Mutant Existential Scoobies presents
Angel: the Series Season 6
(November 02, 2004)
Written by Tyreseus and OnM
PREVIOUSLY, ON "ANGEL" -
- Fred's body falls to the floor beside her bed. The demon king ILLYRIA rises in her place, and carefully examines its new "shell":
This will do.
- Wesley drains off most of Illyria's godlike power as ANGEL, SPIKE and GUNN watch; Illyria lies hunched on the floor afterward, angry and despondent.
- The SENIOR PARTNERS' new emissary, HAMILTON, brutally beats on Illyria.
- The gang stands in the pouring rain outside the HYPERION. THE DEMON HORDES approach.
- a PORTAL opened by a wounded DRAGON sucks Angel, Gunn, Spike, and Illyria into the dimension of FASACH, home of the nomadic WA!JANI tribe.
- Angel and Illyria walk aimlessly through the Fasach DESERT. A sudden sandstorm blinds them.
Strangers...have come to my world. I had to
see for myself...if they present a danger to
- Gunn and Angel converse in the Wa!Jani Leader's tent:
I told him we're not from this realm.
That we're just trying to get home.
If I understand him right, that's what
they're trying to do, too.
If we could find the dragon, we could use
it somehow to get back.
- ANGEL and SPIKE kill the dragon in its lair.
- The Wa!Jani Shaman performs the MYSTIC RITUAL to obtain the DRAGON'S STONE, which will reveal to the Wa!Jani the location of their "promised land," VERLAAT.
- The Gang and the Wa!Jani Shaman use the dragon's stone to return through the portal to L.A.
- Illyria and Gunn walk out onto a daylit street, Spike and Angel standing behind them in the shadows of a doorway.
- The scene of utter devastation outside the ruined school building.
- CLOSE-UP of GUNN, trying to take it all in, saying:
FADE / CUT TO:
EXT. WIDE ANGLE, ALMOST IMPERCEPTIBLY MOVING AERIAL SHOT OF L.A. FOLLOWED BY AN ABRUPT PLUMMET TO GROUND LEVEL, AS IF IN A FALLING ELEVATOR - NIGHT
For a change, it's not pouring down a cold, drenching rain or else 110 degrees and excessively sandy. It is, however, seriously nasty outside in even worse ways. We SMASH CUT from street to street, where we see numerous boarded-up storefront windows, the remnants of fires burning inside the twisted frames of gutted automobiles, once brightly lit downtown areas now mostly dark and abandoned, and finally two people running in terror as large, ominous-looking shadows follow them--and gain ground.
SMASH CUT TO - EXT. A SPORTS BAR IN A ONCE-DECENT, WORKING-CLASS NEIGHBORHOOD - NIGHT
POV - Starting from the middle of the now-littered street, we DOLLY IN quickly as if walking perpendicularly towards the sidewalk, then onward heading for the front door of the bar. We see a small sign by the door that reads "Bill's 678 Club," get almost to the doorway, then we -
CUT TO - INT. THE SPORTS BAR - NIGHT
The are numerous pro- and college-team logos on the walls, along with framed newspaper articles and action photos, and of course, an excess of televisions.
We see an ASSORTMENT OF DEMONS scattered around the interior. Some are shooting pool at a scuffed-up table off to the one corner, others are seated at booths or just milling around. Most are gathered at the bar itself, drinking and getting rowdy, working themselves up for some serious destruction-dealing later in the evening. One demon, who has a pale grey tentacle curled into the handle of a mug of some kind of foaming brew sitting in front of it, is pointing another tentacle and laughing at a HUMAN NEWS REPORTER on the TV screen. We hear the reporter say -
...despite the valiant efforts of the Los Angeles fire department,
Carson's Surf Shop burned to the ground with dozens of
shoppers still trapped inside. The store exits were blocked
and the rescue efforts of firefighters and police were hampered
by the creatures who apparently started the fire after first
rampaging through the interior.
Awww, too bad!
Now me, I like the charred look in terms of good architectural
design. It's a classic.
Several additional events are detailed, all of them bad or worse. The reporter looks as if he has been involved in a vicious scrape himself, and his reportage concludes by informing the viewers that the camera operator who shot the last footage played didn't make it back to the studio. The reporter pauses briefly, then signs off. Apparently unaware that the camera is still running, he crosses himself, then throws the microphone carelessly to the ground and walks off. There is dead air for several very long seconds, then the station cuts to a commercial.
(raises his brew, drains the remaining contents, plunks
the mug back on the bar with a thump)
Now that's entertainment. And everyone thought the
reality show trend had peaked!
Always wanted to star on Fear Factor myself.
(admiring the wit)
(pauses, then indicates the empty mug,
raises its voice)
Yo, barkeep! What did I tell you about keeping these filled?
Not doing so well with that, are we?
The camera moves to show a HUMAN BARTENDER behind the bar, shaking in obvious pain and terror.
Her face is badly scratched and bruised, and several fingers on each of her hands are both bloodied and bent at odd angles, clearly broken. She is struggling to hold another mug in one damaged hand, and pull on the tap with the palm of the other, but loses her tenuous grip as the mug fills. It crashes to the floor, shattering and spilling the contents.
(shakes its head, sadly)
Tsk. Sorry there, Joan. I'm afraid we're going
to have to send you packing.
The bartender's eyes go wide, and she frantically tries to back away, but the Pointing Demon instantly wraps a THICK, ROPELIKE TENTACLE AROUND HER NECK, pinning her in place. Tears begin to flow down her cheeks as the demon's grip slowly tightens.
CLOSE-UP of the bartender's head and shoulders as they're held in the demon's choking grip, where we can see the tails of a thin gold chain necklace with her name spelled out in cursive gold letters hanging just below her throat. A tiny rivulet of blood trickles down from where the tentacle is crushing the chain against her skin.
WIDE SHOT - we see the Pointing Demon use a second tentacle to place its empty mug under the tap, and then begin to fill it, all while continuing to choke the helpless bartender with the first.
