Usual copyright disclaimer: CHANT: Characters are not mine, um-lalalalala they are property of MTV - um, lalalalala this story is meant to work into the story arc left from Is It Fall Yet and Season 4 of Daria -- all inspiration is attributed to the scri

Written in school play format, rather than standard screenwriting format.

Authors note 09/22/2008: Reformatted for reading ease and because I now have the equipment to clean up the more cringe worthy errors. Because a writer never really finishes a piece – it's a quirk we all share – a few gags have been rewritten and dialog has been tightened.

Bait and Switch by Medea42

Act I: Scene I
Ms. Li's office. Daria and Kevin are seated across from her. Both Daria and Kevin are looking extremely unhappy.

Ms. Li: I just received notice that our local Masher's Club wants to honor Lawndale High for outstanding academics and athletics. Since you, Kevin, are our record setting quarterback and you, Daria, are the first person to maintain a 4.0 at Lawndale High in ten years, we want you to attend this event together.

Daria: Why can't Mack and Jodie go to this?

Ms. Li: Mack and Jodie are needed to represent us at the Optimist's Club. I will need you both in formal attire, and I will want you both on your best behavior. This meeting is at Chez Pierre, and I need you to put on the impression you're dating --

Kevin: I wouldn't date Daria, Ms. Li! My girlfriend is Brittany!

Daria: As much as association with Kevin just THRILLS me, I have ethical AND personal issues with letting anyone I know think that I would actually date Kevin.

Ms. Li: Nonsense, both of you! For just one night, you will give the impression that you are a couple, after all, it's my pleasure to hook two nice young people together if it involves a kickback - I mean, publicity - for Lawndale High. The attendance of both of you is
essential.

Daria: I can always ask my mother's opinion about this -

Ms. Li: I think her opinion will be that it's wonderful the Masher's Club is presenting you with a 2,000 scholarship, Ms. Morgendorffer. That scholarship depends on an obvious, symbiotic relationship between academics and athletics.

Kevin: Ew! I don't want to think I'm that way with Daria - she's not even hot! Besides, she WEARS glasses, send her to that Optimist thing.

Li and Daria stare at Kevin for a moment before resuming their discussion.

Ms. Li: Mr. Thompson, I believe that a Mr. Sebfenn is a recognized member of the Masher's Club -

Kevin: The guy who owns the Pigskin channel?

Ms. Li: One and the same. Attending this ceremony with Ms. Morgendorffer would provide you an opportunity to meet this gentleman, and his connections could find you a great place to play football.

Kevin: Cool!

Daria: While the money and your kickbacks -

Ms. Li: Just publicity, Daria, I didn't say kickbacks -

Daria: Your PUBLICITY are harmless enough, I still don't see why this requires that Kevin and I pretend we're dating.

Ms. Li: What better way to embody the co-existence of academics and athletics than through two fine young people from our school?

Daria: But -

Ms. Li: Just DO it, Morgendorffer. Or FACE the consequences.

Kevin: When do I get to meet the Pigskin channel guy? And do I get paid to take Daria out?

Ms. Li: You will be paid when you receive your diploma, Kevin.

Kevin: Awright!!

Daria smacks her hand to her forehead and holds it there.

Act I: Scene 2
Jane is standing at lockers, as Daria arrives.

Jane: So what did Ms. Li want today?

Daria: She asked me to prostitute myself for the glory of Lawndale High.

Jane: So when do you receive your stilettos and feather boa?

Daria: Next Thursday. If I fake a date with Kevin for a community organization, I get a 2000 scholarship.

Jane: Woah. You should have held out for another zero.

Enter Brittany, marching.
Brittany: Daria, I want to talk to you right now!

Daria: Kevin told you.

Brittany: Yes, and I want to discuss this with you sees Jane in PRIVATE!

Jane: Oh, I'm not really here. You just think you're seeing me because you always see me with Daria.

Brittany: (Blinks) I do.

Jane: Yup. Ask Daria -- it's a brain thing.

Daria: Um, yeah, she's right. (VO: For those who have a brain.) Everyone is so used to seeing Jane around me that when she's not here, people think she's here anyway.

Brittany: (Twirling hair) But if that's true, why can YOU hear her?

Daria: Because I'm so used to Jane being around, I'm hallucinating, too.

Brittany: Um, OK. (Remembers to be mad.) Why are you stealing my Kevvy!?

Daria: I'm not stealing Kevin. Ms. Li is MAKING us attend a Masher's meeting. I promise when I'm done, I'll give him back in as good or better condition than he was in the first place.

Brittany: Sure, that's what you say. But how do I know I can trust you?

Daria: Have I ever given you a reason not to trust me before?

Brittany: I'd still feel better if I had some kind of guarantee. (Brightens.) I know! Since you're going out with MY boyfriend, I should go out with YOUR boyfriend.

