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The Proposal Movie Script

Writer(s) : Pete Chiarelli

Genres : Comedy, Drama, Romance

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                                   THE PROPOSAL
          

          
                                    Written by
          
                                  Pete Chiarelli

          

          
                                                            June 16, 2006

          

          FADE IN:

          INT. MARGARET'S APARTMENT - EARLY MORNING

          The sun peeks over the horizon.   There's a stunning view of
          Central Park from this apartment, but whoever lives here isn't
          watching.
          As we wander through expensive furniture, a steady THUMP, THUMP,
          THUMP echoes through the apartment.   Eventually, we see MARGARET
          MILLS (37) running on a treadmill, watching "The O.C." on Tivo,
          and reading a manuscript.
          She sprints as the clock on her treadmill goes to zero.   As she
          hits a button to stop the treadmill...

          INT. WOMAN'S APARTMENT - EARLY MORNING

          A hand knocks an alarm clock off a table to shut it up.   RICHARD
          PAXTON (26) wakes up on pink sheets and looks around to figure
          out where he is. There are multiple framed pictures of the same
          model on the walls.
          Richard looks at the clock and gets up quickly when he sees it is
          6:16 AM.   Unfortunately for him, he is very hung over.

          RICHARD
          Where are my clothes?
          A blob beneath the sheets next to him answers.   SIMONE is the
          model on the walls and is really, really hot.

          SIMONE
          In the kitchen.   I think.   Can I make you
          some coffee?

          RICHARD
          Sorry, I gotta go.   I'm late.
          Richard hurries to the kitchen.   Socks are on the butcher block
          next to an empty champagne bottle.   Shoes in the sink.   He finds
          his pants on the floor and puts them on.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Have you seen my belt?
          Simone looks around and sees it tied to her headboard.

          SIMONE
          In here.
          She unties the complicated knot.   Richard comes back half
          dressed.   He swallows a little throwup.

          RICHARD
          Baby, I just can't do this anymore.

          

          

          

          

          2.

          INT. MARGARET'S APARTMENT - EARLY MORNING

          Margaret puts on a black suit jacket.   Definitely not off the
          rack.   She makes sure she looks perfect in the mirror, and moves
          off.

          INT. WOMAN'S APARTMENT - EARLY MORNING

          Reflected in the mirror above Simone's bed, Richard hurriedly
          gets dressed as he talks.

          RICHARD
          You're just too much for me.   And I'm just
          another guy too wrapped up in his job.

          SIMONE
          Fine.   Whatever.   Just go.
          Richard sits down on the bed and locks eyes with Simone.

          RICHARD
          Let's not end it like that. It's been an
          amazing three and a half weeks.   Thank you.
          And you should know that you have the nicest
          ass I've ever been with.

          SIMONE

          (TOUCHED)
          You mean it?

          RICHARD
          I do.   It's magnificent.

          SIMONE
          I work really hard on it.

          RICHARD
          I know you do.
          Simone smiles and begins to seductively pull the sheets off her
          naked body.   Richard shakes his head "no" and smiles.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          I really gotta go.

          INT. MARGARET'S KITCHEN - EARLY MORNING

          CRUNCH.   Margaret eats a bowl of Kashi and soy milk while
          standing and reading a manuscript.   Her eyes remain glued to her
          reading as she rinses out her bowl and puts it in the dishwasher.
          Her apartment is very quiet.

          EXT. NEW YORK STREET - MORNING

          HONK!   A cab blares its horn at Richard as he runs across the
          street.   His suit is rumpled and he checks his watch.

          

          

          

          

          3.

          INT. MARGARET'S LOBBY - MORNING

          DING!   The elevator opens and Margaret strides towards the exit
          and the DOORMAN (60).   Before Margaret gets to the door, her CELL
          PHONE RINGS.   She checks the caller ID and excitedly points at
          her phone as she lets it ring.

          MARGARET
          (to phone)
          I knew you would call!   Now come on, tell me
          what I want to hear.   Give it to me.

          DOORMAN
          You have to put it by your mouth so people
          can hear you.

          MARGARET
          You should get paid extra for being so darn
          funny.
          Margaret straightens her jacket, answers the phone, and walks out
          the door.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          This is Margaret.

          INT. SKYSCRAPER LOBBY - MORNING

          Richard bursts into the skyscraper and runs into a Starbucks.

          INT. STARBUCKS - MORNING - CONTINUOUS

          Two coffees lie in wait for Richard.   JILLIAN, a lovely Barista,
          smiles as he hurries to the counter.

          JILLIAN
          You're running late today.

          RICHARD
          Jillian, you are the best.

          JILLIAN
          If you think I'm good at this, you should
          use that coffee cup sometime.
          As he runs out the door, Richard glances at his cup and smiles at
          Jillian's name and phone number written in Sharpie.

          RICHARD
          See ya tomorrow.

          INT. SKYSCRAPER LOBBY - MORNING - CONTINUOUS

          The elevator doors ahead of Richard begin to close.

          RICHARD

          

          

          

          

          4.
          Mercifully, a hand reaches out and stops the doors.   Inside the
          packed elevator, Richard's CO-WORKERS look sleepy.   One
          particularly frustrated co-worker confronts Richard.

          CO-WORKER #1
          How long is she gonna make us come in by
          seven?

          RICHARD
          She doesn't exactly consult with me on these
          things.

          CO-WORKER #1
          Well this sucks ass.

          RICHARD
          Welcome to my nightmare.
          The doors close as...

          EXT. NEW YORK STREET - MORNING

          Margaret crosses the street and talks on the phone.

          MARGARET
          You've been thinking about our talk because
          I'm right.   Everyone does publicity.   Roth,
          McCourt, Russo.   Hell, Chabon practically
          whores himself.   Know what they have in
          common?   A Pulitzer.
          (off answer)
          Yes, I know you haven't done it in twenty
          years, but that's how long it's been since
          you've written a book this good.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - MORNING

          Richard bursts out of the elevator and passes a clock reading
          6:56 and a sign that announces "Royce Publishing."   He hauls ass
          through a sea of cubicles.   Along the way, grumpy employees
          begrudgingly nod their good mornings.
          At his desk, he pulls a tie out of a drawer and puts it on
          without looking in the mirror.   Noticing his wrinkled suit, he
          pulls out a SPRAY BOTTLE out of the same drawer, sprays it all
          over his body, and then on his head to help mat down a tricky
          cowlick.   Satisfied, he hurries into a nearby corner office.

          INT. SKYSCRAPER LOBBY - MORNING

          Margaret walks into the lobby and continues talking.   Employees
          avoid her and pile into the elevator.

          

          

          

          

          5.

          MARGARET
          I'm not pushing so you'll sell more books,
          I'm pushing because it'll be a crime if the
          world doesn't hear that you wrote a genius
          piece of literature.   Do the publicity.
          Margaret waits for an answer and smiles when she hears "yes."
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You're making the right decision!   Great
          news.   Going into an elevator, think I'm
          going to lose you...
          Margaret hangs up.   Never give them a chance to change their
          mind.

          INT. MARGARET'S OFFICE - MORNING

          Richard races to Margaret's computer and turns it on.   He picks
          up papers strewn about the room.   He goes back to the computer,
          and opens computer programs.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - RECEPTION - MORNING

          Margaret exits the elevator and receives an enthusiastic...

          RECEPTIONIST
          Good morning!
          Margaret quickly walks by and gives only the slightest nod.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - MORNING

          Margaret walks through the cubicles and nods hello to her staff,
          who all look busy on the phone.   When she turns the corner, they
          stop their "conversations" in mid sentence and hang up.

          INT. MARGARET'S OFFICE - MORNING

          Richard stares at the printer as a sheet of paper comes out.   A
          clock above the door reads 7:00 AM.   The paper clears the printer
          and Richard grabs it quickly.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - MORNING

          Margaret opens the door to her office, and finds Richard standing
          at attention with papers in one hand and coffee in the other.
          Her office looks perfect.

          RICHARD
          You've got a conference call in thirty, a
          staff meeting at nine, and your immigration
          lawyer sent some papers for you to sign.

          MARGARET
          Cancel the call, move the meeting to eight,

          (MORE)

          

          

          

          

          6.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (big news)
          I got Frank to do publicity.

          RICHARD
          Nice job.

          MARGARET
          When I want your praise, I'll ask for it.
          Is Bob here?

          RICHARD
          I'm sure.   You want him on the phone?

          MARGARET
          We're going to his office.   Grab your pad.
          Richard calmly backs out of the office...

          INT. RICHARD'S DESK - CONTINUOUS

          ... but once he's out of Margaret's sight he runs to his computer
          and sends an instant message to the office "The Banshee is headed
          to Bob's office."

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - MORNING

          As the message pops up on computers, the quiet office jumps to
          life as everyone in a cubicle picks up their phone and resumes
          their imaginary conversations.

          INT. RICHARD'S DESK - MORNING

          Margaret comes out to Richard's desk.   She notices his coffee cup
          with Jillian's number on it.   She takes special notice of the
          hearts that dot the "I's" in Jillian.

          MARGARET
          That's cute.   You gonna call her today?

          RICHARD
          What?
          Richard doesn't know what Margaret is talking about, until she
          nods at the cup.   He's embarrassed.

          MARGARET
          Are you bored here?   Do you need little
          distractions like that to get you through
          the day?

          RICHARD
          Uh...

          MARGARET
          You have another late night out?

          RICHARD

          

          

          

          

          7.
          Margaret starts walking.   Richard quickly catches up, worried
          because he doesn't know where she's going with this.

          MARGARET
          I'm firing on all cylinders and you've got
          hearts on your coffee cup, wicked bed head,
          and a wrinkled suit that you wore yesterday.

          RICHARD
          Oh.   Well, it won't be wrinkled for long.

          MARGARET
          You'll magically unwrinkle?

          RICHARD
          Yes.

          MARGARET
          You have magic pants?

          RICHARD
          No.   I've sprayed them with stuff that will
          take care of the wrinkles.

          MARGARET
          Does this work on more than just your pants?

          RICHARD
          Anything that's wrinkled.

          MARGARET
          Buy me some.

          RICHARD
          Will do.
          Richard makes a note.   Margaret stops to make her point.

          MARGARET
          I don't care what or who you do on your own
          time, but when you walk through that door
          you represent me, and I will not have your
          personal life affect you at work.   If you
          want me to think of promoting you to editor,
          I need you sharp, focused and professional.
          Got it?

          RICHARD
          Got it.

          MARGARET
          Great.   Now you're just a prop in here, so
          don't say a word.

          

          

          

          

          8.

          INT. BOB'S OFFICE - CONTINUOUS

          Margaret and Richard enter Bob's office, which is decorated with
          beautiful antiques and first edition books.   But unlike
          Margaret's office, this one isn't in the corner.
          Margaret nods at Richard to shut the door.   BOB (42) wears a prim
          bow tie, circular tortoise shell glasses, and the air of
          superiority.

          MARGARET
          Hey, Bob.

          BOB
          Ah.   Our fearless leader and her liege.
          Margaret smiles.

          MARGARET
          I'm lettin' you go, Bob.

          BOB
          Pardon?

          MARGARET
          You're fired.

          BOB
          What?   What are you talking about?

          MARGARET
          This isn't working out.

          BOB
          You can't...

          MARGARET
          I asked you repeatedly to get Frank to do
          publicity.   You said it was impossible.

          BOB
          It is.   He doesn't do publicity.

          MARGARET
          I just talked to him.   He's in.

          BOB
          But...

          MARGARET
          No more buts, Bob.   I've been chief for a
          month and a half, and this is the third time
          you've dropped the ball.   You didn't even
          call to ask him.

          BOB

          

          

          

          

          9.

          MARGARET
          All you had to do to was pick up the phone.
          That's it.   Now I'll give you two months to
          find a new job, and then you can say you
          resigned.   I won't tell a soul, my lips are
          sealed.
          Margaret nods at Richard and he opens the door.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - CONTINUOUS

          Margaret and Richard walk a few steps.   Margaret looks straight
          ahead and whispers to Richard.

          MARGARET
          What's he doing?
          Richard turns around and takes a peek.   Bob gets out of his chair
          and comes to his door.

          RICHARD
          He's up and about to pop.

          MARGARET
          Oh Bob, don't do it...

          BOB

          YOU POISONOUS BITCH!   YOU CAN'T FIRE ME!
          The office stops.   This is going to be good.   Margaret turns
          around with a disappointed look on her face.   She's deadly calm.

          MARGARET
          What are you doing?   I gave you a civilized
          way out of this.

          BOB
          This is because I'm your competition.
          Because I threaten you!

          MARGARET
          Oh, Bob.   You could never threaten me.   I'm
          firing you because you're lazy, entitled and
          incompetent.   I'm firing you because you
          don't work hard.   So if you know what's good
          for you, you'll shut up, take off that
          ridiculous bow tie, find a bar and get
          drunk.   Because if you say one more word,
          Richard here is going to call security and
          have you thrown out on your ass.   Are we
          perfectly clear?
          Bob nods.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Good.   Now I've got work to do, so if you'll

          

          

          

          

          10.
          Margaret and Richard walk away and speak in hushed tones.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          We need to call his authors and explain what
          happened.   And get Frank's publicity
          schedule figured out pronto.

          RICHARD
          No problem.   I'll just cancel my trip this
          weekend.

          MARGARET
          I gave you the weekend off?

          RICHARD
          It was my Grandma's ninetieth birthday.
          But no big deal.   You were right before, I
          need to stay focused.   Professional.

          INT. RICHARD'S DESK - DAY

          Richard is on the phone with his mom explaining why he can't come
          home this weekend.   He sounds like an annoyed teenager.

          RICHARD
          Well tell gammy that I'm sorry.
          (waiting to speak)
          Mom, she's making me work this weekend.
          It's not like I volunteered.
          (waiting to speak)
          I'm sure dad is pissed.
          Margaret comes to Richard's desk.   He tries to wrap it up.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          I have to go.   Yeah.   No, I'm not going to
          do that!   No.   Sorta.   Mom!   No.   Bye.
          Richard hangs up the phone.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Sorry about that.   Damage control.

          MARGARET
          She tell you to quit?

          RICHARD
          No.   No.
          (off Margaret's look)
          Um.   Yes?   But as I've explained to them,
          after three years together, you're the only
          person on the planet who can make me editor,
          so that's the way it is.
          Richard's phone rings and he picks it up.

          

          

          

          

          11.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Your 10:55 is here.   Mr. Gilbertson?

          MARGARET
          Who is this guy?

          RICHARD
          He said you knew each other.   You weren't
          sure so you told me to set a meeting.   We
          rescheduled on him four times.

          MARGARET
          Go get him.   But he's out of here in five
          minutes, we've got work to do.
          Margaret leaves and goes into her office.

          RICHARD
          (to himself)
          I'll charge up the cattle prod.

          INT. MARGARET'S OFFICE - DAY

          Margaret reads as MR. GILBERTSON (48) sits down.   He's an intense
          man in a bad suit.   He sits in silence until Margaret looks up.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Margaret.   Good to see you.   I know how busy
          you are.   Congrats on the promotion.   Read
          about it in P-W.

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   Well, those announcements are silly,
          aren't they?   Like everyone who needs to
          know doesn't know already.
          Margaret has been trying to figure out how she knows this man,
          but now gives up.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Have to admit, I can't place where we know
          each other from.
          Gilbertson smiles.   He didn't expect her to remember.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Three years ago?   We worked together.

          MARGARET
          Don't have it...

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Remember "Dandelion's Desire?"
          Margaret gets excited.

          

          

          

          

          12.

          MARGARET
          Oh my God, you read that manuscript with me?
          That book is legend.   Without a doubt the
          worst ever written.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You think?

