There may be some content not for younger kids. However, there is nothing here they wouldn't say on the Total Drama series.
Fourteen of the cattiest aspiring fashion designers all agree to live under the same roof for an entire summer, all for the chance to win one million dollars and the title of "Most On-Point Fashionista".
What could possibly go wrong?
|Easy, Breezy, Beautiful Cast|
Chapter 01: A Passion for Fashion
Overly energetic music plays as tacky colors and stage lights flash on and off the screen. Flashes of color followed by guitar riffs followed by even more color, the entire display looks like it has been put together by somebody who isn’t quite all there. When the scene finally settles, the spotlight falls on two distinct individuals standing back-to-back. A man whose chocolate brown hair seems to defy the laws of physics, with sparkly eyes the color of the sky when the sky is inexplicably green. Beside him, a woman whose luscious mane of bubblegum pink hair made the boldest of statements, wearing a tight white dress that certainly did favors for her bust. As the music comes to a crescendo, the two mysterious figures’ eyes open in time with one another’s, before both snapping their heads directly towards the camera as the music reaches its peak. The two finally break apart and begin walking down a long, red carpet.
“Welcome, to the greatest fashion show of ALL time!” The man exclaims, throwing his arms into the air as he walks. “My name is Chip McCazmerick,”
“And I’m Flutina Weathers,” the woman interjects.
“And tonight, fourteen of the world’s boldest, most aspiring fashionistas will gather together for the most stylish,” Chip stops briefly to make a pose.
“Groovy,” Flutina shakes her hips.
“Scandalous,” Chip covers his mouth to feign shock.
“Romantic,” Flutina places her hand over her heart.
“And most importantly DRAMATIC reality TV competition ever.” As Chip and Flutina wrap up their introduction, they come upon a wooden sea port at the end of the red carpet. The two hosts very quickly relax and shake themselves off from their performance, turning their backs away from the port so they could see the rest of the island: fancy buildings jutting into the sky, a rainbow of lights flashing about, and a rather spacious forest area surrounding it all. Flutina couldn’t help but draw Chip closer, resting her head on his shoulder.
“Isn’t it just so beautiful?”
“Yeah,” Chip says, “it really is... I just hope we’re not making a huge mistake.”
Flutina frowns. “Don’t be like that. Everything will turn out just fine.”
“I’m starting to doubt that dragging them into this was ever a good idea. They’re too… unpredictable, and free. They’re bound to screw things--” Chip cuts himself off as Flutina clasps her hands on both of his shoulders, staring directly into his sky-green eyes.
“They are exactly what this island needs.”
Elsewhere out on the open sea, a single sailboat is making its way through rough waters. On board are the fourteen aforementioned fashionistas, all of them on the deck partying and getting to know one another while they make their way to their destination. Well, all but one, that is. Off sitting in the corner was the starkly introverted Vicky, writing away in her journal.
Ever since I departed on this grandiose, meaningless adventure, I have encountered nothing but stupidity. Everyone on this ship seems to see themselves as having some kind of place, like they are meant to be here, or something. There also seems to be an overabundance of chatter about our destination; if I saw any purpose in engaging with these people, I would not neglect to inform them that our destination is nothing. At the end of the day, whoever wins this competition, and whoever loses, both will meet the same soulless, lifeless void; none of their accomplishments ever mattering, their names fading into obscurity as the next generation of blind patrons emerge to ride on the deceptive carnival ride that is life.
Why no one else can see it besides me is a point of wonder, but not one I am interested in pursuing. Ignorance is bliss, and unless ignorance comes up and tries to start a conversation, I see no reason to crush it. Really-
“Hi!” Vicky’s expression quickly turns to one of shock and horror. She slowly looks up to see the rather plain, average-looking Ramsey standing awkwardly before her. After a few seconds of Vicky awkwardly blinking at him, Ramsey says, “Uh, mind if I sit down?”
Vicky sighs. “I doubt I’ll be able to stop you.” Ramsey’s face lights-up. He eagerly takes a seat on the floor next to Vicky.
“So, what’s your name?” Ramsey asks.
“Victoria,” Vicky replies coldly. Ramsey looks taken aback. “What?”
“Oh, nothing,” Ramsey laughs. “I just thought your name would be more… um… y’know…”
“Dark, depressing, and accepting of everything dark and miserable in the world?”
“Er… I guess?”
“They call me Vicky.” Vicky takes a moment to click her pen and close her journal, returning the items to her bag. She could tell that this moron wasn’t going to be going away anytime soon.
“Ah, Vicky!” Ramsey grins, apparently more satisfied with the name. “So, Vicky, tell me about yourself.”
“Who I am is irrelevant and is a point of least concern.” Vicky says, “If it were worth telling people about I would’ve written a book already.”
Ramsey laughs. “Aw, come on, everyone has a story.”
“Everyone has a story that they think is worth telling,” Vicky says. She quickly scans Ramsey up and down. “For the sake of my point, what’s yours?”
“I’m from Tennessee.” Ramsey declares proudly. Vicky blinks. “What, did you expect something more?” Vicky sighs, slowly banging her forehead against her knees.
Out on the deck, the scene is far more lively. A crowd was starting to form around two contestants in particular: Travis, a man who seems to have forgotten his shirt, and Pietro, a man who remembered his shirt but has quickly disposed of it after being challenged to a tournament of testosterone.
“Are you ready to see what a real MAN can do?” Pietro flexes, showing off his hulking biceps. Travis smirks before pumping his pectoral muscles, causing many of the female (and a few of the male) contestants to swoon. Pietro shoots Travis an envious glare before whipping out the big guns: that’s right, his legs. The spectators quickly start to ooh and ahh at Pietro’s godly leg muscles, before Travis counters with his cute and impeccably charming face. The crowd goes absolutely wild, before one bad apple storms in to spoil the fun.
“That is enough,” exclaims the short, frail, older woman with skin the color of dust. “I, Matilda Louisa-Ann Goldschmidt, will not stand for this pointless charade of lust and egocentric behavior!” The crowd quickly grows annoyed and disperses, leaving Matilda face-to-face with the shirtless Pietro. She stomps up to him, jabbing her index finger square in the middle of his exposed chest before proceeding to glare deep into his soul. “Put your shirt back on, you buffoon! Nobody here wants to see your sick, twisted, provocative body!”
Pietro scoffs and rolls his eyes. “Clearly,”
Matilda growls. “Clothes were meant to be worn, not to be cast off just so you can carry out teen girls’ and homosexuals’ dirty, sinful fantasies!” Pietro grits his teeth and steps forward, causing Matilda to stumble back, only to see Pietro towering over her now, his face mere inches above hers in a pure act of intimidation.
“Manliness knows no bounds,” he says in his scariest voice possible. Matilda casually flicks Pietro’s nose. Pietro’s eye twitches, before he faints from the crippling blow.
“Now,” Matilda says, “for the OTHER one…” she whirls around, only to find that Travis had cleverly vanished during her and Pietro’s confrontation. Matilda sniffs and points her nose up in the air. “Very well, then. My job here is done.” She walks off.
“So, you’re a lawyer?” Alfred asks Karen, who is presently combing through her stringy blonde hair with her fingers.
“Yeah, man,” she replies, “it’s a pretty chill gig.”
“So you didn’t mean to apply for this show either?”
Karen laughs. “Actually, I did. After I got through law school and all, I started to realize how constricted our society is. Nine to five jobs, suburbia, social classes and stuff. Then I started to think of what causes all of these limitations, and what I could do to fix it. And then it hit me: fashion. You feel me?” Alfred blinks, hopelessly confused. “The only way to live without restriction is to live as we were initially: free, out in the open, and unclothed.”
Alfred gives a nervous chuckle. “Right… So, I’m the only one here who isn’t into this whole fashion thing?”
“Nope,” Lila says, still merrily plucking at her ukulele. Alfred’s face lights up. “I’m just here to spread the love and advocate for world peace!” Alfred’s expression drops right away.
“Oh,” he sighs. “But then… Why are you on a fashion show? Aren’t there better ways?”
“Like getting a Tumblr?” Karen suggests.
“Muh,” Lila shrugs as she stops playing her ukulele. “I suppose. But life is just one big adventure! Why not try to have some fun while trying to make the world a better place? I mean sure, an internet blog would reach more people, but being there in person, it… it changes people,” Lila kneels down and places her hand over Alfred’s heart. “Right here.” Alfred blinks awkwardly. “Do you feel the love, Alfie?”
Alfred gulps. “Um, not… really?” Lila’s face reflects a look of absolute devastation.
“World peace is fleeting!” Lila cries, throwing her arms up in the air, resulting in her throwing her ukulele overboard. After a brief moment to realize what she had just done, Lila’s eyes widen. “Carolyn!” The zany girl dives into the ocean after her beloved instrument. Alfred and Karen both look over the boat's railing, finding no trace of her.
“Do you think she’ll be okay?” Alfred asks.
Karen shrugs. “Sometimes you just gotta go with the flow, man.” Alfred sighs.
The scene casually shifts to a different part of the boat’s railing, where a new group of contestants awaits. Spence is presently working his leather-laced charm on Gretchen, who is acting ever-so disinterested.
“So yeah, my ex-girlfriend’s dad owns like, four motorcycles. Haha, yeah, I know right? And even after we broke-up, he still lets me ride them. Cuz I really am that cool.” Spence gives a triumphant smile. He turns to Gretchen, who is boredly filing away at her nails. The queen finally looks up to meet Spence’s eyes and jumps, as if just now noticing his presence.
“Oh, sorry, what’d you say?” Spence sighs.
“I have a tight six-pack and a hammer in my p--,”
Gretchen bursts out laughing. “Wait, I’m sorry, but I’m really not. A hammer? Is that the best you can do? Jeez, why am I even giving you the time of day?”
