Lacey Chabert as
Mercedes McKnab as Harmony, Michelle Rodriquez as Kadin and Brittany Murphy as Luna
Bridal Suite – Continuous
Harmony was gushing as she got dressed. "I knew it! The second I read those papers in your lawyer’s office, I had a feeling, ya’know? A blinding flash of female intuition!"
Luna watched Harmony hungrily from her spot on the sofa. She almost seemed not to be listening.
"That’s what’s been missing from my life! Real friends. Me and Cordelia, we used to be close, but then graduation happened. She moved away. I died. When we got together again it just wasn’t the same."
"She didn’t treat you right?" Luna nodded, eyes never leaving the vision of Harmony in her underwear, pulling on stockings.
"Well, she tried. But we were too different by then. Oh well." Harmony slipped on her dress and began to button it up in front.
"Oh, well," Luna sighed.
"But you—I could tell you understood!"
"I do. I do!"
"I mean, we both had minions. And they let us down big time!"
"That’s for sure." For the first time, Luna stopped looking at Harmony with open lust and just nodded in agreement. "Bunch of losers, the lot of them. I planned my revenge for years. I even studied. Read books! But thanks to them, not only did that bitch Dawn get away—they locked me up! In an asylum!" Her voice actually went up an octave.
"Hey, at least that made it easier to break you out." Harmony grinned and sat down beside her.
"That’s right," Luna quieted down. "You rescued me." Her eyes began to burn again. "My hero." She leaned closer to her friend.
"I knew we were going to get along just great!" Harmony said. She suddenly jumped up. "Oh! I just realized! We have something else in common!"
"I kidnapped Dawn Summers too!"
"You did?" Luna squealed. Then her smile vanished. Her voice dropped. "Why?"
Harmony snorted. "Why do you think?" And waited for a reply. Luna said nothing, but the slightest twitch began to appear in her right eye.
"Tell me," she suggested, quietly. Too quietly.
"As bait of course! That’s how we were going to lure the Slayer into our trap!" Harmony sat down again, not noticing the sudden wave of relief sweeping over Luna’s body—the unclenching of her fists, the dimming of the fury in her eyes, the return of a smile to her lips. "And it worked too! She did show up! Only my minions—my chosen ones—they decided my plan wasn’t a good one. They turned on me. I made them and they turned on me. So they weren’t ready when the Slayer did show up. She dusted them all." Harmony stamped her foot. "Served them right. Boys are so ungrateful."
"I know," Luna said, slinking over to Harmony’s side. She put her arms around the vampire.
"It wasn’t fair. My plan would have worked," she whined.
"Of course it would have. Boys spoil everything." Luna rocked her.
"Yeah," Harmony said in a sad tone. "They really do."
"But that’s okay."
"Of course. Luna’s here. Luna will always be here."
Harmony grinned, basking in the attention. "Hey."
"What?" Luna asked, voice low.
"I’ve got an idea."
With a coquettishness that had taken most of junior high and all of high school to master, Harmony stepped away from Luna. She walked towards the bed. She stopped at its edge. Looked back over her shoulder. Waited.
Luna stopped breathing.
Then—Harmony picked up a pillow and threw it at Luna. Who caught it, with a puzzled look.
"Oh? Oh!" Trying not to sound disappointed, Luna picked up the pillow, which had dropped to the floor. "Um…okay!"
Harmony already had her pillow ready. "Just watch out, missy. I am deadly with these things," she giggled.
"What are we playing for?" asked Luna, with a sly grin.
Harmony thought about it. Or tried to. She did whatever it was she did instead of thinking for several moments. "Loser has to do what ever the Winner says!"
Luna smiled from ear to ear. "You’re on!" And she took a swing with all her might!
Coven Room – Same Time
"Okay, how about this one?" Dawn said and slid the dusty book around to Jeff’s side of the table. The young man quickly scanned the moldy parchment.
"Won’t work," Jeff said. "This requires the caster to sacrifice his or hers virginity to a Vinda serpent demon in exchange for the soul. Skye already got your cherry."
"But you could..." Dawn looked hopefully at Jeff.
"Forget it," he said, going back to his own book. "I’m saving myself for the right girl. I’m not giving it up to a snake, not even for you."
