A/N: I do not own Community.
After a night of mistakes and too many drinks, Britta Perry woke up to the eardrum bleeding sound of her alarm clock.
"Fuck," Britta muttered. She rubbed her eyes and laid back down. After many drinks last night and the unpleasant memory of Starburns' tongue down her throat, today she just wanted to sleep the memories away, not go to Greendale and experience its weirdness.
Britta checked her cell phone and saw she had four voicemails. She didn't need to bother checking who called her, she already knew who did. The same person whose call fueled her drunken debacle. Britta vowed to never answer a call from her. Every time she did, the control she had over her own life vanished. After taking some aspirin, she struggled out of bed and threw on the first clean clothing items she found. Today, Britta would show up late and she couldn't care less if she missed Annie's stupid pre-biology class study meeting.
The clock struck a quarter past nine and Annie Edison fidgeted in her seat. Her frustration slowly rose with each tick of the clock. She tried to hold it in, she knew her constant obsession with her grades agitated the group, but now that they shared a grade, her frustration reached the point where she just had to blurt it out, "Where is Britta? She better come today, we are planting our yams and if she doesn't come our grade is going to be lowered!"
"Oh An-nie, I'm sure she just overslept. You know that girl is always carousing about at all hours of the night doing God knows what," Shirley reassured her.
"At least this way, we don't have to start our day hearing about how favoring yams is somehow discriminatory to another vegetable," Jeff retorted.
Pierce added, "I don't need any negativity from her today. My Neo-Buddhist Temple is having a thought-share ceremony this weekend and I'm supposed to prepare by freeing my mind of all negative thoughts. Otherwise, my brainwaves will disrupt the prayer signals the prayerspector laser-ray sends to Buddha."
"Awesome lasers aside," Troy said to Pierce, then turned to Annie and sleepily complained, "Annie, why do you even make us come to these? I mean like half of us like live with you."
"Because," Annie began, "we share a grade and we all need to be on the same page before class starts."
Britta slowly walked into the study room, and slumped into her seat. Her blonde curls poked frizzily out of control and her aviators hung on the tip of her nose. Gently, she laid her head down on the table.
"So, what crappy cover did your band Hole perform last night?" Jeff taunted her.
"Jeff, would you shut it with those stupid Courtney Love jokes every time I'm hungover?" Britta responded as she rolled her head over on the table and looked at Jeff, "Its starting to become unoriginal."
"Yeah Jeff, she's right. This isn't the nineties anymore. You should have referenced, Lindsay, Amanda Bynes or perhaps Ke$ha. She's the new blonde, hot mess stereotype," Abed commented as he raised his pointer finger in the air.
"Please, lets not talk about Kesha. When Annie bought that album by her and played it for like three days straight...I think my eardrums and soul died," Troy pleaded.
"Troy, she's not that bad,"Annie responded.
"Who is this Kesh-a?" Pierce asked.
"Some pop star who cant sing," Britta mumbled, with her head still on the table.
"I don't allow my children to listen to her," Shirley added, and then focused on what Britta was doing. Britta's hands tightly grasped her ears. It surprised the group how quiet she was. Even with a hangover, she normally would complain by now how Kesha's songs are demeaning to women.
"Also, she eerily looks like a coked up John Travolta in a blonde wig and make-up," Troy shuddered, "Its like you're half expecting a picture of her and Tom Cruise to end up in The National Enquirer."
"Her music isn't that bad," Annie repeated in defense of herself from Troy's previous comment.
"Oh, come on Annie, next you will say her lyrics speak to you," Jeff said.
"Its been said her lyrics define a generation," Annie replied in a matter of fact tone.
"Who the hell declared that?" Jeff asked.
"I read it in an article...on the internet," Annie said nonchalantly.
"Annie, 'Whoa oh oh oh oh, There's a party at a rich dude's house, Whoa oh oh oh oh,' defines a generation?" Jeff asked as he smirked at her, "I'm glad its not mine."