          MARGARET
          It was a fever dream!                                         900 offensive and
          pointless pages, with like 30 characters,
          who all had some weird disability.   The
          paraplegic pornographer, and the stuttering
          scientist?   Oh!   And there was the asthmatic
          alien chapter -- written entirely in his
          alien language.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I believe there was a glossary...
          Margaret laughs, caught up in the memory.

          MARGARET
          Did you see the pass letter I wrote him?

          MR. GILBERTSON

          (QUOTING)
          "Your grammar is impeccable, but please do
          not confuse superior form with writing
          ability.   Save your skills for the office
          newsletter, you sir, are no writer."
          A beat.   Margaret says matter of fact...

          MARGARET
          You wrote the book.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I did.

          MARGARET
          You're Dante Dickens?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          One of my nom de plumes.
          Gilbertson paces.   Margaret stays seated, at a loss.

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings.   You
          obviously were spending a lot of time
          writing, I just thought you should channel
          all that passion into something else.
          Gilbertson smiles as he pulls a BADGE from his coat pocket.

          

          

          

          

          13.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Ms. Mills, I'm with U.S. Citizenship and
          Immigration Services, and I'm deporting you
          to Canada.

          MARGARET
          Excuse me?   What?   This is a mistake.   I've
          lived here since 1981.   I'm applying for
          citizenship.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You need citizenship now?   After the big
          promotion?

          MARGARET
          Yes.   And all the papers are in.
          Gilbertson pulls out a stack of papers and throws them down.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Well, my office is going to reject your
          paperwork on Monday, while we investigate
          whether your behavior is well disposed to
          the good order and happiness of the United
          States.   We must protect our sovereignty.

          MARGARET
          I'm a threat to the sovereignty of the
          United States?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Yes, and unfortunately my investigation will
          take awhile, so you'll be deported while
          your case winds through the system.
          (as if he doesn't know)
          Will it affect you at work if you aren't
          allowed to enter the U.S. for the next two
          to three years?

          MARGARET
          "Affect me at work?"   I'll lose my job!

          MR. GILBERTSON
          (mock sympathy)
          Ahhhh.   That's a shame.   Too bad we can't
          work something out.
          Margaret stops looking at her file.   It all becomes clear.

          MARGARET
          Oh, no.   No, no, no.   I won't do it.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Do what, Ms. Mills?

          MARGARET

          

          

          

          

          14.
          Gilbertson smiles.   She's quick.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I've edited it down.   It's better.

          MARGARET
          Well then, get it published at another
          house.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          They all just don't get me.

          MARGARET
          All?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Well not all.   Two hundred fifty, two
          hundred sixty-one.   Ish.

          MARGARET
          I'll be fired and laughed out of the
          industry if I publish that book.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I'm at the end of my rope, Ms. Mills.   I'm
          an author.   Not some bureaucrat who brings a
          lunchable to work everyday and lives in his
          brother's garage.   You're the last stop, and
          I'm desperate.

          MARGARET
          I will never publish your book.   Ever.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          There's no need to make this difficult.   I
          don't turn in your file until Monday...

          MARGARET
          This is blackmail.   I'll go to your boss.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I've spent two years preparing for this day.
          Don't you think I've thought of that?
          Now Margaret is pacing, while Gilbertson happily looks on.
          Suddenly, the door opens and Richard bursts in, acting like there
          is an "emergency" so Margaret can end the meeting.

          RICHARD
          Excuse me, Ms. Mills, risk management needs
          you right away.
          The sight of Richard inspires Margaret.   She turns to Gilbertson
          with a wicked grin on her face.

          

          

          

          

          15.

          MARGARET
          Know what, Dante?   I'm not going anywhere!
          We're getting married!
          Richard has no idea what Margaret is talking about.

          RICHARD
          Who's getting married?

          MARGARET
          We are!

          RICHARD
          You and him?

          MARGARET
          Stop playing around, honey.
          Margaret is all smiles.   Richard is very confused.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Mr. Gilbertson is from the INS.   I told him
          about us.   About us getting married.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You are marrying your male secretary?

          RICHARD
          Assistant.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You are marrying your male assistant?

          MARGARET
          (matter of fact)
          We're in love.   We tried to fight it.   When
          it's right, it's right.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          And this has nothing to do with my visit
          here today?

          MARGARET
          Nope.   True love.   Got it bad.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          (to Richard)
          You.   Is this true?   Are you marrying
          this... woman?
          Margaret comes over to Richard and holds his hand.

          MARGARET
          Of course we are.

          MR. GILBERTSON

          

          

          

          

          16.
          Painfully long beat where Richard doesn't answer.   Margaret
          squeezes Richard's hand hard.

          RICHARD
          Uh-huh.
          Margaret smiles and snuggles up to Richard so he can put his arm
          around her.   Richard is truly afraid.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          (more of a question)
          I'm, uh, marrying my boss?
          Margaret turns and puckers her lips to let Richard know that
          she's ready for a kiss.   The two slowly begin to come together.
          Just as their dry lips are about to touch, Richard chickens out
          and kisses the hair on the top of her head.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Five years in prison and a two hundred and
          fifty thousand dollar fine.

          MARGARET
          What?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          If I prove you're lying, you go to federal
          prison for five years.
          Gilbertson takes out a pad and takes notes.
          MR. GILBERTSON (cont'd)
          (to Richard)
          You.   Do you know what you're getting
          yourself into?   We're going to put you in a
          room and ask you every detail that a real
          couple would know about each other.   Do you
          even know her favorite color?
          Richard doesn't answer.   Margaret encourages him on with a thinly
          veiled threat.

          MARGARET
          C'mon.   Answer.   You don't have a choice.
          Richard doesn't want to do this, but relents.

          RICHARD
          Plum.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You mean purple?

          RICHARD
          No.   Plum is "smokier" than purple.

          

          

          

          

          17.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Favorite flower?

          RICHARD
          Tulips.   But only when they're in season.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Childhood pet name?

          RICHARD
          Miss Mittens.

          MARGARET
          Are we done here?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Who knows you're getting married?
          Margaret interrupts.

          MARGARET
          No one.   With us working together we decided
          it would be too much of a scandal if anyone
          knew.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Have you at least told your family?

          MARGARET

          (EXCITED)
          My parents are dead!

          MR. GILBERTSON
          How convenient.   So you're not telling
          anyone that you are getting married?

          RICHARD
          Nope.
          Gilbertson smiles and puts down his pad.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Pathetic.   Four questions and I've got
          enough to send you to prison...

          MARGARET
          We're telling his family this weekend.

          RICHARD
          We are?

          MARGARET
          Yes.   We are.   We're surprising them...
          (trying to remember)
          ...at his Grandma's 90th birthday party.

          

          

          

          

          18.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          And where's that going to be?

          MARGARET
          (no idea)
          At Richard's parent's house.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          And where's that located?

          MARGARET
          (still no idea)
          In his hometown.

          RICHARD
          Sitka.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Is that on Long Island?
          Only Richard has the answer.   Margaret tries to cover.

          MARGARET
          Why don't you tell him?

          RICHARD
          Alaska.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You're going to Alaska this weekend?

          MARGARET
          (Alaska???)
          Yes.   Of course we're going to Alaska.
          That's where Richard is from.
          Gilbertson begins to walk around.   He's getting worked up.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You think you can beat me with this B-S
          story?   Forcing your secretary...

          RICHARD
          Assistant.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          ...assistant to marry you and then
          conveniently telling his family for the
          first time this weekend?

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry, Dante.   Did you not prepare for
          that?
          Margaret puts her arm around Richard and waits in silence.

          

          

          

          

          19.
          Enraged, but with no recourse for now, Gilbertson checks his
          appointment book and writes down some information.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          The INS will see you both in ten days for
          your official interview.   Your stories
          better match up on every account.
          Mr. Gilbertson gets right up in Margaret's face as he gives her
          the piece of paper.
          MR. GILBERTSON (cont'd)
          Cross all your T's and dot your I's with
          this ruse, Ms. Mills.

          MARGARET
          There are no "T's" or "I's" in "Love" Mr.
          Gilbertson.
          Gilbertson leaves and shuts the door hard.   Margaret goes back to
          her desk like this is all in a days work.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Why are you from Alaska?   Sweet Jesus,
          that's inconvenient.   So here's what's going
          to happen.   We'll play boyfriend and
          girlfriend this weekend for your parents and
          that should be enough for this INS
          interview.
          Richard doesn't react.   Margaret doesn't notice.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          So you need to figure out the travel,
          schedule a justice of the peace for next
          week, and get my lawyer on the phone.
          Margaret takes a sip of her coffee and makes a face.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          But first, run down and get me another
          coffee from your girlfriend, this is cold.
          Margaret holds out her coffee cup.   Richard doesn't move.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Hello?   Richard?   Richard!
          Richard says his first words since Gilbertson left.

          RICHARD
          I quit.
          Richard leaves Margaret's office.   She still has her coffee cup
          outstretched in her hand.

          

          

          

          

          20.

          INT. ROYCE PUBLISHING - CONTINUOUS

          Richard powers through the office.   Co-workers take notice that
          Margaret is following him.

          MARGARET
          Richard, come back here.
          Margaret tries not to make a scene.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Richard.   Richard.
          Richard pushes the elevator button in front of reception.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Come back to the office!
          Richard can't take it.   He gets up in Margaret's face.

          RICHARD
          You shut up.   You just lost your "I get to
          tell Richard what to do" privileges.

          MARGARET
          Well, we need to talk.

          RICHARD
          You want to talk with me?   Fine.   Grab your
          broom and let's go.
          Margaret is dumbstruck.   The receptionist is shocked.   The
          elevator arrives and Richard gets in.   Margaret follows. As the
          doors close, Richard shouts out to the receptionist.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Watch my phones!

          EXT. CENTRAL PARK - DAY

          Richard and Margaret walk in silence through the park.   Richard
          finally speaks.

          RICHARD
          Your plan is psychotic.

          MARGARET
          Well I'd rather poke my eyes out than play
          pretend girlfriend, but this is the big
          time.   Sometimes you need to sack up.

          RICHARD
          Aren't Canadians supposed to be nice?

          MARGARET
          You wanna be an editor?   You need to make

          

          

          

          

          21.

          RICHARD
          OK.   Fine.   Then if we "make this happen"?
          You're promoting me to editor.

          MARGARET
          I'm doing what?

          RICHARD
          We go to Alaska and lie to my family?   I
          risk going to jail?   Well, you're making me
          editor for that.   I mean, did you think I'd
          do this out of the kindness of my heart?

          MARGARET
          You work for me!

          RICHARD
          You know, during my employee orientation,
          the HR rep didn't mention anything about me
          marrying you.

          MARGARET
          Look, I came to this town alone and with
          nothing.   I've worked my ass off for fifteen
          years and this guy wants to ruin me because
          he wrote the shittiest book of all time?   No
          way.

          RICHARD
          Nice story Little Orphan Annie, but that
          sounds like your problem.   Not mine.
          Margaret is stuck.   Richard really does have the upper hand.

          MARGARET
          Fine.   You take me to Alaska this weekend,
          and I'll make you editor.   Deal?
          Margaret puts out her hand to shake, Richard takes it.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          And I'm not sleeping on your parent's hide-a-
          bed, we're staying in a hotel.   Do they even
          have hotels in Alaska?

          RICHARD
          No.   But they have huts.   Teepees really.
          And you have to poop in a bucket.   But
          otherwise, just like the Four Seasons.   But
          with bears.

          EXT. PLANE TO SEATTLE - DAY

          A commercial jet TAKES OFF and leaves New York City behind.

          

          

          

          

          22.

          INT. PLANE TO SEATTLE - DAY

          Richard and Margaret sit in First Class and work on their lap
          tops.   Richard looks up.

          RICHARD
          Um.   Shouldn't we talk about what we're
          going to say to my parents?
          Margaret doesn't look up, annoyed with the question.

          MARGARET
          Are you done with the press release?

          RICHARD
          Almost.

          MARGARET

          (PATRONIZING)
          Well let's finish big people business before
          mommy and daddy talk.   Okay?
          Dejected, Richard goes back to work.

          INT. SEATTLE AIRPORT - DAY

          As they change planes in Seattle, Margaret walks quickly and
          talks on the phone.   Still the assistant, Richard lags behind,
          weighed down by both their bags.
          Up ahead at the gate, a GATE ATTENDANT (Female, 50's) ANNOUNCES
          final boarding to Sitka.   Margaret gets off her phone.

          MARGARET
          So what do I need to know up there?   Bullet
          points.

          RICHARD
          I told ‘em we've been dating for six months.
          We've kept it a secret from everyone...
          (under his breath)
          ...and that you're a naughty minx in the
          sack.
          Richard and Margaret make it to the attendant at the gate.
          Margaret is not amused by Richard's attempt at humor.

          MARGARET

          (VENOMOUS)
          Don't make me hate you.
          Margaret hands her boarding pass to the attendant and breezes
          through.   The attendant gives Richard a look.

          RICHARD
          Bringing her home to meet my folks.   She's

          

          

          

          

          23.
          Tangled in the bags, Richard struggles to find his boarding pass.
          The impatient attendant is getting frustrated.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          I've got it here.   Sorry.   Guess I'm a
          little flustered too.   Haven't been home for
          awhile, hope they like her!
          The gate attendant smiles.

          GATE ATTENDANT
          (heard it all)
          I don't care, sir.
          Richard finds his boarding pass and hands it over.

          RICHARD
          OK then.   You're a sweet lady.   Thanks.
          Richard hustles to the plane as they shut the doors.

          INT. PLANE TO ALASKA - DAY

          Margaret takes her seat and sits next to a well dressed HANDSOME
          MAN who is READING A BOOK.   She notices the title and he catches
          her stare.   Margaret explains.

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry, I hate it when people stare at
          what I'm reading.   It's just... I worked on
          that book.

          HANDSOME MAN
          You wrote it?

          MARGARET
          Edited it.   It was one of my favorites.

          HANDSOME MAN
          Well you did a good job.   It's great.

          MARGARET
          You don't see many guys with that book.
          You, uh, read a lot of love stories about
          Roman concubines?

          HANDSOME MAN
          My ex-girlfriend gave it to me.   I travel a
          lot for work.   I'll read anything...

          MARGARET

          (SUSPICIOUS)
          Ex-girlfriend, huh?

          

          

          

          

          24.

          HANDSOME MAN
          (smiling, embarrassed)
          OK, you got me.   I'm a closet romantic.   But
          let's keep that between us.
          Margaret smiles and makes the "my lips are sealed" motion.   Just
          then, Richard lumbers onto the plane with the bags.

          MARGARET
          There you are.   Give me my lap top.
          Richard untangles the bags and gives Margaret her computer bag.

          RICHARD
          (re: book)
          Hey, he's reading...

          MARGARET
          I know, Richard.
          Richard turns around and puts the bags in the overhead
          compartment.   The Handsome Man turns to Margaret.

          HANDSOME MAN
          Did you two want to sit together?

          MARGARET
          Sit together with who?
          The Handsome man nods at Richard.

          HANDSOME MAN
          Your boyfriend?
          Margaret points to Richard indignantly.

          MARGARET
          You mean him?
          The Handsome man nods.   Margaret tries to set the record
          straight.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          No.   No.   No.   He's my assistant.

          HANDSOME MAN
          You're bringing your assistant all the way
          to Alaska?
          Richard smiles, happy that Margaret has to answer.

          RICHARD
          Oh, you can tell him the truth.

          MARGARET
          Well, he's... indispensable.

          

          

          

          

          25.
          The Handsome man isn't buying it.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          And gay.   Takes care of me everywhere I go.
          Call him my queen mother.   Aren't you my
          indispensable gay queen mother?
          Margaret shoots Richard a nasty look.   He has to go along.