Spence panics, before blurting out. “A, uh, a really BIG hammer!” Gretchen can no longer contain her laughter, knocking herself off her feet and proceeding to roll on the floor laughing. Spence’s face turns a deep shade of red. After a few awkward moments, Gretchen finally regains her composure, standing back up and fixing her specially-done hair.
“I’m sorry, but you are just not worth it.” Gretchen says, “Your fashion sense is nonexistent. Your charm is critically endangered. And you are a grade-A loser.” Spence gasps at Gretchen’s outrageously harsh comments.
“WELL,” Spence folds his arms matter-of-factly, “at least I’m not grade… grade… F! I doubt any of the other guys here even want you, and you turn me down for no reason?”
Gretchen assumes her sassiest pose possible and glares daggers at Spence. “Now you listen here, punk. I am not here to get into some moronic dude-bag’s pants. I am here for ME. When I am through with this show, people around the WORLD will know my name. And you?” Gretchen gets all up in Spence’s face. “You will be a NOBODY!” Spence stumbles back, scared for his life. Gretchen snaps her fingers in a z-formation and skips off. Spence grits his teeth.
“What a diva…” Spence taps his chin contemplatively. “Yeah, she totally wants me.” The bro stands firmly and begins to walk in the opposite direction, a triumphant grin across his face.
Somewhere else on the deck, High-Heel Heath is in action, wasting no time in putting on his acting face and giving everyone a show. In a dress that made all the female contestants feel wildly insecure about their own fashion senses, Heath struts around, a stern look on his face. Most of the others take measures to avoid him out of fear, except for one: the ever-so egocentric Chadd, always on the look out for something shocking.
“Dude,” Chadd laughs. “We have a drag queen on this show? That is awesome!”
“No drag,” Heath says in some unrecognizable accent as he overacts. “Just queen.” He flips his bright wig of hair over his shoulder like it’s nobody’s business.
“Ah, this is great!” Chadd exclaims, “Finally, somebody to challenge my expertise.”
“Alejandro,” Heath says, grabbing Chadd’s shoulders. Chadd is noticeably dumbfounded.
“Um, it’s Chadd…”
Heath pulls Chadd uncomfortably close to him. “Together, we can accomplish anything!”
“With two D’s, man… two…”
“Together, we… we can take over the world!” Heath throws one of his arms up towards the sky, giving Chadd enough room to escape. However, Chadd simply stays put, in awe of Heath.
“Actually, that... sounds pretty nice.”
Heath draws his hand back, tilting his head down in a pure bout of melodrama. “D’accord,” he says. Chadd’s face reflects a look of overwhelming confusion, and so he simply pats Heath on the back, looking to comfort him.
“There, there… pal…?” Chadd glances at the camera awkwardly.
The sun beats down on the contestants as the boat soars through the water. Southern belle Betsy and chatty Danni are at the boat’s most forward point, looking out into the horizon. Betsy fixes her black cowgirls hat and turns around, sinking to ship’s wood floor.
“I reckon we oughta be ther’ by now,” Betsy pouts.
“Oh my gosh there it is!” Danni squeals, jumping up and down excessively. Betsy springs to her feet and looks out to the sea again. Sure enough, there it is: the island they had all been hearing about. The one they longed for and the one they thought would never come. The island where many of their dreams would come true, but just as many more would perish.
“Docking in ten!” A message rings out over the ship’s intercom, apparently from the captain.
Betsy dances around in glee. “Ah can’t wait!”
“Ooohhh my gosh, I know right?” Danni asks. “Actually now that I think about it I’m not a very patient person so I guess saying that I can’t wait for something doesn’t hold that much weight but I mean this I really CAN’T wait for because oh my God we’re going to be on a TV show and we’re gonna be like backstabbing each other and voting each other out and it’ll be just like Total Drama well I mean the first like six seasons ‘cause you know we all know what happened to that show hahaha but yeah I can’t wait!”
Betsy looks at Danni, her left eye twitching in annoyance. She shakes her head and plasters a smile on her face. “Haha, I know exactly what yer mean!” She playfully slugs Danni in the arm.
Danni’s eyes well with tears. “H-how could you do that?” Betsy hesitated.
“I-I, it was a joke!”
Danni runs off crying. Or, she tries to. She gets about five feet away before running over her dress and face-planting squarely on the floor. Betsy grits her teeth in utter annoyance, but calms herself before returning to her sunny disposition, helping Danni up.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it.” Danni sniffles and gives Betsy a knowing smile, before embracing her in a hug that was all too powerful. Betsy rolls her eyes, but plays along.
Minutes later, the ship’s horn signals to all of the contestants the news they had been waiting for: they are about to dock! Everyone grabs their various bags of the luggage that had been carelessly thrown into one corner of the deck and gathers in the center. The boat finally docks and they all rush out.
“Way cool!” Lila exclaims.
“Why does such a small island have all those big buildings?” Travis points to the island’s inner city, still surrounded by dense woodland. As the boat drives away, the contestants all look around for some semblance of life on the island, only to be disappointed.
“Sooo… What now?” Ramsey asks.
“We all stand here and waste away,” Vicky replies.
“That does not seem like a good idea,” Pietro states.
Gretchen scoffs. “No, really, brainiac?”
“Looking for US?” The contestants, all turn and look down the dock, to see Chip and Flutina walking down the red carpet towards them. Flutina steps ahead of Chip in order to greet the contestants. “Welcome to your home for the next six weeks! I would have everyone go around and introduce themselves, but I’m sure you all got more than acquainted on your boat ride here.” A few of the contestants grumble in disgust. “Now, as you all know, this is, first and foremost, a fashion show. So before we get to any of the boring, old game mechanics, let’s give you a tour of our FABULOUS locale!”
Chip snaps his fingers, signaling everyone to follow him down the red carpet. “As you can probably tell, we spared no expense when putting this place together.” Chip says as he walks everyone through the forest. “However, these woods are still a little underdeveloped. If you ever find yourself wandering in here, don’t be surprised it you see, like, one or two rogue crew members. Don’t be alarmed, they’re just doin’ their jobs.”
“And we must point out,” Flutina interrupts, “that trying to converse with these crew members will not end well for you. It could very well lead to your expulsion from the competition, or worse.” A few of the contestants exchange odd looks with one another.
The group makes their way into the more urban part of the island. The streets are lined with tiny little shops, and a couple civilians walking to and fro.
“Whoa, people live here?” Alfred asks.
Chip bursts out laughing. “Ha! No, not at all. Any and all civilians you see here are merely paid actors. It’s to help you guys feel more at home, and to help us…” Chip pauses to choose his words carefully, “...keep a watchful eye.”
Continuing his introduction, Chip says, “Most of your challenges will be outdoors, for better lighting and all. But for down time where you all don’t feel like being roasted by the tropical sunlight, you’ll be staying… there!” Chip points to the tallest building in the center of the island. “The Hotel de Couture! Located centrally on the island, it’ll give you a wide range of access to all of the glamorous island features and the like. Also, for added dramatic purposes, you’ll all be limited to just a few rooms. Two for the guys, two for the gals, based on what team you're on. It wouldn’t be very dramatic if we had everyone on their own floor, now, would it?”
“No, it wouldn’t,” Flutina chimes in.
The two hosts both turn to face the contestants once they reach the Hotel de Couture. “And this, is the town square. This is where we will meet for all of our challenges, votes, eliminations, all that good stuff.”
“I must implore you to get on with it,” Matilda folds her arms crankily.
“Before we cut you loose,” Flutina says, “we will be dividing you into teams!”
“Isn’t this, like, an individual thing?” Karen asks.
“Well, that would just be no fun, now, would it?” Flutina shakes her head matter-of-factly. “Anyway. When I call you name, please step forward. Alfred, Vicky, Pietro…”
Pietro excitedly grabs Alfred and bounds forward, while Vicky saunters up disinterestedly.
“...Gretchen, Karen, Heath, and… Matilda!”
Pietro’s face reflects absolute horror at Matilda’s name being called. Karen gladly walks up, standing next to Alfred. Heath and Gretchen both attempt to strut up, before locking eyes with one another in total disgust. When the team is all together, Flutina tosses them a golden flag.
“You guys will be known as the Killer Catwalks!”
“Hey, that’s pretty cool,” Alfred says.
“Lame,” Gretchen folds her arms.
Flutina looks at the remaining contestants, a big smile across her face. “That means that the rest of you, Ramsey, Spence, Danni…”
Ramsey smiles awkwardly, Danni smiles obnoxiously, and Spence smiles smugly.
“...Lila, Chadd, Travis, and Betsy will all be on the other team!”
Lila jumps with excitement while the others merely nod, not really caring what team they are on.
Flutina tosses the second group a red flag and exclaims, “You will henceforth be known as the Rampaging Runways!” Many of the team members cheer, believing their name to be way better than the other team’s. A few members of the Killer Catwalks frown in disappointment.
“Alright, now that that’s settled,” Chip says, “go crazy!” The contestants all hurriedly charge for the doors of the Hotel de Couture, hoping to possibly get better rooms than others or not have to room with people they already dislike. As the final contestant enters the hotel, Flutina and Chip both turn to the camera, bearing their pearly-white smiles for the world to see.
“That’s it for now! Tune in next time for a new, dramatic episode of Easy,” Flutina strikes yet another pose.
“Breezy,” Chip echoes Flutina with a similar pose.
“BEAUTIFUL!” The hosts sing in unison.
The scene fades to black as the two hosts exchange brief, worried looks.
