Game Theory
By Thomas

Thanks to Steve Brown for helping me with my grammar. And to Medea for beta reading it.

(The class of Mr. O'Neill)

Mr. O'Neill: Despite its grim descriptions of warfare, doesn't "Slaughterhouse Five" seem foolish sometimes? Billy Pilgrim not only travels in time, he also meet aliens. Yes, Daria.

Daria: The book isn't specific on whether or not Billy travels in time. He only starts talking about his time travels and encounters with aliens after he hurt his head. He claims to have been kidnapped by them, but no one noticed his absence. Maybe Billy's idea that our future is carved in stone is really a way to relieve himself of a feeling of guilt. And as a way to remain sane. For Billy this is a positive idea.

Mr. O'Neill: Very good, Daria. But is it a good idea? Does the book have a positive message? Jodie?

Jodie: I don't think the book has any positive message. If you don't think it's possible to change the future, you won't even try. That way the world would never become a better place.

Mr. O'Neill: So are you saying, you *want* to change the world we live in?

Jodie: Uhm. I'm thinking about going into politics.

Mr. O'Neill: That's very good, Jodie. Young people trying to change the world.

Jane: (To Daria) He wouldn't say that if he knew my plans for the world.

Kevin: (To Mack) Come on, bro.

Mack: (To Kevin) Kevin, no. I don't have time to help you out. We have a test tomorrow. I have to study.

Kevin: (To Mack) But didn't you hear what Mrs. Bennett said she wants me to do?

Mack: (To Kevin) And? It's not my fault you forgot to hand your paper in.

Mr. O'Neill: How about you, Daria. Do you want to go into politics?

Daria: No. I believe the problems in our society stems from the human race itself. I suggest using genetic engineering to solve our problems.

Mr. O'Neill: Daria all I did was to ask you a question. There's no need to adopt such an attitude.

Daria: What attitude? Just because I want to remake mankind in my own image. (smirk) You're not trying to oppress my freedom of speech, are you?

Mr. O'Neill: (Pause) I can no longer ignore your attitude towards my teaching. This time you have gone too far. You have detention.

Daria: Detention? Me!?

Mr. O'Neill: Yes. And if there are others who wants to join you. They can say so.

Jane: I want to join her.

Mr. O'Neill: Uhm. Very well, Jane. Then you have detention too.

Mack: Me too. I need a place to study in peace.

Kevin: And me. You can help me there, Mack Daddy.

Mack: You're not allowed to talk in detention.

Kevin: Oh, man. Mr. O'Neill, can I change my mind?

Daria: (To Jane) He could if he had one.

Mr. O'Neill: Only if you had one, Kevin.

Kevin: Oh, man.

Jane: (To Daria) Now that was scary.

(Detention. Eight students in all have detention. Ms. Barch is keeping an eye on them. Daria and Jane are sitting next to each other. Further back are Mack and Kevin. Mack is studying. Kevin looks bored)

Jane: (To Daria) You in detention. This was too good to miss.

Ms. Barch: Quiet, Jane.

Jane: Ms. Barch, Daria's having trouble with her boyfriend. I'm giving her sisterly comfort.

Ms. Barch: Oh those filthy males. That's okay then. You and Daria go ahead and talk.

Daria: (To Jane) Could you not use that as an excuse. I'm not having any trouble with Tom. In fact, lately it's been better than ever. And I fail to see how anyone would even think of coming to you for comfort.

Jane: (To Daria) Now, now. You can tell comfy Jane everything.

Daria: (To Jane) Why did Mr. O'Neill have to give me detention? He never did that before. Not even when I suggested abolishing the death penalty and bringing back torture. (1)

Jane: (To Daria) Ahh. But back then he thought you had low self esteem for yourself, now he realizes it's for everyone else.

Daria: (To Jane) Mr. O'Neill smartened up. I find that a little hard to believe.

Jane: (To Daria) Cut him some slack. He's only endured you for two years now.

Ms. Barch: I'm leaving you alone for awhile. No talking while I'm gone. (leaves)

Jane: You think she started drinking?

Daria: Rendezvous with Mr. O'Neill is more likely. They still think it's a secret.

Kevin: Come on, Mack. Help me out here.

Mack: Dammit, Kevin. I have to study. Look, maybe you should ask someone smarter than me. (looks at Daria)

Kevin: Right. Thanks bro.

Daria: Why, Mack? Why?

Mack: Sorry, Daria. I can only handle so much.

(Kevin walks over to Daria. Jane gets up and offers Kevin her seat)

Daria: Et tu, Jane?

Kevin: (Sits down next to Daria) Hi, babe. I mean, Daria.

Jane: You can call her "babe". She loves that.

Kevin: (Clueless as ever) But why? Daria's not a babe.

Daria: I'll kill all three of you, and then I'll use acid to dispose of your bodies.

Jane: I can always tell when you two want privacy. (sits in Kevin's old seat)

Daria: Whatever it is, make it short.

Kevin: It's about what I'm supposed to do in Mrs. Bennett's class tomorrow.

Daria: An oral presentation. And to answer your next question, you're not supposed to kiss her. She wants you to talk to the class.

Kevin: Whew. I've been worried sick. But why does it have to be me?

Daria: The teachers are under orders from Ms. Li to let you pass. But even Mrs. Bennett can't give you a passing grade on a paper when you forget to hand it in. So she's letting you do an oral presentation instead.

Kevin: So what am I supposed to say?

Daria: You're supposed to explain what a "hole in the market" is. And to give what you think is an example. And to answer your next question, a "hole in the market" has got nothing to do with sex.

Kevin: Whew. I would hate to talk about sex in front of Mrs. Bennett. So what is it?

Daria: A "hole in the market" is when the consumers demand a product that isn't being supplied. It offers a business opportunity for a supplier. Can you memorize that?

Kevin: Demand what isn't being supplied. Yeah I think so. Like when you run out off beer at a party. And someone has to get more.

Daria: (Sigh) As for your next question about an example... (voiceover) Time to get evil... (outloud) You watch the pigskin channel a lot, don't you?

