Disclaimer: I don't own Daria, MTV does... actually I think The-N bought the rights to the show. Anyway I don't have them.
Daria and Jane were currently eating at The mall's Pizza Prince since there usual place was closed by the health inspector yet again. Daria, however, was showing little interest in her pizza. Instead, she found herself staring intently at a store on the opposite side of the mall from the food court.
"Daria... Daria... DARIA!" Jane yelled snapping her friend from whatever daydream her she was having.
"What, oh, sorry Jane, I was...just daydreaming," she shook herself awake and gave one of her rare Mona Lisa smiles.
"You were staring intently across the way for ten minutes, so what's up?" she asked before taking another bite of pizza. Jane knew something had to be wrong due to the fact that Daria hadn't responded with a snide, sarcastic remark to her previous yelling.
Daria shifted uncomfortably and avoided eye contact and let out, "Oh... its nothing Jane... I just spaced out"
"It has to be something, headless animal in the window captivate your attention?" Jane turned to look for whatever Daria was so intent on staring at. The lack of sarcastic remark was a warning sign that her friend was bothered by something and she was going to get to the bottom of it.
"Its nothing Jane." she protested hoping that Jane wouldn't figure it out, but alas, it was too late.
Jane's eyes widened as she realized there was only one thing you could see in the store window from here, a flowing emerald gown.
"Is that a prom dress? What's so interesting about a... oh my, DARIA! you were staring at that dress weren't you?" She hadn't been this surprised since Daria had gotten her belly button pierced under the gentle coaxing from her brother, Trent, to do so. Or the whole contact lens incident.
"What! No." she shook her head, but Jane wasn't fooled. She knew when Daria was hiding something.
"Your thinking about the prom aren't you?" she accused and laughed at Daria's obvious embarrassment.
"No I'm not, I was just daydreaming that's all." Daria retorted.
'Flat out and utter denial. I don't buy it. I better keep pushing until she gives.' Jane mused and continued, "About prom?" she yet again teased.
"No! Well... maybe..." Daria sighed she knew when she was beaten so she decided to admit it.
"Are you going?" Jane asked while leaning forward in the style of a Cheshire cat.
"No." she replied flatly
Jane slumped back down slightly dejected and asked, "Well why not? Your daydreaming about it and looked pretty darn happy too be doing that and you and happy are rarely said in the same sentence when discussing your feelings."
Daria, for the first time since sitting down for pizza, made eye contact with Jane and said, "Can you picture me putting on a gown and slow dancing with anyone? Ever?"
"You said the same exact thing about making out and look what happened. Besides, obviously you could picture yourself doing that so why not go?"
Daria was becoming quite irritated with her best friend. She hated to be cornered like she was. She fired back, "Come on Jane, what would people say If I showed up at prom?"
"They'd all comment, 'is that Daria? Wow, Daria you came to prom, I thought you hated these things Daria.'"
It was like the time she was ten and had changed her mind about disliking hot dogs. Her parents kept bringing up there shock every time they had them for the following two years since she had changed her mind like she had done. Daria enjoyed being invisible except when she was among a few people.
"Sense when do you care about what other people say?" Jane crossed her arms
"I don't...I just...Tom would never ask me anyway." she sighed slumping low in her chair.
Jane simply shook her head, "He'd ask if he knew you wanted to go."
"Yes, but that would require that he knew I wanted to go, and I'm not telling."
Jane let the subject drop and they went back to their pizza in silence. When she later arrived back at home, she picked up her phone and dialed Tom's number in hopes that she could talk to him.
It rang five times before Tom finally picked up and greeted, "Hello, Tom Slone speaking," Tom had been on his couch with a book in his lap.
"Hey Tom, Its Jane, listen, you should ask Daria to the prom"
"Is this a setup?" Tom asked suspicious that he was about to be the victim of a horrible prank by either his former girlfriend or both current and former girlfriend.
"No," Jane replied flatly
"Why should I ask her to the prom then?" Tom was flabbergasted. He was certain this was part of some horrible twisted joke or a prank at his expense. Or, maybe she was planning something at the expense of everyone at Lawndale High and needed an excuse to be there. Sure, he liked Daria, but he didn't want to take part in her plan to ruin everyone else's night. No matter how hilarious it might be.
"She wants to go," Jane said as if it was obvious
"What!" Tom laughed, "Jane, the prom means people, and Daria hates people"
"Listen, we we're eating pizza at the mall..." After a few minutes Jane had explained her previous conversation with Daria. Tom was now sprawled out on the couch at the other end listening to every word Jane was saying.
"So, you're telling me that Daria might actually want to go to the prom?" Tom held his face in his hands in disbelief.
"She was staring at that green gown for an awful long time. She's too much...herself to ask you herself to go and is certain you won't ask her."
