(fade in): to an establishing shot of New Rawley.
Music: How to Save a Life by The Fray
We float above the streets past various familiar houses. We make our way to the center of town, past the garage and Friendly’s. As we float, Will speaks:
Will (voice over): The other day, I lost my keys. I thought it was a pretty big deal at the time. I became preoccupied with finding them. I got frustrated when I couldn’t. And when I found them, carelessly kicked under my bed, I was elated.
He pauses as we make our way to a large church, the church where Finn and Johanna were married.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Now, looking back, I realize how foolish I was because today I know, we all know, what it feels like to lose something that actually matters. The only things that matters. Life. Love.
(cut to): inside the church. Will stands at the pulpit delivering his words to a congregation dressed in black. Behind him is a casket. On the front row, Finn sits next to Meagan. Jacey is in his arms. Meagan wipes away tears. Finn is stoic.
Will: A mother. A wife.
On the row behind him, Finn and Johanna’s parents sit together.
Will cont’d: A daughter.
On the next row we see Grace, Dexter, Bella, Sean, Jill, Jake and Scout. They are all solemn, most near tears.
Will cont’d: A friend. A teacher.
On the row behind the kids we find Meagan’s father and the Fleming family: Steven, Kate and Hamilton.
Will cont’d: A person who touched each of our lives in one way or another.
Hamilton looks deeply affected. He reaches out and takes his mother’s hand as he looks at Jake in the row in front of him.
Will cont’d: A person whom we have lost…
Commercial Break: Check out Ian in an interview about his movie Pulse.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of a cemetery. The funeral party stands around a grave as the casket it lowered. Finn’s mother has Jacey. Meagan stands by his side, holding his hand. As the casket goes down so does Finn’s stoicism. He slumps slightly and his tears fall. Meagan wipes her own tears away, leaning into him.
Music: Words to Live By by Stroke 9
(dissolve to): Tyson and Will’s room. Tyson is lying on his bed wearing a pair of headphones, listening to an mp3 player. Will enters, still in his black suit. Tyson pulls off the headphones and sits up.
Tyson: Hey. How was it?
Tyson nods sympathetically.
Tyson: Poor Finn.
He sighs and looks around.
Will: I…I feel like I’m in a state of shock.
Tyson: That’s understandable. Do you want to talk about it?
Will walks over and sits down on his bed. Tyson waits. Will sighs.
Will cont’d: I have homework to do.
Tyson doesn’t get it.
Will cont’d: But it feels totally silly to do homework. In the grand scheme of things it’s just so…unimportant.
Tyson: In the grand scheme of things, most things are unimportant. But, you know, you do homework so you can make good grades so you can go on to college and make something out of the knowledge that teachers like Mrs. Finn gave you.
Will: Ms. Ryan.
Will: She was Ms. Ryan then. I used to have a crush on her.
Tyson: She was beautiful.
Will: Yeah…and her passion for the subject made her that much more so.
Will smiles, remembering.
Tyson: You should use her as inspiration.
Will: She already was, but…I know what you mean. And, I will.
Tyson smiles as the boys continue their conversation.
(cut to): Sean’s house.
(cut to): Sean’s room. Jill and Sean sit together on Sean’s bed. Jill is crying heavily on his shoulder. He rubs her back.
Jill: It’s so not fair.
Sean: I know.
Jill: They shouldn’t have to lose their mom like that.
Sean runs his hand down her hair, understanding her sadness more now. He leans back a little.
Sean: They’ll be okay. It’ll just take time.
Jill nods, but continues crying.
Jill: I’m sorry this is hitting me so hard.
Sean: It’s okay.
Jill: I just remember what it felt like, you know?
Sean: I know.
He kisses the top of her head as she continues to grip him.
(cut to): the garage.
(cut to): the living room. Grace, Dexter, Bella and Nicholas sit around without speaking.
Grace: I wonder who our sub will be?
Bella: God, Grace, who thinks about stuff like that?
Grace: I do.
She rolls her eyes and leans into Dexter who is next to her. He wraps an arm around her.
Grace: I didn’t mean it in a shallow way, just so you know.
A beat as they all sit somberly.
Nicholas: I can’t believe I met her on the night she died.
Dexter nods in agreement. No one else says anything.
(cut to): the quad as Scout and Jake walk together.
Jake: You know this is going to sound weird, but I’d never been to a funeral before today.
Scout: I’ve been to a ton with my father: fallen soldiers, retired statesmen, a few distant relatives, but…never anyone that I knew somewhat personally.
Jake (sincere): It’s so sad.
Scout: Kind of makes you want to live your own life a little better…
Jake considers this.
Scout: I mean, it just makes you want to live your life to the fullest because you never know when some stupid accident could happen and that would be it, you know?
Jake nods, thinking about this as the pair continues to walk.
(cut to): The Fleming House. Hamilton, Steven and Kate sit at the kitchen table, drinking from steaming mugs.
Kate: It was unseasonably cold today, wasn’t it?
Hamilton drinks mechanically from his cup, not answering her.
Steven cont’d: I’m going to have to find someone to replace Finn very quickly.
Kate: He’s moving to Boston.
Hamilton nods, surprised by this information. He goes back to his mug.
Kate cont’d: Do you have any resumes on file?
Steven nods hesitantly.
Steven: Just one…Alivia Dalton.
Kate: She would be perfect. She’s on sabbatical right now, isn’t she?
Kate cont’d: You should call her today. She could probably be here in a few days. She can even stay with us until she finds somewhere to live.
Steven looks less than thrilled by this suggestion, but tries to stifle it with a nod. Hamilton isn’t even listening to this conversation anymore; he is devoured by his own thoughts. He gets up, pushing his chair in.
Kate: Are you okay, Sweetheart?
He places a hand on Hamilton’s.
Hamilton: Yeah…I just…I have something I need to do…
(cut to): Finn’s house. There are many cars outside.
Music: Uncomfortably Numb by Butch Walker
(cut to): the living room. People mill about, talking quietly.
(cut to): the kitchen. Finn and Johanna’s mothers are setting out hor’dourves and cleaning up used dishes.
(cut to): Meagan’s bedroom. She and Mark sit on the floor, leaning against her bed. She is still wearing her black dress and has her legs drawn up under the dress, pressed tight to her chest. Her arms are wrapped around her legs to hold them in place. She stares off. Mark sits Indian style, still in his black shirt and slacks. He looks over at her periodically. He reaches out to touch her shoulder hesitantly as if she may recoil. When she doesn’t, he eases his arm around her shoulder. She starts to cry, putting her head on his shoulder, allowing him to comfort her.
(cut to): the backyard. Finn stands alone on the porch, smoking a cigarette. The door opens and Hamilton walks out, carrying a small stack of stapled papers.
Finn turns, seems to consider tossing out the cigarette, but instead brings it to his lips once again to take a deep drag.
Hamilton: I didn’t know you smoked.
Finn: I haven’t in ten years or so, but…check it out.
He holds his hand out horizontally.
Finn cont’d: Steady. First time in days.
Hamilton: Yeah, I know what you mean.
Finn doesn’t care to explore the comment.
Finn cont’d: What are you doing here anyway?
Hamilton: I…this is going to sound stupid, but…remember how I didn’t hand in my paper the other day?
Finn: Printer jammed. Yeah.
Hamilton: Well…I printed it off and…I didn’t know if I should still turn it in or…if I should just give it to your replacement or what?
Finn: My replacement? I guess your parents told you I’m leaving.
Hamilton: Is it a secret?
Finn shakes his head.
Finn: Not really. Hearing you say it makes it seem more real to me, though.
Hamilton doesn’t speak for a moment.
Hamilton: So…should I—
Finn gives him an irritated look as he takes one last drag from his cigarette then tosses it in the yard.
Hamilton cont’d: I’ll just hang on to it.
Finn nods as Hamilton rolls it up and sticks it in his back pocket. Hamilton lingers awkwardly as Finn pulls out a pack of cigarettes from his pocket. He takes one out and puts it between his lips. Hamilton is staring intently. Finn notices.
Finn: You want one?
Hamilton: Um…yeah, sure.
Finn tosses him the pack, lights his cigarette then tosses the cigarette lighter to Hamilton. Hamilton takes out a cigarette. He puts it in his mouth and, with little effort, gets it lit. He hands the pack and lighter back to Finn. Hamilton wraps his lips around the cigarette and inhales deeply.
Finn: I didn’t know you smoked.
Finn: So what are you really doing here, Hamilton?
Hamilton looks up at Finn. He hesitates, but then speaks:
Hamilton: I just wanted to tell you that despite our differences in the past, I never would have wanted this to happen to you. You don’t deserve this and…I’m sorry it happened.
Finn: Thank you, Hamilton.
He takes another long drag. Hamilton looks down at the cigarette in his own hand that has accumulated a large amount of ash. He taps it on the porch rail, knocking the gray powder away. He puffs on the cigarette once again. Finn looks at him more carefully.
Finn: Are you alright?
Hamilton: Oh, yeah, of course.
He nods, taking another drag from his cigarette.
Hamilton cont’d: Actually, no…I’m not. The funeral today…it hit me pretty hard. And…I’m such a selfish jerk because you’re the one that’s experienced this loss yet I have this overwhelming feeling of guilt and grief.
Hamilton: I was sitting in that church today and I kept thinking how bad it would be to be in your position. How terrible it would feel to lose the one you love, the one person you searched your whole life for. Like, okay, if Jake died…I…let’s just say a cigarette wouldn’t help me. I mean, I’d be done.
Finn: Jake, huh?
Hamilton thinks this over.
Hamilton: She’s the only one that came to mind. I mean, Alyssa…I wouldn’t want anything to happen to her either. But if I lost Jake…
Finn: Are you sure you haven’t lost her already?
Hamilton takes a deep drag from the cigarette and exhales.
Hamilton: I don’t know. God, I hate this. She put me in this position, you know?
Finn: How’d she do that?
Hamilton: She told me to go be with Alyssa.
Finn chuckles a little.
Hamilton cont’d: What?
Finn: A man much more successful at relationships than I once told me that when she tells you to go…
Hamilton, an epiphany lighting on his face, completes the statement:
Finn: That’s right: don’t.
Hamilton: Oh my God, I’m such a screw-up…
Finn doesn’t disagree as he finishes his cigarette, throwing it out in the yard. Hamilton doesn’t take another drag, but simply tosses it away.
Finn: Don’t make a habit of that.
Hamilton gives him an inquisitive look.
Finn cont’d: Smoking.
Hamilton: Right. Don’t worry about that.
Finn looks out across the backyard, a renewed wave of depression taking over his face. Hamilton looks at him, not really knowing how to handle the situation.
Hamilton cont’d: Did you want to talk?
Finn: Not really, but…I appreciate the company all the same.
Hamilton nods, maintaining his position.
Commercial Break: The Holiday is the best movie ever…and I will try to convince you of that throughout the episode. You are REQUIRED to go watch the clips. Seriously. Now. Go. Please? J
(fade in): to an establishing shot of the boys’ dorm.
(cut to): Jake and Scout’s room. Jake is sitting on her bed with a Rubix Cube in her hands, trying to solve the puzzle. She is back in normal Jake gear: jeans and an oversized hoodie. Scout enters with a pair of Cokes. He still has on the slacks from his suit. His white shirt is unbuttoned to reveal a white tank top underneath. On the whole, he looks charmingly handsome.
Scout: Coca-cola, my lady?
He bends down on one knee and offers the Coke up to her. She laughs as she takes it.
As he stands up, he tucks one hand in his pocket, looking very model-like as he holds his Coke in his free hand. Jake checks him out, clearly thinking something similar. She shakes her head as she re-focuses on opening her Coke.
(cut to): Finn’s house.
