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Buffy, in an attempt to bring some normalcy into her complicated life, decides to try out for cheerleader. When she goes to the big tryout, she meets a quiet girl named Amy. As one girl auditions, she gets more and more into her routine, and suddenly her hands begin to smoke.
Buffy knocks her to the ground and puts the girl’s smoking hands out. Amy tells Buffy that her mother was a cheerleading star and she feels pressure to make the squad. When Amy leaves, Willow says it’s a lot more than pressure — she thinks Amy’s mom is a tyrant.
Neither Amy nor Buffy is chosen as part of the regular squad — both are alternates. Amy is distraught when she is only chosen to be third alternate — with Buffy as first alternate.
In a spooky attic with a cauldron, someone is casting spells with dolls. The next day, snooty Cordelia Chase, who has made cheerleader, is temporarily blinded while taking her driving test. Giles thinks Amy’s a witch, but the only way to prove it is to form a potion and pour it on her — if her skin turns blue, she is a witch.
Buffy, Xander and Willow join forces to test this theory in chemistry class, and Giles is proven correct. Then another cheerleader has a mysterious accident, and when Amy reacts to it with horror, it makes Buffy doubt whether Amy realizes what she’s doing.
Amy comes home in a huff to find her mother on the couch watching TV. She tells her mother to write her history report. We see that Amy is holding an ID bracelet which Xander gave Buffy for good luck at the cheerleading tryouts — Buffy will be Amy’s next victim.
As first alternate, Buffy is now on the cheerleading squad, and starts acting strangely during practice. When she tosses another cheerleader across the room, it’s time for the next alternate to come in — Amy. Buffy suddenly becomes weak, and Giles says the only way to keep her from dying is to get Amy’s spell book. Willow and Xander stay at school to keep an eye on Amy.
Giles and Buffy force their way into Amy’s house, and Buffy discovers that the woman they’re speaking to is not really Amy’s mother but Amy herself. The mother switched their bodies so she could relive her glory days as a cheerleader. Giles finds the spell book, and they all troop off to school, where “Amy” is getting ready to cheer.
As Giles chants, “Amy” becomes weaker as the transformation begins. “Amy” charges out of the gym to find Buffy and kill her. Just as she’s about to get her, the transformation is complete. “Amy” is now the real Amy, and the mother goes berserk. She starts to cast an evil spell on Buffy, but Buffy deflects it with a mirror and sends it back to the mother, who disappears.
Everything seems to be back to normal, until we catch a glimpse of the mother’s cheerleader trophy in a school display case. Its eyes are moving…
EXT. SUNNYDALE HIGH – DAY – ESTABLISHING
This is madness.
INT. THE LIBRARY – DAY
GILES, deeply concerned, is staring at someone we can’t see.
WIDEN TO REVEAL BUFFY, in cute CHEERLEADING OUTFIT
You don’t like the color.
I what? I don’t — Buffy, do you
ignore everything I say? As a
No, I believe that’s your trick. I
told you I’m going out for the
You have a sacred birthright,
Buffy. You have been chosen to
destroy Vampires, not wave pom-poms
at people. As the Watcher, I
And you’ll be stopping me how?
Dyeh, uh, well — by appealling to
your common sense, if such a
I’ll still have time to fight the
forces of evil, okay? But I want
to have a life. I want to do
something normal. Something safe.
INT. ATTIC – DAY
The windows have been boarded and taped over — tiny pinpricks of sunlight stream in to this otherwise dark place. Whatever this place is, it’s not safe.
A figure moves about before us in a black, hooded robe. It pauses before a bubbling cauldron, then crosses to a shelf.
On the shelf is a doll in a cheerleading outfit. Her hands have been wrapped with bits of cloth. The figure reaches out and takes the doll. We HOLD on the empty shelf.
INT. THE GYM – DAY
CHEERLEADING TRYOUTS reads a sign on the wall. Big banner showing the FIGHTING SUNNYDALE RAZORBACKS hangs next to it.
PRETTY GIRLS, in short skirts, twirl and warm up.
Buffy enters with WILLOW and XANDER.
Giles didn’t approve, huh?
He totally lost his water. We
haven’t even seen a vampire in a
week. I’d say he should get a
girlfriend if he wasn’t so old.
Well, we’re behind you.
People scoff at things like school
spirit — but when you see these
young women giving their all like
AMBER, an attractive, agile girl, her feet on two chairs, slides down into an extra low split.
…Oooh, stretchy. Where was I?
You were pretending that seeing
scantily-clad girls in revealing
postures was a spiritual
What do you mean, pretending?
Xander pulls out an I.D. bracelet.
Oh, hey. Here’s a little good luck
thing for the tryouts…
What is this?
What is that?
Buffy takes the bracelet, puts it on.
This is so sweet!
(reads on bracelet:)
That was on there when I got it.
Really. They all said that.
CORDELIA, in cheerleader outfit, moves up, watches Amber stand on one leg and hold the other straight up in the air.
Just look at Amber. Who does she
think she is, a Laker Girl?
I heard she turned them down.
A SENIOR CHEERLEADER (Cordelia two years hence) moves to the judge’s table with two other SENIOR CHEERLEADERS.
Let’s begin with…
(reads from list)
Amber Grove. If you’re not
auditioning move off the floor.
Xander, Willow, Buffy, Cordelia move back. Willow spots AMY MADISON (in cheerleader outfit), nice girl, a little tightly wound today.
I didn’t know you wanted to be a
cheerleader. You lost a lot of
Do you know Buffy?
Oh how I hate this, let me count
Buffy smiles, warming to Amy’s honesty.
They watch Amber’s routine — she’s really good.
She trained with Benson — he’s the
best coach money can buy.
They have cheerleading coaches?
Oh yeah. You don’t have…? I train
with my mom, three hours in the
morning, three at night.
That kind of quality time with my
mom would probably lead to some
I know it’s kinda hokey… but
she’s really great.
Cordelia, standing nearby, feigns boredom with Amber’s performance, turns her back. Everyone else watches Amber as SMOKE BEGINS TO EMANATE from her pom-poms.
What the … ?
That girl’s on fire.
(back still turned)
Enough with the hyperbole.
Amber stops, drops the pom-poms. The smoke is coming from her – and her hands and forearms suddenly burst into FLAMES! Amber SCREAMS! (as do other girls.) Buffy vaults to the large RAZORBACKS BANNER, rips it down and tackles Amber, wrapped her tightly in it and smothering the flames.
It’s okay, you’re gonna be okay…
END OF TEASER
INT. THE LIBRARY – DAY
The foursome are gathered.
I’ve been slaying Vampires for more
than a year now. I’ve seen some
pretty cringeworthy stuff, but
nobody’s hands ever got toasted.
I imagine not.
So this is not a vampire problem.
But it is funky, right? Not of
Quite. Spontaneous human
combustion is rare, and
scientifically unexplainable. But
there’ve been cases reported for
hundreds of years. Usually all
that’s left is a pile of ashes.
That’s all that would have been
left of Amber if it hadn’t been for
So we have no idea what caused
this? That’s a comfort.
Well, that is the thrill of living
on a hellmouth — one has a
veritable cornucopia of fiends,
devils and ghouls to engage —
(off their looks)
Pardon me for finding the glass
Any common denominator in cases of
Rage. In most cases the person who
combusted was terribly angry or
So maybe Amber’s got this power.
To make herself be on fire. Like
the Human Torch, only it hurts.
So I should get the skinny on
Amber. See if she’s had any
colorful episodes before.
That means hacking illegally into
the school’s computer system — at
last something I can do.
She moves to a computer.
I’ll ask around about her.
Guys, you don’t have to get
What do you mean? We’re a team!
Aren’t we a team?
Yeah, you’re the Slayer and we’re
like the slayerettes.
I don’t want you putting yourselves
I laugh in the face of danger.
Then I hide till it goes away.
Okay, well, I’m psyched for the
And what if we find out Amber
didn’t cause this herself?
Then we will have to determine who
or what did. And deal with it
(off Buffy’s worried
Hey, we’ve fought vampires!
Anything else’ll be a walk in the
I hope so…
INT. BUFFY’S KITCHEN – AFTERNOON
There are crates strewn about. Joyce is opening them with a crowbar (and some difficulty). Buffy enters, throws her books on the kitchen table.
Hi. How was school?
A reverent joy. What’s all this?
It’s for the tribal art display.
Buffy picks up a statue, looks at it.
She sits down on the table, grabbing a donut. Watches Joyce a minute — Joyce hasn’t looked back at her — before offering:
We had tryouts today.
Great! How’d it go?
Well, I didn’t get to try out yet.
There was an accident. Pretty fierce
I know you’ll do fine. Keep on
plugging. Just have to get back on
Joyce tries to pry open the crate on the table next to Buffy. It won’t budge.
(finally looking around)
What was I trying out for?
Um… some activity? I have no
idea, I’m sorry.
That’s okay. Your platitudes are
good for all occasions.
I’m distracted. I’ve got a lot of
inventory to go through here. This
is my gallery’s first major show.
She gives up, turns to another crate.
It might not physically kill you to
give me a hand…
Buffy casually flips the lid off the unopenable crate with one hand.
It was cheerleading tryouts.
Oh! Good. I’m glad you’re taking
that up again. Keep you out of
I’m not in trouble, mom.
No, not yet. I mean — you stopped
cheerleading right before the
trouble. So it’s good you’re going
She pulls a statue of a man halfway out of a crate, stops.
She puts it back.
What is it?
Fertility statue. You don’t need
to see it.
Buffy heads for the fridge. Looking in:
You know, this girl Amy trains with
her mom like three hours a day.
(closes the fridge)
Sounds like her mom’s really into
Sounds like her mom doesn’t have a
whole lot to do.
She exits, carrying a couple of pieces. Buffy watches her a moment, then looks down into the crate with the fertility statue. Her eyes go wide.
EXT. SUNNYDALE HIGH – DAY – ESTABLISHING
SENIOR CHEERLEADER (O.S.)
Despite the terrible thing that
INT. THE GYM – DAY
Cheerleader tryouts. Buffy, Amy, Cordelia (wearing pink headband) and ten or twelve others.
…we still have to pick new
cheerleaders. If you make the team,
you’ll find your name posted in the
Quad after lunch. Let’s begin with
group performance — Cordelia,
Buffy, Amy, Morgan, Janice and
LISHANNE is an attractive African American. The five girls walk to the center of the gym. Amy glares at her hands.
Why do my hands have to sweat when
I get nervous?
Don’t worry, you’ll do great.
MUSIC UP. The girls perform a group cheer (to be choreographed.)
It includes synchronized leaps, twirls and basketball cheer, ala:
We’re Sunnydale, Sunnydale
We Never Fail, Never Fail
Jump and Shoot, Swish and Score
The Other Team Is Such a Bore
Morgan is okay. Lishanne is great. Cordelia is surprisingly good, as is Buffy, still a little rusty but impressive.
Amy starts out well but tries too hard — misses a couple of synchronized moves — and, in the big finish (each girl doing a cartwheel and sliding to their knees one at a time) AMY’S HANDS slip on the
floor, and she careens into:
You saw that, right? That wasn’t
INT. GYM FOYER – MOMENTS LATER
Amy, in cheerleader outfit, depressed, stands before a big trophy display case (includes cheerleader trophies and photos).
Buffy, dressed for school, exits locker room, moves up. Looks at CHEERLEADER PHOTO. Under the photo, it reads: 1977 — TRI-COUNTY BEST.
That’s my mom.
Catherine Madison. Get down with
your bad self.
Her nickname was Catherine The
Great: she took that team and made
them tri-county champions, no one’s
ever done that before or since. She
and my dad were homecoming King and
Queen, got married right after
That’s kinda romantic.
Well… he was a big loser,
couldn’t make any money, took off
with Miss Trailer Trash when I was
Okay, that part’s less romantic.
My folks split up, too.