Yes, since you know, barkeep....
He twists his grip on the woman's neck, snapping it.
Fear isn't really a factor...for us.
CUT TO - EXT. A GRAVEYARD - NIGHT
We DOLLY UP off of the street to the gate leading into the graveyard, CUT just before we reach it, and then find ourselves inside.
Several cemetery custodians are working hurriedly to bury a very PLAIN-LOOKING CASKET in a freshly dug grave. Other open GRAVES are nearby--and there are more CASKETS, all the same unadorned wooden box. There are no mourners around, but there are TWO POLICEMEN and what appears to be a SINGLE, HEAVILY ARMED SOLDIER DRESSED IN BLACK--military branch not clear--guarding THE CARETAKER and his ASSISTANT.
ANGLE - The camera moves up to the side and then to the back of the two cops, so we see from their perspective, watching the casket being lowered into the ground.
Man, I can't begin to tell you how glad I'll be for 7 AM
to get here. Punch out, drop the gun and shield off, and
then gone, left, buggin' out.
(long sigh, beyond tired and frustrated, shakes his head)
I hear you. I'm out too, as soon as the docs release
Carolyn and Sharon. I mean, it's bad all over, but here....
(face twists with anger, bordering on rage)
How're they doin'?
(pauses a beat, sets his empty styrofoam coffee cup
on the head of a nearby grave marker)
Better. Better, I....
(pauses again, doesn't finish the sentence)
(puts his hand on the other cop's shoulder, squeezes)
It wasn't your fault. I keep tellin' you that. That damn
thing wasn't even human, fer chrissakes. What could
you do that you didn't?
(gestures towards soldier)
Lookit the firepower he's got, and I'm not sure even that
would've been enough.
I mean, it's important, what we're doing. Even this.
The dead deserve better, this is the least we can do.
The least. But I can't handle it anymore, I gotta think
about my family.
Damn straight about that.
While the police are talking, the camera slowly moves over towards the 3-HIGH STACK OF CASKETS as the caretaker's assistant uses a small tractor fitted with a front-loader to fill in the current grave with soil. Leaning up against the side of the stack of caskets are THIN STONE GRAVE MARKERS, all extremely plain, roughly-finished ones, with the names of the deceased obviously hastily carved onto the fronts.
EXT. SAME GRAVEYARD - NIGHT
REVERSE POV - We are looking from the area of the new grave over to where the cops are standing. The shot is LOW ANGLE, LOOKING SLIGHTLY UP. The soldier is just visible on the far right side of the shot. He's looking slightly outward, away.
The two cops stand silently and watch as the soil eventually reaches the level of the surrounding grass. The caretaker picks a marker from the pile, grunting softly as he hefts the weight. Carrying it over to the top of the grave, he begins to set it into place.
The sound of a distant car alarm suddenly calls out, but neither the police nor the soldier so much as twitches. The caretaker finishes placing the stone, stands up, and then regards it briefly as if reciting a silent prayer.
He moves towards the caskets, and we hear his voice call out, wearily -
J. August Richards
EXT. OUTSIDE THE SAME BAR FROM THE TEASER SEQUENCE - NIGHT
TIME FRAME - the evening after the closing events of episode 2.
CUT TO - A closer shot, showing a LARGE, FURRY, EXTREMELY MUSCULAR DEMON holding Angel in a headlock, and simultaneously trying to pry a THICK METAL PIPE out of his hands. Angel kicks back hard with his legs, pushing the demon over backwards with him and body-slamming it to the ground.
The move surprises the demon just enough that it loosens its grip on the metal pipe, and Angel quickly swings it over the top of his head and smacks the demon hard on its skull. It yelps, releases the headlock, and Angel rolls free, twisting at the last second to slam the pipe down again, this time aiming for the throat.
The demon dodges the blow at the last split second, then deftly grabs hold of the pipe as Angel starts to pull it back for another try. It lets loose with a loud, bear-like roar and yanks hard, manages to pull the pipe from Angel's grip, and flings it away up the street. As the pipe goes clattering out of reach, and the demon starts to clamber back up on its feet, we hear a THUNDEROUS CRASH OF BREAKING GLASS from somewhere out of frame.
EXT. AN ELECTRICAL GOODS STORE ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE OF THE STREET FROM THE BAR - NIGHT
Illyria is sprawled on the floor inside the FRONT WINDOW, shards of glass scattered everywhere around her. She gets up immediately, not even stunned, and runs back out toward the middle of the street to rejoin the fray.
One of the demons, dressed in a manner distinctly reminiscent of the Gorch Brothers, is laughing and simply standing in place, waiting for Illyria to attack him again.
Haw! She's no fun, she got right back up again! Mighty
rugged li'l bitch, ain't she?
Hey, I'll handle her! You and Frenhg try that tossing
move with this bloodsucker here. That was freakin' cool!
The first demon dodges a roundhouse punch from Angel, then flings one leg out, slamming it against the back of Angel's knees, dropping him roughly to the ground.
It then heads over to take on Illyria as the Laughing Demon and the one named Frenhg both grab Angel and start pummeling him viciously with all four of their tentacled arms. Angel tries his best to deal, but at two arms against eight, it's a losing battle, and barely twenty seconds pass before Angel gets picked up and thrown through the WINDOW OF AN ANTIQUES SHOP next door to the electrical store. Or he would be, except....
(smashing against the glass with significant force)
...incredibly, the glass doesn't break. It flexes just slightly, and Angel bounces off and ends up in a heap on the ground, partly dazed and valiantly trying to regain his equilibrium.
(stiffly craning his neck to one side to
peer at the undamaged window)
As he gathers himself and gets up (far more slowly and painfully than Illyria did), a SMALL BLACK SPHERICAL OBJECT falls out of his coat pocket--it's the DRAGON'S STONE from episode 2. He doesn't notice, though, and it rolls into the gutter and stops.
Ahh, now that's just irritating. Morley, we gotta trash
that place after we finish with these guys.
