A Midsummer's Nightmare, with apologies
to William Shakespeare...and Joss
by Linda R. Barlow
ACT ONE The Palace of Joss
Thanks, good Rupert: what's the news with thee?
GILES: Full of vexation come I, with complaint
Against my ward, my stubborn Vampire Slayer.
Stand forth, good Xander. So, my noble lord,
This man hath my consent to marry her.
Step forward, William: and my gracious Joss,
This demon hath bewitch'd the bosom of my girl;
And other nameless parts of her as well.
Thou, Bloody Spike, hast made her honeyed rhymes,
Which, though hardly fit for human ears,
Have won her heart with false claims and pretense
That thou hast against all chance obtained thy soul
Thou hast 'changed body fluids with her, and by
The moonlight at her window sung,
And through her window dragged thy death-cold flesh
To feast upon her warm and foolish throat.
With silly verses thou hast feigned thy love,
And stolen the impression of her fantasy
With bracelets of thy hair, rings, demon hearts,
Knicks, knacks, hot cocks, orgasms, messengers
Of strong prevailment in her tender youth:
With cunning hast thou filch'd my Slayer's heart,
(Not to say her tits and ass and other parts),
Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me,
As her Watcher: and, so my gracious duke,
If she will not here before your grace
Consent to wed this noble carpenter,
Who may lack superpowers but still saved the world
When it was threatened by a whacked-out witch,
I beg the ancient custom of this town,
Since she is mine, I may dispose of her:
Which shall be either to our Xander here
Or to her death
In which case maybe I'll
Have better luck by bossing Dawn around.
What say you, girl? Please be advised, fair maid:
(Well, maybe maid's the wrong term, after all)
To you your Watcher should be as a god;
And think not 'cause you busted Glory's ass
That you need not obey thy holy gods
Like Marti and the scribes, but mostly me.
Xander is a worthy gentleman.
I made him in my image hence the dorky shirt.
So is Spike. He is worthy.
Now that he hast his soul returned to him
Not to mention the fawnings of the fans
Who lusted for his beauteous naked bod.
But lacking still your Watcher's agreement,
This Xander must be held the worthier.
(gazing lustfully at Spike)
I would my Watcher look'd but with my eyes.
Rather your eyes must with his judgment look.
I do entreat your grace to pardon me.
I know not by what power I am made bold,
I do know I'd rip your insides out --
Nor how it may concern my modesty,
In such a presence here to plead my thoughts;
But I beseech you please that I may know
The worst that may befall me in this case,
If I refuse to marry Xander
Either to die the death or to abjure
For ever the society of men.
Therefore, fair Buffy, question your desires;
Know of your youth, examine well your blood,
Whether, if you yield not to your Watcher's choice,
You can endure the livery of a nun.
How's the food?
And how much happier is the rose distill'd,
Than that which withering on the virgin thorn
Grows, lives, and dies in single chastity.
Hello? Angel. Riley. Spike. And Parker, too.
Go read the scripts, your Jossiosity.
Take time to pause; and, by the next new moon--
The sealing-day 'twixt UPN and me,
For everlasting bond of syndication --
Upon that day either prepare to die
For disobedience to Rupert's will,
Or else to wed thyself with Xander,
(Assuming he won't dump you at the church)
Or on Diana's altar to embrace
For e'er austerity and single life.
Relent, sweet Buff: and, Evil Soulless Thing,
Yield thy crazed title to my certain bride.
Look, you bloody sod, I have a soul
And it's as good as yours, you shriveled twit.
You have her Watcher's love, I see --
Always wondered about you two --
Let me have Buffy's: you can marry Giles.
Scornful Spike! true, he hath my love,
And what is mine shall rend him.
(Actually Shakespeare said "render him" but
I like the slashy vibe we're building here
And she is mine, and all my right of her
I give to Xander, even if he is a wanker.
I am, my lord, as well derived as he --
Despite the trifling point of being dead --
As well possess'd; Ok, so yeah, no job
And, fine, no home, since you tore down my crypt
But still, my love is more than his;
I bleedin' died to win my human soul
And now I live with William's bloody rhymes
His guilt, his stupid hair and foppish clothes.
I mean, sod it, Joss, what's it gonna take?
Some mercy for the fangy guy, ok?
Besides, she loves me now. Acourse,
She always had a thing for me, and once
We got it on and made the two-backed beast,
Buffy couldn't keep her hands off my --
I am beloved of beauteous Buff:
Why should not I then prosecute my right?
Harris, I'll charge it to his face,
Made love to Anya ok, so did I -- but
He won her soul; assuming she still has one,
Which she might not, not that I'm one to talk,
Having lived a century free of such encumbrances,
But getting back to Anya
She, sweet lady, dotes still upon this Xander
Loving this dim-witted and inconstant clod.
I must confess that I heard that gossip, too,
And with Xander thought to have spoke thereof;
But, being over-full of self-affairs,
And being forced to re-write Firefly,
Lest the damn network condemn all my shows
Unto the garbage
My mind did lose it.
But, Alexander, come;
And you, too, Rupert; go with me,
I have some private schooling for you both.
I don't mean Eton, nor will I harrow thee.
For you, fair Slayer, look you arm yourself
To fit your fancies to your Watcher's will;
Else you will die or vow a single life.
So that's different from my usual fate, how?
Exeunt all but SPIKE and BUFFY
How now, my love! why is your cheek so pale?
How chance the roses there do fade so fast?