          RICHARD
          That's me.
          Richard turns to close the overhead compartment.

          HANDSOME MAN
          You're awfully nice to fly him first class.
          Margaret nods her head and agrees.   It sucks to be Richard.

          EXT. AERIAL OF SITKA - DAY

          We see the natural beauty of South Eastern Alaska.   Sitka is an
          island the size of Maui.   Only an eight mile stretch of coast is
          inhabited, the rest is complete wilderness.   At the center of the
          island is a mountain with smaller hills around it.   The coast is
          dotted with fishing boats.   Gorgeous.

          INT. JETWAY - DAY

          Margaret and the Handsome Man chat like old friends while they
          walk off the plane.   Richard follows with all the bags.   As they
          all walk out of the jetway they see...

          INT. AIRPORT - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          A big banner that reads: CONGRATULATIONS RICHARD AND MARGARET!!!
          with wedding bells and a graphic showing the journey from New
          York to Sitka.   The banner is being held up by a group of 30
          PEOPLE with excited looks on their faces.
          Richard's mom DEBBIE (60) is front and center.   She's a sweet
          lady who cooked Richard a hot breakfast every morning until he
          left the house.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (89) also waits.   She's lived a long time and
          doesn't have a lot of time to screw around.
          When they see Richard, they SCREAM.   Margaret's face drops.

          ALL
          There he is!!!   Where's Margaret?
          Richard blanches white.   Margaret looks back with eyes that say
          "What the hell is going on?"

          

          

          

          

          26.

          HANDSOME MAN
          (noting banner)
          That's sweet.
          Richard goes over to the group.   Margaret keeps walking.

          RICHARD
          What are you guys doing here?   What's with
          the sign?

          DEBBIE
          So you're "just dating," huh?   I can't
          believe you didn't tell us!

          RICHARD
          Didn't tell you what?

          ANNIE
          We're not saying anything until you let us
          meet Margaret.   Now, where's our girl?
          Richard looks around.   Margaret keeps her head down and tries to
          avoid eye contact.

          RICHARD
          Uh.   Margaret?   You need to come over here.
          Like now.   Honey.
          The Handsome Man sees Richard with the banner people, calling for
          Margaret to come over.   Margaret winces.

          MARGARET
          I have to go now.

          HANDSOME MAN
          (putting it together)
          What kind of sick shit is this?
          Margaret nods.   This would be a tough one to explain.

          MARGARET
          Have a great life.
          Margaret walks toward the group.   Richard puts out his hand and
          silently pleads for Margaret to hold it.   At the last second, she
          takes it.

          RICHARD
          Everyone, this is Margaret.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          It's nice to meet you.   Now, do you prefer
          being called Margaret, or the Dragon Lady?
          We've heard it both ways.
          Everyone laughs.

          

          

          

          

          27.

          DEBBIE
          Annnie!

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          It's not like he hasn't told her that he
          used to call her the Dragon Lady.   They're
          getting married.

          RICHARD
          (real "casual")
          Now, ah, where did you hear that?   The whole
          "getting married" thing?

          DEBBIE
          Oh, that man from the government.   Gilber-
          something.   Said he was checking up on you
          two.   Said it was technicality, because
          Margaret was from Canada.

          RICHARD
          What, ah, did you tell him?

          DEBBIE
          Well for one thing, that you were in a lot
          of trouble for not telling us that you two
          were getting married!

          RICHARD
          No.   Really.   What did you say?

          DEBBIE
          Just that you were coming up here this
          weekend.   That we hadn't seen you in a
          while, and that we'd heard about Margaret
          for years, but that we'd never met her.
          Debbie turns to Margaret and takes both of her hands.
          DEBBIE (CONT'D (cont'd)
          The way that Richard talked about you?   I'll
          admit, I didn't see this coming.

          MARGARET
          Me neither.
          Debbie picks up some of the bags and starts walking toward the
          exit.   Everyone else follows her lead.

          ON THE MOVE

          DEBBIE
          So why all the silly secrecy?

          RICHARD
          It wasn't a secret.   We didn't tell anyone.

          

          

          

          

          28.

          DEBBIE
          Well, is your family just anyone?

          RICHARD
          No, I didn't mean...

          DEBBIE
          I should be mad at you two.   But, but... I'm
          just so excited!

          MARGARET
          (re: group)
          Uh, is everyone coming to our hotel?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Oh, we cancelled your reservation.   You're
          part of the family now.     Family doesn't
          stay at a hotel.   Also, we've got another
          little surprise for you two.

          MARGARET
          Surprise?   Another surprise?

          RICHARD
          She's not good with surprises.

          MARGARET
          I'm really not good with surprises.

          EXT. SITKA AIRPORT - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          Debbie stops.   Sitka Airport is very small, so they are already
          outside by all the cars parked in the loading zone.
          Debbie and Annie excitedly look at each other.

          DEBBIE
          Well you two...

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          ...you're getting married this weekend!

          MARGARET                                                           RICHARD
          What?                                                              What?
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          The whole kit and caboodle.
          Margaret gives both these women a look that says "what are you
          talking about?"

          DEBBIE
          When Gilber-something told us you were
          getting married...

          GRANDMA ANNIE

          

          

          

          

          29.

          DEBBIE
          ...God rest their souls...

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          ...or friends...

          DEBBIE
          ...we decided to give you a wedding.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Engagement party tonight...

          DEBBIE
          ...and the wedding tomorrow at midnight.
          Debbie and Annie wait to see what Margaret thinks.

          MARGARET
          Are you witches?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Just quaint.   During the solstice it's good
          luck.   It's an Alaskan thing.

          DEBBIE
          We've planned everything.
          Margaret isn't sold, so Grandma Annie goes for the clincher.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          I'm old, Margaret.   I don't have much time
          left.   Richard lives so far away, and I
          never see him.   Now I find out he's getting
          married, and I have a chance to see my one
          grandchild's wedding day.   It's a dream come
          true for me.   A dream come true.   Please let
          me see Richard get married before I die.
          Please.
          Long beat.   Richard doesn't know what Margaret is going to say.
          Margaret doesn't know what Margaret is going to say.   Finally,
          she goes to speak, but can only get out... two big thumbs up.
          The crowd cheers.

          EXT. SITKA - DAY

          A procession of cars makes its way through town.

          INT. PICKUP - DAY

          Debbie and Grandma sit in the front of the truck, all smiles.
          Margaret and Richard sit as far away from each other as possible
          in the backseat of the extended cab.

          

          

          

          

          30.
          Margaret tries to get Richard's attention, but he's looking out
          the window.   Finally she pinches him and Richard jumps. He gives
          Margaret a "what did you do that for" look.

          MARGARET

          (MOUTHING)
          The Dragon Lady!?
          Richard shrugs.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          To tell you the truth, we had a lot of the
          plans made already for my birthday.   Just a
          few changes here and there, and we made this
          weekend a wedding.
          Margaret stares at Richard.

          MARGARET
          I'm a lucky woman.
          Margaret does her best to smile.

          EXT. DOCK - DAY

          The cars park in a lot in the middle of nowhere, near a small
          dock.   Everyone gets out of the cars and starts walking to the
          ocean.   Margaret is confused.

          MARGARET
          I'm not getting out of this car until you
          tell me where we're going.

          RICHARD
          Come on, it'll be OK.   I promise.
          Richard points to a small island about a mile away.

          EXT. YACHT - DAY

          Everyone rides on a 75 foot yacht.   Lots of polished wood and
          chrome.   Someone passes out beers on board, and the mood is
          festive.   Margaret takes a look around at the surreal scene.

          MARGARET
          Who are you people?
          Richard lets Margaret wonder.

          EXT. PAXTON DOCK - DAY

          The ship docks and we get our first glimpse of the Paxton Estate.
          It sits above the rest of the wooded island and is as tasteful as
          a 15 bedroom Alaskan mansion can be.
          Richard's father, GEOFFREY (60) waits on the dock. He is a bear

          

          

          

          

          31.

          GEOFFREY
          So you must be Margaret.   We've heard a lot
          about you.   All of it bad.
          Margaret tentatively walks off the yacht in her none to practical
          sling backs.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          I mean, I almost shit myself when I heard he
          was marrying the devil woman.

          MARGARET
          I thought it was the dragon lady?

          GEOFFREY
          Either way.

          RICHARD
          Hey dad.
          Richard shakes his father's hand.   It's a little stiff.

          GEOFFREY
          Welcome home.   Good to see ‘ya.

          RICHARD
          You too.

          GEOFFREY
          Been a while.

          RICHARD
          Yeah.   You'd think you could make it to the
          airport to mark the occasion.
          Grandma Annie interrupts.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Help him with the bags Geoffrey.
          (to Richard and Margaret)
          Let's get you two settled.
          As Richard and Margaret move towards the house, Annie shoots
          Geoffrey a look that says "be nice".

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          The house is decked out in sheik Alaskan decor.   Somehow, it
          makes bear heads and deer antlers look good.   Everything is first
          class.   Margaret is a little awe struck.

          DEBBIE
          We'll show you around later.

          MARGARET
          Uh huh.

          

          

          

          

          32.
          Out of nowhere, a small HUSKY PUPPY startles Margaret and jumps
          on her.

          DEBBIE
          Balzac!   Down!   No!
          Debbie pulls the dog off of Margaret and pushes him toward the
          kitchen.   Margaret tries to take it in stride and make small
          talk.

          MARGARET
          What a great name.   Balzac's "Lost
          Illusions" is one of my favorite novels.

          DEBBIE
          Oh.   Well, this Balzac's got epididymitis.
          Debbie makes two big circles with her pointer fingers to
          illustrate how Balzac really got his name.
          Not understanding, Margaret looks over at Balzac as he walks
          away.   Off her shocked reaction, we understand right away that
          this puppy Husky is an anatomic marvel.
          DEBBIE (cont'd)
          No one on the island wanted him when he was
          born.   We figured he deserved a home.

          GEOFFREY
          And don't let him outside, or the eagles
          will snatch him.

          RICHARD
          C'mon dad...

          GEOFFREY
          I mean it.   They come out of that
          rehabilitation center mean.   And hungry.

          RICHARD
          Don't listen to him, Margaret.

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE UPSTAIRS - DAY

          Debbie opens a door for Richard and Margaret.

          DEBBIE
          You'll be sleeping here.

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          The room is beautiful, right out of Architectural Digest.

          DEBBIE
          Bathroom is there, all the towels are in the
          armoire by the bed.   Just let me know if you

          

          

          

          

          33.

          MARGARET
          Thank you.   Where's Richard's room?

          DEBBIE
          Oh, we took down his "shrine" years ago.
          And don't worry, I'm under no illusion that
          you two haven't slept in the same bed
          before.   Richard can sleep here too.

          MARGARET
          Oh, let's not upset Grandma Annie.

          DEBBIE
          It was her idea.   Anything to help get her a
          great grandchild.
          Richard shrugs his shoulders behind his mother.

          MARGARET
          Great.   You know, I've gotten used to his
          breathing at night.

          DEBBIE
          I thought so dear.
          Debbie leaves and shuts the door.   Margaret reverts back to her
          old self.

          MARGARET
          I'm about 15 seconds from bitch.

          RICHARD
          Calm down.

          MARGARET
          What is going on here?

          RICHARD
          Hell if I know.

          MARGARET
          You had no idea they knew about us getting
          married?

          RICHARD
          You think I'd bring you here if I did?

          MARGARET
          Well, we just gotta tell ‘em.

          RICHARD
          Tell ‘em what?

          MARGARET
          Tell ‘em the truth.   About us.

          

          

          

          

          34.

          RICHARD
          Wrong answer.   No way.

          MARGARET
          What do you mean no way?   This is crazy.

          RICHARD
          No, crazy was lying to the federal officer.

          MARGARET
          Well I don't like this.

          RICHARD
          Well I'm not making my Gammy an accomplice
          to a Class C felony!   For one second could
          you not be so selfish?

          MARGARET
          Selfish?

          RICHARD
          Yeah, you know, that thing you do where you
          only worry about yourself every second of
          every day?

          MARGARET
          How is it selfish to tell the truth?

          RICHARD
          Look.   We're awful, awful people.   In the
          last forty eight hours, we've lied to...
          everyone.   We need to protect the people
          downstairs.   We can't ask these good,
          decent, not awful people to lie for us.
          Let's keep the darkside to ourselves.
          Margaret takes a second to make up her mind.

          MARGARET
          Fine.   But if we do this, you need to stop
          lying to me.

          RICHARD
          What've I lied to you about?

          MARGARET
          Why did you tell me that you were poor?

          RICHARD
          I never said that.

          MARGARET
          Well, you never told me you were rich.

          RICHARD
          When does that come up?

          

          

          

          

          35.

          MARGARET
          I don't know, how about, "Hi, my name is
          Richard, I'm an Alaskan titan of industry."

          RICHARD
          Well, maybe I didn't tell you because you
          would have fired me if you knew.

          MARGARET
          No I wouldn't.

          RICHARD
          Come on!   You're always yammering on about
          your scrappy childhood, and how you fought
          for those soccer scholarships, and how the
          rich kids made fun of you in prep school for
          working in the kitchen.   You're totally anti-
          rich.

          MARGARET
          I'm not anti-rich.

          RICHARD
          Oh yes you are!   And you know what makes it
          worse?   You have money!

          MARGARET
          I earned...

          RICHARD
          ...every penny I have.   Blah, blah, blah.
          You need new material.

          MARGARET
          Hey.   Watch it.   You're still my assistant.

          RICHARD
          You were going to promote me anyway.

          MARGARET
          Sure of that?

          RICHARD
          Nope.   Not at all.
          Margaret takes a look at herself in the mirror.

          MARGARET
          Well, come on.   If we're going to do this,
          we might as well put on a show.

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Downstairs, the engagement party is in full swing.   The starched
          wait staff stands out in the crowd, because the raucous party-
          goers are all dressed in flannel, T-shirts and baseball hats.

          

          

          

          

          36.
          Ponytails rule for the women, and almost all the men have shaggy
          hair and beards.   No dress code here.
          Like the house, the party is first class.   Ice sculptures melt,
          champagne is served on silver trays, and the buffet overflows
          with salmon and king crab.
          Margaret works the crowd like a pro and holds court with some
          WELL WISHERS, Richard's parents, and Balzac.

          MARGARET
          I went to Union college in upstate New York.
          It's a small liberal arts school that no one
          has ever heard of.
          Richard comes to the group and hands Margaret a drink.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (looks at glass)
          Lime?

          RICHARD
          Be right back.
          Richard leaves to fetch lime wedges.   Geoffrey elbows Debbie in
          the side, "What was that?"

          WELL WISHER #1
          How long have you been with your company?

          MARGARET
          Since I graduated college.
          Richard comes back with the lime.   Margaret takes it and doesn't
          say thank you.

          RICHARD
          She's been there since she was nineteen.

          GEOFFREY
          Nineteen?   Wow.   That's how long?

          MARGARET
          Oh, who's counting...
          Geoffrey could let it go, but wants to push her.

          GEOFFREY
          No.   How many years is that?   Exactly.
          Margaret gives Geoffrey the slightest look.

          MARGARET
          Well, let me see.   That would be sixteen or
          seventeen years.   Exactly.

          

          

          

          

          37.

          GEOFFREY
          I was never good with big numbers.   That
          makes you... thirty six now?

          MARGARET
          Just turned thirty seven.   Born on May 20th.
          I'm a Taurus.
          Geoffrey and Margaret give each other a smile.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (to Richard)
          I need some protein.

          RICHARD
          There's some salmon.
          Margaret shakes her head no.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Crab?
          Margaret nods yes.   Richard steps away to find a waiter.
          Geoffrey watches his son do Margaret's bidding.

