(Opening 'teaser' montage. Music: "You're Standing On My Neck" – Splendora.

Daria and Lynn sit side by side in Ms Li's office, looking warily at each other.

LHS science lab. AP standing with Stacy behind a lab table. AP looks at a beaker simmering over a Bunsen burner on the table, then at an empty test tube in Stacy's hand, then ducks under the table. A moment later, he grabs Stacy by the front of the shirt and pulls her down as the glassware on the table blows up.

The woods somewhere. Daria and Lynn are sitting around a campfire. Lynn holds up a hand and they both take on a tense, listening posture.

LHS gymnasium. Jane is in gym clothes, waving her arms in a 'pass it here' gesture. Seconds later, a basketball flies into shot, hitting her in the face hard enough to knock her over.

LHS corridor. Daria is wearing a slinky black dress and looking miserable and resigned. Upchuck leers something at her; Daria raises an eyebrow, gets an 'oh what the hell' look and then kicks him in the groin.

LHS auditorium – stage. Lynn is onstage, holding a knife to her throat and yelling something at Mack, who looks extremely taken aback. Cut to the seats, where O'Neill looks ecstatic and Daria, Jane and AP look impressed.

Morgendorffer corridor. Jake stands in the doorway of Quinn's room, looking sad and horrified. Quinn, talking on the phone, looks at him scornfully and slams the door in his face.

Zen backstage area. Nick and Casey Wright from the Back Alley Name-Droppers are involved in a fistfight. Trent gestures to Jesse, who walks up to the two of them and knocks their heads together; both combatants drop.

Trent's Plymouth. Daria, Jane and AP staring out the passenger side windows. Facial expressions are confusion, disbelief and anger respectively.

Daria and Lynn side-by-side again, smirking slightly. As the original montage sequence, the camera pulls in and then out again to reveal two interlocking circles; one contains the Daria logo and the other contains a corresponding 'Lynn' version. Writing in Daria font reads, "Daria in…")


A Daria Fan Fiction [TLAS 3:09]

(Scene: Lawndale street, early morning. Music: "Take A Look Around" – Limp Bizkit. After a moment, the sound of sneaker-clad feet pounding the pavement in a quick and steady rhythm is heard. A moment later, Jane jogs into shot. She is wearing headphones and seems to have found her stride.1 She goes one block further, turns left … and breaks stride as she sees Lynn [grey T-shirt, black jogging bottoms and what looks like her normal combat boots, hair tied in a braid], also running. Jane looks perplexed.)

Jane: (as Lynn approaches) Yo! I…

(But Lynn, wearing headphones of her own, does not stop. If anything, she speeds up as she passes Jane – she doesn't even seem to see her. Jane frowns, then takes off after Lynn.)

(Scene: LHS corridor. Music plays on. Jane is leaning against a locker, looking petulant. AP is smirking at her. Daria looks a bit lost.)

Daria: Tell me again why this bothers you.

Jane: (indignant) Since when does she jog?

AP: (smug) Since when can she outrun you, more like?

Jane: (petulant) Yeah, well, that too.

AP: She's not bad at sports.

Daria: Unlike some we could name...2

AP: (ignoring that) She just doesn't do teams and stuff. Like I said, Purple Peril walks alone.3

Jane: Yeah. CONSTANTLY, these days.

(Enter Lynn, with a look of amused disbelief on her face.)

Lynn: You guys have got to see this.

Jane: Why didn't you say hello this morning? And since when do you jog? And in boots?

Lynn: (suspiciously innocent) Oh, did I go past you? I was in a world of my own this morning. And I don't normally; I was just breaking in the new boots. (raises a foot to show them; they look no different – just newer) They're SAS surplus. Northern Ireland issue. Made for urban guerrilla warfare so they're lighter than Docs or normal combat boots. Wanted to see if they're as easy to run in as claimed.4 (No one looks satisfied with this. Lynn ignores them.) Anyway, take a look.

Daria: (taking sheet, scanning it – eyes wide) Barch's letter of RESIGNATION?

AP: (stunned) Let me see that! (grabs it from Daria; scans it) You're KIDDING!

Jane: I thought that woman would hang on like grim death! How did you GET this?

Lynn: Same way I got her grade sheets. And those bits of documentation on Ms Li.5

Jane: (stern) Okay, WHY did you get this?

Lynn: (shrug) Never hurts to have a firm view of what's going on around you. (beat) Look, does it really matter where, how or why I got this? What counts are results.