Perchance you're slaying way too many vamps
Or did some vile thing get a taste of you?
Belike for want of rain, which I could well
Beteem them from the tempest of my eyes.
Huh? We're alone now; speak English.
(Tilts his head and does the tongue thing)
Don't listen to that sodding crap from Joss
No way he's killing you again this year
It's boring, pet, sod this, you wanna shag?
(They rush into each other's arms and clothes go flying as
they fall to the ground oblivious to everything else but
the INCREDIBLE SEX. Five hours later
Ay me! for aught that I could ever read,
Could ever hear by tale or history,
The course of true love never did run smooth.
That Shakespeare says the cutest things!
If I put that line in my poetry,
I'd get attacked for using a cliché.
O hell! to choose love by another's eyes.
Or, if there were a sympathy in choice,
War, death, or sickness did lay siege to it,
Making it momentany as a sound,
Swift as a shadow, short as any dream;
Brief as the lightning in the collied night,
That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven and earth,
And ere a man hath power to say 'Behold!'
The jaws of darkness do devour it up:
So quick bright things come to confusion.
(Awed) Ok. We don't change a line of that speech.
Check it out, luv:
I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child:
From Sunnydale her house is seven leagues;
No clue how far away that is, though, pet,
But she regards me as her only son.
That's 'cause I ate her real son, but let's keep
That little secret just between us, luv.
There, Slayer, will I make my vows to thee;
And to that place the wankers at M. E.
Cannot pursue us. If thou lovest me then,
Steal forth from thy house to-morrow night;
And in the cemetery where we meet,
There will I stay for thee.
My dearest William!
I swear to thee, by Cupid's strongest bow,
Or by my super stake with sharpest point --
O swear not by thy stake, my love!
By Cupid's arrow with the golden head,
By the simplicity of Tara's doves,
May she rest in peace
By that which knitteth souls
Now that you have a soul to join with mine,
And by that fire which burn'd the Carthage queen,
When the false Troyan under sail was seen,
By all the vows that ever men have broke,
In number more than ever women spoke,
In that same place thou hast appointed me,
To-morrow truly will I meet with thee.
Come early and we'll grab ourselves a shag.
Keep promise, love. Look, here comes Anyanka.
God speed fair Anya! whither away?
Call you me fair? then fair again un-say.
Xander loves you now; may his cock fall off.
Your eyes are lode-stars; and your tongue's sweet air
More tuneable than lark to shepherd's ear,
Blah, blah, blah.
O, teach me how you scheme, and with what art
You sway the motion of my Xander's heart.
(to ANYA) You're not still fretting over Xander, pet?
I thought I told you to forget that sod.
(Punches SPIKE in the face). Don't remind me of that.
(to ANYA) I frown on Xander, yet he loves me still.
O that your frowns would teach my smiles such skill!
I give him curses, yet he gives me love.
He even likes your curses better than mine??
The more I hate, the more he follows me.
The more I love, the more he hateth me.
(rubbing his latest bruise) I can relate to that.
His folly, Anya, is no fault of mine.
Oh, sure. When things get tough he
Hides behind his Buffy.
God, don't you ever take responsibility for anything?
Take comfort: he no more shall see my face;
Spike and I will fly this place.
Before the time I did sweet William see,
Seem'd Sunnydale a paradise to me:
A bit of an exaggeration, luv.
O, then, what graces in my love do dwell,
That he hath turn'd a heaven unto a hell!
Er, wasn't that Willow? Bringing you back and all
Anya, to you our minds we will unfold:
To-morrow night, when Phoebe doth behold
Her silver visage in the watery glass,
Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass,
A time that lovers' flights doth still conceal,
Now that is poetry! We're getting out of town.
And in the wood, where often you and I --
Or maybe that was Willow used to lie
Emptying our bosoms of our counsel sweet,
There my sweet William and myself shall meet;
And thence from Sunnyhell we'll turn our eyes,
To seek new friends and demon companies.
Farewell, Anyanka: pray thou for us;
And give my best to D'Hoffryn when you do.
And good luck grant thee thy sweet Xander, too!
Keep thy word, Spike: we must starve our sight
From lovers' food till morrow deep midnight.
And don't drink any blood first; it makes your kisses
You never minded my kisses before!
As you on him, may Xander dote on you!
How happy some people can be!
Though, dammit, I am thought as fair as she.
But what of that? Xander thinks not so;
He will not know what all but he do know:
Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind;
And therefore is wing'd Cupid painted blind:
Nor hath Love's mind of any judgement taste;
Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste:
And therefore is Love said to be a child,
Because in choice he is so oft beguiled.
Jeez! What's a demon gotta do to win?
I tried to curse him, but I can't begin
Before I chicken out; he doesn't know
How close he came driving nails Below.
Ere Xander look'd upon the Slayer's eyne,
He hail'd down oaths that he was only mine;
And when this ass some heat from Buffy felt,
So he dissolved, and showers of oaths did melt.
I'll have revenge! If no one makes a wish
I'll bait a hook for him, that slimey fish
I'll tell him all about the Slayer's flight:
Then to the wood will he to-morrow night
Pursue her; and for this intelligence
If I have thanks, it is a dear expense:
But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
To follow him thither and back again.
I love him, and I'm really, truly fucked
So don't be shocked if soon I end up pucked.
END Act One, scene one.
scene as Shakepeare wrote it
Linda's other Buffy Stuff
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