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Posted: May 14th 2006, 12:35 am
Found some bits of writing on my old computer...
~ An Overview on Jordan and Angela ~
Jordan was in many ways still a curiosity to her. Like how he hated the business of being late. He hated to be kept waiting, and if questioned, would assert that he equally hated to keep others waiting on him, even though he often did so, and indeed, more than occasionally never showed up at all. She often could not discern his thoughts, and had only a vague idea of what occupied his time when he was not with her. He still kept his friends distanced from her, although she knew he wasn’t hiding anything, which was all that really mattered to her anyway as they still made her a little nervous. She knew very little of his family, only that he lived alone with his father, nothing was ever said of his mother, and that there was a half-sister or step-sister somewhere with whom Jordan had once been close. In truth, Angela only had access to what bits of himself he was willing share, but she never knew how much that was – had no way of sizing all that was left out. And that, as much as anything else, had been the original draw. It was this unknown percentage – how much of himself he was withholding, that was more alluring and more distracting than the actual withheld information, as it kept one mulling the question over – is this all there is to him, or are there fathoms waiting to be discovered? Oddly, or maybe not, the more time Angela spent with Jordan, the less she thought about this. Jordan never confessed dark hidden secrets to her, nor revealed himself to be an anguishing artist, but he was honest with her, open with most things, tender, and freely gave as much of his time and attention to her as he could. And this, Angela realized, was all she could give to him, and was therefore all she needed from him. There were still disappointments, miscommunications, and conflicts of interests, but there what there also was the absence of all benchmarks and finish lines. Their relationship wasn’t something that needed to be proved or pushed forward, demystified or assessed. They were both happy, and if he still confused her sometimes, she only had to glance at him as she carried on a conversation with a girlfriend to know that she too eluded him, and considering everything, that seemed to be enough.
~ A Brief Background on Jordan ~
He didn’t like restaurants. Diners were the exception. Hamburger joints, and taco stands, if you could find one, were fine too. Anyplace that required standing or had counters and coffee cups already on the table was fine. He was a strictly paper-napkin kind of eater. Generally he never ate much throughout the day, although Jordan was a big one for breakfast. Omelets. He did enjoy a good omelet. But he didn’t really like anything sweet, especially for breakfast. He never could understand how people could wake up and immediately eat dessert. Rarely would Jordan ever eat at school. It wasn’t a cool thing – skipping lunch had started much earlier, before that would ever have been an issue. And, as far as he could figure, it hadn’t been a money thing either. Maybe it was because there had never really been someone at home to make him one, but that couldn’t be the whole reason as Jordan had been preparing meals, or food, for himself for years – it would have been just as easy for himself to pack a lunch as it was to fix dinner. Anyway, for Jordan, most days’ lunch consisted of a soda and a cigarette. He wasn’t a big fan of soda, too sweet for him. He would much rather be drinking coffee, but there were school rules against it, making it too hard to come by, and getting hassled for bringing coffee on campus was one thing Jordan just couldn’t be bothered with. A few years ago Jordan had eaten most meals at friends’ houses, his friends’ mothers always loved him, but by this age most of his friends had reduced contact with their parents to the bare minimum, and were spending every possible minute out of their homes, meaning that Jordan was too. Jordan too stayed away from his house, although not for the same reasons his friends stayed away from theirs. It wasn’t his father, so much. Recently he’d come to regard Jordan as something of a companion, despite of, or rather, as to negate, the violent nature of their earlier relationship. This didn’t anger Jordan, as most of his friends thought that it should. He knew he’d never completely love his father, but also Jordan knew that he did not hate him. The irony of their new arrangement was not lost on him, but Jordan figured if the old man wanted to pretend like they were friends, then he must be in bad shape, and it was nothing to Jordan to drink a few beers and grunt a few times at the man’s stories. There had been a time when Jordan spent long hours away from their house, avoiding his father’s unpredictable moods, but these days Jordan came and went as he pleased, paying little notice to the aging man. What kept Jordan away from the house now was its silence. The house was much too quiet for him. Too still. It wasn’t that he minded solitude. He often sought private moments away from his friends, slipping into moods where he preferred quiet and seclusion. But this was not the quiet he found in his father’s house. There it was too still -- Jordan’s ears seemed to burn as the emptiness echoed around him. It wasn’t always like that for him. Most of the time it was fine, but sometimes the house seemed capable of shrinking him with its vast emptiness. The house gave the air of being wholly unoccupied. It could magnify the absence of things. Jordan and his father lived there, and had lived there for most of Jordan’s life. There had always been things missing. He’d seen it as a boy. And although it had been just Jordan and his father for more than three or four years now, he had only recently become attuned to the darker corners of the house’s shadows. They seemed to follow him now. He could shake them off, one way or another, most times. But success was not always his, and they could take hold and flood his mind, leaving him shaken and cagey.
His sister, left four, no five years ago. She was three years older. She left with her boyfriend at sixteen and never came back. Jordan understood why she’d left. He’d thought of it too at times, and she’d always had it worse. Well, better and worse. It wasn’t like her to take things sitting down; she’d never just shrugged things off like Jordan tried to. So it was moving out, dropping out, getting work and moving on. She was beautiful, lively, charismatic, and bright. Her warmth and vivaciousness disarmed people and drew them to her, and her wit and sharp tongue kept them at arms length. Growing up she’d been wild, and although older, she and her friends had welcomed Jordan into their world. Especially the girlfriends. Being on her own changed her though, at least that’s what Jordan saw. She grew up. Not in a bad way; not in a sink or swim way. Not in a life’s hard all over and I’m going to survive kind of way. Freedom changed her. It soothed her. She’d always been independent, but now that she didn’t have to prove it, or fight for it, she didn’t have to flaunt it, and life settled for her in a way that changed even her smile, and that seemed, to Jordan, to pull her away from him. Now he only saw her every few months. It could be more, her boyfriend had even offered him a set of keys, but things just seemed different now.
Posted: Sep 10th 2006, 11:51 pm
Well, this isn't the episode I originally set out to write, and I wish it was, only it's been so long since then that I’ve forgotten what I meant it to be. This one seems too broken up between stories, and maybe too dark for MSCL. ?? There’s lots of lines and scenes I’d like to alter, and a few I’m considering cutting. (This is the 'uncut' version.) The title was a last minute choice, I had been working with some lines from a Tom Petty song for a long time, but then decided that this fit a bit better. So here's #24. There's plans for 25 and 26 and then I'm done. I don't expect to have anyhting new until the end of January.
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 12:07 am
#24 Turn and Face the Strain
~DAY 1: MONDAY~
* * * * *
[Camera moves through a dark messy bachelor’s pad. We see Rayanne in bed with a guy – a mattress on the floor. Rayanne opens her eyes and turns her head to look away from the still sleeping guy. She slowly inches out of bed and grabs her top from the floor to pull it on over her bra, but finds that her shirt’s been torn. She looks around and grabs a flannel from the guy’s floor and puts it on. With a glance in the sleeping guy’s direction, Rayanne opens his fridge, grabs two beers and tucks them in her bag. She looks through a couple cabinets and grabs a handful of sugary cereal from the box and then lets herself out.]
* * * * *
[Rickie, in his dormitory at the shelter, wakes up really early in the morning when everyone else in his room is still sleeping. He creeps out of bed, quickly and stealthily makes his bed, and gathers his things to take a shower. Rickie walks into the bathroom a little tentatively, looks around, and then enters the shower stall in the back corner of the room.]
* * * * *
[Brian, who rose before his alarm, is changing the water to his fish tank. His bedside alarm goes off, he crosses the room, turns it off, and then before entering his bathroom, passes by the tank again, pauses, then chucks the skull into the wastebasket by his desk. He stumbles to the bathroom; his hair is everywhere. Brian brushes his teeth, leaning way over the sink. As he does so, he glances up into the mirror, and then straightens up and looks longer. He inspects himself for a long time, scrutinizing his reflection with his toothbrush still hanging from his mouth. Eventually he spits, rinses, and then reenters his room and digs under his bed for a pair of sneakers. There is a small skip of time and then Brian emerges from his house to go for a run. He doesn’t have a lot of endurance, but he’s doing it.]
* * * * *
[Rayanne is sitting on top of the back rest of a bench at a bus stop. She pulls her gloves on and clutches the flannel tight around her. Her breath is visible as she exhales while she waits. After a few moments, she goes to pull the beer out of her bag, but as she’s about to open it, two elderly women walk by and she puts it back; instead she searches for a lollipop.]
* * * * *
[Rickie reenters the dormitory room, dressed and carrying his towel and other things he had taken to the shower. The other guys are just getting out of bed, groggily moving around. A few of them eye Rickie a little strangely. Rickie for the most part avoids eye contact and goes about folding his things and putting them away. As the guys leave the room for the bathroom, Rickie sits down on the bed and fixes his hair and goes to apply his eyeliner, hesitates, looking around him, then decides to put it on. Once he finishes though, he looks up and sees a guy in the doorway watching him. It is a quick look — too short and ambiguous to interpret — and then the guy is gone down the hall. Rickie wipes the eyeliner right off again.]
* * * * *
[Angela is lying in bed still sleeping. Graham comes in to wake her up and has to try several times before he has any success. Graham makes a comment that she’s staying up much too late at night, she grumbles something in dissent.]
* * * * *
[Angela and Brian are at the bus stop. Brian seems more vibrant, and a bit more confident today. Angela casually takes note.]
B: [with a little head nod (but not aloof)] Hey.
A: Hey. [The bus comes and they get on, Angela sits, and Brian sits two seats ahead of her on the other side of the aisle, which kind of surprises her. She rides looking out the window. There is a time lapse and the bus pulls into the school. Angela gets off the bus and sees Jordan’s car pulling into the parking lot. He gets out of the car and starts to walk towards the school’s side entrance. When he sees the bus he stops, circles back, and waits by his car. Angela makes brief eye contact with him before she walks over to his car.]
A: Hi. How was your weekend?
J: Okay. Yours?
A: You know… Would’ve been nice to see you. [They start walking towards the building] How are things?
J: You gonna ask that every time you see me?
