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 8 - Better Interest

By Jordan D. White

Voodoo Lady
The Jack

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: Voodoo Lady and The Jack in "Better Interest."

(The door opens, and Voodoo Lady enters, escorting Tangent to a cell.)

T: No… you don’t want to put me in that cell, you’ve got too much other work to do. Look out that window! Doesn’t the planet look pretty? What’s that little wooden thing over there?

VL: You can just keep on blabbering, Tangent, I can’t hear a word you’re saying with these earplugs in. Your distraction powers are completely useless. Just get on in there. Go on. (he does) There. Now that you’re secure, I can-

T: Is that a spider?

VL: What? A spider? Oh God, where? I don’t see it, where is it?

T: I could have sworn I saw one… you’d better check around.

VL: Where did it go? Did you see what direction it was heading? What did it look like? Was it on the wall or the ceiling?

T: It was over on that side of the room, not anywhere near the cell release controls.

VL: Release controls?

T: Oh, my. Look at that release button. So red.

VL: Wow…

T: But look how dirty it is! It’s got a horrible little smudge of dirt right on it there.

VL: No one cleans up after themselves!

T: How can you be comfortable in here with that button is so dirty?

VL: So completely disgusting!

T: I can barely think about anything else, with that smudge there.

VL: Someone should really clean it off…

T: Perhaps someone should.

VL: I need to get a napkin.

T: I bet you could scratch it right off with your fingernail.

VL: You’re probably right…

T: It’s worth a try.

VL: Might as well.

(Jack enters)

Jack: Voodoo Lady! What are you doing?

VL: I was just going to clean the button…

T: It’s so dirty, you see-

Jack: Did you- Voodoo! You didn’t turn on the power inhibitor!

T: No- look over there, it’s a spider!

VL: Where?

T: The planet’s in danger!

VL: Oh my God!

T: Giant purple clowns!

VL: What?

Jack: Nice try. (he activates the power inhibitor) We all know your powers don’t work on me. I can’t be distracted.

T: You know what that means, don’t you? It means you have some sort of disorder. ADD or ADHD or something. Those are the only people it doesn’t work on. And you’re obviously not being treated for it, or you’d be susceptible. (to Voodoo) Do you know you’re working with an untreated mental case?

VL: Wow… you know, without your powers everything you say is just SO uninteresting.

T: Very funny. He could be dangerous.

Jack: I happen to think of it as something that makes me special. Like I can think of many more things than the average person-

VL: Like Doctor Fast.

Jack: Well… sort of. But less. Look, I’m perfectly able to function in society, so I don’t think it’s affecting me negatively at all. And you’re no doctor, so it’s not like we should take your word on these things. Maybe if the medical kicks back in, I can… can… go… what… what is that doing in the cell?

T: What?

Jack: Made you look.

VL: (laughs)

T: Oh, very droll.

VL: All right, now shut the hell up. I hear your voice again, you and Mr. Snake Loa get intimate, if you catch my meaning.

T: I think I can be quiet.

VL: Good. Hey, uh… thanks, Jack.

Jack: It was no problem. But you should be more careful.

VL: I said thanks, not explain what I did wrong.

Jack: (scoff) O-kay…

VL: Oh, come off it. It was a mistake. You’ve made them.

Jack: Yeah, sure. I just don’t know what your attitude is about.

VL: Pff. Whatever. You know, jerk-ass there is right, though. If you’ve got some sort of mental problem-

Jack: I don’t have a mental problem!

VL: Oh no?

Jack: No!

VL: You don’t have ADD or whatever?

Jack: Of course not.

VL: Ok. Prove it.

Jack: How?

VL: We’ll just sit here for a while. In silence. Just sit here doing nothing.

Jack: Fine. I can just sit here. That’s not a problem. Why wouldn’t I be able to-

VL: Silently means without talking.

Jack: Fine!


VL: Good.

(Pause. This is very hard for Jack. He clears he throat.)

VL: That counts.

(Jack exhales through his nose unhappily, but says nothing. Pause. He taps his foot.)

VL: Stop that.

Jack: I- (he stops himself, and remains fairly silent. He breathes loudly and annoyedly. After a little.) This is ridiculous!

T: See!

VL: Shut up, you! (to Jack) See? You can’t just sit here. You can’t take it.

Jack: There’s no reason to just sit here.

VL: There’s no reason to blather on like an idiot either, but that’s never stopped you before.

Jack: I want to talk. I enjoy talking. I don’t enjoy sitting in silence. I get all-

VL: Antsy?

Jack: What do you want me to say? I’m scatter-brained? I have a lot of nervous energy? I admit it, ok? So what?

VL: So it might be indicative of a larger problem- a problem that could be treated with modern medicine.

Jack: I can’t afford it, ok? I can’t afford to check into it. It’s not something that happened as a result of being on the Guard, so it’s not covered.

VL: You see? That’s why you’re an idiot.

Jack: Excuse me?

VL: You need full coverage more than anyone on the entire Guard, and you’re against the strike. That’s called voting against your interests.

Jack: Unless my interest is in having a safe and functioning society!

VL: Blah blah blah. They’re screwing you, and you’re letting them do it. In my book, that means you deserve it. Lucky for you, the rest of us aren’t wimps.

Jack: (jack is taken aback, and makes taken aback sounds)

VL: Oh, get over it.

Jack: Well… well, Broadband is voting against his interests then, too. He’s rich, what does he care about health coverage?

VL: First of all, Mr. "Safe Functioning Society", do you think you’d serve society better as a broke-ass loser who can’t take care of his malfunctioning brain, or as a normal, well-adjusted person? Because I think I know the answer. And second of all, like I said- if he votes against his interests, he deserves what he gets.

Jack: Yeah, but what happens in the mean time? Look at this jerk- if he’d attacked when we’re on strike, who knows how long Congress would have stayed distracted! He actually could have kept them bumbling until they starved to death.

VL: That’s not going to happen. You really think they’re going to stick to their guns if we lay a strike on the table? We’ll get full medical back. They need us. They’ll fold faster than… something easy to fold quickly. Laundry. Whatever.

Jack: That’s so manipulative!

VL: You’re an idiot. It’s about protecting us. It’s about not being abused. I guess if it was in your hands, we’d all do this for nothing.

Jack: No! I mean… I’d prefer not to. But if the Government called off the whole thing, disbanded the Guard… yeah, I’d have to! I couldn’t stop helping people just because there was no money in it!

VL: I’m not talking about making a profit! I don’t even take the stipend.

Jack: You don’t?

VL: I don’t need it. Sh- …My husband makes enough money to cover us. Let the Guard take the money, get better… computers, or force fields or whatever. Spend it on Dr. Fast’s experiments. I’m talking about the fact that we serve society, and society should return the favor a little. If one of us is mental-

Jack: I’m not mental!

VL: -Then it should help us out. Everybody should help each other.

Jack: Well, yeah… that’s true.

VL: So why should I help someone who’s not interested in helping me?

Jack: What? No! We have to help people! Good people, bad people, it doesn’t matter! We’re supposed to be better than the average person!

VL: Oh, come on, that’s unreasonable!

Jack: We’re supposed to be heroes!

VL: Yeah, but we’re not Saints!

Jack: We can try.

VL: (laughs) It’s almost cute how naïve you are! But then it’s not. Let’s drop it. I doubt it’ll even be an issue.

Jack: Fine. (pause) Want to play Scrabble?

VL: In your dreams, cheater.

Jack: I’m not a-! Tfft. (pause) Ooo- look out that window! Doesn’t the planet look pretty? (pause) Hey, what’s that little wooden thing over there?

VL: (sighs)

Go to Episode 9