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Episode Recap: I Awake

Vanessa relives the memories of her ancestor, Lily Van Helsing, in Colonial Hong Kong. There, she learns to control her dark side and fights the B'ah. 


Following the events of last week, Vanessa has been sent into the past to find out what her ancestor did to encounter the B'ah. Being in someone else's body in Hong Kong at the turn of the century is a bit of an adjustment for Vanessa, and it takes her a few minutes, and a near deadly encounter with her maid, Siobhan, to figure it all out, but she adjusts just in time to get tea with the Governor's wife.

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The Governor's wife, Agnes, informs Vanessa that there have been some strange deaths in Hong Kong of late. You see, vampires are using the resurgence of the Black Plague to hide their killings. Agnes has a friend who would like to talk to Vanessa about the problem. Before she can meet him, though, Vanessa has to face off against a foe a little closer to home: Lily's husband, Edward. He wasn't always so keen to assist in his wife's vampire hunting hobbies and he's determined to stop her from even bringing them up. He refers to them as delusions and insists she not mention them when they have guests.

Not one to let a man get in the way of her vision quest, Vanessa straps herself into Lily's vampire huntin' outfit and sneaks out the window to meet up with the mysterious Master Tsui. Along the way, she gets her first look at the local vampires who are different than those she is used to, though no less creepy. Master Tsui, for his part, tells her the vampire she saw was a "shadow walker" and is a servant to the B'ah, an ancient type of vampire. They move very quickly and hide in the shadows. Normally they keep out of cities, but the plague has tainted their blood supply.

Master Tsui tells Vanessa he too is a vampire hunter and the two begin training to fight these new creatures. After a particularly difficult training session kept secret from Edward, he informs her that the man he met with the night before, the head of the East Asia Trading Company, has been murdered, his neck ripped open. Despite the evidence, he won't hear of vampires, but Vanessa knows it's connected to the B'ah, so, naturally, she drugs him so she can go investigate on her own.

That investigation takes Vanessa to a warehouse in which she finds a dead guy, a big shipping crate, and … oh yeah … a shadow walker. Vanessa believes she is  outmatched but Master Tsui arrives just in time to offer some well placed advice, and Vanessa stabs the shadow walker in the gut. Vanessa may have gotten the better of their encounter, but the vampire got his licks in.

Vanessa is reminded, once again, that she isn't herself in this situation. She doesn't have magic healing powers when she is in Lily's body. Vanessa heads home to have Siobhan sew her up. Siobhan expresses her jealousy over Lily's adventurousness and defiance of gender norms and Vanessa reassures her maid that there will be a day in the future when women are allowed to do all manner of things.

And then they are interrupted by Edward, the walking patriarchy. To add insult to injury, Edward intercepts a message from Master Tsui to his wife and vows to put a stop to her delusions and this man who is feeding into them. He locks the women in the bedroom, leaves a guard, and goes to the meeting in her place.

Vanessa and Siobhan break out almost immediately and go to meet Master Tsui. Never send a man to do a woman's job. As Vanessa and Master Tsui arrive at the B'ah's lair, we discover that Edward never made it very far in his endeavor. Or perhaps he made it too far. He's found the B'ah, all right, but rather than confronting her about anything, he's found himself in bed with her, powerless to her vampire wiles.

Upon learning from Edward that his wife is descended from the famous Van Helsings and seeks to fight and kill vampires, the B'ah finally reveals herself to Lily/Vanessa and Master Tsui. The B'ah's true form is less than attractive, but they've got other issues. For one, the minions. For another, the poison, which covers the B'ah's blades, one of which Vanessa catches after, once again, forgetting she's far from invincible.

Vanessa manages to shed some light on the situation, killing all the shadow walkers and gets a piece of the B'ah before the ancient vampire disappears, telling Vanessa they will meet again. Edward finally believes his wife's delusions, and Master Tsui tells her that only the blood of the B'ah can stop the deadly poison. Good thing she's got a little on hand. With everyone cured and Edward on the mend, Agnes arrives to inform Lily/Vanessa that her husband has acquired the shipping manifest from the East Asia Trading Company. Several mysterious crates have been sent off to San Francisco, and now Vanessa knows where the B'ah has gone.

Information acquired, Vanessa snaps out of her dream state and back to the basement of the asylum with the Elder. Vanessa says she must go to San Francisco to claim the B'ah's totem, but before they leave she releases the Elder from her service by stabbing it through the gut. As she puts it, "the more Elders there are, the greater the chance I'll be betrayed."