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Runaway Bride Movie Script

Writer(s) : Josann McGibbon, Sara Parriott

Genres : Comedy, Romance

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  R U N A W A Y   B R I D E

  Screenplay by Sarah Parriott & Josann McGibbon

  --------------------------------------------------------------

  FADE IN

  EXT. AN IMPOSSIBLE EXPANSE OF MARYLAND FARMLAND - DAY

  The wind rustles the endless field of corn, blows over the
  freshly mown meadow of soybeans, and magically sways a copse of
  trees.

  It's a Fall after-noon. A SUDDEN POUNDING OF GALLOPING HOOVES
  breaks the peace and... A HORSE and RIDER burst between the rows
  of corn into the meadow.  They are running for their lives.

  CLOSE ON:

  The rider is a bride -- a beautiful woman dressed in a
  disheveled wedding gown, it's train tattered and flying like a
  knight's banner out behind her. This is MAGGIE CARPENTER.

  The horse is frothing and wild-eyed, like the bride, who turns
  to look behind her in terror.  The horse's labored breathing
  mingles with Maggie's panicked gasps.

  We see a WEDDING BOUQUET fly into a ditch as the horse thunders
  on.  Maggie clings to the reins.  She looks as though she is
  running from the devil himself.

  FADE TO BLACK

  EXT. IKE'S APARTMENT BUILDING - DAY

  Establishing.

                CUT TO:

  EXT. IKE'S APARTMENT BUILDING - DAY - ESTABLISHING SHOT

  EXT. NEW YORK STREET - DAY

          IKE (V.O.)
    Hey, Fisher, pick up.  I have some
    column ideas I want to bounce off you.
    Not there?  Okay.  Listen I'm thinking
    of writing about those mind-numbing
    informercials that are always on.

  Ike walks out of his apartment building talking on cell phone.

          IKE (cont'd)
    What do you think?  Good idea, right?
    Boring, down to death, pointless -- It
    sucks.

  Ike yells at a CONSTRUCTION WORKER.

          IKE (cont'd)
    If you guys are here any longer,
    they're gonna make you sign a lease.

          CONSTRUCTION WORKER
    Your column should be so funny.

  Ike turns and walks down the street, talking into cell phone.

          IKE
    Okay, I was also thinking I might write
    about...

  He spots a RICH LADY with tons of diamonds getting out of a
  Limousine, talking to a CHAUFFEUR.  He goes up to her.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Excuse me.  I was thinking of doing an
    article on limousines.  What would you
    say to people who never had a chance to
    drive in a limo?

  They walk up to her DOORMAN.

          LADY
    I'm sorry, I don't know any people like
    that.

  Ike walks off.  They stare at him as he goes.

  EXT. ANOTHER NEW YORK STREET - DAY

  Ike's talking on the phone to his friend's machine again.

          IKE
      (into phone)
    Fisher?  Come on -- I know you're
    sitting there laughing at me.  Pick up.
    I want to run an idea past you.

  Ike continues walking now in the full panic of writer's block.
  He pleads into his friend's answering machine as he walks.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (into phone)
    I just could use someone to toss it
    back and forth with for a few minutes,
    get the juice flowing, help me.  I have
    an hour and twenty-seven minutes and
    fifty-two seconds.  Hello?

  He walks away from the t-shirt table towards the bar.  The
  Vendor calls out to him.

          T-SHIRT VENDOR
    Hey, Ike, when are you going to put me
    in an article?

          IKE
    When your t-shirts stop shrinking.

  Ike enters the bar.  The Woman drops the shirt she was holding
  and walks off with her children.  The T-shirt Vendor goes back
  to selling his shirts.

  INT. NEW YORK BAR - LATE DAY

  Ike sits at the bar speaking to an attractive Woman nearby, a
  MAN puts is USA Today on the bar and addresses the BARTENDER.

              MAN
    I see photos of a lot of dead writers
    on these walls.  Got any living ones?
    I have a story to tell that could win
    one of them a Pulitzer.
      (then, with enthusiasm)
    Picture this, if you will.  A small
    town in Maryland, a sleepy little
    village, within that a hardware store...

  The Man continues speaking as Ike and the woman continue their
  conversation.

          WOMAN
    So what's in store for us in tomorrow's
    column?

          IKE
    I don't know yet.  I'm kind of a last-
    minute man.  Ideas don't flow until an
    hour or two before deadline.

  The Woman gets up and begins throwing darts.

          WOMAN
      (interrupting)
    This is very interesting.  You get your
    ideas for your column from life.  You
    start up a conversation with a woman in
    a bar, attack her choice of reading
    material, try and get a rise out of her
    while you contemplate whether or not
    she's worth hitting on.

          IKE
    No, I can't hit on you until I get an
    idea.

  She starts throwing darts.

          WOMAN
    That's flattering.

          IKE
    No, you don't understand.

  The Woman goes to her bar stool, gathering her bag and leaves a
  tip for the Bartender.

          WOMAN
    I think I do understand.  So my not
    responding to your baiting me will
    inspire one of those potential bitter
    diatribes you love to write about women
    and all the things we do to drive men
    crazy?

          IKE
      (taken aback)
    I don't write bitter diatribes about
    women... very often.

  She whacks him with a newspaper, then shakes his hand.

          WOMAN
    Only when the ideas aren't flowing,
    huh?  Well, it was very nice to meet
    you, one-minute man.

  The Woman leaves the bar.

          IKE
      (as she exits)
    That's last minute man.
      (then, louder)
    And it's the quality that counts.

          BARTENDER
    You know, for a good looking man, you
    strike out a lot.

          MAN
    I've seen much worse.

  The phone rings.  Te Bartender answers it as Ike sits back on
  his bar stool.  Ike grabs the woman's magazine that she left on
  the bar and starts glancing at it.  The Man at the bar has heard
  the whole thing.

          MAN (cont'd)
    I said, I've seen much worse.

  Ike looks at the Man with reservation.  The Man is George
  Swilling.

          IKE
    Excuse me?

          MAN
    The brush-off.

  Ike gets up and moves to the dart board.  He removes the darts.

          MAN (cont'd)
    I've witnessed far more treacherous and
    nefarious exits than that.  At least
    she castigated you in private.

          IKE
    Not as private as I thought.

  Ike turns slightly, giving the man his back.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Kevin, you've got some napkins?

          BARTENDER
    Writing or wiping?

          IKE
    Give me a pen.

  The Bartender gives him cocktail napkins and a pen.  Ike starts
  making notes.  Ike looks up from his writing.  The Man gets up
  and starts throwing darts.

          MAN
      (throwing darts hard)
    Ah, come on.  They deserve it.  They
    love you, they hate you, they're hot,
    they're cold, they're high, they're
    low...

          IKE
    ... They're up, they're down.  It's
    really fun making this list with you,
    but I've got a column to go write.

          BARTENDER
    Ike.

          MAN
      (undeterred)
    But you don't have a really superb idea!
    Well, there's a girl from my hometown
    you could write about.

  Ike moves to the Bartender and pays him.

          BARTENDER
      (to Man)
    Excuse me, we don't need any new ideas.

          MAN
    She likes to dump grooms right at the
    altar.  They call her "The Runaway
    Bride".

  Both Ike and Bartender turn and stare.

          MAN
    She performed the travesty seven or
    eight times.  Right at the altar she
    turns around and runs like hell.
    Bolts.

  Ike turns and heads for the door.  The Man calls after him,
  getting up from his stool without stopping his enthusiastic
  story.

          MAN (cont'd)
    Adios.  Plows down the aisle, knocking
    old ladies out of her way like the
    running of the bulls at Pamplona.  And
    guess what?

          IKE
    I give up.

          MAN
    She has the next victim all lined up.
    She's twirling another body on the
    spit.

  Ike stops in his tracks.  He turns back around in spite of
  himself.

          MAN
      (beginning his story)
    Imagine if you will, a small town in
    Maryland...

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S APARTMENT - DUSK

  Ike sits at his computer, cassette player with Miles Davis PLAYS
  next to him as he types away reading his handiwork to himself.

          IKE
      (reading)
    "Today is a day of profound
    introspection, I have been accused
    of using this column to direct bitter
    diatribes at the opposite sex!  This
    uncomfortable accusation has plunged me
    into at least fifteen minutes of
    serious reflection, from which I have
    emerged with the conclusion that, yes
    -- I traffic in female stereotypes."

  EXT. USA TODAY OFFICE - DAY

  FISHER walks through the main office reading the paper.

          FISHER
    "But how can one blame me when every
    time I step out my front door I meet
    fresh proof that the female archetypes
    are alive and well?  Te mother, the
    virgin, the whore, the crone; they're
    elbowing you in the subway, stealing
    your cabs, and overwhelming you with
    perfume in elevators."

  INT. USA TODAY OFFICE - CONTINUOUS

  Elaine at her desk reads aloud to herself.

          ELAINE
    "But perhaps, in fairness to the fairer
    sex, I do need to broaden my horizon
    and add some new goddesses to the
    pantheon: I would like to nominate for
    deity..."

  Fisher hands a file to Elaine.

          FISHER
    "... The cheerleader, the coed, and the
    man-eater, the last of which concerns me
    most today."

  Fisher leaves and we hold a USA Today sign.

              CUT TO:

  INT. NEW YORK BAR - DAY

  The Man comes out of the men's room reading the USA Today,
  Kevin, the Bartender, stands on the bar reading the same
  article.

          MAN
      (reads)
    "To be fair, the man-eater isn't
    exactly new.  In Ancient Greece, this
    fearsome female was known as Erinys,
    the devouring death goddess.  In India,
    she is Kali, who likes to devour her
    boyfriend Shiva's entrails while her
    yoni devour his -- dot dot dot, never
    mind.  In Indonesia, the bloody-jawed
    man-eater is called Ragma..."

  Te Man sits at the bar near to the Bartender.

          BARTENDER
    You noticed these are all countries
    without cable.
      (then, continues
       reading)
    "... And in Hale, Maryland where she
    helps run the family hardware store.
    She is known as Miss Maggie Carpenter
    ..."
      (mispronounces)
    ".... AKA, the Runaway Bride."

              CUT TO:

  EXT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCK - DAY

  WORKERS read the above article.

  INT./EXT. BEAUTY PARLOR / HALE, MARYLAND - DAY

  PEGGY and MRS. PRESSMAN exit the parlor and stroll down the
  street. (lowers her paper and reads.)

          PEGGY (cont'd)
    "... And in Hale, Maryland where she
    helps run the family hardware store."
      (to the Women)
    We have to go to Maggie.  Cindy, mind
    the shop.
      (exits salon;
       continues reading)
    "... She is known as Miss Maggie
    Carpenter, AKA, the Runaway Bride."

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Holy moly.

  The older one, Mrs. Pressman, listens with a pained expression
  as the younger one, Peggy, continues to read the column aloud.
  Neither one can believe what they're reading.

          PEGGY
      (reads)
    "What is unusual about Miss Carpenter
    is that she likes to dress her men up
    as grooms before she devours them.  She
    has already disemboweled six in a row
    by leaving them at the altar."... I
    can't ready anymore.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
      (takes paper from
       her, reads)
    "And her ritual feast continues as she
    prepares to make a sacrifice out of the
    seventh fiance.  So all bets are on and
    we hope that this boomerang bride isn't
    honeymooning with Las Vegas odds makers
    because many predict that this girl is
    out of there before the race... before
    the rice hits the ground"
      (then)
    Holy moly.

  Peggy and Mrs. Pressman step into a hardware store.

  INT. HARDWARE STORE - CONTINUOUS

  Peggy and Mrs. Pressman enter, worried.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    You tell Maggie.

          PEGGY
    No, you tell her.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    No, no.  You're her best friend.

          PEGGY
    No.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
      (holding her
       newspaper)
    You know, it's just possible that she
    hasn't read this yet.

          PEGGY
    Yeah.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Maybe she hasn't read the paper...

  On the counter, they see a copy of USA Today opened to the
  article about Maggie.

          MRS. PRESSMAN (cont'd)
    ... Or not!

  We follow MAGGIE down the back stairs inside The Hale Hardware
  Store, the prettiest, most welcoming shop of its kind anywhere
  in small town USA.  Somehow the place ha taken on the spirit of
  the owner's daughter; both stop and shop-girl radiate brightness,
  charm, and possibility.  Maggie comes down steps with a faucet
  handle and goes to an elderly customer, MR. PAXTON.

          MAGGIE
      (bright)
    Here we go!  One antique hot water
    handle with the "HOT" still on it,
    guaranteed to fit any American Standard
    cast iron tub with a four-inch center
    made between 1924 and 1938.  In other
    words, I think you're out of the
    doghouse with Mrs. Paxton.

          MR. PAXTON
      (amazed)
    Hallelujah.

          MAGGIE
    Alright, Mr. Paxton, I'll put it on
    your account.

  Maggie rounds the bend, another customer, EARL, stands by the
  paint machine.

          EARL
    Maggie.

          MAGGIE
      (walking past customer)
    You don't need an air conditioner, Earl,
    you just need an attic fan -- There's
    more in the back.

  Maggie steps behind the front counter of the store and takes the
  account book out.  Her voice trails off as she sees the dour
  expression on the faces of her friends.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    What?

  Peggy nervously mentions the newspaper.

          PEGGY
      (delicate)
    So -- Mag -- you've seen this, huh?

          MAGGIE
      (serious)
    Yes, I've seen it.  And I have to say
    it's the rudest and most offensive...
    joke anybody's ever played on me!

  To their amazement, Maggie starts smiling.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    You guys!  How long did this take you?

  Maggie stays amused.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Where'd you get this done?
      (laughing)
    You creeps!  I should disinvite you!
    And why did you say seven times?  This
    is four.

          PEGGY
    Uh, Maggie, you told us to bachelorette
    jokes, so we didn't...

  Maggie looks at the stricken face of her friends.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Holy moly.

  Peggy looks like she is going to cry with sympathy for Maggie.
  Maggie is starting to feel uncomfortable.  She looks down,
  dubiously, at the paper.

          MAGGIE
    Um, you know, now would be a good
    moment to tell me this is fake.
      (no response)
    It won't be funny if you drag it out.
    Okay?
      (no response)
    Okay, well... I mean, I can find out...
    Real newspapers smear.  Phoney papers
    don't.

  She picks up the paper and brushes it against her apron, leaving
  an INK SMEAR!!

  She nearly kneels over.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
      (sitting)
    Bag.

  Peggy and Mrs. Pressman immediately spring to her side.  They
  give her a bag to breathe in.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Bag.

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKOUT ROOM/GYM - NIGHT

  We see Maggie kickboxing in anger.  The radio is on.  She
  suddenly stops, yanks Ike's article off the wall, leaves her
  workout area and goes to her desk.

  ANGLE ON DESK AREA:

  She turns off the radio and begins to type her letter.

          MAGGIE (V.O.)
      "Dear Editor..."

  EXT. MANHATTAN - DAY - ESTABLISHING SHOT

  As Maggie's VOICE-OVER continues to read her letter, we take in
  a Manhattan busy day.  It is big, loud, and anonymous.

          MAGGIE (V.O.; cont'd)
    "Greeting from the sticks!  Perhaps you
    believe that a rural education is
    focused mainly on hog calling and
    tractor maintenance rather than reading.
    Why else would you print a piece of
    fiction about me and call it fact?"

  Te CAMERA FINDS Ike, striding across a busy street, dodging
  taxies.  A WOMAN smacks him with a newspaper.  He passes a WOMAN
  TRAFFIC OFFICER, then a hot dog stand.  He greets and passes a
  FALAFEL VENDOR.  THE CAMERA PANS to a USA Today Truck.

          MAGGIE (V.O.; cont'd)
    "I suppose Mr. Graham was too busy
    thinking us slanderous statements about
    how I dump men for kicks to bother with
    something silly like accuracy in
    reporting.  Which is understandable,
    because with a "man-eater" like me on
    the loose, who has time to check facts?"

  EXT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCKS - CONTINUOUS

  He passes regular GUYS who cheer him.

          MAGGIE (V.O.; cont'd)
    "Still, we cannibalistic queens can get
    pretty cranky when we see things in
    print that hurt our feelings, like that
    we deliberately abandon fiances with
    malice aforethought."

  INT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCKS - CONTINUOUS

  He enters the newspaper building, going to Ellie's office.

  INT. USA TODAY OFFICE - CONTINUOUS

  He walks through the crowded city room.  His arrival attracts a
  lot of attention from his CO-WORKERS.  Ike seems a little
  surprised, but he's pleased.

          MAGGIE (V.O.; cont'd)
    "That's why I was surprised to find Mr.
    Graham's editor was a woman. Call me a
    sentimental fool, but I sort of hoped
    we man-eater could stick together."

  Ike works his way down the hall to the editor's office.  CHUFFA
  Ike greets various workers.  He steps up to the editor's
  secretary, ELAINE.  She doesn't smile.

          IKE
      (to Elaine)
    I'll put in a good word for you.

          ELAINE
    No, no, don't mention my name in there.

          IKE
    Why?

  A buzz.

          ELAINE
    You can go in now.

  Ike goes into Ellie's office.  Elaine picks up her phone.

              CUT TO:

  INT. ELLIE'S OFFICE - CONTINUOUS

  ELLIE is that editor.  Stylish and successful looking, she's
  about Ike's age.  Ellie sits behind a big desk with a scowl on
  her pretty face.  Her casual-looking husband, Fisher, sits
  nonchalantly on the arm of the couch.  Ike enters as Ellie reads
  Maggie's letter.

          ELLIE
      (reading letter)
    "Anyway, I'm just dropping you big city
    folk this little note to say that I have
    thought of a ritual sacrifice that would
    satisfy my current appetite: Ike
    Graham's column on a platter.  Yours
    truly, Maggie Carpenter.  P.S. -- I
    have inclosed a list of the gross
    factual misrepresentations in your
    article.  There are fifteen."

  Ike sits as Ellie puts the letter down and takes off her glasses.

          IKE
      (chuckles as he sits)
    Fully.  I like her.  She has wit.

          ELLIE
    I left four messages.  You don't return
    my calls.

          IKE
    So?  I never returned your calls, even
    when we were married.  And what's
    Fisher doing here anyway?

  Fisher gets and places a photo of the cat on a bookshelf on his
  way to the other side of the room.

          FISHER
    Ellie asked me to come down to offer
    moral support.

          IKE
    Since when does Ellie need moral supp--

          ELLIE
    -- It's for you, Ike.

          IKE
    What?

          ELLIE
    Journalism lesson number one.  If you
    fabricate your facts, you get fired.

  Ellie pushes USA Today lawyer's letter across the desk for him
  to read.  Ike picks it up and skims the letter.  His face is as
  impassive as stone.

          IKE
    Lesson number two.  Never work for your
    former spouse.

          ELLIE
    That's not nothing to do with it.  You
    cooked this story up and you know it.

          IKE
    I didn't cook up a story.  I had a
    source.

          ELLIE
    Someone reliable, I'm sure.  A booze-
    hound in a bar?

          FISHER
    In vino veritas.

          IKE
    Don't knock drunk guys in bars.  Drunk
    guys in bars are good.  It means
    they're not driving.

  Ike gets up and stands near Ellie, making his point.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Besides, I'm a columnist.  This is what
    columnists are supposed to do.  This is
    what you like.  We push, we stretch, we
    go out on a limo.  That's what makes me
    good!

          ELLIE
    No, that's what makes you unemployed.

