A Final Performance for
Questions, Intuitions, Revisions: Storytelling as Inquiry
A Seminar at Bryn Mawr College
Fall 2005

Da Bes Ninja Beast Freakin' Story
of a Time that You Eva' Heard FOR REAL
Which Only Exists in Your Imagination but
Actually Might Have Something to Do
With What You are Doing Here

By Jessica Brody, Joanne Bunch, Leslie McTavish,
Sarah Placke, Amanda Root and Virginia Tseng

December 10, 2005

So Here it goes . . . .

Over one hundred years ago a school was built in the dark woods of Ayvainpencil. Times were different then. Everyone lived in the forests and hunted to survive. The world was full of thick dark forests where gruesome deadly ninja beasts lurked. The beasts would hunt down girls and take them from their families to make them slaves.

There was only one woman named Athena who had power over the beasts, for she had mastered the way of the ninja by disguising herself as a beast. Eventually Athena decided to start a school for girls in the dark woods of Ayvainpencil so they too could learn the way of the ninja.

Athena needed to protect her school so she surrounded it with a thick glass bubble to protect it from the dangerous beasts. When she finished building the bubble she realized she had to leave a small crack in it, in order to let in the fresh air, otherwise no one would be able to breath. Athena called her school Da Bes School for Girls.

She sent word through the forests and to girls throughout the land to come to her school. The girls began to arrive. Only two classes were offered: Superstition & The Ninja Way and C-Seminary. Da Bes School for Girls thrived, sending more and more girls out into the dark and heavily forested world of Ayvainpencil. The School did not send out just any old girl, they sent out girls prepared to handle any ninja beast that got in their way.

Unable to function without their enabling girl slaves, the ninja beasts quickly grew troubled by Da Bes School for Girls. They brought their complaints to the Top ninja Beast. He too, was slowly becoming concerned, for if Da Bes School for Girls continued growing at the rate it had been, it would soon mean the downfall of the ninja race. The top ninja beast took on the challenge of identifying the weakness of Athena and Da Bes School for Girls so that he could put an end to their success.

To accomplish this, the top ninja beast turned himself into a snowflake and floated down into the crack that had been left in the bubble , amongst the Girls in Da Bes School for Girls. He floated and floated but alas, he could not determine what their weakness might be.

"I must find their weakness," he said to himself, "their one small crack that would completely break them open.' Wait!

That was it! The crack was the key to solving all his problems. When the top ninja beast went home to his ninja lair that evening, he concocted a sticky putty. It was so sticky that he needed to wear special anti-sticky gloves to handle the stickiest putty so it would not stick to his not so anti-sticky hands.

He returned to the glass bubble, with his sticky solution. The top ninja beast stuck the stickiest putty into the crack and cackled maliciously, "HaHahahahhaa! Now Da Bes School for Girls will no longer be Da Bes School for Girls, for they will have to continue their studies without their fresh air and they will exist in Athena's stale and puny little bubble of success! Hahahahahhaha!

The students soon began to suffer from the lack of fresh air. They had few original ideas, their work was turned in late, they took easy classes, and instead of confronting each other in a mature and civil manner, they gossiped passive-aggressively about each other. The ninja Beasts began to feel more enabled without so many confident young women around, and the dark forests of Ayvainpencil began to feel darker to everyone else.

Athena understood that something was wrong, but everyone within the bubble was too confused by the lack of fresh air for any creative problem-solving. Luckily, Athena was still able to remember old creative solutions she had come up with already. In order to let students in and out when they first arrived and when they completed their studies, Athena had made one small part of the bubble removable. The Top ninja Beast had found the crack, but then he had stopped looking and Athena's window could still be opened. However, she couldnŐt leave the window open all the time, it was too big and the ninja Beasts might stage an attack on the school itself. She could not make all her students leave either, because then the ninja Beasts would make them slaves, and Da Bes School would be no more.

So Athena took one of the stone owls from the wall of the school and told it to be alive...and it was!! She took it to the window and told it to fly outside and either solve the problem in the fresh air or find help. Just as the Owl prepared to fly out the window, someone shouted, "Wait!"

It was one of the students. She said, "It's gotten very boring in here, and all my friends are talking about me behind my back, anyway. Can I go with you, Owl?" "Sure," the Owl said, "I could use the company and someone to look out for me." The owl went on, "Rumor has it that the ninja Beasts find roast Owl quite tasty."

So, off they went into the fresh air. The longer they were in the fresh air, the clearer the students' thinking became. She came up with several ideas and quickly dismissed each of them: Water filtration system (too costly), air conditioning (not yet invented), snow removal, personal air systems.. yada yada yada. Feeling frustrated but breathing better the student said to the owl, "Do you have any ideas?" The owl just hooted, flipping her wings, enjoying the feeling of being alive. The student thought to herself, "There must be a way to protect the young women of Ayvainpencil and not destroy the ninja Beasts." She shouted out, "What if the Da Bes School accepted the daughters of the ninja Beasts?"

The Owl, who was still enjoying the feeling of flying in the fresh clear air, swooped up to the top of one of the tallest trees, inadvertently dropping the girl on the way up.

"Did you say something?" the Owl asked.

Now the Owl had two problems. She had to find the missing student, and the girls back at the school were still suffering the effects of the stale air. From atop the tree the Owl was able to view all that was happening across the land and she was able to see some of the women who had once attended Da Bes School. Owl suddenly realized that they had not been affected by the stale air, and they might be able to help solve the problem.

The Owl flew down to where the women were and to her delight, found the girl that she had dropped a little while earlier. The girl was talking to the graduates from Da Bes School and was explaining the situation to them. They were all glad to see the Owl and happily announced that they thought they had a solution, but it would require the help of the Owl and all the girls still trapped inside the bubble. Could the Owl somehow get enough fresh air to the girls so that they would be able to do something to help themselves?? The Owl wasn't sure, but she flew back to speak with Athena again.


Meanwhile, back at the school, time was running out for the girls. Stale air hung in the bubble suffocating the brains of the girls. Athena knew that something must be done, or else the girls and her school would not survive. Divine inspiration came to her, and Athena noticed her owl-friend up in the tree.

"You may not turn back into stone just yet Owl, I need your help as of yet."

Together, Athena and the owl conferred. They bickered back and forth over what they should do to save the world that Athena created. Finally, a decision was made. With a solemn nod of her head, Athena gave consent to begin the plan.

The stale sky above the school turned black and stormy. Out of the shelters emerged all the stone Owls and they too became alive. They flew out of the alcoves of the dwellings and quickly flew through Athena's window, the only breath of fresh air.

Meanwhile, the ninja beasts could see that a plan was brewing and hatching within the bubble, and they didn't like it. They felt that something was about to usurp their power, and Athena had to be stopped. What they did not notice though, were the busy owls hard at work, pecking their way throw the bubble. Their beaks poked and poked and poked at the surface of the bubble, yet it did not pop. Finally, with all their might, the legion of Owls broke the surface of the bubble surrounding and protecting Da Bes School for Girls. As the bubble shattered, a whirlwind occurred. Each and every girl living in the bubble was knocked down by the blast and shock of fresh air. The ninja Beasts crowding the bubble were also knocked down and smothered in the broken bubble residue.

The girls slowly took deep deep breaths, got up and looked at their surroundings. All colors in their world were instantly brightened and revived. They could think clearly again! When they looked around to find Athena, they found her in the middle of a garden, still as stone. In fact, she was stone. Athena sacrificed herself for the welfare and knowledge of the girls she yearned to enlighten, and in her place she left the Owls to guard and protect the both the mental and physical well being of the women of Da Bes School for Girls.

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