Chapter Thirteen: The Great Escape
"I've had enough of this."
Pizzazz pulled a face, shifting herself into a slightly more comfortable position. "I'm cold, I'm hungry, I'm bored and I'm stuck with the world's biggest bore for company. I want outta here!"
"We both want out of here." Jerrica told her coldly. "But unless you've some genius idea to get us out, Pizzazz, we seem to be stuck. Clash has thought of everything."
"Damn her." Pizzazz muttered. "There must be something we can do to get out."
"Oh, so now you're willing to talk about 'we'?" Jerrica demanded. Pizzazz snorted.
"Only because two heads are better than one, and the Festival is tonight." She snapped. "I don't like you, Jerrica, but right now I'd take you over that simpering creep Clash...how dare she mess with us?"
"Easily." Clash herself lounged in the doorway. "Morning, girls. Feeling bored? Never mind. This time tomorrow it will all be over."
"For you too, Clash Montgomery." Pizzazz seethed. "You better damn well have a good lawyer behind you, because I'm gonna sue you to the sky for this!"
"I don't think you will." Clash purred. "Not unless you want all of America to know how little me outsmarted and duped you. That would be real good for your reputation, wouldn't it?"
"Oh, go to Hell." Pizzazz snapped. Clash laughed.
"Temper, temper." She chided. "Now, you girls behave yourselves, okay? Zipper's around, so don't try anything. He has less scruples than I do, as you should know."
"Where are you going?" Jerrica asked.
"Just into the bedroom." Clash responded. "Not far, Jerrica, so don't fret." She grinned. "I have to work out my next plan of action...when your bands don't show up tonight it might be nice to provide a little entertainment of my own. Sure, there'll be the Stingers, but they're so mundane and last week, don't you think? No, I'll cook up some special fireworks for the show, make it unforgettable. I wonder what the papers would say if Jem were suddenly to attempt a sabotage of the venue, bare minutes before opening night?"
"Jem's a wimp." Pizzazz reminded her.
"Yes...but I'm not." Clash replied. "And thanks to you, Pizzazz, I do a perfect imitation. I mean to ruin Jem and the Holograms for good, not just for tonight...and the Misfits too. I want you to remember how dangerous it is to cross me!"
"Bah." Pizzazz snorted. "You don't scare anyone, Clash. Just go away, will you? We're sick of your face."
"With pleasure. Later, Pizzazz." Clash scooped up her bag, winking at them, then disappearing out of the door.
"Creep." Pizzazz scowled.
"So what can we do about it?" Jerrica demanded. "I can hear Zipper's voice outside the door...we're stuck, aren't we?"
"Not necessarily stuck." Pizzazz narrowed her eyes. "Listen, wimp. We got to get to that concert before Clash can tamper with it and ruin both the Misfits and the Holograms beyond repair."
"I know that, but we're tied up."
"Sure...we are right now." Pizzazz nodded. "But maybe..." She raised her voice. "Zipper?"
"Whaddya want, Pizzazz, I'm busy!" Zipper poked his head lazily around the door.
"I want to go to the bathroom."
"Well tough." Zipper smirked. "You'll haveta wait."
"I don't think you'd be too popular with anyone if you don't let me go." Pizzazz spoke in her most demure tone. "Clash let us last night...what's wrong? Scared a big tough man like you can't handle little old me between here and the bathroom door?"
"Shut your face." Zipper snarled, coming into the room and bending down behind her. "I'll take you. Just you better be quick, an' no funny stuff, you got me? I can handle you, so don't get any smart ideas."
"Would I?" Pizzazz sounded offended. Zipper scowled at her, reluctantly untying her bonds and keeping a close grip on her hands as she struggled to her feet. She turned to meet Jerrica's gaze, and the blond understood what her companion was doing. Demure as a lamb, the singer allowed herself to be led out of the room and along the corridor, not even attempting to put up a fight. Once inside the bathroom she locked the door firmly, examining the room. They were ten storeys up, and the windows were barred, so that wasn't an option, but then she'd ascertained that the night before. What was more interesting to her was the shattered glass of the bathroom mirror. Carefully she lifted a particularly sharp piece from the frame, examining it.
