Fan Fiction - Written by Doug Fowler - Alternative Season 9

2. Same Place, New Faces
Written by: Doug Fowler

A/N: Four of my other season 9 ones mentioned herein. As I've said, D.J. & Kimmy wouldn't be in much of season 9. (They wouldn't have to have been in "Going For the Gold." Steve could talk about things from what D.J. told him - you'll know when you read. They could just be in the first 1-2 & a finale.) Jesse wasn't going to be there much - he's more needed for season 9 ones I've done, but if he does 3-4 it leaves him time for other projects. (Six is the actress who played Becky was originally signed for, IIRC.) Michelle's here, & would be in more, but the Olsens would be busier, too. Sometimes, main characters would only be in one scene - the end here plus "We'll Always Have Christmas" equal an episode. (He could film his at the same time as "Some Things Will Never Change.")
"Some Things Will Never Change" would start season 9; if Jesse's not in, Suzie can be introduced. Most importantly, this is episode 2. It explains where some are & introduces ones I've used elsewhere - Caleb (See note before my season 9 finale, "Tanner All-Stars" for how he may be semi-canon), Suzie, Justin, Wendy, Kelli whether or not they separate the Olsens (she can be played by one.) Also, Steve would be there. I'm not sure I have ideas for episodes without Michelle, but like the last season of "The Cosby Show," some would only have a few regulars. Joey & Suzie go slower in the Chronology before marrying than in my season 9, but this is still plausible. The way I've spaced things, books that have to be TVU still can be; like the soccer one ("My Almost Perfect Plan") since Michelle's schedule is too crowded otherwise in books. My profile lists the 9th season ones I did, plus others.

Same Place, New Faces

(Teaser - Eating Like a Horse)

Steve Hale entered the Tanner household. "Hey, did I miss D.J.?"

"Yeah, Steve," Danny Tanner said. He was the father of D.J. - eighteen and a freshman at San Francisco State - Stephanie, thirteen, and Michelle, eight. "She's spending quality time with Michelle. San Francisco State has lots of volunteer programs. She and Kimmy will be doing a lot of that too, while Kimmy tries to get into beauty school."

"D.J. told me. We've had long talks about family, hopes, dreams. We're a lot closer than we ever were. So, is there anything to eat?"

As they were talking, the girls' cousins, three-year-olds Nicky and Alex Kastopolis, walked up to Steve with large pails. They and their parents, Jesse and Becky, lived with the Tanners. Jesse was Danny's brother-in-law, and had moved in eight years earlier with Danny's best friend, Joey Gladstone, after Danny's wife died.

"Here, Steve," Nicky said.

"Hey, guys. What are those for?" Steve wanted to know.

"It's your feed buckets," Nicky explained.

Alex nodded. "Michelle says you eat like a horse." Steve tickled them, as Danny laughed.

Danny sighed, turning from the front window to Michelle as he spoke. "I've hardly seen you since you started soccer, Michelle. Except when I've chaperoned. Then before her fundraiser with Kimmy tonight, D.J. was off having special sister time with you."

"It had to be D.J.. I don't think you'd be good at girl stuff, Dad," Michelle admitted. She was sitting on the couch playing a video game with Kelli, a slightly older girl who looked a fair amount like her.

"He might do better than that story Steph told me about Joey," Kelli noted.

Danny smiled wistfully. "You're right, Kelli. Those were fun times, when my girls were younger. Now if Michelle keeps it up, she might be on the All-Star traveling team just like you were last year. Not that I'm pressuring you, Michelle," he hastened to add.

Stephanie came downstairs, ready for her date. "Dad, have you seen Nicky and Alex?"

"No, did you try Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky's apartment?"

"No." She sighed. "Caleb's going to be here any second."

Michelle put her console down. "Come on, Kelli, let's go look for them."

"Sure." They jogged into the kitchen.

Michelle and Kelli joined Danny in the attic apartment. "You weren't supposed to open that till your parents got back from their weekend getaway," Michelle scolded lightly

Nicky and Alex opened the long box as the girls got to it. "It's a man," Nicky said.

"It's Elvis," Alex noted.

"Obviously, Elvis lost a bet with a Cornhusker fan," Danny said as he looked at it. It was a statue of Elvis, wearing Nebraska red with red sequins, and a red cap with a white "N."

Nicky looked at Danny. "Can we press the button?"