Kevin: All the time.

Daria: A lot of famous football players advertise products on that channel. A "hole in the market" could be to advertise something that no football player has advertised there before. Got it?

Kevin: Gee thanks, Daria. By the way. How is it you always know what my next question is?

Daria: (Voiceover) Two years exposure to you will do that to a person. The stage is set for some serious jock terror. (outloud) When you're really smart you get psychic powers.

Kevin: (Nervous) I don't believe you.

Daria: Yes you do. I see it in your mind.

Kevin: (Very nervous) I think I'll go now. Thanks for the help, Daria. I mean, babe.

Daria: No you don't mean that.

(Kevin looks scared)

Daria: Don't worry. I can't make your head explode. (smirk) Yet.

(Kevin runs out of the room)

Mack: That was wicked. You know he's going to talk about stuff like detergent or mineral water.

Daria: I bet he'll talk about diapers.

Jane: I bet he'll talk about religion.

Guy: Can I join? Or do you have to be in the same class as Kevin?

Mack: You know what? I think, I just found a hole in the market.

(Mrs. Barch comes back)

Ms. Barch: Where's Kevin?

Daria: There's an old movie on TV he wanted to see. "Scanners", I think.

Ms. Barch: So he left detention without permission, did he? (hellish laughter) I'll geld him you hear. I'll take them... (make a fist with her right hand) ...and squeeze, and squeeze, and squeeze.

(The guys in detention looks like they're about to faint)

(Next day. Daria and her classmates are waiting for the teacher to show up. Mack walks over to Daria's table)

Mack: Last chance to join. Mrs. Bennett will be here any minute. You're the only one in the whole class, except Kevin and me, who hasn't made a bet on what he's going to say.

Daria: And if the whole class started wearing wide-legs, would you join them?

Mack: Come on. Ten dollars for each guess and two dollars to me in administration costs. Winner takes all.

Daria: I don't believe in making money off the stupidity of others.

Jane: (Covers her mouth) Ahhbullshit, ahhbullshit.

Mack: The pool is up to 280 dollars.

Daria: (Gives Mack 12 dollars) Diapers.

Mack: Sorry. Brittany took diapers.

Daria: Why does that not surprise me. Perfume.

Mack: Jodie.

Daria: Lets see. Cigarettes.

Mack: (Looks at a piece of paper) No cigarettes haven't been taken.

(Later in Mrs. Bennett class. Kevin is standing next to Mrs. Bennett)

Mrs. Bennett: And now Kevin will give us an oral presentation. Kevin please explain the concept of a "hole in the market".

Kevin: It's when the consumers demand a product that isn't being supplied. It offers an opportunity for a supplier.

Mrs. Bennett: (Taken aback) That's very good, Kevin. Maybe you're finally starting to pay attention. Now you were also supposed to give us an example.

Kevin: Oh, yeah. This is just like show and tell.

(Kevin takes out a pack of cigarettes. The students makes disappointed noises. Daria for once gets a grin on her face)

Kevin: I want to advertise that people should start smoking cigarettes.

Mrs. Bennett: Kevin. Ms. Li's office. Now.

(Daria and Jane are walking down the hall. Daria is counting money)

Jane: I could have won you know.

Daria: You bet Kevin would advertise membership of Jehovah witnesses.

Jane: So? I think Kevin could make a great Jehovah. He makes a lot more sense than those bozos who usually show up at my house.

Daria: Your own fault for not asking them to come back after sunset to donate blood. That makes them stay away.

Jane: Still I should have won. I had the bigger imagination.

Daria: Should have. Didn't. Now if you let me count my money in peace, I'll pay for pizza today.

Jane: Deal. Did you see the look on our classmates faces when you walked out of there with their money.

Daria: No. Looking at my classmates is one of the things I try to avoid.

Jane: Seriously. I think you got some admiration. Who knows. Maybe your luck is changing.

Daria: My luck will never change.

Jane: You did hook up with Tom.

Daria: (Small smile) Yeah.

Jane: And you told me yourself things had improved at home.

Daria: Look I see what you mean. But I'm not just going to believe that everything is rosy. I got lucky so now something bad will probably happen to me.

Jane: Since when did you start thinking along those lines?

Daria: It's not a superstition. It's not like I believe there's some divine power watching over me and making sure I don't have to much luck. I'm being a pessimist. If you think only good things will happen to you, you might not notice the bad ones before its to late.

Jane: And vice versa. You might miss out on good things too.

Daria: I've always had more bad than good things happen to me. Being a pessimist is what works for me. And I bet something bad will happen to me in the next hour.

Jane: An opportunity to get my money back. I bet nothing bad will happen to you.

Daria: You're on.

(Brittany is standing at the other end of the hall, she sees Daria and Jane and walks towards them. She's crying)

Daria: See what I mean.

Jane: Damn (hands Daria 10 dollars)

Daria: (Takes it) Lucky me.

Jane: Wait a minute. Give it back!

Daria: I could do that. Or I could consider it my fee for an introductory course in game theory.

Brittany: (Crying) Daria, I don't know what to do.

Jane: You only found that out now?

Daria: Calm down. Think about kitties or something. Now tell me what happened.

Brittany: The coach threatened to throw Kevvie of the team if he didn't stop smoking. Kevvie said he wasn't smoking, but then Mrs. Manson came and told him he was in denial. I tried to explain to her that it was all a big mistake and that if Kevvie had advertised using diapers instead of cigarettes none of this would have happened. But she told me to get lost and threatened to have me committed. And now she's taken Kevvie. She said she wants to help him with his addiction. What'll I do?

Daria: You don't have to do anything. This will sort itself out.

Brittany: Are you sure?

Daria: Trust me. Mr. Li won't risk being without a QB again. Kevin will be back before you know it.

(Brittany hugs Daria)

Brittany: Thank you, Daria.

Daria: Please don't hug me in public. In fact don't hug me at all.

Brittany: Thank you, thank you.

Daria: Uhm, Brittany. I can't breathe.

Brittany: Thank you.

