Chapter Seven- Double Ford
It was another spontaneous day at the Mystery Shack. Stanford and Stanley's Grantie Mabel was planning a party, and the kids, Dan, and Maria were in charge of decorating, but the twins were taking a break at the moment. Ford and Stanley sat on the couch with smug expressions and hid something behind their backs. Around the room, Ria was setting up the party hats while Danny was blowing balloons. Grantie Mabel was in front of the twins with her back turned and inspected the progress they were making.
Deciding that now was the perfect time to start, Ford held his stomach and groaned, pretending to feel sick, "Oh no, Stanley. I-I don't feel so good. I- BBBLLLAAAAGGHH!" He pretended to throw up and sprayed pink silly string at his twin.
Stan faked a groan, "Grantie Mabel, what did you feed us?!" He made a similar retching sound and shot his can of purple silly string at Ford, and the boys kept at it until both were covered in it and laughed.
Dan Corduroy ran up to the twins, looking serious, "Guys, guys, stop! Something terrible just happened!" The boys stopped to look at him. "BBBLLAAAGGHH!" Danny had joined in, spraying the twins in even more silly string, this time green, causing the three of them to laugh hysterically.
Fiddleford ran in with a box of gold-colored confetti, "You guys are comedy gold!" He laughed, throwing the confetti at them, only adding to the mess. Fidds kept throwing confetti, and the other boys kept spraying the silly string until Grantie Mabel noticed the mess they were making.
"That's enough, kiddos," she said, taking the supplies away. "You don't want to party yourselves out before it even starts, do you?"
"Ms. Pines, whose birthday is this party for?" Fidds asked.
"Nobody's. I'll have you know that back in the day, I was pro at planning people's parties. Still am today," Mabel bragged. "So, I'll throw several parties a year! I'm famous in town for throwing the best Hanukkah parties in town! Not to mention it's great business for all those crazy kids and teens," she added.
Fidds looked impressed, "Nice!"
Grantie Mabel handed a flyer to the twins, and Stan grabbed it, "Why don't you take this to the copier store, huh?"
"M-Ms. Pines?" Fidds spoke up. "I fixed that old copy machine in your office. We can use that instead," he offered.
"Oh, you have?" She asked. Fiddleford nodded. "I'm impressed, Fidds. Why don't you take the twins over there and show 'em how to work it?"
"Yes, ma'am!" He smiled. Fiddleford led Stanley and Stanford to Grantie Mabel's office and turned on the light. Fidds pulled off a filthy, white sheet that was covering something. Underneath was a busted-up copier machine that looked like it had been partially repaired by duct tape. Several moths were flying around the machine.
"Are you sure it works?" Ford asked. He lifted the lid up to inspect it.
"It should. Give it a whirl!" Fidds offered.
Stanford did. He pressed a button, and to test it out, he rested his arm on the scanner. The machine made a loud noise, and a black and white picture of Ford's arm came out on a piece of printer paper.
Stanley picked it up. "Success!" he cheered. The paper shook in his hand, and he dropped it. "Whoa!"
"What is it, Stanley?" Fidds asked. The boys looked at the paper, and watched as the two-dimensional black and white arm shook unnaturally, obtained the exact colors of Ford's arm, and came to life, crawling out of the sheet and towards the screaming boys.
"Back! Stay back!" Ford ordered at the arm. He threw a cup of soda that he had on him at the arm, and it bubbled and sizzled, before it completely disintegrated. The boys took a moment to calm down.
"W-what was that?!" Fidds asked.
Ford looked back at the copy machine in shock, "Guys, I think this copier can copy human beings!"
Stanley gasped, "Do you realize what this means?" The other boys looked at Stan, waiting for him to finish. "BBBBLLLAAAGGHH!" He sprayed another can of silly string at the two of them. Neither laughed that time.
The twelve-year-old boys eventually went back to what they were supposed to be doing and made copies of the flyer, being extra careful to keep their body parts away from the scanner. Ford made a mental note to write this experience down later. Once they were done, the boys and Danny and Maria stood side by side in front of Grantie Mabel.
"Alright party people," she addressed. "Let's talk business. Fiddleford, It's your job to take all the flyers and post them all around town. Be sure people know about the party."
