Woke Up This Morning

By

Stefanie Acela

 

Monday morning.Raven, Rebecca, Zia, Heather, Jonathan, and Alexander are heading to school in Rebeccaís Vista Cruiser.ďWoke Up This Morning (Chosen One Mix)Ē by A3 is playing in the stereo.Right now, the group are somewhere on Lawndaleís highway system, which might as well be Washington DCís beltway.

 

Rebecca:Did we take a wrong turn into DC?

Raven:Are there any idiots pulling to the side of the road and walking to work?

Rebecca:I wonder if that happens in Lawndale, too.This is my first time driving on these roads, and it looks rather scary.

Zia:As long as you break the speed limit like everyone else, you donít have to worry about it.

Rebecca:Good point [pushes down on the gas, taking the car from 65 to 85 MPH].

Alexander:[Reading a certain teen magazine] Oh-my-god!Look at Justin Timberlake!Oh!Heís sooooo dreamy!

Jonathan:[Looks at the magazine in disgust] What the hell is that?

Alexander:Itís Val!Itís, like, the coolest teen magazine ever!

Jonathan:Really? [Scoffs] Looks more like a piece of crap to me.

Alexander:Oh, like, how would you know, Jon?Youíre just jealous because the guys in here are hotter than you!

Jonathan:Oh, is that so?For your information, Alex, Val has got to be the most shallow, image-oriented piece of trash ever printed.Their goal is to screw up young girls by thinking that if they donít look like some anorexic, brain dead twit who looks like the bride of Rob Zombie, then those poor girls will be lost souls.

Alexander:[Puts down magazine and makes ďWhateverĒ sign] What-ever!Hey Becca!What do you think about these hot guys?

 

Alexander holds up magazine in Rebeccaís rear-view mirror, causing her to panic and swerve into the far left lane.

 

Rebecca:[After regaining composure]Alex, could you not do that again, please?Hitting guardrails and other cars like itís a demolition derby wasnít in my daily planner today.

Alexander:Sorry.

Heather:Isnít Val the great white dope who thinks sheís a teenager?

Rebecca:Hold on a minute [listens to a questionable part of ďWoke Up This MorningĒ].Okay.He said, ďShave my body.Ē

Raven:No, Becca, he didnít.

Rebecca:Hello?He did!

Raven:No, he said, ďShake my body.Ē

Rebecca:Um, dear.He said ďShave my body,Ē not ďshake

Raven:Okay, suppose he really did say that.Why would he need to shave his body?

Rebecca:He needs to shave because he needs to be clean.

Raven:Couldnít he just take a shower?

Rebecca:Well, maybe a shower isnít good enough to get him clean.

Raven:And by shaving his body, he will be cleansed of what, exactly?

Rebecca:Heíll be cleansed of all negative energy from doing all of those mob activities.

Raven:Becca, the songís not even about that.

Rebecca:I know that, but maybe the narrator is the one in need of the shaving.

Heather:[While Raven and Rebecca continue their discussion] O-kay.SoÖ

Zia:About Val being the great white dope?

Heather:Yeah!I mean, what kind of a moron is she?!

Zia: Tell me about it!Do you remember how she reviewed our album?

Jonathan:Oh god, donít remind me.ďThe Wake is a really jiggy album made by really edgy teens.If you like depressing music thatís cool, then Sundown is the band for you.Theyíre really wack!ĒIf you ask me, Iíd like to ďwackĒ her in the head with a frying pan!

Heather:You know what the sad part is?That was the entire review!I mean, címon!At least listen to the damn album or something before writing about it [sighs in frustration]!

Zia:You know whatís even sadder?The fact that Val is nothing more than a teen journal written by an airhead whoís 30.

Jonathan:Fuhgeddaboutit!Rolling Stone writes better stuff than that garbage over there.

Heather:Readerís Digest is better than that garbage over there.

Alexander:Aww, you guys are just a bunch of whiners.I mean, just look at the super-cool pics [holds up magazine and shows it around]!

Zia:Yeah.The super-cool pics with Val in every single damn shot.

Heather:I bet a day-old doughnut looks better than Val.

Jonathan:Speaking of doughnuts, hey Raven, Becca, can we stop by somewhere and pick up some breakfast?Heather and I didnít have time this morniní.

Rebecca:Itís just as well.I canít think straight with all of these cars around me on the freeway.

Jonathan:Freeway my ass!We had to pay just to use this clogged vein.I wouldnít be surprised if Lawndale dies from a heart attack Ďcuz of this.

Raven:Youíd figure turnpikes would allow more freedom.Oh well.[Sees road sign ahead] Hey, letís turn off here and go check out that BP station they just put up.I bet they have something there to eat.

Rebecca:Okay.I need to put more gas in the tank anyway.

 

The gang exit the beltway and pull into the BP station/truck stop for doughnuts and gas.Rebecca pulls the car up to the first available pump and shuts off the engine.All exit the car.

 

Rebecca:Wow!This place certainly looks nice!You guys go on ahead and Iíll meet you inside.Donít take too long, though; we have to put in a long day in hell and we canít be late.

 

The rest of the group all go inside the BP convenience store/restaurant to check it out.

 

Jonathan:This place sure is fancy!

Alexander:Uh, itís a convenience store, not Chez Pierre.

Jonathan:Yeah, but does Chez Pierre have a hot dog rotisserie like that [points at a hot dog rotisserie similar to those found at carnivals]?

Alexander:[Sighs in frustration] Iím going to look at the magazines [walks over to the news stand].

 

At the other end of the store...

 

Zia:Maybe we should grab some soda for our lunch today.

Raven:Hmm, are you sure we just need soda?

Heather:Heís right!We need, like, chips or somethiní.

 

After using her gas card at the pay pump, Rebecca moves the car to a parking spot in front of the store, then goes inside.

 

Rebecca:[Spots Jonathan] Hey Jon!What do you have there?

Jonathan:A hot dog.Forget doughnuts, this is my breakfast.

Alexander:A hot dog for breakfast?!Eeeewwww!

Jonathan:Oh, you got a better idea, Quinn Jr.?

Alexander:Duh, Jonathan!Cereal!Doughnuts!Anything but that!And stop calling me Quinn Jr., okay?!

Jonathan:Sure, Sandi Sr.

Alexander:[In frustration] Ooooohhh!

Raven:[Coming from other end of store with Heather and Zia] Hey Becca.We got some stuff for lunch today.Hope you like Munchos [hands her a Grab Bag of Munchos].

Rebecca:You know I do, sweetie [leaves to buy a hot dog].

 

Zia and Heather make catcalls to Raven.

 

Raven:[While grinning with embarrassment] Oh stop!

Zia:I bet she has a crush on you, sweetie.

Heather:Yeah, Raven.I bet she wants to take you on a trip.

Zia:Around the world and back.

Heather/Zia: [Sings] And you donít have to move--you just sit still [giggles].

Raven:[Shakes his head while still grinning with embarrassment]Shut up!

Zia:Címon.Letís go get some hot dogs for breakfast.

Heather:Yeah!Hot dogs rule!

 

Back out on the highway, with the song back on the stereo...

 

Heather:So, where did you find that song, anyway?

Rebecca:Oh, someone from some record company sent over a promo copy of The Sopranos soundtrack to our new office a week ago.

Raven:And weíve been listening to it ever since.

Jonathan:[Eyeing Alexanderís new magazine] Whatís that?

Alexander:Itís the new issue of Val!

Jonathan:You just canít help yourself, can you?

Alexander:As if [starts flipping through the magazine]!

Jonathan:Fuhgeddaboutit!

Zia:Hey, do you remember when Daria had to put up with that twit for an entire day?

Heather:Tell me about it!It was so pathetic just seeing her trying to fit in with us that it was funny.

Jonathan:Too funny [all but Alexander laugh; he scowls at everyone]!

