* * *
Cecil Terwilliger, formerly of cell block 4, Springfield Penitentiary, was pleased to say he was not insane,
thank you very much. His life was (most of the time) perfectly normal. He had never tried to run for mayor on a
corrupted agenda. He had never married someone just to murder them, and he had never held the city ransom
with a nuclear weapon. No sir! Cecil was just about the nicest, most pleasant guy you'd ever want to meet.
It was his brother that was weird.
The red-haired Terwilliger sibling stooped down at their front door and retrieved the envelopes. As he
shuffled through the mail, he predicted that within them were bills, begs for subscriptions to trivial publications
about theories about a musician's surgically-enhanced nose, which rat-faced boy-band dropout would become the
next bubblegum pop sensation, or who Selma Bouvier was dating this week. His expressive onyx eyes blinked in
surprise at one particular piece of paper.
He entered the kitchen, where Cecil was pouring himself some coffee.
"Cecil? Take a look at this. It's from Mom and Dad." All in a sudden their carpet was victimized of a dark,
unsightly coffee stain. After this many years, their estranged parents were pretty much unheard of, unknowns;
vague memories of their past that they wished they could see again-- especially upon reading the curious postcard
that they had sent their sons.
Mr. Bob and Cecil Terwilliger
53 Willow Lane
And this, penned in elegant script:
Dear Robert and Cecil:
Hope you're doing well.
Bringing your little cousin from Shelbyville. We trust the child in your care and protection.
Mom and Dad.
The siblings looked at each other.
"... Shelbyville?!" Bob repeated.
"Okay, okay." Cecil began. He held the postcard in his hands and examined it. "What a mysterious notice."
Bob thoughtfully put his hand to his chin. "True, we have uncountable cousins; brats, mutants and adults
alike, but why would one of them be suddenly shipped off to us like this?"
"Mm. Maybe Father started drinking again and forgot our...ah... unsavory past. As he does other things, like
when he asks about 'what truck hit him' the previous night and such." His voice lowered with bitterness. "And
then I'd say, 'Well, Dad, I don't suppose that the pub delivers whisky to go in a truck, so I don't know what--"
Bob was staring at him for a bit, then rolled his eyes and sighed.
"... Or not."
The spiky-haired man then collapsed on the couch. "Either way, we'll be having company in this cramped-up
chicken coop, like it or not," he said, crossing his legs discreetly as he reclined-- alas, reclined far moreso than
* * *
"It was really nice of you to let me join you for dinner, Mrs. Simpson," Katherine commented as she sat down
at the Simpsons' dinnertable. Bart quickly, deliberately took a seat next to her and smiled warmly.
Over the time he had known her, it was then he finally knew that he was falling for his new friend Kathy. Her
appearance was unique, somewhat frightening in some eerie, beautiful way. Her persona, reclusive; not exactly
one to talk about herself much and quick to change the subject when conversation comes to her (aw, sweet
modesty, he supposed), and, with her vandalizing techniques, good sense of humour with dirty jokes poked at
celebrities (though he wasn't fond of her jabs at Krusty the Klown, but whatt're you gonna do?), also what you
could call a bad girl for this bad boy.
"Hey, any friend of Bart's is a friend of mine." Homer said and grinned. Marge nodded kindly in agreement as
she set the plates onto the table. Katherine, being a vegetarian, picked at her plate of mere vegetables.
A sudden rap on glass could be heard. The patriarch of the family, Homer, looked over to the window. "Get
"But you guys have my ear medicine!" He yelled out.
"Go home, Milhouse," Homer replied.
The boy then put his hand to his ear. "Whaaaat?!" he called out before Homer closed the blinds.
"So, Katherine... tell us some about yourself! Where do you and your parents live?" Marge questioned politely.
To this, the red-haired girl's expression changed. "Um...well... I kinda just live with my older brother, actually."
She danced her fork along her food for a bit. "And he's in prison right now."
"Oh, really? Well, I'm sorry... we really offer our deepest--"
Bart intervened before his mother could finish. "COOOOOOL!" Then, it was Lisa's turn to speak. She was sitting
opposite-side to Katherine, and she offered some advice.
"The revolving-door prison system works. Your brother will be released soon enough."
"Unless, of course, they're psychopathic murderers out with butcher knives out to gut you like a chicken when
you never expect it. .....RAARGH!" As a gesture after his dramatic pause, Homer stabbed his fork into his pork
Marge. with a scowl, took to scold. "Homer!"
