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Episode No. 21 - Interpretations

written by Jim Brooks

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About this story

Published: 1997 | Size: 37 KB (7167 words) | Language: english | Rating: PG-13
Average: 4.3/5   4.3/5 (98 votes)
Angela and Jordan patch things up; Jordan tells her he’s ready to commit to a relationship; Rayanne gets over Angela; Rickie finds out the Pride House has been temporarily shut down due to health violations; Jordan passes a test with Brian’s help; Brian finally fesses up to Angela about the letter

based on stories and characters created by Winnie Holzman




[The scene opens with the familiar picture of Brian sitting in his desk with the desk opposite him empty. The tutoring room is virtually empty with only two other students seated across the room. Brian is reading a Pennsylvania Driver's Manual when he glances at the clock on the wall that tells him it is 7:20 AM. Jordan walks in and sits down.]

JORDAN: Turns out we'll only be at the Loft on Monday and Wednesday, so...I can be here most of the week.

BRIAN: Your band, you mean.


BRIAN: OK, then...we can...get started.

JORDAN (after a beat): So, you're tryin' t'get your permit?

BRIAN: Yeah, I'm just...I mean, I'll probably take the test this weekend and then get a job or somethin' so I can get my license.

JORDAN (smiling): Maybe you can give *me* a ride next time.

BRIAN (matching his smile): Yeah.

JORDAN: So, we have this English test today, right? It's about that story, um...damn, what was the name?

BRIAN: "Master Harold"...and the boys.

JORDAN: Yeah, yeah. I read it, too. I of it. It's about these black guys, and two of them are, like, friends, and they fight or somethin'? But, I think I'm missing a page, 'cause the last thing I read was the one guy just leaves, and it's like they're still mad at each other.

BRIAN: No, that's the right ending. It's an open ending. You're supposed to imagine what happens between them.

JORDAN (getting it): Oh.

BRIAN: Oh, and the *one* character? Hally? He's white, and he's only, like, 17. That's "Master Harold." He's a white kid and he's friends with two black guys who're, like, 40. And, because it's in South America - and this is back in the 50s - that's why it's so ironic.

JORDAN: Oh, 'cause the white kid is, like, smarter than them, so it's like, "Why's he hangin' out with them?"

BRIAN: It's not that he's smarter, he has higher status in society then them just ''cause they're black. So, it's ironic that he's only a *kid* and he can still tell them what to do, but he'd rather be a friend to them. (beat) You know what I mean?

JORDAN: Sort of. (beat) Higher *what?*

BRIAN: Status. It just means that Hally's regarded on a higher level then Sam and Willie. (beat; Jordan still looks somewhat confused. Brian reaches into his school bag and pulls out a sheet of paper.) Here, this was homework we had a few days ago. I filled in all the answers, just read it over a few times n' you should be ready for the test.

[As Jordan begins to read the paper, we CUT TO:


[Rayanne is walking down the street with her large bag. She is the only one in sight with the exception of a few people entering the school off in the distance. Suddenly, Delia Fisher comes walking in to the scene next to Rayanne.]

DELIA: Uh, hi!

RAYANNE (barely paying attention to her): Hi.

DELIA: You're on drama, right?


DELIA (pointing in another direction): The auditorium's *this* way.

RAYANNE: Oh. Right.

[They start to walk in the direction of the auditorium entrance on the side of the school.]

RAYANNE: It's just kinda *unreal* to be here so early. It's like I have this...*freedom.*

DELIA (looks at her, confused): What, you never had to come to school early before?

RAYANNE: No. (laughs) You *have?*

DELIA: Not at *this* school, but...(beat) Why did Katimski ask us to come so early instead of *after* school?

RAYANNE: I don't know, maybe Rickie'll know.

DELIA (happily): You know Rickie?

RAYANNE (understating): Oh, yeah. I've only know him for, I don't know...2 years?


RAYANNE: So, you n' him are, what? Friends? (Delia doesn't answer) *More?*

DELIA: No, no, we're friends! It's just...he's confused. (Rayanne laughs) I mean...well, maybe I shouldn't tell you.

RAYANNE (insulted): Why?

DELIA: 'Cause...maybe he just doesn't want people to know. I don't think he *does.*

RAYANNE: That he's gay? Believe me, the whole *school* knows, myself included! He just hasn't accepted it yet, or whatever. No biggy.

