Week of Hell
By Thomas

Thanks to Steve Brown for helping me with my grammar.

(Morgendorffer kitchen. Jake, Helen and Quinn are sitting at the table. Daria walks over to them with a bowl of green pasta)

Daria: I hope you like it. It's spinach pasta with small slices of ham and a cheese sauce with spinach to make it all green.

Jake: It certainly looks green, kiddo.

Helen: I don't care. I think it's so sweet of Daria to cook dinner for the rest of us.

(Jake, Helen and Daria start eating)

Jake: It's delicious.

Daria: Thanks, dad.

Helen: Why aren't you eating, Quinn?

Quinn: (Suspicious) Daria never volunteered to make dinner before. I'm sure there must be some sort of evil purpose behind it.

Helen: That's ridiculous. Now eat.

Daria: That figures. No good deed goes unpunished. Oh and I call this recipe Solient. And since it's all green. I call it "Solient Green" (1)

Jake: (Not getting it) That's great, kiddo.

Helen: So I guess this will be our last meal together for awhile. Dammit! Why did that stupid judge have to move the trial.

Daria: First, everyone in Lawndale knows your client did it. Second, public opinion is against him -- he wouldn't stand a chance if he went to trial in this town. You should be happy the judge decided to move the trial.

Helen: (Resigned to it) I guess you're right, sweetie. But being away from all of you will be hard. The trial will last at least a week.

Daria: I'm sure the ratman would be happy to keep you entertained with his company.

Jake: I know he's your client, but you don't have to socialize with him? Do you?

Helen: (Warning) Daria! (normal voice) Don't worry, Jake. He couldn't make bail. And don't call him the ratman, Daria. His name is Mr. Cox. Plus he hasn't been found guilty yet. Uh... I mean... that is... What I meant to say is that he was merely trying to get his tenant's to leave his building so that he could tear it down. He couldn't have known his rats would attack people.

Daria: So he *is* guilty.

Helen: That's privileged information.

Jake: Why does it have to be *you* who's defending him? You don't usually handle criminal law.

Helen: I'm only second chair, Jake. I thought I could use a change of pace at the office and asked Eric to assist him. Then the judge moved the trial.

Quinn: I think it's a good thing the trial got moved. You deserve to win, mom.

Helen: (Smiles) Why, thank you, Quinn.

Quinn: And this way maybe my friends won't find out that my mom's defending the ratman.

(Helen's smile disappears)

Helen: By the way, Quinn, why're you wearing a normal outfit on a Saturday night?

Quinn: Johnny's house got burglarized yesterday. And they only left it for, like, four hours.

Jake: Who's Johnny?

Daria: She means Jamie.

Jake: Jamie White? But he lives just two miles from here!

Daria: Not anymore. The burglars stole him.

Jake: What?!

Helen: Daria's being sarcastic. Now Quinn, I'm sure Jamie will get over it.

Quinn: I don't care about that. He was taking me on a date tonight. But now he doesn't want to because he's, like, depressed over the loss of his *stupid* PC.

Daria: And the reason he canceled the date was that your company would just make him even more depressed?

Quinn: (Fumes) And now I have to, like, stay home. (venomous) Just like Daria.

Daria: (Arches her eyebrow) Who said I was staying home? Tom's picking me up in an hour. (smirk) I guess I'm more popular than *you* now.

Quinn: Muh-om, make her stop.

Helen: Daria, be nice to your sister.

Daria: I'll be nice. (smirk) I'll even help her sell all her party dresses now that she won't be needing them anymore.

Quinn: (Puts her hands to her ears) I can't hear you.

Helen: (Looks cross at Daria) I still have time for family court before I leave.

Daria: I'll be good.

Jake: That makes me think. Maybe we should get a gun.

(Helen, Daria and Quinn stops eating and stare at Jake)

Jake: I mean that way I could defend you if a burglar showed up.

Helen: (Stern voice) Jake, we're *not* getting a gun.

Jake: But it's my duty to defend you. I'm the man in the house.

Helen: No guns! It goes against everything we fought for when we were ...

Daria: Hippies.

Helen: I meant to say young.