Daria: (very reluctantly letting it go) So … what ARE the results?

Lynn: Well, Caldwell's set up a meeting with her to discuss it but he's made it quite clear that he's not accepting it.

AP: (whimper) No?

Daria: That makes a lot of sense, if you think about it. Caldwell's new to the school; he's not going to want to break in new teachers as well; not this early.

AP: But … but he can't stop her if she REALLY wants to quit, can he? I mean…

Lynn: Who says she WANTS to quit? (The other three just look at her.) Oh, come on, it's a plea bargain. She wants something out of Caldwell that she probably couldn't have got out of Ms Li.

Daria, Jane, AP: (in unison) A raise.

Lynn: And perhaps a more lenient attitude toward 'hormonal heydays on school property' between faculty members.6

Daria: That too. (beat) So … I take it you're going to have a broadcast of this meeting between Barch and Caldwell this afternoon?7

Lynn: (raised eyebrow) I guess. (beat) Huh. Maybe I should sell tickets.

(Scene: Caldwell's office. Barch is sitting across from Caldwell, who's looking at her with a strange expression of stern sympathy.)

Caldwell: Now, Janet, you know I can't accept your resignation. There's enough upheaval at this school right now – new principal, trying to get the budget back on track – without having to find another science teacher. Now, maybe if you explained to me why it is you want to leave Lawndale High?

Barch: Well, quite frankly, Mr Caldwell, I think that some of the … policies that Lawndale High implements are…

Caldwell: Would this be about fraternisation among the faculty? (to Barch's shocked look) I'm not blind, Janet. Neither are the rest of the teachers. Frankly, I don't have a problem with teachers dating. After all, these days, where else do people meet people but in the workplace? Now, is that all that's worrying you? I don't know how much of a pay raise I can manage, given the state of the budget, but I'm sure I can squeeze out something…

Barch: What WORRIES me, Mr Caldwell, is that this school is a cesspit of rampant male chauvinist pigism!

Caldwell: (taken aback) I … I'm not sure what you mean…

Barch: Have you taken a look at the gym classes lately, Mr Caldwell? That Morris woman has the girls doing cheerleading exercises while the men play REAL sports.8

Caldwell: I … I wasn't aware of this… (firm) Janet, I'll have a talk with Irene. I'm sure we can get this straightened out. I AM the principal, after all, and if I can't guide the curriculum, who can?

Barch: (raised eyebrow) Well, I guess maybe you're not so bad. For a man. (beat) But if something isn't done about that … that INDIGNITY to women people see fit to call a gym class, I'm handing in my resignation and there's not a thing you can do to stop me.

(Barch storms out. Caldwell sits at his desk a moment with a "What the hell have I let myself in for?" look on his face.)

(Scene: LHS gymnasium, next day. Music: "Golgotha Tenement Blues" – Machines of Loving Grace. The guys are breaking up into two teams. AP holds a basketball like he's not sure what he's supposed to do with it. Cut to the other side of the gym, where Daria, Jane and Lynn are standing, holding pom-poms.)

Daria: Do you really think he's going to be able to get us out of this?

Lynn: Don't see why not. He had a point; he IS the principal. Not all power is used for ill.

Jane: You're right, but you didn't spend as long as we did under Ms Li.

Daria: It's a hard concept to accept after a couple of years of all-out tyranny.

Jane: Hey, do you think they found a pit in hell deep enough for her?

(They shrug at each other, then fall silent, not really wanting to talk about Ms Li anymore.)

(Scene: LHS corridor. Music plays on. Caldwell stops outside the door and straightens his tie. As he does so, he hears the squeak of sneakers on hardwood floor and a basketball being dribbled. Then it stops. A brief pause, then male laughter.)

Kevin: (OS) Nothin' but air, guy!

AP: (OS) Okay, so I suck at basketball too! So sue me!

(Caldwell blinks and then walks into the room.)

(Scene: LHS gymnasium, interior. Music plays on. Caldwell stands in the doorway and watches the girls.)

Morris: Right; I want you to do a cheer to show your agility and gymnastic skill. You'll use the moves I've been having Brittany show you all year. (Daria, Jane and Lynn roll their eyes with a sigh) Cullen?

(Lynn, fighting a smirk, moves to the clear space in front of the bleachers, holds up her pom-poms and puts on a bright, cheerleader-like smile. Then she begins.)