A: It was a normal question. I didn’t mean anything. [He looks at her] I was just asking.
J: It’s going to get old.
S: [Sharon approaches] Angela.
A: [To Sharon] Hey. [To Jordan] See you later?
J: I’ll come by. During fifth. Probably. [He starts to walk away]
A: You’re not going to English?
J: I don’t know.
J: I’ll see you later. [He’s already walking away before Sharon’s reaches them, he doesn’t acknowledge her]
S: [Cautious] How are things?
A: [Watching Jordan] Fine. [switching her attention] Did you finish your lab notes?
* * * * *
[Rickie, a little distracted, is in the school hallway in the morning – Rayanne, still in the same clothes from the morning, distracted herself, sees Rickie and hurries to catch up to him.]
Ra: Vasquez, hey.
Ri: Hey. [Taking a better look at her] What happened to you?
Ra: I had a [reaching for a word but not coming up with anything, she does her little hand gesture (that suggests a thing and then brushes it away in the same moment)] night. Do you have any deodorant?
Ri: Not with me. [Getting started on a topic of his choosing] So, the shelter—
Ra: My bra’s like doing this weird thing [She busies herself with some readjusting]—Do you have any gum? [Rickie reaches into his pocket and hands her a piece.]
Ri: The place I’m staying in is—
Ra: What I really need is some mouthwash, or floss. Man, I am so hungry, I had like no breakfast, [rubbing her head] and not that much sleep.
Ra: Sharon would have floss.
Ri: Probably. Rayanne—
Ra: I gotta find Chirsky; [digging through her bag as she walks away] Why don’t I keep a toothbrush in here? [Readjusting again as she walks down the hall] Or a better bra? [Rickie doesn’t seem to have the energy to be surprised. The bell rings and he moves quickly to class.]
* * * * *
[Rayanne comes by Angela/Brian/Sharon’s biology class. Rayanne pops her head into the doorway when Ms. Chavatal is not looking. She “ pssts” to get Sharon’s attention. Angela looks up first to see Rayanne hovering in the hallway. Not realizing that Rayanne is there for Sharon and not for her, Angela looks at Rayanne, not with enthusiasm nor with dislike, but with muted interest. Rayanne, at a loss for how to react, purposely looks past Angela to Sharon.]
Ra: Psst. Chirsky. [Angela turns to Sharon, who looks at her, and then to Rayanne. Rayanne beckons for Sharon who shakes her head -- she’s not going to leave class. Angela lowers her head to appear to be working rather than monitoring the situation, but it’s clear that Sharon’s not going to change her life to suit Rayanne’s, and she’s certainly not going to do it in front of Angela. Rayanne finally turns away when Ms. Chavatal spots her and walks across the room to close the door; Angela, Sharon, and Brian watch Rayanne walk down the hallway. Angela looks around and sees Brian (it’s unclear if he was looking at Rayanne or Angela), she looks at him, he looks back and then looks away.]
* * * * *
[Rickie is sitting in his English class with the substitute lady (from the end of “The Substitute”) who is lecturing, and Rickie is totally tuned out.]
* * * * *
[In the school hallway during passing period. The bell rings. Sharon hesitantly opens the door to the boiler room and descends the steps, walking until she finds Rayanne, who is there making out with a guy.]
S: Rayanne. [Rayanne ignores her.] Rayanne.
Guy: [To Rayanne] Who is this?
S: Who are you?
Guy: Would’ya take your top off?
S: Oh please.
R: Look Chirsky, I’m busy.
S: Well, consider us even. [To the guy] Do you mind? [The guy leaves] Rayanne, when I said that we were friends, it was under the condition that it not come between Angela and me.
R: [Playing with her gum] And?
S: And today turned into Angela or you.
R: No it didn’t. [Readjusting, or re-buttoning her shirt, she sees a mark or a hickey on her collar bone/shoulder, and rubs it] What is this? [Sharon looks disinterested and lifts her eyebrows to Rayanne to indicate that she is not particularly interested in this portion of Rayanne’s life.] I don’t know how I got this, or how long it’s been there. [Buttoning her shirt all the way, she shoulders her bag after hopping down from where she had been perched.]
S: [Indicating the bra that Rayanne left where she had been sitting] Forget something?
R: [Continuing with what she had been saying – not exactly talking to Sharon] This isn’t even my shirt. [Referring to the bra] You can have it. [She begins to make her way to the exit]
S: [Bringing them back to the subject at hand] Rayanne.
R: [Turning to face Sharon, walking backwards to the exit] Today had nothing to do with Angela. I didn’t go there because I knew Angela would be there to see it. Actually, I had forgotten you even had that class together. And besides, you not coming with me wasn’t because of Angela either.
S: [Sharon stops for emphasis] No. It wasn’t. I’m not cutting class.
R: Okay, I get that. Just, don’t push Angela’s guilt trip off on me, [adding, a bit under her breath] especially if it’s just because you’re starting to get freaked out by me.
S: Please, don’t flatter yourself.
S: Meaning, you don’t freak me out “Graff”. And although the majority or your actions are completely… [Sharon searches for an appropriate word] asinine— [Rayanne makes her big eyes]… I’m not taking back what I said about us being friends.
R: Fine. [They stand there, quietly. Sharon looks around.]
S: I’ve never been down here before.
R: [Scoffing] Yeah right. [In a low slow tone] Liar, liar, Chirsky’s pants-a-fire. [Changing the subject, Rayanne searches through her back as she talks] There’s a party tonight at—
S: [Seeing the beer in Rayanne’s bag] I’ve got homework to do tonight.
R: [ Giving up the search for whatever it was she was looking for, not aware that Sharon had seen and reacted to the beer] Chirsky, do you realize, you never go out. You have, like, no life.
S: Buffalo Tom. [Rayanne shakes her head to signal that that doesn’t count. Sharon heads up the stairs, putting her hand on the railing, she then quickly retracts it, making a face because something was on it] I have to go to English.
R: Girl Scout.
S: Would it kill you to go to class?
R: It might.
S: [Continuing up the stairs] You shouldn’t just ignore Angela like that. [Opening the door into the hallway (she looks a little both ways before stepping out, then turns back to Rayanne] It comes off as hostile.
R: Maybe I am hostile. Maybe… [Beginning a seemingly blithe hypothetical in which she doesn’t care at all about Angela, which Sharon cuts off in her quiet “I know the truth” tone]
S: Liar, liar.
* * * * *
[Angela’ sitting at a computer in the library. Possibly on her computer screen is a website on abuse. Jordan pulls up a chair and sits next to her.]
J: Hey. [Absently leaning in over her shoulder a little to see her screen] What’re you doing?
A: Searching on the internet.
J: For what?
A: [Minimizing the screen] Nothing. So, you’re cutting shop now? [Jordan doesn’t respond, and so she pursues it further] Mondays and Wednesdays right?
J: [Sighs] Angela.
A: [Stating not nagging] English too.
J: I’m running an errand for shop. [Jordan pulls a crumpled office pass out of his pocket and slaps it on the table] And English was excused.
A: Sorry. [Jordan spins Angela’s chair side to side a bit with his foot]
J: You can’t help yourself.
A: [looking at the slip to the assistant principal’s office] So you saw the AP again? What’s being done?
J: [leaning back, bored] You’re doing it again. [The librarian shushes them. After a little while they continue talking in whispers.]
A: I’m still worried about y— … [Glancing at the librarian before continuing] What’s hap—
J: Look, it’s over — It’s fine, now. Just, you know, let it go.
A: Jordan — [The librarian passes by them] it isn’t fine. [She pauses] I know I don’t know exactly what’s going on — but, I don’t see how it can be fine.
J: Look, it’s not like it happens all the time. It’s just, he— It was a one time thing. [The librarian shushes them again]
A: [In a grave tone] Only, it wasn’t, was it? [Jordan thinks that she may have dropped it.] What happens the next time—
J: [Jordan is about to get angry and defensive but he looks at her and becomes more understanding] Angela, it’s okay. … I can take care of it. It’s not going to happen again.
A: [Solemnly, looking up to meet his eyes] Have you ever said that before?
J: Listen, I’m fine. Really. [He looks away and fiddles with a cigarette he’s pulled from somewhere, Angela studies him a little with a fragile look, and then snugs up to him with her back leaning against him. He looks down at her, tucks his cigarette behind his ear, and lightly tugs her hair.] I should get back.
A: [As he’s a few steps away from her she calls to him, and he pauses] Jordan. I’m not trying to make things worse for you, or to make it seem like things won’t ever get better. I wouldn’t want to do/communicate that.
J: I know.
A: I apologize if that’s what I’ve been doing.
J: [He continues walking] I’ll see you later. [Turning back to her with a slightly innocent, slightly mischievous look] Unless, you wanna …
A: [Knowing full well what] What…
J: Go somewhere… [He smiles slyly, nods his head towards the exit, and she gets her stuff and leaves follows him out the library, …]
* * * * *
[At the shelter, Rickie is alone in his dormitory room sitting on his bed. He is listening to music with headphones and a walkman, stitching the hem on a garment. The same boy from earlier appears and enters the room, he is only a few feet from Rickie’s bed before Rickie realizes he is there. Rickie looks, up. Not knowing what to expect, he pulls his earphones down around his neck.]
Boy: I’ve seen you before.
Ri: I’ve been here a week. [The boy does not register any kind of response to this which makes Rickie feel more awkward.]
B: [He comes closer and disinterestedly picks up a package of needles from Rickie’s small sewing kit – he glances at them and tosses them back down] What happened to the makeup. [This statement rather than a question catches him off guard, and it was postured in such a neutral way that there is no way for Rickie to read it. Rickie doesn’t say anything. After a few more moments the boy heads back to the hall] It doesn’t get any better clamming up. [He walks away]
* * * * *
[Scene: the Chase’s kitchen before dinner. Graham is cooking, Danielle is sitting at the breakfast table doing homework, and Patty is finishing a phone call, during]
P: [on the phone, at different points in the conversation graham casts a curious glance in Patty’s direction] Right. _____ That’s perfect. ______ Well, thank you so much. _____ Well, I’m just thrilled to do it. Okay, take care. [she hangs up the phone and turns to Graham and Danielle with a big smile]
G: What’s going on?
