(fade in): to an establishing shot of Rawley Academy.
Music: I Don’t Wanna Stop by Good Charlotte
(cut to): Jake’s room. Jake, in Jake gear minus corset, is lying in her bed and Hamilton is over her, kissing her.
(cut to): a closer shot as they part. Hamilton smiles at her.
Hamilton: So…good luck on your test.
Jake: Do all the students get such personal encouragement from the dean’s son?
Hamilton: Only the ones who drive motorcycles and look hot in heels.
She smiles as he kisses her again. He pulls back.
Hamilton: Listen, I’ve been thinking…
Hamilton: I’ve been having some regrets about…New York.
Jake: Regrets? Like…about what happened with us?
Hamilton: More like…about…what didn’t happen with us.
She smiles, but it’s forced.
Will (voice over): “The Power.” We all want it.
(cut to): the dean’s office. The dean is at his desk and Scout is seated in a chair, facing the desk.
Steven: I’m glad you applied for this position, Scout.
Steven cont’d: You’ve got the list of house rules and the handbook. All you need now are…the keys.
The dean opens his desk drawer and pulls out a set of keys.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Control of any kind is very empowering.
Scout reaches out to accept the keys from the dean.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: In the wrong hands, that power can be dangerous.
(cut to): Gwen alone in her room. She is sitting on her bed holding a letter.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Sometimes, lack of control causes us to do what it takes to regain even the slightest bit of power.
(cut to): a closer shot of the letter. The return address bears the Northwestern University logo. It’s been opened and read. Gwen seems to debate with what to do with it.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: That’s how empires get re-conquered.
(cut to): the door as it opens and Will walks in, looking unsuspecting.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: That’s how people get hurt.
(fade in): to the next afternoon, Jill and Gwen’s room. Jill and Jake are sitting on her bed, playing a game of Uno.
Music: Over Your Head (acoutstic) by Marvelous 3
Jill: Why are we playing this?
Jill puts down a green two on top of a red two.
Jake: Because I have a point to make.
Jake puts down a green skip card then a green draw two, leaving one card in her hand. She holds it up.
Jake cont’d: Uno.
Jill: And, the point is what? That you’re way better at Uno? Because…I know.
She draws her two cards reluctantly and waits for Jake to take her turn.
Jake: But, I only have one strategy.
Jill: Yeah, the damn draw four card. You get it then you hang onto it until the very end and then bam! You win.
To illustrate, Jake puts down the remaining card in her hand, a draw four.
Jill: …I happen to be lucky enough to be holding one to put down on top of it, thus forcing you to draw…eight cards.
Jill smiles and puts a draw four down. Jake sighs and draws eight cards.
Jake: Well, I pulled my draw four card with Hamilton in New York before Christmas.
Jill looks up at her.
Jill: Literally? Or, like, is this a metaphor?
Jake ignores her, looking at her new hand of cards.
Jake: And…he kind of pulled this card that I wasn’t expecting…thus winning the game.
Jill: Jacqueline…what the hell are you talking about?
Jake: Well…I was in this needy mood and…I was thinking that Hamilton and I could, well…
Jill tosses her cards down.
Jill: No way…you wanted to and…he didn’t?
Jake: Yeah, pretty much.
Jill: Oh my God. He’s gay. Jacqueline, he’s gay.
Jake: He’s not gay.
Jill: Um, hello, yes he is. I mean, if you couldn’t…arouse…his…interest.
Jake laughs and blushes.
Jake: Wait, it wasn’t that. He could have…he definitely could have…
Jill looks a little grossed out.
Jill: I know I brought it up, but…
They both crack up at the phrasing. After a moment of recovering from embarrassment:
Jill: Okay, okay. So, if he could, why didn’t he?
Jake: It was the wrong time.
Jill: No, no, no…he’s a seventeen-year-old boy. There is no wrong time.
Jake: I think he transcends that label on a regular basis.
Jill nods, but doesn’t seem to be as convinced as Jake.
Jill: Yeah I suppose so.
She picks up the cards and pulls the draw four out, looking at it.
Jill cont’d: Except now, he knows that you’d actually do it and…you’re finally back to normal.
Jake: What’s that supposed to mean?
Jill: Nothing…you’re just…cleansed of…the angst.
Jake: That I am.
Jill shuffles the cards as a beat passes.
Jill: So, to recap…you’ve been not exactly against the idea for awhile, but he never really knew that and, now that he does…he’s in control. You’ve lost “the power.”
Jake nods. Jill laughs.
Jill cont’d: Oh well, at least he’s hot.
Jake smiles, shaking her head.
(cut to): the common room at the boys school. There are a few boys watching TV. Scout and Hamilton are seated on a couch, talking
Scout: With Jill and me, I think it was implied that we both wanted to at some point.
Hamilton: Well, you know, like obviously she and I both want to, but I never thought…I just didn’t know she was as open to the idea as she obviously is.
Scout: You know what? You are so the power player right now.
Hamilton looks over at him like he’s never thought of it like that.
Hamilton: Power player?
Scout: She’s going to go for…whatever you want.
Hamilton looks at him skeptically.
Hamilton: You think?
Scout: Trust me.
Hamilton: Well…you are the RA.
Scout: I got the keys yesterday.
Hamilton: Keys to the Kingdom.
Scout: Yeah, if you want to consider the boys’ dormitory plus the dining hall and kitchen “the kingdom”…
Hamilton: I didn’t say it wasn’t a humble kingdom…Your Majesty.
Scout laughs then hops up.
Hamilton: Going to sit on your thrown?
Scout: Close…I have to do rounds.
Hamilton nods. Scout backs away.
Scout: Remember, though, you’re the one with the power.
He exits. Hamilton considers his new found power.
Music: The Metre by Powderfinger
(cut to): the newspaper room. Will is sitting at the table and Dexter is at a computer. Will is putting the layout printouts and a disk into a FedEx envelope.
Dexter: You’ve got everything under control, right?
Dexter grabs his backpack.
Dexter: Okay, I’m taking off then.
Will: See ya.
Dexter exits passing Gwen on her way in. Will smiles.
Gwen: I almost forgot we were sending that off today.
He gets everything in the envelope.
Will: It’s okay…I have it under control.
He holds the envelope to confirm what he’s said.
Gwen: You remembered the font disk, right?
He sighs, but smiles.
Will: Okay…I don’t have it under control.
Gwen smiles and walks over to a computer and ejects a disk. She checks the label as she walks back to Will. He takes the disk from her, but holds onto her hand as he kisses it.
Will: Thanks. I’d be such a wreck without you.
She watches at him as he gets the packages sealed. She wants to talk to him, but doesn’t know how to bring it up. She runs her hand across the back of his neck. He looks up at her with a smile, but it is replaced with a look of mild concern.
Will: Is something wrong?
Gwen: No, not exactly…
(dissolve to): a little later. Will and Gwen sit in her room, on her bed. He’s reading the letter Gwen was looking at before. She watches him carefully. Eventually, he looks up at her. He fakes a smile.
Will looks at the letter then at her again.
Will: I don’t know what this means.
Gwen: It means I could graduate early and go there in the fall.
Will (disappointed): Oh…great.
He looks hopeful.
Gwen cont’d: …I wanted to talk to you first.
Will: You shouldn’t feel pressure to do this because it’s what your father wants.
Gwen looks down.
Gwen: No, it’s not him…
Will: But, it was his idea, right? He made you apply?
Gwen: No, Will. He doesn’t even know. You’re the first person I’ve—
Will: So, basically…what you’re saying is…you’re going to college in the fall.
Gwen: I don’t know. I was going to ask you what you think, but that’s obviously a bad—
Will (huffy): I think…it can wait.
She wanted a different answer and he knows it.
Will cont’d: What? You don’t think it can wait?
Gwen: It’s just that…I mean, you saw what it said about the scholarship, right?
Will: Yeah, they were basically offering you a free ride.
Gwen: Right and…if I reapply later…they might not offer me something like this.
Will: Gwen…it’s not like you need the money…you have plenty.
Gwen: My father does…
Will: Same thing.
She doesn’t like this. She takes the letter from him and stands up.
Gwen: Okay, thanks for your unsolicited opinion…goodbye.
Will stands too.
Will: I don’t know why you’re getting so mad at me. You’re the one—
Gwen: I’m the one what? You have no idea what I’m doing or trying to do and, what really disappoints me is, I actually thought you would.
