Just A Dream...
A Gabor Legacy
Prologue: Twenty One Years Ago
The singer glanced up from her seat by the window, casting her companion a weary frown.
"What now?" She demanded. "For Heaven's sake, can't you leave me alone for two seconds?"
"It's done." Jetta ignored the tone in her bandmate's voice. "Though why in 'ell you wanted 'er registered is beyond me."
Pizzazz's frown deepened.
"Don't question me." She muttered. "I wanted her registered, and that's that!"
Jetta eyed her companion shrewdly. It had been more than a little bit of a surprise to her that her bandmate had wanted her baby to have proper birth registration, or that she'd send the saxophonist out with instructions to do the registering, but there were certain times that arguing with Pizzazz was not an option, and this was one of those times. Instead she came to sit down on the bed.
"'Ow you feelin', anyway?" She asked, somewhat awkwardly. "Ready for phase two?"
"Guess so." Pizzazz nodded, getting to her feet and smothering a grimace as her muscles rebelled against the movement. "Gotta get this over with. That damn brat kept me up all night screechin'...I want rid of her soon as possible. Where is she, anyway? I don't hear her yelling."
"Stormer's feedin' 'er." Jetta said quietly. "I think it's best we do this before she gets too attached and decides it's beyond 'er conscience to go through with it all. You gonna call the Foundation or do you want me to?"
"I'll do it." Pizzazz replied slowly. "In any case, I gotta make 'em think I'm miffed as heck that someone abandoned a baby on my doorstep. If Jerrica or Kimber or any of those Holo freaks find out that she's mine then I've had it...nothing can go wrong."
"Agreed." Jetta nodded. "Sooner this is done with, sooner we can get back to normal an' start playin' music again. It's been one 'ell of a year for it, Pizzazz...'bout time the Misfits made their comeback in style."
"Too true." Pizzazz nodded grimly. "Okay, quit yakkin' and leave me alone, will ya? I gotta dress an' then make the phonecall...tell Roxy and Stormer to wait downstairs till I come down and for God's sake tell Stormer not to get attached to that thing! She's never going to see her again, and she better get used to it!."
"Got it." Jetta nodded. "See you in a bit, Pizzazz."
She slipped out of the room and down the stairs, leaving the singer alone.
In all truth, alone was how Pizzazz wanted to be at that moment. She didn't want people anywhere near her, as she struggled to fully comprehend all that had happened in the last twenty four hours. She didn't want to get up, speak to the hated Jerrica or Kimber, or explain anything to any of the other Misfits. She just wanted to be left to herself to put things into perspective.
She moved gingerly over to her wardrobe, pushing the door open and sorting through her clothes with a half-hearted amount of enthusiasm, tossing outfits to the floor as she rejected them one by one. Finally she settled on one, dropping it down onto her bed as she changed. All the time, however, her mind was elsewhere, on the one thing that she was doing her level best to conceal.
She was a mother.
It had a strange ring to it now, she mused absently as she pulled her brush through her long thick waves of hair, and applied her makeup. When she had first found out she was pregnant, she had only felt panic and anger, but now it was all over, and now it was soon to be behind her she found herself feeling more pensive than angry...and that worried her more than she cared to admit. Pensiveness was not a characteristic that came naturally to her, for she had always been quicktempered, emotional and impulsive, but somehow she knew the past twenty-four hours had changed her. What she'd faced bringing baby Emily into the world had sobered up a tiny part of her childish, petulant attitude, and in many ways it unnerved her to know it. Sure, she was twenty six, it was time to grow up...but being a mother had never figured in her plans.
It had been Jetta who had suggested the Foundation and Pizzazz had grasped the idea eagerly with both hands. Within twenty minutes of Emily's arrival into the world the singer had had enough of her screaming and had dumped the baby unceremoniously into Stormer's care, for the youngest Misfit had more maternal instinct than the rest of them put together. Stormer had taken to Emily, and Emily to Stormer, which had upset Pizzazz more than she'd cared to admit. Somehow it was only too typical in her eyes that her own daughter should hate her too and prefer a stranger's care. Well, fine then. Send her to the Foundation. As if she cared what happened to the stupid brat anyway! She'd never been planned and was more than a little bit of a nusiance already. Yes, give her to Jerrica and Kimber and the other stupid Holograms. Let them deal with her tantrums.
She sighed, dropping down onto her bed. Maybe it would be better, she mused, when she felt better herself. She was exhausted, both emotionally and physically, and her body still ached, as if it had given up and her muscles had seized up on her, but she had to go on as normal. Showing weaknesses was not a part of her makeup, and she was ashamed enough of the emotional lapses she had suffered during the last few months. Sure, she knew they were hormonal, but it hadn't been much of a comfort to her when she reviewed the fact that more than once she had ended up in tears, shutting herself away in her room so as to avoid the curiosity and awkward sympathy of her companions.
