Monday, December 1, 2008

The Inevitable Fallout

In one of the DiMansion’s many living rooms, Hero EJ comforts Robo EJ who is completely distraught over the loss of his child.

Robo EJ (heartbroken): “NO, ROBO BABY! NO! OH NO!”

Hero EJ (patting his shoulder): “I’m so sorry, Robo EJ.”

Robo EJ (throwing up his hands): “WHY THIS HAPPEN?!”

Hero EJ (sadly): “I don’t know for certain, but I can only assume the excess liquor ate away at Robo Baby’s developing exoskeleton.”

Robo EJ (disbelieving): “ROBO BABY INNOCENT!”

Hero EJ (trying to soften the blow): “Alas, most didn’t see it that way. Both the writing and the audience saw Robo Baby as the tie between us and Nicole…so that connection had to be severed.”

Robo EJ (lip quivering): “IT ALL ROBO EJ FAULT!”

Hero EJ (firmly): “If it’s anyone’s fault, it’s Nicole’s for drinking so much, refusing to see a doctor, and pretending that everything was okay.”

Robo EJ (berating himself): “ROBO EJ CHOOSE POORLY! NICOLE BAD MOMMY!”

Hero EJ (unable to disagree with that point): “Yes, unfortunately, she was. I’m certain that ‘What to Expect When You’re Expecting’ doesn’t recommend to sit down when you’re bleeding and call your ex-boyfriend instead of 911.”

Sinister Voice (savoring it): “Indeed. What proof would you say her amniotic fluid was? 80? No, probably more like 120.”

Hero EJ and Robo EJ look to see Evil EJ stride slowly into the room.

Hero EJ (accusing): “You knew. That’s why you didn’t do anything to Robo EJ after Evil Crazy EJ and Samantha brought him to you. You knew the show would punish him for you. You knew this would happen.”

Evil EJ (rolling his eyes): “I’m sure that the Mars landers knew this was going to happen. Can’t have an Ejole baby with Ejami rooting couple now, can we?”

Hero EJ (disgusted): “And like the snake you are, you’re here to pour salt on the wound.”

Evil EJ smirks at Hero EJ.

Evil EJ (challenging): “Now, now. Such a small mind. Having been invigorated from a lovely tryst with my fair Samantha just now, I’m thinking more like lighter fluid.”

Hero EJ (getting up): “Not this time. I’m not going to let you.”

Evil EJ (amused): “As if I need your permission.”

Not in the mood for Evil EJ’s lack of decorum, Hero EJ grabs Evil EJ and slams him against the nearest wall. He then considers Evil EJ carefully when his opponent makes no move to retaliate.

Evil EJ (calmly): “Careful, avatar. Don’t want to break your manicure.”

Evil EJ (to Robo EJ): “You may be an overgrown toaster, but I was rather impressed with your initiative in going behind both of our backs and altering your programming yourself. Perhaps if you had asked for our assistance and took advantage of our expertise you would have gotten the ending you desired, eh?”

Robo EJ bursts into tears and sobs uncontrollably at the thought that he did not do everything he could to protect his child. Irate, Hero EJ glares at Evil EJ.

Hero EJ (furiously pointing): “That’s it. Your glib attitude is beyond inappropriate at a time like this.”

Evil EJ (continuing): “I had no idea you wanted to be a father so badly.”

Robo EJ (inconsolable): “NOW NEVER WILL!”

Evil EJ (tilting his head): “Oh, I wouldn’t say that.”

About to smack Evil EJ’s head against the wall, Hero EJ stops for a second as Evil EJ doesn’t flinch and only stares serenely back at him.

Calm Voice (nicely): “Someone would like to meet you, Robo EJ.”

Gray EJ walks into the room holding a newborn baby wearing a metal hat and wrapped in a metallic blanket.

Robo EJ (in shock): “WHA?!!”

Evil EJ (smugly): “Congratulations, Robo EJ. It’s a boy. You’re a father.”

Robo Baby: “BALAH1010101!”

Robo EJ (overjoyed): “ERNIE!!!”

Happy to see his daddy for the first time, Baby Ernie giggles.

