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Episode No. 23 - Baby steps

written by Lady Guinevere

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Published: 01 Mar 2009 | Size: 35 KB (5900 words) | Language: english | Rating: PG-13

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Jordan and Angela are back together. Sharon confesses something to Angela, while Angela wants to give Rayanne another chance. Brian talks to Rickie about winning Angela over and tells Jordan he doesn't want to tutor him anymore. Graham and Hallie try to solve their problems when the solution seems to be right at hand. Brian sells the Chase's tickets to the play.

based on stories and characters created by Winnie Holzman

Danielle VO: “So, my sister is flying around the house, totally in love with *Jordan Catalano* again. Apparently he wrote her a song, or something mushy like that. She’s been humming it like, ever since. Well, I don’t get the fuss. It’s not like it takes a brilliant mind to write a song. I don’t know if I like her this way, on cloud nine. It’s like, everything I do is fine with her. She doesn’t even shout at me. It’s weird. I hope I never act that strange when I’m in love! I mean, do I?”

[Monday morning, Chase’s kitchen]

Graham is fixing breakfast while Patty is roaming around the kitchen, gathering her stuff. Patty asks her husband in a determined voice, “Graham, you promise me you’ll talk to Hallie today?”

Graham answers annoyed, “Yes Patricia, I’ll clarify things to her yet again. We can’t go on like this. *I* can’t go on like this. Sometimes I wonder why I ever got involved in this business with *her*? I should have known she was trouble, with her loud obnoxiousness.”

Patty eyes her husband worriedly. “She’s just gonna have to handle her feelings like an *adult*. You’re not available, it’s that simple! She needs to get her priorities straight. Business can’t be mixed with pleasure!”

Graham starts off playfully, “There’s nothing wrong with having a little fun at work…” He continues seriously, “But *this*… is ridiculous…”

“Graham, you want *me* to talk to her?” Patty’s face is frowned. She *hates* it when life surprises her like this.

Graham drops the cutlery he’s holding and eyes his wife seriously. “Patty, don’t *patronize* me, please. I am very capable of dealing with this myself, besides, I *need* to deal with this myself.”

Patty regrets her degrading tone instantly. “I didn’t mean to--”

Danielle walks in the kitchen and interrupts them, “Hey, no breakfast yet?”

Both react abruptly, “No.”

Danielle looks at her parents with surprise. “Sorry for asking…” She probably caught them at a bad time again. As long as they won’t *keep* arguing all the time, it’s fine by her.

Patty apologizes to Danielle for her brisk retort. “I’m sorry honey; dad and I were just discussing something. I’ve got to get to work anyway. Dad will fix you your breakfast, okay?”
She ruffles through Danielle’s hair, then looks around wondering. “Isn’t Angela out of bed yet? She’ll be late for school if she doesn’t hurry up!”

“I thought I heard her get into the shower…” Danielle takes a seat at the table.

Patty kisses Danielle and Graham goodbye and flees out the door, yelling, “Bye Angela!” to the top of the stairs.

[Outside school]

Jordan and Angela are sitting in Jordan’s car, not in direct sight of anyone else. They are entangled in a passionate embrace, once again. Their lips kiss, taste, tease and explore intensely. Angela backs out of their embrace and fixes her eyes onto Jordan’s. “Did I already tell you *today* how beautiful your song was…?” A goofy smile spreads across her face.

Jordan smiles shyly and flicks his hair behind his ear. “Yeah, I know…You told me… Like a hundred times already…Since Saturday…”

“So, did I like, mention how much I loved watching you play then?” Angela gets hold of Jordan’s hand and studies his fingers. She loved watching him play and sing; it was like he was singing to her and her alone. In a way he *was*, ofcourse.

“Yeah, thanks, like, again…” Jordan’s eyes study Angela’s fingers entwined in his own.

Angela hesitates before she continues. “You know, I’m okay with what happened. I mean, with you and Rayanne…”

Jordan locks his eyes onto hers, showing surprise. “You’re sure…?”

