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Episode No. 20 - Changes

written by RAF Jameson

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About this story

Published: 1997 | Size: 111 KB (20960 words) | Language: english | Rating: PG-13
Average: 2.3/5   2.3/5 (12 votes)

based on stories and characters created by Winnie Holzman



After credits, a montage of shots from the interior of Liberty High School. The place is deserted, with a feeling of post-disaster stillness (empty lockers hanging open, papers strewn all over the corridors, desks in classrooms pushed around in disarray, etc.). It's the familiar look of a school on the day after classes have ended for the summer, only made more melancholy by the slow movement of our perspective. As the camera slowly pans through places familiar to us from nineteen episodes of the TV series -- girls' room, classes, hallways, the niche down by the boiler room-- we hear ghostly sounds of teenage voices, laughing, crying, and living. Music swells to a climax and we FADE TO:

EXT - Day.

The front lawn of Liberty on a sunny Pittsburgh afternoon. A small stage has been set up at the top of the hill that leads to the entrance to the school, and a sea of faces surrounds it; near the stage the faces are all dressed in black robes and wear mortarboards, while further back the faces are older and dressed more conventionally. It's graduation day.

There are a few chairs along the back of the stage, one of which contains principal Foster, and at the front is a lectern, from which one black-robed student is speaking. It's BRIAN KRAKOW, giving his valedictorian speech. When we last saw Brian he was an extremely nervous and jittery young boy. He's since lost his baby fat, and some of his awkwardness with it.

BRIAN...what an honor it is to have been chosen class valedictorian. When I remember Liberty High School, I won't just think of the education that I received...

He looks back at principal Foster.

BRIAN (cont)...although that's been really great, Principal Foster.

Polite chuckles from the assembled graduates and families.

BRIAN (cont)I'll remember the people who've all made a difference in my life, and how they've changed me for the better. I'll remember the friends I've made and the relationships that will hopefully stay with me for the rest of my life.

As he mentions the people who've changed him, the camera turns to the crowd of new graduates and begins to scan it. We see some of those people sitting out in the audience: RAYANNE GRAF, who still looks funky but seems to be looking at Brian with almost adoration; SHARON CHERSKY, next to her, who is as rosy as ever; further down we have RICKIE VASQUEZ, who just looks happy to be graduating; and ANGELA CHASE, her hair now long and its natural color, sitting next to Rickie and trying not to look at Brian. Brian's speech fades into background as Angela's voice-over begins.

ANGELA (VO)Throughout your life, you're constantly bombarded with these artificial "moments" that are supposed to change you. It's like, now you've that you've done this... this thing, your whole world is supposed to change. Take graduating from high school: you walk up to a stage, shake the principal's hand, and suddenly you're supposed to be, like, an adult. Like it's that simple, and suddenly everything in your life is supposed to make sense.

As Angela thinks, we follow her glances over towards Rayanne and Sharon. We can see in her eyes that there is still animosity there.

ANGELA (VO)Everything is supposed to be clear, and you're supposed to be able to handle all of the things that previously obsessed you. Or something.

Next she looks back into the sea of parents watching the speech. Her mother PATTI is sitting with her mother, Vivian Wood, Angela's sister DANIELLE (now thirteen and starting to look less like the awkward kid and more like a sullen teen, with a short haircut and the still-lanky stance of someone who hasn't gotten used to their growth spurt) and, surprisingly, Rayanne's mother AMBER FALAN. On the other side of the crowd, we see Angela's father GRAHAM sitting with HALLIE LOWENTHAL; the two parental camps are clearly separated by a wide margin.

Our perspective shifts back to Angela, with Rickie shaking her arm as the graduating seniors all stand up. Brian is done with his speech, and is heading back into the general black-robed mass.

ANGELA (VO)But really, if anything, life just seems to get more complicated.

CUT TO:After the ceremony. The audience has broken up into little groups of people congregating on the lawn, congratulating their kids and jumping up and down in their excitement at finally being out of high school. Angela and Rickie are with Patty and Amber; Patty is hugging Rickie and Amber is smothering Angela as is her wont. AMBER Oh, Angelika, I can't believe you're really out of high school!

She releases Angela from her embrace, and holds her out at arm's length.

AMBER (cont)Look at you. You're a full-grown woman now. Oh, I think I'm gonna cry. And tonight... aaaagh! I remember the night after I graduated from high school! Me and these guys went out into the woods and stripped naked....

She glances back at Patty, and edits out the story she was about to tell.

AMBER (cont)Well, I assume you and Rickie will just be going to Rayanne and Brian's party out at the motel.

ANGELA(Looking confused) Motel...?

AMBER Yeah, I signed for it this morning. I thought that once you were eighteen you could do it for yourself, but I guess on graduation night they're a little more picky than usual. Let Rickie drive; he knows the way.

She pulls Angela in for one last kiss, then lets her go.

AMBER (cont)Speaking of my Raynee, I've got to go find her. (to Patty) I can't believe she graduated.

RICKIE I'll go with you, if you don't mind. (to Angela) I'll meet you at home later, okay?

Angela doesn't look pleased to see Rickie going off, but she accepts it, and kisses him.

ANGELA Okay. I'll see you at home.

AMBER Bye, Angela. Bye, Patty. I'll see you guys later.

They vanish into the sea of parents. Patty shouts after them:

PATTY Bye, Rickie. Bye, Amber. (Looking at Angela.) What?

ANGELA I just can't believe you guys are still friends. She's so....

PATTY So what? Listen, I know Amber can be a little....

ANGELA Annoying?

PATTY Unusual. But she really stood by me through some difficult times...

DANIELLE (Snottily) She means when Dad dumped us.

PATTY Yes, when your father left, and when your grandfather died, and other things. She was always there when I needed her, and that means a lot.

ANGELA I know. It just seems so strange to see you two together.

PATTY Well, yes.

We see Graham approaching, with Hallie. Angela lets out a groan, and Danielle fall into an even deeper pout.

ANGELA Speaking of troubled times....

PATTY Angela! Whatever problems all we might have had in the past, he's still your father and you'll show him the respect he deserves.


Graham and Hallie look acutely aware of the fact that they're entering hostile territory, Hallie more so than Graham. Both are clearly trying to put a brave face on as they come up to the gathering.

Angela just as clearly shows the resentment she still feels towards her father's leaving, though we got the impression from Patty's speech that it was quite a long time ago now. She's also trying to put on a brave face, however, so she smiles when he hugs her.

GRAHAM Oh, sweetheart. I'm so proud of you! A high school graduate! Do you know what this means?

ANGELA They'll let me go to college now?

He lets her pull back a way, though he keeps his hands on her arms in a distance hug.

GRAHAM It means you're really going to leave me.

Everyone is silent for a moment, though Graham, in his genuine feeling of loss, doesn't notice the awkwardness of what he's said.

GRAHAM (cont) Anyway, where's this, Tommy... whatsisname... you've been seeing. I was hoping to finally meet him.

ANGELA Dad. We broke up three weeks ago.

GRAHAM Oh. Didn't you guys go to the prom?

ANGELA That was four weeks ago.

GRAHAM Oh. I'm always behind these days.

Vivian has been patient long enough (for Vivian). She can't hold her tongue any longer.

VIVIAN So, Graham, I see that you've brought your....

PATTY (Jumping in) Hallie, it's... nice... to see you again.

HALLIE Hi, Patty.

GRAHAM So, sweetie, I was hoping you'd come to the restaurant one of these nights. I have a special dish I want to make for you in honor of your graduation. I was going to say you could bring Tommy, but since he's not...

ANGELA ... not...

GRAHAM ... uh, bring Rickie! I haven't seen him in a while.

ANGELA Okay. I mean, yes. I'll come. And I'll ask Rickie.

GRAHAM Good. That's great. And Danielle, you're still coming to my place this weekend, right?

Danielle looks at the ground, the fact that thirteen is still very young suddenly apparent. She looks like the little girl she still partially is. Her burgeoning teen angst is still tried in the presence of real trouble. She shrugs. Graham is clearly not happy with the lukewarm response from his daughters, but he also knows that there's nothing he can do.

GRAHAM (cont) All right. So, do you have big plans for tonight?

ANGELA I don't know. Mom and Grandma are making dinner for some... family... this afternoon. But I'm not sure about tonight. There's a party, but I don't know if I want to....

GRAHAM Oh, honey, you should go! You only graduate from high school once. You should celebrate.

ANGELA Maybe. We'll see.

GRAHAM Okay. Well, I'll let you all get going.

He hugs Angela again,Êthen lets her go. Hallie bends down and gives her a quick hug, more abbreviated out of anxiety for the whole situation than any animosity Hallie bears towards Angela

HALLIE Congratulations, Angela.

and they start to leave. Before fully disappearing, however, Graham takes a last look back at his daughter, and the family he left behind, and we hold on his image for a moment before we


INT - Chase family dining room.

There are a couple of relatives hanging around, along with Graham's brother Neil. There's a level of general chaos as Patty brings out some platters of food which she puts on the sideboard, Vivian works on a bottle of champagne, and Angela collects words of praise from the adults. Danielle has recovered her sulk, though her eyes are riveted on the bottle in her grandmother's hands. With a loud "pop," the cork comes out and Vivian becomes the center of attention, which is exactly what she likes to be.

VIVIAN Everybody bring me your glasses, and we'll have a toast.

Danielle is the first in line. Patty, looking over from the sideboard, sees Vivian start to fill her younger daughter's glass.


VIVIAN What? It's a celebration!

PATTY Okay, but only half a glass.

Danielle rolls her eyes, but Vivian goes ahead and fills it all the way. As more people get their share, the front door opens and Rickie comes in.

RICKIE Hi, everyone! Sorry I'm late!

VIVIAN There's my only grandson. I was worrying that you weren't going to make it!

RICKIE I got tied up for a bit. But I'm here. And Sharon says she'll try to stop by later, if she can get away from her own family.

Vivian hands him a glass, which he pokes his nose into for a second, causing him to blink. Everyone now having a glass, Vivian raises hers in salute of her family.

VIVIAN To my granddaughter Angela...

Angela clears her throat, and nods towards Rickie, eliciting a few chuckles.

VIVIAN ...and my honorary grandson Rickie, on this their graduation day. You've finished one of life's hurdles, and are about to start on another: Rickie, to study drama in New York, and Angela to become the first person in the Wood family to go to an Ivy League college. You've made me very, very proud. Congratulations!

All raise their glasses and drink, followed by the low murmur of additional, private greetings to Angela and Rickie. We see Danielle hurriedly kick back her glass and hold it out to Vivian, who refills it out of habit. Patty gives her mother a one-armed hug as they both look at Angela.

PATTY I'm sorry Daddy didn't live to see this.

VIVIAN (A little teary, with happy tears) He probably wouldn't have come. You know how he was about parties. (She hugs Patty back.) But I know what you mean.

Focus returns to Angela, who's being congratulated by her uncle Neil, apparently still in good graces despite being Graham's brother.

NEIL You're the first Chase going to an Ivy League college, too. Or any college, for that matter. I hope you don't get all superior on us.

ANGELA How could I get superior with you around to keep me humble, Neil?

NEIL Don't you forget it. Columbia, huh? New York's a pretty scary place. Are you and Rickie going to live together?

RICKIE Angela has to live in a dorm her first year, and I'm going to be sharing a place that my drama coach set up for me. Mr. Katimski made the arrangements.

NEIL Isn't he the teacher who...?

ANGELA He was our friend, Neil. Is our friend.

NEIL I know. Anyway, I'm glad you guys will have each other there. I don't know how Patty's going to manage without you both. Especially you, Rickie. Who's going to keep the house clean?

Patty arrives as Neil says this last bit.

PATTY Ha, ha, very funny. That's not why I'm going to miss them both, and they know it. Right?


VIVIAN (OS) Oh, Patty!

Patty sees her mother waving her over from where she's standing with another relative. Patty waves back, then gives both Angela and Rickie a quick stroke of the cheek before returning to her role as co-hostess.

ANGELA (to Rickie) So, how are Rayanne and Brian?

Rickie hesitates for a moment.

ANGELA (cont) It's okay. You can tell me, it's not like I'm going to explode, or start crying, or melt or anything.

Rickie doesn't look so sure, but he goes ahead an tells her anyway.

