"Mona and The Monsters"...Part XXV...



PG13



Spoilers: I make no apologies for the utter ripoff of "Storyteller" in this chapter but mild spoiler alert if you haven't seen that episode...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Josh Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: Back in Sunnydale Buffy takes a job backstage on a ground-breaking new TV series while Buffy Rebecca and Walthrop/Spike are away on their European honeymoon...


    Libby Marsden Play Libby's Theme (You've Got to Hide Your Love Away...)

Part XXV...

"Welcome...Gentle Viewer..." Andrew in late 1930's reporter's hat, press ticket stuck in brim, stared at Jonathan's video camera...

"Today...Fellow devoted fans...We have a special treat in store for you..."

Come...he waved...Tugging at his hat to keep it from falling off...

"These are the halls of power for the production team that brings our heroine and her tales to life...The pulsating corridors of creativity...The Sunnydale offices for Job Wescox Productions...Creative force of "Mona And The Monsters..."

He pointed at a closed door...Office of the Assistant Producer tacked on an index card and stuck on the door with a thumb-tack...

"Behind this door...Are answers to many of the questions which you, the devoted Mona fan...And I, your reporter and webmaster, likewise a devoted acolyte...Having burning...Within the bosom of our hearts..."

He knocks...Jonathan focusing on his tapping fist...

"Come on in..." a voice calls...

Let us...Enter...Andrew solemnly notes...And opens to reveal a beaming Libby in a chair behind a desk...In her Mona "battle jacket"...

Hi...she waves...

"Yes...Gentle devotee...We, your humble webmasters, Andrew...And..." he waves grandly at the camera... "Jonathan...Have brought you...Mona herself..."

"A ten-minute interview...With Ms. Libby Marsden..." he offers due solemnity...

It can be longer...she calls...I'm done for today...

"Ten minutes is all our bandwidth will allow..." Andrew hisses to her...



Oh...

"So..." he takes his intrepid reporter's stance in front of her...

"Ms. Libby Marsden...Star of screen, stage, and television..."

"Only one play, Andrew...Professionally I mean..." she smiled shyly...

"Tell us...Ms. Libby Marsden...What led to you the awesome decision to forever shape your career around the part...Of Mona...?" he sat on the edge of her desk...Staring down at her...

She looks at him, a little unnerved by his intense stare...

Ummn...

"Well...I'd heard Sydney was thinking about working in TV...And then Job asked me...And when Sydney decided to take the Demontos part..."

Ah...Andrew eyes her...So...

"Sydney Mechamber...Your co-star...Played an important role in your decision to become the personification...Of Mona..."

Well...she looks for help from Jonathan...

"I always like working with Sydney...He's a great actor..."

A really, really great actor...she continues...

"Tell us...More..." Andrew intensifies his stare...

Really great...she smiles frozenly...

Great actor...

"And...Job's a lot of fun too...Very creative..." she tries desperately...

Cut...Jonathan calls, shutting the camera off...

"Andrew...Will you stop it...? You're like the Inquisition..."

"It's ok..." Libby wanly smiled...

But...Could you back away a little, Andrew?...she waved...

"I get claustrophobic..."

Ah...He nodded...Claustrophobic, eh...Seizing the angle...He sat down a little further down the desk...

Thanks...she smiled...Ok, she beamed over...Brushing her long black hair back as Jonathan worshipfully eyed her...

Jonathan resumed his filming...

"So...Ms. Marsden..." Andrew eyes her...

"I understand you've overcome a serious disability in achieving your acting career...An ironic disability..." he notes...Staring at her...



"Ummn...Well...It's just a little claustrophobia..." she looks at him, then Jonathan...

"Claustrophobia...In a major television star...Idolized by millions of raging, panting fans...Pressing on her in huge mobs at every public outing..." Andrew turns to the camera...

She blinks...Ummn...Clearly seeing those millions pressing..."Could I have a drink of water...?" she asks...

"Ironic, indeed, eh?...Gentle viewers?..." Andrew solemnly nods...

***

The remaining Sunnydale Slayers...Buffy and Basey...Were meeting alone with their Master Watcher to evaluate the...so-far...success of the Scodos Theatrical Company...