Will: I’m sorry to be so…disappointing. Have a nice college career.
He walks out of the room. She sits back on the bed, frustrated.
Music: Lump by The Presidents of the United States
(cut to): Jake’s room. She’s sitting on the edge of her bed with a notebook in her lap as she works on some homework. Hamilton leans against the headboard of the bed with a magazine.
Hamilton: You really have to do homework tonight? It’s Friday.
Jake: I know, but…
She looks back at him as he moves down to the end of bed.
Hamilton: Why don’t we do something tonight?
He leans over and trails kisses down her neck. She’s about to give in, but she hops up and walks over to her laptop, which is set up on her desk. He gives her an inquisitive look and follows her over.
Hamilton cont’d: What are you doing?
Jake: You want to do something tonight, right?
Jake cont’d: I’m checking movie times in Carson.
Hamilton: Movie times? Jake, we never go to the movies.
He stands behind her and runs his arms down hers until he again begins kissing her neck. She shrugs out of the embrace and kiss and stands up to face him.
Jake: Which is exactly why we should go. You can change into…a clean t shirt.
He looks down at his shirt.
Jake: I’ll get to be…Jacqueline.
Hamilton: Hmm…I do like the sound of that.
Jake: It’ll be fun.
She sits back down at her computer.
Jake: So…what do you want to see?
Hamilton raises an eyebrow mischievously.
Hamilton: I don’t care…as long as we watch it from the back row.
She forces a laugh as he leans over to kiss her again.
(fade in): to as establishing shot of Rawley Academy.
(cut to): a hall. Scout is walking down it quickly. Will catches up to him.
Music: Nice Guys Finish Last by Green Day, but it’s coming from down the hall.
Will: Hey, Scout…do you have a minute?
Scout: Uh…you’ll have to walk with.
Will gives him an odd look.
Will: Okay…where are we going?
Scout: I’m trying to finish my rounds.
Will: Your what?
Scout: Rounds, Will.
I got hung up downstairs with these jerks that wouldn’t turn their radio
Will: But…it’s Friday…there aren’t even quiet hours on Friday.
Scout: Yeah, well…I’m writing them up next time.
Will: You can do that?
Scout: Sure can.
Scout looks over at him.
Scout: Yeah, ha ha. What’d you want?
Will: You know what? It’s not important.
Scout: Oh, okay. You’re sure?
Scout: Okay, well, I’m off to break up this little band rehearsal Max and those guys have going on.
Will: Maybe you should…you know…nevermind…have fun with that…
Will stops walking and Scout hurries off down the hall.
(cut to): a room somewhere else in the dorm. The door is open and there are several guys inside with band equipment set up. They’re playing. The lead singer, Max, has his eyes closed as he finishes the chorus. He opens them and sees Scout. He sings a few more lines, but can see that Scout is waiting for him to stop. He does, but the band keeps playing.
Scout: Hey, excuse me guys?
They all look up at him and stop. They look annoyed, but Max just smiles warmly.
Max: Hey, what’s up, Scout? Come on in, man. You’re the new R.A., right?
Scout: Yes, I am…what are you guys doing?
Max smiles and looks around at the guys.
Max: We’re studying, bro.
He laughs. Scout’s not amused.
Max cont’d: What’s it look like? We’re practicing.
Scout: I could hear you all the way at the other end of the hall.
Scout: Look guys, this is a school dormitory, not a garage.
Max: Finn never said anything to us before…except maybe that we all need to get good day jobs.
The guys laugh.
Scout: Well, you’re under new management now. So…turn it down or turn it off.
Max: Yeah, whatever…
He turns around to talk to another of the guys.
Max: Hey, Davey…crank it down a few for me, will ya?
The guy reluctantly starts to readjust some of the sound equipment.
Scout: Thank you.
Max nods, annoyed, but laid back enough to comply. Scout smiles and turns around, pleased with himself.
(cut to): Hamilton and Dexter’s room. Dexter is lying on his bed reading a comic book. Hamilton is at his closet. He pulls out a long-sleeved t shirt and changes into it.
Music: Nice Guys Finish Last by (actually, this time) Greenday
Hamilton: Hey, Dexter…how’s this shirt look?
Dexter doesn’t look up.
Hamilton gives him a dirty look and walks to the mirror. He starts to tuck the shirt in, but opts against it. He runs his hands through his hair then shakes it out. Dexter slowly looks up at him. Hamilton looks over at him.
Dexter doesn’t say anything. He looks back at his comic book. Jake walks in. Dexter looks up again. She smiles, which makes him look down again. Hamilton runs a hand through his hair again then is ready.
Jake: Through primping?
Dexter laughs despite himself. Hamilton gives him another dirty look.
Hamilton: Let’s go.
Dexter: Where’re you two headed tonight?
Hamilton: None of your business.
He gives her a “let’s go” look. She pretends to miss it as she addresses Dex:
Jake: We’re actually going to the movies tonight.
Dexter: Oh, cool. I love going to the movies, but there isn’t a theater here, is there?
Jake: It’s in Carson.
Dexter: Guess it’ll be awhile before I see any movies.
Jake: Well, hey, you could come with us.
Hamilton: What? No, he can’t.
Jake: Hamilton, yes he can.
Hamilton (pouting): But, Jake…
Dexter: You guys don’t get to do this often, do you?
Dexter: Go to the movies. Go out. Be together in public.
Hamilton: No…we don’t.
Dexter nods and looks back at his comic book.
Dexter: I’m cool here.
Hamilton: Thank God. Can we go now?
Jake is slightly annoyed with Hamilton, but gets up to leave with him.
Music: The Brilliant Dance by Dashboard Confessional
(cut to): the garage, Bella’s room. Gwen and Bella are hanging out there, mid-conversation.
Bella: So…you think he should be a little happier for you, right?
Gwen: Honestly, I don’t know what to think. If he’d been all for it, I suppose I would have been worried about our relationship, but…I definitely thought he’d be more understanding.
Bella: Do you think he could be jealous?
Gwen considers this.
Gwen: I guess it’s possible, but…
Bella: …he’s really just upset because you’re leaving?
Gwen is hesitant to agree to that.
Gwen: I wouldn’t presume to think that—
Bella: …he would be upset solely over the fact that he doesn’t want to lose you?
This embarrasses Gwen.
Bella cont’d: I think it’s a highly probably scenario.
Gwen thinks about it. Bella hesitates, but then offers more:
Bella cont’d: If I learned anything about Will from dating him, it’s that he’s so incredibly selfish. With us, he wanted out and he basically sabotaged our relationship under the guise of wanting our friendship back.
Gwen: Now, there’s a comforting thought.
Bella: It’s not like that with you, though. There aren’t any pretenses. It’s much simpler than that.
Bella cont’d: All he wants is…you. I mean, it sounds like he didn’t even try to hide that. You told him you were going and—
Gwen: He got mad and left.
Gwen cont’d: I just don’t want him to think I’m trying to get away from him. I applied way before I liked him and way way before I loved him.
Gwen: But…it’s not about him. This is something I want to do for me and the fact that I got in is a sign that, regardless of present circumstance, I need to go for it.
Bella: You just have to explain that to him…over and over if necessary.
Gwen nods. There’s a knock then Charlie enters.
Charlie: Bella…you’re grounded. That means no movies with your friends…and no friends over to visit.
He gives her an authoritative look then exits. Gwen looks at her apologetically as Bella sighs.
(cut to): a movie, in progress.
Music: For the Movies by Buckcherry
(cut to): Jake alone in the back row. She’s eating popcorn from a large bucket. She takes a sip of Coke as Hamilton makes his way down the row. He sits next to her and puts his arms on the armrests, getting comfortable. She looks over at him. When they speak, it’s in loud whispers:
Jake: Did you get the Jujubees?
Hamilton (irritated): They were all out.
Hamilton: Of course I had to wait in line for twenty minutes to find that out.
Jake feels bad.
Jake: I’m sorry…thanks for trying.
He smiles, content with her sympathy.
Hamilton (suggestively): It’s okay…I didn’t want to see the movie anyway.
Jake: It’s really too bad Bella couldn’t come.
Hamilton: That’s what she gets for sneaking off to New York.
Hamilton doesn’t skip a beat as he moves in to kiss Jake. She shoves the popcorn at him “accidentally” preventing the kiss.
