BUTTERCUP'S BLUNDER- A PPG Fanfic Part 2
---- continued from Part 1
(FAST MONTAGE of a still-furious BUTTERCUP flying *very* fast, high above various landscapes- cities, oceans, forests, polar icecaps. She turns her trajectory upwards, speeds through the lower, middle, and higher cloud layers, until she breaks out of the atmosphere into black starry reaches. There, she halts to scream out a long roar of primal fury. As it resonates, PULL BACK BY DEGREES to show the curvature of the earth, the entire earth, the earth with it’s orbiting moon. The sound dies away. CUT BACK TO: BUTTERCUP. Her ‘scream’ face collapses into bitter melancholy, and she begins to float downwards, through the cloud layers she’d just passed through, then through the lower atmosphere towards Townsville, and finally through her own bedroom window. With a colossal moan, she comes to rest on the edge of the bed.)
JUDY’S VOICE: Buttercup? Is that you?
(There’s a sound of steps and JUDY enters the bedroom. BUTTERCUP deliberately turns her face away.)
JUDY: (happily excited) I just heard the news on TV- they said the Powerpuff Girls had located and disabled the bomb! Congratulations! (JUDY sits beside BUTTERCUP and hugs her around the shoulders, but immediately notices something’s amiss.) What is it? Did something go wrong? (An awful thought occurs to her) Where are Blossom and Bubbles??
BUTTERCUP: (dismally addressing the floor) They’re fine- they probably stayed to keep an eye on the bomb. They sure didn’t want me around.
(JUDY, worried, is about to say something else, when from downstairs comes the sound of a door opening, and PROFESSOR UTOMIUM’S call.)
PROF’S VOICE: Girls?! Judy?
JUDY: The Professor! (She hurries downstairs, BUTTERCUP floating glumly behind her. PROF, just within the doorway; is somewhat rumpled, and the suitcase beside him has only one clasp fastened. When his eye falls on BUTTERCUP his frazzled expression lights up, and he moves to take her in his arms. But the embrace doesn’t cheer her very much.)
PROF: I started for home, the minute I got the news! Is everybody all right?
JUDY: Yes, thank goodness! Your Girls disarmed the bomb. Blossom and Bubbles are still at the site; Buttercup came home ahead of them. (She looks to BUTTERCUP with concern. For the first time, PROF notices BUTTERCUP’s unhappy expression.)
PROF: Buttercup? What happened, honey?
VOICE FROM THE TV: This is a Channel 8 Special News Bulletin! Coming to you live from the downtown bomb site, here’s Stanley Whitfield!
JUDY: It looks like we’re about to find out.
(The grown-ups move to sit on the couch, BUTTERCUP between them. PROF’s hand lingers on BUTTERCUP’s shoulder. )
(CUT TO: View of the TV. STANLEY stands in front of the ‘Crime Scene’ ribbon marking off the construction site, where several official-looking vehicles with flashing lights are pulled up. Within the site, people in suits and military fatigues are moving about, and we get a glimpse of BLOSSOM and BUBBLES carrying a large metallic object between them.)
STANLEY: This is reporter Whitfield, in downtown Townsville, where Federal Emergency personnel are currently in the process of dismantling the Chernobyl bomb which so nearly reduced our fair city to an irradiated wasteland. Less than two hours ago, this terrorist threat was disarmed, thanks to the combined efforts of Powerpuff Girls Blossom and Bubbles, and, more surprisingly, supervillain Mojo Jojo.
(CUT TO: View of the couch; the grown-ups gape with surprise.)
PROF & JUDY: Mojo Jojo?!?
(CUT BACK TO: View of the TV.)
STANLEY: In an interview recorded earlier, Mojo denied there was anything incongruous about his actions of today.
(The broadcast changes to footage of MOJO, kneeling on the ground beside his modeling tools and box. The cold pack against his left eye is now being held in place with an ace bandage. Somebody off screen is holding a microphone near his mouth; it is apparently this person MOJO is addressing, rather snappishly.)
MOJO: I fail to see what it is you find so astonishing about that! I will remind you, as you seem to have forgotten, that my own place of residence is a relatively short distance from here, and so would certainly have been affected by the bomb blast, as it is well within range. If you are under any impression that I would welcome being deprived of my observatory, along with all my possessions and weapons of conquest, for the next one thousand years, then I can tell you your impression is inaccurate, and furthermore is entirely without basis in fact! (He goes back to packing his tools) (growly voice) Accursed reporters...
