Real Name: Illyria
Occupation: ally of Angel and his
former Demon King
Affiliations: Angel, Spike, Welsey Wynham-Price, Charles Gunn, Lorne
Enemies: Circle of the Black Thorn (specifically Marcus Hamilton,
Izzerial the Devil, Cyvus Vail); Fred Burkle (whose form she usurped)
former Angel, Spike, Gunn, Lorne, Wesley
Known Relatives: None
her host form's relatives were Roger Burkle (father), Trisha Burkle (mother)
Aliases: Winifred 'Fred' Burkle
Base of Operations: Wolfram & Hart, L.A.
former The Deeper Well, Cotswalds, U.K. (spent millennia immobilised there)
First Appearance: Angel Season 5 Episode 15 "A Hole in the World"
Powers/Abilities: Originally Illyria possessed nearly limitless strength and invulnerability, as well as the power to bend time around her and open dimensional portals. However, her powers eventually started leaking out after she rescued Gunn from a pocket dimension and had to strip herself of some of them; currently, she lacks her time-bending abilities, and her strength and invulnerability appear to have been diminished, though they still remain at a high level compared to most beings. She can assume the former appearance of her host body Fred at will, and has also demonstrated a certain degree of empathy.
History: Millions of years ago, long before humans appeared on Earth, it was ruled by the Old Ones, pure-blood demons who constantly fought each other. One of these pure demons was Illyria, a monarch and a warrior both feared and loved, whose kingdom was in the area that's now known as Los Angeles. Although Illyria was defeated by an unknown force, death does not mean the same thing to such powerful creatures as it does to lesser demons, and its essence was interred in a stone sarcophagus within the Deeper Well, a sort of prison for the dead that can be located in a deep hole in the world (literally; the hole stretched from one end of the world to the other). That sarcophagus disappeared from the well, part of an eons-old plan for the demons escape that would be carried further by the demons handful of remaining acolytes.
The sarcophagus was brought to LA, where it was held up in customs. Charles Gunn was manipulated into using his implanted legal expertise to get the relic through customs, and it was brought to Winifred Burkles lab at Wolfram & Hart. Magically drawn to touch one of the crystals imbedded in its surface, Fred was exposed to the demons essence when an iris in the sarcophagus opened. Manifesting as a parasitic agent that attacked her systems, cooked her organs, hardened her skin, and caused forgetfulness and delirium, the demons essence rapidly began killing Fred. The team was able to determine the origin of the sarcophagus, but when Angel and Spike went to the well to draw Illyria back, they learned that if the demon were drawn back to the Deeper Well, it would become the mystical equivalent of airborne and infect every person between LA and Cotswold, England; although the demon wouldn't be able to manifest itself, thousands would die in agony as parts of its essence invaded their souls to avoid imprisonment.
Whether by conscious choice or lack of time, Angel didn't call Illyria back to the deeper well. Moments after Freds apparent death, she convulsed and woke up as Illyria, now with dark blue hair, icy blue eyes, and a blue tint across her forehead and down her arms. Disgusted upon learning that mankind still existed on the earth, and in fact ruled it, Illyria began taking steps to eradicate humans entirely. It rescued Knox, its quahazon (or priest), from Angels' forces, then absorbed more power from the sarcophagus that had imprisoned it for millions of years, gaining a suit of skintight red leather and two large daggers in the process. Illyria threw Angel through two windows several stories off the ground, then revealed its ability to manipulate time while escaping from Spike, Wesley, and and a full Wolfram and Hart black ops team.
It had Knoxs assistance to defeat the mystical locks placed on the gateway to its temple by Wolfram and Hart, but then Angel, Spike and Wesley intervened, Wesley shooting Knox and Angel and Spike tackling Illyria. They failed to stop her, but Illyria discovered that its original form - a tentacled horror that resembled something straight out of a Lovecraftian nightmare - and its waiting Army of Doom had passed to dust during the long millenia it was imprisoned. With nowhere to go, and strangely drawn to W&H by residual fragments left over from Freds memories, Illyria made a deal with Wesley; if the grieving ex-Watcher taught it how to live in our world, it wouldn't kill anyone in the process.