          GEOFFREY
          Keep him on a short leash, huh?   Does he
          roll over when you whistle?
          Debbie hits Geoffrey.

          DEBBIE
          He's just being a good host.
          Richard comes right back with a waiter in tow.   For Geoffrey's
          benefit, Margaret makes a point to thank Richard.

          MARGARET
          Thank you, honey.   You're being so sweet.
          Richard is surprised, but remembers they're a couple.

          RICHARD
          Uh, sure.   Honey.

          WELL WISHER #2
          So you just got some big promotion?

          MARGARET
          I'm editor in chief, now.
          Richard tenderly puts his arm around Margaret.

          RICHARD

          (BEAMING)
          I'm so proud of my girl.

          

          

          

          

          38.
          From behind them, a melodic, etherial VOICE interrupts.

          VOICE (O.S.)
          Editor in chief?   You're marrying up,
          Richard.
          Everyone turns around to find GERTRUDE THURMAN (26).   She is
          Grace Kelly in Patagonia and Timberland.   Adding insult to
          injury, she doesn't have eyeliner on.

          RICHARD
          Gert!?
          Richard snaps his arm back, hitting Margaret in the head, and
          spilling her tonic water on her shirt.   He doesn't notice what
          he's done, and leaves Margaret.   She's peeved.
          RICHARD (cont'd)

          (FLUSTERED)
          What are you?   What are you doing here?

          GERTRUDE
          Your dad made me come.

          RICHARD
          From Chicago?
          Gertrude laughs.   The group watches these two see each for the
          first time in years.   There is instant chemistry, and Richard has
          forgotten about Margaret completely.

          GERTRUDE
          No.   I live here now.

          RICHARD
          You what?

          GERTRUDE
          I moved back about six months ago.   I'm
          teaching second grade.   At Baranof.

          RICHARD
          Did your husband move up here too?

          GERTRUDE
          Uh, no.   I, ah, got divorced.

          RICHARD
          Oh my God.   I'm sorry.

          GERTRUDE
          Me too.   But hey, we're being rude, I wanna
          meet the bride.
          Gertrude leaves Richard and goes to Margaret.

          

          

          

          

          39.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          Hi, I'm Gertrude.   But call me Gert.

          MARGARET
          You're a Gertrude?

          GERTRUDE
          A family name from hell.

          MARGARET
          I'm sure it's been a curse.

          GEOFFREY
          Gert and Richard were quite the item in high
          school.
          Gertrude instantly dismisses Geoffrey's reminiscence.

          GERTRUDE
          Oh Please.   Ancient history.

          GEOFFREY
          Feels like yesterday to me.

          GERTRUDE
          (ignoring Geoffrey)
          So tell me everything.   I hear it wasn't
          exactly love at first sight?

          MARGARET
          Not exactly...

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Now Richard, what I want to know is how you
          proposed.
          This grabs the group's full attention.   Everyone loves to hear a
          story like this.

          RICHARD
          Well...
          Richard hasn't recovered from seeing Gertrude.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Uh, uh, um, I...

          GEOFFREY
          Yeah.   How did you pop the question?
          Richard is a deer in the headlights.   This is getting ugly.
          Margaret sees that Richard is going to crumble, and steps in.

          MARGARET
          Can I tell this one, honey?

          

          

          

          

          40.

          RICHARD
          Uh.   Sure.

          MARGARET
          I'm an early, early riser and go for a run
          everyday.   Well, it was our six month
          anniversary and I was out for my normal jog
          in the park, when who do I see in a horse
          drawn carriage, wearing a tux, and waiting
          for me halfway through my run?   Richard!   So
          I ran up to the carriage and asked him what
          was going on, and he put his finger to his
          lips and says, "shhhh."   So there I am in my
          jogging clothes, next to the most handsome
          mute in the world - have you seen him in a
          tux? - riding like a sweaty princess and
          smiling ear to ear.   Couple minutes later,
          we arrive at Tavern on the Green.   Best
          part, we're the only people in the place
          because Richard got them to open up early.
          Well, we go to our table, sit down, and just
          as the sun starts to peek above the trees,
          this beautiful man gets down on one knee,
          and says "I didn't want one more sunrise to
          go by without you knowing that you are the
          light of my life, and that I would be the
          luckiest man in the world if you would be my
          wife.   Margaret Mary Mills, will you marry
          me?"
          The group is silent, waiting for the clincher.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I said yes.
          The group gives a collective "ahh".   Grandma Annie takes both
          Margaret and Richard by the hand.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          You are a good boy Richard, and you make me
          very proud.   I love you Richy.

          RICHARD
          I love you too, Grandma.
          Grandma hugs the couple.   Everyone smiles except Geoffrey and
          Gertrude.

          GEOFFREY
          So did this happen before or after the INS
          agent came sniffing around?

          DEBBIE
          What is wrong with you?   I'm sorry Margaret.
          Margaret doesn't miss a beat.

          

          

          

          

          41.

          MARGARET
          Oh please.   I'd wonder too.   Honestly, my
          lawyers have been dealing with all of this.
          When you told us at the airport it was the
          first time I'd heard about it.   I'm so
          embarrassed.

          DEBBIE
          Don't be, dear.   Geoffrey's just an ass.
          While Debbie apologizes, Margaret gives Richard a little wink
          that says "I've got this under control".   The moment is
          interrupted when Richard pulls out a RINGING CELL PHONE.   He
          takes a step back and answers quietly so no one can hear.

          RICHARD
          Margaret Mill's phone.
          (off answer)
          One second please.
          Richard comes back to the group and hands Margaret the phone.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          It's our friend, Frank.
          Richard's tone let's Margaret know there's a problem.

          MARGARET
          Excuse me, I'll just be a second.
          Margaret takes the phone and exits out French glass doors that
          lead to the backyard.   She leaves the door open, and doesn't
          notice Balzac follow her outside.

          EXT. PAXTON BACKYARD - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          Margaret goes far from the house so no one can hear.   Balzac
          follows her all the way, but Margaret doesn't see him.

          MARGARET
          Don't be a cliche, Frank.   Don't be the
          wishy washy writer who changes his mind
          every two seconds.
          Margaret notices Balzac, but ignores him.   The dog starts YAPPING
          to get attention.   She walks away, but Balzac continues barking.
          Annoyed, she gets down face to face with the puppy and puts the
          phone against her chest so Frank doesn't hear.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (to Balzac)
          Sit and be quiet!
          Balzac sits and pouts.   Margaret walks away and puts the phone
          back to her ear.

          

          

          

          

          42.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I fired Bob because he didn't have your best
          interest in mind.   Our job is to help you
          succeed.   He wasn't doing that.
          Margaret continues to listen to her writer whine, when she
          notices an EAGLE soaring in circles above her and Balzac.   Not
          sure what to think, she looks back at Balzac and sees him
          peacefully sit in the grass.
          She then looks up and sees that the eagle is gone.   Margaret
          shakes her head, looks back at Balzac when --
          WHOOSH!   The eagle snatches Balzac by the scruff of the neck, and
          takes off.   Margaret jumps.
          There is no one to help, so she chases after the dog and eagle.
          She stays calm on the phone.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Could you hold on just a second?
          With no other option, Margaret throws her cell phone and hits the
          eagle suspended 20 feet above her.   The eagle drops Balzac and
          Margaret catches him.   Balzac looks frightened.
          Tucking Balzac away like a furry football, she runs to her phone
          and picks it up.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          (NONCHALANT)
          Sorry, dropped my phone.
          Margaret looks up and sees that the eagle has resumed flying in
          circles above her.   She decides to wrap up the call quick and get
          back to the house.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Frank, I don't want to sell you on anything.
          But know this.   This book is your legacy...
          Margaret looks up and sees the eagle dive towards her and Balzac
          again.   She runs.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ... and-I-think-you-should-be-the-one-to
          introduce-your-legacy-to-the-world. Call me-
          tomorrow-with-your-decision.   My-phone is-
          always-on.   Talk-to-you-soon.
          The eagle bears down on them with talons out.   Just as the eagle
          is about to strike, Margaret sticks out her hand with the phone
          to fend back the eagle.   To her surprise, the eagle grabs
          Margaret's phone and flies off.   Margaret freaks.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          

          

          

          

          43.
          Panicked, she takes Balzac in both hands and puts him up to the
          eagle as an offering.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Take the dog!   Take the dog!

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE

          Inside, the elegant party carries on.

          DEBBIE
          Where's Margaret?   We need to go.

          RICHARD
          Go where?

          DEBBIE
          It's a surprise.   Girls are going into town.
          And the boys stay here.   I told you, we've
          planned everything.

          RICHARD
          Um.   She's outside.
          Debbie and Richard turn around and look out a picture window.
          They see Margaret running with Balzac above her head.

          DEBBIE
          Oh that's sweet, she's playing with my
          Balzac.

          EXT. PAXTON BACKYARD - DAY

          The eagle is long gone, but Margaret is still running with the
          dog trying to bait it back.

          MARGARET
          This is a delicious dog, Mr. Eagle.   C'mon,
          bring back the phone.
          Richard calls out from the house.

          RICHARD
          What are you doing?

          MARGARET
          The eagle took my phone!

          RICHARD
          Are you drunk?

          MARGARET
          Your dad was right!   The eagle tried to take
          the dog, so I saved it, then it came back
          and took my phone.

          

          

          

          

          44.

          RICHARD
          Did the dingo eat your baby, too?

          MARGARET
          Frank's going to call me on that phone.   I
          need it!

          RICHARD
          Relax.   I've got your information backed up
          on the laptop.   I'll just get you a new
          phone and switch the number.   No problem.

          MARGARET
          Oh.

          RICHARD
          Now come on.   You're going somewhere with my
          mom and the girls.

          MARGARET
          I'm not going anywhere.

          RICHARD
          You want a new phone?   You're going.

          EXT. PIONEER BAR - DAY

          The Pioneer bar is a classic Alaskan bar, decorated with pictures
          of every fishing vessel that has made Sitka its home.
          But tonight estrogen rules, as all the patrons are women CHEERING
          for an oiled, toned, and BEARDED MAN in a tiny thong who gyrates
          to the beat of Prince's "Sexy Motherfucker."   On stage with the
          dancer, Margaret tries to not look miserable in her NOVELTY

          BACHELORETTE PARTY WEDDING VEIL WITH DEVIL HORNS.

          DEBBIE
          Work it Hank!

          GERTRUDE
          Is that a salmon down your pants?
          The room laughs as Hank works his crotch millimeters away from
          Margaret's face.   Margaret remains straight faced.

          MARGARET
          Definitely not a salmon.
          The women encourage Hank on as he moves Margaret's hands to his
          wiggling ass and gives her a feel.   She can't help but give and
          embarrassed smile.   Finally, the song ends and Hank goes into the
          splits.   Thrilled, the room gives him a standing ovation.
          Margaret plays along and gives Hank a kiss on the cheek.   She
          begins to get off the stage, but Hank takes her by the hand.

          

          

          

          

          45.

          HANK
          Ah, ah, ah.   I was just the warm up.
          Hank sits Margaret down, and blindfolds her with a scarf.

          MARGARET
          What's going on?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Just sit there dear.

          MC
          Don't be shy ladies, tip well and often,
          show Hank how much you appreciate his
          assets!   And now... Ramone!
          The room goes silent as a middle aged RAMONE comes on to the
          stage.   He has a pot belly, threadbare thong and a thin mustache.
          Ramone's dance has a Latin theme to it, and he's very good at it.
          Margaret is oblivious.

          MARGARET
          What's that smell?
          Margaret finally takes off her blindfold, and finds Ramone about
          an inch away from her face.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (belly laugh)
          Ahhh!!!
          Margaret falls out of her chair and her scream frightens Ramone.
          After the initial scare he composes himself and wags his finger
          at her naughty behavior.

          RAMONE
          You are a naughty devil.
          Ramone goes to work another part of the stage, and when he turns,
          Margaret jumps off the stage and joins the ladies.

          MARGARET
          Good lord.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Ramone was the only male dancer on the
          island for years. No one has the heart to
          tell him to hang it up.

          MARGARET
          Want me to do it?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Thank you dear, but let's keep it our
          secret.

          

          

          

          

          46.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - SHORELINE - DAY

          Snow capped mountains watch 20 MEN in short sleeves hit golf
          balls into the ocean.   Green pontoon rafts bob in the water, made
          up to look like golf greens.   Golf balls are stacked in pyramid
          formations at every hitting area.
          Richard comes down from the house to join the group.   Geoffrey
          jokes with MR. MAGUIRE (60's, good natured) as they hit balls.

          GEOFFREY
          ...yeah, Debbie found these eco-balls that
          dissolve in the water.

          MAGUIRE
          How does she come up with this shit?

          GEOFFREY
          She just does.   I stopped trying to figure
          out how.
          Geoffrey and Mr. Maguire see Richard coming their way.   Mr.
          Maguire yells at Richard like the old family friend he is.

          MAGUIRE

          (JOKING)
          I'm mad at you, son!

          RICHARD
          Why's that, Mr. Maguire?

          MAGUIRE
          You fly up here and don't call me?

          RICHARD
          Sorry ‘bout that.

          MAGUIRE
          What good is me owning an airline if I can't
          give you free tickets?

          RICHARD
          You're right.   Don't know what I was
          thinking...

          MAGUIRE
          Damn, straight.   Don't let it happen again!
          (hands Richard a golf club)
          Here, you take over.   This game is for
          pussies, I'm getting a drink.
          Mr. Maguire leaves, and Richard and Geoffrey are left alone with
          one another for the first time.   Things are awkward between
          father and son, and Richard begins hitting balls to avoid
          conversation.   Geoffrey finally makes small talk.

          

          

          

          

          47.

          GEOFFREY
          Maguire's stepping down in January.   He's,
          uh, handing things over to Matty.
          Richard gives his dad a look.   He knows where this is going.

          RICHARD
          That's great for them.

          GEOFFREY
          So.   How's work with you?

          RICHARD
          Good.   Busy.   You know.

          GEOFFREY
          I do.   I do.   Hey, did I tell you that we're
          opening a little office in Japan?

          RICHARD
          Congratulations.

          GEOFFREY
          We're not just a mom and pop operation
          anymore.   We're going global.

          RICHARD
          Uh-huh.
          Geoffrey stops hitting golf balls for a second.   He's been
          thinking about this moment for a long time.

          GEOFFREY
          I could really use your help.

          RICHARD
          Dad.   Please.   I'm in New York.   Margaret's
          in New York.   We have jobs.

          GEOFFREY
          I know.   I know.   It's just...

          RICHARD

          (CHALLENGING)
          It's just what?

          GEOFFREY
          You're only a secretary.
          This pisses Richard off immediately.

          RICHARD
          Again with the secretary thing!   I've told
          you, I'm an assistant!

          

          

          

          

          48.

          GEOFFREY
          Just because you call yourself an
          "assistant" doesn't mean you're not really
          just a secretary.

          RICHARD
          Well if I'm "just a secretary", why would
          you want me up here anyway?   Sounds like
          you're doing great without me.

          GEOFFREY
          It's not like that and you know it.

          RICHARD
          Then how is it?   Explain it to me.
          Geoffrey looks around to see if anyone is listening.

          GEOFFREY
          Last week, a man stuck his finger up my
          butt...

          RICHARD
          This man was a doctor?

          GEOFFREY
          ...and it got me thinking about you.

          RICHARD
          I'm not sure this is coming out right.

          GEOFFREY
          Just shut up for a second, okay?   I want you
          to have what I built.   But I'm running out
          of time to show you things.

          RICHARD
          Stop being so dramatic.