DELIA: Wait, so you're saying...?

RAYANNE: I'm *saying,* don't get your hopes up. Him and you?...(shakes her head)...nah.

DELIA: Oh, I know, I just...a girl can dream, or whatever.

(As Delia speaks, Rayanne notices Angela walking into school through the main entrance.)

RAYANNE (depressingly): Yeah, a girl *can.*

[Rayanne and Delia walk up a short flight of steps and into the auditorium.]



[Brian is reading over the paper. He looks up at Jordan.]

BRIAN: OK...(reading from the paper) What's the underlining conflict in the play?

JORDAN: Change.

BRIAN: Right. How does Sam change?

JORDAN: He becomes more...aware?...of Hally's, like, problems, and...he tries to help him, but...Hally's, like, too...uh, what was that word?

BRIAN: Self-conscious.

JORDAN: Yeah, he's that. So, it's like he keeps things to himself.

BRIAN: Mm-hmm.

JORDAN: And, he's sort of got this, like, ego problem? 'Cause there's that one part where he thinks he's right, and he yells at that guy?

BRIAN: Exactly!

JORDAN (self-satisfied): OK.

BRIAN (smiling): OK.


[Angela walks slowly down the hallway, staring into the empty classrooms she passes.]

ANGELA (VO): Being in school before school actually starts is like seeing how a person or a thing is, like...*weak.* You strip away all the elements that make that thing whatever it is. And, it's depressing, kind of...but, at the same time, it makes you feel different...even though you aren't. The past week of my life has made me feel different. I'm really not...But, everyday, something changes me or changes the way I see something. It's like a roller coaster...only I'm not buckled in.



BRIAN: So, I guess that's about it. I mean, you're *ready,* so...


BRIAN: Unless you *want* to stay and go over it some more.

JORDAN: Nah. I should get outta here. I, uh...(suddenly acting exhausted)...I need a smoke! See ya.

[Jordan gets up and heads out the door.]



[We see Jordan turn the corner and begin walking down the hallway towards Angela until he then notices her watching him. Brian steps out of the tutoring room.]

ANGELA (O.S.): Jordan!

[He steps back slightly, then walks up the nearest flight of steps.]

ANGELA (O.S.): Jordan, wait!


[Angela hurries down the hall in pursuit of Jordan. She gets to the end and sees Jordan no where. She lets out a deep sigh and turns around, almost walking into Brian.]

ANGELA: Oh, sorry.

BRIAN: No, that's-

ANGELA: Is he...?

BRIAN: What?

ANGELA: I mean, has Jordan said anything about me?

BRIAN (pretending to think): Not that I remember.

ANGELA (upsetting sigh): Oh.

[Brian notices her sadness. Although he doesn't want Angela and Jordan together, he can't stand to see her like that.]

BRIAN: Actually...

[Angela looks up, hopeful.]

BRIAN (cont'd): ...I think he's, like, avoiding you. (beat) 'Cause he...he *knows* that you know I wrote that letter. And you're all right with it, but he probably doesn't know that. I mean...I can see where he's coming from.

ANGELA (taking it in): Yeah. (beat) I should go talk to him. (beat) Thanks! (Angela leaves)

BRIAN (depressed; barely audible): Sure. (sighs)



[The scene opens with a shot of Jordan under the bleachers, leaning against a support bar. As he lights up a cigarette, he sees something and quickly spins around. Angela comes walking into the picture, brushing her hair to the side.]

ANGELA (casually): Hi.

JORDAN: (turns around; a beat): Hey.

[They stand silent for a moment. Angela is staring at him.]

JORDAN (impatiently): What?

ANGELA: I know...(a beat)...I mean...I found out that you didn't, exactly...(another beat)...*write* that letter.

JORDAN (falsely defensive): I wrote it!

ANGELA (sympathizing): Jordan, you don't have to...please...I know you didn't write it. I'm not mad.

JORDAN (confused): Oh. (after an extended beat) So, who told ya?

ANGELA: No one told me.

JORDAN: So how do you know?

ANGELA: I just...know. (a beat) couldn't have written something that beautiful.

ANGELA (VO): I haven't hated myself more at this moment than I ever've before.

JORDAN (a little insulted): What?

ANGELA: I's not, like, impossible for you to have those feelings, but-

JORDAN: I can't, myself.

ANGELA: I know, so that's why-

JORDAN: So I asked someone...I told someone what to write and they made it, like...sound good.