He sighs and sits back in his seat, pouting as they both go back to watching the movie.
(cut to): Bella’s kitchen. Her dad is doing the dishes and she’s drying.
Bella: I want to talk to you about this being grounded thing.
Charlie: I’m sure you would have enjoyed going to the movies tonight or hanging out with your friend some more, Bella, but that’s kind of the point of this “being grounded thing,” as you called it.
Bella: I just think that maybe you’re overreacting a little.
Charlie: You do not drive to New York by yourself without telling me. When I got the call about that accident and Grace told me where you’d gone…I’ve never been that worried about you before.
Bella: But, it wasn’t me. I’m fine. I can take of myself and I can make my own decisions and there is no reason to ground me for a month over a perfectly reasonable decision.
Charlie has finished the dishes so he drains the sink. He turns to Bella.
Charlie: I trust you more than anyone in the world and I know you usually make the right decisions, but Baby, I love you too much to let this one slide.
He kisses her on the head and walks out of the room. She is frustrated.
(fade in): to Scout patrolling the underclassmen hall. He stops in front of a door listening. Boys are talking but the predominant sound is seventies porn music. Scout knocks. Everyone quiets down and someone comes to the door.
Scout: Eric, what’s…up?
Eric: Oh, hey Scout…not much. We’re just…watching a movie.
He opens the door and several guys are sitting around the room. A TV and VCR are set up but we can’t see the screen. The music continues until someone with the remote hits stop. The guys in the room are younger than Scout and kind of geeky (when in doubt, go with stereotypes? Hmm…J).
Scout: That’s what the common room is for, fellas.
Eric: Yeah but…this isn’t the kind of movie you watch in the common room.
Some of the guys laugh while others are embarrassed.
Scout: Then maybe you should pick another movie because there are currently nine people in this room.
Scout: Anything over eight constitutes a “party” and has to be registered with the in-house official…that would be me.
Eric: Can’t you just give us permission?
Scout: Unfortunately this is one of the smaller rooms on campus, anymore than six and it’s really a fire hazard.
The guys grumble and get up to leave. Scout smiles, again pleased with himself.
Music: Stupid Kid by the Alkaline Trio
(cut to): Will and Scouts room. Will is lying on his bed looking miserable. Hamilton walks in and looks around.
Hamilton: Where the hell is Scout?
Will: Last I heard he was breaking up the third floor indoor Frisbee championship. Why?
Hamilton: I just wanted to talk to him about something.
Hamilton opens the door again with the intention of going to find Scout.
Will: Good luck with that.
Hamilton gives him a curious look.
(dissolve to): Just a little later, giving Hamilton and Will time enough to trade stories. Will is laughing.
Will: Let me get this straight, you actually think you have “the power,” but you haven’t so much as kissed your girlfriend since this realization?
Will laughs again. Hamilton realizes what an idiot he’s been.
Hamilton: This is what I get for listening to Scout.
Will: Listen, Ham, think about it. “The Power” isn’t getting what you want, okay? It’s being able to resist what you want.
Hamilton considers this.
Hamilton: Doesn’t that mean that you should just let Gwen go?
Will: No, it doesn’t…because…I don’t want any kind of power. All I want is her. If she’s the one that has to have control…well, fine—it’s hers.
Hamilton: You know, maybe it’s not you she wants control over.
Will gives him an intrigued look, but then he gets it.
(cut to): Jill’s room. Sean is sitting on her bed. Jill is standing in front of him with a can of mousse. She sprays some into her hand.
Music: Truth About Romeo by Pancho’s Lament
Sean: Okay, no more of this junk.
He takes the can from her.
Jill: Excuse me; I’m in charge here.
She takes what’s left in her hand and puts it into his hair and starts to spike it up.
Sean: This is going to look so stupid. I can’t believe I’m letting you mess with my hair. I like my hair.
Jill: It’s flat…and it’s boring, just like you.
He doesn’t say anything, but the comment bothers him.
Jill cont’d: Hey, you know I’m just kidding. You’ve got a great personality.
She pushes his hair towards the center.
Jill cont’d: Now you’ve got the hair to match.
Sean looks at her suspiciously.
Jill cont’d: Seriously, it’s hip…very…British.
He gives her a defeated smirk and gets up to look in the bathroom mirror. Suddenly, the door opens and Jake bursts into the room.
Jake: Thank God you’re here…
She’s dressed as Jake but is in the process of doing something about that. She throws off her jacket and begins unbuttoning her shirt.
Jill: Um, Jacqueline…
Jake: I swear, I could go the rest of my life without seeing another…
She looks up as Sean comes out of the bathroom.
Jake cont’d: …boy. Hi Sean.
She stops unbuttoning her shirt.
Sean: Hey uh, don’t stop on my account.
Jake is in no mood. She buttons up her shirt again. She walks past Sean over to Jill’s bed.
Jake: Nice hair; very…British.
She sits down on the bed dramatically.
Jill: Didn’t have fun at the movies?
Jake sighs and glances at Sean.
Jill cont’d: Oh, for God’s sake…Sean, can you wait in the hall?
Jill: Thank you.
Jill opens the door and escorts him out.
(cut to): the hall. Several girls are walking down the hall, but stop as Sean is pushed out in front of them. They giggle and Sean smiles.
(cut to): Jill’s room. Jill leans against her door with folded arms.
Jill: Okay…what? Did he try to grope you in the back row?
Jake: Yeah…pretty much.
Jill: And…so? Did you let him?
Jill: Look, Jacqueline…Sean and I think that you’re not being proactive enough in your pursuit of the power.
Jake: Sean and you? You talked about this with Sean.
Jill looks caught.
Jake cont’d: What’s up with you two anyway? Is something going on?
Jill is deadpan.
Jill: Get out.
Jill walks over to her and pulls her by the arm.
Jill cont’d: Get up…Get out.
Jill escorts her out as she did Sean. He is still talking to the girls. Jill pulls him back into the room, leaving Jake and the girls confused.
Music: Who’s Gonna Riot? By Agent 51
(cut to): the hall in the boys’ dorm. Suddenly a Boston Terrier comes running around the corner followed shortly thereafter by Scout.
Scout: Dogs are not allowed in the dorms! Come back here…
A group of seniors comes around the corner.
Scout: Davis, call your stupid dog back.
Davis: Yeah, right, Calhoun. Go Brutus!
The dog runs around another corner and Scout goes after him.
Music: You’ll by Gone by Angela Ammons
(cut to): Will and Scout’s room. Will is cleaning up when the door opens. He doesn’t bother to look up to see who it is as he throws a pile of socks into his top drawer.
Will: Jimmy in 213 locked his keys in his closet.
Gwen walks in.
Now he looks up.
Will: Hey…I was looking for you.
Gwen: I don’t usually spend time in your sock drawer.
Will: Huh? Oh…I meant—
Gwen: I’ve been hiding out in the library.
He nods. A beat.
Gwen: I applied a long time ago. I want you to know that. Long before you and I ever—
Will: I’m sorry for how I reacted earlier.
Gwen: It’s okay.
Will: No, it’s not.
Gwen: No, it’s not, but…if I’ve been advised correctly about the reason—
Will: That I love you?
Gwen: Are you asking?
Will: No. I mean, I do. I love you and…I don’t want to…lose you.
He walks closer to her.
Gwen: Leaving you wouldn’t be that great either, you know…
Will: So…don’t go.
Will: I understand about your dad.
This surprises her.
Will cont’d: That’s what you meant earlier when you said that you thought I would understand better than anyone. And, you’re right…my scholarship was like my get out of jail free card.
Gwen: Exactly…it’s independence from someone I’m really tired of depending on.
Will: When I got my scholarship, I knew I wouldn’t have to rely on my dad anymore. It was totally empowering.
She smiles, looking forward to the feeling.
Will cont’d: But, Gwen…you’re not going to be completely autonomous in Chicago. You’re definitely going to have to get money from your dad.
She does not like this.
Gwen: You really think I’m just some spoiled princess, don’t you?
Will: I’m not saying that, but—
Gwen: …you’re thinking it? Listen Will, I have a plan, all right? When I tell my father that I’m going to Northwestern instead of Princeton, he’s going to cut me off and he’s going to think that I won’t be able to make it on my own…just like you.
Will: I never said you couldn’t—
Gwen: But, I will make it. The scholarship will cover everything…tuition, books, housing, mean plan. I’ll also get a job for stuff like…long distance phone calls.