Drag, huh. He left my mom with
nothing. She put herself through
cosmetology school, bought me
everything I ever wanted and never
gained a single pound…
She sounds great, Amy, but that
doesn’t mean you have to, you know,
lock step as far as the
cheerleading thing —
Amy turns to Buffy, eyes filling.
It’s just, she was the best, and I
can’t get my body to move like
hers. I choked in there so bad.
Amy looks very sad and forlorn as Willow enters. She tries to put on a brave face, heads for the GIRLS’ LOCKER ROOM.
…I gotta get changed…
(to Amy’s departing back)
She’s wiggin’ about her mother…
…the big cheer queen back when.
Yeah. Her mom’s kinda…
Heil. If she gains an ounce she
padlocks the fridge and won’t eat
anything but broth.
So Mommie Dearest is really…
There’s a bitter streak — but
Amy’s nice. We used to hang in
Junior High. When her mom’d go on a
broth kick Amy’d come to my house
and we’d just stuff ourselves with
Any word on Amber?
(pulls paper from
Nothing thrilling. Average student
— got detention once for
smoking — regular smoking, with a
cigarette. Not being smoky. All
We’ll just have to see what happens
next. Maybe nothing will.
They head out.
INT. GIRLS’ LOCKER ROOM – DAY
MOVING CREEPY-CAM through the dimly lit room. Past the cold floors, the metal lockers…
Amy, alone, changes into her school clothes. Her movements are slow and tired. She rubs an aching shoulder — hears a NOISE, whips her head around. HER POV – The empty locker room. Spooky. A lone shower DRIPS.
She instinctively does up a couple of buttons on her blouse, as if to protect herself, turning slowly around in a circle — and suddenly
CORDELIA IS STANDING RIGHT NEXT TO HER
Amy jumps, frightened. Cordelia is perfectly dressed and coiffed. She holds the pink headband she wore during auditions. She speaks very quietly and in a chillingly kind voice, gesturing very close to Amy’s face with the headband.
I have a dream. It’s me on the
Cheerleading Squad, adored by every
Varsity male as far as the eye can
see. We have to achieve our dreams,
Amy, otherwise we wither and die.
Look, I’m sorry about —
Shhh. If your supreme klutziness
out there today takes me out of the
running you are going to be so very
beyond sorry. Have a nice day.
Cordelia hurls the headband into her own locker and SLAMS IT! She walks out — her locker swinging back open. Amy takes a breath, watching Cordelia’s departing back.
EXT. QUAD DAY
Kids mill about after lunch. Xander and Willow walk through them.
I told Buffy about Amber.
Cool. Was she wearing it?
(off her look)
The bracelet. She was wearing it,
right? That’s pretty much like
we’re going out.
Except without the hugging or
kissing or her knowing about it.
So now I’m a figure of fun. I
should just ask, right?
Won’t know till you ask.
See, this is why you’re cool.
You’re like a guy. You’re my guy
friend that knows about girl stuff.
Oh great. I’m a guy.
He sees the Senior Cheerleader moving towards the bulletin board, list in hand. Girls begin to gather.
Hey, they’re posting the list!
He bolts for:
EXT. QUAD – BULLETIN BOARD – DAY
A sizable crowd has gathered. The Senior Cheerleader posts the list and goes. Girls stand on tiptoe, push and poke, trying to see. Buffy and Amy are on the periphery as Xander and Willow move up. A GIRL IN TEARS breaks out of the crowd, runs off. Lishanne, reading the list, jumps up and down with some friends.
I can’t take this…
Buffy tries to wedge into the crowd but TWO CONTENDERS step right in front of her.
Spot me, I’m goin’ in.
Xander takes a little dive into the throng, works his way to the front where he finds himself nose to nose with Cordelia at the list. He lets her check it out first.
Women and children first.
ANGLE – EDGE OF THRONG
Cordelia emerges, triumphant.
I made it?
I made it.
Cordelia moves off; Xander, rubbing his arm, emerges from the throng.
One of those girls hit me really
hard — we have to start testing
for steroids —
(to Buffy and Amy)
— okay, not only did you make it,
but you, Miss Summers, are the
number one alternate and Amy’s the
Amy’s face falls, she turns and walks off.
Any what better way to celebrate
than with a romantic drive-through
for two at —
Xander, alternates are the ones who
didn’t make the team. They only
fill in if something happens to the
ones who did.
(moving after Amy)
For I am Xander, King of the
Cretins, and all lesser cretins
must bow before me.
ANGLE – AMY, TRYING TO CONTROL HER FEELINGS
As Buffy moves up.
At least it’s over. And you know
what I think we should do about it?
Brownie pig-out, my house, now.
How many more hours a day can I
practice? How much more can I do?
This would never have happened to
my mom. Never.
Amy takes off. Buffy watches her go.
EXT. AMY’S HOUSE – DAY
A Sunnydale two story, a little darker and foreboding than the others on the street. WE PUSH in on the house, moving up towards the attic window.
INT. AMY’S ATTIC – DAY
Creepy, dark and strange. Walls adorned with witch and warlock paraphernalia. Burning black candles.
The floor is dominated by a large hand-painted pentagram on top of which sits the classic black iron cauldron, hideous bubbling brew cooking inside.
A HAND ENTERS FRAME drops a serpent’s head into the brew. We don’t see the robed WITCH’S face but we (dimly) HEAR HER CHANTING.
…Lord of Darkness, Lord of
Night… accept they supplicant’s
The Witch moves to a ROW OF DOLLS neatly lined up on the wall. Pretty dolls, Barbie-types.
The hand picks up a brunette doll. The hand brings the doll to the cauldron. We now see CORDELIA’S PINK HEAD BAND in the Witch’s other hand. The CHANTING grows more intense as the pink headband is wrapped round and round the Cordelia doll’s face, tighter and tighter.
…reap thy vengeance with keen and
cruel might… send thy sudden
darkness out of darkest night.
And the hand drops the Cordelia doll in the brew. The pink headband soaks up the foul-colored liquid and the little doll sinks from sight.
END OF ACT ONE
INT. BUFFY’S KITCHEN – MORNING
Buffy is getting her books together. Joyce enters carrying an old yearbook.
Look what I found! It’s my old
yearbook, from junior year. Oh,
look, there I am.
Buffy looks for a second.
Mom, I accepted that you’ve had
sex. I’m not ready to know you’ve
had Farrah hair.
This is Gidget hair. Don’t they
teach you anything in history?
That’s cool. I gotta book —
Well I was thinking, I mean I know
the cheerleading thing didn’t work
out. Maybe you should think about
joining the yearbook staff. I did
it, and it was a lot of fun.
Not really my tip, mom.
I was photo editor. I got to be on
every page. Made me look much more
popular than I was.
Have you seen the kids who do
yearbook, mom? Nerds pick on
Some of the best times I had in
school were working on the
This just in: I’m not you. I’m
into my own thing.
Your own thing, whatever it is, got
you kicked out of school. And we
had to move here to find a decent
school that would take you.
Quite frankly, ouch. The sting hangs in the air before Buffy grabs her books and walks out.
Joyce stands there a moment, upset with herself.
Great parenting form. Little shaky
on the dismount…
EXT. SUNNYDALE HIGH – DAY – ESTABLISHING
INT. SCHOOL HALL – DAY
Cordelia, walking more slowly and regally than usual, passes Xander and Willow (pen in mouth).
Morning your Highness, beheadings
at noon as usual?
(to Willow, re:
Okay, see how she has now clue I’m
even a mammal, much less a human
This invisible man syndrome, a
blessing in Cordelia’s case, a
curse in Buffy’s.
You’re not invisible to Buffy.
Worse, I’m just part of the
scenery, like an old shoe, or a rug
you walk on every day but you never
really see —
(trying to be helpful)
— like a pen that’s all chewed up
and you know you should throw it
away but you don’t, not ’cause you
really like it that much but more
’cause you’re just so used to it
Will. That is the point and let’s
not drive it through my head like a
railroad spike. What I have do —
what I’m going to do — is just
what you said —
Throw away the pen, forget about
(tosses pen in trash)
What I have to do — what I’m going
to do — is be a man and ask her
out. No more i.d. bracelets, subtle
innuendo, or Polaroids outside her
bedroom window late at night —
that last is a joke to relieve the
tension because here she comes.
Buffy rounds a corner, heading their way.
I know I’m relieved.
Alright. Into battle I go. would
you ask her out for me? No. Man.
ANGLE – BUFFY
Passing Cordelia at her locker. Buffy sees Cordelia reach for her combination — her fingers miss it, find it. Buffy moves on, is intercepted by:
Buffy, how would you like to…
Is that even Cordelia’s locker?
Huh? I don’t know, what I’m saying
here is, accompany me Friday
Buffy, not really listening, sees Cordelia give up on the locker which won’t open for her, walk off.
Hang on, Xander, I have to… we
can pick this up later, you don’t
mind, do you?
As she turns and goes. He watches her. A small high-pitched sound builds slowly in the back of his throat — the sound of a plan going down, down, down.
EXT. CAMPUS – DAY
Cordelia, still moving more slowly than usual, makes her way across campus. Buffy exits a building fifty yards or so behind Cordelia. Follows her, concerned. EXT. DRIVER’S ED – DAY
Orange cones are set up in a little course on the blacktop. A DRIVER’S ED car, MR. POLE, the beleaguered TEACHER, two STUDENTS. Cordelia walks up.
Nice of you to join us Cordelia. We
didn’t keep you waiting or anything
did we? It’s your turn to drive.
Let’s buckle up, people.
Pole and students move to the car.
I don’t want to drive today, Mr.
Mr. Pole looks wildly uncomfortable for a beat, then:
You’ve flunked Driver’s Ed twice –
show me some moves or you’ll be
taking the bus to college.
Cordelia marches to the car, climbs behind the wheel.
ANGLE – BUFFY
Moving up, keeping an eye on Cordelia.
EXT.\INT. DRIVER’S ED CAR – DAY
Mr. Pole buckles up in the passenger seat.
Check your brake, your mirrors,
start the engine, put the car in
ANGLE – CORDELIA
Tight on her face, looking at the
GEAR SHIFT INDICATOR
It’s a big blur. This girl is having trouble seeing.
…let’ move forward and through
the cones in a gentle, even turn to
Cordelia puts the car in REVERSE, steps on the gas. The car jerks backwards, knocking into a pole.
Cordelia slams on the brakes, jams the car through every gear until she finds drive, hits the gas. The car SCREECHES forward.
Slow down, turn right, right,
Cordelia does as she’s told, yanking the wheel, stomping on the brakes.
Cordelia’s car launches into a nasty skid, right off the blacktop, onto the grass, careening out of control now towards the street.
Buffy starts running like hell.
Mr. Pole and the KIDS IN BACK SCREAM bloody murder.
EXT. STREET – DAY
Cordelia’s car skids into the street and stops. A car swerves around them, tires squealing, HORN BLARING.
Cordelia, Pole, the students scramble out. Mr. Pole and the students run. Cordelia looks around, completely disoriented.
Dark and murky, dimmest shape of a UPS size truck bearing down on her. She takes a step away, then another — in about five seconds she’s going to be hamburger.
Tears across the grass onto the sidewalk.
Screams, terrified, expecting the worst.
Hits its breaks, heading right at Cordelia.
Leaps on a parked car, using it as a booster to send her AIRBORNE.
BUFFY FLIES THROUGH THE AIR, TACKLES CORDELIA
Carrying her out of harm’s way as the truck screeches past.
CORDELIA AND BUFFY
On the ground.
What’s happening?!? I can’t see
Cordelia, it’s okay, you’re gonna
be — Oh, god…
Buffy looks at Cordelia whose EYES GLAZE OVER TO MURKY WHITE.
What’s happening to me!?!
INT. THE LIBRARY – DAY
CLOSE ON GILES
Witchcraft. Blinding your enemy to
disable and disorient them is a
ANGLE – Buffy, Xander, Willow. Giles holds a witchcraft text. We see AN ENGRAVING of SCARY WITCHES in SACRED CIRCLE in the woods.