"I'm sure you can; whether you should is another question," Danny quipped. "But, go ahead, it looks harmless."

They pressed it, and the Nebraska Elvis started singing "Red Suede Shoes," instead of "Blue Suede Shoes."

"He doesn't know his colors," Nicky complained.

Alex agreed. "It's 'Blue,' not 'Red.'"

"Boys," Michelle said, as she and Kelli read the card, "your mom's from Nebraska. Your dad bought this as a gift."

"It's not their anniversary," Nicky said.

"Or her birthday," Alex said, shaking his head.

Michelle told them, "It doesn't have to be. They love each other so much. So, they get each other little gifts once in a while."

"And he bought her Elvis?" Nicky said in shock.

"I thought guys bought flowers," Alex said.

Kelli laughed. "It's not the most romantic gift. But, he probably figures it reminds her of home. He does that to show he loves her."

Michelle concurred. "Let's wrap it up again. And, don't tell your mommy till your daddy tells her, 'cause it's a surprise," she finished.

Once they all got back downstairs, Joey was the more nervous one. "How do I look?"

"Joey, you look fine," Danny promised him. "You even remembered your dress shoes this time."

Stephanie inquired, "Did Joey come down here in tennis shoes?"

"Actually, he came down in his socks," Danny explained.

Joey admitted he was anxious. "When Michelle introduced Suzie, and I did the entertainment at Justin's birthday party, it was one thing. We've been doing stuff with him and Wendy for a while, but this is our first real date," he said nervously.

"Joey, you just need to relax."

Stephanie turned to him. "Dad's right; you're our chaperones, anyway. I'm supposed to look at you and not be nervous. I've never been courted before. D.J.'s teen magazines never talk about it. Maybe I should have read her copy of 'Our Town'," she rambled.

"Steph, relax, we've talked with Caleb's parents, after you two met at that camp you and Michelle went to in early August, once she recovered completely from her concussion. It's just like a date, except you don't think about the physical, you learn to socialize and build a relationship. Just like D.J. and Steve are doing." He'd moved toward the door as the doorbell rang as he said that, and opened it. "Caleb, come on in. Hi, Mrs. Wilson."

"Hi, Mr. Tanner. I presume Joey and Suzie will be bringing them home?"

"If he doesn't get so nervous he forgets where he is," Danny joked.

Caleb looked at Stephanie and smiled. "Hey. You're doing better than a month and a half ago. Back then, you probably would have insisted Michelle come with us."

"I wasn't that protective, was I?" Stephanie asked with a laugh.

"Maybe not. It seemed like it, but...well, I know you were scared by her accident."

"Yeah, I was. But, some of the stuff you've said about faith, it really makes sense. I really have tried hard to be a better sister. If D.J.'s too busy with college, I'm going to be the one spending quality sister time with Michelle. Well, unless we teach Gia." They laughed. "She is coming along slowly."

"She went through a lot. You're a great friend to her," Mrs. Wilson said.

Danny looked at Joey. "See, that's all you have to do." He put a hand on Joey's shoulder. "Joey, it's been over a year and a half since her husband died. You won't say anything to blow it up. You've been through it with me. And now, my girls are all going their separate ways. It just doesn't seem the same."

"Hey, Danny, it's fine. It's the same great, loving family. There's just a lot of new faces. As far as it working out with Suzie, maybe. It didn't work out with you and Gia's mom."

"Joey, that was for two reasons that will never apply here. I could never control Gia if she couldn't, so I didn't feel comfortable with them coming into the family. And, number two, she went through a bitter divorce that scarred her and Gia terribly. She needed more time. You and Suzie did it the right way. You've done things as a family, instead of dating first." The doorbell rang again.

"I hope you're right." Joey opened it. "Hey, Suzie. Ready to go?"

Suzie agreed. "My mom's watching the kids. This is good that we're going with Stephanie and Caleb, I'll want to get back early, too."

"And Danny might need backup with Kelli sleeping over with Michelle tonight," Joey teased as they started to leave.

"I should be able to tire them out by having them help with Nicky and Alex. So long," Danny said as the couples and Mrs. Wilson left; he closed the door.

Danny came in from the kitchen with popcorn a while later. Michelle and Kelli were on the couch, with Michelle having just put a tape into the VCR. "Thanks for helping with the twins."

"You're welcome, Mr. Tanner," Kelli said.

Michelle spoke as the phone rang. Danny picked it up and took it into the kitchen. "I can't wait till we have a non-mother-daughter slumber party. D.J. took me to my Honeybee one."