Lynn: (Valley Girl stereotype voice) Ready? Okay! Kill, kill, hate, hate! Murder, murder, mutilate! Goooooo TEAM! (to the shocked silence; normal) If you don't like my peppy, I can show you my perky.9

(No one even moves. Lynn sits down. Daria and Jane stare at her.)

Daria: What…

Jane: The hell…

Daria: Was THAT?

Lynn: Apparently it's the traditional cheer of the Illuminati University Fighting Fnords. I'm not familiar with them myself, but I saw that in an e-mail sig once and always wanted to use it.

Daria: I can see why. But was it such a good idea, given…? (gestures to Caldwell in the doorway, looking stunned.)

Lynn: Of course it was. I'd like to see co-ed gym classes. (to Daria and Jane's incredulous looks) Look, do I want to spend the rest of this year and all the next playing badminton and volleyball and (disdainful wave of pom-poms) trying to come up with something new to freak the Iron Maiden out with? Or do I want to play floor hockey and basketball and maybe…

(There is a thump from across the gym. They turn to see AP sprawled on top of Mack on the floor. They were obviously facing off and it went badly.)

Mack: Ow…

AP: Sorry, Captain Sanity.

(Pan back to the girls. Morris looks disgusted.)

Morris: Gah DAMNIT, McIntyre!

(She moves off. Daria and Jane look back at Lynn.)

Lynn: …keep him from getting maimed?

Jane: (smirk) That's so cute! You...10

(Lynn glares. Jane shuts up.)

Caldwell: (from the doorway) Irene! Could I have a word with you? In my office? NOW?

(Daria, Jane and Lynn smirk at each other.)

Jane: Back to the ol' listening post for us this afternoon, right, guys?

Lynn: (sigh) Later on this evening; say around seven. I have…

Daria & Jane: (in unison) …someplace to be after school.

(Now the glare is directed at both of them.)

END ACT 1 – ADVERTS [Lead-in: Lynn doing her 'cheer']

Pimms: Alcoholic beverage. There are billboards with worse puncrimes than even #Daria+ has to offer.

Ribena: Blackcurrant drink. The ads are colourful and bright and shriek out at me from the sides of buses far too early in the morning.

(Scene: the bar. Music: "Drugstore" – Stabbing Westward. The pool table has been moved against the wall. Lynn looks less than impressed.11)

Lynn: I'm going to have to tell them something. This is getting ridiculous.

Rust: (OS) Do they suspect anything?

Lynn: Generally, they all suspect SOMETHING. But I think Daria might be getting close to figuring out WHAT.

Rust: (OS) I'm not surprised.

Lynn: So what do you suggest?

Rust: (OS) Just keep dodging them. It's all you can do. (beat) Now let's see how far you've come on the hand-to-hand. And if you're going to be standing on my neck again, a bit more gentleness?

(Lynn just smirks.)

(Scene: Lynn's room. "Whatever [I Had A Dream]" – Butthole Surfers. They are all staring at the little tape recorder lying on Lynn's bed.)

Daria: Now how do you think that conversation would have gone if we'd still been under Ms Li?

Jane: That conversation wouldn't have HAPPENED if we'd been under Ms Li.

AP: She called him a…

Lynn: (self-satisfied look) Well, at least we finally know why she wants girls to wear the pom-poms and guys to do the pounding. (mild wince; rubbing her neck) I was kind of curious about that.

Daria: That has to hurt, getting so close to the Olympic volleyball team before tearing a muscle. I should have suspected it was something like that.

Jane: Whatever. (beat) Sorry, but I have NO sympathy for the woman. She was a tyrant.

Daria: Still is.

AP: (sigh) Well, at least you guys are getting a change of pace.

Jane: I don't understand how you can be so utterly uncoordinated. I mean, you don't have any problems with hand-eye when you play video games.

AP: I just don't think my body takes orders very well. In general. (beat) I don't want to worry about hurting any of you out on the field.

Lynn: (mild wince; rubbing her right shoulder) Court, AP. Basketball is played on a court.

AP: (worried) You okay, Purple Peril?

Lynn: (evasive) Uh … yeah. Just a little stiff. (beat) Anyway, this is probably the best scenario we could have asked for in this situation. Another two week trial period. If we like playing with the big boys … or the not-so-big boys … we just show prowess. (to Daria's look) Or at least willing. If we hate it, we screw it up.

Jane: And get sent back to the squads.

Lynn: Pretty much.

(The four exchange looks.)

Jane: Well, I'm gonna put some effort in. ANYTHING'S got to be better than being brainwashed into joining the insipid pom-pom wavers.