Chapter 02: The Fabrics of Failure
As the contestants rush into the Hotel de Couture carrying their luggage, they all stop to take in the atmosphere of the worst lobby ever. Cobwebs and dust seem to hold dominion over every piece of furniture, while the walls are covered in sickly green paint. There is but one shag carpet, in the center of the lobby, barely covering any of the broken tile floor. Opposite the entrance is a small window for the hotel’s receptionist, who is predictably absent.
“‘Spared no expense’ my tush!” Matilda shouts as the group disperses into the lobby, searching for any sort of indication as what they are supposed to do. While everyone wastes their time scrutinizing the walls, floor, and furniture, Vicky does the sensible thing and opens a single door, adjacent to the hotel’s entrance. Once the door squeaks open enough to reveal what lies behind, each and every contestant stops dead their in their tracks, being faced with twenty-first century humanity’s greatest arch nemesis:
Gretchen looks absolutely disgusted. “Um, how about no?”
“Want a ride?” Travis asks, nudging Gretchen with his elbow. The queen bee glances to Travis, completely unfazed by his darling face, smooth, creamy complexion, and chiseled physique. Readying herself to shoot the model down, Gretchen catches herself, remembering the daunting task before her. She quickly fluffs her hair and puts on her most seductive expression.
“Sure, baby,” she says, eagerly hopping onto Travis’s back, proceeding to be whisked away by the objectively hottest member of the cast. Spence is fuming.
“Oh, hecks no!” Spence yells, darting up the staircase after them. “I saw her first!” The rest of the contestants begin to come together in order to defeat the obstacle.
“Oh, God,” Alfred says, “this will take forever!”
“No,” says a deep voice as a hand grabs Alfred’s head. Alfred is promptly horrified.
As the rest of the contestants make their way up the stairs, the only sound to be heard is Alfred’s screams of terror as Pietro rockets through the staircase at blazing speed. After far too many flights and passing almost everyone who started before them, Pietro busts through an exquisite-looking door, onto the single fanciest floor of the hotel.
With two gargantuan windows capping the hall on either side, a combination of sunlight and fancy chandeliers lights up the hall. Orange carpeting is sprawled across the floor, with many different portraits and paintings, mostly of Chip and Flutina, adorning the golden walls. Taken in all at once, the hall assumes a very royal appearance.
Alfred can only rock back and forth in the fetal position, his eyes the size of softballs, as the rest of the contestants finish their climbs and begin to explore.
“Alfie!” Lila runs to Alfred’s aid. “Are you okay?”
Pietro gives a hearty laugh. “Why, of course he is!”
“No,” the chef boy replies meekly.
Lila and Pietro exchange awkward glances.
Many of the contestants have already ventured further down the hall, finding four doors, two on either side of the hall. On one side, the doors bear either a red or gold version of the Venus symbol, representing the women. The same is true on the other side, but with the Mars symbol, for the men. Spence and Travis meet one another at the red men’s door, with Spence shooting a resentful glare at the much more attractive man.
“Can I... help you?” Travis asks, obviously very confused.
Spence shoves his sunglasses up on his face and stares down Travis. Well, technically he is staring up, since Travis has at least six to seven inches on him. But that’s not important. “Yeah,” Spence says, “Stay out of my way, or… or… or else!” Spence attempts to storm through the door, only to accidentally slam himself into it instead. After an awkward exchange of looks, Spence finally shoves the door open and stomps inside. Just as this happens, Chadd strolls up.
“Jeez. Who peed in that guy’s cocoa puffs?” Chadd asks.
Travis shrugs. “Maybe he forgot to spend fifteen minutes to save fifteen percent or more on car insurance.” Chadd blinks.
“Girl, what are you on about?”
“...I have no idea.”
Inside each room is a fairly basic set-up: two bunk beds, a small dresser, and an average-size window allowing for a spectacular view of the island. Most people have now taken to entering their rooms and unpacking. High-Heel Heath, no longer dressed-up in drag, nervously shuffles into his room, where Alfred and Pietro have already made themselves at home. “Wait, a minute,” Pietro says, looking at Heath from head to toe. “Were you on the boat ride here?”
“Uh, yeah,” Heath says, giving a sheepish smile. “I was…”
Heath visibly cringes. “Er, yeah...”
“Oh,” Pietro says, a stiff air between the two. “Well, uh... welcome to the team!” He awkwardly offers Heath a handshake.
Heath half-heartedly accepts. “Thank--” A loud squeal slices through the air, piercing everyone’s eardrums within a five-mile radius. “What the?”
The scene promptly cuts to Danni giddily dancing around as she realizes she will be sharing a room with Betsy. The cowgirl’s expression is nothing if not murderous. “Oh my gosh you’re the girl from the boat! I can’t believe we’re going to be rooming together for the entire season like oh my God can you believe it I can’t believe like I’ve never even had a roommate before and now what a coincidence my first roommate is also my bestest friend in the whole wide world I can’t wait to start doing each other’s hair and makeup and talking about all of the boys and just ah I’m like freaking out right now hey by the way my name’s Danni what was yours again?”
Betsy’s eye twitches uncontrollably. “Betsy. Betsy Bopper.”
Danni immediately lights up. “Oh my God, alliteration is my just fave!”
“What in tarnation is alliteration?” Betsy asks, her accent noticeably returning. Danni begins to open her mouth, before Betsy realizes what a grave mistake she has made and smacks her hand over Danni’s mouth. “Ne’ermind. Don’t answer that. We’ve got things to do.”
“Like what?” Danni asks, her voice muffled by Betsy’s hand.
Betsy grits her teeth. “Like finding you a new best friend…”
Out in the hallway, Ramsey is sauntering around. Being a scrawny kid with low expectations for himself, he had neglected to pack any luggage. So now, Ramsey is boredly studying the paintings on the wall, particularly one of Chip, Flutina, and a tiny little chihuahua: painted as if they were a true-blue family. As he walks, Ramsey notices another door in the hall: a slick, silver door.
“...You have got to be kidding me!” Ramsey says, to himself, dashing over towards the door. “This place has an elevator?” He presses the elevator’s button, causing the doors to slide open. Ramsey steps in, and the doors slide shut once again.
Ramsey (Confessional): *pressing various buttons* What the heck? This thing doesn’t even work! What sick, twisted human being would build a fake elevator? Like seriously, what is the point of-- *abruptly notices camera* ...Oh…
The elevator slides back open and Ramsey steps out, only to meet an overjoyed Lila on the other side. “Found the confessional,” Ramsey says.
“Oh, that’s all it is?” Lila frowns, disappointment evident across her face. “What a bum--” a morbid, blood-curdling shriek shakes the entire building.
“Sweet Tennessee twinks getting creamed on a Sunday!” Ramsey shouts, jumping into Lila’s arms as if she were his own mother. “What was that?!”
Lila contemplates for a moment. “Maybe Matilda finally met Karen!” She laughs.
“The nudist?” Ramsey asks. Lila nods. “Oh, God,”
A sharp crackling sound can be heard as Chip’s voice comes over the hotel’s PA system. “From all this yelling, I can assume that you’ve all become more than comfortable in your newfound accommodations. But don’t get too comfortable, fashion felines! Your first challenge is A-S-A-Now! Meet me in the town square, and bring your A-game! The cruel world of reality TV casting has come back to haunt you. McCaz, out!” The PA system promptly switches off.
With not a cloud in the sky, sunlight rains down over the island, giving it a certain liveliness as the contestants slowly and sporadically filter out of the Hotel de Couture, eventually gathering into their teams in the town square, standing before Chip and Flutina.
“Aw, look at all of your darling faces!” Flutina sings. “Just as cute as when you first got here.”
“That’s because we just got here,” Vicky retorts.
Flutina frowns. “Let’s not cloud the issue with facts here, Vicky. Right, Chip?”
“That’s right!” Chip says, stepping forward into a triumphant pose and flashing his pearly whites to the camera. The contestants all roll their eyes and groan collectively. Chip straightens up and smirks at the cast. “Now, as I am sure you all remember, during the casting process we had each of your designate a certain fabric was your favorite. Correct?” The contestants nod. “Well, today’s challenge will be playing off of that. We have selected one person from each team’s designated fabric; that person’s team will be responsible for designing a killer outfit using only that fabric!”
Alfred and Lila’s expressions both immediately drop. Chip lets out a slightly malignant laugh.
“Oh, Chip,” Flutina skips up. “It seems as we have a few psychics in our midst!”
“That it does, Flutina!” Chip laughs. “Alfred, Lila, care to share with your teammates the oh-so witty responses you put down on YOUR profiles?” The two sweat nervously.
After an awkward moment of silence and tension, Lila speaks up. “Well, um, I put… grass…” The Rampaging Runways are not at all happy, as one can imagine. Lila draws back into herself, hanging her head in shame. “I’m sorry, guys…”
“Oh, you’ll be sorry,” Betsy mutters under her breath.
“Alfred, how about you?” Chip asks.
Alfred’s face is a bright red. The chef boy nervously tugs at his collar. “Um… pasta noodles…” The Killer Catwalks let out a loud gasp, while the Rampaging Runways, sans Lila, let out a sigh of relief upon the realization that they weren’t alone in their struggle.
Flutina suddenly tosses each team a map. “These are directions to your team’s work stations. Your fabrics and all constructions materials can be found there. You have exactly two hours to create the most groovy,”
“Stylish,” Chip cuts in.
“And sexy outfits possible!”
“At the end of the two hours, you will showcase your outfits to Flutina and I. Which means, you have to pick a model. Choose wisely; I suspect that presentation will be a huge tiebreaker in this challenge. Is everyone ready?” Everyone nods. “Oh, and one more thing: the losing team will be voting two of their own into tonight’s Fashion Face-Off, a challenge that will determine every elimination in this game.”
