"Harm’s Way"
Written by Elizabeth Craft and Sarah Fain; directed by Vern Gillum

We start out seeing a Wolfram & Hart public relations video, which gives a little history of the firm and explains that the MoG are making some changes. There’s a “zero tolerance policy for killing” and employees can’t drink human blood. “If you don’t kill, we won’t kill you,” Angel says. Apparently, everyone matters now. Harmony begins her day at 7 a.m., looking at inspirational messages on her bathroom mirror as she brushes her teeth (and fangs). She uses her vampire strength to lift up some furniture and find a misplaced shoe. On her way out, she passes a neighbor, whose dog growls at her. At work, she gets blood for Angel and tries to make nice with a woman named Tamika and some other coworkers, but they ignore her. Another guy gets mad when she cuts in line to use the microwave; she explains that Angel’s needs come before everyone else’s. Harmony starts to deliver Angel’s “#1 Boss” mug and gives him some scheduling notes, which he doesn’t hear, since he’s listening to a language tape and trying to learn a demon language. An employee named Rudy tests her to see if she’s consumed human blood recently; her test returns negative. Harmony realizes that she hasn’t given Angel his mug yet, but when she goes into his office to give it to him, she’s shocked to see that he’s killed the demon he and Gunn were just meeting with. After learning that the demon wasn’t so nice outside of work, Harmony argues that he shouldn’t have been killed for what he did. Angel reminds her of the zero tolerance policy.

The other MoG arrive, including Spike, who has apparently been out and about for awhile, enjoying the fact that he’s corporeal again (see “Destiny”). He announces that he’s leaving, though Wesley doesn’t think that’s smart, since they still haven’t figured everything out with the Shanshu prophecy. Spike doesn’t listen, grabbing a car and asking Angel if he has any messages for Buffy. He says his goodbyes and Harmony cries over the fact that he didn’t say anything to her. “Keep it simple, Harm,” he advises. “It suits you.” The remaining MoG gather in a conference room to discuss a battle between two demon clans, the Vinjis and the Sahrvin. They have a liaison named Dupree who has called Wolfram & Hart for help. Wesley asks if they shouldn’t just let the clans kill each other, but Gunn thinks that if they can broker peace between them, the rest of the demon world will take notice. Everyone prepares for the upcoming meeting, including Harmony, who says that she’s been researching the clans’ customs. Wesley tells Harmony that he’s glad she’s there, but it turns out that he just wants her to bring lunch for the rest of them. Back in the break room, other secretaries gossip about the MoG and don’t show much interest in Harmony. She heads off to the lobby, where Angel demands to know why a camel has just been delivered. She explains that camel meat is a delicacy and she thought the demons at the summit the next day would want some. Angel is angry that Harmony took initiative to order the camel and orders her to get rid of it.

Upset, Harmony tells Fred that she thought she was doing something good and complains that everyone hates her. Fred says that she doesn’t, but she doesn’t know Harmony well. Harmony asks what she’s doing after work. That night, Harmony and Fred go to a bar, where Harmony laments that her first foray into being independent is failing. Fred tells her that she can’t take everything Angel says so seriously, especially when he’s trying to deal with a bunch of different things. Harmony says that she wishes she were more like Fred, including having two guys in love with her. (The other secretaries think it’s Knox and Gunn, but Harmony knows it’s Knox and Wesley.) Fred realizes that Harmony doesn’t have a lot of friends at work, which Harmony doesn’t get, since she was popular in high school. Ever since she was sired (see “Graduation Day, Part 2”), she’s had trouble connecting with people. Plus, most of the other secretaries are human, and Harmony gravitates more towards vamps. Harmony spots a nice-looking guy at the bar and Fred encourages her to go talk to him. Harmony does, making awkward conversation, and the guy buys her a drink. The next morning, Harmony wakes up in bed with a hangover and is shocked to see that she’s naked and the guy from the bar is with her. If that weren’t bad enough, he’s dead, with fang marks in his neck.