Daria: I don't think Tom would -

Brittany: Now Daria, no fair keeping all the boys to yourself!

Jane (Laughs so hard she has to sit down on the floor.)

Brittany: (Staring at Jane.) Do hallucinations always do that?

Act I: Scene 3

Sloane living room. Daria and Tom are sitting on the couch, watching TV.

OS: Megaphones and mayhem! When cheerleaders attack, next on Sick, Sad World!

Daria clicks off TV.

Daria: Speaking of cheerleaders...

Tom: You finally found a way to donate them all to science without their parents noticing?

Daria: No, I decided to move the project back to picking their parents. And having them sterilized. beat I need you to go on a date with one.

Tom: A cheerleader's parent?

Daria: No, a cheerleader.

Tom: Daria, did you just say you want me to go on a date with a cheerleader?

Daria: (Miserably) Yes.

Tom: You, Daria Morgendorffer, the anti-cheer of our generation, not to mention my girlfriend, desire that I, Tom Sloane, he who hates perky women, go on a date with a cheerleader.

Daria: You're catching on.

Tom: Does anything look wrong with this picture to you?

Daria: It needs a hint of "Sure honey, anything to help out!"

Tom: Before I say no, no, and hell no, out of morbid curiosity I want to know why.

Daria: Because I'm being forced on a charade date with said cheerleader's boyfriend so I can get a scholarship, and she wants collateral, namely you.

Tom: I feel like such an...object. (Pause.) In a way, I'm kind of flattered.

Daria: So, will you?

Tom: Give me a good reason.

Daria kisses Tom.

Tom: Well, it's a start.

Daria blushes.

Fade out. Pre-commercial to pan of Jane sliding to the floor, laughing. COMMERCIAL BREAK. LOTS OF STUFF YOU DON'T NEED, AND RIDICULOUS REASONS TO CONVINCE YOU YOU DO NEED IT. THANK YOU FOR YOUR PARTICIPATION IN COGNITIVE DISSONANCE.

Act 2: Scene 1
Morgendorffer house. Doorbell rings, Jake answers the door. Kevin is standing there, dressed in the high-water suit he wore in "It Happened One Nut".

Jake: Daria! Your date is here! Looks at Kevin. Tom, are you feeling OK? You look a little different tonight -

Kevin: (Laughing.) No Mr. M, it's me, Kevin! Daria's brothers my girlfriend's date tonight.

Jake: Tom is a brother? He's part of that cult? My little girl -

Enter Helen, phone in hand

Helen: No Jake, I think Kevin's just confused about Daria's boyfriend. Kevin is escorting her to that awards dinner tonight. You remember Kevin, Jake - he worked with Daria on that science project.

Phone rings

Helen: Oh, HI Eric -

Jake: Oh, yeah. brightens. Kevin, my man, come and watch the Pigskin channel with me!

Both sit down, Jake clicks on television

Enter Daria wearing a red strapless dress, and her hair is up. The dress is similar to the green version she wore from her Trent fantasy in "Lane Miserables". Stands behind Kevin and Jake.

Daria: Excuse me.

Kevin: Not right now, babe. Pigskin channel.

Daria walks around and stands in front of Kevin and Jake.
Daria: (Looks at watch.) Not worth prolonging the agony. Now what would I do if he were Quinn? Oh yes. (Grabs Kevin's ear)

Kevin: OOOOOWWWW.

Jake is still engrossed in television.

Jake: Girls, keep it down. Kevin and I are trying to watch here.

Kevin: I'm not a girl!

Daria: Let's go now. (Releases his ear and stands in front of Kevin. Grabs remote out of Jake's hand and turns off TV.)

Jake: Hey!

Daria is towering over Kevin, looks ready to say something threatening.

Kevin: Wow Daria, you look hot. You actually look like your sisters with Quinn.

Daria: And to anyone else, that would be a compliment. Let's get our money and
run.

Kevin: They'll have money there?

Daria grabs Kevin's ear again and proceeds to walk him by the ear to the door.

Jake: Have fun kiddo!

Act 2: Scene 3
Kevin and Daria are seated at a table at Chez Pierre. They are facing a long table at the front of the room, where several business types are giving a speech.

Business Man 1: and it is with great pleasure that we have with us two distinguished high school students, whose accomplishments in academics and sports...

Kevin: (Sotto voce) Daria, do you want to go out after this? You look like so hot, I think it would be great for you to be seen with me -

Daria: Sure, and after that we can go the funeral parlor and meet my friends.

Kevin: (Puts his arm around her, while Daria shrugs it off.) We do have to act like we're a couple.

Under the table, Daria stamps on his foot

Kevin: (Giggles.) Daria, you really need to learn to play better footsie.