RICKIE They're both doing really well. Right now they're at Brian's house suffering the Krakow treatment, but they're both really happy to be done with it all. And they're having that party tonight, you know.

ANGELA So Amber said.

RICKIE Right. So, I kind of told them that we were going to... come.

ANGELA I don't know Rickie....

RICKIE Angela, you're my best friend in the whole world. I love you like a sister. So believe me when I tell you that it's time for you to get over Rayanne sleeping with Brian.

ANGELA Rickie, that was so long ago I can't believe you... wait, what did you say?

RICKIE You heard me.

ANGELA Why would I...? What would make you...? I'm not mad at her for going out with Brian Krakow.

RICKIE All right, then. Prove it. Go to their party tonight. Sharon's going to be there, and all of your friends. It'll be fun. Angela does not look happy at having been put in a situation of having to deal with these two former friends of hers, but Rickie called her bluff with a challenge, and she doesn't feel that she can back down.

ANGELA Okay. I'll go. I'm not promising I'll stay all night, but I'll go.


Vivian summons them this time. They look at each other, then head over to where the grand dame requires their presence. On the way, however, Angela steals a look out the front window. Across the street she can see the Krakow residence. Brian is on the front porch, welcoming some of his relatives. he looks confident and assured... and Rayanne is on his arm.


EXT - Day. Front of Krakow house.

We're watching Brian and Rayanne making their greetings. Rayanne looks across the street and notices Angela's face in the window. For a moment, as their eyes meet, Rayanne's face freezes, its happy expression no longer very convincing.

CUT BACK TO: Chase house.

Angela looks away, then stares into the distance for a moment. Was there something to what Rickie said?



Est shot of the front of a restaurant, called "La Fontaine" (check French for "fountain").

CUT TO: INT - same restaurant.

The eponymous fountain sits in the center of the rather elegant bistro. Waitrons with white shirts, black bowties and continental-looking little white aprons hustle about distributing food and drink to the clientele, which is comfortably full but not packed.

CUT TO: INT - office in the back.

Hallie is at her desk looking over invoices, and listening to the sounds of the kitchen coming in through the open door. She looks up from her work, and sees Graham in his chef's jacket and hat, chopping a few scallions with a distracted look on his face. Around him the assistant kitchen staff is hurrying about the business of preparing the customers' meals, but Graham is off in his own little world. Hallie puts down her papers and gets up.

CUT TO: INT - Kitchen

we just saw from Hallie's door. She's coming out, and going up to her disturbed husband.

HALLIE So Maestro, did you see the review your new coq au vin got in the Reporter?

GRAHAM (snapping out of it) Huh? Oh, no I didn't. Please tell me they loved it.

HALLIE They did. How could they not? Dumont Harper called it "sublime."

GRAHAM (rolls word off tongue) "Sublime." I like the sound of that.

HALLIE I thought you might. And I've heard from a little bird that we might be getting some more good news one of these days.


HALLIE Gourmet might be doing a spread on Pittsburgh, and include us.

GRAHAM Gourmet in Pittsburgh? Isn't that one of the seven seals of the apocalypse?

HALLIE No, but this mood you're in just might be.

GRAHAM I know. I'm sorry. It's just....

HALLIE It's your family. I understand. It's still hard on you to feel left out of their lives.

GRAHAM It's been almost two years now. Don't you think they could maybe start to forgive me?

HALLIE Graham, honey, they were kids. It takes twice as long as you'd expect for them to even start thinking about forgiving you. When my parents split up, I thought I'd never want to speak to my father again. But over the years, I've gotten over it.

GRAHAM Unfortunately.

HALLIE (Smiling.) Hey, that's my dad you're talking about. Anyway, you've got to let them find their way back to you in their own time.

GRAHAM I know. I just feel like I'm... missing out on their childhoods. I mean, Danielle is going to be a real teenager soon.

HALLIE Graham, she already is one. I recognized the glare.

GRAHAM And Angela.... She's going to be moving to New York soon.


We're in a car, Rickie in the driver's seat and Angela the passenger. Music is playing on the stereo at an unobtrusive level.

ANGELA Rickie, would you totally kill me if I decided not to go to school in New York?

RICKIE Yes. Next question?

ANGELA Rickie, I'm serious.

RICKIE How can you possibly be serious? I mean, what would ever make you decide to not go to school.

ANGELA I didn't say not go to school. I still have a spot open for me at Penn State, you know, and I was thinking I might go there for a while. Like, to be closer to home.

Silence, as Rickie looks at her for a moment, his eyes occasionally scanning forward to watch the road as he drives but not often enough for us to be comfortable.

RICKIE You're serious. You can't be serious. What's wrong?

ANGELA I don't know. It's just, I'm worried about what's going to happen if I leave. I mean, you see how Danielle has been acting lately. She's getting to be like... she's starting to act crazy.

RICKIE You mean like Rayanne used to act.

ANGELA Exactly. And look what happened to Rayanne. She almost died I don't know how many times. She almost didn't finish high school.

RICKIE But she did! And look at her now.

ANGELA Rickie, she was raped.

Rickie is again silent. This time looking forward. He's thinking. Finally he speaks.

RICKIE Angela, I understand what you're thinking. I do. And I understand that you might be scared to leave home.

ANGELA (Interrupting) I'm not scared...

Rickie doesn't let himself be interrupted.

RICKIE I'm scared too. I mean, the thought of going to live in that place all by myself, it terrifies me. But I've got to do it, and you've got to do it. And I'm worried about Danielle, too, but look at Rayanne now. She's got herself together, she's got her diploma, and she's happy with Brian. If you're worried that Danielle is going to turn out like she did-- and Danielle's got a lot more sense than Rayanne does-- well, just consider that.

CUT TO: EXT - Eve.

Upper floor of a motel, the sort where the rooms let right out onto the parking lot. Our first sight is a closed door with the balcony-walkway in front of it; we can hear the muffled sound of voices talking and laughing, and music playing. The sound of a party. Suddenly the door opens, and the sound gets louder as the party inside gets a direct shot at us. Rayanne storms out, and shouts back in:

RAYANNE Go to hell, Brian!

She slams the door, reassembles the voluminous bag she always carries (it got jostled by the force of her door slam) and starts stomping away. The door reopens, and Brian's face pokes out.

BRIAN What did I say? Huh? Rayanne, wa... Rayanne! What did I say?

As Brian leaves to follow his angry girlfriend, we see Sharon Chersky come up behind and watch the scene from the doorway. Camera stays on her as she watches them leave for a moment, then roll her eyes and close the door, apparently deciding that it was better to stay out of it.

CUT TO: EXT - Parking lot.

We see Angela and Rickie walking towards the motel. Rayanne streaks past in her rage, and the two watch her go. Brian comes running up; he, however, stops.

ANGELA Brian, what's wrong?

BRIAN (Clearly upset) I wish, I wish someone would tell me. She just ran out of the party like, like someone kicked her. Or something.

RICKIE What did you say?

BRIAN That's just it, I didn't say anything. I wasn't even talking to her. I was talking to Sharon Chersky about, about how I'm thinking about going to Boston a couple of weeks early so I can, you know, get to know the place a little before I start school in the fall.

Angela and Rickie look at each other. They've got it, even if Brian doesn't.

RICKIE Go find your girlfriend.

Brian looks uncertain for a second, sure that once again there's something going on that he hasn't been informed of, but heads off anyway. He doesn't have to go far, though. Rayanne is only at the end of the lot, leaning against a car with her back to the others. Brian sort of limps over to her, and they start talking to each other in that low heated way that couples have. Angela and Rickie watch for a just a moment before Rickie says:

RICKIE Come on, let's get up to the party.

Angela watches for just a moment more, still thinking about what Rickie said before, before turning and following her friend.

FADE TO: INT - Chase house. Kitchen.

Patty is washing dishes, cleaning up from the afternoon. Vivian comes in, far too regal to help with such a mundane task.

VIVIAN Patricia, leave all that 'til the morning. You've had too busy a day to be washing dishes.

PATTY If I leave them, Rickie will probably wash them before I get up tomorrow.

VIVIAN Is that a problem?

PATTY Mom, Rickie isn't a maid around here. He's... well, he's part of the family.

VIVIAN My point exactly. I used to leave the dishes for you when you were living at home.

PATTY You did, didn't you? Well, since this was a party for the graduates, I don't think it would be fair to have them do the cleaning up afterwards.

VIVIAN Suit yourself. I think I'm going to be getting on home.

She kisses Patty's cheek as Patty keeps washing dishes.

PATTY Bye, Mom.

Vivian leaves out the back way. Patty keeps washing, though her pace slows a bit. Hands full of suds, we see her fall into a sort of reverie. She turns and takes in the whole kitchen. There at the kitchen table are Angela, Rickie, Rayanne, Brian, Sharon, JORDAN CATALANO (Angela's one-time object of affection)... and Graham. All of them are in their incarnations from a couple of years ago; odd dye jobs, goofy clothes, the works. They're laughing and fooling around, Graham serving something out of a big pot. This is a ghost of the past, of a past that never really existed but which Patty is beginning to construct as she feels yet another element of her life slip away.

CUT TO: The front staircase.

Danielle, dressed up in tartier clothes than one would expect on a girl that young and wearing a lot of make-up, is tiptoeing down the stairs. She looks around the corner, through to the kitchen, and sees her mother slowly washing the dishes. She then sneaks out the front door.


Front lawn of the Chase household. Danielle is on the porch, looking around for something. We hear a sound.


Danielle turns and sees her friend ERIKA, dressed in a similar way, hiding in the bushes. She runs down and joins her.

ERIKA You got out all right?

DANIELLE No sweat. My mom never pays any attention to me.

Danielle takes a cigarette out of her purse and lights it. Erika takes one as well.

ERIKA So where's this big party you know about?

DANIELLE It's at a motel. I heard Rickie talking about it.

ERIKA Will there be beer?

DANIELLE Should be.

ERIKA Let's go.

They vanish into the bushes, and the night.

DISSOLVE TO: INT - generic-looking motel room.

Angela is sitting on a chair in a corner. Around her is a fairly respectable crowd of new graduates, all smiling and talking with each other. There are beers in a few hands, and there's music playing, but this doesn't have the feel of a full-blown beer bash. Angela, however, looks like the only person not having a good time. She's not talking to anyone, but instead is looking over at Rickie and Sharon sitting on one of the two beds in the room. They're talking, and while we can't hear what they're saying from Angela's perspective, it's clear that they're having a good time, too. The adjoining door liking the room to the next one is open, and Brian and Rayanne come in, arms around each other. Brian sets her down next to Sharon, who immediately takes her hands. The two girls start talking intently, a couple other people in the room joining in. Rayanne looks better, and seems to have made up with Brian (who is now talking with Rickie). It looks like a very close-knit group, Angela conspicuously missing.

ANGELA (VO) Sometimes, and it's been happening a lot lately, I wonder if maybe I've been missing out on something that's been going on. For a couple of years now, it seems that there have been all these... things that have been bringing my friends together. We close in on the four friends now laughing as a group, then reverse angle onto Angela sitting by herself, less watching than staring into space.

ANGELA (VO) Everyone except me. While they're all these great buddies now, I feel like some sort of leper. Like I've been exiled or something.

RAYANNE Hi, Angela.

Angela shakes out of her trance, and turns to see Rayanne squatting down beside her chair, looking at her over the arm rest.

ANGELA Oh, hi Rayanne.

RAYANNE Thanks for coming to my party. It wouldn't have been the same if you weren't here.

ANGELA Thanks for... inviting me.

RAYANNE Can you believe we're finally out of that school? No more lockers! The others in the room notice the direction that the conversation is turning, and join in.

RICKIE No more gym class.

BRIAN No more extra credit.

SHARON No more girl's bathroom.

GIRL 1 No more soap dispensers without soap!

GIRL 2 No more second stall from the end that wouldn't flush.

All the girls in the room give a collective "Eyew!" which leaves the boys in an uncomprehending shrug.

RAYANNE No more school!

ANGELA Wait, aren't you going on to, you know, anything?

RAYANNE I don't know. I haven't decided. Amber wants me to go to junior college or something, but I can't see it.

ANGELA So what are you going to do with yourself? What about... like, Brian?