Rebecca:[Stops laughing and regains composure] Itís too bad Daria didnít go with Val to New York, though.

Jonathan:Yeah.She couldíve met our Uncle Tony while he was on business.

Heather:Tony Jr. and Meadow wouldíve hit it off with Daria, too![Wistfully] If she only had the chance.

Raven:At least we donít have to deal with the great white dope anytime ever.

Rebecca:What a national nightmare that would be [all but Alexander laugh again; Alexís mouth drops at what he sees in the magazine; Rebecca notices him in the rear-view mirror]!Alex?You okay back there?

Alexander:[Slowly] Oh... my... god.

Jonathan:What is it?Itís not Ricky Martin, is it?

Alexander:No.No, itís not.

Rebecca:Well, do you want to share the note with the rest of the class or what?

Alexander:You wonít believe this, guys.

Heather:Tell us already, Alex!

Alexander:[Quickly] Weíre going to be on the cover of Val next month!

Rebecca:WHAT?!

 

Rebecca jerks the wheel of the Vista Cruiser and quickly exits stage left into a ditch.The crew panics as the Cruiser then heads down the hill onto the underpass near Lawndale High.They go across the highway, swerve a hard left, go off-road again, and finally stop right next to the fence that separates the highway from the LHS football field.The crew immediately exits the Cruiser.

 

Jonathan:This is your fault, Alex!

Alexander:My fault?!Beccaís the one who freaked out and nearly got us killed!

Heather:Well, if you hadnít scared us like that, Becca wouldnít have gone down the bunny trail and crash into a goddamn fence!

Rebecca:Will all of you please shut the f--k up [everyone goes quiet]?!Alex, where the hell does it say that weíre going to be on the cover of Val?

Alexander:[As he hands magazine to Rebecca] Right in the back page, under Coming Next Month in Val...

Zia: Iím gonna be sick [throws up on the grass].

Rebecca:[Reading out loud] ďVal goes back to Lawndale to spend a day with depression rockers, Sundown!Itís gonna be totally wack!Ē

Raven:And Iím gonna totally yack the next time I hear ďwackĒ used in a sentence.Who did this to us?

 

All glare at Alexander.

 

Alexander:Excuse me, but I didnít put a call into Val to have her interview us!

Rebecca: Well somebody did, and I know it wasnít any of us.

Heather:Yeah!We all hate Val... [glaring at Alex] well, almost all of us, anyway.

Alexander:I swear, you guys!It wasnít me!

Jonathan:Yeah?!Well, when I find the creep who did this to us, Iím gonna bust their frigginí legs!

Rebecca:No one is going to be busting any ďfrigginí legs,Ē Jon.Letís just calm down and go to school, okay?

Raven:[Looking through fence] Isnít that our football field?

 

All gather to see and confirm the findings.They also notice that the Cruiser took out a part of the fencing, which is now behind the car.

 

Rebecca:[Realizing what just happened] Uh-oh.

Jonathan:That looks really bad.

Zia:I hope no one saw us do that.

Heather:No one from our school, you mean.

Raven:What are we going to do?

Rebecca:Letís just get our things and walk to school.

Alexander:Will the Cruiser still be here when we get back?

Rebecca:Donít worry about it, Alex.Iíll call a tow truck during lunch and have them check it out.

Alexander:What about the fencing?Ms. Liís going to kill us if she finds out what we just did!

Jonathan:Fuhgeddaboutit!Ms. Liís got plenty of money.Letís just go, okay?

Rebecca:Letís.Oh, Alex, bring this with you [hands the magazine to him by hitting him in the chest with it].

 

The group grab their backpacks from the back of the Cruiser and duck under the gap created when the car struck the fence.

 

Lawndale High School.Hallway.Daria and Jane are at Dariaís locker discussing Sundownís upcoming concert.

 

Jane:So, Daria, are you going to the concert in High Hills Park next month?

Daria:I think Iíll pass.

Jane:Oh, come on, Daria!Itíll be fun!

Daria:As much as I like Sundown, I donít think Iím up to seeing two concerts in a row from them.

Jane:Youíll change your mind when you find out who the opening act is [holds up a poster designed by her; Daria reads it and becomes a little excited]!

Daria:Trent?!I thought his band wasnít good enough to be on Sundownís indie label, let alone share the same stage with them.

Jane:It may be awhile before they are, but they have been working very hard recently, so theyíve earned the right to open for the gods of hard gothic metallic dance music.

Daria:I guess competition does allow for improvement, even among the dead.

 

As Daria and Jane continue to talk, Mr. OíNeill spots them and quickly walks over to them.

 

Mr. OíNeill:[Urgently] Daria, Jane, I was wondering if you two have seen Raven, Rebecca, and their friends.I really need to talk to them before class starts!

 

Sundown turn down the corner and make their way towards their lockers when Daria, Jane, and Mr. OíNeill spot them.

 

Jane:Well, look whoís here!

Mr. OíNeill:[To the group] Oh guys!Iím so glad you guys are here today!

Rebecca:Well, weíre glad to see you, too!

Jonathan:To what do we owe the honour of your presence?

Mr. OíNeill:I have such excellent news for your band!I... oh, Iím so excited that I forgot that I canít tell you this in public.[To Daria and Jane] Sorry Jane, Daria, but I can only tell this news to them [whisks the band to the faculty lounge].

Jane:Wow!It must be something really special if only those guys can know about it!

Daria:I have a feeling weíre about to go through something really wrong again.

Jane:Oh Daria, you worry too much.

 

Meanwhile, in the faculty lounge...

 

Mr. OíNeill:You wonít believe whoís waiting for us to call her!Itís... itís Val!You know, the Val!

Rebecca:Oh, you mean the one who writes that very wrong teen magazine?

Mr. OíNeill:Thatís the one!

Jonathan:[To Rebecca] I donít think he heard the ďwrongĒ part.

Mr. OíNeill:Anyway, Val is coming to Lawndale to spend an entire week with all of you!

Sundown:WHAT?!

Mr. OíNeill:I know exactly how you feel.I would be shocked, too, if a big teen magazine editor came here to interview me.You must feel really lucky to have such an honour [starts dialing telephone]!

Heather:[Under her breath] Yeah, really fíing lucky.

Raven:[To Heather] I hear ya.[To Mr. OíNeill] So, how did you manage to hook us up with the fruitcake?

Mr. OíNeill:Hold on a minute.[To person on other end of phone] Yes, this is Mr. OíNeill, Sundownís English teacher.Is Val there?Of course, Iíll hold.[To group] Well, while all of you were touring with Britney Spears--great performance, by the way!

Sundown:[Calmly] Thanks.No problem.

Mr. OíNeill:Anyway, while you were out, I sent some of your promo CDs and materials to the magazines you had on your list of respectable publications.

Zia:And?

Mr. OíNeill:And, when I saw Val in your list of ďpondlifeĒ publications, I was a little shocked that you wouldnít share your art with her, let alone anyone else on that list, so...

Rebecca:[Interrupting] So, you let your heart get in the way of our edict and you mailed promos to everybody on our lists, even Val, right?

Mr. OíNeill:Yes!But then, I receive a call from Val a few weeks later, and we start talking about you and all of the neat things about you!The next thing I know, Iím setting up a meeting with her, and now... [Val picks up phone] Oh my gosh, itís Val! [Talking to Val] Yes, theyíre all right here, and theyíre just dying to talk to you![To group] Who wants it?

Rebecca:Iíll take it[takes phone and starts talking to Val].Hi!Iím fine.Yeah, weíre all big fans of your work, especially our electronics master, Alexander [Alex bounces when Rebecca mentions his name to Val; the rest of the group just look at him in a confused manner].Well, we canít stop you.I guess weíll see you in a week.Okay.Bye-bye [hangs up phone].[To everyone] Well, it looks like weíre going to have company next week.God help us all.