Music: A Quiet Mind by Blue October
(cut to): Meagan’s room. Mark and Meagan are still sitting together on the floor. Mark still has his arm around her. Without a knock, the door opens. Danny Grant, Meagan’s father enters. He seems surprised to find Mark here comforting his daughter. Meagan looks up at him. Mark relinquishes his arm and slides up onto the bed. Meagan stands up.
Danny: What the hell is going on in here?
Meagan seems confused. Mark stands next to her.
Mark: She just needed some quiet time away from everyone—
Danny: Well, I’m not everyone. I’m her father and I think I’m a little better suited to—
Meagan: Dad, this is my friend Mark.
Mark looks down at the label, but bites his tongue.
Danny: Nice to meet you, Mark. Why don’t you go on downstairs?
Mark looks to Meagan for permission. She nods. He gives her a reassuring pat on the back then exits.
Danny cont’d: Now, you know I’ve got that job all lined up in L.A., right?
Danny: I’m actually going to be making a decent salary for the first time in my life. What do you think about that?
Meagan wonders where this is leading.
Meagan: I think it’s great dad, but—
Danny: I can probably afford to get you into a private school if you’d like—
Meagan: Wait, what are you talking about?
Danny: In California—
Meagan: Dad, I’m not going to California. I’m going to Boston with Finn and my brother.
Danny: I understand you want to help take care of the baby, Honey, but I have legal custody of you now. You understand that, don’t you?
Meagan: Don’t patronize me, Dad. I’m not a little kid or an idiot. I understand the legality of the situation just fine, but what about the morality, huh? Are you familiar with the concept?
Danny is taken aback by her intelligence and maturity. He smiles.
Danny: When did you get so smart?
He laughs to himself, shaking his head.
Danny cont’d: Anyway, morally speaking, don’t you think it would be better if you were with your biological father, not to mention a woman who—
Danny: Tina. My fiancée.
Danny: Oh, I told you about all this.
Meagan: No. You didn’t.
She sits down on her bed, folding her arms.
Meagan cont’d: You didn’t mention Tina—fiancée or otherwise.
Danny moves to sit next to her. Meagan sighs, tears flowing gently down her cheek.
Meagan cont’d: I don’t want to go to California.
(dissolve to): Finn’s house, a little while later.
(cut to): the kitchen where Danny and Finn are in the middle of a conversation. Finn leans on the counter, holding a glass of water.
Danny: I mean, what am I supposed to do here, huh?
Finn: Well, you’re right, legally she is yours now.
Danny: Hey, don’t belittle me like that. I’m not trying to treat my own daughter like a possession.
Danny cont’d: So…do you want her?
Finn: Don’t you?
Danny: Eh…I don’t know. Tina isn’t too thrilled about the idea of motherhood. And, a thirteen-year-old girl is a rough way to start.
Finn: Meagan is twelve.
Danny: See, that’s why she belongs with you. You know the little details.
Finn: That’s a pretty big detail, don’t you think?
Danny: Whatever. Look, if you want her, she’s yours, all right? I’ll give you a few days to think about it. I’ll be back on Friday.
Finn nods, though he clearly thinks Danny is an idiot. Danny leans forward to shake his hand. After this, he exits the kitchen. As he leaves, Mark enters.
Mark: What a jerk, huh?
Mark cont’d: I was listening.
Mark cont’d: You aren’t going to let her go, are you?
Finn shrugs. Mark marches up to him.
Mark: Boston is bad, Finn, but I can deal with it. I can’t deal with California.
Finn: I didn’t know this was about you.
Mark opens his mouth, but shuts it. He thinks for a moment before speaking.
Mark: You’re right, but I really think Meagan would rather be with you. She’s always said you’re more of a father to her than her real dad.
Finn: I appreciate that, but…I’m not sure how equipped I am to be a father right now.
Mark looks at Finn carefully. Finn turns away, looking out the window.
(cut to): the girls’ dorm. Sean’s parents’ truck pulls up.
(cut to): inside the truck. Jill is typing on her cell phone.
Sean: Who are you texting?
Jill: Jacqueline. I asked her to stop by if she had a chance.
Sean: Good idea.
Jill smiles, looking out the window.
Sean cont’d: Something on your mind besides the obvious?
Jill: I don’t know…stuff like this just gets you thinking.
They sit in silence for a moment. Sean leads toward her, kissing her gently on the cheek. She turns, kissing his lips. She smiles then reaches to open the door.
Sean: See you later.
Jill nods and gets out.
(cut to): the boys dorm.
(cut to): Jake and Scout’s room. They have started a game of cards on Scout’s bed when Jake’s cell phone buzzes in her pocket. She pulls it out, pushing a button or two.
Jake: Text. From Jill. She wants to talk.
Scout: This probably takes her back to losing her mom.
Jake nods, impressed by his intuitiveness.
Jake: Yeah. I guess I’ll go.
Scout cont’d: Tell her…tell her I’m thinking about her, okay?
(dissolve to): Jill and Alyssa’s room, a little while later. Jill is painting. Jake sits on her bed. They are mid-conversation.
Music: The Bitch Song by Bowling for Soup
Jill: Anyway, I cried on Sean’s shoulder for awhile and…that helped a lot.
Jake: Sean’s a great guy.
Jake: Oh, that reminds me: Scout said to tell you he’s thinking about you.
Jill: What does that mean? He’s “thinking about” me?
Jake: I think he was just trying to be supportive. He knew how today might make you feel.
Jill raises her eyebrows as she continues to paint. A beat.
Jill: Anyway, thanks for stopping by.
Jake: Yeah…it’s been awhile.
Jill looks over at her friend.
Jill cont’d: So what’s been going on with you?
Jake inhales as she considers this question. Jill looks at her suspiciously.
Jake shakes her head as if it’s nothing.
Jake: I’ve just been hanging out with Scout.
Jill: You seem to be in good spirits.
Jake: Well, today was a little bit of a downer, but other than that…yeah, I’ve been okay.
Jill looks at her carefully.
Jake cont’d: What about you?
Jill: Like you said, other than today, I’ve been good. Things with Sean have been…good.
Jake smiles, genuinely happy for her friend.
Jake: No Scout-remorse?
She looks at Jake suspiciously.
Jill cont’d: Did he send you over here to spy on me or something?
Jake: Seriously. He’s sort of over that whole obsessive-depressive thing.
Jill: Oh, well, that’s good…
Jake: Yeah, and he’s even helped keep me from going down that path. He’s been…
She smiles, thinking of the right word. Her smile turns to a grin.
Jake cont’d: Awesome.
Jill: Wait a minute…
Jill sets down her paintbrush and joins Jake on the bed.
Jill cont’d: Do you, like, have a crush…on Scout?
Jake: Why would you even ask that?
Jill: I don’t know…
She looks at Jake again.
Jill cont’d: Do you?
Jake: Drop it.
Jill: Oh my God…you do.
Jake seems to rethink her strategy.
Jake: Okay, say I did…how would you feel about that?
Jill: Well, I would probably feel like it was no big deal…induced by the massive amounts of time you’ve spent with him. I mean, it’s not like he’s your type.
Jake nods, probably in agreement.
Jill cont’d: And, you’re definitely not his type.
Jake tilts her head.
Jake: Really? You don’t think so?
Jill: Sorry. I didn’t mean to sound harsh.
Jake seems to contemplate matching Jill’s obvious bitchiness with bitchiness of her own.
Jake: So, I mean, if I told you we kissed, you’d just think—
Jill: You kissed him?
She fakes amusement, though is clearly interested to learn more.
Jake: He kissed me, actually.
Jill is sobered by this.
Jake: He kissed me and…I’m trying to find out if you’re okay with that so can we just drop the sugar-coated, passive-aggressive girl crap? Can you just be real with me here, Jill?
Jill is totally shocked.
She holds her hand up to her face.
Jill cont’d: Okay, you want real? You want honest?
Jill cont’d: Honestly…that bothers me…a lot. A lot.
She inhales and exhales slowly, putting her hands on her knees.
Jill: Are you guys…?
Jake: The timing is…pretty horrible. That’s what I told him. I mean, every time I turn around, I see Hamilton and these feelings attack me from all directions…
Jill looks slightly relieved by this.
Jake cont’d: But then today…with what happened to Finn’s wife…it just made me realize that maybe there’s not time to waste opportunities. I mean, am I instantly in love with Scout? No, of course not, but…sometimes he’s just so sweet…so cute…hot, actually. Today he was hot. And…I don’t know…it makes me want to seize the opportunity for something fun and—
Jill cont’d: I hope you know that Scout and I had more than just “fun.”
She looks at Jill pointedly.
Jake: I don’t want to hurt you, Jill, but…you know, if it’s this big of a deal…maybe you need to rethink some things…before I do. And you need to do it quick.
She gets up and exits, leaving Jill alone and upset.
(cut to): Jill walking down Sean’s street in New Rawley. Her fists are clenched, her arms are straightened. Whatever her intentions, she is determined.
Commercial Break: If you like that cute guy in The Office, you’ll like The Holiday. Check it. Plus, Cameron’s rants are adorable and funny.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of the boys’ dorm.
Music: I Can Make a Mess Like Nobody’s Business by Saloy
(cut to): Nicholas’ apartment, a little while later. Bella and Nicholas sit on the couch, curled up. There is a knock at the door. They look at each other, Bella ready to bolt if need be.
Nicholas: Who is it?
Jake (outside): Jake.
Relieved, Bella settles back on the couch. Nicholas goes to the door, letting Jake slip in.
She notices Bella.
Jake cont’d: Hi, Bella.
Jake: How are you?
Bella: I feel a little weird. I’ve never lost someone close to me like this. I mean, not that we were that close, but I was in her English class for a year. I babysat Meagan a few times.
Nicholas: Hey, we were just about to make some coffee. You want some?
Jake: Sounds great.
(dissolve to): a little while later. Bella and Nicholas sit apart on the couch. Jake leans on the wall by the kitchen doorway. One hand hangs down next to her, in the other a coffee cup. She takes a sip. Nicholas and Bella watch and wait. Jake takes one last sip, leans into the kitchen, sets the cup on the counter then re-emerges.
Jake: Good coffee.
Nicholas: Something on your mind?
Bella and Nicholas trade an amused smile.
Nicholas: Oh, yeah?
Jake: Things like today happen and it makes you realize all the things in life you’re wasting. All the opportunities that are just staring you in the face.
Bella: Like Scout.
Jake nods and walks over to the couch, taking a spot between Bella and her brother.
Jake: I like him.
Jake shakes her head.
Jake cont’d: And as much as I try to deny it, as many reasons I come up with as to why it would never work…on days like this, where every little adorable thing he does is so appealing to me…I feel like maybe I shouldn’t deny it at all. Maybe I should embrace it. You know, live for the moment.
Nicholas: Sounds reasonable.
Bella: It sounds great. I think Scout will think so, too.
Jake: Really? You do?
Bella: He told you how he felt already.
Nicholas: Yeah, I doubt it was a onetime invitation.
Bella nods in agreement. Jake looks back and forth between them. She smiles awkwardly between these two.
Jake: As always, thanks for the advice guys.
Jake stands. They say their brief goodbyes and Jake exits. Nicholas and Bella look at each other, wondering what will happen.
(cut to): to the art room. Kate sits thoughtfully in front of an empty canvas. Hamilton enters.
Music: Fidelity by Regina Spektor
Hamilton: Hi, Mom.
Kate looks up and smiles.
Kate: Hi, Sweetheart.
Hamilton walks over to her, examining the blank canvas.
Kate: I was thinking I could paint something for Finn.
Hamilton: Going away gift?
Kate: Something like that.
Kate cont’d: Nothing more than that…if that’s what you’re thinking.
Hamilton: I wasn’t. I know better.
She smiles. With no prelude:
Hamilton: I’m going to break up with Alyssa.
Kate is surprised by this, but tries not to show it.
Hamilton: What should I say?
Kate smiles slightly.
Kate: Well…why are you breaking up with her?
