TITLE: The Breakfast Candles
AUTHOR: A Snarlsnout "Literary Tribute"
PAIRING/RATING: Probably Sam/Nicole; sarcastic & fuzzy "R"; probably would be PG-13 if not for the F-word.
DISCLAIMERS: See Summary...
SUMMARY: Popular characters in John Hughes land...
A/N:"When this is over, I'm thinking pineapple pizza and teen video movie fest. Possibly something from the Ringwald ouvre."
-Buffy ("What's My Line-Pt 2")
"...fucking John Hughes...that fucking guy...fucking Breakfast Club--all these stupid kids actually show up for detention...all the honeys are top-shelf, and all the dudes are whiney pussies-except Judd Nelson; he was harsh...movies are fucking bullshit..."
-Jay (of "Jay and Silent Bob" fame) Excerpts of Jay's John Hughes rant in "Dogma"
"Hey! Here's something I haven't ripped-off yet...besides, Molly had it GOING ON! Like a jail-bait Scully! Or a Ch-Ch-Cherry-Bomb(ier) Season 1 Willow! Totally ahead of her time!"
-'Snout (Redhead affecinado)
Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey!--
Saturday, March 24, 2001
Kennedy High School
Santa Monica, California 90405
Nicole Julian voice-over--
"Bobbi Glass, you henious hiefer-- The fact that ~I~ have to sacrifice an entire Saturday to your pathetic power display (a.k.a. detention) is revolting enough...The fact that you expect me to endure these social lepers for eight hours borders on the cruel and unusual...And, for the coup de grace, you expect us to write an essay describing ourselves. What do you care Claw? We're the same people you see day in, day out in your pitiful minium-wage servitude-- Starting, if I may, with myself (thank you)--your superior in every sense...We also have an anorexic prom queen; a dumb, but admirably developed jock; a zit-faced virgin brainiac; an unkempt and uncouth radical-hippie-throwback chick; a possible serial axe-murderess...and...OK, who let this foriegn-exchange student in? So what's the point? It's not like you'll be able to teach us anything..."
As one by one the afore-described students arrive...Harrison nodding and rolling his eyes as his mom drones on and on pulling to the curb...Josh doing likewise in deference to his father...Brooke trying yet again to apologize to a disappointed and disinterested Mike McQueen, as her future step-sibling Sam McPherson slams the opposite rear door and marches defiantly to her fate... Exquisite Woo pulling her 10 speed to the bike-rack, locking it, removing the front wheel, and slipping on her Hello Kitty book back-pack...Mary Cherry who waits until the chauffer can run around the stretch limo to open her door properly...and finally Nicole Julian who drives past Bobbi Glass' rusty Ford Pinto and parks her Jaguar sideways across 3 "reserved for handicapped" spaces...
OK, since we're not sure Kennedy High even has a library, we'll assume for the sake of our story, that they do. While we are at it, we'll imagine it looks just like the state of the art facility found at fictious Shermer High. We know they have a gym, a Chem lab, a cafeteria, a Vice Principal's office, and a girl's restroom--so this pretty much epitomizes the fine state of the American educational system (your tax dollars at work!).
It is into said "book depository" that our Kennedy kiddies file in past Bobbi Glass' eagle-eyed scrutiny. Josh and Brooke grab the front table, as if by divine right. Harrison attempted the table behind them until Nicole showed him the error of his ways--he moved to a table accross the aisle, as she claimed both seats. Sam slunk in; plopped down next to Harrison, yet refused to acknowledge either his greeting or presence. Mary Cherry chose the table behind Nicole, and after an elaborate display of dusting and disinfecting the area, plopped her "tight, teen ass" down in the chair. Finally, Exqusite Woo arrived, and with a slight, respectful nod to Bobbi Glass occupied the table behind Sam and Harrison.
"Alright, listen up losers," Bobbi began endearingly, "I've figured out a way to bilk the system for time-and-a-half by working on Saturdays--you are here to help justify the expense."
"In an effort to focus your microscopic attention spans in this vast wasteland of books, computers, audio and video equipment, I am giving you each a sheet of paper and a pencil, thus depleting your annual state-funded alotment of school supplies."
