Buck & Jane
A Death in the Family
Decker & Hayes
Epic Echoes
The Great Muppet Debate
Guard Duty
Like Mother, Like Daughter
Stage Blood



Guard Duty, Series Three
Episode 7 - Acting In Union

By Jordan D. White

Binary Girl
Mr. Fahrenheit
Voodoo Lady
Captain Fantasy
The Jack
Dr. Fast

Narr: The Earth Guard - the planet's most powerful heroes united in the common goal of protecting the innocent people of planet Earth and defending them from threats of all kinds. From the Guard Tower, their base of operations, they watch over the citizens and spring into action at any sign of danger. To that end, the Guard take shifts monitoring events all over the globe. Sooner or later, they all have to take a shift of… Guard Duty. This week: The Earth Guard in "Acting in Union."

(The Earth Guard is assembled for a full meeting. There is some milling about and chatting heard.)

MF: Hey guys, while you’re all here, I just wanted to ask if anybody is willing to make a guest appearance on my-


MF: Tff. Whatever. I’ll be the only superstar then.

VL: Seriously, you have no sense of what is or is not appropriate, do you?

Stallion: All right, attention everyone. Thank you for coming. I’ve called this meeting because I think there are a few things we need to discuss in regards to our arrangement with the government.

BB: You’re damned right we do! These people need to live, and the government isn’t helping.

Stallion: I understand that-

BB: Jack gets his pay docked when he has to go home and take care of his family, Barbara can’t afford to stop working, even though she’s injured… You’re not taking care of these people, Chuck!

Stallion: I’m trying to tell you that-

BB: I know you founded this Earth Guard, but if this is the way you-

Stallion: God damn it, Bob, shut up! I am still leader of this team, and as such, I think I have to right to speak before you jump to conclusions about how I’m letting down the Guard!

BB: (beat) Fine. You have the floor.

Stallion: And I don’t need you to give it to me. (beat) Now, as I was saying… since Warren Grant replaced Davis Moore as our Government contact, there have been significant changes in some of our coverage and financial arrangements.

Jack: We’ve noticed.

PB: I haven’t.

BG: Why would you let them do that to us?

MF: Yeah- come on, man. What’s the deal?

Stallion: People, please! I wasn’t given a choice in the matter. If Grant had his way, he would have dropped medical coverage completely.

VL: What?

DF: On what basis?

Stallion: As far as he’s concerned, we’re vigilantes. His feeling is that we choose to help people, we choose to put ourselves in the line of fire, knowing the dangers involved, so why should they have to pay for our mistakes?

Jack: But, we’re helping people!

Stallion: He seems to feel that if the Government has no oversight in how we operate, they should not be liable for costs associated with operation.

BB: That’s preposterous! We fulfill a public need!

Stallion: He wanted to pull the funding for cleanup costs, collateral damage as well. I had to give him some sort of a compromise, and this seemed like the best option at the time.

BG: Except that it totally screwed me over.

Stallion: I understand that. That’s why I called this meeting. Something needs to be done.

MF: What can we do? They’re the Government. Why would they listen to us?

Stallion: I propose that we take a hard line with Grant. Tell him we’ll accept nothing less than full restoration of the provisions set by Davis Moore.

CF: Um… or what? Are we… are we going to attack the capitol?

Stallion: What? No!

CF: Ok, good. Because that’s what Dr. Fast thought you meant.

DF: Wha- It was not! My mind is capable of processing millions of entirely separate concepts at the exact same-

Stallion: We’re not going to attack the capitol!

VL: Then what exactly are you proposing?

Stallion: If he won’t agree to our terms… we go on strike.

ALL: (Things like "What?" "Are you serious?" Etc.)

Jack: We can’t go on strike!

Stallion: Everyone, please! Settle down. (they do) I know this is an important issue, that’s why I called this meeting. Everyone gets a vote. We’re not going to do this unless it’s what the group wants. Does anyone want to say anything before we take the vote?

ALL: (Everyone wants to. Things like "Me." "Right here." "I do." Etc.)

Stallion: All right, one at a time, you’ll all get a chance. Doctor, please, go ahead.

DF: Thank you. We need to be pragmatic about this. We need to ask where we place the value of what we do. Are we doing this for the money, or are we doing this because it’s the right thing to do?

BB: It’s not about that at all. We do it because it’s right, but that doesn’t change the fact that people need money to live.

MF: Says a billionaire.