Rayanne looks over to where Brian is talking with others. A shadow passes over her face.

RAYANNE I guess... I dunno. He's going to Harvard, and I'm not. So I guess... that's it.

ANGELA I guess I knew, but... I'm sorry.

RAYANNE Hey, it's no big thing or anything. I mean, I can still call him, or whatever. I mean, it's not like it's the end of the world.

ANGELA Yeah, but still....

Rayanne straightens up, noticing a boy carrying an armload of beers and a bag of chips who's heading for the door.

RAYANNE Hold it right there, Critelli. Where do you think you're taking those supplies?

CRITELLI There's a couple of kids sitting outside who wanted some beers. Is that okay?

RAYANNE What kids?

CRITELLI I don't know. Just a couple of kids. Freshmen or something.

Rayanne goes over and relieves Critelli of the drinks.

RAYANNE You were going to encourage freshmen? At my party? Who even invited them? Angela, get the door for me, would you?

Angela holds the door for the laden Rayanne, and the two girls go out.

CUT TO: EXT - night. The outside of the motel.

There on the concrete walkway is Danielle and her friend Erika. Both have cigarettes and almost-empty beers.

RAYANNE Oh, it's you. That's okay then.

Rayanne goes to put the beer down, but Angela is a lot less blas about her little sister sucking down brewskis.

ANGELA Danielle, what are you doing here?

DANIELLE What does it look like I'm doing?

She opens another bottle, which Angela grabs from her.

ANGELA You're too young to be drinking!

DANIELLE So are you, last time I checked. That isn't stopping you.

ANGELA That's... different, I'm....

Rayanne, though not the problem drinker she once was, is still sympathetic to the plight of kids looking for booze. She looks at Angela, waiting for her to explain how it's different. Angela feels like she's on the spot.

ANGELA (cont) Look, it just is. I'm underage, but at least I'm old enough to vote.

RAYANNE (less fazed) Did you?


RAYANNE (Curious rather than sarcastic) Vote?

Angela returns her attention to Danielle.

ANGELA Just go home.

DANIELLE Look, you can tell me to leave here, but you can't make me go home. Unless you're planning to rat me out to Mom.

The challenge in Danielle's voice again puts Angela on the spot. You can tell that she actually was planning to tell their mother, but now is thinking about it.

ANGELA Of course I'm not going to tell Mom, but....

Danielle and Erika pick up the remaining beers and head for the stairs.

DANIELLE We're outta here. Thanks Rayanne.

RAYANNE Don't get in trouble. If that cops catch you with that don't tell them that I....

They watch the girls vanish down the stairs. Return to Angela and Rayanne, watching where they once were; Rayanne is sort of amused, but Angela is clearly very worried.

RAYANNE Kids these days, huh?

Angela turns to look at her, her face still full of concern for Danielle.


Angela faces forward again, looking out into the night.

CUT TO: A shot of the street beyond the motel, looking dark and sinister.



EXT - DAY. Est shot of the Chase house on another brilliant summer day.

CUT TO: INT - Day.

The Chase kitchen. Rickie is busily washing dishes when Patty comes in, dressed in business clothes and carrying her briefcase.

RICKIE Good morning Patty. I made coffee.

PATTY (Pouring cup) I don't know how I ever got along without you, Rickie. Thanks.

RICKIE Do you have time for breakfast?

PATTY Not today. I've got a morning meeting that (She looks at watch) I'm already late for.

RICKIE Well, there's a muffin left in the bread box. Take that and eat it on the way.

PATTY Okay, Mom.

As Patty starts ruffling through the bread box, Angela comes in, dressed in a long t-shirt and looking like she's still half asleep.

PATTY Good morning sweetheart. You're up early for the first day of summer vacation.

ANGELA I know. I've got to start looking for a job, though.

PATTY And how. I don't know how we're going to afford to pay for your tuition as it is.

Rickie glances back at Angela, a questioning look in his eye. She notices, and it prompts her to keep going.

ANGELA I've been thinking about that, Mom...

PATTY Well keep thinking until I get home. I'm late as is. Oh, one more thing. I spoke to your father last night when he brought Danielle home, after you two went to the movies, and he wanted me to remind you to call him so you can plan what night you're going to go over for that dinner you talked about.

ANGELA Oh, right. The dinner.

PATTY You too, Rickie. So don't forget, or he'll call again and I don't want....

She stops herself, and we can see that she makes an effort not to speak ill of her ex-husband around the kids.

RICKIE We won't forget. Will we Angela?

ANGELA We'll remember.

PATTY Okay, then. So, wish me luck with my meeting.

RICKIE Good luck!

PATTY And good luck finding a job, Angela.

She kisses Angela on the head, pats Rickie on the shoulder and heads out to work. Angela pours herself a cup of coffee and sits at the kitchen table, pulling the newspaper towards herself.

RICKIE She does try, you know.

ANGELA I know. And I try, too. You've got to admit that we get along a lot better than we used to.


He's finished the dishes so, wiping his hands on a dish towel, he comes over and sits next to her. He watches her put three of four sugars into the p> coffee.

RICKIE I can't believe you actually drink that stuff.

ANGELA What are you talking about? You make it every morning.

RICKIE I make it, but you drink it.

ANGELA You're so weird.

RICKIE I'm going to take my shower and put on my face. You need in the bathroom before I do?

ANGELA Go ahead.

RICKIE I can't believe I have to start work today. Where's my vacation?

ANGELA Rub it in why don't you?

RICKIE You'll find something. Who wouldn't want to hire a screwball?

He leaves, and Angela sips her coffee and picks up the paper. We hear Rickie calling from the hall.

RICKIE (OS) Hi, Brian!

Angela takes her coffee and paper and heads out of the kitchen.

FOLLOW TO: EXT - DAY. The front porch.

Angela looks out and sees Brian, dressed in shorts and a t-shirt, doing stretches against a tree in front of his house across the street. She watches for a minute, and our perspective changes to hers: the now-solid Brian's legs look pretty good as he bends his torso over them. He comes up from his stretch and notices her. He calls across the street.

BRIAN Hey, Angela.

ANGELA Hi, Brian. What are you doing?

BRIAN Um, I'm, you know, going running.

She comes down the stairs, and he sort of slow-jogs over to her yard. They meet on the sidewalk on her side.

ANGELA When did this start?

BRIAN I, uh, I don't know. Last year. I guess.

ANGELA When you started going out with Rayanne? Is this you trying to look good for your girlfriend.

BRIAN (That irritated embarrassment is rising.) No. Or, maybe. And even if it is, what's wrong with that.

ANGELA I didn't say anything was wrong with it. When are you finally going to figure out that sometimes I just needle you for the fun of it?

BRIAN (That gets a little smile.) I think I, you know, kinda always knew that.

ANGELA So why do you always get annoyed?

BRIAN I don't know. Because I'm me, I guess.

ANGELA It just encourages me.

They look at each other for a beat.

BRIAN So, I'm going to run now. Unless you want to run with me. I can, like, wait. If you want.

ANGELA Why? Do you think I need to lose weight?

She holds up her naked leg and pats it. Brian instantly blushes, and starts stammering.

BRIAN No, I didn't... I mean, I don't... I'm just....

ANGELA Go run, Brian. I've got to look for a job.

BRIAN Oh, uh, okay. So, why don't you just get a job in your father's restaurant?

ANGELA's a long story.

Brian nods, then starts to jog away. Angela watches him.

FADE TO: INT - Restaurant kitchen.

It's much quieter than the last time we were here, looking like an afternoon rather than an actual working evening. Graham, dressed in normal clothes and an apron rather than the chef's uniform we saw him in last time, is talking on a wall phone. He's got a smile on his face.

GRAHAM Okay. Terrific. Yeah, that's no problem. That'll work out great. Yeah. Me, too. I'll see you tomorrow, then. Okay. Bye, bye.

Hallie strolls by, stack of papers in her hand, on her way to the office. She gives Graham a wifely kiss while continuing to look at the papers.

HALLIE Who was that?

GRAHAM That was Angela.

Hallie looks up.

HALLIE Really? So are you making her dinner this week?

GRAHAM Yes. She's going to come over to the house tomorrow and I'm going to whip up that new risotto I've been working on.

HALLIE Really? Am I invited?

GRAHAM Of course you're invited.

HALLIE He gets the right answer!

GRAHAM What? Angela likes you.

HALLIE More than Danielle, at least.

GRAHAM Danielle's just at that age.

HALLIE No, Graham. I'm the stepmother; Danielle resents that. And I understand, so I just try to stay out of her way.

GRAHAM I'm sure she doesn't....

HALLIE Shh. I said I understand. And, just because you were nice enough to invite me to have dinner with you and your daughter...

GRAHAM And Rickie.

HALLIE ...and Rickie, I'll volunteer to stay here and watch over the assistant chef as he tries to survive an evening without you.

GRAHAM He's always done a fine job in the past. Besides, Tuesdays are always dead.

HALLIE And thank god for that. (She kisses him.) I love you, you know.

GRAHAM I love you too.

Hallie puts her head on Graham's chest for a moment, and he hugs her.

HALLIE I'm glad.

She breaks away, and returns to the pile of papers she's carrying.

HALLIE (cont) Meanwhile, I've still got calls to make. This month's report from the meat supplier looks like it was written by Stephen King.

He smiles as she goes into the office.

FADE TO: EXT - DAY. The front of the Chase house.

Rickie is trying to get the lawn sprinkler set up. Angela comes out, now dressed in shorts and a tee shirt, sunglasses on.

ANGELA Want a juice box?

RICKIE Sure. Just bring it over here.

She walks over to where he's working, dancing over the wet spot where the hose is running. Rickie keeps putzing with the sprinkler, trying to get the nozzle bar to turn, as she sets down the juice box.

ANGELA So, I talked to my dad today.

RICKIE Really? How's he doing.

ANGELA He's okay. He wants us to come to dinner tomorrow. Says he gonna cook some new dish he's made up.

RICKIE That sounds nice. I'm not sure I can make it, though.


RICKIE I might have to work. The show starts in three weeks and we don't even have all of the set designs done.

ANGELA Well, I could....

RICKIE No, that's okay. I'll probably have to work late every night until we open. Besides, you should spend some time alone with your father.


RICKIE After all, you're going to be leaving for school in two months.

ANGELA If I even go.

RICKIE Are you still talking about that? You know, if you say one more time that you're not going to school, do you know what I'm going to do?


He turns the hose on her. She shrieks, and runs away, but he chases after her, spraying her with water. They struggle for the hose, laughing and getting wet. It looks like summer vacation.

CUT TO: INT - DAY. Brian's bedroom.

We can still hear the sounds of Angela and Rickie messing around outside. Brian is sitting on the window seat, looking out at them. Rayanne, dressed in a bikini top and cutoff jeans, is lying on the bed looking through a magazine and looking rather bored in that lazy-day sort of way. Hold on this scene for a moment, until a particularly loud

ANGELA (OS) Rickie!

rouses Rayanne's attention.

RAYANNE What's going on, Krakow?

She gets up and goes to the window. When she sees the water fight, she brightens up.

RAYANNE Water war at the Chases'! Come on, let's get that super-powered water-whatever-it-is that you got last summer and blast 'em!

BRIAN Um, I don't know if that's such a good idea.

RAYANNE Why? 'Cause Angela and me haven't been talking much lately? Come on, we talked at our party.

BRIAN I know, it's just... I just don't want to. Okay?

Rayanne flops back down on the bed.

RAYANNE Fine. (under her breath) You don't want to do anything lately.

BRIAN What's that? What, you mean like.... I mean, do you just want to... Um, we can't always... you know....

RAYANNE Geez, Krakow, is your mind always in the gutter? Get over yourself.

They're back in the postures they were in we first saw them, only instead of looking nice-lazy, they look hostile. Outside, we can still hear the water war in progress.

CUT TO: EXT - DAY. Front of the chase house.

Rickie and Angela, now completely soaked, are laughing that sort of almost-laughed-out laugh. The hose falls to the ground, and they start making fun of how each other looks.

ANGELA Your makeup is running.

RICKIE Now I'm going to have to get all changed before I got to work.

ANGELA Oh, poor baby!

RICKIE Well you should see how you look! You're like some kind of a... a wet kitten. All skinny and miserable.