First vampires, now witches… no
wonder you can still afford a house
Why would someone want to harm
Maybe because… they met her. Did
I say that?
Then why was Amber set ablaze?
Yeah, those guys don’t hang.
They’re both cheerleaders.
Someone doesn’t like cheerleading.
Or likes it too much.
So you guys are leaning towards
She’s desperate to get on that
team… I get the feeling she’d do
anything to make her mom’s dream
Now I do want to make sure I’ve got
this right. This witch is casting
horrible, disfiguring spells so
that she can be a cheerleader.
Your point being?
Priorities. Really, if I had the
power of the black mass I’d set my
sights a little higher than making
the pep squad.
I think you’re underestimating the
amount of pressure a parent can lay
on you. If you’re not a picture
perfect carbon copy they tend to
Cheerleading was kind of her mom’s
We still gotta stop Amy. We should
grab her before —
(flipping though text)
Let’s be certain she’s the witch
before we arouse her suspicions.
She’s capable of some fairly ugly
All right, you’re a high school
girl, you’re desperate to make the
team and please your mom, you turn
to witchcraft. What’s the first
thing you do?
check out the books on witchcraft!
Willow moves to the computer at check-out desk, scanning records.
That’s the last thing you do! You
don’t leave a paper trail. Forget
It’ll just take a minute —
We don’t have a minute.
Cheerleaders’ lives are in
danger — Buffy’s in danger. (grabs Buffy, tries to
hustle her out)
You were the first alternate. You’re on the team now that Cordelia’s out — you could be next, we have to get you to a safe house.
(sees something on
“Witches – Historic Roots to Modern Practice” checked out by Alexander Harris.
(moves to computer)
“The Pagan Rites”, checked out by Alexander —
All right, all right. It’s not
what you think.
You like to look at the semi-nude engravings?
Oh. Well, then it is what you think.
We’ll need a conclusive test anyway. There should be one – yes! The ducking stool. We throw her in
the pond. If she floats, she’s a witch; if she drowns, she’s
(off their looks)
… some of my texts are a bit outdated.
(looks in another book)
Ah! Yes. This should work.
You’ll need some of her hair, a little quicksilver and aqua fortis.
That’s just mercury and nitric acid, we can get it in the science lab.
“Heat ingredients and apply to
witch, if a spell has been cast in
previous forty-eight hours witch’s
skin will turn blue.” Oh, and
you’ll need some eye of newt.
SMASH CUT TO:
A FROG – INT. SCIENCE CLASS – DAY
His big ol’ eye looking up at us.
PULL BACK, revealing we are seeing this in a BIG MIRROR, mounted on the teacher’s desk in front of the class. The mirror is so the students can see what DR. GREGORY (kindly, older) is doing. willow, Xander, Buffy, Lishanne and Amy are part of the class.
Those on track one may begin their
dissections. Those on track two,
add your hydrochloric acid and
ammonium hydroxide to your
He demonstrates, we see it in the big mirror. Smoke and gas. He holds up the smoky beaker. ANGLE – WILLOW AND XANDER
At a large table. Xander holds a scalpel poised over a frog. He lowers the scalpel, then:
He puts the scalpel down. Willow takes it, makes (off camera) a quick neat incision.
One eye of newt…
Wow, you’ve got a killer streak
I’ve never seen before. Hope I
never cross you.
I do too, then I’d have to carve
you up in neat little pieces.
She holds up the scalpel, gives him her sweet “Willow” smile.
How’s Buffy coming with the hair?
Moving past Lishanne.
Isn’t this exciting?
Buffy reaches Amy at another big desk with Bunsen burner, beakers, etc.
Help. Which is the hydrochloric
acid and which is the ammonium
Well, the bottle that says
hydrochloric acid is usually the
Read the bottles — what a concept.
Buffy drops her pen, bends down to pick it up, as she does, her hand slips INSIDE AMY’S purse, grabs some hair off Amy’s brush.
ANGLE – BUFFY STRAIGHTENS UP
Amy’s looking at her — did she see the hair grab?
Buffy moves back to her seat (in front of Willow and Xander.) Keeping her back to them, she reaches back, drops the hair in front of Willow who adds it to a chemical mix on a Bunsen burner.
Amy glances at them.
(through his teeth)
Smile and wave to the nice witch.
Willow hands the beaker to Buffy.
All set. You have a plan?
Spill it on her, try and make it
We’ll be right behind you. Only
Buffy heads for Amy’s desk with beaker. As she does,
Lishanne, can you tell me why these
chemicals have this reaction?
Buffy casually spills a drops or two on Amy’s arm. Buffy looks at:
ANGLE – AMY’S ARM
The drops do turn blue, but we tilt up to see Amy’s eyes locked on someone else. ANGLE – LISHANNE
We see her from behind, starting to shake, to spaz out.
Lishanne? Are you — Oh my god.
She knocks a few beakers over as she stumblingly rises and turns, grabbing at the first thing she sees — which is Amy. Amy is brought face to face with Lishanne — WHO HAS NO MOUTH. Amy backs away, terrified by what she sees.
INT. HALL – MOMENTS LATER
Our three are clustered, conferring.
Did you see? Amy was as freaked
out as the rest of us.
So it’s not her?
The test was positive. She’s our
Sabrina. I just don’t think she
realizes what she’s doing.
Should we talk to her?
Maybe we should talk to her
mother. I wonder if she knows
what she’s created.
EXT. AMY’S HOUSE – DAY
Pushing in on the house as Amy enters frame, marches up and through the front door. INT. AMY’S HOUSE – DAY
Dark. Austere. Clean. Amy moves through, pissed. We haven’t seen her like this before.
Where are you?!
Amy finds her mother, CATHERINE MADISON, late thirties, very well preserved, sitting in the blue light of the T.V. Catherine quickly flicks the T.V. off, like a kid caught doing something wrong.
Another productive day in front of
the T.V. I got a history report due
tomorrow. Write it.
Amy hurls her book bag on the couch next to her mother.
I should be on that team by now.
Instead, Miss Buffy and friends are
sneaking around stealing bits of my
CLOSE – AMY’S HAND
As she angrily dangles something from it — the i.d. bracelet Xander gave Buffy. We’re close enough to read “Yours Always”.
I’ll be upstairs.
Amy wraps her fingers around Buffy’s bracelet, marches out.
END OF ACT TWO
INT. BUFFY’S BEDROOM – MORNING
We TRACK IN on Buffy sleeping.
ANGLE: ALARM CLOCK
It’s one of the old fashioned round ones with the bell, and it starts RINGING. Buffy lumps around under the cover, mewling in protest before she reaches for the clock.
She grabs it and casually CRUSHES it with her hand. Poles her head out from under the covers to look at what she has wrought.
INT. BUFFY’S KITCHEN A BIT LATER
Joyce is making breakfast. Buffy comes in in a really good mood.
(sings to herself)
MACHO MACHO MAN… Hey, juice.
She downs an entire glass in one sip.
Quality juice. Not from
You’re in a good mood.
I am. I’m on the squad. Which is
great because I feel like cheering.
And leading others to cheer. Hey,
She downs Joyce’s as well.
Listen honey, about yesterday…
That’s totally yester. Besides,
it’s not like you were wrong. I
did get kicked out. I’m wacky that
Still, I want you to know that
despite the problems you’ve had —
Mom, you don’t get it. Believe me,
you don’t want it. There’s just
things about being a vampire slayer
that the older generation has a
Long story. I mean I’m kidding.
Buffy, are you feeling well?
I can’t be in a good mood? That’s
a new house rule? Fine, I don’t
mind, cuz I’m a
MACHO MACHO MAN…
She sings her way out, leaving Joyce somewhat worried.
EXT. SUNNYDALE HIGH – DAY – ESTABLISHING
Turn up the music!
INT. THE GYM – DAY
The cheerleaders — Buffy, Senior Cheerleader and the rest practice. Buffy has a big, happy grin on her face, she’s workin’ this cheer — unfortunately she’s workin’ it completely out of sync with everyone else.
Buffy stomps on the Senior Cheerleader’s foot.
Ow! Get it together, Buffy, we have
a game in less than four hours.
ANGLE – DOOR
Willow and Xander slip in to watch.
Hey Willow, Xander! My buds are
here. I love my buds.
WILLOW AND XANDER
React to Buffy.
Is it me, or is Buffy somewhat
Each girl launches the one next to her into a spinning cartwheel. Buffy is launched. WILLOW AND XANDER
We better get her out of there.
Yeah, before she…
Buffy cartwheels to the Senior Cheerleader, grabs her and HURLS HER OUT OF FRAME like a flying sack of potatoes.
WILLOW AND XANDER WINCE
ANGLE – SENIOR CHEERLEADER
Splatted in the corner of the gym where she landed. She gets up, way more angry than hurt.
Did I do that?
You are so out of here!
Willow and Xander rush in, grab Buffy.
It’s not her fault —
She’s on medication —
Obviously not enough. Who’s our
next alternate — oh.
Amy is right there, in costume.
Amy, you just made cheerleader.
No no no, you don’t want her, she’s
Xander clamps a hand over Buffy’s mouth as Willow and he hustle her out.
A wise choice indeed.
As Amy stands, innocently joins the line,
INT. GYM FOYER: DAY
Willow and Xander drag Buffy out, shut the door.
She’s a witchy!!
I just got kicked off the team,
I don’t think it’s your fault.
I know you don’t. That’s cause
you’re my friend. You’re my
…do you have any idea why I love
you so, Xander?
We gotta get you to —
Let her speak!
I’ll tell you. You’re not like
other guys at all…
You are completely and totally one
of the girls. I’m that comfy with
Willow can’t help but look a little pleased; Xander looks like he just got cancer.
Any other guy gave me a bracelet,
they’d want to date me, it’d be a
thing, but you — you —
She staggers a bit.
Oh. I don’t feel so good.
She slumps over, pale and sweaty.
Something is really… not good…
She collapses in their arms.
INT. THE LIBRARY – GILES’ OFFICE – DAY
Buffy’s laid out in two easy chairs. A cold compress on her head. She’s conscious but very sick. Giles (ever present text in hand) Willow and Xander stand over her, concerned.
We gotta get her to a hospital.
They can’t help her. This is a
Bloodstone Vengeance Spell, hits
the body hard, like drinking a
quart of alcohol, then eradicates
the immune system.
Vengeance spell. Like she’s getting
even with Buffy?
‘Cause she knows I know she’s a
The others she just wanted out of
the running, you she intends to…
How much time do we have?
I’m sure we have —
Couple of hours, three at most.
So how do we reverse Buffy’s spell?
I’ve been researching that. We can
reverse all the spells if we can
get our hands on Amy’s spell
And if we can’t get our hands on
The only other way is to cut the
witch’s head off.
(raising his hand)
Show of hands…
No. It’s not Amy’s fault. She
became a witch to survive her
I don’t care why, I care that you
go on breathing.
Giles, where would she be casting
She needs a sacred space with a
pentagram, a large pot…
At home. Help me get up.
(Giles helps her up)
We’ll go to her house, find her
We’ll go with you.
No. Stay here, keep an eye on Amy.
And keep her away from the science
lab. We’ll need it to cast our
EXT. AMY’S HOUSE – AFTERNOON
Giles pulls up.
ANGLE: THE DOOR
He knocks loudly. Buffy peeks in the window by the door.
ANGLE: THROUGH THE WINDOW – AMY’S LIVING ROOM
We see Catherine start at the sound of knocking. She takes something we can’t see very well and slides it under the coffee table. Comes anxiously to the door.
It opens, and she stands before Buffy and Giles. It’s clear from the expression on Buffy’s face that this isn’t what she was expecting.
What do you want? Is there
Mrs. Madison, we need to talk to
you about your daughter.
I’m not allowed to — you’ll have
to come back.
she tries to shut the door — he pushes it open rather forcefully. He ushers Buffy in. CUT TO:
INT. AMY’S LIVING ROOM – CONTINUOUS
Giles moves Buffy to the couch, turns to Catherine.