"Hey, a kid that age should look out for herself, Marge."
Selma Bouvier looked up from her plate. She and her sister Patty, of course, had been invited at coincidentally the
same time, and she gave some words of wisdom to the newcomer:
"Yeah. Especially at your young age. You know, before you get old, get married three unsuccessful times, and
spend your days waiting to be half-eaten by an Alsatian. But still, you someday hope you'll be lucky like some
people, and find your true love --"
She was interrupted by a loud, rip-roaring belch from Homer. "MARGE! PASS THE GRAVY!"
Patty continued from where Selma left off. "Or you can just live the simple life. Make sure not to wear your
sanity too thin..." -- she then flashed a glance at Homer -- "...unlike other problems that could be larger than life."
The "Gruesome Twosome" then proceeded to share a chuckle. "Eheh. Eheheheheheh. Eheheh."
"Hey, shut up!" Homer whined. Marge sighed. Lisa slapped her forehead. Bart was happily listening to Katherine,
who started sharing some stories of her own.
"...Then I told the girl, 'Listen up! Gardening tools are evil! They hurt! You never know-- one day, maybe you'd
be the one pushing daisies instead of your shovel!'" She giggled hysterically at her own joke. The others laughed as
Lisa, like Bart, suddenly had a stare fixed on Katherine. Unlike the wishy-washy state that her brother had sunk into,
the eight-year-old was quite alert. The new girl's prescence, to Lisa, was deja vu-esque, as if she'd met her before;
and her appearance was strangely familiar. Was it her smile, her demeanor that could either be of playfulness or pure
evil? Or could it have been her extra-closeness to Bart that seemed too suspicious to be in all innocence?
She decided to look closer.
"So! Uh... uhm... ah..." Be subtle, Lisa thought to herself. "Do I know you from somewhere?"
Katherine glanced at Lisa. "No, I don't think so... but I've heard alot about you, Lisa." She smiled cutely. "... from
your brother, I mean."
Once dinner was finished, it was still early evening. Everyone was just starting to leave the table when Katherine
suddenly looked at her watch.
Bart noticed this. "Something wrong?"
"No, just... I think I gotta go. I'm really sorry to leave so soon, though. Family... I think," she said with a chuckle.
"Thanks for tonight, though. I'll see you later, Bart."
"See ya." Bart responded as he opened the door for her courteously. Katherine nodded, waved to the rest of the
family, and left.
Not a second after she had gone, the boy went to the window and watched her departure. Lisa eyed her brother
suspiciously. Alas, she wasn't the only one who noticed Bart's peculiar behavior over the night, though.
Patty slanted her eyes. "I don't like this new girl. Bart, you can't marry her."
"If you value your life, don't," Selma added.
To this, Bart shrugged. "I've never really valued my life much before..." He then peered out the window again and
watched Katherine walk off into the distance.
"But I do now..." He sighed wistfully.
Lisa was disgusted. "Oh, Bart..." She and Marge exchanged a "mmmmm" murmur of disappointment.
* * *
Two weeks have passed since we last caught up with the Terwilligers. The flat was filled with an air of curiousity
and anticipation over the young visitor that would come along any minute.
At the doorbell's musical chime, the living room's floor was trampled by hurrying footsteps. Bob approached the
door, tossed his hair, as if in an attempt to make a fashionable impression on the visitor. "He's here! At last!"
Cecil followed, a little less enthusiastic than his brother. "Well, now's my chance to sharpen my fine babysitting
Bob looked intently at him, raising an eyebrow. "It takes time."
"I can imagi-- ... Heeeeey."
The ensuing arguement was delayed when Bob threw open the door and for the first time met his new company.
A rather short kid, dressed snugly in blue jeans and a tattered-looking dark purple jacket, stood at the entrance
to the apartment. His small hands were concealed within the front pocket of the jacket, almost as well hidden as his
face, which was obscured by the hood of the coat pulled over the head as far as the forehead-- the only attribute
that was best visible were some short locks of red hair, fully reminiscent of Bob's.
"Welcome home!" Bob offered his visitor his typical charming smile, and took the newcomer into a welcoming
embrace. "So good of you to come! So--"
Bob paused. Something... didn't feel right when he hugged his cousin.
He reared back to look at the stranger he just embraced. As his eyes travelled downward, something---that had
previously caught his chest-- caught his eye. Something lumpy. Either he was imagining things, or that jacket
needed some heavy-duty ironing, or...
"Carrying something with you, er...what's your name, lad--" he asked, as he touched the child's chest.