Angela nods her head. “Yeah, I’m sure.” She’s positive. She’s over that, totally. They weren’t even together then, so basically he *had* a right to do it. Rayanne however, was still her friend at that time, so *she* had *no* right to do it.

Jordan leans in to kiss Angela, and she kisses him back passionately. His hands wander up her neck, pulling her closer towards him. Her hands fumble through his hair; her fingertips caress the sensitive piece of skin hidden underneath it. Jordan lowers one of his hands and brushes it over her upper-body, lingering for a while on the softness of her breast. His hand slides to the middle of her chest, fingers reaching to touch her skin, right underneath her blouse. He pauses from their kiss and his eyes ask Angela’s permission to continue the exploration his hands are eagerly involved in.

Angela nods to Jordan barely visible and almost immediately handy fingers slip the top button out of its hole; the second and third button follow shortly after. Jordan’s fingers find their way on Angela’s soft skin, fingertips following the lace outline of her bra. The trail of goose-bumps left by Jordan’s fingers elicits tiny moans from Angela’s mouth. His fingers push the hindering piece of cloth away, allowing him easier access to Angela’s breasts. Skilled fingertips draw circles over her skin, their diameters becoming smaller and smaller, getting closer to her nipples, teasingly slow.

Angela closes her eyes to fully enjoy the feelings Jordan awakes in her body. Sure, her own hands have been down that road before, but it never felt anything like this. Wherever his fingers go, her skin is being scorched. His hands slip around her back, unhooking her bra. It’s like her breasts are *begging* to be touched, her nipples are provoking him to be touched, her back arched in his hands. Angela’s eyes are drowned with desire as she glances at Jordan. Her mouth feels dry from the ragged breathing but she doesn’t care. She’s about to lose control and it’s the best feeling she’s ever had.

Jordan’s thumbs *finally* caress her nipples, brush over them, while his fingers are kneading her breasts. Angela throws her head back and lets the unknown feelings wash over her, until they consume her.

Sudden screams and laughter, coming from outside of the car, bring Angela back to reality from her state of ecstasy. She looks around, startled; her cheeks flustered, extremely grateful there’s no one to be seen around. There’s no telling how far she would have let Jordan go if they had been alone right now. She pushes him away, sits up straight, hooks up her bra and slips her buttons back into place again. “Jordan, I’m sorry, but we need to slow down…”

Jordan’s eyes seem to be begging her to let him continue, his voice sounds hoarse with passion. “What? Why?”

“Because we’re like, outside of school, that’s why…” Angela looks at him incredulous; surely he understands they’re not doing it right here and now, where everyone can see them!!!

“I just thought… you know…” Jordan’s voice sounds sweet, like he’s trying to seduce her. He almost eyes Angela gratefully, like she has just given him something incredibly beautiful.
Angela replies dryly, “I don’t want my first time to be in some old abandoned house, or in your car, and *especially* not right here where everyone can *see* us. I think I deserve more. *You* deserve more…”

Jordan smiles shyly at her. “Yeah, you’re right, I guess. I kinda forgot like, where we were…” Jordan puts Angela’s hand in his own hand and looks back up in her eyes. He puts a peek of her red hair behind her ear.

“That’s okay. I forgot it too, like, for a while. You *totally* made me forget the whole world outside, by doing what you did just now.” Angela gives Jordan a sensual grin and eyes his reaction carefully.

“My pleasure, I guess…” Jordan displays an insecure smile again; apparently questioning her seriousness.

“We should go inside, you know. We can’t sit in here all day, unfortunately.” Angela grabs her backpack from the backseat and plants another kiss on Jordan’s lips. “Thank you, Jordan Catalano.” Smiling, she gets out of the car and waits around for Jordan to do the same thing.
He walks around his car, over to her, and gets hold of her hand as they walk towards the school-entrance. She wonders if he has the slightest clue how good that makes her feel. How proud she is to be holding hands with him, how strong it makes her feel inside. Would he feel the same way?
Brian Krakow passes the two of them by on his bicycle. He gives them a look displaying mixed emotions; pain, jealousy and disgust are showing on his face. Angela wants to greet him, but everything she can think of to say seems so pointless. It must be so hard for him to see her with Jordan, partly due to his own helping even... Before she even gets a chance to say something, Brian has disappeared from sight already.