(The broadcast switches to footage of two men taking down an outdoor monitoring camera, mounted above a bank door.)
STANLEY’S VOICE: And now; a KZIX exclusive! We have obtained footage of the entire event- the discovery and disarming of the terrorist weapon- as recorded by First Townsville Bank’s security-monitoring camera, located directly across from the site.
(CUT TO: Close-Up of BUTTERCUP; who looks as though she’s suddenly developed a bad stomach-ache.)
STANLEY’S VOICE: This footage includes astonishing details, which we now present to you unedited.
(CUT BACK TO: View of the TV. The images are now the sort which a monitoring camera would record; black-and-white, photographed from a stationary position, and with a time-bar across the bottom. We see the earlier events as they would appear from across the street; the PPGs arriving, uncovering, and removing casing from the bomb. BUTTERCUP flying off, seconds later BLOSSOM doing the same. BLOSSOM returning with MOJO, MOJO starting to work on the bomb.)
(CUT BACK TO: View of the couch. The grownups are watching intently; BUTTERCUP looks like she wants to sink through the floor.)
(CUT BACK TO: View of the TV. BUTTERCUP suddenly swoops in and knocks MOJO across the lot.)
(CUT BACK TO: View of the couch. The two adults gasp in dismay; BUTTERCUP squeezes her eyes shut, burying her face in her ‘hands.’)
BUTTERCUP: (mournful wail) I Thought Mojo Was Doin’ Sabotage! I Didn’t Know He Was Helping!
(BUTTERCUP starts to cry. PROF and JUDY enfold her between them, murmuring soothingly, though they both still give attention to the broadcast.)
(CUT BACK TO: View of the TV. As the time bar counts down the last seconds to 12:22, MOJO, his bruised eye clearly visible, struggles to complete the disassembly. Only nine seconds from detonation, he withdraws the cutting tool, braces his arms against the casing and lets his head sag; body language clearly indicating relief. Seconds later, the on-screen PPGs start dancing in celebration; an image sharply at odds with BUTTERCUP’s wailing.)
(CUT BACK TO: View of the couch. The adults now turn their full attention to BUTTERCUP.)
PROF: Oh, pumpkin... It was a misinterpretation. We all make them sometimes.
JUDY: Just be glad the results weren’t worse. Blossom and Bubbles were there to help, Townsville was still saved...
STANLEY’s VOICE: And what are we to make of these amazing revelations? A long-time menace to our town acting heroically; one of our supposed protectors engaging in dangerously impulsive behavior and nearly bringing about our destruction. Some might question whether Powerpuff Girl Buttercup really has the right temperament to be a Superhero. Is her apparent lack of judgment, combined with her highly formidable powers, such a dangerous mix as to be...
(Frowning, PROF snatches up the remote and zaps the set off.)
PROF: Now that was uncalled for!
(BUTTERCUP is even more angered; she swipes the last tears off her face and grits her teeth defiantly.)
BUTTERCUP: I am *so* fit to be a Superhero!
PROF: Of course you are! But, there is a lesson to be learned from this...
(BUTTERCUP isn’t listening; she leaps into mid-air, her arms thrashing as she belts an imaginary opponent.)
BUTTERCUP: Anybody who knows anything about Mojo coulda made that mistake! Just *wait* 'til the next time I catch that slimy monkey up to his old tricks- I’ll smash him inta pulp! I’ll show *him* who’s got bad judgment!
(PROF and JUDY look to each other, both rather troubled.)
JUDY: (low voice) It’s good to see her recover her spirits, but....
PROF: (low voice) I know. She seems to have missed the point.
BLOSSOM’S VOICE: (from upstairs) Judy! We’re home!
(BLOSSOM and BUBBLES float down the stairway. They both emit delighted squeals upon seeing the PROF, who runs to gather them both in his arms.)
BLOSSOM: Professor! We didn’t expect to find you here!
BUBBLES: Did they cancel the conference?
PROF: No- I couldn’t stay there, when I heard what was happening in Townsville! Though I should have known you could handle it. I am so proud of you two!
(Behind the PROF’s back, BUTTERCUP averts her face.)
BLOSSOM: Well, we can’t take all the credit this time.