One thing she had learnt, however, was that she could place a certain amount of trust with her bandmates. It was, she supposed, partly a worry for their own futures within the band that had kept them loyal, but as things had gone on she had realised that beneath the surface there was more of a genuine loyalty between them that had bonded them together as a team through this. As Jetta had said, the year had been hard, but if it had shown anything, it had made Pizzazz recognise that the Misfits were in fact the most precious acquaintances she had.
However, right now it was more important to be alone, as she gathered herself together for the act of a lifetime.
It was time to let Emily go.
Downstairs, in the main salon, Jetta had related the singer's remarks to her bandmates, her own expression grave. Of all of them she had always gotten along best with Pizzazz, and it made her somewhat uncomfortable to think how much the singer had come to rely on both her advice and her support. Pizzazz, who had always made her own choices and scorned other people's opinions had begun asking for help, and it did not seem natural, somehow. The saxophonist fervently hoped that some sense of normalcy would return to them soon.
"She said not to get too attached, Stormer, cos she's callin' the Starlight Foundation now." She added. Stormer glanced up from where she had been ministering to the sleepy baby with a sigh.
"I wish she didn't want to do this." She admitted. "Emily's sweet...and really, she isn't that much trouble, considering."
"Stormer, quit being soft. This is a band, not a maternity wing." Roxy snapped. "Pizzazz is doing the only thing she can do and that's that."
"For once, Roxy;s right." Jetta nodded her head. "This baby ain't good news for any of us, especially if 'Arvey Gabor finds out and cuts 'er off. We can't risk people findin' out. In any case, would you give Pizzazz a baby to look after an' expect it to grow up 'appy? I don't think so." She frowned. "I know what it's like to be a kid noone wanted, Stormer, it ain't worth the 'assle."
"Me too." Roxy nodded darkly. "The kid don't belong here."
"Guess you're right." Stormer sighed again, glancing down at the tiny features. "And I know Kimber and Jerrica and the others will look after her, so it's not like she's going anywhere very horrible. It's just sad, that's all, that she'll never have anyone to call Mommy."
"She'll learn to take care of herself, that's all." Roxy shrugged. "I never had a Mom an' I worked out fine."
"That's a matter of opinion." Jetta remarked.
"Don't." Stormer begged. "She's almost asleep and if you start arguing you'll wake her again."
"She'd better not start screaming again." Jetta rolled her eyes. "I barely got any sleep last night because of the noise!"
"I don't think any of us did, least of all Pizzazz." Stormer responded. "Jetta, how is she, anyway? I mean physically."
"I dunno." Jetta admitted. "She's gettin' up, so you can judge for yourself soon enough. Stiff, I think...I didn't pry into it. Ain't none of our business 'ow she settles this. I just want it over so we can go back to 'ow things should be."
"Right. Back how it was before." Roxy nodded. "Before she lost her mind and slept with Eric and started this whole mess."
"Shh...I think I hear her coming." Stormer hushed her friend. "We said we weren't gonna mention Eric to her again, remember?"
"Yeah, yeah." Roxy did not seem particularly concerned. "Whatever, Stormer. I know the deal as well as you do."
At that moment the door of the living room opened to reveal the singer, who cast a glance around, then dropped down into the nearest chair. Though pale, she did not seem much different from usual, and it was hard to believe all that she'd been through.
"Well?" She demanded, reaching for the phone. "Why you all staring at me? Sheesh, as if it ain't normal for someone to have a baby! Stop staring at me like I'm a freak show, dammit!"
Disturbed by her mother's impatience, the tiny baby began to whimper and Stormer turned her attention back to soothing the child, not noticing the look on Pizzazz's face as she did so. The singer got herself under control again almost immediately, however, dialling the number of the Starlight Foundation and adopting her most annoyed tone.
Listening to her, Jetta marvelled at how convincing the singer was.
There was a moment's silence after Pizzazz hung up the phone, then she frowned.
"Aja's coming over to collect the brat in about half an hour, or sooner if she can get away." She said finally. "So we got a bit of time to get the kid sorted out. Jetta, do you have the note I told you to type up last night?"
"It's here, Pizzazz." Jetta indicated an envelope on the table.
"Good." Pizzazz got to her feet with a half-suppressed grimace, scooping up the envelope and glancing at it, then putting it in her pocket. "Stormer, give me the brat, then the three of you get lost, okay? I'm gonna deal with this and make sure nothing goes wrong."
Stormer seemed reluctant to part with the tiny bundle, who, it seemed, was equally disenchanted with the idea, for as soon as she was put in her mother's arms she began to whimper again. Pizzazz glared at her daughter impatiently.
"Quit it, kid." She snapped. "I ain't got time for your noise...we have plenty to do before Aja gets here and takes you off my hands."
She turned to her bandmates.
"I said go!" She exclaimed. "Get lost, all right? The fewer people who are involved in this the better...shoo!"