He looks at her briefly, glad to be factored into her “plan,” but he’s still unhappy with her. He glances away.
Gwen cont’d: …or maybe I won’t need a job after all.
Will: No—I mean, that isn’t what I want. I’d just feel a little better if you’d at least open this up to debate.
Gwen: I cannot do that, Will. I want control of my life.
Will: And I want you.
She’s pissed. He just doesn’t get it.
Gwen: That’s really too bad because…you just lost me.
She turns around and walks out. He stands there not knowing what to think.
(fade in): to Hamilton’s room. Dexter is still in bed reading, but has switched to a book. As we move over to Hamilton’s bed we see that he’s lying there, reading Dexter’s comic book.
Music: Walk By by Good Charlotte
(cut to): The hall. Jake approaches the door.
Jake: Proactive. I can do proactive.
She walks in. Dexter looks up then looks back down. Hamilton ignores her completely.
Jake: Dex…think you can read that in the common room?
Hamilton glances up.
Hamilton: You know this is his room too.
Dexter: Hey, you know what? It’s no problem.
He hops up and leaves with his book, locking the door on his way out.
Jake: He seems to be coming around.
Hamilton barely nods as he continues reading.
Jake cont’d: That comic is really lame…Dexter has horrible taste.
Hamilton looks up at her now. With his attention, Jake kicks off her shoes. She quickly unbuttons her shirt and tosses it on the ground. She then walks over to Hamilton’s dresser and pulls out a tank top from one of the drawers. She takes off the corset and puts on the tank top. Hamilton’s been watching her the entire time. When she turns around, though, he looks back at the comic. She takes off her jeans and walks over to the bed, now just in boxers and the tank top. She sits down next to him. He concentrates on the comic until she gently caresses his arm. He can’t take it; he glances over.
He can’t help but smile. He sighs giving in.
Jake: I borrowed your shirt.
Hamilton looks down at the shirt then back up at her.
Hamilton: Never looks that good when I wear it.
She takes the comic from him, tossing it out of the way and moves in to kiss him. He’s been waiting for this. He lets himself enjoy it for a moment, but then gently pushes her up. The music from before stops. She gives him a confused look.
Hamilton: I’m just like…so tired.
Cue just the main riff and line “I’ve got the power” from the version of the song I’ve Got the Power by Snapp. Hamilton sits up, yawning.
She gets up from the bed. He looks at her suspiciously. She walks back over to his dresser.
Jake: I mean…you’re sure?
Cue only the main riff this time as Hamilton looks very torn, but tries to speak with nonchalance:
Hamilton stands up and yawns again, stretching out as he pretends to get ready for bed. Jake: Okay.
She takes off the tank top, folds it, and puts it back in his drawer. He’s been watching every move. She turns back to him, now just in her bra and boxers. She slowly walks back over to him.
Cue only the line “It’s getting, it’s getting, it’s getting kind of hectic…”
She doesn’t make an effort to move. It’s a standoff. Hamilton swallows hard. After another moment he gives up, takes one small step to close all distance between them and kisses her.
Cue again the main riff and the line “I’ve Got the Power.”
(cut to): the bed as they climb on, still kissing. Hamilton pulls her closer as he begins to kiss her neck. It’s her weakness so she stops it by getting him to lie down. She kisses him and he completely forgets his mission to resist. Just when he gets really into it, she suddenly stops and gets up. Cue once again the main riff and the line “I’ve Got the Power.”
Hamilton: Wh-what are you doing?
Jake: You know that homework I was trying to do earlier?
Jake: I’ve really got to get it done.
Hamilton, still lying down, sighs. Jake quickly puts her pants on then the corset. Hamilton lifts his head slightly.
Hamilton: You’re sure?
She puts her shirt back on and buttons it up as she walks to the door.
She exits. He lays his head back down, defeated.
Hamilton: Yeah, sure, go, no problem…I’ll just…take a shower or something.
With a splash:
(cut to): the lake as we move over to the girls dorm.
Music: Recently Distressed by Phantom Planet
(cut to): Jill’s room. Sean and Jill are sitting on the floor playing a game of Uno. Jill’s heart isn’t really in the game.
Sean: What’s wrong?
Jill looks up at him as she absently puts a card down.
Jill: What are you talking about?
Sean: Well, first…you just put a blue seven down on my red nine…
She looks down at the card then picks it up and replaces it with a red four.
Sean: Second…you’re displaying classic signs of…moping.
Jill: Am not.
She smiles slightly liking that he picks up on these things. He continues with the game.
Sean: You and Jake have an interesting relationship.
Jill: I don’t want to talk about it.
Sean smirks almost suggestively.
Jill: Oh, geez, don’t be such a boy.
She tosses a card at him. He picks it up and puts it on the pile then looks up at her silently urging her to tell him what’s wrong.
Jill cont’d: I’m annoyed with her right now, that’s all. She’s so self-absorbed. I hate it.
Sean: Well, unlike me, not all of your friends aren’t going to worship you and submit to your power.
She looks worried.
Jill: I’m not really that controlling…am I?
Sean: Oh, no, not you…your Highness.
Jill: I guess I can be a little…
Sean: …bossy? Domineering? Control freak-y?
Jill: Yeah, but…Jacqueline’s the same way. That’s why we work. Our friendship is based on balance. We have the ability to be completely self-absorbed one minute then totally understanding and empathetic the next. Except, these days, it’s different. Anything she needs help with…she goes to him.
Jill: And after everything that happened with Scout, do you think she was there for me? Not for long. She’d much rather be making out with Hamilton than helping her best friend mend her broken heart.
Sean: The nerve…
Jill: Do you think she even bothers to occasionally ask me what I’ve been up to while she’s locked away in her room with her amazing wonder-boy-friend?
Sean: I’m guessing no…
Jill: Exactly. Like, she actually asked me if you and I were…
Sean raises his eyebrows.
Jill cont’d: Which anyone with a pulse would know is totally crazy…
Jill: Plus, she’s the one who leaves out huge details of her life, not me. And, when she does want to talk to me, it’s only because she has a problem with him. And, I can’t even be honest with her anymore. She’s like, “my boyfriend is pressuring me to have sex, but I don’t want to do it.” Well, hello…dump him. But, you can’t say that to her because she’ll be like, “It’s Hamilton. He transcends…” blah, blah, blah.
Sean: Maybe you’re just noticing this more now that you’re, you know, not with Scout.
She looks down.
Jill: I haven’t been with Scout for like six months, Sean.
Sean: Well, that little discourse you just gave seems like something that would build up nicely over, say, six months.
She looks up at him.
Jill: Well, anyway, there’s nothing I can do about it. I don’t want to sound like some co-dependent loser…I just miss my best friend.
Sean: If it’s always been about balance like you said, Jill, why are you making it sound like she has all the power? If this is bothering you, just talk to her about it.
Jill thinks about this without totally buying it.
Sean cont’d: She’d be crazy if she didn’t work hard to make everything right again. You’re a pretty great friend to have around.
Sean cont’d: You’re fun, you’re thoughtful…you give great hair tips.
She glances up at his still styled hair.
Sean cont’d: Plus…you always lose.
He puts his last card down, winning the game. She looks down, realizing her loss.
Sean cont’d: Besides, at least your friends still come to you with their problems.
She waves. He smiles.
Sean: You need someone to hang on every word. I need someone who actually wants to talk to me. What will we do?
Jill: A lot more of this, I hope.
He smiles and shuffles the cards.
(cut to): the garage.
(cut to): Bella’s room. She’s looking out the window when Grace walks in without knocking.
Bella: Get out.
Grace: Oh, I am. I have a date.
Bella looks over at her. Grace smiles smugly…it seems to depress Bella.
Grace cont’d: Oh, God, quit with the caged bird routine already. You have to serve your time like that rest of us.
Bella: Easy for you to say; you’ve never been grounded for a month.
Grace: Anyway, I came in here to give you a tip. If you want out—go.
Bella looks confused.
Grace cont’d: I love Dad, okay? But, he’s only got to think he’s in charge.
Bella gets it, but looks disapproving.
Grace: Like I said…it’s just a tip.
She smiles with slightly less malice then exits. Bella looks out the window again, considering the advice.