"Okay, the songs are ridiculous," Annie yelled, "but that doesn't mean I can't like them! Also, I wasn't the one who just quoted one of her songs, Jeff."
"Guys, Guys! Can't you see Britta is upset about something?" Shirley reprimanded. She then turned to Britta and asked in her uplifting tone, "Brit-ta would you like to share with the group what is wrong?"
"I don't think so Shirley, its kind of personal," Britta mumbled.
"Did one of your cats die again?" Jeff asked without taking his eyes and thumbs away from his blackberry.
Britta's head rose from the table, she looked at Jeff in disgust and said, "No! Do you really think I would have come here today, if one of my cats died?"
Jeff looked up at Britta from his blackberry, shrugged and said, "Well, I don't know. Maybe to make us come to a cat funeral or something?"
"Britta, if one of your cats is going to die, we will pay her respects with a memorial service fit for a dog," Troy said sweetly as he smiled at Britta.
"Thanks Troy, but none of my cats are on their deathbed just yet and they're all males," Britta answered.
"Brittles, are you still struggling with your sexual preference because I have another letter prepared for this exact situation," Pierce said.
"Pierce, I am not a lesbian" Britta responded. She took a minute to think, while the group waited in anticipation. "I'm upset about...the...ocu...no...the...seals. Thats right, the seals are dying or something and like Greenpeace wont take me and stuff like that. Theres nothing I can do and this is...um...a major problem. Like watch that documentary about those guys who go to Japan."
"If your referring to the Academy Award winning documentary, The Cove, that's about dolphins," Abed tilted his head with a curious look.
Britta didn't even respond. Annie noticed her vulnerable and sad look. It was obvious she was trying to hide something. Annie knew Britta wouldn't spill her heart out to the group, so she suggested, "Maybe we should just all go to biology class"
Everyone rose from the study table and began to stand up. Britta forced herself to pull her head up off the table. Her pounding headache disoriented her and she dropped her purse on the floor. The contents of Britta's purse scattered about. Annie bent down to help Britta pick up her stuff and observed the objects which included, some condoms, a half eaten candy bar, tampons, a pipe, and a white card with gold trimmings on the edge. Annie picked up the card and observed the writing.
"Don't read that," Britta reached out for the card.
"Britta, is this what you are upset about?" Annie held up the card with a concerned look.
"Fine, yes. My first boyfriend from high school is getting married and I was invited to the engagement party," Britta said as she got up off the floor.
"Why would he invite you? Thats horrible," Shirley asked.
"Its a long story, that I don't care to discuss. Can we please go to biology now and stop interfering with my personal life?"
Annie began to open her mouth to ask Britta a question, but Jeff spotted it and interjected, "Guys, Britta is obviously really hungover and in a horrible mood. Can we please stop bothering her about her personal problems?" He sympathetically looked at Britta and received a small smile of thanks from her. The study group began to walk out of the room.
Annie watched Britta begin to walk out of the room, but called back to her, "Um, Britta, your ex-boyfriend is named Wesley J. Harper III?"
Britta sighed in aggravation. Annie could tell she was pestering her, but Annie knew she needed support from the group and intended to find out as much as she could about what troubled her friend.
"Yeah, thats his stupidly pretentious name," Britta turned around and gave Annie a sorrowful look, which Annie read as an indicator to drop the subject.
"Okay," Annie faked a smile and said, "we better get to Biology."
After Biology, Annie caught up with Abed in the halls. She figured, if someone had any clue about how to help Britta, it was Abed.
"Abed, do you know whats up with Britta?" Annie asked as she cornered Abed at his locker.
Abed turned around, not at all alarmed by Annie ambushing him at his locker,"Well, she's obviously dealing with some of the demons of her past. We don't know much about Britta, but with the right conversation we can find out whats going on."
"Do you think you know whats wrong with her?" Annie asked, her brow furrowed in concern.
"I can only assume, but it seems her high school boyfriend getting married is an upsetting situation for her. Perhaps because of an overbearing and or passive aggressive mother forcing her views on her, but I can only assume by her reaction to Shirley's wedding."