          IKE
    I merely write the stuff.  You're the
    one that serves it up.

  Ike puts down the letter and puts his glasses back into his
  pocket.

          ELLIE
    Not anymore.  I have to draw the line.
      (pushing a piece
       of paper)
    She sent us this list.  Our lawyers say
    it's actionable.

  Ellie hands Ike Maggie's list.

          IKE
      (scoffs)
    Lawyers.
      (glances at list)
    I don't know, Ellie -- Firing me is
    going to be very tough on you.  It's
    going to be hard to get over.  There
    will be therapy bills for you.

          ELLIE
      (shrugs)
    I already made an appointment for later
    today.

          IKE
      (putting the list
       down, standing)
    See?  You want custody of my job? ...
    Why not just consider my wrist slapped
    and call me when you feel I've served
    my time?

          ELLIE
    I'm sorry, Ike.  This is permanent.

  Fisher winces and looks away.  Ike and Ellie look at each other
  for a sober moment.

          ELLIE (V.O.; cont'd)
    If you go quietly, I'll get you
    severance pay.

  Ellie fidgets with her toy rake, then Ike heads for the door.
  He laughs a little at the painful truth of her words and walks
  out.  Ellie collapses back in her chair.  Fisher goes to her and
  rubs her shoulders.

  EXT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCK - DAY

  Ike rides sadly on the back of a forklift, gets off and walks
  out.

  EXT. HALE RESIDENTIAL STREET - ANOTHER MORNING

  ANGLE ON MAGGIE'S HOUSE:

  A train goes by.  A modest clapboard house with a porch.  Two
  entrances.  A PAPERBOY tosses a paper onto the lawn in front of
  the house.  The front door opens and Maggie appears fresh out of
  bed, wearing only a jacket and panties.  Heedless of being seen
  this way, she scampers out to the sidewalk to pick up her
  delivered paper:  USA Today.  She tears off the plastic bag and
  rips into it, looking for her letter.  She finds it.  A smile on
  her face, then she scampers back into the house.

  INT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - THAT MOMENT

  Maggie skips back into her house which she shares with Father
  and Grandma.  A cozy and eclectic place creatively furnished on
  a shoe-string.  She rushes into:  KITCHEN WHERE BOB KELLY,
  fiance #4, is packing cans into a backpack.  Bob, 38, has a
  pleasant face and a body that is almost shockingly buff.  He's
  wearing a T-shirt that reads: "Mountaineers Do It Against the
  Wall.", Maggie dances over, waving the paper and singing.

          MAGGIE
    She canned him, she canned him...

  Bob test the weight of the backpack adding dehydrate food.

          BOB
    Come here, Mag, and try this on.

  Maggie puts the paper on the kitchen counter and starts to read
  aloud, paying no mind to Bob, who is sticking her arms through
  the straps of the backpack.

          MAGGIE
    Listen: "Dear Ms. Carpenter, I
    apologize to you for this unfortunate
    matter.  Ike Graham's column will no
    longer be appearing in this paper.
    Best of luck in you upcoming marriage!"

  Bob continues to hold up the weight of the backpack as he straps
  it onto Maggie's shoulders.

          BOB
    That-a-girl!  You sacked him.
      (checking pack)
    This is the weight of the pack you're
    going to have to carry in the Himalayas.
    Tell me if it's too heavy.

  Bob lets go and Maggie FALLS BACKWARD, disappearing behind the
  counter, and hitting the floor, with a THUD.  Bob looks down at
  her.  Maggie's voice rises from the floor behind the counter.

          MAGGIE (o.s.)
    It's a little... It's a little heavy...
    Help me, baby.

  Bob has no answer.  He reaches a hand down.  He yelps as Maggie
  pulls him down on top of her, out of frame.  We HEAR them giggle
  and kiss.

  INT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCK - ANOTHER DAY

  Fisher uses the dock for a photo shoot featuring men and women
  in evening and formal wear from Escada for G.Q.  Fisher is not
  actually shooting the camera, but rather supervising it.
  Fisher claps his hands and calls the models to attention.  Then
  he goes onto the stage and sets the models in their positions.

          FISHER (cont'd)
    Remember, we are putting the "fun" back
    into formal.
      (to Ike)
    I just say that for the agency guys.  I
    don't even know what that means.  Now
    follow me.

  INT. USA TODAY OBSERVATION ROOM - DAY

  Elevator doors open.  Ike and Fisher exit and walk towards the
  coffee table.

          FISHER
    Ike, I really liked the Runaway Bride
    piece, and since I do freelance stuff
    for G.Q., I'm in a different position
    now...

          IKE
    What are you trying to say to me, Fish?

  They stop walking.

          FISHER
    Vindication.  How would you like to get
    some?  A chance to prove that, though
    your facts weren't entirely straight,
    your theory was correct.

          IKE
      (hiding his hope)
    The real story on Miss Carpenter.

          FISHER
    All the gory details.

  They start walking again.

          IKE
      (excited)
    The anatomy of the black widow spider
    of Maryland.

          FISHER
    It wouldn't be a bad way to get you
    back into writing feature pieces
    again.

          IKE
      (enthusiastically)
    This is good.  It is a good story,
    Fish.

  They stop at the coffee table and grab something to eat.

          FISHER
      (nods)
    If she runs, then it's a cover story.
    All true.  All accurate.

          IKE
      (confesses)
    Okay, you were right.  I hated my
    column, but I can do this assignment.

          FISHER
    Then you've got it.  If you leave
    tomorrow for the hinterlands, you'll
    have plenty of time before her next
    wedding trot.

          IKE
    "Paid vindication"  That's what I call
    justice.

          FISHER
    Justice, yes.  Paid, I don't know.
    They like the idea, but my hands are
    tied with budget restraints.

          IKE
    But I'll get my normal fee, right?

  He walks away.

          IKE
    You want me to do it on spec?!

  He follows him.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. MARYLAND HIGHWAY - DAY

  We see Ike driving down the highway.  The car sputters a little
  as he and Fisher continue their conversation in voice-over. (If
  needed by the editor.)

          FISHER (V.O.)
    Don't say "spec" like it's a dirty word.
    Nobody ever paid Shakespeare to write a
    play!  Plato never got a book advance...

          IKE (V.O.)
    Oh yeah!  I happen to know from
    reliable sources that Nietzche got
    expenses and a rental car.

  We hear Fisher laugh.

          IKE (V.O.; cont'd)
    I'm going to make this work, Fish.  I'm
    going to do it!

  Ike's car drives into Hale, passing a billboard reading,
  "Welcome to Hale."

              CUT TO:

  EXT. HALE STREET - DAY

  Ike drives down picturesque Main Street.  He passes Hale
  Hardware.  Sign says: "At Curl.  Be back soon."

  EXT. ATLANTIC HOTEL - DAY

  A BARBERSHOP QUARTET is singing in front of the only hotel in
  town.  Ike pulls up and goes inside.

  INT. LOBBY/ATLANTIC HOTEL - DAY

  Ike has checked into the Atlantic Hotel.  The clerk, LEE, hands
  him his key.  Ike asks about room service and the restaurant.
  An OLDER WOMAN asks him if he plays bridge as he goes up the
  stairs to his room.

  EXT. HALE MAIN STREET - DAY

  Ike exits his hotel as the Barber Shop Quartet finishes singing
  "Camptown Races."

  He now walks down the charming main artery of the town, looking
  exactly like what he is:  a cynical New York out of his element
  on sunny Main Street, USA.  KIDS ride by on bikes, streaming
  balloons behind them.  A balloon hits Ike on the face.  As he
  crosses the street, he mutters into his tape recorder:

          IKE
    I think I'm in Maryberry.

  Flags hang on all the storefronts and the place sparkles with
  wholesome attitudes as PEOPLE greet each other familiarly.  Ike
  comes to beauty parlor called "Curl Up and Dye".  The place is
  doing business and crowded with WOMEN.

  INT. BEAUTY PARLOR - DAY

  Cindy, the manicurist, does Mrs. Pressman's nails.  Maggie sits
  on the floor next to Peggy's salon chair, fixing the base of a
  barber chair.  She tightens a screw and looks up, satisfied.
  Cindy's dog is on the floor near Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Cindy, you better 86 Sprout.  He seems
    to be enjoying the petroleum
    distillates.

  Cindy rolls over in her chair, picks up her dog and rolls back
  to her station.

          CINDY
    That's it.  Back to obedience school.

          MAGGIE
      (to Peggy)
    Okay -- have a seat... gently,
    carefully.

  Peggy sits in the chair.  Maggie spins her around and around.

          PEGGY
      (delighted as
       she spins)
    You're a goddess!

          MAGGIE
    I didn't even need to change this
    gasket, just put in a little hydraulic
    fluid.

          PEGGY
    Stop it.  When you talk like that, I
    get turned on and it frightens me.

  JUST THEN.  Ike enters the salon, taking off his sunglasses.
  Peggy hops off the chair.

          IKE
    Hello.  I'm looking for Maggie
    Carpenter.  There was a sign at the
    hardware store across the street...

          PEGGY
    Are you a reporter?

  It's a little early in the game for Ike to be thrown off guard.

          IKE
      (shocked)
    What?

          PEGGY
      (eyeing his loafers)
    It's been our experience that anyone
    with some sort of gewgaw on his loafers
    ends up being another big city reporter
    wanting to interview Maggie.

          IKE
    About her upcoming wedding and all.

          PEGGY
    No, about her getting that asshole from
    New York fired.

  Ike smiles down at his loafers and shrugs.

          IKE
    I am just such a reporter.  And you are?

          PEGGY
    Peggy Phleming.  Not the ice skater.

  Peggy steps aside.  Ike moves toward Cindy and Mrs. Pressman.

          IKE
    And who are these lovely ladies?

  Te ladies shake his hand and introduce themselves.

          CINDY
    Cindy.  Maggie's unmarried cousin.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Mrs. Pressman.  No relation.

          PEGGY
    And you are?

          IKE
      (turning toward her)
    Looking for Maggie.

          PEGGY
    Yep.  Maggie -- Someone to see you.

  Maggie looks over from her sitting position on the floor.  She
  gives Ike the once-over, focusing on the shoes.

          MAGGIE
      (yelling to Peggy)
    Reporter?

          PEGGY
    Yup!

  Ike crouches to see Maggie on the floor just as she rises to her
  feet.  Ike straightens up.  For a moment, he is thrown by her
  beauty and intelligent eyes.

          MAGGIE
    I hope you have a different angle.
    It's pretty much all been covered.

          IKE
    Originality is my speciality.

          MAGGIE
    Excellent.

          PEGGY
    Hold on -- Nobody interviews Maggie in
    here unless they're getting haircut.

          MAGGIE
    She's the boss.

          IKE
    Sorry, no.  I just got one.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
      (to Ike)
    Excuse me, sir.  I have an actual fact
    for you.

          IKE
      (steps to Mrs. Pressman)
    Yes, Mrs. Pressman.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    It's her fourth time to the altar, you
    know.  Not seven like they said.

          IKE
    I know.  Tell me something.  Do you
    think she's going to make it all the
    way this time?

  During the Ike/Mrs. Pressman exchange, Maggie looks at Ike.
  There's something familiar about him.  She looks over at Peggy
  and beckons her to a copy of Ike's column affixed to a mirror.
  A goatee and horns, have been scrawled on Ike's byline picture.
  He's been "devilized".  Peggy coughs as she recognizes Ike in
  the newspaper clipping.

          MAGGIE
    She swallowed her gun.

  Mrs. Pressman continues her story to Ike.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    I'm not sure.  Mr. Schullian runs the
    newsstand, he's our local bookie, you
    know, he's giving eight to one odds she
    won't.  He says she's so famous now,
    maybe Vegas will give odds on her.  I'm
    going to wait to hear what the pros say.

          IKE
    Good fact.  Well, you let me know.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Oh, I will.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie indicates column to Peggy.  She looks over at the part of
  the shop used to wash and dye hair.  There's a sink, stool and a
  cabinet affixed to the wall above sink, which holds various
  shampoos and hair dyes.  Maggie gets an idea.  Maggie and Peggy
  step forward toward Ike.

          MAGGIE
    Well, instead of a haircut, how about
    a wash?  You know, get all that city
    grit out of it.

          IKE
    You'll answer my questions?

  Maggie nods affirmatively.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (removing his jacket)
    Fine.  You wash, I'll ask the
    questions.

          PEGGY
    Great.

  Ike hands Peggy his jacket.  A mystified Peggy leads Ike to the
  sink.  While she does this...

          MAGGIE
    Have a seat.  Peggy, why don't you give
    him the special treatment that
    strengthens the follicles.

  Ike sits in the chair near the sink.  Maggie shakes out a smock
  and puts it around Ike.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    So, what do you want to know?

  Ike leans and rests his head on the sink.  Peggy bends over him
  and wets his hair.  She grabs various hair coloring products.

          IKE
    Getting nervous?

          MAGGIE
    Nervous?  Not at all!  No.  I've never
    been more certain in my life.  Except
    -- I am having all kinds of weird
    dreams.

  Ike pulls the cloth down from over his face.

          IKE
    Weird dreams?  You're going to tell me
    about them?

          MAGGIE
    Yes.

          PEGGY
      (calming)
    Let's just put this back here for the
    aromatherapy.

  Peggy recovers his face, then continues to fuss with the hair
  coloring products.  Maggie helps.

  INT. BEAUTY PARLOR - LATER

  Ike sits with a towel over his head as Peggy blow-dries the back
  of his head.  His back is to the mirror, his body faces Maggie.
  Cindy does her own nails as Mrs. Pressman scratches off lottery
  tickets.  The dog, Sprout, sits in is basket.

          MAGGIE
    In another one...

  PETE, wearing a hat, comes in the front door of the salon.

          PEGGY
    Hey, Pete, I'll be right with you.

  Ike peeks out from under his towel as Maggie continues.

          MAGGIE
    I'm inside the church.  Everyone I know
    is there, only they're not really them.
    They're like Frankenstein monsters, but
    without the bolts coming out of their
    necks.  It's all very "Night of the
    Living Dead".  And here's the creepiest
    part -- I look down at my dress and
    it's red.  I mean, I have no idea what
    it means.  Red's not my color!

  Ike listens intently and stares steadily into her eyes.  Peggy
  removes the towel.  His hair is divided into equal parts and
  dyed orange and red.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    So what do you think?

  Ike stares back at her, the tickle of suspicion creeping up his
  spine.

          IKE
    I think you'd look good in red.

          PEGGY
    No, she's talking about your hair.

  Maggie swivels his chair so that Ike faces the mirror.  Ike
  looks at his brightly colored hair.

          MAGGIE
    You're all ready for football season,
    Mr. Graham.

  Ike stares at his hair in total confusion.  With icy calm, Ike
  rises from his chair and primps the end of his hair as if giving
  it the finishing touches.  Then he sees his defaced newspaper
  clipping and all becomes clear.  He picks up the article and
  shows it to everyone.  Ike does a slow burn.

          IKE
    Yes, I think I nailed the personality
    profile of the women of Hale.

  Ike turns and puts the clipping up on the mirror.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (to Peggy)
    My jacket, please.

  Peggy hands him his jacket.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (sarcastically)
    Thank you.

  Ike moves toward the door.  He spots Pete.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (putting on jacket;
       to Pete)
    Excuse me, Pete, do you know a place
    that sells shampoo... Strong shampoo?

      PETE
    Doc's Pharmacy.  Third and Elm.  Tell
    him Pete sent you.  Want my hat?

          IKE
    No thanks.

  Ike smiles at Maggie and exits.

          MAGGIE
      (to Peggy)
    He seems crabby.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. MAIN STREET - DAY

  In front of beauty salon, Maggie follows Ike out.

          MAGGIE
    If you're looking for Elm Street, it's
    that way.

  She puts on her sunglasses.

          IKE
    Thank you.

  He walks the other way.

          MAGGIE
    If you came down here in the pursuit of
    happiness, you might as well go back.
    Because you can't make me feel bad.

  She stops walking and turns to Ike.

          IKE
    I'm not here to make you feel bad.  I'm
    here for vindication.  In my heart...

          MAGGIE
    You have one?

  Ike walks back to Maggie.

          IKE
    I feel I'm right about you.  You got me
    fired, lady.  You destroyed my
    reputation and you screwed up my hair.
    You chew men up, spit them out and
    loved it.  And I'm down here to satisfy
    myself on that point.

  PASSERSBY stare at Ike's hair and giggle.

          MAGGIE
    Did something happen to make you care
    about reality?

          IKE
    Yes.  Conviction.  Conviction that I'm
    onto the truth.  You're going to do the
    same thing to "poor bastard number four"
    that you did to the last three.  You're
    going to run again.  And I'm not
    leaving until you do.

          MAGGIE
    You're going to be very disappointed.

          IKE
    We'll see.

          MAGGIE
    I'd love to stay and chat, but I've got
    to get back to work.  I still have my
    job.

  He stares at her for a beat, stung by her words.

          MAGGIE
    I have nothing to hide, Mr. Graham.
    Talk to whoever you want.  You might
    actually stumble upon a fact or two.

  Maggie walks away.  Ike walks a few steps and stops at a KID on
  a bike.

          IKE
    Hey, kid, I'll give you ten bucks for
    your hat.

  Kid agrees.  Ike puts the hat on and starts to cross the street.
  An OLD WOMAN walks by and hits him with a newspaper.  Ike is
  stunned.

  EXT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - DUSK

  Maggie pulls into the driveway in her truck.  She's in a fine
  mood as she walks right in the house.

  INT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - DUSK

  Bob, Walter, and Maggie's GRANDMOTHER JULIA sit in the living
  room.  Grandma is sewing one of Maggie's wedding veils.  Walter
  drinks wine, Ike wears a hat.

          WALTER
    You know, when I only see one dog, I
    know I've had too much to drink.

  Te family dog, Skipper, sits near a ceramic dog table.  Maggie
  smiles as she walks in the front door and puts down her tool box
  and bag.

          MAGGIE
    You'll never guess who came crawling
    into town with his tail between his
    legs.

          IKE (o.s.)
    Who?

  Maggie enters the parlor to see Ike smiling evilly from his seat
  on the couch.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (innocently)
    Hello, Maggie.  I just came by to
    apologize to your family.
      (looks to Walter)
    When I'm wrong, I'm wrong.  I pushed a
    story.  I made a mistake.

          WALTER
    In other words -- he's only human.  An
    he brought us a bottle of wine.

  Raises the bottle to Maggie.

          IKE
    They made me put my hat back on.

          WALTER
    Oh, yeah.  Scared the hell out of
    Skipper.

          MAGGIE
    You've got to be kidding me.

  Maggie stares at them both.

          BOB
      (enjoying the moment)
    No, no, you should have seen Skipper.
      (then, imitates
       growling)
    It wasn't that funny.

  Maggie gives him a look that says, "You are not absolved."  She
  smiles stiffly, looking back at Ike.  She then sits on the arm
  of Bob's chair and puts her arm on his shoulder.

          MAGGIE
    So, the forces of good and evil have
    already met.

  Maggie takes the wine bottle from the table next to Walter.  She
  snaps a look to Bob, who follows her.

          BOB
    I'll help you take into the kitchen.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Check on the crabs, Bob.

  We overhear them murmuring in annoyed tones about the wedding
  plans as they exit... Walter puts down his drink.

          IKE
    Gee, I hope they don't have a fight out
    there.  You don't think they'll call it
    off...?