P: [noticing that Angela has entered the room] Oh good, you’re home. [To the family] I have some news. [The family looks at her expectantly] Starting this week, I won’t be home Tuesday nights from 7-9:30. I’ve taken a volunteer job.
G: Uh, Patty…
P: [excited now that’s she’s talking about it] Yes, it’s through Planned Parenthood, a lady at Camille’s church told me abut it.
G: Well, uh, what will you be doing?
P: What it is, is a seminar for young mothers to learn things about caring for their children; like diet, and bathing, and handling. And they get women who are mothers to come in and work with the girls.
G: And you’re going to be one of them?
P: Yes, exactly.
D: So, are we going to be home alone?
G: [Speaking to Patty] That’s right Patty. I’ll be at the restaurant.
P: Well, I think the girls are old enough to stay home alone.
D: Me too. [She stands takes a serving dish that Graham has just filled and leaves the kitchen for the dining room] I’m starving.
P: [To Graham] So, what do you think?
G: I don’t know what to say, I’m a little surprised. ____ I’m happy for you Patty. [he exits the kitchen carrying another dish to the dining room]
P: Angela, you haven’t said a word.
A: So, why are you doing this?
P: I needed a change in my life Angela. [She kind of tugs Angela’s hair from behind] Ever feel that way? [She exits the kitchen]
* * * * *
[Rayanne and Amber at home. Amber is in her silken robes sitting at the kitchen table painting her nails. Her feet are up on a chair next. Rayanne is slumped on the couch sleeping.]
A: Rainie, light me a ciggie. [Rayanne doesn’t budge.] Rayanne, my nails are wet, light me a cigarette please.
R: I’m sleeping.
A: [Amber turns to look at her] Are you sick?
R: [Amber turns back to blow on her nails. Rayanne rolls over and responding in a grouchy tone] No.
A: Well, are you getting enough sleep?
R: [Rayanne lifts herself up on an elbow to look at her mother, whose back is turned to her] When did you get in last night?
A: Oh! Well, some things came up and I stayed the night at Rusty’s. [Turning back to Rayanne] Were you waiting up?
R: [sinking back down to fall asleep, and sounding defeated] Yeah.
A: I’m sorry Ray. We’ll spend a night together just the two of us. [Amber gets up from the table, walking gingerly so as not to ruin her fresh nails. Holding everything carefully to not nick her nails, she opens the freezer and pulls out a blender container of margarita and pours it into a glass already standing on the counter. Amber takes a sip, turns on the radio (‘Rock Star’ by Hole), and plays it louder than she should considering that Rayanne is sleeping, and mouthing/softly singing along, she kind of glides into the bedroom; she comes back out with a top and skirt in hand and asks Rayanne what she thinks of it as an outfit.]
A: What do you think? Too boring?
R: [Rayanne turns her head slightly and opens one eye] You’re going out again?
A: [Not fully realizing that what Rayanne actually said was ‘I want you to spend a night home with me’. ] Yeah. All us technicians are going for drinks. [Moving down the hall] Celia got a new—[Amber’s down the hall in her bedroom by this point and the music blares too loud for us to hear what she is saying. She left her drink on the table right in front of Rayanne as she went to finish getting ready. Rayanne stares at it, dips her finger in and spoons some of the drink into her mouth.]
* * * * *
[Patty and Graham are in their bedroom later that night. Graham, already, is reading Gourmetmagazine, and Patty is hand washing her bras in the bathroom sink, popping her head through the doorway as she carries on this conversation with Graham]
P: So, what are you thinking? You seemed a little stunned downstairs.
G: I’ve just never heard you talk about this before.
P: I used to do volunteer work before the girls came.
G: And Angela is how old now? That’s fifteen years at least.
P: Well, exactly. The don’t need me anymore. And work is, work. And you’ve got the restaurant opening … I just, really feel like I need something of my own; to feel like I’m doing some good – doing something new with my life. [she has crossed the room and now sits on the bed facing Graham]
G: I’m happy for you Patty.
P: [giving him a funny look] You’ve said that already.
G: [not realizing that he had] Well, I mean it.
P: [Moving past Graham’s seemingly weak praise, and almost like she is thinking aloud, she draws her knees up to her chest] It will be nice, to really be needed.
G: [reaching out to her and caressing her] I need you. [he pulls her to him, they kiss]
P: [pulling back for a moment to look into his eyes, she says this in all earnestness, not the flattery thank yous] Thanks. [they kiss again, more passionately, she says it softly, but grabs on to him tightly] I need you too.
* * * * *
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 12:24 am
~DAY 2: TUESDAY~
* * * * *
[At school, Rickie is in his English class, bored and tuned out again, so much so that he barely realizes at first when the bell rings. Then, he springs into action, gathering his things, he quickly moves toward the door.]
Sub: Young man, please stay a few moments. [Rickie stops and stands mute and stoic] You’re not doing any classwork. [She stops for a response as if she had asked him a question] You’re always inattentive. [She pauses again] Do you know why this alarms me? [Although this time she’s actually asked him a question, she pauses for the shortest amount of time] I find this particularly alarming because you had an A in the grade books when I took over the class. Was that a mistake? Now, I don’t know what the problem is, but it’s in your best interest to start performing better in this class. You’re excuse.[Rickie leaves the classroom and is spotted by Delia who hurries to catch up to him]
D: Rickie! Hi. I feel like I haven’t seen you for days.
R: [A little out of sorts] Oh, I know…
D: [Upbeat offering a possible explanation] Been busy?
R: Not really.
D: I heard about Mr. K. [Makes a face] Sorry about that.
R: Yeah… [Starting to shut down the conversation] Um Delia, I actually got to
D: [Sincere] That must be really hard, I mean—Man, it just must be really awful. [Rickie doesn’t reflect any kind of reaction, which she takes as a sign to step back.] God, I’m sorry. You don’t want to talk about it with me. [gesturing down the hall] I should probably stop by the yearbook room anyway.
R: [As if just really tuning in, Rickie seems for the first time to realize the conversation as it occurs] Delia, do want to get something to eat?
D: [smiles] Sure.
* * * * *
[At the Chase house that evening, Patty pops her head into Angela’s room]
P: Angela, can you come down stairs. Daddy and I want to talk to. Please.
A: [She looks alarmed by this vague seemingly threatening request] Okay… [Patty leaves the doorway, and Angela hesitates – nervous. She slowly heads downstairs, at the bottom of the stairs she looks around, they’re not in the family room. She peaks into the study where they are seated. Both Patty and Graham look at her.]
G: Sit down. [Angela is really apprehensive. They look at her.]
A: What’s going on?
P: Angela, we want you to change your fifth period class.
A: [Totally confused] Why? That’s study hall.
G: The school called. Seems that you’ve been cutting that class a lot.
A: It’s study hall.
P: Well, don’t you think your grades could stand some regimented study time? [Not waiting for a response] Angela, we talked about this before. We made it very clear that we expect you to attend every single one of your classes everyday you are in school.
G: Cutting is not an option.
A: Well, it’s the middle of the semester; I can’t transfer into another class.
P: We already talked to your counselor.
A: You talked to Ms. Kryzenowski?
P: Who? No. Your academic counselor.
A: Without me? So, what am I supposed to take?
G: An elective. Shop, Home Ec, yearbook.
A: I don’t think they even offer those classes anymore. Anyway, I have study hall because I dropped yearbook.
P: And now you’re using it as an opportunity to what? Spend time with Jordan I’m sure.
G: You didn’t drop yearbook because…
A: [Firmly] No.
P: What about journalism. You like to write.
A: No I don’t.
P: Angela, you’re a beautiful writer.
A: No I’m not. And I’m not going to write for the school paper – all they report on is football games and pep rallies. [This negativity in Angela kind of alarms Patty.]
G: Well, after the Lit., maybe it’s better you stay away from publishing for a while. [Patty and Angela both look at Graham.]
P: Angela, start thinking of what class you want to take because you’re not staying in study hall.
P: [For final emphasis] You are to go to your classes and apply yourself. Is that clear? [Angela nods]
G: [Checking for understanding] Angela?
A: Yes. [On her way back to her room, Angela passes Danielle on the phone. We do not hear exactly what is being said, but as Angela walks past Danielle gets really quiet and watches until Angela passes by before continuing her conversation. Angela thinks this is kind of funny because she assumes that Danielle can’t have anything to say that would be secret or of any interest.]
* * * * *
[Still in the Chase house, Graham comes out of the kitchen holding a small dish in his hand. Patty’s rushing to collect her things before se heads out the door.]
G: Has anybody seen the cat?
P: Check Danielle’s room [Patty’s on her way to the volunteer thing. She’s wearing jeans and a button down shirt with sleeves rolled up.]
G: Oh, so, that thing starts tonight huh?
P: Yup. [Putting on her coat] It’s starting early tonight for orientation for the volunteers.
G: [Drawing her close and rubbing her arms] Well, good luck.
P: [Walking out the door] Check under the bed.
P: For the cat. [Patty leaves, and we see her go out to her car, get in and drive away. Once her car has passed by, we see Brian in the background hitting tennis balls against his garage.]
* * * * *
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 12:28 am
~DAY 3: WEDNESDAY~
[In the school hallway at Liberty, we see the girl Gina from “Guns and Gossip” and then we see Brian. Gina is at her locker, Brian sees her, and moves to approach her, but then second thinks it and stops, but then he moves in anyway.]
B: Gina? [She turns and sees him, surprised at him randomly talking to her, but still smiles warmly]
G: Hi Brian.
B: How are you?
G: [Raising an eyebrow a bit] Good.
B: Um, you’re on tennis right?
G: [smiling] Yeah. [Indicating the racquet he’s carrying] Are you trying out?
B: I was thinking about it.
G: [with enthusiasm] You should.
B: Is there like—Do I have to—Paperwork or anything?
G: I don’t think so, just come down to the courts after last bell. How long have you been playing?
B: Oh, you know, I’ve been playing with my parents for years.
G: Well cool, maybe we can play doubles sometime.