"Nasty." She said with a half-smile. "Someone could hurt themselves on that...but it'll do just fine for cutting rope."
She pulled a length of toilet roll from the holder, wrapping the glass shard in it and slipping it into the inside pocket of her jacket, out of sight. Then she turned on the taps to conceal the noise, as she clambered up on the seat of the toilet itself and peered onto the dusty top shelf of the delapidated, doorless cabinet.
"Bingo." She murmured, reaching in and removing a roll of dirty bandages from the back. "I wonder if Clash even knows what's in here?" She slid them into her pocket too, then grabbed hold of the nearest thing - the scales - and carefully unlocked the door, being as quiet as she could.
"Come on, Pizzazz." Zipper's impatient voice came from outside. "Time to go."
"Okay, I'm coming, keep your hair on." Pizzazz snapped, pulling open the door with her free hand and keeping the scales concealed behind her back. Zipper turned to grab her, but she was too quick and she brought the heavy object down on his head, stunning him into unconsciousness. Catching him before he could fall and make a sound, she deftly pulled his still form into the bathroom, pushing the door to behind her. He'd be out for a while, she knew that.
Cautiously checking the corridor for Clash, she slipped back to the room where Jerrica was still a captive, shutting the door firmly behind her.
"What did you do? Where's Zipper?" Jerrica demanded.
"Taking a nap." Pizzazz smirked, extracting the shard of mirror from her pocket and slicing through Jerrica's bonds. "There. You're free...now you can quit moaning, okay?"
"That feels better." Jerrica stretched her arms and legs out, enjoying the feeling of restored circulation. "But how do we get out of here...there's Clash still to deal with, remember?"
"Yeah, I know, but it's two on one, ain't it?" Pizzazz replied. "Or didn't you ever learn how to fight in school?"
"Never needed to." Jerrica retorted.
"Well, even a wimp like you might be some use." Pizzazz rolled her eyes. "Listen, I left Zipper catching z's on the bathroom floor - laid him out with the scales - but I dunno how long he'll be out cold for. We gotta take care of Clash if we're gonna get out, cos she has the key to the front door of this place." She produced the bandages. "I got this in case we need to do some tying up of our own."
"Okay, then let's go get her." Jerrica pulled herself to her feet. "We have the element of surprise, after all." She frowned. "I don't think we should tie her up, mind you."
"Why not? Wimping out?" Pizzazz demanded.
"No...I was thinking ahead." Jerrica snapped. "If we were to tie her up and then we got out and went to the police or whatever and they found her tied up, she'd say we kidnapped her and it'd be our word against theirs, pretty much. There's nothing in the outside world to tie Clash to this, and noone's likely to suspect her, are they? We can't take that risk."
"Guess you're right. Pity." She said resignedly. "Well, let's go get the keys off her anyway. Might as well make some use of our freedom, huh?"
"Sure." Jerrica nodded. "Where do you suppose she is? The back of the apartment is what she said..."
"I dunno, but I vote we stick together." Pizzazz replied. "Two on one, remember? Maybe we'll scare her into giving them to us."
"Well, you're scary enough for us both." Jerrica muttered, nonetheless following the Misfit out of the room and along the corridor. In truth she did not want any kind of physical confrontation, but inwardly she felt glad that if it came, Pizzazz was fighting on her side this time. The Misfit singer was a fearsome adversary in more ways than just music, and though she felt able to compete more than adequately in terms of the charts, she wasn't so sure how she'd fare if it came to fists.
Clash was in a back bedroom, carefully and meticulously sorting through the parts to her Jem disguise, and picking out the right makeup to use. She did not hear them enter, and was not aware of their presence until Pizzazz grabbed her by the shoulders.
"Got you." She said grimly. "You got some questions to answer, miss Montgomery."
"How did you get free?" Clash's reaction was a mixture of shock, fear and anger. "Where's Zipper?"