Daria: Young hippies then. But dad, Jamie's house got robbed while they were away. Having a gun in the house would've made no difference.

Helen: That's right, sweetie. Jake, listen to Daria.

Jake: But what if someone attacks us?

Daria: You're white, middle aged and you live in the suburbs. Statistically you're more likely to get attacked by your wife than by a total stranger. Having a gun would in fact *decrease* your chances of survival.

Jake: But the idea of Helen attacking me is ridiculous. (concerned) I mean, it is ridiculous isn't it, dear?

Helen: Of course it is, Jake. (to Daria) I'm far more likely to attack *other* family members.

(Daria swallows)

(The following morning. Helen is standing by the door with her suitcases at her side. Daria and Quinn are standing in front of her)

Helen: (Puts her arms around Daria an Quinn) I'll be going now girls. I'll see you when the trial is over.

Daria: Go get 'em, mom.

Quinn: You can do it.

Helen: And girls. This isn't the first time I've leave you two alone with Jake. But I trust you'll be more responsible this time than back in Highland. I wasn't all too happy when I came home. (Sternly) Remember?

Quinn: But, muh-om, you know you can trust me.

Helen: Can I? You lied and told Jake it was your birthday to make him throw you a party.

Quinn: But he asked me when my birthday was. And I thought a party would cheer him up. It wasn't fair you took my gift back. I got, like, emotional scars.

Daria: Hey, at least you got to keep my gift.

Quinn: That's because you gave me some of my own stuff.

Daria: It's the thought that's counts.

Helen: And Daria...

Daria: What? I didn't do anything wrong.

Helen: You asked Jake to spend a day with you.

Daria: So? He was the one who wanted to bond with me. And I fail to see how it could be wrong for a daughter to spend a day with her dad.

Helen: You made him take you to the museum of serial killers. And *buy* you souvenirs.

Daria: You had no right to throw them out.

Helen: Now I know Jake's got it in his head to buy a gun. And since I'll be gone for awhile, I won't be able to put a stop to it. So that task falls on you two.

Quinn: I don't know. I mean, what if a burglar did show up to steal my clothes?

Daria: Don't worry mom. I'll ask dad to get an assault rifle instead.

Helen: Perhaps I'm not expressing myself clearly enough. (raises her arms so that they're around Daria and Quinn's necks, soft voice) If there's a gun in the house when I get back, my revenge will be terrible. You two got that?

Daria & Quinn: (Meek) Yes mom.

(Helen leaves)

Quinn: So what'll we do?

Daria: We? You're the one who put the idea into dad's head.

Quinn: Maybe. But mom'll punish us both.

Daria: Damn. (pause) Plan A. Keep an eye on dad. Get his mind of buying a gun and hope that he'll just forget about it.

Quinn: Spend time with dad? But, Daria...

Daria: We can also face mom's terrible revenge.

Quinn: And plan B?

Daria: Get tough on him. Remind him of his time on the shooting range at the military academy.

Quinn: Remind dad of his childhood? But that's cruel.

Daria: I know.

Quinn: (Sighs) I'll take Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Daria: And leave me with Tuesday, Friday and Saturday? Forget it.

Quinn: But, Daria! Think about my social life.

Daria: Think about mine. I've got one now remember?

Quinn: Thursday for Friday?

Daria: Deal.

(Monday. Jake's office. Jake is sitting in his conference room with Mr. Gross, one of his clients)

Mr. Gross: I'm not sure. The environmental activist might find what you're suggesting... ah... provocative.

Jake: Maybe. But it's my experience that in the end people will always choose their jobs over nature.

Mr. Gross: I guess I can't argue with that. Very well, I'll recommend your suggestion to my boss.

Jake: Thanks. By the way, is that a gun magazine you have there? (points to a magazine in Mr. Gross's briefcase)

Mr. Gross: (Beams) It sure is. You know, I'm running a small business besides my nine to five job. I sell guns.

Jake: Really? You know, I've been thinking about getting a gun. You know, to defend the house and all.

Mr. Gross: Let's have a look then. (opens another compartment in his briefcase revealing several hand guns) See anything you like?