Dawn sighed and stared off at nothing. Finally she said, "I could ask Andrew."
"You could ask, but you’re too late," Jeff mumbled still not looking up.
"Oh?" Dawn’s face mirrored her confusion and then cleared with a happy grin. "Oh! Good for them."
Dawn expression turned sad again and Jeff noticed. "What," he asked.
"I just want Andrew and Tracey to be happy," Dawn mourned. "And when it comes to relationships, all of us from Sunnydale are cursed."
"I’d say that’s an exaggeration," Jeff chided.
"That’s what you think," Dawn scoffed. "Everyone one of us has had relationships that ended in disaster."
Jeff thought a moment. "Giles and Becca," he said snapping his fingers. "They’re happy."
"Now they are," Dawn said. "Giles did the smart thing and got out, but the Sunnydale curse screwed him royally with Jenny Calendar and my mom."
"Giles and your mom?" Jeff said. "I didn’t know that."
"There was this thing Ethan did," Dawn explained. "They got happy and then blushed every time they saw each other after that. I think if it wasn’t for Ethan’s chaos spell, they might have hooked up normally, but that’s Sunnydale for you."
"This is Cleveland," Jeff pointed out. "Stop feeling so sorry for yourself and do something about your relationship."
"I thought I was," Dawn said, point to the books strewn around the table.
"Then get back to work and try to find a spell that at least tries to stay within the Wiccan Rede…okay?"
"Okay," Dawn said and went back to her book.
Cleveland Graveyard - Night
Kennedy kept her eyes trained on the ground as she and Kadin walked along in silence. The slayer's hands were stuffed deeply in the pockets of her jeans as a cold breeze blew through, causing her to shiver.
Kadin cast a quick glance over at the other woman. "Thought you slayers were supposed to be tough? One little cold breeze and you're shakin' like a leaf."
Kennedy lifted her gaze from her boots with a nervous smile. "Yeah well, not all of us have spent half our lives on some iceberg in the middle of the Arctic."
"It was hardly that long," Kadin replied with a light smile of her own. "'Sides, I've been plenty of hot places too."
Kadin glanced over at Kennedy, her smile slowly growing. "You a pretty good listener, huh?"
Kennedy shrugged. "Only when it's something I wanna hear."
"Didn't know my life qualified as interesting or entertaining."
The slayer looked over at her companion with a light smile. "Well, I happen to think it does. On both accounts."
Kadin returned the smile before looking away. "Good to know."
Kennedy looked over at the other woman, but didn't reply.
Watcher's Council - Library - Same Time
Willow was sitting in front of her laptop. The sound of rapid typing the only noise permeating the dark room. Her eyes were scanning the screen, but her look was disinterested.
The redhead finally sighed and pulled the computer closed. She looked over at Rowena who was sitting on a nearby chair an arms length away, flipping through a book. The watcher closed the cover and seemed to notice the stare. She looked up and the blonde's eyes met Willow’s, but neither woman said a word.
Rowena picked up the books she had gathered.
"Time to call it a night. If anyone asks for me I’ll be upstairs," she told the witch.
Willow nodded and watched as Rowena turned her back and walked from the room.
Coven Room – Later
pushed a rolling cart before him through the doors, causing both Dawn and Jeff
to jump in their seats at the loud crash.
Andy," Jeff groused. "Silence is golden, ya know."
ignored the young witch and rolled the cart to their table. He lifted the
warming covers and set two plates full of food before them.
guys missed dinner," Andrew said as he set utensils and napkins in front of
Andrew," Dawn said, but continued to read.
sat down opposite her, folded his hands in front of himself and stared at her
intently. After a moment, she finally glanced up from her book and caught his
he said pointing to her plate.
glanced at her plate as if seeing it for the first time and then mumbled, "Yeah,
sure…okay." She returned to her book, but when Andrew didn’t move, she
looked up again.
she said loudly.
need to eat Dawn," Andrew insisted. "Ever since…well, let’s just
say that you haven’t been eating right lately and with your svelte figure is
turning gaunt. I’m not leaving until you eat. So…get to it."
turned to Jeff to look for support, but the Watcher was busy eating. He paused a
moment to look up and shrugged. "He’s right, Dawn," he said.