At first, everything went fairly well for Illyria, although she found certain aspects of humanity rather curious. For example, she was surprised that nightmares here were reduced to mere voices in the head, since in her time they had wandered the Earth freely, skewering anything in their path. She complained about how limited she felt in her present state, how now the things that she had once ruled could now easily crush her. Despite being an ancient god, she did have her humourous moments, such as when she ate a petrie dish while Wesley was trying to find her limits. She also went through other rather curious tests, such as Wesley sending Spike to test her physical limitations (Wesley hadn't planned for Spike to test Illyria's limits by trying to fight her, and then complaining when she wouldn't even tell him how she felt when he hit her). It was also revealed that she was capable of sensing other people's emotions, such as sensing that Spike had had a certain affection for Fred, or that Wesley was constantly grieving for Fred's loss.
Eventually, Illyria, acting for someone else for a change, managed to drag Gunn out of a pocket hell dimension where a demon cut out his heart every night by transferring Gunn's curse to the demon itself; it killed itself. However, it was soon discovered that Illyrias power was too much for her formerly human form to contain, causing her to travel randomly through time, repeating moments that included an attack by Wesley using something called the mutari generator. Interpreting this as an attempt to murder her, Illyria killed Spike, Wesley, Lorne, and Angel, before being bounced back in time to an argument with Angel. While holding Angel off the ground and threatening him, time fluxed again and Angel was somehow dragged along with her, learning of her future actions, until he witnessed her power erupt and destroy her - and presumably, as Wesley later revealed, everything on the same tetonic plate as Los Angeles. That explosion sent him back in time once more, and he used his knowledge of the immediate future to save the others and convince Illyria to let them use the mutari generator on her to siphon off enough of her power that she could live. Illyria was reduced to a shadow of her former self, lacking her ability to open dimensional portals or jump through time, and her strength had also dropped considerably, although she was still far above the human norm.
Wesley was later to discover that Illyria had another couple of abilities that nobody had been expecting; not only was she capable of feeling other's emotions to a certain degree, but she could also change her shape to look exactly like Fred. However, she only did it once, to stop Fred's parents grieving for their daughter's loss, and afterwards Wesley ordered her to never do it again. However, things started to get dangerous when Spike and Illyria rescued Drogyn, the guardian of the well where Illyria had been kept for all those thousands of years, and he revealed that Angel had actually arranged Fred's death in order to join the Circle of the Black Thorn, a small, elite group of people that worked directly for the W&H Senior Partners, furthering such agendas as man's inhumanity to man and various apocalyptic scenarios. To be chosen to be a Black Thorn was to be the Senior Partners' instrument on Earth and many evil beings saw it as an honor. In order for Angel to join the circle, he would have had to give up the mantle of "champion" and kill one of his lieutenants just to get noticed by the circle members - and Fred was the sacrificed lieutenant.
While Illyria tried to save Drogyn from Marcus Hamilton, the liason to the Partners (she was nearly killed, but it was still a valiant effort), Angel revealed to the others that he'd never actually been serious about joining the Circle, nor had he killed Fred; he'd simply tried to make it something worthwhile rather than just a random accident. He had acknowledged that the Senior Partners would be there long after they'd all died, and he couldn't change that, but he was determined to show them that, even if just for a single moment, they didn't rule every little thing about the world, even though the cost would be his life and the lives of anyone helping him. Despite the sacrifice required, the entire team agreed to join the fight, although Lorne was privately disgusted about the whole thing and vowed to leave after his part was over.
Spending what might be their last day alive off to do whatever they wanted, Angel had a cup of coffee with his son, Connor, Gunn spent some time withan old friend of his who ran a homeless shelter, Spike recited poetry in a biker's bar, Lorne sang in a club, and Wesley... just stayed with Illyria, treating her wounds after her fight with Hamilton. In the final struggle against the Black Thorn, Illyria was sent to tackle Izzerial the Demon, who commonly dined with three other members of the Order each night, and she promised to make trophies of their spines. Tackling them when they were driving away in a Sedan, Illyria destroyed them all, then heading to where Wesley had been challenging the circle's sorcerer, Cyvus Vail, out of what she realised was concern. Unfortunately, Wesley had been practically gutted by the powerful mage, and was near to death when Illyria arrived. Shifting into Fred, she told him she'd missed him, and assured him they'd be together soon, before he died in her arms. Enraged at his death, Illyria shattered Vail's head with a single punch, before leaving to join Angel, Spike, and Gunn in an alleyway opposite their old home, the Hyperion, to face the wrath of the Senior Partners, in the form of an army of demons and monsters. Angel called dibs on the dragon, and the four of them charged forward, ready to die fighting the good fight....
Comments: Played by Amy Acker.
Profile provided by David Spence. Thanks to Robb House for corrections.
Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.
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