"Ma'am, yes, ma'am!" Fidds saluted.
Mabel turned to Maria, "Ria, you'll be on DJ, Stanford is on decoration. Daniel, you and Stanley will work the ticket stand."
"What?" Stanley groaned. "But Grantie Mabel, this party is my chance to talk to girls!"
Ford raised his hand and spoke up, "I… I could work with Danny."
Mabel thought about it for a moment, "If it's alright with you, then you can. You have to remember, Stanford, that if you do, you have to commit to stay at the ticket stand with Daniel. No getting out of it. Just the two of you. Alone. All night," she added in a knowing wink and smiled.
Ford looked back at Danny to see him spraying Fidd's glasses with silly string and watched them laugh. He turned back to his grantie, "I promise."
A few hours later, Ford stood in front of a mirror in his room. He decided to go for a 'party casual' look and wore a bow tie over his normal outfit. He knew it looked a little odd, especially with his gloves, but after learning that Danny would be doing something similar, he figured that he could try it as well. To spruce himself up a bit more, he went for the hair spray, only to find that Stanley was right in his face. He screamed, "STAN!"
Stanley laughed and spoke in a mocking voice, pretending to be Ford, "Uh, uh, I could work the ticket booth with you, Danny! Let's kiss!" He made kissy noises and laughed.
"Yeah, yeah. Laugh all you want, but I devised a plan to make sure my night with Danny goes perfect," Ford smiled confidently.
"Plan?" Stan asked. He groaned when he realized what he meant, "You're not making one of those over-complicated lists, are you?"
Ford scoffed, "Over complicated? Don't be ridiculous, let me… just…" he pulled out a piece of paper from his jacket, and unfolded it several times. The paper was long enough to reach the ground, "okay. Step one: Getting to know each other through playful banter. Banter is like talking, but smarter," he explained.
"That sounds like a dumb idea for poopheads," Stan complained.
"For example, what you just said. That is what I want to avoid with Danny," Ford said. "The final step is to ask him to dance with me."
Stan rolled his eyes, "Yeah, like that's gonna happen."
Ford glared at him, "I thought you would be supportive with me on this?"
"I'm just being honest. Ford, you'll never get anywhere if you can't just walk up and talk to him like a normal person."
"Step nine, brother," Ford pointed to step nine, which read 'talk to him like a normal person'. Stan sighed and rolled his eyes.
Finally, the party started, and Stanley stood at the upper level, smiling and watching the party from below. He wore a white shirt, an unzipped leather jacket, ripped jeans, a belt chain, and tennis shoes. Grantie Mabel leaned on the rail next to him, wearing a pink top and skirt, red heels, triangle-shaped earrings, and a red bow on her head, "What do you say, ankle biter? Can your grantie throw a party or what?" She asked proudly.
"This party is awesome!" Stan smiled. "And the music Ria chose is great!"
"Then what are you doing up here then, kiddo?" Grantie Mabel pushed him to the stairs, "Go mingle! Have fun!"
Meanwhile, outside, Danny and Ford were at the ticket station selling tickets. Ford took a deep breath and remembered the list, "Step one: Casual banter," he whispered to himself. He talked to Danny, a little too loudly. "SO HERE'S A CASUAL QUESTION!" Ford coughed and lowered his voice. "What's your favorite type of snack food?"
"Oh, man!" Dan laughed. "I can't just pick one!"
"No way! Mine too!"
Stanford's eyes widened when he realized his mistake, "Uhh… I mean… um…" he stammered and shoved a large handful of popcorn in his mouth as a distraction. He took too much and ended up coughing.
"Dude, are you alright?"
Inside the Mystery Shack, Stanley was dancing wildly. He took a break and sat next to Fiddleford and, to his surprise, Buddy. "Hey, Buddy!" Stan waved.
"Hi, Stanley!" Buddy waved back. "Nice party here."
"Thanks," Stan smiled. "You can thank Grantie Mabel for that. How're things going for you?"
"Alright, I guess," he shrugged. "Do you remember the cleaning lady, Valerie?" he asked. "She's really nice. A lot better than my dad. I-I've still been keeping up the Tent of Telepathy business, though."
