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Old 03-26-2010, 01:43 AM   #1
JWood201
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Default "Nothing But Trouble" (a complete story! omg!)

“Nothing But Trouble”

I’ve always been intrigued by the part in “It’s Magic” when Gilligan makes a point of lamenting “Even Mary Ann” after all the other castaways comment on how irritating he can be. I also found it odd that she commented at all, as she usually doesn’t put him down.

This takes place during “It’s Magic” in between the scenes where everyone brings him dinner and their sad powwow around the fire. I’m not sure if this is the best use of this story possibility, but I wanted to comment on all the loose emotional threads of this episode. (I also wanted to comment on the money carpet and the 'No body iz hom' sign, haha).

----------------------

Mary Ann stepped cautiously over a fallen log and pushed aside low-hanging palm fronds as she slowly navigated her way down the dense jungle path. She held a dim torch out in front of her and desperately tried to remember if she should have went left at the fork in the path instead of right.

She hated going out alone at night. Absolutely hated it. She didn’t know how Gilligan could stand it, let alone find his way without any light, as he so routinely did. She could get turned around on the twisting jungle paths trying to get to the lagoon in clear daylight. The island nights were filled with eerie shadows and menacing sounds whose culprits who were never found, even once the sun rose.

Mary Ann jumped back and screamed as a dense black shadow flew by with only a few inches to spare and disappeared into the jungle with a crash and a squawk. She still felt the rushing wind against her face as she leaned against a fat palm tree, one hand over her heart, and breathed heavily. “It’s just a bird. Relax. You like birds. You have chickens. But chickens don’t fly at your head in the middle of the jungle.”

Mary Ann whirled around at the sound of branches breaking behind her. She brandished her torch at her pursuer and gasped when the orange flame illuminated, “Gilligan!”

“Mary Ann!”

“What are you doing here?”

“I live in the jungle now, remember? What are you doing here? You hate going out alone at night.”

“I do not! Actually, I find it very relaxing.” A sudden simian yell from somewhere in the jungle propelled her forward and she latched onto him.

Gilligan stumbled backwards a bit, but couldn’t help but laugh as he gently took the torch from her. “Fine. I hate it. But I was worried about you.”

“You guys were just here half an hour ago with dinner and the blanket. Thanks, by the way.” He grinned down at her goofily and she frowned.

“I know, but I just couldn’t stand the thought of you out here all alone.”

“But I’m fine.” Gilligan smiled bigger, as if to prove his point. “Except you’re kinda poking holes in me.” He grimaced slightly and glanced down at where her fingernails were digging into his left side.

“Sorry.” Mary Ann smiled sheepishly into his shirt, but loosened her grip only slightly.

Gilligan shifted from one foot to the other uncomfortbaly. His left arm was starting to ache from holding the torch up and his right from having nowhere safe to put it. He had started to put his arm down before, but realized just in time that it would’ve ended up around her waist, so he resorted to letting it hang awkwardly in mid-air.

“Mary Ann. I think you should –.” The air was momentarily knocked out of him when an animal of some sort crashed through the underbrush not too far from them and Mary Ann tightened her arms around him again.

Gilligan had been fully intending on telling her to go back to camp, that he was a Lone Wolf and would be living out in the jungle from now on. But then he made the mistake of looking down at her. He could feel the warmth on his chest from where her cheek was pressed against his shirt. Her eyes were open wide and constantly surveying the jungle around them.

He couldn’t send her back to camp alone. He was positive she’d never agree to go back by herself anyway and the Lone Wolf was never going back at all. Maybe she just needed some time to calm down.

Mary Ann lifted her head to look at him. The spot on his shirt instantly dropped twenty degrees and he shivered slightly. “I should what, Gilligan?”

“Um. I think you should come see my new house. It’s real swell. I’ve got carpet.”

Some of the fear left Mary Ann’s eyes and she raised her eyebrows incredulously. “You mean the Lone Wolf is going to let a girl into his den?”

“Nah, you’re not a girl. You’re Mary Ann.” Gilligan smiled, apparently finding this terribly witty.

Mary Ann, however, frowned and loosened her terrified grip on him. “Gee, thanks a lot, Gilligan.”