MORLEY (aka LAUGHING DEMON)
Okey-dokey by me. I ain't even got to m'second wind yet.
(laughs at Angel)
He looks kinda winded, though!
(still fighting Illyria, and remarkably, holding her off
Well, I kinda got my dance card full here, so you're going
to have to handle him yourselves.
(to Angel, who's gotten up off the ground and
is starting to head back towards him)
Hey, y'all don't want to take a little breather there,
be'for'n I whup you agin?
Angel runs and dives headlong into Morley. As he does, the DOOR TO THE ANTIQUES SHOP opens a few inches, then a little further, and A FACE PEERS OUT, A HUMAN ONE, intently watching the ongoing skirmish out in the street.
Vampires don't breathe, moron.
He slugs at Morley and Frenhg viciously, trying to duck the multitude of flailing appendages snapping back at him seemingly from everywhere at once, but both of the demons are exceptionally tough adversaries, and it's an incredibly difficult battle. Morley dodges leftward just in the nick of time to avoid a head-butt from Angel, and Angel staggers forward from the incompleted momentum. Just then -
Well, we don't have to breathe, but we can. Hard to
smoke otherwise, and I do like my cigs.
(scowling--about damn time...)
Thanks for waking up. You wanna make yourself useful here?
Bitch, bitch, bitch. Not my fault 'e snuck up on me.
Angel kicks Morley back towards the approaching Spike, who wraps an arm around the demon's throat and begins to choke it.
I don't think "sporting"'s a big demon priority.
(struggling in Spike's chokehold)
Sporting? Why, shore we is.
(gasps, tries to twist free)
Heck...we even got our own bar over there!
He twists violently, breaks the chokehold, then spins around and slams a tightly curled tentacle tip solidly into the center of Spike's chest. Spike "whuffs" painfully and goes flying back several feet.
Mebbe I should go git some-a m'friends?
Suddenly, Morley goes wide-eyed and stands stock still. Angel and Spike freeze, stare at him--huh? Now what?
Damn. Now that sure weren't sportin'.
(momentarily getting the advantage and throwing
the furry demon against a nearby brick wall)
Your inappropriate accent disturbs me, although I am
The reason for Morley's behavior quickly becomes apparent as he falls forward, and we see the THICK, WOODEN SHAFT OF AN ARROW buried deeply in his right lower back. Everyone's eyes snap towards the shooter.
ANGLE - GUNN steps into view from behind the cover of a nearby car, holding a GOOD-SIZED CROSSBOW pointed right where Morley was standing. He skillfully loads another arrow into the crossbow by feel, keeping his eyes trained on the remaining two demons.
Maybe that's because there's more demons voting these days
than you might think.
They can do that? (sighs) You people are just much too
Gunn! I told you to stay back!
Oddly, the remaining two demons haven't stepped in to continue the fight, but are looking UPWARD AND AROUND at THE ROOFLINES OF THE NEARBY BUILDINGS. They seem disturbed, uneasy, even fearful. Spike, Angel and Illyria all pick up on this sudden shift in motivation, and freeze where they stand, watching the demons intently. Is this a feint of some kind?
Where did you get the weapon, Charles? It was not present
when we left Fasach.
Yeah, not that it wa'n't the nick o' time bit and all, but
you don't find crossbows just lying around in the street.
This one was. Just around the corner there.
(noting the quiver slung over Gunn's back)
With extra arrows, no less.
The demons are definitely spooked now, and are even slowly backing away from the gang. Gunn has the crossbow aimed at the closer demon, but he continues to watch, doesn't fire.
Yeah. Manna from heaven. Dropped right in.
Illyria is shifting her gaze rapidly between the retreating demons and the surrounding rooflines.
I see nothing.
They're here. They're freakin' here, man.
Here? Who's here?
But the furry demon doesn't answer. He and Frenhg turn and take off down the street at a blinding speed. The gang watches mutely, now even more perplexed. Finally, after several seconds pass -
This has no logic.
Hey, I don't think logic's a big demon priority.
They didn't strike me as the give-up-easy type.
(starts to walk out towards the rest of the gang)
Yeah, I was expecting the Supreme Court to weigh in any
Illyria laughs, just the briefest of chuckles, but a laugh nevertheless. Spike, Angel and Gunn shift their gaze towards her--WTF??
(looks intensely disconcerted, and after a pause--)
That was disturbing. I don't know where that came from.
(looking even more disturbed than Illyria)
I...it was a joke, I didn't really expect....
(quickly shifting demeanor)
We should leave now.
Agree with that. We can't take on the whole city, and
based on what we've seen so far, this is just the tip
of it. Let's get out of here.
(who has now walked over to join the other three weary fighters)
No arguments here. Not really feeling all that perky.
He winces, gritting his teeth as he flexes his body to shoulder the crossbow.
Oughta get you to a hospital, Charley. Magic spiders or
no, you ain't lookin' your best.
Gunn? Can you hang on a while yet? We need to get out of
sight, and do it quickly.
(getting pissed at Angel seemingly downplaying Gunn's
What's the rush, ace?
Not asking you, ace--
Suddenly, a VOICE, SOFT-SPOKEN BUT CLEAR and well-measured, calls out from off-screen.
All look over in the direction of the voice, and see A MAN standing outside the ANTIQUES SHOP. His fingers are curled around a faintly glowing object that is cradled in his hand, partly concealing it from view.
You, uh--you dropped something when you hit my window.
The man is of medium height and build, about 50-ish, clean-shaven, and his hairline is just starting to recede. He wears a conservative business suit, neatly tailored but looking somewhat less than new, with a tie, but currently minus the jacket. His face is open, friendly, but there is a hint of puzzlement playing at the corners of his eyes.
(he points at the window he hit earlier)
You're the antiques dealer?
Yes, it's my store. I came out when I heard you fall
against my window.
Angel walks over to the man, who backs off just a little as Angel stops before him.
(studying him, sensing--nothing really. Just who he
says he is...)