Your daughter is up to something
very dangerous. Are you aware of
I don’t know what you’re talking
I think you know very well.
You have to go. She’s gonna be
This girl is very sick. You will
shut up and you will listen to me.
You daughter has access to some
very powerful magics. Somehow
your obsession with cheerleading has
made her —
I don’t care about cheerleading!
It’s not my fault she’s doing
Buff is staring intently at Catherine.
As her mother, you should accept
some responsibility for her
Surprisingly, she starts laughing.
Well, these kids today…
Buffy looks at her, then looks at what Amy hid under the table.
ANGLE: UNDER THE TABLE
is a plate of brownies.
Buffy stands, weakly.
She’s out of her mind. Ever since
You’re afraid of her.
She turns to look at Buffy, who approaches her slowly. Giles turns as well.
Catherine takes a step back, wide eyed.
Are you Amy?
I don’t understand…
She switched, didn’t she? She
switched your bodies. She wanted
to relive her glory days.
Catherine the Great.
Catherine nods, quietly.
She said I was wasting my youth…
So she took it.
END OF ACT THREE
INT. AMY’S LIVING ROOM – SECONDS LATER
Catherine has sat down on the couch next to Buffy. She is terrified and fighting back tears.
I didn’t know about her… her
power. When my dad was here they
would fight, he called her a witch.
I thought he meant something else.
When he left I wanted to go with
him but she wouldn’t even let me
call. She got crazy. She’d lock
herself upstairs for days. And
she’d get down on me all the time.
She said I didn’t deserve to have
it so easy, that I didn’t know how
hard it was to be her. I guess she
showed me, huh?
She does cry now, quietly. It takes all of Buffy’s effort to say:
Amy, it’s gonna be okay.
A few months ago I woke up in her
bed, I didn’t know where I was…
and I looked in the mirror…
She locked herself upstairs.
She has a room in the attic.
INT. AMY’S ATTIC – A BIT LATER
We see the dolls lined up in the foreground as in the background the DOOR BURSTS OPEN, Giles coming in behind it.
Catherine stays in the doorway, too afraid to enter as Giles comes up to the dolls.
If she finds out I’ve been in here
she’ll kill me.
ANGLE: TWO DOLLS
A woman and a girl. The dolls are lashed together with a thorny vine.
I believe we can reverse your
mother’s spell. All of them, in
You really could?
Yes, but I need her books. There
are certain volumes she would need
for this kind of casting.
He looks around. Tentatively, she enters, and helps. They rummage about in the dark recesses of the place, looking on shelves, under old blankets.
Giles discovers a small trunk. As he pulls it open he says to Catherine:
Collect those dolls, and all the
something LEAPS at him from the trunk, SCREECHING — a black cat. Giles jumps back as the cat hits the floor and takes off out of the room.
Giles takes a moment to recover himself.
(looking in the trunk)
What were you guarding? Yes…
He pulls out the book.
This is it.
INT. AMY’S LIVING ROOM – SECONDS LATER
Giles comes back down with the book, Catherine with the box of talismans.
Buffy is back on the couch. She looks ghastly, but she looks up to Giles with hope.
Did we find?
He gently helps her to her feet. He hands the book to Catherine and picks Buffy up.
Where are you going?
We’re going to school. And you’re
coming with us.
INT. THE GYM – EVENING
We hear students CHEERING as the school basketball team takes the floor.
The camera is in steady motion, following the team, sweeping across the stands, racing by the cheerleaders. The last one is Amy.
INT. SCIENCE LAB – EVENING
They enter, Giles placing Buffy in a chair as Catherine drops the box on a table. He squats before Buffy, looks her in the eyes.
I’m going to stop this.
ANGLE: BUFFY’S POV
the figure of Giles is a colorful BLUR. The room seems to teeter and shift around him, his VOICE a bizarre and deep echo.
I promise. Just hang on.
He stands up (we are no longer in her POV), digs in the box for the book.
How is she?
We only have a few minutes.
Giles pulls the book out of the box, starts looking through it.
Let’s see… I’ll need lead,
sulphur, some sort of diacetate…
He goes over to the glass cabinet with the chemicals in it. It’s locked. Casually, still looking down at the book for reference, he picks up a metal beaker and smashes the glass. He looks in and starts picking out vials of useful substances.
What should I do?
He turns to her.
Find me a frog.
INT. THE GYM – CONTINUOUS
The game has started, the kids in the stands CHEERING. The cheerleaders are on the sideline, doing steps.
Is right there with them, last on the left. She is beaming.
ANGLE: THE CROWD – AMY’S POV
They are a ROARING mass, an appreciative audience. A joyful noise.
And she moves in SLOW MOTION, the camera circling LOW around her, as she relives her greatest glory.
ANGLE: THE STANDS
The camera whips across the fans to find Xander and Willow up off to the side. They alone are silent, their eyes never leaving Amy.
INT. SCIENCE LAB – A BIT LATER
Giles has something bubbling in a beaker, a Bunsen burner under it.
Catherine is nearby, reluctantly prying out a dead frog’s eyes.
He throws in a powder, and begins:
The center is dark.
centrum est obscurus.
The darkness breathes.
The listener hears.
He throws in another powder.
INT. THE GYM – CONTINUOUS
Amy is still strutting in step, still basking in her glory.
ANGLE: AMY’S POV
The appreciative crowd is before us, and then suddenly it becomes
ANGLE: CATHERINE’S POV
the lab. A table. A frog.
It’s just a flash, and then it’s the audience again. Amy starts, wide eyed, and nearly messes up. CUT TO:
INT. SCIENCE LAB – CONTINUOUS
Catherine is reeling just as Amy was, shaking off the momentary change.
Unlock the gate, let the darkness
shine. Cover us with holy fear.
He barks the order again, “show me”, but this time in Arabic (waar re-nee).
The lights in the room blow out.
INT. THE GYM – CONTINUOUS
The cheerleaders are forming a pyramid, Amy at the top. She is up there when: ANGLE: CATHERINE’S POV
flashes before us again. This time it’s clearer; we can see Giles, and the whole room. Our gaze sweeps over to include the dying Buffy.
Amy SCREAMS — and falls, wrecking the whole pyramid. The girls tumble about, the fans LAUGHING a bit.
Amy, what’s your problem?
Amy stands, primal fury on her face. The cheerleader backs off.
Amy RUNS out of the gym.
ANGLE: XANDER AND WILLOW
They see her go.
She must be heading for Buffy!
INT. SCIENCE LAB – CONTINUOUS
ANGLE: BUFFY’S POV
Giles continues the spell, in Buffy’s increasingly weird, dark view. His voice is not even human to her anymore.
She is still reeling from the flashes. She looks up suddenly.
She’s heading this way.
INT. SCHOOL HALL – CONTINUOUS
Amy turns a corner and runs smack into a very casual Willow.
Get out of my way!
Wait! I needed to talk to you. I
can help you.
The look Amy gives her raises one’s hair.
Help me? With what?
Well, you know, all your…
witchcraft. I know a really
good… cauldron… do you actually
ride a broom or —
Xander is sneaking up behind Amy. She SPINS suddenly and glares at him. She mutters something under her breath and he stops, suddenly unable to breathe. Drops to his knees.
Amy turns and PUNCHES Willow, knocks her to the ground.
Amy takes off.
INT. SCIENCE LAB – CONTINUOUS
Things are really heating up in here. Giles holds his hands to the heavens:
Corsheth, and Gilail, the gate is
closed. Receive the dark, release
the unworthy… Take of mine
energy and be sated!
He PLUNGES HIS HANDS into the brew! Huge colored cloud shoots up.
INT. HALL OUTSIDE LAB – CONTINUOUS
Amy arrives, tries the door.
Catherine sees the door rattle, startles back in terror
Smashes the emergency glass and pulls out an axe.
Pulls his dripping hands out.
Be sated! Release the unworthy!
ANGLE: THE AXE
hits the door, burying itself above the lock.
Her eyes flutter shut, her head slumping over.
INT. SCIENCE LAB – CONTINUOUS
And the door BURSTS OPEN, An axe wielding Amy running in. She takes one quick look around, heads for Buffy —
Amy raises the axe — there is a flash of light —
–and she stops. Lowers it as
stands, completely restored. She and Amy look at each other in wonder.
And Catherine FLIES into frame, SCREAMING and tackling Buffy. The woman has gone completely apeshit. Giles comes at her and she just LOOKS up at him —
— and a desk MOVES at him, knocking him down.
Catherine stands, comes toward the cowering Amy. Nothing but hate in her gaze.
You. You little brat.
She is retreating, raising the axe more for protection than anything else. Catherine merely cocks her head and the axe FLIES out of Amy’s hand and into her own. Amy stifles a scream.
Raise a hand to your own mother?
Who gave you birth, who gave up her
life, her LIFE so you could drag
your worthless carcass around and
call it living?
She SLAMS the axe into a table top.
Amy looks from the axe to her mother.
ANGLE: CATHERINE’S HANDS
Something is happening — energy begins emanating from them — like sparks, only black. Something very powerful is brewing in her.
You were never anything but
trouble. I’ll put you where you’ll
never make trouble again.
Buffy appears right behind Catherine.
Hey, guess what?
I feel better.
ANGLE: Catherine flies over a table, hits the ground with all attendant smashing of glass things. Buffy comes around the table and Catherine pops back up, wired with fury.
That body was mine! Mine!
Oh, grow up.
Catherine throws her head back in a mystical shriek — and Buffy is flung back over the teacher’s desk. She rises to see Catherine shaking, about to cast the spell.
I shall look upon my enemy —
Her arms CRACKLE with energy — she opens her eyes and they are glowing darkly- she throws her arms forward with the final phrase —
— I shall look upon her and the
dark place will have her soul!
Corsheth! Take her!
And Buffy SWINGS her leg over the table and BREAKS the support for the mirror above — it comes down, hitting the table at an angle, still supported on the other side.
It’s too late for Catherine to stop. The spell shoots out of her arms at her own reflection. It bounces right back at her.
She SCREAMS. Glows. Energy singing around her, wrapping her up.
Then there’s nothing.
Giles, no longer pinned, gets up, creeps forward with Amy. Buffy comes from behind the desk. They all look around them, but they are alone. After a while…
Well, that was interesting.
Are you guys okay?
Buffy smiles at her.
I think all the spells were
reversed. Of course, it’s my first
casting, I may have got it wrong.
You save my life. You were a god.
One doesn’t want to be immodest,
but I am not unsatisfied —
Giles, stop being so proper.
You’re in America. Brag.
And they head for the door, Giles obliging:
Well, it was the first time and some of
those incantations are quite
tricky. And I was somewhat
interpretive with the
A FIGURE LEAPS OUT at Amy, tackles her.
I got her! I got her! Cut her
Xander, what are you doing?
Buffy pulls him off Amy.
But she’s evil!
Well, it wasn’t exactly her.
It was my mom.
It takes a moment for him to realize he has no idea what they’re talking about. Willow runs in now, carrying a baseball bat.
Where is she?
Willow! It’s cool.
Oh yeah. I took care of it.
INT. BUFFY’S BEDROOM – AFTERNOON
Buffy is throwing pieces of her alarm clock in the trash when Joyce enters.
I don’t get it.
I’ve been thinking a lot about
where you’re coming from, how to
relate to you, and I’ve come to a
simple conclusion. I don’t get it.
What you want, what you’re
thinking. Not a clue.
I’m inscrutable, huh?
You’re sixteen. I think there’s a
biological imperative whereby I
can’t understand you because I’m
Do you ever wish you could be?
There’s a frightful notion. Go
through all that again.
No even if it helped me understand
Buffy kisses her on the cheek —
I love you, mom.
— and exit, leaving Joyce thrown once more.
I don’t get it.
INT. HALL BY THE GYM – DAY (DAYS LATER)
Buffy and Amy are walking through the hall.
Dad is so impossible. He doesn’t
ever want me going anywhere, wants
to spend total quality time
I’m like, “Dad, I can go out, it’s
perfectly safe.” He’s got all this
guilt at leaving me with mom and
he’s being a total pain.
