William (called Willie) is a Visitor who originally learned Arabic for his Earth assignment, but was instead transferred to LA. His knowledge of English is very weak, resulting in many slips of the tongue. During the First Invasion, Willie was captured by the Resistance, who were looking for a Visitor on whom to run some humane tests. Willie eventually gained the trust of the Resistance, and voluntarily joined them in their fight against his people. Willie fell in love with Harmony, a human food services worker, who was tragically killed in the First Invasion.
Willie stayed on Earth when the Visitors retreated,
and went to work at Club Creole, the restaurant opened by Elias Taylor.
Willie helps the Resistance to decode Visitor messages, and provides a
Visitor perspective. He also acts as mentor and teacher to Elizabeth,
helping her to learn about and understand her alien powers. Willie
decided to become a vegetarian.
When brought aboard the fleet, he was fitted with a human skin and given hypno-training in Earth languages. But his machine had a flaw in the programming and some words were misapplied, resulting in spoonerisms in his speech training. But even Willie doesn't realize how extensive the programming flaw is.
On the way to Earth, he discovered one of the major parts of the invasion plan, a facet which was already obvious to everyone else. It happened when he decided to watch an Earth television transmission which he'd heard was very popular with the crew and had been played often in the lounge to much hilarity. It was an episode of a decades-old television series, known as The Twilight Zone, The episode was called 'To Serve Man', and was about carnivorous aliens who arrive on Earth feigning friendship but really intending to serve up mankind as a meaty delicacy. "Tonight's bill of far, for The Twilight Zone", the host intoned. Some had wagers as to who would get to eat the host himself, even if he was a bit on the stringy side.
Willie was appalled. It had long been a moral sin to consume another intelligent species, but with the rise of the military elite (those whose parents had been deemed the most likely to produce powerful warrior progeny wand who willingly gave their offspring up to the state) morals had shifted and become rewritten. Humans were now no more significant to their society then the juicy grug flies. Willie was beside himself with horror. How could he ever be expected to feast on another intelligent species, especially the race which produced Rod Serling?
By chance, he overheard two crewmen talking one day and realized that there were other like-minded individuals, and that they were forming an anti-invasion underground among the Visitors. Willie hesitantly contacted them and was accepted into their fledging organization at once. But he was cautioned never to take any overt actions without orders from the leaders of the Fifth Column. He agreed, but also stated that he could never participate in feasts on human flesh, even if it meant revealing his personal sentiments.
When they arrived on Earth, Willie found his role as a friendly alien an easy one to fill, because he wasn't putting on an act. When an accident trapped a human in a sub-zero tank, Willie rushed in and pulled the man out, making him a hero. But unnoticed by the humans, the other Visitors present found the act questionable -- risking one's life for a human?
When war broke out between human and alien, Willie worked closed with the Fifth Column, serving as a go-between for them and the Resistance movement.
When the Visitors were drawn off by the red dust, Willie remained with the Resistance, knowing that he was now an outcast from his own race. Naturally, he found that his retaining his human-like skin covering made it easier to deal with the humans.
On at least once occasion, though, it proved both embarrassing and dangerous. When a young woman fell in love with him, he had to reveal to her that he wasn't human. When her friends learned of this, they almost executed Willie; the Resistance saved him in the nick of time and unmasked the real spy, who was human.
Willie's command of the alien language proved invaluable in translating intercepted messages and helping to pinpoint targets for the rebels. With the arrival of The Leader, and his intention to make peace with the humans rather than exhaust what little resources they had remaining, Willie felt that at last he would be able to return to his own people. A woman whom he had loved among the alien Fifth Column was killed during the final days of the initial conflict, and he still grieved for her.
He adopted the Earth name of Willie since his own would translate phonetically into something akin to wolverine. He knew that that name would tend to put people off. He has been trying to improve his command of the English language and speaks slowly and hesitantly, trying to carefully choose the right words.
Although he never expressed it, he also found
himself attracted to Elizabeth, the human/alien hybrid, but only maintained
a quiet friendship with her.
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