Fortunate One is an alternate universe Daria fanfic by The Angst Guy. Quinn Morgendorffer is an only child, but she suspects it was not always this way. Her investigations into the past lead her to heartbreak and nightmare.
The story itself is significant as, at the time it appeared in spring 2004, it was one of the earliest serial stories to be published without being beta-read first. It appears to have started a trend in publishing serials without prior editing, which has led to faster publication online but more errors appearing in the text, corrected later as readers point them out.
TAG stated that two endings were developed for the story.
The Morgendorffers have just arrived in Lawndale, and Quinn is driven by her father, Jake, to school, where she quickly makes friends with the Fashion Club and becomes a target for dates. She presents herself as a only child. At home, Quinn, Jake and Helen lead a seemingly happy life, though Quinn has the feeling that a secret is being kept from her. Her parents are very protective of her and also seem to constantly be buying her presents, even things that are obviously luxuries.
The next day, at school, she contacts and befriends outcast Jane Lane, presenting herself, and bribes Jane into driving her home, austensibly to take care of art supplies. A confused Jane agrees but realises it's not art when she helps Quinn retrieved a box filled with baby's things and the name 'Daria'. Upon examining the box contents, Quinn remembers more and more about her childhood, including an unknown sibling, eventually concluding she once had a sister that had disappeared. Her drifting off and crying at school eventually leads to her being assigned to self-esteem class.
A few days later, on a Friday, Jane and Quinn again sneak back to Quinn's house and retrieve some documents from a safe. That night, before she goes to bed, Quinn opens the folder to discover a letter of condolence and a death certificate for a Daria Morgendorffer, three and a half years old. Hurt and stunned, she is unable to find sleep all night. In the morning, she argues with her mother over her discoveries and flees to Jane's home, taking the documents and Daria's things with her.
At Jane's that afternoon, she watches a videotape that was found with the documents. It shows Daria's 3rd birthday party, as well as Quinn's birthday, at which Daria is 3 and a half years old. In both, Daria is scornful of Quinn and states that she can't stand her sister. At the end of the tape, Daria is shown wandering off after a nasty remark directed towards Quinn, presumably to her death.
Later that day (Saturday), Quinn returns home to a relieved family, including both her Aunts Amy and Rita. Quinn is moody and, talking to her Aunt Amy, screams at her and accuses her of never contacting them. She also accuses herself of having killed her own sister, and breaks down in tears. The rest of the afternoon and the weekend, the whole family talk about Daria and their situation, clearing the air and appologizing for past behaviours. Amy assures Quinn that she'll make more of an effort in the future to keep in contact.
In the last chapter, the Morgendorffers, plus Amy and Rita, go to Austin to visit Daria's grave on what would have been Daria's 16th birthday. It is revealed Quinn, Helen, and Jake are attending therapy and all have made plans to spend more time together. That night, alone in her hotel room, Quinn lights up three candles by the window and watches as the wind blows them out, as if Daria had done it.
The alternate ending starts right after Quinn screams at Amy. The action cuts directly to Quinn attending self-esteem class with Jane, where she says things aren't good but are starting to talk.
The events of the family's reconciliation and visit of Daria's grave are briefly referred to but not shown. Quinn and Jane go on with their lives, being occasional friends. Quinn reconciles with her parents over Daria, and they start to let her on her own. However, Quinn is still depressed until she reads an article about cloning.
The action then cuts to twenty years later. Jane rushes to a maternity ward, where Quinn is giving birth to a clone of Daria. After the girl is born, Jane is stunned to be informed that Quinn had arranged for Jane to be Daria's legal guardian, as Quinn had been ruled as an unfit parent (due to unethical and illegal means she had used to get herself pregnant with Daria's clone). Jane accepts and moves to Lawndale, becoming mother to baby Daria.
The title is derived from Creedence Clearwater Revival’s song, “Fortunate Son,”. The group itself and the song appear in the story.
The possible reasons Quinn comes up with regarding Daria's disappearance would be the inspiration for another story by TAG, the serial The Outers.
Fortunate One at the author's website.