ANGELA You're just jealous, Mr. Round Man.

She pats his belly.

SHIFT TO: A new perspective of the same scene: from the porch.

We see the two of them fall into each other's arms. Angle reverses, and we can see that it's Danielle watching. She has an expression on her face that's an odd combination of envy and disgust. It's a look we've seen on many a teenager watching older people.

Angela, now helping Rickie try to get the sprinkler working, looks over and sees her sister watching.

ANGELA Hey, Rickie. Do you see what I see?

RICKIE Is that somebody who's still dry?

ANGELA Not for long!

They start to stalk towards the porch, wielding the hose and big smiles. Danielle's face hardens.

DANIELLE Don't even think about it.

ANGELA What are you going to do about it?

DANIELLE Tell Mom that you're not going to Columbia after all.

Angela freezes, and the smile runs off of her face.

ANGELA Who told you that?

DANIELLE Word travels fast when the windows are all open.

ANGELA Anyway, I don't care if you do. I mean, it's not like I've decided or anything. It's just something I'm thinking about.

Danielle runs down the steps and starts heading off. As she passes, she says:

DANIELLE I hope you decide to go. I don't want you around her any more than I've gotta.

As she runs off, Angela calls after her:

ANGELA Hey, where are you going?

DANIELLE None of your business!

ANGELA When are you going to get home?

DANIELLE When I feel like it!

ANGELA Danielle!

She's gone, though, Angela once again watching as she runs off to do god knows what.

RICKIE She had her gym bag. She's probably just going swimming or something.

ANGELA I know. It's just....

RICKIE You can't protect her. If you try she's just going to act out more.

ANGELA But she's my little sister! It's like she's all alone in the world.

RICKIE She's not alone. No more than you are.

She looks at him, and he puts his arm around her.

CUT TO: Danielle's perspective.

She stopped as soon as she got around the corner. Now she's peering past a tree, watching Angela and Rickie get back to trying to fix the sprinkler, though the pair are less jovial about it now. From Danielle's perspective, we see the water finally come out of the nozzle bar, and start to arc back and forth as it's supposed to. Reverse angle back to Danielle, who is watching with the same mix of longing and disgust as before, though maybe there's a little more longing this time.



EXT - DAY. A gas station.

The light is getting long, and it feels like evening is approaching. Patty's car pulls up into the little station's lot, and Patty gets out to pump. A tall, dark-haired kid is working on a car that's half-in the garage. As Patty starts the pump, she notices the kid looking at her. He looks familiar, and she looks back for a minute. Finally she's got it.

PATTY Jordan?

It is. Jordan Catalano, who we saw earlier in Patty's kitchen daydream. The real-life Jordan is somewhat different than the Jordan of her fantasy, however: his hair a lot longer, and he's got a fairly significant stubble worked up. It's almost like he's starting to grow a beard. What's more, he's twenty and working; it shows in his eyes.

JORDAN Hi, Mrs. Chase. How are you.

He speaks in the same slow way he used to, however. Wiping his hands on a rag, Jordan walks over to where Patty is pumping gas and shakes her hand.

PATTY I'm... fine, Jordan. How are you? I haven't seen you in... well, a long time.

JORDAN I'm good. Yeah, I'm working here.

PATTY I didn't see you at graduation.

He looks down for a second. Patty is worried that she's said the wrong thing.

JORDAN No, I didn't graduate. I mean, I sorta did. I got a GED, y'know, last semester. I just couldn't keep going, to... like... class there.

PATTY So what are you doing with yourself? I mean, aside from this.

JORDAN I'm taking a mechanics' course at the community college.

PATTY Oh? That's great.

JORDAN So, I heard about you and Angela's dad getting divorced.

PATTY Oh. Yes. Well, you know how these things are. It was hard on us all.

JORDAN Are you going out on dates?

Patty looks beflummoxed. We can tell it's been a long time since anyone has asked her about that, let alone since she's done it. She's not used to such directness.

PATTY No. Not really.

JORDAN Huh. Why not?

PATTY I guess I just... don't have the time.

JORDAN Huh. Well, that'll be thirteen fifty.

PATTY Excuse me? Oh, the gas. Okay.

She opens her purse and takes out the money as Jordan puts the gasoline nozzle back onto the pump and twists the gas cap onto her car. He takes the money and opens her door for her.

PATTY (cont) Thank you. Well, it certainly was nice to see you again, Jordan. I'm glad everything is going so well for you.

JORDAN Yeah. Say hi to... like... Angela for me.

PATTY I will. Bye, bye.


Patty drives off, and Jordan saunters back to the car he was working on.


Fading light tells us that the day is continuing to pass. We're on Angela's street, as we can see by a shot down the street that shows her house. But the camera cuts to the house across the street: Brian's. After a moment of est., a car pulls up and parks in front. Sharon gets out and heads for the door. We follow her up to the porch, where Rayanne is waiting for her.

RAYANNE Hey Chersky. Brian's running a little late for a change. Where's Dylan?

SHARON Family vacation. His parents took him down to the Virgin Islands for two weeks.

RAYANNE (Sarcastically) I'm sure you're gonna miss him just about as much as....

Sharon is glaring at her, so she gives one of her "don't you just love me" smiles.

SHARON It's not like we're engaged or anything. Anyway, he's going to Penn State and I'm going to Ohio State. So what difference does it make at this point?

Rayanne looks away, so Sharon can't see what a sore point that is for her.

SHARON (cont)What are you doing out here anyway?

RAYANNE You know how it is at Chez Krakow. When the folks get home, I'm exiled from the upstairs.

SHARON You can't even sit inside?

RAYANNE Oh, yeah, I can. But both of his parents are shrinks. Have you ever had a conversation with two shrinks?

SHARON I get your point. So, has anyone invited Angela and Rickie to come to the movies with us?

RAYANNE Uh, yeah. Right after I tamed the wild boar I captured in the Krakows' back yard.

SHARON Oh, come on. I saw you guys talking at the party last weekend.

RAYANNE Yeah. I know. But Brian doesn't think we should try to push things, I guess. He doesn't want a full-scale war in the neighborhood or something. I don't know.

SHARON That's dumb. We're all friends. We should spend time together before we all go off to school. Aside which, things have been pretty hard for Angela these past couple of years. I think she needs to be reminded that we still care about her.

RAYANNE Well, you're the only one she still talks to much. Why don't you go over?

Sharon stands up.

SHARON I will.


Change perspective as Sharon starts walking across the street. As she comes, Patty's car arrives and pulls into the driveway of her house. She's getting out just as Sharon arrives.

SHARON Hi, Mrs. Chase.

Patty goes to the back hatch and opens it. She begins taking out grocery bags.

PATTY Hi, Sharon. How's your summer going?

SHARON Oh, you know. Work work work. Gotta save up for school in the fall. Here, let me help you with that.

She picks up the last bag and the two of them start for the house. Follow as:

PATTY Thanks. Your mom tells me you're going to Ohio State?

SHARON Yeah. I start in August.

PATTY Well that's very exciting.

SHARON Yeah. I'm just ready to get out of Pittsburgh.

PATTY You'll still be back for vacations, though.

SHARON I suppose.

They get into the kitchen and put down the bags. Rickie comes in, immaculately groomed but dressed in a paint-spattered coverall.

RICKIE Oh, hi Sharon.

SHARON Hey, Rickie. That's quite an ensemble you've got on.

RICKIE Like it? It's a Sherwin Williams original.

SHARON Big date?

RICKIE Yes, I've met the hunkiest paint brush you've ever seen. I don't think there's a chance we'll get the sets painted in time, but we've got to try.

SHARON Oh, you have to work?


SHARON You can't skip it? Brian and Rayanne and I are going to the movies, and we wanted you and Angela to come.

RICKIE I'd love to, but we can barely get any time at the space as it is. They've got it rented out to this motivational speaker every day for the next two weeks, so we can't work during the day. It's insane; I don't know why I do it.

PATTY And Angela's with her father tonight, isn't she?

RICKIE That's right. I was invited to that, too, but the show must go on.

CUT TO: INT - Eve.

The sky, seen through the windows of the nicely furnished apartment in which we find ourselves, is a deep purple. The space in which we've relocated is a large one divided by function rather than walls into living room, dining room and kitchen. Angela is sitting at the dining room table while Graham is in the kitchen. He's standing over the stove with a measuring cup, stirring a large saucepan while he slowly adds the liquid from the measuring cup.

GRAHAM I'm just about done here. Do you want some wine before we start? I've got a nice bottle of Merlot in that cupboard over there.

ANGELA You're offering me wine? I'm honored.

GRAHAM Huh? Oh, yeah. I, uh, it just feels like you're a grown up now. I think you should be able to handle a glass of wine with your old man. I'm sure you've had one or two before.

ANGELA (Coyly) Maybe.

Graham smiles as he adds the last of the stock to the risotto. With a final stir, he covers it and turns off the heat. He then checks in the oven for a second; when done, he turns around.

GRAHAM The chicken will be done in a few minutes. So we can... talk. He gets the wine from the cupboard, along with two glasses. As he opens the bottle, Angela asks:

ANGELA So, how's business going. At, you know, the restaurant.

GRAHAM Good. Very good. Hallie tells me that we might even be in Gourmet magazine one of these days.

ANGELA Is that good?

GRAHAM It's great. It would be this awesome jolt of publicity that we don't have to pay for.

ANGELA That's good, then.

GRAHAM So how are you?

ANGELA I'm fine.

GRAHAM Are you excited about going to New York.

ANGELA (Hesitantly) Yes-s-s....

GRAHAM What? Are you getting nervous?

ANGELA No, it's not that I'm, you know, nervous. It just that I'm thinking now might not be a great time for me to be going so far away.

GRAHAM What do you mean?

Angela looks at him, not sure what she should say. Their relationship has changed a lot in the past few years.

GRAHAM (cont) Honey, you can talk to me about anything. That hasn't changed. I hope you know that.

ANGELA I know. Okay, it's just that everything still seems so up in the air since you...

GRAHAM Since I moved out.

ANGELA Right. I mean, with Danielle, and Mom, and... everything. I think I'd just feel like I was sort of... abandoning everything if I moved to New York.

GRAHAM Angela....

ANGELA And it's not like I'm thinking of not going to school. I've still got that slot at Penn State, or maybe I could still get in at Pitt.

Graham takes her hand.

GRAHAM Angela, honey. I think it's great that you're concerned about your mom. But believe me, she's a strong woman. I of all people should know that. And I know that she'd want you to go to Columbia, and get the best education you can.

Angela just watches him, not saying anything.

CUT TO: INT - EVE. Chase kitchen.

Rickie, Patty and Sharon are still taking as Patty and Rickie put away groceries. Rayanne appears at the back door.

RAYANNE Hey, we've been ready for, like, and hour now. Hey, Patty.

PATTY Rayanne, it's good to see you. Come on in.

She comes in, but still looks like she's in a rush; she feels like she's on enemy ground.

RAYANNE Okay, but we're late for a movie. So Rickie, are you coming?

RICKIE Gotta work.

RAYANNE Oh. How about Angela?

RICKIE She's not here. She's having dinner with her dad.

RAYANNE Graham? How's my buddy doing?

She catches her faux pas too late, but Patty doesn't let herself be rattled.

PATTY Well, the restaurant business still seems to agree with him. How are you doing?

RAYANNE I'm okay.

PATTY Amber hasn't said anything about what you're planning to do now that you're out of school.

RAYANNE That's because I haven't said anything about what I'm planning.

Patty waits a second, like she's expecting more, then prompts:

PATTY So....

RAYANNE So, uh, I don't know. Brian's going off to Harvard, but I guess I'm just going to....

SHARON We should probably get going if we're going to make the early show.

RAYANNE Right. Brian's probably going bonkers by now. See you, Rickie. Bye, Patty.

PATTY Bye, Rayanne.

The two girls leave, slamming the screen door behind themselves as they go.

Patty watches them as Rickie finishes putting things away.

PATTY That poor girl. It's like she's finally started to straighten herself out, and it just gets yanked out from under her.

RICKIE I know. Two years ago I would have been frightened for her. Now I'm more frightened for Brian.

Patty looks at him for a second, the they both break up laughing.

FADE TO: INT - NIGHT. Graham's apartment.