Jake: (Surprised) You're just traveling around with those?

Mr. Gross: I have a permit. Now an automatic might be overkill. I think you're looking for something like this... (takes out a small revolver) Both you and your wife can use it. (hands the revolver to Jake)

Jake: (Takes it) The problem is that I'm not sure my wife would approve.

Mr. Gross: Aren't you the *man* in the house? (laughs) Tell you what, Jake. You and I have another meeting in a week right? You can borrow it until then. Give you a feeling of what having a gun is like.

Jake: (Looks at the gun) I'm not sure. I mean, I don't have a permit.

Mr. Gross: But who's going to know right?

(A courtroom. Helen and Eric are sitting with their client, Mr. Cox. A woman is on the stand. The DA is questioning her)

DA: Mrs. Gamble. Please tell us in your own words what happened on the day in question.

Mrs. Gamble: It was horrible. The rats were coming out of the walls.

Eric: Objection, your honor. The police report clearly states that the rats in question came through the door.

Judge: At least they had manners. Sustained.

DA: And what happened then?

Mrs. Gamble: Then... (cries) They ate my baby!

(Loud gasps are heard from where the jury is sitting)

Eric: Objection, your honor. The witness has no children.

Mrs. Gamble: (Cries) No, not anymore.

(More gasps are heard from where the jury is sitting)

Eric: Objection! I meant to say that the witness never had any children.

Judge: I'm sorry. Did you just object against yourself?

Mrs. Gamble: (Stops crying, angry) Maybe it was just a *cat* to you. But is was my baby.

Mr. Cox: (To Helen) This is good right? It hurts her credibility. Right?

Helen: (To Mr. Cox) Oh absolutely. (voiceover) We're sooooo going to lose this case.

(Jake's office. Quinn comes in. Jake enters from the conference room)

Quinn: Hi, dad.

Jake: (Surprised) Quinn? What are you doing here? (concerned) Did something happen?

Quinn: Uhm, no. I just wanted to see how you're doing.

Jake: But you never came to see me at work before.

Quinn: One time had to be the first. Is there anything I can help you with?

Jake: That's really nice of you, but I'm in a meeting that's running late. But if you could make some coffee for us...

Quinn: Sure.

Jake: And watch the phone...

Quinn: Sure.

Jake: And come to think of it... (opens a file cabinet, and takes a stack of papers from it) I need these to be typed into the computer.

Quinn: (Whining) Sure.

(Morgendorffer livingroom. Daria is watching TV)

TV: Does human flesh really taste like chicken? Tonight on Sick Sad World.

(The door opens. It's Jake and Quinn. Quinn walks over and falls on the couch)

Jake: Hi, kiddo.

Daria: Hi, dad. How was your day?

Jake: Fine. Quinn came to see me, she was very helpful. I'll get started on making dinner. (walks into the kitchen)

Daria: So how was your day with dad?

Quinn: I was a (sobs) *secretary*!

Daria: Preparing yourself for your later career in life?

Quinn: Your words can't hurt me, Daria. I happen to know it'll be your turn tomorrow.

Daria: So? I'm tougher than you. I'll manage.

(Quinn laughs)

Daria: What's so funny?

Quinn: (Evilly) Oh, you'll see. You'll see.

(Tuesday. The courtroom. Helen and Eric are sitting with Mr. Cox. A man takes the stand. As he turns it's seen that he has no nose)

Mr. Cox: (Breaks down) I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. Please forgive me. If I knew, I would've fed the rats first.

Eric: (To Mr. Cox, beat) He lost his nose in a car accident two years ago.

Mr. Cox: (Gets a grip on himself, to Eric and Helen) Uhm. This is bad right?

Helen: (To Mr. Cox) Oh I don't know. Maybe we can still cut a deal over the rental agreement violations.

Mr. Cox: (To Helen) What violations? I don't mind my tenants having pets.

(Jake's office. Jake is sitting at his desk. Daria comes in)

Daria: Hi, dad.

Jake: Hi, Daria. I had trouble believing it when Quinn said you might drop by today. But seeing is believing. Right, kiddo?

Daria: Unless you're a prisoner of the matrix.