Each student begrudgingly accepts thier share as Bobbi makes the rounds and continues her diatribe--
"Your assignment--as if you had a choice not to accept it-- is to write a 1000 word essay describing yourself in your own words and through your own warped little perceptions. This does not include repeating the same word 1000 times (looks at Josh); or your fashion accessories (scans all 3 blondes); Nor will it include your Herclean sexual exploits (scoffs at Harrison) or your skewed, martyred, "Who-will-save-the-world-if-not-I?" flights of fancy (to Sam). And...(stopping puzzled in front of Exquisite)...I'm sorry--why are you here again?"
"In my country, students often attend classes on Saturday," the demure brunette began earnestly. "An oppurtunity to learn is an oppurtunity to grow."
This brought the expected round of "stupid foriegner" scoffing as Nicole blew a quick series of little "kiss-up" gestures; Mary Cherry squinting her eyes and muttering something, no doubt hateful and horrific involving a chainsaw; and even Bobbi Glass not buying the insincerity for a moment...
"Be that as it may..." she continued, chasing her train of thought, "You are here for 8 hours people. Eight hours in which you will NOT talk, give each other make-overs, slip out to your lockers for a mid-morning crack break, or break into the audio department over there for soundtrack assistance in a gratuitous musical interlude. There will be NO displays of teen angst or wanton lust; nor will I abide any heart-wrenching epiphanies leading to a clearer understanding of your true place in school standing, society or the vast, infinite cosmos at large. I'll be right across the hall, watching the Sailor Moon cartoons and Christina Aguleria videos you were all forced to sacrifice. Don't make me come back in here people. Good day."
A breif overview of our students finds they have used thier time, if not wisely, then in the following manner--
Exquiste Woo: has filled both sides of her paper with a double-the-assigned-word-count essay and is now proof-reading.
Josh and Brooke: have engaged in excessive displays of affection limited to a PG-13ish "footsy" and "goo-goo eyes".
Harrison: was imagining himself in Josh's place with thoughts so vivid he had to spread his notebook in his lap to avoid embarassment.
Mary Cherry: had discovered she could see thousands of tiny reflections of herself in her sequined handbag...
Sam: was guest of honor, and the only one attending her pity-party; the crushing wieght of the knowledge that not only her entire family, but all her friends have forgotten that this is her 16th birthday and she's spending it here, in her very description of Hell.
Finally Nicole: who had used her time thus far to touch-up yesterday's manicure and to study each of her fellow inmates to determine the weakest, most vulnerable and to wiegh out the various angles of attack...she was bored--
"Hey gang! Here's an idea," Nic began, in her patented friendly rattlesnake persona, "Let's write each other's essay! Wouldn't that be a hoot?! Mary Cherry--You could write about your friend Joe here (Harrison snarls), how he woke up yet again this morning and had to change the sheets as the result of dreaming about a certain blonde cheerleader--who by the way is NOT you!" Pow! Mary Cherry and Harrison both hang thier heads...
"Joshie--you could do Mary Cherry's! You know--how she always wilts in the emaciated shadow of the school's precariously balanced ruling princess. Un-huh, that emporess has no clothes but with that bag-of-bones bod--who cares!" Zing! Brooke bites the dust...
"Hmm, Exquisite, you're done with yours...Perhaps you could tweak Josh's essay for him--Of course don't go all poly-syllabical or start crossing out all the redundancies--it's got to be hard enough finding 1000 words that are apropreiate" Smack! Or at least it will be when Josh figures out he's been insulted...sssshhhh, he's working on it....
And glancing across the aisle at her ultimate prey-- "And I could do Spam's!" Nic smirked, always able to get a rise with her pet name for the brunette. "Let's see..." she teased; then wavered just the slightest instance. What? No reaction? The girl's usually at "Def-con 4" by now...Nic takes pride in knowing her advesaries, and right now, something's definitely wrong with this picture...
She regrouped and prepared to attack from another angle when Brooke chose this moment to vent her minor-threat wrath-- "God Nicole! You are such a hateful, repellant bitch!"