Lynn: Agreed.

Daria: I suppose a team effort is the lesser of two evils in this case.

AP: (grin) For those of you who don't like sport … there'll be sport!12

Lynn: (mock scowl) That's MY line, Maverick.

AP: Hey, you were the one who taught it to me!

(Lynn sighs and gives a Mona Lisa smile. AP's ears go slightly red.)

(Scene: LHS gym. Music plays on. Daria, Jane, Lynn and AP are lounging on the bleachers in gym clothes [Lynn's hair is braided], waiting for class to start. Daria notices a bruise running from neck to wrist on Lynn's right arm and winces.)

Daria: What the hell happened to YOU?

Lynn: Walked into a door.

Daria: Why don't I believe you?

Lynn: Believe what you want. Would I admit to doing anything that stupid if it weren't true?

(Daria looks as though she seriously wants to debate that, but she is interrupted by a whistle blast. Lynn smirks.)

Daria: What IS it about the universe?

Lynn: (still smirking) It either likes me or hates you. Or both.13

(Ms Morris stands in front of the assembled class, with Mr Caldwell at her side.)

Morris: (nearly choking on the words) All right, boys and girls, listen up. Mr Caldwell here wants to institute some changes in the way this class is run. So we're going to do a test run for his little programme. For the next two weeks, this class is co-ed.

(Murmuring from the rest of the class. Daria, Jane, Lynn and AP look impassive, of course.)

AP: I am Joe's complete lack of surprise.14

Morris: We'll stick with the basketball for now. It seems harmless enough for you all. (glare at AP) Well, MOST of you. Now, because this class is now … a bit bigger … I'll have to split you into teams of three and rotate. I need three captains! Mackenzie, Thompson and…

Caldwell: (pointed) I think it might be a good idea to pick a girl captain for at least one team, Irene.

Morris: (growl) Fine. (beat; searches the class with her eyes; sigh) Cullen.

Lynn: (utter shock) Excuse me?

(Scene: LHS gym. Lynn is facing off against Kevin. Morris stands between them, holding up a basketball.)

Kevin: Don't worry, Lynn! I'll go easy on you!

(Lynn scowls at him. Morris throws the ball into the air between them; Lynn jumps, hammering a foot down on Kevin's knee as if using it as a step up as she smacks the ball back towards her own team. Kevin yelps and collapses. Morris blows the whistle.)

Morris: (surprised) CULLEN! Foul! (beat) IMPRESSIVE foul.15

(Lynn smirks at Ms Morris, who looks at Lynn speculatively.)

(Montage sequence. All scenes take place in the LHS gymnasium. Music: "Setting Sun" – The Chemical Brothers featuring Noel Gallagher.
AP is trying to dribble and run at the same time, an expression of preoccupied dread on his face. He fumbles the ball at the same time as he trips over one of his own shoelaces and he falls over; the ball bashes him in the face as he does.

Daria is standing by the net, looking uncertain. A basketball bounces towards her. She picks it up and gingerly throws it towards Mack, who smiles and dribbles away. Daria has a "wow. I participated" look on her face.

Lynn, in control of the ball, dodges past Kevin, who looks extremely put out by the fact that she's kicking his butt. She then does a spin-pass towards Jane, who scores an impressive 3-point shot. Kevin turns brick red.

AP has the ball but is being resolutely covered by Mack and that brawny kid with the crew cut from "The Daria Database" [Kevin's Party Trick]. He looks around wildly. Pan to Jane, who is waving her arms over her head in a 'pass it here' gesture. The basketball flies into shot too fast to stop, hitting her in the face hard enough to knock her over backwards. Pan to AP, Mack and Crew Cut, all three of whom look stunned. Mack and Crew Cut turn to AP, who shrugs at them.

Daria is standing by a different basket, still looking a little uncertain. The portly red-haired girl from "This Year's Model" passes her the ball over Upchuck's head. She looks at it, then tosses it towards the basket. It goes in. Daria looks utterly amazed.

Kevin has possession; he is headed for the basket like a bat out of hell. Lynn dodges in beside him and slaps the ball out of his control, right towards Jane, who heads back towards her own basket and scores. Kevin looks apoplectic with anger.

Daria is on defence, standing in front of the basket and looking far less uncertain now. Then a basketball bounces off the rim and hits her right in the back of the head, knocking her glasses off. Daria picks up her glasses, rubbing the back of her head with the other hand, then puts them on and sees AP grinning apologetically at her. Daria rolls her eyes.)