Gray EJ (handing him over to Robo EJ): “Careful. The steel is still hardening in places.”

Robo EJ (now crying happy tears): “YOU OKAY! YOU OKAY!!!”

As Robo EJ takes Baby Ernie into his arms, Gray EJ smiles, and Hero EJ unhands Evil EJ and stares at him incredulously.

Hero EJ (jaw dropping): “What in the hell is wrong with you?!!”

Evil EJ (lighting up): “What isn’t?”

Hero EJ (flabbergasted): “You depraved worm! You made Robo EJ a zombie baby?!!”

Evil EJ (genuinely insulted): “I wouldn’t give that walking corpse the time of day much less his own decaying offspring. Robo Baby never died-he was cryogenically frozen the very instant it was possible to do so. What else do I pay my minions for? Young Ernie is one hundred percent the child Nicole was carrying.”

Gray EJ stares at Evil EJ.

Evil EJ (admitting as he crosses his arms): “All right, more like 47.6%, but between the incomplete human-cyborg fusion and the alcohol damage we had quite a few gaps to fill.”

Hero EJ (wondering): “How did you manage this without me?”

Evil EJ (gesturing): “Oh, someone thinks he’s important. Gray EJ here more than made up for your insignificant contribution to my work. What he lacks in probability alteration he more than makes up for in moral ambiguity.”

Hero EJ (forcefully): “And between the two of you there was no one there to point out the problem with trying to play God.”

Evil EJ (darkly): “Who’s trying? I don’t try anything. I just do it.”

Gray EJ (stepping between them): “Okay, calm down, you two. There’s a baby in the room. The bottom line is that this story should have never been greenlit in the first place.”

Evil EJ (seriously): “Precisely. Women watch soaps for escapist fantasy, and a miscarriage is a tragedy. It’s an experience that none of them wish to relive, so highlighting one on this show is exceedingly cruel.”

Hero EJ (warily): “All true, but that doesn’t give you the right to do anything to Robo Baby.”

Evil EJ (unconcerned): “Why not? We compensated for the blood loss, removed all the alcohol damage, appropriately SORASed him, and conducted beta testing with Evil Crazy EJ and Samantha playing with him in a supervised environment. We even removed all of Nicole’s worthless genes and substituted a cyborg-phillic variant of Samantha’s DNA instead, with her freely given consent of course.”

Hero EJ (surprised at Evil EJ’s foresight): “Really?”

Evil EJ (secure in his brilliance): “Ask her yourself when you go back to stand vigil on her and her idiot handler.”

Unsure, Hero EJ looks at Gray EJ for confirmation.

Gray EJ (nodding): “He’s telling the truth. I wouldn’t have agreed to help otherwise.”

Still not convinced, Hero EJ watches Robo EJ hold Baby Ernie.

Evil EJ (silver tongue): “See how happy he is? How can you deny him that over some middling concerns about opening a forbidden path to a brave new world?”

Gray EJ (agreeing from a different perspective): “I understand your concern, Hero EJ, but Robo EJ and Ernie shouldn’t have to pay for TPTB’s mistakes.”

Silent for several moments, Hero EJ’s opposition to the idea melts underneath the warmth from shared smiles between father and son.

Hero EJ (understanding): “You’re right. They didn’t do anything wrong.”

Evil EJ (scoffing): “Of course they didn’t. You and your ethics. Get off your high horse. This show had Jack donate his organs and still come back from the dead three times. What’s saving a cyborg baby from a plot point miscarriage?”

Hero EJ (suddenly considering): “This is probably much too late to bring this up, but wasn’t the Ejole baby a girl?”

Evil EJ and Gray EJ look at each other. After a moment, Gray EJ shrugs.

Gray EJ (sheepishly): “Beats me. I tried to ask Zombie Dallas EJ about the baby several times, but all I got was him drooling over Nicole and mumbling about not finding any brains to eat.”

Evil EJ (shaking his head): “Due to his less than optimal fetal environment, we had to manually resequence all of Ernie’s DNA, and what remained was male. Regardless, there is no way I would let a member of our family be named after the maid from The Jetsons.”