The rest of her rant was drown out as Harrison and Josh each decided to join the meley. Mary Cherry, nodding & fuming; the whole "if looks could kill" number. Exquisite just sat there in shock experiencing the unchecked, violent rage she'd only previously witnessed in American "Action" movies. She was poised to duck under the table the instant everyone starts throwing down on each other with Uzis (the inevitable outcome of all disagreements in the U.S.A.). Our girl Sammy remained totally oblivious to everything, lost in her world of self-pity and depression...
The ruckus brought a very agitated Bobbi Glass back into the library; her ear-peircing whistle brought a return to some semblence of order--
"What the hell is going on in here!?! Ms. Julian-I might've known! Apparently the concept of punishment is lost on you... You seem to be compounding your infractions. Perhaps you'd like to join me here again next Saturday?," Bobbi challenged.
"Not a problem," Nicole replied definantly, "although won't that interfer with your weekly bath?"
"You got it!," Bobbi fumed. "Would you like another?!"
"You got it! Keep it up Missy! Want another one?"
"Fine! I can hold out just as long as you Ms. Julian! I'm not the one who will be forfieting my precious teen social life to spend every weekend alone and isolated. Time and a half, remember--I'll benefit from all this, will you?" Bobbi seethed, drawing closer until the two were face to face. "So? What's it going to be Ms. Julian? Would you like another?"
Nicole bit back on her rage; refusing to let it cloud her moves as it has her opponent. She cast a side glance at her fellow students, all encouraging her enthusiastically to keep accepting the added detentions. She had to smirk inwardly, as if she be that easily manipulated--
"I'm sorry Ms. Glass. I'm afraid that's all I can commit to without a thorough examination of my personal planner..."
There were audible groans from her classmates knowing the time free of Nicole had been brought up short. And a collective sigh of (momentary) relief when Bobbi escorted Nicole out of the library to an undisclosed, isolated "time-out" space (using her paraphrase of the Mr Vernon line that she actually used in a Popular episode)--
"Don't mess with the bull, it'll gore you in the ass!"
Nicole had exhausted all the mischeivious entertainment she could derive while being locked in the janitor's closet. (changing all the cleaning product labels etc.) and decided to make a break for it. She donned a one-peice cover-alls uniform and escaped thru the suspended ceiling tiles. Unfortunaetly she soon became disoriented in the darkened crawlspace, and "guided by voices", she found herself poised back over her classmates in the school library.
Without Nic's disruptive influence, the rest of the group had let their gaurds down and were talking freely--mostly about what a henious bitch ~she~ was! "At least I leave a lasting impression," Nic smirked to herself as she continued eavesdropping...
Brooke had launched into an especially emotional diatribe about how "it's all Nic's fault that she's here; how disappointed Mike and Jane had been; how this would reflect on her acedemic record etc." when Sam finally broke her silence--
"Because it's all about you, isn't it Brooke? Your precious image being sullied. Your detention trauma." Sam muttered. "The folks so agreived over this vast injustice to you, that they completely disregard me! Do you even know what day it is Brooke?"
"Duh. It's Saturday," Brooke quipped, totally oblivious. "What do you think I'm so upset about!"
"Arrrgh!" Sam groaned in sheer frustration, burying her face in her arms on the desk.
"Hmmm, wonder what that's all about?" Nic pondered, always eager for a new tidbit she could add to the arsenal.
Mary Cherry broke the tension by closing her cell-phone and announcing she has arranged to have lunch catered in by chef extrordinaire Jose Proton!
Harrison (acting as look-out) erroniously announces that Bobbi Glass is on the move. In fact, what he hears, is Lunchlady Vera Krupps wheeling another trolley of "mystery meat" from the basement deep freeze to the kitchen. She always found this much less disruptive to do on the weekends, especially like now, when it kept trying to slither away...
Nicole decided to continue her escape before she was discovered missing. Once again, loosing direction in the dark confines, she makes first a wrong turn, then a wrong step, and crashes thru the ceiling of Vice Principal Krupps office. A startled Bobbi Glass looks up from where she's been pilfering through the student & faculty confidential personal records...
"Ms. Glass," Nicole acknowledges as she stands and proceeds to brush herself off; maintaining the unsinkable Julian sense of dignity...
"Ms. Julian," Bobbi confirms. Busted. Red-handed. Stoic outside, she inwardly trembles, waiting to see how the Spawn of Satan will play out the killer hand she's just been dealt...