Hamilton: Because I’m in love with Jake. I want to be with Jake.
Kate nods, trying to make no judgment.
Kate: Have you talked to Jake yet?
Kate: Maybe you should see how she feels about this.
Hamilton shakes his head.
Hamilton: I want to show Jake that I’m committed to her…and to making it work. I don’t think I can get that point across if I’m still with someone else.
Kate: Okay, fair enough.
Hamilton waits for the advice portion of the conversation.
Kate cont’d: As for Alyssa, just tell her the truth, but in the most gentle way possible.
Hamilton: Do you really think I should tell her that I’m in love with another girl?
Kate: If you don’t, she’ll find out eventually and it will hurt her all that much more. I mean, I assume you’re here talking to me because you want to avoid hurting her?
Kate cont’d: Gentle honesty is my best advice.
Hamilton: Okay. Thanks, Mom.
(cut to): to an establishing shot of the girls dorm, the common room. Alyssa sits curled up in an armchair by the fireplace, reading a book. Two girls, Caitlyn and Kelsey, walk in.
Music: Secret by Howie Day
Kelsey: Anyway, it’s totally tragic. I heard Finn isn’t coming back.
Caitlyn: Yeah, I guess it would be embarrassing…you’re townie tramp teacher wife biting it.
Alyssa: Excuse me, but don’t you think that’s a little disrespectful?
Caitlyn and Kelsey look over at Alyssa.
Kelsey: Hey, aren’t you the girl Hamilton’s dating?
Caitlyn: You mean the girl that converted him?
Kelsey and Caitlyn laugh. Alyssa rolls her eyes and looks back at her book, seeing this will go nowhere.
Caitlyn: Seriously…how’d you do it?
Caitlyn drags Kelsey to a couch near Alyssa as they continue the conversation.
Alyssa (reluctant): Do what?
Caitlyn: Get Hammie to change teams.
Alyssa doesn’t get it.
Kelsey: As in he used to be gay and now he’s not.
Alyssa: Hamilton’s not…what are you talking about?
Caitlyn: Oh, this is good. She has no clue.
Kelsey looks at Alyssa sympathetically.
Caitlyn: Tell her.
Kelsey: Hamilton and Jake. They were definitely a couple.
Alyssa: Right. Sounds like the rumor mill failed you on that one.
Kelsey and Caitlyn look at each other skeptically.
Alyssa sighs and looks back into her book.
Alyssa: Hamilton used to date a girl.
Caitlyn: What girl?
Caitlyn: Jacqueline who?
Alyssa shrugs as if this is unimportant.
Alyssa: I don’t know.
Kelsey: Jacqueline Gibbs?
Alyssa: I don’t know.
Kelsey: Long, blond—
Caitlyn: Jackie Weber? Red head—
Caitlyn: Well, I don’t know any other Jacquelines here at Rawley.
Kelsey: Where does she live?
Alyssa: Around here.
Caitlyn: Nope, that’s impossible.
Kelsey: Yeah, because she doesn’t go here—
Caitlyn: And we know every townie worth knowing.
Kelsey: Yeah, like Bella and Grace Banks…
Caitlyn: Sean McGrail. What a stud.
Kelsey: Oh, and that dealer, what’s his name?
Caitlyn: Ben Hudson aka Major Skeeze…but definitely no Jacqueline.
Kelsey: So she doesn’t live around here.
Caitlyn: You know, call me crazy, but maybe Jacqueline is Jake’s drag name.
Kelsey considers it. Alyssa looks up at them like they’re nuts.
Alyssa: I’ve met her, okay?
Caitlyn: Yeah, and did she look like Jake in drag?
As she says it she seems to reconsider, but tries not to give this away. Caitlyn and Kelsey look at each other knowingly and rise from the couch.
Caitlyn: Right, well, it was nice to meet you, Alyssa.
Kelsey: Yeah, totally. And, you know, good luck with Hamilton.
Alyssa watches, contemplating what was said.
Commercial Break: Sure, Jack Black can be annoying, but…he can also be adorable.
(fade in): Sean’s house. Jill sits alone on the front porch steps. After a moment, the front door opens and Sean comes out.
Music: Life After Lisa by Bowling for Soup
Sean: My mom said she thought she saw you out here.
Jill: Yeah. Hadn’t worked up the courage to knock yet.
Sean instantly seems to understand this won’t be good. He eases down next to her.
Sean: Do you want to come inside? It’s freezing out here.
Jill shakes her head.
Sean cont’d: So…what’s the bad news? You dumping me for Scout or something?
Jill doesn’t respond.
Sean: That was a joke…
Jill nods, a little freaked out.
Sean: I was hoping you were coming over for some more comforting, but it looks like I’m the one that’s going to need to be comforted when this is over, huh?
Jill looks at him, but doesn’t speak. He sighs, knowing he’s correct.
She doesn’t go on.
Jill cont’d: I’m just not sure if…
He shakes his head, putting his hands together.
Jill cont’d: Thinking about the funeral today…
Sean: Look, I got into this knowing about your Scout baggage, okay? I know you have feelings for the guy. I know that a day like today is going to make you—
He cuts himself off.
Sean cont’d: Okay, I knew this day would come. I told myself no begging or bargaining so, okay, you’re breaking up with me. You are breaking up with me?
Jill nods ever so slightly.
Sean cont’d: Okay. Well, goodbye, Jill. Have a nice life.
He starts to get up, but Jill grabs his arm. He looks at her, his patience waning.
Jill: I do care about you, Sean.
Sean: And I love you, Jill. I probably will for awhile.
He escapes her grip and stands.
Sean cont’d: But the see-sawing is over. You’ve made your choice. You’ve lost me. Forever. Are we clear?
She nods, examining her hands. He lingers a moment, waiting on nothing then goes back into the house. Jill sighs and forces herself up, walking off.
(cut to): the girls’ dorm.
(cut to): Alyssa as she walks down the hallway toward her room. Hamilton is knocking at the door.
Music: Honestly by Cartel
Alyssa: She’s not home.
Hamilton: Oh, hey. There you are.
Alyssa: Here I am.
He nods, looking nervous as she unlocks her room door.
Alyssa cont’d: How was the service today?
Thoughts of the funeral are far from Hamilton’s mind.
Alyssa: Did Finn look bad?
Hamilton nods as the pair enters the room.
Alyssa cont’d: I feel so sorry for him.
As she says it, she wraps her arms around Hamilton’s neck, moving in for a kiss. For a moment, the temptation is too great; he kisses her back. Eventually and reluctantly he pulls away.
Hamilton: I need to talk to you.
She is confused by his denial as she watches him take a seat on her bed. He motions for her to join him and she does while keeping her concerned eyes on him.
Alyssa: What’s up, Hamilton?
He looks at her seriously.
Hamilton: I like you, Aly. I like you a lot.
Alyssa: I like you, too.
Hamilton: I know, and that’s what makes this so hard…
Alyssa begins to look afraid of what he may have to say. Hamilton’s eyes have drifted downward, but he looks up at her.
Hamilton: We have to break up.
Alyssa is shocked.
Alyssa: Hamilton, what are you talking about? You just said—
Hamilton: That I like you, and I do. The only thing that surpasses your beauty is your personality.
Hamilton cont’d: Any guy would be an idiot if he didn’t fall in love with you.
Hamilton cont’d: And I’m the idiot.
The reality of what he’s saying is clear to her now.
Hamilton: I’m in love with someone else and it just isn’t fair to you to keep wasting your time.
Alyssa is silent for a long time, and Hamilton hasn’t come up with what else to say.
Alyssa: Who is it that you’re in love with?
Hamilton: Fair question. Jacqueline.
Alyssa anticipated this response, but still seems distraught.
Hamilton: I just don’t want you to think it’s about you at all. I mean, you’ve just been so amazing and—
Alyssa: Where does Jacqueline live exactly?
Hamilton is totally thrown off by the question.
Hamilton: Excuse me?
Alyssa: I’m just curious.
Alyssa: I’m not going to go kill her or anything.
Hamilton: I wasn’t suggesting that…I just don’t really want to talk about her, if that’s okay.
Alyssa is disappointed about this and still shocked about the overall result of this conversation. She plasters on her best smile and leans toward Hamilton, kissing him softly on the cheek. She lingers by his ear.
Alyssa: Goodbye, Hamilton.
He turns, looking at her, wanting to kiss her. He bites his lip, pulling back and inhaling deeply. He stands, awkwardly tugging at his shirt.
Hamilton: We can still—
Alyssa: No, we can’t. Goodbye.
He slowly turns to exit. Alyssa watches as he opens the door then leaves, letting the door fall closed behind him.
(cut to): the boys’ dorm
Music: Almost by Bowling for Soup.
(cut to): Jake and Scout’s room. Scout sits at his desk, doing homework. Jake plays a video game on her laptop. After a moment, she slams it closed and tosses it aside. Scout looks up from his stuff.
Scout: You okay?
Jake: I lost.
Scout: I figured, but I meant in general.
Jake: Oh, in general? Well, in general, I’m freaking out.
Scout abandons his work and moves over to the foot of Jake’s bed.
Scout: Did something happen with Jill?
Scout waits, but Jake doesn’t continue.
Scout: Are you mad at her?
Jake: Not really…
Scout waits another moment, but Jake has nothing else to say.
Scout: Come on, Jake, you’re killing me with the twenty questions again. Maybe Hamilton’s sharp enough to get you with minimal clues, but I’m a little duller.
Jake half-smiles, looking down her nose at him.
Jake: I’ll let that one go out of sheer desire to not alienate any other friends today.
Scout: And, finally, we’re getting somewhere. How’d you alienate Jill?
Jake: Well, Scout, let me answer that by asking you this: what would you do—no, how would you feel, if Jill knocked at the door and told you that she dumped Sean and she wanted to be with you again?
Scout: How would I feel? Totally confused and out of the loop.
Jake: Yeah, but I mean, after all that. Would you be happy?
Scout: Let me answer that by asking you this…
He smirks, teasingly.
Scout: What the hell happened?
Jake takes a deep breath then looks up at Scout.
Jake: I told her what you said: that you were thinking about her.
Scout: Thank you.
Jake: She wanted to know if you’d sent me there to spy on her.
Scout: I guess it wouldn’t be the first time I enlisted your help for reconnaissance.
Jake smiles, but then frowns at what she is about to say.
Jake: I told her that you’re pretty much over her.
Scout doesn’t necessarily celebrate this.
Jake: That was the beginning of the mutual bitchiness.
Scout: So what next? She made some snide comment about us?
Jake: Yeah. She wanted to know if I “like” you.
Scout rolls his eyes, amused.
Jake: And all of the sudden, I got really pissed at her, you know? She was the one dumb enough to let go of a good thing. What gives her the right to get mad at me?
Scout: I know what you mean. It’s pretty much what goes through my mind every time I see Hamilton glaring at me.
Jake: Speaking of, I essentially asked Jill what you asked Hamilton at the drive-in the other night.
Scout thinks. Jake helps him:
Jake cont’d: “Let’s say I do like him. What are you going to do about it?”
Scout looks at her, the start of a curious smile on his lips.
Jake cont’d: I guess it was more like “Do something or I will.”
Scout tilts his head inquisitively.
Jake cont’d: Which is why I’m curious. What if she does do something?
Jake: Yeah, I mean she might actually—
Scout: You know, I really don’t care what she might do…it’s the promise of you doing something that has my interest right now.
Jake laughs sheepishly.
Jake: Right, that.
She looks down, examining her hands for no reason in particular. Scout is wearing a grin of disbelief, but makes the bold move of placing a hand on her knee. She swallows, but says nothing. Slowly, he slides his hand from her knee to her thigh.
Scout: So what are you going to do?