"But, why?" Stanley asked. "I thought you hated that?"
"I do, but Valerie and I need to make money somehow, and if I quit, a lot of people will lose their jobs..."
An uncomfortable silence followed. To lighten up the mood, Fidds showed Stan and Buddy his pet, "I brought my pet raccoon! Do you like her?"
"Yeah," Buddy smiled. He went up to pet her, but the raccoon growled, and he drew his hand back.
"She's usually not like this," Fidds said reassuringly, but Stan wasn't listening to him. He was gawking at a very pretty girl with a lazy eye in a very beautiful orange dress. "Stan?"
Stan pointed at his new crush, "Who is she?"
"Her?" Buddy asked. "That's Susan Wentworth. Growling Grenda's granddaughter," he gasped when he pieced it together. "You like her! Dude, go talk to her!"
"W-What? Talk? I-I," Stanley stammered, but the other two boys would have none of it. They pushed Stan into the crowd, muttering to him words of encouragement. Stanley took a deep breath and walked up to her, but before he could, another boy went up to Susan.
"Hey," the boy smiled. "I'm Preston Northwest. Of course, you already know that. Wanna dance?"
"Sure," she said. Susan took his hand and they danced together.
Stanley stared at them in shock. Fidds and Bud walked up, seeing his bad luck, "Tough," Fidds said after a long, low whistle.
"Who's this Preston Northwest?" Stan asked, feeling jealous.
"The most popular boy in town," Fiddleford answered, "except, maybe Buddy, but that could be debatable. Preston is richer, though."
"He always makes me feel bad about myself when I'm around him," Buddy added.
At that moment, Maria spoke into the microphone, "The dancing contest will begin later tonight! The person with the loudest applause will win this party crown!" She held up a crown, and Stan got an idea.
"I'm gonna win that crown," Stanley said in determination.
"Oh, yeah?" Preston asked, overhearing him. He turned away from Susan. "What makes you say that, newbie? And, oh look, are those your friends?" he taunted. "Raccoon boy? Baby Man? You've got to be kidding me!"
"Hold me, Fidds!" Buddy hugged Fiddleford in fear.
"Our kind isn't welcome here!" Fiddleford exclaimed.
Stanley looked angrily at Preston, "My name is Stanley, not 'newbie', and I will win that contest, because jerks who make fun of other people don't deserve to win!" Fiddleford and Buddy gasped behind him.
Preston laughed, "Stanley? That sounds like a fat, old man's name. Fine, Stanley. The winner will get the crown… and Susan. May the better dancer win," he walked away menacingly. Susan stood where Preston left her, unsure what to do.
"He's going down," Stanley smiled confidently. Behind him, Fidds and Bud stared at Stan in total shock.
Ford and Danny continued working the ticket stand, but Danny was getting distracted by the party going on inside, "Woah! Sounds like the party's getting nuts," out of curiosity, Ford took a peek inside to see his twin brother dancing wildly and forming a crowd around him. "I gotta get in there!" Dan exclaimed. He stood up to leave.
"Wait! We're not supposed to go anywhere, remember?" Ford reminded him.
Danny scoffed, "It won't be long. I'll just party out for a minute and be right back. Cover for me?"
"Umm… well, I… um-"
"Thanks, dude!" Danny went inside and danced.
Stanford looked at Danny through the window, and then looked back at the people in line in front of him waiting for their tickets. He stood up and addressed the crowd, "I'll be back shortly!" He left his seat to go inside to join Dan. "I'm sure Mabel won't mind if I'm gone for a few minutes…" He whispered to himself.
Before Ford could reach the door, Mabel grabbed him by his ear and pulled him back to the table, "What do you think you're doing, Stanford?"
"OW! OW! OW! Grantie Mabel, that hurts!" Ford complained.
She sat him back down in his chair, and Stanford rubbed his red ear to ease the pain, "Now stay there and sell these good people their tickets," she ordered firmly. "You made a promise. Stay committed to it."
Ford sighed and continued selling tickets. He looked back to the party, where Danny was dancing by himself, "If only I could be in two places at once," he spoke to himself. He recalled the phenomenon that happened earlier that day and gasped. Ford had an idea, but unfortunately, that would require leaving the station again, and he couldn't risk Mabel catching him leaving again.