They eye each other warily; wordlessly, as Nic joins Bobbi in sifting thru this veritible treasure trove. Stopping just short of whipping out an Austin Powers mini spy-cam, Bobbi does manage to compile a hefty collection of documents and proceeds to the school's copier and fax machines...
Nicole relies soley on her photographic memory, and the Spartan teachings of the "Art of War"...That part about "knowledge of one's opponent equaling power" must have been the reason she spent so much time perusing Spam McFearsome's file, right? I mean, what other purpose would she have? Then she found it--so glaringly obvious she'd almost overlooked it... Today was that caustic correspondent's Birthday!
"Lois Lame turns Sweet 16, and nobody--freinds or family --seem to care...No wonder the kid was so bummed..." Normally Nicole would be in full smirk-mode by now, having confirmed an opponent's "loser" status. But she was flashing back to an almost identical drama-rama a few months prior, in which she had been the star. OMG! She was feeling empathetic towards Spam! That overwhelming sense of betrayal and being un-noticed; un-worthy; un-loved...Sure, she'd grown to accept it from her cold, indifferent "mother" (since she was adopted anyway, her actual birthdate had never held any real signifigance--to any one but her, that is...) but this year even her friends had spaced it. She could overlook the slight by Popita and Mary Cherry, they were superficial relationships at best, but when Brooke completely phased it out, it...hurt. All day long she had deluded herself that they were going to spring a huge surprise party blow-out for her. Anticipation giving way to realization giving way to depression. A downward spiral halted by the faintest ray of light--Spam!
Somehow Sam had figured it out. She'd gotten both cliques to pool thier scant resources (Mary Cherry and her Platinum Cards mysteriously & momentarily missing...hmmm). She'd skipped a couple of mid-day classes and returned with...IT! Barring Nana's musicbox, it was Nicole's most cherished gift ever! Sure it was cheap, and the thought behind it dubious at best, but the fact that Sp--Sam had went to so much effort--for her! --was reason enough...
That settled it! Convincing herself she was only returning a social kindness (and freeing her debt!), Nicole made a quick call to Jose Proton's catering service to put a rush change-of-menu thru. Hanging up, she couldn't decide which aspect was making her feel more giddy--the surprise she planned for McPherson, or the fact that she'd charged it all to Mary Cherry's mom...
Nicole had actually spent the last hour imagining the look on Sam's face when she saw the surprise feast. Had she looked in a mirror she'd have been just as surprised by her own face--smiling ear to ear. She listened thru the glass door as an entire serving staff rolled cart after cart of delicious-smelling food past V. P. Krupps office and into the library. She strained to hear the gasps and squeals of delight; unable to single out Sam's voice, she decided it was time for her triumphant return... She'd see for herself! Nic turned the handle, with a sudden, sinking realization: Bobbi Glass had locked her in!
Nic was pacing frantically, trying to think her way thru this minor glitch, when Bobbi entered wheeling a small serving cart with settings for two. She was apparently not going to give Nicole a chance to undermine her authority and "create a scenerio where the other students would have even less respect for her than they do now..." She could partake of the scrumptious feast but only in solitary. Nic was ready to play her blackmail card, but Bobbi had her "flushed royally" in that department--
"A little survielance tape I found earlier," Bobbi smugly began. "You can't see the faculty member very clearly, but you can certainly see the faculty member's member! And hey, doesn't the spike-haired little blonde girl doing the Monica Lewenski impersonation look familiar..."
Acknowledging (but not admitting!) defeat, Nicole swiped a magnum of Champagne off the serving cart, opened it, and took several huge swigs, staring at her captor with a renewed hatred.
A/N: OK from this point on, I admit the details get almost as fuzzy for me as it does for our cast of characters. In essense: the Champagne alone cannot have such a quick and dabilataing effect...True, thier young metabolisms are probably inexperienced with the consequences, but we must also look to other causes; possibly some psylicibonetic attributes of the Mushroom Souffle? The janitorial staff fumagating the school? Suffice it to say that within the hour everyone is 'faced...
