Scene 1 - O'Neill's English class

O'Neill: But from where does HAL get his violent nature? Is his turmoil kept within him waiting for a chance to bubble over? He has no way to express himself.

Jane: (to Daria) except by killing people. If they'd sent him up with others of his own kind, I bet you he'd rather kill them instead, and let the humans complete their mission.

Ms Li. over speaker: It's horrible! Horrible. The TV is on in the assembly hall. Horrible. At least buying the aircraft radar will finally pay off.

Jane: You think someone's finally managed to put all the staff cars up on bricks?

Daria: We can only hope.

O'Neill: Okay class, exit orderly please. Exit orderly...(class has left all except Daria and Jane.

Scene 2 - Auditorium. Huge projector screen on stage. The room is nearly full.

Jane: Why spend money on air conditioners when you can buy a projector TV?

Camera on screen. It shows a plane flying into one world trade tower, while the other tower is still smoking. You know the shot. Close up on Daria's face, so we can see the huge ball of fire in a reflection on her glasses. She actually looks shocked.

TV announcer: This footage is of the second terrorist strike out of four on American soil today. In all cases, terrorists took control of the passenger planes, and flew them into the buildings in question. The death toll is staggering. So far we do not have an estimate... (Cut to the close ups of various people. Brittany and Kevin are holding each other, Mack and Jodie are holding hands, Sandi is holding Upchuck, till she realises, and Ms. Barch has her arm around Mr O'Neill, who is sobbing)...of the death toll, but it will be in the thousands. This is the worst terrorist attack on American soil ever.

Brittany: Think of the loss of human life.

Upchuck: Think of the loss of world trade.

Jane to Daria: Think how much the guy who shot that footage would have sold his video camera to NBC for.

TV Announcer: We haven't got in contact with the president yet, but he will no doubt condemn the event, and demand retaliation.

Kevin: It's war, then!

Daria: (to Jane) And I thought it was just a tragedy with the loss of thousands of lives.

Jane: (looking around) It looks like the entire school is in here. You realise what this means?

Daria: We can go home early and no one will notice?

Jane: Exactly.

Scene 3 - Jane and Daria walking past some shops. The Shop "Al's TV Store" has a sizable crowd in front and in store, watching the events on TV.

TV Announcer: The fourth and what appears to be final aircraft crashed into the west side of the Pentagon...

Jane: At least they only destroyed the ugly buildings. They left the empire state building, and the Washington war memorial.

Daria: Pity they couldn't have taken out the mall as well.

Homeless Bum: It's war, I tell you, WAR!

Daria: It's not war yet. Only a terrorist attack.

Jane: The former being two sides hitting each other with sticks, the latter being one side hitting the other side, while the other being one side hitting the other while the other side reaches for its stick. (Daria glares) What!?

A car approaches hurriedly approaches, and then puts on the brakes. Window winds down to reveal Jake in the driver's seat.

Jake: Hey, kiddo! Did you hear the news? Attack on America!

Daria: Yes, that's the reason for both my being out of school before midday, and your driving.

Jake: I'm on my way to the supermarket to stock up on food. War is a terrible time. My father wanted me to join the army.(starts mumbling)

Daria: We still have plenty canned food from your Y2K stock.

Jake: Yeah! (Car beeps behind him) Dammit! I'll see you at home soon then, kiddo. I hope the Helen and Quinn are okay too. (Drives off)

Scene 4 - Outside of Morgendorffer's house. Tom walks down path to front door.

Side view. Coming into view are black tire marks, ending in oddly parked Morgendorffer vehicle, partially on the lawn. Tom rings the bell.

Jake: (offscreen) who is it?

Tom: Uh, Tom.

(Sound of locks unlocking and furniture being moved. Jake opens the door to reveal the front room turned into a barricade.

Jake: Come in, come in. The planes are everywhere!

Jake looks fearfully at the sky. Tom steps in. Jake moves couch to cover door and locks doors.

Tom: Is Daria in?

Jake: No. The poor things are out there still. (More to self now) But I'm safe in here. They'll never conscript me, never! Father wanted me to join, but I didn't want to, and I still don't! (Back to Tom) Come help me make sandbags, my man!

(Walks off. Tom lets himself out.)

Scene 5 - Fashion club walking. Probably to Cashman's.

Quinn: Have you seen what they used to wear during wartimes?! It was SO bare. No accessories whatsoever.

Stacy: Not even scrunchies?

Sandi: No accessories means no accessories, Stacy.

Stacy: Sorry.

