|“||I am Anck-Su-Namun reincarnated.||„|
|~ Meela Nais (speaking in Arabic) describing herself as the reincarnation of Anck-Su-Namun to Imhotep.|
Meela Nais is the secondary antagonist of The Mummy Returns. She is a mysterious crime lord and beautiful woman who was the reincarnation of Anck-Su-Namun, that joined the Cult of Imhotep whose intent was to see that the dreaded High Priest of Osiris Imhotep be resurrected and conquer the Earth.
She was portrayed by Patricia Velásquez.
Confronting Meela Nais
Meela Nais had been Anck-Su-Namun in another life, carrying on the memories of her past existence onto her current form, and had been reborn as a female millionaire crime Lord. As she was the reincarnation of Anck-Su-Namun, her life would be ended so that Anck-Su-Namun's would return. Coupled with her desperate desire to have her lover, the former High Priest of Osiris, Imhotep returned to life, Meela joined forces with a group of cultists that sought to obtain power by defeating the legendary Scorpion King, an ancient creature whose demise spelled absolute power for his successor in battle: the cultist group had decided that Imhotep was the only being powerful enough to confront the Scorpion King and win.
Dig at Hamunaptra
Meela Nais, along with a curator-turned-cultist leader named Baltus Hafez and his cultist followers, had enlisted hundreds of native fellahin diggers to uncover the remains of the High Priest of Osiris, Imhotep within the ruins of the former necropolis Hamunaptra. Two discoveries that the cultists made were the Book of the Dead and the Book of Amun-Ra; holding the Book of Amun-Ra and referring to it as the Book of the Living, Meela mused that the Book was the force that could take life away, to which Lock-Nah, Meela's bodyguard, quipped that taking life away was his job.
At that moment, the diggers had come across something of importance: the Earth began to quake around them and as many were in a dug sandpit, they stood gazing at the bottom of the pit, hearing a rushing noise and seeing that the sands were rising as if something was lifting itself from them. Out of the centre of the pit, a horde of flesh-eating scarabs ascended the pit, killing both cultists and diggers as the insects swarmed about. The deaths of the diggers and cultist thugs meant to Meela, rather they served as confirmation that they were getting closer to their prize, a concept which she smoothly stated as she headed towards Hafez to consort with him. Turning away a ride from her driver at the dig site, Meela took with her the Book of Amun-Ra while Lock-Nah took the Book of the Dead; Meela was informed by Lock-Nah that the Book of Amun-Ra was the only item on Earth that could defeat Imhotep, and so Meela threw the Book of Amun-Ra directly into a pit filled with sand, burnt and trapped scarabs, and the remains of devoured diggers. At that, the cultists gathered to a side of the dig site where a crane had pulled up a large chunk of amber-like material: the mineral that had imprisoned Imhotep after his demise several years back.
Meela drew herself closer to the mineral with silent glee, knowing that within was her love. Lock-Nah then brandished a large blue-and-gold urn, stating that they must raise those that served Imhotep, and at that moment, three thieves had stepped forward: Spivey, Red, and Jacques. The three thieves were hired by Hafez to retrieve the Bracelet of Anubis from a temple which was visited by an adventurer named Rick O'Connell and his family, but the thieves returned empty-handed. As Hafez insisted that the cultist group needed that bracelet, Lock-Nah angrily drew out his sabre in an insistent gesture, but the three thieves raised their guns just as quickly. Only Meela could stop the confrontation by reminding Hafez that she had requested to handle the matter herself, and Hafez cryptically responded that her "past history" would have become an issue. Red and his thieves explained that the bracelet was being sent to London, and with that, the cultists headed to London.
The cultists had reached the O'Connell's London home, expecting to find the Bracelet of Anubis, and so had infiltrated their household. Meela, along with Hafez and a small number of cultist thugs, had mistaken Jonathan Carnahan, the brother of Evelyn, Rick O'Connell's wife, for O'Connell himself. The cultists had taken Jonathan into a room and began to interrogate him, which Meela helped by taking a poisonous Egyptian Asp from a basket, and, kissing the asp, announced that asps was venomous as she brought her snake closer to Jonathan. Jonathan then told her that the bracelet was in a vault downstairs, giving her a combination to open it, but this did not register to Meela, who brought the snake closer, insisting on killing Jonathan. As Meela drew closer to Jonathan, the real O'Connell walked in, thinking the interrogation was another of Jonathan's house parties.O'Connell then asked the cultists to cease their doings as he did not permit snakes or dismemberment in his home, but before O'Connell could finish, Meela threw the snake that she was holding at him, which O'Connell caught in midair and threw right back, hitting one of the cultist thugs.
