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Cast, as Credited

Helga Francesca Smith
Arnold Spencer Klein
Phoebe Anndi McAfee
Harold/Lil' Harold Justin Shenkarow
Dr. Bliss Kathy Baker
Big Bob Maurice LaMarche
Miriam Kath E. Soucie
Olga Nika
Principal Wartz David Wohl
Mr. Simmons Dan Butler
Little Arnold Rusty Flood
Brainy Craig Bartlett
Little Helga Katie Bartlett

Scene 1

( Principal Wartz plays with toy animals until Dr. Bliss enters the room.)

Principal Wartz:

Come in.

Dr. Bliss:

Principal Wartz? I'm Dr. Bliss.

Principal Wartz :

Oh, Dr. Bliss. I'm Principal Wartz. Welcome to P.S. 118.

Dr. Bliss:

Thank you.

Principal Wartz:

What did you mean by that?

Dr. Bliss:

Nothing.

Principal Wartz:

So Dr. Bliss, I heard the school district found room on their budget to send us a child psychologist on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school. Very nice of them. What are you doing here at 8:15?

Dr. Bliss:

I'm working on my psychological profile of you, Principal Wartz.

Principal Wartz:

What?

Dr. Bliss:

(giggles) I'm kidding. I just thought I'd come early. You know, spend the day observing your students.

Principal Wartz:

Ha, yes, of course, very well, doctor. Well, ake yourself at home. Roam the hall, observe if you like, but I really don't think you will find much that would interest a psychologist.

Dr. Bliss:

Oh? Why not?

Principal Wartz:

Because, doctor, unlike P.S. 117 and P.S. 119, P.S. 118 is the picture of mental health.

Scene 2

(Helga stomps down the halls, angry as usual.)

Helga:

Outta my way, geek bait!

Principal Wartz:

Well, happy hunting, doctor.

Dr. Bliss:

Thank you.

Helga:

(shoves kid to the floor) One side, moron! I'm walkin' here!

(Dr. Bliss' jaw drops at Helga.)

Helga:

What are you looking at?! (shoves another kid to the floor)

(Dr. Bliss starts writing down on her clipboard, walking after Helga. Cut to Mr. Simmons' class, Helga enters and walks to her seat. Harold is heard in the background laughing at the blackboard drawing of Mr. Simmons, which Mr. Simmons is erasing.)

Phoebe:

Ohayou gozaimasu, Helga.

Helga:

Ugh, no Japanese this morning, Phoebe, I have a headache.

Pheobe:

Oh, okay. English!

Mr. Simmons:

(whispering to Dr. Bliss, who is standing at the door) Oh, yes, yes. Well, welcome.

Helga:

Hey, who's the skirt?

Mr. Simmons:

Class, settle down please. Listening ears. Today we have a very, uh, special guest. Our school district "psychologist" (finger quotes), Dr. Bliss.

Helga:

Whoop-de-doo. The school shrink. Bring it on. I've got nothin' to hide.

(Helga draws a picture of Arnold.)

Mr. Simmons:

Dr. Bliss is out in the field today, observing classes and she has randomly chosen to observe us. Us meaning the students, I'm sure, not the teachers. Am I right, Dr. Bliss? (nervous chuckle) Well, anyway. just remember to be your own special selves as if nothing out of the ordinary is happening.

Helga:

(scoffs) That's easy.

( Helga shoots a spitball at Arnold causing him to glare at her.)

Helga:

What?!

( Arnold turns his head away and Dr. Bliss starts writing on her clipboard. Later, Helga looks at her mini figure she made of Arnold and swoons at him. Near the end of class, she shoots another spitball at Arnold causing him to glare at her again.)

Helga:

What?! What are you lookin' at Football Head?!

( Dr. Bliss notices Helga's rude behavior again and writes on her clipboard. The school bell rings for recces and Arnold gets up, sighs, and brushes the spitballs out of his hair. Dr. Bliss continues to write things down on her clipboard.)

