Back at the Peach Pit, Brando and Davy are helping Val to a booth and Brandon “Yo Adrienne” Walsh hollers to Nat “Hey Nat we need some water over here pronto!” and when Nat obediently brings a glass over, Val takes a few sips.
“You guys, really, I’m okay,” she insists, and, at Nat’s curious look, Brandon explains “Val kinda fainted back there.” And Nat’s gerbil face crinkles in concern, and he pats Val on the shoulder and says “You just sit here and rest, honey, and I’ll get you some orange juice.” And Brandon says “Everyone’s upset with the... you know... situation” and Davy laughs and twitches.
The bell over the front door tinkles, and Kelly comes in and looks around before spying The Gang and heading over. “I convinced Donna to go back to the beach house and rest for a while,” she breathes in Ultra-Kelly Do-Gooder fashion as she sits all ladylike at the table with a little box-like trendy purse that compliments her sweater-skirt ensemble.
“Is she gonna be okay?” asks Brandon “The Forehead” Walsh.
“I hope so. You know, it’s hard to tell whose life [sic] has gotten more bizarre lately, ours or Donna’s,” sighs Kelly, “I mean, we have this wedding to plan and the child-custody hearing, and now Donna’s got to deal with these accusations against Noah.” And, of course, Kelly completely forgets about the fact that someone has just been RAPED because ultimately what matters is not Tara/Kara’s violation but how it affects A Hillster. And, of course, Kelly’s Hedonistic Domesticate trivial pleasures and pursuits are to be equated with Donna Martin’s Raping Boyfriend and Spineless Self-Implosion.
Fortunately, Val jumps in with a “Yeah, Kel, good thing Kara was only raped, huh?”
And Kelly glares and Brandon does his Big Fake-O Laugh before saying “Now girls, don’t start” but Kelly snips “What is that supposed to mean, Valerie?” and Davy twitches and laughs and deedles himself. And thankgodfully (TM xix) Val says “You think this is funny? You think this is amusing, David?” and The Hillsters are growing increasingly uneasy as Val gathers steam and hisses “Has it completely slipped your minds that Noah – the person who raped me only a few months ago – just raped someone else?!”
And Davy and Kelly and Brando shift their eyes around and finally Brandon, in his capacity as Spokesperson and Great Leader, tries to placate poor upset little Valerie with “Hey, Val, we know you got hurt, but-”
“But” is right.
“Got hurt?” snaps Valerie. “You equate rape with ‘getting hurt’?”
And Self-Righteous Kelly says “They were really drunk last night” because in Hillsterland, county of Spelling, being drunk means that you don’t have to take responsibility for your actions. And we wonder why society is so screwed up? But it only gets worse when Kelly continues “Noah’s not a criminal” because in Hillsterland, county of Spelling, criminals are those greasy, satanic “Others” that make one or two appearances and try to lure or cause harm to a Hillster before being carted off to jail; a Hillster Beau couldn’t be a “criminal”! Perish the thought!
Val pushes to her feet, shouldering her pleather purse. “Why don’t you say what you really think, Kelly?”
And Kelly purses her prim little girly-girly lipsticked rosebud lips and says all condescendingly “Well, Val, you do have a ... ah ... *reputation*”
And Val stares at Kelly REAL HARD (TM xix, like, how many TM xixes can I squeeze into one episode, as if he hasn’t been traumatized enough by the freelancing for Ohndrea Zuckerman in Hillsterland plotline?) before she finally says, “Well, it’s obvious I’ve made the right decision about a number of things. Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to see if there’s anything I can do to help Kara. I know how used and alone and violated she must feel right now.” And Val starts to storm off, but stops. “I’m sure you understand from your work at the *Foundation*, Kelly.”
And Brandon “Jesus” Walsh is like “Val, we just want to help” but of course it sounds more like he’s chastising Val instead of offering support.
Val glances at the Hillsters. “Yeah. With friends like you....” And off she stomps.
Scene: a large corner office with “A. Harper Finch, Attorney at Law” on the door. Brinda Warsh, in a neat, navy maternity frock with her hair tied smoothly back by a flowery scarf, is sitting in one of those big ol’ shiny leather office chairs with rivets, facing an enormous expanse of desk. Behind the desk, a tall, grave lawyer is going through a folder.
“... and sent Mr. McKay a letter informing him of his legal financial obligations to the child-”
“But I don’t want to involve Dylan,” protests Brinda. “He’s already made it clear that he doesn’t want anything to do with me or this baby.”
“We still have to take certain legal steps,” says Mr. Finch. “If Mr. McKay fails to respond, then the next step is for you to file for sole custody of the child.”
Brinda nods, then takes a deep breath. “What about Brandon and Kelly, Mr. Finch? Can they take this baby from me?”
Mr. Finch adjusts his horn-rims, tapping the papers together on his desk before answering. “In order to do so, Ms. Walsh, they need to prove you to be an unfit parent... and themselves to be fit to raise the child.”
“So this is going to court?”
“Probably not. It’s more likely that there will be a more informal hearing. I’ll know for certain in a few days. Meanwhile, I need to compile a list of character witnesses who we may need to ask to testify on your behalf....”
With a resolute set to her mouth, Brinda reaches for the papers, studying them intently.
Scene: Kelly’s Angel of Mercy Foundation for Self-Gratifying Philanthropy. In the front door waltzed Our Heroine, decked out for a hard day’s non-work in her California Casual Best: flowing trousers in understated creamy beige, a white baby t-shirt, a black crocheted vest thingie, a pair of black faux-skatrrr grrl Sketchers sneakers and complementary black nail polish, her hair all spiky-gel’d and, thankfully, sans cute lil’ barrettes this time. Of course the phone is ringing, and of course Kelly doesn’t answer it, but rather, puts her purse down and looks around the empty office. Her dewy face wrinkles in perplexity as she calls “Hello...? Connie...? Dr. Martin....? Is anyone here?” And when she gets no response, she starts picking up folders off the front desk and making little “hmm”s and questions “why no one’s taken care of these yet.”
And the front door opens and Kara/Tara, looking less like a Kelly Taylor Clone in a pair of baggy jeans, sweatshirt and (of course) long black wig, peers hesitantly in.
Kelly looks up in surprise, doing her head-tilty-thing as she exclaims in condescending savior Kelly tone “Kara! What are you doing here?”
And Kara/Tara says “Hi, I, um, have an appointment this morning.”
And Kelly looks at the desk in confusion and says “I don’t see-”
But the timely arrival of an Unnamed Other Foundation Worker cuts Kelly off. “Kelly, you’re finally here, good. I’ve been waiting to talk with you.”
“Well sure,” says Savior Kelly.
“There are going to be some major changes here at the Foundation, starting today.”
“Changes?” parrots Kelly. “Why?”
“We have a new subsidizer, a new patron who has contributed a substantial amount of money to the Foundation-”
And Valerie comes in, clad in a weirdly mustard yellow spaghetti-strap tank top/matching sweater combo with a pair of brown hiphuggers, carrying her briefcase and smiling brightly. “It’s okay, I’ll tell her,” chirps Val. And she turns to Kelly, her face growing serious. “Hi Kel. Welcome to the Cry for Help Rape Crisis Center.”