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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Supernatural · #2134838
To keep from losing the woman he loves Wesley has a dying Winifred turned into a vampire.
Buffy: the Vampire Slayer/Angel Fan fiction.

To keep from losing the woman he loves, a distraught Wesley has Harmony turn the dying Winifred Berkel into a vampire.

I do not own any of these characters. They belong to the producers of the TV Series “Angel”.


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Illyrian Blues

By Yesmrbill

1

She had a high fever, and felt pain throughout her body. She was groaning in agony, and unable to stop trembling. Her lungs were filled with fluid, and she was wheezing heavily. When she tried to sit up, she felt dizzy and nauseous. All she could do was lie in bed.

“Sarcophagus.” Winifred (Fred) Berkel thought, it’s a Greek word meaning “Eater of the dead.” Now the one that I opened is eating me alive.

She was lying in her bed in her apartment.

The 30 year old woman thought, I’ve come home to die. At least I’m not dying alone. Wesley is with me. He’s hovering over me. His troubled face is above mine. Before this, I’ve always loved having him above me, while I was lying in bed, but I never expected it to be happening this way.

“Wesley.” The researcher mumbled in her Texas accent, “Make love to me.”

He looked troubled. Then spoke in his upper class British accent. “Not now Fred.”

“I’m sorry Wes.” She told him, “I’ve seen myself in the bathroom mirror. I know that with the way I look now, no guy'd want to go 'wham-bam thank you ma'am' with me."

“It’s all right Fred.” He spoke in a comforting voice. “Once you’ve got your health back, you and I will...”

The doorbell rang.

He said, “I’ll be back in a moment.”

He was gone from her.

He and I will what? She thought, What I did when I was a high school girl in a backseat?

Sorry Wes. I’d love to, but that’s never happening with me and any guy, ever again. Sorry. I know you're gentleman. You always say 'Thank you ma'am'.

She tried to put her mind to something else. She remembered the beginning of this week, when she’d opened the sarcophagus, and the overwhelming stench had hit her in the face. Since that moment, her health had rapidly deteriorated.

Be back quick Wes, she thought. I don’t want to die alone.

She heard a woman’s voice just outside the bedroom door.

It’s Harmony, a vampire who works at Wolfram and Hart, like me and Wesley, but she works as a receptionist. She has nothing to do with Research.

A vampire? She’s come to see me while I’m dying?

She’s come for? Has Wesley’s actually arranged for?

Should I refuse? Just let it happen?

Now Wesley was back beside Fred. A woman with a thick mane of long blonde hair, stood at the foot of the bed, looking as distressed as Wesley, by the sight of the sick woman. She wore a yellow business dress, with matching vest and shoes.

Winifred spoke with a wheezy voice. “Hi Harmony. How’re things going?”

“Hi Freddie girl.” Harmony spoke uneasily.

“Winifred,” Wesley told her, “Listen carefully. There is no way you can survive in your condition, for very much longer. That’s why I’ve asked Harmony to come over.”

“She’s gonna bite me?” Fred spoke to Harmony, “You’re gonna kill me, and turn me into a vampire?”

The blonde woman, who appeared to be in her early twenties nodded. “That’s what friends do for each other girl.”

“Wes.” Winifred’s voice shook. “Are you sure you know what you’re doing?”

"I know," he said, “that right now, I'm exercising terrible judgment. I’m sure I may regret this, but right now, I’d rather have an undead you in my life, than none of you at all.”

Harmony sighed. “Why Wes, that’s beautiful.”

Winnie began to choke, and coughed her throat open with difficulty.

He said, “I think we’d better get on with it now.”

The vampire nodded, “Right.”

Then Wesley stepped back. Harmony came over beside the bed, and got a close look at the dying Miss Berkel.

Then she said, “Eeew! Her blood’s gonna taste rancid! It’s gonna be full of what’s doing this to her.”

“It won’t have any effect on you Harmony!” He spoke sharply. “You’re already dead!”

“Okay Wes, but keep the bathroom door open. I’m probably gonna puke it all up.”

Now Winifred asked, “It’s not gonna hurt too much, is it?”

“Of course it is.” Harmony chuckled. “Why do you think they call me ‘Harm’? But don’t worry. I’ll be quick. You’ll be dead before the pain gets too bad.”

Then she looked at Wesley. “You want to leave the room Wes? I’d rather not have any witness looking on.”

“Oh right. I’ll be outside the door.”

