Synopsis of Him
The next episode starts with Spike moving in to Xander's apartment at Buffy's request. Xander "hates this plan" and worries that Spike might attack Buffy again regardless of whether or not he has a soul. Xander has modified a large closet to be Spike's room. Buffy points out that Spike is already "not so much with the crazy". The next day, Buffy and Dawn sit on bleachers outside the school. Dawn asks if Buffy loves Spike. Buffy says no, but she does "feel for him". Dawn points out that Xander had a soul when he left Anya at the altar. Dawn thinks people in general put too much time into their relationships. Buffy returns to her office. Dawn looks up and sees a guy on the football field wearing a letterman's jacket. She gazes at him longingly. (We later learn his name is RJ.) Dawn continues to watch him as he leaves the field and she's watching him so intently that she falls off the bleachers. Later at Anya's apartment, Buffy fights a demon while Anya crawls across the floor. Anya is trying to convince the demon that maybe she is "not even the right Anyanka."
[Apparently, D'Hoffryn decided to have her killed after all.]
Buffy was nearby and heard the screaming. Anya thanks Buffy for the help but still asks her to leave because she doesn't "want to need help". Buff understands but doesn't leave. She refers to Anya as her friend and Anya is touched. She offers to help them in her usual blunt manner.
Dawn practices what to say to RJ then approaches him while he is talking to a few other students who appear to be in the stereotypical "popular crowd". She tries to join their conversation but they pretty much ignore her and continue to talk. It isn't long before they walk away, leaving Dawn just standing there. Dawn finds Buffy's old cheerleader outfit and uses it to try out for the cheerleading team. She uses a cheer that specifically talks about RJ being the best player and she does a horrible job. That night, Dawn hides in the bathroom crying while Buffy tries to console her from the other side of the locked door. Xander arrives, but Buffy tries to cancel their movie plans but Xander wants to stay. He thinks Dawn in a bad mood is still better than being at home with Spike. Xander refers to Dawn as a "teenager in a snit" and offers to order pizza. Dawn opens the door and forcefully denies being in a snit, then runs to her room. Buffy finds the shredded cheerleader outfit on the floor. Buffy goes to scold her about ruining the outfit. She tells Dawn that she doesn't even know RJ, but Dawn claims that she knows "his soul." She tells Buffy that she's dysfunctional and doesn't know what real love is.
The next day, Dawn overhears a football player telling someone that he is going to replace RJ on the football team. As the guy walks away, Dawn follows. She tells him that he "can't do this to RJ" and she pushes him down the stairs. Later in the principal's office, Dawn explains that the guy "stumbled and fell". Principal Wood prepares to tell the coach "the bad news" and Dawn brightly points out that "at least he still has RJ". Buffy looks concerned. Soon after, RJ catches up to Dawn and thanks her. He invites her to go out that night.
[It was unclear to me, if RJ is referring to Dawn's talk with the principal or if he knows that Dawn pushed the other guy.]
At the Bronze, Xander, Willow and Buffy sit at a table. Xander complains about Spike bad housekeeping habits. Buffy notices RJ on the dance floor with and explains things to Willow. There's a girl dancing provocatively with RJ. Xander makes a comment about it, which he soon regrets... Buffy is glad Dawn can't see RJ "getting all thrusty with some slut-bag hussy" but then the girl turns around and we see that it is Dawn. Buffy tries to lecture Dawn on her behavior and clothes. Dawn gets in angry and leaves. As Dawn walks down the sidewalk, one of the cheerleaders stops her. She calls Dawn a slut and tells her to stay away from RJ. They start hitting each other but Buffy arrives and stops them.
The next day, RJ has gotten detention and Buffy stops him on his way out of the principal's office. She starts to lecture him about setting a good example but he starts to leave. Once he puts on the jacket, Buffy starts to lose her concentration and ends up commenting that he "runs a lot" when he practices football. It's obvious that Buffy is now under the spell of the jacket. Later at home, Dawn wants to hear all about Buffy's conversation with RJ. Buffy lies and tells Dawn that RJ thinks she came on too strong and urges Dawn to hold back.