O'Connell and Jonathan escaped the room, taking the golden sceptre with them as the cultists opened fire on them. After the cultists had taken Evelyn, who was downstairs, and the chest that the O'Connells had found, they headed for the British Museum of Antiquities. Once the cultists had reached the museum, they began the ritual that would bring Imhotep back to life within the storage rooms within, Hafez reading the incantations from the Book of the Dead, which was held up by Shafek, a servant of the cult. In time, Imhotep was brought back from the dead, breaking free from the mineral chunk and asking what year it was; upon learning that it was the Year of the Scorpion, he chuckled deviously before seeing Meela stride towards him: as she did, Imhotep saw not Meela Nais, but Anck-Su-Namun. Meela was told by Hafez to not be frightened, but Meela revealed that she had no fear, and as she only wanted Imhotep to provide her safe protection from danger, stated to Imhotep that she was Anck-Su-Namun reincarnated, in the hopes that he would protect her life, to which Imhotep remarked that she was only Anck-Su-Namun in body, but after bringing her soul back from the Underworld, their love would once again be whole.
Meela then told Imhotep that she had a gift for him: Evelyn Carnahan, whose death Meela knew would bring her love joy, a sentiment which she expressed as she gestured to the cultist guards to take Evelyn to a burning basin within the storage room. Evelyn was about to be thrown into the fires when O'Connell leapt in and rescued her from the plank, unbinding her ropes as he did. The cultists then began to open fire on O'Connell and Evelyn, who shot back against the cultists, and received cover fire from the Medjai warrior Ardeth Bay. During the fight, Lock-Nah threw Meela a machine gun, which she used to fire back at Ardeth. As the shots were being fired, Imhotep advanced towards the blue-and-gold urn that had been found in Hamunaptra and opened it, commanding its contents to awaken: from the urn came four mummified soldiers that were given the order by Imhotep to kill his foes.
That night, the cultists succeeded in taking Alex O'Connell, the O'Connell family's son, hostage: Alex was wearing the Bracelet of Anubis and so could not be harmed, but Alex would be taken prisoner as the key to the next location to be visited by the cultists. Meela stood by Imhotep in the British Museum balcony that overlooked the London streets, both eager about Imhotep's future confrontation with the Scorpion King, Meela stating that with the Scorpion King's downfall, they would be unstoppable together. At that moment, Hafez admitted to Imhotep that the O'Connells had the Spear of Osiris, and that he had seen it, but Imhotep stated that once they had reached Ahm Shere, his powers would be so great that he would have no need for the Spear. With that, Imhotep leaned forward to kiss Meela, but though she was devoted to her lover, she could not disguise her revile at his appearance: to counter this, Imhotep placed her under a trance that caused her to recall her past life as Anck-Su-Namun, and to see Thebes in place of London. With that, the two kissed deeply, Meela under such a trance that she could not see the corpse that she was kissing.
Sometime after the abduction of young Alex O'Connell, the cultists had headed to Cairo, enlisting a private train to take them to Karnak, the first stop on the way to the ancient oasis of Ahm Shere. Hafez took a moment to explain to Meela the truth about Imhotep: the last time that he had encountered the O'Connells some years ago, it had cost him his immortal soul, which was sent to the Underworld, and as powerful as he would become, he would not be invulnerable to attack. Hafez went on to explain that Imhotep would need Meela's help, and so he gave her the black Book of the Dead, to keep with her at all times. Lock-Nah then entered, bringing Alex O'Connell with him as he stood before Hafez, expecting orders, and Alex, recognising the Book of the Dead, spoke out loud, Meela calmly threatening him with poisonous snakes being placed in his bed if he did not behave. Hafez ordered Lock-Nah to take Alex off to see Imhotep before the three thieves Spivey, Red and Jacques entered the boxcar, presenting Hafez with a chest that he had requested: the chest had come at the price of two guards' lives taken, but the thieves had acquired it.