He left the room quickly, shutting the door behind himself.

Now Harmony put her hand on Winifred’s trembling shoulder, and smiled.

“It okay Freddie girl. The best is yet to come! You’re gonna be one of us now. And don’t worry. I’ll teach you all the ropes.”

Harmony removed her vest, revealing her bare shoulders and arms. She leaned over Fred, who looked up and saw the vampire’s extended fangs; larger and sharper than the Wolfram and Hart researcher had ever seen.

The vampire went on. “First chance we get, after you get your fangs, I’ll take you hunting with me. There are certain places in Mexico, where you can have all the hombres you can eat. We can totally pig out.”

Wesley was in the living room seated on the sofa, staring blankly at the magazine he’d opened. From behind the shut door, he heard Winifred make a loud, sharp scream. He shot up straight, but remained seated. After that there was just silence.

Five minutes later the bedroom door opened. He tossed the magazine onto the coffee table in front of him and stood up quickly.

Harmony stepped out into the living room. She made a gagging sound and had a sour look on her face.

“I was right Wes.” She told him, “Her blood was absolutely rancid. Do you know if she’s got any Maalox here?”

“Then she’s dead?”

The vampire nodded, “She’ll be undead in three days. Then she’ll be beautiful, strong and healthy, with a very cute pair of fangs, for the two of you to play with.”

“Three days?”

“That’s right, so you can relax; but right now I just got to puke.”

“That’s easy for you to say 'relax'. I may thoroughly regret this.”

Then Harmony coughed, and began to gasp for breath.

“What’s going on Wes?” She sounded frightened. “I’m already dead, but whatever was killing Fred, is doing the same thing to me!”

Then Harmony collapsed, and lay stretched out limp and lifeless on the floor. The skin of her face, her bare arms, shoulders and her legs had turned a splotchy blue; so had her blonde hair.

Wesley knelt down, beside the doubly dead vampire woman.

“Harmony? Can you hear me? Harmony!”

Now the woman spoke with a strong, sharp, commanding voice. “My name is not Harmony!” She demanded, “Why do you address me that way?”

“If your name is no longer Harmony,” Wesley asked, “what should I call you now?”

She sat up in an instant. She had a stern expression on her dark blue face, and displayed a larger pair of fangs, than she’d had before.

Her eyes glared brightly, as she again spoke with a commanding tone. “My Worshipers address me as Illyria! ”

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2

Wesley moved away from the sofa, backing away from Harmony’s reanimated, splotchy blue corpse, who now wanted to be addressed as “Illyria.” He placed his right hand inside the pocket of his jacket, gripping the crucifix he kept there, for occasions when Wolfram & Hart vampire employees got out of hand.

She rose up quickly, standing straight, with a haughty demeanor.

“What place is this?” She demanded, “Where are my Devotees, and why is my De-vine Personage contained in such an unworthy vessel of corrupt flesh?”

He told her, “You are in Los Angeles, California. In the apartment of my betrothed, Miss Winifred Berkel; who works as a researcher for Wolfram and Hart Corpora-tion.”

She raised her voice in anger. “I am in the home of a woman of an inferior class? Who is responsible for this outrage?”

“Whoever it was,” he told her, “he, she or they, sealed you inside an accursed sar-cophagus, more than three thousand years ago.”

“Oh yes.” She nodded, “The Leaders of the Rebellion. That occurred three thou-sand years ago? Does the Rebellion still continue?”

He shook his head, “That Rebellion is a long time ended, and a long time forgotten.”

“Then why was I only released now?”

“Because you Illyria, are a long time forgotten yourself.”

“I? Illyria? A long time forgotten?”

“It happens to everyone eventually Illyria, including Divinities like yourself.”

She stood there silently, with no change of expression.

Then she asked, “Tell me, what is your name?”

“I am Wesley Wyndham-Pryce the Third. I am a former member of the Watcher’s Council.”

“‘Watcher’s Council’? Tell me Lord Wesley Wyndham-Pryce the Third. What do the members of your Council watch?”

“I am not a Lordship.”

She sighed in resignation.

He went on, “We watch vampires.”

“I see. Are there any vampires nearby?”

“Nearer than you apparently realize, oh most Devine One.”

She turned around, and looked through the open doorway into the bedroom. She saw the lifeless body of Winifred Berkel.

“This woman is dead. Killed by a vampire.”

“That is correct.”