"It seems to be working out quite well...No one's come to any harm..."

Hmm...

"I'd even say our demons are finding earning honest paychecks an agreeable experience..."

Hmm-hmmn...Sigh...

"Xander's doing very well at his little writing career..."

Xander...Our "writer"...Yeah...

"Willow's sure to find her job a big asset when she's ready to start work after college..."

Uh-huh...

"Dawn's college fund is growing by leaps and bounds...And Dawn seems to really enjoying her little acting career..."

Dawn...Our "demon queen"...A slight groan from Buffy as she stares at the wall...

"Buffy..." Giles frowned at her...As the Slayer sulked in her chair at the research table of the Magic Box...

"I thought it was understood that it was my job to throw cold water and moan and groan at times...And...schemes like these..."

But for once, this crazy little plan seems to be working...he noted...

"And even if it later fails disastrously...You and Dawn will've gained valuable work experience and a nice addition to your bank accounts..."

Basey beside Buffy grinned a little, canning it when Buffy glared at her...

"We can't all be stars, Buffy...Some of us never get the chance..." Giles eyed her...

"And even stars fade for a time...In the light..."

It can be a chance for them to rest a little and think through their lives while they have the chance...

"I don't think "Mona" is gonna do the Slaying for us in Sunnydale, Giles..." she glared...

"It's not really..."Mona"...Who's bothering you, Buffy..." he stared back...

Buffy's glare reached serious proportions...



Uh-oh...Basey stared...

"Should I go...?" she asked the Master Watcher brightly...

Amelia should be back soon from her furniture hunt...Probably'll want me to train...

"It's not you either, Basey..." he smiled at her...

But...Perhaps...

"I am not..." Buffy began...

I'll be in the back...Basey smiled...Mainly at Giles...

"Giles..." Buffy frowned at him...

"Buffy..." he stared back...

"I had hoped when your "sister" left for Europe with William and you seemed happy with Warren and your increased duties...You'd begun to put things behind you..." he began...

"Are you saying...? What I think you're saying...?"

"I'm saying...You've been through a great deal this year...Several great deals in fact...And you've been denied much chance to deal with the intense emotions that those events have triggered..."

"You think I'm jealous of my roboclone...?"

"She has achieved much of what you would have liked to...She's happily married, saving soul and body of the man she loved in the process, she has a "father" of sorts who is devoted to her, she's likely to soon have children, she has a firm career goal in mind and well underway...She...And I don't mean to hurt you with this, my dear...She is a stronger and faster Slayer and always will be...And...I notice..."

"She seems to have suddenly stopped being your... "sister"..." he noted coolly...

***

"So...Gentle viewers...Our heroine's portrayer fears large crowds and tight spaces..." Andrew eyes the camera...

No doubt a reflection of the natural modesty she shares with her alter ego...

"But let us delve more into the subject of our heroine's co-star...The famed Mr. Mechamber...Our "Demontos" supervillain..."

A really great actor, as our star has noted...he smiles at Libby...Who bears a somewhat uncertain look now...

"You've worked with Sydney Mechamber on a number of projects, have you not...?" he turns back to her...

Ummn...Well, yeah...she nods...Eyeing Jonathan...Andrew feels his reporter's hat, pressing it back down firmly on his head...

Andrew...Jonathan thinks...I think you're getting...

"You worked together in "Evensong", "Death In Venice", "Matchless"...Films which established you as a star in films..." Andrew notes solemnly...

"And you'll be playing in Quentin Tarentino's "Byzantium"...Coming to a network near you, gentle viewer...This fall..." he looks back to the camera...

"Thanks for the plug..." she frowns a little... "But we're not working together on that one...It's a miniseries...He's playing Emperor Justinian...I'm playing the evil Empress Irene a few centuries later..." she warms a little...

"It's a neat part, actually...I get to be evil...I even blind and murder my own son..."

Hmmn...Yes...Andrew frowns...But you will be filming together at the same time...

Ummn...Ye...ah...she stares at him...

Andrew...Jonathan glares...