"Well, Abed how do we fix it?" Annie frustratingly asked, "Because I know who her ex-boyfriend is-"
"Well, not personally. He's a really rich guy who owns this company that-"
"Interesting," Abed interjected and thought for a moment. "Annie, you must confront her with these details and report back to me"
"Do you have a plan?"
"Not a definitive one, but a rough sketch," Abed said as he left Annie at the doorway to her class.
Britta decided to head out to her car after biology. She angled the seat back a bit, lit up a joint and put on her headphones to listen to her walkman. For the first time today, she felt at peace. She didn't need to think about anything, it was only her and Radiohead, until a tap on the window disturbed her moment of solace.
It was Annie, Annie always had to butt her head into her life. However, Britta thought, in Annie's defense, I also get way too involved in her life. She decided to roll down the window.
"Hey, you seemed upset earlier and I know how you aren't as open about your feelings as everyone else. So, I just wanted to tell you that I'm here for you and If you ever need to or want to talk, I'm here to listen."
"Okay, thanks," Britta thought for a moment. Annie helped when she needed to avoid Blade, but this might be over her head. This was an actual real life, complex, adult problem and Annie was so young and naive. Britta could always talk to Shirley, but in these circumstances, Shirley would probably judge her. In the end, Britta couldn't hold it inside. She learned in her psyche class that things like this probably shouldn't be bottled up.
Annie started to walk away and Britta called out, "Wait!" Annie turned around, Britta opened the passenger side door and said, "Get in"
Annie reluctantly got into the car. Britta took a drag of her joint and was about to offer Annie some, but then remembered her friend's past. She looked so innocent, it was easy for Britta to forget Annie's past addiction. She immediately put it out and let her headphones hang from her neck.
"So, your ex-boyfriend's father is Wesley James Harper II?"
"The founder and CEO of Harper Corp, the medical device company and one of the richest guys in Colorado?"
Of course Annie would figure this out, with her annoying hospital administration class, it was only a matter of time.
"Yup, you wan't to know everything, don't you?"
"Of course Britta, I just wan't to help you. You are like a sister to me"
"Thanks," Britta managed to half-smile, "You cant, under any circumstances tell anyone who is not in this car what I am about to tell you. Understood?"
"If you do, I will purposely fail at biology and ruin your grade because you and I both know I don't need that class to graduate."
"I won't Britta."
"So, my family and Wes' family are really close and stuff. My dad owns a plastic company that supplies stuff for Wes' father's company.."
"I knew it!"
"You're loaded aren't you?"
"Annie!" Britta's eyes widened at Annie's outburst.
"Sorry, that was kind of rude," Annie winced as she apologized.
"I'm not loaded, my father on the other hand is and how exactly did you know?"
"Come on Britta, leather jackets and stripper boots don't pay for themselves"
"I don't accept a dime from my dad for your information,"Britta said, then remained silent for a moment.
"I'm sorry Britta, that was insensitive for me to say," Annie looked down away from Britta and was about to get out of the car.
"Its okay," Britta said as she grabbed Annie's arm to assure her it was fine to stay, "Anyway, like I was saying, our dads are friends, but Wes is best friends with my older brother, so he's like connected to my family for life. We'd known each other since we were kids and our parents pushed us together like some oppressed, arranged marriage in some third world country. We dated until my sophomore year in high school. Before I dropped out and ran away, but then he cheated on me."
"Is that why you dropped out?"
"No," Britta shook her head and dolefully replied, "There are many reasons why I dropped out."
Annie laid her hand on Britta's shoulder and gave her a supporting look.
"After I found out he cheated I didn't speak to Wes for years, "Britta began again, "but my mother reminded me of my so called 'mistakes' every chance she got. Last time I spoke to her, four and a half years ago, we got in a fight about it. Wes drunkenly told my brother he missed me or something lame like that and my mother jumped on it. Like it was going to save me from a life she described as 'depraving.' Now he's getting married and my mother has left me four messages on my voicemail."