          GEOFFREY
          I'm not being...
          (takes a hard line)
          I need you to stop dicking around down there
          and get serious.

          RICHARD
          So this is all about what you want?

          GEOFFREY
          That's not what I said.

          RICHARD
          And me in New York with Margaret?   That
          isn't serious?

          

          

          

          

          49.

          GEOFFREY
          One day the woman is the Antichrist, and the
          next day she's the love of your life?   How
          is that serious?

          RICHARD
          Things change, dad.

          GEOFFREY

          (INDIGNANT)
          Things change?

          RICHARD
          Things change.

          GEOFFREY
          Things change?

          RICHARD
          Yes.   Things change.

          GEOFFREY
          Things change.   That's your explanation?
          Know what I think?   I think you banged your
          boss and fell in love, that's what I think.
          Some sorta mommy complex.

          RICHARD
          Nice, dad.   We gotta have these Cosby
          moments more often.   This is great.
          Richard drops his club and walks back to the house.

          EXT. PIONEER BAR - DAY

          Margaret steps outside to have a moment to herself.   She's on a
          patio overlooking the ocean.   It is late, but the sun is hanging
          just over the horizon.

          GERTRUDE
          They can be a little overwhelming, but
          they're great people.

          MARGARET
          What?   I'm just working on my tan.
          (off Gertrude's look)
          It's been a long day.
          Margaret looks inside and sees that the party is still raging.

          GERTRUDE
          Around the solstice they don't watch the
          clock.   Pretty much party ‘til they fall
          over.

          MARGARET

          

          

          

          

          50.

          GERTRUDE
          I actually missed it when I was in the
          states.

          MARGARET
          Chicago, right?

          GERTRUDE
          Yeah.   Since college.

          MARGARET
          And now you're back?

          GERTRUDE
          Six months now.   Call me crazy, but I love
          it.   Think I'm back for good.

          MARGARET
          Really?   I don't know.   Don't you miss...

          GERTRUDE
          Neimans?   Starbucks?   Escalators?
          Margaret laughs.   She likes this woman.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          Yeah.   I miss it.   Believe me, growing up I
          never thought I'd end up divorced and back
          here teaching at my old elementary school.
          That was always Richard's plan.

          MARGARET
          For you to get divorced?

          GERTRUDE
          (smiles, remembering)
          No.   I was going to teach, he was going to
          run his dad's business.   He was like a
          little old man.   Had it all worked out.

          MARGARET
          Are we talking about the same guy?

          GERTRUDE
          What do you mean?

          MARGARET
          Well, Richard's such a player.
          Gertrude looks confused.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I mean he was a total player.   Before we
          started dating.   Six months ago.

          GERTRUDE

          

          

          

          

          51.

          MARGARET
          That surprises you?

          GERTRUDE
          Did he ever tell you why we broke up?

          MARGARET
          We don't really talk much about stuff like
          that.

          GERTRUDE
          Oh.   Well I should shut up...

          MARGARET
          No, no.   Please.   I mean, we are getting
          married.   I want to know these things.
          Gertrude looks down a little embarrassed.

          GERTRUDE
          He proposed to me.   When we were seniors.
          Margaret laughs.

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry.   I didn't mean to...   He proposed
          to you in high school?

          GERTRUDE
          He bought this sweet little ring, and got
          down on his knee.   It was so cute.

          MARGARET
          You must have...

          GERTRUDE
          ... freaked out?   Oh you bet.   I broke up
          with him on the spot.

          MARGARET
          I would hope so.

          GERTRUDE
          After getting rejected the first time, I
          can't imagine how hard it was for him to get
          up the courage to ask you.
          Margaret just smiles, feeling guilty about lying when Gertrude is
          being so honest with her.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          Anyway.   The idea that my little old man
          could be a player...   It's just not the
          Richard I knew.   Good thing you're making an
          honest man of him again.

          

          

          

          

          52.
          Gertrude toasts Margaret and knocks back the rest of her beer in
          one swig.   She has a hard time finishing it off.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          Well I'm empty.   I'm going to go get
          another.   I think I hear Ramone wrapping up,
          let's get back to the girls.

          MARGARET
          I'll be right in.
          Margaret smiles and turns to the ocean.   Gertrude goes inside.
          Then, to herself, Margaret silently whispers.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          We are awful people.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          THWACK!   An axe slams down and splits a log in two.   Hands
          quickly place another log down and THWACK!   We pull back to find
          Richard playing the role of executioner.   He's still mad after
          talking to his dad, and is taking it out on the firewood.   Rage
          Against the Machine plays on his iPod and he's in his own world.
          Behind him, the girls return to the island on the family yacht.
          Their mood is light, and they chat amongst themselves.   Debbie's
          mood deflates when she sees Richard.

          DEBBIE

          (SHOUTING)
          Richard!   Honey!   Is everything OK?
          With his back to the girls and the iPod on, Richard doesn't hear
          or see the girls.
          Annie shakes her head.   Something is up.

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE FAMILY ROOM - DAY

          Geoffrey pets Balzac as he watches SportsCenter on a sixty inch
          plasma television.   The ladies arrive and Annie and Debbie step
          in front of the TV, blocking his view.   Margaret watches from the
          door, not sure what is going on.

          GEOFFREY
          Excuse me?   I'm watching that.

          ANNIE
          Why is Richard chopping wood?

          DEBBIE
          And don't play dumb.   What did you do?
          Geoffrey is uncomfortable answering in front of Margaret.

          

          

          

          

          53.

          GEOFFREY
          Nothing.   I didn't do anything... will you
          please move.
          The showdown intensifies.   Margaret excuses herself.

          MARGARET
          I am so tired.
          Balzac GROWLS when he hears Margaret's voice.   He's still mad.
          Margaret just smiles.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Think I'm going to take a shower and clean
          off Ramone's bubble gum body oil. Thanks for
          a great night.
          Annie and Debbie smile graciously and wish her good night.   Once
          she's gone, they turn their death stare back to Geoffrey.   He
          looks genuinely unnerved.

          GEOFFREY
          Stop looking at me like that!

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Richard continues to listen to his iPod, and has worked up quite
          a sweat.     He's stacks the last log, takes off his soaked through
          shirt, and gets a whiff of himself.   Ew.   He stinks.

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY

          Margaret walks into the private bathroom attached to her room and
          shuts the door.   We hear her turn on the shower.

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE FAMILY ROOM - DAY

          Geoffrey defends himself to Debbie and Annie with great
          conviction.   Richard walks right by the fighting trio, but
          doesn't notice anyone.   He continues to listen to his iPod and
          his attention is focused on the controls, as he looks for the
          playlist "Songs I Shouldn't Like" and Charlene's hit "I've Been
          to Paradise, But I Haven't Been to Me."

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY


          IN THE BATHROOM
          Margaret turns off the shower, pulls back the curtain and reaches
          for a towel.   All she finds is a miniature unabsorbent decorative
          hand towel.   Shit.

          IN THE BEDROOM
          Richard enters the room smiling as Charlene sings "...I've been
          undressed by kings and I've seen some things that a woman ain't

          

          

          

          

          54.

          IN THE BATHROOM
          Margaret's ears perk up.   The bathroom is a disaster because she
          has dripped water everywhere looking for a towel.

          MARGARET
          Richard, is that you?

          IN THE BEDROOM
          Richard opens the armoire next to the bed and pulls out an
          incredibly absorbent Egyptian cotton towel.

          IN THE BATHROOM
          Margaret cracks the door open to see what the sound was.   Richard
          isn't there, but she sees the armoire open and the towels waiting
          for her.   How did she miss that?

          MARGARET
          Richard, are you...
          Then out of nowhere, Balzac (he followed Richard in) startles
          Margaret.

          BALZAC
          Yap, yap, yap, yap, yap!
          Margaret slips on the wet floor and falls on her ass.   Her foot
          kicks the door open as she retreats from the vengeful puppy.

          ON THE BEDROOM'S DECK
          Richard is oblivious as he hangs his wet clothes over a rail on
          the deck attached to the room.   He makes sure that no one is in
          the yard, pulls down his shorts, and hangs them up as well.

          IN THE BATHROOM
          Naked, wet, and starting to get a little pissed off, Margaret
          manages to pull herself up by the toilet.   She wants a towel
          badly, but Balzac guards the doorway.   She tries reason.

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry bout the eagle.   But I saved you.
          Balzac won't listen to reason and barks angrily.   Margaret grabs
          the ceramic top of the toilet tank to protect herself.

          ON THE BEDROOM DECK
          Richard calmly turns around and sees that the bathroom door is
          open.   That's weird.

          

          

          

          

          55.

          IN THE BATHROOM
          Margaret holds the top of the toilet tank like a baseball bat,
          ready to strike.   Balzac will not be intimidated, and continues
          to growl and not let her out of the bathroom.   Margaret knows
          that she can't hit a dog, and looks for another way out.   Then
          she spots the bathroom mat.

          IN THE BEDROOM
          Richard saunters towards the bathroom, wearing only his iPod.

          IN THE BATHROOM
          Balzac puts a paw onto the bath mat.
          Margaret slowly puts back the toilet top.
          Balzac gets to the center of the bath mat, and Margaret pulls
          hard, sliding the bath mat and Balzac to the back of the
          bathroom.   With Balzac out of the way, she runs out, closes the
          door behind her and...

          IN THE BEDROOM
          WHAM!   Margaret crashes into Richard and they fall to the floor.
          It takes a second for them to realize that they are holding each
          other buck naked.

          MARGARET                                                             RICHARD
          Aaaaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!                                        Aaaaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
          The two quickly separate and spastically try to cover up.   A
          rapid fire back and forth ensues.

          MARGARET                                                             RICHARD
          Why are you naked?                                                   Why are you wet?

          MARGARET                                                             RICHARD
          Don't look at me!                                                    You tackled me!

          MARGARET                                                             RICHARD
          It was the dog!                                                      You're blaming the dog again?

          MARGARET
          Will you just hand me a towel!
          Richard looks for a towel, but forgets he's naked.   When he looks
          under the bed, Margaret shrieks and covers her eyes..
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You're flashing brain!
          Richard quickly changes positions.   Out of desperation, he pulls
          the entire comforter off the bed.   He throws it Margaret's way,
          and she wraps herself in it.

          

          

          

          

          56.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You can cover up any time!
          Richard cups the beans and franks and backs up to his clothes by
          the window.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Explain yourself!

          RICHARD
          I didn't know you were home!   I was outside
          chopping wood!

          MARGARET
          You didn't hear me?

          RICHARD
          I had my iPod on!

          (CONFUSED)
          Why did you jump me?
          Richard reaches his clothes and pulls on his shorts.

          MARGARET
          I didn't jump you.
          (off Richard's look)
          I didn't mean to jump you.   I didn't know
          you were here.

          RICHARD
          You didn't see me?

          MARGARET
          I was running from the dog!
          Richard looks at Margaret suspiciously.

          RICHARD
          Wait.   Were you tryin' to seduce me?

          MARGARET
          Oh please!   Don't flatter yourself.

          RICHARD
          Mmm-Hmmm.

          MARGARET
          Go take a shower.   You stink.

          RICHARD
          Fine.   But don't come sneaking in there.
          You're still my boss.   That'd be sexual
          harassment.

          

          

          

          

          57.
          Richard goes to the bathroom and shuts the door.   Margaret takes
          a breath, but is startled when the door suddenly opens back up
          again.   Richard has Balzac cradled in his arms and scratches his
          neck.   He gently puts him outside their room.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          There you go, buddy.   Go on and play before
          she makes a coat out of you.
          Richard shuts the door and goes into the bathroom.   Without
          looking back, Richard gets the final shot.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Puppy hater.

          LATER
          Richard grabs all the pillows, cushions and blankets he can find
          to create himself makeshift bed on the floor.
          Margaret turns out the lights, leaving the room still bright with
          the sun still shining outside.   She gets into her bed.

          MARGARET
          I'm never gonna to get to sleep.
          Richard pushes a button and motorized metal blinds come down
          outside the window.   The sunlight is instantly blocked out and
          the room is pitch black.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Oh.   Well.   Thanks.
          Richard settles into his pathetic excuse for a bed.   The two
          silently lie awake and stare at the dark ceiling.

          RICHARD
          It was kinda weird seeing you naked.

          MARGARET
          Can we not talk about this?

          RICHARD
          I'm just saying.   It was weird.

          MARGARET
          It wasn't weird.

          RICHARD
          How was that not weird?

          MARGARET
          Because we're... like teammates.

          RICHARD
          We're like teammates?

          

          

          

          

          58.

          MARGARET
          We are teammates.   And teammates see each
          other naked in the locker room.   All the
          time.   It's not a big deal.

          RICHARD
          Well, if we're teammates can I sleep in the
          bed?

          MARGARET
          Good night, Richard.
          The two lay awake in silence for another beat.

          RICHARD
          Margaret?

          MARGARET
          Yes?

          RICHARD
          Don't take this the wrong way.

          MARGARET
          Okay...

          RICHARD
          You're a very beautiful woman.
          Margaret smiles with her head turned away from Richard.

          MARGARET
          Get some sleep Richard, big day tomorrow.

          INT. PAXTON ESTATE - OFFICE - DAY

          Not a creature is stirring, except for Geoffrey who creeps into
          his office.   He shuts the door softly and goes to his gigantic
          oak desk.   He finds a phone number with a New York City area code
          on a piece of paper.   He dials.

          GEOFFREY
          Yes.   Mr. Gilbertson?   My name is Geoffrey
          Paxton...
          Only the animal trophies that adorn Geoffrey's office hear the
          rest of the conversation.

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY

          Margaret wakes up.   She looks over to Richard asleep on the floor
          with a blanket and a pillow.   She stares maybe a beat too long,
          before there is a KNOCK on the door.

          MARGARET
          Who is it?

          

          

          

          

          59.

          DEBBIE (O.S.)
          It's me dear.   I made you two breakfast in
          bed.   Can I come in?

          MARGARET

          (STALLING)
          Uh, sure.   Just a second.
          Margaret can't yell at Richard, so she throws a model wooden
          sailboat to wake him up.   She hits him in the head.

          RICHARD
          What the...

          MARGARET

          (MOUTHING)
          Your mother.
          Richard jumps up and replaces cushions and hides signs of his
          makeshift bed.   He finishes quickly, hops in the bed, and puts
          his arm around Margaret.

          RICHARD
          Come on in mom!
          Debbie enters with a tray of pastries, fruit and coffee.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Ah mom, you made your cinnamon rolls.

          DEBBIE
          Well, it's your special day.
          Debbie smiles, puts down the tray on a bedside table and sits on
          the edge of the bed.   She is buzzing with excitement.
          DEBBIE (cont'd)
          You two need your energy, so eat up.   We've
          got your dress fitting, have to get the
          house ready, and then your wedding.

          RICHARD
          I gotta run into town to get Margaret a new
          phone.

          DEBBIE
          Will you pick up some champagne while you're
          there?

          RICHARD
          No problem.

          DEBBIE
          And don't be gone for too long.   Lots of
          work to be done!

          

          

          

          

          60.

          MARGARET
          You don't have to go to all this trouble.
          Really.
          Debbie sweetly looks back at Margaret.

          DEBBIE
          Don't be silly.   This is the biggest day of
          your life.   You are coming into this family,
          and when it's family, it's no trouble.   If
          your parents were with us, they would do the
          exact same.
          Debbie leaves and Margaret smiles as the door closes.   Richard
          jumps out of bed and goes to the food.

          MARGARET

          (TOUCHED)
          Your mom is just so sweet.   I haven't had
          someone make me breakfast in bed since I was
          a little kid.
          Richard takes a huge bite of cinnamon roll.