Daria: Graaaaaa.

(At Pizza Palace)

Daria: Since I started dating Tom people have been treating me differently. Our classmates aren't avoiding me anymore. More and more they even come to me for advice. Like Kevin and Brittany did.

Jane: Bad move. Brittany tried to crush you. And Kevin got sent to Mrs. Manson.

Daria: You have to take the sweet with the sour. I just don't see why people make such a big fuss because I have a boyfriend now. I mean, I'm still me.

Jane: (Smirk) You have to cut them some slack. Its only the biggest news since the moon landing.

Daria: (Fumes) Start begging and I might give you the antidote to the poison I poured on your Pizza.

Jane: Sorry. But why do you think its just because you have a boyfriend? That's only part of it.

Daria: How would you know?

Jane: Some of us listen to gossip. Its my own private Sick Sad World. And the word is that many of our classmates are envious of you. Respect you even.

Daria: Envious of me? Because I have a rich boyfriend?

Jane: Will you stop with the boyfriend. I just said that's only part of it. First and foremost it's your grades. We're seniors now and we can finally see the end of high-school. Many of our classmates have suddenly realized that maybe they can't get into the college of their dreams, that maybe some of all those nights they spend partying or dating had been better used studying. They look at your perfect GPA and get envious.

Daria: Are you saying you're envious of me.

Jane: We Lane's aren't college people. And now that you have a boyfriend you seem a lot more normal than you did before. You're still unpopular but you're no longer seen as this major outcast. So people treat you different, even coming to you for advice.

Daria: So instead of looking down on me people are now looking up to me.

Jane: Well maybe they would if you grew a few inches.

Daria: I really am going to kill you now.

Jane: You'll have to catch me first.

(Morgendorffer livingroom. Quinn is watching TV. Daria comes in. She's trying to catch her breath)

Quinn: What happened to you?

Daria: I went running with Jane.

Quinn: In your normal outfit? You'll get sweat stains you know. Not that it matters with what you're wearing.

Daria: Running with boots on really pays off you know. Did Tom ...

Quinn: Yes, Tom called. And yes, I'm tired of being your answering machine. If you promise not to ask for a cell-phone, I'll support you if you ask to get your own phone.

Daria: (Smirk) Cell-phone.

Quinn: (Agitated) Oh no you don't. If mom won't let me have one, then you can't have one either.

Daria: Why not? When she gave you your own phone, I didn't get one.

Quinn: Daria, please. The only one who ever called you was Jane.

Daria: (Walks over to the phone) I suppose my life has changed since then. (voiceover) There I go again. My life has changed. But if my life has changed then am I still me? And is it a good idea to get an existentialist crisis before calling your boyfriend? (calls Tom, outloud) Hi, Tom, it's me, yes, yes, me too, this weekend? Your parents are out? I'd love to -- don't worry about them, I'll tell a lie... (blushes) Stop it, Tom, I'm not your little mermaid. Goodbye.

(Quinn gets a suspicious look on her face)

Daria: (Dances towards the stairs) La, la, la, la.

Quinn: (Smirk) Did you hear the story on the news on how being in love can cause your brain to degenerate?

Daria: (Fumes) And do you know what the difference is between you and Jane?

Quinn: Uhm...

Daria: You're not faster than me.

(Daria grabs Quinn and forces one of her arms behind her back)

Quinn: Let go of me. Daria, no! AAAAAAAH!!

(Morgendorffer kitchen. They're having dinner. Quinn is sending Daria dirty looks. Jake is looking at a report card)

Jake: Very good, Quinn. You got an A in both history and economics.

Quinn: Thanks, dad.

Jake: I guess this calls for a little something. (gives Quinn 20 dollars)

Daria: Deja vu. I think I'll try a different approach this time. (takes her note-pad, writes something on it and hands it to Jake)

Jake: What's this?

Daria: If you're going to reward Quinn 10 dollars for each "A", I should have the same. This is my preliminary bill for the A's I got attending Lawndale High.

Jake: (Choked) 2000 dollars?!

Daria: I said it's only preliminary.

Helen: Daria has a point. If we reward Quinn we have to reward Daria as well.

Jake: But, Helen -- 2000 dollars!

Helen: She can have what Quinn gets. (gives Daria 20 dollars)

Daria: I'm positive that this isn't fair. I should have the most.

Helen: Life isn't fair, sweetie.

Daria: By the way, can I spend the weekend at Jane's?

Helen: Sure.

Quinn: (Voiceover) Jane? Oh I see. Prepare to get blackmailed, Daria (outloud) But if Daria gets to spend the weekend at Jane's, isn't it only fair if I can spend the weekend at Stacy's?

Helen: Sure, Quinn.

Jake: But if the kids aren't here, how about we go to that place with the bear rug?

Helen: (Smiles) Sure, Jake.

(Daria and Quinn look to the ceiling)

Helen: Dammit, Jake! The girls are listening!

(Saturday at noon. Daria leaves her house. A minute later Quinn sneaks after her. She follows Daria down the street. Daria finally turns and notices her)

Daria: What're you doing?

Quinn: I believe the question is what're you doing, or not doing? "Not" being going to Jane's.

Daria: (Uneasy) What do you mean?

Quinn: Jane's house is in the other direction from the one you're walking in.

Daria: So I'm taking a detour.

Quinn: Please, Daria. You think you can fool the expert on relationships? You're going to Tom's. You don't want mom and dad to know, because you're planning to spend the night there, so you told a lie about going to Jane's. Only you don't want to risk mom or dad seeing Tom picking you up. So now you're distancing yourself from the house.

Daria: That's a lot more thinking than I ever expected to come from you. But totally speculative. You have no proof for any of it.

(Tom's car drives past them and makes a turn)

Quinn: You were saying?

Daria: Damn. How much?

Quinn: I don't want your money. I want to come with you.

Daria: Excuse me?

(Tom's car stops next to them)

Quinn: You have no choice. Shall we drive? (opens the door to the back seat and gets in)

Daria: For this you shall pay, little sister. (gets into the car and closes the door)

(Cut to the inside of the car)

Tom: Hey, Daria. Uhm. What's Quinn doing here?

