Chapter Eight: A Change Of Luck
"I swear, if that bleedin' phone rings one more time I'm disconnectin' it." Jetta groaned, glaring at the offending object and throwing a cushion in it's direction. "It's been nothin' but moanin' and complainin' from Eric and Riot since Pizzazz refused to cooperate with 'em an' I'm sick of it!"
"You ain't the only one." Roxy grimaced. "What I wanna know though is why she refused him. She's doolally over Riot - think she's finally got her brain back?"
"Dunno." Jetta shrugged. "Hope so. I just wish it didn't mean we got the 'assle over it. Like we can change 'er mind! The concert is in less than 2 hours now an we ain't playin'. End of story."
"It's a nothing show anyway." Roxy snorted. "I'm sick of playin' backup or support for those dumb Stingers, anyhow. We're the Misfits, we don't play support for anyone! They're nobodies, they ought to be warmin' up for us!"
"Tell me about it." Jetta groaned. "It's 'umiliatin' as 'ell, if I'm honest about it, and Pizzazz won't be argued know, if 'Arvey does die, I'm toyin' with the idea of persuadin' 'er to set up 'er own music company again and pullin' out of this Stingers Sound mess. I've 'ad enough of it...I don't wanna work for Riot an' Eric any more."
"Me neither." Roxy admitted. "If I had someplace else to go I'd've quit by now."
"You an' me both, love." Jetta sighed. She frowned. "I've 'ad enough of this, too. It's surreal, bein' stuck in an 'ouse with you...we're startin' to 'ave meaningful conversations."
"Only cos there's noone better to talk to." Roxy snapped in. "Don't think I've gone sweet on you. When Pizzazz and Stormer get back, it's back to normal, you got it? This is only while they're away."
"Suits me fine." Jetta returned. She reached for the paper, flicking through the pages with little interest. "Well, since we ain't got concert plans tonight, an' the damn phone won't quit ringin', I think I'm goin' out. Wanna come?"
"So long as I don't have to hang out with you when we get there." Roxy nodded.
"That was what I was thinkin'." Jetta agreed. "Jus' a taxi costs less if we go 'alves."
"I'll get my jacket." Roxy got to her feet. "Call 'em, huh?"
"Yeah, I was goin' to." Jetta rolled her eyes. "Jus' don't take forever! I ain't waitin' once it's 'ere!"
"Yeah, yeah, whatever." Roxy pulled a face at her foe. "Cool out already. I'll be there."
Across the other side of the country, oblivious to Roxy and Jetta's attempts to live together without coming to blows, Pizzazz was back at the hospital. A phonecall early that morning had suggested an improvement in Harvey's condition, and they were hopeful that he could be encouraged back to consciousness. The singer was much more her usual, snappy self thanks to her good night's sleep, but she had not refused Stormer's offer of breakfast, and though she was hardly trying to be friendly, she was less hostile to the younger girl than she had been before.
Stormer, for her part, had wisely left all mention of the previous day's revelations alone. It had happened, and it was over, and however much improved her relations with the singer were, it would not help to bring them up again.
She had left the singer to her own devices at the hospital, realising that Pizzazz needed to deal with this in her own way, and Pizzazz had been inwardly grateful for her companion's perception. As she sat down beside the bed, another uncharacteristic wave of apprehension washed over her. What if they were wrong? What if he wasn't going to make it, after all?
Her mind flitted back to the conversation she had had with her bandmate the day before, and she frowned. Well, maybe for once Stormer had a point, though she'd be damned before she'd admit it out loud. Maybe it wasn't too late...and maybe it was down to her to make an effort, if things were ever going to be settled.
Carefully, and a little awkwardly she took a hold of her father's hand in hers, gripping it gently.
"Daddy?" She murmured. "It's Phyllis...wake up, Daddy. We need to talk."
There was no response, and Pizzazz bit her lip.
"Please, Daddy." She begged, her tone not that of the spoiled brat begging for more, but that of an anxious, desperate child. "I don't want to be alone! I don't care about the stupid magazine or anything else...I just don't want you to die! You've spent my whole life jetting off to other places...don't you know that I need a father too?"
There was a moment's stillness, and then Pizzazz felt her father's fingers move slightly. Hope replacing fear in her green eyes, she was on her feet, reaching for his other hand.
"Daddy, come on!" She urged. "You can do're a Gabor! We don't give up, remember? You gotta fight back!"
Harvey's eyes flickered slightly, then opened, focusing slowly on his daughter's face. The joy he saw there prompted a faint smile, and he gripped tighter on the girl's hand.
"Phyllis." He murmured.
"No, you ain't talkin'." Pizzazz shook her head. "You're gonna listen to me, Daddy. Okay? Cos I haven't had the best few days in the world since you took sick and it made me think about something. We never talk, do we? I mean, you always got your business, and I've got my music...and I know you hate that. I use you for money, you get me outta your hair...well, I don't want that, Daddy! You're the only family I got and...well, I want my father. Not a bank account...who cares about money? I want...I want you to be proud of me."
Harvey gazed at his daughter for a moment, tears in his eyes. Then, with an amount of difficulty he spoke, his voice soft and hoarse.
"I am proud of you." He whispered. "But most of all...for being here now."
Pizzazz smiled slightly.
"I...guess I was worried." She admitted self-consciously. "I'm mad as hell at you for getting me worked up, you know."
Harvey smiled.
"It's care." He replied softly.
"Don't be dumb." Pizzazz scolded him. "I'm your daughter! What do you think I am, anyway, some monster? Don't answer that...I don't wanna know." she added as an afterthought, reaching over to press the buzzer to summon a doctor. "Now, you better get well, Daddy, an' soon, too. I don't like hanging out in hospitals, they give me creeps. I'm staying in DC, so I'll be around a day or two if you...want to see me."
"Of course." Harvey nodded slowly and haltingly. Pizzazz smiled.
"Right. Then I'll be back to see you tomorrow." She said, slightly embarassed with the whole situation. "Bye, Daddy. Don't relapse in the meantime, okay?"
"I'll... do" Harvey assured her. Satisfied, Pizzazz sent him a grin, leaving the hospital room as the doctors entered to examine their patient.
Strange as she felt, she also felt that a weight had been lifted from her shoulders.
Her father was awake, surely now he would live?
And surely now things would be settled between them?

Chapter One: The Magazine
Chapter Two: A Phone Call
Chapter Three: Washington DC
Chapter Four: Harvey Gabor
Chapter Five: Answering To Eric
Chapter Six: Breaking Down
Chapter Seven: Riot
Chapter Eight: A Change Of Luck
Chapter Nine: Harvey's Proposal
Chapter Ten: A Cunning Plan
Chapter Eleven: As It Should Be

(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)