There are candles burning, the wine bottle is open, and the remains of the meal is still on the table.

GRAHAM Why do you think that Danielle is in some kind of trouble?

ANGELA It's just the way she... you know, looks now.

GRAHAM Well Angela, she's not a kid any more. God knows I wish she was sometimes, but we've got to face....

ANGELA I know. It's not that. It's just the way she, I don't know, sort of glares all the time.

GRAHAM Teenagers do that.

ANGELA I know. And maybe you're right, maybe she's just doing the same things that I did when I was her age. But she just seems so... you know... lost all the time.


GRAHAM I think I know what you mean. And I'll be honest, it has me worried too, sometimes. BUT, your mother and I are able to handle it. After all, we survived one teenage daughter. And she turned out pretty well. Angela smiles, but we can see that she's not entirely convinced by that argument. The phone rings.

GRAHAM (cont) Excuse me.

Graham wipes his mouth on his napkin and goes to the phone in the living room area. He answers.

GRAHAM (cont) Hello.


GRAHAM (cont) Yes, this is Graham Chase. What can I...?


GRAHAM (cont) Hold on, what are you...?


This time, Graham's face blanches, and we can see that something is wrong. His eyes go wide, and he has to struggle to get anything out.

GRAHAM (cont) Wh... where has she been taken? Southside emergency room? All right, I'll be right there. Thank you.

He hangs up, but continues staring for a moment, the dull look in his eyes. Angela, still at the dining room table, has overheard the entire conversation. She's starting to panic.

ANGELA Dad? Dad, what is it?

No response.

ANGELA (cont) Dad, has something happened to Danielle?

GRAHAM (Slowly) No. No, something's happened to Hallie. There's been an... accident.

He snaps out of it.

GRAHAM (cont) Honey, I'm sorry, I've got to get to the hospital. I... we...

ANGELA Come on, Dad. I'll go with you. Do you want me to drive?

They hustle out the door. Camera lingers on the candle that's still burning as we:



INT - Hospital room. Hallie is lying in one of those intense-looking beds, her eyes closed and an oxygen mask over her mouth and nose. Her arms and body are thickly wrapped in gauze, though we still can't tell what happened to her. Angela is sitting beside her, a blank look on her face as she watches her sleep. In the background we can see Graham talking to two people, one of them a health-care-looking person and the other a guy in a chef's uniform.

ANGELA (VO) It was really strange to be there, sitting over my father's... wife. She was really hurt, and I didn't feel anything. If I'd felt anger or hatred, that I could have understood. But instead it was just this complete blank. Which was almost worse.

Graham returns to her side, looking haggard and disheveled. He's clearly a wreck, while Angela is a blank.

GRAHAM Apparently this new kitchen assistant wasn't watching where he was going when he was carrying a tub of hot grease.

ANGELA How's she doing?

GRAHAM I don't know. She's been burned pretty badly. The doctors say that this kind of grease burn can really....

ANGELA But she's going to be all right, though, right?

GRAHAM I don't know. I hope so. They've got her sedated now, but we'll just have to wait and see.

Graham reaches out for Hallie, but she's been burned so he knows he shouldn't touch her. Instead he reaches over and takes his daughter's hand.

ANGELA (VO) And right then, just for a second, I had a thought. It wasn't that I wanted her to die or anything, but just for that one tiny moment I thought about how much easier everything would be if she did.

She squeezes her father's hand, and puts her head down onto his shoulder as he watches Hallie sleep.

ANGELA (VO, cont) Then I could at least feel bad, because I'd done something I knew was wrong.


The outside of a rather run-down looking theatre, on a dark and deserted street. A bunch of people start to come out, laughing and chatting. We close in on Rickie, still in his coveralls which are now even more paint-stained. He's also got some paint on his face, but he looks happy as he wanders out of his job with his associates.

SHARON Rickie!

He looks up, and sees Sharon, Rayanne and Brian waiting for him on the hood of Sharon's car. He waves, then walks over to them.

RICKIE What are you guys doing here?

RAYANNE We thought we'd scope out what was so much more important than us.

SHARON And we thought maybe after you were done you might want to come hang out with us. So....

BRIAN So you're done now, right?


BRIAN So do you want to? I mean, hang out?

RAYANNE Of course he does! How could he help but want to hang out with us? Unless that guy we saw you talking to is....

RICKIE No! I mean, no, he's not. And yes, I'd like to come hang out with you. I'll have to go home and change first.

SHARON (wrinkling nose at his messy clothes) Good idea. And that way we can see if Angela's back.


Sharon gives her another look. She's getting tired of being in the middle of the feud. Rayanne rolls her eyes.

BRIAN So, are we... going?

SHARON Yes. And Rickie, try not to get paint all over my car.

RICKIE Don't worry. I'll make sure it's artistic.

They start piling into the car.

CUT TO: INT - NIGHT. A generic-looking convenience store.

Danielle is lolling about by the magazine rack. With her face buried in some fashion magazine, she steals a glance into the security mirror at the attendant. He's talking to an older girl, and so clearly preoccupied. Danielle stealthily reaches behind her to the candy rack. Without taking her nose out of the magazine, she drops a pack of gum into her bag. Her larceny complete, she keeps looking at the magazine until her friend Erika comes in.

ERIKA Danielle, come on, let's go.

DANIELLE (Bored-sounding) What is it, Erika?

ERIKA (Lowered voice) My sister was going to this party, and I managed to score a couple of beers off of her.

Danielle regards her for a few seconds, then throws the magazine onto the rack.

DANIELLE Let's motor.


The two girls come out of the store. Erika pulls Danielle towards the back.

ERIKA Come on, I stashed 'em back here.

Follow as they scurry to the alley behind the convenience store. In the broken-glass-sparkley darkness back there, they discover three teenage boys (14 - 15 y.o., so a little bigger than them) drinking beers-- beers that were meant for the girls.

ERIKA Hey! That's ours!

The meanest-looking kid stands up.

MEAN TEEN Oh, yeah? Looks like its ours now.

DANIELLE Oh, aren't you the big man, huh? Stealing from a couple of girls.

TEEN #1 (NEWT) Hey, we just found these here. We didn't know they were anyone's....

MEAN TEEN Shut up, Newt. (to Danielle) Hey, you.


MEAN TEEN Come here.

DANIELLE I don't think so.

MEAN TEEN I do think so. Come over here.

DANIELLE Why don't you come over here?

He looks over at his buddies, who chuckle. They aren't used to talking to girls, and their nervousness is obvious. The mean-looking one is gathering strength in numbers. Still watching his friends, he starts to saunter over towards the younger girls.

Danielle has him fixed with a steely glare. Erika looks nervous, though.

ERIKA Danielle, let's just get going.

DANIELLE I know what I'm doing.

The mean-looking guy is pretty close now. With a lascivious gleam in his eye, he comes right up to Danielle and gets in her face.

MEAN TEEN So I'm here.

DANIELLE Come on, big boy. Get closer.

He looks back at his buddies again, who chuckle in vicarious pleasure, then leans over until his face is almost touching Danielle's. She smiles at him. Then she lifts the mace sprayer she had clutched in her hand and blasts him full in the eyes. He screams and falls to the ground, clawing at himself. His buddies are momentarily shocked.


The two girls take off, and the boys follow. The mean-looking one is slowed down by his teary eyes, and the other two are only half-hearted.


A brief chase through the dark streets and alleys. The girls are now sort of giggling. Danielle turns and brandishes her mace at the distant boys for a second; when they hold up, the girls laugh and tear through a yard. Out the other side, they fall into a dark space, hidden by bushes. They hear the lackluster pursuers giving up, and stifle their giggles. When they stand up, however, they find the Mean Teen right behind them. His eyes are red and he's streaked with tears, but he doesn't look very sad.

MEAN TEEN Think you're pretty funny, huh?

DANIELLE A scream.

MEAN TEEN Well, I'm not laughing.

He grabs Danielle's hand and wrenches the mace sprayer out of it. Despite her big talk, there's nothing she can do about it. Still, she keeps the steely look in her eye... until he sprays her. Then she starts angrily stomping and tearing at her eyes. The mean teen puts the mace in his pocket and turns to go. Before leaving, however, he says:

MEAN TEEN I don't want to see you two around any more. If I do....

He walks away. Erika, who stood terrified through this, now bends down to see if Danielle is all right. Danielle pushes away her friend's hand, looking very mad.

CUT TO: INT - EVE. Sharon's car.

Rickie is in the front with Sharon, while Brian and Rayanne are in the back. The couple are having a fight, which makes Sharon and Rickie a bit uncomfortable.

BRIAN Could you just tell me what's bothering you?

RAYANNE I don't know what you're talking about.

BRIAN I mean, for the past couple of weeks it's like you never want to, um, talk to me! Did I do something? Have I said something? I mean, what is it?

RAYANNE Look, Krakow, I don't know why we're even having this conversation. Don't you have some studying to do or something?

BRIAN It's summer!

RAYANNE Well, you have to get ready for Harvard, don't you?

BRIAN What's that got to do with, like, anything?

RAYANNE Did I say it had anything to do with anything?

Focus shifts to the front seat, and Sharon and Rickie being irritated by this whole thing (which we can still hear going on in the back).

RICKIE Have you tried talking to these two?

SHARON Doesn't do any good. They're both too stubborn to listen.

RICKIE Maybe, but it's driving me crazy listening to them have these stupid arguments about anything but what's bothering them.

SHARON Well, you can try again.

RICKIE I will.

Rickie turns around in the seat to address the back.

RICKIE (cont) Could you two shut up for just one minute?

BRIAN We're trying to have a conversation here?

RICKIE No, you're not. You're trying to avoid having a conversation, and Sharon and myself are tired of listening to it.

RAYANNE What's that supposed to mean?

RICKIE It's supposed to mean that you, Rayanne, are upset with Brian because he's leaving you. But you're not telling him that, which makes you an idiot. You, Brian, are also an idiot for not being smart enough to see that your girlfriend is upset that you're leaving.

Both Brian and Rayanne look stunned, as they've heard the truth spoken out loud for the first time. Rickie notices that they're approaching his home.

RICKIE (cont) Now, we're almost there. As soon as we get home, I'm going inside to take a shower. Sharon is going to come inside with me. And you two are going to either sit in the car, or go to Brian's house, and talk about this. Okay?

Rickie turns around and faces forward again. Brian and Rayanne are now trying to avoid each others' looks in the back seat. After a moment, Sharon says:

SHARON At least they're quiet now.

RICKIE That's some improvement.


Sharon's car pulls up in front of Rickie's house (the Chase house).

CUT TO: INT - Sharon's car.

RICKIE You coming, Sharon?

SHARON (emphatically) Oh, yeah.

Rickie and Sharon start to collect their stuff. Before they get out, however:

RAYANNE Hey, isn't that Graham's car?

RICKIE Yeah. I wonder what he's doing here?

RAYANNE Come on, I want to say hi.


RAYANNE Graham and me go way back.

Perhaps avoiding the conversation with Brian a bit further, Rayanne scurries out of the car.


Rayanne jumping out of the car, then running towards the Chase house. Rickie and Sharon make their way towards the house, too, with Brian bringing up a reluctant-looking rear. Follow Rayanne up to the porch, where she's still acting a bit the loon. Rickie and Sharon get there, and she opens the door.

CUT TO: INT - Chase foyer.

Seen from the perspective of the Living Room, Rayanne is in the doorway laughing. When she looks in, however, the smile fades from her face.

RAYANNE What's going on?


Danielle and Erika again walking through the night streets of Pittsburgh. They have cigarettes going, though Danielle for one doesn't seem to be enjoying hers all that much. Perhaps it's because she was recently blasted in the eyes with pepper spray, a fact made apparent by the way her mascara and makeup are running down her face, and the way she still has to frantically wipe at her eyes.

ERIKA Danielle, I swear to god, I thought we were gonna die.

DANIELLE What, from those punks? They didn't scare me for a second.

ERIKA What? Come on, that one guy blasted you with your own mace!

DANIELLE There was hardly any left. He got most of it himself.

ERIKA I think I'm just gonna go home.

DANIELLE Are you wimping out on me? Look, the night is young! I bet we can find some guys to buy for us....

ERIKA No, really, I'm just going home. I... I'm pretty tired, and I think I'm going to bed.