"Let us delve still deeper into our Mr. Mechamber...And his long-time relationship with our star..." Andrew begins...

"Lets...Not..." Libby smiles...Warmly...But a long, narrow look at her interviewer...


Play Libby's theme (You've Got Hide Your Love Away)...

"Turning to other subjects..." Andrew looks away...

***

"Giles..." Buffy eyed her Watcher narrowly...

I am not...Jealous...Of my twin...

"I'm glad for William that he has her to help him...Maybe I have a few random memories from when our minds were merged...But I've worked through that..."

You saw me with them in England last week...Did I act like a jealous sister?...she asked in a precise tone...

"Well..." Giles smiled thinly... "Lets see..."

Despite Warren's presence you spent the entire time in England with them...Almost every second...Continually finding excuses to be with them even when it was quite clear to me...And everyone else that William and your sister were hoping to slip away together during the break in his training...

"I was trying to show my support for Will...A little solidarity..."

Buffy...Giles eyed her...

"Your sister sprang from your mind...Including her feelings for William...Even before your little mind-merging...Those were feelings taken from you..."

She hopped up... "I was never in love with Spike before!...You know that...!"

You nearly married him...he looked at her...

"Willow had me under a spell...I'd've married you if she'd arranged it that way..."

And he came to love you after the chip had begun to drive Spike down...

"So..." she waved a hand...

Lotta underworld types fall for the Slayer...I even think little Willie likes me...

"Loved you so much that he overcame his nature when a version of you offered him a chance to prove himself...And now, he's practically free of Spike...All due to the love you couldn't bring yourself to offer him..."

The love you've had for him...Quite a long time, Buffy...he stared at her...



A crash from the rear of the store...The training room...They looked up...

"I'm fine...Just knocked the target dummy over..." Basey called faintly...They sat back down...Buffy collecting herself a bit...

And broke a few of Giles' prized antique weapons...Oh...Geesh...Basey did not say...For now...

"Your "sister" spoke to me at some length...Before she left with William initially...And in England last week when she finally...And quite nervously, I should add...Let you take him shopping alone..."

"BR was nervous about us shopping for a coupla hours...?" Buffy stared...

"What did she say to you...?"

"She told me...That she knew now you both had loved Spike...Well, William at least...For a very long time...How exactly she knew that...And how long...She wasn't sure...But she knew it...And she knew you knew it as well..."

"Oh...?" she asked coldly...Great twin I got...When the hell did I ask her to speak to Giles for me...?

"She knew you'd be furious about her talking to me about this, Buffy...But she felt it was important that someone else knew what you were going through..."

"Fine...So I felt for Spike before BR and I merged...Only natural...I'm the Slayer...I feel for my victims...Even my potential ones...At least when they start acting humanish again..."

"Angel's human name was...Liam, wasn't it?..." he asked her...

Which is a derivative of William...

"What?..." she stared at him...

"I did say...A very long time, Buffy..."

***

"And so...Gentle Viewer...We conclude our interview with Ms. Libby Marsden, lead actress of "Mona and the Monsters..."...Who has brought Mona to life with charm, wit, courage, and delicate grace...For which we give our humblest and most grateful thanks..." Andrew nodded graciously to Libby who beamed at him...Cut...He waved to Jonathan...

Aw...Guys...she grinned...That was really...

"I wrote that ending..." Jonathan hastily noted...

You guys...she got up...Hugging them both...A cheek kiss for each...

"So which one of you is gonna ask me out first...?" she smiled...

Out...? Jonathan stared, jaw dropped...

"But I'm paying...Ummn that is, if you're both free tonight...?" she stared...

Ummn...They looked at each other...

"Yeah...I think our social calendar is clear for tonight..." Andrew nodded...

"Okay then..." Libby grinned... "But first...I came through on my end..." she paused...

"O...K..." Andrew sighed...



Wait...she put up a hand...Lemme get one thing...er two things...She raced out...

"Do we gotta do this?..." Andrew frowned...

Libby Marsden kissed me...Jonathan sighed...Picking up the video camera...

"Oh...I will never wash this cheek again..."