“Have you come to drive a wooden stake through her heart, so she will not become a vampire herself?”

“No.” He shook his head. “Never. She is the woman I love. My betrothed. I will never do that to her, and I will do all that is within my power, to prevent anyone else from doing so.”

“You intend to remain betrothed to a woman, who might become a vampire? Will you be wed to a vampire?”

“I am greatly distraught.” He told her, “I know I am exercising very poor judg-ment, in regards to this situation.”

“Indeed!”

“If it wasn’t for you,” he spoke sharply, “she would not have been killed this way!

“I have no idea who rebelled against you, or why! What I know is that you were sealed inside an accursed sarcophagus! I also know that my betrothed Winifred Berkel was the one who unsealed the sarcophagus. When she did, she inhaled an ether, that caused an infection that was going to kill her.

“I did not want to lose her entirely, so I had a vampire named Harmony come over here tonight, and bite her, so that she would remain in this world, as a vampire.”

“You are a fool, Wesley Wyndham Price the Third.”

“In this situation, I cannot argue.”

“Wait. You said the vampire was named Harmony. That is what you called me.”

“That is correct Illyria. You may have been a Divinity, three thousand years ago, but now, you are just a humble vampire girl, who has drunk blood that was infected with you.”

Now the splotchy blue woman growled. She extended her fangs, and pounced to-ward Wesley, as he pulled the crucifix out of his pocket, and held it between her and himself.

Illyria reached out and gripped the crucifix. Then she howled in agony, and pulled her hand away as she recoiled back.

“Wes!” She called out with Harmony’s voice, “What the hell’s the matter with you?”

The splotchy blue color was gone from the Wolfram and Hart receptionist. Her skin had returned to its normal tone and her hair was blonde again. She looked at the palm of her hand, that had touched the crucifix. She held the wrist in her other hand.

She asked with a whimpery voice, “Don’t you know how much that hurts?”

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3

The time was 11:30 in the evening. Wesley was again seated on the sofa, in the living room of Winifred’s apartment. A lamp was on, filling the entire room with a soft yellow light. Harmony sat in an easy chair, across the room from him. She was fidgeting; rubbing the palm of her hand, that had touched Wesley’s Crucifix.

“It still hurts Wes.”

“I wouldn’t have used it,” he told her, “if it wasn’t necessary.”

“You know that wasn’t really me, don’t you?”

He nodded. “It was Illyria.”

“What a snobby bitch!” Harmony fumed, “I’m ‘An unworthy vessel of corrupt flesh’? Me? Okay, I’m a vampire; an animated corpse. I suppose that makes me corrupt; but how does that make me an ‘unworthy’ vessel? She wasn’t expecting to possess a virgin, was she?”

Wesley asked, “So you’re beginning to remember things?”

“Just vaguely.” She told him, “But what a bitch, and I think she’s got an awfully ungrateful attitude. Don’t you, Wes?”

“What else do you remember about Illyria?”

“All I remember are the things she said to you, while she was using my mouth. I don’t know what was going on in her mind. Do you know anything about her Wes?”

“I’ll have to look it up.” He told the Demonic employee of Wolfram and Hart, “What I know off hand, is that ‘Illyria’ was the name of a Roman Province, in the region that was, until recently, known as Yugoslavia.”

“I was possessed by a Yugoslavian goddess?”

“That was the name of a Roman Province. It could not have had anything to do with her. She was sealed inside a sarcophagus, more than 1,000 years before the Romans came to power. The inscriptions on the sarcophagus are undoubtedly Egyptian, Middle Kingdom.”

“Okay Wes, that’s all very interesting, but what I want to know, is if she’s gonna come back and possess me again?”

“Have you purged all the infected blood, that you drank from Fred?”

“Oh yeah.” She told him, “I grabbed that bottle of Maalox all right. I puked it all up, and flushed it down the toilet.”

“Then you probably won’t need to worry about it happening to you again.”

“Do you think this Illyria’ll possess some guy who works in a Waste Treatment Plant?” She laughed, “That’d be one ‘Unworthy Vessel’ wouldn’t it?”

He chuckled. “It might teach her some humility.”

“There’s just one thing Wes. Fred’s still got a lot of that inflected blood in her.”

“You mean you didn’t drain her totally?”

“No!” She made a face. “With the way she tasted? Eeew yuck! I only sucked out enough to kill her. Once her heart stopped pumping, I stopped sucking. In her condition it didn’t take all that long. That was a relief!”