B: Oh, do they mix the teams like that?
G: [looking at him funny] No. [the bell rings] I [indicating with her head the direction of her class] gotta get to class.
B: Oh, yeah, me too.
G: Good luck Brian. [Brian enters the English classroom, and Angela’s eyes covertly follow him. (Angela sits several seats in front and to the side of Jordan). Brian sits down and puts down his racquet. Angela sees it and looks again, she’s wondering about this. Brian notices and answers her unspoken question.]
B: I’m uh, practicing with the team after school.
A: You’re joining tennis?
B: Um, well, I’m trying out.
A: I hate tennis. The racquets are too heavy, and everybody’s always shouting ‘love’.
B: It’s the scoring system, it means zero.
A: I know, it’s just annoying. [small hand gesture] ‘Love.’
B: [Brian makes that tight lipped “What do you want me to do” look and turns forwards to face the board. Angela feels a little dumb.]
* * * * *
[Angela and Rickie are in the counseling office flipping through a big binder of classes offered at the school looking for a new elective for her to take.]
A: This sucks.
R: I don’t know Angela, this could be kind of cool. Find something you always wanted to do. [Flipping through more pages] What about drawing? Or creative writing? [Angela makes a face] Or ceramics, maybe photography?
A: That could be cool maybe…
R: Brian’s into photography right? [Registering Angela’s reaction to this] So, ceramics?
A: [Walking out of the office, Rickie following her] Would I get to use one of those wheels?
* * * * *
[Chase home that evening, Angela and Danielle are downstairs. Danielle is at the dining room table doing homework, Angela is lying on her back on the couch reading. Patty and Graham come into the room.]
P: Girls, we need to talk. Danielle, can you come sit over here for a minute. [Angela and Danielle both look a little apprehensive. Angela sits up and makes room for Danielle. Patty and Graham look at each other for who will start. Graham stands behind Patty, hands on her shoulders.]
G: [Taking a breath] Uh, mom and I took the cat to the vet today.
P: She’d been sleeping a lot, and not eating…
G: And, she’s uh, developed intestinal cancer.
A: So what’s going to happen?
G: They really don’t think it’s treatable.
D: So, what…?
G: She has to be put to sleep.
P: We’re really sorry girls.
A: Where is she now?
D: Did you already do it?
G: No. She’s .. [at the vet’s or upstairs sleeping?]
P: [crying a little] This is really hard. [She sits down by Danielle and squeezes her, more to comfort herself than Danielle.]
A: When are you going to do it?
* * * * *
[Outside the shelter, Rickie sees the boy reading Slaughterhouse Five. He approaches, but doesn’t say anything. The boy eventually looks up.]
R: Sorry. [He turns to leave]
B: God, are you always like this? [Rickie stops, really thinking about this; he turns back. The boy asks the question again] What?
B: You going to sit? [Rickie does, momentarily he speaks]
R: I know someone who reads Vonnegut.
B: Yeah? This one’s pretty good. The guy can time travel. [Rickie nods politely, but the boy clarifies] Not like to the future or to the damn dark ages, but within his life, so like, anytime he’s in a bad moment, he can simultaneously be somewhere else. So even his death doesn’t matter because all the other moments of his life still exist.
B: Do you believe that?
R: [Thinking about it] I don’t know…
B: [closing it and putting it down] I mean, it’s just a book. [this breaks the kind of spell Rickie was in] But still, can you picture going back to moments of your life, the true, you know, turning points that screwed you up, and made you how you are, and then looking at them with a detached vantage point --? Intense.
B: [looking around their surroundings] You ever get out of here?
R: I try not to be here.
B: [Nodding] Yeah. [standing] Well let’s take off. [they walk, he turns to Rickie] You drink?
R: No. [the boy nods, again, Rickie is unclear of what answer the guy was looking for]
B: I know a place.
* * * * *
[At the Chase home later that evening, Angela walks by Danielle’s room – Danielle appears to be slightly upset; Angela ducks in and sits on Danielle’s bed, ready to be sympathetic and consoling.].
A: I’m sorry about the cat. [Danielle looks up at Angela, gets up from the floor where she’d been sitting].
D: You don’t know everything. [and leaves. Angela, who is surprised and confused by Danielle’s behavior, remains seated on Danielle’s bed. Patty, walking by and seeing Angela in Danielle’s stops in the doorway.]
A: Hey. [Angela notices Patty’s arms are full with old baby books and things]. What’s going on?
P: [casually pursing her lips to one side] Nothing. [casually entering Angela’s bedroom, setting her load down on a shelf by the door] I’m just collecting some of this stuff for the parenting center.
A: [Angela nods, then as there seems little else to say, and since Patty isn’t leaving, she asks] So how was it?
P: You know, it was, … important.
A: How old were they? The girls?
P: Mostly sixteen to eighteen. There’s two fifteen-year-olds.
A: Wow. So, was it sad?
P: [Thinking carefully] No. It’s not sad. It’s—[Not sure of how say it, and aware that Angela is listening intently] I don’t know what to call it. [Patty registers Angela’s reaction.] Angela, when Daddy and I shared with you our concerns about the amount of time that you’re spending with Jordan, we, we wanted to … [Starting again] I really want to impress upon you the importance of making good choices.
P: Angela, I know this makes you feel uncomfortable, but frankly a little awkwardness is the least of my concerns right now. I need to know that you are making safe and responsible decisions.
P: Angela, I don’t know what you’re thinking about sex, or what you and Jordan have – or have talked about, but the more serious you and Jordan, or you and any boy get, the more all this will become a very real and serious issue. Now, I don’t want to frighten you – well maybe I do, you’re fifteen, this is your first boyfriend— Angela, you should not feel obligated or coerced; don’t pressure yourself into anything.
A: Mom, really, it’s okay.
P: Would you say otherwise?
A: Probably not, but I’m not stupid mom; I know about safe sex.
P: [With great emphasis] Honey, I don’t think that you’re stupid, that is not what this is about. But sometimes, in certain situations, we don’t make the choices we would ordinarily make outside of those circumstances.
A: Okay, I get it.
P: You know Angela, that it’s important … [Patty cuts herself off, deciding that enough’s been said. Instead she hugs Angela around the shoulders from behind] I love you.
A: [a tad grudgingly] I love you too.
P: [Just on her way out of Danielle’s room] Any luck with the new elective?
A: [flatly] No. [realizing that this is not what her mother wanted to hear, she adds with a bit of determination] Still working on it.
* * * * *
[Rayanne’s apartment at night. Rayanne’s home alone and bored. She’s on the phone, but all she gets is busy tones or no answer. After three tries she drops the phone down and sits motionless for awhile. Eventually she rises and looks in the mirror for a long time, then grabs her bag and a bottle and leaves the apartment, shutting the lights off as she closes the door. She comes back in only a few moments later and stands in the darkened entranceway. “s**t” she says, and goes back out the door, slamming it behind her this time.]
* * * * *
[Rickie follows the boy into a dark smoky bar. The crowd is a mix of young men (late teens) and men in their mid to late thirties. Rickie stops. He was completely unprepared for this. Both intrigued and apprehensive, he remains still and takes in the room. The boy turns around and takes some of Rickie’s shirt fabric in hand and tugs him into the crowd.]
B: Come on.
* * * * *
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 12:50 am
~DAY 4: THURSDAY~
[Chase house, morning. Angela and Danielle are downstairs in the morning eating breakfast together before school. Angela, who sits at the counter, still seems to be asleep, and is staring at a piece of toast with jam on it, but isn’t eating it. Danielle sits at the table eating cereal and sipping a large glass of apple juice. Danielle is absently reading her cereal box.]
D: Do people put pet birds to sleep? Or their pet snakes? [Angela looks at her weirdly]
A: I think it’s probably just mammals.
D: What about pet rats? Would they put a rat to sleep if it got old or sick?
A: I don’t know.
D: This kid at school, he plays water polo, his family has four marmots and five chickens. Would they put them to sleep?
A: I don’t know Danielle. Maybe the marmots. Not the chickens.
D: Why not?
A: I don’t know.
D: But what if the chickens were in pain?
A: I don’t know. Maybe they do. Look, I really don’t know anything about it.
D: Is the stuff they use to put pets to sleep, like dogs and cats, the same they use for big animals, like horses?
A: [Getting a little annoyed, she stands and puts her uneaten toast in the refrigerator] Danielle, how would I know anything about putting horses to sleep?
D: It’s ketamine. They use ketamine to put horses to sleep.
A: How would you know?
D: It’s called Special K.
A: What are you talking about?
D: Kera Fraiser’s older sister does it.
A: [Getting alarmed] Does what?
D: K. Jason Kharmack and Andrew Dietrich use it too.
A: Those boys go to school with you? Oh my god!
D: [taking her dishes to the sink to rinse out] Angela, it’s not a big deal.
A: Yes it is Danielle. It is a big deal.
D: No, it’s just, when people won’t shut up about what they’re planning to use, it’s annoying. But, you can’t let something like if they use drugs or not keep you from having someone as a friend. You know what I mean? [Danielle inspects the contents of her lunch box and makes a face. Angela is stunned.]
AVO: It’s really hard to realize that someone you’ve known they’re whole life – you’re little sister by four years, might be growing up faster than you.
A: [Dazed] Uh-huh. [Graham enters as Danielle exits. Angela leans against the kitchen counter watching her sister exit – her mind is clearly blown.]
G: Good morning.
* * * * *
[At Liberty Angela and Jordan are sitting in the small bleachers by the vending machine from “Dancing in the Dark.” Jordan’s reading a stapled Xeroxed copy of “The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber.” Angela is sitting there, still a little in a daze.]
A: My sister asked me about drugs today.
J: [Still kind of reading] Yeah?
A: What do you mean “yeah”? My little sister asked me about drugs. [He looks at her]
J: What, like to hook her up?
A: She’s eleven.
J: Yeah, I know. That’s what I meant by “yeah”. What’re you worked up about?
A: Well, that apparently junior high kids, people my sister knows, are getting high.
J: Is she?
A: Well don’t you find it alarming? They’re so young. And she was so blasé about it. I don’t want her exposed to that.