[School, the outside steps]

Brian and Rickie are sitting on the steps of the school, as Jordan and Angela walk by holding hands, positively glowing with happiness.
Brian spills his gut to Rickie. “They look so *happy*, it’s sickening. It’s even more sickening to know that I *helped* them get back together…I thought I wanted her to be happy, but seeing them together makes me wish I never wrote that *stupid* letter for Jordan Catalano!”

Rickie retorts, “Although I *do* think they look like, adorable together… And I like, totally get Angela… I do know what you’re like going through…And I hate to say it Brian, but, um, I think you’re like better of without her. I mean, you should get over her, for your sanity.”

Brian answers depressed, “Yeah, I know. It’s just, I’ve known her for so long already. We used to hang out together all the time, play games, have sleepovers, you name it! Then this *Jordan Catalano* shows up and sweeps her off her feet… And now, she’s suddenly out of my league. High school *sucks*, you know?!”

Rickie sympathizes with Brian. “Yeah, it’s like, we’re *cursed* or something! We like, want to hang out with the Jordan’s and Angela’s of this world, and even better, we want to *be* them! But we’re like *doomed* to be part of some group that like, doesn’t belong anywhere, and nobody wants to be part of anyway. We’re *forced* to be part of a group we like don’t even *want* to be in, because of all these stupid like, unwritten *rules* in high school that make your life like, a living hell!”

Brian seems to ignore Rickie’s outburst and continues phrasing his own thoughts. “But should I give Angela up, like without a fight? Should I just like, let her be with Jordan Catalano, eventhough *I* wrote the words for him to say to her? So, really, it should be *me* she’s like holding hands with and making out with…”

Rickie looks at Brian a little upset. “It’s not like, *just* your letter anymore, you know?! Jordan Catalano like *actually* wrote her a song as well… And I hate to say it, but it was like, *breathtaking*. I wish someone would like, love *me* enough to write me my own song.” Rickie seems to drift away in blissfulness, softly singing a few lines from the refrain of Jordan’s song.

“I built my own prison,
And you hold the key.
I built my own prison,
Angel, won’t you set me free…”

Brian reacts upset, “*That’s* from the song he wrote her?! Okay, first of all, I *gave* him the idea to write a song!!! And secondly, that line about being trapped in a prison? That’s *literally* something I told him to tell her apology-wise. Before he made me write the damn letter…”

Rickie looks at Brian perplexed. “You know, this love-triangle is beginning to become more and more absurd! It’s like the movie Roxanne, based on Cyrano de Bergerac, you know that? Come to think of it, *why* are there like, so many love-triangles in my life?! What’s wrong with just like, one-on-one love-affairs? Why does there always have to be like, some poor third person involved?”

Brian sighs, his chin leaning in the palm of his hand. “I know Cyrano de Bergerac yeah. He’s as big a fool as I am, with no life whatsoever...” He looks at Rickie. “Why do *we* always have to be like, those poor third persons?”

“I guess it’s just like, our destiny, or something.” Rickie tries to make Brian see the truth. “Brian, you know you’re in *way* deep. The more you like, keep helping Jordan, the further away you’ll drift from Angela…”

Brian drops his head between his opened legs. “So, any advice?” The feelings he has for Angela will *kill* him someday, he’s *sure* of it.

Rickie hesitates. “I’m no expert, you know. I’ve only been in love like, a couple of times, and those guys like, didn’t even *notice* me. Hey, I could ask Rayanne for some advice? She’s like *the* expert on this kinda stuff.”

Brian gives Rickie a disturbed look. “Are you *serious*?! Please, leave her out of this. I don’t trust her at all; it’s like she’s always trying to make a fool of me. And right now my life is miserable enough, thank you.”

Rickie agrees with Brian, “She kinda does, doesn’t she? But, like, let’s think, *what* would she do in this situation… Oh, wait, I know! Try to make her jealous!”

Brian’s brain is having trouble keeping up with Rickie. “Who, Rayanne?” His head *hurts* from thinking.