Reluctantly the other Misfits withdrew from the room, Roxy shutting the door behind her, and Pizzazz heard them heading upstairs. The baby in her arms was still whimpering and, afraid the child would set up full blown screams, the singer sat down in the armchair once more, fixing her daughter with a meaningful look.
"Now you listen to me, kid." she said firmly. "Shut up complaining. You're a Gabor, now act like one...Gabors don't cry. You're goin' out into this world to fight for yourself, you got it? Cos I ain't gonna do no fighting for you. When Aja gets here you're on your own. Not that you give a damn anyway."
The baby's whimpers began to verge into even more displeased yells, and, frustrated, Pizzazz groaned.
"Yeah, I know. You're a rotten stinkin' brat and you can't wait to get outta here." She snapped. "Well, guess what, Emily? I can't wait to be rid of you, either. You've screwed up my life long enough, you and your damned father...sooner you're both out of my life the better. I don't need you or want you so you'd better get used to being on your own."
She set the baby down carefully in the battered cardboard box Roxy had located in the garage for the purpose of creating the illusion of abandonment, covering her tiny body with the blanket and slipping the envelope down into the folds of the cloth, where it could be discovered later. She did not need to read what it said, for she had dictated it's contents to Jetta the night before, and she knew her bandmate wouldn't let her down, for Jetta was as keen to be rid of the baby as she was herself.
Emily did not seem to want to give up proving how strong and healthy her lungs were, and Pizzazz covered her ears in vain against her daughter's squeals.
"Shut up, I told you!" She exclaimed. "God, how dumb are you? Don't you know that you're not makin' any friends squawking like that?"
Emily seemed to understand her mother was upset, and her cries receded into plaintive, pitiful whimpers that even tugged on Pizzazz's heart strings. Glad that noone was around to see, she gently stroked the tiny fist.
"I'm sorry." She whispered. "I don't know how to be your mother...you gotta understand that. They know what they're doing at the Foundation, you'll do okay there."
There was a knock at the door, and slowly Pizzazz went to answer it, slipping her act into place as she pulled it open.
"You took long enough." She snapped. "Where did you come from, Baltimore?"
"Oh, give it a rest, Pizzazz." Aja sighed. "Jerrica said you'd had an unusual gift delivered here this morning...where is she?"
"Through there, stinky little horror." Pizzazz jerked her head carelessly in the direction of the main salon. "Take her away, for God's sake!"
"Who in their right mind would give you a baby to look after?" Aja wondered out loud, heading into the lounge and making her way over to the box. "They must have been warped in the head to think she'd get any love here. Hello there, little one...Pizzazz, do you know if she has a name? I mean, was there a note or anything?"
"You think I care enough to look?" Pizzazz returned, though for some reason she could not explain her heart ached at her companion's thoughtless words. "I just want the thing off my property. If I ever catch the creep who left her here..."
"It's all right, I'll take her now." Aja sighed, scooping the infant up out of the box, blanket and all. "Come on, sweetheart...oh! What's this?" As the envelope fluttered to the floor. Carefully she bent to pick it up. "Guess someone cared enough to write a note, after all! Guess we'll open this back at the foundation, huh? Better we get you out of here, before you develop an attitude."
"Shut your face, Hologram." Pizzazz snapped. "Just take the kid and go, will you?"
"I'm going, I'm going." Aja assured her. "Don't worry...she's off your hands now. Which I'm sure is as much a relief for her as it is for you."
With that the Hologram was gone, leaving Pizzazz alone again. Idly she moved to the window, watching Aja put the baby gently into a secure carrier in the front seat of the Roadster, and then slip into the driving seat, revving the engine.
"Goodbye, Emily." She whispered, unable to prevent the tears from falling now that there was noone there to see her. She would never see her daughter again, of that she was sure, and even if they did meet, they would be but strangers in the street, not knowing the other was even there.
She closed her eyes as the Roadster drew away, not wanting to see the vehicle leave. Impatiently she dashed the tears away, unaware that Jetta had observed everything from the doorway. It was over now. Time to forget and time to move on.
"Just another thing in the past." She muttered. "Time to be a Misfit again...time to sing and to perform! Time...time to be Pizzazz."
PART SIX: A GABOR LEGACY
Prologue: Twenty One Years Ago
Chapter One: Sirena And Blade
Chapter Two: Nancy's Heart
Chapter Three: Coup D'Etat
Chapter Four: The Reaction
Chapter Five: Nancy Finds Out
Chapter Six: Dilemma
Chapter Seven: Facing Phyllis
Chapter Eight: Scandal!
Chapter Nine: An Unexpected Shock
Chapter Ten: A Revelation
Chapter Eleven: Harvey Takes A Hand
Chapter Twelve: Sirena vs Pizzazz
Chapter Thirteen: Settling Rory
Chapter Fourteen: At Misfit Music
Epilogue: A New Beginning
Copper, Nancy, Sylvie, Anna, Blade, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita, Luis and any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE. Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers of the Jem series.