          RICHARD
          (mouth full)
          I wish she hadn't.   I mean she almost caught
          us.   Damn, that was close.
          Like a pig in shit, Richard continues to dig in and doesn't pay
          attention to Margaret.

          MARGARET
          You just take all this for granted?   Your
          family, this house...
          Richard takes another big bite and turns to Margaret.

          RICHARD
          (mouth full)
          I'm sorry, what?   You gotta try these.
          Margaret looks at Richard with disgust.

          MARGARET
          Why are you doing this to them?

          RICHARD
          Huh?

          MARGARET
          Why am I here?   You didn't have to bring me
          here.

          RICHARD
          You made me bring you here!   You told me I

          

          

          

          

          61.

          MARGARET
          I didn't make you do anything.   You could of
          said no.

          RICHARD
          And what?   Start over at the bottom again?
          No way.

          MARGARET
          I get why a not rich person would do this.
          But you've got everything.   It doesn't make
          any sense.

          RICHARD
          Know what?   This is none of your business.

          MARGARET
          I wish it wasn't my business.   But
          unfortunately, it has become my business,
          because I made a deal with someone I thought
          I could trust.
          Richard stares at Margaret for a beat.   He's exasperated.

          RICHARD
          You wanna know why you're here?   I'll show
          you why you're here.

          MARGARET
          Fine.

          RICHARD
          We leave in a half hour.

          MARGARET
          I'll be ready in 20 minutes.
          Margaret angrily takes a bite of a cinnamon roll and slams it
          down on the plate.   She goes to her suitcase and looks for
          clothes.   A beat passes, and she comes back to the rolls.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          These are really good.
          She takes a cinnamon roll and leaves.

          EXT. PAXTON DOCK - DAY

          Richard and Margaret board the yacht.   They wear athletic clothes
          and running shoes.

          EXT. BOAT - DAY

          Richard drives the yacht and Margaret sits by herself.

          

          

          

          

          62.

          EXT. PAXTON SEAFOODS PIER - DAY

          Richard docks the boat at the Paxton Seafood pier.   Located in
          the town's harbor, the packing plant consists of three large
          warehouses, and buzzes with activity.   Fishing boats line the
          pier, unload their fish, and forklifts take the fish to be
          processed.   Everything is clean and organized.
          Richard and Margaret walk down the pier.   He points to the SEALS
          that swim everywhere and eat fish scraps.   Damn, they're cute.
          Richard waves hello to WORKERS.   An elderly Phillipino man, BEK
          BEK, yells at them as he walks into a warehouse.

          BEK BEK
          Hey, Richard!   That the lucky lady?

          RICHARD
          Yes sir, it is!

          BEK BEK
          (to Margaret)
          You look much younger than everyone says.

          MARGARET
          That's great to hear.

          RICHARD
          See ya on the line, Bek Bek.

          INT. LOCKER ROOM - DAY

          Richard opens a locker and points.   We don't see at what.

          RICHARD
          Put this on.   I'll meet you outside.

          MARGARET
          But I don't...

          RICHARD
          Ah.   Put it on.

          EXT. LOCKER ROOM - DAY

          Margaret opens the door with a sour look on her face.   She's
          wearing large green hip waders with suspenders, rubber fishing
          boots, and gloves.

          MARGARET
          Is this really necessary?

          RICHARD
          You'll thank me later.
          Richard walks towards the warehouse.   Margaret follows in her

          

          

          

          

          63.

          INT. SLIME LINE - DAY

          Inside one of the brightly lit warehouses, workers at different
          stations process the fish that come off the boats.
          At the top of the line, Bek Bek is HANDCUFFED to the head
          decapitator machine.   He happily feeds whole salmon into a
          guillotine, where the heads are chopped off.   He awkwardly waves
          when he sees Margaret and Richard.

          MARGARET
          Why is he handcuffed to the machine?

          RICHARD
          So his hands don't go too far.   So he
          doesn't...
          Richard makes a chopping motion.   Margaret winces.

          MARGARET
          Nice.
          From the decapitator, fish are fed into the gut puller, where
          their bellies are slit and the intestines are pulled out.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You know, I shouldn't be here.   I was a
          vegetarian for six months in college.
          Richard leads Margaret to the end of slime line, where a long
          line of 20 workers give the fish a final cleaning before they are
          frozen.   With great speed, they take the fish from the gut puller
          line and clean out all the left over intestines.

          WORKER
          There he is!   Big city boy come to show us
          how its done.

          RICHARD
          Ah, it's been a while.

          WORKER
          C'mon.   Show her how we do it.

          RICHARD
          Okay, okay.
          Richard and Margaret go to the end of the line.   Richard expertly
          demonstrates with a knife.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          You grab a fish, but be gentle, cause you
          don't want to bruise it.   Open her up, tilt
          the knife, and then pull with the grain of
          the fish.   Two quick stokes to clear the
          organs attached to the spine.

          

          

          

          

          64.
          Margaret looks nauseous.   Richard enjoys her discomfort.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Then use the tip of the knife to squeeze the
          blood out of the vein.   Then send her down
          the line.
          Richard guts another fish with precision and speed before
          offering a knife to Margaret.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Wanna try it?
          Margaret doesn't say anything.   All the other workers watch.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          If it's too gross for you...

          MARGARET
          Gimme that.
          Up to the challenge, she takes the knife and grabs a fish.
          Margaret puts the knife in and keeps as much distance as possible
          between her and the salmon.

          RICHARD
          I did this for five summers.   Dad wanted me
          to earn my stripes before I took over.

          MARGARET
          Is that why you're still pissed at him?

          RICHARD
          Nah, I loved it here.

          MARGARET
          (re: fish guts)
          You loved this?

          RICHARD
          The slime line?   Hell no.   Nobody loves the
          slime line.   I loved this place.   The
          people.   Growing up, running this place was
          all I wanted.
          Margaret scrapes a huge glop of guts out of a fish.

          MARGARET

          (DISGUSTED)
          You wanted this?

          RICHARD
          I wanted to run this place. It was
          comfortable here.   It was what I knew.
          (re: fish)
          Don't forget the spine.

          

          

          

          

          65.

          MARGARET
          I wasn't gonna forget.
          Margaret squeezes the blood out of the vein, sends the fish on
          its way, and grabs another fish with more confidence.

          RICHARD
          But then things changed.   And it wasn't so
          comfortable anymore.

          MARGARET
          What kind of things changed?

          RICHARD
          Stuff.

          MARGARET
          (as if she didn't know)
          You mean, like, Gertrude?

          RICHARD
          Yeah...
          Richard stops, he can tell Margaret knows something.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Oh my god.   She told you didn't she?

          MARGARET

          (INNOCENT)
          Told me what?
          Richard is embarrassed.   He turns away.

          RICHARD
          About the... you know.

          MARGARET
          The creepy teenage proposal?

          RICHARD
          Ah, shit!

          MARGARET
          You were a freak by the way.

          RICHARD
          OK, get it all out.

          MARGARET
          And she was right to break up with you.

          RICHARD
          You done?
          Margaret nods yes.

          

          

          

          

          66.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          I know now that it was the right thing, but
          it screwed me up for a little while.

          MARGARET
          For a little while?   Don't sell yourself
          short.

          RICHARD
          When Gert crushed my heart into little
          pieces, a life up here didn't seem so great
          anymore.

          MARGARET
          So you moved to the open arms of New York
          City?

          RICHARD
          At first it was about getting as far away
          from this place as possible, but then I fell
          in love with it.

          MARGARET
          With scheduling my pilates?

          RICHARD
          With editing.   See, as an only kid I'd
          always read a lot, but until I worked for
          you I didn't love it.   I mean, when I
          realized that we could find the next
          Cuckoo's Nest, or Catch 22, or...

          MARGARET
          (with reverence)
          ...To Kill a Mockingbird.   It's all about To
          Kill a Mockingbird.

          RICHARD
          Exactly!   We could find the next To Kill a
          Mockingbird.   God damn, how great is that?
          Margaret smiles.   She never knew that Richard had this kind of
          passion for the job.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          So when I tell my folks that I want to spend
          my life finding books?   My dad goes ape
          shit.                                                             "How dare you forsake your family...
          you'll come crawling back to us... you're
          nothing without our help."   I left that
          night and we didn't talk for a year.
          Haven't been back here since.

          MARGARET
          So we're "getting married" so you can give
          daddy the finger?

          

          

          

          

          67.

          RICHARD
          No.
          Margaret gives Richard a disbelieving look.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Sorta.   OK, Yes.   Coming back here with
          you...   I get the promotion and I get to
          show off.   You're editor in chief.   You make
          a good prop.

          MARGARET

          (SMILING)
          I guess that's a compliment.

          RICHARD
          So now you know I'm a petty asshole.   Am I
          trustworthy again?

          MARGARET
          Oh yeah, we're good.   By the way, you're
          more screwed up than I am, Paxton.

          RICHARD
          Yeah.   Thanks.

          MARGARET
          One more question...

          RICHARD
          Yes, everyone at work thinks you're a
          lesbian.

          MARGARET
          That wasn't my question.

          RICHARD
          I know.   Just lashing out.
          Margaret smiles.

          MARGARET
          Can we stop gutting fish?   I need my phone.

          INT. SITKA GENERAL STORE - DAY

          Richard and Margaret enter the well appointed general store,
          filled with food, booze and electronics.   A mini Wal Mart.

          RICHARD
          Hey Ramone.

          RAMONE
          Hey Richard.   Hola mi amo.
          Margaret recognizes Ramone, the male dancer from last night.

          

          

          

          

          68.

          MARGARET

          (EMBARRASSED)
          Hey.
          They walk a few steps, and before Margaret can say a word.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You know him?

          RICHARD
          He was my shop teacher.

          MARGARET
          Of course he was.   How many people are on
          this island?
          They start to fill their cart with cases of champagne.

          RICHARD
          Like eight thousand?   Depends on the time of
          the year.

          MARGARET
          Feels smaller.
          With the cart full they head to the checkout.

          RICHARD
          (to Ramone)
          You got the phone I called about?

          RAMONE
          Charged up, ready to go, number changed.
          Ramone throws Richard a phone.

          RICHARD
          Thanks, Ramone.

          RAMONE
          No problem.
          Ramone gives Margaret a flirty wave.   She awkwardly waves back.
          Richard pushes the cart out the front door and does not pay.
          Margaret is confused.

          EXT. SITKA GENERAL STORE - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          Richard keeps pushing the cart, Margaret catches up.

          MARGARET
          Why's Ramone letting you steal his stuff?

          RICHARD
          It's our stuff.

          

          

          

          

          69.
          Richard points to the "Paxton General Store" sign.

          MARGARET
          That must have been handy in High School.

          RICHARD
          You have no idea.

          MARGARET
          Should you leave the cart?

          RICHARD
          It's our cart.   I didn't know you were such
          a prude.

          MARGARET
          I've come to realize that being my assistant
          gave you more access to my life than I ever
          imagined, but there are a few things you
          don't know about me.

          RICHARD
          I doubt it.   When I started, you were still
          wearing those Ugg boot things.

          MARGARET
          (deadly serious)
          I told you never to talk about that.

          RICHARD
          I'm just saying it's been a long time.   I
          know it all.
          Margaret turns on her new phone.   It searches for a signal.

          MARGARET
          (up to the challenge)
          Did you know I took disco lessons in the
          sixth grade?

          RICHARD
          Where?

          MARGARET
          The Y.

          RICHARD
          Margaret 1, Richard 0.

          MARGARET
          Uh, my first concert was Kool and the Gang.

          RICHARD
          At Woodstock?

          

          

          

          

          70.

          MARGARET
          I won tickets on the radio and saw them at
          the fair.

          RICHARD
          What'd they sing again?

          MARGARET
          You know.

          (SINGING)
          Cherish the love we have, we should cherish
          the life we live...
          Richard shakes his head.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Well they were good.

          RICHARD
          You had a lot of soul there, Canada.

          MARGARET
          I really like "The O.C.".   Not fake, ha, ha
          isn't it funny I like this trash.   I really
          like it.

          RICHARD
          Wow.   I'm getting shut out here.

          MARGARET
          Allergic to pine nuts.

          RICHARD
          Knew that.

          MARGARET
          Afraid of penguins.

          RICHARD
          Huh.

          MARGARET
          Haven't slept with a man in a year and a
          half.

          RICHARD
          Holy shit!   You are a lesbian!
          A MOTHER walking by with her 7 year old gives Richard a nasty
          look.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          (to mother)
          My bad.
          The mother walks on.   Margaret is mortified and walks faster.

          

          

          

          

          71.

          MARGARET
          Kool and the Gang gets nothing, but that
          gets a Holy shit?   I've been busy!

          RICHARD
          That's a really long time.

          MARGARET
          That hurts coming from Mr. Magic Pants.

          RICHARD
          I knew it had been slow going, but I figured
          there was a booty call in there somewhere.

          MARGARET
          Yeah, well, I'm not good at that.

          RICHARD
          I find that hard to believe.

          MARGARET
          No, not that.   I'm great at that.   Aces.
          Top notch.

          RICHARD
          I'll have to take your word for it.

          MARGARET
          Yes.   You will.

          RICHARD
          How, exactly, do you define top notch?
          Margaret is smiling as she listens to a message on her phone.   In
          an instant, she's all business.

          MARGARET
          I need a computer and the internet.   Now.

          INT. FISHERMAN'S NET INTERNET CAFE - DAY

          Designed to attract tourists, the Fisherman's Net is awash in bad
          nautical props and fishing gear.   A bored TEENAGE CLERK in a
          PIRATE OUTFIT greets Margaret and Richard.

          PIRATE
          Aye lassie, welcome to the cyber seas.   Our
          T-1 line is faster than a clipper ship in a
          hurricane, but for now ye be needing to
          scrawl your mark on this sign up sheet.
          Margaret looks and sees that all the computers are taken.

          

          

          

          

          72.

          MARGARET
          No, no, no.   I need on now.   I've got a
          Booker prize winning author demanding I send
          him an e-mail in the next forty five minutes
          explaining why he should stay with a
          publishing house that "makes" him do
          publicity.
          The Pirate looks at Margaret like she's speaking Chinese.

          PIRATE
          Arrgh...

          MARGARET
          Listen to me asshole...
          The Pirate looks around to make sure his boss can't hear.

          PIRATE
          Look lady.   You gonna put your name down on
          the list or not?
          Margaret is about to throttle the Pirate, when Richard pulls her
          back.

          RICHARD
          C'mon.   I got an idea.
          Richard leads Margaret to the door.   As they are leaving Margaret
          shouts out.

          MARGARET
          I didn't know there were a lot of pirates in
          Alaska!

          INT. BARANOFF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - OFFICE - DAY

          Margaret sits at a computer, furiously opening her e-mail.
          Richard has brought her to his elementary school, where he and
          his old principal, MRS. WHITING, stand over Margaret.

          MRS. WHITING
          I'm so excited about the wedding!

          RICHARD
          Thanks for letting us use your computer.

          MRS. WHITING
          No problem.
          (to Margaret)
          So what flowers are you going with?
          Margaret turns around annoyed, but manages to keep her cool.

          MARGARET
          I'm sorry, but could I have a minute alone

          

          

          

          

          73.

          MRS. WHITING
          Oh.   Sure.

          RICHARD
          Show me around will you Mrs. Whiting?   It's
          been years.

          INT. BARANOFF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - HALL - DAY

          Richard and Mrs. Whiting walk around the elementary school.

          MRS. WHITING
          Do you think she'll be long?   I've got work
          to do.

          RICHARD
          She'll be out of there in two shakes.
          Out of the corner of his eye, Richard catches Gertrude teaching a
          class of second graders.   He stops transfixed.

