Story by Susan Carr and CN Winters
Written by Susan Carr, Dan Joslyn and CN Winters
Directed and Produced by Susan Carr and CN Winters
Sounds by CSR
Edited by Sway and Dan Joslyn
Art Direction by CN Winters and Robert Kidman
Artists – CN Winters, Robert Kidman
Watchers Council Conference Room – Late Afternoon
Rowena reached over and turned off the overhead projector while Willow gathered up her folders. When the witch finished, she leaned her head back and tried to stretch the tension out of her neck.
"Headache, baby?" Rowena asked.
Willow sighed. "Yes," she admitted.
Rowena came around to Willow’s side of the table and put her hands on her lover’s shoulders, beginning to massage the stiff muscles.
Willow groaned in appreciation. "Oh goddess, that feels good. Thank you."
"My pleasure," Rowena said, kissing the top of Willow’s head. "How about we take in an early dinner at Ginoette’s and then head home to watch a movie in bed? I’ll even nuke the popcorn."
"Is popcorn the only thing you’ll be nibbling on in bed tonight?" Willow answered with a smirk.
"Well…no," Rowena replied, laughing. "But it’ll make a nice appetizer. What d’ya say?"
"Okay, it’s a date," Willow replied and Rowena hugged the redhead from behind.
"Come on," Rowena said, letting her go and holding a hand out.
"I want to just finish up my notes from the meeting…" Willow started.
"Nope, not allowed," Rowena interrupted, pulling Willow to her feet. "I want a shower before dinner and I want to take it with you."
"Work is done for the day, Will," Rowena said firmly. "And since I’m the boss, you’ve gotta do what I say, eh?"
Willow rolled her eyes. "Okay," she finally agreed as they left the room. "But I expect my back to be thoroughly washed, Boss of Me, eh." Willow added the last in a teasing, mimicking accent.
"Agreed," Rowena said with a laugh. "See, it’s good to be the queen."
The sound of the women’s laughter trailed off as they walked down the hall.
Watchers Council Andrew’s Apartment – Same time
A box of half-eaten cold pizza lay on the coffee table in front of the wide-screen television. The lights were off and only the glow from the screen cast shadows on the couple lying together on the couch.
Andrew’s graceful hands moved their way under Tracey’s shirt, tracing along the sharp ridges of her spine. The brunette moaned into his mouth as she kissed him passionately, her body moving sensuously on top of his.
"Oh goddess," Andrew gasped as Tracey pressed more firmly against him.
"Oh yes," she responded, lifting up a bit so his hands could move around to her front. "God, Andy…I want you so bad."
"Not…not here," he managed.
"Right," she said, moving off of him and pulling him to his feet. "Bed…now!"
"Yeah…" he agreed and they practically sprinted toward the bedroom.
Just as they reached the doorway, the phone rang. Andrew paused, but Tracey tried to pull him into the bedroom.
"Ignore it," she said, her breathing heavy.
The phone rang again. Andrew looked at it and then back at his girlfriend, a sheen of perspiration lining his mouth as his own breathing matched hers.
He hesitated only a moment longer. "I can’t," he finally said. "It might be important."
As he walked to the phone, Tracey groaned and leaned her head against the doorframe.
Andrew picked up the cell phone from the coffee table. "Hello?" he said. "What? Are you sure?" He paused and then closed his eyes in frustration. "Okay, we’ll be right there."
He clicked off the phone and looked at Tracey, a sorrowful expression on his face. "That was Jeff," he said.
"Everything okay?" Tracey asked, worry on her face.
"Yeah," Andrew said with disgust, tucking his shirt into his jeans. "Someone trashed the kitchen and the pantry. There’s food and broken dishes all over the place."
"Again?" Tracey said loudly. "That little bit…"
"Jeff said whoever did it didn’t leave a trace, so we can’t make any accusations until we have proof," Andrew interrupted. "I knew I should have installed that spy cam after the last time, but with Skye and Faith and everything, it just slipped my mind."
"Don’t blame yourself, Andy," Tracey said, rearranging her own clothes. "Let’s just get it cleaned up and then I better head back to the dorm."
Andrew’s eyes looked sad. "Tracey…"
"I know," she said, moving toward him and putting her arms around his neck. "Believe me… I know. I never take this many cold showers in the winter."
He smiled wanly at her joke. "It’s just that we keep getting interrupted. I’m beginning to think that we’ll never…" His face reddened as he trailed off.
"We will," she said. "When the time is right, it’ll happen. I promise."
"Come on, let’s get this over with," he said, sighing. "After, I’ll find one of the off-duty Slayers and we’ll walk you home."
He took her hand and led her from the apartment.
Cypress Grove – Midnight
A large iron cauldron sat over a blazing fire, its considerable weight supported by an iron frame. Steam rose from the water bubbling within.
A man dressed in leather leggings and a colorful tunic worked under a palm-covered, open walled hut. He was carefully sharpening a long machete with an oilstone.
From another hut, a pair of men similarly dressed untied a man from the center post and led him over to a downed cypress log near the cauldron. The man seemed barely conscious as they laid him face down over the log.
"What… what are you doing?" he asked weakly.
"Silence," one of the men said. "You must prepare yourself for your journey to visit the Great Spirit."
"What?" The man shook his head and tried to rise, but the man holding him leaned a leg on his back, trapping him against the log. "Wait, what do you mean?"
"You are honored to be selected to become a man-angel and tell the Great Spirit that his followers are ready to sacrifice themselves for the coming battle."
"Man-angel?" The man tried to struggle harder, but was unable to throw off the weight entrapping him. "That’s just an old legend! You can’t…"
"Silence!" the standing man commanded as he motioned to the man with the machete. "Remember the message."
The man under the other hut put down the stone and joined the others by the log. He raised the machete over the prone body of the trapped man and looked at the leader.
"Wait!" the bound man cried. "No!"
The leader motioned with his head and the man’s screams were silenced.
Fade to Black
End of Teaser
Onto Act One