The next day, Buffy makes up an excuse to pull RJ from his math class. She takes him to an empty classroom and flirts with him. They end up kissing with RJ on a desk with Buffy sitting on top of him. Dawn has been looking for RJ and sees them through the window. Dawn runs outside crying, where Xander finds her. He mentions RJ, then Buffy but Dawn doesn't want to talk about either. Xander goes in search of Buffy and finds her still kissing RJ.
XANDER: "Get off the boy, Buffy, we're going home."
At home, Buffy tries to comfort Dawn by saying that Dawn's "crying isn't going to make his love for me go away". Xander thinks it's a love spell. Buffy agrees but indicates that she believes only Dawn is under the spell. Willow says they're working on a way to break the spell. Anya is there also and she goes to the table with Xander and Willow to work on breaking the spell. Dawn gets angry that Buffy betrayed her and when Buffy calls RJ her lover, Dawn leaves. Willow points out that people can forget that love spells can be dangerous. This causes Xander to have a flash-back of when he had Amy do a love spell for him to attract Cordelia but instead it attracted everyone except Cordelia. Willow finds a webpage about RJ and Xander discovers RJ's brother used to pick on him in high school. Xander offers to talk to the brother in hopes of getting some information.
Xander and Spike go visit the brother and discover he's not the *stud* he used to be. Lance has gained some weight and works in a pizza parlor. Xander explains that RJ might be dating a female friend of his, while Spike silently wanders around the room looking at things. Lance was worried about RJ but then he blossomed. Spike discovers pictures of each brother, both wearing the jacket in the picture. Lance says he gave the jacket to RJ when he graduated. Lance explains he got it from his father. Xander claims it's getting late and tells Spike they should go. Lance appears disappointed and invites them to stay but they leave anyway.
Anya and Willow are doing research when RJ arrives looking for Buffy. They tell him she isn't there and hurry him to leave. They watch him leave but he is wearing the jacket so they fall under the love spell also. They begin to argue over him. Buffy and Dawn come downstairs and all four of them bicker over RJ. One of them points out that Willow is gay, but Willow claims she "can work around it". Willow suggests they prove their love. Buffy concludes that since slayer means kill, she will kill Principal Wood to prove her love. Willow says she will prove her love with magic. Anya sarcastically makes a comment about turning RJ into a girl but realizes too late that she has given Willow an idea. Anya doesn't say what she plans to do but she hurries to leave along with Buffy and Willow hurries upstairs. Dawn sits at the bottom of the stairs looking extremely sad.
Willow sits on the floor and begins preparing to do a spell. Buffy arrives in a parking lot and carries a bazooka toward the principal's office. Anya approaches a bank after having changed into all black clothes. They show Anya pulling a ski mask down over her face. Dawn walks along train tracks then lies down across them. Xander and Spike arrive home just in time to stop Willow from completing her spell. She explains to them that she is trying to prove she loves RJ the most. She also tells them about the others and they hurry off to stop Buffy. Principal Wood sits with his back to the window and through it we see Buffy prepare to him at him with the bazooka. She is attacked by Spike, who takes the bazooka away from her. Principal Wood finally hears something and turns to look out the window but Spike and Buffy are out of view. Buffy chases Spike, who returns to the parking lot where Xander and Willow are waiting. Willow does a spell to locate Dawn. The group arrives at the train tracks. Willow and Buffy mutter about Anya getting ahead in the race to prove their love. Xander scolds them. Buffy runs along side a train and scoops Dawn up at the last second before the train rushes past. Dawn claims that she didn't have anything to offer in comparison to the others. Dawn says that if she died, then RJ would know she loved him enough to give up her life. Buffy admonishes her that "no guy is worth your life".
[Apparently she has forgotten about the time right before graduation, when Angel needed a slayer's blood to survive and she forced him to drink hers.]
Spike and Xander run up to RJ and take his coat, then they run away. Back at the house, the gang burns the coat in the fireplace. Xander admits that he tried on the jacket, but it didn't fit. Anya says they are not morally or legally responsible for what they did under the spell. Dawn is embarrassed about the way she acted. Buffy and Willow are slightly embarrassed also and they ask what Anya did. She doesn't want to talk about it, but finally claims that she wrote an "epic love poem". A voice on the radio starts talking about a robbery but Anya quickly turns the radio off and suggests they go out for ice cream.