DANIELLE Tired my butt. You're just scared we're going to run into those boys again.

ERIKA So what if I am? Maybe you don't care what happens to you, but I don't want to be scraped up by the police in the morning.

Erika starts walking away, presumably towards her house. Her defiant strut of earlier scenes is a bit muted now. Danielle watches her for a few moments, then calls after her:

DANIELLE Come on, don't go! I still wanna go over to the mall and check out the parking lot! There's usually some boys out there, they might be able to.... Hey, come on.

Her face sets as she sees her friend not turning back.

DANIELLE (cont) Fine. Go on home. See if I care! And see if I invite you next time I'm going out partying!

Medium shot of Danielle as she watches Erika go. She takes another drag of her cigarette, though from this close we can see that she probably isn't inhaling. After a moment, Danielle knows that there isn't anything left to do. We shift to a longer shot, and see her slowly start making her way home.


Danielle getting home from her wild night out. She slowly plods her way up the path to the porch, clearly not at all excited at the prospect of being home. She sort of clods up the steps to the porch, where she sees Rickie, Sharon, Rayanne and Brian waiting.

DANIELLE What are you guys doing here?

RICKIE Danielle, there's been.... You'd better go inside.

She looks at him with that contemptuous look that young teenagers all seem to have mastered, but he still follows her as she goes inside.

CUT TO: INT - EVE. The Chase house.

From Danielle's perspective, we can see into the living room, where Graham (clearly a mess) is sitting with Angela. Patty, who is still apparently sublimating her own feelings into those of others, is also there, as is CAMILLE CHERSKY, Sharon's mother. There's a clear feeling of post-disaster about the room. Patty notices her other daughter's arrival, and comes hurrying up.

PATTY Danielle, there you are. I've got some terrible news to tell you. She notices the state that Danielle is in.

PATTY cont Danielle, what happened to you?

DANIELLE Nothing, Mom.

PATTY What do you mean nothing? Your face is all red and your eyes....

DANIELLE (angrily) I said it's nothing! Now what was it you wanted to tell me?

PATTY It's... it's about Hallie.

GRAHAM Sweetheart, there's been an accident. Hallie was hurt.

Danielle says nothing. She just looks at the room full of her family.

RICKIE But we're sure she's going to be all right. Isn't that right?

Lots of nodding and "oh, yes." Danielle continues to just look at everything. Finally she says:

DANIELLE I don't care.

She runs up the staircase towards her room. Patty is not amused.

PATTY Danielle! Danielle, you get back here this instant!

She keeps looking up the stairs for a minute, but it's clear that Danielle isn't going to come down. So she turns back to the room. Graham looks absolutely stunned.

PATTY (cont) Graham, she didn't mean it. She's just upset, and she....

GRAHAM I've got to get back to the hospital, see if there's any news.

ANGELA Dad, do you want me to go with you?

GRAHAM No. No, that's all right. I'll be fine.

ANGELA Are you sure?

GRAHAM Yes. Positive. You stay... with your friends.

ANGELA Okay. I'm going to call you in the morning, though. Okay?

GRAHAM Okay. Great.

He goes to the door, looking very shell-shocked. Just before he leaves, he looks up the stairs, towards his youngest daughter's closed bedroom. He lingers a moment, then opens the door and leaves.



A languishy summers' day, with everything the brilliant color of the season. After a short montage of general summer scenes (people bike riding, kids playing in a kiddie pool, trees and flowers) we come to the Chases' street. Sharon's car is again parked outside Brian's house, and from a distance we see Sharon sitting on the hood wearing shorts and a tank top. Rayanne is there, with her hair going crazy as she does a little dance to illustrate some point while Brian stands a bit apart; we're too far away to hear what they're actually saying, but they seem to be having fun. Rayanne looks up and sees Rickie coming out of the Chase house. He waves and starts to head over towards the group.

ANGELA (VO) Summer vacation.

Angle changes, and we can see Angela looking out her bedroom window at the scene in the street in front of her house.

ANGELA (VO, cont) For, like, my entire life, summer vacation has been this great treat that I spent all year looking forward to. Three months of freedom to play with your friends and live your life without restraint.


Angela's room. She's gazing out the window, still watching the world rather than taking part in it.

ANGELA (VO, cont) What I always seemed to forget is that most of the summer is spent sitting around being bored.


We're close enough to those out on the curb to hear what they're saying now.

SHARON I'm bored. There's nothing to do in this town.

RICKIE You're lucky. All I seem to do is work.

RAYANNE Are you still doing that? Isn't that show ever going to open?

RICKIE We open on Friday, and we're so far behind that I think we'll still be painting when the audience gets in.

RAYANNE (to Sharon) Why don't you get a job if you're so bored?

SHARON (defensively) I'm looking. Besides, I don't see you working.

RAYANNE You don't see me complaining, either. Amber wanted me to get a job at Big Guy Burger, but I don't think so.

RICKIE Oh, come on, Rayanne. I can just see you wearing a little paper hat and saying "Welcome to Big Guy Burger, where everyone is a Big Guy!"

RAYANNE Is your girlfriend still working there?


SHARON She means Delia Fisher.

RICKIE Oh, right. No, she's moved up to a McDonald's.

RAYANNE Okay, now I'm bored.

She snuggles up to Brian.

RAYANNE (cont) (Little-girl voice.) Will you amuse me, sweetie-pie?

BRIAN (Embarrassed) Uh, well....

RICKIE Time for me to go.

SHARON Do you need a ride?

RICKIE That'd be great. I hate to leave Angela without a car.

SHARON (to Rayanne and Brian) Bye you guys.

RICKIE Amuse yourselves.

They start a new conversation as they get into Sharon's car.

SHARON So, do you want to go to Vertigo after you get off tonight? I hear there's this new band playing open mike that's really....

Sharon drives off, Rayanne and Brian waving.

BRIAN Do you ever think how strange it is that, like, Sharon is friends with you guys?

RAYANNE What do you mean?

BRIAN Well, it's just, she couldn't stand you when we were sophomores.

RAYANNE Neither could you.

She gives him a little kiss on the nose. He smiles goofily.

BRIAN That's not really, like, true.

RAYANNE Oh, no? You seemed to hate me.

BRIAN I just didn't... uh, know you. But I always think that I... you know....

RAYANNE (Goading him.) What?

BRIAN Well, you know. Felt, like...

RAYANNE Felt what?

BRIAN Good. About you.

RAYANNE Felt good. Hmm. That's interesting. What exactly does it mean?

BRIAN It means, like, what it means. It means... RAYANNE Yes?

BRIAN It means I loved you. I mean, love you.

Rayanne's playfulness melts away. We get the impression this is uncharted territory for her.

RAYANNE What did you say?

BRIAN I said, I love you.

Her eyes wide, she watches him for a minute, then quickly kisses him with great intensity. After a moment of that she puts her head on her chest, facing the camera but looking down. She's got some tears coming.

RAYANNE But you're still gonna leave me.

Brian gets a pained expression on his face. She's right, but he doesn't like thinking about it.

BRIAN It's like, Harvard. I mean, I don't know what you expect me to do. She pulls herself together; Rayanne isn't one to let her emotions be seen easily. She backs away a step and tries to resume her pose of unconcern.

RAYANNE Nothing. I don't expect you to do anything.


They turn to see Angela coming across the street towards them. She's got a smile on her face, and is clearly making an effort. Her timing, however, is terrible.

RAYANNE Hi, Angela. (to Brian) Listen, I, uh, I've got to get going. I'll see you later.

Rayanne takes off at a brisk pace, just under a run. Angela looks upset at the response her arrival seemed to bring.

ANGELA What's wrong?

BRIAN (Still watching Rayanne go.) Nothing. Everything. I don't know (Turns to Angela.) Look, I... I've got to go.

He goes into his house, and Angela is left alone on the sidewalk. She watches Brian's house for a second, then begins to slowly amble down the block, aimlessly.


Graham is on the phone, trying desperately to get some of Hallie's work done. He's clearly not doing a very good job of it: he's tangled in the phone cord and trying to write on a scrap of paper among the clutter of the desk.

GRAHAM Okay, wait, so the veal delivery comes on Thursday, but the chicken is on Mondays and Wednesdays? Is that because chickens hatch faster than cows? Okay, okay, I'm sorry, a little joke. Now, when does the fish come in? You don't do the fish?


GRAHAM (cont) So who does?


GRAHAM (cont) I know, I'm sorry. Yeah. Thank you. You've been a great help. Right. Bye bye.

He puts the phone down and sighs deeply. He looks up and sees Angela standing in the doorway, the kitchen dim behind her.

GRAHAM Angela! This is a nice surprise.


GRAHAM What brings you here?

ANGELA I just thought I'd stop by and see if there's anything I could do to, you know, help you.

GRAHAM Really? That's so nice of you. If you could tell me why I don't have enough stock for tonight's sitting that would be a big help.

ANGELA 'Cause it wasn't ordered? I guess?

GRAHAM That's it.

He looks across the disaster area of a desk.

GRAHAM (cont) You know, there were days that I'd think to myself that Hallie had it made. All she had to do was sit back here and play with papers while I did all the work. Now I know better.

ANGELA How's she doing?

GRAHAM (After pause) Better. She's still in pretty bad shape, though. The doctors aren't sure whether they'll be able to save her... hands....

He stops, not wanting to inflict the gory details on his daughter. Angela, for her part, clearly isn't all that pleased with the gory details. He brightens.

GRAHAM You know Hallie, though. Her biggest complaint is that it's starting to itch under the bandages.

ANGELA That must be horrible.

GRAHAM Yeah, but the doctors say that's good. If it's itching, it's healing.

ANGELA Well, I don't know about doing your ordering, but if you need me for... something... I've got time.

He looks at her; obviously he needs her for something, but it doesn't have much to do with work. Still, work is what he has so:

GRAHAM Actually, I might. Have you ever waited tables?

ANGELA I worked the concession stand at the pool last summer, but that's not really the same.

GRAHAM It is, sort of. Sometimes we get rushes on weeknights that we're not ready for. Maybe if you're not doing anything, you could stick around and help out the regular staff if it gets busy.

ANGELA Well, what would I have to do?

GRAHAM I guess you could help carry things out to customers. You could look over our menu, so if things get really busy you could maybe take some orders.

ANGELA I don't know....

He gets up and starts walking towards the kitchen and dining room, leading Angela as he does so.

GRAHAM It's not really very hard. All you need to do is know what we serve, which will be even easier tonight because we're not going to have any lobster or any trout. When someone gives you an order, you just....

As they pass out of sight, we:

FADE TO: INT - EVE. Chase foyer.

Patty comes through the door, with Camille. She calls out:

PATTY I'm home! Hello? Anybody?

The silence of the house is deafening.

PATTY (cont) (to Camille) You know, I'm never sure whether I love summer vacation or hate it. At least during the school year you know where they are most of the time.

CAMILLE Under your feet.

PATTY Yeah. (pause) It's going to be strange having Angela gone.

CAMILLE I thought she'd decided to stay around here.


CAMILLE That's what Sharon told me. She said Angela was thinking about going to Penn State instead of Columbia so she could come home on weekends.

PATTY This is news to me.

CAMILLE You know teenagers. And you get to do it all again.

PATTY Camille, I don't know if I can stand it. Danielle is just starting to get into that age and she's already exhausting me. Part of me wants to just lock her in a closet until she's twenty.

CAMILLE If only we could.

PATTY And I think Danielle's going to be a real handful. She didn't take the divorce well, and she's starting to act very strangely. She came in the other day just reeking of cigarette smoke.

CAMILLE Just be grateful it's only cigarette smoke.

PATTY But she's only thirteen!

CAMILLE How old were you when you first started stealing cigarettes from your parents? Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot; you never did that. You thought it would look tacky.

PATTY No! It's just that my parents didn't smoke....

Camille's clearly not convinced.

CAMILLE Right. Well I started stealing them when I was about Danielle's age. Maybe a little older, but not much.

PATTY And you couldn't quit until you were almost forty.

CAMILLE You're right. Lock her in the closet.