"I wonder why their stuff looks so much like Brownies stuff."

"I don't know," she told Kelli. "Maybe someone just liked wild, striped uniforms. My dad says they're sort of like the Astros had for a while in baseball. Except, theirs were yellow, orange, and red."

"That might even look weird on our soccer uniforms. But, a pro baseball team?"

"My dad says the 1970s tried to make up for years of black and white pictures," Michelle explained as Danny came back in the room.

"Girls, there was a small fire at the Smash Club," he explained. "I have to go...Hey, Steve. Listen, I'm glad you and D.J. had to have your date last night. Something happened at the Smash Club, and the others are away, so I have to go down there. Can you watch the girls for an hour or so?" He could. "Great, thanks." He hung up, and told Kelli, "I don't if you know Steve, Kelli, but he'll be fine. He's D.J.'s steady boyfriend, and he was a male counselor at Camp Lakota."

Michelle added, 'The only problem is, he might eat all the popcorn."

"Good point; I'll put another batch in the microwave," Danny said.

The movie had just ended, as Steve sat with Michelle and Kelli. "That was fun. I've gotta admit, before D.J. told me about it once, I though 'Alice In Wonderland' was for girls, just 'cause there's a girl's name in the title."

"It's a funny story, isn't it?" Kelli asked.

"Yeah, it was. I'm just glad I don't get bigger or smaller when I eat."

Michelle agreed with Steve, saying, "You'd go up and down so fast, you'd get seasick."

Steve looked at his watch. "Wow, I lost track of time. It's after 10:00."

"I hope everyone's okay," Michelle said worriedly.

At that moment, Joey and Stephanie came in; Stephanie was helping him, as Joey was walking with a huge limp, as if he really twisted his ankle.

(Commercial break)

Steve rose quickly. "What happened; was there an accident?" Steve inquired worriedly.

"A car hit a pole just right, and caused a big fire," Joey explained.

Michelle gasped. "But, how did you get out?"

Stephanie explained as Joey plopped into a chair, with Steve's help. "It wasn't our car. But, it caused a big traffic jam, as we were going for ice cream after supper."

"Oh, so did someone run into you?" Steve asked.

"No, but there were a couple small wrecks," Stephanie told them.

"So, that's where you hurt your ankle?" Kelli guessed.

"No, I hurt my ankle running around trying to find a cell phone to call and let people know we'd be late," Joey explained. "Suzie had to drive my car, we pulled behind Danny's, and the Wilsons picked Caleb up once they could get through. Then, Suzie drove us home in my car before taking hers home." He sighed, as Michelle and Kelli went to get some ice. "Danny's just now finishing up an assessment of what got damaged at the Smash Club. Man, this is gonna be so rough on Jesse."

"It's not a total loss, is it?" Steve asked.

Joey shook his head. "Oh, no, they can open again in a few weeks. A small part of the fire just spread to it before firefighters got there, that's all. But, Jesse tries to get away for a quiet weekend alone with Becky, and he comes back to this."

"He may want another quiet weekend very soon," Stephanie remarked.

"Suzie said she'll bring the kids over here tomorrow, but still, I feel like our first date was a disaster. I go and get hurt and she has to handle things," Joey mourned.

"You know, it's funny; I felt the opposite," Stephanie said. "If I'd kept thinking of it as a date, I'd call it a disaster. It was really unromantic. But, once we knew nobody was hurt badly - the guy got out before the transformer blew, luckily - Caleb and I just had fun talking. It was kind of an adventure. I didn't need to worry about that other stuff."

Joey smiled. "Thanks, Steph. Thanks, girls," he said as Michelle and Kelli brought him ice, Kelli moved the table over so his foot could be elevated, and Michelle wrapped his ankle in a towel with ice, before the girls sat back down. "If I was your age, Steph, I'd feel the same way. But, I was the adult; I really wanted to show Suzie I'd be a good provider. I want what Jesse's got, a great wife, wonderful kids. That sort of thing."

Steve consoled him. "Hey, it's gonna happen for you, man. You're goin' about it the right way. It's like D.J. and I now. D.J. never spent much time at my house before, 'cause it was so hectic - my younger brother has so many friends, and ours is the one where they all come to hang out, or play ball in the backyard."

"Sounds like Kelli's house," Michelle concurred.