"You haven't washed it in two weeks...Shouldn't be that hard..." Andrew noted..."Where do you think she'll take us, anyway...?"

Heaven...Wherever she takes us...It will be...Heaven...Jonathan sighed...

Oh...God, don't let this be residual from my spell...he thought...

She raced back in...A magnifying glass in one hand, a skull in the other...And took a position back at the desk...Looking solemnly at Andrew...Who sighed and put his reporter's hat back on...

"Jonathan...?" she called...

Roll 'em...

He started the video camera, focusing on her...She sat, carefully eyeing the skull through the glass, still with solemn air...

And glanced at Andrew...Who came over...

"Professor..." he banged on the desk...Giving it his reluctant best...

"I've got to know!...Who threw those pies?!..."

Oh...Libby looked up to the camera...Grinning...

"I threw the pies...Heh...ha, ha...ha, ha..."

Yes...Andrew turned to the camera...Our star displaying her remarkable facility for classic scenes...

"As you, gentle viewer, may not recall...That was a scene from a short film by the...Three Stooges..."

Very humorous...he noted to the camera with a slight frown...

Heh...ha, ha...ha, ha...Libby chuckled...

"And...Cut...Cu...ut..." Andrew glared, waving his arms and drawing his forefinger across his throat in a hurried gesture at Jonathan...Who beamed at the Libby...Who'd kissed him...

"That was just great..." he gushed...

Thanks...Libby smiled warmly back...

"I always wanted to do that one...Hey, guys!..." she had a sudden inspiration...

"I was talking to Xander Harris about a Three Stooges Mona tribute episode...The Shemp one where they're detectives?...We have Mona unconscious and dreaming while a Stooges marathon's on TV..."

I'd get to be evil...Mona as the "nice" niece...You know that one?...

"Oh, yeah..." Jonathan nodded... "Great..."



Andrew gave a slight look of disdain...More...Stooges?...

"You guys could be in it..." she grinned...

That hat is perfect for one of the detectives, Andrew...

Really...? he stared...Well, naturally...Hmmn...Perhaps one could view it as a chance to lighten the dark side of Mona...he thought...Show shouldn't be all gloom first season...

Wait a minute...she wants me to be a...Stooge?...

"And Sydney says he'd love to do the old uncle, Ole Man Goodrich...Get outta the Demontos costume for a bit..."

"That'd be fantastic...Thanks..." Jonathan nodded...

Right, Andrew?...he gave a slight glare...

It might...Amuse the fans...Andrew noted...A little kitschy comedy...

"Well...We'd better go and get ready...Tomorrow we'll see if the network will let us run this on the site..." Jonathan smiled at her...

"Ok...Xander and I will run the episode idea past Job tomorrow and I'll let you guys know...Thanks, Andrew..." she waved as they left... "Lets meet back here in...An hour?..."

Yeah, yeah...he nodded...Thanks...

"Hey...Go over to Tony in wardrobe...Tell him I said to dress you up nice, fellas...I got a good place in mind..." she called...

Jonathan followed him...And whacked his arm as soon as the door had closed...

"Andrew...Geesh...What were you doing back there...? She was great..." he hissed as they headed back to the lair of the webmasters...

Three Stooges...She likes the Three Stooges...Andrew shook his head...

"I like the Stooges...So did you, before you got so...Persnickety..." Jonathan stared at his fellow acolyte...

Persnickety?...Andrew stared back...Pulling his head back sharply...

Geesh...Why don't you just claim I'm gay or something?...he groused...

Sorry...Jonathan apologized...

Just think Mona should have a leetle more...Dignity...In her choice of comic roles...

"Ms. Marsden..." Jonathan frowned..."Libby..." he involuntarily grinned, as he continued... "Has all the dignity Mona needs...And then some..."

"Well...In any case...I suppose it will make her seem more...Human...To her fans..." Andrew relented...

Jonathan waved a hand...More important concerns pressing...

"What are we gonna wear...?" he eyed his fellow acolyte... "We've got nothing to wear..." he fretted...

"She said to see Tony in wardrobe..." Andrew noted calmly... "He'll know..."



Tony, right...Ok...Lets go...Jonathan dragged him off...