Rickie grins, “No, silly, Angela!”

Brian replies sarcastic: “Oh, why didn’t you like, say so in the first place?! So, what you’re saying is, I should just like, find a girl who’s either interested in me *or* is willing to play this charade along. That sounds so easy! If only, like, girls didn’t avoid me, this plan would have been brilliant. “

Rickie sighs, staring ahead, his chin resting on the palm of his hand. “And we’re *right* back where we started…”

Delia walks by, and greets Rickie very enthusiastically. Brian gets a lukewarm “hey”.

Brian looks at Delia and sighs, “I’ll probably *never* have sex…”

Rickie sighs along with him, “Yeah, me neither…”

[At the restaurant place]

Graham and Hallie are still alone, waiting for the workers to show up, wandering around the empty space a bit awkwardly.

Graham starts hesitantly, “So, Hallie...”

Hallie is sulking, “Yeah?”

Graham stops dead and fixes his eyes onto Hallie’s. “Hallie, we seriously need to straighten things out. We can’t go on like this.”

Hallie retorts feisty, “I know! How long can we stop fighting our feelings? You’re a married man for God’s sake!”

Graham responds incredulous, “You don’t get it Hallie! I am *not* interested in you!”

Hallie reacts angrily, “Stop lying to me, Graham!” She points her finger at his chest.

Graham rubs his eyes. “I’m not lying, Hallie! I can’t deny you’re attractive, and it’s great fun to be around you, but that’s it. No more. And we need to get this out of the way if we ever want this restaurant to be a success.” He looks her in the eye, wondering what it will take to get through to her thick head. Even if he was attracted to her, he’s just not the type of guy to cheat on his wife.

Hallie replies playfully, “So, you *do* find me attractive?”

Graham smirks, “You’re not butt-ugly or anything…” He continues seriously, “But that’s not the point here. The point is, we need to keep this professional. Or you will be doing this *without* me. Do you understand that?”

Hallie calms down, “I do understand, Graham, I just got carried away. But I want this place to be a hit, and I can’t do it without you.” She needs him in more than one way. Risking loosing him will mean the end of her dream as well…

Graham raises his eyebrow at her, “Are you *sure* you can handle it?”

Hallie replies seriously, “I am really going to try, Graham. I don’t want to lose your friendship. But it’s not going to be easy, being around you like all--”

Suddenly, the door opens and Graham’s brother Neil walks in, interrupting their conversation. “Well, well, well! This is quite a place you got here!”

Graham gets up enthusiastically and greets his brother, “Well, well, well! Isn’t that a nice surprise?!” He’s actually *thrilled* his brother interrupted them. As far as Graham was concerned their conversation was through, but he wasn’t sure Hallie was ready to give it up yet…

Neill looks around the place a bit. “Patty gave me the address. I figured, since you’re really going through with this, it’s high time I take a look!”

Hallie looks at Neill approving and steps forward. “Well, well, well! Who is this, Graham?”

Graham casts Hallie a surprised look, “Oh, I’m sorry! Hallie, this is my brother Neill. Neill, this is Hallie, my business partner…”

Hallie and Neill make their acquaintances and it seems like there are sparks flying between the two of them, to Graham’s great pleasure. He watches the two of them chatting together approvingly. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship…

After a short while the workers are coming in, interrupting their conversation as well. They greet them, and Graham grabs hold of his brother’s elbow and whisks him away from Hallie for a moment. “So, Neill, how are things with Marla?”

Neill’s face displays bad weather, “Don’t get me started…We’re through, again. For good…”

Graham smirks and mumbles, “How convenient…”

[In the girls’ restroom]

Sharon walks in, gesturing wildly, “I can’t believe how *stupid* I am!”

Angela walks in behind her. “Slow down, Sharon… What happened?”

Sharon leans against the bathroom wall. “You know, like after Jordan’s gig, Saturday night… Kyle and I, like, had sex again…”

Angela’s face looks blank, “So…?” She’s awaiting the punch-line.