Steve nodded toward her. "We got too caught up in the physical, just wanting to be together. D.J. was more caught up than I was. That's why she noticed it wasn't working. I guess I was mature enough to take an interest in you guys after a while, but not enough to see what was happening with D.J.."

"That makes sense," Joey said. "I hope you're right, about doing it the right way."

The following afternoon, Becky entered from the kitchen to join Joey, Danny, Stephanie, Michelle, Nicky, and Alex in the living room. "Well, Jesse's going back over to the Smash Club. D.J., Steve, and Kimmy are helping with the cleanup."

"I hope you didn't mind my calling at 10:00 last night," Danny said.

"Oh, it's okay. Jesse slept like a baby. He woke up every two hours and cried," Becky quipped. "He says it'll be a while before they get performers in."

Nicky looked up from the game he was playing with Alex, Stephanie, and Michelle. "He's still got Elvis," the tot noted.

"I don't think anyone will be performing there for a while, boys," Becky noted.

"No, Elvis is here," Alex said.

"He's right over there," Nicky said, pointing to a box near the fireplace.

"Uh, boys..." Michelle looked at Stephanie. "Uncle Jesse brought it down, but then he didn't have time to tell Aunt Becky what it was."

"This should be interesting," Stephanie remarked, as the boys opened the box for Becky.

Becky was stunned. "What's that?"

Alex looked oddly at her. "Daddy didn't tell you?"

"No, he was too busy worrying about his club. Was this the surprise he said he had for me?" Becky asked as she knelt down to look.

Nicky said it was. "'Cept he doesn't know his colors."

Danny chuckled as he went to open the door for Suzie, Justin, and Wendy. Joey stood, on one foot; his ankle was heavily taped. "They just changed it for Nebraska. If they made a Giants fan like that, it would be 'Don't Step on My Orange and Black Suede Shoes,'" Joey said.

"That would be way too many syllables," Stephanie teased as Joey greeted the others.

"Are you okay?" Wendy asked.

"Mom told us what happened. How's your ankle?" Justin asked.

"It's feeling better, so I don't think it's more than a bad sprain. The doctor's going to see me tomorrow to make sure," Joey said as he sat back down.

Justin looked at the Nebraska-clad Elvis that Becky was taking out of the box. "Whoa, is that like a Bizarro Elvis?"

"Uncle Jesse got it for their apartment. Although, I don't know if I'd want Elvis staring at me like that all the time," Stephanie said.

"Well, it's the thought that counts," Becky said. "As unusual as those thoughts are sometimes, it's still touching."

Wendy walked over with Justin. As they did, she said, "That's the biggest doll in the world."

"It's not a doll; it's an 'action figure,'" Justin corrected her.

Suzie sat next to Joey on the sofa. "Hey, Suzie. I'm sorry last night didn't turn out that well," he said sadly.

"It was fun, Joey. It really was," Suzie assured him.

"Thanks. I just didn't feel like that much of a provider after I got hurt. Especially because I was romping around like a kid in all that traffic. Then I happen to see Danny after I get hurt, and he has his cell phone he got last year right there all the time."

Suzie smiled warmly at him. "Joey, you're taking this at just the right speed. I wouldn't want a macho man who tried to do everything right now. To tell you the truth, a handyman who can do anything might remind me too much of my husband at times. But, you're warm, you're funny, you're great with the kids."

"Thanks. I've gotta admit, I've really started to have feelings for you. I'm just afraid of blowing it right now. Steph taught me something last night, about looking at it as a fun time without trying to make it too romantic, like teens can do at times." Joey couldn't believe he was saying this, in a way. It had been so long since he'd really liked a woman. "But, after these last six weeks, what I feel is beyond what they'd feel."

Suzie was grateful. "Thanks. I'm kind of having those same feelings."

"I might even be able to get an 'I love you' out, would have to be as a cartoon character," Joey confessed.

"Trust me, Joey. Right now, I think a cartoonish 'I love you' would be perfect."

"Okay." He said "I love you" in his Popeye voice, adding a "whoa" and his Popeye laugh. He then looked at Justin and Wendy, who had been watching. "Hey. I know it probably seems strange to hear someone say 'I love you' to your mom like I just did."

"Especially like you just did," Justin joked.

"True. But, I want you to know, I know nobody could replace your dad. But, if it does work out between your mom and me, I'm going to try to be the best I can be. And, love all of you with all my heart."