Thrown against, actually.
You were? Damn, and here I was unconscious at the time.
Blue, you'll fill me in later, right?
(her eyes on Angel and the shopkeeper)
It was an impressive impact.
(pauses, suspicion rising slightly)
And the glass didn't break.
(looks faintly bemused, but doesn't miss a beat)
Plastic, in fact, not glass. I have a brother in the
trade. It's a new space-age material, even more resilient
than the traditional polycarbonate.
(pauses, looking around)
This is a bad neighborhood now. He gave me the material at
cost, and installed it himself. It's employed on the door
also, within a steel frame. Prevented quite a lot of
damage so far.
Illyria drifts towards the shopkeeper, her eyes curious.
Why do you stay here?
She stops beside Angel, who is scrutinizing the shopkeeper, hands on his hips. The shopkeeper takes in the sight of both of them, his fingers toying with the object in his hand. He glances over at his shop again.
This is my life now, my livelihood. I don't take kindly to
the idea of being driven out by....
(thinks, looking for a description that fits the new
(still not quite getting a read on the man)
Well, I'm glad we didn't damage anything of yours.
The shopkeeper smiles, then blinks and glances down.
He holds out the pale red dragon's stone. Illyria's eyes turn to it.
You dropped this.
Angel glances down as Illyria takes the stone from the shopkeeper's hand.
(grinning as he suddenly regains focus)
Oh. Uh, yeah, thanks. Yeah, I must've dropped that.
The shopkeeper returns his grin. Beside them, Illyria examines the glowing stone. She blinks and sways just a little and raises her free hand to her temple. Her hand closes around the stone.
(to the shopkeeper)
Thanks, really. That's a family heirloom.
(glancing at the stone in Illyria's hand)
Really? (beat) An heirloom? And you carry it with you....
(gestures around to the barren, battered environs)
Gunn and Spike join Angel and Illyria at the shopkeeper's side.
Well, there was...a robbery once. Long story.
Angel turns to Illyria, gesturing for her to give him the stone. Illyria stares at him for a beat, then hands it over. Angel pockets the round black stone, then turns and waves at the shopkeeper.
Well, thanks again, but we've gotta get moving. Take care
of your business there.
Oh, I will. As long as possible anyway. Someone has to
fight the good fight, eh?
If that's what you call it.
The shopkeeper watches as the four walk away down the street, his eyebrows raised in a quizzical manner. Then he squints down, deep in thought, his lips compressing. He holds his hand out and stares intently at his fingers, then curls them in, forming a loose fist. The fist tightens momentarily, then he relaxes and the arm falls slowly to his side. Sighing with a certain distant sadness, he turns and opens the door to the shop, and heads inside.
INT. SOMEWHERE IN THE UTILITY TUNNELS UNDER L.A. - DAY
Angel, Gunn, Spike and Illyria are walking through a LONG NARROW TUNNEL with Illyria in the lead. Apparently running parallel to a main roadway overhead, the passageway seemingly stretches on forever without a turn or fork in the path. While there are some much smaller channels feeding into it at regular intervals, they are too restrictive for human-sized beings to travel in while standing upright. Clearly the group is tiring of the walk, and Gunn in particular is showing increasing signs of pain from the prolonged strenuous activity without full recovery from his wounds. As their pace slackens, the distance begins to grow between Illyria and the rest of the group. Angel gestures with his arm.
C'mon, we gotta keep moving.
Not to go all car-ride-to-Disneyland on you, but are we
Look, we've been walking for hours. I'm just wondering--
where are we going?
(sighs, then somewhat dejectedly--)
I don't know.
No! I think you've still got Wa!Jani on the brain. We've
been wandering these miserable tunnels for bloody hours
assuming you had some kind of plan. Is this your brilliant
You'd rather wait around for whomever or whatever the
Senior Partners send after us?
Oh, I see, we're running--as in away.
We don't know what's coming.
Right now, I don't care, so long as I can punch it and it
doesn't smell like bleedin' fungus or burned insulation.
Angel's right, Spike. We need to keep moving. Military
types like those guys we saw above ground? Rumor is that they
don't take kindly to people who've tossed an axe into the
head of a United States Senator.
What are you talking about? No one's chasing after us.
Well, okay, lots of things were chasing after us,
but they aren't now.
I mean, look....
(he turns, gestures broadly at the tunnel space behind
Do you see anyone?
(cups a hand to one ear,
leans out slightly toward the same space)
Do you hear anyone? Anything?
And indeed, there is nothing to see but the faint, repetitive glimmer of the distantly spaced tunnel lights, or at least the ones that are still working. The only sound is that of water slowly running or dripping, or the faint snapping/sizzling noise of electrical arcs. Otherwise...whole lots more of nada. Gunn sighs deeply, moves over to the side of the tunnel and sits down, gingerly, holding his side as he does so. He leans back wearily against the block wall.
O.K., changed my mind. Blondie-bear has a point.
(rolls eyes, then mock-plaintively)
Please stop calling me that.
Hey, it's meant affectionately.
Oh, now, really...(pauses) It is?
He does not have a point, Gunn. Look, we keep
moving until we can be sure the Senior Partners aren't
right on our heels.
(returning from her distance ahead of the group)
We stop here.
Not you too!
The ceiling portion of the passage has collapsed up ahead.
We can go no further in this direction.
(sits down next to Gunn)
Thus endeth plan A.
I do not like this place, the walls are close and
Then we go another way.
Ahh. Plan B. What other way?
Illyria walks briskly by them, heading back the way they came. All eyes follow her, but no one else moves from where they're standing or sitting. The reason for her change in course becomes evident shortly as she stops walking away and abruptly begins to move vertically. Deep in shadow, the effect is rather spooky--Illyria seems to be DISAPPEARING INTO THE CEILING AT THE SIDE OF THE TUNNEL.
Vent. I saw it when we passed it, but I wasn't thinking
of heading back upstairs.
Plan C already? (sighs) Plan B, we hardly knew ye.