Scene 3

Helga:

(at locker) Phoebe! Go save my four-square court. And if Harold tries to take it, tell him I'll pull his appendix out the old-fashioned way.

Pheobe:

Saving. (runs off)

Helga:

(Opens locker, looks over and sees Arnold down the hallway. Scoffs.) Arnold. What a nerd. What a goof. What a tiny-hatted little creep. How I hate him. And yet... (looks around) I love him. (takes out locket) Oh Arnold, bastion of sanity in this crazy mixed-up world in which we live. How tender I feel when you brush past me. How I forget my chaos. How the essence of you lingers, sweetening the air. And I feel peace: true peace at last. Ohh....

Brainy:

(breathing deeply) Hi.

(Helga smacks him and Dr. Bliss notices Brainy out cold.)

Dr. Bliss:

Oh my...

(Cut to Principal Wartz' office.')

Helga:

Okay, I hit him. So what?

Principal Wartz:

Miss Pataki, I don't need to remind you that striking another student is a direct violation of school policy.

Helga:

Brainy? He doesn't mind. I do it all the time. (Principal Wartz and Dr. Bliss exchange glances.) What?! You'd sock him too if he was standing there behind you breathing.

Dr. Bliss:

Breathing?

Helga:

Yes, breathing!

Principal Wartz:

Young lady, that is quite enough. When I welcomed Dr. Bliss to roam the halls of P.S. 118 I never imagined that she would find a candidate for treatment before lunchtime!

Helga:

Treatment?

Dr. Bliss:

Helga, I recommend that we meet after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Principal Wartz:

To punish you soundly for your blatantly insouciant acts of juvenile delinquency!

Dr. Bliss:

Principal Wartz, please sit down. May I handle this?

Principal Wartz:

Yes. Fine, fine. Of course. Take it away doctor.

(Principal Wartz pulls out two toy animals and starts playing with them.)

Dr. Bliss:

Helga, the point isn't to punish you. The point is to discuss the anti-social tendencies and examine possible strategies for improvement.

Helga:

Huh?

Dr. Bliss:

I think your behavior may be covering up other more important issues, and I want to try to get to the root of the matter. Maybe uncover some emotions you may be hiding.

(Helga looks down at her book, in which handmade mini figure of Arnold is hiding.)

Helga:

H-hiding?!

Scene 4

(Helga walks home, panicking.)

Helga:

Thinks I'm crazy? Hiding something? It's okay, Helga ol' girl. You're, you're fine fine. You can do it. You're not nuts.

(She crashes into a lemon cart and pictures them as yellow Arnold heads.)

Arnold Lemons:

Hey Helga. How's it goin'?

Helga:

Ohhh!

(Helga runs away from the lemons.)

Arnold Lemons:

Hey, where are you going? Come back! Helga, wait!

Helga:

Aaaaugh!

(Helga enters her house.)

Big Bob:

(on the phone) THERAPY?!?! Ahh, this never would've happened to Olga. Look, is this gonna cost me anything?! Good.

(Helga tries to sneak upstairs but her dad catches her.)

Big Bob:

Hold it right there missy! Report to the trophy room pronto!

(Big Bob and Miriam are standing in the trophy room, while Helga sits and watches them.)

Big Bob:

We didn't have therapy when I was a kid.

Helga:

(scoffs) That's obvious Bob.

Big Bob:

I don't want you blabbin' to some school shrink. We Patakis don't talk about things. Sweep 'em under the rug.

Miriam:

(sips her smoothie) Some things are best swept under the rug, Helga.

Big Bob:

Whatever you do, don't blab anything, or they'll give us all a one-way ticket to the Funny Farm. Ya got it?!

Helga:

I got it, Dad!

(Helga storms out of the room.)

Big Bob:

This never would've happened to Olga.

Miriam:

I know. I know, B.

Helga:

(In bathroom, brushing her teeth.) "I want to try to get to the root of the matter. Maybe uncover some emotions you may be hiding." (spits out toothpaste) What a disaster! (walks into bedroom, closes door) Well, I don't care how smart she is, no stinkin' shrink is gonna make me reveal my deepest, darkest secret: my love for Arnold!