“Harmony! You’re talking about Fred!”

“Sorry Wes. What I meant to say, is that there’s still a good amount of infected blood left inside her corpse.”

“Then there’s a good amount of Illyria left in her.”

Wesley rose up from the sofa and went over the desk in a corner of the room, where Winifred’s home computer was set up.

He sat in the chair and switched the computer on.

He told Harmony, “I’m going to check with google. I’ll see if there’s any information, in regards to a Divinity named Illyria. I want to see if there’s anything I can learn, about how to deal with her.”

He typed in the words “Goddess named Illyria” and hit the “google search” button. Then he sat staring at the screen, with his arms folded, and a frown on his face.

Harmony asked, “Find anything?”

“7,384,926 entries.”

“Gonna take a while, huh?”

“Apparently.”

“Well I hate to say it Wes, but now that I’ve puked up everything, my stomach is empty, and I’m getting hungry.”

He reached in his jacket pocket, at took out the crucifix again.

“It’s okay Wes!” She spoke sharply. “I’m not Illyria anymore! You can put that thing away!”

He lay the object on the desk, beside the keyboard.

“I’ll keep it here, just to play it safe.”

“Okay. You stay your side of the room, I’ll stay here. You don’t know if there’s any bottled pigs’ blood in the fridge do you?”

He took his eyes off the screen and looked at Harmony. “Bottled pigs’ blood? Fred wasn’t a vampire yet.”

“But she will be, so you should have been prepared.”

“You said I’d have three days. That’ll give me plenty of time to purchase every-thing that’s necessary.”

He returned his attention to the screen.

“Right.” She asked, “You don’t really need me here, do you Wes? I’d like to go out and get something to eat.”

He looked at her again, “Harmony?”

“Don’t worry Wes!” She again spoke with annoyance. “I’m not gonna bite anyone. There are establishments that cater to vampires, where you can get all the pigs’ blood you want for a reasonable price.”

“Yes. I’ve heard of them. I’m glad to know you’re being a responsible citizen Harmony.”

“Thank you Mr. Wyndham-Pryce the Third.”

She got up and headed for the door. When she reached it she turned around.

“I also know some places,” she told him, “where for a much higher price, you can get the good stuff. I’ll bring some back for Fred.”

Then she went out the door.

Wesley now sat alone, working at the computer on the desk in the apartment of the late Winifred Berkel. Her bedroom door was open. Through the corner of his eye, he was aware of her lifeless body lying stretched out on the bed, while he waited for her to become a vampire.

She’ll be undead in three days. “‘Beautiful, strong and healthy, with a pair of brand new fangs, for the two of you to play with.’”

Poor judgment indeed, he thought. Yes. I am a fool. I cannot argue with that. But...

But lose the woman I love? I can do nothing but fight against that!

Whoever said, “All you need is love.” didn’t know what he was talking about.

“Better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all”? Whoever said that, was also a fool. Not as big a fool as I.

He tried to focus his attention on the computer screen in front of him. What he was discovering about a Divinity named Illyria was disturbing.

According to Ancient Mythology, Illyria was a Daughter of the Darkest Ones; who caused a wasting death to afflict all mortals, who encountered her true essence. This Illyria raised up mighty armies, that waged war upon the inhabitants of Earth, causing total death and devastation wherever she led them.

After many centuries of warfare, bloodshed, death, destruction and untold suffering, her armies were finally vanquished. She was captured and sealed within a sarcophagus, upon which a mighty curse was placed. Then the accursed sarcophagus, containing the accursed Being was interred in a location that was never revealed.

Wesley wondered, And this Accursed Being thought that Harmony was an “Unworthy Vessel” for herself?

He returned to what he was learning about the “Accursed” Illyria’s undiscovered...

But, he thought, the sarcophagus was discovered, several months ago. It arrived at the Wolfram & Hart Research Department, about two months ago. They’d only been able to get around to checking it out at the beginning of this week; and the woman I love was the one who just happened to be the researcher who opened the lid.

That was how she encountered the “True Essence” of Illyria, and why she would have died from a wasting disease, if he and Harmony hadn’t intervened.

Would have died? He looked back into the bedroom.

Illyria didn’t kill her. Harmony and I did. But Winifred will come back as a vam-pire. “With a brand new pair of fangs.” For the two of us to play with?