“What? No! I mean, I know you’re a girl,” he backpedalled. “Obviously. A very nice, sweet, pretty girl.”

“Gilligan, you’re babbling,” she admonished with a smile.

“Sorry. I just meant that you’re my pal.”

Mary Ann’s frown returned and she released him completely. “Oh, Gilligan.”

“What?!”

“It’s getting late. I think I should go –.” Another bird shrieked in a tree directly above their heads and Mary Ann grabbed his free arm, clutching it to herself. “I think I should go see your new place. I’ve never seen a cave with carpet before.”

“Oh, yeah, it’s great.” He grinned. “Because then if you get tired of it, you can just collect it up and use it to buy new real carpet. Come on.” Gilligan started down the path towards his cave with Mary Ann still clinging to his hand, scampering to keep up.

----------------------

“Turn around.”

“What for?”

“Just do it.”

Gilligan sighed and complied as Mary Ann knelt down in the dirt to crawl through the tiny opening in the rocks into the cave.

“I don’t see why I have to –.” Gilligan turned back towards the cave and froze when he saw her, halfway through the door on her hands and knees, her dress having ridden up until it was barely covering what it should be covering. A tan hand appeared from inside the cave and tried unsuccessfully to yank it back into place.

“Did you turn around?”

“Yes,” he answered automatically, before realizing he was a liar and spinning back around.

Gilligan crawled into the cave with his eyes closed, not sure exactly what he’d find once he got inside. This is why girls were no good in the jungle.

“What are you doing?”

Gilligan cautiously opened one eye and peered in the direction the voice had come from. Mary Ann was watching him curiously from one of the blankets they had brought him, propped up against the wall with her ankles crossed in front of her. She glanced around critically. “I like what you’ve done with the place.”

Gilligan grinned and sat down on the blanket next to her. “Thanks.” He winced and shifted to the left, pulling Mr. Howell’s teddy bear out of the blanket underneath him. She laughed and he handed her the bear, which she held lovingly in her lap. “I can attach my hammock to those pointy rocks that stick out of the walls over there. And that alcove on the other wall would make a great closet. And maybe I can get a nice piece of art for that great big wall over there.”

“Gilligan, come home,” she interrupted. She stared up at him, giving him the best look of devsatated doe-eyed innocence she could muster. He hated that.

He sighed. “I can’t.”

“Please?” Mary Ann added a slight pout to her expression and he groaned.

“Mary Ann, don’t look at me like that.”

“Like what?”

“I’m not going back. You don’t want me there.”

“Yes, I do,” she whispered, affectionately hugging Teddy.

Gilligan sighed and slid his half-eaten third dinner between them. “Do you want some pineapple?” he ventured after a moment. “After two other dinners, I could barely eat half of this one.”

He barely heard her quiet “No” from behind the swinging pigtails of her bowed head as she distractedly picked imaginary fuzz from Teddy’s fur.

“I should probably tell you something,” Gilligan tried again after a moment. “But I don’t want you to get upset.”

“Too late,” she replied bluntly, but finally looked up at him.

It was Gilligan’s turn to look at his lap. “I might not be out here if you hadn’t said I was nothing but trouble. I’m used to everyone else picking on me, but yours hurt.” Gilligan turned to look at her and shouldn’t have been surprised to find her eyes already pooling with water. “Mary Ann, please don’t cry! Stop!”

“I know!” she wailed, “I’m awful!”

“No, you’re not!” Gilligan sat up on his knees and peered at her. “You’re not!”

“Yes, I am! I’ve felt awful about what I said all day. And then when we realized you’d heard us, it was so much worse.” Gilligan could only understand every other word through her sobs. The tears in her eyes had spilled over and were running down her cheeks in perfectly straight lines. He reached out instinctively to wipe them off, but she pushed his hands away. “When did I get so mean? It was so awful. I didn’t mean it! I’m sorry!”

“It’s okay. I am nothing but trouble.”

“No, you’re not!”

“Yes, I am!”

“Gilligan, be quiet!” Mary Ann got to her feet and towered over him. “I came all the way out here in the dark to apologize to you, so let me!”

“No! I don’t want you to. I already forgave you, it’s okay!”

Mary Ann froze and stared down at him. “You did?” The confusion in her eyes suddenly flashed back to anger and Gilligan flinched at the change. “Then why did you tell me that you wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t said anything? That’s just mean!”