(She enters her closet, closes the door, claps and the lights in her closet turn on revealing a shrine of Arnold. She turns on some tribal music, applies lipstick on her cheeks, ties a blanket on her like a cape, and bows down before the statue.)

Helga:

Oh Arnold, I call upon the power of thy sacred shrine. (puts on Arnold mask/helmet) Give me the strength and animal cunning to outwit the school shrink! Aah! (trips over Christmas lights tangled around her feet, falling out of the closet, still wearing Arnold costume)

(Miriam and Big Bob enter her room.)

Miriam:

Helga? We heard a crash. Are you alright honey?

Helga:

Of course. I was just... getting ready for bed.

Miriam:

Oh, okay. Well, sleep well. (closes the door)

Big Bob:

Yeesh! What a nutjob!

Miriam:

I need a smoothie...

Scene 5

(Helga gets off the bus, wearing a trenchcoat and hat, obviously trying to be inconspicuous. Phoebe walks by carrying some kind of musical instrument and notices her.)

Phoebe:

Hello, Helga.

Helga:

Huh?!

Phoebe:

Are you wearing a disguise because you're embarrassed about your upcoming sesion with Dr. Bliss? Because, in this day and age, therapy is perfectly acceptable and quite useful. There's nothing at all to be ashamed or nervous about.

Helga:

(scoffs) Nervous? Are you kidding? I'm just gonna make up stories for an hour. I won't even let her get a word in edgewise. It'll be a snap.

(Inside, Helga walks up to Dr. Bliss's door and ditches the disguise.)

Dr. Bliss:

(offscreen; answers phone) Hello, Doctors' office...

(Helga enters Dr. Bliss's office.)

Dr. Bliss:

Helga. Come in. How have you been?

Helga:

You mean since yesterday?

Dr. Bliss:

There's no need to be hostile, Helga.

Helga:

I'm not hostile! So you're a child psychologist? (sits down on couch)

Dr. Bliss:

That's right.

Helga:

Does that mean you weren't good enough to be a grown-up psychologist?

Dr. Bliss:

No, it means I chose child psychology because I'm interested in helping children.

Helga:

Well whoop-de-do for you, doc.

Dr. Bliss:

You seem angry.

Helga:

I am NOT angry. (clenches and twists magazine in a choking-like manner)

Dr. Bliss:

Helga, you're here to see me -

Helga:

"To discuss these anti-social tendencies and examine possible strategies for improvement." Right. Well, let the healing begin.

Dr. Bliss:

Alright.

Helga:

(looking at bookshelf) Did you read all those books?

Dr. Bliss:

Most of them.

Helga:

Did you write any of them?

Dr. Bliss:

No.

Helga:

How many books do you have to read to be a shrink?

Dr. Bliss:

Mm, you have to read a lot of books.

Helga:

So, are you an actual doctor? I mean, if I suddenly had a heart attack, would you be able to do anything about it?

Dr. Bliss:

Well, there's a heart clinic upstairs, so this would actually be a very good place for you to have a heart attack.

Helga:

(looks at painting) Nice picture. You like Edward Hopper?

Dr. Bliss:

I do.

Helga:

Yeah, he's okay. He's a little simple, though. And what's his deal with women, anyway?

Dr. Bliss:

That's pretty astute for a fourth-grader. I notice you're asking all the questions, however.

Helga:

Yeah, you got a problem with that?

Dr. Bliss:

No, ask away.

Helga:

Great! Then how about I sit in the big chair and you sit on the couch?

Dr. Bliss:

I don't see any harm in that.

Scene 6

(Dr. Bliss is lying on the couch and Helga is listening, sitting in the chair, holding the clipboard)

Helga:

So... What were you like as a child?

Dr. Bliss:

I liked animals. We had an Animal Club. We drew pictures our favorites. I liked giraffes and killer whales. I liked jumprope.

(Helga is nodding and writing down things -- we see that she's drawing a picture of Dr. Bliss with an arrow through her head.)

