By now, the police had formed a perimeter around the entire school. Snipers had been put into position, ready to take out the threat. For over an hour, the grounds of Lawndale High had been silent, save for the squawk of police radios, the chatter of news anchors, and the squealing of brakes signifying the arrival of another worried parent. Various attempts to contact the shooter via loudspeaker and phone had all been futile. The bodies -- the ones outside, at least -- had long since been carried away.

Suddenly, the school's PA system shrieked into service, and a voice began speaking. "A few days ago, my father had a fatal heart attack. A day later, my mother took a cocktail of vodka and sleeping pills. Coupled with a year of frustration with my insipid classmates, corrupt or incapable faculty, and a sister who rejects me, I snapped, and used my savings to buy a gun and a hundred pounds of C4. And that is why I, Daria Morgendorffer, am mental in the morning."

A split second later, Lawndale High School exploded, sending debris flying at hundreds of miles per hour, killing over two dozen policemen and onlookers. A pretty anchorwoman was decapitated live on air.

In a squad car, Jane Lane sat in a fetal position, sobbing.