ANGELA: And I know Brian Krakow wrote it...but, that doesn't mean it wasn't coming from you, I understand that. (extended beat) So, what I'm trying to say is...(shying away a bit) that I forgive you...again.

[Jordan is happy, but he hardly shows any emotion.]

JORDAN: what?

ANGELA: The bell's gonna ring soon, so I should probably...ya know...


ANGELA: So...bye.

JORDAN: Later.

ANGELA (VO): Moments like these...I should've gotten, like, a medal of bravery.

[As the camera pulls away, we see Angela walking away with a smile of happiness and relief, while Jordan remains emotionless on the outside, but ecstatic on the inside while smoking his cigarette.]

ACT 2:


[Sharon emerges from the bathroom still playing with her hair.]

BOY #1 (yelling out at Sharon from the midst of a crowd): VD!

[It doesn't hurt her as much anymore, but a look of anger for Kyle still crosses over her face. Suddenly, she sees Kyle walking with all of his friends as they jokingly push each other around. One of his friends notices Sharon glaring at them.]

BOY #2: Yeah, Cherski!

[Kyle and his friends walk up to her.]

KYLE (deviously): Hey, Sharon.

SHARON (with no emotion): Hey, Vinovich.

KYLE (humoring her): Oh, so that's how it is now? A last-name basis?

SHARON: Look, just 'cause you couldn't get it up...

BOYS: Oooooh!! Yeah!!

BOY #2: Ya gonna take that, Vinovich?

KYLE: Shut up. What am I gonna do, hit her?

SHARON (sarcastically): You better not hit me or you might get my AIDS.

KYLE: Yawn, Sharon. You're no fun even when you're *mad.* Later.

[Kyle and his friends retreat as Angela approaches Sharon.]

ANGELA: Sharon!

SHARON: Angela! Hi! How's everything?

ANGELA: What's this I hear about you having AIDS?

SHARON: Oh, it's just a stupid rumor that Kyle started after I dumped him. It hurt at first, but now it's just pathetic. I'm sure it'll be completely forgotten in a few days.

ANGELA: So, you dumped Kyle? Congratulations! I mean...I guess, if that's what you wanted.

SHARON: I wanted to. But, when I was actually doing it, I was, like, regretting it. I wanted to cry, but after seeing how Kyle's taken it...I mean, I'm seeing a whole new side to him, and now I'm just so glad to have him *off* my *shoulder!* (beat) So, you and Jordan Catalano are back together?

ANGELA: Yeah. It's weird, it's like this thing I can't control it. It's a long story. (walking away) I'll tell you later. I have Geometry now, so...!

SHARON: OK! (waving to Angela as she walks out of sight. Sharon smiles happily.)


[Rickie is applying some eyeliner when the toilet flushes and Delia comes out. There are several other girls in the room.]

DELIA: Is there another meeting today?

RICKIE: No, Mr. Katimski's gotta go straight home.

DELIA: Oh, good, 'cause I can't work another minute.

RICKIE: I know what you mean-

[Suddenly, Rayanne enters the bathroom.]

RAYANNE: Rickie...! (to Delia) Oh...hi.


RAYANNE: Um...(forgetting what she was going to say)...oh, is there a meeting after school?

RICKIE (laughs): No.

[Rayanne comes over and steals the eyeliner form Rickie and uses some on herself.]

RAYANNE: It's not you. (looks at Delia) Delia, right?

DELIA: Yeah. We talked this morning?

RAYANNE: I know. (beat) So, what're we doin'?

RICKIE: Don't you have gym or somethin' now?

RAYANNE (quickly): Yeah. It's too crowded in here, let's go hang outside. (Rickie and Rayanne look at her questioningly) What?

RICKIE: Are you...all right?

RAYANNE: Yeah, I'm great! Let's go! (Rayanne motions for them to follow her out the door.)

RICKIE (to Delia): Hold on.

[Rickie follows Rayanne out into the hallway and they stop there.]


RICKIE: What happened? Did something happen with Angela?

RAYANNE: No! I just...realized how lucky I am to be alive and that I don't need "Angela" to live my life! If she wants to ignore me, that's her fault.

RICKIE: No. No, that''re lying.

RAYANNE: No, I'm not. Let's go sit in Tino's car. (Rickie doesn't move) C'mon!