"You know, Andrew...Sometimes...You really show a dark side potential..." he sighed to him as they headed over to wardrobe...

"I guess you're right..." Andrew nodded... "But then, I come from a dark heritage...As you know..."

Tucker...Jonathan nodded back...

There are times I see myself...In a different existence...Andrew mused...

Evil...And on the brink of world domination...

Jonathan looked at him...

Hmmn...

"You know, sometimes...I've seen you in another existence too...In love with Warren Mears and baking things for Buffy and her other Slayer sisters..."

Oh...Andrew looked at him...

You've seen that, too...? he asked...

"What?...I was kidding..." Jonathan glared...C'mon, he frowned...

***

"Mona and The Monsters"...Part XXVI...

PG13

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: Back in Sunnydale Buffy takes a job backstage on a ground-breaking new TV series while Buffy Rebecca and Walthrop/Spike are away on their European honeymoon...

(See part XVIII posted for a background review...Or better yet read "Sunnydalopolis" and "The Tie that Binds" at my BR verse page link above)

Part XXVI...

"It's..." Giles sadly paused, staring at the broken crossbow, a priceless item from the reign of Henry IV...

"Nothing...My dear...Just an old crossbow..."

Basey gulping slightly again...Just enough history under her belt to guess...

Still, he was just a librarian here in Sunnydale before, right?...He couldn't have afforded something really...

On the other hand, Watcher...Master Watcher...And BR was kinda proudly laying it on the other day from England by video link as to how much William could be making from them if they hadn't decided in view of his success in cybernetics with ole Warren to hand his salary over to a fund for Slayers-in-Training...A rather neat little "selfless Watcher-candidate" pr move on Buffy Rebecca's part...Guaranteed to sit well with the Council, reflecting their own utter lack of interest

(Giles, Buffy, and Warren in England watching the Walthrops' joint speech from the Council gallery had rolled eyes in unison on that one)

in mercenary reward...

And Buf did say as to how he'd covered her and Dawn preety generously after Joyce passed away...Oh, God...

"I'm so sorry, Rupert..."she sighed...Buffy frowning from behind Giles...

God...If I'd ever so much as scratched the finish on that one...she thought...

"I'll get it fixed...I promise..." Ms. Granger insisted... "Whatever it costs..."

"It's likely to cost quite a lot, dear...Please, don't worry about it...You and Buffy and her twin may never receive a proper reward from Humanity...But at least you can allow those of us who are in the know to occasionally do something for you..."

That much eh?...she thought...Whoa...She turned it over...

"Henry Percy...1...4...0...Yikes!..." she read a worn inscription...Double whoa!...

"This belonged to Henry Percy?...Not the Henry Percy?...Hotspur and Hal and all that?..."

Who's Henry Percy Hotspur?...And Hal?...Buffy thought...Never heard of them...Unless she means the computer voice in "2001..."?

William would know...she thought...And I bet sis would've known...she sulked a bit...But only by way of Warren's supplemental memory...

"Yes, the Henry Percy..." Giles sighed... "But not to worry, Basey..."

Besides...he smiled, a bit less frozenly now...

"I can charge it off to the Council as damage in the course of my duties in working with the Slayers..." he gently cradled it in his arms and headed for the ladder to his rare books collection...

"Absolutely...A training accident..." Basey vigorously nodded to him as he moved off...Trying not to reread that date on the inscription...140...God!

So...It was English, right?...Buffy hissed as Giles went up...And old?...Real old?...

"Oh, yeah..." Ms. Granger sighed...And he will never let me near it again in this life, no doubt in my mind...she thought...

Hmpf, I knew it...Well...Maybe I'm not so bad at English history at that...Even without my own back-up supplemental memory...Buffy thought contentedly...

Not that I'm competing or anything with sis...For once, Giles is absolutely, positively out of his...

"Oh, Buffy?..." Giles called down, emerging from where he'd locked his precious artifact, never again to be allowed out...

"Did you have a chance to speak to Harmony since our return?...Regarding her wanting to rehearse a bit with you?...She was quite anxious the other night that we ask about it..."

