"You Meddling Kids" is the 9th episode of Desperate Schoolboys.
Ben grows suspicious of Nick and decides to take a closer look at the source of the fire. After the death of Ali and revelations of her past, Rena pays a visit to the orphanage in order to dig deeper into his own history. Val takes a dislike to Liz's return to the group, with both having befriended Josh. And things take a turn for the worse for Joe, when his father is released from prison.
In the wake of any disaster, there are many things that can occur. Death by a terrible accident...
Flashback to Ali being pulled on a gurney into an ambulance as they cover her body with a sheet.
...understanding thanks to a heroic rescue...
Dr. Sonya smiles to Joe when they spot each other walking through the hallway.
...guilt due to being at fault...
Flash to Nick sitting on his bed, sighing and crying.
And one of the most hopeful things to sprout from disaster... friendship.
We see Val and Josh walking together in the half of the school that isn't now under construction, approaching Liz, Katie and some more girls. "Hey, ladies," Val says, expecting immediate welcome. Everyone remains silent, besides Liz, "Hi, Josh." Josh smiles as they begin to converse. "I don't get it, why am I going ignored?" Val asks, getting quickly angry. "No one's ignoring you, dearie, you're just too exhaustive to talk to," Liz tells her. "Oh, yeah?" Val asks. "Yeah," Liz tells her. The other girls still remain silent. "I don't get it, why are you girls mad at me? I was just trapped in a fire!" she exclaims. "Yes, we know. As was I. Except I don't plan to milk it," Liz states. "How dare you?! I could have died!" Val yells. "Yes. And that's why I resent Josh a little. He rescued you," Liz says, Val's jaw drops. "No one talks to me like that!" she yells. "No, Val. They just don't say it to your face." Val angrily stomps away, Josh remains silent, looking worried at her rage.
Yes, many things can happen as a result of disaster... the least hopeful one of which... is war.
Val and Liz stare at each other from afar, Josh continues to worry.
Since the fire at Wiksteria High, people had been searching. The police had been searching for a cause. And they were treating it as suspicious.
Flash to the police looking around in the rubble and remains of the burned down building. One of them picks up a match and calls over the others.
They had searched for a suspect and a motive. But to no avail.
to the police interviewing children.
And some, were searching for a way to deal with their loss...
Rena is sitting down in the school cafeteria with Ben. Ben is trying to console him and express his condolences, when Nick walks over. Rena and Ben look up at him. Nick is shaking and staring intensely into Rena's eyes. He utters, "I just wanted to say how sorry I am." Rena nods his head, "Thanks." Ben and Rena then look away, expecting Nick to go off. However Nick continues to stand and he utters once more, "I'm so sorry." Rena looks up, "Did you know Ali?" Nick shakes his head, "No, no, I didn't. But I heard she was very nice. And that you were both very close. It's terrible. And I'm sorry." Rena thanks him again. However Ben looks up at the shaking Nick, suspiciously. "They think someone started the fire, on purpose," Ben says to him. Nick responds, "I'm sure it was just some dumb kids. They probably meant nothing by it." Rena looks up angrily, "Well, something did happen because of it! And they should be punished!" Nick turns, "Well, I just wanted to say sorry." Ben watches Nick walk off with untrusting eyes.
Yes, people had been searching since the fire at Wiksteria High. And Benjamin Ashdale, was determined to seek the truth. And he wasn’t the only one...
Rena turns to Ben, "I need you to cover for me today. I won't be here." Ben nods, confused, "Sure, of course. Eh, where are you going?" Rena stands up and begins walking away, "To the orphanage."
Joe is seen walking down a burned hallway where the fire has clearly affected harshly. He makes it to Dr. Sonya's office where he sees the therapist with cardboard boxes going through his drawers. "Need any help?" Joe wonders. "Haven't you helped me enough?" Sonya asks. "Yes. Yes, I have," Joe states. Sonya says that Joe can help him pack some boxes. Joe obliges, going through his drawers and placing any non-burned objects into a box. "So, where's your new office?" Joe wonders. "Oh, it's very, very small compared to this one across school," he says. "Well, it better be big enough to fit a couch 'cause I'm not lying on the floor five mornings a week," Joe says. Dr. Sonya tells him that he's sure there'll be a couch. Joe picks up a standard-size tool box from a drawer and shakes it, "Well, at least whatever's in here will have survived." Joe notices the padlock and asks what's inside. "Oh, it;s nothing," Sonya says, snatching the box. "Better let me pack this." "Okay..." says Joe who finishes his box and picks it up before proceeding to the door."Oh, and Joe..." the boy stops, "Yes?" "Thank you for saving my life..." he tells him."Meh, no biggie." Joe leaves the office with his box, followed by Brad.