Scout’s hand is on her hip now. Jake smiles at him and goes for it. She leans toward him, guided by his hand on her hip. She rests her hand on his shoulder as she moves her lips toward his. Just before they can kiss, there is a knock at the door. Scout winces at the sound, putting his forehead against Jake’s.
Jake: Should I get it?
Scout nods then lets go of Jake as she leans away and gets up. She takes a minute to compose herself before opening the door. On the bed, Scout sighs, running his hands through his hair. Still, his smile does not fade. Jake opens the door to reveal Jill.
Jill: Is Scout here?
Jill doesn’t wait for an answer. Instead, she enters the room, leaving Jake in the doorway.
Scout: Hi, Jill.
Jill: Do you have a minute?
He looks at Jake. She shrugs, it’s up to him. A second later, there is a knock again. They look up at the door where Hamilton leans against the frame.
Hamilton: Hi, guys.
Everyone returns the greeting. He looks around as everyone is awkwardly silent.
Hamilton: Jake…can I talk to you?
Jake looks at him for a second, but then consults Scout. He gives her an encouraging smile and nod.
Commercial Break: Just when you thought Jack Black couldn’t get cuter.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Rawley Academy.
(cut to): Hamilton’s room. Jake sits on the bed, watching Hamilton stand inelegantly in front of her. He finally decides to take a seat next to her. He doesn’t speak right away so Jake fills the silence:
Music: Say Anything (Else) by Cartel
Jake: It’s been a crazy day, hasn’t it?
Hamilton: Yeah. You have no idea.
He turns to her.
Hamilton: I rehearsed about ten different openers for this, but they all sucked so I’m just going to say this...
When he doesn’t, Jake prompts him.
Jake: Say what?
He looks at her decidedly.
Hamilton: I love you.
Not what Jake was expecting.
Hamilton: I don’t know what happened a month ago. I don’t know what I was thinking. I mean, obviously, I wasn’t thinking. You told me to go…and I did.
Hamilton: Never mind. The point is, you didn’t force me to do anything. I had a choice and today I realized that I made the wrong choice. I have no clue why I did it. Maybe things stopped being easy. Maybe now I’ll have to work at making it work. But I’m willing to. I want to. Because I want you. More than anything…or anyone. If this was a test, then I failed. But, I don’t want to keep failing.
Jake is overwhelmed.
Hamilton: I want to make you happy. I want to be happy and that’s why I’m here…telling you that I love you.
He takes her hands.
Hamilton cont’d: I love you, Jacqueline.
Jake doesn’t know how to reply.
(cut to): Scout and Jake’s room. Jill and Scout sit on Scout’s bed in a position similar to Jake and Hamilton.
Scout: I don’t know what to say…
Jill: You could say that you love me back…
Scout: Jill…I appreciate the gesture, I really do, but...I can’t say that anymore.
Jill: You can’t say it…or you can’t say it’s true.
Scout: It doesn’t matter because you lost me a long time ago. I’ve moved on.
Jill releases his hands and sits facing forward.
Scout cont’d: I thought you had, too. You and Sean seemed to have a really good thing going. I don’t know why you’d—
Jill: Yes, you do. You do know why. It’s because of her.
She gestures toward the door.
Jill cont’d: It’s because of Jacqueline. Because she said that if it—if you—were so important to me, do something about it. So, that’s what I did. I did something, but obviously that’s not good enough because you don’t want me anymore.
She looks him in the eye.
Jill cont’d: You want her.
Scout looks at her incredulously.
Scout: Yes…I do. Not that it’s any of your business.
Jill: Maybe you should tell Jacqueline that. She’s the one that made it my business.
Scout: That’s true. I think she half-thought I’d take you up on what you’re offering. She created a choice.
Jill looks down.
Jill: And you choose her. In a million years, I never would have thought…
Scout: I’m sorry. I’m flattered.
He smiles when she looks up at him.
Jill: And what if she’s off making up with Hamilton right now?
Scout: What if she is?
His smile doesn’t falter.
Jill: Wow, I don’t know what level of denial you’re residing in right now, but…whatever.
She stands up.
Jill cont’d: Good luck, Scout.
(cut to): Hamilton’s room.
Music: Things I’ll Never Say by Avril Lavigne
Jake stands at the door. Hamilton sits on his bed.
Jake: I’m sorry, Hamilton.
Hamilton: Me, too…but I understand.
Jake nods, turning to leave. Hamilton looks like he wants to speak, but doesn’t.
(cut to): an establishing shot of Finn’s house.
(cut to): the living room. Everyone seems to be gone. Finn sits on the couch, giving Jacey a bottle.
Finn: So this is the last bottle, buddy.
Jacey looks up at Finn as he drinks.
Finn cont’d: It’s formula only from here.
Jacey gurgles a little.
Finn cont’d: I know; you can handle it. You’re strong. I’m going to try to channel some of that in the days…weeks….months…years to come. Okay?
Jacey sucks and listens. Finn smiles for a moment, but then his face contorts. Just before he can get any further down this road, there is a knock at the front door.
(cut to): the other side of the door. Sean stands holding a casserole dish. Finn, still holding the baby, opens the door.
Finn: Hi. Come on in, Sean.
(cut to): inside as Sean enters.
Sean: My mom made this casserole. She wanted me to bring it over. I don’t know why people do that…but…it’s a good casserole.
Finn: I appreciate it.
Finn takes it and walks toward the kitchen. He talks over his shoulder:
Finn: How have you been?
Sean follows him into the kitchen.
(cut to): the kitchen as Finn and Sean enter.
Sean: I’ve been better. Jill dumped me today.
Finn deftly maneuvers with the baby in his hands. He puts the casserole in the fridge.
Sean cont’d: But, you know, I can’t complain.
Finn: Dumped, huh? I guess that’s going around today.
Sean doesn’t get it. Finn leans against the counter as he shifts Jacey.
Finn cont’d: Can I get you something to drink?
Sean: I’m good. Who else got dumped?
Finn: I think I inspired Hamilton to follow his heart.
Sean nods, understanding now.
Sean: That’s probably a good thing.
An awkward silence passes.
Finn cont’d: Listen, Sean. I’m leaving.
Sean looks around.
Finn: No. I mean, I’m leaving New Rawley. Leaving Rawley Academy. Moving to Boston.
Sean: Oh. Wow. Meagan must be—
Finn: She’s going with her dad to California.
Sean: Really? I thought…I mean, I can’t believe she wouldn’t want to go with you.
Finn: I didn’t ask her and, while I will think about her constantly, I won’t be worried. Her father is a little dull, but he’s protective. She’ll be safe. And, without the reminder of this life a constant, I’m sure she’ll eventually be happy again.
Finn cont’d: But there is one kid I am worried about.
Finn: His family…what a train wreck.
Finn cont’d: Just, you know, make yourself available to him. Think you could do that?
Finn: Thank you, Sean.
Sean nods. An awkward beat.
Sean: Well, I should go.
Finn: See you around. And, thank you, again.
Sean nods and leaves through the kitchen door. Finn looks down at his son, his somewhat carefree attitude replaced by utter despair.
(cut to): Scout and Jake’s room. Scout is pacing around, nervous. The door opens and Jake enters tentatively. She closes the door behind her, but stands as close as possible to it.
Music: Almost by Bowling for Soup
Jake: Yeah. Yeah, hi.
They stand, across the room, each as awkward as the other.
Scout: So, um…how’d it go?
Jake: I guess it went well.
Jake cont’d: And with Jill?
Scout: She wanted me back.
He chuckles. Jake is unsure of how to take this.
Scout cont’d: I told her I wasn’t interested. When you say “well,” what exactly do you mean? What did he want?
Jake: He broke up with Alyssa.
Scout raises his eyebrows, folding his arm across his chest.
Jake cont’d: The funeral made him rethink some things.
Scout: That’s great, Jake.
Jake: Do you really think so?
He tilts his head inquiringly. She gives nothing away.
Jake: What do you think?
Scout lets his arms fall to his sides.
Scout: What do I think?
He takes a step toward her.
Scout cont’d: I think I want you to be happy and if that means being with Hamilton, then I think I want you to be with Hamilton.
Jake nods and takes a step toward Scout.
Jake: Is that all?
Scout: Is that all I think?
She nods as they drift a little closer.
Scout cont’d: No, that’s not all I think…at all.
Jake: What else?
He runs a hand through his hair.
Scout cont’d: Got a year?
Jake: I’ve got whatever you need.
Scout grins, taking another step toward her.
Scout: Yes, you do.
Jake blushes at this. There is only a yard between them now.
Scout cont’d: Including the answer to the only question my brain seems to want answered.
Jake waits for the question.
Scout cont’d: What’d you tell Hamilton?
Jake: I told him…that I wasn’t interested.
Scout nods, subtracting a foot from the space between them.
Jake: I think I was distracted.
Jake: Lingering thoughts of what it felt like to be right in front of you, wanting you to kiss me.
She takes away one more foot.
Scout: How did that feel?
Jake: It feels exciting. Different. Good.
Scout: Yeah. I agree.
Jake: I’m afraid if I take this last step—
Scout: Ephemeral moments are just as good as all the others. Maybe better.
Jake: I’m not even going to ask where you learned that word.
Jake cont’d: Anyway, I was just going to say that I’m afraid if I take this last step, someone will knock at the door.
Scout smiles, taking the step for her.
Scout: Answering is always optional.
Jake tugs on her hair, grinning.
Jake: I guess I never thought of that.
Scout: You’ve got all kinds of options that I bet you’ve never thought of.
Jake takes this seriously. She nods as a beat passes. She bites her lip as she leans toward Scout. He finishes off the final few inches, bringing his lips to hers, but before they have time to consummate the kiss, there is a knock at the door. The noise surprises them and breaks them apart. Jake, still close to the door looks at Scout in disbelief. Scout just smiles, shrugs and leans toward her again, but before he gets to close:
Will (outside): It’s Will. Anyone there?
Scout looks torn.
Jake (whispered): Get it. Maybe he…you know…
Scout nods and reluctantly steps past Jake to answer the door. He gives Jake one last affectionate look before inviting Will in.
Commercial Break: Okay, I’m almost done convincing you of how awesome The Holiday is (or, at least, how much I love it). This interview with Cameron and Kate is lovely, though.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Finn’s house.
(cut to): the one-hour photo.
(cut to): inside. Tyson is behind the counter, working on developing some photos. Will is hanging out on the other side of the counter.
Tyson: So you hung with Jake and Scout a little?
Will: Yeah…I was up for the company. Hope you don’t mind me tagging along with you.
Tyson: Not at all, man.
A slight beat.
Tyson cont’d: Does Scout still have a crush on Jake?
Will: You know, it’s just so much more complicated than that.
Tyson doesn’t really get it, but he doesn’t pursue it further.
Tyson: So who do you think they’ll get to replace Finn?
Will: No clue. No one can really replace him, though. He’s the whole reason I’m still at Rawley.
Tyson doesn’t understand all the implications of that statement, but he gets the basic idea.
Tyson: He went above and beyond for me, too.
Tyson cont’d: And he said he’s moving to Boston?
Will: Yeah, he’s got one friend at BU, one at Worthington and another at Harvard. Apparently they’ve all be trying to get him to their respective schools for years.
The bell on the door rings. Will and Tyson look up as Sean enters.
Sean: Hey, guys.
Will and Tyson nod hello. Sean looks rough.
Will: You okay?
Sean scoffs to himself.
Sean: Just a rough day. Have you guys seen Bella?
Tyson and Will look at each other then turn back to Sean.
Will: No. Is she not at the garage?
Sean: Grace said she went up to Rawley. I thought maybe you saw her…
Will: Sorry. She’s probably with…
Will cuts himself off carefully, mindful of Tyson’s presence. Sean nods.
Sean: Yeah, I figured. Okay. Thanks guys.
Will and Tyson look at each other curiously as Sean exits.
(cut to): outside the one-hour photo as Sean exits. Across the street, Nicholas’ car pulls up and Bella gets out. Nicholas pulls away as Bella starts to go inside.