J: It was there when you were in junior high. [Angela makes a face to deny this, but he anticipates her response and continues] You might not have been aware of it, but it was definitely there.
A: Well, so what? That’s supposed to make it okay for my sister to have to deal with it?
J: Not everybody grows up like you.
A: [not amused] What does that mean.
J: It means… kids do drugs. They drink. They have sex. They do dumb s**t. They still manage to grow up, it does happen.
A: What about when people overdose? That happens too.
J: Yeah, it does. But not that often, and it’s not going to happen to you’re sister.
A: I’m leaving.
J: What, you’re mad?
A: No. Well, yeah.
J: How come?
AVO: I guess I didn’t have an actual reason. Not one that I could easily verbalize. Yes, Jordan was being annoyingly flippant about something that was bothering me, but that wasn’t really why I was leaving. Jordan wanted me to admit to something I didn’t want to admit to, and it was just easier to walk away than have to finish the conversation.
A: Forget it. I shouldn’t have brought it up.
J: The thing is, you don’t want to think about the people you love being in dangerous situations.
A: [Still a bit defensive] Who does?
J: Well, nobody I guess. But you think that you can do something about it.
A: And you see something wrong with that?
J: No; but you’re setting yourself up for disappointment, or worse. ‘Cuz, it doesn’t work like that. [after a moment he starts to grin]
A: What? [he doesn’t respond] Jordan, what?
J: You hate it when I’m right.
A: I do not.
J: It’s okay.
A: Yeah, it is okay, because you’re not right.
J: She’ll be okay. [Angela frowns as her attention returns to the subject of her sister]
AVO: It’s hard sometimes, not to take the people in your life for granted. To let go of how you’ve known them in the past to allow for – who they really are. What’s really disturbing about it, isn’t even that the people in your life aren’t always who you rely on them to be – but the fact that you’re relying on them to be any one thing at all. It’s upsetting. But also really hard not to do.
* * * * *
[The Chase family, including Neil is sitting around the dinner table. Angela isn’t really eating, she’s looking at her sister.]
AVO: People change. I know because I’ve seen it. I’ve changed. [Thinking] Sharon’s changed. [Not quite sure as she says it] Jordan ‘s changed… Actually, I’ve seen most of the people in my life go through some kind of change this year. But, watching your family change, even when you’ve resented them for not allowing you to change, is strange.
D: Sheri Hickey’s having a sleepover tomorrow night, can I go? [This totally alarms Angela. Neil looks around the table]
N: Wait, what’s this girl’s last name?
N: Talk about bad luck.
D: [Ignoring Neil] So can I go? [Patty rises and starts clearing the table]
P: Danielle, Daddy and I are rushing to get out, we’ll give you an answer tomorrow.
D: But why can’t I just go?
A: Um, [her eyes dart, trying to think of something] Doesn’t she live across town? [looking at Patty] You don’t want to drive all the way over there on a Friday night.
D: [In a mind-your-own-business tone] We’d go over there after school on the bus.
A: But um, technically, isn’t Friday a school night? [to Danielle] Don’t you have homework? [everyone’s looking at Angela funny]
G: Are these rules you want to start living by?
A: [discouraged] No.
D: [getting up from the table] Then bud out.
A: Well, Danielle, we could hang out tomorrow night. Do you wanna do that?
D: No. [Danielle exits and Patty reenters]
P: Okay. [to Angela, who, along with Neil, is still seated at the table] I’m off to Camielle’s book club, and Daddy’s got a meeting for the restaurant. [to Neil] We should be back by ten. I packed you some food take home, it’s in the fridge.
N: What’s the book.
P: Oh, who knows.
N: [laughing] Every woman I know who’s in a book club says the exact same thing.
G: [coming in, and resting his hands on Patty’s shoulders, moves past her into the hallway by the front door] How many women do you know? [Patty cuts Neil’s retort off]
P: Goodnight! [Graham and Patty both exit]
* * * * *
[In the Chase house, later that evening. Neil is downstairs drinking a beer and watching basketball on TV. Angela enters a little tentatively, and sits down.]
N: What’s going on?
A: Uncle Neil, can I ask you something? [Neil glances at her, picks up the remote and mutes the game.] Have you ever heard of Special K?
N: It’s that Oprah-style chick cereal right?
A: It’s also some kind of animal tranquilizer. [Neil shrugs.] People use it as a drug.
N: Whoa. That’s harsh. What happened to smoking hash? [Neil thinks better of what he just said] Don’t tell your mom I said that. [joking] Angela, are you taking animal pharmaceuticals now? Cuz, you know, Marla’s poodle had worms last month, I think there’s still a bottle of her meds somewhere…
A: Danielle’s friends are talking to her about it.
N: [Taking this more seriously] Talking how?
A: I don’t know. But don’t you find it alarming that we both thought it was cereal, and Danielle and her eleven-year-old friends are discussing it?
D: I guess so. But Angela, I don’t for a minute think that Danielle’s anywhere close to doing drugs. Do you? Is that what that was about at dinner?
A: I really don’t want her to have to deal with this. I feel like I’ve been taking for granted that I knew what her life was like. Should I talk to her? Should I tell her to change friends?
N: One time, when your parents had only been dating for a little while, we went hiking out in the woods, and your dad brought this whole bag of— No, Patty would murder me if I told you that story. [Angela is having a hard time registering this] Look, would you say your parents turned out okay?
A: I guess they have.
N: Well, there you go; they weren’t perfect when they were young. They did things I know they wouldn’t like me telling you about. Just like you’ll do things you won’t tell your kids about. We all do things that maybe we shouldn’t, or that we definitely shouldn’t, but that’s what growing up is. I’m sure there are some things your parents may look back on and regret doing, but I think for the most part, they’re pretty happy with their choices, not that they would admit that.
A: [Trying to make sense of this] So, you think she’s okay?
N: I think she’s fine. And I wouldn’t worry about that sleepover.
A: Okay. ]He puts the volume back on and they sit, kind of watching the game. After a few beats Neil looks over at Angela]
N: That stuff about your parents, I probably shouldn’t have told you all that huh?
* * * * *
[Later that night, Jordan is walking out front of wherever they were, packing his cigarettes, and comes across Rayanne who is standing there with some tough looking guy, she is looking disoriented, and generally not-okay, holding onto the guy to steady herself. Jordan walks past her, but then stops]
R: Hey! Catalano. [She walks a few steps away from the guy she is with, Jordan slightly turns to face her, he is slowly unwrapping the package, he uncomfortably looks around her, not directly at her]
R: What? You can’t talk to me? [Taking a few steps closer to Jordan] Well, it’s not like you ever liked me, [slightly defensive and in a lower voice, trailing of] I know that. [Jordan looks away from her, his expression is stern, she changes the tone and the subject] So where’s Chase? Home right? Probably past her bedtime.
J: Leave Angela out of it.
R: [Getting kind of up in his face, but not speaking loudly or getting excited, she speaks slowly and bluntly, her words almost carve] Out of what? There is no “it”. [Backing down, and softer now] She doesn’t even look at me … [Changing the subject again- clearing her throat and sniffing as] Catalano, Tino with you?
J: [Jordan shakes his head in answer] Look Graff, I gotta go. [Studying the guy she is with, he says in a soft voice] You should go home. [This she did not expect and it kind of shuts her up and she looks blankly at him with wide eyes, Jordan turns and walks away. From a slight distance and from another angle than the rest of the scene was shot in, the guy approaches Rayanne but she shoves him away.]
* * * * *
[*Possible Deleted Scene*]
[Inside the new restaurant site at night. Hallie and Graham are sifting through linen samples]
H: I can’t stop thinking about you. If you only knew how many times I pick up the phone; I lie in bed thinking about you, I even bought all this stuff [she lifts a heap of napkins from the table and then lets them fall] just so I could call you about it.
G: Hallie … We’ve been—
H: I can’t stop thinking, “if he only gave me a chance, if he only knew how good for him I am”, if you only knew how I [she is looking directly at him at this point]
G: I know. But it isn’t going to happen — It’s never going to happen.
H: You wouldn’t have to leave Patty, I could live with that.
G: You deserve better than that. Patty deserves better than that. We have to let it go.
H: [there is a long moment, Hallie looks stunned, not just because of what Graham has said, but mostly because these words have just come out of her mouth. As she speaks now, her voice is lower and a bit detached] You’re right. You’re right,[grasping her hair tightly at the roots and lowering her hands to cover her eyes] Ahhrhh! [still covering her face, she is speaking to herself] What am I doing… [slowly she opens her hands, remembering he is still there] Oh, God! [—as if to say “I so don’t want to be here.” She lets out a small laugh at herself] I have to get home. [collecting her stuff as quickly as she possibly can] I’m sorry. I’m so sorry Graham. [she finally makes eye contact with him] I didn’t – [rethinking that saying anything might just make things worse, she grabs the rest of things] I have to go. I’ll, we’ll talk later. [she’s gone]
* * * * *
[Rayanne comes home late at night kind of stumbling. The apartment is dark, and Rayanne moves into her mother’s bedroom and sees that Amber’s not there.]
* * * * *
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 12:57 am
~DAY 5: FRIDAY~
[Angela is sitting at a table in the library during study hall, Jordan comes in, taps her, and then walks down one of the far aisles of the books. She gets up and follows him, closing her textbook but leaving her stuff at the table. Jordan’s waiting for her, He smiles when she meets him, and leans into her, resting his hands at either side of her on the shelf behind her.]
J: What are you doing right now?
A: History. You know, my parents are making me get an actual class for this period. [He has no reaction to this, she continues] The school called because I’ve cut so many times. [She clarifies] I’ve been hanging out with you instead of coming here, so my parents are making me get a real class. [Jordan’s still not really giving her the bummed reaction she was hoping for.]
J: [absently fiddling with the book binding] So, what are you going to take?
A: I don’t know… My dad suggested shop—[This catches his attention. He looks up with an expression of surprise and alarm] I’m not going to. Ricky and I thought that maybe ceramics or photography might be kinda cool.
J: Shane’s taken ceramics. He made a lot of pipes.
A: The teacher didn’t notice?