So whadda we do?
I guess we go that way.
Gunn and Spike groan and rise up reluctantly from their seated positions and follow Angel as he moves toward the rusty, decrepit ladder. Angel starts climbing. Meanwhile, Illyria has reached the top of the vent shaft and pushes the heavy steel cover up and to the side. A BEAM OF BRIGHT SUNLIGHT pierces the dusk of the shaft, and Angel jumps quickly off the bottom rungs and out of the way.
Owww! Damn...must be close to noon, sun's directly
We're not in Fasach anymore, Toto.
Angel edges over as close to the vent as he can without contacting the sunlit area and yells up to Illyria.
Be careful up there! Is anyone around?
No. It appears to be an alleyway off a more primary street.
I see only the typical detritus of your civilization
scattered about the immediate perimeter, and the
occasional vehicle traveling the primary.
Spike and Gunn are now standing at the base of the vent along with Angel. Gunn peers up into the vent, sunlight bathing his face and shoulders.
What kind of vehicles? Civilian? Military?
Illyria slides the cover back over, and begins to descend the ladder.
I don't know about this.
Plan D? Ooh, I'm so excited!
Stop with the plan alphabet!
I don't like the idea of going up there in the daytime.
You and I can't, Gunn's not firing on all cylinders yet,
and Illyria sticks out like....
Illyria nears the bottom of the vent shaft, releases her hold on the ladder and drops the remaining four feet to the tunnel floor. Her face remains completely deadpan as she says, to no one in particular -
Xena, Warrior Smurf?
Hey, it's meant affectionately.
Your attempts to curry favor with me are of negligible
O.K., but are we still on for Saturday night?
(ignoring Spike, turns to Gunn)
Mostly civilian, but an occasional military vehicle.
The general frequency of appearance is extremely low. We
can easily emerge without being seen.
Then I say why don't I do a recon, and maybe bring us
back some supplies, food.
(pauses, looks at Spike and Angel)
Maybe find a butcher shop, cop some pig's blood?
(shakes his head emphatically)
It's too risky to go by yourself.
I will accompany him. We will avoid confrontation.
Be sneaky, even.
One of humanity's few shining attributes.
(thinking, then, to Gunn--)
Clothes, could you maybe steal some clothes, a scarf
to cover her head, make her look more--ordinary?
Yeah, sure, then I could come back here and....
(cuts him off)
This is unnecessary. If you would....
Illyria doesn't continue, simply stands, expression inscrutable.
(very long pause, then, getting it--)
Oh. Yeah, that would work. You could do that.
(getting it also)
Wesley once told me to never assume her physical
persona, but in our present circumstances, this
ability would be useful.
Well, that it would. No doubt.
(taken somewhat aback)
Are you serious? You could stand to look at her like that?
Yeah, it'd be a little tough, but like she said--
(stares directly at Illyria, who meets his gaze)
Look, you don't have to. Get the scarf, sunglasses,
whatever--like you said before.
No. That'll take more time, and I don't want Gunn out
there either alone, or for any longer than necessary.
(turns to Illyria)
THE MORPH is over in barely a second--and THE IMAGE OF FRED now stands before the three others.
(turns away, speaks quietly)
(in Fred's voice)
So, is this dress O.K.? I mean, not too out-of-towny?
Yeah, yeah, clothing's good, fine...I....
(not unkindly, but with intent)
Could you keep your normal voice when you're alone
Of course. If you prefer.
(turns back around, nodding)
Yep. O.K., then. Up ya go.
(gestures at the vent shaft)
Gunn begins climbing the ladder, Illyria/Fred follows. Angel calls up after them as they reach the top, push the cover aside and climb out.
O.K., Spike and I will wait down here. See what you can
find out. Come back after sunset and we'll try looking
for a better tunnel.
If y'all say so.
Illyria and Gunn disappear, the cover slides back over the hole. Angel and Spike both wince just a little.
Then, a brief moment later, the cover slides back open. Illyria-Fred's head appears at the top of the vent, looking down.
The cover slides shut again, and the tunnel returns to muted darkness.
(odd expression on his face)
Did she just say "sorry"?
Spike moves to take a seat where Gunn and he were previously sitting. He idly picks up Gunn's crossbow and runs his hands along it.
Strange, strange demon kinngggg-niggit.
Angel says nothing more, just sits down beside Spike. They wait.
FADE/CUT TO - EXT. COMMERCIAL AREA OF L.A. - DAY
GUNN and ILLYRIA (appearing as FRED) emerge from the alleyway and survey the DEVASTATION OF LOS ANGELES by day. The streets appear to be mostly empty and covered in litter, shattered glass and rubble. Illyria was right--there are very few cars moving about, and even fewer people. Gunn spots an ARMY NATIONAL GUARDSMAN at one corner, dressed in dark-colored combat fatigues and leaning against his Humvee. Gunn gently steers Illyria in the opposite direction, trying to act as "normal" as possible.
Things seem to have calmed down since last night.
Perhaps, but the air is still hazy with fear, like
the acrid smoke of charred flesh.
Sure that isn't just smog?
(notices a newspaper lying on the ground)
Look at this.
He picks up the NEWSPAPER, which has a headline in 2-inch bold type reading "Martial Law Declared!" Smaller, but still dramatic subheadings declare "Death Counts Rise" and "Derelict Leadership? - Political Figures in Hiding."
Look at this date--it's been almost four months since we
left L.A. !
The intricacies of your odd local time cycle have little
meaning to me.
All I'm saying is that if anyone's after us, our trail
has been cold for a long time now.
Your race has an interesting phrase:
"Revenge is a meal best served cold."
It's "a dish best served cold,"
but point taken.
A WOMAN walks around from the opposite corner and appears on the street, late 30's/early 40's, looking rather nervous and clutching a bag of groceries closely. Gunn notices her and crosses toward her with his most charming smile.
Excuse me, ma'am?
(pulls a knife from her grocery bag)
Whoa, easy--easy there! Just want to talk.