Mr. OíNeill:Now, we have to keep this a secret.Val doesnít want anyone to know sheís coming. Oh Rebecca, gang, we did it!Weíre going to spread the positive message of Sundown to a broader audience [hugs Rebecca way too tightly]!

Rebecca:[Muffled, while patting Mr. OíNeillís back] Thatís great, Mr. OíNeill, but youíre crushing my solar plexus!

Mr. OíNeill:[Quickly releases her] Sorry!

 

Hallway.Later in the day.Raven and Rebecca are with Daria and Jane at Ravenís locker discussing Valís imminent return to Lawndale.

 

Rebecca:I canít believe Mr. OíNeill did that to us.

Raven:We gave him a job, and he didnít exactly obey orders.

Jane:I donít know.Maybe heís doing you a favour by sending those promos to the ďpondlife.Ē

Rebecca:In what way?

Daria:I guess he just wants you to do well in your career, and by sending your music to magazines like Val, youíll have a wider audience.

Rebecca: I donít know if I want that kind of audience, though.

Jane:What do you mean?You toured with Britney Spears!

Daria:Yeah.You basically played your music to the same audience who reads vapid teen magazines like Val.

Rebecca:And thatís why we made that list of magazines!

Raven:So we could avoid attracting the wrong crowd.

Daria:That still doesnít explain why you spent your summer with Americaís teen pop princess.

Rebecca:Well, I-I-I had a crush on Britney at the time, and after I spent some time with her, I just fell in love with her personality.

Raven:Besides, Britney loved our work and wanted us to tour with her.

Rebecca:We just couldnít refuse that opportunity of a lifetime!

Raven:And we ended up taking in some of her fans into our Dominion.

Jane:I guess that makes sense, but that still doesnít explain why you didnít want to send your work to Val and others like her.

Rebecca:Itís because we want our Dominion to expand due to their appreciation of our work and of us, not because they saw us on some vapid teen Ďzine and just decided to hop aboard.

Raven:It would eventually ruin the fan base and us.

Rebecca:But, I guess we can survive this.

Raven:If Sleater-Kinney can, then so can we.

Daria:I guess.

Ms. Li:[Over PA system] Will Ms. Milano please come into my office for a normal, everyday, routine conference?This is so exciting [giggles]!

Rebecca:Hmm.I wonder why she just wants to talk to me?

Raven:Well, maybe it is just about you.

Rebecca:I guess.Well, Iíll see you later [heads off to Ms. Liís office]!

Raven/Daria/Jane:See ya!

 

In Ms. Liís office...

 

Ms. Li:Itís so exciting to hear that Val is coming to Lawndale next week!I just canít wait another minute!

Rebecca:Uh, how did you find out about that?It was supposed to be a secret.

Ms. Li:[Quickly] Security cameras.[Normal pace] Anyway, in honour of this major event, I came up with this schedule of events for her stay during the coming week [hands Rebecca a paper].

Rebecca:[Reading] Monday-School Colours Day.Tuesday-Come As You Are Day.La la la... la.Friday-Sundown Appreciation Day?

Ms. Li:Oh yes.On that day, everyone will dress in ďgothicĒ attire...

Rebecca:Weíre not goth.

Ms. Li:And your band will be holding a special concert/dance later that evening.

Rebecca:I see.And why are we playing this ďdance?Ē

Ms. Li:Well, I figured that it would be easier to rake in the money needed for a new fence by holding a dance, instead of having you and your band repair the old one.

Rebecca:You saw that?

Ms. Li:Yes, so you have no choice but to play, for the glory of Lawndale High.

Rebecca:Okay.So, why didnít you call in the rest of my friends?

Ms. Li:I figured it would be easier to talk to one of you, and since youíre the head of the band, well, why not you?Besides, I canít have six people in the same room with me in it at the same time--damn fire codes!

 

Saturday morning.Lane house.Raven, Rebecca, Jane, and Daria are in Janeís room.Trent is still asleep.Jane is painting and Daria is watching Sick Sad World, and Raven and Rebecca are arguing over some certain lyrics.

 

SSW Announcer:A math genius perfects nuclear fusion, but without a brain!Howís that possible?Brainless mathematics, next on Sick Sad World!

Raven:Okay, so youíre saying that he would shave his body to rid himself of the bad karma?

Rebecca:Well, yeah.

Raven:I think he could do that by just shaking his body.

Rebecca:You just canít shake bad karma like that off your body, Raven.You have to shave it off!

Raven:With what?Some kind of cosmic razor?

Rebecca:A karmic razor.

Daria:[Eavesdropping] I bet thatís what King Gillette had in mind when he invented the disposable razor.

Rebecca:See!Daria agrees with me.

Daria:Actually, I...

Raven:I think Daria is saying that youíre nuts.

Daria:Well...

Rebecca:Daria did not say I was nuts.She thinks youíre nuts!

Jane:Iím nuts, youíre nuts, weíre all nuts, letís call the whole thing off!

Daria:[Seeing painting] Whatís that?

Jane:Just an interpretation of their argument, with an added twist.

Raven:Hmm.Youíve managed to put Val in concrete shoes with a razor to some guy, orÖ guys?

Jane:Yeah.I had to put the two of you in somehow.

Rebecca:That reminds me.Daria, youíve had experience with Val, correct?

Daria:Enough to know how much of a nut job she is.

Rebecca:Good.Can you come with Raven and me to Cíest La Veal tonight?Valís coming here this afternoon, and weíve made reservations.

Daria:Why canít the rest of your band come?

Raven:Ziaís with her parents on a camping trip--they left yesterday, Heather and Jonathan are going to see the Redskins game against Pittsburgh, and Alex is going clubbing.

Rebecca:Though Alex would really love to come with us to meet [with awe] his heroine [bats her eyes]!

Raven:Iím surprised he doesnít shoot her up by now.

Daria:Now thatís something Iíd like to see.

Rebecca:You know what?So would I.Raven, could you call Alex and tell him to change his plans.

Raven:Sure [grabs phone and dials Alex].

Rebecca:Okay, so, as I was asking, will you please come?I donít want to deal with her alone.

Daria:I donít know...

Rebecca:Jane, you can come, too.

Jane:Cool.Will I need a dress, because I donít have one.

Rebecca:Donít worry.I have some things you can wear.

Jane:Cool.

Rebecca:Now, what else will it take to get you to go?

Daria:Well, I guess I can come along.

Rebecca:Great!Letís see... We have you, me, Raven, Jane, Mr. OíNeill, Trent...

Daria:Trent?!

Rebecca:Yeah!Iíve heard his band lately, and I think it may be time to expand the Nightwind family.

Raven:Hey Becca!Alex is coming with us tonight, if he can find the right things to wear.

Rebecca:Which is why Iím also inviting Quinn.Those two seem to be able to get it together when theyíre together.

Daria:With half-a-brain each, I donít see why not.

Jane:At least theyíll be talking to each other tonight.

Rebecca:Rock.

 

Saturday Evening.Outside Ravenís home.Rebecca pulls the Cruiser up to the curb, and then steps out.She has on a classic black dress, low-heeled black polished leather dress shoes... well, think Audrey Hepburn with a Ď90s flair.Anyway, she walks up the door and rings the bell.Raven opens the door.

 

Rebecca:Hello, my sweet.

Raven:[In awe] Hi!Wow!You look beautiful!

Rebecca:Thank you.I love how you look, too.

Raven:[Smiles] Yeah.Itís kinda hard to find a Ď30s gangster outfit in womenís sizes.

Rebecca:Well, you look very cute in it.

Raven:Thanks.Ready?

Rebecca:When you are.

 

Raven and Rebecca walk over to her car, arm-in-arm.Raven then opens the driverís side door for Rebecca, and finally he climbs in on the passenger side.Rebecca then turns on the stereo, and ďTwilight ZoneĒ by Golden Earring starts playing.