Music: Again I Go Unnoticed by Dashboard Confessional
(fade in): to Hamilton and Dexter’s room. It’s now pretty late. Dexter has a computer opened up and is working on it. Hamilton is pacing around the room in pajama bottoms, a t-shirt and shower-wet hair. There’s a knock at the door. He looks up nervously. He shakes his head as if to get himself ready for another round of battle.
Hamilton: Come in.
Bella walks in.
Hamilton cont’d: Bella? What are you…what are you doing here?
Dexter glances up, but quickly looks back at his work.
Bella: Gee, nice to see you too, Hamilton.
Hamilton: I didn’t mean it like that, but, seriously, what are you doing here?
Bella: I snuck out.
Bella: Then I realized that I didn’t know where to go.
Hamilton: Great…so you came here to guarantee my dismissal from the garage when Charlie finds out?
Bella: He won’t find out; he trusts me.
Hamilton: And…the fact that you’re betraying his trust means…nothing to you?
Bella thinks about this.
Bella: It does; of course, it does.
Hamilton: Super, so now that this is settled…
He walks over to her, putting his hand on her back in order to escort her out.
Bella: But, it’s like Grace said…he only needs to think he’s in control of us.
Hamilton looks at her disapprovingly.
Hamilton: All right, look…here’s Grace…
Standing behind Bella, he puts his chin on her right shoulder.
Hamilton cont’d: Bella, go out and do bad things so that you can be in control.
He picks his head up.
Hamilton cont’d: And now, the voice of reason.
He puts his chin on her other shoulder.
Hamilton cont’d: Go home before Charlie finds out you’re gone and you really do lose all control…and all of his trust in the process.
Bella walks toward the door and away from Hamilton.
Hamilton: Thank you.
Bella: See ya.
She walks out. Hamilton shakes his head then turns around to find Dexter staring at him.
Hamilton: God, what?
Dexter: How is it so easy for you?
Dexter: Just talking to girls like that like it’s no big deal. I mean, you had your hands all over her and…she’s so pretty and…it was nothing for you.
Hamilton: Dex, let me tell you, there is only one girl that makes me nervous these days.
Dexter: Jacqueline—I mean, Jake?
Dexter cont’d: It’s funny because she’s like the one girl I can talk to.
Hamilton: You talk to Jill sometimes.
Dexter: She kissed me before, you know…
Hamilton: I know.
Dexter: I guess she wasn’t as intimidating after that.
Hamilton: And, you talk to Gwen…I’ve seen you.
Dexter: That’s no big deal, though…we work on the newspaper together.
Hamilton: You’re perfectly capable of talking to pretty girls, Dexter. You just have to take charge of your intimidation. To me, girl friends aren’t any different than guy friends.
Dexter: Yet your girlfriend makes you nervous…
Hamilton: Yeah, but…that’s a sex thing.
Dexter nods weakly and looks back at the computer.
Hamilton: Which is probably why all girls make you so nervous. You think about sex too much.
Dexter: Is that your professional opinion?
Hamilton: I mean, sure, Bella is a beautiful girl, but…I don’t want to have sex with her.
Dexter: Just Jake, I get it.
Dexter is concentrating hard on his computer. Hamilton shakes his head at the fact that he actually feels bad for this kid. After a moment:
Hamilton cont’d: We…we haven’t actually ever…
Dexter looks up; he’s pretty surprised.
Hamilton: Cross my heart.
Dexter: Are you…going to? Have sex, I mean.
Hamilton: Oh, right…I knew there was something I was forgetting to do. Be right back.
He turns to the door, momentarily confusing Dexter. He turns back around. Dexter still doesn’t get it.
Hamilton cont’d: I’m just kidding…that was a joke.
Hamilton sizes him up…is it worth talking to him about it? Hamilton looks down and begins to ramble awkwardly:
Hamilton: Like, I’m sitting here telling you not to be intimidated by sex and…I so totally am. And, after today…I’m so confused. I don’t know if she wants to or what. Like…what if I don’t—
Dexter: …turn her on?
Hamilton looks up at him.
Dexter cont’d: That is the number one reason why girls intimidate me.
(cut to): Jake’s room. Jake, still dressed for the part, and Bella sit on Jake’s bed. They’ve been talking.
Music: Life on a Chain by Pete Yorn (courtesy of Jake’s CD player)
Bella: He still seems a little weird to me…way too quiet.
Jake: He’s not going to blow up the school, if that’s what you mean…he’s just intimidated by girls like you. He figures there’s no way you’d ever like him and…he freezes.
Bella: But…he can talk to Jacqueline?
Jake: He’s still pretty mad at her right now.
She looks down then out the window.
Jake cont’d: He’s currently the least of my problems.
Bella: When I first went in the room…Hamilton seemed a little…jumpy. Like, he was afraid I was going to be someone else.
Jake: I guess I did torment him a little.
Bella: Good; he deserves it. He sent me home like I was his little sister or something.
Jake: I guess he got a little of that dean DNA after all.
Bella: I just want to do my own thing. I don’t know why everyone is so against that.
Jake: I’ve been doing my own thing for awhile and…I have to say, I wouldn’t hate being grounded every once in awhile.
Bella: Are you kidding? No one telling me what to do? I’d love that.
Jake: Sometimes it would be nice to have a little…guidance.
Bella: Well…that’s what your friends are for.
Bella smiles and Jake thinks about this…thinks of Jill.
Jake: Good point.
Bella: Anyway, I guess I really better get going. I’d hate to make Charlie worry.
Jake: Her rebel exterior crumbles under the pressure of her goody two shoes.
Bella laughs as they walk over to the door. Jake opens it for her and Bella walks out into the hall.
(cut to): the hall where Scout is walking with Grace and a student Grace’s age. He’s also one of the band guys from earlier, the drummer
Bella: Grace, what are you doing here?
Scout: I could ask you the same thing, Bella.
He glances at Jake who stands in her doorway.
Grace: I told you…I had a date. Christopher, my sister Bella…Bella, my date.
Bella: Hi, nice to meet you. Grace, let’s go.
Grace: We can’t. We’re going to see the dean.
Bella: Says who?
Scout: Says me. Chris isn’t allowed to have female visitors this late without prior authorization.
Bella: Authorization, Scout? This is a school dorm, not a nuclear power plant.
Scout: Regardless of diction, Bella…this violation will be reported to the dean.
Jake: What’s the matter, Calhoun? Can’t handle it yourself?
Scout: When persons who are not students are involved, the dean must be informed…Pratt.
Chris: Well, isn’t Jake in “violation” too?
He’s confused then he gets what Chris means. He looks at Jake then Bella.
Chris: Guess you have to “report” Jake to the dean too.
Jake: Scout, don’t even think about it.
Scout: I’m sorry, but Chris does have a point.
Jake: Look, Grace and Bella are your friends, okay? Why don’t you save them the embarrassment of being paraded down to the dean’s office where you know they’ll just be treated like—
Scout: Dean Fleming isn’t like that.
Jake: Well, how about the fact that I’m your friend and if the dean finds out about this…rampant rule breaking…he’s not going to want his son to hang out with me anymore…me or Bella, that is.
Jake gives him a steady, but pleading look. Scout sighs.
Scout: I’m giving both of you…guys…detention. And, you girls can get out of here.
Jake looks relieved.
Chris: Thank God. Thanks Pratt.
He hits Jake on the shoulder.
Chris cont’d: Grace…next time…your place.
She smiles and waves and Bella pulls her down the hall. Chris walks away. When all but Jake and Scout are gone:
Scout: I can’t believe you just under-minded me like that.
Jake: I can’t believe you were going to take me to the dean because Bella was hanging out.
Scout: Rules apply to everyone.
Jake: Yeah, but you get to choose which ones to enforce, Scout. I mean, I’m pretty much a walking “violation,” don’t you think? But, you never thought of ratting me out, did you?
Scout: Well, of course not, but that’s different. That would be extreme.
Jake: Handing out detention for having a radio too loud is extreme. You have to be laid back. Look at Finn. He had this place as quiet as it needed to be, but people still respected him. He knew when to enforce the important rules and when to let the useless ones slide.
Scout: I’m just trying to do my job. Goodnight.
He walks off. Jake rolls her eyes and goes back into her room, slamming the door.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of Rawley Academy at 6:30 a.m.
Music: Kick Some Ass by Stroke 9
(cut to): the roof. The door opens and Max, the band guy, walks out. He looks around and smiles.