(doesn't move the knife from its raised position)
Then talk--from where you are. Stay away from me!
(appearing as clueless as possible)
What's going on around here?
What? What do you mean? Who are you?
Easy. I'm just...the wife and I, we've just been out of
town and things seem...different.
Out of town? Where out of town? Where have you been?
(in Fred voice)
We've been house-sitting for a friend. Can you believe
this big goof's never been to the mountains? We spent the
whole summer up in their cabin, looking at the sky and
fishing and--well, you know, communing with nature.
It's just, when we got back home, just this morning,
everything was...different. There were some really scary-
looking guys outside our apartment building and it seems
like everyone's hiding!
(whispering to Illyria)
That was good....
The woman considers Illyria/Fred's story and relaxes her guard a bit, partially lowers the knife.
Your home is gone. It's all gone.
The whole world's gone....
(the bag slips in her grip)
(taking a step forward)
Hey, let me help you with that.
(dropping the bag completely, re-points the knife)
No! Stay away! I'll call the marshal....
Panicking, the woman turns and runs toward THE SOLDIER STANDING BY THE HUMVEE. Previously he was ignoring Gunn and Illyria/Fred, but now he turns to look at them as the woman cries out.
Help! Marshal, help!
(eyes widening--oh, sh*t...)
No, wait, please, I'm just trying to....
(quickly moves forward, picks up the bag of groceries)
What are you doing?
You need food. She has abandoned hers.
I don't think she agrees.
(points toward the woman)
GUNN'S POV - revealing the woman now speaking to THE GUARDSMAN, pointing back at Gunn and Illyria. The words "stealing my food" are heard fairly clearly, and Gunn grimaces. The guardsman steps protectively in front of the frightened woman and quickly flips the transmit button on his radio.
(speaking into the mic)
Theta Base, this is Charlie-02, we've got an incident in
progress at Hope and First Street.
Let's get out of here.
You two! Stop where you are!
Put that bag down!
EXT. COMMERCIAL AREA OF L.A. - CONTINUED FROM ACT ONE - DAY
We return just moments after we left. GUNN and ILLYRIA/FRED are running back towards the ALLEYWAY they emerged from a short while before. Illyria is tightly clutching the BAG OF GROCERIES taken from the woman who dropped it, somehow managing to do so without slowing down. Gunn isn't doing as well, though--he's starting to gasp with every step. Illyria passes him, notices his pained expression and faltering gait. She slows just slightly.
(looks over at Illyria)
The bag--drop the bag!
(still running, but much slower, matching Gunn's pace)
We need these.
So does she. Not....
(gasps, almost stumbles)
...not taking...stealing from....
Suddenly a loud report of MACHINE GUN FIRE rips through the air. It's just a short burst, but sharp snapping sounds and a biting spray of concrete bits fly up at Gunn and Illyria from just a few feet to one side of them as they run.
Stop right now! This is your last chance!
(clutching his side, stops, almost falls)
Illyria stops also, drops the bag, looks back over her shoulder to see the soldier braced in position, pointing his weapon directly at her. A strident screech of tires heralds the arrival of reinforcements, driving up quickly behind him. Gunn does finally fall, or perhaps folds up and drops might be a better description, groaning as he does so.
(still shouting over at them)
That's right. Now you're getting it.
You two, turn to face me and put your hands behind your
necks, lock your fingers together. Walk this way, right now.
(faces the guardsman, speaks firmly in Fred voice)
He's injured! Don't shoot us, please!
(whispers to Gunn, in Illyria voice)
Charles...take my hand.
(catching his breath)
What? What are you....
Something indescribable in the tone of Illyria's voice causes a cold shiver to run through him, but desperation and fear makes Gunn put his reason on hold. He reaches out his palm to grasp the one Illyria is extending down to him.
(to the guardsman, in Fred voice)
I'm just helping him up. Don't shoot!
Illyria's fingers close around Gunn's hand, squeezing it tightly, almost painfully. With blinding speed, she pivots around, pulling Gunn to his feet as she turns to face away from both the original officer and now several other soldiers gathering at his side, their weapons raising to the ready.
CLOSE-UP of MAN'S FINGER - slowly pulling back on a trigger.
SOLDIERS' POV - Looking at Illyria pulling Gunn up from the ground, turning to run away.
CLOSE-UP of FINGER ON TRIGGER - CONT. FROM ABOVE - continuing pull, trigger clicks, attenuated sound of gun firing, as if cut off microseconds after the gunpowder ignites.
CGI SHOT OF BULLETS - leaving muzzle of rifle, as close to "bullet time" style as we can get without hefty royalties to Wachowskis.
SOLDIER'S POV - Gunn on his feet, running, arm stretched in front of him, Illyria-F's arm stretching back to meet his.
SUPERIMPOSE - CGI shot of bullets moving towards them.
GUNN'S POV - Illyria-F in front of him
TWO-SHOT - Gunn winces as Illyria pulls hard on his arm, then as his eyes blink back open he sees a BRILLIANT BLUE-VIOLET SHIMMER appear before them. The shimmer instantly blends into what reads as if the air surrounding them has been suddenly made liquid. The liquid air ripples and bends, and then everything streams black-ward (sic) as odd, low thuds, followed by shrill whistles that drop rapidly in frequency seem to slide past his right ear.
SUPERIMPOSE - CGI SHOTS (AS NEEDED)
BLACKOUT - Pause for several seconds - FADE UP slowly from black through pale, low-contrast color, then into full white - then fade from full white into low contrast color, then finally normal color.
WE ARE NOW IN GUNN'S POV - he's dazed, finds himself sitting on the ground, leaning up against the outside brick wall of a building, in an alley, but not the one where the tunnel vent was from the earlier scene. Illyria is back in her normal "blue" form and is sitting on her haunches, looking at him carefully.