(Scene: girl's locker room. Music: "Postmodern Sleaze" – Sneaker Pimps. Daria is pulling her burnt-orange T-shirt over her head. Jane, minus her red shirt, is lacing up a boot.)

Daria: I've noticed something over the past few days. It's not just running you do well. Have you always been into sports?

Jane: Not 'into', exactly. 'Capable of doing', yes, but the whole team thing never appealed to me. It's like the army without three square meals and bunk inspection.

Daria: Until you saw Evan.16

Jane: (disgusted) God, are you damn Smythe sisters going to invoke every romantic mistake I've ever made? Bring up Bobby Bighead, why don't you?17

(Daria blinks a little at the blatant reference to sisterhood. Lynn appears, fully dressed, and starts unravelling her braid.)

Lynn: Bobby Bighead?

Jane: (huge sigh) Met him at a party at Brittany's. He thought my head was a lollipop.

Lynn: YOU were invited to a party at BRITTANY'S?

Daria: *I* was. SHE crashed. And her encounter with Bad-Pickup-Line Boy earned me a bonus sock, so I'm not really complaining.

Lynn: Are you deliberately confusing me?

Daria: If we were, it'd be no less than you deserve. (to Lynn's blank look; sigh) Never mind. (beat) You two are good out there. You make a good team.

Lynn: Thanks. I think. (A speculative look crosses her face)

Jane: Do I want to know?

Lynn: (slightly too fast) Oh, nothing; just … got hit with an idea. You know us writers. (beat; ignoring their dubious looks) Oh, I left my History textbook in the Merc. I'll see you in class.

(Exit at speed. Daria and Jane look at each other.)

(Scene: LHS corridor, next day. Music: "Big Problems" – Corrosion of Conformity. Daria, Jane, Lynn and AP at AP's locker. AP opens it; various bits of locker detritus fall out as he does. He gives them all a sheepish look.)

Lynn: You haven't even been here for the whole school year, Maverick.

Jane: I thought scientists had organised minds.

AP: Nah. I bet Einstein was a slob.

(Enter Caldwell, with Morris firmly in tow. Caldwell looks pleased; Morris, reluctant.)

Caldwell: Good morning! (looking at the locker detritus spread out on the floor) Oh dear. I hope you intend on tidying up that locker after school today.

AP: ('okaaay' expression) If you say so, sir.

Caldwell: I was hoping to catch up with you, Ms Cullen, Ms Lane. Ms Morris here was filling me in on the progress of our little co-ed gym class experiment and she has been very complimentary of your skills on the court. (He waits for a reply. All he gets is four expressions that clearly say, "And…?") Now, the Lawndale Lions are primarily known for football, which means that there are two sports seasons of every year that we don't get a lot of spectator interest. And our basketball team…

Jane & Lynn: (before he can get any further) No.

Caldwell: But … you don't even know what I was going to ask…

Jane: You want us on your basketball team. No.

Lynn: We have enough commitments. I know I'VE done enough for the school lately. The play. The slave auction. There is only so much a student can be expected to do.18

Caldwell: But it would be a great opportunity…

Jane: I'd like to focus more on my studies. I may actually want to go to college. And I'm in the play too. So no.

Lynn: Anyway, we're not that good.

Morris: What IS it with you two? Are you SO determined to hide your lights under bushels? You… (gesture to Lynn) …could have made cheerleading squad captain – if you hadn't been so DAMN determined not to smile or participate. YOU… (turning on Jane) …could have made Olympic track, but you tore the track team apart for no reason *I* could see! Why not use your talents to someone's benefit?

Jane: We do.

Lynn: Our own.

Morris: (scornful; to Caldwell) I told you it would take more than just a smile and a question to get these kids motivated.

Caldwell: (to Lynn and Jane) I'd like to give you the opportunity to think about this. I'll be speaking to you again on this matter.

(He and Morris walk away, deep in conversation.)

Daria: You WILL be keeping an eye on them, won't you?

Lynn: An eye and an ear. (beat) Damn; I haven't got the TIME for this.

Jane: Damnit, I'm NOT going back into a team. Not under HER. Not EVER.

AP: Chill, Art-Smart Scarlet; you're not gonna have to. They can't make you.

Jane: (disbelieving chuckle) Want to bet?19

(Daria and AP look a bit worried, and more so when she sees the sharp, pondering look on Lynn's face.)