Helga:

You jumprope? What rhymes do you know?

Dr. Bliss:

Oh, 'Walking the Dog', 'Clinkin' Lincoln', 'Harbor Street'...

Helga:

You know 'Harbor Street'?

(Helga and Dr. Bliss are jumping rope together.)

Helga and Dr. Bliss:

(singsong) When they get in fights, this is what they say! Boys are rotten, made out of cotton, girls are sassy, made from molass-y, boys go to Jupiter to get more stupider, girls go to college to get more knowledge!

Dr. Bliss:

(lying back on the couch) And my sister kept it! She said, "You'd just break it." I was so mad, I snuck in her room and broke it when she was sleeping.

Helga:

(scoff) You think that's annoying, try having a sister that's perfect. (throwing darts at a dartboard)

Dr. Bliss:

Perfect? What do you mean, perfect?

Helga:

Well, she gets straight As at Bennington College, all the boys want to go out with her, but she's got to stay home and practice the piano for the Brandenberg Concerto she's giving at the orphanage this weekend! And Mom and Dad can't get enough of her. Last time she was home, I was going out of my mind. (throws a bullseye)

Scene 7

(The Pataki's house in black and white. Olga comes out of the kitchen carrying a pot of coffee. Audience applause.)

Olga:

Good morning! Who wants some more of my freshly-made Sumatran drip coffee?

Big Bob:

I'll have another cup if you made it. (winks and points at coffee cup)

Miriam:

Mm-hmm! When'd you wake up, honey?

Olga:

Oh, hours ago. I went down to the corner grocers for breakfast ingredients. I'm baking a lemon souffle.

(laughtrack)

Big Bob:

Haha, oh Olga, it's great to have you in the kitchen again. (hand grasps belt buckle) I'm going to have to put another notch in my lucky belt!

Miriam:

You sure do spoil us when you're home, honey.

Big Bob:

You sure do.

(Miriam and Big Bob laugh, laughtrack and cheering in background)

Helga:

Mooom! (sticks her head through the doorway, color comes back and the laughtrack is dropped) Did you pick up my winter coat from the cleaners?

Miriam:

What? Oh, oh Helga, I forgot. All the excitement... your sister being home from Alaska... But don't worry, because the weatherman said it should stay about freezing for most of the day.

(Helga scowls, growls, and storms into the kitchen.)

Big Bob:

Speaking of Alaska, Olga, tell us all about it. Start all over again from the very beginning.

(Helga opens her empty lunchbox, places a can of refried beans inside, throws a spoon in.)

Olga:

Ohhh! It was so wonderful, Daddy! The primeval forests... the streams choked with migrating salmon... les glaciers... the towering peak of McKinley...

(Helga picks up her lunchbox and walks towards the door, opens it to find it windy and snowing.)

Helga:

I'm going to school now.

(Miriam and Big Bob laugh in the background. Helga scowls and closes the door behind her. Shot of Helga walking by herself in the snow.)

Scene 8

(Back to Dr. Bliss' office. Another dart hits the dartboard.)

Helga:

Nobody in my house even knows I exist. They never listen to me. I think I'd go crazy if it wasn't for Arno...

(Helga stops short and looks at Dr. Bliss, panicked. Dr. Bliss looks up, intrigued.)

Helga:

Arno... are no air conditioners working in this entire building?! It must be 90 degrees in here!

Dr. Bliss

Then I'll turn on a fan. (stands)

Helga:

No, don't bother, I'm actually all talked-out, I'll just let myself out. (goes to open door)

Dr. Bliss:

Helga, there's still 49 minutes left in the session. Relax. Sit down.

Helga:

Ohh no. Forget it, doc. I'm onto you. You think if you hang out with me and tell me a little about yourself I'm gonna get all gushy and say anything you want. Well, it's not going to be that easy, sister.

Dr. Bliss:

Okay, Helga. We don't have to talk about your family. We can keep it light. We can talk about the weather, or sports, or your classmates. We can... talk about Arnold.