"Thanks," Justin said, now looking relieved. Joey hugged both kids before they left.

Joey turned back to Suzie. "I just didn't feel like that great a provider last night."

"Only a great provider would say what you said to the kids just now," Suzie reminded him. "But, you not only assured them of it, so they could hear it themselves, I can tell you meant it. And, that's what I would hope for in a man."


Later that evening, as the boys were about ready for bed, Jesse and Becky were in the attic apartment with Nicky and Alex. The "Nebraska Elvis" was standing there, too. "Boy, what a day," Jesse said tiredly.

"You said it." They sat on the couch, with the boys crawling into their laps. "At least everyone's going to be okay."

"Yeah. Sorry the boys spoiled your surprise. At least I'm used to that, huh, livin' around here for eight years," Jesse said with a laugh.

Becky agreed. "I just wonder if it looks...well, tacky?"

"There's tacks on it?" Nicky asked.

"Not that kind," Jesse promised him. "I just love you so much, Beck. I saw this place where you could get custom statues, and I thought, it wouldn't cost too much, and it'd be a great way to show how we've blended our lives."

"I know, Jess. And, I really appreciate the thought. But, do you want Elvis staring at us in our apartment all the time? Besides, now the boys think Elvis' shoes really were red, even though he sang about blue ones, since he's got red ones on his feet," she finished with a laugh.

Jesse snickered. "Yeah; guess that is kinda disrespecting him, to make the boys think he didn't know his colors."

Becky joined in the laugh. "There's that, yes. But, I will always love you. And, I know you'll always love me. I don't need a Nebraska Elvis to know that. What's important is that we have a wonderful, warm, and happy family. Nothing's going to change that."

Alex got up, and motioned Nicky to follow. "Come on. This is where they get mushy." They left.

"I know. It just seems like I quit an' let Viper take over the band, I decided to spend more time with the family. And, I guess I still go overboard a little in trying to show my devotion to you." He put an arm around her, and they drew close. "'Course, now, I'm driving Michelle to soccer more, an' the Smash Club's gonna take lots of work, even with the day to day general manager there, till it gets fixed."

"I know. But, we'll always be a great couple," Becky said. Jesse said "Have mercy," and they kissed.

Danny and Becky were in the living room right after school, with Stephanie and Michelle the following day; the twins were taking naps. Stephanie was helping Michelle with homework. "I'm glad you're helping her with that," Danny said with a smile.

"I'm just glad to be helping someone that's really starting to love school. Although, Gia's better. Today, when I told her how much fun being with a guy could be without worrying about romance, it really made her think," Stephanie said.

Becky pointed out, "She's improving a lot. And, she could still get into college. She could go to San Francisco State, like D.J., and come home every night."

"Or, she might go to Nebraska to be near the big Elvis you just donated," Michelle said.

"Thankfully, she's not that crazy about guys anymore," Stephanie stated.

Danny chuckled. "That's a long way away. And even San Francisco State, with D.J. doing special things with you girls, then her studies and volunteer work, it seems like I hardly see her at times. Families always seem to stay together on TV."

"Although, that's not actually true," Stephanie pointed out. "I'm explaining percentages and fractions to Michelle, and I just used the example that we see less than one percent of a TV family's lives. Half an hour, out of 168 hours a week. The time we see might be the only time they see some people, while TV characters might have other really close friends we never see, as long as they stay in character. Like that one guy on one show who you always hear about, but never see his face."

"It would have been nice to have Kimmy like that," Danny teased.

"I think what Steph's trying to say is, it's normal for kids to go their own way at times, like D.J., or like Michelle with soccer and horses, but they'll still be around. We'll certainly see her more than that," Becky elaborated.

"You're right. Just like you and Jesse will always see a lot of each other." Danny sighed. "I guess it's still hard for me to get used to change. Maybe I'm thinking about Pam, I don't know," Danny surmised.

"But, we can still have a lot of fun here. I do when I'm not out playing or riding," Michelle acknowledged.

Stephanie concurred. "Suzie, Justin, and Wendy will be over a lot, I'm sure. Steve was a big help Saturday night, and he likes being here. Caleb and I are becoming really good friends, and not worrying about forcing the romantic stuff."

"And, Gia's getting really nice, too, thanks to Steph," Michelle added.

Danny sat beside Stephanie and Michelle. "You're right. I guess we still have a great family. We've just added people. And, that means we can multiply the love," he finished, as they hugged.