Daria: You're asking me? I'm not the one who gave birth to her. Just drive.

Tom: Sure. There has been a change of plans. Elsie is staying at the house. Mom found out about her having a math test Monday and has forbidden her to leave the house. I had to tell her about you coming over, but she promised me she'd stick to herself. I promised we'd have dinner with her.

Quinn: Don't worry about me. I promise to stick to myself as well.

Daria: I don't know why you want to ruin my weekend, Quinn. But you're on thin ice here.

Quinn: Gee, Daria. I want to see Tom's house. I'm not trying to ruin your weekend.

Daria: No, just my life it seems.

(Sloane's house. Quinn is standing inside a guest room. Tom and Daria are standing in the doorway)

Tom: You can sleep in here, Quinn. The guest room has its own bathroom and cable TV. There's a key in the door so you can lock it when you leave.

Quinn: This is so great. It's twice the size of my own room. Is there a phone in here?

Tom: Sorry, no phone. But there's one down at the fireplace you can use.

Daria: The Sloane's are probably not used to having people staying who are so poor that they don't have a cell-phone. No offense Tom.

(Quinn sends Daria a dirty look)

Tom: (Sigh) Shall we go down to the swimming pool, Daria?

Daria: You go along. I'll be with you in a couple of minutes.

(Tom leaves)

Quinn: You're going swimming with Tom?

Daria: That's the idea, yes.

Quinn: But you can't swim.

Daria: I can swim.

Quinn: You mean you can try to swim. I've seen you at the beach.

Daria: Why did you ask for a phone?

Quinn: I'm inviting Stacy over here.

Daria: You're really pushing it now. (smirk) Wait a minute. No one knows you're here. Am I right?

Quinn: No, not yet. (pause, scared) I mean lots of people know I'm here.

Daria: Too late.

(A minute later. Daria is walking down the hall. Behind her is heard the sound of Quinn shouting and banging her fists at the door)


(Helen and Jake's bedroom. Jake is packing a bag. Helen is searching her closet)

Jake: Hurry up, dear. The bear is waiting for us.

Helen: Dammit, I can't find my red belt. Quinn borrowed my things again without asking.

Jake: But why would Quinn borrow any of your things?

Helen: That was a nasty thing to say.

Jake: It was?

Helen: Lucky for you I know you're ignorant. I'll call Quinn. (takes her cell phone) God help her if she's taken it with her.

(Griffin's livingroom. Sandi is reading Waif. Linda is reading a book. The phone rings. Sandi answers it)

Sandi: It's Sandi. Oh, it's you, Stacy. Calm down. No *Quinn* isn't here. Yes, of course I'm sure. (sighs) Just a moment. (presses the mute button) Mom, say you have this friend, but you think there's an alien living inside her head. Is it okay to crack her skull open?

Linda: What's Stacy saying now?

Sandi: Apparently Quinn's mom just called her. She's claiming that Quinn is at her house. Only she isn't. So now Stacy is even more confused than usual.

Linda: I'm sure you'll think of something to say to her.

Sandi: (Releases the mute button) Hi again. I suddenly remembered *Quinn* telling me she wanted to play hide and seek with you. She's hiding somewhere in your house, and you're supposed to find her. Gee, Stacy. I don't know why *Quinn* would do something like that. (hangs up)

Linda: That was evil of you.

Sandi: Thanks, mom.

(Cut to Helen and Jake's bedroom. Helen is on the phone)

Helen: I see. Tell her to call me as soon as you find her. Thanks, Stacy. Bye. (hangs up) Stacy said she and Quinn were playing hide and seek. Strange. I thought she had gotten too old for that.

Jake: She has?

(The swimming pool. It's a big outdoor pool. It has both a three and a five foot jump-board. Tom and Daria are swimming side by side. Daria is not wearing her glasses)

Daria: You're probably used to swimming at a faster pace.

Tom: You're doing just fine.

Daria: Thanks. I had second thoughts about this you know. Swimming lessons aren't my happiest memories. I had no contacts back then, and the instructor wouldn't let me swim with my glasses on. So I would swim in circles, and the other kids would make fun of me.

Tom: If you want I can take out a contract on him.

Daria: Thanks. But him was a her. Besides it's water under the bridge. Its just that I never thought I could find joy in swimming after that. But here I am with you. And I am enjoying myself. Even if I have to use my contacts. Funny how lately everything seems to be going my way. Best of all my sister's been locked up.

Tom: Best? (makes doggie eyes)

Daria: Okay. Being here with you is best.

Tom: What will you do with her? Won't she tell your parents?

Daria: I'll make her an offer she can't refuse. Silence for freedom.

Tom: I have a better one. Silence for food.

Daria: (Smirk) I like your thinking, Tom (sigh) Maybe Jane was right. Why should I be a pessimist?

Tom: Because if you were an optimist you might not notice the bad stuff before its to late.

Daria: I told you this before?

Tom: Two weeks ago. But we told each other a lot of stuff that night, maybe that's why you can't remember. (smiles) We also did a lot of stuff that night.

Daria: (Blushing) Tom... (splashes water on him)

Tom: Aaah! I'm hit, I'm hit!

Daria: (Swims on her back) My life has gotten better. Why try to deny it?

Tom: You're asking me?

Daria: Let me explain. In life, good and bad things happen to you okay?

Tom: Okay.

Daria: Now before I moved here, my life was like bad, bad, bad, good, bad, bad, bad, good. Then I moved here and met Jane. And suddenly its more like bad, bad, good, bad, bad, good. You with me so far?

Tom: I'm with you.

Daria: Then you and I hook up, and suddenly its more like bad, good, bad, good, bad, good. But lately it's been bad, good, good, bad, good, good. And now I'm asking myself. What reason do I have to be a pessimist?

Tom: Quinn?

Daria: That's a reason alright. But not one that's big enough. Maybe I can be an optimist. Maybe I can be reckless. I can be a reckless optimist.