Jake: Huh?

Daria: Movie joke (2). Is there anything I can help you with?

Jake: Yes there is. I've kept delaying it. But now I have you to help me. I finally want to sort through all my old business records for stuff I'm not obligated to keep anymore.

Daria: (Nervous) Will it take long?

Jake: (Thinks about it) I suppose. I'll call Quinn and tell her to make dinner herself. But with you by my side I'm sure we can wrap this up before ten. We don't want to break your curfew do we?

Daria: (Voiceover) I haven't had a curfew in over a year. (outloud, beat) Of course we don't.

(Morgendorffer livingroom. Quinn is doing her homework. The door opens. It's Jake and Daria. Daria walks over and falls on the couch)

Jake: Hi, kiddo.

Quinn: Hi, dad. How was your day?

Jake: Good. Daria was very helpful. I think I'll get us a snack. (walks into the kitchen)

Quinn: So how was your day with dad?

Daria: The good news is that I now know how to run his business.

Quinn: So what's the bad news?

Daria: I have no plans to become a consultant, and I'm too tired to kill you.

(Wednesday. The courtroom)

Judge: I understand you wish to change your plea.

Eric: Yes, your honer. Mr. Cox has decided to plead guilty to the charges before him. But before sentencing we would like to bring in some character witnesses.

Judge: The rats?

Eric: (Beat) No. Some human character witnesses.

Judge: Yes that's probably a good idea. As he said himself yesterday. He didn't feed them first.

(Lawndale High. The fashion club is standing in the hallway)

Quinn: I'm sorry, but I can't go shopping today. It's my turn to be with my dad... I mean, I want to spend time with my dad.

Sandi: You *want* to spend time with your dad? Is that why you canceled our meeting two days ago?

Quinn: I mean, I have to spend time with him. I'm helping him at his office.

Stacy: Is he forcing you to work for him?

Quinn: That's right, Stacy. I'm being forced to work.

Tiffany: Child labor. That is soooo sad.

Sandi: Your dad must be a bad person.

(Quinn's eyes flashes with anger)

Sandi: (Scared) But that's really none of our business, is it? You go along, Quinn.

(Quinn leaves)

Sandi: This is suspicious. I think we should follow her.

Stacy: You mean spy on her?

Sandi: No, Stacy. Following someone is different than spying on them.

Stacy: (Surprised) Oh.

(Jake's office. Jake is sitting at his desk. Quinn comes in)

Jake: Oh, hi, kiddo.

Quinn: I thought you might need some help at the office again.

Jake: No, I'm just about finished for today. But Quinn, how about we go and have lunch instead? You know that new place, Milligan's, that serves sandwiches.

Quinn: (Smiles) I'd love to.

(Milligan's. Jake and Quinn are sitting at a table. They're eating sandwiches)

Quinn: This place is really great. They have all kinds of low fat sandwiches, I come here quite often. But how would you know about this place?

Jake: One of my clients told me about it. So how was your day, Quinn?

Quinn: (Smiles) It's better that I had expected. (voiceover) I never thought I'd actually enjoy dad's company. So what if anyone sees me with him.

(The rest of the fashion club walk over to their table)

Quinn: What're you doing here?

Tiffany: We've been following you.

Sandi: We were concerned about your erratic behavior. You canceled meetings to be with your dad.

Jake: Yes. I asked Quinn to have lunch with me.

Stacy: That's so sweet. I remember when I was twelve. My dad would have lunch with me every Saturday.

Sandi: Yes, I'm *sure* it would have been sweet when *Quinn* was twelve.

(Quinn laughs nervously)

Jake: (Choked) Twelve? But you're fifteen, aren't you Quinn?

Sandi: I hope not. Because that would mean Quinn got presents for her *sixteenth* birthday under false pretext.

(Quinn buries her face in her hands)

Sandi: Tiffany, Stacy let's go. I'm sure *Quinn* wants to be alone with her dad. It looks like they have a lot to talk about. Starting with her age.

(Morgendorffer livingroom. Daria is watching TV)

TV: I was a woman, but now I'm a man, again. Tonight on Jerry Springer.