Red pointed out, as Jacques had stated, that the previous finders of the chest had all died, suggesting that the chest must be cursed. With that, Red demanded more money be paid, which Hafez spoke out against, but Meela conceded to, directing the men away to a different boxcar, where she claimed their "just rewards" would be had, locking the door as she left. The three mercenaries were concerned about their imprisonment in the boxcar if not angry at being locked in, but displeasure quickly turned to fear as Imhotep came down from the ceiling, roaring at the three men, causing them to open pistol fire, which had no effect on the corpse. Spivey, in desperation, quickly turned back to the door, trying to open it, when Meela appeared behind the spy-hole on the other side, telling him that the mummy wanted the chest opened, as it would placate him. In fear for his life, Spivey ran to the chest and tore the lid open, which Jacques loudly protested. The three men were then subject to the chest's curse and were killed, their organs, fluids and tissue consumed. In the next boxcar, Hafez sat calmly reading a book of poetry, listening on to the sounds of the thieves' deaths with slight concern while Meela was unfazed completely.
After the mummy had killed the three men, Meela stepped over their corpses with slight disgust and beheld Imhotep, fully regenerated and whole. Bowing her head before him, she was about to kiss him when the train had stopped abruptly in front of Karnak. Alex had begun to run away from the train as two cultists fired at him from atop the train with machine guns; Imhotep, knowing that the men would kill off their only source of a map, used his powers to lift the two men into the air, ramming them against one another before throwing them both hard towards two giant statues, killing them. Meela was then for awhile frightened that Imhotep had gone mad and would attack her too, as she gave Imhotep a frightened look, but sensing Meela's fear, Imhotep reassured her by protecting her by putting his arm round her shoulder and drawing her close. The two then resumed their romantic encounter, Meela, protected, gladly stroked Imhotep's regenerated face and smiled romantically upon being with her complete lover.
That night, the cultists left the train and camped out in the ruins of Karnak, Alex chained to a post to ensure that he did not escape. Imhotep took the time in Karnak to sit with Meela at a sacred pool, where he put her under the same trance as she had been in London, causing her to recall her past history as Anck-Su-Namun. Meela recalled how she had fought against the princess Nefertiri in a knife duel as entertainment for Pharaoh Seti I, how she had won the fight and been engaged to be married to Seti. In her memories, Meela recalled that Imhotep had come to her residence and had kissed her deeply, holding her arms and staining her body paint as he did.
Seti had come that night to Anck-Su-Namun's residence, knowing that the concubine was having an affair. It was Nefertiri that had alerted the Medjai, Pharaoh's guards, to her father assassination at the hands of Anck-Su-Namun and Imhotep. Meela, so deep in her reliving of memories, had begun to believe that she was back in ancient times, and she had spoken out her exact words to Imhotep, telling him to leave or be discovered by the Medjai as the Pharaoh's killer. Acting out the final part of her memories as Anck-Su-Namun, Meela took a dagger, and subconsciously stabbed herself in the stomach, ending her life as Meela Nais. At that moment, Imhotep, who had been reading from the Book of the Dead, performed the incantations that summoned Anck-Su-Namun's soul into Meela's body. Meela was dead, and Anck-Su-Namun had been reborn. After destroying the Scorpion King, Anck-Su-Namun, in the body of Meela, left Imhotep behind and got lost in the pyramid, and when the one of the passageways collpased, she fell into a pool scropion and died. Meela's body was never found when the Oasis of Ahm Shere was sucked into the earth.
Personality and Traits
Meela Nais was a duplicitous woman, as was her past self, Anck-Su-Namun, and Meela turned to trickery when dealing with those that were, in her views, dispensable. Meela would only turn to violence when in the most pressing situations, knowing well how to handle a gun in a fight. In her incarnation as Meela Nais, she was born a millionaire that had a penchant for obtaining power, and had a fondness for snakes, particularly Egyptian Asps. When the chips are down, she is shown to be both imbecility cowardly and disloyal, leaving Imhotep to be swallowed by Hell after he begged her to save him.
Meela took on the same bodily appearance that she had back in 1290 B.C without her body paint, her hair trimmed exactly the same as it had been, with shortly-trimmed bangs.
When in a setting such as the digs at Hamunaptra, Meela wore tight-fitting khaki trousers and a cream-coloured shirt with a belt and boots, while in London, Meela's clothing took on a much more formal approach: a tight, glittery, black evening dress with high heeled shoes, a golden necklace that bore the same insignia worn by the cultists and an exact replica of the necklace that she had worn as Anck-Su-Namun, long black gloves, along with a black feather boa and veiled fascinator.
In her travels through the desert with the other cultists, Meela wore a matching purple coat, blouse, trousers, and shoes in the true native style, this outfit matching the body paint patterns that she had worn centuries back.
- In the novelization of the film, Meela's surname was Pasha, translating into "viceroy" in Turkish.