END ACT 2 – ADVERTS [Lead-in: Jane getting hit in the face with the basketball]

Customer Service Announcement: Because I'm nearly out of adverts, I thought I'd take this opportunity to tell anyone who reads these things but isn't a message board/IRC regular that The Look-Alike Series Season 3 should be posted in its entirety by Thursday 31 August.

Next in The Look-Alike Series: Jake tries to cope with the rift between him and Helen and a few of Lynn's secrets are finally revealed in "None of Your Affair".

(Scene: LHS cafeteria. Daria and AP are sitting across from each other at a table.)

AP: (as if trying to convince himself) She's not gonna kill anyone. She already TOLD me she'd never kill anyone.

Daria: (same tone) Jane put Ms Morris off well enough the last time with a minimum of effort. There's nothing to worry about.

AP: Where IS she, anyway?

(Enter Jane, who sits down next to Daria.)

Jane: Yo.

AP: (to whatever listening deity) Actually, I meant Purple Peril.

Jane: Do you get the feeling she's up to something?

Daria: I get the feeling she's up to her neck in something. But on this … yes.

(Enter Lynn, who sits next to AP and stares at them all levelly.)

Lynn: I thought I felt my ears burning.

Jane: So what's the plan?

Lynn: Well, there's a problem. The way I figure it, the only way we're going to convince Caldwell to let us off is if we demonstrate that we suck at basketball. And if we do THAT, we blow the co-ed gym class thing.

Daria: Hobson's choice. (beat) Well, I have to admit, I'm not really enjoying doing actual sports in a co-ed forum any more than I enjoy waving pom-poms on the sidelines with the girls. I'm only doing this because of the principle involved.

Jane: (downcast) Oh. Yeah. The principle.

Daria: (concerned) Jane?

Jane: (sigh) I agree that it's important to be unbiased, Daria, but … this is personal. I can't let them herd me back onto a team. It … turned me into someone I didn't really like. I don't want to let anything tempt me into doing that again.

(Silence. Lynn and AP exchange a confused look, but Daria's face shows real understanding.)

Daria: (tactful change of subject) And, of course, what with Lynn's schedule – the band, the play, the homework and the … 'someplace to be'… (the inflection on that causes Lynn to scowl at her) …neither of you can afford to hold on to that kind of principle.

Jane: So, what? We just … screw up repeatedly?

Daria: Looks very much like. At least until Caldwell comes to see us in action.

Lynn: How are we going to screw up?

AP: (mischievous grin) Well, all YOU have to do is foul a few people…

Lynn: (answering grin) Easy enough … though a lot easier with a weapon, I have to admit.

AP: And Art-Smart Scarlet … (sheepish grin) Well, all YOU have to do is copy me.

(Montage sequence. All scenes take place in the LHS gym. Music: "Ready to Go" – Republica
Another face-off, this time between Lynn and Crew Cut. She 'misses' the ball entirely and smacks Crew Cut in the nose. Crew Cut screams. Morris scowls in a slightly suspicious way.

Daria stands by the net, still looking uncertain. The ball bounces her way. She picks it up and tosses it towards the basket. It hits the rim and bounces off into the hands of Kevin, who takes off for the other side of the gym with a grin. Daria smirks.

Jane accepts a pass from Angie [one of the cheerleaders recently named in S4], goes two steps and 'accidentally' trips over the basketball she's trying to dribble, falling flat on her face. She looks up and smirks at a scowling Morris.

The Goth girl with the streaks in her hair [we see her in the background sometimes] has the ball and Lynn, using all her hockey prowess, body-checks her into a wall. The Goth looks at her, then grabs her and throws her into the wall. Lynn looks thoughtful, then retaliates by throwing a punch at the Goth, who staggers under the force of the blow and then tackles Lynn to the floor. Fight ensues. Pan to Morris, who looks rather like DeMartino at his worst.

Jane aims for a perfectly clear shot, then closes her eyes and tosses the ball. It sails two feet to the right of the net, bounces off the wall, and hits Daria in the back of the head. Daria retrieves her glasses and puts them back on, then smirks at Morris, who looks like she's going to cry.

Kevin has the ball and Lynn approaches for the steal. Instead of batting it away, however, she bats it up towards his face. He screams and grabs his nose. The whistle blows. Morris points off towards the bleachers. Lynn goes to sit down and then smirks at Caldwell, who is sitting at the top of the bleachers, watching in something like horror.)

