|Happy Days: Twilight Zone
Author: Thor2000 PM
Joanie has entered the Twilight Zone; she's having visions and reflections of life from the Eighties and the Nineties and Richie and the gang think she's losing it as her personality keeps hopping time periods.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Fantasy/Humor - & Joanie C. - Chapters: 5 - Words: 13,699 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 1 - Updated: 09-22-12 - Published: 10-19-09 - Status: Complete - id: 5453445
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Arthur Fonzarelli lived above the Cunningham's garage. As the Fonz, he replaced the role as Richie's role model in the absence of Chuck away in the Marines and avoiding his father. In the wayward son's absence, Marion had adopted Arthur in a way and had become the mother figure he had so missed in his life. Since he had stayed with the Cunninghams, he had mellowed… somewhat. He no longer ran with a gang or threatened to beat anyone up. He was Richie's best friend.
"Hey, Mrs. C…." He entered the house through the back door in the kitchen.
"Hello, Arthur…" Marion shined like the perennial Fifties housewife and turned to hand him his thermos filled with hot coffee. "Would you like some breakfast?"
"Of course…" He grinned to her. He loved her attention to his needs. "Is this one for me?" He saw a plate sitting on the counter between the counter and the breakfast table.
"No, that's Joanie's, and it's cold…" Marion turned back to the stove. "I'll scramble you your own eggs." She paused to take a deep breath and yell for her daughter again. "Joanie, come eat your breakfast!" Her voice annoyed her husband sitting and reading the morning newspaper at the breakfast table. Richie barely looked up from proofreading his homework at the table.
"I'm coming!" The voice of the delayed daughter sounded from the top floor and echoed down the staircase followed shortly behind by herself. Prancing from her room, the effervescent brunette grabbed a backpack filled with her schoolbooks and looked like any other female student going to school at the beginning of the Twenty-First century. However, this was the Late 1950s, and her attire was likely to cause some heads to turn toward her for all the wrong reasons. Instead of the sweater and skirt, she was dressed more casually in blue jeans that hugged her hips a bit lower than normal. Her feet scuffed the carpet in thick-soled sneakers of dark material with glowing light blue shoelaces and over her arm, she carried a leather jacket of her own. Her top was off-white in color and was a bit on the small side. It was like a t-shirt, but there wasn't enough to tuck into her jeans, a portion of her abdomen peeked out here and there as she moved, and the sleeves were practically nonexistent. She was showing a lot more skin that any other girl in the 1950s. Richie looked at her once as she dropped the backpack.
"Going camping?" He looked at her pack.
"Going shopping for a new personality?"
"Joanie!" Her father reacted. She had never smarted off to her brother before like that!
"Mrs. C…" Fonzie sipped a small glass of orange juice. "It looks like you shrunk Short Cake's shirt in the laundry."
"Oh, dear…" Marion looked over as Howard peeked over the newspaper. "I may have…" She actually didn't recall Joanie owning a shirt like that. "Here, you go, honey…" She gave her daughter her plate of scrambled eggs. "Eat your breakfast and then go up and change your shirt." Joanie looked over it and inspected it. It was the same breakfast she always got, scrambled eggs with sausage and potatoes with orange juice, but this morning, she was not interested.
"Mom…" Joanie took her usual seat at the breakfast table. "These eggs are cold."
"Well, you should have come down the first time I called."
"Why don't you just nuke it in the microwave?" Joanie inquired.
"Nuke it?" Her mother reacted confused.
"Microwave?" Her father responded just as confused. "What's a microwave?"
"It's a wavelength of energy." Richie recalled that word; it was from his high school textbook. "I read in a magazine that someday ovens using microwaves will be able to cook a lot more faster with microwaves. I guess Joanie read the same book."
"Yeah…" Joanie looked to Fonzie staring at her and tried laughing it off. "The same book…" She looked to her breakfast and picked at with her fork a second before poking in her pack by her chair.
"Richard…" Howard lowered the newspaper and folded it small enough to carry before commandeered the morning conversation next. "What are your plans for the weekend?"