RICKIE (defeated): Okay, but-

RAYANNE (calling to Delia): Hey, uh...(forgetting her name again)! Y'comin'?

[Camera shows Delia in the bathroom through the doorway.]


[Delia walks out and joins the 2 of them. Rayanne is all smiles.]



[The scene opens with a shot of Jordan's car parked just outside an unknown park. The camera pans to the left and we see Angela and Jordan walking down the sidewalk.]

JORDAN: We figure I'll do the singing for now, and if we can't get anyone better...I'll just be the singer. I don't mind, I mean...I never thought of myself as a singer, but...

ANGELA (sincerely interested): Yeah.

JORDAN (after a long beat): So, whadda we do?

ANGELA: You'll do fine. I *love* your voice.

JORDAN: No, *us.* I mean, are we, like, official?

ANGELA: You mean, back together? Like a couple?

JORDAN: Like a couple.

ANGELA: I don't know, I mean...I *want* to, but...I want a relationship. I don't want to be another girl, I want an actual relationship were, like, we *both* have to make, y'know...sacrifices, or whatever. I mean, wha-

[Jordan leans in and kisses her passionately, interrupting her.]

JORDAN (after a beat): Look, I don't wanna pressure you or anything, but I gotta know. Are you, like, one of those "I'm worth waiting for" girls?

ANGELA (laughing): I don't know! (deadly serious now) Wait, you're saying it matters?

JORDAN (quickly): No, I just...

ANGELA: Just what?

JORDAN: ...curious...'cause... (long beat) doesn't matter. I want, ya know...a relationship, too.

ANGELA (smiling): Me too.

JORDAN: And if you're *ready?* Great. If *not?* Y'know, no problem.

ANGELA (VO): I *could not* believe it. Jordan Catalano wanted a relationship for what must be the first time in his life...with *me.*

[Angela is still smiling from ear to ear as he leans and kisses her once again, and we



[As Patty is pacing around the kitchen putting the last of the groceries away, Graham is seated at the kitchen table flipping through a cookbook.]

GRAHAM (pointing to a dish in a book): Have I ever made this?

PATTY (butchering the pronunciation): Coq au vin?

GRAHAM: Or how 'bout Chicken Provençal?

PATTY: I don't-

GRAHAM (in deep thought): I need some deserts. Um...Apricot Soufflé. That's good, right? I mean, it *sounds* good.

PATTY: Graham...slow down.

GRAHAM (laughing): Oh. Yeah, sorry. (takes a deep breath) OK. (laughs again) It's just that I'm falling behind. I was supposed to have this at least *half* done yesterday, but all we have right now are the few main entr_es that me and Hallie decided on a little while ago. And, I mean, think about it; I have to figure which dishes can be prepared ahead of time, how *far* ahead, the best way to store them and reheat them, how *long* I can store these things, how much storage space I'm gonna even *have.* I mean, my God...I'm just *now realizing* how much pressure I'm under!

[Patty looks at him with concern and sympathy as she pets his head. She sits down next to him.]

PATTY: Graham...I can't tell you to *not* be nervous. I mean, maybe that'll make you work more and *better.* All I can say is that...I believe in you.

[Graham smiles and gently kisses her lips.]



[Angela is walking down the hallway with a smile on her face, ear to ear. She is dodging the large hallway crowd when Brian approaches her.]

BRIAN: Angela.


BRIAN: 'Member that book we just did in English?

ANGELA: Oh, um...Harold something?

BRIAN: Yeah. You still have it, right? The one I let you borrow?

ANGELA: I have it.

BRIAN: Well, since we're done with the test, could I get it back? I mean, normally, I wouldn't care, but my cousin? He goes to North Catholic, and they're doin' it over there, so it would just be convenient...I mean, I told him I'd let him borrow it when he needed it, so-

ANGELA: OK! (laughing) God, you don't need some big explanation for everything.

BRIAN (smiling): Well...I guess not. So...I'll pick it up tonight.

ANGELA: OK. (Brian nods a goodbye as he heads in the opposite direction. Angela turns the corner and stops at her locker.)


[As Angela does the combination for her locker, Rickie suddenly stops beside her and smiles.]

ANGELA: Hi! God, it's been, like, years.

RICKIE: We've both been busy.

ANGELA (pulling books from her locker): Yeah. I mean, in the last 4 days, my life is, like...just something completely different and unexpected. And...I guess it's a *good* thing, but...I keep waiting for something to twist it all around.