Quinn: Very plain. No logos, no angles, just straight plain material, usually one colour.

Sandi: Then how did they co-ordinate their outfits, Quinn? They must have done something.

Quinn: I think they wore a lot of hats.

Sandi: (with disgust) Hats?

Tiffany: Hats. Ewww.

Sandi: I hope you're not trying to go against fashion club law by wearing hats, Quinn. We've already discussed this.

(Tom drives up in his car, putters along the same speed as the fashion club)

Sandi: (sarcastic) Nice car.

Tom: At least it's less likely to explode than an aeroplane. Barely. Hey Quinn, have you seen Daria?

Quinn: I don't know? I'm not my si.. I mean cousin's keeper.

Tom: I've already checked your house.

Quinn: Then try her friend's house. Jane's.

Tom: (slight cringe) Oh, thanks. (Drives off)

Quinn: Gosh! I wish Daria's friends would stop bothering me.

Stacy: He is kind of cute though.

Sandi. Eww, Stacy. You should know better than to comment on a loser's boyfriend.

Stacy: (quieter) Sorry Sandi.

Scene 6 - Jane's Room. Jane and Daria watching SSW on TV

SSW Announcer: They pose as door-to-door salesman, but they turn house owners into frogs! I came, I saw, I conjured! Next on Sick Sad World.

TV Announcer: We interrupt this program to go LIVE to Manhattan. (World Trade Center is in Manhattan BTW)

Daria: Looks like one TV crew arrived late to the scene. (And this is where the events in Daria's World start to differ)

TV Announcer: Not only has known terrorist Ben Ladden claimed responsibility, but he has sent several copies of video evidence to leading TV stations to prevent other groups from claiming responsibility. We all suspected he was somehow connected, but until this time it wasn't clear how.

Daria: Not only have they decided to give the public a direction to focus their anger, but also they've given the media proof so they convict him when they catch him. Turn it off.

Jane: (Shifting herself to get comfortable) Wait a minute. This is getting interesting.

Daria: Well I'm getting a glass of water. (Daria exits)

Scene 7 - Lane Kitchen

(Trent is eating something liquid in a bowl, with a fork. Daria gets her drink while talking to Trent.)

Daria: Why are you up so early? Have you heard the news?

Trent: Not up early. I'm up still. What news?

Daria: Four lots of terrorists have taken control of passenger planes and crashed them into buildings. Including the pentagon and the World Trade Center.

Trent: Woh. Hmm. "You crashed into my tower! / Now I'm burning with desire." Nice. Thanks Daria.

Daria: (somewhat annoyed) Fine. (Daria exits, Trent repeats lyrics to himself)

Scene 8 - Jane's Room. Jane sitting on pillow in front of TV.

Daria: Why are you still watching that crap?

Jane: (eyes still on TV) It's not crap, it's art. Only an artist could manage to use the same piece of footage seven times in the past ten minutes and still keep their job. (Bell rings)

Daria: Are you going to answer that?

Jane: Anyone who knows us and wants to get in will use the back door. Otherwise it'll be a salesperson or an official, in which case they'll leave soon. (pause for a few seconds. Then the knocking repeats. Daria exits (again!))

Scene 9 - Lane's front door.

Daria opens it to reveal - surprise surprise - Tom.

Daria: (First surprised, then suspicious) What are YOU doing here?

Tom: Looking for you, as it happens. You weren't at your place.

Daria: (suspicious) Really? You turned up at the Lane's looking for a Morgendorffer.

Tom: That's unfair Daria. I was concerned. What with recent events and all.

Daria: (apologetic, mumbling) Sorry.

Tom: Anyway, are you all right?

Daria: Of course I'm all right. The planes crashed a thousand miles away. Don't tell me you're caught up in the hype too?

Tom: (grinning) No. But you might have got injured in a rush of people trying to get close to a TV.

Daria: Thank goodness at least one other person is sane. Jane's gotten caught up in the madness too. She's glued to the TV. Probably hasn't noticed I'm gone.

Tom: Come for a pizza, then?

Daria: The alternative is watching a bunch of reporters recap on the same events over and over. Yes.

Scene 10 - Inside Tom's car.

They arrive in the pizza parlour's deserted car park. A large sign in the window says "Closed because of the tragedy."

Tom: "I don't get it? They mourn for the dead by denying pizza to the living? That's just cruelty to the living.

Daria: No. They're not mourning. They just can't unglue themselves away from the TV screen.

Tom: Or they're too scared to come out of their houses. Like your dad.