"I don't know."
"I could use some help in the hardware store this weekend." He ate his scrambled eggs. "How about seventy-five cents an hour?"
"Sounds okay…." Richie thought of his friends. "Can Ralph and Potsie help too?"
"If they come, it's fifty cents an hour." His father looked at him. "And Potsie works in back where he's not around the customers. I've got this new idea to…" He heard distant music somewhere and paused. "Where's that music coming from?"
The three faces at the table turned to Joanie. She had tiny earpieces in her ears connected by wires to a small device on the table. At first, they thought it was a transistor radio, Richie had one in his room, but hers was even smaller. It looked like a fat credit card with a small dial on it and part of was lighted up from within, but it was so small and slender he could not see how anything could be in it. Joanie just sat there swaying and moving her head to the music in her ears. Her mind was a million miles away. She picked at her eggs, ate some of her fried potatoes but ignored the sausage on her plate before she noticed she was being watched. Looking up briefly, she noticed Fonzie was looking at her then Richie and her father. Her mother brought Fonzie his plate and stopped to look at her. Taking a cue from the faces on her, she pulled out her earphones.
"Wha-utt?" She tore the one syllable word into two syllables.
"Shortcake…" Fonzie spoke up. "What are you listening to?"
"On what? A postage stamp?" Richie picked up her new toy and turned it around and over. There were some names in the little window next to smaller images and song titles... Gwen Stefani, Britney Spears, Justin Bieber… His finger just grazed it and the list moved revealing recording artists he'd never heard of... Selena Gomez, Jay-Lo Green, Miley Cyrus, The Baha Men, Lady Gaga, Rhianna… Some force of nature called Rob Zombie. What the heck was this thing? His father wanted to see it, but Fonzie reached first.
"Did I miss something?" Fonzie was able to scroll the list up and down too. "Did transistor radios get smaller?"
"Fonzie…" Joanie chuckled in disbelief. "It's not a transistor radio. It's an I-Pod!" She lit up knowingly then showed him. "Look, I can record all my favorite songs and replay them in any order or as many times as I want."
"How can you record anything on something that small?"
"Microchips, dad! Duh!"
"Okay, I gotta ask…" Richie did a double take. "What kind of allowance are you giving this girl?"
"Joanie…" Howard started wondering if she was taking money from his wallet without his knowledge. He had heard of kids doing that, but Joanie was supposed to be different. She might have been distracted at times and childish around her brother, but she was not dishonest. He fretted a bit and passed his hand over his forehead a bit dismayed. "H-How did you get… Where did you get this thing?"
"With my allowance…" Joanie looked at them with their accusing faces. "At the mall…"
"What's a mall?"
"The shopping mall…" She honestly did not understand their confusion. "I go there with my friends to shop and drink cappuccinos and look at boys and…"
"Howard, what's a cappuccino?" Marion asked getting even more confused.
"I think it's a drink of some kind…" Her husband looked at her than back to his extra-sophisticated daughter. "Uh, Joanie, how can you afford to do this on the allowance I give you?"
"Actually, I think…." Joanie reached down a poked into her backpack. "…I've been budgeting myself quite well." She pulled out a wad of bills that had been folded over themselves. Richie made a gagging noise in surprise, and Fonzie's eyes widen in shock. Both her mother and father gasped in shock at what she was carrying, but then her father's stubby round fingers reached out and took the bills from her.
"Okay, I gotta ask…" Richie was almost hyperventilating. "What kind of allowance are you giving this girl?"
"Joanie, where did you get all this money?" Her father counted it out. "Twenty, forty, fifty… she's got to have almost five hundred dollars here. This is practically payment on the house!"
"Dad, this has got to be play money!" Richie looked at the bills. "Look, the paper's funny, the President's pictures are really huge, and…" He held it up to the light. "Look, there's some sort of ghost image to the left inside the bill!" Fonzie took the $50 and looked at it closer.