Tom: Uhm. Aren't you going a bit fast now?

Daria: I don't think so. (swims to the edge and crawls out of the pool) When I had swimming lessons the one thing I feared the most was to make a head-jump. But why? I had no reason to be afraid. Look... (makes an anything but elegant head-jump but a head-jump nevertheless) See, nothing happened.

Tom: That's the spirit. Now lets go back to swimming side by side.

(Daria crawls out of the pool and walks over to the five foot jump-board)

Tom: What're you doing?

Daria: Making another dive.

Tom: Daria!

Daria: Reckless, Tom. I want to be reckless. (climbs to the top and spreads her arms out) I'm the Queen of the world.

Tom: (Nervous) Yes, but can't you pick another throne than the five foot jump-board.

(The guest room. Quinn is watching TV. She has an angry look on her face. She hears the door being unlocked)

Quinn: (voiceover) Finally. Daria is *so* going to pay for this.

(The door opens. Tom enters. He's holding Daria is his arms. Tom is wearing swim trunks. Daria is wearing a swim-suit. Both are wet)

Quinn: Daria! What happened to her.

Tom: (Lays Daria on the bed) She tried to make a dive from the five foot jump-board.

Daria: (Moaning) I huuuuuurt.

Quinn: What was she doing that for? She can hardly swim. (pause) She did a belly-flop, didn't she?

Tom: Oh, yeah. Luckily I was there to fish her out. (strokes Daria's head) Look, Daria, Quinn's here.

Daria: (Moaning) Let me diiiie.

Tom: (Sigh) I'm going to get Elsie. Could you help her get dried, and put a bathrobe on?

Quinn: I don't know. Then I would have to take her swim-suit off.

Tom: She's your sister. Are you telling me you haven't seen her naked before?

Quinn: She doesn't want me to. I used to make fun of her figure.

Tom: You really know just how to destroy her confidence in herself, don't you?

Quinn: What about her? My whole life she's been telling me I'm stupid.

Tom: Gee I wonder if there is a connection. Could you at least try to put your differences aside while you're here. All I'm asking is that you help her, okay?

Quinn: I guess so.

Tom: Fine. (leaves)

(Quinn begins to remove Daria's swimsuit)

Daria: Aaah. Careful.

Quinn: I am careful. Boy, you should see yourself. You look like a boiled lobster on the front.

Daria: You promised not to make fun of my figure.

Quinn: I'm not. I'm talking about your colors. You always suspect the worst.

Daria: With you I do. Just get me a bathrobe will you.

(Quinn gives Daria a dirty look. She leaves and returns with a bathrobe)

Quinn: Here.

Daria: Thanks. (Puts it on) This is so typical. Just when I thought my life was wonderful, this happens. I guess that's what you get for doing hubris.

Quinn: Who?

Daria: Hubris. Its Greek. Its when you ...

Quinn: (Shocked) You're cheating on Tom with a Greek guy.

(Tom and Elsie are walking down the hall)

Tom: Could you hurry it up?

Elsie: Why? Because of a belly-flop?

Tom: Look, Daria's in a lot of pain. And you know first-aid.

Elsie: Unfortunately it seems. If I had known it would mean running around the house with my half naked brother.

Tom: Elsie. Please.

Elsie: (Sighs) Okay. But why did you put her in a guest room?

Tom: Her sister is here. And ...

Elsie: Daria's sister? You're having both the Morgendorffer girls here. Why? (evil grin) How kinky.

Tom: (Irritated) Its complicated. I'll explain later, okay?

Elsie: I'll be all ears.

(They reach the door of the guest room. There is the sound of Daria's laughter. Cut to the inside. Daria is lying on the bed. Quinn is standing next to her)

Quinn: Stop it, Daria. Stop laughing at me.

Daria: (Laughing) I can't. Oh no it hurts. I can't stop.

Quinn: I swear if you don't stop I'm going to tell Tom about hubris.

(Daria laughs so hard she can't speak a word. Tom and Elsie appears in the doorway)

Elsie: Your Daria looks fine to me. Except for what appears to be some involuntary contractions. Hi, Daria, hi, Quinn.

Tom: Are you okay, Daria? And tell me about what?

Daria: (Gets a grip on herself) Uhm. Nothing. Quinn just told me a joke to cheer me up. Hi, Elsie.

Quinn: Hi. (voiceover) I suddenly get the feeling that hubris might be some sort of "brain" code. Better keep quiet about it.

Elsie: I thought you told me those two couldn't stand the sight of each other.

Tom: Uhm.

Elsie: Never mind. It's time we get ready for dinner anyhow. Quinn and Daria can borrow my dresses. You go put on a suit.

Quinn: (Lightens up) Thanks.

Daria: I don't dress.

Tom: But dinner isn't for another two hours. How can it take you so long?

Elsie & Quinn: You wouldn't understand.

(Quinn and Elsie giggles)

Daria: (Puts her hands to her ears) Aaaah! I'm deaf, I'm deaf.

Quinn: (Evil smile) If we wear dresses. You should wear a dress too, Daria.

Daria: Right, Quinn. You and what army will get me to wear a dress?

Quinn: Elsie, shouldn't Daria wear a dress?

Elsie: I think so. Yes.

Daria: I'm not sure I like where this is going. (backs towards the door)

Quinn: You take her left arm. I'll take the right.

Elsie: Sounds fair.

Daria: No it doesn't!!!

(Elsie and Quinn grab Daria and drag off with her)

Daria: Help me, Tom!

Tom: I would but I'm not sure how.

(Elsie's room. Daria is wearing a green dress. Quinn and Elsie are helping her making it fit)

Daria: This isn't fair. Two against one.

Quinn: I haven't even started on your hair yet you know. How many times have I dreamed of doing this, and all I needed was some muscle. Dammit, why can't you have bigger hips?

Daria: Don't you start. It was bad enough at the wedding.

Quinn: Huh?

Elsie: Your hips are fine.

Daria: No they're not.

Elsie: You look great.

Daria: No I don't.

Elsie: Daria you're looking great. Tom will be blown away.