As if by a miracle, Fiddleford walked outside and saw Ford, "Hey, Stanford," he waved. "The party is going crazy in there! You should see your brother."
"Hey, Fidds!" Ford waved. "Can you do me a favor? I really have to use the bathroom, and Danny bailed on me. Can you take my place for a bit?" he asked.
Fiddleford went a little pink and smiled, "Sure! Can you make it quick, though? I really want to watch the dancing contest."
"No problem," Stanford said. Now that he was free, he ran to the copy machine in Mabel's office. He lied down on the scanner and pressed the copy button. "I wonder if this is a good idea," he thought out loud, a little too late. The machine printed out a black and white picture of Ford. The paper fell on the ground, and the image obtained color and came to life, creating a Ford double. "Woah!" Ford gasped. He paused at his double. "I have a really big head."
Ford and his clone spoke simultaneously, "So, uh…" they chuckled. "Sorry, you first. Stop copying me!" They laughed in unison.
Stanford stood silent for a while, taking in the clone. His mind was boggled with interest. As much as he wanted to learn about his clone, he needed to act fast if he wanted his plan to work. He looked through Grantie Mabel's desk drawers to find blank pins. With a permanent marker, he wrote a '2' on it and pinned it to his clone's jacket, "For now, I will call you Number Two."
"Definitely not," his clone disagreed. "You know a name we've always wanted?"
Ford and the clone smirked knowingly, "Shermy," they finished at the same time.
"Alright, Shermy. Let's make this quick," Ford ordered. "I'm thinking you cover me at the ticket stand, while I ask Danny to dance with me."
Shermy pulled out the exact same list that Ford had, "I know the plan, buddy," he smirked.
A thought came to Stanford, and he took a couple steps back, "Hey, we're not going to get jealous and turn on each other like the clones in the movies, are we?"
"Stanford, please," Shermy scoffed. "This is you you're talking about. Not to mention," he added, "you can always just disintegrate me with water."
"True…" He considered. "Alright. Partners?"
"Partners," Shermy smiled. They shook hands.
Shermy stood outside, where Fiddleford was, "About time, Ford!" he exclaimed. "I'm getting tired of handing people their tickets!"
"Hey, no problem, Fidds," the clone smiled. He peeked inside the window and gave Ford a thumbs up. Ford returned the gesture from the other side of the glass and walked up to Danny.
Fidds looked back at the window, "Hey, who are you looking at…?" he peeked inside and gasped. Fidds looked back at Shermy and narrowed his eyes in accusation. "You didn't."
"I didn't. He did," Shermy corrected him, pointing his thumb at the original Stanford.
Fiddleford shook his head, "Look, we'll talk about this later, but I just gotta say that I am very disappointed in you. I mean him. I mean- AUGH! I need to sit down," he sat back down in the chair while Shermy continued working the ticket stand.
Shermy glanced back at Ford again, only to see that Danny was with Stacy. He had a jealous thought towards Stacy, and, judging from Ford's expression, so had he. He called Ford, "Hey, Ford. It's me, you. I just had the same jealousy fantasy."
"We have to get rid of Stacy if I ever want to dance with Danny!" Ford exclaimed from the other end. There was a pause. "Oh, no! They're sitting on the couch! We gotta think of something quick!" Both Shermy and Ford looked outside to see Stacy's bike. "I got an idea!"
"I got the same one," Shermy nodded, "but we're gonna need some help," the two of them silently agreed to their new plan, and Ford hung up. Shermy saw that Fiddleford was still sitting next to him, and he heard the whole conversation. "So, uh… do you mind?"
Fidds frowned and folded his arms bitterly, "Oh, not at all, Ford's clone!" he replied sarcastically. "Just go right on ahead, I don't care! Make a million clones for all I care. At the very least, PROMISE me you'll have one for the ticket stand!"
"I promise," Shermy said.
He left Fiddleford alone at the stand, and once the clone was out of earshot, he grumbled, "It's a good thing he's cute..."
Ford stuck a pin with a '3' written on it on a third clone's jacket, "And that's where you come in, Number Three!" he finished.