(Scene: LHS girl's locker room. Music: "You Blew Me Off" – Bare Jr. Daria [in skirt, boots and gym T-shirt] grabs the bottom of her LHS T-shirt and starts to pull it off … then notices Lynn's locker door is standing ajar. She lets go of the T-shirt and moves towards it slowly, trying to peer into the crack, but it's too dark in there to see anything. Daria hesitantly raises a hand…)

Jane: (OS) What're you doing?

Daria: GAH! (as Jane walks towards her in shorts, leggings and T-shirt) Don't sneak up on people like that! (pulling shirt off over her head [plain white sports bra, so don't even think about it] and reaching for her regular T-shirt.) You'll give me a heart attack.

Lynn: (approaching in normal clothes minus boots and jacket, unravelling her braid) I think that went well. You should have seen the look on Caldwell's face… (to the look on Daria's face) What's up with you? You look like you've seen a ghost.

Daria: (pulling T-shirt over her head) Jane just decided to stalk me, horror-movie style.

Jane: (looking up from boot lacing) Hey, that's not fair! YOU were… ('let's not go there – Daria would be toast…') …a million MILES away! I can't help it if you weren't paying attention!

Daria: (doing up her own boots) Yeah, it looks like it did go well. (beat) Though I didn't get as close to Caldwell's facial expression as you did.

Lynn: (shrug) Well, if he wants ME on his basketball team, I'd be greatly surprised. (goes to her locker, reaches in and grabs a hairbrush) He probably thinks Morris is some kind of psychotic, to think that I'M any kind of team player.

Jane: (shrugging into her shirt) Well, you had to hand it to Morris; she didn't lose her cool in front of anyone.

Daria: (grabbing her jacket out of her locker) No … but she DID spend an awful lot of time in the storage room after Lynn tripped Upchuck and stepped on his head. (slams locker door shut)

Jane: (to Lynn, who's brushing her hair) You nearly done?

Lynn: You go on without me – I'll be with you in a minute.

(Daria and Jane share a look, then exit.)

(Scene: LHS corridor. Music: "The Division Bell" – Pink Floyd. Daria and Jane walking.)

Daria: Thanks for not saying anything.

Jane: Hey, you should only be punished for what you've DONE, not what you CONSIDERED doing or NEARLY did. (beat; worried) What did you think you were going to find?

Daria: That's just it; I didn't know. (beat; rueful sigh) That's not the way to go about it anyway. If we want answers out of her, we'll have to ask to her face. I just haven't been able to yet.

(Enter AP, grinning wildly)

AP: Hey ho, Erudite Emerald; Art-Smart Scarlet! You guys were GREAT out there!

Jane: (mock pouty) Great? But we were SUPPOSED to be TERRIBLE!

Lynn: (appearing from around the corner) We were wonderfully awful. Deliciously dreadful.

AP: Um … yeah. What she said. (beat) Celebration? I saw Caldwell and he was looking REALLY pissed off at the Iron Maiden. Said something about seeing her in hell before seeing her recruit for a team again. I bet she doesn't last out the year.

Daria: A principal who trusts us more than one of his teachers.

(That idea freezes the entire group.)

Jane: Celebration pizza? (to Lynn) And don't you tell me you have someplace to be; we DESERVE this.

Lynn: (utmost patience) Jane, the reason I went through all this was so that I could have time to be in that someplace else.

Daria: But Jane's right – you DO deserve this. (beat; pointed) You celebrated with Mystik Spiral.20

(AP does not look happy about this.)

Lynn: (sigh; trapped) You're right, okay, I'm sorry, I'm being a stick-in-the-mud. (beat) I didn't realise you were such a party taskmaster, Daria.

Daria: (deadpan) Behind this stoic surface lies the spirit of a true party animal. (beat; still deadpan)Me-ow.

(That gets a smirk from everyone.)

Lynn: In that case, I have to make a phone call. Later.

(She heads off rather quickly; something drops out of her pocket and hits the ground.)

AP: (picking it up) Hey, Purple Peril, you dropped your… (looking at it) Filofax? (beat) Since when does she keep her schedule written down?

Jane: Since it became so full of mysterious THINGS, probably.

Daria: I'll return it to her. I have Econ with her next.

(AP nods and hands it over before heading away. Jane looks pointedly at Daria, then at the book in Daria's hands, then leaves. Daria only hesitates a moment before opening it.)

Daria: (under her breath) 4 till 7 – locks – Rust. (beat) What the hell?

(She shuts it hurriedly and wanders off.)