RICKIE: Are you talking about you and Brian?

ANGELA: Me and Brian, me and and my*self!* I'm actually happy with myself.

RICKIE: So, I mean...well, what happened with Brian? Did he tell you?

ANGELA: Oh, he told me. I was sort of disappointed at first, because...I guess I was just fascinated that someone could almost feel the way about me that I felt...*feel*...about Jordan.

RICKIE: So...wait. So, why are you disappointed?

ANGELA: Because...when Brian wrote was just like this favor. I mean...(laughing)...he didn't actually *mean* it. And now that I think about's funny that I thought he actually could've. I mean, can you *imagine* Brian love...with *me?* (still laughing)

RICKIE (slight laugh): It doesn't sound so weird.

ACT 3:


[The camera pans across the room. The teacher is sitting quietly in his desk while the students are busy writing in their copybooks. The camera zooms in on Brian as he sits at his desk writing on his test with a pencil. As he writes, we see him pause for a moment. The camera zooms in on his hand as he turns the pencil over to erase the mistake he just made. We see that the end of the pencil doesn't have an eraser. The camera moves back to Brian's face who is obviously frustrated. As he slowly looks up, his eyes open wide.]

["Estonia" by Marillion plays continuously through the scene:

Feeling you shake
Feel your heart break
Thinking If only, If only, If only]

[Through the small glass window of the classroom door, we see Angela and Jordan walking down the hallway in slow motion. They are smiling and laughing and kissing.]

BRIAN (VO): Kill me. Kill me now.

[And the salt water runs
Through your veins and your bones
Telling you no not this way, not this way, not this way]

[Then we see Sharon and Kyle walk past each other, not saying a word but staring into each others eyes with such hate and such contempt that it makes Brian blink back to reality.
The camera fades down the hallway as the music ends the scene.]

[And you would give anything
Give up everything
Offer your life blood away
For yesterday]


[The camera shows Rickie walking down an empty hallway holding a slip of paper in his hand. The camera pans to the entrance of the boys' bathroom where Brian is emerging from.]

RICKIE (O.S.): Brian.

BRIAN (looking up): Oh, hi. (They walk down the hallway together. Rickie looks at Brian as if he's waiting for him to speak.) What?

RICKIE (beat): You *know* what I'm gonna ask you.

BRIAN: What? About Angela? Look, I told her as much as I can. I told her I wrote the letter and that was it. I was like, 'I was interpreting Jordan Catalano for you.' I mean, you *know* she was relieved to know that I'm not, like, *obsessing* over this whole thing. Or at least she's relieved 'cause she *thinks* I'm not. (he sighs sadly)

RICKIE (looking down at the slip of paper as they walk down a flight of steps): Where's room 108?

BRIAN (uncertain): I think that's guidance.

RICKIE: That's not good enough.

BRIAN (surprised): What?

RICKIE: You have to tell her everything. She has no idea how you feel!

BRIAN (laughing): Oh. (serious) Oh, oh, no, I can't.

RICKIE (becoming impatient): *Yes,* you *can.*

BRIAN: If I tell her I meant would be pointless. So, maybe she'd be flattered or whatever. That's it! I can't expect her to have those same feelings just 'cause *I* do! It doesn't work like that!

[A unidentified teacher emerges from a classroom they are walking past.]

TEACHER: Hey, we're takin' a test in here! You wanna keep it down?

BRIAN: Oh, sorry.

TEACHER: Where are you two s'possed t'be?

BRIAN: Oh, I was just going to the bathroom.

RICKIE: And I don't *know* where *I'm* supposed to be.

TEACHER: Well, shut up and get back to class.

[The teacher shuts the door and they both laugh.]

RICKIE: Oh, here's room 108. So...I'll see ya.

BRIAN: Yeah.


[Mrs. Krzynowski is seated at her chair as Rickie opens the door and enters.]

KRZYNOWSKI (sympathetically): Hi, Rickie.

RICKIE (confused): Uh...hi.

KRZYNOWSKI: Listen, I've got, It's about that place. Remember? The Pride House?

RICKIE: Oh. (prompting) Right...

KRZYNOWSKI: Um, well, what happened was...I'm really sorry, I don't know how to say this. (Rickie grows more and more concerned by the second.) The Pride House got...closed down...for health violations.