          MRS. WHITING
          (re: Gertrude)
          We are so lucky to have her.   Mr. Megher
          really left us shorthanded when he ran off
          in the middle of the school year.   He's
          living out in the forest now with his
          wolves.   Full time.
          Richard hasn't heard anything that Mrs. Whiting has said.   He's
          hypnotized by Gertrude.   She looks happy teaching these kids, and
          they hang on her every word.
          MRS. WHITING (cont'd)
          Will you excuse me?   The bell is about to
          ring, I need to get ready for recess.

          RICHARD
          (not paying attention)
          Uh, sure.
          Mrs. Whiting leaves.   Richard goes to the door and Gertrude sees
          him.   Good lord can that woman smile.   She waves him in.

          INSIDE THE CLASSROOM
          The kids all turn to see Richard when he opens the door.

          GERTRUDE
          Class, this is my old friend Richard.

          CLASS
          (all together)
          Hi Richard!

          

          

          

          

          74.

          GERTRUDE
          Richard and I used to be in this very same
          classroom together.   We even had your old
          teacher, Mr. Megher.

          CHILD #1
          Mr. Megher smelled like farty eggs!
          The class giggles.

          GERTRUDE
          That's not a nice thing to say, Patrick.
          The BELL RINGS.   One girl gets up.   Gertrude eyeballs her.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          Marcia?

          CHILD #2
          Sorry.
          The child sits back down.   Gertrude waits a beat.

          GERTRUDE
          OK, everyone is excused for recess.
          All the kids pop up and head to the door.   Mrs. Whiting directs
          traffic outside.   Richard makes his way to Gertrude.

          RICHARD
          Patrick's right.   He did smell like eggs.

          GERTRUDE
          It's still not a nice thing to say.   And
          actually, Mr. Megher smelled like wet dog
          and...
          (makes smoking pot motion)
          ...Matanuska Thunderfuck.   But let's keep
          that between us.

          INT. BARANOFF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - OFFICE - DAY

          Margaret reads over her e-mail to Frank.

          MARGARET

          (READING)
          I give you my word as an editor and a
          friend...
          The door opens suddenly, and Margaret SHOUTS.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          (STERN)
          Five more minutes!   Please!

          

          

          

          

          75.
          Margaret turns to find a PIG TAILED GIRL in the doorway.
          Terrified.   She SHRIEKS and runs off.   Margaret wants to
          apologize, but needs to keep working.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          (WEAKLY)
          Sorry.

          INT. BARANOFF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - CLASSROOM - DAY

          Gertrude and Richard wipe down the chalk boards together.   They
          are very comfortable together and have an easy rapport.

          RICHARD
          Remember when Mr. Megher made us do this
          after school for a week?

          GERTRUDE
          That was your fault.

          RICHARD
          Was not!

          GERTRUDE
          You tried to kiss me.   A girl has to defend
          herself.

          RICHARD
          C'mon!
          (Tom Cruise ala Top Gun)
          I had the shot.   I took it.
          Gertrude rolls her eyes.   She's heard this a hundred times.

          GERTRUDE
          No Top Gun.   Please.

          RICHARD
          What?   You loved my Top Gun.

          GERTRUDE
          No.   You loved your Top Gun.   I just smiled
          and laughed like a good girlfriend.

          RICHARD
          That's right.   Ice... man.   I am dangerous.
          Richard clicks his teeth together, trying to mimic Tom Cruise.
          Gertrude is not impressed.

          GERTRUDE

          (LAUGHING)
          Really.   Stop.

          RICHARD
          That cuts deep.   I'll have you know that

          

          

          

          

          76.
          Talk of Margaret immediately shuts Gertrude down.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          (noticing her change in mood)
          Uh, is something wrong?

          GERTRUDE
          No.   Nothing's wrong.

          RICHARD
          It's been awhile, but I can still tell when
          something's wrong with you.
          Gertrude doesn't want to say anything.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          What is it?   You know I hate it when you get
          all quiet.

          GERTRUDE
          I wish there was a better way to say this.

          RICHARD
          Better way to say what?

          GERTRUDE
          I made a huge mistake.   With you.   Breaking
          up with you.   I'm sorry.

          RICHARD
          Are you apologizing for high school?

          GERTRUDE
          Yes.

          RICHARD
          Oh, thank God.   I thought this was like,
          something big.

          GERTRUDE
          This is something big.

          RICHARD
          I coulda used this about five years ago, but
          I'm all good now, promise.   Thank you for
          saying that, though.
          Gertrude sees that Richard isn't getting her point.   She pulls
          herself together.

          GERTRUDE
          I think...
          (looking down)
          I want you back.

          RICHARD

          

          

          

          

          77.

          GERTRUDE
          (more to herself)
          Oh God, he's making me say it again.
          (looking at Richard)
          I want you back.   Like... we should be
          together.   All the time.

          RICHARD
          Whoa, whoa, whoa.   Rewind.

          GERTRUDE
          I know this isn't the best time to bring
          this up.

          RICHARD

          (RHETORICAL)
          My wedding day isn't the best time for you
          to bring up the idea of us dating?
          Richard's reaction stings, and Gertrude begins to well up.
          Bringing this up is very hard for her.

          GERTRUDE
          I'm not talking about dating!   You should
          move back here.   We can have the life you
          always talked about in High School.   I'm
          ready for that now.

          RICHARD
          Why are you doing this?

          GERTRUDE
          I know that the timing here sucks.   But we
          are meant to be together.   I know it.   I
          think you know it too...

          RICHARD
          No, I don't.   I don't know it.
          Richard begins to pace.   Not sure what to say.   Every time he
          opens his mouth, he can't find the words.
          Then, from the door, an interruption.

          MARGARET
          Hey guys.
          Holy shit.   Did Margaret hear anything?   Her face gives nothing
          away.   Gertrude and Richard act like nothing just happened, but
          look guilty as hell.

          GERTRUDE
          Oh.   Hey Margaret.

          RICHARD
          Uh, you all done?

          

          

          

          

          78.

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   We'll see what he says.

          RICHARD
          Great.   Great.

          MARGARET
          You ready to get back to the house?

          RICHARD
          Uh.   Yeah.   Uh-huh.

          MARGARET
          Well let's go.   See you at the wedding,
          Gertrude.
          Gertrude just smiles.

          GERTRUDE
          Yeah.   See you at the wedding.

          EXT. PAXTON DOCK - DAY

          Richard and Margaret unload champagne.   Richard is still thinking
          about Gertrude and wanting to be alone.

          MARGARET
          So, what did you and Gertrude talk about?
          Richard lies.

          RICHARD
          Nothing.   About her school.   The kids and
          stuff.   Apparently my second grade teacher
          was a pot head.

          MARGARET
          That was it?   I was gone for awhile...

          RICHARD
          (cuts her off)
          Yeah.   That was it.   You know, I can do
          this.   You should really go try on the dress
          for my mom.

          MARGARET
          I was going to go for a run first, it's been
          three days since I got out, I'm feeling
          crazy.

          RICHARD
          (could care less)
          Whatever.
          Margaret isn't accustomed to Richard talking to her this way, but
          doesn't push it.

          

          

          

          

          79.

          EXT. PAXTON TRAIL - DAY

          Margaret runs at a fast pace deep in the woods.   She's running
          hard, muttering to herself, and working out the aggression she's
          accumulated over the last thirty six hours.   She's lost in her
          own world, until she sees smoke, and slows to a stop.

          MARGARET
          What now?
          Margaret follows the smoke, and hears a mysterious DRUMBEAT.   She
          soon discovers a tremendous bonfire by the water, and a SHAMAN
          dancing around it.   He is dressed in a loin cloth, and wears a
          carved bear's head mask and tribal make up.   His belly shakes as
          he spastically moves around the fire. The Shaman sings a song
          that sounds centuries old.

          SHAMAN
          Yai...takuju magaluam Ut uksu lingm ik
          pifiksailiriju m 1k tuakjuk qangani
          takujumagaluam Ut qangalan uarm.
          Margaret hides behind a tree and stares at this man in a trance.
          He begins to yell at the fire and scream at the top of his lungs.
          Exhausted, he stops and catches his breath.   He yells out again.
          SHAMAN (cont'd)
          Margaret, welcome!
          She looks around.   Maybe another Margaret is in the vicinity.
          SHAMAN (cont'd)
          Come to me, Margaret of New York.
          Nope, that's her.   She carefully steps out into the clearing.
          SHAMAN (cont'd)
          It is I, father Paxton.
          Sure enough, Geoffrey is beneath all the make-up.

          MARGARET
          What, ah, are you doing?

          GEOFFREY
          My shaman Kevin told me to get out here and
          clear my head.   As you know, things have
          been a little crazy around here.   You should
          join me.

          MARGARET
          Ya know, I've got to get back.

          GEOFFREY
          You closed minded southerners amuse me.
          Never willing to leave the nest and try

          

          

          

          

          80.

          MARGARET
          I'm a big fan of the nest.
          Geoffrey throws sand into the fire and it blazes higher.

          GEOFFREY
          Dance with me!   You besmirch my ways if you
          deny my circle.
          Worried she's going to really piss him off, Margaret relents.

          MARGARET
          OK, OK.   I "accept your circle."
          Geoffrey smiles and throws more sand into the fire.

          GEOFFREY
          Clear your mind and follow me.
          Geoffrey begins dancing slowly, contorting his body.   Margaret
          follows, always a half step behind, and can't get into it.   After
          a few moments, Margaret stops.

          MARGARET
          I'm gonna head back.

          GEOFFREY
          We're not done.

          MARGARET
          I think I am.
          Margaret begins to leave.   Geoffrey calls after her.

          GEOFFREY
          Margaret?
          Margaret stops and turns around.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          I'm sorry we got off on the wrong foot.   But
          I'm making an effort here.   Don't leave now.
          Much to her chagrin, Margaret stays.   Geoffrey is pleased.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          Thank you.
          (switching gears)
          Yai...takuju magaluam Ut uksu lingm ik
          pifiksailiriju m 1k...
          Geoffrey throws more sand on the fire to make it go higher and
          speeds up the dance.   Margaret is getting better, but it is still
          painfully awkward.

          

          

          

          

          81.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          ...tuakjuk qangani takujumagaluam Ut
          qangalan uarm.
          Geoffrey speeds up the dance.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          Now you.

          MARGARET
          Me what?

          GEOFFREY
          Chant.

          MARGARET
          Chant what?

          GEOFFREY
          Whatever comes out, just chant.   It is the
          way.   You'll feel better.

          MARGARET
          I can't...

          GEOFFREY
          Close your eyes.   Chant.
          Margaret and Geoffrey keep dancing.   Margaret closes her eyes,
          but can't figure out what to say.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          Chant!

          MARGARET
          I don't know any chants!

          GEOFFREY
          Chant!

          MARGARET

          (GUTTERAL)
          Toooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo...
          Looking at Margaret, it's surprising she can make such a low
          noise.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo...

          GEOFFREY
          Chant!
          The drum beat continues.

          MARGARET

          

          

          

          

          82.
          They continue to dance, Margaret is getting into it.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...to the wall...
          More sand.   More fire.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...to sweat drop down my balls...
          Geoffrey stops dancing.   What did she say?
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...to all these bitches crawl...
          Margaret's eyes are closed, she doesn't realize that she's broken
          out into a ‘Lil John song.   She continues to dance.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...To all skee skee motherfucker...
          Geoffrey takes the bear head mask off.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...all skee skee got damn...
          From the trees, the moment is broken when Debbie shouts out.

          DEBBIE
          Geoffrey!
          Margaret stops chanting ‘Lil John.

          GEOFFREY
          Oh Debbie, I didn't do anything.
          Margaret sees Debbie and Grandma Annie in the clearing.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Is she singing about balls?

          MARGARET
          He told me I had to chant!

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Oh, you poor dear.   Geoffrey, you can't do
          this!
          (to Margaret)
          He's an eighth Tlingit, dear.

          DEBBIE
          He does this to keep in touch with "his
          people".

          

          

          

          

          83.

          GEOFFREY
          Don't make fun of my heritage!   And it was
          helping.   Don't you feel better?   I feel
          better.

          DEBBIE
          Come on sweetie, we need to get you cleaned
          up.   You've got a dress to try on.   And
          Geoffrey, put that fire out and come in and
          help us with this wedding.
          Geoffrey turns off the boom box that was hidden in the trees and
          the drum beat stops.

          GEOFFREY
          Fine.
          With a fire extinguisher, the bonfire comes to an end.

          INT. PAXTON MASTER BEDROOM - DAY

          Debbie and Annie wait outside a bathroom door in a massive master
          bedroom.   They talk to Margaret through the door.

          DEBBIE
          I am so excited.   Aren't you excited?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          This was my dress from 1929.   My mother made
          it by hand.   Amazing how things come back
          into style.   How does it fit?
          Margaret speaks through the door.

          MARGARET (O.S.)
          Just buttoning up here.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Drum roll!
          Grandma and Debbie enthusiastically make drum roll sounds.
          Margaret opens the door and smiles.   She's unsure of herself, but
          looks fantastic.   The dress fits great, except...
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          Your boobs are bigger than mine ever were.

          MARGARET
          Yeah, it's a little snug.

          DEBBIE
          Come over here.
          Debbie leads Margaret to a mirror.   Grandma Annie follows.

          

          

          

          

          84.

          MARGARET

          (ADMITTING)
          It's a lovely dress.
          Debbie looks at Margaret, and spontaneously begins crying.

          DEBBIE
          (through the tears)
          You're so beautiful, and such a great match
          for my Richard.   I know I've just met you,
          but a mother can tell.   When he looks at
          you, I can tell he's in love.   I'm so happy
          I get to share your day.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Debbie, please.   We've got work to do.

          DEBBIE
          You're right.
          Debbie collects herself, then starts crying again.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          You go work downstairs, I'll finish this.
          Debbie tries to calm down, but can't.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          Go!
          Debbie nods in agreement.   Smiling from ear to ear, she leaves in
          tears.   Margaret and Annie watch her go.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          Had to get rid of her before I gave you
          this.   Don't think she woulda recovered.
          Grandma Annie comes from behind and puts her arms around
          Margaret's neck.   When she is done, a stunning blue necklace lays
          on Margaret's neck.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          You needed something blue.   It's silly, but
          I didn't want to take any chances.

          MARGARET
          It's beautiful.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          It's hematite.   Alaska diamonds.   The blue
          ones like this are very rare.   My great
          grandfather gave it to my great grandmother
          when they were married.   They were quite a
          scandal, you know.   He was Russian and she
          was Tlingit.

          (MORE)

          

          

          

          

          85.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          Back then, you had to get approval from
          every person in the tribe before you got
          married.   It almost broke them up.

          MARGARET
          How'd they stay together?

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Don't know.   But I'm sure happy they did,
          none of us would be here if they hadn't.
          Grandma and Margaret admire the necklace in the mirror.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          I want you to have it.
          This is awful news for Margaret.   She might as well be stealing
          from Annie.

          MARGARET
          No, no, no.   I can't.   Really.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          I don't want to hear it.   It's yours.
          Grandmothers like to give their stuff away
          to their grandchildren.   Makes us feel like
          we'll always be a part of your life, even
          after we're gone. Take it.
          Margaret puts her hand to the necklace, and for the first time
          feels like a complete and total fraud.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          Are you feeling all right, dear?
          Margaret doesn't speak.   Annie patiently waits for her reply.

          MARGARET
          Well.   Thing is...
          Margaret deliberates spilling her guts to Annie, but can't.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          ...the dress is just a little tight.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Oh, don't worry about that.   We've got these
          seams by the arm, this'll be easy.
          Annie marks up the dress with tailor's chalk.
          GRANDMA ANNIE (cont'd)
          We can fix this no problem.
          Margaret smiles, but knows that Annie couldn't be more wrong.