BUBBLES: You’ll never guess who helped us!
PROF: (rueful grin) I already know, Bubbles. We’ve been watching the newscasts.
BLOSSOM: Oh. (Her eyes stray uncomfortably towards BUTTERCUP.)
BUTTERCUP: (forcing a smile) Ah, it’s okay- I’m over it. Guys, I’m sorry for messing up, and for running out on you that way.
BLOSSOM: Yeah, and we’re sorry that we had to... you know, take Mojo’s side.
BUBBLES: (brightly) But, no harm done! (BLOSSOM looks less sure.)
PROF: (releasing BLOSSOM & BUBBLES and stepping to JUDY) I want to thank you again for watching the girls in my absence. You’ll be getting full compensation, even if I did come back earlier than planned.
JUDY: (lifting a palm) Don’t worry about it. It’s always a pleasure spending time with these three. Albeit a *demanding* pleasure... Perhaps tomorrow you could all come visit the Townsville Zoo? I could give you a behind-the-scenes tour.
BLOSSOM: Not tomorrow. Actually, we wanted to ask you if you could be one of our guests then, because...
BUBBLES: (breaking in excitedly) The Mayor is giving me an’ Blossom medals for distinguished service to the city!
JUDY: That’s wonderful! Of course I’ll come!
(PROF beams, but he notices BLOSSOM is less enthusiastic than might be expected.)
BLOSSOM: There is something else...
BUBBLES: Mojo’s getting a medal, too!
(The grown-ups raise their eyebrows. BUTTERCUP is flabbergasted.)
BUTTERCUP: WHAT! Mojo!?! Are They Crazy?!?
BUBBLES: (surprised at her sister’s reaction) But Buttercup, he saved Townsville!
BUTTERCUP: He only did it because his own place was inside the blast zone!
BLOSSOM: (voice of reason) That doesn’t make it wrong.
PROF: (trying to calm things) If you don’t approve, Buttercup, you can stay home...
BUTTERCUP: Oh, I’m going, all right! Somebody’d better be there to protect the audience, when that maniac gets onto the platform and starts sprayin’ everyone with machine-gun fire!
BLOSSOM: He won’t be able to bring any weapons up there. They’ll have metal detectors.
BUTTERCUP: Then when he steps up to make his acceptance speech, an’ he starts ranting about how he’s gonna destroy us, an’ take over Townsville an’ all the rest of the world, I’ll be the one to shut him up! That miserable simian’s not gonna get away with *anything* while I’m around!
(BUTTERCUP once takes to the air to punch out an imaginary MOJO. JUDY and PROF exchange the same troubled looks, BLOSSOM rolls her eyes, BUBBLES is bewildered.)
JUDY: Maybe we should just leave her to work it off.
PROF: Yes. Hopefully, by tomorrow she’ll be over the worst of it.
(Unnoticed by the intently air-boxing BUTTERCUP, the grownups, BLOSSOM, and BUBBLES uneasily vacate the room.)
NARRATOR: (glum) I wouldn’t count on that, Professor. But, let’s cut to City Hall on the following afternoon, and find out.
(FADE TO: Exterior Shot of Townsville City Hall, daytime. In front are the same speaker’s platform and assembled audience we’ve see in other episodes. A podium w/ microphone stands at the middle of the platform. Close beside it on the right, the MAYOR and MS BELUM sit in office chairs, the latter with her face obscured by a boom camera. To the left are three more padded chairs, two occupied by BUBBLES and BLOSSOM in their best frilly blue and pink dresses. The third chair is vacant. The usual Townsville regulars make up the audience, including the OLD LADY, TALKING DOG, RAINBOW THE CLOWN and GEORGE JETSON. Some people are still moving to take their seats.)
(SLOW PAN of the audience’s front row. There’s a number of very distinguished-looking visitors; evidently VIPs from out of town. Past them are five invited Pokey Oaks students; MARY, MIKE BELIEVE, JULIE BEAN, PABLO and ELMER SGLUE. At the end of the row sit PROFESSOR UTONIUM and BUTTERCUP, flanked by MS KEANE and JUDY, all formally dressed. PAUSE ON: BUTTERCUP, who’s wearing a somewhat fancier than usual green frock. She’s fidgeting and looking out of sorts.)