Daria: What?

Tom: He's barricaded himself in. You never know when a plane might hit.

Daria: Oh no. You'd better drive me home. I'd better go home and fix the house before mum comes home.

Tom: She won't be at home? Everyone else is.

Both: Work

Scene 11 - Morgendorffer's kitchen.

Jake serving to the other Morgendorffer's, who are sitting at the table in their usual positions. Helen is on the phone. Quinn is wearing some sort of khaki jacket.

Quinn: Beans, dad? Beans bring out my pores.

Daria: And we all know how pores and khaki don't go together.

Jake: (oblivious to Daria) I had to kiddo. War times rations, war times rations.

Helen: (on phone) No Eric. Noone's suing anyone else over it. Don't accept any clients who want to sue the Trade Center for not being plane-proof. NO Eric! We're at war with them, not the Trade Center. (Hangs up)

Daria: (interrogating) Just who are THEM?

Helen: Everyone knows it's the Afghans, Daria. Haven't you been watching the TV? (Quinn and Jake nod their assent. Daria sighs.)

Scene 12 - Daria's room.

Daria enters, and turns on TV. Flicks channels. The same footage, on every channel. Trade Tower collapsing. Turns off TV, sits on bed and opens journal. Retrieves biro and entitles the page "The day the world went crazy". Pauses, crosses out the "y" and replaces with "ier."

Scene 13 - DeMartino's History class.

Kevin has a WWII helmet on. Ms Li enters.

Ms. Li: I hate to interrupt...

Jane: (to Daria) If you hate it so much, then why do you keep doing it?

Ms. Li: ...and I'm sure that you're all rocked by the terrorist attack, but the Red cross has placed a donation box in the front office, for students to donate emergency supplies, money and non-perishable foodstuffs. Thankyou. (Exits)

DeMartino: Thankyou very MUCH for another un-SCHEDULED announcement, taking up my VALuable time.

Daria: Y'know, for once I can't see how she's making money out of this.

Jane: Deep.

Daria: Either that or it's too early in the morning for thinking.

Jodie: We all act differently in a crisis. It shows what sort of person we really are. (Daria appears to ponder this)

Scene 14 - Hallway just after class.

Daria is catching up to Jodie

Daria: And what's your opinion on recent events?

Jodie: Do you really care what I think? You never care what anyone else thinks.

Daria: It would be nice to meet someone else who wasn't getting caught up in the war epidemic.

The 3 J's walk past in the opposite direction.

Jeffy: Did you hear that? An epidemic!

Jamie: They're using biochemical warfare!

Jodie and Daria watch them go past, in which time Jane catches up, then resume their conversation.

Jodie: Not to that extent, but I do see that there is a possibility for war to occur. I hope it doesn't come to that, but you can never tell. I have every sympathy for the victims of this tragedy, and I hope the killing ends there.

Jane: Was that spontaneous, or was that prepared?

Jodie: (sympathetic) I have to make a speech at a special assembly tomorrow, in memorial of the lives lost. (Mack walks up.)

Mack (enthusiastic): Hey, Jodie, football practice is going to late today. We're jogging past the war memorial.

Jodie: Fine, sweetie. (Mack walks off)

Daria: You encourage him?

Jodie: If he joined the army, he'd at least be doing some extra-curricular activity.

Daria: As opposed to joining a volunteer service where you can be doing constructive things for a constructive purpose.

Jane: Yeah, but very few volunteer organizations let you use a gun and kill stuff.

Daria: No constructive organizations, anyway.

Jane: And you don't have to provide your own gun in the army.

Jodie: Later, guys.

(Daria and Jane walk towards their lockers. Kevin and Brittany making out in front of Daria's locker. (again!!) Kevin's WWII helmet is getting in the way. Leather straps break and helmet falls onto Brittany's helmet.)

Brittany: (squeaks) Ouch!! Kevy!!

Kevin: (genuine) Sorry babe.

Brittany: War really does hurt everyone involved! (She runs off holding head)

Jane: (as if announcing a headline) Realisation came down from heaven, hit her head, and suddenly Brittany realised the truth about war.

Kevin: Y'know, this anti-war stuff is really unpatriotic of you guys. I should give you a white feather.

Daria: We're not AT war.

Kevin: But we will soon.

Daria: Well give them my apologies. I won't be attending. (Kevin walks off with his helmet, shaking his head.)

Scene 15 - Pizza Parlour scene.

(Daria, Jane and Tom are sitting next to each other. Tom is sitting next to Daria.)