RICKIE (devastated): It...(gulp)'s shut down? (Krzynowski nods) Health violations? God. Is it...I mean...forever? Or...or temporary?

KRZYNOWSKI: At this point, no one can say. I don't know it works, but I think the Pride House will have a certain amount of time to clean up the place, then the Health Board will do another inspection, and if it passes, they can re-open, only with twice as many inspections.

RICKIE:, how long?

KRZYNOWSKI: Um, I honestly wouldn't know. My guess would be...6 months?

RICKIE: Oh, so...that means...


[Mrs. Krzynowski and Mr. Katimski are seated opposite each other on a long, red, picnic-style table eating their respective lunches.]

KATIMSKI: ...that I'll just have to keep him for...6 months? Are you *sure?*

KRZYNOWSKI: No, I'm not. But I *am* sure that this is not a fast process.

KATIMSKI: I mean, it's not that I don't mind his company, gee whiz, I enjoy it, but, but...I'm sure...I'm sure he's not particularly fond of living with his teacher. (laughs) Isn't there...isn't there something we could, we could *do*...for *him?*

KRZYNOWSKI: Well, do you *know* that he would rather be somewhere else than with you?

KATIMSKI: Kathy, any living child would rather be *anywhere* than, uh, with...with a teacher. Imagine having to...(laughs)...having to *live* with one!

KRZYNOWSKI: You can't assume that. He's a very nice kid, and he's so thankful to have a good house at this point...I mean, it should not have to be this way, but he's just happy to be *any*where besides the street or some shelter!

KATIMSKI: 'Cause, I'll...I won't mind doing it. I mean, I'm not...not looking to, *adopt* him, but...(after a beat; laughs) Ya know, this *wasn't* in the job description.


[Katimski holds a handful of tests as he sits at his desk.]

KATIMSKI: Ripley...71. Edwards, 74. Lee...[laughs]...63. Petrucci...gee whiz. Down in flames. [some of the class laughs] Catalano...oh, wow! 82! [Brian and Jordan smile, proud of themselves. Angela smiles but is visibly shocked that Jordan did unusually well.] Krakow, 97. Thank you. So, Brian, maybe you you tell the 80 percent of the class that got the essay...wrong... what it was?

BRIAN: What the question was?

KATIMSKI: The *question* was, "Describe the change that Hally and Sam's relationship, uh, uh...underwent." Is it underwent?

BRIAN (As the camera zooms in on his face): Oh, yeah, um. It was just...that it was going too fast for them, and...they used to be friends; they used t'play together all the time, and *now?* It's like somethin' they couldn't control, it's just...with time...*everything* does...change, I mean. And it's due, in part, to Hally's *ignorance?* But I think the point is that we have t'deal with change as it happens... because it's *life.*

ACT 4:


[Graham is walking around his kitchen, checking out some of his brand new equipment (pots, pans, various kitchen utensils). Hallie comes through the swinging door between the dining area and the kitchen.]

GRAHAM: I have to say, you did good.

HALLIE (joking): At least one of us can.

GRAHAM: Hey, I'm under *much* more pressure than you.

HALLIE (laughing): Oh, yeah, that's good! You should do stand up! (seriously) I still have a *million* things to do.

GRAHAM: Well, I have a billion.

HALLIE (laughs): Seriously! I mean, I have a ton of companies to call. We still need more forks and spoons and stuff, not to mention an entire *set* of china. Plus, I have to buy the basic ingredients you'll need, and the other things I'll have to order *after* you've decided on the menu. So, *hurry up!*

GRAHAM (after a long beat): I saw those guys out there working on the fountain, painting the walls and everything.

HALLIE (energetic): Don't ya love it? Can't you just *feel* the rush? I swear, I could live off the excitement.

GRAHAM: I bet you could. (beat) Now, you have this all planned out? If we do everything on time and *right,* we can open by...when?

HALLIE: OK, last time. (running down the list in her mind) After we've completely furnished the dining area, ordered all of the kitchen supplies, all of the food, printed the menus, blah, blah, blah, we should be ready 3 weeks to a month *if* you hold up your part. 'Cause I need to place an order for that food, and it'll take at *least* a week and a half for all of it to be shipped.

GRAHAM: Don't worry...just...don't worry.

[Hallie opens her mouth to speak when she is interrupted by the ringing of the phone. She picks it up.]