 

Raven:So, who are we picking up first?

Rebecca:Alex and Quinn are at Dariaís house, so theyíre first.Then we go over to Janeís to pick up Daria, Jane, Tom, and Trent.

Raven:Cool.

 

Later that evening, the group is waiting for Val to arrive in Cíest La Veal.They are seated at a table in a private area overlooking the lake. The arrangement, going clockwise, is an empty chair at the 12 oíclock position, which is facing the outdoor entrance, for Val, then Rebecca, Raven, Daria, Quinn, Alexander, Trent, Tom, Jane, and another empty chair for Mr. OíNeill.

 

Trent:Wow!This is a really great place.I bet itís expensive, too.

Jane:Yeah.How did you two pay for this?

Rebecca:Oh, Valís footing the bill.

Raven:Well, before Val and Mr. OíNeill arrive, the two of us have something to tell you, Trent.

Rebecca:Trent, when you go home tonight, call your bandmates, because you and your group are our first signees to Nightwind [all applaud the news]!

Trent:Thanks.When do we start recording?

Raven:Can your group start after this next week, considering our arriving situation?

Trent:Sure.

Jane:Looks like weíll soon no longer have to worry about paying the bills around the house, now that we have a rock star waiting in the wings!

Tom:Maybe you can do your brotherís first album cover.

Trent:Will you do it, Janie?

Jane:Why not?I have some photos I took for Sundownís debut lying around.†† We might be able to come up with some ideas from there.

Trent:Cool.

Daria:[Checking watch] Whenís Val going to be here?

Tom:Whoís Val?

Jane:Some crazy teen magazine editor who thinks sheís still a teenager.

Daria:If you consider 35 as still being a teenager.

Quinn:[Staring out onto the lake] Isnít this great, Alex?We get to go to a really cool French restaurant overlooking a moonlit lake... [sighs] Isnít it romantic?

Alexander:Yeah.Itís too bad that itís kinda ruined with our friends being here and all.

Quinn:Yeah, that does kinda ruin it.

Alexander:Iím so excited that Valís coming here to Lawndale again!

Quinn:Well, to be quite honest, Val wasnít exactly right in the head.

Alexander:What do you mean?I think sheís the coolest!

Quinn:Youíll see what I mean when she arrives.

 

A few minutes later...

 

Raven:Is she supposed to be fashionably late, or just late?

Rebecca:No kidding!She was supposed to be here at seven, and now itís eight!

Daria:Maybe sheís still trying to choose which lip gloss to wear with her Sundown baby-tee.

Raven:I guess.

 

Rebecca looks up from the table and spots Mr. OíNeill entering the restaurant.She motions to him to come over quickly.

 

Mr. OíNeill:Wow!You all are certainly dressed to the nines tonight!

Rebecca:Take the seat next to Jane, Mr. OíNeill [he sits down].

Raven:So, whereís Val, Mr. OíNeill?

Mr. OíNeill:She said that sheíll be here in thirty minutes.

Rebecca:I see.Okay, well, Iím going to freshen up.[To Raven] Iíll be right back, sweetie [gets up, kisses Raven on the cheek, and goes to the restroom].

 

All make catcalls to Raven as soon as Rebecca is out of sight.

 

Jane:Ooooh, Raven!It looks like she wants you.

Raven:[Embarrassed] Noooo!Sheís just being really nice, thatís all.

Quinn:Oh come on, Raven!I can tell just by the way she looks at you that she wants you.

Raven:[Still embarrassed] I donít know.

Tom:I say you should go for it.

Trent:Yeah.You two would make quite a couple.

Daria:You two would be the envy of the most popular couple at Lawndale High.

Alexander:I know you two would not only be the most popular couple, but possibly the sexiest couple in Lawndale, girlfriend!

Mr. OíNeill:I donít know if they should be the envy of everyone at our school, guys.Jealousy is a very scary thing to see, and very destructive.I think Raven and Rebecca should set a positive example of what a couple could be, rather than compete against another.

Quinn:The real world doesnít work that way, Mr. OíNeill.Raven, be honest with us.Do you have feelings for her, or not?

Raven:[Blushing] Oh my!All of you are playing matchmaker for me... I donít know what to say [pauses for a minute]!Okay, I do have feelings for her.I mean, Iíve known her all of my life.Sheís my true best friend.Weíve done a lot together, and weíve been through a lot together.Hell, we even have our parentsí deaths in common.Iím just afraid that if I ask her to be my lover, and if something goes wrong, we wonít be able to be friends after the breakup.

Mr. OíNeill:They say that the best relationships start out as friendships.I think you two may actually be more than just friends.

Raven:Like soul mates?

Mr. OíNeill:Actually, more like twin flames.I read this book recently, and it said that sometimes a reincarnated soul will split into two or more pieces, in order to gain more experience before returning to the astral plane.Those are known as twin flames.

Raven:So youíre saying that Becca and I are the same soul, and we just happen to arrive back here nearly four months apart?

Mr. OíNeill:Yes!Thatís exactly what Iím saying, Raven!

Tom:I donít understand this new age stuff Mr. OíNeill is telling you, but he is right about how friendships can lead to some of the best relationships anyone can have.

Raven:So, I should ask her to be my lover?

All Others:YES!!

Raven:Well, it is working out for John and Christine of Boss Hog--hell, theyíre married--so why not the two of us!

Mr. OíNeill:Thatís the spirit!

 

Rebecca returns from the restroom.

 

Rebecca:Iím back [sits down next to Raven and Mr. OíNeill]!

Raven:Cool.Iím going to freshen up myself now, so if youíll excuse me...

All Others:Sure.Cool.

Raven:Iíll be back [gets up and leaves for the restroom].

Rebecca:I am so in love with him!I wonder if he realizes it.

Daria:Why not just tell him how you feel about him?

Rebecca:Iím afraid he wonít be able to reciprocate.

Jane:[To herself] Those two definitely have something in common.[Out loud] Rebecca, what if I were to tell you that he might have some feelings towards you?

Rebecca:You really think so, Jane?

Trent:Sheís never been wrong about things like this before.

Rebecca:[Sighs] Raven and I have been like this [crosses her fingers and holds them up quickly] since we were babies.I mean, we have been through heaven and hell and back again throughout our entire lives!I feel as though I am Raven and he is I, and itís the strongest when we are together!Lately, whenever I see him, I have this intense, fiery desire build up inside of me, and... and... and...

All others:What?!

Rebecca:[Passionately] HE-MAKES-MY-BLOOD-BOIL!!!I want him, I need him, and I desire him now!

Mr. OíNeill:[Shocked, like everyone else at the table] Oh my!Now I know how Ms. Barch feels when she sees me!

Quinn:What?

Mr. OíNeill:[Realizing he said that out loud] Nothing!

Alexander:All I can say is ďwow!ĒIf you two got together, you would be the most popular, the most passionate, and the sexiest couple to ever walk the halls of Lawndale High!

Daria:Not to mention the scariest.

Rebecca:Iím sorry about that.Itís just that I really love him...

Tom:Donít worry about.Someday, youíll two will be in sync with each other and the two of you will finally hook-up.

Jane:And set fire to the halls of [as Ms. Li] Lawndale High.

 

All laugh at Janeís impersonation when Raven returns.

 

Raven:Whatís so funny [sits down]?

Daria:[Composing herself] Something about school and fire.

Raven:A combination that hardly ever comes to pass.

Trent:[To Tom] But thereís one combo sitting here that will.

Tom:[To Trent] And very soon, too.

 

A few minutes later, Val FINALLY arrives.She is, of course, a little OLD for the outfit she is wearing; sheís also out of place because of that outfit, and because of her lack of sense... or something.

 

Val:Hi everyone!Iím sorry Iím late, but I had a hard time finding the right lip gloss and glitter to go with this outfit.