Nicole's head begins a slow roll to the left; her vision following, albeit delayed and slightly out of focus. She felt more strung out than after that week long Spring Break bender in Corpus. Her hand released it's grip on an empty Champagne bottle and it was reunited with it's kin on the floor; the "klank" noise causing her to sit up and attempt to focus on the rest of her surroundings. The devastation that was once Vice Principal Calvin Krupp's office--the gaping hole in the mangled ceiling tile; the gutted file cabinets; mounds of plates still displaying remnants of a vast, yet forgotten feast...finally zooming in on the shiny, size 12 men's wingtip loafers propped on the desk in front of her.
"Oh my god," Nic mumbled, "Bobbi Glass must've slipped me a roofie!" She quickly dismissed this notion tho, when she realized Bobbi was in worse shape than she was. Kicked back in V.P. Krupps chair, her teacher was snoring and drooling profusely, clutching the framed 8x10 glossy of himself that Krupps adorned his desk with...
Realizing the time, Nicole unsteadily gained her footing and decided to check on her...friends. She paused breifly at the doorway, surveying how incriminating and devastating the scene would appear if it was left intact for V. P. Krupps to discover early Monday morning; she still had a couple of hours to decide Bobbi Glass' fate (i.e. wether to wake her or not...) either way she'd definitly snap a few rolls of film for the arsenal...
Nicole walked delicately into the library, knowing any unneccessary jostling of her head now will just amplify the hangover later. The room looked still intact for the most part, the sheer joy of mindless destruction and vandalism obviously lost to these particular high-school students...
Josh, Brooke and Harrison had barrackaded themselves into one of the soundlabs and were in the throes a of a drunken, debaucherous dance that could have only one possible outcome--a sweaty menage a trois.
Mary Cherry was sprawled nude atop her full-length mink, laying face down on one of the tables while Exquiste Woo (also nude) was giving her some type of erotic back massage by walking barefoot on her spine and wriggling her toes. They both seemed totally enraptured by the experience.
Finally Nicole turned her attention to the guest of honor. Sam looked as drunk as Nicole felt as she slouched over the banquet table. Her head propped up by one hand, while the other hand was idly scrawling circles in the icing of the unscathed remnants of what was once a huge multi-tiered cake...
"Heh," Nic ventured, "who'd of thought--Spam McFearsome: the girl with the most cake..."
"Channeling Courtney Love now, Nicole?" Sam acknowledged the reference. "Figures...You two have the same make-up stylist"
"Ouch. This from the girl who applies eye-shadow with a paint roller!" Nic countered as she plopped down beside the sullen brunette.
"So why the long face Spam? In the midst of this ~swank soiree~" Nic scoffed sarcastically.
"Puh-leeze," Sam scowled, "Like this was anymore than a last minute guilt-trip...although I suppose I should be grateful my so-called friends made more effort than my so-called family..."
Sam scooped up a handful of white frosting, obliterating the blue lettering and pink roses trimming it, and held it defiantly under Nicole's nose (an action she'd never do sober).
"I only hope Steve and Janice enjoy thier nuptuials as much without thier wedding cake..."
"OK. Look Spam. Most people would be honored that thier friends thought enough of them to try to make an unbearable situation a little more tolerable". Self-pity was wasted energy as far as Nicole was concerned, and she "pitied the fool" who indulged in it--especially to the degree Sam was imbibing.
"Yea? Well you know what Satan?" Sam drawled as she drained the dregs from another magnum of Champaign "It's been said before, but never better--'It's MY party and I'll cry if I want to'--so, um, Fuck Off!" she slurred as an afterthought.
Nicole smirked inwardly at Sam's virgin voyage into the vino. She was going to be a hurting unit tommorrow; hammered shit on a rock...
"Look at them!" Sam unsteadily panned the room with a sweep of her arm, as she continued her slurred sililoquy. "Exquisite's been in this country less than 2 weeks, and she's already found someone---um, although there's no accounting for taste..."
Nicole nodded her agreement as she observed the blonde and brunette slowly dressing each other, giggling and whispering.
"And Brooke!," Sam nodded in the direction of the soundlab, where the dancing had taken on a more pronounced horizontal angle. "She could have any guy she wants...so of course, she takes the only two ~I~ ever wanted..."