With this, she hurled Teddy at him and turned on her heel. She knelt down by the cave entrace and whirled on him again, a demanding finger pointed in his direction. “Turn around!”

Gilligan sprang to his feet and was at her side in a moment, grabbing her arm and hauling her to her feet. “You can stay here as long as you want, Gilligan! I don’t care!”

Mary Ann struggled with him until he finally pinned her arms against his chest by wrapping his arms around her. “Mary Ann, just listen! I guess I told you because it really hurt my feelings. More than what everyone else said. You’re my best friend; you’re supposed to be on my team.” Mary Ann stopped struggling and looked up at him from under a furrowed brow. “What you say matters more than everyone else and you should know that. Can I let go now?” he asked after a moment of relatively calm silence. “Are you going to throw more stuff at me?”

Mary Ann shook her head and he cautiously released her. She instantly wrapped her newly-freed arms around his torso, hugging him tightly. “I’m sorry, Gilligan. I don’t want you to stay here as long as you want. I do care. Please come home.”

He could feel her leftover tears soaking through that spot on his shirt and awkwardly hugged her back. He sighed. “Okay.”

----------------------

“Will you be okay to get back from here?”

Mary Ann nodded, glancing over her shoulder through the few hundred feet of jungle separating them from their camp. They could hear the distant voices of their friends around the campfire.

“Why won’t you just come back now? I don’t understand. They apologized.”

“Because I told them I’m a Lone Wolf from now on. If I go back on my own, they’ll think I chickened out and make fun of me. I know they’ll come up with some crazy plan to get me to come home. Besides, maybe I’ll get a party out of it.” Gilligan grinned and he saw Mary Ann do the same in the dim torch light.

“That’s very smart, Gilligan.”

“You gotta play along, though, okay?”

She nodded and gave him a lingering kiss on the cheek. “I’ll see you later.” She started to turn away, but paused. “Gilligan. You do know how to spell ‘is,’ don’t you?”

Gilligan grinned. “Of course I do. But spelling it with a Z made it look like one of those signs on the swell clubhouses that kids make that girls aren’t allowed in.” Mary Ann raised her eyebrows and he added, “Except you.”

Mary Ann smiled. “Thanks, Gilligan.”

He watched her approach camp and emerge from the jungle. She sat down next to Ginger and gave a great dramatic sigh as the Skipper lamented the loss of the dinners and blankets, Howell chiming in about his beloved teddy bear.

Gilligan turned to go back to his cave, but jumped back when a large black shadow swooped by his face and disappeared into the jungle. "It's just a bird. You like birds."
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Old 03-26-2010, 07:00 PM   #2
callensensei
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You've done a great job of tying up the loose threads here: why Gilligan was especially upset about Mary Ann's comment, why he still refused to return to camp when by his own admission he had already forgiven his friends, and even why he misspelled "iz"! I think it's true that Mary Ann might have felt the most guilty over criticizing him, since she obviously did so against her better judgement: she was simply too weak to stand up for him.

Some sweet comic touches here: the "turn around" scenes, Gilligan's telling Mary Ann she's not a girl, and the torch scene. You portray their relationship as gentle and innocent on both sides.

And I loved the idea of Gilligan's natural affinity for the jungle and its creatures. No wonder he could stay out in the jungle alone at night; he never really was alone.

This was a delightful piece. Thank you!
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Old 03-26-2010, 09:29 PM   #3
JWood201
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Thanks! By the time I was halfway done with this, I got the idea that I want to write something where they get into some crazy fight. This was a start, I guess, haha.

I think I'm getting back in the writing mood, hopefully.

Thanks for the comments!
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Old 08-04-2017, 09:23 AM   #4
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Good stuff! I always loved Gilligan's childish spelling and you included that which was great. I think the only other time Mary Ann was irritated/mean with Gilligan was episode 21. She scolded him for kicking sand on her after running into Duke (he could've suffered a concussion from running into Duke's coconut-like bicep). Then she ignores him. Later she admonishes him to "give up" when he's trying to lift the barbell and walks off with Duke despite Gilligan crying for help as the weight hangs precariously over him. Love your writing. Hope things pick up on this board again!
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