Buffy came home to an unfamiliar sound - male voices. Male British voices, coming from the kitchen. The Potentials must be out in the back yard, she thought. Either that, or Spike had finally snapped and eaten them all. If he had, Giles was clearly angry about it. They were yelling at one another. Possibly getting to the point of a physical fight.

"Come on! Come ON you donkey! Have it!"

"What was that...oi! You wanker! Wanker!"

"You're going home in a ****ing ambulance!"

Buffy was starting to get seriously worried and rushed through to the back room to find...

"Stand up, if you hate Man U, Stand up, if you hate Man U!"

... the two men embracing and singing in rough-yet-tuneful unison, while pointing at the screen of a television set.

"You're not singing any more!" Spike added, taking a moment to register her presence, then swinging around and disentangling from Giles.

"Buffy," he mumbled. "Sorry, didn't know you were here..."

Buffy folded her arms and tried to repress the giggles that were welling up. "Giles?" she said, all sternness. "Were you just bonding with Spike? In my kitchen?"

Equally sheepish, Giles readjusted his tie and started pulling down his rolled-up shirtsleeves. "It's not what it looks like." He hemmed his throat clear and ran fingers through his hair to tidy it.

"You see, I was just testing if this set still worked," Spike added. He gestured to the TV. "It was in my crypt, and I figured it might be damp and whatnot, so we were testing it..."

"And there was a match on," Giles added. "Manchester United versus Sheffield Wednesday and it turned out..."

"We're both fans of the same team," Spike finished. "Supported it as a kid - though, it was a cricket club back then...19th century and all, football not being a gentleman's game exactly..."

Buffy shrugged. "So, you both like Manchester United, does that mean you're suddenly best of..."

"WHAT?" both men cried in horror.

"Manchester United, Buffy, I don't think you can grasp quite how shocking an accusation..." said Giles. But Spike, whose horror seemed even greater, cut across him before Buffy had a chance to get a word in.

"MANCHESTER UNITED?? What do you think I am? A monster!?" he cried. If he'd been human, he probably would've burst a blood vessel.

"Ok, calm down, both of you," said Buffy. She held up a pacifying hand - after keeping the peace among dozens of hormonal teenage proto-supergirls, keeping two old Englishmen calm couldn't be that hard, could it? "But, wait a minute..." She took a step closer to Spike. "A few years ago, Manchester United was your reason for wanting to save the world, you said. You know, along with eating people and cute little puppies..."

"Dog racing..." Spike corrected. "But..."

"Don't change the subject. You said, Manchester United was one of the things that made this world worth living in," Buffy insisted. "So, why were you all ooh, Man U back then, and now with the fear and loathing and get thee behind me soccer satan?"

Giles and Spike gazed at her in shock and disbelief, then exchanged a glance.

"Surely it should be obvious?" Giles said.

"Not in.. at all. Hence the me not knowing."

"I have a soul now," Spike prompted.


"Buffy," said Spike. "I liked Manchester United because I was EVIL."