You’re loving it.
Every single minute.
Cordelia breezes by with the other cheerleaders as they get out of the gym. We see Amber and Lishanne — all recovered.
Hey, I’m really sorry you guys got
bumped back to alternate. Hold
it — wait — no I’m not.
Well, I know I’ll miss the
intellectual thrill of spelling
words out with my arms.
Ooh, these grapes are sour.
She exits, passing Buffy, who is staring at the trophy case. Amy looks to her, the smile leaving her face.
Oh, I’m sorry. I forgot you
actually wanted to be on the squad.
No, that’s okay. Cheerleading is
just a little too hairy these days.
That’s for sure.
For a moment they both look at Catherine’s trophy.
Catherine the Great.
And there’s been no sign of her?
That last spell, she said I’d never
make trouble again. Wherever she
is, I don’t think we have to worry.
I’m just happy to have my body
(as they walk off)
I’m thinking of getting fat.
Well, that look is in for spring.
As they leave, we stay on the trophy. TRACK in closer to the cheerleading figure on top. And closer, to the impassive bronze face.
Her eyes dart back and forth.
END OF SHOW
In every generation there is a Chosen One. She alone will stand against
the vampires, the demons and the forces of darkness. She is the Slayer.
Sunnydale High School. Cut to the library.
Giles: (upset) This is madness! What can you have been thinking? You
are the Slayer! Lives depend upon you! (begins pacing) I make allowances
for your youth, but I expect a certain amount of responsibility, and
instead of which you enslave yourself to this, this… (stops pacing)
Buffy: (wearing a cheerleader outfit) You don’t like the color?
Giles: I d… (exasperated) Do you, um… (puts some books on a cart)
Do you ignore everything I say as a, as a rule?
Buffy: No, I believe that’s your trick.
Giles pushes the cart to the counter. Buffy skips in front of him and
Buffy: I told you, I’m trying out for the cheerleading squad!
Giles: You have a sacred birthright, Buffy. You were chosen to destroy
vampires, not to… wave pompoms at people. And as the Watcher I forbid
it. (goes back to the table)
Buffy: And you’ll be stopping me how?
Giles: Well, I… (sits on the edge of the table and crosses his arms)
By appealing to your common sense, if such a creature exists.
Buffy: I will still have time to fight the forces of evil, okay? I just wanna have a life, I wanna do something normal. Something safe.
Cut to the witch’s attic. The camera moves through the dark space. There are flowers and herbs hanging upside down from the rafters to dry and personal items with identification tags. The witch moves around in the darkness. The camera follows her to the cauldron. She waves a pendant on a chain over the brew, then pulls it back. She goes over to a rack and yanks off a doll hanging there by its neck on a wire.
Cut to the gym. Cheerleader tryouts are about to start. Girls are stretching and practicing, doing back handsprings, cartwheels and walking handstands. One girl does a roundoff followed by a back handspring. Buffy, Willow and Xander come through the door.
Willow: Giles didn’t approve, huh?
Buffy: He totally lost his water. We haven’t seen a vampire in over a week. I’d say he should get a girlfriend if he wasn’t so old.
Willow: Well, we’re behind you.
Xander: People scoff at things like school spirit, but look at these girls giving their all like this!
He notices Amber doing the splits between two chairs.
Xander: Ooo, stretchy! Where was I?
Willow: You were pretending that seeing scantily clad girls in revealing postures was a spiritual experience.
Xander: Who said I was pretending? (to Buffy) Oh, hey! Here’s a good luck thing for tryouts. (hands her a bracelet)
Buffy: What’s this?
Willow: What’s that?
Buffy: Oh, how sweet! (reads the inscription) ‘Yours Always.’ Xander: I-i-it came that way, really, they all said that! Willow: (exhales)
Cordelia: (approaches them) Just look at that Amber. Who does she think she is, a Laker Girl?
Willow: I heard she turned them down.
Joy, the cheerleading squad leader, steps up with her clipboard and calls for everyone’s attention.
Joy: Okay, listen up! Let’s begin with (checks her clipboard) Amber Grove. If you’re not auditioning, move off the floor.
Willow: (to Amy) Amy! Hi!
Amy: (comes over) Hi!
Willow: I didn’t know you wanted to be a cheerleader! You lost a lot of weight.
Amy: Had to.
Willow: Do you know Buffy?
Amy: Oh, how I hate this, let me count the ways.
Amber begins her routine. It’s very athletic. She starts off with a needle-split lift followed by a double spin and a jumping double spin. After landing, Amber launches herself into an aerial and a cartwheel. Jazz slides are then followed by a single spin. Everyone in the gym is intent on watching her.
Amy: (to Buffy) She trained with Benson. He’s one of the best coaches money can buy.
Buffy: They have cheerleading coaches?
Amy: Oh, yeah! Don’t you have? I train with my mom, three hours in the morning, three at night.
Buffy: Hmm, that much quality time with my mom would probably lead to some quality matricide.
Amy: Oh, I know it’s hokey. But she’s really great.
Cordelia turns her back to Amber with a look of contempt on her face. Cordelia: Hmm!
Buffy and Xander watch Amber in amazement. Amy and Willow are impressed, too. Amber’s hands begin to smoke.
Buffy: What the…?
Willow: That girl’s on fire!
Cordelia: (facing away, not seeing the smoke) Enough of the hyperbole!
Amber’s hands catch fire. She drops her pompoms and screams. Buffy reacts. Amber flails her hands in the air. Buffy jumps up onto the stands and pulls down a banner. She runs back to Amber, knocks her down and snuffs out the flames with the banner. Everyone stares in shock.
Buffy: (trying to comfort Amber) It’s okay, it’s okay, you’re gonna be… okay. (to herself) God!
Opening credits roll. Buffy’s theme plays.
The library. Buffy is pacing. Willow and Xander are sitting at the study table.
Buffy: I’ve been slaying vampires for more than a year now, and I have seen some pretty cringeworthy things, but… nobody’s hands ever got toasted before.
Giles: (comes out of the cage) I imagine not.
Buffy: So, this isn’t a vampire problem.
Buffy: (turns to Giles) But it is funky, right? Not of the norm?
Giles: Quite. Spontaneous human combustion is, is rare, and, and scientifically unexplainable, but there have been cases for hundreds of years. Usually all that’s left is a pile of ashes.
Willow: That’s all that would have been left if it hadn’t been for Buffy.
Xander: So, we have no idea what caused this. That’s a comfort.
Giles: But that’s the thrill of living on the Hellmouth! (sits on the edge of the table) There’s a veritable cornucopia of, of fiends and devils and, and ghouls to engage. (everyone looks at him) Pardon me for finding the glass half full.
Buffy: Any common denominators in cases of spontaneous combustion?
Giles: Uh, rage. In most cases the person who combusted was, was terribly angry or, or upset.
Xander: So maybe Amber’s got this power to make herself be on fire. It’s like the human torch, only it hurts.
Buffy: I need to get the skinny on Amber. Find out if she’s had any colorful episodes before. (starts to go)
Willow: That means hacking illegally into the school’s computer system. At last, something I can do!
She and Xander get up and go over to Buffy.
Xander: I’ll ask around about her.
Buffy: You guys don’t have to get involved.
Xander: What d’ya mean? We’re a team! Aren’t we a team? Willow: Yeah! You’re the Slayer, and we’re, like, the Slayerettes! Buffy: I just don’t like putting you guys in danger.
Xander: Oh, huh, I laugh in the face of danger. Then I hide until it goes away.
Buffy: Okay, just walk softly, at least until we know a little more. I mean, what if Amber isn’t causing these problems herself?
Giles: Well, then we have to determine who or what did, and, uh, deal with it accordingly.
Cut to the kitchen at the Summers house. There are several wooden boxes and crates. Joyce is trying to pry one open with a crowbar. Buffy comes in.
Joyce: Hi, how was school?
Buffy: Mm, a reverent joy. What’s all this?
Joyce: It’s for the tribal art display.
Buffy: Cool! (examines a piece) We had tryouts today.
Joyce: Oh, great! How’d it go? (exhales)
Buffy: I didn’t actually get to try out. There was an accident. Pretty fierce competition, though.
Joyce: Oh, I know you’ll do fine. Keep on pluggin’, just have to get back on the horse.
Buffy: What was I trying out for?
Joyce: Oh, uh… (stops prying at the crate and looks at Buffy) Some activity? I have no idea, I’m sorry.
Buffy: That’s okay. Your platitudes are good for all occasions.
Joyce: (exhales) I’m distracted. (starts prying again and exhales) Got a lotta inventory to go through here. (exhales) This is my Gallery’s first major show. (exhales and gives up) You know, it might not physically kill you to give me a hand here. (goes to check her clipboard)
Buffy grabs the lid of the crate and effortlessly tears it off. Buffy: It was cheerleading.
Joyce: Oh good! I’m glad you’re taking that up again, it’ll keep you out of trouble.
Buffy: I’m not in trouble.
Joyce: No, not yet.
Buffy is hurt. Her mother looks up from her clipboard and notices.
Joyce: I mean, you stopped cheerleading just before the trouble, so it’s good you’re going back.
She goes back to the crate and partially lifts out a statue. Joyce: Oh, dear.
Joyce: The fertility statue, you don’t need to see it. She replaces the crate’s lid and goes back to her clipboard.
Buffy: Y’know, there’s this girl, Amy, and, um, she trains with her mom, like, three hours a day.
Buffy: Sounds like her mom’s pretty into it.
Joyce: Sounds like her mom doesn’t have a lot to do.
She walks out of the kitchen with a piece of art. Buffy lifts the crate’s lid a little bit and looks in.
Cut to the gym the next day. Tryouts have resumed.
Joy: (pacing) Despite the terrible thing that happened yesterday we still have to pick new cheerleaders. If you make the team you’ll find your names posted in the quad after lunch. Let’s begin with group performance.
Amy: (to Buffy) Why do my hands have to sweat when I get nervous? Buffy: (to Amy) Don’t worry. You’ll do great.
Joy: (loudly) Five, six, seven, eight!
All: Sunnydale! Sunnydale! We never fail! We never fail! Jump and Shoot! Swish and score! The other team is such a bore! Yeah!
Amy blows the cartwheel and crashes into Cordelia. Cordelia yelps as she falls and then quickly gets up.
Cordelia: You saw that, right? That wasn’t me! You saw that, right? (looks at Amy and back again) Right?
Cut to the halls. Amy is admiring the trophies in the case with a longing look. Buffy comes up next to her. Amy notices her, smiles and points to a picture in the case.
Amy: That’s my mom!
Buffy: No! (reads the inscription) Catherine Madison. Get down with your bad self!
Amy: Her nickname was ‘Catherine the Great’. She took that team and made them tri-county champions. Y’know, no one’s ever done that before, or since. She and my dad were Homecoming King and Queen. They got married right after graduation.
Buffy: That’s kinda romantic.
Amy: Well, he was a big loser. Never made any money. Ran off with Miss Trailer Trash when I was twelve.
Buffy: Okay, that part’s less romantic. My folks split up, too.
Amy: Drag, huh? Uh, he left my mom with nothing. She put herself through cosmetology school. (smiles) Bought me everything I ever wanted. (shakes her head) And never once gained a single pound.
Buffy: (walks around to face Amy) Uh, she sounds really great, Amy, but, um… it doesn’t mean that you need to lock step as far as this cheerleading thing.
Amy: She was the best! And I can’t get my body to move like hers! I choked in there so bad!
Buffy: No, Amy, you did fine.
Amy: (dejected) I’m gonna get changed.
Buffy: Wait! No…
Willow: (walking by) Hey, Amy! (comes over to Buffy) Is she okay?
Buffy: No, she’s, she’s wiggin’ about her mom, big cheer queen back when.
Willow: Yeah, her mom’s kinda…
Buffy: …Nazi like?
Willow: Heil. If she gains an ounce she padlocks the fridge and won’t eat anything but broth.