Both remain quiet for a moment as the now very distant sounds of activity recede. Gunn starts to catch his breath and relax a bit. Illyria moves from her crouching position, smoothly pivots on the balls of her feet, slides back against the wall, and seats herself beside Gunn. Gunn closes his eyes, focusing on breathing regularly, deeply. He winces and relaxes, his fingers gently hovering over his abdomen.
Slow REFOCUS on the background behind them (TIME CUT), then -
We find Gunn sitting a few minutes later, eyes open, looking at Illyria.
I thought you couldn't do that anymore.
I could not.
Wesley's device was very effective in inhibiting my power.
But you did. Just now. That sensation isn't something
I'll forget any time soon.
(voice hardens just slightly)
Comprehension fails me. I have attempted to bend time
on several occasions since I was first devolved, to no
Her eyes go distant momentarily, pupils dilating as if she is disconnecting from something, then returning to normal focus. When she speaks again, there is a clear sense of bitterness.
And I cannot do it again.
The connection is gone, as before.
(she twitches just slightly, jerkily,
as if surprised with a pin-stick)
Gunn stares at her uneasily, as if pondering the obvious--Illyria has been a mostly loyal ally of the group for the last several weeks. Her advanced powers could be a huge asset. But if those same powers are in fact returning to her....
Illyria twitches again, grimaces slightly.
Someone is in trouble.
(rolls his head back slightly against the wall, looks
No, I feel them. Panic. Fear. Ughh....
(a beat, then she grimaces again)
It torments me. Like jagged obsidian against my breast.
You do love your similes, don't you? Who? Where's it
I feel your pain, and now their pain.
(points at the building across from where they sit)
There. Likely two blocks down.
(starts to get up)
What are we waiting for?
This does not concern us.
(with a certain sympathy)
But...you like feeling that way?
(less cold, more resignedly)
Then let's move.
We still need to get some food and supplies anyway,
and sitting here won't get it.
Very well. Your logic has merit.
The two of them head off toward the source of Illyria's empathic distress, walking briskly but not too fast, Gunn setting the pace. They reach the end of the alley, and turn onto the adjoining back street.
Oh, and...thanks for what you did back there.
Illyria does not respond, and they walk out of frame.
INT. UTILITY TUNNEL - SAME LOCATION AS IN PREVIOUS ACT - DAY
Angel sits on a pile of rubble near where the tunnel collapsed. Spike paces restlessly, watching the tunnel and the vent conduits to the street above for any sign of an impending attack.
Gaahhh! I want to hurt something.
Bloody sitting around here waiting and waiting....
Plenty of time for that later.
Yeah, about that! I haven't seen a city so buggered up
And, of course, Sunnydale, but that ended up with me at
the center of a crater-making explosion, so maybe not
quite that much with the hurting, but, something in
(he shouts, the sound echoes down the tunnel)
(zoning back in)
You'll get your fight. The Senior Partners are finally
showing their true colors.
(stops ranting - ehh?)
How do you figure?
I knew all that talk about the long-term war was just
talk. They're finally going for the kill. This is it--
this is the end game, and what's out there is the
beginning of it.
Oh great, we started the apocalypse.
This is the Senior Partners' doing!
Well, yes, mate, that may be true, but...we're the ones
that poked the bear.
(his hand abruptly darts toward a pile of rubble)
You think I don't know that?
So why are we running away like flippin' schoolgirls
instead of getting out there and fixing things?
Something SQUEALS. Angel pulls a RAT from the rubble.
Because...we're ridiculously outnumbered and we have no
idea who's specifically pulling the strings on this. I
never thought they could replace the Circle so quickly,
but someone's behind this and we need to figure out who.
Then, we kill them.
Angel stares grimly at the squirming rat in his hand, then puts on his vamp face and BITES INTO THE RAT.
I like the sound of that--what are you doing?
When's the last time you ate?
He extends the dead rat toward Spike. Spike looks at the rat for a beat, hunger and wariness warring on his face. He almost reaches out to take the offering, but at the last second suppresses the movement and frowns.
Nope. Help yourself.
I'll wait for what Charley and Blue come up with.
That battle with Wolfram and Hart really did a
number on your palate.
He sits down again, quieter now. Angel frowns, then we CUT BACK to see Spike fumbling absent-mindedly with Gunn's crossbow as wet crunching and chewing sounds echo softly in the surrounding space.
EXT. YET ANOTHER ALLEY IN LOS ANGELES - AFTERNOON
Gunn and Illyria (still in normal blue form) enter the new alleyway to find it oddly quiet.
So, where to now?
(pauses, briefly looks around)
It was here. It's stopped now.
(indicates with a tilt of her head)
Gunn spots the same sight just as Illyria speaks--a BODY OF SOME KIND, halfway hidden behind a battered, rusty dumpster. They cross over to the spot, and the body reveals itself to be that of a LARGE DEMON, silvery colored, tentacled, pale grey fluid liberally spattering the body and pooled around it. It's the same species of demon that the gang fought with the previous night, only this one's head is detached and lying cupped inside a deliberately arranged curl of tentacles on the chest, facing outward, dead eyes staring--as if being offered up in sacrifice. Gunn stares in abject disbelief at the artful carnage, and even Illyria seems just slightly disturbed.
Now who--or what--did this?
I do not know. But it is obviously a formidable entity.
As you recall, these creatures gave us significant
resistance when we attempted to eliminate them.
Yeah, that they did. That empathic thing of yours not
giving you any greater insights here?
(points to a wall above the demon)
I once saw sensation the way I see this wall, but now it
is vague, blurred. I see merely the surface, and little
Well, maybe, but you're still the one-eyed demon king in
the land of the fast-going-blind.
(looking at wall)
Well, what do you think that means?
Gunn points to a CRUDELY DRAWN, GREYISH MARK on the wall, apparently traced with the DEMON'S BLOOD. The mark is vaguely BATTLE-AXE-SHAPED, but rendered in a highly stylized, quickly made version.
This is not a symbol I am familiar with.
And it's not in any demon language I recognize.
Wait...wait...I know what this is--it's a territory
marker. When I was on the streets, this was how we marked
our turf, with graffiti, or symbols--like this one.