Or she will come back as Illyria, a Vampire Goddess, and who knows how she will play with us?

Horrid judgment on my part indeed!

He heard a creaking sound, coming through the open bedroom door.

He looked into the darkness of the room. He saw the dim form of Winifred’s body, lying stretched out on the bed. She hadn’t moved.

She’s only been dead about four hours. Much too early for her to become undead. Probably a sound from outside, coming through her bedroom window. It has to be. She can’t be reviving now! I’m not ready! Harmony hasn’t returned with the good stu...I mean pigs’ blood yet!

He returned his attention to the screen, and heard creaking again. This time he didn’t look.

It’s too early for Winifred the Vampire to arise, he thought, but not too early for Illyria.

He reached over to the side of the keyboard, and put his hand on the crucifix.

Then he definitely heard the bed creaking. The sound had not come through her bedroom window.

He now turned and gazed through the open doorway, into the darkened bedroom. The body of Winifred Berkel, stood in the darkness beside the bed, gazing back at him.

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4

She's undead already? Wesley wondered, as he stared at the figure, standing in the shadows of Winifred's bedroom. She began moving slowly, in the direction of the open doorway.

He stood up, holding the crucifix. He remained where he was, as she neared the doorway. She came out of the shadows, into the light. He saw that all life was gone from her. Her eyes were not focusing, and her skin was dark. When she reached the doorway, he realized that her skin was not only dark. Her pajamas and match-ing fluffy slippers were pink, but her skin had turned a splotchy dark blue; so had her hair.

As she stepped into the living room, he raised the crucifix, holding it out between himself, and whoever this being in Winifred’s body was.

Then she stopped moving, and looked around herself with confused curiosity.

Now Wesley spoke. “Illyria?”

Her eyes focused on him. She opened her mouth and displayed a pair of sharp, fully extended fangs.

Then she spoke, in a very uneasy tone. “Wesley?”

He held the crucifix in place. “Winifred?”

She asked calmly, “Am I dead? I remember Harmony...”

“She drank all the blood she needed, to end your life.”

“Am I” she spoke haltingly. “a vampire?”

He nodded, “You are now among the undead, my lo...”

He wondered, Can I call her “my love”, now?

She put her hand to her mouth.

“I have fangs,” she told him, “and they’re sharp.”

He raised the crucifix a little higher. She looked away from it.

Then she told him, “I’m getting hungry.”

“Don’t take another step.”

“I’m hungry Wesley.”

She turned toward the door of the apartment. Wesley moved swiftly, placing him-self between Winifred and the door, while still holding the crucifix between her and himself.

“I’m hungry Wesley!” She insisted, “I need to eat!”

“I understand that Fred. It’s all right. Harmony’s gone out to get you some blood. She says it’s ‘The good stuff.’”

“How soon before she gets back?”

“Well she’s only been gone about fifteen minutes. I have no idea how soon she’ll get back. We didn’t expect you to become undead this quickly.”

“Can you call her on her cell phone, and tell her to hurry back?”

“Right.” He raised his free hand, with the palm facing her, and made a pushing ges-ture.

“Just stay where you are.”

He removed the cell phone from the pouch in his belt. The receptionist’s cell phone number was listed among the contacts. He tapped the button, put the phone to his ear and waited to hear Harmony’s voice.

Winifred turned slowly, gazing at everything around her with a dazed expression on her face. Then she halted, facing a mirror.

“I am a vampire.” she said in a dazed tone. “I have no reflection.”

She looked down at herself; at her hands and bare arms.

Now Wesley spoke into his cell phone. “Harmony. Something unexpected has hap-pened. Winifred has revived already. I know. It’s three days earlier than we’d ex-pected. Tell me, have you got any of that blood yet?”

Harmony sounded peeved. “Of course not Wes. I’m nowhere near the place.”

“Well Winifred’s hungry, and she needs blood now.”

He heard the vampire chuckle.

“That’s no problem Wes.” She told him with a happy voice, “If Freddie gal needs fresh blood, you’ve got more than enough for her, just pulsing through your veins and arteries right now.”

“Harmony?”

“Welcome aboard Wes.”

“Wait. I don’t know what you’re doing to get the blood. You don’t have to tell me that. All you have to do is tell me where you are, and I’ll have Winifred join you.”

“Sure Wes. I’d love to have some company. I told her I’d teach her how to hunt...I mean purchase bottled blood.”

He groaned under his breath. Then he asked, “Where can we join you Harmony?”