"Besides, this is good. Thanks, Andy."
welcome," Andrew said and turned pointedly back to Dawn and raised his
she fumed and pushed her book nearly halfway across the table. She picked up her
fork and began to shovel food in her mouth, barely taking the time to chew.
smiled in satisfaction. "So, what are you guys doing?"
Dawn and Jeff mumbled at the same time and in the same tone of voice. They
glanced guiltily at each other and then both buried noses back into their
looked at them and nodded. "Uh huh," she said and grabbed Dawn’s
Dawn said unsuccessfully trying to grab it back.
are you doing?" Andrew asked as he read the page. "A Quartet of Gypsy
Curses?" He glanced at the other books strewn around the table.
"Modifying Spells? A Modern Witch’s Approach to Romany Magic?"
not…" Dawn started.
this?" Andrew said, his eyes flashing as he pulled a thick binder toward
him. "I recognize this." He flipped the binder over and revealed the
printed cover. "Willow Rosenberg’s Report on the Ensouling of Angelus,
AKA Angel. Addendum detailing the second ensouling."
Dawn tried to explain.
is not a good idea, Dawn," he said.
just researching," Jeff explained. "Playing ‘what if,’ that’s
you spoken to Willow?" Andrew asked, his eyes never leaving Dawn’s face.
said no," Dawn said, almost petulantly.
good reason," Andrew said. "You can’t mess around with this kind of
stuff, Dawn. The consequences of magic…"
I’m sick of hearing about those goddamn ‘consequences’!" Dawn
yelling, throwing her fork onto her plate with such force it leapt off and onto
the floor. "What about the consequences of the woman I love being
turned into a vampire against her will? What about the repercussions of
my having to spend the rest of my life being in love with a soulless killer?
already happened, Dawn," Andrew said, standing up and moving around the
table toward her. She held up a hand as he approached. "You can’t change
what’s happened, but you have no right to meddle in this."
did it!" Dawn slammed her hand down on the binder. "Twice! Is
she the only one allowed to meddle?"
Willow did was sanctioned by the Powers that Be," Andrew said. "I
don’t see Jeff here getting any visions saying it’s okay to shove a soul
back into your girlfriend’s body!"
don’t see the difference," Dawn said.
is a difference, Dawn," Jeff said. "Willow was acting as a tool
for the Powers."
didn’t know that!" Dawn argued. "How do we know what the
Powers want or don’t want?"
don’t," Andrew said. "But we’re Wiccan, remember? We practice the
Craft of the Wise…we’re supposed to have the wisdom to do or not to
do what’s right."
sat back in her chair, her arms folded across her chest. "We’re only
Skye’s not," Andrew said softly, kneeling next to her chair and putting a
hand on her thigh in comfort. "Not anymore. And unless we get any kind of
messages otherwise, it’s best if we stay out of things that don’t concern
gonna tell Willow about this?" Jeff asked warily.
sat back on his knees and thought a moment. "No, you’ve only done some
harmless research, not taken any actions. Keep it that way."
‘buts’ Dawn!" Andrew said firmly. "I catch you doing anything more
than just reading a book and I’ll run to Willow."
can’t…" Dawn started.
can," Andrew said. "As the high priest of your coven I’m ordering
you both not to take any action in regards to restoring Skye’s soul. Is that
that clear?" he repeated.
nodded and Jeff said, "Yes…that’s clear."
Andrew said and retrieved a clean fork from his cart. He placed it next to
Dawn’s plate. "Now finish your meal."
an order, too?" Dawn mumbled.
none, Dawnie," Andrew said returning to his chair, picking up a copy of the
daily newspaper. "And that includes yourself…so eat."
my lord," she said in a tone that elicited a chuckle from Jeff.
watched until she picked up her fork before he opened the paper.
Rowena’s Apartment – Moments Later
Rowena juggled her books and her keys as she entered her apartment and closed the door behind her. Marco raised her head from the sofa to see what the commotion was about as Polo made her way over with a soft mew.
"Hey girls." Rowena greeted them with a smile as she set the books on the coffee table. Polo began to do figure eights around her legs. The blonde reached down and picked up the tabby, who proceeded to lick her chin. "You guys hungry?" she asked. The question seemed to get Marco’s attention, who now stood up and gave a lazy stretch. "Let’s go see what we got," she said as she walked toward the kitchen.