Max: Ah, the smell of expulsion in the morning. Guys…
He holds the door open as the rest of the bands, including Chris, walk out carrying equipment. Davis, the senior, walks out carrying his Boston Terrier Brutus.
Davis: Maxwell, this idea was inspired.
Max smiles and looks around.
(cut to): the hall in front of the boys’ rooms. Jill is walking toward Jake’s room. Before she knocks, Hamilton’s door opens and he looks out.
She’s slightly startled.
Jill: Oh…morning, Ham.
Hamilton steps out and walks over to her, looking around.
Hamilton: Yeah…can I talk to you?
(cut to): down by the lake. Jill and Hamilton walk together.
Hamilton: What do you think?
Jill: I think…that even if I did know how you could get the upper-hand, I wouldn’t tell you.
She stops hastily and leans against a tree, crossing her arms in front of her. Hamilton stops too. He doesn’t get the attitude. He leans on the tree and looks over at her.
Hamilton: I don’t want the upper-hand.
She rolls her eyes and looks away.
Jill: Isn’t that what this whole power struggle thing is about?
Hamilton: I never said—
Jill: Duh, Jacqueline told me. She said that in New York when she wanted to and you didn’t—
Hamilton: Wait…I did want to, but—
Jill: Right, right…you could have…you just didn’t.
Hamilton sighs, looking thoroughly embarrassed.
Jill cont’d: Anyway…whatever…I told her that you’re probably gay.
Jill: She seemed to think that you had, in the bold move of turning her down, somehow managed to gain “the power” and she was trying to figure out how to get it back.
Hamilton: So, she was playing games with me. I knew it.
Jill: Yeah, way to go, Scooby.
She glares at him briefly and he catches it.
Hamilton: You’re mad about something.
Jill: Good call again, but, sorry, I left the Scooby Snacks in the Mystery Machine.
Hamilton: Want to talk about it?
Jill: Not with you.
Hamilton: With Jake…right. I’m sorry for bugging you.
His feelings are hurt and he feels bad. He sticks his hands into his pockets and starts to walk away.
He turns back around.
Music: These Days by Powderfinger
(cut to): Friendly’s. Will is unlocking the door. Bella walks across the street.
Bella: Do my eyes deceive me? Will Krudski working the early shift?
Will turns around, looking tired.
He gets the door unlocked and goes inside. Bella follows.
Bella: Get everything straightened out with Gwen?
Will: She talked to you about it…great.
Bella: I guess that’s a no.
Will: Well, actually, we did get it straightened out. She dumped me. The end.
Bella: Oh, God…
Will: Whatever, she’s not worth it.
Bella: Really? Because the way I remember it, you don’t go around telling girls that you love them when…they’re “not worth it.”
Will: Well, then, I guess I’m not worth it to her because…she wouldn’t even consider staying.
He looks at her, annoyed.
Bella cont’d: Will, you’d go for it, wouldn’t you?
Bella: College of your dreams offers you a free ride…you’d go…no question, right?
He thinks about it.
Will: I guess I didn’t think about it like that.
Bella: Well, now that you are thinking about it like that…be sure to make it right, okay?
He smiles, but nods.
(cut to): the dock. Hamilton and Jill sit on opposite sides of the dock. She’s got her knees drawn up and looks across the lake. Hamilton looks at her then speaks timidly:
Hamilton: Something happen with Scout?
She shakes her head.
She laughs and looks over at him.
Hamilton: Yeah, you two have been hanging out, right?
Jill: Yeah…how’d you know?
Hamilton: I pay attention. So’d you guys have a fight or something?
Hamilton: You and Sean.
Hamilton: You know, I don’t remember you ever having this much difficulty talking about yourself.
Jill: Shut up. God…just when I have myself convinced that you’re a jerk…
She takes a deep breath.
Jill: I’m mad because…my best friend is so preoccupied with her jerk of a boyfriend that she never bothers to ask about me anymore.
Hamilton narrows his eyes slightly as he considers this.
Hamilton: Me and Jake?
Hamilton cont’d: Jill…
Jill: Pretty lame, huh?
Hamilton: Not if that’s how you feel.
He moves across the dock so that he’s sitting next to her. He puts his arm around her as a beat passes.
Hamilton cont’d: I never meant to steal your best friend from you…
Jill: …it just kind of worked out that way?
He is slightly more concerned.
Hamilton: How long has this been bothering you?
Jill: I hate to admit this, but…I think Sean was right. I think it correlates well with—
Hamilton: …breaking up with Scout?
She nods. Then stands up.
Jill: God, this is…just…pathetic.
She starts to walk off the dock. Hamilton scrambles up and follows her.
Jill cont’d: It’s not about Scout, you know.
Hamilton: I know…it’s about you…and being—
Hamilton: You’re not needy, Jill. You’re like the most independent person I know.
Jill cont’d: Not…controlling?
He smirks. A beat.
Hamilton cont’d: Look, you need to talk to Jake. So do I. We both need to restore some balance, I think.
He offers her his arm and she takes it as they walk back down the dock.
Music: Where I’ll Go by the Influents
(cut to): the newspaper room. Gwen is at a computer. Dexter walks in. Gwen looks up at him. He smiles nervously then considers walking out again. Instead he takes a deep breath.
Dexter: You’re here early.
Gwen: I’m working on my side of the editorial.
Dexter: I didn’t think you and Will had decided on a topic.
Gwen: We didn’t, but it’s on graduating early.
Dexter: Are you for it or—
Dexter: And Will’s against it.
Dexter: Is it…personal?
Gwen looks up at him as though she’s just realizing who she’s been talking to.
Gwen: You’re talkative today.
It interrupts the smoothness he’d been building. He nods and looks down.
Gwen cont’d: I’m graduating early and going to Northwestern in the fall.
Dexter: Wow…that’s a great school for…well…this.
He gestures around the room. Gwen nods.
Gwen: Yes, it is. And…it’s funny because Will is really one of my biggest influences. Whether he meant to or not, he’s the one that’s encouraged my interest in journalism. And, the first Second Opinion editorial we wrote together is what sparked my essay for the scholarship I applied for.
Dexter: What did you write about?
Gwen: How the media is able to police itself against biases because of the wide range of backgrounds and viewpoints of journalists.
Dexter: In other words, there’s always some other journalist out there with…a second opinion.
Gwen: Yes. And, it’s also why the media isn’t some type of domineering entity. We’re just around to give all the sides. Very representative of the general public, if you ask me.
Dexter: Fair and balanced.
Dexter: I guess it’s good that you’re giving Will the chance to say why he doesn’t agree with…”graduating early.”
Gwen looks up at him. She’s actually made a point not to give him the right to an opinion. She realizes this, but just nods.
Gwen: Anyway, are you busy right now?
Dexter shakes his head.
Gwen cont’d: I want to build some decent desktop publishing skills. Maybe use them to get a work-study job next year.
Dexter: Oh, yeah, sure. Quark isn’t all that user friendly, but once you catch onto it…
He sits down at a computer in order to pull the program up. Gwen seems to still be pondering the idea of “fair and balanced.”
(fade in): to a shot of Rawley Academy, 7:30 a.m. There are a suspiciously large amount of people on the quad. Most are sitting around talking, but it’s still generally very quiet.
Music: Lonely Day by Phantom Planet
(cut to): the hall in front of Jake’s room. Hamilton and Jill walk together.
Hamilton: I wonder what’s going on outside.
Jill doesn’t respond. When they reach the door:
Jill: Okay, you can go first.
Hamilton: Oh, no…go on.
Jill: Rock, paper, scissors?
They stick out their hands and start the game, but Jill stops.
Hamilton: What are you doing?
Jill: So…winner goes or doesn’t go?
Hamilton: Doesn’t go…wait, not that seeing Jake is a loss…
Jill: Shut up. Everyone knows you love her. Loser has to talk to her.
They have another go at the game. After counting to three, Jill throws “rock” and Hamilton, “paper.” Just as he covers her hand, signifying victory, the door opens. Jake pokes her head out, clearly not yet “Jake,” and being careful to conceal that fact.
Jake: I thought I heard voices out here…
She looks down at their hands.
Hamilton: Oh, hey.
He takes his hand from Jill’s.
Hamilton cont’d: Your best friend needs to talk to you.
Jill gives him a nasty look.
Jill: Rock should beat everything.
Jake looks from Jill to Hamilton.
