In the Dark

I'm the Big Bad!

In 1999, [Oz] goes to Los Angeles and hands Angel the [Gem of Amara], a ring that gives total protection to vampires. [Doyle] wants Angel to wear it, but the vampire thinks it's better to hide it in a safe place.

Spike had found the Gem in Sunnydale, but ended up losing it to Buffy (Buffy/The Harsh Light of Day); so, he goes to Los Angeles as well, after his ring.

Arriving in LA, he watches from a rooftop his archenemy Angel saving the life of an innocent. Afterward, they — Angel and the girl — have a little chat and Spike, who cannot hear the conversation, does his own version of it:

Spike/Rachel: How can I thank you, you mysterious, black-clad hunk of a night thing?
Spike/Angel: No need, little lady, your tears of gratitude are enough for me. You see, I was once a badass vampire, but love and a pesky curse defanged me. Now I'm just a big, fluffy puppy with bad teeth.

Rachel approaches Angel

Spike/Angel: No, not the hair! Never the hair!
Spike/Rachel: But there must be someway I can show my appreciation.
Spike/Angel: No, helping those in need's my job — and working up a load of sexual tension, and prancing away like a magnificent poof is truly thanks enough!
Spike/Rachel: I understand. I have a nephew who is gay, so…
Spike/Angel: Say no more. Evil's still afoot! And I'm almost out of that Nancy-boy hair-gel that I like so much. Quickly, to the Angel-mobile, away!

Later, Spike attacks Angel when he is walking to his car; he tells the vampire with a soul that he wants "his" ring back, and the two of them fight, until [Cordelia] and Doyle arrive, making Spike run away.

After failing the first time, Spike comes up with a plan — he allows Angel catch him biting a girl:

Caught me fair and square, White Hat*. I guess there is nothing to do now but to go quietly and pay my debt to society.

*White Hat = good guy, from the Western movies, where the good guys always worn white hats and the bad guys, black ones.

When Angel stops him, Spike runs away, leading Angel to a trap; with the help of another vampire, Angel is chained by the neck, from behind and Spike kidnaps his rival.

Angel is taken to an abandoned warehouse, where he is tortured by Marcus — a sadistic vampire who likes to bite children and do other "nasty things with them" — hired by Spike. Spike just watches, amused; he even brings up Buffy's holy name:

It's called addiction, Angel. We all have it. I believe yours is named Slutty the Vampire Slayer. Speaking of little Buff, I ran into her recently. Your name didn't come up. Although she has been awful busy jumping the bones of the first lunk-head that came along. Good-looking fellow — used her shamelessly. She is cute when she is hurting, isn't she?

Spike leaves Angel with Marcus and goes to Angel's apartment, to look for the ring, to no avail. Cordelia and Doyle catch him there, and Spike tells them he has Angel and wants the ring.

Cordy and Doyle manage to find the Gem in the tunnels Angel uses to walk during the day, and take it to Spike, in the warehouse. There, Cordy throws the ring on a place in the sunlight, preventing Spike from getting it. At the same time, Oz arrives with his van, and armed with two crossbows, threatens to kill Spike, while Cordy and Doyle unchain Angel and take him to the car. They drive away and when Spike goes for the ring, it disappeared... as well as Marcus:

Where is the ring? Bloody hell! Son of a bitch! I do the work, I do the digging, fight off a Slayer, drive to LA, fire the help, and what do I get? Royally screwed, is what!

Distracted by his pain, Spike doesn't notice, at first, that he is right under a sun beam, and his hair starts smoldering.

Marcus, with the ring, can now walk under the sunlight. He goes to the beach and is about to attack a group of children when Angel arrives and manages to throw Marcus in the water; they fight, Angel gets the ring from Marcus and kills him.

Angel spends the rest of the day on the beach, enjoying the sun. Afterwards, he destroys the Gem of Amara, because he thinks the ring is something very dangerous when worn by the wrong person; he rather go on fighting the good fight in the dark, protecting people without them even knowing.