Buffy: So, mommy dearest is really… Mommy Dearest?
Willow: There’s a bitter streak. But Amy’s nice. We used to hang in Junior High. When her mom would go on a broth kick, Amy’d come over to my house and we’d stuff ourselves with brownies!
They start down the hall.
Buffy: Hey, any word on Amber?
Willow: Nothing thrilling. Average student. Got detention once, for smoking. Regular smoking… with a cigarette, not, like, being smoky.
Willow: All pretty normal.
Buffy: So we just have to wait and we’ll see what happens. Maybe nothing will.
Cut to the girls’ locker room. The camera shows the showers dripping. Cut to a row of lockers. The camera follows them around a corner to Amy alone at her locker. She hears a noise and turns to look. Nothing. The showers keep dripping. Amy closes her locker and starts to go, but is surprised by Cordelia.
Cordelia: I have a dream. It’s me on the cheerleading squad, adored by every varsity male as far as the eye can see! We have to achieve our dreams, Amy. Otherwise we… wither and die!
Amy: Look, I’m sorry about…
Cordelia: (cuts Amy off) Shhh! If your supreme klutziness out there today takes me out of the running, you’re gonna be so very beyond sorry! (smiles) Have a nice day.
Cordelia turns and leaves. She throws her scrunchie into an open locker and slams the door as she rounds the corner, but it doesn’t stay shut. Amy leans against her locker, apparently shaken.
Cut outside. Willow and Xander are walking along the colonnade. Willow: I told Buffy about Amber.
Xander: Cool! Was she wearin’ it? The bracelet, she was wearin’ it, right? Pretty much like we’re goin’ out.
Willow: Except without the hugging or kissing or her knowing about it.
Xander: So I’m just a figure of fun. (exhales) I should ask her out, right?
Willow: You won’t know till you ask.
Xander: That’s why you’re so cool! You’re like a guy! You’re my guy friend that knows about girl stuff!
Willow: Oh, great. I’m a guy.
Xander: Oh, hey, they’re posting the list!
He runs off to check the list of names for the cheerleading squad. Cut to the crowd in front of the bulletin board. Buffy and Amy are at the back. A girl rushes away in tears because her name is not on the list.
Amy: I can’t take this.
Joy steps away from posting the list on the bulletin board. Lishanne sees her name on the list.
Xander comes up behind Buffy and Amy.
Xander: Cover me, I’m goin’ in.
He pushes his way through the crowd and looks at the list. Cordelia comes out of the crowd.
Cordelia: (to Amy) You’re lucky!
Amy: I made it?
Cordelia: I made it!
Xander comes back out of the crowd and gets hit on the way.
Xander: One of those girls hit me really hard! You should test for steroids. Okay, not only did you make the team, but you, Miss Summers, are the first alternate, and Amy’s number three.
Amy looks at Buffy, badly disappointed, and leaves.
Xander: And what a better way to celebrate than with a romantic drive through…
Willow: Xander, alternates are the ones who didn’t make the team, they only fill in if something happens to the ones who did.
Buffy: Excuse me. (goes to console Amy)
Xander: (downtroden) For I am Xander, King of Cretins. May all lesser cretins bow before me.
Buffy: (catches up with Amy) At least it’s over. And you know what I think we should do about it? Brownie pig-out, my house, after school.
Amy: It’s just how many more hours a day can I practice? Y’know, how much more can I do? This would never happen to my mother. Never.
She walks off. Buffy stares after her.
Cut to Amy’s house. The camera closes in on the brickwork outside of the attic. Cut inside the attic. The camera pans from the wall across a bunch of tagged personal items that she’s taken from people. Cut to the cauldron. Amy stirs the pot.
Amy: Give me the power. Give me the dark.
She goes to get another doll from her rack.
Amy: I call on you, the laughing gods.
She yanks one of the dolls off of the rack.
Amy: Let your blackness crawl beneath my skin.
She wraps Cordelia’s scrunchie around the doll’s head.
Amy: Accept thy sacrifice… of Cordelia. Feed on her. She drops the doll into the brew.
The Summers kitchen. The toaster pops up, and Buffy pulls out a freshly toasted half of a bagel. She takes it to the island in the middle of the kitchen for more preparation. Her mother comes in.
Joyce: Look what I found. It’s my yearbook from junior year. (finds herself) Oh, look!
There I am.
She puts the book down on the island and goes to get a cup of coffee. Buffy looks at the picture.
Buffy: Mom, I’ve accepted that you’ve had sex. I am not ready to know that you had Farrah hair.
Joyce: This is Gidget hair. Don’t they teach you anything in history? Buffy: Well, it’s really cool, but I gotta book.
Joyce: Well, I was thinking. I know the cheerleading thing didn’t work out… Maybe you should think about joining the yearbook staff. I did, it was a lot of fun.
Buffy: Not really my tip, mom. (opens the refrigerator)
Joyce: I was, uh, photo editor. I got to be on every page, made me look much more popular than I was.
Buffy: And have you seen the kids that do yearbook? Nerds pick on them. (walks to her bag)
Joyce: (insulted) Some of the best times I had in school were working on the yearbook!
Buffy: (faces her mom) Oh, this just in: I’m not you! I’m into my own thing.
Joyce: Your own thing, whatever it is, got you kicked out of school, and we had to move here to find a decent school that would take you!
Buffy is hurt. She takes her bag and starts to go.
Joyce: Honey, uhhh… (Buffy leaves) (disgusted with herself) Uhhh! Great parenting form! Little shaky on the dismount.
Cut to the hall at school. Cordelia walks past Willow and Xander in a daze.
Xander: Cordelia, you haven’t been mean to me all day. Is it something I’ve done? (to Willow) Okay, see how she has no clue that I’m even a mammal, much less a human being?
Willow: (takes the pen from her mouth) I see that.
Xander: This is the invisible man syndrome. A blessing in Cordelia’s case. A curse in Buffy’s.
Willow: (closes her locker) You’re not invisible to Buffy. She chews on her pen some more as they start to walk down the hall.
Xander: It’s worse! I’m just like a part of the scenery, like an old shoe. Or a rug that you walk on every day but don’t even really see it.
Willow: (takes her pen out of her mouth) Like a pen that’s all chewed up, and you know you should throw it away, but you don’t, not ’cause you like it so much, more ’cause you’re just used to…
Xander: Will, yeah, that is the point, you don’t have to drive it through my head like a railroad spike. I’m gonna take your advice and not beat around the bush.
Willow: Or I could be wrong! Maybe you should beat around the bush more.
Xander: Nah, I gotta be a man and ask her out. Y’know, I gotta stop giving her ID bracelets, uh, subtle innuendoes, taking Polaroids outside of her bedroom window late at night, that last part is a joke to relieve the tension because here she comes.
Buffy comes out of a classroom and walks toward them.
Xander: Okay, into battle I go. (quickly turns to Willow) Would you ask her out for me?
He grabs her by the shoulders, startling her. Buffy sees Cordelia trying to work the combination on a locker. Xander pulls himself together.
Xander: No. Man. (lets go of Willow) Me battle. (to Buffy) Buffy! Would you like to, uh…
Buffy: (reaches Willow and Xander) Is that even Cordelia’s locker? They see Cordelia give up and continue down the hall.
Xander: Huh? Oh, I don’t know. What I’m saying is accompany me Friday night…
Buffy: (watching Cordelia go and cutting him off) Xander, I have to, um… (faces him) We can make this up later. You don’t mind, do you?
She gives him her book and follows Cordelia. Xander whistles the sound of a bomb falling and exploding. Willow looks at him and continues chewing on her pen.
Cut outside. Buffy comes out of the hall and looks around for Cordelia. She sees her and starts to follow. Cut to Mr. Pole, the Driver’s Ed. Teacher. He’s waiting impatiently for Cordelia. He turns and sees her coming.
Mr. Pole: Nice of you to join us, Cordelia. We didn’t keep you waiting or anything, did we? It’s your turn to drive. (to the others) Okay, people, let’s buckle up.
Cordelia: (goes around the front of the car) I don’t wanna drive today, Mr. Pole.
Mr. Pole: You’ve flunked Driver’s Ed. twice already. Show me some moves, or you’ll be taking the bus to college.
He gets into the car. Cordelia gets in last. Buffy watches from behind a school bus.
Mr. Pole: Okay. Check the brake. Check the mirror. Start the engine. Cordelia turns the key and the engine starts, but she seems out of it. Mr. Pole: Hello? Put the car in drive.
Cordelia struggles with the shifting lever.
Mr. Pole: Let’s move forward through the cones with a gentle even turn to the…
The car takes off backward, crashes into some signs and stops. Cordelia gets it in drive, and the car races forward, burning rubber.
Mr. Pole: Slow down. Slow, slow, turn right! Turn right!
Cordelia loses control as the car races along the course, knocking down cones and signs. Buffy begins running after them.
Mr. Pole: Brakes! Brakes!
The car crashes through a fence and bushes and careens out onto the street, where it comes to a sudden halt. Another car just manages to swerve around them.
Mr. Pole: Everybody out!
They all get out. Cordelia is in a daze, and she walks into the middle of the street. A delivery van is coming the other way, but it doesn’t slow down. Buffy comes running. Cordelia turns to see the van coming and screams. Buffy leaps over the Driver’s Ed. car and grabs Cordelia, pulling her down and out of the way. The van takes out the open car door as Buffy and Cordelia roll to a stop.
Cordelia: Oh, my God, I, I can’t see anything!
Buffy: It’s, it’s okay, it’s… (sees Cordelia’s eyes) Oh God! Cordelia: What’s happening? I can’t see anything!
Her eyes no longer have irises and are completely white. Cut to the library. The team is sitting at the table.
Giles: Witchcraft. Blinding your enemy to disorient and disable them is, it’s classic!
Xander: First vampires, now witches. No wonder you can still afford a house in Sunnydale.
Giles: Why should someone want to harm Cordelia?
Willow: Maybe because they met her? Did I say that?
Giles: And setting Amber ablaze?
Xander: Yeah, those guys don’t hang…
Buffy: They’re both cheerleaders.
Giles: Someone doesn’t like cheerleading.
Buffy: Or likes it too much.
Xander: So, you guys are leaning towards Amy?
Buffy: She’s desperate to get on that team, and I’ve got this feeling she’d do just about anything to make her mom’s dream come true.
Giles: Uh, let me make sure I have this right. This witch is casting horrible and disfiguring spells so that she can become a cheerleader?
Buffy: I think you’re underestimating the amount of pressure a parent can lay on you. If you’re not a picture perfect carbon copy they tend to wig.
Willow: Cheerleading was kind of her mom’s last hurrah. Xander: Look, we still have to stop Amy. We should grab her and…
Giles: (interrupts) I think we should be sure she’s the witch before we arouse her suspicions. She’s, she’s capable of some fairly unpleasant things.
Buffy: Okay, alright, (gets up) so, you’re in high school, you are desperate to make the team and please your mom, so you turn to witchcraft. What’s the first thing you’re gonna do?
Willow: Check out the books on witchcraft!
She and Buffy go over to the computer to access the on-line library card catalog.
Xander: Uh, no! No, that would be the last thing you would do! You don’t wanna leave a paper trail. Forget that!
Willow: It’ll just take a minute.
Xander gets up and stands behind them.
Xander: We don’t have a minute! Cheerleaders are in danger. Buffy’s in danger. (to Buffy) You were the first alternate, you are on the team now that Cordelia’s out. You could be next. We gotta get you to a safe house.
Willow: (exhales and reads the monitor) ‘Witches: Historic Roots to Modern Practice.’ Checked out by Alexander Harris.
Buffy: (reads also) ‘The Pagan Rites’, checked out by Alexander… Xander: Alright, alright, it’s not what you think.
Willow: You like to look at the semi-nude engravings?
Xander: Oh, well, uh, I-I guess it is what you think.
Giles: Have you all quite finished? We have to find a conclusive test. There may be something in here… (pages through a book) Yes, this
should do it. You’ll need some of her hair, a little quicksilver and some aqua fortis.