BUTTERCUP: Where is he? I know he’d enjoy keeping us all waiting, but I can’t believe he’s not gonna come!
MS KEANE: (teasing) Well, if he doesn’t, we can call him ‘Mojo No-Show.’
JUDY: (checking her watch) It’ll be another five minutes before he’s actually late.
BUTTERCUP: (struck by a happy thought) Maybe he’s about to stomp in here with one of his Robo-Mojos!
PROF: (noting as a taxi pulls up to the City Hall curb, a distinctive white dome visible through the back window) Not this time- that’s Mojo now.
BUTTERCUP: (making a ‘fist’) All right!
(CUT TO: Shot of the cab as MOJO gets out, pays the driver, and proceeds towards the Speaker’s Platform. He’s wearing his usual attire, which appears freshly cleaned. His expression is neutral and completely at ease, a dark smudge is all that remains of his ‘shiner’. As he steps past the security guards he gives them a nod, passes through the metal detector with nary a beep, climbs up the steps to the platform and takes his seat beside BLOSSOM and BUBBLES.)
MOJO: (agreeably) Good afternoon, girls.
BLOSSOM & BUTTERCUP: (polite but wary) Hello, Mojo.
MAYOR: Well, splendid! Now that everyone’s here we can get started. (He goes to the podium and ascends the little stepladder behind it) My friends, we are here today to honor the three brave citizens of Townsville who just yesterday saved our fair city from certain doom: Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup.
(Awkward pause. A loud throat-clearing can be heard.)
MS BELUM: (leaning closer to the MAYOR) Sir, I think you mean Blossom, Bubbles and Mojo Jojo.
MAYOR: B’Wah, of course- silly me! Buttercup was the one who almost blew it for us, wasn’t she?
(Scattered laughter, though not from anyone on the platform, or the PPG guests in the front row. Nonetheless, BUTTERCUP cringes.)
PROF: (touching BUTTERCUP’s arm) Just keep in mind who’s doing the speaking, sweetheart. (BUTTERCUP perks up.)
(CUT BACK TO: MAYOR, gesturing behind the podium. Gradually PULL BACK during the following dialogue, to show the full view of City Hall and the audience.)
MAYOR: Now where was I? Oh, yes; when in the course of human events, it sometimes falls to a few of us to rise above our usual stations in life, to be called to give our utmost in defense of our neighbors family and community, beyond the last full measure of devotion, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah....
(WAVER to indicate time passage, and FADE IN to the same scene, with subtly different lighting, and most of the audience slumped with boredom.)
MAYOR: ... blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah and so to conclude... (the audience rouses at this) ... in recognition of their heroic service, we will now award these tokens of appreciation to our honored honorees!
(CUT TO: Closer view of the MAYOR, as he signals to MS BELUM. She steps over, carrying an open box displaying three Olympic-type medals; gleaming golden disks [one slightly larger] on long striped ribbons. MAYOR selects the biggest disk.)
MAYOR: Mojo Jojo, will you please present yourself?
(CUT TO: BUTTERCUP.)
BUTTERCUP: (with unholy glee) This is it!
(CUT BACK TO: The platform. MOJO rises, crosses to the podium, and solemnly bows his head as the MAYOR slips the ribbon around his neck. MAYOR shakes his hand and steps aside; MOJO takes his place behind the podium. QUICK CUTS of the three POWERPUFFS tensing to spring into action.)
MOJO: (gracious voice) Citizens of Townsville, I thank you very much for this singular honor.
(MOJO steps down from the podium and returns to his chair. The audience breaks into thunderous applause. QUICK CUTS of BLOSSOM and BUBBLES looking surprised, and BUTTERCUP looking dumbfounded among the politely clapping adults.)
MS KEANE: Why, isn’t that nice! It looks like you can stop worrying, Buttercup; Mojo didn’t come here to make trouble. (But BUTTERCUP doesn’t appear remotely relieved.)
(CUT TO: MAYOR, applauding as hard as anyone.)
MAYOR: Now that’s the kind of speech I like- short and to the point! Don’t you agree, Ms Belum?
MS BELUM: (long-suffering voice, clapping in a more perfunctory way) Yes, Mayor.
(The MAYOR returns to the podium.)
MAYOR: We thank you so much for those inspiring words, Mojo! And now; Blossom and Bubbles? (He lifts the remaining two metals)
(Happy, albeit slightly dazed, the two cross the platform and receive their own decorations. BLOSSOM takes her turn at the microphone.)