Hamilton: I keep telling her it’s “The Rock.” She’s so slow to catch on to the wrestling lingo. Well, I’ll see you two later.
He takes off. Jill smiles awkwardly.
(cut to): Jake’s room as she and Jill enter.
Jake: Do you know what was up with him?
Jill: He’s afraid of you.
Jake tilts her head.
Jill: You so have “the power” back, by the way.
Jake: I know…last night…let’s just say…I got proactive.
Jill: Unfortunately, he’s on to you and he’s going to try and restore some balance to the relationship.
She smiles. A beat.
Jake cont’d: So…what are you doing here so early?
Jill: Attempting to…restore some balance.
Jill smiles, but Jake doesn’t understand.
Jake: Listen, about yesterday…I never meant to make it seem like I’m so completely clueless about what’s going on with you. I know you and Sean have been hanging out.
Jill: Ham tell you?
Jake: Yeah…he heard from Bella.
Jill cringes instinctively; Jake disapproves.
Jill: Oh, what? I’m allowed to hate her…it’s got to be in high school girls’ handbook.
Jake laughs. A beat.
Jake: So…are we cool?
Jill sits down on Jake’s bed.
Jill: Not exactly. I mean, it’s more than yesterday.
Jill takes a deep breath as Jake looks at her inquiringly.
Jill cont’d: Okay, Jacqueline, I’m just going to say all this.
Jake nods, looking a little worried.
Jill: Lately…I’ve felt more out of touch with you than when we lived on different continents.
Jake sits down next to her on the bed.
Jill cont’d: And, since I haven’t been with Scout, I’ve found myself needing you, but…you haven’t been there.
Jill: Competing with Hamilton for your attention makes me feel like a total loser, but…sometimes, it would be nice to just hang out like we used to.
Jake doesn’t really know what to say.
Jill cont’d: I guess I never realized how much I rely on you…because I’ve been a self-pitying mess without you.
Jill looks down, awaiting a reaction. Jake looks at her, feeling guilty.
Jake: I’m…wow…I didn’t know you…I’m really sorry, Jill.
Jill slowly looks up at Jake.
Jill: I…I don’t want you to be sorry. I mean, you and Hamilton…
Jill can’t seem to figure out where she was going with that.
Jake: Hey, you know, I have an idea. Why don’t we—
Hamilton bursts into the room, causing Jake to jump up and look freaked out. When she sees it’s him, she calms down, but shuts the door behind him.
Jake: God, for a second I thought you were Scout telling me it’s too early to have girls in the dorms.
Hamilton: Scout? Oh my God…he’s going to love this.
Hamilton: Remember all those people on the quad?
Hamilton: You just have to come see this…both of you.
Jake and Jill look at each other.
Hamilton cont’d: I know I’m interrupting and that you probably still have stuff to work out, but…this is so worth it.
He grins in a way that definitely piques their interest.
(cut to): Friendly’s.
(cut to): inside where Will and Bella are talking at the counter. Another waiter has arrived, but there are no customers yet. Grace walks in, holding a cordless phone and wearing a mischievous smile.
Grace: Oh my God, we have to go to Rawley, like, now.
Will and Bella look at one another.
Grace: Hey, other waiter guy?
The other guy looks up.
Grace: You can cover Will for like an hour, right?
She then adds a flirtatious smile. The guy nods.
Grace cont’d: Cool. So, let’s go already.
Bella: What about—
Grace: Just come on…
She grabs Bella by the arm and nods for Will to follow her.
(cut to): Scout and the dean walking through the halls of the boys’ dorm.
Steven: You know, Scout, I wasn’t sure you had it in you.
Steven: After all, you’ve had your own problems following the rules.
Scout: It just gave me a greater respect for them, Sir.
Steven: I can see that. You know, it hasn’t been this quiet on a Saturday morning in as long as I can remember.
Scout: Well, last night, I was sure to let everyone know how things would be from now on. I think I did a good job of establishing myself.
Steven: Still…it is awfully quiet.
The dean looks around suspiciously then the P.A. system cuts on with a screech. Someone clears their throat then the unmistakable voice of Max, the band guy, fills the halls.
Max (P.A.): Good Morning, Rawley Academy.
We hear yells and cheers over the speaker and from outside. The dean and Scout stand listening in stunned silence.
Max (P.A.) cont’d: So, we know everyone’s been enjoying the lovely command of our new R.A., Scout Calhoun.
People boo. Scout looks insulted.
Scout: Did I…just…get booed?
Several boys exit their rooms looking sleepy and confused. The booing continues.
Max (P.A.) cont’d: Aw, come on guys…Scout, bro, they don’t really mean it.
The dean looks at Scout, shaking his head.
Steven: Scout, how could you let this happen?
Scout: I…I don’t know, but…I’m going to stop it.
He walks off down the hall. The dean watches him for a moment, looking almost a little amused. He shakes it off and follows behind Scout.
Max (P.A.) cont’d: Okay, Scout, man…this one’s for you.
Music begins playing over the speakers: My Way (normally by Butch Walker).
(cut to): the newspaper room. Dexter and Gwen are still working at a computer, but the music is really loud.
Gwen: Is this…is this a tape?
Dexter (nonchalantly): Nope, it’s a band. They set up on the roof. I helped them rig the P.A. system.
He looks at her, suddenly worried.
Dexter cont’d: Don’t…tell anyone, okay?
Gwen laughs. She grabs a notepad and a pen then leaves to do her journalistic duty. She quickly pops her head back in.
Gwen cont’d: Make sure Hamilton is covering this with his camera.
Dexter sighs and gets up.
(cut to): outside as Will’s car pulls up. Bella, Grace and Will get out. The whole school, both campuses, is out on the quad, or filing out of the dorms. The band is on the roof, continuing the song.
Will: Oh my God, no way.
Bella: What is this?
Grace: It’s…a free concert. Look, there’s Chris.
She points to the roof and, sure enough, Chris is behind the drum set.
Will: Scout…is going…to freak.
A beat as they walk toward the crowd. Several more cars have pulled up. Will looks around.
Will cont’d: Hey, I’ll catch up with you two later…I need to make sure Hamilton is getting pictures of this.
He jogs off.
(cut to): Jake, Jill and Hamilton. They’re standing near the school, looking up at the roof.
Hamilton: This is the coolest thing that’s happened in the history of Rawley Academy.
He glances at Jake for a moment.
Hamilton cont’d: Well, at least the coolest thing that everyone knows about.
Jill rolls her eyes. Suddenly, Gwen and Will walk up from different directions.
Will and Gwen: Hamilton?
Hamilton: Whoa, stereo.
He looks back and forth between Gwen and Will who have now noticed each other.
Hamilton cont’d: What?
Gwen: I…I told Dexter to make sure you were taking pictures of this…
Hamilton: No, I’m trying to enjoy it. Will?
He turns to Will to see what he wanted.
Will: Sorry, pretty much the same request.
Hamilton sighs again and turns to get his camera when Dexter comes running up with it.
Hamilton: If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a million times…don’t touch my camera.
Dexter: But, Gwen—
Hamilton: But, thanks…you just saved me a trip.
He smiles at Dexter and takes the camera, turning it quickly up to Max and his band. Gwen and Will look at each other again, both wanting to talk. Hamilton interrupts the look:
Hamilton cont’d: Hmm…guys…should I get this too?
He nods toward the front steps.
(cut to): the door as the dean and Scout walk out.
(cut to): Hamilton and company.
Hamilton cont’d: Wait a second…is my dad…smiling? No way…
They all turn to look.
(cut to): a closer shot, through Hamilton’s camera. The dean does, in fact, look far less furious than Scout who is completely over-whelmed by the scene. The camera then moves shakily up to the roof where the band is playing. Max notices Scout and looks down with a polite nod as he sings the chorus one more time
(fade in): to an establishing shot f\of Rawley Academy, midday.
(cut to): Jake’s room. We pan over to her bed, not actually seeing the bed itself. What we do see is Jake and Hamilton, lying in bed. They are about two feet apart and lie facing each other, with their heads propped up. Hamilton doesn’t have a shirt on and is studying the bed in between them. He looks up at her with a tentative smile.
Hamilton: I know this might be a setup, but I’m going to have to jump you.
She shrugs casually. He reaches across the bed, which we still cannot see. As his hand seems to get closer to her, she smiles.