Sharon distorts her face. “Well, we had something to drink, you know, and we like, forgot to…”

“Forgot *what*, Sharon? That you wouldn’t *use* Kyle for sex anymore?” Angela is willing to pull the words from her friend’s mouth, out of sheer curiosity.

Sharon responds dramatically, “*No*! We forgot--” She falls silent.

“Oh my God! You forgot to *use* something?!” The truth hit Angela, and shocked her.

Sharon sighs defeated, “Yeah…” She rests her head on her hand.

Angela still looks worried. “So, now what?” She can’t imagine what it must feel like, let alone what to do next!

Sharon looks at Angela desperately, “I don’t know…I just have to wait for my period to come, I guess.”

“When’s that gonna be?” Angela tries to think along with Sharon.

Sharon sighs, “About two weeks from now. Two agonizing long weeks…”

Angela replies witty, “You know…I think I’m gonna wait to have sex with Jordan, just for a while. Like, *ten years* maybe.” She’s hoping to get Sharon to laugh a little again, but seriously, this is like *bad* stuff.

Sharon smiles faintly, “You don’t know how lucky you are, like, not having to worry about all this…”

Angela wonders, “Am I?” Am I lucky for *not* having had sex yet?

Sharon looks at Angela pleadingly, “Please Chase Face, don’t rush things because you feel *pushed*. It’s not worth it.”

Angela is perplexed. “That’s not what you told me last time!” The other night Sharon told her that sex was like, *great*! Ofcourse, this changes everything, she gets that…

“Yeah… But that was before I screwed up…” Sharon’s face displays her worries, her eyes are having trouble fighting back that the tears that well up inside of them.

Suddenly Rayanne walks in the restroom, hooking up with Sharon’s latest remark. “Screwed up what?”

Both are quick to answer, “Nothing.”

Rayanne backs away. “Okay, I get it. Not my business!” She feels attacked by the both of them. It’s not *her* fault she has to know everything that goes on around here!

Sharon regrets her blunt answer and tells Rayanne, “No, it’s not, I mean, I can’t tell you. Yet.”

“Whatever,” Rayanne puts on her lipstick while staring into the mirror; like she has forgotten about what happened already. Like it doesn’t matter anyway...

Angela asks her hesitantly, “So, Rayanne, how’s the play coming along?”

Rayanne stops putting on her lipstick instantly and looks at Angela. “Fine, fine, we’re very busy, you know, rehearsing and all. Amber practices with me like all the time, at home. And the ticket sales are going great!” Her voice has a nervous ring to it.

Angela smiles at her reassuringly, “Yeah? I know, well, partly. I already sold *my* thirty tickets, so. But it’s good to hear, you know. I’m actually thinking of coming myself.”

“You should. I mean, it wouldn’t like, be the same without you. I mean, you can come, like, if you want to, it’s no big deal or anything. Just do what you want, like, I don’t care, I guess. ” The grateful, relieved look Rayanne sends Angela says more than her insecure words do.

“So, you know where I might be able to get some tickets then, just in case?” Inside Angela is smiling because of Rayanne’s words. She can’t pour her heart out like a normal person, she has to stay like, *cool*, at all times.

Sharon sends Angela a meaningful look, probably thinking the exact same thing Angela is, about Rayanne.

“Let me check. Not quite sure…” Rayanne is hopping around restlessly already again.

“Okay. So, good luck, like, with rehearsing and stuff.” Angela stuffs a lock of red hair behind her ear.

“Thanks, bye!” And Rayanne is off again.

Sharon laughs at Angela, “She’s like, *so* weird! I mean, she’s like out of this world *all* the time, or something!”

“Yeah, I know. That’s probably like, part of her charm, I guess.” Angela giggles and holds open the door to let Sharon and herself out of the girls’ bathroom.

[At tutoring]

Jordan and Brian are sitting at a table again; books lie open in front of them. Jordan’s eyes flicker over Brian’s face as he searches for words to thank him in his own unique way. “So, Brain, that thing you like, told me, you know, to write Angela a song?”

Jordan’s eyes search contact with Brian’s eyes; his mouth falls silent, waiting for Brian to respond.

When Brian keeps quiet, Jordan continues, “It worked out like, great!”