"Guess I should buy some tickets...rent a Limo..." his voice trailed off while listing the things he would have to do to pull this off properly.
"You'd have to rent a Limo?" Jane raised one eye brow with her question.
"You know what I mean." he sighed wishing that Jane had stayed serious instead of starting to make snide comments like she enjoyed doing.
"I don't know about this "
"Could be worse,"
"Well, she could have been admiring a wedding dress." Jane snickered and Tom choked in shock at those words.
"Jane, we're still in high school so don't joke about that!"
"But its so fun listening to you swallow your own tongue."
La la la la la
Tom knocked on the Morgendorffer's door. He was still suspicious about what Jane had told him but figured he had to talk to Daria about it. Thankfully, Quinn answered the door instead of either of Daria's parents. He didn't need Daria's mother barging in every two minutes, making sure she wasn't becoming a grandmother.
"Oh, hey Tom, come right on in, Daria is up stairs," she chirped.
"Thanks, Quinn." he quickly answered. He headed directly for Daria's room. Quinn got back to watching a fashion show with Sandi, Tiffany, and Stacy, who were also there, sitting in the living room watching while Sandi made comments about all the outfits and the other two replying to whatever their president said.
"I can't believe your weird sister was able to score such a cute guy...a cute rich guy..." Sandi complained. Quinn sighed and started brushing her hair during the commercial break.
"Well, Tom's like a brain with a cute body." Quinn responded to Sandi's comment.
"Lucky her," Sandi scoffed, "She probably puts out. That's the only reason why he puts up with her." Sandi thought not realizing that she had said that out loud.
"SANDI!" Quinn yelled.
"I can't believe you said that!" Stacy chimed in.
"Whoops," Sandi muttered as she realized she hadn't just thought that after all. Of course, she only made that half hearted apology due to the fact that she had secretly had hoped she had said that out loud in order to see how far Quinn would defend her weird sister.
La la la la la
Tom pulled a chair up next to Daria who was busy reading.
"Hey Tom," she leaned over and gave him a light kiss which Tom returned.
"Hey, so do you have any plans for May 5th?"
Daria smiled, "Well, I thought I might think of new ways to torture Quinn, but...I could be persuaded to do something else"
"Hey, we could..." Tom took a deep breath before continuing and then said, "Go to the Prom." There was a brief moment of silence that felt like an eternity in Tom's mind. Daria's eyes turned cold and she slammed her book shut.
"Jane talked to you didn't she?" she accused, the ice that was coming from her tone of voice was palpable to Tom.
"What makes you say that?" Tom lied desperately hoping Daria wouldn't see right through him.
"Because she caught me staring at a prom dress and..." she quickly covered her face with her hands before she finished that statement and turned away in a futile attempt to hide her embarrassment.
"Daria, its ok." Tom assured her by reaching out to stroke her hair.
"You must think I'm some vain, shallow person now." she hung her head dejectedly.
Tom lifted her chin and gave her a deeper kiss than before and said, "Daria, your an intelligent, funny, stubborn, beautiful girl. There isn't any shame in wanting to look pretty for one night." Daria gave one of her rare smiles and scooted her chair next to Tom.
"So, how far do you want to go with this? Flowers, chocolate, a limo?"
"Hmm," Daria thought, "Chocolate sounds good, and so does the Limo "
Putting an arm around her shoulder he asked, "What about flowers?"
"I could do without the flowers, I haven't morphed into Quinn, but after this I better check to make sure I haven't. Do you know how much prom tickets are?"
Tom held up two tickets for the senior prom. "Jane told me where to get them."
"Oh," Daria's eyes widened, "You already got them. What if I had said no?"
"If Jane had been pulling my leg like I thought she was, I'd have died of embarrassment, but being out a little money would have made no difference." Tom laughed.
They leaned in and kissed again just as Helen popped her head in the door. Before the woman could speak, her eyes zeroed in on the Prom tickets that were in Tom's hands. She exited just as quickly as she had come. Leaning up against the wall, she gasped and a tear came to her eye.
"My little Daria is going to the prom? Willingly?"
Daria and Tom soon parted and she remarked, "If I had known prom tickets would act as mother repellent I'd have nailed some to my door a long time ago"
"So, how about we go for pizza?" Tom asked and Daria nodded and the two headed for Pizza Prince.
"Tom, one question... why did you pick Lawndale's prom? Doesn't fielding have a prom?" Daria questioned
"The Fielding Senior prom is in three weeks which isn't enough time to renew my passport."
Daria laughed. She wasn't sure if Tom was being serious or not, but she figured she'd be more uncomfortable at his prep school then at Lawndale.
"So how much is that dress you were interested in?" Tom inquired while leaning in for a kiss
"Umm..." Daria looked hesitant. She actually had no idea how much the dress was. "Tom, I'm not comfortable with you paying for everything."