          WALTER
    Well, wedding cake freezes.  This we
    know.

          IKE
    You know, your daughter seems...

  Ike notices that he's been sewn to the veil.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Sorry.

          IKE
    That's okay, Grandma.

  Grandma cuts the thread and separates the veil from Ike's sleeve.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (continuing his thought)
    ... Like such a lovely girl.

  Walter points to a portrait painting on the wall.

          WALTER
    Like her mother.

          IKE
      (seeing the portrait)
    Ah, beautiful.
      (gets up to admire
       the portrait)
    I just can't see her leaving multiple
    grooms in the dust like that.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Oh, yes, you can.  She's has 'em all on
    tape.

          IKE
    She has a tape?

          WALTER
      (good-natured)
    Yeah.  Lee at the hotel videos wedding.
    I mean Maggie didn't know she was going
    to make the hundred-yard dash.

  Walter gestures to a pile of video cassettes on the bookcase.
  Ike checks on the tapes.

          IKE
    Dad's fishing trip, Grandma's knee
    operation, Grandma's birthday...

          WALTER
    Gotta tell you this about my daughter.
    My daughter makes real good time, even
    in a long dress and heels.  Maggie may
    not be Hale's longest running joke, but
    she certainly is the fastest.

  Walter cracks up.

          GRANDMA JULIA
      (sarcastically)
    Ha ha.

  CLOSE ON:  A tape.  It reads: "Maggie I, II, III."  Ike's
  interest is more than piqued.  Ike picks it up.  They get up and
  go to the dining room.

              DISSOLVE TO:

  INT. DINNING ROOM/MAGGIE'S HOUSE - NIGHT

  The family dog, Skipper, steals food from the table.  Walter
  scolds him.  Walter whacks his crab with his hammer and Ike
  copies him.

          WALTER (cont'd)
    Emma and I were only blessed with one
    child, not for lacking of trying.

          MAGGIE
    This is good, Dad, don't leave anything
    out.

  Ike's hammer flies out of his hand.  He goes to pick it up.

          WALTER
    So I've come to see it as a bonus,
    really, that we've been able to plan,
    and pay for, so many weddings.

          MAGGIE
    Not this one.  This one's on me.

  Walter reacts.

          IKE
    That's fair.

          MAGGIE
    Despite what you think, I don't do it
    on purpose.  And I have no intention of
    doing it again.

          BOB
    That's right, Maggie.  Just keep your
    eye on the ball.

  Ike raises his eyebrows in question.  Bob explains.

          BOB (cont'd)
    Sports psychology.  It was my major in
    college.

          IKE
    Ahh.

          BOB
      (false modesty)
    I'm the town's unofficial fitness
    trainer.  Big advocate of the mind and
    body combining for success.  You could
    say or you can quote me, I'm a glass
    half full king of guy.

          MAGGIE
      (boasting)
    Bob's the head of the P.E. department
    at the high school.  And he coaches the
    football team.  And he's climbed
    Everest.

  To Maggie's satisfaction, Ike shoots Bob a look of begrudging
  respect.  Nobody who's been up Everest is a total clown.

          IKE
      (impressed)
    Everest.  Is that right?

          MAGGIE
    Twice...

          IKE
    Really?

          MAGGIE
      (sticking it to Ike)
    Without oxygen...

          BOB
    My girl likes to brag about me.

  Bob and Maggie kiss Ike two little love-birds.

          BOB (cont'd)
    I'm taking her trekking on Annapurna on
    our honeymoon.

  Ike is highly amused.

          IKE
    How romantic.

          MAGGIE
      (sharply)
    We think so.

          IKE
    Nothing like sharing your nuptial bed
    with two Sherpas and a yak.

  Walter cracks up, Maggie shoots Ike a look.  He smiles back.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL ROOM/INT. FISHER AND ELLIE'S BEDROOM (NYC)

  INTERCUT TELEPHONE CONVERSATION

  Fisher and Ellie are exercising.  Fisher is on a cycle machine.
  Ellie does yoga stretches.  Ike sits back on the couch, puts on
  his glasses and watches a video taped wedding playing on the TV
  screen.  Superimposed titles read "Brian Norris wedding."

          IKE
      (to Fisher; into phone)
    You won't believe what I'm looking at,
    Fisher.  A videotape of all three train
    wrecks.

  THE TV - CLOSE

  Two flower girls and Peggy enter a crowded church where the
  groom, Brian, and his best man wait at the altar.

  Now we see Maggie come down the aisle, then walk past the altar.
  We see Maggie move away another aisle and out of the church.
  SHOCKED WEDDING GUESTS rise in horror, as she runs from this
  first wedding.  She drags the train boy up the second aisle as
  she leaves.  Ike hangs up.  He gets up to pick up the remote and
  then sits back down to watch.

  The tape fast-forwards to the next wedding.  Now Ike is looking
  at a much more relaxed, hipper, backyard wedding.  It says,
  "Gill Chavez Wedding".  He hits the fast-forward button
  (sometimes slowing down).

  ON TV:

  We see the Carpenter's backyard.  It is Gill and Maggie's
  wedding day.  The yard is crowded with a MIXTURE of Hells
  Angels-types, Deadheads and townspeople.  The "altar" is a band
  platform against the back fence.

  Gill is waiting on the platform with a rock combo playing
  Grateful Dead-type music.  He makes an introductory speech.

  Maggie steps out onto the back porch.  She's beautiful in a
  hippie-type wedding ensemble.  She walks with her father to a
  trampoline.  We can see her tattoo.  She jumps on the trampoline,
  then dives into the crowd.  They watch her and body surf her
  over their heads to the back fence.

  As she hits the stage, she looks at Peggy and Gill, then decides
  to go.  She jumps off the stage and runs up to a passing GUY on
  a dirt bike.  She jumps on and turns and waves as she rides
  away.  During the video, Ike scribbles: "Gill Chavez".  Maggie
  goes off on dirt bike.  The tape fast-forwards to the last of
  Maggie's fiascoes.

  ON IKE'STV

  He now sees the third wedding.  It's outdoors, in a tree lined
  area, MUSICIANS plays.  Ike laughs as he discovers that Maggie
  approaches the altar on horseback, in a simple white dress,
  wearing a crown of flowers.  The Maid Marian look.  Ike slows the
  tape.

  ON TV:  IT SAYS, "GEORGE SWILLING WEDDING".

  As Maggie rides down the aisle, suddenly the horse whinnies!

  Maggie has kicked it in the shins.  It rears and bolts,
  galloping off with the bride.  Ike FREEZE FRAMES the tape on an
  image of Maggie, hair blowing.  Although she is panic-stricken,
  her soul seems to shine through in tat single frame.  As Ike
  stares at her, the smirk fades from his face.  He just looks at
  her, allowing himself to see her expression, her eyes.  He can't
  help it.

  She gets to him.  Ike gets a restless look on his face.  He
  stares closely.  The groom is George from the bar.

          IKE
    Kamikaze!

              CUT TO:

  EXT. TE TROUT BAKERY - THE NEXT DAY

  Establishing.  High angle wide shot of a bakery in Hale.  Ike
  exits a neighboring shop and walks down the block.  He pauses in
  front of the bakery to take a look at Maggie's truck.  As he
  does, a middle-aged Black WOMAN walks by and whacks him with a
  newspaper.  Ike is stunned as she walks off.  He turns to a MAN
  sitting on a bench.

          IKE
    Did you see that?

              CUT TO:

  INT. THE TROUT BAKERY - CONTINUOUS

  CLOSE ON a group of plastic grooms and brides on a counter top.

  MRS. TROUT is behind the counter helping Maggie with a selection
  of grooms for her wedding cake.  The groom figures are spread out
  on the counter.  All sizes and colors, some attached to brides,
  some solo, some tuxes, some in dinner jackets.

          MRS. TROUT
    This one's very popular, but oh, you've
    used this one before... Brian.  But I
    like the white dinner jacket.

          MAGGIE
    No, he's no good.  Too blond.

          MRS. TROUT
      (picks up another)
    We'll go with total traditional.

          MAGGIE
    Too dark.

  Then, Ike comes up behind her as she discards another groom.

          IKE
    But he's got the Bobster's eyes.

  Maggie cringes at the sound of Ike's voice.

          IKE (cont'd)
    No -- the Bobster's eyes are closer set.

  She ignores him and continues her search.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (to Mrs. Trout)
    Could I have two coffees, please?  And
    what is that wonderful smell?
      (seeing the
       cinnamon rolls)
    I'll have two of those delicious
    looking cinnamon rolls.

          MRS. TROUT
    Sure.
      (picking up a
       miniature bride)
    Here, Maggie.  I think this makes the
    best you.

  Mrs. Trout steps away to get his order.  Ike moves to the other
  side of Maggie and picks up the bride and groom figure.

          IKE
    Let's see... Excuse me, isn't that cute?
    Ahh...

  He makes the bride figure repeatedly knock the groom figure in
  the head and run away screaming.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Bam, bam, bam, bam, bam!  Oh, help me!
    Help me!  Yup!  That's her all right.

  Mrs. Trout just about bursts a gut laughing.  Maggie takes the
  bride from Ike coldly.

          MRS. TROUT
    You must be that Mr. Graham fellow.

  Ike turns and goes to her.

          IKE
    Yes, I am.  And who are you?

          MRS. TROUT
    Betty Trout.  Five dollars.

          IKE
      (as he pays)
    Oh, Betty.  I take it you're going to
    be making the wedding cake and they say
    you're throwing --

          MRS. TROUT
      (interrupting)
    -- The luau for Maggie.

  She starts picking lint off his sleeve and buttons his cuff.

          MAGGIE
      (all smiles for
       Mrs. Trout)
    Grandma made me the cutest outfit.  I
    can't wait to show it to you.

          IKE
      (cynical delight)
    A pre-wedding luau?

          MRS. TROUT
    Yes.  My husband and I love luaus.
    It'll be fun.

  Mrs. Trout turns and grabs Ike's bag containing two coffees.

          IKE
    Fun?  Fun isn't the word.

  Mrs. Trout beams.  Maggie understands his answer a little better.
  Mrs. Trout hands Ike his items and he pays.

          MRS. TROUT
    If you're still in town, you should
    stop by.

          MAGGIE
    No, I'm sure he doesn't.

          IKE
      (to Mrs. Trout)
    Actually, I would love to come.
      (taps her service bell)
    Thank you.  Thank you so much.

  Maggie steps over, carrying her bride and groom figure choices.

          MAGGIE
      (exasperated)
    Is that what you're going to do now?
    Follow me around everywhere I go?

  Ike smiles at Maggie enigmatically as he picks up his order and
  heads for the door.

          IKE
    No.

  He starts to leave with his bag.  Mrs. Trout stops him.

          MRS. TROUT
      (handing him the
       other bag)
    Your two cinnamon rolls.

          IKE
    Bye, Betty.  Thanks.

  He leaves.

          MAGGIE
    He's not a nice person.

  Maggie hands Mrs. Trout her bride and broom figures.  Maggie
  looks at Mrs. Trout, suddenly nervous.  She dashes out.  Mrs.
  Trout imitates Ike bamming the bride and groom, laughing.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL FIELD - DAY

  Various High School SPORTS TEAMS practice.  Maggie strides across
  the football field, a scowl on her face.  A few HIGH SCHOOL
  FOOTBALL PLAYERS job past Maggie, doing laps.  A boy, KENDALL,
  calls out to her affectionately as she passes.  One of them,
  DENNIS, slows his pace to run alongside Maggie.

          DENNIS
      (playful)
    Maggie, don't marry Coach!  Marry me.
    I love you.

          MAGGIE
    You're jail bait, Dennis.  Go away.
    Run your laps.  Go. Go.

  Dennis runs on as Maggie continues toward her goal: Bob and Ike,
  standing together on the other side of the field.

  ANGLE ON BOB AND IKE

  They're both standing on the blocking sled.  Wave after wave of
  VARSITY FOOTBALL PLAYERS ram into the sled and drive it across
  the field with both Ike and Bob on top of it.  Ike is munching on
  one of the cinnamon rolls as Bob pushes the KIDS.

          BOB
    Drive!  Drive!  From your hips, get low,
    get low, get low.  Next!

  Ike smiles broadly atop of the sled as he sees Maggie
  approaching, looking mighty peeved.  He nudges Bob and points to
  Maggie.  Bob lights up at the sight of her.

          BOB (cont'd)
    Good job, gentlemen... Special teams.

  The football players move away from the sled.  Bob moves to
  Maggie, leaves Ike alone.

          BOB (cont'd)
      (to Maggie)
    Hey, honey!

  Bob kisses and embraces Maggie.  She doesn't see Ike immediately,
  then:

          MAGGIE
      (indicating Ike)
    What is he up to now?

          BOB
    Ike just came by to check out the team.

          IKE
    And talk about you.

  Ike grins and shows Maggie the notes in his pocket.

          MAGGIE
    Bob -- are you making friends with this
    man?

          BOB
    I'm just bragging about how great you
    are.  I'm the luckiest man alive.

  Bob grabs Maggie around the waist and smooches her adoringly.
  Maggie scowls at Ike.  He nods, all charm.

          IKE
    Well -- I've got to get moving -- lot
    of work to do today!  I'll see you two
    love-birds later.

  Ike leaves.  Bob calls after him.

          BOB
    See you at the wedding.

          IKE
    You bet ya, Coach.

  Maggie is aghast.  She stares at Bob.  Ike joins in behind a line
  of peppy cheerleaders.

          MAGGIE
    At the wedding?  You invite him?  Bob,
    don't you realize he's writing another
    article about me?

          BOB
    Sure I do.  But the bet defense is a
    good offense, right?  You're not going
    to let your opponent throw you off
    your game.

          MAGGIE
    You don't understand this guy.

          BOB
    Let him come to the wedding.  You're
    not running, right?  Say it. "I'm
    not..."

          MAGGIE
      (irritably)
    I'm not running.

          BOB
    So if you're not running and Ike Graham
    is there to see it, then any article he
    writes has got to have a happy ending,
    right?  All we're doing is turning
    lemon into lemonade.

          MAGGIE
    I've got news for you.  No amount of
    sugar and water is going to turn like
    Graham into something you want to take
    on a picnic.

  Bob gives Maggie a big hug.

          BOB
    Where's that homemade sunshine?

  Bob blows his whistle, then puts Maggie on the football sled.

          BOB (cont'd)
    I want you boys to take my princess on
    the ride of her life... Honey, tell 'em
    where you parked your car.

  Maggie screams as the boys push her down the football field.

  INT. CONFESSIONAL BOOTH/CHURCH - DAY

  Maggie kneels, hands folded reverently.  The booth's grate opens
  before her.

          MAGGIE
    Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.
    My last confession was... ahh...

  She tries to recall.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    ... Anyway, I have sort of a technical
    question here.  I've been having -- bad
    thoughts.  I mean, really bad thoughts
    ...

          PRIEST
    Of an impure nature?

          MAGGIE
    No -- like -- I'm having a problem with
    that whole turn-the-other-cheek concept.
    I want revenge.  I want to destroy this
    guy's life, career, everything. On the
    sin scale, how big is that?  I mean,
    can I "Hail Mary" my way out of it?

          PRIEST
    Child, any sin in one's heart is...

          MAGGIE
      (impatient)
    The name's Maggie.  It wasn't this side
    of ten years ago that you had your
    tongue down my throat.  So don't call
    me "child", Brian.  It annoys me.

          PRIEST/    BRIAN
    Now don't get upset.

  Brian closes the confessional window and exits

          MAGGIE
      (still inside
       the booth)
    Brian, open up.  Don't ignore me.

  Brian leans into her confessional.  She steps out to join him.

          BRIAN
    You're not even Catholic, Maggie -- you
    really shouldn't come to confession.

  He's a nice looking and gentle man.  They regard each other for a
  beat.

          MAGGIE
    I'm sorry.  I'm just so stressed out
    about that slime-ball reporter being in
    town.  I jus had to come warn you he
    might show up here and start asking you
    all kinds of ridiculous questions.

  Brian moves away.  Maggie follows and sits in a nearby pew.

          BRIAN
    Actually, he only asked me one
    ridiculous question.  The rest weren't
    so bad.

          MAGGIE
      (sliding along
       the pew)
    What?  You talked to him!  Did you tell
    him we dated before you were a priest?

          BRIAN
    Yes, yes, I'm sure I only did you good,
    Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    What did he ask?

  A woman, MRS. MURPHY, rushes in.

          MRS. MURPHY
    Father, am I too late?

          BRIAN
    No, no.

          MRS. MURPHY
    It won't take long.  Jus two venials.

  The woman goes into the confessional booth to wait.

          BRIAN
    Only respectful things.  What did we
    have in common back then... What kind
    of music did you like... Did you ruin
    my life when you left me standing at
    the altar...

          MAGGIE
    And what did you say?

          BRIAN
    How could I be angry at you when
    clearly what has happened to me is as
    God intended?

          MAGGIE
      (relieved)
    Good one!  Thanks.

          BRIAN
    It happens to be how I feel.

  Brian sits next to Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    God... Of course.  I'm sorry -- I mean,
    I'm...
      (sighs)
    Brian -- I've got to go.  The man's a
    lunatic, but I know exactly where he's
    going next.

          BRIAN
    God bless you, Maggie.

  She turns to rush out, then stops herself.

          MAGGIE
    Oh, wait, my purse.

  She moves to the confessional, knocks, then speaks to Mrs. Murphy.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Excuse me, sorry, forgot my purse.
    Good luck.

  Maggie closes the booth curtain and turns to Brian.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Wait -- what was the ridiculous
    question he asked?

  Brian smiles mischievously.

          BRIAN
    He wanted to know how you used to like
    your eggs.

          MAGGIE
    Weird.  Like after all those years you
    would remem--

  She starts to go, then stops in her tracks as she hears:

          BRIAN
      (interrupting)
    -- Scrambled, with salt, pepper and
    dill.  Same as me.

  Maggie  looks at Brian.  Suddenly, she remembers too.

          MAGGIE
      (tenderly)
    I'm really sorry that I hurt you, Brian.

          BRIAN
    I'm happy here, where I'm supposed to
    be.  But if you ever become a Catholic,
    may I ask you a favor, Maggie?

          MAGGIE
    Of course.

          BRIAN
    Could your confess to Father Patrick
    from now on?

          MAGGIE
    Of course.

  And she scampers out.  Brian goes back into the confessional.

  EXT. GILL'S GARAGE - DAY

  Maggie drives up to an old brick firehouse that is now an auto
  garage.  The faded sign reads: "Gill's Garage".

  INT. GILL'S GARAGE - DAY

  Maggie rushes inside and looks around.  No one is in sight.
  Several cars, including a yellow jeep-like car up on a hydraulic
  lift, are in the funky garage.

          MAGGIE
    Gill?  Lydia?  Gill?

  A CRASH, coming from the nearby back room, we hear loud muttering
  in Spanish, then out stumbles GILL CHAVEZ, 34, wearing a grease-
  stained Grateful Dead tie-dyed T-shirt.  He grins triumphantly,
  worshipfully cradling a CASSETTE TAPE in his hands.

          GILL
    Hey -- I found it!

  Maggie regards her former fiance with patient warmth.

          MAGGIE
    Found what?

  Gill looks up and gives Maggie a fond, hazy smile.

          GILL
    Mags!  Hey, look -- The tape from the
    Radio City Music Hall concert --
    Remember that night I as trying to get
    Jerry to let me sit in on "Ripple"?