'Course, we used spray paint.
In the days of my rule, the boundaries of our kingdoms were
defined by the rotting corpses of those who would dare to
(looks back down at the demon body)
Well, I think that might be the plan here, too. I also
very much think we don't want to find out who or what took
out that thing.
Agreed. Our original purpose in running this errand has
been deflected sufficiently as it is.
Amen to that. So let's go get with the program.
Gunn and Illyria head back out to the main street. Illyria shifts back into Fred-visage as Gunn starts looking around for stores that are closed and possibly accessible for some selective liftage. As they move down the sidewalk, the camera gradually draws back into a long shot, and then we CUT TO -
EXT. A VIEW FROM A ROOFTOP ABOVE THE ALLEY - DUSK
We see a backlit shot of a MYSTERIOUS FIGURE, framed partly in the lowering angle of reddish sunlight, the shadows being cast hiding any identifying features, save for one--the outline of what appears to be an AXE-SHAPED OBJECT slung across the figure's upper back. The figure stands silently, watching Gunn and Illyria leave the way they came, then just as silently moves sideways, blending completely into the shadows and disappearing from view.
INT. UTILITY TUNNEL - SAME AS IN ACT ONE - DUSK
The SOUND OF A MANHOLE COVER sliding away carries down the vent shaft and into the tunnel. SPIKE and ANGEL get up from where they're seated and move toward it.
SPIKE'S POV - LOOKING STRAIGHT UP THE VENT SHAFT. We see Gunn's face framed in the opening at the top. The sun appears to have set, or nearly so, as there is almost no light shining down from above, and Gunn's features are just discernible.
Yo there! Catch!
Spike catches a CANVAS BAG as it falls from above, and we hear the clinking of glass as items move about loosely inside the bag.
(looking in bag)
'ey now, what's this?
He reaches down into the bag and pulls out a plastic container full of what is obviously BLOOD. A second reach retrieves a large bottle of vodka.
Aww right, Charley! Just what I needed, a chaser.
He tosses the bag to Angel as Gunn and Illyria (blue) finish descending the ladder. He quickly unscrews the cap and chugs a mouthful, then lets out a long, satisfied sigh. Gunn silently watches Spike, bemused, then turns to Angel -
Do I want to know?
(rooting through the sack, retrieving another container of
blood and a collection of foodstuffs and some small
Probably not. What'd you learn?
Well, things are pretty hairy out there.
Looks like whoever's currently representing the human
authorities have declared martial law.
(retrieves a rolled-up newspaper from the collection of
items strewn on the floor)
And we've been gone nearly four months, not just a few days.
(takes it in, expression darkens)
Great. Any idea who's in charge?
There is no apparent central order in this new domain.
Those with strength or power have created their own
diminutive kingdoms--the remainder have become either
slaves, refugees or corpses.
(pulls a apple from the bag, starts eating it)
We saw mo' of those Army National Guard guys out there.
They seem to be keeping the peace during the day, but
there are definitely others taking advantage of the
As should we. I have seen divisiveness such as this
before, these minor factions are easily conquered with
appropriate planning beforehand.
Gunn looks up from the apple he's holding, and abruptly stops eating. He stares at Illyria, consternation on his face. His eyes turn to Angel to see his response.
We're not in the business of conquering.
You would prefer to see your people fall prey to every
ambitious competitor who comes along until one of them
gains influence or armies large enough to wage a final
war? The ravaged are crying out for protection. They will
accept any ruler who can restore order and
enforce the peace.
So we find out who's causing this chaos and stop them, and
I have a pretty good idea where to start looking.
Did you see anyone who might've been from whatever's
left of Wolfram and Hart?
No, we were kinda concentrating on dodging bullets and
getting the supplies. I did see...I...ahhhh!
...oh, damn...not again....
(suddenly groans deeply, and clutches his stomach.)
(starting to shake)
Man, it's getting cold in here all of a sudden. Thought
I'd feel better after I ate something, but--
This painful weakness occurred previously, while we were
escaping from your military.
(she looks at Gunn closely, twitches slightly, frowns)
He is far worse this time. I clearly sense it.
He needs to see a doctor--just like I said before. A
human doctor, not the otherworldly magic-insect-using
Technically they are what your species-catalogers refer to
as "arachnids." But the vampire is correct.
I'll be all right, I think it's just....
I think I need to sit down--feelin' kinda dizzy.
We need to find some place safe.
We need to find a hospital, you bleedin' twit!
(getting in Spike's face)
I can see that, I'm not blind. We find a doc, and then
what? We can't go back to the Hyperion, it's too obvious,
and Wolfram and Hart is out of the question. Gunn's going
to need to rest and we need some place to think, to plan
the next move.
(partly sitting, partly lying on the rubble pile nearby)
I...I think I know a place. If it's still around.
Been....been a long time...might not be. Or I would have
Is it larger than this?
Southwest side of town. F-f-f-fair walk from here.
(looks at Spike, and Illyria, then back
at the shivering Gunn)
Fine, doctor first, then we'll check out this place of
Anywhere's better'n this dead end.
(to Gunn, kindly)
Charley, can you walk?
Dunno. Give it a try.
(attempts to rise, but as soon as he does, he falters
and sinks back down again)
Uhhh, "no" seems to be the answer.
That's okay, I'll carry you.
Angel bends down to pick up Gunn, but suddenly gets roughly pushed aside by Illyria. As he looks over at her, he's startled to see, for the barest fraction of a second, the external appearance of Fred. But, the instant he blinks, the usual, blue-eyed demon is there, cradling Gunn's body, and rising with him in its arms. The hint of anger in the voice is scarcely concealed as she says -
I'll do it. You have failed him before, vampire.
I will not.
She begins walking back down the tunnel at a rapid pace. Spike picks up the sack with the supplies and slings it over one shoulder, gestures at Angel.
Guess we go that way.
Spike and Angel look at one another, then, wordlessly, follow the leader.