“Now on your marks… get set… and… Style!” The two hosts sing in harmony as the teams sprint off in separate directions.
The Killer Catwalks are the first to reach their work station. Aside from the twelve-foot tall, towering mountain of pasta noodle boxes, there are many construction supplies. “Well,” Heath says, “they don’t call it a challenge for nothing, eh?”
Vicky blinks. “Yep, we’re doomed.” Alfred gulps.
“It took you this long to figure that out?” Gretchen rolls her eyes, nonchalantly filing her nails.
Karen shakes her head. “Dudes, we’re not out of this yet. We just gotta think outside the box!”
“Karen is right!” Pietro declares confidently. “We should open the boxes first!” Pietro proceeds to snatch a box of noodles from the middle of the towering mountain. Said mountain begins to rumble rather violently, before promptly collapsing, burying the entire team in boxes upon boxes of pasta noodles.
Vicky is able to dig herself out of her noodle-y grave. “Well, if that wasn’t the epitome of brilliance…” The rest of the team slowly unearths themselves as well.
“Brainless fool!” Matilda shouts, hurling a box of noodles straight at Pietro’s head. He quickly ducks. “How did I get stuck on a team with such degenerates? Not as if it matters; these noodles are frailer than my old lady bones! We’re as good as five-day-old oatmeal!”
Pietro gives Matilda a stern look. “With that attitude, we might as well be!” Matilda growls and advances toward Pietro, only to be intercepted by Heath.
“Whoa, guys, calm!” Heath says, “It is way too early to be reaching your boiling point with each other.” All of a sudden, Alfred’s face lights up like he’s a kid in a candy shop.
“That’s it!” Alfred jumps up in joy. “Of course! How could I be so stupid?” He turns to his team, a wide smile across his face. His teammates all look slightly disturbed.
“Hey, Alf,” Pietro asks, “you okay?”
“No,” Karen answers, a proud smile forming on her face. “No he’s not.”
The scene cuts over to the Rampaging Runways, just now arriving at their station, where a giant mound of grass is waiting for them. Seeing the dejected looks on her team’s faces, Lila jumps to the front of the pack, taking charge.
“C’mon guys, it’s not so bad!” Lila says, “People have done this before! If we just work together, I bet we can get this done with time to spare!”
“Who said you got to be the leader?” Spence asks, adjusting his leather jacket and glaring at Lila over the brim of his sunglasses. He points an accusatory finger. “You got us into this mess!”
“Well, technically this could have happened to any one of us…” Lila says.
“Excuses my swooshes!” Spence says, stepping forward, mere inches between him and Lila. Lila and the rest of the team exchange glances in a futile effort to discern what he had just said. “I’m not taking orders from someone who’s already jeopardized our team on day one! I think someone else should lead; someone smart, someone--”
“Spence, do you want to be the leader?” Lila asks.
Spence is speechless for a brief second as he blinks at Lila. “...Yes,” he says, an uncharacteristically quiet tone to his voice. Lila can’t help but grin.
“All yours, bud!” She playfully slaps the bewildered Spence on the shoulder, before merrily joining the rest of the team. “At your service!”
“Are we allowed to object?” Travis whispers.
After a moment, Spence gives a triumphant smirk. “No,” he says, “now get to work!”
“We haven’t even decided what to do, yet,” Ramsey points out. Spence squints at him, quite menacingly.
“Don’t talk back to me.” Ramsey rolls his eyes.
The Killer Catwalks have taken it upon themselves to relocate their operation to an abandoned noodle shop, not too far from the town square. Alfred and Vicky are in the shop’s kitchen, cooking an obscene amount of noodles, while the rest of the team is out front weaving and molding the boiled noodles together, apparently hoping for a miracle.
“It took a totally meaningless series of events for us to realize that boiling the noodles was our best option?” Vicky asks no one in particular as she disinterestedly stirs a pot full of noodles. She slowly turns to Alfred, who is meticulously slaving over an even larger pot. After a moment of pure, silent judgement, Vicky turns back to her own pot.
All of a sudden, Gretchen kicks her way through the kitchen doors, carrying a gigantic pot of noodles with her. She drops the pot down on a nearby countertop before giving Alfred a piercing look. Alfred looks justifiably petrified.
“For the love of all that is chic, chef boy, get your head in the game!” Gretchen yells, “How many times do I have to tell you, we don’t want edible. We want usable. Strong! Rubber! Unbreakable!” The imposing girl slams her fist on the countertop. “Like the thing your parents forgot to--”
“Hey!” Alfred interrupts. “That’s a bit harsh…”
Gretchen makes a rather weak attempt to tame herself. “Answer the question! How many times do I have to say it. Noodles like this do nothing but waste everyone’s time! They’re useless.”
Alfred frowns. “They’re al dente.”
Gretchen slams her fist once again. “I’m about to al dente your face!” Alfred, eyes wide with terror, takes a few steps back from the counter. “Either pull your weight or pack your bags, because if we lose this challenge, you’re as good as gone!” With that, Gretchen storms back out of the kitchen.
Alfred groans, rhythmically banging his head on the counter. “She’s not wrong, you know,” Vicky says. Alfred bangs his head even louder.
The sun beats down over the island as the teams toil away, rushing to finish their outfits as time slowly ticks by. At the Rampaging Runways’ station, everyone is at work gluing and weaving bundles upon bundles of grass together. Everyone, that is, except Spence. He has taken to merely standing there and criticizing everyone’s work.
“Ramsey, you weave like an old lady in a nursery home. Who can’t weave!”
“For someone who likes grass so much, Lila, you sure haven’t touched much of it!”
“Betsy, do people down South not--”
“I reckon I’ll go for a walk!” Betsy interjects, jumping to her feet.
Spence’s jaw drops. “What do you think you’re doing?”
Betsy smirks and cracks her knuckles. “What’s that ther’, Spence? You wanna come with? Alrighty, then!” She grabs Spence’s jacket and effortlessly drags him off-screen, in spite of the leather lover’s violent, swear-ridden protests. Once Spence is out of earshot, the remaining members of the team let out a collective sigh of relief.
“My weaving is fabulous,” Ramsey grumbles. Chadd pats him on the back for moral support.
“Do you guys have any idea what that guy’s problem is?” Travis asks. “Ever since we got here he’s been trying to establish himself as the top dog, or something.”
“I think it’s just his personality.” Chadd says, “As if the tacky leather jacket isn’t enough of an indication that he’s stuck on himself…”
Lila laughs. “Actually, I think he may just have a crush on the bossy girl on the other team.”
Travis’s eyes practically bulge out of his head. “What? Gretchen?”
“That might be her name…” Lila blushes. “Sorry, I haven’t quite gotten everyone’s names down yet.”
Travis is notably perturbed. “That’s it then, we can’t have him goin’ all googly-eyed for the other team. We don’t know how far he’s willing to go for girls.” Travis’s audience all shoot him odd expressions concerning where he intends to take this conversation. “If we lose this challenge, we have to send him to the face-off.” He puts his hand in the middle of the group. “All in favor?”
Without much hesitation, Ramsey and Chadd throw their hands on top of Travis’s. Danni, who’s been day-dreaming this entire time, shrugs and throws her hand in as well. They all look at Lila, whose internal conflict is quite evident.
Lila (Confessional): Alliances aren’t really my thing. It’d be pretty weird if I tried spreading my message while simultaneously lying to people and betraying them. But I’m pretty sure this is just a one-time deal, right? I mean, Spence is kind of hostile, and I could see him being pretty difficult to live with down the road… I just really hope the competition doesn’t boil down to who's the best at deceiving others. That would be pretty depressing.
As Lila gives in and places her hand on top of the others’, a fairly loud screeching sound startles the team apart. Chip’s voice can be heard all around, presumably on some hidden speaker system. “Listen up, everyone! You’ve got exactly ten minutes left! Make your finishing touches, designate a model, and get ready to strut!”
“Your!” Flutina can be heard faintly in the background.
“Stuff!” The speaker cuts out. An awkward moment of silence overtakes the team.
Cut to a montage, complete with elevator music, of both teams frantically finishing their outfits, arguing about which contestants would make better models, and fumbling their way into town square. Eventually, the Rampaging Runways and Killer Catwalks are all gathered in front of Chip and Flutina, many of them gasping for air.
Chip starts things off. “Well, I’m sure it has been a dramatic two hours for both teams. But now, it’s time to determine the winner. Runways, who have you chosen to model your design?” Ramsey steps forward. “Great! And how about the Catwalks?” Heath emerges from the crowd, grinning widely. The Runways begin to protest, only to be immediately shut down.
“Ah, ah, ah!” Flutina says, “All is fair in love and war!”
“And fashion!” Chip flashes his smile at the camera.
Flutina claps her hands together. “Ramsey, Heath, go ahead and prepare yourselves.” The two models nod and walk off. “The rest of you, get ready to be the grooviest audience possible! Let’s go, Chip!” Flutina and Chip clap their hands together in perfect sync.
In a flash, the town square has been transformed. In the middle is a long runway, with a kiosk at the very end, where Chip and Flutina are seated. On one side of the runway is a set of bleachers, where the non-participants sit. As the contestants make their way onto the bleachers, insignificant chatter is made, most of it regarding Spence’s array of new bandages, courtesy of Betsy.
“So,” Karen says as she sits down next to Gretchen. “You must be, like, pretty stoked to see this.”
Gretchen shrugs. “Not really, no. I couldn’t give less a hoot about fashion. Fame and fortune are the only look for me, honey,” Karen’s eye widen in shock.
“Really?” She says, “Interesting…”
“Alright!” Chip booms over a microphone. “Time to get this show on the road! Will our first model please step out?”