Rena steps off the bus and makes his way down the streets to the orphanage. He knocks on the door and Mr. Silver slowly walks over, and opens it. Mr. Silver looks at him with a blank expression, "I only take kids which the government sends me." Mr. Silver begins to close the door, but Rena stops him, "No, no, I'm not an orphan. I'm here because a friend of mine..." "I don't allow visitors," the grumpy man responds. Rena puts his food between the door, to stop, frustrated, "My friend just died! Alison Sword! She told me that I use to live here." Mr. Silver's eyes widen, "Come in." Mr. Silver opens the door and walks down the hallway to his office, where Rena follows.
In the quad, Liz, Val and Josh are standing alone with each other, waiting for others to arrive. "Well, Josh. Seems you could become a permanent member of our social group," Liz points out. "Yes... but, doesn't it look a bit suspicious to always be hanging around with you lot?" Josh asks, "Cos I do what to hang around you two... you're the only people I can talk to about this stuff..." he says. "It's okay. People won't see what you don't want them to. And you're right, I'll always be here." Liz places her hand on Josh's shoulder. Val sees this and seems angry, she places her hand on his other shoulder and swings 'round to face him directly, "As will I," she utters. "And of course, no one will judge you when you decide it's time... I didn't." Liz gives a comforting smile, Val sees this and tries to give one, too, however, hers comes out looking slightly evil and scary, Josh's eyes widen. The rest of Liz's friends arrive on the scene. "What's she doing here?" Katie asks. "I have no idea," Val states, referring to Liz. "Not her, you." Val's jaw drops. "And just what exactly are you insinuating?!" Val exclaims. "Leave." Her jaw drops some more. "After the way you treated me earlier... you bitches should be fucking begging for forgiveness!" The rest of the girls remain silent, not saying a word. "Well... argue!" she demands. "Val... please. Leave," Liz says. Val is stunned, "Fine, I wouldn't wanna hang around with you whores anyway! Come on, Josh, let's go!" she exclaims, Josh sticks by Liz. "Well, come on, then..." she says. Josh is silent."Oh, I see. This is ridiculous!" she yells before stomping away in a huff.
Ben enters the remains of the burned down part of the school, were placed everywhere is 'Danger' and 'Under Construction' signs. Only the bottom two floors are still standing, and the second floor hardly. Ben makes his way up the still standing stairs to the roofless second floor, and enters the classroom where the fire supposedly started. Joe then enters, "Hey, Ben. You wanted me to meet you here?" "I did," Ben nods. Joe nods back awkwardly and then looks around at the mess of the room, "The fire sure made a mess." Ben nods in agreement and walks over to the window, which is completely broken, except from one remaining glass pane. Ben continuously glances at it in distress. Joe says, "Okay, Ben, why did you call me here?" "Did you know Liz's class was right downstairs, beside the fire exit?" Ben asks. Joe shakes his head, confused. "Nick came to say his condolences to Rena today. There was something very off," Ben says. "What do you mean?" Joe asks. "He just seemed so upset," Ben says, while continuously looking back at the remaining glass plane, "He looked very guilty... and... he... Excuse me." Ben turns around and backs his elbow into the glass plane, smashing it. Joe's eyes widen and Ben explains, "Now, they're all even." They begin walking back out the room, as Ben washes his hands with his gel, due to touching the soot and dust. He offers it to Joe, who declines before saying, "So, Ben, what are you saying? Nick started the fire? Why?" "I don't believe he wanted to hurt anyone. He wanted to save Liz. He wanted her to notice him as a hero," he explains. "That's insane! What makes you think he would do that?" Joe asks. Ben explains, "Because, I've thought about doing it."