Tom: It's nice to see the pizza parlour open again.

Daria: The owner moved his TV onto the counter.

Tom: I see.

(Cut to shot of a group of people huddled around a TV from Jane's perspective. Kevin's helmet can be seen in the crowd)

TV announcer: As our president said in a recent interview, we are now at war with the terrorist group involved.

Sounds of affirmation from the group huddled around the TV.

Daria: (to herself) We're not AT war with anyone yet.

Jane: (to Daria) If I hit you, and you hit me back, we're at war. Yes?

Tom: There's always a chance of forgiveness.

Jane: What? You think we're just going to forgive someone that's killed thousands of US citizens?

Daria: Maybe the terrorists will forgive the US when President Bush is facing them with his finger over a big red button.

Jane: But apart from that, would you agree that we're AT WAR? (Jane's emphasis of AT WAR obviously annoys Daria.)

Tom: (trying to smooth things over) It may or may not be war. But we will have to do something about it. It can't just stand the way it is.

Daria: (burst of anger) mimicking "We're at War!" Who is the "We"? It's not you and me. A section of the government is going to deal with the crisis. You're turning into a couple of... patriots! (Daria squeezes past Tom, and exits.)

A few seconds of silence ensue. Jane and Tom look at each other with glum expressions, stare at their respective pizzas, and then back at each other)

Tom: I should probably follow after her and say something.

Jane: (obviously uncomfortable) Yeah.

Tom: shall I put in an apology from you too?

Jane: Yeah. (Tom exits)

Scene 16 - Sidewalk, leading away from Pizza Parlour.

Tom: (catching up) Wait up!

Daria: Leave me alone.

Tom: I'm sorry if I've offended you. (Daria slows) Jane says she's sorry too. (Daria slows even more) At least tell me why it bothers you so much. (Daria stops)

Daria: (turns around) Fine. I'll tell you why it bothers me so much. I hate the whole situation. All of it. The media blows a situation out of control, throws around a heap of phrases and cliches, and manipulating everyone into believing we're at war. If this wasn't bad enough, it pounds this and other messages into our heads all day on every channel. Eventually it starts converting noted sceptics including you and Jane.

Tom: I...

Daria: You started by sympathising with Jane, and then you said "we". You were on your way. Even other people are supporting the war environment in their own ways.

Tom: Your dad in his barricade?

Daria: And Jodie supporting Mack's attitude to war. But that's not just it. She said that how we react to a crisis shows what sort of person we really are. And she's got a point. Most of the idiots around Lawndale are reacting as if we already at war. They're completely sucked in, and would support nuking the Afghans completely. (Pace of voice is quite intense now.) And Trent was completely unfazed by the whole thing, not caring if thousands are dead. I don't care how cynical a person is, some things ARE important. And... and...(the words coming harder) all I've been doing is commenting about other people's reactions to it. Do I only care about other people's reactions? (Becoming more distraught) Shouldn't those deaths AFFECT me? Given the enormity of the situation, shouldn't I be at least a little sad? (Suddenly hugs Tom for comfort. Her face looks upset. She sniffs. Neither person can see the other person's face, but they know.)

Tom: (His face also looking sad. He waits for a few seconds before speaking.) Yes, you are upset. And that's okay. (pause) Do you want to go in and apologise to Jane too?

Daria: (sniffs) In a minute. Just a minute. (Camera starts zooming out, centred on the couple.)(No dialogue for a few seconds)

TV announcer (Voice Over): And we're now speaking with one of the member of the special task force that just captured Ben Ladden.

Task Force member (VO): It was a swift operation, and I'm glad we didn't have to go to war.

Kevin (VO): You mean, we're NOT going to war?

Jane: It's okay, Kevin. You can still wear your helmet if you want to.

End Credits

The title: "Prepare for Bore" is taking off the phrase "Let him who desires peace, prepare for war" spoken by Vegetius of the 4th century, originally "Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum"

HAL is the computer from 2001: A space Odyssey, by Arthur C Clarke.

Sandi holding Upchuck is in homage to various Fan Art pictures I've seen (sorry I can't remember who any of them were done by)

Stacy's comment in the fashion club's scene is in homage to M Man's fanfic "All in a Rowe"

I made the terrorist's name Ben Ladden, specifically because it isn't correct, but sounds similar. I see no reason to mention that person in this text.

Other note of interest: The media coverage is still non-stop on Australian channels, 24 hours after the disaster (time of writing)

by DW Death