Hamilton cont’d: You’re smiling because this is a setup…you’re dying to get naked, aren’t you?
She stifles a laugh and tries to be serious:
Jake: I suppose you’re going to want me to…king you?
He grins as we pan down slightly to reveal a checkerboard in between them. He’s jumped over two of her men and landed on the furthest side of the board. He collects his two checkers, counting them off as “one” and “two.”
Hamilton: Plus, kinging counts as two, right? That makes four.
She rolls her eyes and kicks off her shoes, then reaches down and takes off her socks which she throws at him in a playfully seductive fashion. He picks them up thoughtfully and tosses them on the floor.
Hamilton cont’d: We should probably talk, huh?
Music: Someday Soon by Angela Ammons
Jake: That is why we locked ourselves away in my room, isn’t it?
Hamilton grins playfully then regains his thoughtfulness.
Hamilton: I guess so.
He sits up and picks up the game. Jake watches him carefully, not sure of exactly what to say.
Hamilton cont’d: I want you to know that…I don’t want to be the “power player.”
Jake: Power player? What does that mean?
Hamilton: I don’t even know. I guess it means the person with the control in the relationship.
Jake: So…you’re saying you don’t want control?
Hamilton: Well, I’m saying I don’t want it—us— to be about control, but…if it has to be, then, yeah, I forfeit all power to you and I promise to never try to regain it again.
Hamilton cont’d: What’s so funny?
Jake: I don’t know…it just sounds so strategic.
Hamilton: Which is something you’re good at so—
Jake: Hey…I don’t want it to be about power or control either, okay?
Jake cont’d: We’ve always been able to talk about it—
Jake: Isn’t that what this has really been about?
Hamilton: Yeah…the fact that I want to have it and you don’t.
Jake: Now, wait a minute…
She sits up so that they are again at eye level.
Jake cont’d: …I want you to understand something, but you have to promise to listen without interruption.
Jake cont’d: I don’t want to have sex with you…
He looks down.
Jake cont’d: …right now.
He looks up again.
Jake cont’d: But, I mean “ right now” as in this point in my life.
He doesn’t understand.
Jake cont’d: And, it’s completely about you.
Hamilton: Doesn’t that expression go, “it’s not about you.”
She gives him a reprimanding look.
Jake: It’s completely about you, Hamilton because…after everything that happened with my father…I mean…I feel so completely different. The other day, Jill said something about me being back to normal, but…I don’t feel back to normal. My life is entirely unlike it was before. I have a dad who doesn’t want to see me and a brother I may not ever get to see again. And, my mom…God. It’s like she came on full force for a whole…day, but now…she’s harder to catch up with than ever. And then, today, Jill comes over here and lets me know what a terrible friend I’ve been. That’s not something I’m used to hearing from her and, I’m still struggling to figure out how I can make it right.
Hamilton: Yeah, I can see how this is completely about me.
Jake maintains eye contact with him.
Jake: I don’t want our relationship to change.
She looks down as if this is the key point. He gets it now. He feels bad.
Hamilton: It won’t, okay? It won’t.
He leans toward her, pulling her gently into a hug.
Jake: I’m really scared to take it to the next level, Hamilton.
Hamilton: I am too…and, we don’t have to.
Jake: I’m not willing to risk it right now. I promise eventually—
Hamilton: I can definitely deal with eventually.
She leans back from him now.
Jake: You’re not disappointed?
Hamilton: Oh, I am, but…you’ll make it up to me…eventually.
His smiles turns into a grin as his comment makes her blush. She looks at him seriously again.
Jake: I love you.
He nods and leans toward her, pressing his forehead to hers.
Hamilton: Me too.
She smiles at the reference and they softly and briefly kiss. When they part they look at each other for another moment.
Hamilton: Oh yeah, one more thing…promise me…no more mind games…no more teasing…no more…torture…
Hamilton cont’d: I’m serious. Yesterday was…well, it was bad.
She smiles again.
Hamilton cont’d: Just stop looking so pleased and…promise?
Jake: Okay…I promise.
Hamilton: Thank you.
Hamilton kisses her quickly then gets up to pull on his shirt.
Hamilton cont’d: Come on.
He nods for her to get up.
Jake: Where are we going?
Hamilton: To my house, I’ve got a white flag and an olive branch you can borrow for when you go see Jill.
(cut to): Jill and Gwen’s room. Gwen is sitting at her desk using her computer to type up the notes from her notepad. Jill is sitting on her bed looking upset.
Jill: I can’t believe you’re leaving.
Gwen: I’m not going tomorrow or anything.
Jill: Still…you’re my preferred roommate for next year.
Gwen finishes typing and hits save.
Gwen: I’ve got to run into town.
Music: This is Who I Am by Angela Ammons
(dissolve to): Friendly’s, a little while later. Will is back behind the counter. There is a couple at a table and the other waiter is helping them. Gwen walks in and sits at the counter, taking a menu. Will walks up tentatively.
Will: What can I get you…besides an apology?
She takes the menu down.
Gwen: The chance to apologize back?
Gwen cont’d: I’ve been really unfair…telling you that you have no say in this when you do…of course, you do.
Will walks around to the other side of the counter and sits next to her. The other waiter looks at him and Will holds up five fingers as if to indicate he’s taking five. The guy looks moderately annoyed, but turns back to his customers.
Will: Do you want my say?
Will cont’d: It’s a really great opportunity and you’d be crazy not to take it.
Gwen: I know.
Will: And, other than that, I want you to be happy.
Gwen: I know that too.
Will: And, when I said you couldn’t make it on your own, that was only my own selfishness talking. You…are so strong and so smart…and you’re definitely going to be able to pull this off. But, you probably knew that too…
Gwen: Actually…on that I needed some reassurance.
Will: You’ll do great.
Will: It’s not that I won’t miss you because…I will…so much.
Gwen: I’ll miss you too, Will.
Will: You know this plan of yours…the take control of your life plan?
Will: Well, I was wondering if you’d let me have the next six months.
Gwen: What do you mean?
Will: Both of us have a lot to focus on and stay busy with…but…I was thinking we could make all that secondary and…kind of let us—our relationship—lead things.
Gwen: Will, think about what you’re saying…making out over doing homework…a dinner date over working on the newspaper…prom over final exam cramming…
Will: Yeah, sounds pretty great, doesn’t it?
He smiles as she leans in to kiss him. When they part:
Gwen cont’d: Thank you for understanding.
Will: Thanks for giving me the time to understand.
The other waiter walks past giving them a dirty look.
Will cont’d: Hey, I’m sorry, but I have to take the rest of the day off.
The guy makes his look even dirtier as he walks behind the counter. Will looks at Gwen and leans in to kiss her again. We pull out and leave them framed by the Friendly’s window.
(fade in): to an establishing shot of the lake.
Music: Whatever Makes You Happy by Powderfinger
(cut to): the dean’s office where the dean lectures the band. Despite this, they all look fairly pleased.
Will (voice over): Questing after power can lead to the attainment of other evils like selfishness…
(cut to): Will and Gwen as they drive in Will’s car.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: close-mindedness or…
(cut to): Scout as he sits alone in the common room looking displeased at the way things turned out.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …an inflated ego. I think our time should be spent on better things like self-improvement…
(cut to): Bella as she sits in front of the garage by herself, looking pleased.
(cut to): Jill’s room. She’s answering the door. Jake stands in the hall and pulls out a bag of Oreos from behind her back, offering them to Jill.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …friendship…
Jill smiles takes the bag and pulls Jake into the room and into a hug.
(cut to): Will and Gwen again in the car. He glances over at her briefly then keeps his eyes on the road as he reaches over and takes her hand. She smiles at him.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …love. When you manage to discover these things…
(cut to): Dexter and Hamilton chatting amiably about a pile of comic books on Dexter’s bed.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: You’ll discover something else…
(cut to): Jake and Jill as they sit on Jill’s bed talking. A knock leads Jill to answer the door again as she reveals Sean. Jake smiles and waves.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …the Power isn’t so important.
(cut to): the garage as Charlie comes out and sits with Bella, bringing her a cup of hot chocolate.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: When you live life right…
(cut to): the dean’s office where they boys are still being lectured and still looking pleased
Will (v.o.) cont’d: …there are no games. There is no single winner.
(cut to): Will and Gwen in the car, still holding hands.
Will (v.o.) cont’d: Somehow, though, I still feel like a champion.