Harmony?...Rehearse...? Basey eyed her fellow Slayer...

"She's still on that kick...?"

"Yeah..." Buffy nodded...



Scodos brought her along the other night...When we met to discuss additional jobs for his "people" at Warren's...

"I said ok...We're gonna do a couple of scene together..."

Basey frowned slightly...

"On the set, well-lit, plenty of folks about...Mr. Pointy in my pocket..." Buffy shrugged...

She seemed kinda set on it, poor kid...Didn't have the heart to say no...

"The...Heart..." she eyed Basey... "Make sure you get that right when you tell Willow..."

Heck, "Mona"...And my twin...Aren't the only monster killers capable of feeling for the condemned...she thought...

***

"Whoa, guys..." Libby looked the acolytes over from head to toe...

"Ms. Marsden..." Jonathan, decked out in tux, curtsey Job Wescox Productions, gave a slightly swaggering nod of the head...The star-quality groomed head...

Andrew likewise dolled up...Giving a polite half-bow...

Tony of costuming...Bearing rather a deep crush of his own on JW Productions' leading lady...And being rather a selfless artist in his own right...Had undoubtedly outdone himself...

If he couldn't be tonight's escort...He'd been determined that his creations would be worthy...

"God...I dunno if I'm quite up to you two..." she grinned...

However, Ms. Marsden had had every intention of turning on the full star power for her dates...And in her simple yet elegant black and blue dress...Made the grade...And then some...

"You look great...Ms. Marsden..." Jonathan sighed...

Absolutely...Andrew heartily seconded...

"Libby, fellas...We're off duty..." she grinned...

Well...Mostly off duty...

"Still got the reputation of "Mona ..." to uphold, eh guys?..." she offered an arm to each...

Naturally...Andrew nodded...Jonathan still trying to recover as he carefully tucked her hand under his elbow and onto his forearm...

"Boys...Shall we paint the town?..." Libby beamed at her escorts in turn...

Andrew gave a casually affirmative nod...As they headed out for the waiting limo...

God, I hope Buffy and Ms. Granger really do have things under control in town...Jonathan thought nervously as the driver held the door...

I mean, my spell being unavailable, my willingness to die at an instant for Libby tonight would hardly make an effective difference if something goes wrong...



Still...Most underdwellers can't really afford the places a major star would frequent...Even on a steady paycheck as they are now...

***

"Ok...Cut...Very nice, guys..." Wescox smiled at the demons and actors...er actors...Completing the final night scene of episode six...Sidney grinning back in full Demontos costume...

"Well done, Jerome..." he smiled at his companion, Jerome...the now out-of-his-prolonged-retirement fellow thespian...In equally appropriate dress...Though rather less make-up...

I would've bet money on our chances in defeating our "Mona" in that one...he grinned...

"And a great scene, Bill..." he called over to a beaming Grieg...Already receiving praise from a very content and therefore, more agitated than ever, Job...

Well...Thank you, sir...Jerome beamed...But loyally added... "I'm sure "Mona" will get the better of us..."

"Lets hope so...I'd hate to see this thing end abruptly now..." Mechamber chuckled...Wiping a little sweat...

So long as we get to crawl away for a comeback each week...he noted...

"Indeed, sir..." Jerome nodded...

"We'll add the scenes with Libby and Dawn tomorrow night..." Wescox boomed excitedly, coming over... "Fellas, this is gonna make the season...Excellent job..."

Mechamber swayed a bit...Sir?...Jerome steadied him...

"Sid?..." Wescox hurried over...

Fine...Job...Fine...Sidney nodded...Hand to his head...

"How's about taking ten in your trailer...?" Job eyed him...

"God, Wescox..." Mechamber grinned... "I hope you're not suggesting we do that one over...And I have a date tonight...My girls are coming up..."

"Just wanna be sure my prima donna star is up for tomorrow..." Wescox smiled back...A steady look...

Always...Job...Always...Sidney eyed him back...Equally steady...

"And as you see, right as rain..." he straightened up and grinned...

"Demontos rides again...But, I hope...Not tonight, slavedriver..."

"I'd say what we got will pass...It's only about ten times better than anything else on television today...But it'll pass..." Job grinned back...But paused before turning away...