BLOSSOM: Ah-hem. Thank you, Mayor and, citizens of Townvillain- I mean, citizens of *Townsville.* My sister Buttercup and I are... that is, Bubbles, and I, we’re very honored and appreciated, ah, appreciative, of...
(As BLOSSOM continues in a similarly stumbling fashion, a slit-eyed BUTTERCUP turns her scrutiny on MOJO. He’s sitting in a relaxed posture, wearing what many people would call a ‘polite listening smile.’ But BUTTERCUP reads more into it.)
BUTTERCUP: That Mojerk! He *planned* this!
(PROF gives BUTTERCUP a warning nudge in the ribs; several other people shush her. BUTTERCUP closes her mouth, but continues to send dirty looks in MOJO’s direction.)
(CLOSE-IN on BUTTERCUP’S frowning visage, then PULL BACK to show she’s now standing in the middle of the post-ceremony reception, on the lawn beside City Hall. Waiters wander about offering trays of hors d’oeuvres, in the far background, MARY, PABLO and ELMER are playing tag. The grown-ups are gathered in clusters, sipping drinks and talking- we can see PROF, MAYOR and MS KEANE in the nearest group. BUTTERCUP’s frown is directed at another cluster; MOJO, his medal glimmering, is chatting easily with several of the out-of-town VIPs. BUTTERCUP hears childish giggling behind her, and turns to see BLOSSOM & BUBBLES, both wearing their medals, enjoying some private joke with MIKE and JULIE. They all hold glasses of lemonade. BUTTERCUP looks askance at them, then moves closer to listen.)
JULIE: ... and when you said, ‘Citizens of Townsvillian’...
BUBBLES: And you called the mayor ‘Major’!
MIKE: And how ‘bout, ‘Professor Utopia’! Hee hee...
BUTTERCUP: (cutting in) Do you guys really think that was funny?
BLOSSOM: (just slightly more serious) Well, I didn’t at the time. But now that it’s in the past; yes, it *is* kinna funny! How about when I said ‘Pilloried’ instead of 'Privileged'!
(The other kids laugh; BUTTERCUP looks more annoyed.)
BUTTERCUP: You have to know Mojo did that on purpose, Blossom. He threw you a curve with that brief speech of his, to make you mess up on yours.
BLOSSOM: (matter-of-factly) No, it was my own fault. I made a strategic error; I was so focused on one possible contingency that I was caught insufficiently prepared for another. But, it’s not *that* big a deal. Everybody in town knows I’m usually much better at public speaking. (She sips her lemonade.)
BUTTERCUP: Well, I think it stinks! (looking back towards the VIP cluster) Just look at them! Fawning over Mojo like he’s some kinna movie star, when he’s really just a scumbag who’s probably got some evil plot going on right under their noses! Somebody outta warn ‘em. (BUTTERCUP starts towards the group.)
BLOSSOM: (sobering up) Hey, Buttercup, I don’t think that’s such a good idea!
(Ignoring her, BUTTERCUP stalks right up to MOJO.)
MOJO: (addressing one of the VIPs; a rather heavy-set, dark-haired man in a broad-rimmed hat and tan suit) Yes, thank you again, Senator. Alfred Hitchcock provided my inspiration; you can’t top the master...
BUTTERCUP: (poking MOJO on the arm) Hey, Monkeybreath!
MOJO: (turning to face her without resentment) Yes, Buttercup?
BUTTERCUP: Just what did you think you were doing back there?
MOJO: ‘Back there?’ Could you be more specific?
BUTTERCUP: At the ceremony! Deliberately embarrassing my sister! Don’t deny you gave that polite address just to throw off her concentration!
MOJO: (quirking an eyebrow) Would you have preferred it, if I’d ranted and raved?
BUTTERCUP: Yes! Ah, I mean... (she suddenly becomes aware that all the adults in the group are frowning at her.)
SENATOR: (sternly) Young’un, y’all got no business blamin’ Mojo here, just ‘cause yer sister’s not quite up ta his level ‘ah oratory skill- which ain’t hardy surprisin’, at her age. But at least she showed real good manners, which is more’en I kin say about some hereabouts.
(There’s general chuckling from the group, which MOJO does not contribute to. BUTTERCUP boils over.)