Nicole, ever the student of human behavior, seemed to be riding on the roller-coaster of Sam's emotion--the surge of anger as Sam contemplated hurling the empty bottle; the sinking despair, as she instead set it back on the table and resting her chin on her fist stared at it and idly peeled off the label. "Note to self," Nicole smirked inwardly," Spam makes one sloppy drunk..."
"Damn it, Nicole! I'm sixteen!" Sam sniffled. "When--if ever! --is my life supposed to start?!? I mean, look--we're surrounded by thousands of books--any character in any of them is more alive than I am! Everyday is just one blank page after another... Where's my adventure...my purpose...my love?!?"
"You said it yourself Sam, ~thousands~ of books--everybody's story is different--and all the good ones are banned!" Nic quipped as she fumbled thru her bag.
"Too bad we can't get in there," Nic stated (indicating the now darkened soundlab), "Or I'd've played you this" (indicating the CD she now waved in hand)--
And turning to the peruser, she continues--""Kinky" by obscure Austrailian rockers The HooDoo Gurus; The song "Dressed in Black"...
You have been hurt; you're sorry for yourself,
Well there is no argument.
So you retreat, hiding your love away
Well that is no testament.
You can cry yourself a river,
I say dam(n) your eyes...
You're not such a trajic figure--
"What's a matter, Satan, Can't remember the words to 'Happy Birthday'?" Sam snidely queried.
"I know them kiddo, that just seemed more appropo. Besides," Nic stated and (using the modicum slieght-of-hand needed to convince the inebriated) appearred to pull up a small plastic box from the cake remants that Sam must've overlooked, "you don't want to be all Gloomy Gus when you open your presents--"
Sam grabbed the odd shaped plastic box from Nic's hand and shook it vigorously, listening to the rattle. Finally focusing on it she scathed "Oh Boy! I got a printer cartridge! And they don't even know what type printer I have---"
"OK, you are quite the little deductress, Spam--Yes, this also was a spur of the moment gift--but as they say, it's the thought that counts right?..."
Sam finally manages to pop it open and spills out 2 clear-blue diamond stud earrings, a perfect pair, 1 carat apiece...
"...And I'd say someone thinks very highly of you." Nic finished.
And the worse part is--Sam looks right around Nicole--as if it had too be one of the 2 boys in the soundlab with Brooke. Nicole rolls her pale blue eyes skyward as they suddenly water up. She sniffles stoically.
"Yea, so...wear 'em in good health, whatever. They were--er,um look--very expensive Spam. Treat them with respect--don't go piercing your nose again or anything..."
Sam was still staring at them mesmerized. Normally she wouldn't care less; would think them arrogant and an expansive show of self-indulgence, but...
"You know, you might not be half bad, if you'd maybe wear your hair up, let those accent your delicate neck..." Nicole paused up in time; instead kicking herself internally...
"Holy shit! Look at the time! Your 'rents'll be here any minute--we better get your sist--Brookie out of there..."
One by one, the students depart. Almost an exact reversal of the morning. Brooke, not having imbibbed as deeply as Sam runs up to hug Mike McQueen as they both start apologizing profusely for their earlier behavior. Sam exchanges small, friendly waves with Harrison as he climbs into his mom's car and is soon distracted. She smirks as she watches Mary Cherry's chauffer strap Exquisite's bicycle to the trunk of the limo. She sighs inwardly as she watches Josh climb into his dad's SUV. Then she once more opens her hand to gaze at the earrings she's clutched so tightly...
Finally, she notices Nicole walking towards her car..."God," Sam sighs, "Nicole is so beautiful; I can't even imagine having a killer body like that..." Suddenly realizing the two are just standing there gazing at each other, Sam breaks eye contact with a little roll of her head, snickering to herself--"And, as if Nic would ever wear a totally fine ensemble like that without properly accessorizing..." She squeezed the earrings tighter in her hand and smiled knowingly...
She got it! Nic felt like shouting to the world but just smiled and nodded, for both of thier benifits. In her car she caught a glimpse of her elated face in the mirror; and a glimpse of her necklace with the BITCH medalion in 2" high silver letters...her earlier present from Sam...She supposed her neck would turn green eventually from the cheap bauble, or worst-case-scenerio her head would fall off--but then she realized she'd already lost it anyway, along with a big chunk of her heart...