Willow: Well, that’s just mercury and nitric acid. You can get that in the science lab.
Giles: (reads) ‘Heat ingredients and apply to witch, and if a spell has been cast in the previous 48 hours, witch’s skin turns blue.’ Hmm. (shuts the book) Oh, and you’ll need some Eye of Newt.
Cut to science class. The camera shows Dr. Gregory holding a frog as reflected in a mirror propped up on a stick above him. It pans down to show him holding the frog up for the class to see.
Dr. Gregory: Those of you in track one may begin your dissections… now.
He indicates where the students should cut their frogs. Cut to Xander trying to take his frog’s eye out with tweezers.
Dr. Gregory: Those of you in track two (cut to him) take your hydrochloric acid and your ammonium hydroxide and carefully pour them into your beakers.
He begins to pour. Cut to Xander still struggling with the frog’s eye. Dr. Gregory: Now slow, slow…
Xander: I can’t.
Willow grabs the frog and takes out its eye.
Dr. Gregory: …capping one, I’m being safe. And you get… Willow: (drops the eye into the beaker) Eye of Newt!
Cut to Dr. Gregory. The ingredients in the beaker react and begin to bubble and smoke.
Dr. Gregory: …that.
Cut to Xander.
Xander: How’s Buffy doing with the hair?
They look toward Buffy. Cut to Lishanne at another lab table. Lishanne: (to Buffy) Isn’t this exciting!
Buffy: Oh, yeah! (to Amy) Amy, help me. Um, which is the hydrochloric acid and which is the, uh, ammonium hydroxide?
Amy: Well, the bottle that says ‘hydrochloric acid’ is usually the hydrochloric acid.
Buffy: Read the bottles. Good concept! (laughs nervously and drops her pencil) Oops.
She crouches down to pick up the pencil. She reaches into Amy’s bag and pulls some hair off of her brush. She gets up and tries to pretend nothing happened. She glances at Amy to gauge her reaction. Amy smiles back weakly. She noticed but pretends she didn’t. Buffy waves her pencil and smiles back. She heads back to her lab table with an expression of relief at having avoided a close call. She puts the hair on Willow’s bench as she walks by. Willow picks up the hair and mixes it into the
concoction. Amy looks back at them to see what they’re doing. Willow and Xander look back nervously.
Xander: (in a low voice) Wave ‘Hi’ to the nice little witch!
Amy overhears and gives them another quick look. Willow takes the beaker and pours some of the liquid into a test-tube.
Willow: All set. (hands the tube to Buffy) Do you have a plan? Buffy: Spill it on her. Try ‘n’ make it look natural.
Xander: We’re right behind you, only… further back.
Buffy slowly makes her way over to Amy.
Dr. Gregory: Lishanne, can you tell me why these chemicals have this reaction?
Buffy pours some of the mixture onto Amy’s arm and feigns an accident, drawing in her breath. She sees the liquid turn blue on contact.
Dr. Gregory: Lishanne?
Amy apparently didn’t notice the spill. She’s looking over at Lishanne. Dr. Gregory: Are you… Oh, my God!
Buffy looks over at Lishanne now, too, and sees her shaking her head violently. She turns to the camera, and everyone sees that she no longer has a mouth. Buffy stares in amazement. She looks back at Amy, who looks amazed, too. Willow and Xander are also stunned.
Cut to the halls. Buffy, Willow and Xander are discussing the result of their experiment.
Xander: Did you see? Amy was as freaked out as the rest of us. Willow: So it’s not her?
Buffy: The test was positive! She’s our Sabrina. I just don’t think she realizes what she’s doing.
Willow: Well, should we talk to her?
Buffy: Maybe we should talk to her mother. I wonder if she knows what she’s created.
Cut to Amy’s house. She walks through the gate with determination. The gate has a gargoyle face on it. Cut inside the house. She comes in and looks around for her mother.
Amy: Where are you?
Cut to Catherine. She quickly turns off the TV and gets up. Amy sees her.
Amy: Another productive day in front of the TV?
Catherine just looks back.
Amy: I got a history report due tomorrow. (drops her bag) Write it! Catherine can only keep looking and exhales.
Amy: (considers) I should be on that team by now. But instead Miss Buffy and friends are sneaking around stealing bits of my hair.
Catherine shakes her head. Amy opens her hand, and out drops Buffy’s bracelet.
Amy: I’ll be upstairs.
Catherine watches her go.
The next morning in Buffy’s room. It’s a bit of a mess. The camera pans through it and stops on Buffy still sleeping. The alarm clock goes off. She slaps it with her hand hard enough to smash it with her strength.
Buffy: Oh! Oops! Oh… (sits up) Mm…
Cut to the kitchen. Joyce is making fresh-squeezed orange juice. Buffy comes dancing in singing and wearing her cheerleader outfit.
Buffy: Macho, macho, man! I want to be a macho man. Macho… Oh, hey, juice! (grabs the glass and drinks) Mm… Quality juice. Not from concentrate!
Joyce: (glances at Buffy) You’re in a good mood.
Buffy: I am! I’m on the squad, which is great, ’cause I feel like cheering and leading others to cheer. Ooo, hey, juice!
Buffy takes the second glass and drinks again.
Joyce: Listen, honey, about yesterday, I really…
Buffy: Mm! That is totally yester. Besides, it’s not like you were wrong, y’know. I did get kicked outta school. I’m just wacky that way!
Joyce: Still, I just want you to know that, despite the problems you’ve had, I really…
Buffy: (cuts her off) Mom, you just don’t get it. And, believe me, you don’t want it. Y’know, there are just some things about being a Vampire Slayer that the older generation…
Joyce: A what?
Buffy: It’s a… long story.
Joyce: Buffy, are you feeling well?
Buffy: What? Oh, I’m, I’m fine, y’know? What, like, I can’t be in a good mood? Is it, like, a new house rule? Fine, y’know? It’s just fine, fine, fine, ’cause… (sings) I’m a macho, macho man! I want to be a macho man! (bobs her head) Macho, macho man! (leaves the kitchen) I want to be a macho man!
Cut to the gym for cheerleading practice. Buffy is positioned next to Joy in the lineup.
Joy: (loudly) Five, six, seven, eight!
The cheerleaders begin practicing a routine.
Buffy: Turn up the music!
The routine continues until Buffy accidentally stomps on Joy’s foot.
Joy: (yells) Ow! Get it together Buffy! We have a game in less than four hours!
Xander and Willow come in.
Buffy: (jumping gleefully) Willow! Xander! My buds are here! I love my buds! Hi! (notices everyone staring) Hi… Oh…
She gets back in line, and the routine continues.
Xander: (to Willow) Is it me, or is Buffy a bit looped?
Willow casts a worried gaze. The cheerleaders continue with a series of assisted cartwheels.
Willow: We better get her outta there.
Xander: Yeah, before she…
Buffy overthrows Joy’s aerial, sending her crashing into the gym wall. Xander: …hurts someone. Ay…
Joy gets up as Buffy comes running over.
Buffy: Did I do that?
Joy: (pushes Buffy) You are so out of here!
Willow and Xander come running up and each grab one of Buffy’s arms. Willow: It’s not her fault!
Xander: She’s on medication.
Buffy: (to Xander) What?
Joy: Well, obviously not enough. Who’s our next alternate? (sees Amy behind her) Oh. Amy, you just made cheerleader.
Buffy: No, no, no. You don’t want her, she’s a wi…
Xander quickly puts his hand over Buffy’s mouth.
Xander: A wise choice indeed!
He and Willow pull Buffy away, nodding and casting nervous smiles at Amy and Joy. Amy stares after them.
Cut to the hall outside the gym. Willow and Xander are supporting Buffy between them as they come down the hall.
Buffy: She’s a witchy!
Buffy: I just got kicked off the team, didn’t I?
Xander: I don’t think it was your fault.
Buffy: Hmm, I know you don’t, that’s ’cause you’re my friend. You’re my Xander-shaped friend! (leans her head on his shoulder) Do you have any idea why I love you so, Xander?
Willow: We gotta to get her to a…
Xander: (stops Willow with a gesture) Let her speak!
Buffy: I’ll tell you! You’re not like other boys at all. Xander: Well…
Buffy: You are totally, and completely one of the girls! (to Willow) I’m that comfy with him.
Willow smiles widely.
Xander: That’s great.
Buffy: Any other guy who’d give me a bracelet, they’d… wanna date me, and be like a…
She begins to feel woozy.
Buffy: Oh! I, I don’t feel so good.
Buffy collapses into their arms.
Cut to the library. Buffy is lying back in a chair with a wet cloth on her forehead. Willow supports her head and keeps the cloth in place with her hand.
Willow: We’ve gotta get her to a hospital!
Giles: They can’t help her. This is a bloodstone vengeance spell. (takes her pulse) Hits the body hard like a, a quart of alcohol, and then it e-eradicates the, uh, immune system.
Xander: A vengeance spell, like she’s trying to get even with Buffy? Buffy: ‘Cause she knows I know she’s a witch.
Giles: The others she just wanted out of the running. You she intends to, um…
Willow: How much time do we have?
Giles: Oh, uh, I’m sure, uh…
Buffy: Truth. Please.
Giles: Couple of hours… Three at most.
Xander: Well, how do we reverse the spell?
Giles: (gets up) Well I, I’ve been researching that, and, uh, we can reverse all the spells if, um… (takes off his glasses and rubs his eyes) …we can just lay our hands on, on Amy’s spell book.
Willow: And if we can’t get a hold of it?
Giles: Well, the other way is to cut the witch’s head off. (puts his glasses back on)
Xander: Show of hands! (raises his hand)
Buffy: It’s not Amy’s fault. She only became a witch to survive her mother.
Xander: (to Buffy) Look, I don’t care why, I just care that you go on breathing.
Buffy: Giles, where would she be casting these spells? Giles: Oh, she needs a, a sacred space. A-a-a pentagram, um, large pot. Buffy: Her home. Okay. Help me up.
Xander and Willow help her up.
Buffy: We’ll just go to her house and we’ll get her book. Willow: Okay, we’ll go with you.
Buffy: Uh, no! You guys stay here and keep an eye on Amy.
Giles: (takes Buffy from them) And keep her away from the science lab. We’ll need it to cast our counter-spells.
He and Buffy go. Willow and Xander exchange worried looks. Xander exhales.
Cut to Giles’ old car pulling up to Amy’s house. Cut inside. Catherine has a plate of brownies on her lap and takes a bite out of one. Giles knocks on the door. She looks up, startled. Giles knocks some more. Buffy looks very tired and out of it. Catherine slides the plate under the coffee table and gets up. Giles knocks again. Catherine opens the door.
Catherine: Who are you? Wha, um, uh, is there something wrong? Giles: Mrs. Madison, we need to talk to you about your daughter. Catherine: I’m not allow… You’ll have to come back later.
She tries to close the door, but Giles prevents her and pushes his way in.
Giles: Excuse me!
Giles: (turns to help Buffy) You alright? (looks for a place to sit her down) Um, in here. (leads Buffy into the living room) (to Catherine) Your daughter is meddling with something very dangerous, are you aware of that? (sits Buffy on the couch)
Catherine: Uh, I don’t know what you’re talking about. Giles: Oh, I think you know only too well.
Catherine: You’ve got to go. She’s gonna be home soon, and you…
Giles: (interrupts, indicating Buffy) This girl is very sick. (very angrily) Now you will shut up and you will listen to me! Your daughter has access to some very powerful magicks, and somehow your obsession with cheerleading has made…
Catherine: (interrupts, incredulous) I don’t care about cheerleading!
It’s not my fault she’s doing stuff.
Buffy sees the brownies and begins to realize who Catherine really is.
Giles: As her mother you should assume some responsibility for her actions.
Catherine: (laughs) Well, you know, these kids today! I… (calms down a bit) She’s out of her mind. Ever since dad, her dad… left I can’t control her.