Helga:

(starts to walk out, but halts at the word) Arnold?!

(fade to black)

Scene 9

Dr. Bliss:

We can... talk about Arnold.

Helga:

Arnold? What about him?

Dr. Bliss:

Let's talk about him. He's special to you, isn't he?

Helga:

I don't know what you're talking about.

Dr. Bliss:

Well, yesterday morning in Mr Simmons' class, you threw 57 spitballs at him, you stared at him the whole time, and you called him 'Football Head'.

Helga:

Yeah, so? What's your point?

Dr. Bliss:

That's a lot of attention to pay to someone, even if it is negative.

Helga:

You got a problem with that?

(Dr. Bliss smiles and gestures towards the couch. Helga, still standing by the door, scowls and stomps over to sit on the couch.)

Dr. Bliss:

You seem angry with him in particular.

Helga:

I am not angry at him, that was completely random. I was throwing spitballs at him because... uh... because it was Arnold Day on my calendar. Today was Gerald Day, I shot rubber bands at Gerald. Really. (nervous laugh)

Dr. Bliss:

Okay, then. We'll move on. (stands up and walks towards desk)

Helga:

(to herself) Phew, she's moving on. Nice recovery, Helga. Now, all I have to do is stay focused. No matter what, stay away from the subject of Arnold.

Dr. Bliss:

Now, we're going to do some tests. (returns from desk with white cards)

Helga:

Oh, tests?

Dr. Bliss:

Yes, we'll start with inkblots. I want you to look at these and describe what you see.

(Dr. Bliss shows the first one. It morphs into the silhouette of Arnold's head.)

Helga:

Ar... ar... architecture of some kind? (nervous laugh)

(Dr. Bliss shows the second. It, again, morphs into Arnold, this time with distinct facial features.)

Helga:

Ar... ar... Inverted soup tureen... that's on fire! (nervous laugh, pulls at collar) Hot in here...

(Dr. Bliss shows the third. It, again, morphs into Arnold, fully in color, turning and winking at her.)

Helga:

Ar... ar... aren't you tired of this? I mean, what do a bunch of inkblots tell you, anyway? They-they're just inkblots.(takes the inkblot cards from Dr. Bliss and throws them out the window, walks over and sits at desk)

Dr. Bliss:

You're right, that's enough inkblots. How about we try a little word association? Now, I'm going to read off this list of words and I want you to say the next word that comes to mind.

Helga:

(fiddling with pencil) Steady, girl. You can do it. Do not say Arnold.

Dr. Bliss:

Love.

Helga:

Hate.

Dr. Bliss:

Rocket.

Helga:

Locket. Pocket! Davy Crockett!!

Dr. Bliss:

Football.

Helga:

Head. Heh, did I say head? I mean game, football game. (reclines in chair)

Dr. Bliss:

Monday.

Helga:

Night football. (falls over backwards in chair with a shriek, gets up) Enough word associations.

Dr. Bliss:

Good idea.

Helga:

Let's move on. What else do you wanna talk about?

Dr. Bliss:

You said that no one at home notices that you exist.

Helga:

And?

Dr. Bliss:

Well, I think that's very sad, Helga. Everyone needs to be noticed. Otherwise, life would be terribly lonely.

Helga:

You got that right.

Dr. Bliss:

Your mom doesn't notice you?

Helga:

My mom? (scoff) My mom wouldn't notice me if I was an alien pod-person chanting Hare Krishna and spitting nickels. The other morning, I was in the kitchen, running late, as usual...

Scene 10

(Helga is standing on a chair in her kitchen, searching through the top shelf.)

Helga:

Mooom! (walks into the living room) Miriam?!

Big Bob:

(walking upstairs) She's asleep on the couch.

Helga:

Again?

(Miriam sits up. The studio audience is back, applauding and cheering.)

Miriam:

Wha... wha? Oh, I was looking for my keys.

Helga:

They're hanging on the hook, Miriam.