"But what if Stacy catches me?" The third clone asked. "I'll be all alone!"
"He does have a good point," Shermy nodded.
Stanford sighed, "This isn't a problem. We'll just make one more. Four people will be enough, right?" He jumped back on the scanner to make another copy of himself, but the copier jammed.
"Uh-oh, paper jam," Shermy called out. He pulled the paper out of the copy machine, and the clone screamed as it came to life. It came out bent and distorted, and it made a screeching sound instead of talking.
"Come on!" Number Three groaned. "You're not going to pair me up with him, are you?"
Shermy shushed him, "Don't be rude!" He turned to the paper jammed clone, "Hey, it's okay."
Paper Jam Ford yelled something incoherent, and Ford sighed, "Okay. Just one more clone."
Preston was on the stage, dancing and singing a catchy R&B song. When he was done, the crowd cheered. He smiled cockily and handed the microphone to Stanley, "Try to beat that!"
Stan narrowed his eyes at Preston, "I will!" He turned to see Fiddleford running up to him and Buddy. "Hey, Fidds! Where have you been?"
"Doing your brother a favor," Fidds grumbled. "Or should I say brothers," he added under his breath.
"What was that?"
"Nothing. Now go!" Fidds gave him a push towards the stage.
Stanley walked up to the stage and pointed to Maria, "Ria! Give me that really awesome 70s, crowd pleasing song everyone likes!"
Maria began playing the song "Romanian Rap City" by King, and Stanley danced to the beat of it. He sang, "Is this a fake dream? Or is this reality? Trapped in a mudslide, don't escape from the fantasy!"
The crowd cheered wildly for him while he sang and danced, and when the song reached a guitar solo, he shouted. "NOW I'M GONNA DO A FLIP!" Instead of actually doing a flip, he fell on his face, but he smiled. "That was for YOU guys!" Stan was very proud of the jealous and angry look on Preston's face. He was even more happy when he saw that Susan was clapping for him. He wanted nothing more at the moment than to win that contest and Susan's heart.
Ford ran up to Maria and whispered something in her ear. She repeated what he said through the microphone, "I have a quick announcement: Would the owner of a silver and red dirt bike please report outside. It is being stolen right now."
Stacy looked outside, "Wait, WHAT?!" She ran outside, where Clones 3 and 4 were riding her bike away from the shack and laughing. "Hey, come back here!" She yelled, chasing them.
Ford took the chance to walk up to Danny, "Oh, tough luck. I wonder who those guys are who aren't me because I'm right here."
Ria played a slower song, and people were coupling up to dance. "This is a nice song," Dan thought out loud. He smiled and tapped his feet to the rhythm.
Stanley saw this and ran up to Ford, "Hey, doofus, now's your chance to ask Dan-" Ford covered his mouth and moved to where Danny wouldn't hear. "Now's your chance to ask Danny to dance with you! Come on! Go!"
"Okay, I'll do it!" Stanford said. It was easier said than done, though. He got too nervous to go over to Dan and ended up bailing. "I'll be right back!" Ford ran away in the opposite direction.
With Paper Jam Ford running the ticket stand, and Clones 3 and 4 still distracting Stacy, Shermy and Ford paced around each other in the twins' room, "I agree," Shermy nodded after Ford explained the situation. "You can't just DANCE with him. What if there's a glitch in the sound system?"
"Grantie Mabel might get in the way," Ford added. "And Stacy might come back. There are too many variables," he clasped his hands together. "We need help."
Six more copies of himself later, Stanford made sure that the other Fords knew the plan, and they set out to put it in action. Clone Number 10 walked up to Maria, "Ria, someone threw up near the food table."
Ria sighed, "I bet it was the stale candy. Alright, stay here. Let me take care of it."
Once she was gone, the clone put in a disc labeled 'Danny's Mix'. Meanwhile, another clone attached a stuffed animal of an adorable kitten on a fishing rod and dangled it in front of Grantie Mabel. "Oh my gosh!" she exclaimed. "GIVE ME THAT!" She tried to grab it, but ended up crashing into a table. She got back up and went after it. "GIVE ME THE CAT!"