Jane:What do you know, Daria!It looks like you completely nailed it on the wall about Val!

Daria:I just forgot about the body glitter.

Val:[Realizing that she is a bit underdressed] Um, it seems as though Iím a bit underdressed for a place like this.I think I better go change.

Rebecca:No, you donít have to do that.Just come sit down [points to the empty chair].

Val:[After sitting down] I just want to say that this is so jiggy of you invite me to this place, Rebecca!

Rebecca:Well, you should thank Mr. OíNeill for bringing you back to Lawndale to spend a week with us, Val.

Mr. OíNeill:[Bashful] Oh, I couldnít [chuckles].

Val:But sheís right!If you hadnít sent their CD and press kit to me, I wouldnít have been able to meet such edgy teens like Rebecca!Say, I have a really cool idea thatís totally wack!

Quinn:[To herself] Would that be taking a swan dive off the table into that lake?

Val:Why donít we stand up and introduce ourselves to each other!Iíll start, and weíll just go from there!ĎKay!My name is Val, and I am the editor of Val, the coolest magazine for edgy teens in America!Your turn, Rebecca!

Rebecca:Okay.My name is Rebecca Milano, and I am the lead singer and guitarist for Sundown.

Raven:My name is Raven Giuliani, and I am the other lead singer and guitarist for Sundown.

Daria:My name is Daria Morgendorffer, and I run the Nightwind website. Iím also a contributing lyricist for Sundown.

Quinn:My name is Quinn Morgendorffer, and I am vice president of the Fashion Club at Lawndale High.

Alexander:My name is Alexander Versace, and I am one of the electronics handlers for Sundown.

Val:Versace?Are you related to the fashion designers, Giovanni and Donatella Versace?

Alexander:No.The only other thing I have in common with them is, like Donatellaís late brother, I am gay.

Val:Youíre... gay?

Alexander:Yeah.Why do you ask?

Val:Oh, itís just that I didnít think that a band like Sundown would have gay people in its roster.

Rebecca:Oh come on!You work in the entertainment industry, right?

Tom:Sheís right, Val.There are a lot people who live under the rainbow in the entertainment industry, and Sundown is a perfect example of that.

Raven:Thatís right.Rebecca, Zia, and myself are not only bisexual, but transgendered as well.

Rebecca:And Alex and Heather represent the gay and lesbian stripes of the pride flag, so whatís the big deal?

Val:Whatís transgendered?

Rebecca:Weíll explain later, over dinner.Right now, we have to finish the introductions that you suggested we do to get to know each other, okay?

Val:Okay.Iím sorry I interrupted.

Rebecca:Trent, I think you were next.

Trent:Right.My name is Trent Lane.I play guitar and sing for my band Mystik Spiral, and weíre not changing our name, since weíre also on Raven and Rebeccaís record label.

Jane:Try saying that three times fast.

Tom:My name is Tom, and I head up one of the Nightwind Street Teams for Sundown.

Jane:My name is Jane Lane,and I do the photography for Sundown and Mystik Spiral.Iím also Trentís sister.

Mr. OíNeill:My name is Timothy OíNeill, and I teach Sundown, Daria, Jane, and Quinn at Lawndale High School.

Val:Jiggy!Now that we are better acquainted, letís order something!Iím starving!

Daria:[To herself] For attention.

Quinn:No kidding.Why would she wear a Sundown baby-tee?

Alexander:Itís as if sheís trying to suck up to us.

Trent:I donít think she did a good job, considering...

Val:So, Becky...

Rebecca:Itís Rebecca or Becca, not Becky.

Val:What about Beck?

Rebecca:Do I look like a loser, baby?

Val:No, I think you look like a modern-day Audrey Hepburn!

Rebecca:Eh.I do what I can.

Val:Wack!I see that Raven went with a gangster look this evening.Thatís so jiggy!

Raven:Really?

Val:You better work it, girlfriend!Who designed that outfit?

Raven:Becca.She has one for herself, too, but itís black and mineís navy blue.

Val:Jiggy!

Raven:Thanks.

Mr. OíNeill:Rebecca, werenít you going to tell us about transgenderism?

Rebecca:Oh yeah.Well, Raven, Zia, and myself are transgendered.

Val:Whatís that?

Rebecca:Let me put it to you this way:ďTransĒ means ďacross,Ē and ďgenderĒ is the role assigned to a person, based on their sex, according to the rules of a particular society.So, to be transgendered means to go across those gender lines.

Raven:Itís just that half of Sundown is genetically transgendered, due to Alexandriaís Genesis.

Val:Is that some kind of disease or something?

Rebecca:No!Of course not!Itís actually a human genetic code that is completely different from the ďnormalĒ human genome.

Val: Is this going to be a biology-type discussion, because biologyís icky.

Raven:No, Val, itís not.Itís just an insight as to who we are through a specific lense.

Rebecca:You see, there are two types of this genetic code, and all us in Sundown have them.Alex, Heather, and Jonathan have Type II, and Raven, Zia, and I have Type I.

Val:Whatís the difference?

Raven:Well, look at me, for example.What do you see?

Val:[Examining Raven] Well, I see someone who needs to go out into the sun more, for starters.

Rebecca:It wonít matter if he does.Our skin can neither burn nor tan.

Val:You mean... it stays white... forever?!

Raven:Yes, but thereís more.

Rebecca:Type Is also share the exact same hormonal code, whether weíre twins or not.

Raven:Itís just a matter of what sex weíll be, and I am a male, but I donít think or look like one.In fact, Type Is are a type of transgendered people known as androgynes.

Val:Is that, like, being androgynous?

Rebecca:Exactly!While the females look feminine, the males with Type I are physically more feminine in appearance than masculine, despite having a penis and the lack of breasts.

Raven:But mentally and emotionally, both sexes have a 50/50-split between their masculine and feminine selves.

Rebecca:More or less.

Val:I see.So why doesnít Alex look like you?

Raven:He has Type II, which is the same genetic code, but without most of the aesthetic and hormonal aspects Type Is have.

Rebecca:We could go on, but weíd rather eat.

Mr. OíNeill:Wow!This is so exciting!

Tom:Yeah.Who knew we would be receiving a biology and a gender studies lesson at the same time?

Val:Whew!All this thinking has me tired out!Iím hungry.

Jane:Well, itís settled:no more lessons until we have food on our plates.

All Others:Amen.

Val:Jiggy!

 

At the end of the evening...

 

Val:Well, I have to be going now.Iím a little tired.So Becca, where do you want to meet up Monday?

Rebecca:Hereís my home address [hands Val a piece of paper].Have your driver stop there, and Iíll take you to school.

Val:Jiggy!See you later, everyone!

All Others:Bye!See ya!Nice meeting ya!

 

Val leaves, leaving the others a bit confused about her.

 

Raven:Um, is she a tad bit homophobic?

Rebecca:No, just a bit oblivious.Of course, thatís the least of her problems.

Alexander:You mean our problems with her.I now realize what a moron she is!Argh!!

Mr. OíNeill:Now, letís not get too judgmental.This mightíve been an off-night for her.

Tom:And she did arrive just this afternoon.

Raven:She came down to Lawndale, not Palm Springs.

Rebecca:I donít know.Letís just go.We have a lot of planning to do for our ďextraĒ concert this Friday night.Jane, you were pretty damn good with the last dance you did.Do you wanna do some of the planning with us?

Jane:Sure!Just come by my house sometime tomorrow and we can work on it.

Raven:You got it.

Tom:[To Jane] I really love that dress youíre wearing, Jane.

Jane:Thank Becca; she loaned this to me from her collection.

Rebecca:Not a problem.In fact, I think all of us should go to that dance Friday night!

Tom:Jane, do you want to go with me to their dance Friday night?

Jane:[Putting arms over Tomís shoulders] Of course, my sweet.