It's lunch time and Val is sitting on her own, she looks over to her usual group of friends who are laughing with Liz, Josh is seen there, too. Suddenly, something within her snaps and we see a very angered Val charging towards them. She stands on their lunch table and they ask her what on Earth she's doing. "Okay, it's time to make a choice, bitches! Me... or that?" Val asks, gesturing Liz. The girls are silent. "I don't have all day, people. Now, answer me! I command you!" she exclaims. "I think what Val here is trying to ask is that, do you want a sociopathic, slutty bitch in your midst... or me... someone who's... well, not those things," Liz says. "Um, Val... we choose Liz..." Katie says. "Shut up, girl! The other ladies haven't answered me yet!" she exclaims, "Now, tell me, do you want your Queen... or some peasant?" she asks. "...Peasant," they all state in unison. Val is stunned, "But... you're all nothing without me!" she yells. "And we'd rather or feel that way because of you..." Liz says. "Wait a second, Josh hasn't answered! Does he not get a vote?!" she wonders. They all turn to Josh, he is stunned. "Val... go," he says after a pause. She is absolutely stunned. "Oh, I will not have this. I know it's just because you're all so damn jealous of my beauty and talent, but still! You don't want your Queen? Well, my dears. Here... she... is! Despite of you! Well... I'm actually gonna leave now... but I'll... be... back!" she exclaims before jumping off of the table and leaving.
In the office of the orphanage, Mr. Silver pulls out Ali's file, "I remember, Alison, very well. A very friendly and pleasant girl. But not entirely stable." "What do you mean?" Rena asks. "She didn't know the difference between reality and fantasy. I don't know why she would tell you that you use to live here, but it's certainly not true." Rena disputes, "I knew, Ali! She wasn’t unstable! And she must have genuinely believed we met here. I need to know why!" Mr. Silver shakes his head, "Kid, look at the files," Mr. Silver opens the cupboard and points to them all, "Do you see your name?" Rena shakes his head. "That's because you were never here! What? You think that your records just disappeared and that everyone else at the orphanage just suddenly forgot you existed? I'm sorry about what happened to Alison, but I knew her for most of her life. I raised her! And I know that she wasn’t entirely sane. How could she be? She had a lonely life." Rena looks down upset. Mr. Silver shakes his head and then attempts to comfort him, "But at least she had her time with you. I'm sure that it meant everything to her. Now, go back to your family, kid." Rena nods and then leaves.
Joe is seen walking home through town and sees a guy selling newspapers outside a mall. Feeling sorry for him, Joe tosses a few coins his way and buys one. Joe walks ahead, flicking through the paper and sees an article within a group of minor stories, one with a photograph of his father as the header. It reads that Matthew Hadland has been released from prison with good behaviour and minor charges, his eyes widen and his jaws drop. Suddenly, Joe runs back to the salesman and points out the story. "Is this true?" he asks. The salesman is confused and remains silent. "Is this true?!" he exclaims, grabbing the man by his jacket collar, freaking him out, he is still speechless. Joe drops the man and runs away. He runs around the corner and stops, seeming extremely stressed and maddened. He leans his head against the wall, tearing up. "He's gonna be coming for me..." he utters to himself, sadly. He then wiped away the tears and pulls himself together, he proceeds to run.
Nick is walking home from school, when Ben approaches him, "Hey, Nick! I want to talk to you." Nick turns round, "Yes?" "I know what you did," Ben says. "I don't know what you're talking about," Nick retorts. "Oh, I think you do," Ben says, "You wrote on the registration form that you were in class when the fire started. But you weren't." "You accusing me of lying?" Nick asks. "I'm accusing you of much more than that," Ben corrects, "You know, I use to think that we very similar, Nick. And it bothered me when Liz became your friend. But not anymore. We're nothing alike." "You sure of that? I know how you feel about Liz, Ben. I think you would do the same," Nick enquires. "I would never be so selfish as to actually do something so evil," Ben says. "We've had a lot of chats in chess club, Ben. Although I've never really talked to you outside, I assume you think the same in life as you think in the game. So, the game is on. Your move," Nick teases. "This isn't one of our chess game, Nick! Someone died!" Ben shouts. "Sometimes pawns must fall if you are to capture the Queen. And Liz will be my Queen," Nick smirks. Nick goes to walk around Ben, but he steps in front of him, blocking his path with a straight face. "Do you mind? You're in my way!" Nick says. Ben smiles, "Yes. I am in your way." Ben continues to stand but Nick laughs at him, and walks off.