Convenience store parking lot. Danielle walks into the scene, dressed in shorts and a cropped t-shirt. She's not from a busty family, and is just starting to get what she's destined to have, but she's clearly trying to show that off. She takes out one of her cigarettes and lights it up, then leans against the store. Waiting for something to happen. We hardly notice an older-looking guy walk past her, into the store, when a voice calls out:

MEAN TEEN (OS) Hey, you!

Danielle turns to see the big mean-looking kid she had her encounter with earlier. He's sitting in an old American-made automobile, with the door open and music playing. He's got a cigarette himself.


MEAN TEEN You don't look old enough to smoke.

DANIELLE Well, how old do I look?

MEAN TEEN I don't know. Fourteen?

DANIELLE Something like that.

MEAN TEEN Do you go to Roosevelt High?

DANIELLE No, I go to Liberty.

She's got this act down. Even we almost believe her. She wanders over to stand by the Mean Teen.

MEAN TEEN So what are you doing around here?

DANIELLE Just hanging out. There's never anything happening around where I live.

MEAN TEEN Not much happening around here, either.

DANIELLE Not right now, but you never know what could happen later.

He pauses for a second, clearly considering what's going on. She seems to be flirting with him, but the last time she seemed to do that he got shot in the face with pepper spray.

DANIELLE (cont) So is this your car?

He's conflicted. He clearly wants to lie, but just as clearly knows that he can't get away with it.

MEAN TEEN No, it's my brother's. He's inside getting something to eat. But he lets me drive it.

DANIELLE You have a license?

MEAN TEEN No, but he doesn't care.

DANIELLE Hey, is he old enough to buy?

MEAN TEEN Unfortunately not. He's seventeen.

DANIELLE Too bad. I could go for something to drink right now.

MEAN TEEN You know, we might be going to a party later. You want to go?

DANIELLE Where's it at?

MEAN TEEN A friend of my brother's. A guy named Tino.

DANIELLE I might want to go.

She smiles at him, then takes a drag on her cigarette.



EXT - NIGHT. Est. shot of Vertigo, a coffee shop.

CUT TO: INT - The coffee shop.

Rickie and Sharon are sitting together at one of those small but high round tables, each stirring a cup of something.

SHARON I can hardly wait for this summer to end so I can get out of here.

RICKIE What about Dylan? Aren't you going to miss him?

SHARON Doubtful. We broke up when he got back from the Caribbean.

RICKIE I'm sorry to hear that.

SHARON Don't be. He was being a butthead, so I told him that I didn't have the time. Besides, we were just gonna break up when the fall came and we both went off to school. (brightly) Now I'll have more time to spend with my friends.

RICKIE Speaking of our friends, what do you think Brian and Rayanne are gonna do?

SHARON I couldn't even begin to say. It's not like Brian has a whole lot of experience with handling things like this.

RICKIE Who does? It's not like we've all gone off to school before.

SHARON True. I just wish Rayanne had a better idea about what she was going to do with herself. It's like she never thought beyond what was happening today.

RICKIE She never did. At least when she started going out with Brian, today was a good thing. Now... I don't know.

SHARON What about you, Rickie? Do you think about more than just today?

RICKIE Constantly. It's all I ever think about; sometimes it's like I'm waiting for my real life to start.



We enter the scene focused on a large skillet with some vegetables and chicken stir-frying; a large wooden spatula is flipping things around, and we see a dose of soy sauce shoot in with a loud hiss. Pull back to see that we're in Rayanne's kitchen, and Rayanne is the one doing the cooking. Amber watches from the wings.

AMBER I still can't believe you learned how to cook. Where did you learn that? At school?

RAYANNE It's called home ec. It's a requirement.

AMBER It was a requirement when I was in school too, but that doesn't mean I actually learned anything.

RAYANNE Well, I guess I paid attention because I like to eat so much.

AMBER So, is Brian coming over tonight.


RAYANNE I don't think so.

AMBER Are you going over there?

RAYANNE I doubt it.

AMBER Why not? Not that I blame you; Bob Krakow isn't my idea of a great host....

RAYANNE It's not his father. It's just... I don't know how much time I'm gonna spend with Brian. He's gotta get ready to go to school... and stuff....

As Rayanne turns off the burner, then starts scooping rice and stir-fry onto two plates, Amber comes over to her.

AMBER Aw, Raynee. I'm sorry. I know it must be hard for you to lose him. I remember when Rusty left us....

RAYANNE I'm not losing him. We're just not... hanging out as much.

AMBER You know, sweetie. If you really want him you're gonna have to fight for him. That's the way men are. They never let you get anything easy.

Rayanne hands a plate to Amber.

RAYANNE You know, Mom? Just once it might be nice if someone fought for me.

She starts eating, with little appetite but enough enthusiasm to put a halt to any more conversation.

FADE TO: EXT - NIGHT. Chase street.

Brian is sitting on the curb in front of Angela's house, doing nothing. A car pulls into the driveway, and Angela gets out. She walks over to the curb where Brian is sitting and sits next to him.

ANGELA Hey Brian.

BRIAN Hi, Angela.

ANGELA What's going on?

BRIAN Nothing. I'm just... I'm just thinking about stuff.

ANGELA Where's Rayanne?

BRIAN I don't know. She left this afternoon, and I haven't heard from her since.


ANGELA Brian, can I tell you something?


ANGELA When you first started going out with Rayanne, I got... I don't know... jealous.

He looks a little confused.

BRIAN What, of me?

ANGELA No. Of her.

BRIAN I, I don't get it.

ANGELA Well, for our whole lives, I've always had you around. I mean, whenever I needed something, I knew that I could ask you, and you'd do it. I sort of had you to myself.

BRIAN I don't know about....

ANGELA Brian. It's true. But when you started spending so much time with Rayanne, it was like... I didn't have you for myself anymore. And I sort of resented that.

BRIAN Is that why you never seem to want to talk to us anymore?

ANGELA Partly. Partly it's just... I don't want to talk to anybody anymore. It's like no one could possibly understand what I feel like... like I'm all alone.

BRIAN Your not, though. Alone, I mean.


BRIAN It's funny. All my life I thought I wanted... I didn't know what I wanted. Or, I thought I wanted to go to this great school and get this, like, amazing education, and now that I am, all I can think about is Rayanne.

ANGELA That's because you love her. And she loves you.

He smiles awkwardly, and she leans over slowly to give him a sincere kiss on the cheek.

ANGELA (cont) Are you okay?

BRIAN Yeah, I'm fine.

ANGELA I'll see you tomorrow?

BRIAN Yeah. I mean, sure.

She goes up the steps to her house, taking a last look back at Brian, who is still on the curb. She turns to go in.

CUT TO: INT - NIGHT. Chase foyer.

ANGELA Mom! I'm home!

PATTY (OS) I'm in the kitchen!

CUT TO: INT - NIGHT. Chase kitchen.

Patty is sitting at the kitchen table with a piece of pie and the newspaper as Angela enters.

PATTY (Brightly.) Where have you been?

Before Angela can interrupt.

PATTY (cont) I'm just asking. Just curious.

ANGELA I was at Dad's restaurant. I was, kind of, helping out.

PATTY Really?

ANGELA Yeah. I waited on a couple of tables. I think I might start doing it, like, as a job.

PATTY That'll be nice.

ANGELA Mom....

PATTY No, really. I think it'll be good for you to spend some time with your father before you start school.


PATTY (cont) So, are you getting excited about leaving yet?

ANGELA Mom, I think we need to talk about something....

PATTY And what is that?

ANGELA I've been thinking, maybe, now isn't the best time for me to go so far away.

Patty takes a deep breath, trying not to blurt out anything.

PATTY Why do you think that this isn't a good time to go to school?

ANGELA You know... there's just so much... stuff... going on, with like Dad and Hallie, and Danielle....

PATTY What do you mean, Danielle?

ANGELA Come on, Mom! Don't tell me you haven't noticed how she's been looking. And acting. Like she's some kind of a....

PATTY A teenager.

ANGELA Mom. That's not....

PATTY No, that is. You know how I know? I've seen it before.

ANGELA I was never....

PATTY Oh, yes you were. You may not think so, but let me tell you, your father and I were worried sick about you. When you started doing strange things to your hair, and hanging out with all those... strange people.

She goes over to Angela and brushes her hair back from her face. Patty's face is very soft as she regards her daughter.

PATTY (cont) But look at you now. You've grown up, and you've gotten into the Columbia School of Journalism. And your strange friends turned out to be not so strange after all. I even let one of them move in with us.

She hugs Angela.

PATTY It's okay to be concerned for your sister. We're all concerned. But don't worry. She's going to have it a little harder than you did because of... all that's happened. But we'll keep her safe. Your father and I. We've done it before.

ANGELA I just get so... so scared. I look out at the world and all I see is this empty, lonely place.

PATTY It can be scary. But it's not so empty. You'll still have Rickie nearby, which is more than I had when I went off to college. And you'll still have us, even if we're not as nearby as we used to be. You know what you'll have that's the most important thing, though?

She pulls back, and holds Angela's face in her hands.

PATTY (cont) You'll still have yourself. And you know what? That's all you're going to need. Do you see me worrying about you going off to New York City? No. Because I know that you're smart enough, and capable enough, and that you're ready.

She hugs her again, and rocks her for a moment.

PATTY (cont) You didn't see Danielle while you were outside, did you?


PATTY Camille told me I should just lock her in a closet until she's twenty.

ANGELA That explains a lot about Sharon.

They laugh.

CUT TO: INT - NIGHT. Sharon's car.

Rickie and Sharon are driving.

SHARON You wanna know what's funny?

RICKIE Always.

SHARON It seems like all of my friends are all worried about going away to school, and I'm, like, totally not.

RICKIE Thank you for sharing that with me.

SHARON No, I mean... why am I so excited about the idea of leaving? It's not like my life here has been horrible. In fact, compared to most people I know, it's been pretty easy. So why am I so anxious to leave it?

RICKIE You've been hanging around Angela too much. You're starting to analyze everything to death.

SHARON Rickie....

RICKIE Okay, okay. Seriously? I think you're excited to leave because your life has been so great. I mean, your home life is good, you've always been popular, and you get to spend time with the prettiest boy at Liberty High.

SHARON Former prettiest boy at Liberty High.

RICKIE What's that supposed to mean!

SHARON Oh, you know what I meant.

RICKIE Anyway, isn't the whole point of growing up supposed to be moving out and being on your own? Well, your parents actually succeeded in doing that, so now you're ready.

SHARON (Smiling.) Maybe that's it.

RICKIE You know I'll have to kill you because of it, though.

SHARON I understand.


SHARON Hey Rickie, let's go find Angela.

RICKIE What for?

SHARON I just want to see her. Is that okay? It's like I hardly ever do any more.

RICKIE That's fine. She's probably at home. It's funny, I live in the same house with her but I hardly ever see her anymore, either.

CUT TO: EXT - NIGHT. A dark street.

We see Sharon's car drive past, but we stay behind. There are the sounds of a party going on, and we can see one house is lit up. From behind the camera come two figures, one large and one small; it's Danielle and the Mean Teen. They walk away from us as we begin to hear their conversation.

MEAN TEEN Man, I've got a full-on buzz going.

DANIELLE Me, too. I'm wasted.

We change angle so we're looking then face on, as the Mean Teen leans against a parked car. Danielle goes and leans next to him.

MEAN TEEN So how'd you know that guy?

DANIELLE My sister knows him; I met him somewhere I think.

MEAN TEEN That's cool.


MEAN TEEN (cont) So what do you wanna do now?

DANIELLE I don't know. You wanna go back in?

MEAN TEEN Not just yet.

DANIELLE Okay. But what do you...?

The mean teen grabs her and starts kissing her. She isn't sure what to do-- she's never actually been kissed before-- but she doesn't exactly fight him off. It's more like she just lets it happen. When he finally pulls away, Danielle wipes her mouth off, and looks confused.

MEAN TEEN So, do you want to go somewhere?

DANIELLE (Not getting it) Where?

MEAN TEEN Anywhere. Back in those bushes, or maybe in a car somewhere.

It starts to dawn on her exactly what this guy is suggesting. Now her tough exterior shows a little crack.

DANIELLE Uh, I don't think so.

MEAN TEEN Come on. What's the matter?

DANIELLE Nothing. I just think that I should... get home. It's pretty late and my Mom will....

MEAN TEEN Forget about your mother.