  He pulls out the cassette from its case.  It's broken.  The tape
  is dangling from the cassette.

          GILL (cont'd)
      (disappointed)
    Oh, I'll play it for you.

  Gill picks up an electric GUITAR and starts to play.

          MAGGIE
      (shouts over the music)
    Listen, Gill -- There's this reporter
    who's ben making my life a living hell
    ... If he comes by here, don't talk to
    him.  And whatever yo do....
      (crosses to Gill)
    ... Don't show him that picture of me
    at the concert in San Francisco --

  Suddenly, a loud CHUCKLING emanates from the car overhead.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    What was that?

  Maggie stops Gill from playing.  She shoots her ex an angry glare
  and moves a lever on the shop wall.  With a HUM, the car descends.

          GILL
    We went to San Francisco twice.
    Remember one time we had a flat tire...
    Which picture?

  As the hydraulic lift slows, the car is lowered, revealing Ike
  sitting in the driver's seat.  He has been enjoying the
  photograph he's holding.

          IKE
      (feigning shock)
    Imagine!  Maggie Carpenter topless in a
    public arena.
      (checks photo again)
    And I see there was a chill in the air.

  Maggie swipes for the photo, but Ike is faster at pulling it away.

          MAGGIE
    Give me that!

          IKE
    But the most interesting thing here is
    that I don't see the rose tattoo that
    I've heard about on your back.

  Gill takes off his guitar and sets it down.

          GILL
    Ike bet me fifty bucks you don't still
    have it, Mags.  I said "You're on, man!
    Maggie loved that thing!"  And I could
    really use fifty bucks.

  Maggie is conspicuously silent.

          GILL (cont'd)
      (looking worried)
    Mags?

          MAGGIE
    I'm not gonna show you guys anything.
    I am a soon-to-be-married woman.  Now
    give me that photograph.

  Maggie seethes.

          IKE
    Sure, I would love to give this to you.
    Just give us one quick gander at that
    rose, and, I'll gladly hand it over.

  She tries to grab the photo again.  Ike pulls it away.

          MAGGIE
    Fine.  Here.

  Maggie quickly turns around and pulls down the back of her shirt,
  revealing the top of her back and a pristine expanse of skin.  No
  tattoo.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
      (turning back around)
    Satisfied?

          IKE
    Completely.

  Gill is still trying to grasp the meaning of this.

          GILL
    Maggie?  You got it removed?

          IKE
    Gill, I'll go ya double or nothing if
    was a stick-on.

          GILL
      (dismayed)
    Maggie?

          MAGGIE
      (admitting)
    I'm really, really afraid of needles...
    It doesn't make me a bad person.

  Ike laughs.  Maggie looks at him with rage.  Gill dramatically
  pulls down the front of his t-shirt.

          GILL
    Look.

  There it is on Gill's chest: the rose tattoo.  Maggie sighs,
  pained.  Gill shows it to Ike.  Ike looks at the tattoo.  He
  shakes his head at Maggie.

          IKE
      (sincerely)
    Look, look, man.  I think the man is
    heartbroken.

          MAGGIE
    He is not!

  Maggie moves the lever on the wall again, sending Ike back up to
  the ceiling in the car.  She grabs the photo from Ike and exits.

          GILL
    I think I am.

  Gill grabs his guitar and sits.

          GILL (cont'd)
    Hey, Ike, what would Jerry do?

  The hydraulic lift stops moving.  Ike leans out.

          IKE
    Jerry.  He'd play.  He'd play... Jerry
    would play his heart out.

  Ike sings and taps along in tempo on the side of the car as Gill
  sings and plays "Ripple".

              CUT TO:

  EXT. HOTEL PORCH - NEXT DAY, SATURDAY MORNING

  As Maggie drives into town with Peggy, they see Ike on porch with
  SHERIFF, POLICE CHIEF and MAIL    MAN, all playing instruments as
  a blues band.  Ike is not bad on slide guitar.  They all like
  Ike.

  Maggie "CHUFFAS" with Peggy and moves on.

  EXT. SOFTBALL FIELD - LATER THAT DAY

  CLOSE ON:

  The slow, loopy pitch of a softball.  A bat connects.

  NEW ANGLE:

  A big wholesome man, CORY, runs for first base.  He just beats
  out the throw.  Bob, acting as umpire, yells, "Safe!"  Happy,
  Cory turns to the stands and waves.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie and Peggy, cheering loudly.  Peggy tries to whoop harder
  than Maggie, but that would be tough.  From firs base, Cory waves
  back to them.  The two women sit back down and Maggie takes back
  up with their conversation.  Maggie is still al steamed up.

          MAGGIE
    Okay, he's on base.  Can we talk about
    my life now?  -- Ike's going to turn
    that tattoo stuff into a big deal --
    that I was never serious about Gill,
    blah blah.  He's totally out to get me.

          PEGGY
    For what reason?  Some personal
    satisfaction?

          MAGGIE
    That's what he says, but if he thinks
    that I don't realize he's writing
    another article, then he's an idiot.

          PEGGY
    It's probably because you got him fired.

          MAGGIE
      (sarcastic)
    Ya think?

          PEGGY
    Not that he doesn't deserve to get
    fired... Look!  Cory's going for
    second!... Sneaky!

  ANGLE ON:

  Cory as he runs for second base and with a slide beats the throw
  for the force out.  The women jump and cheer -- Maggie, again,
  the most boisterous.

  ANGLE ON:

  Dennis recognizes Ike as he walks up.  Dennis tells Ike that he
  is going to marry Maggie some day and shows Ike where Maggie is
  sitting.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie spots Ike as they sit back down.  She groans.

          MAGGIE
    There he is.  Snoop Doggy-Dogg.

          PEGGY
    Where?

          MAGGIE
    Over there.  Ten o'clock.  He's talking
    to our little Dennis.  Dennis will turn
    into one of those "sources say" things.

          PEGGY
    He looks better with that stuff out of
    his hair.  He's an attractive man.

  Ike finds Maggie in the crowd and leaves Dennis.

          MAGGIE
    I'd say you've been in the sun too long.
    You handle him, okay?  I could use five
    minutes off from that creep.

  Before Peggy can protest, Maggie climbs down off the bleachers
  and goes and stands near the dugout near the rest of Cory's team.

          PEGGY
    Okay, that's fine.  I can do that.

  Ike comes up to Peggy.

          IKE
    Hello, Peggy Phleming, "not the ice-skater".

  Ike indicates the seat next to Peggy.

          PEGGY
      (protesting weakly)
    That's Maggie's seat...

  Ike sits down comfortably.

          IKE
    ... And this is Maggie's beer.

  He starts drinking it.  ON THE FIELD, Cory is getting ready to
  steal third.

          IKE (cont'd)
    That your  husband out there?  Cory
    Phleming, a local radio announcer.

          PEGGY
    Have you listened to his morning show,
    "Wake up with ballplayer"?

          IKE
    Not yet.  I had a phlemless morning.  I
    hear he's a pretty good ballplayer.

          PEGGY
    This game is pretty important to him.
    He made all-stars in high school, you
    know.

          IKE
    That must have made you proud.

  Peggy takes a small sip off her soda.

          PEGGY
    He was going with Maggie back then.
      (quickly)
    He was never one of her... I mean, they
    were never going to get... They just
    dated for a while.

  Cory dives in for third and makes it.  The crowd goes wild.
  Peggy yells and jumps in.

          PEGGY (cont'd)
    Good job, honey!

  But Maggie's whoop sails out above it all.  Cory waves.  But not
  at Peggy.  He directs his delight at Maggie, who jumps up and
  down by the dugout.

  Ike looks between Cory, Maggie and finally, Peggy.  Peggy jerks
  her waving hand back down to her side and sits down.  Ike
  pretends not to have noticed.  The two watch as Maggie and Cory
  smile at each other.

          IKE
    It's nice that they're still friends.

          PEGGY
      (looking at Maggie
       and Cory)
    Oh, sure.  That was a long time ago.
    See, she's not a man-hater at all.
    She's very supportive of men...

  Next BATTER hits one to deep left field and it lands in the grave
  yard.  Cory scores, greeted by Maggie.  Ike and Peggy watch as
  Cory and Maggie belly-bump and high-five each other in
  celebration of Cory's play.  No looks at Peggy.  Ike keeps an
  empathetic silence, seeing that Peggy is truly hurt.

          PEGGY (cont'd)
    I'll be back in a second.

  Suddenly, Peggy stands, pushes past him and runs down the steps.
  Maggie looks up just in time to catch Peggy's exit.  Ike pulls
  his tape recorder out of his pocket and starts speaking into it.

  Maggie shoots Ike an accusing look, walks up to him in the
  bleachers and sits next to him.

          MAGGIE
    You've been here for three minutes.
    What did you do to her?

          IKE
    You can turn that finger around.

  Ike does an on-the-button imitation of Maggie jumping excitedly
  at Cory.  Now Maggie sees what he's getting at.

          MAGGIE
      (defensive)
    You misinterpret everything.  We've all
    been friends our whole lives.  But
    that's the types of relationship you
    wouldn't understand.

          IKE
    Obviously, I'm not the only one who
    doesn't understand it.  The USS Maggie
    leaves quite a wake... Excuse me.

  Ike walks away.  Alone, Maggie tries to seem enthused.

          MAGGIE
    See, I cheer good.  What is he, a cheer
    critic?

  EXT./INT. STREET/BAR - LATER - DUSK

  Sitting in front of Inn Hale Bar, we see the BARTENDER
  pantomiming holding the reins of a wildly galloping horse.  We've
  seen something like this before.  Maggie's wild ride away from
  her last wedding.  Ike laughs with Bartender just as Maggie
  drives by the bar and sees this.

          MAGGIE
      (to herself)
    This guy never stops.

  INT. ATLANTIC HOTEL - NIGHT

  Maggie walks up to the front desk of the hotel, where Lee is
  sleeping with his feet up.  She knocks his feet off the counter.

          MAGGIE
    Lee, hey, wake up.  Give me the key to
    the reporter's room.  I want to snoop
    around.

          LEE
      (handing her the key)
    Okay.  Second floor.

          MAGGIE
    Thanks.

          LEE
    Don't take anything big.

  Maggie moves up the stairs towards Ike's room.

  INT. ATLANTIC HOTEL - HALLWAY - MOMENTS LATER

  Maggie walks towards Ike's room, checks that no one sees her and
  enters.

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL ROOM - CONTINUOUS

  Maggie lets herself in the modest room and turns on the lights
  on.  She spots on audio cassette on the desk near the door.  She
  holds the cassette up to the light to read the hand-written
  label.  It says "Miles Davis" on it.  She pockets the tape.  She
  walks to the living room.

  MAGGIE'S POV:

  Ike has placed post-its on a framed picture, using the frame as a
  bulletin board.  Post-it notes lay out the information he has
  gathered under headings and subheadings.  Parents "Mother"
  deceased, subheaded by "Walter" and there is one for "Brian",
  "Gill", and "Bob".  Maggie smiles and shakes her head.  She rips
  one post-it down and reads it to herself.

          MAGGIE
      (reads)
    "How does she get all these guys to
    propose?  She's not that beautiful."
      (snorts)
    Bite me, paper boy.

  She begins ripping many of other post-it off the picture frame.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
      (as she takes post-its)
    Rude...

  She's ripping them down, fast and furious, then shoves them in
  her shoulder bag.

  INT. ATLANTIC HOTEL HALLWAY - CONTINUING

  Ike comes down hallway as Harvey puts his shoes out to be shined.

  BACK INSIDE THE ROOM

  Maggie, looking around, discovers the wedding video on the
  coffee table and grabs that, too.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Thief!

  THE SOUND OF A KEY IN THE DOOR makes Maggie jump.  She flees to
  the bathroom, and shuts and locks the door.  Just as Ike enters,
  he sniffs and looks around the room, instantly knowing something
  is up.  He sees all his notes gone and a glimpse of Maggie as she
  closes the bathroom door.  Ike is steaming.  A BUMP sounds from
  the bathroom.  He goes over to the door and tries the handle.
  It's locked.  He starts to pound on the door.

          IKE
    All right, I know you're in there...
    You steal my research... You're messing
    with the first amendment now.  Open up.
    Open up.  You got no place to go.

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL BATHROOM - CONTINUING

  Ike's wrong.  Maggie is already trying to open the first
  bathroom window.  It's stuck.  She climbs over the bathtub,
  opens that window and starts to climb out.

          IKE
    I want to have a very serious discussion
    with you as to why you're such a pain in
    the ass.

  We HEAR Ike slamming his body against the bathroom door.

  As Ike breaks in, he runs to the window and yells after her.

  EXT. IKE'S HOTEL WINDOW - CONTINUOUS

          IKE (cont'd)
    That's breaking and entering.  I'll call
    the sheriff.

          MAGGIE
    You do that.  And remind him he's
    bringing the wine to the luau.  Thanks.

  She disappears around the ledge of the building and runs off.
  Ike's neighbor, Harvey, sits reading near his window.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - NIGHT

  Establishing.

  INT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - NIGHT

  CLOSE ON:  A CASSETTE PLAYER.  We see the familiar handwritten
  label: "Miles Davis."  "Kind of Blue" plays as Maggie listens in
  a chair, looking shell-shocked, surrounded by the post-its she
  stole from Ike's room.  We see as she reads them: "Father, two-
  fisted drinker," "Peggy, best friend, but Peggy doesn't totally
  trust Maggie," "Bob" -- doesn't love him.  Overwhelmed, she
  finishes reading the last note, leans back, puts her feet up on
  the table, deep in the mood of the melancholy music.

  The CAMERA MOVES on the last note on the floor next to her chair.
  It reads: "SHOWS NO REMORSE".

  FADE TO BLACK.

  FADE IN:

  EXT. MAIN STREET/BEAUTY PARLOR - NEXT DAY

  It's early morning.  Mrs. Pressman hands Peggy a cup of coffee
  to go.  Peggy walks to the beauty parlor, unlocks the front door
  and goes in.

  INT. BEAUTY PARLOR - DAY

  Peggy enters and starts about her opening duties.  She turns on
  the lights and turns and sees her friend, Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Do you think I flirt with Cory?

  Peggy stops in her track.  Maggie is sitting curled up in a salon
  chair.  She looks like she hasn't slept.

          PEGGY
    Good morning to you, too.  You look good.

          MAGGIE
    Thank you.  Do you think I flirt with
    Cory?

          PEGGY
    Yes.

  Maggie looks miserable.

          MAGGIE
    I don't mean it.

  Peggy moves to the salon mirror near Maggie with her cup of
  coffee.

          PEGGY
    I know.  I think sometimes you just
    sort of spaz-out with random excess
    flirtation energy and it just lands on
    anything male that moves.

          MAGGIE
    On anything male that moves?  As
    opposed to anything male that doesn't
    move?

  Peggy pours her coffee out of its Styrofoam cup into a ceramic mug.

          PEGGY
    Like certain kinds of coral.

  Peggy sits in the salon chair next to Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    I'm going to kill myself.

          PEGGY
    Why?

          MAGGIE
    Because you think I'm all like... "Hey
    man, check me out".

          PEGGY
      (friendly)
    No, I don't think you're like, "I'm
    charming and mysterious in a way that
    even I don't understand and something
    about me is crying out for protection
    from a big man like you".  Very hard
    to compete with.  Especially to us
    married women who have lost our mystery.

          MAGGIE
    But you haven't lost your mystery!
    You're very mysterious!

          PEGGY
    No.  I'm weird.  Weird and mysterious
    are two different things.

          MAGGIE
    But I'm weird.

          PEGGY
    No.  You're quirky.  Quirky and weird
    are two different things.

          MAGGIE
    Peggy, there's distinct possibility
    that I might be profoundly and
    irreversibly screwed up.  Despite that,
    I love you and I can promise that I
    will no longer flirt with Cory, and I
    beg your forgiveness.

  Maggie looks ready to cry.

          PEGGY
    I'm not worried about you and Cory or
    Cory and me or even that you're
    irreversibly screwed up.  But, Maggie,
    you've been like this since we were
    kids.  And I think now that you are
    aware of it and that it hurts people's
    feelings, maybe it's time to move on
    with your life and commit to someone of
    your own, like Bob, if he's the one.

          MAGGIE
    I think you're right.
      (then)
    Is there anything I can do to make it
    up to you?

          PEGGY
    Something that brings warmth to my heart.
      (pause)
    Duckbill platypus.

          MAGGIE
    It's only funny at Camp Birchwood at
    three in the morning at a tick hunt.
    It's not anymore.

  Maggie makes her funny face.  Peggy doesn't laugh.

          PEGGY
    You're right.  It's not funny now.
    Maybe we both grew up.

          MAGGIE
    Thanks.  Will you fix my hair?

              CUT TO:

  EXT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - LATER THAT MORNING

  Maggie exits her house, gets on her bike and rides off towards
  town.

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL ROOM - LATER THAT MORNING

  Ike is still in bed.  He slowly blinks awake, stretches, and is
  about to  throw off the covers when Maggie's voice breaks the
  silence.

          MAGGIE
    Freeze.  Hold on to those covers -- I
    didn't come here to see Ike Junior.

  Maggie smiles cheerfully at Ike from the foot of the bed.  He
  narrows his eyes at her.

          IKE
    I take it the desk clerk is one of your
    many admirers.

          MAGGIE
      (deadpan)
    How do I do it?  I'm not that beautiful.

  Ike notices Maggie is holding two coffees.

          IKE
    Coffee.  Now.

  Maggie hands it to him.

          MAGGIE
    You're welcome.  Your notes made
    interesting bedtime reading -- if you
    like trashy fiction.  Your observations
    are distorted, ungrounded an incomplete.
    You must be very proud.

          IKE
    I'm not a boastful man.  What's your
    point?

  Ike puts a shirt on as Maggie speaks.

          MAGGIE
    My point is that one again, you're
    getting it all wrong.  That won't
    improve your reputation any, and it's
    not very flattering to me either.  So,
    I'm going to give you a chance to write
    the truth.

          IKE
    Really.

  Maggie turns away from him as he dresses.

          MAGGIE
    I've decided to cooperate and let you
    interview me.
      (beat)
    For a thousand bucks.

  Ike clears his throat as he stands putting his pants on.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I want a big wedding and a killer dress
    and for a grand I will answer all your
    questions and let you follow me around.

  Ike takes his coffee with him as he picks up his glasses, puts
  them on and crosses to the window.

          IKE
    My magazine doesn't pay because for
    stories.  It's not what you call ethical.

          MAGGIE
    Oh, but making up the facts as you go
    along is ethical?  Actually, I meant
    you.  You probably got severance or
    expenses or both.  I'll take your check.
    No credit cards.

          IKE
      (to Maggie)
    You've seen the post-its.  I've already
    got more juicy material than I need.
    Why should I pay you dollar one?

          MAGGIE
    Because I think you're writing on spec
    and with a first person interview, you
    might actually sell that thing.

  Ike knows she's right.

          IKE
    Too much.

          MAGGIE
    Seven-fifty.

          IKE
    Five hundred.

          MAGGIE
    Six-fifty.

          IKE
    Done.

  Scowling, he writes out the check and hands it to her.  Maggie
  looks at it and smile sweetly.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - DAY

  Ike jogs alongside of Maggie on her bike.  Maggie parks her bike
  and they go inside her door to the house.

  INT. MAGGIE'S FOYER AND STAIRS - DAY

  Maggie leads Ike upstairs to her workroom.