Tom:Will you wear that dress?

Jane:Hmm.I donít know.

Rebecca:You can wear it, Jane.

Tom:Then itís settled.

Jane:Cool.

Daria:If you donít mind, I think Iíll stay home that Friday.

Jane:Come on, Daria!Itíll be fun!

Daria:I donít think...

Trent:Iíll take ya.

Daria:[After a moment of silence] Umm, Ďkay.

Trent:Cool.

Raven:Are you guys ready?

Tom:Actually, I want to spend a few minutes with Jane out here.

Jane:Yeah, you guys go ahead.Weíll catch up!

Raven:Donít take too long, you crazy kids!

 

As the rest leave, Tom and Jane go over to the balcony railing and stare out onto the lake.

 

Jane:It is beautiful out here, isnít it?

Tom:Not as beautiful as you.

Jane:Oh Tom...

 

They start kissing.This lasts for a few minutes before Raven comes back to get them.

 

Monday morning.Milano house.Val arrives at the front door and rings the bell.Rebecca opens the door.

 

Val:Hey girlfriend!How are you this morning?

Rebecca:Not too bad.Just ready to put in another day in hell, thatís all.

Val:Aww, you shouldnít say that, Becky.School is cool!

Rebecca:[A little annoyed] Right.Say, youíve ever rode in a station wagon before?

 

A little later in the morning.Lawndale Beltway.ďPossessionĒ by Sarah McLachlan is playing on Rebeccaís car stereo.

 

Val:This is a very nice car you have here, Becky.

Rebecca:Becca.

Val:What?

Rebecca:Becca, not Becky.I become very upset when people call me Becky.

Val:Sorry.So, will be picking up any of your friends?

Rebecca:No.As you can see, I have my two guitars, a couple of amps, and my part of the PA system.So, I only have room left for my books, you, and me.

Val:Oh.So how will your friends get to school?

Rebecca:Daria and Jane usually walk, and the rest of Sundown drive to school, except when they donít wish to drive; then I drive them to school.

Val:Wack!

Rebecca:[Slightly annoyed at Valís lack of complex vocabulary, or anything else] Right.Right.

 

After school.Lawndale High Gymnasium.While the football team helps bring in the stage for Fridayís concert, Val is interviewing Sundown.

 

Val:[Recording interview] Okay!I finally have a chance to meet one of the edgiest sensations in the teen pop scene today.They are the six-member depression rock group from Lawndale, Maryland, Sundown!Letís start with introducing yourselves to our readers.

Raven:Okay.My name is Raven Giuliani, and I am one of the guitarists and vocalists.

Rebecca:Iím Rebecca Milano, and I am the other guitarist and vocalist.

Zia:My name is Zia Stefani, and I am one of the electro-geeks in Sundown, plus I play some guitar.

Alexander:Iím Alexander Versace, and I am the other electro-geek in Sundown.I also handle Beccaís electronic companion and the best friend of our drummer, Isis.

Jonathan:Hello.My name is Jonathan Soprano, and I play the drums.

Heather:Sometimes with Isis [band laughs].Iím Heather Soprano, Sundownís bassist and Jonathanís older sister.

Val:Wow!I watch The Sopranos every Sunday night on HBO!Itís very edgy, just like you two must be.

Jonathan:Um, well, weíre not those Sopranos.

Heather:Though, we do have an Uncle Tony, an Aunt Carmela, and two cousins.

Jonathan:Meadow and Anthony Jr.

Heather:Yeah.Theyíre cool guys.

Jonathan:Our grandauntís a total bitch, though.

Heather:Iím surprised Uncle Tony hasnít killed her yet.

Jonathan:Fuhgeddaboutit.

Val:What does your uncle do, exactly?

Heather/Jonathan:Waste management.Environment.

Val:I see.So, Rebecca, tell us about your band.

Rebecca:Raven and I started it around the time Raven turned 14.

Raven:The two of us would go to Beccaís basement and just play music everyday.Then, her parents bought her a Boss DR-55 drum machine, but she didnít like the name ďDr. Rhythm.Ē

Rebecca:I decided to name it after the Egyptian goddess, Isis, since I knew that one of these days, it would sound like a goddess was playing drums with us.

Val:Cool.So, why are you called Sundown?

Raven:Well, it had to do with the kind of music we were listening to at the time.

Rebecca:We were into bands like The Sisters of Mercy, Depeche Mode, The Cure, nine inch nails...

Raven:Marilyn Manson, Hanson, Jesus Christ, Satan [all burst out laughing, except for Val, who is confused, as always]...

Rebecca:[Regaining composure] Well, maybe not the last two, but we did receive encouragement from bands like Hanson and silverchair, since they were around our age and selling a lot of records.

Raven:Then, one evening, we were having a barbecue party at Ravenís house.The two of us were by the pool when we looked toward the western sky and looked at the beautiful sunset--we were in Palm Springs, California at the time.

Val:[Impatiently] Yeah, great spas.Are you going to tell us or what?

Raven:My, youíre rude and impatient.

Heather:Yeah.Have some respect for us, Val.

Val:Sorry.Go on.

Rebecca:Right.Anyway, when we looked into that sky that night, we knew immediately that this was going to be our name.

Raven:And thatís how we became Sundown.In fact, that barbecue at my old house was for my 14th birthday celebration.

Val:Really?!Whenís your birthday, Raven?

Raven:My birthday is August 29th.

Rebecca:Mineís May 12th.

Heather:I was born on September 10th, and my brother came over a year after on November 7th.

Zia:My birthday is May 2nd.

Alexander:And mine is on September 2nd.

Val:So, that means that Raven, Heather, and Alexander are Virgos, Rebecca and Zia are Tauruses, and Jonathan is the lone Scorpio.Jiggy!Okay, now, why did you guys make The Wake?Hey!That rhymes!Wack!

Rebecca:Yes, yes, very cute.Anyway, we, meaning Raven and I, wrote that album for our parents.

Raven:Itís been over a year since they were killed out on US 10.

Rebecca:Yeah.We wrote The Wake because their deaths threw our lives into a tailspin.

Raven:We were now orphans, and our aunts would soon come to Palm Springs to move us to our current home in Lawndale.

Rebecca:Which added to our depression.Eventually, we just couldnít take it anymore.So, the day after our first Halloween concert here, we just started writing.

Raven:It would just come out of us and it didnít stop until we poured out the last of it.

Val:If you had to describe your entire album with someone elseís song, what would it be?

Rebecca:Hmm.Thatís actually a very interesting question.

Zia:The most interesting question youíve asked any of us so far.

Rebecca:Yeah.ďEmmaĒ by The Sisters of Mercy would the one.

Val:Why that one?

Rebecca:Well, I think itís because... you see, ďEmmaĒ is a very beautiful song.The bass is perfectóit has that great, Motorhead-like sound, the guitars are super cool for the dark and powerful aura of the song, and the drums add a danceable rhythm to it.It just takes your breath away.

Raven:Add a bit of Love-era Cult, some Floodland-era Sisters of Mercy, and a touch of Depeche Mode, and you have the song that matches the mood of The Wake perfectly.

Val:I see.Okay.A few evenings ago, I heard that you had a seventh member named Daria Morgendorffer?

Rebecca:Isis is the seventh member.Daria is the eighth.Why?

Val:Well, I remember her being a... a...

Sundown:Yes?

Val:A brain!

Raven:So?She writes some songs for us, and theyíre good because she can write, unlike a certain editor I know.

Val:Well, I think thatís all for now.Did I tell you that I have my own television show?

Sundown:No.Nuh-uh.

Val:Oh, well, itís going to be super-jiggy and totally la vida loca!And, your performance Friday night will be my first show ever!

Rebecca:Really?

Val:Yep!And itís going to be live, too!

Sundown:Live?!

Val:Cool, huh?Well, Iíll see ya guys [leaves].