Miriam:

Oh, good. (laughtrack)

Helga:

Mom! I'm late for school, and no one made my lunch! (they walk into the kitchen)

Miriam:

Oh, yeah, I did honey, I put it out for you. (wanders around kitchen) It's, it's... It's around here somewhere...

(Helga facepalms in frustration.)

Miriam:

Oh, here it is! (opens oven and pulls out lunchbox)

(Laughtrack. Helga is unimpressed. She snatches the lunchbox and opens it.)

Helga:

(scornfully) Moist towelettes, an individual packet of crackers, and a can of shaving cream?

Miriam:

Oh! How did that get in there? (laughs) Uh oh, uh oh, that must mean the cheese fizz is in B's medicine cabinet.

(Cut to Big Bob upstairs in bathroom. Laughtrack.)

Big Bob:

Ohh, Miriam!! Aughhh! How am I supposed to run a beeper empire with my face smelling like hickory smoked cheddar, Miriam?!

Scene 11

(Back in Dr. Bliss' office.)

Dr. Bliss:

Did you eventually get to school?

Helga:

Yeah.

Dr. Bliss:

What did you have for lunch?

Helga:

I traded the shaving cream with Harold for a Mr. Fudgey bar. He thought it was some sort of whipped topping. (scoff) What an idiot.

Dr. Bliss:

So what about your dad? He doesn't notice you either?

Helga:

(scoff) Are you kidding? All he cares about is Olga, because she's so perfect. She's got him completely buffaloed, always has, as far back as I can remember...

Scene 12

(Sounds of piano playing in the Pataki house. Olga is sitting at the piano, playing, with Big Bob and Miriam standing behind her watching. Little Helga, age 4 or 5, wanders into the room.)

Miriam

That was wonderful, honey! (hugs Olga)

Big Bob:

You're a stinkin' genius!

Little Helga:

(pulls on Big Bob's pant leg) Daddy, who's gonna take me to pweschool?

Big Bob:

Eh? (looks down at Little Helga, shakes her off his leg) Oh, yeah, sure. Come on, play us another one, Olga.

Olga:

I know, how about the Minute Waltz by Monsieur Frederic Chopin?

Miriam:

Oh! I love that one.

Big Bob:

Yeah! You should hear her play Beethoven, Miriam.

Miriam:

Can you believe our Olga? Concert pianist at 15! Class valedictorian!

Big Bob:

Plus she's won every spelling bee in the whole darn city! Haha! (gestures at trophy display) Makes me proud to be a Pataki.

Little Helga:

Hey, who's taking me to pweschool? (tugs impatiently on Big Bob's pant leg)

Big Bob:

Yeah, in a minute, Olga.

Little Helga:

No, I'm Helga, Dad! Helga!

Big Bob:

Whatever. Go play outside, would ya?

Little Helga:

I'm going to pweschool!

Big Bob:

What do you know, one minute flat! (laughs) You're amazing, Olga!

Little Helga:

(halfway out the door) I'm going to pweschool!

(As it begins to rain, Helga walks by herself through the stormy streets and she passes the hobo, sleeping in an alley. A passing car splashes her with mud, and a stray dog wrestles her lunchbox from her grip.

(Cut back to Dr. Bliss' office.)

Dr. Bliss:

So, nobody's ever noticed you.

Helga:

...There was someone...

Scene 13

(Little Helga is walking by herself in the rain when suddenly an umbrella, held by Little Arnold, age 4 or 5, is held over her head. She looks up at it and then at him.)

Little Arnold:

Hi. Nice bow.

Little Helga:

Huh?

Little Arnold:

I like your bow, because it's pink like your pants.

(Arnold walks to the door, closes his umbrella, and goes inside. Helga looks up at her bow and touches it, and then smiles. She presses her face against the glass door and sighs dreamily at Little Arnold.)

(inside the preschool. Little Helga is staring dreamily at Little Arnold, who laughs with Little Gerald and does their secret handshake. Little Helga adjusts her bow and sighs dreamily. While she's distracted, Little Harold reaches in and steals her graham cracker cookies, laughing at her as he eats them. She's about to cry when Arnold comes over.)