"I dealt with Zipper. He's otherwise engaged." Pizzazz told her quietly. "Now, you listen to us, Clash. There are two of us, and one of you...and much as Jerrica and I hate each other, we both hate you twice as much right now, so the odds are not in your favour. You better give us the keys to this apartment, or else!"
"Not a chance!" Clash exclaimed. "You're staying here till the concert's finished and that's that, whatever you do to me!"
"I don't think you wanna know what I want to do to you." Pizzazz raised her fist menacingly, but Jerrica put a hand on her arm.
"No violence - we don't want an assault charge!" She warned.
Pizzazz rolled her eyes.
"I'll assault you in a minute, if you don't get a spine." She snapped. "Shut up, Jerrica. We're doing it my way!"
Clash wrenched herself free from the singer's angry grip, pulling the keys from her pocket and hurrying to the window, tossing them out before Pizzazz could stop her.
"There. Now you're stuck." She said. "You can't go anywhere, either of you. So I can't go to the concert and cause a little extra chaos, so what? Neither can either of you. I still win."
"Wanna bet?" Pizzazz scowled, grabbing Clash by the arm and pulling her towards the door. "We're going to get out of here, whether you like it or not, and you're coming with us so you don't cause any trouble."
"What are you gonna do, break the door down?" Clash demanded.
"Yeah, with your head, if we need to." Pizzazz snapped back.
Jerrica rolled her eyes, following on behind, but at the doorway she paused, spying something among Clash's disguise that glinted. Curious she paused to pick it up. It was a hairgrip, presumably to push Clash's own hair back under the wig. A glimmer of an idea formed in Jerrica's mind and she hurried to catch her reluctant comrade in arms up.
"Pizzazz, I have an idea." She said. "I found this in Clash's room...think we can pick the lock?"
"We can damn well try." Pizzazz looked pleased. "Say, you know how to pick locks? I can't exactly let go of miss trouble here."
"Sure I do." Jerrica nodded. "You wouldn't believe how many times we had to pick the lock on the garage door back home, after Kimber dropped the key someplace in the garden. It became a Benton art."
"Neat." Pizzazz sounded approving. "Well, better get on with it then...we ain't got all day."
"Let me go!" Clash wriggled as hard as she could, struggling to escape the singer's grip, but Pizzazz held her fast. "Put me down, Pizzazz!"
"Not a chance." Pizzazz said grimly, as Jerrica bent her energies to picking the lock. As she did so, she smelt something strange.
"Can anyone else smell anything?" She demanded.
"What do you mean, smell anything?" Pizzazz demanded. "Just pick the damn thing, will you?"
"I am!" Jerrica protested. "It just smelt like...well...like something was burning, that's all."
There was a click and the door swung open.
"Well, who cares, we're getting out of here." Pizzazz replied shortly.
"Not so fast, ladies." Zipper's voice came from behind them, and, startled, Pizzazz loosened her grip on her captive, who took the chance to dart away into the corridor and away. Pizzazz and Jerrica, no longer too worried about where Clash got to made for the open door themselves, reaching it before Zipper could reach them. As one person they made for the lift, but stopped dead at the end of the corridor, for there was a thick grey smoke beginning to seep out through the doors of the lift and along the edges of the shaft. As they looked in horror, they saw the beginnings of flames licking their way along the base of the walls.
It was Pizzazz who found her voice first.
"Fire!" She screamed.
Chapter Two: Deception
Chapter Three: On Tour With The Holograms
Chapter Four: The Next Stage
Chapter Five: Jem?
Chapter Six: Trapped!
Chapter Seven: An Unlikely Team
Chapter Eight: Laying Plans
Chapter Nine: Letter From The Desert
Chapter Ten: Jetta's Hunch
Chapter Eleven: Some Outside Help
Chapter Twelve: Kimber's Dilemma
Chapter Thirteen: The Great Escape
Chapter Fourteen: Fire!
Chapter Fifteen: Repercussions and Rock and Roll
Chapter Sixteen: The End Of An Era
(The Misfits and Holograms and other animated Jem characters are copyrighted to Hasbro Inc. All characters who do not appear in Jem episodes are my own creation. This story is copyrighted to E.A Woolley (2001)