Credit: ABC Family

Before Alison DiLaurentis (Sasha Pieterse) faked her own death and disappeared into the Rosewood night on Pretty Little Liars, she was arguably afraid in some degree of bestie Spencer Hastings (Troian Bellisario). After all, Spencer was the only one of the Liars who would routinely stand up to Ali, who could outsmart her in her own game of scheming. Now that Alison’s back, is she still scared of her former bestie?

Yes. Alison knows what Spencer is capable of

Season 4B is shaping up to be a big one for both Spencer and Alison. With Ali’s return to the Liars lives, we’re going to be getting a lot more information about what happened the night of Ali’s disappearance, including a secret Spencer has been hiding since day one. Is this secret part of the reason why Alison was afraid of Spencer? Perhaps, Spence even had something to do with Ali’s reasons for faking her death? Whatever Spence’s involvement or lack of involvement in Ali’s break for it, the sleuthiest Liar is a force to be reckoned with. She’s only become sharper both in terms of skill and sentiment since Ali’s disappearance. The “A” game has made Spencer more suspicious and better capable of pulling of the kinds of manipulations and cons Alison was notorious for (i.e. joining the “A” Team in Season 3B). If we were Alison, we’d be afraid of Spencer. especially if the Red Coated runaway has something to hide. Because Spence will stop at nothing to get the truth.

No. “A” is the only one she’s afraid of.

On the other hand, perhaps Alison’s time away has give her some serious perspective on fear. Whoever is chasing Alison, the former mean girl seems seriously afraid of being caught. Afraid enough that any past squabbles with Spencer have likely been forgotten -- or, at least diminished. There is also the point that, if Alison were truly frightened of Spencer, then she never would have presented herself to the Liars at the end of the Halloween episode. If she didn’t think she could trust her former bestie, then she probably would have sought help elsewhere. Perhaps, even, revealed herself to only a few of the Liars.

No. She was never really afraid of Spencer

Though we always got the impression that Spencer scared Alison because Ali couldn’t control her bestie like she could the others in her life, perhaps we’re reading it all wrong. There is a difference between fear and irritation. Spencer often screwed up Alison’s plan of manipulation, but Alison could have admired her for that. There may have been some annoyance between the two, but it was Spencer whom Alison told about her diaries and Spencer who went M.I.A. for a few hours the night Alison disappeared. Perhaps, Spencer was the only person Ali truly trusted enough with the secret of her fake death. Perhaps, Spencer has been guarding it from the other Liars for all of this time. That doesn’t sound like fear, but love.

Do you think Alison will be afraid of Spencer upon her return? Do you think she ever was? Sound off in the comments below!

Catch the Pretty Little Liars Season 4 winter premiere on Tuesday, January 7, 2013 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC Family.

Kayti Burt is a contributing writer for Wetpaint Entertainment with a penchant for all things pop culture. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!