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episode two (it's to jimmy eat world and those nights in my car)

This chapter by Amy/fox1013.

Alexia's living room is dark. All lights have been turned off; most electrical appliances have been turned to face away. All but the TV.

The gentle glow of the television bathes the room in a pale blue light. It's Buffy night, and Jenn would have wanted it that way.

The gang is all there. Darkling and Catling are curled up on one end of the large overstuffed couch; Razor is stretched out on the other. ShinyMonkey perches on a matching armchair. Alexia, eyes never moving from the screen, sits on the floor approximately four inches from the television. Expensive electronic monitors guarantee that Weyrlady, safe in her cell, can watch with them.

"Who's that?" asks Weyrlady. Thirdhand TV viewing has made her very confused. "Is that Angel?"

"I think that's... a vampire?" Razor hasn't watched in a while; she's been very busy drinking.

"Angel?" ShinyMonkey says. "Where?"

Catling disentangles herself from Darkling for a moment. "Angel?"

"No Angel," Alexia says, smirking somewhat superiorly. "Sorry."

ShinyMonkey glares, and then speaks pointedly. "Faith."

Alexia shrieks. "Faith? Where?"

"There's Faith?" Darkling echoes.

"Is she dancing?" Alexia asks. "Is she naked?"

ShinyMonkey gestures emphatically; her point has been proven.

"You suck," Alexia whimpers.

"Yer mom," ShinyMonkey replies pleasantly.

Weyrlady clears her throat. "No. THAT."

"The dark wispy cloud-thing moving across the screen?" ShinyMonkey asks.

"Yes!"

Alexia squints. "No, that doesn't look much like Faith."

"No one said anything about Faith!" ShinyMonkey says.

"I know! I did!"

"Yer mom!" ShinyMonkey gives Alexia the finger, and one of her ninja monkeys immediately bites it. She pries the monkey's mouth open and immediately sucks on her wound. It's really not too bad; she shouldn't have to go to the hospital this time. "Good monkey," she whispers.

"I think that's the disembodied spirit of Jenn," Razor says.

Darkling squints at the screen. "Are you sure that's not Faith?"

"It's ME!" shouts Jenn from inside the TV.

Alexia squints at the television. "But it's Buffy."

"I'm DEAD!"

"And you'll still be dead at commercial," agrees ShinyMonkey. She and Alexia smile in solidarity against the common enemy of television interruption. Even the ninja monkeys have learned to be quiet during Buffy time. "Now shh."

"But I'm-"

"Hey!" Catling says. "I have a remote, and I'm not afraid to use it. If you're not going to be quiet..."

Jenn, having no other option, sighs and waits for commercial break.


PSF Episode 2: Title Sequence


It's late when everyone finally leaves. At least, most of them leave; Razor is passed out somewhere, and ZappoZi, who arrived late from work, is still eating dinner while watching a slide show of the PSF's newest weapons. It is obvious who ordered them; each tank has so-called "ironic" pink trimming.

This is under consideration from the rest of the group, although the consensus appears to be that as long as there is the possibility of war and destruction, anything's fair game.

After a nice, long bath, Alexia finally walks back to the living room. She turns the television back to her. "Jenn?"

Jenn steps carefully to the foreground. "Do you know what you've done to me?"

"I-"

"I was stuck in Cheers reruns for two hours."

"Oh, wow." Alexia knew Jenn had died, but that seems like cruel and unusual punishment.

"I know. And?" Jenn pauses dramatically. "I had to see a commercial for the next Harry Potter movie."

"I'm sorry?"

"They weren't in canon robes!"

"You're dead, and your focus is on canon robes?"

"You saw your dead friend and your first thought was Buffy!"

"No, my first thought was Faith!"

ZappoZi comes into the room, her arms filled with slides. "Are you arguing with the television again? Because you know Alex Trebek can't hear you."

"No, I'm arguing with Jenn."

"Um... Alexia? You do realize Jenn died, right?"

"Yeah, but her spiritual form returned during Buffy today. I told you you should be watching."

"Huh." ZappoZi sits down next to her in front of the television. "Hey, Jenn."

"Hey."

"What's going on? How's afterlife treating you?"

"Apparently, I haven't finished my life's mission. So they sent me back the only way they were sure you'd see me."

"Internet?"

"Buffy."

"Cool." She turns to Alexia. "Do you have any nachos left over?"

"I think the ninja monkeys ate them. We've got some plain chips if you want."

"Sure."

Alexia rings a bell attached to an intercom, and requests some food. Ever since he started dating ShinyMonkey, Paul has been the most helpful butler the PSF Corp has ever seen. By the time she returns to the conversation, Jenn and ZappoZi are deep in discussion of their lives over the few days since Jenn's untimely demise.

"How's the porn career going?" Jenn asks conversationally.

"Not bad. You know, the usual- sex, sex, assassination, sex, sex..."