Tom simply nodded at her response. He loved in hated that about Daria. He felt bad she wasn't comfortable with his family being old money, but at the same time felt good because it meant she liked him for him. Daria was the second of two girls that he could be sure of that either wasn't with him for the trust fund.
Helen took this moment to re-enter the room. "Daria, are those prom tickets?" she asked faking badly that she hadn't seen them a minute ago.
Daria simply rolled her eyes before answering her mother's question. "Yes, they're prom tickets. Yes, I'm going to the prom. Yes, I'm going to the prom with Tom, and no we're not renting a motel room afterwards."
"I'd at least spring for a hotel suite." Tom joked which forced Daria to elbow him in the rib. "Ouch," he muttered.
La la la la la
La la la la la
The following day, Daria followed Helen into the shop. Tom had offered to pay for the dress and everything, but Daria wasn't comfortable with that and Helen nearly cried tears of joy at the news that her daughter was going to the prom. Daria went strait for the dress she'd been admiring the other day. She couldn't help but to smile a little when she looked at it, but that quickly fell away when she saw the price tag.
"There's no way mom will pay for this." Daria said to herself. She felt utterly defeated at that moment. Quinn often asked for clothing this expensive but never got it.
Helen came up behind her and ran a hand down the gown while commenting, "Its beautiful honey, so don't worry about the price"
"But..." Daria started to protest but Helen cut her off.
"Its the prom honey, the kind of occasion where you spend a little extra on things like this.."
Daria smiled to herself. She couldn't wait to rub it in Quinn's face.
Finding shoes proved to be the most difficult part. Daria loathed the idea of high heels. She had worn her boots to her cousins wedding. Since she actually cared about this up coming event, she decided that she would leave her big black boots behind that for night only. Thankfully, she had learned from Quinn that low-heel formal shoes for women did exist. Fortunately, she found a pair that went with the emerald green gown.
'I should find a way to thank her...' Daria thought, 'but I won't.'
La la la la la
That night at dinner, the family, as a whole, was able to admire the dress,which was hung and protected in plastic, on the off the key rack.
"Oh, you'll look great in that kiddo." Jake said as he placed the meatloaf down onto the table.
"But mom! It's not fair! Why does Daria get such a nice dress! I never get anything like that!" the youngest Morgendorffer whined.
Helen just sighed as she sat down for dinner with the rest of them. She said to her youngest child, , "Now Quinn, we still spend way more on your clothing then we do on Daria's. Maybe, if you cut back on your everyday spending we could afford something this nice for you."
"So, you're saying just because she accepts the cheapest clothes she gets to splurge it all on one thing...that is so not FAIR!"
"Actually Quinn, that sounds perfectly fair." Helen replied to to Quinn's complaining.
"Well Quinn, if you like you could borrow my dress for your senior prom next year." Daria offered knowing exactly what would happen next.
Helen smiled, "You see Quinn? You can get nice things without paying top price for them."
Daria just smiled.
La la la la la la.
The next two weeks went by with the general idiocy of Lawndale High only slightly annoying Daria. Finally, the night of the prom arrived. The prom was just in a couple of hours. Daria had just gotten out of the shower, one towel around her hair and the other towel around her body. 'Damn, I left the dress in the kitchen...ah well, prom isn't for a few hours.' she thought. Then Jane came in with Quinn and a couple of familiar looking makeup bags.
"What's going on?" Daria asked not liking where this could go.
Quinn and Jane just looked at each other and smiled.
"Well, we thought," Jane started.
"Since this is your prom night," Quinn continued.
"We should help you out a little." Jane finished and they held up their makeup.
Her eyes widened in horror. Ok, so she was planning to wear the fancy dress, and the fancy shoes, and go to the prom and dance but makeup...that was a line she didn't want to cross.
"Come on Daria, your already going to hell so you might as well knock Tom's socks off." Jane reasoned.
"Don't think about trying to run either, you won't get far with that towel." Quinn explained smugly.
"Then I'll ditch the towel,"
Jane just smiled, "Bet Tom would love that. He dropped me off and decided to hang out 'til you were ready. He's in the living room and you left the dress downstairs."
'Damn, I'm trapped.' Daria thought, "Your bluffing!" she challenged.
Jane and Quinn just smirked at her.
"Try us," they said in unison.
Daria sat down knowing that she had lost. She was going to vanity hell anyway with the dress so she might as well look her best.
"Alright, let's get this done."
While Jane and Quinn applied blush, lipstick, and eyeliner, Tom was suffering the horrible fate all men in his position go through. He sat across from Jake and Helen feeling quite uncomfortable. Jake at least had been forbidden by Helen from speaking so he just glared menacingly at Tom.
"Now Tom, as this is prom night, I know its the time when a lot of teenagers..."