Brian responds angrily, without looking at Jordan, “*Don’t* talk to me about Angela!!! Please…” In his head he finishes the sentence. ‘It hurts too much…!!!’

Jordan reacts clueless, “Why not? I just thought, like, since you helped me write that letter and all, you know…”

Brian’s eyes lock onto Jordan’s and his voice sounds dim, “I still regret *every* syllable I like, wrote down on that stupid piece of paper. I poured my heart out to her and someone else takes credit for it. Next thing I know, I tell him to write a song, and he like, does it, using my words again! Oh, and while he’s at it, let him strip away the little shred of dignity I have left and take my *life* away from me too, please. It’s worthless and it *sucks* anyway… ”

Jordan’s reaction shows his ignorance, “What? What do you mean, Brain? She like, *loved* your letter man! What are you talking about?”

Brian mumbles, “Obviously you don’t get it, Catalano.” There’s no point in talking to him. He’s either *really* that stupid, or *that* clueless to the world around him.

“Don’t get, like, what, Brain?” Jordan gets a little frustrated, shoving around the books over the table, worried Brian might know something about Angela that he should know as well.

“Look, can we like, *please* forget this conversation, and do what we’re supposed to do?!” Brian is tired of trying to explain things about his love-life to Jordan Catalano. Or rather, *lack* there of.

“Whatever,” Jordan decides it’s best to stop trying to understand Brain. He obviously doesn’t want to explain things any further. Since Jordan is used to being treated impatiently because of his so-called dumb-ness he accepts his role yet again.

Brian scrapes together some courage to tell Jordan one more thing he should have told him a long time ago. “By the way, I think it’s best you find yourself another tutor. I can’t do this anymore.”

Jordan is taken by surprise, “I thought we like, had a deal? Like, you tutor me, I tutor you!” Even if Brain did react impatient just now, he has always tried to *learn* Jordan things. Jordan had something to teach him as well, so the deal was good for both parties.

“Yeah well, it turns out I am only helping *you*, and I can’t do it anymore.” Brian is a little afraid Jordan might not take ‘no’ for an answer and punch him in the face or something ruggedly savage like that; so he eyes him carefully, prepared for a fit.

Jordan reacts resigned, “Bummer. Maybe Angela knows someone else…”

Brian sounds glum. “It’s not my problem, so just fix it any way you want to. I don’t care.” He gets back to tutoring, but seems absent-minded.

When Jordan and Brian are finally done tutoring, Brian takes off instantly. In the hallway he bumps into Rayanne. “Oh hey, Krakow, just the guy I need! Metaphorically speaking, ofcourse.”

Brian reacts irritated, “What do you want, Graff?” Another person to make his life miserable.

“You’re in a crappy mood! Oh, wait! Did the mouse from your experiment like, die because of the pressure, or something? Anyway, how’s the ticket sale going?” Rayanne looks at him inquisitively, one eyebrow arched.

Brian flushes. “Oh…umm, well, I may have sold *one*…” He totally forgot he was supposed to sell those lame tickets. That’ll teach him not to sign up for anything *ever* again because there’s a *girl* involved.

Rayanne reacts sarcastic and slaps him on his back. “Wow Krakow! That’s *got* to be a new record! Be sure to take a picture of yourself to star in the school-paper!”

Brian crumples with embarrassment.

“Anyway, how would you like to sell a few extra tickets then?” Rayanne searches her bag and her hand comes out holding up a lollipop. She unwraps it, throws the piece of paper on the floor and sticks the lollipop into her mouth.

Brian eyes her movements closely. “Not that I care, but I have a feeling you’re gonna tell me anyway…”

Rayanne takes the lollipop from her mouth. “Angela like, thought about coming, and I figured, since you like, live across the street from her, you can just go by her house and tell her you’re like, selling the tickets.” She looks at Brian contently.

Brian hesitates, “It’s not like we’re that close or anything, but I could do it, I guess. …” The thought of going over there scares him, but thrills him at the same time. He can *always* use another excuse to see her.