Suddenly Good EJ and Evil Crazy EJ enter the room. Good EJ is loaded down with a cake, various beverages, and balloons. Evil Crazy EJ is carrying his Samantha doll and a small plastic bag. Both are dressed in party attire with Evil Crazy EJ in a crisp sky blue button down shirt and khakis and Samantha in a cheery pink ruffled dress.

Hero EJ (wondering): “What’s this?”

Evil Crazy EJ (brightly): “Hello, Hero EJ! It is the Robo EJ is a daddy, and Baby Ernie is alive party! We are very happy that Evil EJ and Gray EJ made everything turn out okay!”

Setting everything down on the nearby coffee table, Good EJ looks at Evil Crazy EJ. Evil Crazy EJ glares at him threateningly and points to his Samantha doll.

Good EJ (rehearsed): “I am very happy that Baby Ernie is okay and has been returned to Robo EJ. Let me go get the rest of the party materials.”

Samantha: “…”

Evil Crazy EJ (agreeing with his wife): “Yes, Good EJ knows to stay on his best behavior now that we have very nicely let him out of his cage for the party, or he will suffer the consequences.”

While Robo EJ quietly continues to bond with Baby Ernie, Evil Crazy EJ opens his plastic bag and removes its contents.

Evil Crazy EJ (handing them out): “Samantha made party hats for everyone! Baby Ernie too!”

Hero EJ (happily putting on his hat): “Wow, these are great! Thank you, Evil Crazy EJ and Samantha. You outdid yourselves.”

Evil EJ (smiling in spite of himself): “I think so too.”

Evil Crazy EJ (proud of his wife): “I third the opinion!”

Samantha: “…”

Evil Crazy EJ (kissing her on the cheek): “Yes, you are better than Martha Stewart!”

Unimpressed, Gray EJ refuses to put on his gray party hat and snickers as Evil EJ nonchalantly dons his black one.

Gray EJ (smiling at the sight): “You look ridiculous.”

Evil EJ merely watches as Evil Crazy EJ moves quickly and punches Gray EJ in the face.

Evil Crazy EJ (adamant): “Samantha spent hours on these in order to make them the best party hats in the history of existence, and she thinks Evil EJ looks very nice. And she says Gray EJ will put on his party hat if he would like to keep his spleen because she will not let him ruin Robo EJ and Baby Ernie’s party!”

Gray EJ (hastily putting on his hat): “Oo-o-okay…”

Reeling from the blow, Gray EJ tries to hold his head back. Amused, Evil EJ offers him his handkerchief.

Evil EJ (savoring the moment): “Do I?”

As Hero EJ, Evil Crazy EJ, and Samantha set out the beverages and decorations, Evil EJ helps himself to a piece of cake and stands where Gray EJ can still see him as he attempts to stop his nosebleed. Evil EJ taunts Gray EJ by eating his cake as slowly as possible, including licking the frosting off his fork.

Evil EJ (devilishly): “Delightful.”

Seething, Gray EJ glares at him.

Evil EJ (discarding his empty plate on the floor and surveying the available drinks): “Quite the assortment of carbonated beverages, eh? Shall we have a toast?”

Hero EJ (concerned): “Shouldn’t we wait for Good EJ to get back?”

Evil Crazy EJ (disagreeing): “There are lots of presents! It will take too long to wait for Pansy EJ to come back with all of them!”

Evil EJ (concurring): “As if we need to include Princess anyway.”

Robo EJ, Hero EJ, and Evil Crazy EJ all take a can off the table. Finally stopping the bleeding, Gray EJ faces forward again and puts the bloody handkerchief into his jean pocket as Evil EJ places a drink into his hand.

Evil EJ (commanding): “Gentlemen.”

Evil EJ raises his own soft drink and the rest of the EJs follow suit.

Evil EJ (gravely): “To gravitas.”

Robo EJ and Evil Crazy EJ repeat the phrase and open their beverages while Hero EJ and Gray EJ openly stare at a grinning Evil EJ.

Hero EJ (blankly): “You didn’t.”