BG: Then take it from me- we need money to live. If there wasn’t two of me, I couldn’t do my job properly with this broken arm. So, I’d be on leave at my day job and unable to perform on the Guard. How would I eat?

DF: May I continue please?

Stallion: Of course. Everyone, wait your turn, please.

DF: As I was saying, I think we can see that if we evaluate the situation logically, we can come to a clear decision. If we say that better coverage is required to facilitate our better serving the greater good, and that a strike is the best way to persuade the government to provide those funds-

Jack: But it isn’t right! I mean, I need that coverage desperately, but we can’t go on strike in order to get it! What if, what if one of our villains attacks? People could be hurt!

DF: You see, Jack- that’s why we need to look at it objectively. If we can say definitively that the better funding would lead to a greater good, then a certain amount of damage would be considered acceptable losses.

PB: What losses are acceptable to you? Have mortal lives been deemed so worthless now? How many lives would be squandered away before it would outweigh financial gain?

BB: It’s not about financial gain, it’s about respect. I don’t need money, I don’t need medical coverage-

MF: Because you’re in no danger. Robot and all.

BB: But that’s not the point! We’re doing a public service. This government seems to think anyone who spends their time in anything other than self interest is an idiot! That’s why we don’t pay teachers well, we don’t pay police well, and now, they’re trying to take money away from the Earth Guard. I already cover over half our operational expenses myself. What do they want from us?

CF: I don’t know… I mean in some ways, I help people for selfish reasons. If people suffer, the world of dreams gets really depressing. I like when it’s yellow.

MF: Howard’s right. I don’t help people because I feel like I have to. It’s a job. For me, being on the Earth Guard is just like singing on my album: I have an ability, and someone offered to pay me to use it. I wouldn’t be making a record if I wasn’t getting paid.

VL: Who’s Howard?

BG: So if the Evolutionist had offered you a job first, you’d be on the other team?

MF: I doubt he covers any medical at all.

VL: Look, you guys are missing the point. They need us more than we need them. They can’t push us around like this. We dictate the terms of this relationship, and if they don’t like it… they’re on their own.

Jack: That’s so heartless!

VL: Eh.

Stallion: We can’t do this if we’re divided on the issue. We need a clear majority, otherwise it’ll tear the team apart.

BB: The bylaws of the Guard do have provisions for strike, and according to those, we need two-thirds of the group in favor.

Stallion: Correct. But it also says that once a strike is declared, any member of the Guard found to have broken the strike will be kicked off the team, so it’s a very serious decision.

BG: I think we’re all taking it very seriously.

CF: I don’t think I understand what we’re arguing about.

VL: (sigh) We’re considering going on strike until they give us better medical coverage.

CF: Oh ok. Coverage… Like blankets?

Stallion: No… no, it’s about money, Captain. You know, like the stipend you collect?

CF: Oh, I see! Wait… we get paid?

PB: Is money all that holds sway in your minds? Is not doing what’s right it’s own reward?

BG: Of course it is- but you don’t need to buy things. The companies you shill for give you everything. And you don’t need to eat!

BB: This is getting us nowhere. Let’s just take a preliminary vote, see where everyone stands. If we don’t a two-thirds vote, we can discuss alternatives.

Stallion: Fine. I want to be clear on this- this vote will authorize the threat of strike in negotiation with Warren Grant. It doesn’t mean we’d be on strike immediately, it merely gives me the authority to declare one if necessary. I’ve got a meeting with Grant tomorrow afternoon. Are we all clear on what we’re voting here? … All right. All in favor, say aye.

BB: Aye.

DF: Aye.

Stallion: Aye.

BG: Aye.

VL: Aye.

MF: Aye.

Jack: What? But you said-

MF: I gotta vote my wallet.

Stallion: All opposed?

Jack: Nay.

PB: Nay.


CF: Why is everyone looking at me?

BB: Forget it. Six for, two against, one absent minded. The motion passes.

Stallion: All right. I’ll do everything in my power to make sure it won’t come to it, but if Grant won’t meet our terms… we strike. Grant will be coming to the tower tomorrow afternoon for a meeting. I’ll keep everyone posted after that. Until then, it’s business as usual. Meeting dismissed.

CF: What? … Oh. Foal says she thinks this is a mistake.

Stallion: What?

CF: Foal. She’s right over there.

MF: You know, Howard, you might want to keep all this Foal talk to youself.

CF: Who’s Howard?

Go to Episode 8