On that cue, Ramsey steps out onto the runway, most of his frighteningly pale body on display for the whole world to see. The only thing he has on, in fact, is a pair of pants: made of grass. Most of Ramsey’s team cheers for his and he awkwardly makes his way down the runway, occasionally swaying his hips in an attempt to show his pants off.
“Wow!” Chip exclaims. “Just look at that body! It’s like his parents were two Clorox bottles!”
Flutina laughs. “Your teeth would be jealous!”
“That they are! But let’s not waste any time; let’s see our next model, Heath!”
Ramsey and the rest of the his team gasp as Heath makes his way to the stage, clad in nothing but a toga made of pasta noodles. As he takes his first step onto the runway, he stops. “No,” he says in yet another odd accent, running his hands through his unruly mess of blond hair. “Not Heath…” He takes another step. “Francesca Noodlebottom.” She begins to strut.
The Killer Catwalks cheer from the bleachers as Francesca begins to absolutely murder Ramsey at strutting. It gets to a point where Ramsey decides to give up and just dart to the end of the runway, fearing what would become of him should Francesca cross him.
“Francesca Noodlebottom, ladies and gentlemen!” Flutina exclaims as the queen finishes her strut, striking a fierce, over-the-top pose. With this pose, however, disaster strikes. Francesca’s toga completely falls apart, sliding off her body into a pile of gross, sweaty noodles at her feet. The crowd gasps, Ramsey shields his eyes, and Heath covers himself in embarrassment.
Chip flinches. “Ooh… What an unfortunate series of events…”
“Aw,” Flutina pouts.
“Teams were to be graded on both design and presentation,” Chip explains. “And seeing as the Catwalks’ design is now a steaming pile of disgusting… I guess that means that the Rampaging Runways win!” The Runways all burst into celebration, while the Catwalks are dumbfounded. Many teammates give Alfred furious and/or disappointed looks.
“Al dente!” Gretchen growls, stomping off the bleachers.
Alfred hangs his head in shame as his teammates exit off the bleachers. Karen, however, decides to join him. “Cheer up, Alf,” she says, “at least you tried, right?”
Alfred shrugs. “I guess. But I’m still going home…”
“Dude, actually,” Karen says, “I think I have an idea…” Alfred gives Karen a puzzled look.
Time elapses and soon enough, it is nighttime on the island. The town square is back to normal, and the Rampaging Runways have retired to the Hotel de Couture. The Killer Catwalks stand in front of Chip and Flutina, both of whom are holding an envelope and displaying gleeful smiles. “Welcome to the very first Fashion Face-Off of the season!” Chip exclaims. “As retribution for losing today’s challenge, however narrowly, you have been tasked with voting two of your own into battle. Flutina and I will each reveal the name of one of tonight’s participants.”
“Whoever wins stays alive,” Flutina continues, “while the loser will be forced to return home to their mundane, far less fashionable lives.” Chip and Flutina both shed a tear over this fact. The Killer Catwalks all roll their eyes at the hosts’ melodrama.
“And now,” Chip says, “it is time to name our participants!” He rips his envelope open, pulling out a single card. “Our first participant…” Chip flips the card towards the Catwalks. “Alfred!” The chef boy sighs, stepping forward. Without missing a beat, Flutina seamlessly tears her envelope open.
“Joining him will be…” she flips the card. “Gretchen!” Most of the team is visibly shocked.
“Wh-...What?” Gretchen asks, her eye twitching uncontrollably. Karen gives a soft smile. “This can’t be right! Why would anyone vote for me? I am the strongest person on this team!”
Chip smirks. “I’m glad you said that. Because right now it’s time for you to put up, or shut up!” Gretchen scowls as Chip and Flutina claps their hands in some weird pattern, triggering a poof of smoke not too far behind them. When the smoke clears, a pile of designer dresses has appeared. The contestants are too tired to really be shocked.
“This face-off will take all of, oh, five minutes.” Flutina says, “On our go, Alfred and Gretchen will race to the pile of dresses and putting on as many dresses as possible.”
“At the end of five minutes, whoever has more dresses on wins the face-off and the right to stay on the island. Simple enough?” Alfred nods, while Gretchen just grumbles to herself about not losing her shot at fame and glamour to a useless runt. “Alright. On your marks, get set…”
Flutina joins Chip in singing, “Go!”
Thanks to Alfred’s comically short legs, Gretchen makes it to the pile first. She picks up a yellow dress. “Ha, not in a million years!” She casts the dress aside. As Gretchen spends her time being picky, Alfred catches up to her. Gretchen glares at Alfred, and the two begin to throw on dresses of every color, size, and fabric. The rest of the team has advanced in order to watch the match closer. For much of the competition, the two look to be dead-even.
Chip glances at his wrist, where there is no watch to be found. “About three minutes have passed by now, wouldn’t you say, Flutina?”
“Of course!” Flutina agrees.
As time quickly runs out, it becomes harder for the either of the participants to move with so much weight surrounding them. In a bout of desperation, or just an attempt at humiliation, Gretchen takes to snatching dresses right from Alfred’s grasp. Just as the two are playing tug-of-war with a gaudy pink-and-green dress, a buzzer sounds, signaling the end of the face-off.
Gretchen releases the dress, sending Alfred flying back. “Twerp,” she mutters.
“Time to get a count,”Chips says. He produces a walkie-talkie and speaks into it. “This is Chip McCaz-- please deploy the A-team.”
All of a sudden, a group of highly trained interns pounces on the scene, grabbing both both Gretchen and Alfred and quickly removing each and every dress from their bodies, tossing the two aside like rag dolls once done. The grunt back and forth as they count up Alfred and Gretchen’s totals. As they finish, they report their findings to Chip and vanish from the scene. Chip quickly fills in Flutina, who gasps at the results and nods.
“Well, we have our verdict!” Flutina announces. “By a narrow count of twenty eight to twenty-five dresses, the first person eliminated from the competition is…
...Gretchen!” Every single member of the team is completely dumbfounded.
“What?!” Gretchen screeches. “No! This was not what was supposed to happen!”
Karen runs up to embrace Alfred. “Dude, you did it!” Gretchen grits her teeth.
Before any sort of confrontation between the newly-dethroned queen and the nudist can occur, Chip intervenes. “Gretchen, it’s time for you to go.”
Gretchen folds her arms and scoffs. “Fine. Whatever. I’ll just become a social media queen. Who cares about these dumb fashion shows anyway?!” She storms off down the path which the contestants took when they first arrived, towards the island’s dock. Pietro and Heath join Karen congratulating Alfred on his victory, while Matilda simply gives an old-lady grunt and Vicky shrugs.
“Well,” Flutina says, joining Chip in front of the camera. “That’s a wrap on our first ever elimination! And quite a shock, wouldn’t you agree, Chip?”
Chip shrugs. “Something tells me the viewers expected it.” Flutina frowns. Chip bursts into laughter. “Ha! Please! Nobody saw that one coming!” The hosts laugh together. “Well,” Chip says, “that’s all for this episode. Tune in next time for the dramatic continuation of... Easy!”
“Breezy!” Flutina winks.
“BEAUTIFUL!” The scene fades to black.
Chapter 03: One Ring to Rule Them All
It’s nighttime on the island, just a few days after Gretchen’s demise, and most of the remaining contestants seem to have congregated in the hotel lobby. Spence sits on an uncomfortable sofa, a stern expression on his face, rage boiling just under the surface. Glaring over his sunglasses, Karen seems to be the object of his anger. Rather reluctantly, Travis takes a seat beside Spence, having nothing better to do.
“I think I already know, but, what are you so angry about?”
Spence’s eye noticeably twitches. “They voted off the hottest chick in this joint!” Travis smacks his hand against his forehead.
“You’re saying that as if you had any shot with her, man,”
“Are you implementing that I didn’t?” Spence redirects his glare towards the male model.
Travis shakes his head in absolute pity. “No, I’m implying that you didn’t. And really, who cares in the end? There are plenty of girls here, and I’m--” Travis takes a moment to swallow every last drop of his pride. “--sure at least one of them lives up to your standards.”
Spence scoffs. “You needa get ch’o eyes checked, bro. Like who?”
Travis contemplates for a moment. As the wheels turn and turn in his head, an evil, hellish grin emerges across his face. A look so sadistic, so diabolical, that the Devil himself might have been scared. After cultivating his idea, Travis lets out a lighthearted laugh. “Nah, you could never win that one over…” Spence’s interest is immediately piqued at the notion that he couldn’t do something.
“Excuse me? Who?”
Travis laughs. “Danni.”
Spence blinks. “Danni? That one girl? Bro, she’s cannon fodder incarnate! And I don’t date pre-mergers.” Travis smirks. At this moment, Travis realizes that he’s already won.
“I guess you’re just too chicken.” Spence immediately cracks, jumping to his feet, rolling up his sleeves, and shoving his sunglasses up on his face.
“Nobody calls me chicken!” He marches off to find Danni. Travis leans back on the sofa to relax.
“Very dark and cold-blooded,” Travis is startled by a voice behind the sofa, which is quickly confirmed to belong to none other than Vicky.
“Wh… What are you doing behind the couch?” Travis asks, slightly perturbed.
“Sleeping,” Vicky says. A brief moment of silence ensues. “I share a room with a frumpy old hag and a nudist.”
On the main floor with the contestants’ rooms, most of the players have retired for the night. That is, with the exception of Heath and Chadd, who are walking up and down the hall, enjoying one another's company.
Heath (Confessional): Coming onto this show, I was really nervous about how everyone would react to me. So far, though, the reaction has been pretty favorable; no one’s really had a problem with who I am yet. Chadd and I have really hit it off, too; out of all the people on this island, I’d say he’s the one I trust the most, and I’d love to be here with him the entire time!