Little Arnold:

Want mine?

(Little Helga nods mutely and takes the crackers. He walks away and waves over his shoulder, and she waves back, smiling. 'She sighs dreamily and clasps her hands together. Little Harold imitates her and the children -- who include Little Harold, Little Rhonda, Little Sid, and Little Stinky -- laugh at her. Little Helga gets angry and pushes Little Harold to the ground.)

Little Helga:

Quit laughing geekbait, or you'll have to answer to Old Betsy and the Five Avengers!

Little Harold:

Old who and the five what?

Little Helga:

My fists, stupid! That's their names!

Little Harold:

What?! Wait, wait, your fists have names?! Oh, you're confusing me!

(Little Helga jumps on Little Harold's stomach and he grunts. She begins to storm around the preschool, knocking down the block building Little Phoebe was making.)

Little Helga:

I'm the boss around here, got it?

(The other children -- Little 'Phoebe, Little Sid, Little Stinky, and Little Harold nod mutely.)

(scene changes, Helga is storming around the art stations, stepping in Little Eugene's clay and spilling paint on Sheena.)

Little Helga:

That's right, I'm walking here, Helga G. Pataki.

Little Harold:

What's the G stand for?

Little Helga:

None of your beeswax! Now get busy with your fingerpainting before I make you wear it! (pokes Little Harold in the nose with her paint-covered finger, making a dot appear there)

Little Harold:

Okay. (muttered) Madame fortress mommy...

(Little Helga scowls at Little Sid, who runs away. Helga spots Arnold fingerpainting and stares dreamily at him. Then, checking to make sure no one's looking, Helga sits down in front of the trash can and pulls out a picture of Arnold on a pink paper heart.)

Little Helga:

I love you, Arnold, and I wanna marry you.

(Heavy breathing sounds can be heard, and Helga looks up to see Little Brainy popping out of the trashcan. She punches him in the face, and he falls over.)

Scene 14

(back to Dr. Bliss' office)

Helga:

And I'm trying to hide behind the stinkin' garbage can, I'm just trying to get a minute alone, and there he is, breathing away. Of course I hit him!

Dr. Bliss:

And why did you want that minute alone, Helga?

Helga:

Because of - (sighs and crosses arms) Leave me alone.

.Dr. Bliss:

I'm hearing your anger again, Helga.

Helga:

Okay, so you hear my anger, so I get angry. I already told you that I've got a lame mom, a blowhard dad, and a perfect sister. So they make me mad, big deal.

Dr. Bliss:

So why do you take it out on Arnold?

Helga:

Why do you keep bringing up Arnold? I am not angry at Arnold.

Dr. Bliss:

Helga, I've seen you express more anger at him than anyone else.

Helga:

I don't know what you're talking about.

Dr. Bliss:

You know, Helga, if you feel like getting something off your chest, like how you feel about Arnold, now might be a pretty good time to do it. Anything you say will be kept in confidence of course.

Helga:

...Confidence?

Dr. Bliss:

It's my professional code not to tell what goes on here.

Helga:

You're sworn not to tell?

Dr. Bliss:

Of course, Helga.

Helga:

I mean, you're sworn, right? Even if you were tortured, you'd never tell?

Dr. Bliss:

I swear never to tell. (raises left hand in an oath)

Helga:

You mean, so, like, if someone stuck your head in a cage with a starved, rabid rat, you'd still wouldn't tell?

Dr. Bliss:

Even then, Helga, I still wouldn't tell.

Helga:

Well... I...

Dr. Bliss:

You...?

Helga:

I... I love Arnold! (panting) There, I said it! I love him! I love him! Arnold, Arnold, Arnold! I'm absotively posilutely in love with the boy! I wanna grow up and have a fabulous life with him, traveling around the world: coffee in Paris, roses, sailboats, the whole nine yards! I wanna have a perfume named after us: Arnold and Helga! I love Arnold!!! (panting, a car alarm goes off outside) Satisfied?

Dr. Bliss:

Now we're getting somewhere!

