted, and Xander says that although he thinks Riley is all right "in an oafish kind of a way," he has doubts about the Initiative. Willow ventures that the commandos are good guys and "anti-demon." She notices Anya's glare and reassures her that the Initiative probably has no problem with ex-demons. Anya says, "Maybe. I choose to feel threatened." Good for her. Xander wonders what the commandos are up to.
Out in the dark woods, the masked commandos seem to be stalking something through the woods. That something turns out to be Buffy, and I'm excited because recapping fight scenes always goes quickly. Buffy, clad in a black watch cap, poofy silver jacket, and baggy pants, kicks commando butt and takes down four guys in a few seconds. She uses one of the commandos as a shield against a taser blast, and as she squares off with a guy I can tell is Riley by his little piggy eyes, Dr. Walsh calls, "Lights!" A Humvee behind them turns on its headlights, and Walsh approaches Buffy to say in an accusatory tone of voice, "It took the patrol team forty-two minutes to track you, and you neutralized them in twenty-eight seconds." Buffy claims it was just luck, but Walsh, who looks really pissed, is not convinced. She leaves, and Riley grins proudly at Buffy as Graham and Forrest limp by. Graham compliments Buffy, but Forrest looks disgusted and blows her a little raspberry. Riley cuddles Buffy as Walsh looks on. Walsh is either incredibly worried about Buffy's rogue strength, or about her relationship with old Potato Nose, or both.
Daytime. Some cafeteria at UC Sunnydale. Willow and Buffy are drinking coffee while Buffy brags her ass off about her adventures with Walsh and the Potato Brigade the night before. She asks Willow how her night was, and Willow, a little resentfully, says it was "light on the action-packed." She goes on to say that she hopes Buffy won't find tonight's plans too boring. Buffy looks blank for a moment, and when Willow gets worried, Buffy reassures her that she will indeed meet the gang at the Bronze and that she has missed them recently. Willow says she understands Buffy has been busy with the Initiative, which Willow doesn't look too pleased about, and with Riley, which seems more palatable to her. Buffy gets a distracted look and explains that Riley just entered the cafeteria. Buff decides to not say hi, but to just gaze upon him, and asks Willow again about her night. Willow describes the poker game with Anya and Xander; Buffy distractedly murmurs, "That sounds like fun." When Willow protests, Buffy seems to be about to tell her to get used to Anya when she interrupts herself, "A Twinkie? That's his lunch? Oh, he is so gonna be punished." Willows busts into a full-time pity party and grouses, "Everyone's getting spanked but me."