Chadd (Confessional): *Laughs* Let me tell you, I was expecting to be the nuttiest box of bolts on this show! But then I get here and there’s Heath, all glammed up and ready for war. I love it! Girl, I can’t tell you how glad I am that we’ve got a drag queen here. Around everyone else, it’s like walking on eggshells, but with Heath? Baby, I can work it.
“So, what happened after that?” Heath asks.
Chadd snickers. “He comes up to the guy and says, ‘If it were me, I woulda ordered the lobstah!’” Chadd and Heath howl with laughter, as is usually the case with crustacean-based humor.
“Ah, classic,” Heath wipes a tear from his eye.
“We should probably get to bed,” Chadd suggests once he has regained his composure. “We prob’ly got a challenge tomorrow, after all.”
“Yeah,” Heath nods. “It really sucks that we’re not on the same team, though. I feel like I’d be a lot more excited if one of us winning didn’t mean the other one losing.”
Chadd smiles. “I don’t think either of us have anything to worry about, girl. You killed the last challenge, and my team’s too preoccupied with pants…” Chadd gives a cheeky smirk. “...If you know what I mean.”
Chadd sighs. “Yeah, I know. But we’re in this together; anyone trying to serve you up a bowl of cornflakes is gonna get slammed with a bowl of fruity pebbles, you know what I’m saying?”
“Point being,” Chadd says, “Neither of us are alone.” Heath smiles and gives an understanding nod. The two bid farewell and retire to their respective rooms. The camera pans out to show the entirety of the Hotel de Couture, the night’s full moon shining down over it. Thanks to the magic of timelapse editing, the moon quickly falls out of view, being replaced by the bright, shining sun the very next morning.
A blow horn promptly blares over the hotel’s PA, providing many of the contestants with vintage rude awakenings. “Gooooood morning!” Chip exclaims over the PA. “It’s time for your next challenge! Meet us in the town square immediately!”
“And remember,” Flutina chimes in merrily behind Chip, “ring your A-game!” The hosts begin to giggle uncontrollably, triggering many puzzled glances among the contestants before the PA finally cuts out. The contestants are left in various states of irritation and sleeplessness.
“Those rotten hosts,” Matilda grumbles as she tightens her girdle around her waist. “Whatever happened to basic human decency?”
“No clue,” Karen yawns, crawling out of bed with not so much as a thread of fabric covering her body. Matilda is filled with a sudden, murderous rage.
“Flaky oatmeal residue left after three wash cycles…” she says gravely through gritted teeth.
Karen blinks. “Say what?”
“Scum of the Earth!” Matilda sticks her nose up into the air and pivoting on her heel, putting Karen’s bare figure out of sight as she continues to dress herself. “Such foolish insolence, dumb enough to think you have the right to tear down the very pillars of society!” Matilda shakes her head. “Poppycock! If things were my way, people so sinfully vain as yourself would be gone faster than a pot-watching, bingo-cheating charlatan!”
“I am a lady,” Matilda interjects.
“Lady,” Karen continues, completely unaffected, “I don’t know if that’s fair. I mean, we all do things that don’t seem right to other people.”
Matilda scoffs, a little too quickly. “Not me.”
Karen suddenly beams. “You know how in those crime dramas they sometimes have that lawyery intuition that someone’s lying?” Matilda rolls her eyes.
“What about it?”
Karen grins, ever-so delightedly. “I think I just got it.”
If looks could kill, Karen would be dead. “Well then, use your ‘lawyery’ intuition to put some clothes on!” At this exact moment, the door to the room clicks open. Matilda whirls around. Vicky is standing in the doorframe, her face expressionless as she discovers a naked Karen and a half-dressed Matilda standing mere feet from one another.
“Nevermind,” Vicky says, calmly closing the door. Matilda lets out a demonic screech.
As the bulk of the cast makes their way down the hotel’s endless stairwell, Alfred is desperately pleading with Pietro, who has hoisted the pint-sized chef over his shoulder. “Come on, Pete, I can do this myself.”
“Nonsense!” Pietro boasts, “A champion of such caliber deserves a king’s escort! A stallion!” Pietro instinctively flexes his biceps, nearly killing Alfred in the process. After a couple of seconds, in which Alfred turns various shades of purple, he finally relaxes.
Alfred gasps for air. “You realize you were one of the votes for me, right?”
“The folly of man!” Pietro sniffs melodramatically. “I was only going with the group. But thanks to your strategic brilliance, I have changed; I have witnessed the error of my ways!” Alfred glances uncomfortably towards the camera.
“Don’t give the li’l twerp too much credit,” Betsy says, walking behind the pair. “It was all that there lawwer’s doin’. Without her, that half-pint would be doner than a buck at a shootin’ range!”
“Hmm,” Pietro taps his chin. “Quite a colloquial point you have…” Suddenly, a light bulb goes off. “Aha! I’ve know precisely what to do!”
Alfred gulps. “What are you thinking now?”
“I’m going to teach you…” Pietro smiles confidently. “...MANLINESS!” Betsy nearly chokes.
Finally, the contestants have all made their way to the town square, divided into their respective teams before Chip and Flutina, who have been joined by a buff-looking sailor, muscles bulging through his tight shirt with various fear-inducing tattoos sprawled all over his body. Many of the contestants are reasonably bewildered.
“Welcome to your next challenge!” Flutina sings. “Take it away, Chip!”
“With pleasure!” Chip smiles, motioning to the sailor. “Fashionistas, meet the focal point of today’s challenge: Mister Scarroway!” Right on cue, the sailor lets out a ferocious growl towards the contestants, even going the extra mile to spit at their feet. Never one to back down from a good old southern challenge of dominance, Betsy spits back at Mister Scarroway’s own feet. The two exchange glares.
“Mister Scarroway is a world traveler,” Flutina explains, “he was visiting the island, and just getting ready to leave, before he realized--”
“--he lost his precious silver ring!” Chip cries. “And as the good samaritans of this island, it is our duty to help him retrieve it. Which is why, for today’s challenge, each team will be split into three pairs and tasked with finding the ring.”
“Tragically,” Flutina says, “Mister Scarroway misplaced his ring in in our local corn maze.” The contestants suddenly realize a giant, towering corn maze standing behind the hosts and Mister Scarroway.
Vicky raises an eyebrow. “Where did that maze come from? And what on Earth does this have to do with fashion?”
“Life’s not about the hard questions, Vicky,” Chip shakes his head before immediately returning his face to his pearly white smile and clapping his hands together. “It’s time to pair up!”
In a flash, the teams have readied themselves for battle. On the Killer Catwalks’ side, Alfred and Pietro and Heath and Karen have teamed up, leaving Matilda and Vicky as a mutually disinterested partnership. On the Rampaging Runways’ end, the pairs are Spence and Danni, Ramsey and Lila, and Betsy and Chadd, leaving Travis sitting out. Chip and Flutina stare at Travis with wide, eager smiles.
Travis glances about. “What are you…” the hosts begin to advance toward him. “...God help me.”
The scene cuts to the majority of the cast, including Mister Scarroway, howling with laughter at the sight of Travis in a giant corn costume. “Ha ha ha, very funny,” Travis says, clearly not amused.
“It’s time to begin the challenge!” Flutina announces. “But first--” a group of highly-trained interns leaps into the daylight, swiftly and roughly apprehending the pairs and handcuffing them to one another. As the interns vanish, a chorale of groans is set off. Eventually, everyone gets back on their feet and ready to begin.
Chip produces a handy-dandy whistle. “First team to make it out of the maze with the ring in hand will win immunity. The losing team will be sending two people to the Fashion Face-Off. On your marks, get ready, set…” Chip blows the whistle. “Go!” The various pairs all dash into the maze’s entrance, all of them eager to win.
Upon entering the maze, all Hell breaks loose. Not only is the maze unrealistically huge, but the pairs are faced with six indistinct paths, leading to the rest of the maze. For some odd reason, a few of the pairs seem to think that getting into the maze first will give them an advantage in actually solving it, and a pseudo-brawl breaks out, people pushing and shoving every which way.
Ramsey and Lila are the first to break away.
“Ow!” Ramsey cries, clutching his ear. “Betsy bit my ear!”
Lila blinks. “Isn’t she on our team?”
“Well, yeah--” Ramsey notices the other pairs beginning to catch up. “We’ve gotta get a move on.”
“Let’s take this one!” Lila says, pointing to one of the paths without much thought. The pair races into the maze, corn towering over on either side. None of the teams appear to have followed them, and after a while they finally ease to a fast-paced walk. Ramsey struggles to catch his breath, while Lila seems relatively unaffected by their little jog.
“So,” Ramsey huffs, “Now it’s just like finding a needle in a haystack.”
Lila nods. “Yeah, this won’t be too easy. But it should be fun!”
Ramsey shrugs. “This maze is so huge, I doubt we’ll be seeing another team.”
“Nah,” Lila says, “I think we will. I doubt they’d design a challenge where there’s no chance for interaction, you know? Gotta keep things interesting.”
“True,” Ramsey says. For a while, they walk in silence. “So, uh…” he frantically searches for a topic of conversation. “...seen any good movies lately?”
Lila laughs and shakes her head. “I don’t watch movies all that much anymore.” Ramsey grins sheepishly. “I’m just not a big fan of all the violence and bad energy, you know? I wish more people could just get along and realize that life doesn’t have to be so dark and serious.”
“So... more like a romantic comedy?”
Lila smiles. “Yeah, I guess so.” Suddenly, she stops. “Hold on! I’ve got it!” Ramsey gives her a rather quizzical look before she abruptly takes to the ground, sitting in the lotus and beginning to meditate with a big, joyful grin on her face. Ramsey takes a brief, confused glance at the camera.