Daria groans and slumps a little. Under table, Kevin tries putting his hand on her thigh. Daria grabs a fork and jabs him on the hand.

Kevin: Ow!

Business Man stops. All are staring at Daria and Kevin.

Daria: Sorry, I'm getting the vapors.

Business Man: As I was saying - the relationship between academics and athletics is crucial to community development. With smart, disciplined young adults, we are assured of the future of Lawndale. I would like to introduce for the evening our guests, Ms. Daria Morgendorffer and Mr. Kevin Thompson, two well-known contributors to the reputation of Lawndale High School. Will this fine young couple come up here for a moment, please?

Daria and Kevin stand up and walk to the podium. Kevin takes Daria's hand, and she holds it far away from her body.

Business Man: Here at the Mashers, we admire the positive co-existence of academics and sports. That this symbiosis continues to express itself in such a positive and romantic way winks at Kevin, who smiles and gives him a thumbs-up is a delight to myself and to all the
members of our organization. We would like to present you, Ms. Morgendorffer ,with a 2000 scholarship for your outstanding academic reputation. Kindly say a few words about managing your academic outlook and an athletic boyfriend.

Daria disentangles her hand from Kevin's.

VO: Dammit, it's the 21st century. It's not that much, but it might rescue me from a summer job. Oh the wonders of selling out. Aw hell. Damn values.

Daria: Thank you, gentlemen of the Masher's club, for this honorarium. It really makes up for the complete lack of female membership and the token that I must attach myself to an idiotic football player who I would rather die than ever date in my life. Your organization has done MUCH to promote the advancement of academics, and I see no prejudice based on gender here at all.

Business Man: Ms. Morgendorffer? What are you saying?

Daria: I'm saying that my real boyfriend is not here, and probably very grateful for that. I'm also saying that this award is total bull, and I guess I'll just work this summer anyway. (Walks out.)

Club Member: Hey, haven't I seen her with Angier Sloane's boy?

Club Member 2: I'll go after her. (Dashes out door Daria exited.)

Kevin: (Takes podium, giggles.) Babes. It must be that time, y'know. (Wiggles eyebrows.) Y'know? (A few club members clap and chuckle.)

Act 2: Scene 4:
Tom and Brittany are at a play. Curtain closes.

Brittany: I love plays. They're like movies, but different.

Tom: Plays were the basis for movies, Brittany.

Brittany: (Twirling hair.) Really?

Tom: Just like cheerleaders were the basis for introducing capital punishment.

Brittany: (Looks around.) Why is everyone getting up? Is the play over? I want to find out what happens next -

Tom: It's inter – (VO: who knows what she'll think that word means. She already misunderstood xenophobic, and now I'll never see Lucy Lawless the same way again. Daria said keep it to three syllables or less.) It's a break so the actors can set the scene for the next part of the play. The audience can go fix their hair and makeup during this time.

Brittany: Oh! How nice! I think I'll do that! (Leaves.)

Trent appears behind Tom. He's dressed entirely in black and wearing a headset.

Trent: Hey Tom!

Tom: (Jumps.) Trent! Hi! What are you doing here?

Trent: I make a little money operating the sound board for these shows.

Tom: Does that cut into your time with Spiral?

Trent: Nah, the plays end early enough that I can still make my gigs at night. Besides, I'm always late.

Tom: I didn't know you were interested in theater. That's very cool.

Trent: Just behind the scenes, man. Acting is not for me. (Awkward pause.) So, uh, how's Daria?

Tom: Oh, she's fine. You know here – pizza, homework and plotting world domination. (Awkward pause.) How's Jane?

Trent: She's fine.

Tom: OK.

Brittany returns.

Brittany: There you are, Tom! (Takes his arm as they retake their seats and then notices Trent.) Aren't you Jane's brother?

Trent: (Eyes wide.) Woah! I didn't know you broke up with Daria! (His headset buzzes.)

Headset Voice: Everybody, places!

Tom opens his mouth to speak.

Trent: Gotta go!

Brittany: You broke up with Daria? I guess you got tired of her braininess, now you can experience a woman with real passion. And you're not in sports but you're really cute and your parents live in Crewe Neck so this should work OK! (Tries to kiss Tom.)

Tom: (Holds her off.) It's not like that, Brittany.

The curtain rises on the stage. Brittany rests her head on Tom's shoulder, little hearts bursting in the air around her. Tom looks miserable.

Pan to Daria dragging Kevin out of the Morgendorffer house by the ear.

COMMERCIAL BREAK. THANK YOU FOR PARTICIPATING IN COGNITIVE DISSONANCE, CHECK YOUR BRAINS AND YOUR CREDIT CARDS AT THE DOOR.