          MAGGIE
    Pardon the mess.  I haven't cleaned
    since the fifth grade.

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKROOM - LATER

  Insert on a cappuccino machine.  We PULL BACK and see Maggie and
  Ike standing at her work table.  An automatic cappuccino maker
  stands on the table.  Its base is made from a used paint mixing
  machine.  It looks very shiny and futuristic.  Maggie's logo
  "MAG" is on the side.  The machine shakes as it steams the
  cappuccino.  Ike notices another homemade machine on the table.

          IKE (cont'd)
    What's this over here?

          MAGGIE
    It's a birthday present for my cousin.
    Put your finger in.

          IKE
    Cindy the manicurist.

  He puts his finger in the wrong hole of the machine.

          MAGGIE
    No, the other one.

  He puts his finger in the correct hole.  She turns it on.  The
  brushes rotate.

          IKE
      (laughing)
    This is wonderful.  You reconfigure all
    these industrial parts and you do
    something amazing with it.

  He looks around and spots some gadgets and lamps on another table.
  He walks to them.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Amazing.  Found industrial stuff.
    Willow lamp... Rasta lamp...

  He picks up one of the many logos on the counter.  Each boasts a
  "MAG" logo.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Is this your preferred logo?

          MAGGIE
    I think so.

          IKE
    I like it.  This whole thing is pretty
    incredible.
      (studying a lamp)
    I think you could probably sell this
    lamp idea in New York.

          MAGGIE
    Maybe someday.

          IKE
    You afraid to try?

          MAGGIE
      (stares at him)
    No, I'm not afraid.  Just... Maybe
    someday.

          IKE
    Well, I'm impressed.  Absolutely
    incredible.
      (sitting)
    I didn't expect pink and lacy, but this
    isn't exactly a woman's room.

          MAGGIE
    What an incredible chauvinistic
    observation.

  INT. MAGGIE'S LIVING ROOM - A BIT LATER THAT DAY

  Maggie's showing Ike engagement rings.

          MAGGIE
    That's Brian's.  He took me ut canoeing
    on the lake and gave me the ring in a
    velvet box.

  Ike snores.  Maggie hits him.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
      (defensive)
    It was classic.

  Maggie hands Ike another ring.  This one is in the shape of a
  Grateful Dead rose.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Gill.  Of course.  He proposed at the
    tie-dye t-shirt stand at a Dead concert.
    It was very sweet until he hallucinated
    that the drum set was a blood-sucking
    space alien.

          IKE
    Always a mood killer.

          MAGGIE
    Still sweet.

  Maggie hands Ike a third ring.  It's in the shape of a butterfly
  and studded with multi-color gems.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    George.  He proposed at a butterfly
    farm in St. Thomas.  The ring was
    inside a cocoon.

          IKE
      (grimacing)
    It's a little "Silence of the Lambs"
    for me.  I can't believe you waited for
    the wedding to run.

          MAGGIE
    He's an entomologist!  I thought it was
    very unique.

  Now Maggie shows Ike the ring on her hand.  It's a gold "#1" with
  a diamond set into the number.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    And here we are at Bob.  He proposed
    during the seventh inning stretch...

  Ike touches her hand to examine the ring more closely.  Her
  surprise at his touch shows on her face as she finishes her
  sentence.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    ... At an Oriole's game.

  She takes her hand down.  Ike steps away.

          IKE
    Wait.  Don't tell me.  The scoreboard
    lit up with "Mary me, Maggie."

  Ike picks up his cup of cappuccino and moves behind the couch.

          MAGGIE
    It was one of the most wonderful
    moments of my life.  Cal Ripken even
    applauded.

          IKE
      (stopping)
    Highly suspect.

          MAGGIE
    What do you mean?  It was incredibly
    romantic!

          IKE
    Maybe it's just me, but -- if you got
    to dress it up, it doesn't ring true.

  Ike moves back to the couch.

          IKE (cont'd)
    I think the most anybody can honestly
    say is, "Look..."
      (sits on the arm
       of the couch)
    "I guarantee that we'll have tough
    times.  I guarantee that at some point
    one or both of us will want to get out
    of this thing.  But I also guarantee
    that if I don't ask you to be  mine,
    I'll regret it for the rest of my life.
    Because I know in my heart -- you're
    the only one for me"

  Maggie stares at Ike for a beat.  His words have taken a little
  bit of her breath away.  She covers.

          MAGGIE
    I like it.

  She moves from the fireplace to a chair and sits.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I'd like it better on a scoreboard.
      (lightly)
    Is that how you proposed when you asked
    your wife to marry you?


  Ike is taken aback.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Don't look so surprised, you've got
    divorce written all over you.

          IKE
    I'm a work in progress.

          MAGGIE
    So?  Is that what you said to her?

          IKE
    No.  I think I said something eloquent
    like, "So, uh -- maybe we should, ya
    know.  What do you think?"

          MAGGIE
    Now that's romantic.  A proposal like
    that and you didn't find eternal bliss?
    What went wrong?

  Ike takes a swallow of cappuccino.

          IKE
    I don't know.

          MAGGIE
    You don't know.

          IKE
    No.

          MAGGIE
    Maybe you should ask her some time.
    Ever thought of that?

  Ike is restless.  He stands up.

          IKE
    Call me crazy, but I believe that check
    I gave you entitles me to ask the
    questions for a while.

  Ike puts down his cup of coffee, gets his tape recorder and sits
  close to Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Fair enough.
      (thinks a beat)
    Actually...

  Maggie move to TV.  She picks up Ike's stolen post-it notes and
  her wedding video on top of the TV, and goes to the front door.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I'll just need one more day to make sure
    your check clears.

          IKE
    Ow!

              DISSOLVE TO:

  EXT. HALE STREET - THE NEXT DAY

  Ike and Maggie drive in Maggie's truck.  They pull up in front of
  a Bridal Shop.

  A spectacular dress fills the small window.  It's beautiful,
  romantic, sexy.  Maggie and Ike can be seen in the reflection.

          MAGGIE
    Even with everything that's happened
    I've still never been married and I
    still deserve a beautiful dress.

          IKE
    Agreed.

  Maggie gives Ike a smile that lights up the sky.  They go inside.

  INT. BRIDAL SHOP - DAY

  The place is fairly large and prosperous, probably the place to
  go in the Tri-County area.  A little FLOWER GIRL, 10, is being
  fitted on the pedestal in the middle of the room.  A saleswoman,
  POLLY, has taken the flower girl under her wing.  They are both
  under the expert eyes of a stern looking woman, MRS. WHITTENMEYER,
  the shop owner.  Also, the girl's MOTHER is there watching.

      POLLY
      (to the mother)
    She'll be the prettiest little flower
    girl in your daughter's wedding.

          MAGGIE
    Mr. Whittenmeyer.  Hi, Polly!

  The flower girl sees Maggie and runs and hides behind Polly.

          POLLY
    Hi, Maggie.  You'll have to excuse her,
    Maggie.  Some of the children are
    afraid of you since you dragged that
    little boy up the aisle.

          MAGGIE
    I didn't drag.
      (then to the girl)
    He tripped on his shoelaces.

  Mrs. Whittenmeyer comes forward to greet Maggie.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    You've come for your dress.  Good!
    I'll get it from the back.

  Maggie leads her to the front window.

          MAGGIE
      (happily)
    Actually, I would like to get this dress.

  She points to the dress.  She smiles back to Mrs. Whittenmeyer,
  expecting her to share her joy.  Mrs. Whittenmeyer darkens.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
      (to Polly)
    Polly, take Leslie into change.
      (then, to Maggie)
    But the one you have on hold is lovely.

          MAGGIE
      (pleasantly)
    Yes.  But I've changed my mind.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    It's one thousand dollars.

  Maggie is keenly aware of Ike listening in.

          MAGGIE
    I have one thousand dollars.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
      (firmly)
    The other one is only three hundred
    dollars.

  Maggie lowers her voice, hoping to lessen the humiliation of the
  moment.

          MAGGIE
    Is this dress for sale?

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    It just seems like an awful lot of
    money to spend on one of your dresses,
    Maggie... You only wear them for about
    ten minutes.

  Ike watches with regret as Maggie's child-like enthusiasm
  drains away, her happy mood crushed by the tactless assault of
  the shop owner.  He's starting to see that it's no always easy
  being Maggie. There's a tremor in her voice.

          MAGGIE
    Yeah, that's a good point.
      (then, sitting)
    The other dress is nice.

  Ike calls out to Mrs. Whittenmeyer.

          IKE
    Mrs. Whittenmeyer.  May I talk to you
    for a second?

  She walks over to him.

          IKE (cont'd)
    I don't know much about this kind of
    thing.  I'm from out of town.  You're a
    salesperson, right?  You're here to
    sell wedding dresses.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
      (huffy)
    Yes.  I've been here for thirty years.

          IKE
    Perfect.  Because Miss Carpenter is
    here to buy one.  But not just any one.
    She wants that one.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    It's a thousand dollars!

  Ike goes over and takes the mannequin out of the window.  Mrs.
  Whittenmeyer catches the wig as he puts the mannequin under his
  arm.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Look, Aunt Bea, we're buying this
    beautiful dress and anything else she
    wants or I'm coming back here with a
    squirt gun filled with India ink.

  Mrs. Whittenmeyer wilts under Ike's fierce gaze.  She turns to
  Maggie.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    Will he really do that?

  Maggie gives her a look.

          MR. WHITTENMEYER (cont'd)
      (to Maggie)
    Well, why don't you pick out some
    accessories while I get this ready,
    dear.  Polly, will you come help me,
    please?

  Polly comes to help carry the mannequin away.

  ANGLE ON POLLY AND MRS. WHITTENMEYER:

          POLLY
      (whispering to Mrs. Whittenmeyer)
    It's a thousand dollars.

          MRS. WHITTENMEYER
    Shhhh!  The man has ink!

  Maggie looks gratefully at Ike.

          IKE
    Tough to spend money in this town.

  TIME CUT: A FEW MINUTES LATER:

  Ike sits as he hears Maggie's voice behind him.

          MAGGIE (o.s.)
    What do you think?

  Ike turns around.  Maggie is standing on the pedestal, wearing
  the dress and looking unbelievably gorgeous.  She is overwhelming
  to behold and Ike has to struggle to keep his face under control.

          IKE
      (stammering)
    You look... uh... You look fine.

          MAGGIE
    Fine.  The newspaper's upside down.
    That's better than fine.

          IKE
    Bob will be very happy.

  She glows.  Then the moment between them is broken as she
  suddenly remembers something and grabs the veil off her head.

          MAGGIE
    Bob!  I almost forgot!  I have to meet
    Bob!

  INT. DINER - DAY

  This is a great place -- a major hub of social life in Hale.  The
  food is greasy and good, Mrs. Pressman is the waitress, and the
  CROWD the essence of what is wonderful about a small town.  Bob,
  Maggie and Ike sit on the counter.  Mrs. Pressman CHUFFS about
  the luau, then moves around the corner.

          BOB
    Mrs. Pressman, I think we're ready to
    order.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    We're out the special because
    somebody...
      (indicates COOK with head)
    ... didn't order enough sausage.

          BOB
    Let me have the garden omelette.  Egg
    whites only.

  Ike looks at Maggie.  He'd bet a thousand bucks on what she'd say
  next.

          MAGGIE
    I'll have the same.

          IKE
      (clears his throat)
    Of course.

          MAGGIE
    What was that?  I can't order  my eggs
    without sarcasm?

          BOB
    Neutral corners you two.  You're on the
    same team now.  Any more fighting and
    it's fifteen minutes in the penalty box.
      (gently, to Ike)
    Maggie's the nicest person you'll ever
    meet.  But she's always focusing out
    there.  She's got to start focusing
    more in here.
      (taps his chest)
    That's why she's had some -- whatever
    you want to call it -- problems in the
    past.
      (to Maggie)
    That's what we're working on -- focus.
    Right, Maggie?  Focus on Maggie.  Focus
    on Bob.

  As Bob has been talking, Ike has been watching Maggie's face.
  The joy seems to have drained out of her.

          MAGGIE
      (quietly)
    Right.

          BOB
      (to Ike)
    I lead Maggie through a visualization
    exercise.  All the sports shrinks use
    this head stuff.  Visualize the end
    zone, if you catch my drift.

  Bob takes out a notepad and hands it to Maggie.

          BOB (cont'd)
    Here's today's mantra: "It's an open
    field to Big Bob."

          IKE
    Tell me.  When you get to the altar,
    will you spike the bouquet?

          MAGGIE
    You know, there's no...

  Before Maggie can finish, Ike intercepts her.

          IKE
    Well, I'm off.  A reporter's work is
    never done.
      (heading to the door)
    Mrs. Pressman, thank you.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    Tootaloo.

  INT. ATLANTIC HOTEL - MOMENTS LATER

          GRANDMA JULIA (V.O.)
    I'd like to explain about the weddings.
    There are reasons why they didn't come
    off.  Three weddings, no "I do's".  You
    can't believe how much cake we were
    left with.  I should weigh three
    hundred pounds.  I don't think her
    father minded spending so much money on
    booze that nobody drank.

  We hear Grandma as through the hotel doors, we see Maggie exit
  the diner.  She gets a bag from inside the cab of her truck and
  comes inside the hotel where she finds Ike talking to Grandma,
  who is having tea with her friend, NETTA.

          MAGGIE
    Ike... Hi, Grandma.

          IKE
    Gram here was going to give me the
    skinny on why you run from marital
    bliss.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Right, cover your ears, Netta.  It's
    not that she's afraid of the wedding,
    she's afraid of the wedding night.
    Innocent girls are terrified of "the
    one-eyed snake".
      (getting into it)
    Why, when I was a virgin bride, I took
    a knitting needle with me into the bed...

  Ike winces.

          MAGGIE
    Actually, Grandma, I charmed the one-
    eyed snake awhile ago.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Oh, yeah, I forgot.  I'll tell you one
    thing, your grandpa didn't forget that
    wedding night.
      (no Netta)
    You can take your hands off your ears,
    Netta.  Your tea's getting cold.

          MAGGIE
    Can you excuse us a minute?
      (then to Ike)
    May I have a word with you, please?

  Maggie moves toward door.

          IKE
    Bye, Netta... Bye, Grandam.

  He steps over to Maggie in the doorway.

          MAGGIE
    I found this and didn't know if it was
    something interesting.

  Maggie hands Ike a 30-year-old LP: Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue."

          IKE
      (excited)
    Oh, my God -- It's Miles Davis.  This
    is "King of Blue"!  This is the
    original recording.  Hard to find in
    good condition.  Where did you find
    this?

          MAGGIE
      (casual)
    It was in the attic.  It was jus
    sitting there gathering dust.

          IKE
    It's valuable.  Hang onto it.

          MAGGIE
    No.  You take it.

  She steps outside, leaving Ike with the record.

          IKE
    Hmmm... Figuring out what kind of music
    I like and then finding me a rare album.
    You're not trying to soften me up, are
    you?

          MAGGIE
    No -- I'm cleaning an attic.  I
    wouldn't attempt the impossible.

  She turns and walks back to the diner where Mrs. Pressman is
  outside watering plants.  Ike looks after Maggie and then back
  down at the record in his hand.  Somehow it makes him sad.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S CAR - LATER THAT DAY

  Ike drives through Hale gobbling french fries from the fast food
  bag in his lap.  Ike passes THE INN HALE BAR, same dump of a
  tavern he talked to bartender at.

  ANGLE ON: MAGGIE'S CAR parked a few cars down.  He pulls over
  and parks.  He gets out and speaks into his tape recorder.

  INT./EXT. THE INN HALE BAR -- DAY

  Ike approaches the window of the bar.  There's a DRUNK MAN and a
  DOG sitting outside.  Inside, we see two figures from the back,
  arms around each other.  One is definitely Maggie.  The other is
  definitely not Bob.

          MAGGIE
      (coaxing)
    C'mon.  Let's go.

  As Maggie helps the man get up,  we see that it's Walter, Maggie's
  father -- dead drunk.

          WALTER
      (belligerently)
    I haven't had any fun since you got
    your driver's license...

  They stumble and lurch, exiting the bar toward Maggie's car.

          MAGGIE
    I'm not exactly having fun, either...
    Steady.

          WALTER
      (to Dog)
    Good boy, Port Hole.

          MAGGIE
    His name is Skipper, Dad... Steady.

          WALTER
    I changed it.
      (then to Drunk)
    See you later, Mr. Travis.
      (then to Maggie)
    That guy has a problem... Maggie, you
    can run everyone's life but your own.


  Maggie's having trouble keeping him steady as she opens the car
  door.  Ike is there in a flash to help her pull Walter into the
  car.

          WALTER (cont'd)
    Good daughters let their fathers pass
    out.

  Walter passes out on the front seat.

          MAGGIE
      (without difficulty)

    Ike... Please don't write anything
    about this --

          IKE
    No.  Forget about it.  Don't even think
    about it.

  Maggie looks at him with real gratitude.  She swings the car
  door shut.

          MAGGIE
    Watch your leg, Dad.
      (then to Ike)
    I'm so tired of this.

          IKE
    Why don't you let him sleep it off in
    the trunk. I'll take you for a ride.
    Then we'll come back for him.
      (to Drunk on bench)
    Keep an eye on him.

      DRUNK MAN
    I'm too loaded.

          IKE
    I was talking to the dog.
      (turning to Maggie)
    All right?

  Maggie thinks about this for a moment.  She takes a deep breath.

          MAGGIE
    Okay... I'll just grab my jacket.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. ROAD - LATE DUSK TO NIGHT

  Establishing of Ike's car driving.

  INT. IKE'S CAR - LATE DUSK TO NIGHT

  Maggie and Ike ride along.

          IKE
    My dad managed a business and two
    mistresses.  He wanted me to be a
    novelist.  More?

  Maggie nods,

          IKE (cont'd)
    My mother wanted me to become a
    musician.  0 for two.  But at least
    I'm a journalist and we all know
    journalism is literature in a hurry.

  EXT. IKE'S CAR - COUNTRY ROAD - NIGHT

  Ike and Maggie stare forward.  Both seem in melancholy moods.
  They're beginning to sense they're in trouble here.  Suddenly,
  the car falters and jerks.  It shows to a stop on the shoulder of
  the road.  The car backfires and smokes.

  EXT. IKE'S CAR - COUNTRY ROAD -  NIGHT

  Ike and Maggie sit in the steaming car for a moment.

          MAGGIE
    Your filter's clogged.  This takes
    unleaded.

          IKE
    Can you fix it?

          MAGGIE
    First I have to find some tools.  I
    need a half and a nine-six-tenth.

          IKE
      (removing his glasses)
    Of what?

          MAGGIE
      (in amazement)
    Wrenches.  My dad's gonna love that one.

  Maggie slams the food closed.

          IKE
    Kind of isolated.

          MAGGIE
    Yeah.  It's kind of nice.

  An uncomfortable silent pause.  Ike breaks the moment.

          IKE
    There's one thing we New Yorkers know
    how to do is hail a cab.  If there's no
    cab, we walk.

  Ike stares off down the road.  Maggie indicates a building in
  the distance, then turns off the car lights.

          MAGGIE
    I can get some tools over there.... and
    save the battery... There's one thing
    we country girls know how to do is cut
    across a field.  It's quicker.

  Maggie points diagonally across the field to where a gas station
  sign glows and the lights from the outer house twinkle.

  He smiles and follows her into the field.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Be careful of snakes.