Joe runs into his house, seeming in a panic, he locks the door behind him. He runs into the kitchen where his mother is watching a game show on a miniature TV, he turns it off and she asks him what he's doing. "He's out," Joe says, proceeding to lock the kitchen windows, running through to the living room where h locks their windows as well, his mother follows him. Who's out?" she wonders. "Dad. He's out of prison and I want to make sure he stays out of our house," he explains before moving to another room and locking the back door. "Joe, this makes no sense. Why wouldn't you like to see your father?" she wonders. "Remember when I first asked to see him and you warned me against it... well... now I'm doing the same. So, you can either stop questioning it or help me seal the place down." Annie is stunned and goes on to help him lock some more windows. "You know, you never told me what he did..." she says, "What can be so awful that you can't tell me?" "What do you think?" Joe asks. He locks the side door.
Josh and Liz are walking home together and conversing and we see Val watching them from afar, she stares at Liz madly. She starts walking after them and step-by-step catches up, eventually, she is close enough to tap Liz on the shoulder, the girl turns around, not expecting much, she is consequently punched in the face by an angry Valentina. "Val, what on Earth are you doing?!" Josh exclaims. "Taking back what's mine!" she yells. An angered Liz runs at her and tackles her to the ground, wrestling the bitch. Val head butts her nemesis and she gains the upper hand in the wrestle, flipping her to be on top. Liz kicks Val from underneath and pushes her backwards; Val leaps to her feet and stumbles. This gives Liz time to stand up before Val charges at her, the ladies grab each other's arms and apply pressure, forcing into the other person. At this point, Josh rushes in and pushes them apart, separating the fight. "You see that, Josh?! She attacked me!" Val exclaims. "Where the hell do you get off saying that?" he asks, coming to Liz's aid. "It's not my fault, she gave me no choice!" Val yells. "We always have a choice, Val... and I no longer choose to be your friend. Now please, get the fuck away from me!" Josh yells. "Oh, so we're back to this again, are we?! Oh, you're gonna regret this!" she yells. "Val... please... just don't bother..." he requests."How can you ask that of me at this point? You've been so awful to me..." she states. "After all you've done, you have the nerve to say I'm the awful one?!" he asks. "I have nerve enough to do what I want... and that makes me undefeatable..." she assures him before walking away. Josh looks to Liz and asks her if she's okay. "Yeah, I think I hurt my leg when she tackled me though." Josh walks a limping Liz home.
Mr. Silver is in his office, he puts away Ali's file. He then sighs and picks up the phone. After dialing a number, Justine answers, "Hello?" "Hello, Mrs. Abelho. It's Mr. Silver, from the orphanage." Justine gives a surprised voice, "Mr. Silver? How can I help you?" Mr. Silver answers, "Your son, Renato, was snooping around here." "What?" Justine responds. "Apparently his girlfriend was a girl that use to live here. She remembered him. What are the chances, huh?" he says. Justine goes on, "Well, I appreciate you bringing this to my attention, Mr. Silver." "Of course. Have a good day, Mrs. Abelho," he says. Justine puts down the phone, and she then begins scratching her hand nervously.
Yes, there will always be a time where we find ourselves searching for answers... whether you want to know about your true past...
Rena walks past Justine on his way into the house; he seems disappointed, runs into his room and slams the door. His mother leaks an eerie smile.
...or just who is to blame for an awful tragedy...
Ben walks past Nick at school and sees him staring at the half that is under construction, he seems saddened by it and Ben thins his eyes, seeming more and more suspicious.
...or a way to stop loneliness when you've severed all of your connections...
Val is in her bedroom looking in her mirror, she treats the bleeding lip that she retained in the fight and then looks over to a photo of her, Liz and Katie that's discarded on her dressing table, she angrily tears it up and throws it in the trash.
And then we have people who are being answers and searching for something becomes their only true purpose... or someone...
We see Matthew Hadland sitting in his motel room, he looks at a photograph of Joe next to a map where an address has been circled and the words "Son's house" have been scrawled next to it. He moves a box out of the way to reveal that, hiding next to the map, is a gun.