1] I've neglected Jane's running fetish [seen most notably in "See Jane Run" and, to a lesser extent, "The Misery Chick"]. Really only because it's not intuitive for me – I don't do sport and can't stand early mornings unless viewed from the other side.[Back]

2] We first saw AP's utter hopelessness at anything involving physical co-ordination in "A Hard Day's Write", and later [but chronologically earlier], it's seen in one of the "Growing Cynical" chapters – "A Sporting Mischance". [Back]

3] As he states in "The Flack-Jacket Mafia" and she herself mentions in "Mercedes Bends". [Back]

4] There are such things. I don't own them, but they exist. And they go along quite well with some of the other stuff Lynn's been doing/learning/acquiring since "Sister, Sister". [Back]

5] "Run Away From Homecoming" and "The Flack-Jacket Mafia" respectively. Basically, she broke into the place and stole it. [Back]

6] Direct quote from the memo Ms Li sent around the school in "The Daria Diaries". Lynn would have been able to get the exact wording because that's one of the documents she used against Ms Li in TFJM. [Back]

7] Lynn has the principal's office, faculty lounge and who-knows-where-else in the school bugged, as shown in "Grating Expectations" and "Teachers' Pests". [Back]

8] "See Jane Run" again. And something I kept going in "A Hard Day's Write". [Back]

9] The Illuminati University Fighting Fnords cheer I got via Austin L's prose adapt of "Admission: Impossible" – it inspired me. And the "peppy or perky" is direct quote from Jane in "The F Word". It's a parallel I want to keep drawing, given Jane's near-cheer experience in that ep correlating well with Lynn's in "Misshapen Identity". [Back]

10] I'm not gonna explain this. Read the conversations between Jane and Lynn in "Relation-slips" and "Thrash of the Titans". [Back]

11] We see this place first time in "An Irony of Errors". Rust we first meet in "Sister, Sister". And yes, you get a face for him soon enough. [Back]

12] As those of you who've read Austin's prose adapt of "A Hard Day's Write", you'll know that this is from Monty Python's "The BBC's New Schedule Sketch". AP knows nearly as much about Python as Lynn does, as he's been into it almost as long [see "Hail Cullen, Well Met"]. [Back]

13] See "Sister, Sister", "An Irony of Errors" and "Thrash of the Titans". If Lynn's not actively dodging and fleeing questions, something happens that makes Daria have to rethink pressing Lynn for answers. [Back]

14] Line from the movie [and book] "Fight Club". Highly recommended [I figured AP would like this one because of the detail it gives on terrorist activity but would need some of the more esoteric plot points explained to him]. [Back]

15] Anyone who has read and remembers "A Hard Day's Write" and, for more details, "A Sporting Mischance" will remember how Lynn plays team sports. [Back]

16] "See Jane Run" – Jane joined the track team partly to prove to Ms Morris that not all Lanes were slackers and partly to impress Evan. [Back]

17] 'Bobby Bighead' is what the Daria fanfic community tends to call that guy Jane ended up in the laundry room with in "The Invitation". And yes, Daria and Lynn are half-sisters but it doesn't get invoked much – it's still a pretty new fact to the lot of them. [Back]

18] She's playing Juliet in the school play as of "An Irony of Errors". And as for the slave auction, she and Daria got sold to Upchuck in "Job Lots". I think being Upchuck's slave for a day shaves a good century off anyone's stay in purgatory. [Back]

19] Ms Morris was very … shall we say, persuasive when Jane quit track in "See Jane Run". [Back]

20] The final scene of "Thrash of the Titans" shows Trent cornering Lynn into partying with her bandmates after tying for second in a Battle of the Bands. [Back]


Daria Morgendorffer et al are the creations of Glenn Eichler and Susie Lewis Lynn but are owned by MTV, a Viacom company, copyright 1997, 2000. [Apparently, this is possible by 'work for hire', a concept that eludes me.] Lynn Cullen and AP McIntyre, on the other hand, were created and are owned by me, one Janet 'Canadibrit' Neilson, copyright 1999, 2000. Touch my characters without consulting me and it will go hard with you. This is a "substantially transformative" derivative work, apparently [what a highfalutin way to say fanfic], and is protected by the Supreme Court's decision in re Campbell v. Acuff Rose Music, so keep the copyright notice where it is and don't post it for money. If you do so without my permission and that of MTV Networks, I WILL pull a Lynn Cullen on you. And then I'll call lawyers.

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