Categories: Season 7
, Episode RewriteCharacters:
I hate that mutiny in S7 so much… so please bear with me while I have a rant. Sorry it’s so long. I trimmed it as much as I could!
Checking back, I see that it was actually Faith who first questioned Buffy’s judgement when she wanted to go back to the vineyard to find whatever Caleb was protecting. To my way of thinking, she is the only person who had the right to question Buffy’s decision, since she was also a slayer, even though she was out of training and had a less than stellar history both with her attitude to her Calling and with Buffy.
If she’d had any leadership skills whatsoever, she should have known to bring up her concerns in private, between equals. That failing is a very telling indication of her inexperience.
Wood instantly jumped in to support Faith’s protest. He has the excuse of being infatuated with Faith, being disillusioned with Buffy because of Spike, and not knowing any better.
But Pod!Giles was next. He’d been totally unsupportive of Buffy since her resurrection, and even deliberately acted against her since he arrived out of the blue with the first batch of potentials and told her it was All Up To Her. He constantly undermined her authority, questioned her judgement and thereby weakened her self-confidence.
When he added the weight of his watcherness to the rebellion, IMHO, that’s what gave the potentials, and then Willow, Xander and Anya the implicit licence to add their whiny complaints.
I like to think that Dawn only joined in because everyone else’s contributions convinced her that just this once, Buffy had to be wrong. Plus she was terrified of Buffy dying and leaving her again which everyone had implied would happen if they went back to the vinyard.
Apart from Buffy and Dawn, the only person among those present who had the right to be staying in the house was Willow. Of course Spike and the guestage, who also did, are notably absent.
Everyone else has just barged in uninvited. Giles brought the potentials and dumped them for Buffy to protect, and then Xander & Anya just kinda stayed despite having apartments of their own to go to.
Rant over… On to the actual challenge.
When Dawn says: Then you can't stay here. Buffy, I love you, but you were right. We have to be together on this. You can't be a part of it. So I need you to leave. I'm sorry, but this is my house, too.
Buffy has an epiphany and remembers that actually this is her house. She is the adult whose name is on the deeds, and Dawn is a minor for whom she is totally responsible until she comes of age and gains access to her share of Joyce’s estate. Dawn has to go where Buffy goes. Since it would be far too foolhardy and dangerous to take Dawn out into the deserted town with Caleb and all the Bringers, not to mention all the other baddies, Buffy decides that she has no alternative but to stay to protect her.
Her determination to do this overrides her guilt about what happened at the vineyard, and gives her a much-needed reality check. She recovers from her shock at the way her friends and watcher have betrayed her, and regains her Take-Charge-Slayer confidence.
She announces her decision to the room at large, then tells them that anyone who is still willing to follow her lead and fight alongside her is welcome to stay.
Those who no longer wish to follow her leadership, or trust her to protect them, have to get out of her way. They should go and find somewhere else to stay, and choose someone else to lead them. From now on, they’ll have to rely on that person to protect them, to feed and clothe them.
Meanwhile, Buffy will follow her Calling—emphasis on the fact that it’s not a mere job; it’s a Calling—and save the world.
She was Chosen for that very purpose. Apart from Faith, they weren’t, and it’s unlikely that any of the small number of potentials present ever will be. Buffy couldn’t walk away from it even when she wanted to, and now she doesn’t want to.
Up to you how Buffy’s ultimatum is received, but Buffy must stand her ground against any and all protests.
Of course, Dawn must stay, but it’s up to you who else stays, and who leaves.
Those who stay should end up being solidly supportive.
When Spike & the guestage return, they naturally stand with Buffy.
Please complete the season your own way from this point.
If you can find a way to do it without doing that (IMHO) insane ‘let’s make all the potentials into slayers’ spell, all the better.
Naturally I’d like a ‘Spuffily ever after’ ending, please.
Again, sorry this turned out so long.