Raven:A live performance?

Heather:On national television?

Rebecca:I know.

Jonathan:[After a minute] Weíre gonna wreck the show, arenít we?

Rebecca:Oh yeah.

 

Friday morning.Lawndale Beltway.Sundown are riding around in the Vista Cruiser heading to school.By this time, the stress of Val being a pest is getting to them.In fact, Rebecca is so frazzled that Raven is doing the driving.

 

Raven:Well, this is the end of this stupid week.

Rebecca:Itís also the day Iím really dreading.Everyone in our school today will be dressed like goths, in honour of us.

Raven:Oh geez.Ms. Li has no idea about us, does she?

Jonathan:Sheís not the only one.

Rebecca:I swear that if Val shows up to school today, then Iím going to kick her ass!

Raven:Calm down, Becca. We made a plan to ruin her live show tonight.Thatís better than any ass-kicking you or any of us can do to her.

Rebecca:I just have so much going on in my head... [sighs] Just drive.

Raven:Okay.

 

When they arrive at LHS, Sundown look at all of the people in the halls and see that the only thing that is remotely ďgothĒ is the fact that everyone is wearing black, even the Fashion Club and our favorite duo.

 

Jane:Hey guys!Whatís up?

Jonathan:Hey Becca, it looks like no one bothered to be the ďgĒ word today.

Rebecca:It looks more like someone died or something.

Daria:Too bad itís not Val.

Raven:Tell us about it.I donít know if Val is having a mid-life crisis, but Becca is about to have one.

Rebecca:Hold me, Raven [he holds Rebecca tightly]!

Jane:Oh, you poor thing.

Daria:Itís about to get worse [points to Val coming down the hallway and towards them].

Val:Hi guys!

Sundown/Daria/Jane:[Sadly] Hi.

Val:Ohh, donít be sad.Itís almost the weekend!You should be happy!

Raven:I guess we should, shouldnít we?

Val:Well, youíll be glad to know that Iíll be spending a day with all of you!Isnít it just so jiggy?

Rebecca:[Dejectedly] Yeah.Jiggy.

Val:Well, see ya in class, guys!

Sundown/Daria/Jane:See ya [Val leaves].

Jane:[To Rebecca] Do you think you can make it until tonight?

Rebecca:All I can say is that I now know how Mr. DeMartino feels when heís trying to teach Kevin and Brittany.

Daria:You and me both.

 

Mr. DeMartinoís class.Val is seated next to Rebecca in the second row from the front of the class.Raven is between Rebecca and Daria.The rest of the band are scattered throughout the first four rows.

 

Mr. DeMartino:Yesterday, we discussed how events in the early 1800s led to the Civil War between the North and the South!Now, here is a very simple question:name all of the states that joined The Confederacy.Kevin!

Kevin:Ummmm... Hazard County?

Mr. DeMartino:Interesting answer, Kevin, considering that General Lee WAS NOT A HEMI ORANGE DODGE CHARGER!!!

Kevin:Of course it was, Mr. D.It had a really cool flag on the roof, and whenever the Duke boys jumped over Roscoe, they would honk the horn, and it would play a song by the Dixie Chicks.

Mr. DeMartino:[Smacks head] ARRRRGGGGHHHHH!!!

 

Val raises her hand.

 

Mr. DeMartino:[Through his teeth] Yes, Val?

Val:I was wondering if I can take some questions.

Mr. DeMartino:Very well, but I must warn you, Ms. Val, that some of these students have the intellect of a rock.

 

Val goes up to the front of the class and sits on Mr. DeMartinoís desk.

 

Val:Whoís first?[Jodie raises her hand] Youíre on!

Jodie:What made you decide to come back to Lawndale?

Val:Well, I wanted to get to know the band and learn about why they write such depressing but edgy music.

Brittany:But theyíre not depressing, just a little dark.

Kevin:Yeah!I mean, without the rock guitars, they would be chick music!

Val:Chick music can be edgy, and Sundown are the proof of it! [Daria raises her hand] Youíre next!

Daria:Iím just wondering if youíve even listened to The Wake?

Val:Why do you ask?

Daria:Well, they didnít write, record, and release their debut full-length just so they can be described as ďedgy teen depression rockersĒ by a rather stupid teen magazine like yours.

Val:Just what are you getting at, Dar?

Jane:What sheís saying, Val, is that Raven and Rebecca wrote an album that amounted to a tribute to their parents, and all they received in return was a rather inept review of their record because someone wrote it while looking at the artwork instead of reading the lyrics and listening to the album.

Val:Rebecca, are you going to let them talk to me that way?

Rebecca:Val, dear, I am not a god, I am a human.I may be a rock star, or, rather, a ďdepressionĒ rock star, but frankly, Iím enjoying this.

Val:You know what?!I think Iíll just leave right now!Iíll just listen to your stupid record and Iíll see you tonight [storms out of class]!

Mr. DeMartino:Yikes!Sheís worst than me.

Rebecca:She canít be saved.

Mr. DeMartino:I know.

 

Lunchroom.Sundown, Daria, and Jane are sitting together.

 

Rebecca:You know, I shouldíve just kicked her ass right then and there!

Jane:Easy, tiger!

Daria:Look, we all know Val isnít right in the head, but I donít think she really thought your album was stupid.

Rebecca:I know.But when she does listen to it, sheíll just think that weíre just a bunch of lame-ass losers crying over some stupid death that only our loser fans and our loser selves could ever understand.

Jane:Oh come on, Becca.All of us knew why you and Raven wrote the record, and I for one thought it was a very moving tribute to your parents.

Daria:Yeah.If it werenít for you, I probably wouldnít have thought of writing lyrics to someone elseís music, let alone the kind of music that makes people think and dance.

Jane:If not at the same time.

Rebecca:Yeah.

Jane:I wouldnít worry about Val.

Jonathan:Yeah!Fuhgeddabouter, Rebecca.Sheís just another brick in the shallow wall, anyway.

Rebecca:Youíre right, guys.Youíre right.

Jane:Just concentrate on an excellent performance tonight.

Rebecca:[With a little smile] Thank you.

Jane:Youíre welcome.

 

Friday night.Lawndale High Gymnasium.As the crowd fills the gym, Sundown are backstage--locker rooms--preparing for their concert to pay for the fence they destroyed nearly two weeks back.Meanwhile, Tom, Jane, Daria, and Trent are hanging out near the bleachers.The theme of the dance is based off of the artwork and lyrics from Sundownís The Wake, which include a Pacific blue background with white clouds, white sand, twisted metallic structures, and a stage surrounded on three sides by a man-made lake of water and blue dye.

 

Tom:Wow, Jane!Youíve really outdid yourself this time!

Jane:Eh.I do what I can.

Trent:Itís like youíre actually in the album cover.

Daria:Where did Ms. Li find the money for all of this?

Jane:Well, she only gave me a thousand dollars, but Sundown managed to find the rest.They wanted something a bit romantic, but a bit post-apocalyptic, too.

Daria:So, you basically recreated the artwork from their album.

Jane:Yeah.

 

The Fashion Club, standing near the stage, have a different opinion...

 

Sandi:I hope I donít get sand in my shoes.

Tiffany:How are we supposed to dance with this much sand?

Stacy:It looks like itís nighttime in the middle of a beautiful beach!

Quinn:It would be, but the metal takes away from it.

Sandi:Itís like Iím in a Sundown video.Itís all too gothic and weird for me.

Tiffany:This is scary.

Quinn:Guys!Itís not that bad!It matches the mood of the band.

Sandi:I guess, if you like that sort of thing.

 

Backstage, Sundown are preparing for their first live television performance.

 

Rebecca:This is going to be really cool, you guys!

Zia:Did you see that dance floor out there?

Heather:I know!I like the beach idea Jane created for us!

Raven:Well, we did pay for most of that stuff, especially the white sand.