Tom knew where she was going and quickly decided to cut her off at the pass. "Misses Morgendorffer, Daria and I already decided a few weeks ago that we didn't need to have sex in order to advance are relationship so you don't need to worry."
Jake sighed with relief, "Oh Thank God,"
Helen just smiled and said, "Well, I was young once, and I know how quickly things can change...I just want to make sure you respect Daria enough to use protection if the time comes." Jake tensed up again.
"Mr. and Misses Morgendorffer, I care about Daria and won't ever stop respecting her." Tom affirmed. Helen reached out and shook Tom's hand.
"I trust you'll be responsible then"
When their hands made contact Tom's face flushed with embarrassment and he quickly put his hands in his pockets.
After a very long and uncomfortable silence, Daria descended the stairs at last. The look on Tom's face was priceless and Daria couldn't help but smile at his reaction a little. Her hair was put up, her lips red, and her eyes...he clearly could see a glasses case in her right hand which meant that she was going to be quite blind this night. She handed him the glasses case.
"Here, you actually have pockets." she stated plainly.
"You look beautiful." Tom complimented.
"Don't I look good everyday?." she shot back, not really meaning it.
"That's a loaded question, and loaded questions are more dangerous than loaded guns."
"Alright, don't answer and ruin my fun." she said with a faked pout.
"Race you to the Limo?" he asked
"Quick, before my mom gets her camera."
Helen chased after them as quickly as she could while flashing photos of their backsides, but the two were able to get safely in the Slone limo before Helen could get any facial shots.
"That was close." Daria sighed snuggling up to Tom.
Tom put an arm around her.
"Always happy to avoid a family moment."
A bright flash filled the limo and the two looked from each other to the Limo driver.
"Dreadfully sorry Master Thomas, but your mother insisted."
In response, Tom raised the window which blocked the driver off from view of the couple.
"Sorry about that." he apologized.
"Great, one of our most tender moments and its preserved forever for our parents to gush over."
La la la la la la.
The two arrived at Lawndale High. Ms Li, in a 'brilliant' plan to save money, decided to hold the prom in the gym instead of anywhere that would have cost additional money. Daria and Tom entered unnoticed, or at least that's how she'd have liked it. Unfortunately, reality had other ideas.
"Whose that girl?" questioned Jodie.
"It's Daria." Jodie's date, Mack, answered.
"Kevvy, isn't that Tom? That guy Daria is dating?"
"But what's he doing at our prom? And whose that girl?" a slightly irked Kevin led Britney over to them.
"Your cheating on Daria at our prom, so not cool bro!"
"Umm, Kevvy..." Brittney started.
Daria just sighed. She took the glasses case from Tom and put them on and said, "Kevin, I'm Daria."
"Wow! your a babe!"
"Hey!... your right, she is." and With that, Kevin and Britney left the couple behind to do their own thing.
Just when she thought she might have a moment of peace, Jodie and Mack approached the couple.
"Daria, you look wonderful." Jodie said
Daria shifted uncomfortably with all this unwanted attention. "Thanks...you look good too."
Mack remained silent despite a cold stare from Jodie.
"I'm not complementing another girl, and I'm not lying either, so I'll just shut up"
Jodie sighed and dragged her smart ass boyfriend back to the dance floor.
"Alright Earth, you can swallow me up now, or if you prefer, you could swallow everyone else up and leave me up here."
"Come on Daria," he said and led Daria onto the dance floor. He put his arms around her. Daria rested her head on his chest and the couple danced. She lost track of time for a while as she enjoyed the feeling of dancing with Tom. But, as the night went into its first hour, Daria started to become annoyed by a few things. First, they were playing the same four songs over and over again, second, the school gym reeked of turpentine, and third, everyone was making a huge deal out of her being here. No one was bugging Upchuck, but then he didn't have a date. When Jane arranged for them to be in the spotlight dance, she felt like she had had enough of this.
"Let's get some fresh air." Tom suggested. Daria smiled and took his arm and together they walked out of the gym and into the cool night air. Daria didn't pay much attention to where they were going, partly because she didn't care as long as it was away from people, but mainly because her glasses were still in Tom's pocket. She was thankful for the low-heeled shoes, who ever invented high heels should die a horrible, horrible death as far as Daria was concerned.
"Maybe this wasn't such a good idea. You know how well I get along with people." she sighed.
Tom pulled her close and said, "I know and I anticipated this might happen." He pulled a small object from his pocket and Daria could swear she heard music. She looked over and could see the blurry image of a Stereo on a card table. They were somewhere out on the track field. She looked back to Tom.
"Here," Tom said while slipping her glasses on, "You look better this way."
"What is all this?" she blushed.
"Its the prom, but without all the people." Tom smiled and led Daria into a dance.
Daria said nothing and rested her head on his chest and they danced the night away under the stars.
It was the best prom Daria could hope for, one without any other people to bother or annoy her.