"Whoa! That's not the only thing! 2008, 2005, 2010…" He pointed at the dates. "Mr. C, as a guy who runs his own business like yourself, I'd swear this is real currency! Somehow, someway…" He slapped his hands in disbelief and pointed to Joanie. "Shortcake's been traveling to the future and coming back with cash and the music device."
"Joanie…" Marion placed her hand to her chest. "Have you been traveling to the future, sweetheart?"
"No, no, I swear…" The girl felt scared and confused. "I didn't know I had the money until a minute ago." She tried rationalizing it logically. "I knew about the I-Pod and the laptop, but I never knew…"
"Laptop?" Richie and Fonzie chorused together and looked at each other. "What's a laptop?"
"Oh…" Joanie turned round to her pack on the floor by her chair reached into it once more to pull out something that looked like a metal cutting board, but she casually popped the release and it opened up to a half typewriter and half television interior. On the screen was a floating picture on a digital cartoon image of gold symbols on blue. It wanted a password.
"This is my laptop." Joanie held it in her left arm as if she was a teenager from the Early Twenty-First Century and typed with her right hand. "I used it to do my homework last night." She typed in "Joanie" with her "Shortcake" password and immediately opened her AOL account.
"You've Got Mail…" A voice came out of it.
"Dad," Joanie was both excited and nervous at the same time. "It's got this site called Wikipedia that tells me everything about life, history and culture to the end of the century!" She paused with a light grin. "Did you know we're going to have an African-American President in 2010?"
"African-American?" Her father looked confused. Was that some sort of slang for black people?
"Okay…" Fonzie snapped his fingers and stepped back. "I am officially getting creeped-out-a-mundo here! We are officially entering the Twilight Zone here." He grabbed his coffee thermos from the window to the kitchen. "I don't know about you, but I'm getting out of here before Rod Serling comes through that front door and takes me with him." He headed for the back door to head out. "Joanie, my advice: keep the I-Pod and the cash but chuck the laptop! No one, but no one should know what happens in the future! I'm out. Whoa!" He closed the back door on himself and was off on his motorcycle.
"The entire future…." Howard looked from Fonzie back to his daughter. "In this one tiny little box?" He reached to look at his daughter's future gadget.
"No, dad…" Joanie grinned enjoying the attention. "The information is out on the World Wide Web. My lap top just lets me access it."
"Joanie…" Her mother was nervous about this device. "How do you know this?" Joanie started to answer then got confused.
"I don't know…" Joanie looked at her father examining her laptop. How did she know that? Did knowing this stuff somehow affect her mind? Was it changing her into a kid of the future? Was that how she knew that song at Arnolds and how to dress this way?
"Let's see if it can tell me what to invest in." Her father looked at the letters. It was like a typewriter that gave him answers from the future, but instead of paper, he looked at words and images and faces and strange icons. "Imagine! I can play the stock market with no risk at all!"
"Dad!" Richie was shocked. This was the man who taught him wrong from right. Even was wife was surprised!
"What the heck am I doing?" Looking at his son, Howard regained his normal personality and the choice to do the right thing. "Joanie, young lady, take this thing, that I-Pad thing…." He grabbed everything up and pushed it back to her. "And get it and everything else out of this house… especially the cash." He pulled his handkerchief out to wipe his head. "My God, do you realize that funny cash could get me in trouble for counterfeiting? Counterfeiting! Me!"
"Dad!" She laughed at him. He was being ridiculous. He'd just have to wait fifty years to spend it!
"Joanie…" Her brother came toward her. "It may be real in the future, but now, in the present, it's just funny money and pretty much worthless in our economy."
"What?" She looked to her mother. "Mom!"
"Joanie, just listen to your father…" Marion dropped into a chair distraught and flustered. "Just… go upstairs, put some modern clothes on, and…" She paused trying to think. "Please dear, just stay in this time."
"What? Well…" The girl backed up slowly. "Maybe… just maybe… I don't want to live in this time!" She screamed and turned for the staircase, charging up them angry, down the hall and slamming the door of her bedroom.