Jonathan:Weíre not going to be barbecued if we fall in, will we?

Rebecca:As long as youíre not plugged in, I think youíll be okay.

 

Val makes her way into their dressing room, and sheís rather upset.

 

Val:[Holding their CD angrily] What the hell is this?!

Jonathan:[A little shocked, like the other members] I think thatís our CD that we made quite awhile back.

Val:This album sucks!

Zia:So, you finally listened to it, eh?

Val:You know, I like depressing things if theyíre cool, but cool is cool, too, and depressing things that donít get cool is very depressing, now isnít it?!

Rebecca:You know what, Val?Ever since you arrived, youíve somehow managed to give us grief over every damn little thing about us!First, it was the thing about our name and our placement in the world of teen pop!Then, the next thing I hear is that you donít like our lyricist because you had a bad experience in realism from her the last time you were in Lawndale.And now, you insult our work?!How could you?!

Val:Well, if it werenít for your stupid parents killing themselves, you couldíve been Hanson instead of a bunch of self-absorbed whiners who mope around complaining about the loss of some loved one!

Raven:You know what, Val?If you donít shut up, the six of us are going to teach you lesson in pain [Sundown stands up and surrounds Val].

Val:Well, you know what, Raven?I donít care!Your parents deserved to die!

Rebecca:F--K YOU, YOU MOTHERF--KING BITCH [Rebecca jumps on Val and begins to pummel her]!!!!

 

While Rebecca and Val exchange blows, the rest of the group take cover.Rebecca then grabs a steel folding chair and is about to smash Val over the head with it when Jonathan grabs it out of hand.Val, with her face covered in blood, plus a broken nose, quickly gets up and starts to run out, but Rebecca jumps on her again.Eventually, Jonathan and Alexander grab the two women and pull them apart.Val is then told by Zia to leave immediately, but when she runs out, Rebecca breaks free from Alexander, grabs the steel chair, and throws it at her.It misses and hits the wall instead.Rebecca screams a few more profanities at the top of her lungs before collapsing to her knees and starts crying uncontrollably.Raven goes down to his knees and holds her.

 

Raven:Could you guys leave us alone for a few minutes, please?

All Others:Sure.Okay.

Zia:Weíll make sure Val doesnít come back.

Jonathan:Weíll take care of this [all leave while Raven and Rebecca stay].

 

Raven and Rebecca get up and go sit on a bench.

 

Rebecca:[Still crying] She had no right to say that about our parents!

Raven:[Rubs her back lovingly] I know.She had no right at all.

Rebecca:Why would she say such mean things about our parents?

Raven:I donít know.Sheís not exactly the brightest bulb in the bunch, but I didnít think she could be this way.

Rebecca:I didnít think our record could bring such a reaction like hers.

Raven:This proves that sheís insane.

Rebecca:Yeah.[Looks up at Raven] Raven?

Raven:Yeah?

Rebecca:I love you.

Raven:I love you, too.

Rebecca:No, you donít understand.I love you.

 

Brief pause as Raven is taken aback at what he hears.

 

Raven:Really?

Rebecca:Raven, weíve been together since we were born.Throughout that entire time, weíve been through everything damn thing together.

Raven:Every up and every down.

Rebecca:[Wiping away the last of her tears] Exactly.I feel that we have so much in common, and... and...

Raven:Shhh [Raven kisses Rebecca, first on her tear-soaked eyes, and then softly on her lips].Becca, I have the same feelings as you do, for you.

Rebecca:Raven, that was the sweetest thing youíve ever done for me.Come here.

 

Raven and Rebecca start kissing again, and it becomes more passionate as they start caressing each other.This lasts for a few minutes until Jonathan comes down to get them.

 

Jonathan:[Clears throat to draw attention; the couple stops and turns to see him] I hate to ruin this moment, but there are a few people whoíve come to see us.

Raven:[Looks at Rebecca, then back at Jonathan] Weíd better go out there, huh?

Jonathan:[Smiles] Yeah.Iíll see you up there [starts to leave].

Rebecca:Jonathan?

Jonathan:[Turns around] Yeah?

Rebecca:I feel like doing a song that Iíve wanted to do for awhile.

Jonathan:[Realizing what sheís talking about] We can do it.You ready [Raven and Rebecca shake their heads in agreement]?Cool [Turns to go upstairs, but then turns around].Oh, you two might wanna, uh [makes gesture to clean up their faces]...

Rebecca:Oh yeah [sniffles and giggles].

Jonathan:See ya in minute [leaves; Raven and Rebecca just look at each other for a second before cleaning themselves up].

 

Stage.The rest of Sundown are behind their respective instruments--drums, keyboards/electronic equipment, and bass--when Raven and Rebecca grab their guitars and go to their positions toward the front and center of the stage.Mr. OíNeill comes up from stage right and introduces the band.

 

Mr. OíNeill:Tonight, in front of millions watching at home in America, we bring to you Lawndaleís very own electronic rock ní roll band, ladies and gentlemen, Sundown [audience cheers]!!!

Raven:Hello everyone!How are you all doing tonight [more cheers]?Rebecca, why donít you introduce the first song.

Rebecca:Sure!Well, this song is one of my favourites.I think it went to #1, but I donít remember.Anyway, this song is really cool, and we can only hope that we can do it justice.Youíll recognize it soon enough.Jon?

Jonathan:[Counting off] One-two-three-four.

 

Heather plays a slightly extended version of the opening bass line to ďWhat Do You Want From Me?Ē by Monaco.Then, the music explodes into heavy, Sisters-esque rock music.

ďWhat Do You Want From Me?ĒMusic and lyrics by Monaco.New music by Sundown.

Raven/Rebecca: Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.

Rebecca:There is one thing that I would die for.It's when you say, ďMy life is in your hands.ĒWhen you're near me, your love is all I need.Now I can't imagineÖ

Raven/Rebecca:What do you want from me?It's not how it used to be.You've taken my life away, ruining everything.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.

Raven:Give me something that I can rely on, far away from the life that I once knew.But what does it matter; thatís all I have to say.And I can't imagineÖ

Raven/Rebecca:What do you want from me?It's not how it used to be.You've taken my life away, ruining everything.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.

†††††

Raven launches into an electronically distorted guitar solo while synths, bass, drums, and guitar continue.Then, all but drums cut out.Jonathan is playing a steady kick beat, then synths return.Finally, the bass returns and the music then explodes again.

 

Raven/Rebecca:What do you want from me?It's not how it used to be.You've taken my life away, ruining everything.What do you want from me?It's not how it used to be.You've taken my life away, ruining everything.

Alexander/Heather:[while Raven and Rebecca repeat chorus two more times] Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.Sha la la la la la la, sha la la la la la la.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††

Music stops abruptly, followed by fading reverb from Raven and Rebeccaís guitars.The audience cheers.

 

Monday morning.A month later.Lawndale High School.Hallway.Daria and Jane are at Janeís locker when Raven and Rebecca come over.

 

Jane:Hi guys!

Raven/Rebecca:Hi!

Daria:Did you read this monthís issue of Val?

Raven/Rebecca:No. no.

Jane:Well, youíre on the cover, but not in favourable light [hands them a copy of the magazine].

Rebecca:[Reading magazine] My week with Sundown:a disturbing look at Lawndaleís depression rockers.[Opens up to article] Sundown [stops reading]...You know what?I donít care.Sheís just pondlife.

Raven:Yeah.Val wouldnít know a damn thing about us even if she were handed our bio sheet just before interviewing us.

Rebecca:We have better things to take worry about, anyway [both look into each othersí eyes lovingly while holding hands; Rebecca hands back the magazine].

Raven:Weíll see you around, guys [leaves].

Daria/Jane:Bye!

Jane:Well, it looks like those two donít have a care in the world.I love those guys.

Daria:Jiggy.