Rayanne looks at him incredulous. “Oh come on, Krakow! It’s like, never stopped you before, has it? Angela’s been ignoring you for like, as long as I’ve known her, but you just keep following her around like a little, stray puppy anyway!”

“You know, it wouldn’t *kill* you to be a little more tactful once in while.” He flushes, knowing Rayanne is right; feeling embarrassed that *everybody* seems to know how he feels about Angela.

“Don’t underestimate the power of straightforwardness, Krakow…” Rayanne waves her lollipop at Brian and takes off, disappearing as suddenly as she appeared.

[Chase House, around supper time]

Patty just walks in the backdoor, while Graham is fixing dinner. Angela and Danielle are lounging on the living room-couch, watching the TV.

“Hey honey, I’m home. So, how was your day?” Patty is curious how Graham dealt with Hallie. She gives her husband a kiss.

Graham replies relieved, “Well Patty, you won’t believe this, but I think the solution to Hallie’s infatuation lies in my DNA after all!”

Patty gives him an inquisitive look. “I don’t have a clue what you mean, but you’re gonna tell me, right?”

Graham explains himself further, “Well, I confronted Hallie about –you know-” Graham tilts his head toward the living room where Angela and Danielle are watching the TV, then continues: “I basically told her she’d have to get her act together, or I would quit.”

Patty looks at her husband with disbelief, “Seriously?”

“Well, I really don’t want to give this up, but if things don’t work out, we have to come up with some sort of solution. [Pause] Anyway, we hadn’t even finished our conversation, when Neill walked in.” Graham raises his eyebrows in a meaningful manner.

“Oh how nice! He told me he was going to surprise you one of these days. So, what did he think of the place?” A sincere smile lights up Patty’s face.

Graham sounds pleased, “He liked the place. But the best part is, that is, if I am not mistaken…” He continues in a whispering tone, “He seems to like *Hallie*…”

Surprise takes over Patty’s face; she whispers, “What? He likes *Hallie*? But what about Marla?”

“Marla and he are through. *For good*, this time. But wait, the story gets even better…” Graham talks as a conspirator, “Hallie [pause] seems to like him *back*.”

“Seriously? They like each other?” Patty is taken by surprise to say the least, but this could be a good thing.

Graham smiles confidently, “You wouldn’t believe the sparks I saw flying! And they hit it off in conversation right away.”

Patty is hesitant to be totally excited yet, “You know, if this was anyone but your brother, I would be relieved that Hallie has found someone new. But judging by Neill’s love-history…”

Graham smirks at his wife, “Whatever gets her mind of *me* must be a good thing, right?”

“I guess so. Funny, how faith seems to have a hand in certain things.” Patty’s mind is trying to explain what happened here; is it a good thing or a bad thing? Hallie will leave her husband alone, but on the other hand, she might become her sister-in-law… The shivers that are going down Patty’s spine aren’t totally positive, that’s for sure.

Danielle VO: “It’s funny how grown-ups always seem to think you don’t have a clue what they’re talking about. I notice how my mom reacts whenever my dad talks about this Hallie-person. It’s like, she’s jealous or something. It scares me sometimes, thinking my parents might get a divorce. There are like so many kids in my class whose parents had a divorce. I don’t want that to happen to me.”

The doorbell rings; Danielle jumps up from the couch to answer the door, “I’ll get it!” She puts the door-curtain aside to check who it is, and opens the door when she sees a familiar face, “Hi Brian.” Her heart jumps a little at the sight of him. He’s got the cutest curls, and--

“Hi. So, is Angela around?” Brian interrupts Danielle’s thoughts on him unknowingly.

Danielle responds disappointed, “Yeah.” She turns away from Brian and shouts at Angela, “Angela, it’s for you!” She walks into the living-room and plops down on the sofa again.

Danielle VO: “It’s not fair that Brian is like always here to see *Angela*. She doesn’t even appreciate him; she doesn’t see how smart he is. She like, makes a fool of him and his feelings, while even *I* can see how much in love he is with her. Why can’t he be in love with me? The age difference isn’t *that* big. Why does Angela like get to have *two* guys chasing after her, and me not even *one*? She always gets to do stuff first, and it’s not fair!”  