He paled considerably when his hand got hold of something round and firm.
"Um... do you mind?" the cousin asked contemptibly-- with a youthful, feminine voice. Feminine.
"... Ohhh dear God." Bob very slowly removed his hand from the obviously personal spot he had touched and stared,
eyes wide and curious.
The (now known as a) girl pulled back the hood, shook a headful of shoulder-length red hair and said: "My name
is Katherine, just so you know."
Cecil held back gales of laughter, but he couldn't help but snicker. "Well! Apparently our young lad is a young
"Well, obviously." Bob grumbled.
* * *
"But, Miguel... you?! I had no idea..."
"Yes, Liza... I'm not your holy soulmate Saint. *I* am El Bandito."
"Miguel, why didn't you tell me?! I thought you loved me -- I thought you needed me -- after all those
proclamations of loving me and needing to see me tonight! It can't be!!"
"'Yes... yes... now... vaya con Dios.' *BANG*"
Lisa blinked. "Geez. These Spanish soap operas are so weird."
"Now, Lisa, you've got to be more open to other cultures. If bursting into tears at random moments and big
revelations that have no relation to the plotline whatsoever and loads of mascara running down their faces is
important to our Mexican and Spanish friends, then so be it," Homer stated, almost eloquently.
She stared at her father in obvious shock at the sudden role reversal-- from beer-boozing to philosophical
"Hey, he's right, Lis'. Embrace the foreign mood-swing customs within!" Bart chuckled.
Pause. "I give up," Lisa flatly stated as she just resumed watching the program quietly.
Bart stood up. "Well, I'm outta here. Adios, amigos. And estupido."
Homer looked over at him. "Where you going, boy? And what have I told you about swearing in foreign language?"
Marge looked at him as if about to correct him, but didn't say a word.
"Only in the house, not at school, and not at Mexican exchange students with lawn mowers." He said as he opened
the front door, and put on his jacket.
"Atta boy!" Homer called to him as he left. The door closed with a *click*.
Marge was not as proud of her son -- or his father."Homer, did you notice when Bart left he didn't say where he
was going?" she asked in a stern voice.
"Don't worry, Marge!" He placed a comforting arm around her shoulders. "He knows what time we're having
fajitas tonight. Just like he knows to go to escuela in the mañana."
Marge and Lisa looked at him silently in astonishment. Lisa opened her mouth to commend her father on his
"Don't say a word, Lisa," Marge said, "as long as he gets that much right, it's pretty good."
"VAYA CON DORITOS, BOY!!" Homer shouted out the window to Bart. Marge sighed. "Well, bilingual culture in the
house was nice while it lasted." Lisa nodded in agreement.
* * *
"One, please." said Bob, as he looked down at Katherine.
"Certainly," the lady at the snow-cone stand smiled. But just as she bent over to take a cone of ice-cold
sweetness, she stopped in her tracks. Her eyes traveled from Bob to Katherine, then to Bob again.
"My, my, are you guys twins? The resemblance is incredible!"
Bob's facial expression read "WTF?", but he replied, chuckling: "She's not my sis--"
"WHOA..." Katherine cut him off. "This is the greatest snow cone... in the history... of snow cones..."
Bob quirked a brow, then smiled lightly at her silliness. Even so, he was feeling exasperated by now. "Third
time today that's happened. Why do people keep thinking you're my sister?" he mumbled to himself as he watched
Katherine indulge in the snow-cone.
The dialog that just took place between himself and the snow-cone lady had already taken place three or four
times earlier today with a lot of people they'd encountered on their outing to the park this afternoon.
That vibrant red hair, the charming smile, the mischevious look in her eyes -- Katherine did look like him, yes.
Coincidence, really. But... his sister? He just didn't see it, even though every time he tried to say she wasn't,
he was stopped either by Katherine or someone else interrupting, or himself. It had only been a week since his new
little cousin came to stay with him, but he felt an indescribable bond with her already, he thought.
Other than that, nothing else unusual happened. Nothing could really go wrong today.
He didn't notice that, as he walked off with Katherine trailing behind, Bart was watching him from behind the
bushes, his mouth agape in horror. . .
Bart Simpson, Sideshow Bob Terwilliger, and related characters © Matt Groening/FOX.
Katherine Terwilliger [fan-character], "Ma Vie, The Ruse" © Janna 'Janie' Correa [03.08.05]. DO NOT ALTER, STEAL, COPY OR POST WITHOUT PERMISSION.