Daria: (Small smile) Uhm, thanks.

Quinn: Now le'ts see. At least you're wearing your contacts. Maybe if we stuff your ...

Elsie: (Angry) One word, Quinn. One more word and I'll break your nose.

(Quinn looks shocked. Daria smiles)

Daria: You were saying, Quinn?

(Later. The girls, fully dressed, are sitting on Elsie's bed. Daria doesn't look as good as Quinn or Elsie. But she looks considerably better than she did at Erin's wedding) (2)

Quinn: So Broke was about to take my place in the fashion club. But then her nose collapsed. (3)

Elsie: Oh god.

Quinn: And now we, I mean other girls, call her Scarface.

Daria: But not to her face though. She might come at you with a baseball bat. (4)

Quinn: Huh?

Elsie: (Giggles) Good one, Daria.

Daria: What're we waiting for exactly?

Elsie: For Tom to come pick you up.

Daria: Wouldn't it be easier to just go down to the dining room?

Elsie: Maybe. But then we would have to help him get dinner ready. The catering people can be so annoying.

Quinn: Did you hear that Daria? Catering. If we had catering we wouldn't have to eat dad's food.

Elsie: Its not every day. Usually we just use our cook. But the help isn't here this weekend.

Quinn: Did you hear that Daria? Cook. If we had a cook ...

Daria: If you don't shut up, *I'm* going to break your nose.

Quinn: Hey.

(There is a knock on the door)

Elsie: Go on, Daria. We'll follow you later.

(Daria leaves the room and closes the door after her)

Quinn: I wonder how it'll work out.

Elsie: It's out of our hands.

(Cut to the hallway)

Tom: Wow.

Daria: Before you say anything else. I should let you know, that if you say there's anything wrong with how I look it could potentially ruin our relationship.

Tom: Daria I'd never ...

Daria: On the other hand, you shouldn't tell me that I'm the most beautiful girl you've ever seen or stuff like that. Because thats obviously a lie. So I'm not even sure you should say anything at all.

Tom: (Pause) How about this then: You're looking better tonight than your already lovely self.

Daria: (Small smile) Okay, I guess.

Tom: (Offers Daria his arm) Shall we go?

Daria: (Takes it) If they could see me now.

Tom: What did Quinn tell you that was so funny.

Daria: Oh brother. You're not going to believe it.

(Cut to Elsie's room. The sound of Tom's laughter is heard)

Quinn: (Agitated) He's laughing at her. How can he?

Elsie: Calm down. He only laughs that way when he hears something funny. Daria must have told him a joke.

Quinn: Elsie, can I ask you something? I'm afraid it might sound foolish.

Elsie: I'll try not to laugh.

Quinn: What is hubris?

Elsie: Hubris? It means arrogant pride. The word comes from the ancient Greeks. They believed it to be a bad idea because their gods might take offense. And the gods from Greek mythology could be particularly vindictive.

Quinn: I see. (voiceover) No wonder they're laughing at me. (outloud) So it would be hubris to say, like, the Titanic couldn't sink.

Elsie: Yes exactly. Good thinking.

Quinn: Uhm. Thanks.

(At the dinner table)

Elsie: ...only Tom didn't have a date, so our mom set him up with Winnie, who's the daughter of one her friends.

Tom: Former friend. But please don't remind me of Winnie. Anything but that.

Elsie: Sorry, Tom, but they have to hear this. Winnie was really pretty but a total airhead. Sometimes when you said something to her, she would laugh because she thought it was a joke even when it wasn't. But then when you did tell her a joke, she wouldn't understand it.

Daria: Sounds familiar.

Elsie: Finally Tom couldn't take it anymore and asked me for help to get rid of her. Now our aunt had brought her dog with her, a Great Dane. It was still a puppy but it was this huge dog. It was running free in the garden, so Tom took Winnie there, and I called on the dog, and then we sort of told it to eat Winnie.

Quinn: Oh god.

Daria: Fascinating.

Elsie: Winnie ran away screaming her lungs out. The dog thought it was a game and wanted to play so it ran after her. And we just sat there and laughed.

Tom: Boy did we get punished.

Elsie: Don't say it wasn't worth it. Mom newer tried to fix you up with a date again. Much to her dismay. (looks at Daria) Until now.

Daria: Thanks. (reaches for the bottle but finds that its empty) No more wine? I only had one glass. Looks like we have a sponge among us.

(Daria looks at Quinn who lowers her gaze)

Tom: Two sponges I think. (looks at Elsie) I'll get us another bottle from the wine cellar. (leaves the table)

Elsie: I had two glasses and now I'm a sponge. Sometimes I wonder if big brothers exist only to make your life miserable.

Daria: It's my experience that big brothers are wonderful. No, I think its little sponges who make your life miserable.

Quinn: I'm not a little sponge. I only had three glasses.

Daria: Uhm. Did Tom have many girlfriends before me?

Elsie: No. I can't say that he did. (smirk) Don't tell him I told you this, Daria. But you should have seen the ones he's brought home. Like the one before you. Jane it think it was.

(Uncomfortable silence but Elsie doesn't notice)

Elsie: Mom swore he only did it to irritate her. She's an artist, and she gave him this awful picture. Tom really hated it and would only leave it hanging when she was here. I even think she was a little nuts.

Daria: (Cold voice) Please continue.

Quinn: Uh oh.

Elsie: (Oblivious) Tom once ate her gummy bears. And she started yelling at him because she needed them for a sculpture.(5) I mean what gives... (looks around) Did I say something wrong?

Daria: (Furious) Why would you think that? You've only been saying what Tom told you. Now if you'll excuse me. (leaves the table)

(Elsie is about to get up but Quinn stops her)

Quinn: I'll get her. (follows Daria)

(The bathroom. Daria is standing at the sink. Quinn comes in)

Daria: Damn, damn, damn. That insensitive jerk. He and Elsie have just been laughing at Jane behind her back.

Quinn: Hypocrite.

Daria: Excuse me.

Quinn: What did Tom laugh about earlier?

Daria: What do I know?