Harmony tries to dump the body down her building’s garbage chute, but she has some trouble. She nervously heads to work, trying to act like nothing’s happened. Angel tells her that with the demon summit happening that day, he can’t have anything go wrong. In the break room, Harmony tries to remember the name of the dead guy, blaming Fred for what happened because she encouraged Harmony to go talk to the guy. She winds up chugging some blood, confusing the other people in the break room. Back at her desk, she listens in on part of a phone call from a detective who tells Angel that a man was found who was attacked by a vamp. Harmony panics as Angel fills in Wesley and Gunn. He says that the police called him because the body had Angel’s card on him - it was Dupree, the clans’ liaison. (This sets off a light bulb in Harmony’s head. Apparently, he also told her he was an astronaut.) Wesley wonders if someone is trying to derail the summit and Harmony pretends to go along with that idea. Angel, Gunn, and Wesley head to Angel’s office for a conference call with the Vinji leader. Angel doesn’t help much, since he still doesn’t know how to speak the language. Harmony learns that Dupree’s body is in Fred’s lab and heads down. Fred thinks that Angel has sent Harmony to check on Dupree because he’s nervous about the summit. She discovers that, based on the bite marks, the vampire who killed Dupree was female. Harmony tries to pretend that she had nothing to do with it and Fred doesn’t pick up on her guilt. On her way back to her desk, Harmony contemplates running away, then realizes that because Dupree was bitten on the right, she couldn’t have killed him. Unfortunately, Rudy tests her and she comes back positive for having had human blood. She giggles and knocks him out.

Harmony shoves Rudy in a closet, then heads off, trying to pretend like nothing’s happened. She runs into Lorne, who tells her that Rudy’s blood tests automatically get sent to the lab. He hears Rudy moaning in the closet and, minutes later, Harmony shoves an unconscious Lorne into the same closet. She heads back to the lab, where Fred tries to give her the benefit of the doubt about having human blood. Harmony says that she thinks someone drugged her, revealing to Fred that Dupree is the guy from the bar. Harmony demonstrates how she’s a “right-biter,” but since Dupree was bitten on the right, he had to have been killed by a “left-biter.” Fred points out that Harmony’s blood test came back positive and Harmony says that someone might have spiked her thermos that morning. Fred starts to call Angel, but Harmony reminds her of the zero tolerance policy and says that Angel will kill her. Minutes later, Harmony shoves an unconscious Fred into the utility closet. Harmony apologizes to her three captives and promises them dinner once she’s cleared her name. She heads off to get her thermos and see if she can find her framer via fingerprints. She winds up hiding out while Angel and Gunn meet with the clan leaders; the Vinji leader is upset that Dupree’s killer hasn’t been found. He announces that if they can’t find the killer, someone from Wolfram & Hart will have to die. Angel tells Harmony to find Fred so they can find out what she got off of Dupree’s body. She heads to the break room, where she finds Lorne’s assistant with her thermos and tries to get him to confess to framing her. She thinks that he hates her, but he says that he doesn’t care enough about her to hate her. Harmony vamps out and tries to get the assistant to confess, but he’s suddenly knocked out by Tamika, who says she did it to make it look like Harmony did.

Tamika complains that she’s been in the steno pool for five years and is skilled, but Harmony got hired right away and has a great job. Harmony thinks she has the advantage in a fight, but Tamika’s a vampire, too. As they fight, Tamika confesses that she drugged Harmony at the bar, followed her to her apartment, and killed Dupree after Harmony had passed out. She adds that when she gets Harmony’s job, she’s going to smash all of Harmony’s unicorns. In the conference room, the demons argue, demanding a sacrifice. Harmony and Tamika crash in and Harmony stakes Tamika. The demon leaders are satisfied, though Angel isn’t. That night, Harmony reveals all to Angel and apologizes to Fred, Lorne, and Rudy. She says that she has to try harder to make good decisions because she doesn’t have a soul. She announces that she’s ready to leave, but Angel doesn’t want to fire her. Harmony heads back to the bar and complains to the bartender that after saving the demon summit, Angel told her to get coffee for everyone. Spike arrives and says that he can’t just head over to Europe after making such a dramatic exit. Harmony says that she knows how he feels about not mattering. Spike says that she had to have mattered to Tamika if she cared enough to frame her. “You’re right,” Harmony says. “That girl hated me. She wanted me dead. I matter.” Apparently, that’s good enough for her.

MORAL, or CRAMMING COMPLEX ISSUES INTO A NUTSHELL: If people hate you, it just means they care.

GRADE: B Aww, poor Harmony.

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Spike: “Any message for Buffy?”
Angel: “Tell her you’re a moron.”

Angel: (in Vinji) “Be disemboweled.”
Vinji leader: (in Vinji) “Filthy man whore! How dare you! You--.”
Gunn: (in Vinji) “He meant, be patient! The whore man is a novice in your tongue and makes foolish errors. We make fun of him, yes?”


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