J: [Shrugging, and moving from leaning into to standing beside her, leaning against the bookshelves] Maybe he didn’t care.
A: I heard people do coke in the photo dark room.
J: [Moving in a bit closer again, but more for emphasis than out of any real expectation] I heard they do something else… [He moves back to a more casual stance] My sister’s into photography. [She looks at him – it’s unclear if she’s heard about this sister before or not – Jordan closes his eyes]
A: It seems pretty cool. [More to herself] I don’t have a real camera though…
J: I gotta go find something to eat.
* * * * *
[In the hallways of Liberty, Angela’s waiting by a locker. Sharon approaches and sees Angela waiting for her. Sharon seems momentarily apprehensive. Angela smiles]
S: Hey. [Sharon opens her locker and transfers her books]
A: Do you have plans for the weekend?
S: Not really.
A: Wanna do something?
S: [Stopping what she’s doing and looking at Angela for emphasis] Yeah.
A: [Smiling] Good.
A: Sharon, it’s fine if you want to be friends with Rayanne.
S: It’s not about you.
A: I know; it’s fine. I just wanted to make it clear. I’ll call you tomorrow?
S: Okay. [They kiss cheeks]
A: I’ll see you. [She walks towards the exit.]
* * * * *
[Jordan and Angela are driving in his car, Angela’s absently looking out the window. She slouches down and puts her feet up on the dashboard, which Jordan immediately swats down. After a few more moments she speaks; Jordan’s music is playing loudly so they have to speak over it until she turns it down. ]
ANGELA: So, um, your sister …
ANGELA: I don’t know, [She reaches and turns down the music] it’s like weird, to think about.
ANGELA: I don’t know. You never talk about her. You were like, kids together?
ANGELA VO: It’s weird to think of Jordan as a little kid.
JORDAN: [Jordan gives her a strange look. Naturally he was a kid once, what’s the big deal? ] Well, kind of. She’s my, uh, half sister.
ANGELA: Oh. Older? [He nods] What’s she do?
JORDAN: [Jordan switches gears as he turns a corner] Wants to be a nurse.
ANGELA: Hm. Does she live in Three Rivers?
JORDAN: Wilmington. Wanna meet her?
ANGELA: What? Oh, no, we don’t have to.
JORDAN: Well, you’re asking all these questions, might as well…
ANGELA: Well, I mean, now? How random is that? To just, show up, with me?
JORDAN: Not very.
ANGELA: Does she even know who I am?
JORDAN: [Jordan recognizes this for the loaded question it is and stays clear of it. Instead of answering he gives her a look. Jordan makes a u-turn and starts off in the opposite direction, heading for the highway.] This is good, ‘cuz I owe her money anyway.
ANGELA VO: That’s the thing about Jordan – he does things quickly, and, he’s surprisingly practical.
* * * * *
[Jordan and Angela drive down a narrow street. It is residential, but so close to the downtown district that the street doesn’t look completely comfortable with its domestic life. Jordan parks on the street and they walk towards an old one story house. The house is small, not terribly kept up, probably built in the late ‘40s. It needs to be painted, and the yard could use some work, but it doesn’t look trashed either. Angela thinks it’s even a little cool looking. Definitely with personality, and definitely showing potential. Jordan walks up the walk to the house, clearly familiar with the house, Angela, still pretty far behind, walks slower as she is without the certainty of familiarity. Jordan, already at the door, turns and sees she’s not next to him like he’d assumed.]
JORDAN: [Not out of any real concern] Okay? [She nods, and walks to catch up. He’s opening the door and walking in, he calls out.] Lis? [Angela follows him into the house, still steps behind Jordan. She awkwardly closes the door herself, and looks around the room she’s stepped into. Jordan’s already down a hallway looking for his sister. He reenters eating a rolled up tortilla.]
ANGELA: Isn’t she home?
JORDAN: [Sitting on the couch] No.
ANGELA: Well, shouldn’t we, [Jordan’s sorting through a stack of CD’s on the table in front of him] at least wait outside?
JORDAN: Angela, relax okay? Not everything’s such a big deal.
ANGELA: Okay. [She starts looking around. The sofa is a kind of fatigue green; urban-retro. There are books and houseplants everywhere. A large vinyl collection sits in crates against one wall. The room has not been “decorated” but has the sense of being lived in and is warm and effervescent. There are a lot of indicators that someone in the house is into photography. There’s a sewing machine on a table under a window, surrounded with fabrics and project materials. Angela notices that there’s no television; she walks over to the piano, and still standing, fingers a few notes. Jordan looks up.]
JORDAN: You play?
JORDAN: Let’s hear.
ANGELA: [Walking away from the instrument] No, I never practice anymore. Now all I can play is chopsticks. [Jordan rises, goes down the hall and returns with an acoustic guitar. It’s different from his, it’s almost a pale yellow, and it’s rounded in the back. He sits down again and begins to strum. He looks up at Angela who is inspecting a series of photographs hanging on the wall. He plays a little louder to get her attention and to catch her eyes. He continues playing, not letting their eye contact slip, he nods to the piano. She shakes her head, he looks down to adjust the strings]
JORDAN: C’mon. [Angela rolls her eyes and then returns to the piano, sighing as she sits.] Just play along. [Jordan is strumming a simple melody, keeping it consistent so that she can pick out the tune.]
ANGELA: I’m not used to playing like this. [He doesn’t answer, but keeps playing. Angela finds and loses the tune, stumbling at parts, but as she finds her way Jordan begins to vary his notes and to build off of the melody. It begins to sound fairly good, but when she loses the rhythm she gives up and closes the piano.] I told you, I’m not very good.
JORDAN: You’re not bad. [Starting to strum something else] You should practice.
ANGELA: [She leaves the piano and begins browsing through a shelf of books] Your sister plays?
JORDAN: No, her boyfriend. This is his. [Indicating the guitar]
ANGELA: Hm. [Pulling a copy of Lolita from the shelf and leafing through it] Do you think – are we just going to –?
JORDAN: She’ll probably be here soon. We’ll give it twenty minutes. [Putting the guitar down] I’ll be back. [Jordan goes down the hall to the bathroom, Angela nods and continues looking through the book. After a few moments the door opens and a beautiful girl of 23 comes in. She’s carrying canvas sacks of groceries.]
ANGELA: Oh, hi. [She puts the book down]
LISA: Hey. You here with Jordan? [Angela’s a little flustered and looks around] His car’s out front.
ANGELA: Oh, yeah. He’s uh, in the other—[Stepping forward smiling] I’m Angela.
LISA: Lisa. [Walking through to the kitchen] Ben home?
ANGELA: I don’t think so, no. [Angela follows Jordan’s sister into her kitchen. Lisa lightly kicks the bathroom door as they pass by.]
LISA: Jordan! [Jordan emerges and goes into the kitchen where his sister is putting away produce.]
JORDAN: You meet Angela?
LISA: I got her name. [To both of them] Want something to drink? [Jordan looks at Angela to take her order]
ANGELA: Water? [Jordan takes a small glass from a cabinet and fills it for her, then goes to the refrigerator, putting one hand on his sister’s back as he reaches in past her for a beer. He sits on the kitchen counter next to where Angela leans against it.]
Jordan: Saw Ella and Cammie the other day.
LISA: Yeah? [Taking a bite from an apple and fixing herself a cup of coffee] What are they up to?
JORDAN: Seem exactly the same.
LISA: I don’t doubt it. [Clarifying for Angela] Friends from high school.
LISA: [Shaking her head] Banning. [Turning around to finally face Angela and Jordan without anything else distracting her]
JORDAN: We had some friends in common though.
LISA: Uh, [to Angela] they were my friends, [to Jordan] you were just allowed to hang out. [To Angela again] That’s how he met Tino you know; J’s earliest girlfriends… [Deciding that this was too much information, she switched the topic] Um, have you seen the garden?
[Scene continues a few moments later in the backyard. Most of the garden is bare and cut back as it is still winter, but there is also a large growth of vegetables that she leads them through, squashes, lettuces, greens. There’s a homemade outdoor grill, some old painted wooden chairs, and a clothesline. Lisa wields a pair of clippers as she walks through the plants. Bending over some chard.]
LISA: How’s the old place?
JORDAN: [Not really taking note of the garden] Fine. [His eyes trail to Angela to stress that she not counter this, her eyes in turn go big as to say, TELL her.]
LISA: That bastard still drinking himself to death. [This isn’t really a question, and though there is some level of hostility behind it, on the surface it comes across as a benignly neutral observation. Jordan almost shrugs but then doesn’t bother, and instead tears a branch of a tall plant nearby him. Lisa continues matter-of-factly] Well, not fast enough.
ANGELA: But, you grew up there, right? [Jordan isn’t pleased with the direction of this conversation and goes and sits in one of the chairs by the fire pit.]
LISA: Yeah I grew up there.
JORDAN: Got out early though.
LISA: [Explaining to Angela as she turns on the garden hose to quickly water a limp looking vine] I moved out at 16.
JORDAN: Ran out.
ANGELA: [Looks at Jordan and then at Lisa] Really? [Lisa shrugs and turns her attention elsewhere – back towards Jordan.]
JORDAN: We have a show coming up.
LISA: Yeah? [The phone rings inside, Lisa, busy putting the hose away looks to Jordan and nods inside] J -- could you? [Jordan rises and goes inside to get the still ringing phone.]
A: I like your place.
A: So, you’re in nursing school?
L: City college, trying to get into nursing. [Looking to Angela] You staying to dinner?
ANGELA: Uh, I’m not sure, I really don’t know what Jordan had in mind – it was pretty unplanned, coming here I mean.
LISA: [Lisa studies Angela, and then slightly smiles with one side of her mouth] How long have you guys been hanging out?
JORDAN: [Sticking his head out the kitchen door] It’s Ben. [Lisa walks past Jordan into the kitchen, Jordan remains, leaning against the doorframe. Angela slowly nears the doorway, Jordan, on the small porch step, standing a good six inches taller than she. Jordan leans and whispers something to her and she laughs. He has one of her hands in his and is kind of absent mindedly one by one pressing the tip of her fingers between his thumb and index finger.]