“Not you Wes. Just her.”

“Right. Where can Winifred join you?”

“Tell her that when she leaves her building through the front door, she should turn left and go thee blocks to the corner with the Dunkin’ Donuts next to the bodega. That’s where she should turn right, cross the street and go another three blocks. I’ll be coming in the opposite direction, and meet her somewhere in between.”

“Right.”

Wesley switched off the phone.

“All right Fred. You’ll have to get dressed, so you can go out and meet Harmony.”

“I can’t go out.” She told him, “My skin has turned blue. Oh Wesley! I can’t have people see me like this!” She shouted, “I’m hungry! I need blood now!”

She began to approach him, with her hand raised between her eyes and the crucifix.

“Please Fred.” He told her, “Please be patient. You’ve been hungry before, and you’ve waited patiently ’til it was time to eat. It’s just the same now.”

“When I was hungry before,” she shouted, “I wasn’t a vampire!”

Then she pounced forward, reaching for Wesley. He raised the crucifix, which she grabbed with her right hand.

As soon as she touched it, Winifred screamed in agony. Then she collapsed.

The splotchy blue body of Winifred Berkel lay stretched out dead on her living room carpet.

Wesley knelt beside her.

“Winifred.” He asked her, “Are you in any way undead? Winifred?

She opened her eyes, which glared at him in the midst of her dark blue face, which displayed a haughty demeanor.

“You were told,” she spoke with a commanding voice, “to address me as Illyria!”

He immediately moved the crucifix, holding it near her face.

The woman on the floor shrieked and cringed, shielding her eyes with both hands in front of her face.

“Keep that away from me!” She commanded, “Take that away or you will regret it!”

He took a step back while still holding the object that revolted her.

She got up into a crouching position, and retreat several feet. Then she stood up and regained her composure, while keeping one hand between the crucifix and her eyes.

She resumed her haughty demeanor. “This talisman you are holding. It is truly powerful. I touched it and it burned me. My hand still hurts from touching it, and my eyes ache at its sight. I am a Goddess, and yet it harms me.”

Wesley told her, “This is called a ‘Crucifix’, most ‘divine one’.”

“The shape of the object is strange.” She said, “I cannot look upon it now, but it shows a dying man nailed to some device.”

“The man,” he told her, “was named Jesus. He was the Son of God. He was cruci-fied dead and buried, then He rose again on the third day, and ascended into Heaven, where He sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.”

She asked, “A son of a god was murdered by mere mortals?”

“Yes Illyria. To take away their sins.”

She asked, “Is there no more sin in this world?”

“Oh yes. More than ever. But His blood was shed to cleans away every sin, from everyone who accepts Him as Savior.”

“The son of a god you say? Which god is he?”

Wesley told her, “He is the God of the people, who you would have known by the name Israelites.”

“Israelites? Yes. I know of them. They are a plague upon all the Earth!”

“From what I have read Illyria, that is what many people said about you.”

She again spoke with anger. “It was an Israelite; a priest of this God of theirs, who helped seal me inside that accursed sarcophagus. He held a scroll, containing the words of their God’s Law. He put it as close to my face, as you put this talisman, and made me powerless, as they sealed me inside.”

“An Israelite Priest?”

“Yes. His name was Aaron. He was brother of their King Moses.”

“Aaron the brother of Moses?”

“You know their names, after 30 centuries?”

“The name of Moses stands out above all time, and even more does the Name of Je-sus. Aaron restrained you with the Word of God’s Power. It is the same Power that is found in the Name of Jesus; and nothing evil can stand in the Presence of the Liv-ing Word of God’s Power!”

Illyria shrieked and hid her face with both hands again. She swiftly backed away from Wesley, retreating into the bedroom where she shut the door against him.

He shouted, “Stay there Illyria! Do not come out of that door, and you will be safe from me!” He added, “And my ‘talisman’?”

Unfortunately, he thought, so will Winifred.

Wesley returned to the desk, and sat back down in the chair, still gripping the crucifix.

This, he thought, is going to be one very long night.

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5

The doorbell rang, waking Wesley up, as he sat in the chair beside the desk, still holding the crucifix.

I dozed off? He thought. For how long?

The door to Winifred’s room remained shut. He heard no sound coming from be-hind it.

He called out, “Just a moment!” as he got up from the desk, and went to the front door.

He asked, “Who’s there?”