He grabs her and kisses her again. This time she fights to avoid it, but he's a lot bigger and stronger than she is.


MEAN TEEN Hey, look. I don't want to hear any of this crap. I've been waiting all night for you to....

Before he can get any further, he's whirled around and slammed against the hood of the car. A face is right up in his, and it's not happy: Rayanne. She gets up his nose and snarls.

RAYANNE No means no. Don't they teach you that in reform school, pinhead?

Even though Rayanne isn't a whole lot bigger than Danielle, she's a lot older and a lot meaner. The Mean Teen, like most teenage boys, is easily cowed; he looks terrified.


RAYANNE Shut up! I'm going to give you five seconds to get the hell out of my sight, then I'm going to start tearing off pieces of you and feeding them to Tino's pit bull. Okay? One....

MEAN TEEN I was just....


He doesn't need any more warning. He turns tail and runs. Rayanne picks up a beer bottle and throws it at him, vaguely; we hear it hit the street and shatter.

She turns to Danielle, who is hugging herself. She looks very scared. Rayanne, however, doesn't look all that much more pleased with her than she was with the Mean Teen.



Another dark street scene; we see two figures walking side-by-side, slowly: Rayanne and Danielle. Danielle still looks upset from her encounter with the Mean Teen.

RAYANNE Well, it's probably better that you learned this lesson young. Lots of boys are jerks, and you shouldn't trust them.

DANIELLE I know about jerks.

RAYANNE Yeah? I suppose you do. What are you doing out so late anyway?

DANIELLE Trying to have fun.

RAYANNE There's other ways to have fun than getting molested by King Kong.

DANIELLE You're a big one to talk.

RAYANNE You're right. I am. I know just what I'm talking about.

DANIELLE Oh, what, so you're allowed to go out and get crazy but no one else is? Like that's fair.

RAYANNE In the first place, no one said life is fair. In the second place, I nearly got myself killed more times than I want to remember. Why do you want to do the same thing?

DANIELLE Like I said....

RAYANNE Yeah, yeah, yeah. I've heard it all before. Don't try to snow me. Why do you really want to go out all the time?

DANIELLE What am I supposed to do? Stay home? Like anyone even knows I'm there when I am there.

RAYANNE Ah. Now we're getting someplace.

DANIELLE Now I guess I'm gonna get some big lecture about how everything is really great at home and how....

RAYANNE Is this a lecture?


RAYANNE (cont) Maybe it is. But only because I know a little bit about that, too. My mom had to work all the time when my parents broke up, too.

DANIELLE It's not just when my mom's working that she ignores me. It's all the time.

RAYANNE Look, I'm not saying that your life is perfect. Parents are jerks, too, most of the time. But that doesn't mean they don't love you. Danielle snorts.

RAYANNE And let me tell you something else. Just because someone isn't around all of the time, that doesn't mean they don't love you either. Pause, as Rayanne thinks about what she just said and how it might relate to her own life.

RAYANNE Face it. The world sucks. Most things don't work out the way you want them to. You've just gotta remember not to let it get you. Have fun by all means, but if you act stupid all you're gonna do is hurt yourself. Besides, there's better ways to get back at your parents then getting yourself killed on the streets.

DANIELLE Like what?

RAYANNE Get rich, and don't support them when they're old. That's my plan. I'm just waiting for the day when my dad tries to get a little help out of me....


Street outside of the Chase house. Again we see people sitting on the curb, but it's a different group this time: Angela, Rickie and Sharon.

RICKIE So you've finally given up and decided to work at your father's restaurant, huh?

ANGELA I didn't "give up." He needs some help, and I need a job.

SHARON It makes sense to me. I'd work at my father's lumber store if he'd let me, but he keeps telling me that I'd just cut off my fingers.

RICKIE Wouldn't you?

SHARON Probably.

RICKIE (to Angela) So, what's the deal, Angela? Are you going to New York in the fall, or aren't you?

ANGELA I don't know. I guess so. I mean, I suppose it's the best thing for me. In the long run.

Rickie falls into Sharon's lap.

RICKIE Hallelujah, Mary! Our girl has finally made up her mind.

ANGELA God, Rickie! I was just nervous!

RICKIE And you were making me nervous, too. So now I don't have to worry.

SHARON You know what I think we should do? I think we should have a really, really big party before we go. Something to say goodbye to Pittsburgh.

RICKIE Would you invite all of your football player friends?

SHARON I guess so.

RICKIE Count me in.

ANGELA Rickie, you're insane.

RICKIE Hey, a boy can dream, can't he?

As they laugh, we see Brian come across the street to join them.


ANGELA (smiling) Hi, Brian.

BRIAN Have any of you seen Rayanne?

SHARON Not since this morning. Why?

BRIAN I've got something I want to tell her, and it's kind of important. No one's at her house, so I thought, like, maybe one of you had seen her.

RICKIE What do you have to tell her?

BRIAN It's kind of, um, private.

ANGELA Is it something sexual?

BRIAN God! I just can't....

ANGELA Brian, I was kidding. Sit down. She'll probably show up.

SHARON In fact....

Rayanne and Danielle are just coming down the street.

BRIAN Rayanne, can I, uh, talk to you?

RAYANNE Sure what's up?

Rayanne and Brian walk off together. Danielle starts up towards the house, but Angela grabs her leg and pulls her to the ground in a playful wrestle.

ANGELA What's up with you, squirt? Where have you been all night?

DANIELLE Don't call me squirt. I'm almost as big as you are.

ANGELA Yeah, but you'll always be a squirt to me.

She tickles her sister, who struggles to free herself but kind of enjoys it just the same.


Brian and Rayanne standing on Brian's lawn across the street. We can see the other four now all roughhousing in the background.

RAYANNE So what's going on?

BRIAN I've been um, thinking all day, and I've come to a decision.

RAYANNE What's that?

BRIAN Well, I've been thinking about when I move to, you know, Boston in the fall?

RAYANNE Brian, I've been thinking too, and...

BRIAN And I've decided that you should come with me.

Rayanne is stunned. She can't speak for a moment, then says:

RAYANNE You want me? To come with you to Boston?

BRIAN Well, actually Cambridge, but um, yeah, that's what I think... I mean what I want to do.


BRIAN I don't know how we can make it work, seeing as how I'm going to have to live in the dorm my first year, and I, uh, don't think they'll let you stay in there with me, but....

She jumps on him, knocking him onto his back. As he lies there helplessly, she covers him with kisses. Finally, he gets a break for some air.

RAYANNE Have I told you today that I love you?

BRIAN Um, I don't think you've ever...

RAYANNE I love you, Brian Krakow. Even if you are a big goof.

She looks into his eyes for a moment, then gives him a deep, long kiss.


Their friends, who start cheering for them from across the street.


Brian and Rayanne. She sits up on him, and raises her arms in salute to the cheers. Then she falls back on him.

RAYANNE You know what?


RAYANNE I can't go with you.

BRIAN Wh... what do you...?

RAYANNE I've decided I'm going to take some classes at the community college, maybe learn to do accounting.

BRIAN Accounting? You hate math.

RAYANNE True, but I love money.

BRIAN So, you don't want to....

RAYANNE Of course I want to. But I'm going to do something responsible for the first time in my life, and stay here. Besides, you're going to be too busy your first year to have much time for me anyway. After that, though...

She gives him a quick kiss.

RAYANNE (cont) out!

BRIAN You, you mean, I've been worrying myself sick all day for nothing?

RAYANNE Not for nothing. Asking me to go was the best thing you could have done for me. It tells me that you really care about me.

BRIAN Well, uh...

RAYANNE Now shut up.

She kisses him again, deeply.


The other side of the street. The four others are sitting around talking; we can't hear what they're saying over the music, but we focus in on Angela, who sort of surreptitiously looks over at the kissing couple, then looks a bit more openly, a smile bursting on her face.


Est shot of the Chase house on yet another beautiful sunny summer's day.

CUT TO: INT - DAY. The Chase foyer.

Patty comes in, briefcase and work clothes indicating she's ended another day on the job.

PATTY Hello! Anybody home?

CUT TO: Danielle on the couch in the Living Room.


Patty comes into the room, setting down her briefcase.

PATTY Hi. What did you do today?

DANIELLE Went swimming with Erika. She bet me that I couldn't hold my breath underwater for two minutes, but I did.

PATTY Who counted, you or her?


PATTY I bet you counted fast.

DANIELLE Maybe....

PATTY So what are your plans for tonight?

DANIELLE I dunno. Why?

PATTY Well, I was thinking we might go see a movie or something, then go get a pizza. Just the two of us. What do you think?

DANIELLE I don't....

PATTY I'll tell you what. How about if I promise to take you to a theatre and a restaurant all the way on the other side of town, so none of your friends will see you with your mother?

DANIELLE You don't have to do that....

She sits down on the couch next to Danielle.

PATTY I know. But I don't want my friends to see me out with family, either. What would that do to my reputation?


PATTY You'll never guess what your old mother did today.


PATTY I made a date

. DANIELLE A date? You mean, like with a guy?

PATTY Like that, yes.


PATTY A man who works at a magazine we do the printing for. He's been asking me out for a few weeks now, so I finally thought "what the hell."

DANIELLE Do you like him?

PATTY I don't know yet. That's why I'm gonna go out with him, to find out.

DANIELLE So, can I go on dates yet?

PATTY No. You're still too young.

Danielle pouts a little, but it's not the serious teenage pout we've been seeing before. It's more a courtesy pout. Patty puts her arm around her and pulls her into a hug.

FADE TO: INT. Restaurant kitchen.

Graham is cooking something, looking very much at home. We see Angela, dressed in the black pants/ white blouse uniform of a waitron, leaning against the wait station looking at him. They're laughing about something.

ANGELA (VO) There's something about deciding to go away. It's almost like it frees you from the little angers that you'd been holding onto for so long. It's like, suddenly it becomes okay to forget about everything that's been bothering you, and just remember the good things.

Hallie, leaning against the door of her office. Her left arm is bandaged and slung against her chest, and her right hand is wrapped though free, but other than that she looks happy, watching her husband and his daughter enjoy each other's company.

ANGELA (VO cont) The disasters that you've been through seem far away, but the good times seem really close. And you know how much you're going to miss everything. And you know that it's okay.

A waitron comes in.

WAITRON The special party is here.

GRAHAM Oh, right. Angela, why don't you take this table?

ANGELA Oh, I don't know if I can handle....

GRAHAM Trust me, I think you'll do just fine.


She grabs a pad and pencil, and goes out the door to the dining room.

CUT TO: INT - EVE. Dining room.

Angela walks through the door and sees a table with Rickie, Rayanne, Brian and Sharon.

ANGELA What are you guys...?

RAYANNE Excuse me, Miss? Could you take our order please? We're practically starving out here.

ANGELA What are you doing here?

Graham appears behind Angela, smiling.

GRAHAM I invited them. Sort of like, my little going away party for you.

ANGELA But Dad, I'm not leaving for another two weeks.

GRAHAM I know. But I figure you'll have more important things to do than hand out with your old man before you leave.

She hugs him.

ANGELA I doubt it.

He smiles broadly.

GRAHAM Go on. You're officially off duty.

RICKIE Make sure he still pays you!

GRAHAM That's it, Rickie, you're washing dishes tonight.

All laugh as Angela kisses Graham, takes off her apron and goes to sit with her friends. Graham waves, then goes back into the kitchen to make their dinner.

RICKIE So, did you hear that Rayanne here has finally joined the work force?

ANGELA No! Who'd hire her?

RAYANNE Rickie, I told you...

SHARON You'll never guess!


RAYANNE Chersky, if you value your life....


They laugh, Rayanne frowning in mock anger. Brian reaches over and kisses her with an easy familiarity. Under voice-over, we see slow gauzy shots of the faces of Angela and the friends that have meant so much to her, simply enjoying each other's company.

ANGELA (VO) When I remember these days, it won't be school, or work, or even boyfriends that didn't work out that I'll remember. I'll remember the people who've all made a difference in my life, and how they've changed me for the better. I'll remember the friends I've made, and the way we've shared who we are, and the relationships that will hopefully stay with me for the rest of my so-called life.


MSCL: Changes

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  • anonymous author commented on 18 Aug 2004:
    Short and Simple... PERFECT!

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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)"