Now that both women were distracted, another clone, Number Six, rang a bell. Shermy heard it and ran over to Ford, "That's your cue. Now's the perfect moment to ask Danny to dance," he gave Stanford a small push. "Good luck, me!"
"Thanks!" Ford smiled. He walked down the hallway only to see that Danny was leaning against the wall next to the bathroom door, and not on the dance floor as planned.
"Oh, hey, Stanford!" Danny waved.
Ford tried not to panic, "W-what are you doing here? Wouldn't you rather be out on the dance floor?" he glanced at his watch. "In exactly 42 seconds?"
"Just waiting for the bathroom," he shrugged.
Stanford took a deep breath and decided on a plan two: Small talk. Before he could ask anything, Dan spoke up, "So hey, let's say everyone at this party gets stuck on a deserted island. Who do you think the leader would be?"
"I think I would go with this lunatic," Danny pointed at a short, sweaty, angry-looking man that was dancing furiously.
Ford laughed and looked at the partiers, "I'd probably go for the tall guy over there, because tall people can reach coconuts?"
"Speaking of tall, wanna see something?" Dan asked. He pulled out a picture. "Those are my uncles, and that's me," he pointed to a younger version of himself with braces and no muscle, but he was strangely tall. "Yep. I was a freak."
Stanford laughed, suddenly feeling more comfortable, "You know, kids would make fun of my hands before I started hiding them all the time."
"Hands?" Dan repeated.
He immediately regretted saying that, "Uh, no! It's nothing!" he denied. "I-I…" Ford groaned. "Why did I say that?"
"No way, dude!" Danny smiled. "Now you have to show me! Show me, show me!" he chanted. Welp. It was over. Ford took a deep breath and removed his gloves to show Danny his bare hands. Ford closed his eyes, but he could still feel Dan's eyes on his fingers, counting all twelve of them. Danny gasped. "Six fingers! So THAT'S why you're always wearing gloves! And here I thought you were just a germaphobe or something," he joked. "I guess that makes us both freaks," Dan smiled.
Stanford blinked at him in shock and slight confusion, "You aren't freaked out?"
"No way, dude. Your hands are cool! If anything, you're just as much of a freak as I am!" Danny held up his cup. "To being freaks?"
"To being freaks," Ford smiled. They clinked their cups, and at that moment, a boy Ford's age stormed angrily out of the boy's restroom and Danny went in.
Shermy came in the hallway with the rest of the clones behind him. "Hey! What are you doing up here?" Shermy asked. "Ria is almost done cleaning up Number 10's fake vomit!"
"You won't believe this, guys!" Stanford smiled. "I bumped into Danny accidentally and things are actually going great!"
"That's nice," Shermy commented, "but not the plan. Do we have to remind you?" The other clones pulled out their lists and read the steps out loud from it, but out of order.
It was an odd sight for Ford, but he pushed it aside, "Listen, guys. Maybe we don't need the plan anymore, you know? I could just go talk to him like a normal person," he suggested.
Ford's clones gasped, clearly in disagreement, "If you're not going to stick to the plan, maybe you shouldn't be the Ford to dance with Danny," Number 5 said. The other clones muttered to each other in agreement.
"Guys, come on," Stanford backed away. "We promised we wouldn't turn on each other."
Shermy stepped forward, "I think we all knew we were lying. Get him!"
The clones grabbed Stanford and threw him in a closet and closed the door, despite Ford's protests. Ford banged his fists at the door, and he overheard the clones arguing over who would get to dance with Danny. He tried the doorknob to see that Shermy had forgotten to lock it, and he ran out when no one was looking. He made it to the balcony when one of the clones grabbed him and dragged him back to the other clones.
"Come on, Ford. Give it up," Shermy asserted. "You're overpowered."
At that moment, Fiddleford walked into the hallway to use the bathroom, only to see Ford and his clones in the hallway. He stared at them for a long, awkward moment before going back to the dance floor, "I'm going to forget I saw that."
With the other clones distracted, Ford punched Shermy in the face, "CLONE FIGHT!" One of them yelled. The clones start fighting each other, and Stanford snuck out of the rumble.
"Hey, Classic Ford's getting away!" A clone exclaimed. "Get him!"