BUTTERCUP: (yelling) You people don’t know Mojo at all! He’s the most vile criminal in the history of Townsville! He’s up to something even now an’ you’re all to stupid to see it, just because he...
(A large hand grips BUTTERCUP’s shoulder; she looks up to see it belongs to a glowering PROFESSOR UTONIUM. Just beyond him, BLOSSOM and BUBBLES look acutely embarrassed.)
PROF: (tautly angry) That will be enough out of you, young lady.
MOJO: Don’t be too hard on her, Professor. Yesturday’s events were stressful for all of us. (turning to the group) She’s actually a good kid, but has problems with self-control.
(General nods and mummers of understanding among the adults. To judge from BUTTERCUP’s expression, nothing could’ve made her madder.)
BUTTERCUP: (venomous undertone to MOJO) You just wait- I’ll find out what your game is. You’re gonna slip up somewhere, an’ I’ll be watching you like a crowned eagle... (Author’s Note: the African crowned eagle is a notoriously efficient monkey hunter.)
SENATOR: (slipping an arm across MOJO’s shoulders) ‘Fraid yer gonna have ta wait on that, little darlin’. Mojo’s gonna be outta town fer a while.
MOJO: Indeed. Senator Roundhouse has invited me to spend the weekend at his ranch outside Houston.
ROUNDHOUSE: Yer gonna love it there, Son! We got swimmin’ pools, ridin’ trails, tennis courts... and I’ll bet ya have a tall-tale ‘er two you could share!
MOJO: (with a wolfish smile) I could indeed!
BUBBLES: (wistfully, to BLOSSOM) Gee, nobody ever invited *us* to a weekend at a Texas ranch.
(A long white limo pulls up beside the adjacent curb)
ROUNDHOUSE: Aw, is it time fer us ta be goin’ already? Wale, all you nice Townsville folks say goodbye ta Mojo fer now.
(Many of the people there, including MAYOR, the Pokey Oaks Kids, MS KEANE and BUBBLES, wave and call out wishes for a happy trip. ROUNDHOUSE and MOJO climb into the limo, waving back as it pulls away.)
BUTTERCUP: (shouting after the limo) I hope you get saddle sores!
(Every nearby adult, including JUDY and MS KEANE, regard BUTTERCUP as they would a bad-mannered brat. CLOSE IN in the PROF, as angry red spots flare in his cheeks.)
(FADE TO: Exterior of the Utonium Home, late in the day. The family car pulls up into the driveway. PROF, his features dangerously rigid, gets out one side while the PPGs emerge from the other. BLOSSOM and BUBBLES are nervously keeping close together; BUTTERCUP’s expression shows equal volumes of defiance and queasiness. PROF stalks to unlock the front door, stands aside as the three Girls enter, steps inside and slams the door shut.)
(CUT TO: Interior of Utonium home. PROF stiffly turns to face the PPGs.)
PROF: (same taunt anger) Blossom, Bubbles: I would appreciate it if you would both find something to do in your room. Buttercup and I need to have a talk.
BLOSSOM & BUBBLES: Yes, Professor.
(As they float up the staircase, BLOSSOM glances back, looking as if she’d like to say something, but wisely decides against it. PROF brusquely gestures for BUTTERCUP to sit at one end of the couch, lowering himself down at the other. There’s a long silent moment as he continues to regard her with strong parental disapproval, and she shifts uncomfortably.)
BUTTERCUP: (marginally contrite) Go ahead and say it.
PROF: I want to hear you say it first.
BUTTERCUP: I guess, I wouldn’t exactly get a gold star for the way I behaved at the reception...
PROF: No, you wouldn’t.
BUTTERCUP: (defensive) But, it just made me so mad! Mojo putting on that phoney benevolent-celebrity pose, and those dumb visitors just eating it up! We both know Mojo’s gonna exploit this new ‘hero’ status of his, to...
PROF: That’s entirely possible, Buttercup, but I don’t believe that’s your real issue with him. You’re angry at Mojo because of what happened at the bomb site.
BUTTERCUP: It’s not that I blame him for putting it outta commission, but, jeeze, he only did it to protect his own home!