Evil EJ (smirking): “I most certainly did.”

Gray EJ (uncomprehendingly): “But he’s our-”

Evil EJ (interrupting): “He is. I only kid because I love.”

Misinterpreting the edge in his voice, Hero EJ and Gray EJ continue to look at Evil EJ.

Evil Crazy EJ (missing the point as he romantically shares his drink with his wife): “Samantha enjoyed the toast very much, Evil EJ, but she would like to know what that means.”

Evil EJ (dryly): “Apparently it means equating our sacred relationship with our soulmate with that of an opportunistic tart. Who knew? I really must buy an updated thesaurus one of these days.”

His intuition alerting him, Hero EJ takes a look at the clock at the wall.

Hero EJ (reluctantly taking off his hat): “Well, I’d love to stay, but I really need to get going.”


Evil Crazy EJ (waving): “Goodbye, Hero EJ! We will save you some cake if Samantha is not very hungry later!”

Gray EJ (clasping Hero EJ’s shoulder): “Have fun, Hero EJ. Try not to get too bored watching Safe and checking in with the minions shadowing Ali.”

Evil EJ (adding): “The instant the plot allows me to move my daughter here, I will. In any case, make sure not to say hello to the Ninja Turtle for us.”

Hero EJ (correcting): “His name is Rafe.”

Evil EJ (ignoring him): “Yes, he favors red bandanas in addition to being a sai master and quite the cutup, I’ve heard.”

Hero EJ regards Evil EJ.

Hero EJ (letting it go): “You know, Evil EJ, you’re still a vile excuse for a human being.”

Evil EJ (raising an eyebrow): “Flattery will get you nowhere, valkyrie.”

Hero EJ (continuing): “But you really do have a heart. A black one akin to a bullet hole, but a heart nonetheless.”

Hero EJ (curious): “What gave you this idea?”

Evil EJ (honestly): “I wisely listened to my better half.”

Hero EJ glances at Robo EJ beaming as he holds his son.

Hero EJ (warmly): “I’m glad you did.”

Hero EJ leaves the room to guard Samantha and her unborn child while Evil Crazy EJ and Samantha move over to Robo EJ and Baby Ernie.

Evil Crazy EJ (holding his wife up so she can see): “Samantha wants to say hi to Baby Ernie! She loves babies and wishes there was more of them on the show. She does not know why Steve and Kayla could not have both Baby Joe and Pocketman!”

Turning away from them, Gray EJ shakes his head at Evil EJ.

Gray EJ (sighing): “I can’t believe you joked about that.”

Evil EJ (sanguine): “Yet he can say we have no male anatomy? Cheer up, buttercup. Loyalty does not mean lockstep opinion.”

Evil EJ (sincerely): “Of course I appreciate beyond words everything he’s ever done for us. And I wish him the best of luck with the upcoming astoundingly boring spoilers for the next month on the show. But that doesn’t mean everything he said is correct. Particularly about me not killing people.”

Gray EJ (not sold): “I suppose.”

Evil EJ (certain): “I know. Now go take a piece of cake before Evil Crazy EJ comes over and asks if Samantha can have the frosting.”

Gray EJ (folding his arms across his chest): “Speaking of differing opinions, this wasn’t your idea, was it?”

Evil EJ (innocently): “I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

Gray EJ (thinking): “Once you found out Robo EJ disobeyed you and Hero EJ, you were hellbent on taking a blowtorch to him and melting him into slag. You don’t have a better half-your better half is Samantha. She’s the one who insisted on this.”

Evil EJ (not disagreeing): “Hormones. The oxycotin build up in pregnancy makes one seize on ideas that otherwise would have been dismissed.”

Gray EJ (finishing the puzzle): “And you want me to keep my mouth shut so you have leverage over Hero EJ.”

Evil EJ looks at Gray EJ before one side of his mouth curls into a smirk, and he puts his arm around his frequent companion.

Evil EJ (idly threatening): “You really are too smart for your own good. Fortunately for you, you answer to me.”

Gray EJ (deadpan): “You certainly know how to make me feel wanted.”

Evil EJ (grinning): “What are friends for?”

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