Buffy slowly gets up.
Giles: You’re afraid of her?
Catherine looks at Buffy and realizes she’s been found out. Giles looks at Buffy, still puzzled.
Buffy: Are you Amy?
Giles: (looks back at Catherine) I don’t understand.
Buffy: She switched! She switched your bodies, didn’t she? Catherine looks down, defeated.
Giles: (the truth dawns on him) Good Lord!
Buffy: She wanted to relive her glory days.
Catherine: (looks back up) She said I was wasting my youth. So she took it.
The living room at Amy’s house. The camera pans to them sitting on the couch.
Catherine: (distraught) I didn’t know anything about her powers. I mean, when dad was here they would fight and yell and he would… call her a witch and… I mean, I would, just thought he meant… Oh, God, when he left I wanted to go with him. But she wouldn’t even let me call. She went crazy, I mean, she’d lock herself upstairs for days, and she was always coming down on me, telling me I didn’t deserve to have it so easy, and that I didn’t know… how hard it was to be her, and… I guess she showed me, huh?
Buffy: (takes her hand) Amy, it’s gonna be okay.
Catherine: A few months ago, I woke up in h… her bed! I didn’t know where I was, and… then I looked in the mirror…
Giles: She locked herself upstairs?
Cut to the attic. Giles breaks in the door, comes in and starts to look around. Catherine comes in after him.
Catherine: (tries to stop him) Don’t! If she finds out I’ve been here she’ll kill me!
Giles walks around the cauldron to the rack with the hanging dolls. He sees the two dolls bound together for the body-switching spell and takes them in his hand.
Giles: My God! (exhales) I believe we can reverse your mother’s spell. Well, all of them, in fact. (lets go of the dolls)
Catherine: You could? Really, you could?
Giles: We need to find her books. There’d be specific volumes she’d need for this kind of casting.
He begins to look around some more. He finds a trunk and knocks off the things on top.
Giles: Collect those dolls, and, uh, any other personal effects…
As he starts to open the trunk, a black cat jumps at him and surprises him.
Giles: Ah! Nice kitty… (calms down) Let’s see what you were guarding. (opens the trunk) Ah, yes! (takes out a book) This is it.
Cut to Giles and Catherine coming back down the stairs and going into the living room.
Buffy: Did we find?
Giles: We found. Come on.
He helps Buffy up from the couch. She’s gotten weaker.
Catherine: But where are you going?
Giles: We’re going to school.
He realizes Buffy is too weak to walk and picks her up in his arms. Giles: And you’re coming with us.
Cut to the gym. The Sunnydale High basketball team comes through the doors and runs onto the court. The camera pans across the court, then back and across the cheerleaders, stopping on Amy. Amy’s clearly very happy to be there. Cut to Xander and Willow in the stands, watching Amy.
Cut to the science classroom. Giles carries Buffy in and lays her down on a lab table, knocking everything off of it in the process. He takes off his coat.
Giles: (to Buffy) I’m gonna stop this. I promise.
Buffy looks up at him. He folds his coat and puts it under her head as a pillow. Her vision is blurred.
Giles: You just hang on.
Buffy moans. Giles goes to the box of books and other things Catherine has set on Dr. Gregory’s bench and reaches in to get Amy’s spell book.
Catherine: (concerned) How is she?
Giles: We only have a few minutes left.
Cut to the gym and the cheerleaders.
Cheerleaders: Go, Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go! Six, seven, eight! Go Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go! Six, seven, eight! Go Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go! Six, seven, eight! Go Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go, Sunnydale go! Go! (yells from the cheerleaders)
The camera focuses on Amy in slow motion. Cut to a slow pan across the crowd. Cut to Amy with a smile on her face.
Cut to the science classroom. Catherine is cutting an eye from a frog, and is squeamish about it.
Giles: Right! Here we go!
Cut to Buffy. She’s getting weaker. Cut back to Giles. He recites as he mixes a potion.
Giles: The center is dark. Centrum est obscurus. The darkness breathes. Tenebrae respiratis. The listener hears. Hear me!
Cut to the gym. The cheerleaders are doing a counting chant. The camera focuses on Amy. She stops chanting and looks startled. Her vision flashes to what Catherine sees in the science lab, the book and the frog. She’s back in the gym and takes up the count again, but has a worried look on her face. Cut back to the lab.
Catherine: Oh, it’s… it’s working!
Giles takes the book up from the table and reads.
Giles: Unlock the gate. Let the darkness shine. Cover us with holy fear.
Catherine staggers back and covers her face.
Giles: Show me…
The lights go out in the classroom.
Cut to the gym. Some of the cheerleaders are lifting Amy. Once up, she thrusts her fists into the air and gives the crowd a big smile. Her smile fades as she has another flash to the lab, where she gets a glimpse of Buffy. She comes back to the gym and begins to lose her balance. Xander and Willow watch. The cheerleaders supporting Amy struggle for control, but they collapse. The crowd reacts to the fall. Xander and Willow see everything, too. Cut back to Amy.
Joy: Amy, what’s your problem?
Amy shoots her a dirty look. Joy is taken aback. Amy gets up, looks around and runs from the gym. Cut to the lab.
Catherine: She’s coming!
Giles looks worried.
Cut to the halls. Amy violently pushes open a door. Willow stops her. Willow: Amy!
Amy: Get out of my way!
Willow: W-wait! I-I-I need to talk to you, I-I can help you.
Amy: Help me? With what?
Willow: Uh, well, y’know, all your witchcraft! I, I know this really good cauldron.
Xander sneaks up behind Amy.
Willow: Do you actually ride a broom?
Amy twists around, growls and holds out her hand like she’s grabbing Xander’s neck. His hand goes to his throat. Amy makes a fist and twists it. Xander collapses to the floor, choking.
Amy spins back around and punches Willow hard in the face, knocking her to the floor. She starts running to the lab.
Cut to the lab. Giles is holding up his arms and chanting.
Giles: Corsheth and Gilail! The gate is closed! Receive the dark! Release the unworthy! Take of mine energy and be sated!
He plunges his hands into the mixture he’s concocted.
Cut to the halls. Amy slams through another door and continues walking to the lab with a determined look on her face. She tries the door, but it’s locked. She yanks at it. Cut inside. Giles takes his hands out of the brew. Catherine looks at the door and sees it’s being yanked on.
Giles: Be sated! Release the unworthy!
Cut back to the hall. Amy stops yanking at the door and finds a fire axe in a glass case. She breaks the glass with her fist and takes out the axe. Cut inside to Buffy. She can’t keep her eyes open and is just rolling her head slowly.
Amy begins to chop down the door.
Buffy lies prone. Amy has made a hole, reaches through and gets the door open. She marches in, axe in hand, straight over to Buffy.
Amy starts to wield the axe, but stops when there’s a flash of light and the spells are all broken. She is herself again. She looks around, a bit confused, steps back and lowers the axe. Buffy has her strength back and gets up from the table. Giles sees that she is okay.
Catherine lunges at Buffy from the side and tackles her to the floor, knocking her out. Giles advances, holding his arm out and pointing.
Giles: You… you…
Catherine growls and looks at him. She uses her powers to force him back and push a table against him, knocking him down and out. Amy just stands there watching, still holding the axe in both hands. Catherine gets up
and confronts her.
Catherine: You! You little brat!
Amy: (holds the axe threateningly) Mom! Please!
Catherine holds out her hand, and the axe flies from Amy’s hands to hers.
Catherine: How dare you raise your hand to your mother! I gave you birth. I gave up my life so you could drag that worthless carcass around and call it living? (swings the axe into a lab table) You’ve never been anything but trouble. I’m going to put you where you can’t make trouble again!
Buffy: (jumps up behind Catherine) Guess what?
Catherine turns to face her.
Buffy: I feel better!
She punches Catherine, and she flies through the air, lands on a lab table and rolls off, hitting a shelf full of bottles along the way. She quickly gets up.
Catherine: That body was mine! Mine!
Buffy: Oh, grow up!
Catherine growls, holds her arm out toward Buffy and uses her powers to send her flying against the wall. Buffy hits the wall and falls to the floor. She gets up, craning her neck. Catherine begins to cast a spell.
Catherine: I shall look upon my enemy!
She looks up at Buffy, and her eyes have become pitch black. Catherine: I shall look upon her and the dark place will have her soul!
Buffy looks around for a way to stop her. She sees the pole holding up the mirror above her.
Catherine: Corsheth, take her!
Buffy does a standing hook kick, knocking the pole out from under the mirror and letting it flop down. Catherine’s spell leaps from her hands and is reflected by the mirror back at her. The power of the spell envelops her as she screams. The energy twists around her and disappears with a roar, taking her with it.
Buffy surveys the scene. Amy is badly shaken. Buffy sees Giles unconscious on the floor. He wakes up.
Giles: Well, that was, um, interesting.
Buffy gives him her hand and helps him up.
Buffy: You guys okay?
Amy: I’m fine!
Giles: I assume the, uh, all the spells are reversed. It was my first casting, so… (inhales) I may have got it wrong.
Buffy: You saved my life! You were a god!
Amy: Well, I didn’t think you’d pull it off.
Suddenly Xander comes rushing in and grabs Amy tightly. Xander: I got her! I got her! Cut her head off!
Buffy: Xander, what are you doing?
Xander: Saving you?
Buffy: Get your hands off of her.
Xander: But she’s evil.
Giles: It wasn’t exactly her.
Amy: I was my mom.
Xander: Oh! (releases her)
Now Willow comes running in, too, wielding a bat.
Willow: Where is she?!
Xander: Uh, hey Willow! It’s cool!
Willow: It is?
Xander: Yeah, I took care of it.
They all just look at each other.
Cut to Buffy’s room. She scoops her smashed alarm clock into a wastebasket. Her mother comes in.
Joyce: I don’t get it.
Joyce: I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about… where you’re coming from, how to relate to you… and I’ve come to a very simple conclusion: I don’t get it.
Buffy: I’m inscrutable, huh?
Joyce: You’re sixteen. I think there’s a, a biological imperative whereby I can’t understand you because I’m not sixteen.
Buffy: Do you ever wish you could be sixteen again?
Joyce: Oh, that’s a frightful notion. (exhales) Go through all that again? Not even if it helped me understand you.
She smiles at her daughter, and Buffy smiles back.
Buffy: I love you, mom.
She jumps up and kisses her mom on the cheek, then runs from the room. Joyce: I don’t get it!
Cut to the school halls. Buffy and Amy are walking together. Amy: My dad is so impossible! He doesn’t ever want me going anywhere!
He wants to spend total quantity time together. And I’m, like, ‘Dad, I can go out, it’s perfectly safe!’ But he’s got all this guilt about leaving me with my mom. And he’s being a total pain.
Buffy: You’re loving it.
Amy: Every single minute.
Cut to another part of the hall.
Amy: This Saturday night he wants to stay in and make brownies. Well, the brownies were my idea.
Cordelia: (comes up behind them) Hey, I’m really sorry you guys got bumped back to alternate. (reconsiders) Hold it, wait… No I’m not!
Amy: Well, I know that I’ll miss the intellectual thrill of spelling out words with my arms.
Cordelia: Ooo, these grapes are sour!
Buffy and Amy stop at the trophy case while Cordelia continues on.
Amy: (to Buffy) Oh, I’m sorry. I forgot that you wanted to be on the squad.
Buffy: Oh, hey, that’s okay. Cheerleading’s just a little too hairy for me these days.
Amy: (takes a breath) That’s for sure.
They go around to the front of the case and look at Catherine’s picture. Amy: Catherine the Great.
Buffy: And there’s been no sign of her?
Amy: That last spell… She said I’d never make trouble again. Wherever she is I don’t think we’ll have to worry.
They both look at Catherine’s cheerleading trophy.
They turn and go.
Amy: I’m just happy to have my body back. I’m thinking of getting fat. Buffy: Y’know, I hear that look’s in for spring.
The camera closes in on the cheerleading trophy. Catherine’s eyes are looking out and she’s making muffled noises.