We thought we'd heard everything here at TV Guide Online. But then we rang up Hudson Leick, and dang if the former Xena: Warrior Princess villainess didn't prove us wrong in nothing flat. "I quit acting for about two years," the 34-year-old knockout tells us. Why on Earth? If ever a performer was born ready for her close-up, we'd have bet that it had to be her. So, what possessed her?!

"'What possessed you?!'" she repeats dramatically, then bursts into laughter. "I just wasn't crazy about the business. When you work, you're so lucky — I mean, only [a small percentage] of the Screen Actors Guild actually makes enough money to support themselves. I just didn't think that was what I wanted to do.

"But," she adds, "I was wrong."

We could've told Leick that. Whether the veteran of Melrose Place and Touched by an Angel is throwing herself into another of what she calls the "slutty, bitchy bimbo" roles on which she's built her golden rep, or revealing unimagined fragility in a less aggressive part, you'd be hard-pressed to find a more compelling screen presence.

Nonetheless, before getting back into the swing of things, the Ohio native set in motion Plan B: a new career as a yoga instructor. "I'm certified three times over," she says proudly. "It doesn't pay the bills quite the same [as acting], but it's very, very cool." On the rare occasions when she's recognized, she feigns ignorance. "People will be like, 'You look just like that girl on that show. Shoot... what was her name?' And I say, 'Really? What show?'"

If Leick's wish (and, for that matter, ours) is granted, soon all the world will know what show she's on. Although she comes back to the fore this fall, guest-starring in the series premiere of Fox's Tru Calling, with Eliza Dushku, she's already got her eye on an even bigger prize: a gig on Angel, Dushku's sometimes stomping ground. "The same casting agency that hired me for Tru Calling [handles] Angel, and I really want to play a vampire," she teases. "So anything is possible."