Sean: Hey, Bella.
She looks up as Sean crosses the street.
(cut to): the bench in front of the garage. Sean and Bella sit together.
Music: Not Over You Yet by Kevin Devine
Bella: Just like that?
Sean: Just like that.
Bella doesn’t know what to say.
Sean cont’d: I told her if it was over, it was going to be over.
Bella: Did she say why she—
Sean: Him. Of course, it was about him.
Bella narrows her eyes.
Sean looks at her as if she’s missing the obvious.
Sean: Scout. She wants to be with Scout.
Bella is surprised by this.
Bella: And…Scout’s cool with this?
Sean: I’m sure.
Bella: Are you? Did she mention that she’d talked to him?
Sean doesn’t understand this line of questioning.
Sean: No, but why would he turn her down?
Bella: Because he likes someone else.
Sean doesn’t believe it.
Sean: No way. He has and will eternally pine for Jillian Thomas.
Bella shakes her head.
Sean: All right, then who does he like?
Bella considers not the question, but whether she should tell Sean.
Sean cont’d: Come on. It’s not gossip; it’s peace of mind.
Bella is skeptical, but gives in.
Sean looks around as if the name is that of an intruder on the conversation. When he sees no one, he turns back to Bella, confused.
Bella cont’d: Scout likes Jake.
Sean: No way. What a freak.
Sean: Sorry…it’s just…how do you fall for a girl that dresses like a guy all the time?
Bella: Live with her long enough to see her for who she really is.
Sean shrugs then smiles.
Sean: Anyway, since you’re sharing gossip.
She protests with a click of her tongue.
Sean cont’d: Oh, right, not gossip. Information.
Sean cont’d: Hamilton’s dumping Alyssa. Finn told me.
Sean: Yeah, apparently he decided to “follow his heart.”
Bella: So, right now at Rawley—
Sean: Jill’s trying to get Scout back. Ham’s trying to get Jake back.
Bella: And Jake and Scout are—
Sean: Trying to get together?
Bella looks at him.
(cut to): Scout and Jake’s room. They sit on Jake’s bed, side by side. She slides her hand over to his. He gladly takes it.
Jake: Maybe we should just…
Scout: Yeah. Probably.
He nods and smiles at her, squeezing her hand a little harder.
(cut to): Jill and Alyssa’s room.
Music: First Time for Everything by Five Times August
Alyssa is sitting on her bed with headphones on. In her lap is her sketchbook, by her side, a pack of Oreos. She is thoughtfully drawing while also munching on a cookie. The door opens and Jill enters. Alyssa glances up, but then looks back at her sketch.
Jill: I figured as much.
Alyssa pulls off her headphones.
Alyssa starts to put on her headphones again.
Jill cont’d: I broke up with Sean.
Alyssa is surprised to hear this. She takes off her headphones completely.
Jill cont’d: I’m guessing you and Hamilton also called it quits.
Alyssa narrows her eyes.
Alyssa: How did you—
Jill: He was looking for Jacqueline.
Jill realizes her mistake now.
Jill: In Scout’s room. I was there looking for Scout. They were together.
Alyssa: Scout and Jacqueline?
Jill nods. Alyssa takes note of this information.
Jill: What’s wrong with us?
Alyssa: I don’t know what you mean.
Jill: I mean, what’s wrong with people? Why do we screw up so much?
Alyssa doesn’t have an answer.
Jill cont’d: I don’t know either. I was with Sean and he was wonderful. This morning, he let me cry on his shoulder for an hour. And that’s just normal, supportive Sean stuff. He’s a great guy, but…
Alyssa clearly does not want to participate in this, but fills the silence as she picks up another Oreo:
Alyssa: But, what?
Jill: You have Oreos?
Alyssa nods and pushes them in Jill’s direction. Jill takes a couple and flops down on her own bed.
Jill: But as much as I enjoyed being with Sean, as much as I tried to love him…I knew I didn’t. I mean, I’m pretty sure I knew.
Alyssa listens, softening a little.
Jill: Then today, Jacqueline came here and told me that Scout kissed her—
Alyssa: Scout kissed Jacqueline?
Jill: Which is weird. I mean, Jacqueline’s been my best friend forever. I probably haven’t mentioned that.
Alyssa: I thought Jake had that job covered.
Jill considers this.
Jill: I lost Jake awhile ago, I think.
She shakes her head. Alyssa tilts her head, considering the possible implications of such a statement.
Jill cont’d: But Jacqueline…I never thought…I mean, that’s a major betrayal, right?
Alyssa thinks it’s rhetorical until she realizes Jill is waiting for an answer.
Alyssa: So, let me get this straight…Scout and Jacqueline are now a thing?
Jill: I don’t know. I guess that depends on Hamilton. He and Jacqueline were still together when I left.
Alyssa takes a deep breath.
Alyssa: It’s why he dumped me.
Jill looks sympathetic.
Jill: So it wasn’t mutual?
Alyssa shakes her head, examining her sketch.
Jill cont’d: See, this is what I mean. Hamilton had you. And, by the way, the only reason I got pissed about that whole thing and basically ended up hating you—no offense—was out of loyalty to Jacqueline.
Alyssa nods, still not completely into this momentary truce.
Jill cont’d: But, look what happened. Jacqueline basically stabbed me in the back. And Hamilton, being the tool that he is, dumped you…for Jacqueline…who may or may not want him back. And what if she does? That means Scout’s newly found bubble of happiness gets burst…which I kind of feel good about, but then kind of feel terrible about because I’m probably the reason that he needed someone to make him happy in the first place…and probably the reason that he couldn’t completely let go with you this summer thus causing you some degree of pain and sadness, which I didn’t care too much about until right now because I’m pretty much out of loyalty for Jacqueline.
Jill takes a deep breath.
Jill cont’d: So while I may not be totally objective, I’ve at least shifted my clarity to you and your whole summer slash coming to Rawley experiences.
Alyssa: Thanks…I guess.
Jill: And, hey, maybe Jacqueline will totally turn him down.
She considers this.
Alyssa: I’m really sick of being a substitute. Just once, I want to be…the one.
Jill: I’m sure it’ll happen one day, and when it does, my only advice is to appreciate it because when you don’t, you end up…like me, which I’m sure is someone you never want to be like.
Alyssa doesn’t say anything. Jill laughs.
Jill: I have been so awful to you.
Alyssa nods, but then smiles.
Alyssa: Probably for the best. I haven’t had too much success with girl friends. They always seem to think I’m trying to steal their boyfriend.
Jill: Well, you won’t have that problem with me.
They both laugh.
(cut to): a shot through the window as the girls continue their friendly conversation.
Commercial Break: Wii would like to play. Even if you don’t have a Wii, you can make your own Mii here. It’s pretty fun. You should try to make a Jake.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Finn’s house.
(cut to): upstairs, Finn’s bedroom. Jacey’s crib is set up. Finn is standing over the crib, watching a sleeping Jacey. He rubs his back gently, then walks out of the room.
Music: Hold My Hand by New Found Glory
(cut to): the hallway. As Finn exits, Meagan exits her room.
Finn: Enjoy your nap?
Meagan shakes her head.
Meagan: I had a dream about Mom.
Meagan looks down.
Meagan: My dad wants me to go to California.
Finn: I know. I think it’s a good idea.
Meagan stares at him.
Meagan: Finn…no. Please, no.
Finn: You’ll have two parents. You—
Meagan: I don’t want two parents. I want my brother and my dad.
Finn: You’ll have—
Meagan: I meant you.
Finn: Can we talk about this later?
Meagan: Like next weekend when he comes to pick me up?
Finn doesn’t say anything.
Meagan cont’d: I can’t believe this. Mom would want me to be with you. I know she would.
Finn says nothing. Meagan storms off, down the stairs. Finn hangs his head with a loud sigh.
(cut to): the Fleming house.
(cut to): the art room. At the canvas, Kate stands finishing a painting. It is a landscape of the Rawley campus, the lake visible in the background. Hamilton enters. Kate looks up.
Kate: Hamilton. Hi.
Hamilton: Hi, Mom.
Hamilton makes his way to her, looking at the painting.
Hamilton: It’s nice. He’ll like it.
Kate: Thank you.
Hamilton: I broke up with Alyssa.
Kate turns to look at him, happily expectant, but the look on his face lets her know the rest of the story.
Kate: Jake wasn’t ready?
He shakes his head.
Kate: Well, she’ll come around.
Hamilton: I don’t know…
Kate: If it’s meant to be—and I think it’s meant to be—she’ll come around.
Hamilton: I don’t know, Mom. I think…
He looks around the room.
Hamilton cont’d: I think she’s got a thing for Scout.
Kate looks surprised by this.
Kate: Well, you “had a thing” for Alyssa…and look at you now.
Hamilton sizes up the comment.
Hamilton: Yeah, but…
He groans in frustration.
Hamilton cont’d: God, I’m such an idiot. I gave up the most amazing girl in the world for…what? A girl that wears dresses regularly? What the hell was I thinking?
He realizes the profanity slip.
Hamilton cont’d: Sorry.
Kate only smiles.
Kate: Jake knows how you feel about this, right?
Hamilton: Yeah, and she’s probably still off with Scout doing God knows what. Man, this absolutely sucks.
Kate: I think you’ve learned a valuable life lesson, regardless of how things turn out.
Hamilton rolls his eyes.
Hamilton: Thanks for pointing that one out, Mom.
Hamilton cont’d: You know, all the time I was with Alyssa, I knew that eventually Jake and I would be together again. I really think I thought she’d just be there waiting on me. As if Jake would ever give up her self-respect like that.
Kate smiles at something she heard Jake say.
Hamilton: Anyway, I can’t take back what I have done. I can’t convince Jake to take me back. All I can do is be patient and make myself a viable option for her.
Hamilton cont’d: I’ve never been patient in my life, have I?
Kate shakes her head.
Hamilton cont’d: So it’ll be a turning point.
Hamilton cont’d: A new and improved Hamilton.
Kate: I look forward to meeting him.
Hamilton smiles slightly, looking back at his mom’s painting.
(dissolve to): Finn’s house, later.
Music: Breaking Me by Johnny Lang
(cut to): living room. Finn is sitting on the couch, feeding Jacey from a bottle. Just as he finishes, the doorbell rings. Finn sets the bottle down and gets up, placing Jacey in a nearby motorized swing.
(cut to): the door as Finn gets there and opens it, revealing Kate. She holds her painting, facing away from Finn.
Finn: Kate, hi.
She smiles awkwardly. He looks at the painting.
Kate cont’d: I know people usually bring food, but…that’s not really my specialty.
Finn makes his way around her to see the painting.
Finn: No…but this is.
Finn cont’d: This is beautiful.
Kate smiles proudly then passes it over to Finn.
Finn cont’d: Thank you so much.
He examines it as Kate makes her way over to the baby.
Kate: What’s his name again?
Kate: He’s precious.
She reaches out and Jacey takes her finger, squeezing it.
Finn: He’s awesome.
Kate: And his sister?
Finn: Meagan. She’s at Johanna’s parents’ house for the night. Thank God.
Kate: How’s she doing?
Finn sets the painting down.
Finn: Not so well. She doesn’t want to go with her dad to California.
Finn nods toward the couch so Kate sits down next to him.
Kate: She wants to stay with you?
Kate: What do you want?
Finn: I want her to be happy and normal. How can she be either of those things with a wreck like me trying to be her father…and mother, for that matter.
Finn looks up at Kate.
Finn cont’d: I don’t know how I’m going to go on.
Finn buries his face in his hands. Kate scoots closer, placing a hand on his knee. He looks up at her, leaning in to kiss her. She leans back.
He snaps back into reality, shaking his head.
Finn: Jesus. I’m sorry.
He sinks back into the couch.
Kate: It’s okay.