"About tomorrow, Sid...If you'll be up with your daughters til all hours...And..."

I'll be in...At my regular time, pal...Sidney noted...

"The things they'll do to save a few bucks in TV, eh Jerome?..." Mechamber grinned at him...

Hmmn...Jerome stared at the two...

"Tomorrow as usual..." Wescox nodded... "Hey, Bill!...I got an idea to go over with ya for tomorrow!!..." he called over to Grieg...

***

"And so...Mona...You die...Ha! Ha-ha!...Ha-ha!!..." Dawn leered at Xander...As they stood in the Summers' living room...Leroy a worshipful audience...

Anya, perhaps less so...

Demons don't laugh like that before a triumph...Anya frowned to herself...Even Angelis and the Master were more restrained in the gloating...

Mr. Mechamber's Demontos doesn't carp like that...

And you rear back...In triumph...Xander noted...Eyeing the script...

Dawn reared back...A triumphant look in her eyes...

Borrowed from what she remembered of Glory...

"Then Mona cuts my head off?..." she eyed him...

She wouldn't if you'd can the laughing and pay attention to what's going on...Anya thought... "Demon Queen"...

"After you reveal yourself to her completely..." Xander raised a finger...

"She still doesn't know you're sweet little Ilsa yet..."

Oh...Right...Dawn nodded...Thumbing through the script...Yeah...

"Poor dear Mona...So trusting...Such a fool..." she smiled evilly at Xander...Who attempted to register Mona's shock and horror at learning her poor sister's trusted, innocent young friend was in fact a hideous fiend...

I take the Ilsa form now...Dawn explained to the captivated Leroy...Via special effects...

Hmmn...Anya nodded slightly to herself...A little better...

And it's not Dawn's...Or Assistant Writer Harris' for that matter... fault...Wescox wrote the scene himself...

"Ilsa...?" Xander gasped, doing his best at a "Mona" imitation...

"Ilsa..." Dawn sneered... "Sweet, helpless Ilsa...Who now will finish the job...Properly...My partner Demontos botched so badly...!"

"You killed my sister..." Xander made a stab at the higher register...With middling results...

Mona got a sister?...Leroy hissed to Anya...I thought she only had a brother...

"Just for a couple of episodes...Her younger sis comes home from boarding school with Ilsa/the Demon Queen in tow..." Anya explained...

Dawn killed Mona's sis?...Leroy's eyes widened...Partly in horror...Partly...

In admiration...

"Yeah...But just for the show, Leroy...Not for real...And it's the Demon Queen who kills Mona's kid sis..."



And rather nice to see a demon leader showing a little sense...Anya thought...Moving right on to the immediate family, none of this slow-moving (slow-witted, I'd say) Angelis style build-up...

"Yes..." Dawn reverted to Demon Queen mode...Affecting an air of haughty grandeur and the extra height the props guys gave her for the DQ scenes... "I killed your sister...The little fool could've worshiped me and lived as my own...But she chose the Light...Like sister...Like foolish sister..." she sneered...

Please don't tell me Mona prays for her sister now...Anya thought...

Ok...Mona's pal's little sis Janey...Miss Cooke...Comes in now from the rear...And lets you have it in the back...Xander reads...

She never trusted Ilsa...he notes...

Arggh!...Dawn staggers to the side a bit...

And...Mona rises up...Sword by her side...Xander reads...And...

Swooope...!

"And my head winds up on the pavement..." Dawn grinned at Leroy...Who blinked...

"Well...?" Xander eyed Anya...Who shook her head...

Bit of an insult to female demons, actually...We're...Er, they're...certainly as smart as Mr. Mechamber's Demontos...

You don't see him stupid enough to go head to head with Mona without preety heavy support, hefty firepower...And an escape route all planned out...

"The Demon Queen's only a guest villain, An..." Xander pointed out...

"We gotta kill her off in a coupla episodes...And she has to be less able than Demontos if he's not to lose face..."

I think I do preety damned well...Dawn noted...

"I take out Mona's sis...Did any of Buffy's ever do so well?..."

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