Daria: (Voiceover) Enough with the talk. Start fighting, dammit!

(The door opens. It's Jake and Quinn. Quinn walks over and falls on the couch)

Jake: Hi, kiddo.

Daria: Hi, dad. How was your day?

Jake: Great. Quinn came to see me. We had lunch together. I'll get started on making dinner. (walks into the kitchen)

Daria: So how was your day with dad?

Quinn: Humiliating. But I find comfort in the thought that it'll be your turn tomorrow.

Daria: That's what you think. Tom will come with me to dad's office and invite him for a game of golf. But I'll think of you when I'm sitting in the lounge reading a book and having a drink.

Quinn: But how did you get Tom to take dad for a game of golf?

Daria: (Blushing) That's none of your business.

Quinn: (Gets it) Ohmygod!

Daria: (Irritated) Shut up, Quinn. Besides, I'm almost eighteen.

Quinn: (Smirk) Does dad know? Or shall I be the first to tell him.

Daria: You want him to have another heart attack?

Quinn: Damn.

(Thursday. The courtroom. Helen is sitting with Mr. Cox. Eric is questioning Ms. Levitt, Mr. Cox's secretary)

Eric: Tell me, what kind of man is Mr. Cox?

Ms Levitt: I have to tell you that I can't understand how anyone could think badly about him. He's so big and warm. When he takes you into his arms you can just tell how big and warm he is.

(The judge laughs)

Helen: (To Mr. Cox) Why didn't you tell us that your secretary is also your mistress?

Mr. Cox: (To Helen) You never asked. Can't Eric do something? Damage her credibility I mean.

Helen: (To Mr. Cox) She's *our* witness.

(The golf course. Jake, Tom and Daria are standing in the lounge)

Tom: So are you ready to hit a few balls with me?

Jake: I sure am, Tom. A game of golf is a good way to get to know each other. Don't you think so?

Tom: (Looks at Daria, smiles) I sure do.

Daria: (Blushing) You two get going. I'll wait for you here.

(Angier and Kay walk over to them)

Daria: (To Tom) What're your parents doing here?

Tom: (To Daria) Uhm. I might accidentally have mentioned that I was taking your dad for a game of golf.

Angier: Hi, son. And good day to you, Morgendorffer, and you, Daria.

Jake: Please, call me Jake.

Daria: (Voiceover) Don't suck up to him, dad. Please don't suck up. (outloud) Daria is fine. You can keep calling me that.

Angier: As you wish. I heard about you and my son having a game of golf. And I thought I'd tag along. You don't mind, do you Jake? It's been a long time since my son and I played golf together.

Jake: Why of course not, Mr. Sloane.

Daria: (Voiceover) AAAAAAAH!

Angier: That Angier to you, Jake.

Kay: You boys run along. And don't worry, Tom. Your Daria is safe with me.

(Tom gives Daria a pitying look. Then he leaves with Angier and Jake)

Kay: Then it's just the two of us I guess. Let's sit down. There're so many things I want to know about you.

(Morgendorffer livingroom. Quinn is watching TV)

TV Buffy: I could use that exorcism spell now.

TV Willow: I'm sorry, Buffy. But I forgot my remedies at home.

Quinn: (Voiceover) Why can't she do a makeover spell? Put her powers to something useful.

(The door opens. It's Jake and Daria. Daria walks over and falls on the couch)

Jake: Hi, kiddo.

Quinn: Hi, dad. How was your day?

Jake: Very good. I had a great game with Tom and Angier. And Daria, you really enjoyed having a talk with Kay didn't you?

Daria: Sure, dad. I got to study various interrogation techniques first hand.

Jake: That's great, kiddo. I'll make us some dinner. (walks into the kitchen)

Quinn: So how was your day with dad?

Daria: The bad news is that I had to tell Kay about my childhood.

Quinn: So what's the good news?

Daria: Kay is more caring than I thought. She stopped before it became traumatic. So I didn't have to talk about the time I spend with you.

Quinn: (Sarcastic) Oh, ha, ha.

Daria: By the way. Dad's made plans for our sufferings this Sunday.