Upon arriving she set Polo on the floor and opened her cupboard. She looked inside and pulled out two cans. "Marinated Tuna or Chicken Hearts?" she asked. Marco finally arrived and reached up to stand on Rowena’s leg that held the fish. "Tuna it is," she told them.
She opened the can and put the food on a plate, placing it on the ground for them. As they began to feast, she walked over to the refrigerator and reached for a bottle of beer. She started to open it but pulled it away to examine it for a moment. Decidedly, she put it back and opened another cupboard. She pulled down a teacup and a tea bag as she turned on her kettle.
"If I become the crazy hermit cat lady you guys will let me know, right?" she asked the eating cats. Food, however, took a greater priority than lavishing any attention on her at the moment. She grinned softly. "Thanks guys," she told them as she started to unbutton her shirt and make her way from the room.
Watcher's Council - Library - Same Time
"Hey green eyed goddess," Xander called out as he entered the library.
Willow looked up and grinned. "And to what do I owe this unscheduled visit?" she asked.
"I can’t stop by to see one of my bestest buds?" he asked. "My bestest friend of all my friends?"
"Absolutely," she told him. "Now tell me what’s wrong?"
Xander smiled. "Nothing. I’m good. But…"
"I knew there was a ‘but’ in there somewhere," Willow teased.
"But…" Xander continued, "I wanted to see how you’re doing."
"I’m okay," Willow answered. Xander just looked at her without saying anything. "Really. I’m not doing cartwheels at the moment and even if I could I couldn’t do them very well because I’m not that coordinated but…You know…I’m doing okay."
Xander didn’t say anything for a moment. "I know how much she means to you Will. That’s why I walked away from trying anything beyond friendship with her."
"Maybe you shouldn’t have walked away," Willow muttered. "Maybe she would have been better off with you."
Xander shook his head. "No, we both know that’s not true…I just wish there was something I could do."
"There isn’t anything anyone can do. It’s just…sad…Ya know?"
Xander nodded. "You still love her," Xander answered.
"Of course I do. A-and I think I kinda get how you felt about Anya…after the wedding…You loved her, still wanted her…I feel the same way about Ro."
"Well, you didn’t leave her at the alter," Xander pointed out. "So what gives?"
Willow paused a moment before answering.
"When Giles was here and we weren’t at odds with each other. We didn’t have to be the ones to make decisions that affected so many lives…Things were good, great actually. But this past year…" she went on as she shook her head in frustration. "We can’t see eye to eye on most council business and it’s impossible to come home at night and act like nothing happened during the day. Plus, it’s not like either one of us can just leave and find a new job. This is more than what we do, it’s who we are."
"What about Al taking over in Cleveland?" Xander suggested.
Willow shook her head. "She has her own Coven at the England branch and there’s no one here qualified to handle the Coven, not as high priest or priestess, not yet. Besides, it’s not that simple anyway."
"What’s not simple?" he asked. "You love her, she loves you. Case closed."
"No, that’s only part of the story. The other part is we’ve got, issues – decisions that have been made that I don’t agree with and would never agree with. The night with the black ops…that was the final straw I guess you could say. This camel just can’t haul anymore," she said motioning to herself.
"So the solution is to walk away then?" Xander asked.
"I thought you were here to cheer me up?" Willow countered.
Xander held his hands up. "I’m just kicking around ideas – seeing if there’s a solution, that’s all."
"I have thought about it Xander, a lot, and I really only had two choices."
"Leave now while we’re still speaking, no matter how awkward it might be from time to time, or leaving when we can’t stand each other. I didn’t want it to get to that point and after the Black Ops fiasco it was getting there quick, at least for me."
Xander ran a hand over his face. "This sucks," he muttered.
"You’re telling me, Buster," Willow said with a melancholy grin. "But it’s not just her. I mean, yeah, I look at her and I think about the dead secretary, but I also look at her and I think I should have done more."
"I don’t follow you," Xander replied.
"I think one of the reason, on some level deep down, I trusted her, and Kennedy too, that everything would be fine. I really didn’t expect them to open fire and by the time they did it was too late…I might be the green eyed goddess but even a green eyed goddess couldn’t stop that many bullets that soon. But if I’d followed my instincts maybe I could have, I don’t know, turned their bullets into feathers."