ANGELA: [Low enough that no one inside would hear her] I like her.
ANGELA: It’s funny how, it’s funny that you guys are so d—
LISA: [From inside] Hey! Dinner – are you guys in or out?
* * * * *
[Later that night Angela and Jordan are tucked away in his car. She revisits something mentioned earlier (she’s clearly been waiting to bring it up).]
A: Did you, date your sister’s friends? [Jordan is simultaneously surprised and validated when she says this – he half expected that she would be mulling this around in her head all this time since it was brought up]
J: I never dated them.
A: But you, hung out with them right? [Jordan confirms this. She pauses before going on, deliberating everything that she says aloud] So, you, um, you slept with them though? [He looks at her intently, deciding if it’s worth it to tell the truth. He looks straight at her, very forthcoming.]
A: And they were what, three, four years older?
J: About that.
A: Was that how your first time was?
J: [This last question is a little more awkward than the previous two, but he continues with his manner of sober honesty.] What do you mean?
A: With someone that much older, and more… [She can’t say it]
J: Experienced? [She confirms; he watches at her before he answers] Yeah.
A: So, how old were you?
J: Fourteen, or thirteen. [This was not what she was expecting, but she tries not to react]
A: Wow. That’s, that’s really, um, young.
J: Is it?
A: Jordan, yeah. That’s pretty young. Wow.
J: Well, it was—
A: Actually, do you mind if we, change the subject? [Jordan doesn’t mind, but he looks at her a little confused – not quite being able to follow why she would start and finish these types of conversations so abruptly. Angela, aware of the now awkward silence reaches for something to say] Dinner was good. [Both aware of how stupid it sounded, they kind of laugh]
* * * * *
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 1:02 am
~Day 6: Saturday~
[Angela and Jordan are at the garage where Jordan works. Jordan isn’t on shift, but is working on his own car, and she’s hanging out while he does.]
J: Hand me a wrench – it’s—
A: I know what a wrench is. [She hands it to him. He works for a while silently while she leans against his car flipping through a magazine. Eventually he glances over to her, and hesitates before asking her what’s been on his mind] Angela, did what I told you yesterday, about, you know, ‘me’? Did that – bother you?
A: [Trying to play it cool] Bother me? No, it didn’t bother me. Okay, it freaked me out a little bit, but…
J: Why? It doesn’t have anything to do with you.
A: I know.
J: Or with me and you.
A: I know. It’s not like, it’s not like I care. It’s not like it’s an issue. It’s just you know, I’m seeing how big – there’s a big difference between me and you.
J: Yeah. It doesn’t really matter though.
A: Well, it kind of matters to me. [He’s starting to assume that she’s pissed or jealous, but she quickly clarifies.] It’s … intimidating. I’m embarrassed.
J: Don’t worry about it.
A: But, that’s not what you’ve communicated to me in the past.
J: [He looks straight at her] I’m sorry about that – [adding] I didn’t mean it. [Angela needs time to process this, momentarily Jordan brings them back to the topic of his past experiences] But you don’t, you don’t mind it do you?
A: Mind it? [She pauses to consider] No. It’s your business. [After thinking about it…] Why? Do you mind that I –
J: Okay. [They both kind of laugh at this whole situation. They stand there, both kind of awkward, but both also feeling more at ease. They stand. Then, with another small laugh at themselves and the moment, they both move in for a kiss.]
A: [Pulling away from the kiss (after a few moments) Angela kind of whaps Jordan on the arm] I can’t believe you took me to that house. That was not cool.
J: [flatly] You should have said something.
A: Really, what did you think was going to happen?
J: I thought I had a pretty good idea of what was going to happen.
A: How did you think that?
J: You should have said something.
A: Well I’m saying it now; taking someone to that house is a jerk move. Okay?
A: [Angela relaxes and leans back] I don’t want my sister to get into trouble.
J: I know.
A: And I want to know that you’re okay.
J: I am.
A: Why didn’t you say anything to your sister?
J: Angela, I’m okay. [With great meaning]
I need you to let it go.
AVO: It’s hard to hear things about the people you love, painful things that you can’t help or stop. Maybe that you can’t even really understand. And part of you wishes you just didn’t know. But if you can’t keep them safe, I guess you can still let them know you care.
A: [She looks at him for a long]Okay. [She sighs, purses her lips, and then looks away – the tension from a moment ago is gone] I should go.
* * * * *
[Angela walks down her street towards her house. The sun is just beginning to go down as she reaches the Chase home and finds Rickie sitting on the front step.]
R: You’re dad said you’d be home soon.
A: I was with Jordan. I met his sister last night; do you know her? It’s strange; they’re like exactly the same. Well, not really, but you can kind of tell that they were at one time, or that they will be. I don’t know. Do you know, she’s a great photographer; her pictures are amazing. I think I’m going to take photography— [Rickie turns to her, straight forward and says ]
R: Angela, I need to talk. [Angela very quietly understands, and goes through a sudden shift from self-involved to chatter, to solemn expectant listener.]
A: Okay. [Now that Rickie’s got her attention he’s flustered and kind of exhales and laughs (but not because anything is funny)]
R: How much time do you have?
A: [earnestly] All the time you need.
R: [They sit there for a really long time silently – Rickie needs to work up to this, and she has o earn back his confidence] I think that everything that’s happened is getting the better of me. Every time I get used to, and accept things to be a certain way, something happens to uproot and change everything and I have to rearrange it all allover again; its exhausting. [Angela puts her hand on Rickie’s back and sits silently with him]
AVO: Rickie’s right; it does seem like everything changes. And when it does, it’s frightening and unpleasant, but as upsetting as it can be, maybe it’s also good that you never get stuck in one reality for too long – that you do get these glimpses of the world as it really is. That it’s not always a world of your own creation. When you think about it, it’s almost strangely comforting.
* * * * *
[Saturday evening, Rayanne sits alone in a laundry mat late at night. A guy in his early-mid twenties comes in, cast a glance in Rayanne’s direction before he begins stuffing laundry in a washer across the room. Rayanne is sitting on top of one of the driers with her hair flipped over the front of her face as she detangles and braids it. The guy casts another glance in Rayanne’s direction and then goes about his business. She kind of parts her hair in front of her eyes to steel a peek…]
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 2:36 pm
great story, keep it up
Posted: Sep 11th 2006, 2:42 pm
Phew. There were alot of storylines!!! Ahhhh... what is going on with Brian? Is Patty's new job setting up for a Sharon/Rayanne pregnancy? Danielle's getting so much older! I never had to even think about drugs when I was that young. I feel sorry for her. It's funny, because it always feels like Angela is the really sheltered one out of everyone. Even her own sister is experiencing things she doesn't really know about. Neil is such a character. I love Jordan and Angela's slow shift into a consistent relationship. They really are past all that first crush/first dating phase. I love all the times of them just sitting together, each doing their own thing. It's very realistic. I like Lis, too. I wish her and Angela had had a few more seconds between just the two of them, or maybe between Jordan and Lisa. It would've been nice to see her reaction to Angela, or to the idea of Angela. Oh! And the playing. I liked that. Jordan is such a musical person, that's how he functions and how he communicates. It was nice that Angela got to be apart of that, even if only for a few moments. What happened on Wed. night with Rickie? I'm kind of suspicious of the boy and the bar full of men. Hm. I hope Rickie's okay. Um, let's see. I'm glad you deleted the scene between Hallie and Graham, it didn't really fit in at all. Maybe in the next episode, but in this one it was too abrupt and sudden.
One thing that would have been nice is if you had put in more light-heartedness. I loved all the development with the characters and how it seems like they are only branching off into totally different people. However, I think part of what made MSCL was just little moments of jokes or teasing one another. I understand right now it's hard because all the characters are dealing with issues, but even one or too little moments would be good. Like when Neil started talking about the parents.
Oh, and the ending... I didn't really understand the bit with Rayanne. Maybe you could put it before the Rickie/Angela scene? It just seemed out of place. Or maybe you have a plan for it... I'll trust you.
I really liked Jordan and Angela's discussion about their different experiences (or lack thereof) with sex. FINALLY, I think. It was nice that they had a talk about it without any pressure whatsoever and that they kind of supported each other in their different stances. I liked that. Alot. oh! In the library, it was kind of abrupt when he said he was hungry. Was he really hungry, or was he angry at her, or was he just bored? And why did he keep coming to find her in the library? Just to be with her or did he have a purpose that was forgotten? And WHY wasn't he annoyed that her parents made her change 5th period?
He should have had some reaction, stupid boy. That's so me, though. Saying something, and then clarifying, and then clarifying again because I'm not getting the reaction I was looking for. haha I loved how Angela did that!
Rayanne is driving me crazy!! She's so messed up! And her mom is driving me crazy too!! She's so messed up! They should go to counselling.
Sorry if this is all disjointed, I'm just writing my reactions as I think of things. I'm so glad you updated! Excellent work!!
Posted: Sep 21st 2006, 12:18 am
Queen of Brooklyn, I’m so glad to have your reviews! I haven’t had the time to reply until now. … So many of your comments are so right on – I don’t know what the hell was going on with this episode. I think it definitely got away from me.
I agree that it’s kind of storyline overload, and what sucks is that most of them aren’t even good ones. As for the Graham scene, that was a super old one, and yeah, it doesn’t fit anymore. As I think it is posted in my other thread, in my early conversations with Grim, we talked about how things like what exists between Hallie and Graham don’t just go away, which I think is the theory behind a lot of what happened in this episode. While I had envisioned “Isolation” as my dark episode, this one turned out to be even more so as I tried to avoid just dropping the storylines from that episode. I agree that this episode doesn’t ring true to the tone of the series.