Quinn: (Nervous) What plans? The stores are closed. Dad can't buy a gun on a Sunday.

Daria: DAD!!

Jake: (Enters from the kitchen) What is it?

Daria: Tell Quinn about your plans for Sunday.

Jake: Oh yes. I thought I'd take us to an amusement park. And then we could roast marshmallows afterwards.

(Quinn laughs nervously. Jake goes back to the kitchen)

Quinn: Look, I don't think I can take any more of this. I know how you enjoy seeing me suffer. But can't we please...

Daria: Actually, I don't enjoy seeing you suffer.

Quinn: (Surprised) You don't?

Daria: No. Because to *see* you suffer, I'd have to *look* at you.

Quinn: Daria! Seriously, I'm ready to move on to plan B. (sighs) Even if it means letting dad relive his childhood traumas.

Daria: We could also try plan C first.

Quinn: There's a plan C? Why didn't you say so?

Daria: I just came up with it. Now you'll sneak into the house tonight through one of the windows.

Quinn: Why would I use a window? Why not simply open the front door?

Daria: Because you forgot your keys.

Quinn: I never forget my keys.

Daria: It's all part of the plan.

Quinn: Why do I have to be the one to sneak through a window? Why don't you?

Daria: Because it's my plan.

Quinn: I'm not sure I like your plan.

Daria: But you haven't even heard it yet.

Quinn: Uhm. Okay.

Daria: Now listen. You come in through the window. I'll wake up dad and tell him that I think there's a burglar in the house, at which point you'll make some noise. Dad will grab one of his gulf clubs and come after you. When he sees you, you'll scream at him not to hit you. He'll get ashamed, and we'll talk about how good it is that we don't have a gun in the house, because then he might have shot you. Dad reconsiders buying a gun and we can have our lives back.

Quinn: I see. But why would I sneak into the house?

Daria: Because you broke your curfew.

Quinn: Are you feeling well Daria?

Daria: Why do you ask?

Quinn: Because I don't have a curfew anymore. Mom said I'd gotten old enough to administer my own time.

Daria: Dad is having difficulties remembering how old we are. You think he knows we don't have curfews?

Quinn: Aahh. Now I understand it.

Daria: Who are you? And what have you done with Quinn?

Quinn: What's that sup... Hey!

(Later. Jake and Helen's bedroom. Jake is asleep in his bed. Daria comes in and wakes him up)

Daria: Wake up, dad.

Jake: Uhm, Daria? What is it?

Daria: I hear noises from the livingroom, I think it might be a burglar.

Jake: A burglar? Here?

Daria: You should get a gulf club to defend us. I'll wait for you outside.

Jake: (Still groggy) But, Daria. Wait.

(Daria steps outside and walk to the top of the stairs. A couple of moments later Jake joins her. He is holding the revolver in his right hand)

Daria: (Whispers) Can you hear it, dad? Someone's down there. I heard her... or him come in through the window.

Jake: (Whispers) You're right, Daria. I can hear him too.

Daria: (Whispers) He's coming up the stairs... (turns to Jake) Did you get a club?

Jake: (Whispers) No, I have this. (holds up the gun for Daria to see)

Daria: (Her eyes goes wide) Where did you get that?

Jake: (Whispers) Quiet, Daria. He might hear us. One of my clients let me borrow it. Now go back to your room.

Daria: (Panicking) DAD, NO! DON'T SHOOT! IT'S QUINN!!

(Daria grabs Jake's right arm and tries to wrestle the gun from him. They both lose their balance and fall down the stairs taking Quinn with them. They all land in a heap at the bottom of the stairs)

Daria: Aaaaah.

Quinn: Uuuuuh.

Daria: Are you okay?

Quinn: I think so. I landed on dad, and I didn't hurt my face.

Daria: I'm fine, I think. I also landed on dad. How are you dad?

Quinn: Dad?

Daria: Dad?

Daria & Quinn: DAD!!!

(Early Friday morning. Cedar of Lawndale Hospital. Jake is lying in a bed. Dr Phillips is talking to him)

Dr Phillips: You have some bruised ribs and a slight concussion. You should be fine, but I must recommend that you stay here a few days for observation.