“It’s Harmony Wes!”

He opened the door, with the crucifix raised. The blonde vampire receptionist raised her hand, blocking her view of what he was holding.

“Will you cut it out Wes. You’d think I can’t be trusted or something.”

“Not tonight Harmony. Not you, nor Winifred.”

She stepped into the room and he shut the door.

He told her, “After this however, I’m going to be dependent upon you Harmony, to teach her how to control her bloodlust, the way you control yours.”

“Yeah. Right.”

Then she said, “I came back, thinking I’d run into Freddie girl, who’d be coming to meet me. I didn’t meet anyone. I guess she’s taking time getting dressed, isn’t she?”

Now the bedroom door opened a crack.

“Harmony?” It was Winifred’s voice, not Illyria’s . “Have you brought me some blood?”

“No Freddie gal! That’s not what I’m here for.”

“Why not?” The woman’s voice trembled, “Wesley said you would.”

“It’s okay girl!” Harmony called out happily. “This is even better! I’m taking you hunting with me. I mean shopping for pigs’ blood with me.”

Winifred sounded tearful. “I can’t go anywhere with you Harmony! I can’t go out-side and have people see me this way!”

“It’s okay Freddie! All you got to do is retract your fangs, and nobody’ll notice anything different.”

“Yes they will Harmony!”

Wesley sighed, “Winifred has turned blue Harmony, just like you did. She also became Illyria for a time.”

“Uh-oh!”

Winifred began to sing.

“Am I blue!
Am I blue!
Ain’t these tears
In my eyes
Telling you?”

Harmony said, “This just isn’t your night, is it Wes?”

“The worst of my life.”

Now Harmony called out, “How hungry are you Freddie?”

“Hungry enough to kill Wesley!”

The blonde woman smiled at Wesley and clapped her hands together. “Then both of our problems are solved girl!”

He raised the crucifix. Harmony stopped smiling and took two steps back, while shielding her eyes again. Then the lowered the object.

“You know Wes.” Harmony was peeved. “It’d simplify things for you too. If she makes you a vampire, then you and Freddie can get married, and be undead happily ever after.”

The bedroom door opened a little wider.

Winifred said, “It sounds good to me. What do you say Wesley?”

He hesitated.

Then he said, “I’ve made enough very bad decisions tonight. I don’t want to make any more. I’ll have to think this over.”

The bedroom door opened wide. Winifred stepped out into the living room, still splotchy blue in color, but also fully clothed.

She said, “You know I love you Wesley.”

He said, “I know that Winifred Berkel does. The thing is, that I wouldn’t only be married to you. My wife would also be Illyria.”

Harmony spoke sharply, “No she won’t Wes!”

The receptionist resumed the haughty demeanor. Her skin and hair were splotchy blue again.

“From now on,” she announced, “I will be Illyria!”

Wesley again raised the crucifix. Harmony shielded her eyes with her hand once more.

Winifred spoke, “That’s not necessary Wes. I can wait ’til our wedding night.”

Her skin had resumed it’s natural color.

Then she spoke to the splotchy blue woman, “Okay Illyria, we’re both hungry, so let’s go hunting. Harmony said that she knows some places in Mexico.”

“Now you’re talking Freddie girl.” Harmony was herself again. She had also re-sumed her natural color.

Wesley moved between both women and the front door, holding the crucifix.

“No!” He told them, “I can’t let either of you leave!”

Harmony shouted, “We’re both hungry Wes!”

“It’s okay Harm!” Winifred said happily. “We can go out through my bedroom window, and down the fire escape!”

“Right.”

Then both women rushed into the bedroom. Winifred stood at the door for a mo-ment.

She asked, “You want us to bring you anything back Wes?”

“Winifred? Harmony?”

The receptionist again spoke in a haughty manner. “I told you to address me as Illyria!”

Winifred said, “When you leave Wes, remember to turn off all the lights and lock the door.”

Then she shut the bedroom door.

In the living room, Wesley heard footsteps ringing, as both vampire women de-scended the fire escape outside Winifred’s bedroom window.

He wondered, “‘Love is never having to say you’re sorry’?”

He lowered the crucifix, and remained leaning with his back against the door to Winifred Berkel’s apartment.

I’m a man in love, who is one sorry fellow.

Then Wesley Wyndham-Pryce the Third began to sing.

“Am I blue!
Am I blue!
Ain’t these tears
In my eyes
Telling you?”




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