          IKE
    Snakes?  Are you serious?  I don't like
    snakes.  I've never even seen a snake.

  He steps carefully into the field, then hops gingerly toward Maggie.

  MOMENTS LATER

  Maggie leads Ike through a cornfield.

          MAGGIE
    Do you think there's only one right
    person for everybody?

  Ike chooses his words carefully.

          IKE
    No.  But I think attraction is too
    often mistaken for rightness.
    Attraction is very misleading.  And if
    it's mutual, it's well, terribly
    distracting.

          MAGGIE
    Yes it is.  And it doesn't mean
    anything.

  Ike nods as they come to a wooden fence.  She puts her hand on
  his shoulder.  Ike puts his hands around her waits to give her a
  boost over the top.  We see the flicker of misunderstanding cross
  Maggie's face at the initial contact.  Neither of them moves --
  forward or back, but the electricity is obvious.

  ANGLE ON:  Ike.  His conflicted feelings are apparent.  With
  difficulty, Maggie straightens up and they both quickly remove
  their hands.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
      (lightly)
    I suddenly forgot how to climb a fence.

  They look at each other for a moment, then:

          MAGGIE AND IKE
      (breaking the
       moment jokingly)
    "Tools".

  She climbs over the fence on her own and Ike follows.  They see
  an old guy, LIONEL, whittling on a porch.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Lionel, can I borrow some tools?

          IKE
    Yeah, we need a half and nine-
    sixteenths.

          LIONEL
    Gonna bust out of another wedding?

          IKE
    You're sure well known around here.

  EXT. FISHER AND ELLIE'S BUILDING - THE NEXT DAY

  Establishing shot.

  INT. FISHER AND ELLIE'S KITCHEN (NYC) - DAY

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL ROOM - DAY

  INTERCUT BETWEEN TWO LOCATIONS:

  Ike sits on his bed, on the phone, working and eating his
  breakfast.  He's watching Maggie's wedding tape again.  Fisher
  is cooking an elaborate breakfast.  Ellie rushes around getting
  ready for work.  He is on the phone to Ike.

          FISHER
      (into phone)
    Yes, well, my theory was that she may
    be running because she gets attention...
    Negative attention is attention.
    Like when women whack you on the street
    because of your column, that's negative
    attention.

          IKE (V.O.)
    This is about her negative attention,
    not mine.  Did you get the
    reimbursement for the dress yet?

          FISHER
      (into phone)
    No, I'm paying for the dress.  Do you
    think she's still gonna run?

          IKE (V.O.)
    I don't know.

  Ellie enters the kitchen, hears the question and shakes her head
  to herself.  If only these boys would give it up.

  INT. IKE'S HOTEL ROOM - CONTINUOUS

  He is finding it very hard to gloat.  Fisher is annoying him.

          IKE
      (into phone)
    Look -- I'll be in there later today.
    I'll come by and tell you all about it.

          FISHER (V.O.)
    You're coming here?

          IKE
      (into phone)
    Yeah.

          FISHER (V.O.)
    Then come for dinner.

          IKE
      (into phone)
    Okay, we'll order out.

          FISHER (V.O.)
    Order out like a Philistine, when you
    got the Galloping Gourmet here?...

  Ike hangs up and watches more of the George Swilling wedding
  video.

  INT. NEW YORK BAR - DAY

  The bar from the opening scene.  GEORGE SWILLING, the same man
  Ike talked to before, is sitting on a stool, nursing his drink.
  He looks better.  Ike enters.  George looks up and recognizes
  Ike, who takes the bar stool next to him.

          IKE
    Get this man a Kamikaze.

          GEORGE
    Splendid dissection of Maggie Carpenter,
    very professional job.

  Ike sits and leans over to George.

          IKE
      (whispers)
    You could have told me you were fiance
    number three.

          GEORGE
    And end up in the papers?  I've been
    humiliated enough already to last a
    lifetime, thank you.  I'm sorry she got
    you canned.

          IKE
    Thanks.

          GEORGE
    She's a cacophony of contradictions.

          IKE
    Well, I'm writing another article on
    the cacophony.

          GEORGE
    Ah, can't stay away from her, can you?
    Like a moth to a flame.

          IKE
    Guess you'd know about that.  You're an
    entomologist, right?  How's business?

          GEORGE
      (taking a sip
       of his drink)
    Not bad.  I was traveling around
    studying the reproductive and migratory
    patterns of locusts when Maggie met me.

          IKE
      (sarcastic)
    Neuter a locust, feed the world.

      GORGE
    Not the world.  Just Africa and China.

  Ike wipes the smirk off his face.  Like Maggie's other men, this
  guy has a worthy accomplishment under his belt.

          GEORGE (cont'd)
    You know Maggie was the only girl I
    ever met who would hold my tarantula.
    On the first date.

          IKE (cont'd)
    So, tell me, George, why do you think
    she ran?

          GEORGE
    Same as you said.  What did you call
    her?  A "man-eater", "a devouring death
    goddess."

          IKE
    I don't think that's why she ran.

          GEORGE
    Why do YOU think she ran?

  Ike sips his drink before answering.

          IKE
    I don't know.  I'm working on it.  I
    was on the wrong track.

          GEORGE
    And you defending her?

          IKE
    No.  I call it like I see it.  I'm a
    journalist.  I'm a truth teller.

          GEORGE
    Unbelievable, she got to you.

          IKE
    Oh, please!

      GORGE
    Join the club.
      (passing him
       his drink)
    Here, you need this more than me.

  George heads out.

          IKE
      (protecting, taking
       his tape recorder
       out of his pocket)
    I'm writing an article, I'm getting
    paid to do this, it's going to be a
    cover story, it's going to be published
    ... The facts will be read someday.

  As George pauses in the doorway, Ike holds up his tape recorder.

          IKE (cont'd)
    What kind of eggs did she like?

          GEORGE
    Poached, just like me.

  George exits.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. NEW YORK STREET/FISHER AND ELLIE'S BUILDING - DAY

  Ike walks down a street toward Ellie and Fisher.

              CUT TO:

  INT. FISHER AND ELLIE'S APARTMENT (NYC) - NIGHT

  Ellie is on the phone as Fisher enters with beer.  Ike sits at
  the piano.

          FISHER
      (sarcastically)
    Overpriced nice apartment and Chinese
    takeout.  That's New York living.

          ELLIE
      (into phone)
    ... Just call me when you have it.
      (hangs up, then to Fisher)
    Ike, how is the story coming?  Is she a
    man-eater?

          FISHER
    Or a vegetarian?

          ELLIE
    Or does she pick "NGB'S" -- "Nice Guys,
    But..."  Nice guys, but I'm cheap.
    Nice guys, but he lives with his mom...
    Nice guys, but he just out of prison.

          IKE
    No... They're interesting guys.  Each
    one of these guys has something going
    for him.  I mean, one's been up Everest.
    Another's become a priest.  One's a
    pretty good guitar player.  And this
    guy today tried to end world hunger, if
    you can believe that...

          FISHER
    Whoa, Ike.  Getting a complex, buddy?

          ELLIE
    Fisher, let him talk.

          IKE
      (sits)
    But one of those guys -- not one of
    them -- knew her at all.  Each one was
    convinced that she was perfect for them,
    but they didn't see her.  And she never
    showed up so they couldn't see her.
    It's a very symbolic thing happening.
    She becomes what she thinks they wanted
    to be.

  Fisher doesn't like the sound of this.  He glances at Ellie, who
  is looking very interested.

          FISHER
      (in shock)
    Ike is turning sensitive and I can't
    bear to watch.  I'm going to make a
    fresh pot of tea.

  The phone rings as Fisher exits.  Ike goes to the piano as Ellie
  picks up the phone.

          ELLIE
      (into phone)
    Yeah... Oh, Jay... Okay... Bye.
      (hangs up, then yells to Fisher)
    Fisher, don't forget the fortune
    cookies.

  She joins Ike at the piano.  Ike gets serious.

          IKE
    Is that what I did to you?  Is that
    what happened?  Did I just not see
    you?

          ELLIE
    No.  No, you didn't.

  He hugs her.

          IKE
      (heartfelt)
    Well -- I'm sorry, I'm really sorry,
    Ellie.

          ELLIE
    I'm sorry, too.
      (beat)
    Wow.  That only took us between years
    to say.

  Ellie blinks back sentimental tears.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. TROUT'S BARN - THE NEXT NIGHT

  We hear Hawaiian music.  We see a truck with GUESTS drive up and
  HULA DANCERS through barn slats.

  INT. TROUT'S BARN - NIGHT

  It's a small barn that's been converted into a luau with a bar.
  A BAND plays for two hula dancers.  The Trouts had decorated it
  as a little slice of Hawaii.  There are tiki lights, numerous
  rented plastic palm trees and fiberglass copies of Hawaiian
  statuary.  Strings of colored lights crisscross the ceiling.
  It looks like a Hawaiian high school gym on prom night.

  Maggie's family, Mrs. Trout and people we've already met, and
  more, are here, milling around wit tropical drinks garnished
  with umbrellas.  Plastic leis abound and most people have
  managed to find their old Hawaiian shirts.

  As we come in, the hula dancers finish their applause and Mrs.
  Trout announces.  Hula dancers stop.

          LOU TROUT
    Welcome to our annual country luau.  As
    you know, Betty and I got married on
    the rim of the crater, Diamond Head.

          MRS. TROUT
      (grabbing the
       microphone)
    This year, we're dedicating our first
    dance to the soon-to-be newlyweds, the
    King and Queen of Hawaii, Maggie and
    Bob.

  The couple enters.  Bob is a goody bronzed god in his King
  Kamahamela outfit.  Maggie is spectacular in her authentic
  looking Hawaiian Princess get-up.  But her face reflects none
  of the festivities around her.  Every now and then, she looks up
  and glances around for Ike, hating herself for it.

          MRS. TROUT (cont'd)
    King and Queen, dance.

  Maggie and Bob start to dance as the Quarter sings "Aloha Oe."

          MRS. TROUT (cont'd)
    Everybody dance.

  Everybody dances.

              TIMES OUT:

  Maggie and Bob pose for pictures with some of the guests.

          MRS. TROUT
    Pictures of the King and Queen.

  Dennis poses with Maggie.  Cory poses with Bob.  Mrs. Trout runs
  out of film and goes to get more, leaving Peggy and Maggie alone.
  Peggy whispers to Maggie.

          PEGGY
    Lighten up, wahine.

          MAGGIE
    Lighten up, what?

          PEGGY
    This party is for you and Bob.  Get
    your mind off the reporter.

          MAGGIE
    I haven't seen him in twenty-four hours.
    It just gives me the creeps a little bit.
    I'd feel better if I knew where he was.

          PEGGY
      (nods to door)
    Would it?

  ANGLE ON:  Ike just entering the party.  At least he tried.
  He's got a tropical sheet wrapped around his pants and shirt.
  He walks to the bar and is greeted warmly by Lee.  Maggie gets
  very flustered.

          PEGGY (cont'd)
    What are you doing?

          MAGGIE
      (after a beat)
    I'm going to go dance with Bob.
    Because he's the man.
      (referring to her headdress)
    I like those grapes.

  Maggie dances affectionately with Bob as Mr. Trout, tending
  bar, greets Ike.

          LOU TROUT
    Hey, Mr. Graham, welcome to our luau.
    What can I get you?

          IKE
    You got something without a toy in it?

            TIME CUT:

  A LITTLE LATER - CLOSE ON

  A pair of expressive pantomime "A Little Grass Shack".

  PULL BACK TO REVEAL:

  Mrs. Trout is on stage, introducing hula contestants.  Grandma
  judges the Hawaiian dancing.  The party is at full tilt -- a
  little wild, a little goofy.  Some guests (Bob, Cindy, Cory, Lee
  and Ted) do the limbo.  Walter, Mrs. Pressman doesn't turn as
  she hears him.

          IKE
    Aloha.  That's a very fetching
    headdress you're wearing.

  Ike leans into Maggie, enjoying the smell of her hair.  She
  notices, but acts casual.

          MAGGIE
    Where did you disappear to?

          IKE
    Missed me bad, huh?

              TIME CUT:

  All the guests start banding their pineapple cups.  Walter rises
  unsteadily, lifting his pineapple.

          MRS. TROUT
    Attention.  Listen to Walter.  Listen
    close, he slurs.
      (then)
    Shut up, wahines!

          WALTER
    In the tradition that has grown through
    the years, it is now Toast Time!  First
    up, our host, "A Honey of a Beekeeper",
    Lou Trout..

  Lou Trout stands with his glass raised.

          LOUT TROUT
    May the groom's heart be filled with
    hopes and the bride's feet be filled
    with lead!

  There are shouts of "Hear hear!"  Walter roars.

          MRS. TROUT
    May the pitter-patter of little feet
    not be Maggie's.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    May the gifts be returned!

          TED
    May the back of the dress be as pretty
    as the front!

  The laughter swells and swells, led by Walter.

  ANGLE ON:

  Ike watches as Maggie takes the heat, raising her glass along
  with the others.  Bob raises his glass like the good sport he is.
  Ike can't believe it.

          WALTER
    You know the old saying, "You're not
    losing a daughter..."  Well, I'd like to!

  Walter gets a bit laugh.  He goes again.

          WALTER (cont'd)
    Maggie may not be Hale's longest
    running joke...
      (under her breath)

  Maggie finishes the punchline along with his father.

          WALTER AND     MAGGIE
    -- But she's certainly the fastest.

  Uproarious laughter.  Maggie looks terribly pained.  Ike's had
  enough.  He pushes himself to his feet.  Walter is thrilled.  He
  shushes the CROWD.

          WALTER (cont'd)
    Oh, look, Mr. Graham, how about a toast?

          IKE
    I don't know, give me a minute.
      (to Maggie)
    Are you all right with this?

          MAGGIE
    Excuse me?

          IKE
    Are you all right with this?  You think
    this is funny?

          MAGGIE
    Yes.

          IKE
    I don't and I don't think you should...

          BOB
    It's a joke.  They're kidding.

          WALTER AND CROWD
      (yell)
    Come on and give us a toast.

          IKE
    You want me to make a toast?  Okay...
    I'll give you a toast.  To Maggie's
    family and friends.  May you find
    yourselves the bull's eye of an easy
    target.  May you be publicly flogged
    for all of your bad choices and may
    your noses to rubbed in all of your
    mistakes...

  Ike watches their reaction.  The silence is deafening.  All the
  guests stare at Maggie.  Mortified, she holds back tears.

          MRS. TROUT
    That was funny.
      (a pause)
    But enough toasts, let's hula.  Let's
    start the music up.

  She gets everyone up to hula.  Band plays fast tune.  Maggie
  walks through the CROWD down the steps and outside.  Ike
  follows, but Peggy grabs a coat for her.  Bob watches her go as
  Cory approaches.

          CORY
    Hey, Bob.  I got twenty dollars bet on--

          BOB
    Not now.

  Bob rushes after Maggie.

          PEGGY
      (calling after her)
    Maggie.  Maggie.
      (to Ike,  handing him a jacket)
    Here.  She may need this.  It's not
    really Hawaii.

  Ike exits.  Then, Bob comes over.

          BOB
    Where'd Maggie go?

          PEGGY
    Oh, she just went to get me something
    from the car.

  Cory comes over with Dennis to Bob and Peggy.  BOB/PEGGY/CORY/
  DENNIS CHUFFA:  About Bart Starr and football.  (Which keeps Bob
  from going outside to follow Maggie).  Bob thinks about it.

  EXT. TROUT'S BARN - NIGHT

  Ike runs after Maggie.  He grabs her arm and turns her to him.

          IKE
    I'm the only goddamn person in there
    pulling for you.

          MAGGIE
    You humiliated me!

          IKE
    No, Maggie, I defended you.
    Humiliating you is what everyone else
    is doing.  It's the theme of this party.

          MAGGIE
    I had it under control.  Now they feel
    sorry for me.

          IKE
    Well, they should.  Because they're
    about to watch you hang yourself again.

  Maggie has no response.

          IKE (cont'd)
    -- Tell me something, do you really
    care about Mount Everest?

          MAGGIE
    It's fun!  It's high.

          IKE
    Or the sexual habits of locusts?

          MAGGIE
    That was very interesting research
    George was doing!

          IKE
    What kind of Dead Head gets a temporary
    tattoo?

          MAGGIE
    I already explained about that.

          IKE
    And where you ever really going to run
    the leper colony in Molokai?

          MAGGIE
      (wincing)
    Brian told you that?

          IKE
    Or maybe you just wanted to wear the
    headdress.

          MAGGIE
    Every one of those times I was being
    supportive.  Something you won't
    understand.

          IKE
    Supportive?  You weren't being
    supportive.  You were being scared.
    Just like now.  You are the most lost
    woman I have ever laid eyes on.

          MAGGIE
    Lost!

          IKE
    That's right.  You're so lost you don't
    even know how you like your eggs.

          MAGGIE
    What!?

          IKE
    With the priest, you liked them
    scrambled.  With the Dead Head, fried.
    With the bug guy, poached.  Now it's
    egg whites only, thank you very much.

          MAGGIE
    That's called changing your mind.

          IKE
    No, that's called not having a mind of
    your own.  What are you doing, Maggie?
    You really want to let that man drag
    you up Annapuma on your honeymoon?  You
    don't want to climb Annapuma.

          MAGGIE
    Yes I do!

          IKE
    No you don't.  You want a man who will
    lead you down the beach with his head
    over your eyes just so you can discover
    the feel of the sand under your feet.
    You want a guy who will take you into a
    cave with a thousand candles just to
    read you a poem.  You want a man to
    wake you up at dawn because he's
    burning to talk to you and he can't
    wait another minute to find out what
    you'll say.  Am I right?

  He's laid her flat.  Maggie can't speak.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Am I right?

  She fights back angry tears.

          MAGGIE
    Stop.  Stop it!  I'm getting married on
    Sunday, and you're just trying to make
    me run!  Why?  Because you're a cynical,
    exploitative, mean-hearted creep who
    wouldn't know real love if it bit him
    in the armpit!  And all you do is tear
    other people down and-and-and laugh at
    them, and criticize what they do,
    because you're too afraid to do
    anything yourself!  I read your column.
    You never wrote one about you.  I'm not
    the only one who's lost and you know it!
    Am I right?  Well?  Am I right?

  ANGLE ON:  Bob comes outside.

          BOB
    Mag.  Help me out here.  Green Bay.
    Right guard.

  Both Maggie and Ike are breathing hard.  Bob comes up to Maggie
  and gives Ike a very hard look as he puts his arm around his
  fiancee.

          BOB (cont'd)
    You know... Blocked Bart Starr, crewcut
    ... Are you okay?

  Maggie adjusts her face as best she can.

          MAGGIE
    Yes.

          BOB
    Let me take you back inside, okay?

  She lets him lead her away.

          MAGGIE
    Jerry Kramer.

  Ike looks at her drooped shoulder and he shakes his head and
  walks to his car.

  EXT. HALE METHODIST CHURCH - THE NEXT DAY

  Peggy and Cindy arrive for the rehearsal.  They leave Cindy's
  dog in Peggy's car and walk to the church.

          CINDY
    Tell me, why does Maggie need another
    wedding rehearsal and two days before
    the wedding?  She's already done this.

          PEGGY
    Bob is making her visualize the
    ceremony.