Act 3: Scene 1

Pizza King, same night. Daria still wears her red dress. Jane is sitting across the table from her.

Jane: Crazy night. You didn't even collect your 200 and pass go.

Daria: I couldn't do it. I left Kevin there, drooling on himself and I will face down Ms. Li tomorrow. THEN they offered me the money anyway because I was dating Tom.

Jane: (Shakes head.) Ah, Daria. You can have money or integrity...or integrity when you have the money to afford it.

Daria: More wisdom from the art colony?

Jane: Wise isn't what I would call that. Maybe you're overexposed to the Sloanes. They can afford integrity.

Daria: Yeah, they keep it in the back of the fridge. Maybe Mom will get some extra when she makes partner. But I think for her it's more about trading it in bit by bit because of the lease arrangement she made on her soul to pay for law school.

Enter Trent, still in his stagehand outfit.

Trent: Mind if I join you guys?

Jane: Join away, oh joiner you!

Trent sits next to Daria.

Trent: Hey Daria! Nice dress. (Places hand on her shoulder.) Sorry about Tom, he's a jerk to dump you, too -

Daria shrugs Trent's hand off. The look of disgust on her face parallels the look she gave Kevin earlier.

Daria: What are you talking about?

Trent: I just saw him with that blonde girl Jane had over once. I think she's a cheerleader or something. After dating fine women like you and Jane, you'd think -

Daria: Brittany? I know he's with Brittany.

Trent: You do? And you're not upset?

Daria: I appreciate your concern, Trent, but it's simply a matter of collateral.

Trent: Huh?

Daria: I was forced to go out with Kevin tonight, and Brittany insisted that I leave Tom with her as an exchange.

Jane: It's Daria's birthday present to me. One night of sheer hell for Tom. Best gift ever!

Trent: Huh?

Daria: Oh, come on Trent, it's just a stupid boyfriend. They're interchangeable, and according to the Quinn theory of economics, I should be able to trade Tom in for a sporty little VW bug
any day now.

Trent looks horrified, then the wheels start turning.

Trent: (Laugh/cough.) Funny, Daria. You really had me going. And I can't say Tom doesn't deserve it.

Jane: A hunk for a clunker. Not a bad theory.

Daria: Are you calling my future car a hunk of junk?

Tom enters, with Brittany still hanging on him.

Tom: For the last time, Brittany, I don't like you that way!

Brittany: But I'm blonde and bubbly! Besides, Kevvy is out with Daria, and I'm sure she'd do the same with MY boyfriend --

Daria: Should I rescue him?

Jane: I want to see him suffer a little longer.

Daria: Tempting, but he is my boyfriend. I do actually like him. After all, he's spent at least 3 hours with Brittany by now.

Jane: Oh, I guess he's suffered enough.

Daria: (Raises voice.) Brittany, hi! Did you guys have fun?

Brittany: (Jumps.) Oh! Daria, I didn't see you there. (Immediately takes her hands off Tom.) We were just -

Tom disengages and runs to Daria's side. Brittany notices who is at the table.

Brittany: (Angry.) Where's Kevvy? He was supposed to meet me here, the jerk!

Tom: (Wry.) Yes, you were so eager to introduce him to your new boyfriend.

Daria: I dumped his body in an alley on Dega Street. He's probably still there. He might have caught leprosy or gotten something pierced.

Jane: If someone didn't see a spare quarterback sitting out with the trash and try to take him home, that is.

Trent smirks.

Trent gets out of booth and sits on Jane's side

Brittany: But I'M your date tonight, it's not over yet! We agreed, until midnight, right Daria?

Jane: Brittany, since Daria didn't get the full time with Kevin, is it really fair that you get extra time with Tom?

Brittany: (Twirling hair.) I guess not. (Pause.) Are you actually here?

Jane: No, I'm hallucination Jane. That's why you can understand me perfectly.

Brittany: (Understandingly.) Oh.

Jane: Now wouldn't it be fair that Daria spends at least another two hours with Kevin?

Brittany: You're right. I'm sorry, Daria. I'll make sure that Kevin takes you someplace fun that brains like – like the library or something.

Daria and Tom both glare at Jane.

Tom: I have a better idea.

Act 3: Scene 2:
Cut to movie theater; Jane and Kevin are sitting towards the front, Trent and Brittany are sitting toward the back. Jane and Trent respectively are both elbowing off the advances of Kevin and Brittany.

Kevin: But babe!

Jane: I have my glue gun and I'm not afraid to use it! (Jane whips out glue gun and waves it at him.) It can get up to 380 degrees! That's so hot it would fry pigskin!

Kevin sinks into his chair, afraid.

Brittany: But Trentie!

Trent: Call me that again and I'll make you listen to more of my music.

Brittany sinks into her chair.

Close to alter egos.