HALLIE: Hello? (beat) Patty! Hi. (beat) Mm-hmm. (beat) You wanna talk to Graham or should I just relay the message? (beat) Don't blame ya. (beat) OK! Bye. (to Graham) She said to be home early. Danielle, talent show, etcetera.

GRAHAM (remembering): Oh! Right! (laughs) Good thing she called, I would've forgotten completely.



[Rickie walks through the metal detectors. In the distance, Mr. Katimski is hurrying to catch up with Rickie. He slows down and walks through the metal detectors, then stops beside Rickie as they continue to walk.]

KATIMSKI (upbeat): Enrique, hi!

RICKIE (trying to mask his depression): Uh...hi, Mr. Katimski.

KATIMSKI: So...(waiting for Rickie to tell him) Look, I know about...about the, uh...the House.

RICKIE: You do?

KATIMSKI: You're welcomed to, you know...stay with me for...for as long as you'd like. I'm sure, though, you''ll wanna get outta there soon, though, I with a teacher? (laughs)

RICKIE: Oh, yeah, well...I mean, is that something you would, like...?

KATIMSKI: What's that?

RICKIE: I mean...I just... don't know...what I'm going to do.

KATIMSKI: I just want to, to help you, so...whatever's best for you best for me. If you want to stay with, with me, or...with a friend long as you'll be safe. I probably don't want to spend all your, your *time* living with your teacher.

RICKIE: No, I...I don't even really *look* at it like that.

KATIMSKI (softly): Oh. How do you, do you...look at it?

RICKIE: Just that...a good person giving me a place to stay.

[Rickie and Mr. Katimski reach his car.]

KATIMSKI: Do you want to ride home, or...or...?


[Katimski unlocks the door and Rickie gets in the car as Katimski goes to the other side.]


RICKIE: So...getting back to all that. I don't want to be, like, a burden on you or-

KATIMSKI (starting the engine): No, no, Rickie, you're not a burden! I...I thought *I* was burdening *you* by, by, by...I mean, you living with a teacher just seems so...what's the word they use these days? Um...oh, gee whiz! It's just not `cool!`

RICKIE: You think I care about being cool? Three weeks ago, I was living on the streets and in warehouses with pretty much nothing to eat! Now, I live in an actual *house* and eat real meals and sleep on a bed! I would live with *any*one to get away from what I use to have!

KATIMSKI:'re all right with having to live at my house a while longer?

RICKIE: Perfectly happy.

KATIMSKI: Perfectly happy? (Rickie nods. Katimski smiles.) Well...I'm glad we got that out of the way. (beat) Of course you realize that you won' able to stay with me for*ever.*

RICKIE: *Then* I think I would go nuts. (They both laugh as we end ACT 3 or something



[Patty is pacing back and forth, nervously, putting on her coat, looking for her keys, etc.]

DANIELLE (O.S.): Mom, I can't find my shoes!

PATTY (panicky): We're going to be late!

[Danielle walks down the stairs as Patty finds her shoes on the floor.]

DANIELLE (panicked): I can't go without my shoes.

[Patty shows them to her and relief crosses Danielle's face. Graham comes into the living room throwing his jacket on quickly. There's a knock on the door.]

PATTY (hurrying into the kitchen): Graham can you get that?

[Graham opens the door. Brian is there, waiting patiently for something to happen.]

GRAHAM (prompting a response): Uh...

BRIAN (realizing): Oh, I just need this book. Well, not me, but my cousin. I mean, Angela has it, and he needs it, so-

GRAHAM (quickly interrupting): OK, OK. (motions for Brian to come in) She'll be down in a minute.

[Graham walks upstairs to get Angela. Danielle is in the living room with Brian tying her shoes. She is clothed in her aerobics get-up.]

DANIELLE (explaining): Talent show. 'Cause I'm, like, talented.

BRIAN: Yeah.

[Patty returns from the kitchen.]

PATTY: Hi, Brian. (Brian returns a shy wave) What, um...?

BRIAN: I'm, uh...I need this book back.

PATTY: Oh, OK. Angela! Graham! We'll be out in the car!

[Patty opens the door. She and Danielle leave. Brian stands in the doorway when Graham trots down the steps.]

GRAHAM: She'll be down in a minute.

BRIAN (moves out of the way so Graham can leave): I know.

[Once again, Bran is alone. After a beat, Angela comes down the steps with the book.]

