(The Very Short Version)
©2005 The Angst Guy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Daria and associated characters are ©2005 MTV Networks
Feedback (good, bad, indifferent, just want to bother me, whatever) is appreciated. Please write to: email@example.com
Synopsis: When Helen Morgendorffer’s youngest sister (the “wild one” from Hollywood) comes to visit, guess which member of the family gets the biggest surprise!
Author’s Notes: This tale grew out of an April 2003 PPMB discussion of Mary Sue tales and other forms of self-insertion fanfic. At some point, the idea came to me to have fanfic author Kara Wild, creator of the Driven Wild Universe, appear in a ficlet as the youngest of the Barksdale sisters (Helen, Rita, and Amy). The original story grew to enormous length as others added in their own contributions to the tale. This ficlet is the stand-alone start of the “Aunt Kara” epic.
Readers interested seeing in the whole sordid Very Long Version from PPMB, complete with the rude comments and heckling of the original group of readers, plus a large number of amusing additional ficlets, are directed to this link on Kara Wild’s Contrarian Corner (PG-13 rating):
Acknowledgements: This story is for the great Kara Wild, because it seemed like a good idea at the time. 8D
“Helen? Is this the sister you always fight with, the sarcastic sister with glasses, or the Hollywood sister?” Jake Morgendorffer called for the third time that morning. A moment later, the doorbell rang.
“Oh, stop worrying, Jake!” Helen cried. She opened the front door. “Kara!” she cried, and threw her arms around the smiling young woman standing in the summer sunlight. “So good to see you again!”
“Oh, God,” Jake moaned from the kitchen.
“It’s okay, Dad,” Daria called to her father. “You don’t have to drink the whole pitcher. Save a martini for later.”
“Aunt Kara!” Quinn shouted, stampeding downstairs from her room to join in the hug. “Thank you for the gift certificate to Cashman’s! I filled up my whole closet! And those business manager classes turned out to be super! Even my friends in the Fashion Club signed up for it!”
“You really overdid it with the birthday presents, Kara,” said Helen, “but I’ve used three of those all-day massage and aromatherapy pampering certificates this month already. I feel like a new person!”
“That’s wonderful,” said Helen’s youngest sister. “I’m just on my way to New York and thought I would drop in for a few minutes.” Kara looked at her glasses-wearing niece. “And how are you, Daria?”
“Fine, and thank you for sending me to that creative writing workshop in Seattle,” Daria said, fighting an impulse to smile broadly. “That was the best weekend I’ve had since before Quinn was born.”
“Did Bantam and Dell get in touch with you about your manuscripts?”
“What?” Helen looked from her youngest sister to Daria in astonishment. “What’s going on?”
“Oh.” Daria blushed. “I wrote something at the workshop on that wireless laptop Aunt Kara gave me, and—”
“And there’s a bidding war going on over it,” finished Kara in triumph. “You might see a Melody Powers novel in paperback at Books by the Ton any day now!”
“Ohmigod!” cried Quinn in distress. “Something you wrote is going to be published? With your name on it? Did you tell everyone that you’re my sister? I’ll be totally humiliated!”
Daria surrendered to the grin. “Thanks, Aunt Kara,” she said with feeling.
“No problem, dear,” Kara said, and gave Daria a hug and a kiss on the forehead. Kara then looked brightly around the living room. “And where’s . . . Jake?”
“Jake!” Helen shouted. “Come and say hello to my little sister!”
“All right, damn it!” said Jake from the kitchen. He walked out with shoulders slumped, hands in his pockets, and head down. “Hi, Kara, good to see you again,” he said, then turned before he reached her and headed back to the kitchen. “I have to go to the garage and fix something for a few days, just call me if—”
“Oh, no no no no!” cried Kara, seizing Jake’s arm in a vicelike grip. “I have a present for you, too!”
“Oh, no!” cried Jake, unable to escape. “Helen! Don’t let her do this!”
“Jake!” snapped Helen. “Stop being a child, and go see what it is!”
Kara dragged Jake through the front door, prying his fingers from the doorframe. “I’ll be right back!” she told her sister and nieces with a smile. She grabbed the knob and shut the door, smashing many of Jake’s fingers in the process, then dragged him down the sidewalk to the street as he whimpered. An ambulance waited for them there.
“This is for your own good, Jake,” Kara said, signaling the medical crew to approach. “I’ve signed you up for six weeks of nonstop rational-cognitive-behavior-reality therapy at a private clinic on a ranch in Montana.”
“What?” Jake cried. Four burly medical attendants grabbed him. “Helen!” he shrieked at the house. “It was a trap!”
“Save it for the shrinks, Jakey,” said Kara. “You’re going to get straightened out or die in the process. Helen told me what you said about her in family therapy at that Quiet Ivy retreat.” Kara leaned in close as the attendants put the straightjacket over Jake’s struggling figure. “No one says that about a sister of mine and gets away with it. No one.”
“Mad Dog sent you!” Jake screamed as the attendants dragged him into the ambulance. “I knew it! You’re his vengeance from beyond the grave! But you won’t break me! You won’t! GAAAAAAAAHHH!!!!”
The doors on the ambulance slammed shut. Kara watched as the vehicle pulled away from the curb and headed down the street for the local airport. Jake’s bruised fingers clawed for a moment at the window before a hypodermic needle flashed into view, and the burly attendants pulled him back.
Kara sighed and dusted off her hands, then walked back up the sidewalk. At least now, when she told Helen and the girls she was taking them to Manhattan for the rest of the week, no one would be around to spoil the fun. Whistling “New York, New York,” Kara opened the door and went in to give her second-biggest surprise.
Postscript: “And Jake never *did* return from that correction facility. . . .” —Kara Wild.
Original: 5/18/03, modified 04/08/05