Angela’s not in the mood to get up, so she gets up slowly and walks to the hallway, greeting Brian lukewarm, “Hi.”

Brian sorta waves at her, “Hey. So, um, Rayanne told me you may want to buy tickets for the play.”

“I was considering it, yeah.” Angela tucks a lock of hair behind her ear and curls her hands further into her sleeves.

Brian sounds mechanical, “Well, I got stuck with like thirty tickets, so.”

Angela cocks an eyebrow at him, “You too? I already sold mine, so. But I won’t be needing *all* thirty of them, you know…” She smirks at him.

Brian smirks back at her, uncomfortably, “I know. So, how many will you need then? I mean, are you going there with Jordan Catalano?”

Angela leans against the door-post, her mind drifting off immediately, with those magic words. “Dunno. I haven’t asked him yet, or anything. Doesn’t seem like his kinda thing, though.”

Patty interrupts them when she walks into the hallway, “Hi Brian, how are things with you? What brings you here?”

Brian makes the wave-ish kind of gesture again, “Um, hi, Mrs C, I’m selling tickets to the play, it’s this Friday.”

Patty asks him surprised, “The play? Oh, you mean “Our Town”. I didn’t know you were going, Angela?” She turns her head to look at Angela.

Angela is still leaning against the door-post as she raises her shoulders. “I’m still considering it. Rayanne asked me to.”

Patty is over-enthusiastic, “Okay, so, isn’t Jordan coming with you? I mean, if I were you, I would go anyway. Hey, how about we all go, as a family, that’d be nice, right? I would like to see how Rayanne is doing. Plus, it will help Brian out, if we get a few extra tickets of his hands!”

“No, I don’t think Jordan’s coming. So, you like, *really* wanna see Rayanne? And you think I should go?” Angela looks at her mother incredulous. She wasn’t even sure she wanted to go at all, and now they’re like going with the *whole* family… How does she do that???

“Yes I do, Angela. Plus, you have been helping out too, haven’t you? Aren’t you the least bit curious even?” Patty tries to warm her daughter up for the play, trying to encourage her to watch her friend play.

Angela retorts lukewarm, “I guess so, it’s just… I don’t know.”

Patty makes up her mind for all of them, “Brian, I’ll buy four tickets from you. How much is it?”

“Thanks, Mrs Chase. That’ll be thirty dollars then.” Brian is glad to be acknowledged again; watching Patty and Angela talk, was like watching a game of tennis.

“Let me check my purse.” Patty walks into the kitchen.

Angela and Brian just stand there in an awkward silence, both looking around uneasy, until Patty returns with the money. “Here you are, Brian. So, will you be there as well, this Friday?”

Brian hands Patty the tickets, “Thanks, Mrs Chase. Yeah. They’ve asked me take pictures for the school paper, so yeah, I *have* to be there.”

Patty holds on to the tickets and smiles warmly at Brian, “Okay, so, maybe we’ll see you then!”

“Who knows, so, bye then.” Brian takes a step back and raises his arm again for the wave-gesture.

“Bye Brian,” Patty turns around and walks into the kitchen again.

“Bye,” Angela closes the door and leans her back against it, closing her eyes. She has no choice but to go now; her mother decided for her. Not fate, but Patty…   

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Episode No. 24 - Our Town, part I: Lies, truths, acts and confessions by Lady Guinevere
Published: 01 Mar 2009 | Size: 42 KB (6500 words) | Language: english english | Rating: PG-13
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Patty lets Angela in on a secret, while Jordan invites Angela over to his house to spend the night while his dad is out of town. Angela finds out more about Jordan's parents, and lies big time to her own parents to be with Jordan. Sharon shares her secret with Delia. Brian has to take pictures of the entire cast of the play and Rayanne gives him a hard time fulfilling his job. Rayanne suffers from stage-fright again.

Read this story now: Episode No. 24 - Our Town, part I: Lies, truths, acts and confessions

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“I cannot bring myself to eat a well-balanced meal in front of my mother.”

Angela Chase, Episode 1: "My So-Called Life (Pilot)"