Quinn: Liar.

Daria: Are you trying to say something? Because this isn't funny.

Quinn: I may not be as smart as you. But that doesn't make me stupid, you know. I asked Elsie what hubris means. So I thought it was a name. Big joke. You and Tom have laughed at me behind my back.

Daria: Even if we have, that's not the same thing.

Quinn: (Mock voice) No, of course it's not. When Tom makes fun of someone it's wrong, but when you make fun of someone it's right. Because you're the high and mighty Daria.

Daria: Dammit, Quinn you're (pause) right. You're absolutely right. What am I thinking? I knew Tom was irritated about some of the things Jane did. He tells Elsie about them, so what? He didn't like her picture. I don't like all of Jane's pictures. Thanks, Quinn I think, I might have done something stupid if you hadn't been there.

Quinn: Hey, I'm the expert on dating you know.

Daria: (Small smile) Funny how you can be helpful sometimes and totally rotten the next.

Quinn: What did I do?

Daria: You're asking what you did? You've tried to ruin my weekend with Tom.

Quinn: No I haven't.

Daria: You blackmailed me into taking you with me. And as if that wasn't enough you wanted to bring your fashion cohorts over. Even if you know perfectly well how much I detest the sight of them. How is that not trying to ruin my weekend?

Quinn: You've got the wrong idea. I wasn't going to phone all of them, just Stacy. And I wasn't trying to ruin your weekend.

Daria: Then tell me. Why?

Quinn: I don't know if I want to tell you. You'll make fun of me.

Daria: I promise not to, okay?

Quinn: (Sigh) Stacy spent last weekend at Sandi's house. And Sandi talked to her about what a shame it was that she couldn't use the jacuzzi when she came to visit me because we, like, didn't have one. Stuff like that. I wanted to impress her by bringing her here.

Daria: (Pause) If it really matters to Stacy if our parents have a jacuzzi or not, then she's not your friend.

Quinn: Don't say that! Stacy *is* my friend. You don't understand, she's easily impressionable. I don't want to loose her, okay.

Daria: Okay. But you're doing it the wrong way. Playing Sandi's game like this.

Quinn: What do you mean?

Daria: You can't compete with Sandi in the parents department. Hers have better jobs than ours, they're younger, live in a bigger house, and they have more money. You should fight Sandi where you can win.

Quinn: (Very interested) How?

Daria: Oh brother. That the day would come where I said that. Brains, Quinn, you're smarter than her right? You get better grades don't you?

Quinn: Oh, yeah. But how can that help me? If I bragged about my grades I would look like a... (shudders) ...brain.

Daria: The secret is how you do it. Next time you're all shopping you start talking about your future careers. I mean with Sandi's grades she'll be lucky to get a job selling clothes.

Quinn: (Laughs) That's brilliant. Thanks, Daria.

Daria: (Smiles) You're welcome.

(Quinn moves closer to Daria. Daria tries to back away but she has her back against the wall)

Daria: (Voiceover) Oh no she's going to hug me.

(Elsie comes in)

Elsie: I hope I'm not disturbing you.

Daria: No you came at just at the right moment.

Elsie: I wanted to apologize. Tom did mention Jane having this really smart and funny friend when he told me about her the first time. He did tell me her name was Daria. But I forgot, and when I met you, I didn't make the connection. But now it suddenly came back to me. It's not like we get together and make fun of his girlfriends. And I'd hate to see him get in trouble over something I said.

Daria: You don't have to apologize. You didn't know and I overreacted. It's okay, really. It's not like I haven't made fun of people myself.

Quinn: He thought Daria was funny?

Daria: (Irritated) Shut up, Quinn. Let's head on back. (pause) Has he said anything that I do that irritates him?

Quinn: (Smirk) Like existing?

(Elsie laugh. Daria fumes)

Elsie: No. All he said was that your glasses get in the way when you kiss.

Quinn: You kiss with your glasses on?

Daria: (Blushes) Shut up, Quinn.

Quinn: Gee, Daria, you're such a geek.

(The dining room. Quinn reaches for the bottle)

Daria: No, Quinn. That would be your fifth glass. You've had enough.

Quinn: You don't understand, Daria.

Tom: Somehow I doubt that.

Daria: (Smiles) Thank you, Tom.

(Elsie sticks her tongue out. Quinn laughs)

Tom: You know that Hitchcock movie where they switch murders?

Daria: I do your sibling. You do mine?

Elsie: Please continue, Quinn.

Quinn: I've never had alcohol before.

Elsie: (Surprised) You've never had a drink?

Quinn: When I'm on a date I can't get anything to drink because I'm still a minor. At parties I can't drink because then some guy might try to take advantage of me. When I'm with my friends I can't drink because Sandi would call me a sponge. And at home mom and dad won't let me or Daria have even a glass when they share a bottle themselves. This is the first time I can drink.

Daria: You're not missing out on much. I don't think the stuff they drink is very good.

Quinn: (Surprised) How would you know?

Daria: The time from when the cork gets pulled till the bottle is brought to the table -- a.k.a. "window of opportunity". Use water to hide your traces.

(Quinn looks shocked)

Tom: Me and Elsie used to spice the cola.

Elsie: I wonder. Do you think it's our fault uncle Jim crawled back into the bottle? He started drinking again shortly after having tried some of our "cola"

Quinn: I guess you can really get some blackmail material at a dinner party.

Daria: (Angry) One more reason I'm looking forward to going to college.

Quinn: (Starts crying) You'll leave, and I'll never see you again.

Daria: What are you whining about now? I thought that would make you happy.

Quinn: (Crying) It'll be just like mom and aunt Rita. They only meet when someone dies or gets married because they can't stand the sight of each other. And then all they do is fight. That's how it'll be between us.

Daria: You're drunk Quinn. And it's not like you've given me lots of reasons to think you wanted it otherwise.

Quinn: (Crying) You don't understand. I respect you, I really do. You're the only one I can come to when I have problems. You always know what to say.

Daria: (Sighs) It doesn't have to be with us like it is with mom and Rita. I don't want that to happen anymore than you.