Helga:

And if you ever tell anyone, I'll rip your tongue out and wrap it around your neck!

Dr. Bliss:

Don't worry. You can trust me.

Helga:

(heavy sigh) Yeah... that was building up for awhile.

Dr. Bliss:

I know. But you said it, and the world didn't end, did it?

Helga:

(sigh) No. I guess I'm pretty sick, aren't I? I mean, I once sculpted Arnold's likeness out of wads of his used gum.

Dr. Bliss:

You're not sick. You feel your feelings very strongly. You're very creative. (pause) Did you say used gum?

(Helga nods and smiles awkwardly)

Dr. Bliss:

Okay. So, you love Arnold, and you're scared to tell him 'cause he might not love you back. Helga, this kind of thing happens every day, but you realize that you'll never know how he feels until you tell him.

Helga:

But I'm not ready to tell him!

Dr. Bliss:

You don't have to tell him now. You can do it when you're ready.

Helga:

You mean I can still keep it a secret?

Dr. Bliss:

Mmhmm.

Helga:

It's okay to be obsessed about him? Y'know, the shrines and stuff, the 3 AM vigils, the tantric spells?

Dr. Bliss:

As long as you're not hurting anyone, it sounds like an okay way to express yourself.

Helga:

So, animal sacrifices are out.

Dr. Bliss:

Yes, I'm afraid so.

Helga:

So, it's okay to be Helga. I can go out there and yell and boss the other kids around, right?

Dr. Bliss:

Right!

Helga:

What about Brainy? Can I still sock him?

Dr. Bliss:

No, don't sock Brainy. That's why you're here in the first place.

(Helga shrugs, grinning.)

Dr. Bliss:

Okay, that's plenty to think about! The session's over, Helga.

Helga:

What, already? But we were just starting to make some progress!

Dr. Bliss:

We can talk again.

(Helga runs out of the office. A second later, she runs back and hugs Dr. Bliss, then runs away again.)

Scene 15

(Helga gets off the bus, smiling and then sighs happily and places her hands on her hips.)

Helga:

Man! I feel great! So clean! Confession is good for the soul. (grabs a passing woman) It's the new, honest me!

(Helga lets go of the woman and strides away happily towards a corner. On the other sidewalk leading to the corner, Arnold is walking, carrying a bag of groceries. They walk into each other and both fall over. Arnold stands and offers his hand out to Helga.)

Arnold:

Sorry, Helga.

Helga:

Arnold! (she takes his hand and he pulls her up) I just wanna say that... that... that you should watch where you're walking, Football Head! Quit crashing into me all the time! Sheesh!

Arnold:

Nice running into you too, Helga.

(Helga runs down the street and into a nearby alley. She peers around the corner to watch Arnold picking up his groceries, and she laughs.)

Helga:

Look at him! All ticked off. He doesn't get it! He doesn't know my secret! (laugh) What a sap. What a maroon. He still can't even tell... that I adore him. (pulls out her locket) Ohh, my football-headed love god. I'm okay, you're okay, we're all okay! I love you, love you, love you!!

(Brainy appears from a nearby arch, wearing a bowtie and a button-up shirt, breathing heavily as always. He holds out a ring in a ball won from a vending machine. The Wedding March plays in the background. He walks over and places it in her hand.)

Helga:

(looks down at ring and then chucks it aside) Look, Brainy, this is just weird. How is it that you're standing behind me again? How did you get in this little arch? Were you waiting for me to come to this alley? What's your deal?

(Brainy doesn't reply, just stares and breathes.)

Helga:

(puts arm around Brainy and walks towards alley exit) Alright, I'm not gonna hit you this time. This one's for free. Today I'm feeling generous. But tomorrow, look out. (pats Brainy on the cheek)

(Helga strides away happily and Brainy puts a hand to his cheek, smiling. Helga walks past the lemon stand again, and the lemons, again, morph into Arnolds.)

Arnold Lemons:

Hey Helga, how you doin'? Lookin' good!

(Helga turns and points and winks at them.)

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