Jake: What about my daughters? Are they okay?

Dr Phillips: Why shouldn't they be? They're not the ones who fell down the stairs.

Jake: (Confused) But...

Dr Phillips: They're waiting outside to see you. They wouldn't go home, so we let them spend the night here. You have some very devoted daughters, Mr. Morgendorffer. I'll leave you alone with them now.

(Dr Phillips leaves. Daria and Quinn walks in)

Jake: (Relieved) You're okay. And you came to see me.

Daria: That or I was driven by nostalgia to see this place again.

Quinn: (Whines) I'm not okay. My bruises have bruises. But luckily my face didn't get hurt.

Jake: (Sighs) Girls, I've got it all figured out now.

Quinn: (Nervous) Really?

Daria: (Nervous) Is that so?

Jake: Yes. Daria you heard it was Quinn. And you became afraid I might shoot her. But the gun wasn't loaded. All I wanted was to scare the burglar with it.

Daria: You certainly had me scared.

Quinn: I promise to remember my keys from now on.

Jake: I guess you must really be mad at me now.

Daria: Of course we're not mad. How could we be mad at you, dad?

Quinn: That's right. No hard feelings.

Jake: Really?

Daria: Really.

Quinn: I love you, dad.

Jake: I don't have a gun permit. When the police find out what happened...

Daria: Find what out? We haven't said anything.

Quinn: And we're not going to.

Jake: But Helen will find out...

Daria: You know, dad. I don't think mom needs to know about this.

Quinn: We'll tell her it was an accident. Like, you tripped over something Daria forgot at the top of the stairs.

Daria: There's no reason why mom should find out you got a gun.

Quinn: Absolutely none.

Jake: (Pause) Girls, you know how I've often wished one of you had been a boy. But I don't anymore. Because no son could be half as good as you two.

(Daria and Quinn try to say something but fails. Instead they both lean over and hug him)


Daria & Quinn: (Let go of him) Sorry.

(Outside Jake's room)

Quinn: What's that feeling when words get stuck in your throat, and your stomach seems to curl up?

Daria: That's love.

Quinn: No, it was very unpleasant.

Daria: Then it's shame.

Quinn: So that's what shame feels like.

Daria: Yeah. And all it took was for us to almost kill dad.

Quinn: Me? It was your plan.

Daria: So? You're the one who went along with it.

Quinn: (Irritated) Daria! (normal voice) To think dad already had a gun. All that time we spent with him was for nothing. For nothing. At least I can have my life back now.

Daria: We have to come visit dad while he's here.

Quinn: An hour a day. I can do that.

Daria: We also have to try and keep his consulting business running.

Quinn: Can't it run itself?

Daria: Not if it's going to help pay our way through college it can't.

Quinn: (Scared) You mean...

Daria: (Sighs) No social life while dad's in the hospital.

Quinn: You underestimate my stamina, Daria. I can go to school, visit dad, do my homework, look after dad's business and still go on a date tonight.

Daria: I don't think you got any more sleep that me. And all I got was three hours.

Quinn: But that was because I was worried about dad. Now that I know dad's going to be fine, I can sleep normally again.

Daria: Could you stop talking? Your Quinn-logic is hurting my head.

(The courtroom. A crying Mr. Cox is being led away by the court officers)

Eric: At least we got the DA to drop the animal abuse charges.

Helen: Yes, I suppose ten years is better than ten years and two months.

Eric: So how did you like handling a real criminal case?

Helen: Eric, if I ever ask to do this again...

Eric: I'll shoot you.

Helen: Thanks. I wish I was home already. Jake and the girls are probably having a wonderful time.

(That evening in Robert's car. Quinn is sitting next to Robert. She's fallen asleep. Again.)

Robert: Wake up, Ma-am. We're there.

Quinn: (In her sleep) Leave me alone, Daria. I don't want to type anymore letters.

Robert: I'm not Daria.

Quinn: (Wakes up) Sorry, Zachary. I just dosed off...

Robert: (Strained voice) My name is *Robert*.

Quinn: (Still sleepy) Oh. I hope it's a good movie. Will you get us some popcorn?