Quinn: (Stops crying) You really mean that?

Daria: I think our problem is that we're too different to get along when we live together. Maybe after I move out of the house our differences won't seem as important to us anymore. I'm sure we can be friends then if we want to.

Quinn: Oh, Daria. (hugs Daria)

Daria: First Brittany, now you. This had better not be the beginning of some new fad. And now I really think you've had enough. (moves the bottle outside Quinn's reach)

Tom: Please, Daria. Give her some more. It'll make her fall asleep sooner.

Elsie: (Smirk) And think of the hangover she'll get tomorrow.

Daria: Elsie. I think I like you. (fills Quinn's glass) Quinn, drink some more.

(Later. Quinn has fallen asleep at the table)

Tom: Maybe we should call it a night.

Daria: Yeah. Elsie, will you help me put my drunk and disorderly sister to bed.

Elsie: Sure, but I think I can handle the little wine-bag myself.

(Daria looks astonished as Elsie lifts Quinn in her arms as if she didn't weigh anything)

Elsie: (To Daria) I ride horses. Maybe you should try it sometime.

Daria: No thanks. I already have a sport where I can fall on my belly.

(Tom and Elsie laugh)

Elsie: I'll leave you two alone now. And Tom, don't do anything I couldn't do. (snicker, leaves with Quinn)

Tom: I am so going to kill my sister.

Daria: Don't listen to her.

Tom: I wish. She knows exactly how to get under my skin. It must be something genetic.

Daria: Tom *don't* listen to her.

Tom: (Gets it) Listen to whom?

(Tom and Daria kiss)

(Next day. Tom's car. Tom is driving Daria and Quinn home. Daria is riding shotgun. Quinn is sitting on the back seat. Daria turns the radio on)

Quinn: Stop it! Oh my head. Why did you let me drink so much?

Daria: The answer to that is in your question. (turns the radio off)

Tom: So have you come to a conclusion Daria? Pessimist or optimist?

Daria: (Sigh) I admit that my life today looks a lot better than the life I had when I moved here.

Tom: But?

Daria: There are still many things about it I don't like. And last time I thought my life was good I ended up doing a belly-flop. If you don't mind, I think, I need more time to come to a conclusion.

Tom: I could never mind, snoogie.

Daria: (Blushes) Don't call me that.

(Quinn makes puking noises)

Daria: (Angry) You don't have to drive us straight home. You could make a stop at the landfill.

Tom: You want to get rid of one of the things that are wrong with your life?

(Quinn fumes)

Daria: Oh, Tom. I love it when you say things like that.

(Tom and Daria kiss)

Quinn: (Panicking) The road! Watch the road!

(Daria and Quinn are walking up to their house)

Quinn: You think mom and dad found out?

Daria: Why would they? They never bothered to check up on us before.

Quinn: But we never lied about where we spend the night before.

Daria: That's superstition, Quinn. (smirk) But I'll bet something bad will happen to me in the next hour.

Quinn: The next hour. No tricks?

Daria: No tricks.

Quinn: Fifteen bucks?

Daria: Deal.

Quinn: (Pause) Wait a minute. If nothing bad happens to you, then you loose the bet, but that's bad. I'll have to pay you no matter what.

Daria: A shame you didn't think about that before.

Quinn: You said no tricks.

Daria: It's not a trick. It's called game theory.

Quinn: Forget it. The bet is off.

Daria: You can't call off a bet. It means bad luck.

Quinn: Now who's superstitious?

(They enter the house. Cut to the livingroom. Helen and Jake enters from the kitchen. A crying Stacy is with them)

Jake: (Angry) There you are, Quinn. Just where have you been?

Helen: (Angry) How could you scare poor Stacy like that? She showed up here crying telling us how you played hide and seek. And how she couldn't find you anywhere.

Stacy: (Crying) I searched and searched. I even looked in the attic. And there was this spider... (sobs uncontrollably)

Helen: (Angry) You better start looking for council now, young lady. You're soooo going to family court.

Quinn: (Grabs Daria's arm, scared) Help me, Daria. Mom and dad are scaring me. I'm sorry I called off the bet. Please, I don't want any more game theory.

Daria: It would appear that I have entered the Twilight Zone.

(Later that day in Daria's room. Daria is sitting at her computer. There's a knock on her door. Quinn comes in)

Daria: The answer is no. You can't have my booze.

Quinn: Oh, ha, ha. I came to... (sigh) ...thank you for helping me out.

Daria: No need. I couldn't risk you telling the truth back there.

Quinn: Yeah. But did you have to tell them I went with you and Jane to a photo exhibition in Oakwood on body piercing. Now Stacy will tell Sandi. Dad is looking at me in a funny way, and mom wanted to see my belly button.

Daria: I owed you one.(6) Besides now they're not to interested in hearing about our "trip".

Quinn: What did Tom mean when he asked you if you're an optimist or a pessimist?

Daria: (Sigh) I've been counting all the good and bad things that's been happening lately trying to figure out if I have reason to be happy. Like I got detention. That's bad.

Quinn: You got detention?

Daria: Yes I did. So what?

Quinn: Detention. You?

Daria: Yes. But then I won a lot of money. That's good. Brittany tried to crush me. Bad. Tom invited me over. Good. You came with us. Bad. I locked you up. Good.

Quinn: Hey!

Daria: I did a belly-flop. Bad. And so on, and so on. The problem is that I think I need a larger sample to do reliable statistic.

Quinn: You're such a geek. I know of no other person who would think of using statistic to figure out if they were happy or not.

Daria: Uhm. I guess it does sound a bit silly, doesn't it.

Quinn: Do you feel happy?

Daria: I'm not sure.

Quinn: Then you're not happy. Give it time Daria. When you become happy you'll know it.

Daria: I suppose you may be right. Thanks, Quinn.

Quinn: You're welcome.


(1) "Arts'n Crash"

(2) "I Don't"

(3) "Too Cute"

(4) The movie "The Untouchables"

(5) "Mart of Darkness"

(6) "Pierce Me"