ANGELA (in a friendly tone): Here. (Hands Brian the book.)

BRIAN: Thanks.

ANGELA (pointing out the door): We gotta go, so...

BRIAN (deep breath): I meant it.

ANGELA (impatiently): You're welcome!

BRIAN: No, the letter.

ANGELA (after a beat): Wait, say this again?

BRIAN (hesitant): The letter that I wrote, *for* Jordan, t'give to you. I meant it.

ANGELA (perplexed and amazed): I don't...I meant it? Like, every *word* of it?

[Without warning, Patty appears at the doorway.]

PATTY (grabbing Angela's arm): Angela, let's go! We're late as it is! (Unwillingly, Angela leaves; to Brian) Just close the door on your way out. (Patty walks out and Brian is left standing in the Chase's doorway, alone, as the camera zooms in on his awestricken face, then the credits roll.)

The End

Author's Notes

"Estonia" by Marillion is available on their 1997 release, "This Strange Engine" and is highly recommended.

"Master Harold"...and the boys was written by Athol Fugard and is set in England-governed South Africa in the 1950s.

Next story

Episode No. 22 - Opposing Hearts by Jim Brooks
Published: 1997 | Size: 33 KB (6488 words) | Language: english english | Rating: PG-13
Average: 4.0/5   4.0/5 (53 votes)
Graham reveals to Neil that he kissed Hallie; Angela talks to Brian about the letter; Graham and Hallie name the restaurant; Angela and Rayanne finally talk

Read this story now: Episode No. 22 - Opposing Hearts

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Reviews for this story

Rating Distribution:
Average: 4.3/5   4.3/5 (98 votes)
  • Patricia commented on 29 Sep 2001:
    Really, really a great story. This writer absolutely has the right writing style for these episodes. It's all very natural in he way the storyline and characters continue to develop and unfold and build up again. I like how you ended it too. I didn't stop reading or even pause at all till I finished reading the whole piece. Thanks for the episode!!
  • anonymous author commented on 04 Jun 2002:
    Too much cussing in your stories to relly be the show.
    Delia knows Rayanne and Rickie are best friends, she says so to Sharon in #19
    I kind of don't think that we should say how long ricki and Raynanne have been friends
    jordan shouldn't give in to her insulting him about not being able to write a letter, he should just say
    'what' and then get defensive. Jordan Catalano doesn't have to explian that part of himself
    some of the converstaions, especially with Delia don't seem real, but you do a good brian.
  • Eva commented on 10 Jun 2002:
    The characters are developed very well. Great story.
  • Yodie commented on 27 Jul 2002:
    it brought back so many memories.. it brought me ack to the storyline. Perfect how you had Brian let Angela think, he was doing Jordon a favor by writting the letter, when he really wrote it himself. Aww, anyways, I really liked it.:)
  • Tasha commented on 12 Jan 2004:
    It was good.
  • karem commented on 10 Oct 2004:
    It's one of the best stories, where Angela, Jordan and Brian face love, the way they feel about it
  • cms commented on 11 Oct 2004:
    This one was better than Communication Breakdown. There were a few things that weren't conscise with the show. Like the conversation between Delia and Rayanne about Rickie being gay, and in #19 Angela knows that Brian wrote the letter and he implied that HE ment it.... But overall it was a great story and I enjoyed it.
  • Becca commented on 23 Dec 2004:
    I think this is a super story! I like how you even pick the music to play. The one thing I think is a little false is about Jordan bringing up the relationship issue with Angela. Jordan initiated the reconciliation, but he's not near as much of a forward thinker as Angela, and he needs some time to process the fact that Angela has forgiven him, not to mention the false foundation of the Brian letter that he needs to build the renewal of the relationship upon. I think he would not break out of his "whatever" facade, even with Angela, without some severe provocation. I think the letter is more Angela and Jordan's problem than Brian's right now, since he has already told Angela that he wrote it (at the end of #19).
  • Michele gave this story a 4.0/5 4.0/5 rating and commented on 02 Jun 2013:
    I am a die-hard fan of MSCL, and I have to say, you did a superb job! I just now found these, but I am SO enjoying them! Just read the first two, on my way to the third! Good job; you nailed the characters pretty much right on! And it is going pretty much how I anticipated how it would have went on.

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“And, you know, with your hair like that? It hurts to look at you.”

Rayanne Graff, Episode 1: "My So-Called Life (Pilot)"