Robert: What movie are you talking about? I'm taking us to Chez Pierre!

(Daria's dream. Daria is sitting on the defendant's chair in a courtroom. Helen is the judge)

Dream Helen: Our next case is the Morgendorffer's against Daria. She is charged with the murder of Jake.

Dream Daria: But dad's not dead, he's in the hospital.

Dream Helen: The hospital *morgue*, you mean! You'll get the chair for this, young lady.

Dream Daria: That's not true, dad's still alive!

(Helen's phone starts ringing. Helen answers it. But the phone keeps ringing)

Dream Helen: Yes you can bring the chair in here now.

Dream Daria: DAD'S NOT DEAD!!!

(Daria wakes up. She is lying in Helen and Jake's bed. The phone next to the bed is ringing. Daria answers it. Split screen between Daria and Quinn)

Daria: Hello.

Quinn: It's me. Can you come and pick me up.

(Jake's car. Daria is driving Quinn home)

Quinn: And then he throws me out of the car and tells me to walk. How am I supposed to walk in high heel shoes? (pause) Well, what're you waiting for?

Daria: Waiting for what?

Quinn: Aren't you going to make fun of me?

Daria: No.

Quinn: Why not?

Daria: Believe it or not, I'm grateful you woke me up. I was having the second worst nightmare of my life (3).

Quinn: Family court dream?

Daria: (Surprised) You too?

Quinn: Yeah. You know, someone ought to pay for all we're going through.

Daria: Oh, she'll pay all right.

(Saturday. Jake's office. Quinn is on the phone. Daria is using Jake's computer)

Quinn: I'm sorry, but Mr. Morgendorffer can't come to the phone right now. He has a severe cold and has lost his voice. But he'll send you everything you need by e-mail later today. Goodbye. (hangs up)

Daria: Did you know that the product I'm helping this guy market can cause allergies?

Quinn: Please, Daria, not that again. Now it's allergies, last time is was food poisoning, and before that it was radioactivity. You need to think positive.

Daria: Positive?

Quinn: I mean college.

Daria: (Voiceover) College, college, college (outloud) It doesn't help. Did you know that the guy you just talked to sells stuff that can cause cancer?

Quinn: Then try thinking about how going to college will mean leaving Lawndale.

Daria: (Voiceover) College means leaving Lawndale. Leaving... good! (smiles, outloud) That helped. Now let's cause some cancer shall we?

Quinn: You're on.

(Helen enters the office)

Helen: (Smiles) Girls.

Quinn: Mom, you're back.

Daria: How was the trial?

Helen: Didn't you see it on the news?

Daria: We've been too busy to follow it. Spending time with dad. Looking after his business.

Helen: Jake told me all about how you both spent a lot of time with him when I went to see him in the hospital. That was really sweet of you. How clumsy of him to fall down the stairs.

Daria: Yeah. How clumsy.

Quinn: You know dad.

Helen: But he didn't seem to know that you two were looking after his business for him.

Daria: It's a surprise.

Quinn: It's the least we can do for him.

Daria: And mission accomplished. There's no gun in the house. (voiceover) It's right here in the office.

Helen: That's good. So how was your week?

Quinn: Mom... You know how some old people sit in an old folks home, waiting for their children to come visit them?

Daria: But their children never come? They won't even call?

Quinn: Finally they start wondering what it was they did to get their kids so pissed off?

Helen: (Sighs, hands Daria the platinum card) Knock yourselves out, girls.

(Later that day. Daria and Quinn are driving home in Jake's car. The back seat is filled with Quinn's shopping bags)

Quinn: (Satisfied) The joys of a new wardrobe.

Daria: And I finally got that heating cabinet. Now I can grow my own bacteria stems.

Quinn: I wonder. (pause) Should we feel ashamed for ripping mom off?

Daria: (Ponders this for a moment) Have we pushed her down the stairs?

Quinn: No.

Daria: Then there's no need to feel shame.


(1) Unless you've seen the movie you will not get this joke. Fans of "Millennium" might have a clue.

(2) "The Matrix"

(3) In "Monster" Daria dreams she's Quinn.