On the subject of Rayanne: This episode opens with her waking up after a one night stand, and then coming home and discovering that she hasn’t been missed. By now she’s given up Brian, she’s not ready to admit to missing Angela, and she’s too caught up in her own stuff to be any kind of real friend to Sharon or Rickie. By this episode Rayanne is in a darker place. I wanted us to really start seeing that she might not always bounce back, and that while she might stop the drinking and the drugs, she could possibly always be in this cycle of self-destruction . I love that it’s Jordan who helps her, who tries to protect her, even though he doesn’t like her, and there’s all this stuff between them (I like that the people around them, and the audience feels like there’s all this stuff between them, but that they probably do not. There’s nothing between them – or at least from Jordan’s side. Rayanne probably can’t feel that way now because it is connected to something else -- her loss of Angela, and thereby her connection to normalcy…). In the next episode I have Angela finally admitting that she misses Rayanne and wanting to make up with her, and Rayanne having a kind of heart to heart with Jordan about her loss of Angela, and so I wanted this episode (and a little bit in the previous one) to show where she might potentially take herself if she doesn’t make the choice to take care of herself irregardless if other people are there to take care of her or not. There has been a shift from self-amusement to self-destruction. So, while the opening scene shows us the end of one of her trysts, I wanted the closing scene to show the beginning of one (or the potential for one, as we do see Rayanne trying to end the cycle).
On the subject of Rickie: I wasn’t sure of how I wanted to portray his life at the shelter, and I really wrestled with whether or not I wanted to take his storyline in the direction of possible interactions with men. … I’m still not sure. I’ve never liked the fanfictions that show Rickie just getting into a happy open relationship with another kid at school – it doesn’t seem likely, and usually reads as contrived. I didn’t want to create anything that the girl characters could ooh and ahh over and label as ‘cute’. I figured that Rickie might be feeling rather unstable at this point, and also probably trying to avoid spending too much time at the shelter, and because all of his friends seem to be pretty occupied with their own stories, he’d probably be looking some place else. I want to keep it as vague and general as possible when it comes to what he might be doing because I do recognize that out of all of the characters, Rickie is the romantic. He thinks that relationships and physical contact should special and meaningful – he isn’t really the type to be hooking up with random guys. On the other hand, he is feeling lost and slightly abandoned and might be looking for a distraction, and some kind of connection. I’m really on the fence about this though, I might go back and delete it. I do like the encounters with the other guy though – that Rickie is so unsure of his new surroundings that he doesn’t know how much of himself he can be (even though he seemed to really maintain a strong sense of self while living with his abusive family), and doesn’t know what to expect from the people he encounters there.
As for that last scene between Rickie and Angela, I wanted there to be a surprise change in tone / focus. A lot of the episode is really focused on Angela or on her perception of others, but I wanted to show that when she needs to, she can whole heartedly and effortlessly switch over to focusing on Rickie – not her take on it -- or how it relates to her – it is him. It should feel simultaneously surprising and natural to the audience, but should feel really nice.
Now for Brian: I’ve been having a tough time figuring out what he should be up to, but I wanted him to be doing something new, to kind of start getting out into the world trying new things. Brian’s always doing something athletic out in the streets, so I thought that maybe he might take that and go join a team, and tennis, although we’ve never seen him play it (or mention it) seemed like a school sport that might fit Brian. I think it’s in “Angela’s World” where the skull in Brian’s fish tank (visible, I think, in “Life of Brian”) is connected to Yorick’s skull in Hamlet – Hamlet being notorious for his hesitation and letting opportunity pass him by. Brian tosses it out because I just want him to start participating in life a little more.
I’m glad you liked the scenes with Jordan’s sister. They came from a chapter I originally wrote for the Interactive Story. I think Angela would have liked to have had more time with his sister also, but I didn’t want to give her that opportunity because I wanted to keep Lisa just a bit removed and unattainable, in true Catalano form.
I like the Neil scene too. He always cracked me up, so I thought this was a perfect opportunity for him jump back into the episodes. I wanted Neil to tell Angela too much about when he and her parents were young (but when it came time to write it, I couldn’t think of just what to say), not trying to promote a certain kind of behavior, or give her permission to start doing bad things, but because he’s not sure of how to speak honestly with kids but still send a good message. I like that he isn’t necessarily giving her good advice at all. I like that Angela is the voice of reason for her peers, her younger sister, and even the adults in her life. Angela believes the just say no, and she was affected by the overdose and how she sees alcohol affecting her peer’s lives. I think that after she and Jordan have been together for a while (a long while, after her awe of him has faded and they are more on equal terms) his substance use will start to become an issue for her. (I know, I know, I have Angela getting a little faded in episode 20, and she gets drunk again in the next episode, but my theory is that while Angela might never drink in her normal life – hanging out with Rayanne or Jordan etc, a temporary change in her circumstances (like in #20) might temporarily alter things.)
Okay, now for the big one – Danielle. Yeah, I totally think she’s a year or two too young for this conversation, but I wanted to come up with a storyline for her that would bring them closer and force Angela to really see her sister as a person. Their conversation is loosely based on a conversation I remember having with my sister when I was in 6th or just beginning 7th grade. I wanted to show the two sisters growing up differently from each other. I think it’s common for the older sister to kind of be shocked by the younger sister’s behavior, and for the younger sister to be influenced by the older sister’s actions, and to also interpret them in ways that aren’t accurate. Danielle is definitely going to go a little crazy when she’s older, although I strongly don’t think she’s at any risk for doing anything at this point.
And about Patty’s new volunteer job: Nope, not a precursor to a pregnancy for any of the characters, just something I wanted her to do. Like Brian, I wanted Patty to find something of her own – I’ve been setting up that Patty feels a little left behind and has kind of been searching for something. I chose this particular thing because when I was in high school my mother was going to do it. She never did, I’m not sure what happened, but I always liked that she was going to.
One last thing, Q of B, I feel like we’ve talked a lot about the relationship I’ve been creating between Angela and Jordan, so I’d love your opinion on this. I like that they’ve become comfortable with each other and have kind of fallen into a routine -- keeping their two lives separate but still hanging out with each other, but, I don’t want it to seem too settled. Being in a relationshio is new to both of them, and I don’t think that either of them are terribly capable of maintaining a relationship without problems. Angela especially (I think in a lot of ways she’s really mature, but I can see her slipping into high-maintenance mode occasionally).
Anyway, thanks for reading, and thanks so much for the comments!
Posted: Dec 8th 2006, 2:51 pm
Akkkk so I'm finally writing a reply. I know, it's been forever! I'm so sorry!!
SO I just re-read your last episode, and really everything you said in your message makes it all fit into place. I don't really have any recommendations because you seem to have a plan for each character that sounds great. I especially like the idea of Rayanne on this path of self-destruction instead of self-amusement, as you said. It totally fits. She comes off as one of the strongest, most-opinionated characters, yet she really does depend on the people around her to keep her going. I think losing Angela really kinda threw her and now as a result she is pushing all her other friends away from her. I love the idea. If Rayanne can pull through this phase, I think she will learn alot about herself and come out much, much stronger. I want to slap her mom, though.
I also agree with you on the Rickie thing with the boys. I always hate the fanfictions where he falls in love with some boy at school. It isn't realistic. Although I would love to see Rickie find love, and he deserves it, in high school it just doesn't seem likely. I do think, too, that after seeing Katimski's relationship with his partner, that Rickie is probably more optimistic about his chances for a relationship like that somewhere in the future. This added to Rickie's romantic personality, I believe, would keep him away from just hooking up with random men/boys. If you aren't sure where to take that whole thing with the bar/club, you could use it as a beginning to a crush. Maybe him and the boy from the shelter become close, and Rickie likes him. Not in a dramatic, unrequited love kind of way. But maybe scenes of the two hanging out together and it is obvious to the readers Rickie feels more, but the boy does not. Or he could get a job at the bar, or just make several older male friends which start to pull him away from the high school crowd. I'm not sure, really, what would be the best direction for that to go. I'm just throwing out ideas.
Wow, Brian as Hamlet. What a scary thought.
Okay, so on Angela and Jordan. I definitely think that Angela needs to find some way to check her 'high maintenance' tendencies, if she wants to maintain her relationship with him. It was clear in this episode that Jordan was getting a bit irritated with her acting as his mother, and I think his patience/liking of her would fade if she continued to do it to such an extreme extent. This episode was a great start for Angela to realize she can't control or protect the people around her. She needs to let go more.
I'm really not sure what else to do. I agree that their relationship should not become too routine, but with everyone branching out into these completely separate lives, Angela spends most of her time with Jordan and there isn't room for other characters to create conflicts between them. I would like to see a greater awareness of each other in all the characters. I can't remember what your plan was, but didn't you have some idea about a cabin, or a party, or some going away episode where Rayanne and Jordan are stuck together? I keep thinking of Life of Brian, or Halloween, when all the characters are surrounded by each other and have no choice but to interact. That would make for a very interesting episode.
I'm really sorry that I don't have any other ideas... My brain seems dead right now.
If you have any tentative plans I would love to give you feedback on them, though!
Posted: Dec 11th 2006, 1:31 pm
Thanks for the comments Q of B! I really have made no progress on these episodes because I'm sort of stuck on the next one, which is the episode in which all the characters are lumped back together again. I'm not happy with how I originally orchestrated it, and now that I have separated the characters so far apart from each other, I'm not sure how to fill in the dialogue around what I have going on between Jordan and Rayanne, and Angela and Jordan.
I have been working here and there on some other MSCL fanfiction stuff though (for the "Yearbook" project which is just those small snips of Jordan and Angela's interactions post high school). I'm close to finishing a short thing which shows Jordan visiting Angela for a weekend in her freshman dorm. And then I've been trying to kind of rework the very first MSCL-inspired writing I did (which was when I was 15 or 16, right after the show ended, before I knew such a thing as 'fanfiction' existed). Last night actually, when it was 2am and I still couldn't sleep, I wrote about a page of a scene in which Angela, at about 27, goes to Jordan's for dinner with him, his pregnant partner and their almost two-year-old daughter. I'm picturing Jordan growing up to be kind of a mellow, easy-going, eco-friendly guy. I also see him settling down before Angela does. Anyway, the writing is going slowly, but I'll post when I have something readable.
Posted: Dec 17th 2006, 1:46 pm
if your writing a fan fiction story , um u should seriously consider like making it and angela/brian story
becus that would be realli sweet , i so think they should be together:)
Posted: Dec 17th 2006, 2:50 pm
no it would just be dull, no excitement or dramatic tension whatsoever