"Something non-lethal," Willow explained. "So not only do I blame myself but on some level I blame Ro too…Yeah, she didn’t kill them but…"
"Maybe if she wasn’t your lover you would have put up more of a fight?"
Willow nodded. "Yeah, something like that. I wanted to believe she made the right call of using them…But really, it’s my fault too. A-and being with her reminds me of that…I know that might not make much sense."
"I think I get it," he told her. "Vi wasn’t the most trusting after I tried to stab her to save us both…So yeah, I can see the trust issues here for you. And again…this sucks."
"But chances are you won’t have to stab Vi again. I, on the other hand, will have to go through this situation again and again and again as long as Ro and I are two people calling the shots here…I had to walk away."
They looked at each other for a moment and Xander took Willow’s hand. She tightened her grip on him in silence.
Cleveland Graveyard - Moments Later
A sudden noise from the bushes caught Kennedy's attention. She cast a quick glance over to the source as she reached into her jacket for her stake.
"Don't," Kadin quietly said as she reached out and placed a hand on the slayer's arm. When Kennedy looked over at her with a raised brow, the hunter just shook her head. "Not a vamp."
The bushes rustled some more before a squirrel finally came running out and scampered up the nearest tree.
Kennedy looked over at her girlfriend, clearly impressed. "So much for slayer intuition."
Kadin just smiled as she dropped her hand away. "Lucky guess."
The slayer pulled her hand out of her jacket and let it fall away to her side. She watched in silence as the hunter went over to the nearest tombstone and took a seat.
Kadin pulled her crossbow off her hip and began to check it over.
"If you wanted a break, all you had to do was say so." Kennedy walked over with a smile and took a seat on the tombstone next to Kadin.
The hunter remained quiet for a long moment. "Just waitin' for you to tell me why we're really out here." She finally looked up at the slayer, her expression completely serious.
Kennedy was quiet as she stared back into Kadin's eyes. "So, you know...?"
"I know that we're not out here just to spend some quality time," Kadin answered before turning her attention back to her crossbow.
The slayer dropped her eyes to her boots and let out a slow breath. "It's a test," she answered shortly. When she didn't hear Kadin reply, she cautiously continued. "The rest of the Council doesn't think you work well as a team with the others. They...they don't even think you can." Kennedy paused and chewed on her lip. "It's my job to prove 'em wrong."
Kadin finally looked up from her crossbow. She stared out into the darkness before her as she clipped it back onto her waist. "Is that what I am now?"
Kennedy instantly shot her head up and looked over at the other woman.
"What?" Her brow furrowed as she tried to decipher the hunter's words. "Kadin, no," she shook her head adamantly. "That's not what you are at all."
"Really?" The hunter snapped as she finally brought her gaze back over to meet Kennedy's. "That why the second your little friends throw a bitch fit, you drag me all the way out here in the freezin' ass cold just to 'prove 'em wrong?'"
"Hey, that's not fair. I..."
"You know what?" Kadin interrupted before the slayer could finish. "Just...save it, Kennedy." She tore her eyes away from her girlfriend's to stare back out into the darkness. "I can't believe after everything we've been through that you would...that you could do this to me."
Kennedy looked completely lost. "Do what?" she asked a little exasperated. "Kadin, I'm not sure I know what's goin' on here. Why are you so upset?"
The hunter's head whipped around to face the slayer. Her look was cold and unforgiving. "Are all you slayers this dense?"
Kennedy's confusion was instantly replaced with anger. "Wait just a damn minute." The slayer shot to her feet and pointed a finger in Kadin's face. "I don't know what crawled up your ass, but that was way outta line."
"Outta line?" Kadin repeated. "You betray me like this and you actually have the audacity to lecture me on what's outta line?"
The anger faded from Kennedy's face in that instant. She gazed down at the other woman as her hand slowly dropped back to her side. "Betray you?" Her brow furrowed and her expression fell. "Kadin, I...I never meant to...betray you."
"What do you think this is, Kennedy?" The hunter's tone was harsh, but pleading. "One word from your so called 'friends', and I'm just your next little science project."
Kennedy was speechless.
"Don't you get it, Ken?" Kadin asked with a slight shake of her head. "Being someone's girlfriend, someone's lover...means more than just great sex and the occasional late night dinner."