The clones march towards Ford and cornered him. Ford's only weapon was a party popper that was on the ground next to him, "Stay back!" he warned. Stanford fired it, and, much to his shock and relief, the smoke from the party popper caused the sprinklers to activate, and the clones melted. Ford sighed in relief, "Glad that's over," he smiled.
Stanford turned to see that one clone still remained. And it was Shermy, "Uh-oh."
Shermy yelled and jumped on Ford, and the two of them wrestled on the ground, "Say it!" the clone demanded. He hit Ford. "Say I can dance with Danny!"
The sound of a laugh caused them both to stop. "Danny?" They asked in unison. They looked over the balcony to see Danny chatting and laughing with Stacy. They sat down and sighed, defeated. "We blew it."
"You wanna grab a couple of sodas?" Shermy asked. Ford nodded, not thinking of anything better to do.
Stanley and Preston finished dancing, and Ria announced, "Let the party crown voting begin!"
"Good luck, Stanley," Preston said sarcastically.
"Actually, in our family, it's more common to say Mazel tov," Stan corrected him. "It's a religious term, meaning good luck."
Preston rolled his eyes, "Whatever, loser. Just know that after this, Susan WILL be my girlfriend."
Unseen by either of them, Susan looked fuming mad.
"Applause to vote for Stanley!" Ria began. The crowd applauded loudly for her. "Let's check the applause meter," she raised her hand to measure the sound. "Very good, Stanley! And the next contestant: Preston," the crowd applauded softly. Preston glared at the audience angrily, and more people clapped for him. To raise the odds, Preston went up to bribe Crazy Chiu, and her clapping, added to the others, ended up louder than Stan's. "Ladies and gentlemen, we-we have a winner," Ria hesitated, looking disappointed. She reluctantly gave Preston the crown. "Preston Northwest."
"Thank you!" Preston smiled. He walked over to Susan. "And now to claim my other prize!" He went to grab her hand, but she slapped it away.
"What do you think I am?!" She yelled suddenly. It shocked both Preston and Stan. "Do you really think that you can just label me as a prize without asking me what I want first?! I don't want to date either of you, so go away!"
"Way to be a killjoy, princess," Preston sneered. "Like I want to be with a peasant like you anyway," he turned to the crowd and announced an after-party at his place, and they all left, save for Stanley, Ria, Wendy, Susan, Fidds, and Buddy.
Stanley turned to Susan, who was looking away and holding her arm, "Did… Did I really make you feel that way?" Susan nodded sadly. "I'm really sorry, Susan. I… I should have said something to you first. I didn't mean to make you feel that way. I understand if you want to leave."
"Who said I wanted to leave?" She asked. "I won't go out with you, but I will forgive you," Susan smiled. "How about we stay friends?"
Stan smiled, "Yeah, sure! I'm Stanley Pines," he introduced himself. He pointed to the others. "That's Fiddleford, Buddy, Maria, and Danny! And you can also meet my Grantie Mabel and my twin brother, Stanford!"
Susan laughed, "That sounds great!"
"Do you kids want to keep dancing?" Ria asked. The kids cheered, and she played another song. Everyone danced along to it.
On the roof, Ford and Shermy each held a can of soda, "Some night, huh?" Shermy spoke up to break the silence. A shooting star flew across the night sky as they opened their soda cans.
"Do you think we even have a chance with Danny?" Ford asked. "I mean, we don't know if he's even into guys, not to mention that he's fifteen and we're twelve."
"To be honest," Shermy thought, "I'm not sure, but the way we're doing it isn't working. The only real progress you made with him was when you weren't following the list."
Ford sighed, "I know. Stanley was right. I do get in my own way."
"Literally!" They both laughed. The cans touched, but Shermy accidentally spilled his all over himself. He began to disintegrate.
Stanford gasped, "Shermy!"
"It's okay, Ford," the clone reassured him. "I had a good run while it lasted. Don't forget what we talked about."
"And don't be a wimp around Danny, okay?" Shermy added. "For my sake…" The clone completely melted and bubbled into nothing but wet paper. Stanford paid his respects to Shermy and went back to the dance floor, where only his friends, Stanley, and a new girl remained.
"Stanford!" Stanley called out. "Where have you been! Meet my new friend!"