Finn looks up at the ceiling.
Finn: It really isn’t.
He sighs and looks over at her.
Finn cont’d: Do you want something to eat? We have casserole.
(cut to): Johanna’s parents’ house as the sun goes down. Mark and Meagan sit on the front steps.
Mark: I’m sure Finn won’t send you to California.
Meagan sighs, not sure. Mark takes her hand, noticing that she is wearing the bracelet he gave her. He touches it.
Mark: Just don’t forget about me, okay?
Meagan looks at him and smiles.
Commercial Break: I got a Zune for my birthday. I wish I got one from Ellen…she and I have the same birthday.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of the garage.
Music: Familiar Landscapes by New Found Glory
It is nearly dark now, and the office window casts light onto the garage driveway. Bella sits inside at the desk. Hamilton rides up on his bicycle. Bella gets up and exits the office, greeting Hamilton:
Bella: Hey, stranger.
Hamilton: Hi, Bella.
He smiles, one foot on the ground for balance. Bella walks up to the handlebars.
Bella: You remember my name.
She smirks. He laughs.
Hamilton: I haven’t forgotten you. I’ve just been away…on…an idiot vacation.
Bella: I’d say. How was the weather?
Hamilton: Partly cloudy with a one hundred percent chance of impending failure.
Bella: I heard you’re dumping what’s-her-name.
Hamilton: Been there, done that.
Bella: So, then, what are you doing here?
Hamilton: I was wondering if I could borrow back my guitar?
Bella tilts her head.
(cut to): a few minutes later, the living room. Bella and Hamilton sit on the couch. Hamilton has his guitar. He strums a chord.
Bella: So what made you think of the guitar?
Hamilton: I’ve been overwhelmed today with thoughts and emotions, but I don’t really have anyone to share them with…unless you count my mom.
He laughs, strumming a chord.
Bella: My door is always open.
Hamilton: I know that. Honestly, I do.
He smiles at her.
Hamilton cont’d: But I can’t put you in that position.
Bella: What position?
Hamilton: Well, you do have that boyfriend who hates my guts.
Bella gets it.
Bella: First of all, he doesn’t hate you. He just cares about Jake.
Hamilton: And I hurt Jake.
Bella: And you hurt him…with a nasty right hook.
Hamilton smiles sheepishly.
Hamilton: Sorry about that.
Bella: Anyway, Nick’s not really the type to hold a grudge.
Hamilton nods, not really buying it. A beat.
Hamilton: So…how bad is it with Jake and Scout?
Bella: Oh, I don’t—
Hamilton: You do know.
Bella tucks her hair behind her ear.
Hamilton cont’d: It’s that bad, huh?
Bella: You know, Ham, you left her hanging…totally alone, completely vulnerable. And, Scout—
Hamilton: Swooped in.
Bella: No, but he was there for her when she needed it the most. I mean, can you honestly tell me that you’re more worthy right now?
Hamilton considers this, then:
Hamilton: So…she really likes him?
Bella: I think it’s more like…she really trusts him.
Hamilton: Can’t blame her there.
He shakes his head.
Hamilton cont’d: I’m such an idiot.
He strums a chord on the guitar.
Hamilton (singing): She told me to leave and I went. What an idiot. She told me go and I did.
He looks up at Bella for lyrical assistance.
Bella: What a dick?
Hamilton (singing): She told me to go and I did. What a dick. I want her back so goddamn bad. She’s with him. I want to make her mine again.
He stops, sighing.
(cut to): the entryway where Nicholas clears his throat. Bella and Hamilton look up.
She smiles. Hamilton stands.
Hamilton: I was just leaving.
Nicholas: You don’t have to do that.
Bella: Yeah, you should stay.
Dexter and Grace enter the living room.
Grace: I thought I heard a guit—what’s he doing here?
Dexter nods hello to Hamilton.
Hamilton: He was just about to leave.
Bella: Or he could hang out a little while. Maybe do a little jam session?
Grace (sarcastic): Sounds like fun. Let’s go Dexter.
She takes his hand, but he resists, giving her a puppy-dog look.
Grace cont’d: God, okay. Play it again, Ham…
Nicholas laughs at that one. Hamilton looks around, actually happy to be welcomed somewhere, but a little hesitant.
Hamilton: I don’t really play in front of people.
Bella: Except when you played at prom.
He shrugs, knowing she has him there. He smiles, sitting back down. Everyone finds a place to sit.
Music: Almost by Bowling for Soup
(cut to): Jake and Scout’s room. At first the room looks empty until we pan to the foot of Scout’s bed. There, we find Scout and Jake’s feet, just touching. As we pan up, we find them lying side-by-side. Jake watches as Scout plays a gameboy.
Jake: To the left, there’s a…
A downward progression of notes lets us know he’s failed.
Jake cont’d: Never mind.
He laughs and looks over at her, very close now. She smiles and is, perhaps, about to move in for a kiss when there is a knock at the door.
Scout: Beat it.
Jake stifles a laugh, but them shushes him.
Scout cont’d: Seriously, I can’t believe this.
He shakes his head then looks at her, pleading for her not to go, but she gets up as the knocker tries again. Scout sits up and tries to look composed. Jake opens the door to find Alyssa standing in the hallway. Jake looks surprised to see her.
Jake: Uh, hi, Alyssa.
Scout’s eyes widen at the name, trying even harder to look natural (and failing miserably).
Alyssa: Hi. Is Scout here?
Alyssa looks Jake over carefully, easily picking up that something is off.
Jake: Scout, are you here?
Scout fakes a laugh. Jake opens the door, allowing Alyssa entry.
Scout: Hi, Aly. What’s up?
She looks back and forth between them, noticing their shared awkwardness.
Alyssa: I was just wondering if we could talk. Privately.
She looks at Jake pointedly.
Jake: Oh, uh, yeah, I have a few things to do.
Scout gives her the “you don’t have to do that” look, but she only smiles.
Jake cont’d: Catch ya on the flip side, Calhoun.
He smiles at her with clear affection as she slips on her shoes then reaches into her closet, grabbing her helmet and bookbag. She gives Scout a smile, Alyssa a wave, then exits.
Alyssa: What’d he mean?
Scout is taken aback by her tone.
Scout: What’d do you mean, “what’d he mean?”
Alyssa: “Catch you on the flip side?” What’s that?
Scout: It’s an expression. A rather lame and trite one, at that.
Alyssa looks at him with suspicion he can’t miss. He stands up, folding his arms awkwardly.
Scout cont’d: What’d you need, Aly?
Alyssa: Hamilton broke up with me.
Scout: Yeah…I heard about that.
Scout: Hamilton told Jake…Jake told me. Why? Is it a secret?
Alyssa: Hamilton’s already talked to Jake about it?
Scout: I guess. I don’t—
Alyssa: Why is Jake rooming with you now?
Scout: Because I hated rooming with Dexter.
Alyssa: What’s wrong with him?
Scout: He snores.
Alyssa: And why did Hamilton talk to Jake?
He does a double take to stall.
Scout cont’d: I don’t know…what’s with the third degree?
Alyssa: I’m just curious.
Scout: Is this why you came here?
Alyssa: No, I came to get some support from one of the last people around here I trust.
Scout softens a little.
Scout: Aly, there are a hundred other guys at this school that would love the opportunity to—
Alyssa: I don’t want a hundred other guys at this school.
Scout: You wanted Hamilton?
Alyssa considers this.
Alyssa: Yes, I did. And, I honestly thought he wanted me, too.
She shakes her head at her own ignorance and sits down on Jake’s bed.
Alyssa cont’d: But, really, this whole time he wanted her.
Alyssa nods then looks at him suspiciously.
Alyssa: Have you seen her today?
Scout assesses this question, looking at Alyssa carefully.
Scout: Why do you ask?
Alyssa shrugs. He sits down on the loveseat.
Scout cont’d: I guess I should tell you that she and I…I mean, we—
Alyssa: Yes, I know. Jill told me.
Alyssa nods. Scout sighs.
Scout cont’d: Everything’s so complicated right now.
Alyssa rolls her eyes.
Scout cont’d: What?
Alyssa: That’s just what he would say about everything. “It’s complicated.”
Scout nods, understanding completely what Hamilton meant.
Alyssa cont’d: Anyway. Since I’ve never actually seen Hamilton and Jacqueline interact, I can’t say this for sure, but it seems like they’ve really got something special.
He nods, understanding the deeper implications of this far better than she could.
Alyssa: What I’m trying to say is, be careful, Scout. You’re—
Scout: In the middle of something huge.
He gets it.
Scout cont’d: I’m okay with that.
She can’t understand. He smiles then gets up and joins her on the bed.
Scout cont’d: And, one day, when you realize that Hamilton is a big loser, not worthy of a woman such as yourself, look around this school because there are some really good guys that would love to, well, be loved by you.
Alyssa looks down, not sure of this at all.
Scout cont’d: Seriously.
She looks up at him, crying now. He feels bad for her. He wraps an arm around her, letting her cry on his shoulder.
Commercial Break: Go Colts!
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Finn’s house.
(cut to): the front door. Finn is letting Kate out the front door.
Finn: Thank you so much for stopping by. You were…just what I needed.
He smiles genuinely.
Kate: Even when you’re in Boston, I’m only a phone call away, okay?
Finn: Thank you, Kate.
He leans toward her, giving her a friendly kiss on the cheek. She smiles and leaves. He stands in the door, watching as she gets in her car.
(cut to): Rawley Academy.
(cut to): the dean’s office. Steven is sitting at his desk with his desk phone in his hand. He hesitates a moment then dials.
(cut to): a huge house in L.A. where we hear a phone ring.
Music: You Lied by Allister
(cut to): an elaborately nice kitchen where Alivia Dalton, Alyssa’ mother, answers. We get a split-screen with Steven and Alivia.
Steven: Steven Fleming.
Alivia: Oh, Steven.
She runs a hand through her hair as if he could see her.
Steven: Are you planning to remain on your sabbatical for the remainder of the year?
Alivia finds the question odd.
Steven takes a deep breath.
Steven: There’s a position opening up here. A few introductory literature classes, Victorian literature and an authors study.
Steven: I would like to offer you the position.
Alivia is surprised by this.
Alivia: I should probably think about it, but…that sounds fantastic.
Steven nods, wanting to get off the phone.
Steven: Okay, well, after you think about it—
Alivia: I said I should think about it. I didn’t say I would.
Steven: So you’d like the job?
Alivia cont’d: I’d like to work with you.
Steven: What I’m offering you is completely professional.
Alivia: We’ll see about that.
Steven is unnerved by this. He adjusts his tie.
Steven: Kate knows nothing about what we had in the past. I’d like to keep it that way.
Alivia: And she’s been completely faithful over the years?
Steven: That’s not really your business.
Alivia: Just as I thought.
A beat as Steven really wants to get off the phone.
Alivia cont’d: Before I accept, what happened to the previous teacher?
Steven: His wife died. He’s moving to Boston.
Alivia: Oh. I was hoping he was the one Kate slept with.
Steven is flustered almost to the point of anger.
Steven: Look, you’re my last choice…actually, you’re my only choice. Do you want this job or not?
Alivia is pleased to have upset him.
Alivia: Absolutely. When should I arrive?
Steven: As soon as possible. I’ll email you the course syllabi.
Alivia: I’ll start packing.
Steven: Great. Thank you, Alivia.
Alivia: My pleasure.
They both hang up. Steven leans back in his chair, relieved to be done with the conversation. Alivia smiles menacingly.
(cut to): the garage.
Music: Hey Driver by Lucky Boys’ Confusion
Jake pulls up on her motorcycle. Dexter and Grace are sitting on the bench outside. Jake stops the bike, gets off and removes her helmet. Hamilton’s bike is off to the side, but goes unnoticed by Jake.
Jake: Hey, guys.
Jake (genuine): How are you guys doing?