"Must get boring after a while."

"The sex, yes. Killing never gets old."

They all laugh. It's a joke that they've told millions of times which, presumably, will someday become boring, but because some day is so far away, it's worth laughing at again and again.

Paul comes in with a small tray of miniature hot dogs, quiche, chips, and cheesecake. ZappoZi smiles her thanks.

"I'm dying for some cheesecake!" Jenn exclaims.

Ignoring Jenn's unfortunate figure of speech, Alexia aims the remote at the deserts, but no matter how many times she presses the "menu" button, the cheesecake does not go into the television. "Sorry," she says.

"More for me!" ZappoZi says cheerfully.

Jenn finally stamps her foot. "I have something very important to tell you!"

ZappoZi and Alexia exchange a glance before deciding it'll be a good idea to humor her. "What's up, Jenn?"

"You need to know my murderer!" she exclaims. "I was killed... by Fritler."

~.~.~

"Sit!" ShinyMonkey commands. "No, don't throw feces. Sit. SIT!" Upon her third time instructing, the monkey abruptly obeys her command and swings down into some approximation of a sitting position. "Good monkey. GOOD monkey!"

"You know, if you keep rewarding him for basic tasks, we're never going to accomplish anything," Darkling says.

"Hey!" Catling says. "Stop talking."

"She's training a monkey!"

"But we're not. And we could be doing lots of other things."

ShinyMonkey rolls her eyes at her nymphomaniac roommate. "I wish Paul could have come with us."

"Paul's back at Alexia's, helping her plan things out. And bringing people those little mini-quiches."

"But I want a mini-quiche!"

"Is that a euphemism?" Catling asks.

"Is the monkey ready yet?" Darkling asks, bored.

"He should be. Come here, Charlie. Good monkey!" At Andrea's commands, the monkey flips around and mimes stealing a key. "Good monkey."

"You spoil the monkey," Darkling says.

"He's the one who's helping me get into Weyrlady's jail cell. If you were able to break into a maximum-security prison, maybe I'd give you the treats."

"Is that a euphemism?" Catling interrupts.

"I can't help not having a tail!" Darkling says to ShinyMonkey.

"Well, then I can't help that none of the treats are for you," ShinyMonkey replies, turning on her heel. "Come on, Charlie. Let's go talk to Weyrlady."

~.~.~

The prison cell is surrounded by similar cells, small and dark and somewhat cold. Luckily, the PSF Corp. has connections all over; Weyrlady's cell is an oasis of comfort in the jail. When ShinyMonkey approaches, monkey in tow, Weyrlady clears a space on one of the four massaging leather armchairs and finds a small bunch of bananas for Charlie.

"Hi!" ShinyMonkey says cheerfully.

"Hi! It's great to see someone in a non-electronic capacity!"

ShinyMonkey offers a large envelope. "These are cards from children all over the world thanking you for your crime."

Weyrlady flushes with pride. "Well, I do what I can."

"Jenn's back."

"Is she alive again? Cause that almost never happens."

"No, she's still dead. She's living in Alexia's television."

"Oh. Cool."

"How's prison treating you?"

"Pretty well. Some of the inmates have been watching Chicago a little much. I keep waking up to the Cell Block Tango."

"Why don't you put on those headphones we had specially produced that pump anime straight into your brain?"

"I can't sleep, surrounded by gay boys! I have to watch! It's how God intended!"

"You sound like ZappoZi."

"Well, it's true! They're animated, but they're so in love!"

"I can- Charlie! Charlie, no!"

"It's okay. We can always buy a new lava lamp."

"Yeah, but that could poison him!"

"Well, that could probably teach him not to eat things he doesn't recognize just because they're floating in brightly colored globs."

ShinyMonkey nods thoughtfully. "Do you think if we brought Razor over, she might learn the same thing?"

~.~.~

"So this," says the thin man with the carefully trimmed mustache, "is what we call the arch nemesis." He points to a large diagram of what he firmly believes is the PSF Corp headquarters, possibly because of the large sign on the yard measuring approximately eight feet tall and fourteen feet wide.

The PSF are located halfway across the country from this place, but he does not know this, nor will he.

One of his minions raises a hand. "Excuse me. Fritler? Sir?"

"Yes?" Fritler arches an eyebrow menacingly.

"What do we plan to do to this group?"

"What do you think we shall do, you imbecile? We shall KILL THEM!"

"How?"

"By shooting their heads! We already killed one of them!"

"Aren't there a lot of them?" asks another minion.

"No! There are seven! And there will be less!"

"But what about the monkeys?" asks one of the few female minions timidly.

"SILENCE!" yells Fritler. He aims a laser at her. She immediately falls mute, and he continues. "There is to be no discussion of the monkeys! The monkeys will not interfere! For I am Fritler, and all shall bow before me!"

"But how?" asks the first minion, awestruck.

And thus Fritler begins to share his brilliant plan.
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