              CUT TO:

  INT. HALE METHODIST CHURCH - NIGHT

  They are in the church proper now.  Peggy waits in a pew as Bob
  leads Maggie and Ike up the back steps of the church.

          BOB
      (to Maggie)
    Okay, we're ready.  Want me to have Ike
    leave now?

  Maggie turns on Ike with "cheerful" hostility.

          MAGGIE
    No.  No -- Actually, let's make Ike the
    pastor.

          IKE
    I'd rather not.

          MAGGIE
      (sarcastically)
    Come on, it'll give you a great view.
    It's perfect.
      (seeing Peggy)
    Hey.

  Maggie smiles at Bob.  Ike sighs and goes with it.  Bob pulls Ike
  to the head of the aisle and places him.  Peggy follows Maggie
  into the foyer to get ready.  Cindy sits with Ted at the organ.

          BOB
    Team effort, Pastor Ike... Cindy, ready?
      (after no response)
    Cindy, come on.

  Cindy leaves to join the girls in the foyer.

  INT. CHURCH FOYER - THAT MOMENT

  Once in the privacy of the foyer, Peggy and Maggie talk.

          PEGGY
    He's going to be the pastor?

          MAGGIE
    Yep.  I want him to be front and center
    and to watch everything.

          PEGGY
    What happened at the luau?

          MAGGIE
      (flustered)
    ... I don't even want to talk about
    the luau.
      (then seeing a hanging rope)
    What's this?

          PEGGY
    It's for the bell.

  Cindy joins them.

          CINDY
    Bob's in a hurry.

          PEGGY
    Don't be nervous, Maggie.  Let us
    visualize.  Remember what Bob said?
    "Be the ball."

          CINDY
    "Sink the putt."

          PEGGY
    "Make the shot."

          CINDY
    "Nothing but net."

          PEGGY
    "Never say die."

  Maggie puts her hands up.

          MAGGIE
    Go!

  Peggy and Cindy exit.  Maggie pulls the bell rope and sways back
  and forth as she rings the bell.

  INT. CHAPEL - THAT MOMENT

  It is Maggie's turn to enter.  They all turn expectantly.  Too
  much time passes.  Ted plays the organ, then stops.  Maggie
  swings back and forth in the foyer doorway.

          BOB
    Honey, are you okay?

  Maggie stops ringing the bell and pulls herself together.  She
  walks into the aisle looking a little shaky.  She takes a few
  tremulous steps slowly with her eyes closed, peeking
  occasionally with one eye.

          IKE
      (taking off his jacket)
    At this pace, it could be an evening
    wedding.

          BOB
    Hold it!  Hold it!  I think we're
    taking this too fast.

  He begins to pace.

          BOB (cont'd)
    We need to limber you up a little.
    You're tensing.
      (thinks a moment;
       to Ike, moving him
       to groom's spot)
    You stand here and be me so she knows
    how far she'll have to go.
      (then to Maggie)
    I'm going to walk with you.

  Bob goes to Maggie and walks behind her.

          BOB (cont'd)
    Visualize!  Visualize!  It's game time.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie walking.

          BOB (cont'd)
    You are the football.  You're spiraling
    through the air towards the hands of
    the groom.

  She proceeds down the aisle.  Bob behind her.

          MAGGIE
      (eyes down)
    Yes, I'm spiraling through the air.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie raises her eyes and sees Ike in front of her as groom.
  Ike and Maggie lock gazes.  If they had to, they couldn't look
  away.  All the things unspoken are now communicated -- the love,
  the longing.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I streak towards the goal line.

  Maggie's pace quickens.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    And I land on the goal line.

  ANGLE ON:

  Bob beams to see Maggie's eager arrival at Ike's side.  He
  switches off the music and proceeds like a proud coach to be the
  pastor.

          BOB
    Okay, I'm the pastor.  Dearly beloved,
    blah, blah, blah.  So on and so forth.
    Ra ta ta ta.  Yabada dabada.  I now
    pronounce you man and wife.  Kiss the
    bride, badum dum.
      (then moving toward Ted)
    We have the crescendo that leads to us
    right back down the aisle and out the...

  Ike kisses Maggie.  It is a world class, Olympic kiss.  It is a
  kiss that changes everything and can never be taken back.  It is
  a kiss you only get once in your life.

  NEW ANGLE:

  Bob's smile dies.  Cindy's mouth drops open as the kiss goes on
  and on.  Peggy loses control and screams.

          BOB (cont'd)
    Maggie!!!!?

  Like a bucket of water thrown on two dogs, Ike and Maggie are
  startled out of their kiss.  They pull apart and smile at each
  other.

  ANGLE ON:  Bob.

          BOB (cont'd)
      (furious)
    If you were imagining me, you did great.
      (to Ike)
    What the hell were you doing?

          IKE
      (eyes on Maggie)
    I'm sorry, Bob.  She kissed me back.

          MAGGIE
      (dazed but happy)
    I kissed him back.

          BOB
    Yeah, I caught that.  Want to tell me
    how long this has been going on?

  Maggie looks at Ike, wondrous, confused.

          MAGGIE
    About a minute...?

          IKE
    A little longer for me.

          MAGGIE
    Really?

          BOB
    What do you expect me to say to this?

          IKE
    How about -- "I hope you'll be very
    happy together"?

  Bob hauls back and punches Ike in the face.  Ike drops.

          BOB
    I hope you'll be very happy together.

  Bob storms down the aisle and out of the church.

          MAGGIE
      (to Peggy)
    Take care of him.

  Maggie leaves.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. CHURCH - THAT MOMENT

  Bob is halfway down the walk.  Maggie appears at the church door
  and calls after him.

          MAGGIE
    Bob, I'm sorry!
      (half to herself)
    At least I backed out before the
    wedding.  That's progress!

  He keeps marching.  Now Peggy appears next to Maggie.  Maggie
  calls again.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    Some woman is going to make you a lot
    happier than I ever could...

  The words are barely out of her mouth when Cindy comes out the
  door, racing after Bob at a full sprint.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    See?

          PEGGY
    Well, Maggie -- in the words of Mrs.
    Pressman: "Holy moly".  Call me later.

  Peggy goes to her car.  Cindy joins her as Bob speeds off in his
  car.  Now Ike takes Peggy's place next to Maggie.  Maggie turns
  to face Ike.  They are both beet red, stammering and unable to
  look at each other, trying to act normal.

          MAGGIE
    Okay.  So... what, uh... What just
    happened?  Just now?  Jus then?  In
    there?

          IKE
    I don't know.  I, uh -- I frankly don't
    even want to talk about it.

          MAGGIE
    Me, either.

  Ike GRABS Maggie and BOOM -- they are all over each other,
  kissing frantically, tongues, hands, hair, elbow, you name it.
  Blathering fools.

          IKE
      (blathering)
    I love you.  I love you.

          MAGGIE
      (blathering)
    I love you, too.

  They come up for air.

          IKE
    Wait.  We have to talk.  We have to do
    some talking now.  Pull up a railing.

  Maggie sits on the railing, then Ike backs up and sits on the
  opposite railing.

          IKE (cont'd)
    You have to go down an aisle and say "I
    do".  You have to get married.

          MAGGIE
    To who?  Are you asking me?

          IKE
    Me?

  Ike backs up to opposite railing and sits facing Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Yes, you!

          IKE
      (thinks)
    Well, you do have the dress.

          MAGGIE
    And the church.

          IKE
    And the wedding date.  There's the two
    of us.
      (beat)
    So, you think... maybe... You have to
    go down the aisle with somebody you
    love and who love you back.

          MAGGIE
    I'm okay with that.

          IKE
    So am I.

          MAGGIE
    So, we'll...

  They both nod and sit there smiling, sort of. The organist, Ted,
  closes the church door.

      TED
    Good night.

  Ike pulls his tape recorder out of his pocket and quietly speaks
  into it.

          IKE
    I'm getting married.

  WIDE SHOT:

  They smile at each other and remain sitting.  Then, silence.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. STREET/HALE/ATLANTIC HOTEL - THAT NIGHT

  Ike drives up and parks in front of the hotel as he talks on his
  cell phone.

  INTERCUT WITH:

  INT. FISHER AND ELLIE'S BEDROOM (NYC) - NIGHT

  Ellie's on the phone.  Fisher sits nearby.

          ELLIE
    Ike's going to get married.

  Fisher throws himself onto the carpet and rolls himself
  helpless with laughter.

          ELLIE (cont'd)
      (without turning to him)
    Fisher, if you pee on that Persian,
    I'll kill you.

              CUT TO:

  INT. BEAUTY SALON - NIGHT DAY

  Maggie talks to Peggy, Cindy and Grandma Julia.  Grandma Julia
  sits under a hair dryer.  Sprout, the dog, sits in his basket.

          CINDY
    I love his eyes.  I just believe
    they're listening to you.

          PEGGY
    His hair... any color.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    I like his tight butt.

  Peggy laughs.

          MAGGIE
    Grandma!

          PEGGY
      (to Cindy)
    See, this is a mature relationship.
    She's really found it.

              CUT TO:

  LOVE MONTAGE SHOTS:

  EXT. OCEAN - DAY

  Ike and Maggie fishing.

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKSHOP/HOME - DAY

  They play ping-pong.  They laugh, enjoying the moment.

  INT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - DAY

  Ike and Maggie have fun playing cards.  The game is slapjack.

  EXT. FIELD - DAY

  Maggie and Ike horseback riding.  They sit on their horses
  amongst trees, "nuzzling".  Ike reads as he pushes Maggie in a
  tire swing.

  INT. MAGGIE'S ROOM - DAY

  Ike and Maggie open and close a Hoberman ball by holding its
  opposite ends in their teeth.  Grandma looks in.

  INT. MAGGIE'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  There is a fire in the fireplace.  Maggie and Ike sit as Ike
  shows Maggie some passages from his favorite books.  He's
  reading something from Yeats at the moment.  They seem happy.

  EXT. CHURCH - THE DAY OF THE WEDDING

  It is a media circus including FOUR REPORTERS, Midday with
  Meredith and the T-shirt Vendor.  Plus three other people the
  reporters are interviewing, a GERMAN LADY, BUTCH KENAN, a
  farmer and Grandma Julia.  Reporter DINA NAPOLI walks down the
  church steps.

          DINA NAPOLI (OF WBAL)
    Wedding bells are ringing for the
    fourth time today in Hale, Maryland.
    Maggie Carpenter, "Always a Bride --
    Never a Bridesmaid", will be attempting
    to complete her fourth wedding ceremony.
    We'll come back on the air when the
    results are in.  Back to you, Jessica.

  Meredith, the low-end public access TV reporter, films himself
  pointing a cheap video camera himself.

          MEREDITH
    The turnout for this morning's wedding
    is usually reserved for royalty or
    Hollywood stars, but Maggie Carpenter
    is Hale, Maryland's special star and
    the citizens of Hale are out in full
    force today.

  The NY T-shirt Vendor pitches his wares.

          T-SHIRT VENDOR
    I got "Bye-bye Birdie".  "What part of
    'I do' don't you understand?"... Get
    your "Runaway Bride" T-shirts here...

  Reporter JULIE MURPHY stands near Grandma Julia and Mrs.
  Pressman.

          JULIE MURPHY (Channel 6)
    The bride's been here for almost an
    hour, but being around in the beginning
    was never her problem.  We'll be here,
    showing you the full wedding ceremony,
    we hope.

  Reporter JACKI and TIFFANY stand at the edge of the CROWD
  reporting.

          JACKI/REPORTER #3 (WBOC TV16)
    Will she or won't she?  That is on the
    minds of these several hundreds folks,
    who are standing here this morning.
    Not to mention on the mind of Groom
    Number #4, ex-USA Today columnist, Ike
    Graham, who is missing in action.

  EXT. WINDOW OF CHURCH/INT. SUNDAY SCHOOL ROOM - DAY

  INSERT window of church.  Peggy peers out the window at the
  carnival scene.  Cindy sits with Maggie as she leans forward,
  doubled over on a child's chair.  Peggy moves from the window to
  sit with them.

          MAGGIE
      (moves to window)
    He's not coming.  Watch.  He's not
    coming.

          PEGGY
    No, no.  I saw eight geese flying in a
    "V".

          MAGGIE
    You and your lucky geese.  You always
    see geese.

          PEGGY
    Not eight...

          CINDY
    And in a "V".

          MAGGIE
    Eight is good... "V" could be Victory.

  They ad lib various words starting with the letter "V".  Maggie
  is nervous.

          CINDY
    Rub your ears.

          PEGGY
    Yes, rubbing your ears is very soothing.
    Cory does that to me when I
    hyperventilate.

  Maggie rubs her ears.

          CINDY
    We do it to our dog.

          MAGGIE
    It's hurting.

          CINDY
    We'll rub.

  After they rub Maggie's ears a bit:

          PEGGY
    He's here!  He's here!

  They all squeeze and peer out window.  They scream in excitement.
  Cindy rushes to Maggie's wedding dress.

          CINDY
    I'll get the dress.

          MAGGIE
    He's here!... He's here!

          PEGGY
    Now's the time for calm... If you don't
    calm down, you won't get your dress on...
      (reassuringly)
    He's the one... He's the one.

  Peggy moves to help Cindy with the dress.  Maggie stands alone at
  the window a moment.  She picks up a toy horse.

          MAGGIE
    This is not a good sign.

  Maggie goes over to Peggy and Cindy, and starts to get into her
  bridal gown.  They continue to ad lib words standing with the
  letter "V".

          CINDY
    We have to hurry.  The Sunday School
    kids will be here soon.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S CAR - DAY

  Ike pulls up slowly.  GUESTS peer through the his car window and
  wave.  Ike rubs his headache.

          JULIE MURPHY
    Well, the groom just pulled up.  There
    was talk of a "now show", but he is
    here.

          DINA NAPOLI
    Ike Graham is here!

  IKE'SPOV:

  He moves as he takes it all in:  a FAMILY eats a fast food picnic
  on a neighbor's lawn, invited GUESTS flock by in their party
  best, and local NEWS TEAMS block the way.  The STATE SENATOR is
  making a speech welcoming the press to Maryland.  A large GROUP
  of reporters head up the church's stairs, hauling their
  equipment.  They enter the flood of PEOPLE streaming inside the
  church.  Ike snaps.

  EXT. IKE'S CAR - CONTINUING

  Ike stops the car where it is and jumps out, slamming the door in
  anger.  The REPORTERS swarm around him as he gets out of the car.
  They continue to pound him with questions as he walks to church
  steps.  An OLDER LADY smacks him on the shoulder with a
  newspaper.  He turns in astonishment and continues up the
  steps.  He charges up the stairs and grabs Lee.

          IKE
    Shoot ours so she has one with an
    ending.

  Mrs. Pressman stands, shooting Ike with her video camera.

          IKE (cont'd)
      (pleading)
    Mrs. Pressman, please.

          MRS. PRESSMAN
    It's okay.  There's no microphone.
    You're no fun.

          IKE
    No, I'm not.

  Ike retreats into the church.  Lee comes up to him again with his
  video camera:  CHUFFA about Scorsese.

  INT. CHURCH - CONTINUING

  As Fisher and Ellie sign the guest book, a LOCAL LADY stares at
  Ellie.  Ellie stares back at her until she leaves.  Ike walks
  away from Lee and turns smack into Ellie and Fisher.  Ike puts
  his arms around them and gives them a big hug.

          IKE
    Friends.  Thank you.  Thank you.

  Over Ellie's shoulder, Ike sees Fisher's grinning face.

          IKE (cont'd)
    We are friends, aren't we, Fisher?

          FISHER
      (grinning)
    Of course we are.  Of course.

          IKE
    Then you'll be my best man.

          FISHER
    Well, I'm good, I don't know if I'm
    best.

          IKE
    Go talk to the pastor and he'll tell
    you what to do.  And someone will tell
    me what to do.

          ELLIE
    You always looked great in that suit...
    And Ike?
      (emotional)
    I'm happy for you, honey.

  Ellie whispers in his ear.

          ELLIE (cont'd)
    I'll have a car around the back to
    whisk you out of here if she runs.

  Ellie kisses him on the cheek and walks away.

  ANGLE ON:

  Bob comes up to Ike.  He looks like he's going to punch Ike, then
  abruptly holds out a rose boutonniere.

          BOB
    You look awful.

          IKE
      (sarcastically)
    Thank you.

  Bob hands the flower to Ike.  Ike is shaking.  Bob catches this
  and looks up to Ike.  It is a moment of clean honesty between the
  men.

          BOB
    Ike.  Need help?

  He takes the boutonniere and puts it on Ike's lapel.

          BOB (cont'd)
    I'm glad it's you.

          IKE
    Really?

          BOB
    I didn't want to find out I wasn't for
    her in the fourth quarter.

          IKE
    Got any last minute advice?

          BOB
      (motioning to their eyes)
    Maintain eye contact.

  Bob turns and leaves, going down a side staircase.

          IKE
      (to himself)
    Eye contact.  Eye contact.

  Out of the corner of his eye, Ike sees a pictures of Christ on the
  wall.  He leans into the picture and whispers.

          IKE (cont'd)
    Cover me.

  He walks into the chapel.

  INT. CHAPEL - CONTINUING

  Ike steps up and stands next to Fisher.

          FISHER
      (to Ike)
    I have no idea what I'm doing.

          IKE
    Your job is... the ring.
      (to Fisher)
    Do you have the ring?!

          FISHER
    I just found out I'm best man!  I'm
    lucky I have a suit... What's wrong?

  Ike gives the ring to Fisher.  The Pastor approaches Ike.  Ike
  turns away and look out over the guests.

  IKE'SPOV:  There are most of the TOWNSPEOPLE we've come to
  know, plus some NEW YORKERS for Ike, with little ponytails.
  Armani wire rims, Donna Karan bodysuits.  There's a lot of
  smirking, checking out the hicks, forming their stories for
  cocktail hour.  Elaine is in back all dressed in black, mourning
  Ike.  Mrs. Trout approaches Ike.

          MRS. TROUT
    You should thank Lou and I for the
    wedding car -- a '63 Buick.

          IKE
    Thank you.

          MRS. TROUT
    Oh, come on.  You're practically family.

  Mrs. Trout starts picking lint off Fisher's jacket.

          FISHER
    Hello.  I'm Fisher.

          MRS. TROUT
    This doesn't want to come out.

          FISHER
    You just pull a hair from my neck.

          IKE
    Mrs. Trout, go back to your seat!

  INT. CHURCH FOYER - DAY

  Peggy joins Maggie, who is blowing bubblegum and swaying in
  front of an oscillating fan.  Grandma and Walter come in.
  Grandma gives her a kiss on the cheek.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Good luck, Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Thank you, Grandma.

  Grandma leaves.  Walter steps up.

          WALTER
      (quietly to Maggie)
    I'm really rooting for this one.

          MAGGIE
    Thank you, Dad.

  Peggy turns off the fan.  Cindy takes the bag from Maggie.

          CINDY
    Spit.

  Maggie spits her bubblegum into the bag.  Peggy hands Maggie her
  bouquet.

          PEGGY
    Let's go.

          MAGGIE
    No sauntering down the aisle.  Just
    make time.  Let's just get there.

  Cindy and Peggy nod and leave.  The door closes.

  INT. CHAPEL - CONTINUING

  Both extends his hand to Elaine.

          ELAINE
    Hi, I'm Elaine from New York.

          BOB
    Hello.  I'm Bob, Maggie's fourth
    attempt.

          ELAINE
    I'm sorry.