Grace: She was my favorite teacher.
Dexter puts an arm around Grace and looks up at Jake solemnly.
Jake: I’m sorry.
Grace: If you’re looking for Bella. She’s inside.
Dexter: Hamilton’s here, too.
Jake is surprised by this.
She looks back at the bike as if thinking about leaving.
Grace: And Nick.
Jake is also surprised by this, but doesn’t seem to mind too much.
Grace cont’d: Hamilton’s playing the guitar…as if someone didn’t just die.
Jake stands awkwardly, not knowing what to do.
Dexter: You can just go in, if you want.
Jake offers him a small, grateful smile then enters the house.
(cut to): the living room. Nicholas listens as Bella and Hamilton work on a song. Bella is writing down lyrics as Hamilton watches, nodding.
Bella: Is that what you want?
Hamilton nods, focused as he begins to play again.
Hamilton (singing): With her green eyes, she changed my world…just one look and I was hooked…like my very own pearl…plucked from an oyster in the sea…her beauty came from one grain of sand…ain’t it grand?...hey, this is my last stand…I want her back, but…
He plays a transition as the shot pans out to reveal Jake in the doorway. She listens.
Hamilton cont’d (singing): She told me to leave and I went…
Bella (singing): What an idiot.
Hamilton (singing): She told me to go and I did…
Bella (singing): What a dick.
In the doorway, Jake smiles.
Hamilton (singing): I want her back so goddamn bad.
Bella (singing): She’s with him.
Hamilton (singing): I want to make her mine again. I want to make her…
From the doorway, Jake gives away her presence by shifting on a creaky floor board. Everyone looks up. Hamilton turns red.
Music: Congratulations by Blue October
Jake: You don’t have to stop.
He hands the guitar off to Bella.
Hamilton: Yeah, I do. Jake…what are you doing here?
He stands, walking over to her. She takes a step back.
Jake: Just cruising around. Alyssa stopped by to see Scout so I kind of…needed somewhere to go. I hadn’t talked to Bella today so…here I am.
Bella and Nicholas trade a look. Hamilton tries not to react to the Alyssa update.
Bella: Hey, Nick, you want to help me get some drinks for everyone?
He starts to get up, but Hamilton stops them with a wave of his hand.
Hamilton: No. I have to be going.
Jake: You don’t have to do that.
He smiles genuinely at her.
Hamilton: It’s cool.
She smiles back, tensions dissolving. She looks at Hamilton.
Jake: Actually, maybe we could take a walk?
Hamilton: You and me?
She nods. Hamilton is surprised by, but pleased with the invitation. He glances over at Bella as if asking for advice. She nods for him to go ahead. He turns to Jake.
(cut to): the town square, very near where Hamilton and Jake said goodbye their first summer together.
Music: Beautiful by Stereo Fuse
They walk slowly and silently. Hamilton stops somewhat abruptly. Jake turns to him with a curious smile, wondering why he’s stopped.
Hamilton: It’s not funny.
Her curiosity increases.
Hamilton: That…it’s over.
She stares at him with a twinkle in her eye that proves she knows what he wants to hear. He waits, hoping she’ll say it. His pleading look gets to her, but the words don’t come.
He raises his eyebrows innocently. She gives him a sterner look.
Hamilton: What? It was worth a try.
He chuckles. She smiles.
Jake: So, do you want to be friends or something?
Hamilton: Or something.
She rolls her eyes.
Hamilton cont’d: Come on. Of course, I want to be friends with you.
He starts to walk again. She watches for a moment then walks along side him. He touches his elbow to hers.
Hamilton cont’d: I want you to know that I’m patient.
Jake offers him a good-natured scoff.
Hamilton cont’d: All right. What I meant was…patience is something I’m working on right now.
Jake: And how are you doing that?
Hamilton stops again and turns to her.
Hamilton: By waiting for you.
She looks down, fidgeting with her long sleeve.
Hamilton cont’d: Hey…
She glances up, but looks back down. He reaches out, but forces his hands away, shoving them into his pockets for extra protection. He waits patiently until she finally looks up again.
Hamilton cont’d: See…patient.
Hamilton cont’d: And, I guess I don’t really need to tell you how I feel about you since you probably heard it earlier in there…
He nods toward the house.
Hamilton cont’d: But, just know that I love you and I always have loved you and I always will love you. The only thing good about any of this is that you gave me the chance to figure out that there is no one else but you. There never will be.
She looks at him, not knowing exactly what to say.
Hamilton: So now it’s your turn.
She smiles, liking that idea.
Jake: Yes, it is.
Hamilton: And if you come to the same conclusion that I did, I’ll be here waiting.
Hamilton considers it.
Hamilton: Figuratively, yes. Right here. Right here where, one time, I thought it was over, but then you asked…do you remember?
Of course she remembers.
Jake: Who said it’s over?
Hamilton smiles, pleased that she’s remembered.
Hamilton: I’m going to be thinking about that question all the time. And, I’m going to be waiting. Not in that weird stalker way, but in that patient, loving way,
A beat as they look at each other, caught in a bittersweet moment.
Hamilton cont’d: Oh, and I’ll try not to hold it against Scout. I mean…
He takes a step back, looking at her, in love with her.
Hamilton cont’d: …who could blame him?
She tugs at her hair, doubtful of his words, but flattered nonetheless. He wants to take full advantage of the moment without being pushy.
Hamilton cont’d: So, I really don’t want to ride my bike all the way back to Rawley.
Jake rolls her eyes in mock annoyance.
Jake: As long as you don’t mind a ride on the bitch pad.
Commercial Break: Kinda creepy magic 8-ball.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Rawley at dusk.
Music: Sadie Hawkins Dance by Relient K
(cut to): the front steps. Jake and Hamilton approach. Hamilton is carrying his guitar.
Hamilton: So…since we’re friends now, think I could come over and get my ass kicked at some video games?
Jake: Like, now?
Jake is hesitant.
Jake: Well, Scout and I are kind of…
As she tries to think of how to complete the thought, Scout exits.
Jake cont’d: …in the middle of something. (to Scout) Hi.
He offers Hamilton a smile.
Hamilton gives a smile back, but he has to fake it.
Hamilton cont’d: So, what are you in the middle of?
Hamilton: Jake said you two were in the middle of something.
Scout: Oh, right. Calc homework. Derivatives of sines and cosines. It’s a bitch.
Hamilton knows he’s lying, but doesn’t mention it. He looks at Jake who doesn’t agree or disagree.
Hamilton: In that case, I’m going to head to my parents. I’m thinking of moving back in with them.
Hamilton: Full time maid service? The privacy of my own room? Plus, it’ll be a good place to just be totally alone and reflect on some things. Solitude is not something you get in the dorms, you know?
Before they can respond.
Hamilton cont’d: Anyway, I’ll see you guys later. Have fun with that calc homework.
He exits and is gone from earshot in seconds.
Jake: Calc homework?
Scout: Did you want me to tell him we were in the middle of initiating the hottest make-out session of all time instead?
Jake: Oh, were we?
Jake laughs. A slight beat.
Jake: I went to town to see Bella, but then Hamilton was there…and he needed a ride back so…
Scout looks at her as if not understanding why she is telling him this.
Jake cont’d: It’s not like I went looking for him or anything.
Scout understands now.
Scout: You don’t owe me an explanation, if that’s what you’re doing.
Jake: I know, but—
Scout cont’d: Seriously.
He smiles honestly.
Scout cont’d: And when you inevitably decide to be with him again, you don’t owe me an explanation then either.
She looks him in the eye for a moment, but then looks down.
Scout cont’d: And if it doesn’t happen that way, I’d be completely cool with that, too.
She looks up at him now, a smile on her lips.
Scout cont’d: You’re an amazing girl.
Jake looks around, but there is no one there.
Jake: Don’t say that too loud.
Scout (loud): What? That you’re gorgeous? And I want to kiss you?
Jake laughs, touching his arm.
He smiles and nods back toward the building. He lifts his eyebrows.
Scout: Calc homework?
Jake: Yeah. Okay.
She smiles and follows him into the building.
(cut to): Finn’s house.
(cut to): the kitchen where Kate and Finn are finishing up two plates of casserole. Jacey is sitting in his high chair, quietly playing with a handful of casserole. Though Finn carries on with some degree of normalcy, there is still a very clear hint of sadness in every word he speaks:
Kate: Well, it sounds like you have a lot of options in Boston.
Finn: I just hope your husband can find an adequate replacement. I do feel somewhat responsible to the kids.
Kate: Actually, have you ever met Alivia Dalton?
Finn: She used to come to all those events with her husband, but then they got divorced or something, right?
Kate: Yes. And her daughter—
Finn: I should have put that together. She’s a bright girl when it comes to literature.
Kate: I guess that’s what happens when you’re mother is a well known writer and professor or literature.
Finn: Kind of surprising that she isn’t more of a bitch, though.
Kate: What do you mean?
Finn: Alivia Dalton is a first class female dog.
Kate: I always thought she was nice.
Finn considers this.
Finn: Don’t take this the wrong way, but…keep an eye on her. I’m sure she’s more than capable of teaching my classes, but somehow I picture her as quite the homewrecker.
Music: Sadie by Gratitude
Kate doesn’t really believe this, but before she can say so, the back door opens and Meagan enters. She seems surprised to find Kate there.
Finn: Hey, Meag, this is Mrs. Fleming.
Kate looks at her sympathetically.
Kate: Hello, Sweetie.
Meagan: Hey, Finn, um, I know you’re probably going to say no, but do you think Mark could stay here tonight?
Finn: Can’t you just go see him first thing in the morning?
Meagan: I do want to spend time with him before you ship me off to California, but—
Meagan: But the reason I’m asking is that his mom and his brother are majorly fighting tonight.
She turns to Kate.
Meagan cont’d: His brother is a drug dealer.
Kate is surprised by this. Finn sighs.
Finn: Okay, but…he sleeps on the couch.
Meagan gives Finn a hug.
Meagan: Thank you.
He kisses her head before she heads back out the back door.
Kate: Drug dealer?
Finn shrugs then nods.
Finn: Things aren’t so nice on this side of the tracks.
A second later, Meagan enters with Mark.
Mark: Thanks a lot, Finn.
Finn: Meagan, why don’t you head on upstairs and let me speak to Mark a minute?
Meagan gives him an uncertain look, but then does as he asks. Kate watches curiously.
Finn cont’d: Have a seat, Mark.
Finn cont’d: Meagan cares about you a lot and she’s going through a really hard time right now. Do you understand that?
Mark: I think your whole family is going through a hard time.
Finn nods, still very clearly hurting.
Finn: And because of that, I’m not sure how great of a job I can do at making her feel better so…anything you can do…I’d appreciate it.
Mark: Mostly she just needs a friend to be next to her.
Mark looks up at Kate pointedly. She smiles at him.
Finn: Also, you understand that we’re going to be gone soon?
Mark nods, looking down, clearly upset by this.
Finn cont’d: If anything…happens, I want you to call Sean first, and if he can’t help, call me.
Mark keeps his head down.
Finn cont’d: Mark?
Mark looks up. He nods.
Finn: Johanna cared about you a lot and…
He pauses, almost choking up, but controlling himself.
Finn cont’d: She’d want you to know that.
Mark: I do know, Finn.
Finn: Okay. Go.
He nods toward the door to the living room. Mark goes, rubbing Jacey’s head and patting Finn’s back on the way out.
Kate: Such nice kids.
Kate cont’d: Can I help you clean up?
She looks around, spotting the sink piled high with dishes.
Finn: That would be…
He sighs, a little less stressed.
Finn cont’d: …awesome.
(cut to): a hallway in Rawley.
Music: Shut Up and Smile by Bowling for Soup
Will: Thanks for inviting me to dinner at your house.
Tyson: No problem. Hopefully my parents didn’t scare you too much.