PROF: And he was justified in doing so. Just as you’re justified in protecting Townsville because it’s *your* home. For once, both of you were trying to do the right thing. The difference is: Mojo went about it the way a hero should, and *You Didn’t.*
(BUTTERCUP looks as hurt as if he’d just slapped her. PROF’s aspect softens a bit.)
PROF: Mojo’s in the town’s good graces for now, because he kept his head under duress and got the job done. You’re in the ‘doghouse’ because, as you’re all too prone to, you jumped into things with both fists flailing. And now you resent Mojo for providing an example you’re not at all anxious to learn from. (much gentler) But you’ve got to, Buttercup. This time, your sisters were there to prevent your impulsiveness from causing a disaster. You, and Townsville, aren’t going to be that lucky every time.
(BUTTERCUP’s mouth goes trembly and tears leak from her eyes. All sternness gone, PROF takes her onto his lap and hugs her as she cries against his arm. This is different from the wailing crying she did earlier; it’s softer and more deeply felt.)
PROF: (soothing) It’s okay, honey. Life gives us harsh lessons sometimes, and believe me, this isn’t the most painful way you could’ve learned it. Now, I want you to take one thing away from this experience: promise me that, from now on, you’ll make a greater effort to look situations over before you act on them.
BUTTERCUP: (sniff) I promise, Professor!
PROF: (relaxing) That should be the end of it, then. (sigh) Y’know, whether he was speaking sincerely or not, Mojo was right about something else; this *has* been a stressful business. I think we should all take some time off tomorrow. Why don’t we accept Judy’s offer to visit the zoo?
BUTTERCUP: (managing a little grin) That would be nice.
PROF: And I know another thing which might be nice; why don’t you go upstairs and offer congratulations to your sisters? There’s no need for you to be jealous of their medals; I’m sure you’ll earn plenty of your own.
BUTTERCUP: Okay. (Bravely, she dries her eyes, proceeds to float upstairs, pauses to look back) I really am sorry, Professor.
(PROF gives her a loving smile. The moment she’s out of sight, he sags, leaning his forehead against his palms.)
PROF: (exhausted voice) Where *do* people get the idea that being a single parent is easy....?
(FADE TO: the POWERPUFF’s bedroom, nighttime. BUBBLES is blissfully asleep. BUTTERCUP has her eyes closed but her mouth is downturned, and she sighs. BLOSSOM is awake, eyeing BUTTERCUP worriedly.)
BLOSSOM: (whispering, so as not to disturb BUBBLES) Buttercup, would it make you feel any better, if you told me what the Professor said?
BUTTERCUP: (gloomy voice, keeping her eyes shut) He made me promise to think more, before I act.
BLOSSOM: Is that all? That’s not so bad...
BUTTERCUP: But I’m not sure I can do it.
BLOSSOM: You can, if you really try. After a while it’ll get to be a habit.
BUTTERCUP: (with just a trace of a frown) An’ then we’ll have *two* Blossoms on the Powerpuff team.
BLOSSOM: No; you’ll never be another me. Nobody wants that anyway. We’ll always need you to be you: Buttercup with the fighting spirit, the toughness, the kick-tail attitude. But, Mojo was right; you could use a little more self-control.
BUTTERCUP: (frowning a bit more) ‘Seems like Mojo’s been right about everything lately. Maybe he should get out of the supervillain business and start writing an advice column.
BLOSSOM: He’s just having a good week. Or, as he might put it: (doing a commendable MOJO impression, a la ‘Rainy Day Adventure’), “I, Moojo Jojo, have been experiencing more than the usual number of fortuitous happenings through this time period... (BUTTERCUP can’t help cracking a smile) ... which is to say; the ratio of advantageous events to disadvantageous ones has recently increased; which means overall the indicated interval has been above average for me, and so I may state without fear of contradiction that this qualifies as a good week.”
(BUTTERCUP and BLOSSOM giggle for a few seconds, until, hearing BUBBLES stir, they both hush.)
BLOSSOM: We really should try to get to sleep now- we’ve got a big excursion tomorrow.
BUTTERCUP: (tired) Yeah, I think I can manage now.... Blossom? Thanks.
BLOSSOM: (settling in) You’re welcome, Buttercup. G’night.
(PULLBACK and HOLD on the Girls, all of them now looking peaceful. SOFT FADE TO BLACK.)
---- continued in Part 3 ----
Last edited by Sharklady; 08-07-2001 at 04:40 PM.