          BOB
    That's okay.  There's a lid for every
    pot.  Besides, I'm comfortable with Ike.
    I mean, Jack Dempsey lost his
    heavyweight title to a New Yorker.

            ELAINE
    I know.  Gene Tunney.

  The organ begins to play.  The organist is Ted.  Grandma, Walter,
  Mrs. Pressman and the Trouts watch.  Mrs. Trout picks lint off of
  her husband's jacket.

  ANGLE ON:

  Cindy and Peggy enter with the confident air of people who have
  done this before.  They make it to the head of the aisle all too
  quickly.  Peggy gives Ike a wink and an encouraging smile.

  INT. CHURCH FOYER - CONTINUING

  The door opens and Dennis sticks his head in.

          DENNIS
    They're ready, Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    Just a second.

  Dennis closes the door behind him as he goes back into the
  chapel.  Maggie has a moment alone.  She looks at back door as
  possible escape route, then changes her mind.  She signals the
  start of the wedding by knocking on the door.

  INT. CHAPEL - CONTINUOUS

  Immediately, Cory and Dennis open the doors for her entrance.
  All the guests stand as Maggie enter the chapel smiling.

  MAGGIE'S POV:

  The aisle stretches before her into infinity.  Faces goggle at
  her from every direction.  The tiny figure of Ike stands like a
  beacon a long way off.

  NEW ANGLE:

  She plunges forward with a sped-up hesitation step.

  ANGLE ON:

  Ike rocks imperceptibly, urging her on.  Peggy and Cindy make
  little "come on" motions.  It seems to be working.  Maggie
  approaches rapidly.  The CROWD has turned from skepticism to
  looks and noises of encouragement.

  ANGLE ON: MAGGIE

  But then her feet gradually begin to slow.

  ANGLE ON:

  Fisher gives a little "darn, so close" look.

  ANGLE ON:

  But Ike is too busy maintaining eye contact.  His eyes urge
  Maggie closer -- loving her, willing her on.

  CLOSE ON:

  Maggie stops her walk, gives Ike a teasing smile, and then
  resumes with her walk toward him.  His face.  Her face.  His
  face.  Her face.

  CLOSE ON:

  Her foot inches forward.  The other follows.

  NEW ANGLE:

  A sigh now rises from the GUESTS as Maggie closes in on Ike.  He
  smiles at her.  She smiles at him.  She is almost there... She's
  there, smiling at Ike.  The Pastor gestures to the guests to sit
  down.  They do.

  ANGLE ON:

  Ike sneezes.  She looks down and imagines she sees the carpet
  splitting apart.  And she bolts like a bat out of hell!  In a
  flurry of white, she is halfway down the aisle before Ike knows
  what hits him.

  ANGLE ON:

  Ike stands there dazed.  For a second.  Then she springs into
  action, charging after her.

          IKE
      (yelling out)
    Block the doors!

  Like a general, he points to Dennis and Cory in the back and
  sends them into action.  The doors shut in Maggie's face.  But
  she's a wild animal cornered.   She moves to the side.  The
  TOWNSPEOPLE stand so Ike can hurry through the pew.  Ike climbs
  on the pews towards her as GUEST crowd the aisle, blocking his
  path.  Like a gazelle, she leaps to the side aisle and scampers
  down and away.  Fisher gets on his cell phone.  Ike charges from
  one of the full pews, crosses the aisle and leaps across the pews
  near the staircase to cut her off.  He grabs her veil and it
  comes off in his hands.  Maggie disappears down the steps of the
  church basement.  Ike fumble with the veil and jumps over the
  railing, landing on Dennis' toe.  He follows down the stairs
  after her.  Mrs. Pressman and Walter exchange bet money.

              CUT TO:

  INT. CHURCH BASEMENT - CONTINUING

  Maggie comes down steps and enters the church children's Sunday
  school class.  A lot of KIDS And TEACHERS are doing religious
  arts and crafts.  As Maggie runs through:

          MAGGIE
    There's a man coming down those steps
    with lots of candy in his pockets.  If
    you tickle him, he'll give candy.

  She gives her bouquet to a little GIRL as she goes by.  Ike comes
  down stairs.

          IKE
    Maggie!

  The KIDS mob him, grabbing his pockets.  Ike fights his way
  through KIDS.

  ANGLE ON:

  Maggie as she's in the church kitchen and hops on counter and
  heads out the window.  The window is wide enough.

  ANGLE ON:

  Ike as he gets to the window, but Maggie is out in driveway.

  EXT. CHURCH DRIVEWAY - CONTINUING

  Maggie flies toward a FedEx truck at next house just leaving.

  ANOTHER ANGLE:

  She gathers her dress and jumps in as Ike yells from window,
  then, quickly climbs out onto the lawn as the truck starts to
  pull away.

          IKE
    Maggie!

  Maggie looks back once, tearful and regretful, and disappears
  inside the truck.  The truck races off.

  The PHOTOGRAPHERS turn their cameras on Ike, en masse.  He is
  enveloped by a barrage of bright lights.

  Ellie and Fisher, who have also stepped outside on chapel front
  steps, are looking around as Ike turns around the corner and
  past the church.

          ELLIE
    Look, he's running after her.

          FISHER
    Look, he's in pretty good shape.

          ELLIE
    Poor Ike.

  They look after the FedEx truck and watch Ike chasing the truck
  down the road away from the church.

          IKE
      (running; yells)
    Maggie!

          ELLIE
    Where do you think she's going?

          FISHER
    Wherever it is, she'll be there by ten-
    thirty tomorrow.

  Cindy, Cory, Peggy and Meredith also rush out of the church and
  comment on Maggie's runaway.  Further down the road, Ike still
  chases the truck, yelling:

          IKE
    Maggie!

  As the truck rounds the bend in the road and disappears, Ike
  stops and stares alone after the disappearing truck.  A swarm of
  REPORTERS catch up to him, flashing pictures and asking
  questions.  Another camera flashes and we cut to:

  A NEWSPAPER PHOTO

  Of Ike's stunned face on the cover of the USA Today.  The caption
  reads: "Hit and Run:  Runaway Bride Strikes again".  And we see
  headlines in other papers.

  "MAGGIE'S MAD DASH"
  "HARDWARE HONEY GOES NUTS AND BOLTS"
  "JOURNALIST WRITTEN OFF"
  "BRIDE TAKES HIKE...NOT IKE"
  "BRIDE TAKE RIDE"
  "MAGGIE SAYS I DON'T"

  NEWSPAPER MONTAGE:

  INT. NEW YORK BAR - DAY

  Kevin, the bartender, reads Jay's column, in the USA Today
  entitled "Maggie's Mad Dash".

              CUT TO:

  EXT. USA TODAY LOADING DOCK - DAY

  Various newspaper WORKERS also read Jay's column in the USA
  Today entitled "Maggie Mad Dash" and "Hardware Honey Goes Nuts
  and Bolts" in another newspaper.

  FADE IN

  EXT. MAIN STREET/HALE - NIGHT (1-5 MONTHS LATER)

  It's a night like any other in Hale -- the regular order of
  things has been restored on its quaint streets.  Quartet sings
  in front of the hotel.  LEE AND CORY CHUFFA:  About where Peggy
  is.

  INT. HARDWARE STORE - NIGHT

  Maggie is sitting, end of a long day.  Peggy sticks her head in
  entrance door.

          PEGGY
    You okay?  I'm closing.

          MAGGIE
    I'm just finishing up, too.

          PEGGY
    Want to go to Butch's for a drink or
    something?

          MAGGIE
      (interrupting)
    No, I'm just going to head home.

          PEGGY
    Okay.

  Peggy starts to go, then moves close to Maggie.

          PEGGY (cont'd)
      (stepping closer
       and making a "V"
       with her fingers)
    You know, I was just thinking about
    that geese thing.  I think the "V" was
    half of a "W".  A "W" for...

          MAGGIE
    What are you talking about?

          PEGGY
    Wedding.  Wedding.
      (holding Maggie's face)
    You just have to get the rest of your
    ducks in a row.

          MAGGIE
    Thank you.  You still think that he
    was....

          PEGGY
    Quick.  Very quick.

  Peggy exits.  Maggie stares, losing herself in thought.  Then a
  VOICE startles her.

          VOICE
      (whispers)
    Marry me, Maggie.

  Maggie jumps and turns to see:  DENNIS -- the kid from the high
  school football team, popping up from a low position near the
  counter.

          MAGGIE
      (softly)
    Hi, Dennis.

          DENNIS
    I am going to propose, you know.  I
    mean, the right way.  Soon as I turn
    eighteen.

          MAGGIE
    You're sweet, Dennis.  But you've got
    to go.  I'm closing up.  Here's a candy
    bar and one for your brother.

  Dennis takes the candy and starts to go.

          DENNIS
    I'm not giving up.   A person shouldn't
    give up.

  Dennis exits.  Maggie is alone.  She turns out the lamp she
  designed, then on again.  She turns off the other lamp on the
  counter and exits.  We hold on Maggie's designed lamp.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S HALLWAY AND APARTMENT - NIGHT

  Ike walks up to his door, carrying his mail and a bag of
  carryout.  He opens the door and walks into his apartment.  He
  pets Italics, who sits on his sofa bed.  Without taking off his
  coat, he goes to his keyboard and plays music as he CHUFFAS to
  his cat about marriage and divorce.

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S HOUSE - DAY

  Dad and Grandma Julia are there.  Grandma is making lunch.
  Walter is juggling oranges.  There's glass of beer on the
  kitchen counter.

          WALTER
    That's Maggie.  Home for lunch.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    She's been doing this since the last
    wedding.  I don't think it's good.

  Maggie walks in and kisses Grandma on the cheek.

          MAGGIE
    Hey.  Grandma, what's for lunch?

          GRANDMA JULIA
    Turkey and cheese.

          WALTER
    Honey, your grandmother and I were
    thinking about opening a wedding gift
    museum.

  Walter laughs.

          MAGGIE
    STOP!

  Walter looks at his daughter in surprise.  He's never heard a
  tone like this in her voice before.

          WALTER
    What?

          MAGGIE
      (quiet fury)
    Just stop it.  Don't say another word
    like that.

          WALTER
      (putting down the oranges)
    Maggie, it's just a joke...

          MAGGIE
    No.  It's my life.

          WALTER
    A harmless joke.

          MAGGIE
    No, it's humiliating and you've been
    doing it since I was a kid.  I don't
    like it.  Stop.  You may not like
    having a daughter with problems.  But
    guess what?  I don't like having a
    father who's drunk all the time.  I'll
    eat in my room.

  Maggie takes a plate and exits.

          GRANDMA JULIA
    That needed to be said.  You know --
    you're always making jokes about her,
    so they won't make jokes about your
    drinking.

  Walter reacts.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S APARTMENT - DAY

  Ike goes out on his terrace.  He bounces a basketball.  It
  doesn't bounce.  He sits on the steps of the patio an stares.

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKROOM/GYM - DAY

  Maggie is kickboxing.

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKROOM/GYM - ANOTHER DAY

  Maggie is a bit melancholy as she works on her lamps.

              CUT TO:

  INT. IKE'S APARTMENT - ANOTHER DAY

  Ike quietly sits in bed writing and staring into space thinking.
  His cat sits on the windowsill.

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S WORKROOM/GYM - NIGHT

  Maggie jumps rope barefooted late at night.

          MAGGIE
    I need a plan... A plan to life... What
    would Bruce Lee do?  He'd kick some
    ass...

              CUT TO:

  INT. MAGGIE'S KITCHEN - DAY

  Maggie in front of plates full of all sorts of types of eggs --
  scrambled, poached, sunny-side up, Benedict, soft boiled, etc
  -- sits on the kitchen counter.  She ties them all.

  EXT. NEW YORK STREET - DAY

  Establishing shot.  Two MEN try to fix the engine of a taxi
  outside the restaurant.

              CUT TO:

  EXT. NEW YORK STREET - DUSK

  Eke walks by the T-shirt Vendor, goes into a subway station.

  EXT. ANOTHER STREET - DUSK

  Ike crosses a busy street where a MAN is being arrested.  Ike is
  passing the upscale "Millennium Hardware Store".  He glances at
  the window, looks away, stops and looks again.  The window
  display is made up of an assortment of Maggie's lamps.  Logo
  "MAG" is on them.  He smiles and walks on.

  EXT. CENTRAL PARK RESERVOIR - DUSK

  Ike stares out at water as he walks.

  EXT. IKE'S APARTMENT BUILDING - NIGHT

  Ike walks along sidewalk, crosses street, enters his building.

  INT. IKE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

  Ike opens the door to his apartment and flicks on the lights.  He
  crosses to hang his coat in the closet.  In the closet mirror, he
  sees and is stunned to find:  MAGGIE, sitting on the couch
  holding Italics, the cat.

          MAGGIE
    Hello, Ike.

  He closes the closet and crosses to his desk.

          IKE
    Don't tell me.  My doorman is one of
    your many admires... I knew I should
    have given him a better Christmas gift.

  Maggie smiles tenuously.  She's more than a little terrified.

          MAGGIE
    I've been making friends with your cat.
      (then)
    Is it okay that I'm here?

          IKE
    I don't have much choice in the matter
    now, do I?  But I can't speak for
    Italics.
      (to Cat)
    Traitor!

  He moves to the kitchen.

          MAGGIE
    I don't blame you for being mad...

  Ike looks at her.  Apparently the word "mad" is an understatement.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    ... Or... furious.

  Ike looks at her again.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    ... Irate?  Livid?  How's that?

  He starts putting cat food in a bowl.  The cat leaves Maggie's
  side and starts to east.

          IKE
    Livid is good.  So what is it, Maggie?
    You here on business?  I saw your lamps.
    They're terrific.

          MAGGIE
    It's something I've always wanted to do.

  Ike leaves the kitchen, turns on the balcony lights and re-enters
  the living room from the balcony.

          IKE
    You actually could make breaking and
    entering into a new career.
      (after opening
       the glass doors)
    So, what are you doing here?

          MAGGIE
    I wanted to talk to you about why I run
    or ride away from things.

  Ike moves away from her and sits on the steps near the balcony
  window, listening.

          IKE
      (after sitting)
    Does it matter?

          MAGGIE
    I think so... When I was walking down
    the aisle?  I was  walking toward
    somebody who didn't have any idea who I
    really was.  And it was only half the
    other person's fault, because I had
    done everything to convince him that I
    was exactly what he wanted.  So it was
    good that I didn't go through with it
    because it would have been a lie, but
    you -- you knew the real me.

          IKE
    Yes, I did.

          MAGGIE
    I didn't.  And you being the one at the
    end of the aisle didn't just fix that.

  Ike takes this in.  She's reaching him -- but then the defenses
  go back up.  He turns to her.

          IKE
    No, I couldn't fix anything...
      (as he gets up)
    But I still ended up chasing a truck.

  Ike moves out to the balcony.  After a moment, Maggie follows him.

  EXT. BALCONY/IKE'SAPARTMENT - NIGHT

  The balcony overlooks Central Park.  The twinkling lights of the
  city stretch out across the beautiful night.  Ike looks out at
  the view with his back to Maggie as she speaks.

          MAGGIE
    I understand why you bring up the truck.
    Let me explain something.  The fact is,
    you've seen me at my worst, most
    embarrassing, deviously plotting,
    potentially but not certifiably,
    psychotic state.  And if you liked me
    then, I mean, now... I can't imagine...
      (crosses to him)
    Benedict.

  Ike has no response.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I love eggs Benedict.  I hate all the
    other kinds.

  She hesitates.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    ... I hate big weddings with everybody
    staring.  I would like to get married
    on a weekday while everybody is at work.
    If I ride off into the sunset, I want
    my own horse.

          IKE
    Should I be writing this down?

  She returns to the balcony and hands him the box.

          IKE (cont'd)
    What's this?

          MAGGIE
    These are for you.

  He opens it.  It's her running shoes.

          IKE
    Used?

          MAGGIE
    They're mine.  I'm turning in my
    running shoes to you.

          IKE
    This is getting serious.

  Now she is glowing at him, shining with the full force of her.

          MAGGIE
    And one more thing.  I know it's hard
    to believe there could be more.  Um...

  Maggie glances around and spots a DECK CHAIR, which she turns so
  it is facing the city lights.  Then she softly says:

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    If you could have a seat, please.

  Ike sits.  Maggie takes the box from him and puts it aide.  And
  then she gets down on one knee.

          IKE
      (laughing)
    Oh my God.  No.

  Maggie smiles up at him.  Ike tips his head back and covers his
  eyes with his hand.

          MAGGIE
    No, no -- don't hide your face, this
    only happens once in a lifetime.  It's
    definitely a first to me, and you're
    not going to want to miss it.

  He smiles as he looks at Maggie.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I love you, Homer Eisenhower Graham.
    Will you marry me?

  Ike swallows, overwhelmed, overjoyed, and scared shitless.

          IKE
    Maggie, I gotta think about this a
    little bit.

  Maggie hops cheerfully back to her feet.

          MAGGIE
      (cheerful)
    Good.

  She gets off her knees and stands.

          MAGGIE (cont'd)
    I was hoping you'd say that.

          IKE
      (laughing)
    You were not.

          MAGGIE
    I was, because if you said "yes" right
    away, I wouldn't get to say this next
    part.  And I've been practicing it.
      (pulling up a chair
       and sitting)
    Ready?

          IKE
    I'm listening.

          MAGGIE
      (tenderly)
    "I guarantee that we'll have tough
    times.  I guarantee  that at some point
    one or both oof us will want to get out.
    But I also guarantee that if I don't
    ask you to be mine, I'll regret it for
    the rest of my life. Because I know in
    my heart -- you're the only one for me".

  Ike takes her hands affectionately.

          IKE
    Pretty good speech, Maggie.

          MAGGIE
    I borrowed it from this guy I know.
    So?

  Ike looks into Maggie's shining face and pauses.  He gets up and
  motions with his hand for her to stay seated.  He goes inside and
  turns on some music.  The cat is sitting by the radio.  He
  returns to the balcony and takes Maggie's hand.

          IKE
    Dance with me.

  They start to dance a slow dance.

              DISSOLVE TO:

  EXT. LARGE GREEN FIELD - DAY

  We see a hill and on top of it is a Pastor marrying Maggie and
  Ike, in beautiful wedding attire.  We see Maggie walk down a
  leaf-lined aisle to a waiting Ike.  They kiss as we hear the vows
  and hear them each say "I do".  They kiss a twirling, whirling
  kiss, a circular kiss.  We hear the applause of about twenty
  people.  Slowly, we see the twenty people come over the crest of
  the hill.  They are all Maggie's family and friends, plus the
  old grooms.  They are all paired in twos, like a love Noah's ark.
  We see others get the news.

  INT. CHURCH - DAY

  Priest Brian hears about Maggie's wedding.

  INT. BAKERY - DAY

  Mrs. Trout hears about Maggie's wedding.

  INT. NEW YORK BAR - DAY

  George, Groom #3, hears about Maggie's wedding.

  INT. ELLIE'S OFFICE OR APARTMENT - DAY

  Ellie and Fisher hear about Maggie's wedding.

  EXT. FIELD - DAY

  ANOTHER ANGLE:

  Maggie and Ike finally break the kiss.  Ike takes her hand and
  walks her to two horses.  Ike and Maggie, on the two horses, ride
  off happily in their wedding clothes.  As the group cheers,
  Maggie throws bouquet.  We see it float in the air.

              FADE TO BLACK.

      THE END

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