“...What does this accomplish, exactly?”
“Meditation helps clear the mind,” Lila explains, “Once the mind is clear, what one seeks is sure to be near.” She proceeds to repeat the word ‘om’ for long, drawn out intervals.
“Lila?” Ramsey asks. No response. “Lila?” Still no response. Ramsey sighs, having no other choice but to join Lila on the ground, sitting criss-cross applesauce and staring off into space with a very, very bored expression across his face.
The scene cuts over to Heath and Karen, who are aimlessly wandering through the maze, attempting to discern whatever it is they’re supposed to do. “This challenge seems very ill-conceived,” Heath says.
“Dude, you’re so right,” Karen says, “but there’s gotta be some way to make it easier…”
Heath cracks a smile. “That’s what I thought trying to fit into three-inch heels.”
“Heels are like, the worst part of the loaf, man,” Karen says.
Heath does a double-take. “Right…”
“Wait, dude, let’s stop for a second,” Karen says. The pair stops abruptly, Karen taps her chin in deep contemplation, while Heath looks about, hopelessly confused. “We need to go there,” Karen says, pointing upward. Heath blinks.
“Karen, I don’t know if anyone ever broke this to you, but that’s the sky. And humans can’t fly.”
“Life’s real tragedy,” Karen sniffles, wiping away a single tear. “But nah, man, I meant there.” She points once again, this time towards the top of the maze’s corn walls. “I we can get up there, we’ll have a better vantage point, don’t you think?”
Heath nods. “You’re right. But we are handcuffed. Getting up there won’t be easy.”
“Well then,” Karen says, a determined smile forming on her face, “let’s do this!” In a single bout of excitement, she rips her entire shirt off, twirling it around before flawlessly tying it around her forehead and ultimately leaving her entire chest exposed. Heath’s face turns bright red and he immediately looks away.
“Was that really necessary?” Heath asks.
“Yes,” Karen says, “yes it was.”
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the maze, Spence and Danni are walking in silence. Danni is merrily humming along while an irritated Spence looks her up and down, his face showing varying degrees of disgust as he scrutinizes every aspect of her appearance.
Spence (Confessional): Danni is a solid four, bro. She ain’t got no style, her face is plain, and her chest is flatter than her personality. Does she even vape? Let me tell ya, in real life, Danni would have no chance in heck. In real life, Spence is gettin’ all the tens. If you ain’t with a ten, you ain’t ever gonna win! Travis shoulda picked someone smarter, cuz picking up Danni? *scoffs* Piece of pie, man!
Spence adjusts his hat to the perfect angle of cool. “So, Danni, I haven’t heard much outta you since the first day. What gives, bro?”
Danni gasps. “Oh my gosh, you’re the first person to ever say that to me! Hmm, well, I guess it’s probably because I haven’t had coffee in like--” Danni lets out a loud, obnoxious yawn. “--Wow! Now that you mention, I am so tired! It’s like I can’t even think straight!”
“That’s great!” Spence forces a smile. “And ‘ey, there’s a coffee shop near the hotel. I can…” Spence gulps. “...show it to ya later.”
“Really?” Danni’s face beams with excitement. “Wow, Spence, after everything everyone’s said I didn’t think you could be so nice!” Spence stops dead in his tracks.
“People? Talking about me?” Spence asks through gritted teeth. “What’d they say?”
Danni giggles. “Oh, nothing you haven’t already proven wrong. They said you were a selfish egotist willing to walk over anybody to get what you want.” Spence blinks. “But none of that’s true, obviously.”
“Of course not.” Spence agrees. “But, uh, hey, let’s stop having meaningful conversation so they won’t focus on us.”
“No reason...” Spence says as he slowly produces his very own personalized vape pen.
Apparently, Vicky and Matilda have been doing absolutely nothing this entire time besides getting incredibly lost. Vicky leads the way, saying nothing, while Matilda fires off complaint after complaint after complaint about anything and everything. “These handcuffs are making me chafe!” “Back in my day, mazes were on PAPER!” “Starches make my hips stiff and my good eye bleed!” “Stop walking so fast, you’re making my ankles numb!”
Vicky abruptly loses all patience. “You know what? I’m done with it.” She quickly produces a paperclip, bending it outward and effortlessly unchaining herself from the frumpy old woman. “There. You’re on your own.” Matilda is notably appalled, her jaw hanging open, allowing her false teeth to pop out and onto the ground as Vicky begins to walks away.
“Get back here, you whippersnapper!” Matilda yells through her gums. She angrily snatches her teeth from the ground, shoving them back into her mouth before taking off after Vicky. The camera pans to showcase the old woman’s comically slow-paced run. Vicky continues walking, even turning a corner in the maze. Matilda increases her speed. “Why you little--” she promptly trips, breaking her fall with her fragile face and saggy cheeks.
Matilda lifts her head, rage apparent, one eye twitching demonically.
Matilda’s screech rang throughout the maze, even reaching the ears of Heath and Karen, who have finally climbed to the top of the maze’s walls. “Sounds like the rest of the cast is having fun,” Karen says.
Heather laughs. “Really, though,” the two begin to look around, almost immediately spotting the center of the maze, not too far away from where they are currently. “Bingo!” Heath prepares to jump off the maze wall, only to have Karen pull him back.
“Wait,” she says, “it’ll be easier if we just walk on the walls.”
“There’s no straight path there going on the…” Heath’s voice trails off as he looks at Karen’s confident, almost smug expression. He gasps. “”No… you wouldn’t…”
“Oh,” Karen smirks. “I would. And we are.”
Chadd and Betsy are minding their own business, just moseying on through the maze, when suddenly a huge shadow soars over them, followed by a loud thump.
“What was that?” Chadd asks, slightly afraid.
“How would I know?” Betsy says, “I ain’t no fluddy-duddy psychiatrist!” The pair suddenly looks upward to see Heath and Karen, still recoiling from their impact of their landing atop the wall. Chadd and Betsy are briefly awestruck.
“Heath!” Chadd beams.
Betsy glares daggers at the two. “Left-handed yankees!” She charges towards the maze wall, dragging Chadd behind her like a rag doll. Scaling the wall in no time, she quickly comes face to face with Heath and Karen, while Chadd groans in pain.
Karen blinks. “This was unexpected…” She glances to Heath. “Run!” The pair rockets off towards the other side of the wall.
“On your feet, partner!” Betsy says, practically yanking Chadd to his feet. “Time for a good ol’ fashioned Texas hoedown!” They take off after Karen and Heath. Jumping from wall to wall, stopping only to briefly skirmish with one another, the scene looks like it’s been pulled straight out of an action-packed spy movie. Watching the chaos unfold through a pair of binoculars is none other than Chip.
“Huh,” Chip says, lowering the binoculars from his face. “Not exactly what we had in mind.”
As the two pairs are neck-and-neck with one another, Chadd and Heath find themselves virtually side by side. “Hey, how ya holding up?” Chadd asks between exhausted huffs.
“Not very well,” Heath says, “this challenge is no walk down the runway in a dress made of spaghetti, you know?”
“Girl, you’re tellin’ me,” Chadd laughs. “Just remember what I said, okay?”
“About the lobster or the cereal bowls?”
Chadd shrugs. “Either one works, really,”
In near perfect sync with one another, the two pairs make their final jump into the center of the maze. Just a few feet away lies the coveted silver ring, shining in all its glory as it sits delicately upon a small, fancy white table. After a mad dash, Karen is the first to grab the ring.
“Yeah!” the lawyer cheers. Betsy promptly cracks her knuckles.
“The only way that ring is leaving this maze is with me,”
“Dude,” Karen says, “can’t you just let us have this one? I mean, we’ve already lost one of the challenges. Don’t you think it’s fair to just even things out for now?” Betsy begins to growl ferociously, taking a single step forward. “Uh… guess not?” she takes another step. Karen frantically turns to Heath. “Dude, let’s get out of here!”
Having no time to climb back up the walls with Betsy on their tails, the pair opts to just aimlessly run down the paths of the maze, hoping for a miracle. The pair races down one path towards a cloud of somewhat thick, white haze. “Oh, God,” Heath takes a deep breath. Once the two feuding pairs have sped through, the cloud slowly dissipates, revealing a wide-eyed Spence with his vape pen mere inches from his lips. He sheepishly scoots out of view.
“...And that’s rule six-hundred and twenty-eight on how to be a man.” Pietro says to Alfred as the two walk through the maze, oblivious to any and all action happening nearby.
Alfred yawns. “Shouldn’t we be trying to win the challenge now?”
Pietro lets out a hearty laugh. “Oh, Alfredson, don’t you know the saying? You can win a man a challenge, and keep him for safe a day. But, teach a man HOW to win challenges,” he masterfully pumps his biceps. “And you can keep him safe for life!”
“I’m not sure that’s how it works,” Alfred says.
Pietro gives a very concerned look. “Really?”
“Alfie!” Pietro and Alfred immediately whirl around to find Karen and Heath, still in hot pursuit by Betsy and Chadd. “We need your help, man!”
“Fear not,” Pietro says, stepping into the line of fire as his teammates pass by. “We’ll fight them off! We are men!” Alfred gulps as Betsy and Chadd draw nearer and nearer.
Cut to the cowgirl promptly hurling the both of them over one of the maze walls. “That oughta take care of them,” Betsy says, dusting off her hands as she and Chadd continue to run after Heath and Karen. She grits her teeth. “They ain’t gonna get away with this!” Triumphant wild west music begins to play as Betsy produces her secret weapon: her golden lasso. She begins to twirl the lasso high in the sky as the gap between her and Karen and Heath closes. “Yeehaw!” Betsy propels the lasso forward, perfectly roping the duo and yanking the rope back, tightening it around the two.
