Buffy receives a serious stab wound while fighting a vampire at the cemetery; she is saved only by the unexpected arrival of Riley. Despite his encouragement that she is not slipping, Buffy wants to research ways to avoid making more mistakes. She and Giles start looking in the Watcher diaries for information about past Slayers' deaths, but Giles tells her there won't be much in them because the Watchers usually also died or found it too painful to recount the incidents. Buffy then remembers they have another witness to Slayers' final battles: Spike.
Buffy meets Spike at the Bronze, and he agrees to tell her about his battles with the two Slayers that he killed. He starts out by describing how he was turned, revealing that he was ridiculed by his peers and rejected by the love of his life before Drusilla sired him.
Meanwhile Riley, Xander, Willow and Anya take over Buffy's patrol. Riley is very methodical, but the rest of the Scoobies are rather lax about the process. They do discover a nest of vampires, including the one that injured Buffy. They make plans to destroy it the next day when the vampires won't be active.
Spike tells of killing the Chinese Slayer during the Boxer Rebellion, describing her as "all business" and getting nostalgic about how Drusilla was excited afterward.
Riley, rather than waiting for daylight, goes back to the vampire lair at night and firebombs it.
Spike moves on to his second Slayer (Nikki Wood), whom he describes as more improvisational like Buffy. After he finishes, he reveals that he won by exploiting the Slayers' curiosity about - and wish for - death. Buffy rejects his conclusion and becomes angry and disgusted when Spike comes on to her, challenging her to prove him wrong. She leaves him on the ground.
When she gets home, her mother reveals that she needs to go into the hospital for some more tests, and that her condition may be serious. When Buffy goes outside to cry, Spike walks up intending to shoot her. Buffy's distraught state changes his mind and he attempts to comfort her instead.