They sat in silence for a couple moments.
"Are you going to go?" Annie asked.
"Well, that's the problem, I only listened to the first of my mother's four voicemails, and she RSVP'd for me and a guest. When I got the invitation a month ago, I didn't respond because I didn't want to go. Its this weekend and I'm completely screwed"
"Britta, you know you don't have to go," Annie said sternly and shook her head, "You have no obligation to Wes or your mother"
"Thanks Annie, but its a little more complicated than that. If I don't go to the engagement party, she said she would disinherit me. Its all part of her plan to get Wes and me back together. Its not that I care about money. I'm not even getting any, but its my grandmother's watch. Its the only thing I get in the will and it means a lot to me..." Britta and Annie remained in silence for a moment. Britta then looked at the clock radio in her car and said, "I have to go to my psych class...Thanks for listening." Britta gave Annie a hug and then they left the car.
"Did you talk to Britta?" Abed tracked Annie down at her locker.
"Mmmhm," Annie nodded and began to walk away.
"So what did she say?" Abed said as he chased Annie down the hall.
Annie stopped for a moment and turned around,"I promised her I wouldn't tell," Annie turned around and began to walk down the hall again.
"Annie, how are we going to help her if we don't know what the problem is?" Abed said as he stood still waiting for Annie to respond.
Annie cringed and turned around, "Fine, I will only tell you that she needs to go to this engagement party to get her mother off her back and to get her grandmother's watch."
Abed stood still for a moment in deep thought. "Just what I thought...Okay, I got it. Meet me in the study room in an hour," Abed suddenly took off down the hall.
An hour later, Annie walked into the study room, only to be greeted by Abed dressed as Inspector Spacetime.
"Good, Geneva!" he said with a British accent, "I have a mission for you to complete."
"Abed, I have class, I mean, Inspector," Annie put on her bad British accent, "I have an Intergalatic Alliance meeting I must attend. Could you not get Reggie to complete the mission for you?"
"Unfortunately not," Abed said as he put his arm around Annie's shoulder, "You must skip this meeting of yours because this is of imperative importance. It has to do with securing associate Reena's happiness."
"Oh really?" Annie replied as she knew the Inspector Spacetime character they assigned to Britta was barbarian princess Reena, even though Britta did not participate in any of their homages.
"Yes, Geneva, here are the coordinates for your mission, you must be there in approximately fifteen minutes."
Annie looked at the paper Abed gave her of the "coordinates," which consisted of a hand drawn map of Greendale with an "x" written in red over where Annie was supposed to go.
"But I am not wearing the proper attire, wouldn't that warrant me to go to my meeting instead," Annie asked with the hope that she would be able to go to class instead.
"No, for this mission I have for you, you must be...disguised. Now please, go now, we haven't gotten much... time."
Annie left the study room and followed the directions Abed gave her. She ended up outside of a classroom. Patiently, she waited for something to happen. A few minutes later, students began to swarm out of the door across the hallway from her. Then Duncan came out of the classroom and unfortunately came over to greet her.
"Well, isn't it the very legal and very lovely iron-fanny Annie? The American meaning of fanny, I mean," Duncan chuckled.
"Excuse me, Professor Duncan, but don't you mean irony-free?" Annie asked in an offended, but confused tone.
"Nope. You know its a shame that your friend Abed had to ruin that psych study of mine, it could have been us working together a lot, instead of that flat butted and chested blonde friend of yours. I thought she was hot at first, but then she opened her mouth-"
"Professor, are you drinking again?" Annie interrupted by whispering inconspicuously.
"Nope, I would say I'm pretty sober right now," Duncan looked at his cell phone for a minute and then said."Whoops, I'm sorry, but I have to be going back to my office, I'm late for an appointment."
Annie stood confused, still not understanding exactly why Abed sent her there, or how it was supposed to help Britta. She waited ten more minutes, until it was time for the group's daily study meeting.