"Kadin, I..." Kennedy tried again, but she couldn't seem to find the words.
The hunter looked up at the slayer for a long moment before she finally released a sigh and dropped her eyes away. Kennedy started to step forward to reach out to the other woman, but thought better of it and kept their distance.
"We should get movin'," Kadin said, finally breaking the awkward silence. She stood and glanced over at the slayer.
Kennedy nodded shortly. "Yeah."
"I'd say we should split up," Kadin started a little snidely, "but, that'da just blow your little plan all to hell."
"I don't have a plan, Kadin," Kennedy shot back as she suddenly became annoyed. "This isn't about me and you. This is about your ability to work as a team and to..."
"To take orders?" The hunter finished coolly. She glanced over her shoulder at the other woman. "You know me better than that, Kennedy. I haven't taken an order a day in my life." Kadin adjusted the crossbow on her hip as she brought her stare back in front of her. "I sure as hell ain't about to start now."
"Kadin, please," Kennedy pleaded as she took the few steps forward and placed her hand on the hunter's shoulder. "It wasn't my idea. You gotta believe me." Kennedy waited until Kadin turned slightly and met her eyes. "This isn't about you personally. It's just..." Kennedy sighed and started again. "The Council is kinda big on the whole 'team orientated' thing. There's alotta slayers out there now and it's our job to keep 'em alive long enough to even know what that means." Kennedy dropped her hand away from the other woman's shoulder and stuffed her hands into the pockets of her jeans. "The girls we get don't really know what they're doin' and I think you know that's the number one thing that'll get you killed in this line a work."
Kadin seemed to waver in her anger. "I get that, Ken. I do," she nodded. "But there's one big difference between me and them."
"Oh yeah?" Kennedy asked with a sigh. "What's that?"
Kadin slowly slipped her hand down to her thigh and wrapped her fingers around a stake. "I know exactly what I'm doin'."
The hunter grabbed the stake and pulled it out of the holster. She spun around swiftly and the silver and wooden stake shot out of her hand.
A vampire came stumbling out of the shadows. The demon had his hands wrapped around the stake protruding from his chest as he looked over at the two women. He took another step forward and began to fall.
Before his body hit the ground, he burst into ashes and dusted away in the wind. Kadin looked back at the slayer and smirked.
Kennedy wore a smirk of her own. "Can't argue there."
Kadin took a step closer to Kennedy and gave her a grin. "You’re important to the council Ken. Like I said, I get it. But I’m not one of the wet behind the ears gals you train. Do we understand each other?"
"Absolutely," Kennedy agreed.
"Good," Kadin answered. "Be sure to pass that along to your friends then." The hunter turned to face the brunette and reached out to place her hands on either of her hips. "Wanna see what else I can do? Something you don’t have to tell your friends about?"
Kennedy chuckled as she placed her hands on Kadin's forearms and pulled her in.
"Well, this must be my lucky night." A low, deep voice interrupted the moment just before the women could finish the kiss.
Kadin looked over to the source of the voice, but didn't break her hold on Kennedy's hips.
A large, muscle-bound vampire stepped out of the shadows and sneered at the two women. "I was just out lookin' for a late night snack, and instead, I find myself a slayer-sized meal."
Kadin broke her hold on Kennedy's hips and reached down to her thigh for another stake. She eyed the vampire wearily as she pulled herself upright with the stake in hand. "Just how I like 'em," she said returning the sneer. "Big and stupid."
The hunter started to charge forward, but Kennedy reached out at the last minute and grabbed her by the arm. "Hey," the slayer protested with a smile. "Why you get to have all the fun?"
Kadin grinned at the other woman.
The vampire chuckled. "Well, ain't that just sweet?" He took a few steps forward and clenched his fists as the smile faded from his face. His glare was trained on the slayer. "You can watch as I rip the beating heart from her chest."
Kennedy stepped up next to Kadin and snorted. "You and what army?"
Muffled footsteps suddenly sprouted up around the two women. Two, three, then four more figures came out of the shadows until there was a dozen in all. Each had the distinctive furrowed brows, fanged mouths and golden eyes of the undead.
Every single one was grinning.
Kennedy's eyes widened slightly. "Oh, that one."
End of Act
Onto Act Two