Will: No way. They were totally cool. And your little sister was hilarious.
Tyson: Yeah…Tyne doesn’t get much socialization. I can’t believe my parents are home-schooling her. I mean, she’s twelve so that’s, what? Three years before she can start at Rawley. Hopefully she isn’t some freakazoid by then. You know, like those kids you see in the Spelling Bee on ESPN.
Will laughs. A beat.
Will: Are you sure you don’t want to stop by Finn’s?
Tyson: I can if you need the back up, but…I’m not great at grief management.
Will: Don’t worry about it then.
The boys walk past the art room where Tyson happens to look in.
(cut to): a shot from his point of view.
Alyssa sits at a table near the window with her sketchbook open.
(cut to): Will and Tyson.
Tyson: Besides, um, it might be a little awkward, especially if he has family or anything there.
Will follows Tyson’s gaze into the art room.
Tyson: Does this make me a bad person?
Will: Nah. Go ahead. Just remember…she’s officially with Hamilton now so…
Tyson: I’m just going to say hi.
Will: Okay…see you later.
Will walks away as Tyson stands at the door, looking in.
Commercial Break: Bowling for Soup. Crazy, catchy lyrics.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Rawley Academy.
(cut to): the art room
Music:Why Do You Want Him by Green Day
Tyson is sitting on the stool next to Alyssa, leaning back on the window sill. He’s playing it very cool. She is sitting sideways on her stool, facing Tyson, her elbow propped on the table. She’s playing it coy.
Tyson: That’s crazy.
Alyssa: You think so?
Tyson: Hamilton’s a loser. And, I’ve never even met Jacqueline, but…I bet she’s a pretty big loser, too.
Alyssa smiles, tucking her hair behind her ear. A beat.
Alyssa: I’m glad you stopped by to look for Mrs. Fleming.
Tyson looks a little guilty, but says nothing.
Alyssa cont’d: Hey, let me ask you something.
Tyson perks up at this.
Alyssa: How well do you know Jake?
Tyson: Jake? Not too well. My friend Dexter is tight with him, though. Why?
Alyssa: I heard a rumor about him.
Tyson tilts his head.
Tyson: Oh, yeah?
Tyson cont’d: What’s the rumor?
Alyssa hesitates, but only to build suspense.
Alyssa: That he’s gay.
Tyson is a little surprised or at least acts it.
Alyssa: Actually, these girls told me that Hamilton and Jake used to…be a couple.
Tyson is surprised by this.
Tyson: Are you serious? I don’t know…that seems…I don’t know. I mean, what about Jacqueline?
Alyssa: Oh, that’s the best part; they don’t know her.
Tyson: She doesn’t go to the girls’ school?
Alyssa shakes her head.
Tyson cont’d: Maybe she goes to Edmond.
Tyson cont’d: My family lives in town, but my sister Tyne is home-schooled. Maybe—
Alyssa: They’ve never even seen her.
Tyson: I’ve seen her.
Alyssa: Have you really, though? Up close and personal?
Tyson considers it.
Tyson: No. I guess not.
Alyssa: Me either.
Tyson: So…what exactly are you saying?
Alyssa: I’m saying…maybe…Jake’s a cross-dresser.
Tyson is definitely surprised by this.
Tyson: No way…
He thinks about it a little more.
Tyson cont’d: Really?
Tyson cont’d: So Jacqueline is actually Jake in disguise?
Alyssa shrugs again.
Tyson cont’d: That’s, like…whoa. I mean, so far this place has been pretty boring, but…dude that dresses like a chick…doesn’t get much more interesting than that.
Alyssa nods. Tyson thinks of something.
Tyson: This conversation, it’s just between us, right?
Tyson: I promised Will I wouldn’t say anything to anyone so…
Alyssa: My lips are sealed.
Tyson considers betraying the trust. He looks at Alyssa carefully, so happy to be caught up in this intimate conversation with her. He takes a deep breath.
Tyson: The other day, I overheard Scout telling Will that he has a crush…on Jake.
Alyssa is not surprised by this.
Alyssa: Today, Scout told me that he hooked up with Jacqueline.
Tyson’s jaw nearly drops.
Tyson: Oh my God…you’re totally right about all this.
Alyssa nods, sure of her not-quite-right conclusion.
(cut to): The Fleming house.
Music: My Hometown by Bowling for Soup
(cut to): the kitchen. Hamilton is searching through the refrigerator when Steven enters through the back door.
Hamilton: Hey, Dad.
Steven: You’re here late.
Hamilton: Yeah, uh…
Steven: Where’s your mother?
Hamilton: I’m not sure.
Steven: That’s odd.
He looks around in confusion. Hamilton rolls his eyes.
Hamilton: Hey, Dad?
Steven looks back at him.
Hamilton cont’d: I’m going to move back home.
Hamilton turns back to the refrigerator.
Hamilton: Also, I broke up with Alyssa today.
Steven doesn’t like this. He runs his hands through his hair then puts them on his hips.
Steven: Is this why you’re moving back in?
Hamilton looks at him like he’s an idiot.
Hamilton: I’m just…over the whole dorm thing, Dad.
Steven just shakes his head.
Hamilton cont’d: Do you not want me here?
Steven: I don’t care one way or the other, Son. I just want to make sure that you’re not running away from anything.
Hamilton looks at him carefully. Maybe he’s not such an idiot, after all.
Hamilton: Dad, that’s ridiculous. I just…need a change, okay?
Hamilton pulls out a foil-wrapped packet from the refrigerator, opening it to find a piece of pizza.
He closes the fridge.
Steven: Well, make your self at home, I suppose.
Hamilton toasts him with the cold pizza as he tosses away the foil.
Hamilton: Night, Dad.
Hamilton leaves a still confused Steven alone in the kitchen.
(cut to): Finn’s house.
(cut to): the living room. Finn and Kate walk down the stairs together.
Kate: That was easy.
Finn: We’ll see how long it lasts.
Kate: It always used to take us hours to get Hamilton down.
Finn: And still today, he’s stubborn.
Kate: He did finally dump little Ms. Perfect, though. Thank God.
Finn: You prefer him to be with Jake?
Kate and Finn make their way to the couch.
Kate: Strangely enough, I do, but…he’s not with Jake.
Finn: I thought…
Kate: Oh, he tried.
Finn smiles, shaking his head. He gives her a sly look.
She smiles. A series of tones, which we recognize as a cell phone sounds. The sound comes form Kate’s purse which is on the end of the couch. She takes it out.
Kate: Eight missed calls? Oh, God…
She hits a button and holds the phone up to her ear.
Kate cont’d: Hello?...Oh, Hi Honey—Yes, I do know what time it is…Well, I stopped by to drop off a gift for Finn and he needed some help with cooking and kids…Steven, please calm down…Thank you…Okay, Sweetheart…I love you, too…I will.
She hangs up.
Kate cont’d: Sorry about that.
Finn: I guess you have to go.
Kate: I think that would be best.
Finn: Well, thank you, Kate. You’ve been a wonderful distraction.
She smile, standing.
(cut to): the door as Kate exits. Will is walking up the steps.
Kate: Great timing, Will.
Will: How is he?
okay, but he could use some company.
Will nods. Kate smiles and pats Will’s back as she passes him.
(cut to): a few minutes later. Will is seated on the couch. Finn exits the kitchen with Mark. Mark is carrying a box of goldfish and two small bottles of water.
Finn: Make sure she eats some of that. I don’t think she ate anything else today.
Mark: Got it.
Finn pats his back as Mark exits the room via the stairs. Finn watches for a moment then takes a seat on the couch with Will.
Will: I remembered this quote from that Arthur story we read.
Finn: Le Mort d’Arthur.
Will: Right…I looked it up so I’d get it right.
Will pulls out a folded piece of paper and hands it to Finn. Finn unfolds the paper and reads aloud:
Finn: “Queen Guenever, for whom I make here a little mention, that while she lived she was a true lover, and therefore she had a good end. “
Finn smiles then folds the paper again. He holds it up.
Finn: May I?
Will nods. Finn puts the paper in his pocket.
Finn: Speaking of Guenever, how’s Gwen?
Will: Uh…she dumped me for a professor, actually.
Finn is shocked.
Finn: I thought you just went to see her.
Will: I walked in. Can we talk about something else?
Finn: Wow…I’m sorry, Will.
Will: Relatively speaking it’s…no big loss.
The impact of these words create a silence between them that lingers before we…
Commercial Break: You can actually read Le Morte d’Arthur online. I read it in high school and I think I thought it was pretty cool. Don’t know if I’m as smart as I was back then.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of the dorms.
(cut to): Jake and Scout’s room, they are just entering.
Music: Almost by Bowling for Soup
Scout: Let’s never go to dinner that late again. Congealed mashed potatoes is never a good thing.
Jake smacks her lips, remembering dinner. A beat.
Jake: I am so ready to be out of these clothes.
Scout looks at her with amusement. Jake is embarrassed.
Jake cont’d: I mean, out of these clothes and into other clothes. Girl clothes.
Scout simply smiles.
Jake cont’d: I’ll be right back.
Scout watches as Jake quickly reaches into her top dresser drawer, pulls out a handful of clothes and exits into the bathroom. Scout quickly runs over to his desk, pulling out a package of gum. He considers it then tosses it aside and keeps searching. He finds a packet of breath freshening strips. He pulls one out and places it on his tongue, letting it dissolve. He does a breath check then puts three more strips on his tongue. As he closes the desk drawer, the strips kick in, clearly a little too strong. Scout starts coughing.
(cut to): the bathroom. Jake has changed into a pair of silky blue pajama bottoms and snug-fitting t shirt. She has also just finished brushing her teeth. She puts her toothbrush in the toothbrush holder. She looks at herself in the mirror, fluffing her hair a little. She sighs, looking less than up to par.
Jake: Hey, Scout?
Still coughing, he answers.
Jake: You okay?
Jake: Okay, well, I’m going to take a quick shower.
The single word seems to choke him up. Jake looks at the door curiously, but then begins to disrobe.
(cut to): the girls’ dorm. Tyson and Alyssa approach.
Alyssa: Thanks for walking me back, Tyson.
He rubs his hands together.
Tyson cont’d: You know, if you ever want to hang out sometime…
Alyssa: That would be great. And, again, I’m really glad we hung out today.
Tyson watches, pleased, as she heads into the dorm.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: One man’s trash is another man’s treasure?
Tyson backs away, his smiling getting wider and wider.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Hmm. Let me try that again. One man’s loss is another man’s find.
(cut to): Finn’s house.
(cut to): the living room where Will and Finn sit, talking.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Some men’s losses, though, can never be recovered…by anyone.
(cut to): Meagan’s room. She and Mark sit together on the floor, not talking.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Some losses are complete and total. Utter devastation.
(cut to): Hamilton in hi room, looking around as if it were a museum.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Others are slightly more…
(cut to): Scout and Jake’s room. Scout has recovered from his breath strip incident. The bathroom door opens and Jake exits, fresh from a shower and looking beautiful. Scout smiles.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …Bittersweet.
They seem to float toward one another before finally consummating their kiss. It seems to be worth the build up for both of them.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: But like all losses, the missing item, person, feeling…
(cut to): a Chicago street where Gwen walks down a street, holding hands with her professor boyfriend.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Some are recovered. Some not.
(cut to): Sean’s house.
(cut to): his room where he sits on his bed looking through a stack of pictures.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: And we, as humans, either deal with it…
(cut to): Jill in her room. She sits at her easel, staring at a blank canvas.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …Or we don’t. And, it really is that simple.
(cut to): the garage.
(cut to): the living room. Our couples, Dexter and Grace and Bella and Nicholas, sit together, talking.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: The world keeps going, with or without you.
(cut to): a shot of Finn’s house from the outside.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: And the best you can hope for is that you make it and you keep going, too because the other option is frightening. The other option is to be lost…forever.