“Oof!” Karen grunts as she and Heath barrel into the ground. The ring rolls right out of her hand. “Dang,” she says as Chadd picks up the ring. “We were so close…”
Heath sighs. “Really, though,” Chadd looks down at Heath, conflicted.
“Woohoo!” Betsy cheers. “We did it!” she holds out her hand to Chadd. “Gimme the ring!” Chadd glances to Betsy, but makes no move, even tightening his own grip on the ring. Betsy shoots him a glare. “‘Ey, I’m the one who got us that ring. Give it to me.” Chadd looks down at a confused Heath. Suddenly, the drag queen comes to a realization.
“Chadd, no!” he yells, a little too late as Chadd throws the ring over the nearest maze wall. Betsy’s eyes widen with absolute fury. Karen is absolutely dumbstruck.
The ring clinks onto the ground on the other side of the wall, mere feet away from Lila and Ramsey, who are sitting in the exact same spot they have been for the entire challenge. Ramsey quickly notices the ring, almost dumbfounded. “Lila!” he shouts, “Lila! The ring!”
Lila immediately wakes up, beaming with delight. “When the mind is clear, what one seeks is sure to be near!” The duo dashes over to the ring. “See, Ramsey? I told you it would work!”
Ramsey laughs. “I guess. But we still need to get it out of the maze.” A hand suddenly taps on Ramsey’s shoulder. He turns his head, only to find Pietro. After a few seconds of awkwardly blinking at each other, Pietro nonchalantly snatches the ring from Ramsey’s fingers, sprinting away with Alfred in tow. Ramsey turns back to Lila. The two spend another few seconds blinking at each other, before a collective gasp sends them running and yelling after Pietro.
“And the winners are…” Flutina says as the first pair approaches the maze’s exit.
“...the Killer Catwalks!” Chip announces as Pietro and Alfred run by, holding the ring high in the air for all to see. Lila and Ramsey dash out seconds after, huffing and puffing.
Ramsey sighs. “I guess I’m a goner, aren’t I?”
“Don’t say that,” Lila frowns.
“Yeah,” an unusually calm voice says, “don’t say that.” Lila and Ramsey turn around to find Betsy walking through the maze’s exit, a murderous, almost psychopathic look on her face.
The scene cuts to a little while later, once all of the contestants have exited the maze and regrouped in front of Chip and Flutina. Mister Scarroway is merrily showing off his ring. Chip smiles. “Well, at the end of the day, the Killer Catwalks reign victorious!” The team cheers triumphantly, most of the teammates hugging one another.
“Unfortunately,” Flutina says, “that means the Rampaging Runways will be voting two of their own into tonight Fashion Face-Off.”
“What happened in there, exactly?” Travis asks, returning to his team after being freed from his corn costume.
Betsy immediately grabs Chadd by his collar. “This no-good, dirt-eatin’, other-team-sympathizin’ TRAITOR threw the challenge, that’s what!” she throws Chadd to the ground, causing him to wince. Lila runs to his aid. “We ain’t ever gonna win a challenge with this little runt on our team. I say you send him to the face-off with me! I’ll teach him a thing or two about throwdowns…”
Travis shrugs. “I’d be down.” The rest of the team nods slowly, afraid to cross the cowgirl.
“Well,” Chip says, “we’ll see you guys tonight, I suppose.” He and Flutina walk-off as the scene fades to night, where the Rampaging Runways are now standing before them in the town square, the corn maze nowhere to be found. Both of them hold a single envelope each.
“Welcome to the second Fashion Face-Off of the season!” Flutina sings.
“The challenge that is the end-all be-all of who stays and who goes!” Chip adds.
The hosts simultaneously rip open their envelopes, revealing a card inside both. “Our first competitor,” Flutina says, “Chadd!” Chadd nods, not at all surprised by his position.
“His opponent,” Chip flips his card, “Betsy!” The cowgirl smirks. Chadd and Betsy both step forward, readying to fight to stay alive.
“For today’s face-off, you’ll be tossing rings!” Flutina announces. All present contestants roll their eyes. “Both of you will have your own post. The first person to successfully sink five rings around their post will be the winner of this round’s face-off. The loser will be eliminated from the competition and immediately sent home, their dreams of changing the fashion industry forever soiled.” Chip wipes a tear from his eye.
Chadd sighs. “Girl, really though? Ring toss? If I wanted to play carnival games I would’ve just…” he blinks. “...gone to a carnival…”
Chip chooses to ignore him. “Let’s get started!”
In a flash, Betsy and Chadd have taken their positions are a bold red line. About eight or so feet away from both of them is a finger-shaped post. Next to them both is a bucket full of giant rings. Chip clears his throat. “Players, on your marks, get ready, set…”
“Go!” the two hosts sing together.
“Wooo! Let’s go Chadd!” Lila cheers. Chadd throws his first ring, sending it flying into the forest at the edge of the town square. Lila winces. “Okay, okay, warm-up shot! Next one’ll be better!” With the next shot, Chadd nails Chip in the eye. “Ooh! Maybe… not…”
“I would quit while I’m ahead,” Travis advises. Lila sighs.
As Chadd dangerously flops at the challenge, Betsy is faring much better, landing her first two shots. As she picks up her third ring, she has a sinister idea, launching a ring towards Chadd’s post, causing it to topple over. The rest of her team collectively gasps.
“Girl, what?” Chadd raises an eyebrow. “That’s just rude.”
“But legal,” Flutina points out.
“Girl, what?” Chadd’s jaw drops as Betsy lands her third shot. He scurries to reset his post, only managing to land his first ring after Betsy lands her fourth. The cowgirl smirks.
“You’re deader than a buck in bow season, boy,” she says. As she says this, Chadd lands his next ring. She fixes her hat and fires her final ring towards her podium…
“The first Rampaging Runway and the second person eliminated is…” Chip begins as the ring spins around atop the post.
“...Chadd.” he finishes as the ring finally falls into place. Chadd sighs as Betsy confidently dusts off her hands and returns to her team. Danni excitedly tackle-hugs Betsy, while the rest of the team sticks to typical congratulations and whatnot. Lila walks up to comfort Chadd.
“I’m sorry that you were put in that spot,” Lila says.
Chadd shrugs. “Can you tell Heath something for me after I’m gone?” Lila nods. Chadd whispers in her ear. Lila smiles.
“You can count on me.”
“Chadd,” Flutina says, “sadly, it’s time for you to go.”
Chadd smiles contentedly. “Peace out, girl scouts,” he says to his team as he walks down the red carpet leading to the port. Once he is out of sight, the camera focuses in on Chip and Flutina, both smiling with delight.
“That’s all for this episode,” Chip says, “be sure to tune in next time to find out what new drama ensues, on Easy!” Chip grabs Flutina’s hand.
“Breezy!” Flutina grabs Chip’s other hand.
“BEAUTIFUL!” The hosts’ melody echoes as the shot fades to later in the night, with Spence bringing Danni a cup of coffee.
“Here ya go,” he says.
“Aw, thanks so much!” Danni chugs the coffee endlessly, causing Spence to be incredibly grossed out. She lets out a loud sigh of relief once she finishes. “So, like I was saying in the maze…” Danni thusly launches into a long, drawn-out monologue about God knows what as the camera slowly pans closer and closer to Spence. He impatiently waits for Danni to stop talking, but get this: she never does. She goes on, and on, and on, and on, with seemingly no end in sight as Spence’s eye begins to twitch and his lip begins to quiver...
The scene cuts to black, the only sound being Spence’s tortured scream.
Chapter 04: Polished Nails and Hidden Trails
Name: This contestant was on the Killer Catwalks team.
Name: This contestant was on the Rampaging Runways team.
WIN: This contestant won immunity for this episode.
SAFE: This contestant did not get enough votes to be sent to the Fashion Face-Off.
WIN: This contestant was the winner of this episode's Fashion Face-Off.
OUT: This contestant was the loser of this episode's Fashion Face-Off and eliminated from the game.
- The title is obviously a reference to CoverGirl's iconic slogan.
- The story's concept was thought of on a whim; I decided to run with it.
- Alfred was inspired by cooking competitions, another obscure sub-genre of reality TV.
- Gretchen is basically Helen only better...
- Karen's character was inspired by Hali Ford from Survivor: Worlds Apart.
- Pietro is named after Pietro Maximoff, a.k.a. Quicksilver, from the Marvel Universe.
- Ramsey is based off fellow wiki user Avery FireFlame.
- Spence is based off a particularly charming person I know in real life.
- Travis is a parody of many reality shows' tendency to cast people solely for sex appeal.
- Chip and Flutina were created on the spot as I began to write the first chapter. Over the course of writing their introductory performance, I created their personalities and plots for the story.
- Travis's line about insurance in Chapter 2 are a reference to GEICO®.
- During the second chapter's challenge, Heath's pronouns briefly switch to feminine when he becomes Francesca Noodlebottom. This is meant to reflect common practice in the Drag community, where most, but not all, drag queens prefer the use of feminine pronouns when in character. This will only happen whenever a character of Heath's is given a name, so as to prevent confusion.
- The third chapter's title is an obvious reference to the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
- Although it's never explicitly stated in the story, the third chapter is where I hoped readers would key into the fact that both Chadd and Heath are somewhere on the LGBT+ spectrum. The reason it's never specified is because I never found a place in the story where it would have felt natural for them to talk about it. I could have added it into their conversation at the beginning of the chapter, but there I wanted to highlight their friendship more than I wanted to highlight their sexualities.
- Post-Chapter 3, copious references to The Lost Christmas Special of Easy, Breezy, Beautiful, written by the amazingly talented Rhonda the stalker fan!, are inevitable.