          

          

          

          

          86.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Richard helps WORKERS build a stage for the band.   He's still in
          a foul mood when Margaret interrupts in a panic.

          MARGARET
          We need to talk.

          RICHARD
          I'm a little busy.

          MARGARET
          Well I'm freaking out.   I need to get away
          from here.   From everyone.   Now.

          RICHARD
          Go for another run.

          MARGARET
          No!   I did that.   It did not help.

          RICHARD
          I'm a little tired of you making demands and
          me just jumping...

          MARGARET
          (re: wedding stuff)
          We're not going to need any of this if I
          don't get out of here.

          RICHARD
          OK, high maintenance.   Let's go.

          EXT. PAXTON SPEED BOAT - DAY

          Unlike the bulky yacht, this boat is built for speed and
          maneuverability. Richard starts her up.

          MARGARET
          Move over, I'm driving.
          Margaret cuts in front of Richard and grabs the wheel.

          RICHARD
          You don't know where we're going.
          Margaret opens up the throttle and they are off.

          MARGARET
          It doesn't matter.

          ON THE OPEN OCEAN
          Margaret and Richard leave everyone behind and take off for the
          horizon.

          

          

          

          

          87.
          As they jet up the coast away from civilization, the green trees,
          blue water and wildlife (bears, puffins, moose) that inhabit the
          coastline have a calming effect on both of them.   In Alaska, it
          doesn't take long to leave humanity behind.
          Eventually, the boat travels through a channel with steep
          mountain walls on either side.   Although it is still warm out, an
          icy beach can be seen straight ahead.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Where are we?

          RICHARD
          The north pole.   Congratulations, we made
          it.
          (off Margaret's look)
          It's a glacier.   Tracy's Arm.   You better
          let me take it from here.

          MARGARET
          I'm fine.

          RICHARD
          Oh.   OK.   So like me, you've navigated a lot
          of glacier fields?   And not died?
          Margaret reluctantly moves aside and lets Richard steer.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Lady, you've got issues.

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   I'm a control freak.   Fine.

          RICHARD
          It doesn't stop there.

          MARGARET
          This coming from the sociopath.

          RICHARD
          Oh, please.

          MARGARET
          I'd never bring me here.

          RICHARD
          You drove!

          MARGARET
          I mean to Alaska.

          RICHARD
          Are you kidding me?
          Richard pulls next to the glacier and turns off the engine.

          

          

          

          

          88.

          MARGARET
          You're sick.   Doing this to them.

          RICHARD
          I explained to you...

          MARGARET
          They love you.   Do you get that?

          RICHARD
          Of course.

          MARGARET
          And you're still willing to lie to them?

          RICHARD
          Like you didn't know.

          MARGARET
          Didn't know what?

          RICHARD
          That we were going to lie to them.

          MARGARET
          I didn't know!

          RICHARD
          Well that makes you either stupid, or
          ignorant.

          MARGARET
          You think I'm stupid?

          RICHARD
          No, but what's behind door number two...

          MARGARET

          (SCREAMS)
          I forgot!   OK?   I forgot!

          RICHARD
          Forgot what?

          MARGARET
          What it was like!

          RICHARD
          What what was like?

          MARGARET
          To have a family!   I forgot what it was like
          to have a family.   I've been on my own since
          I was thirteen, and I'd forgot what it was
          like to have people that love you, and make
          you breakfast, and give you necklaces...

          

          

          

          

          89.
          Suddenly, Margaret has a hard time speaking and is short of
          breath.   She goes to the side of the speed boat.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I'm going to take a walk.

          RICHARD
          We need to head back...

          MARGARET
          Alone.   I need alone time.

          RICHARD
          What?
          Margaret looks at Richard with a scared and confused look.

          MARGARET
          I'm, uh, about to lose my shit.   Big time.
          I need a second.

          RICHARD
          But...

          MARGARET

          (PANICKED)
          Stop right there!
          Richard puts up his hands in surrender and stays put.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I'm going to be over there.   Away from you.
          Just sit down, turn around, and act like
          you're not here.
          Richard goes to speak, but Margaret motions for him to sit down
          and turn around.   He does.   Margaret gets off the boat and walks
          away from him on the glacier.

          ON THE GLACIER
          Margaret tries diaphragmatic breathing to calm down.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (manic, to herself)
          You can do this.   Couple more hours, and
          then you'll never see these people again.
          Eventually you'll write a letter.
          Apologize.   Send the necklace back.

          RICHARD
          (from the boat)
          Margaret!

          MARGARET
          No talking!

          

          

          

          

          90.

          RICHARD
          (from the boat)
          Watch your step, OK?   It can be dangerous.

          MARGARET
          Again, you're not supposed to be...
          Margaret doesn't finish her sentence.

          ON THE BOAT
          Richard sits with his back turned to Margaret, waiting for her
          reply.   He doesn't hear anything.   That's weird.

          RICHARD
          (back still turned)
          Margaret?
          Richard turns around and looks for Margaret.   He doesn't see her.
          He gets out of the boat and goes onto the glacier, walking in the
          direction he last saw Margaret.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Margaret?   I know I'm breaking "the rules"
          here, but where are you?
          He takes one more step before he hears...

          MARGARET (O.S.)

          (YELLING)
          Richard!!!!!!!!   Help!!!!!!!!
          Richard still can't see her, but runs in the direction of her
          voice.   He soon rounds a mound of ice and sees that --
          Margaret's been swallowed by the ice.   Her upper torso sticks out
          of the glacier, held up by her arms.   Her eyes are wide, and
          she's almost hyperventilating.     It's a bizarre sight.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Oh, thank God!
          Richard tries to control himself, but BURSTS OUT LAUGHING.
          Margaret is really scared.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Wh-, wh-, why are you laughing?

          RICHARD
          I'm sorry.   I'm sorry.   Just relax.   I'll
          get you out of there.   You've broken through
          an ice bridge.   It happens all the time.   No
          biggie.

          MARGARET
          Don't do that.

          

          

          

          

          91.

          RICHARD
          Don't do what?

          MARGARET
          The thing that doctors do in E.R. when they
          tell the gunshot victim who is bleeding to
          death that they're going to be OK.   Don't do
          that!

          RICHARD
          It's not like that.   Really.   We do need to
          be careful here though, I don't want us both
          to fall in.   Stay still, OK?

          MARGARET
          Uh-huh.
          Richard is ten feet away from Margaret now.   He's checking the
          ice to see if it is stable.   He slowly walks her way.

          RICHARD
          So, I'm going to walk up to you and very
          slowly pull you out.   OK?

          MARGARET
          I'm really cold.

          RICHARD
          Yeah, that's normal when you're surrounded
          by ice.

          MARGARET
          (makes sense)

          OK.
          Richard stands over a stuck Margaret, whose head just comes up to
          his knee.   He calmly looks down on her.

          RICHARD
          So I'm going to pull you up by your armpits.
          I'm probably going to touch boob.   But don't
          freak out.
          Margaret shakes her head yes.   Richard reaches down and slowly
          lifts her out of the ice.   Margaret doesn't say a word.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          When I get you all the way out, I need you
          to hold onto me.   I'm going to carry you
          over there.
          Margaret nods yes as she puts her arms around Richard.   He's
          strong, so it isn't difficult for him to slowly carry her "over
          the threshold" style, away from the hole in the ice.   He speaks
          once they're safe.

          

          

          

          

          92.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          I've, uh, never done that before.

          MARGARET
          You said it was "no biggie".

          RICHARD
          Yeah.   Well.   You OK?

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   I'm fine.
          Richard smiles.   Margaret smiles back.
          Richard walks very comfortably with her in his arms.   She fits
          just right.   Margaret looks up to Richard gratefully.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          (SMILING)
          You shouldn't of laughed at me.

          RICHARD
          You woulda laughed at me.

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   While I was getting my camera.
          The two stare at each other for a beat.   There's a real spark.
          They might kiss.

          RICHARD
          Gertrude wants me back.
          Whoah.   Not what she was expecting.   She looks down.

          MARGARET
          And?

          RICHARD
          Well.   It seemed like you were having...
          second thoughts.

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   I was.

          RICHARD
          Maybe we should do it.   Come clean.

          MARGARET
          Put me down.
          Richard puts Margaret down near the boat.   She tries to regain
          her composure.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          You wanna call it off?

          

          

          

          

          93.

          RICHARD
          If you do.

          MARGARET
          Fine.   It's over.   We'll tell them when we
          get back.

          ON THE BOAT
          Margaret sits hunched over with a blanket wrapped around her.
          Richard drives the boat.   They don't talk.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Richard and Margaret walk towards the house, which looms above
          them as they prepare to deliver the news that they aren't getting
          married.   The front door opens, and Geoffrey comes outside in a
          hurry.   He's clearly been waiting.

          GEOFFREY
          Come with me.

          RICHARD
          Where's mom, dad?   We all need to talk.

          GEOFFREY
          Not now.   C'mon.
          Richard and Margaret look at each other, not sure what to do.
          Geoffrey storms off and they follow.

          EXT. PAXTON GUESTHOUSE - DAY

          Richard, Margaret and Geoffrey arrive at the door to the
          guesthouse.   Geoffrey stops before they go in.

          GEOFFREY
          (to Richard)
          I haven't told your mother about any of
          this, and I don't plan to.
          (to Margaret)
          I was really beginning to like you.   Sorry
          about this.
          Geoffrey opens the door and goes inside.

          INSIDE THE GUESTHOUSE
          The guesthouse has been converted into a squash court.   In the
          middle of the court, a man patiently sits on a metal folding
          chair.   It's Gilbertson.   He smiles.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Hey there kids.   Good to see ya!

          

          

          

          

          94.

          RICHARD
          (to Dad)
          What did you do?
          Geoffrey doesn't answer.   He's not proud of himself.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          (getting angry)
          What did you do, dad?!

          GEOFFREY
          I called him yesterday.   He told me that you
          were lying, and that he was going to catch
          you.   That he was going to send you to
          prison.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          (to Richard)
          We made a deal and dad here flew me up.   Now
          you tell the truth, and get off scott free.
          It's like it never happened for you.

          RICHARD
          You made a deal with him?   On my behalf?

          GEOFFREY
          You were making a mistake...

          RICHARD
          That's none of your business.

          MARGARET
          It's fine.

          RICHARD
          The hell it is.   It is not fine!

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Oh quack, quack, quack.   Just tell me what
          really happened, and I'll be on my way.   No
          one gets hurt, we all get what we want.
          Margaret takes Richard's hand.

          MARGARET
          It's OK.   Tell him.

          RICHARD
          (to Geoffrey)
          You do not get to make this decision.   This
          is my decision.
          (to Gilbertson)
          The truth is... I've been working for
          Margaret for three years.   Six months ago we
          started dating.   I recently asked her to
          marry me, and she said yes.   See you both at

          

          

          

          

          95.

          GEOFFREY
          What are you doing, Richard?

          RICHARD
          (grabs Margaret's hand)
          Come on, we gotta get ready.
          Margaret and Richard storm out of the squash court.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          The couple walks briskly to the house.

          RICHARD
          What was I thinking?   They act like they're
          nice, but really, they're evil.

          MARGARET
          He's only doing it because he loves you.

          RICHARD
          Are you defending him?   Are you defending
          the king dick?

          MARGARET
          Just stop.   Think about this.

          RICHARD
          Oh, I've thought about it.   And know what I
          think?   I think you saved my life.   Thank
          you, Margaret.   Getting married to you is
          the best thing that's ever happened to me.
          Without this, I might've ended up back here.
          Up at the house, Debbie opens the door.

          DEBBIE
          There you are!   You two almost gave me a
          heart attack.   C'mon, get dressed!

          RICHARD
          Coming mom!
          (to Margaret)
          Time to sack up.
          Richard winks and goes inside.   Margaret follows, not sure.

          THE WEDDING MONTAGE
          -- Chairs are set up outside.
          -- Guests arrive via boat.
          -- Richard stands on the deck, wearing his tuxedo.   Gertrude
          arrives for the wedding, and they lock eyes.   Richard waves hello
          and mouths "Sorry."   He goes back inside.

          

          

          

          

          96.
          -- Geoffrey sits in his bedroom and watches TV.   He's not dressed
          for the wedding yet.   Debbie shakes her head at him in the mirror
          as she puts on her ear rings.
          -- Gilbertson eats every hors d'oeuvre that's offered to him.

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY

          Grandma knocks on the door and comes inside.   We see Margaret
          from head to toe.   The dress, veil and flowers look amazing.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          If I were one to brag, I'd say that dress is
          perfect.

          MARGARET
          Matches the shoes.
          Margaret pulls up the dress to reveal running sneakers.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Those'll be your best friend.   Wedding shoes
          stink.   You ready?

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          With the ocean in the background, 200 GUESTS sit in white chairs.
          Richard stands under a gazebo, and smiles at his mother in the
          front row.   He ignores Geoffrey.
          Gertrude sits nearby, next to Gilbertson.
          From the gazebo, Richard nods at a GROUP OF CELLO PLAYERS, who
          begin playing from downloaded sheet music that reads "Kool and
          the Gang, Cherish".   Heads turn with the start of the music, to
          see Annie walk Margaret down the aisle.
          When Margaret recognizes the song, she smiles.

          MARGARET
          (mouthing to Richard)
          Nice song.
          Richard shrugs his shoulders.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          Is that your song, dear?

          MARGARET
          I guess so.
          Margaret and Annie stop at the end of the aisle.   Looking up,
          Margaret sees the justice of the peace, Ramone.                      (Yes, the same
          guy from the liquor store and the strip club.)

          RAMONE

          

          

          

          

          97.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          It's me, Ramone.
          Margaret gives Annie a kiss, and then turns to Richard.   They
          whisper while they walk up to Ramone.

          RICHARD
          You look gorgeous.

          MARGARET

          (SMILING)
          You look disgusting.

          RICHARD
          So, is this what you dreamed of when you
          were a little girl?

          MARGARET
          Oh, you bet.
          They make it to the Gazebo, where Ramone awaits.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Ramone.

          RAMONE

          (QUIETLY)
          Mi amo.
          (To the crowd)
          We are gathered here today to celebrate one
          of life's greatest moments.   To give
          recognition to the beauty, honesty, and
          unselfish ways...
          Margaret looks at Richard on the word "unselfish," but he's
          looking straight ahead, determined to get through this.
          RAMONE (cont'd)
          ...of Richard and Margaret's true love...
          "True Love" gets Margaret as well, although no one in the
          audience notices.
          RAMONE (cont'd)
          ...before their family and friends.
          "Family and Friends" gets a reaction out of Gertrude and
          Geoffrey.   She purses her lips.   He holds on to his chair in
          order to keep himself seated.
          RAMONE (cont'd)
          For it is family and friends who taught
          Richard and Margaret to love, so it is only
          right that family and friends all celebrate
          that love here today.

          

          

          

          

          98.
          RAMONE (cont'd)
          And if there is anyone who has cause why
          this couple should not be united in marriage
          and love, they must speak now or forever
          hold their peace.
          Gilbertson stays quiet.   Geoffrey takes a tug from a flask.
          Ramone is about to continue, but something gets his attention.
          He's not sure what to do.
          RAMONE (cont'd)
          Mi amo, do you have a question?
          We reveal that Margaret has her hand halfway up, eyes squinted
          shut like the new kid in class not sure of herself.

          MARGARET
          No.

          RAMONE
          Then why is your hand up?

          MARGARET
          I have something to say.   It's not a
          question though.

          RAMONE
          Can it wait ‘til after?

          MARGARET
          Uh.   Um.   No.

          RICHARD
          What are you doing?
          Margaret gathers herself and turns around to the crowd.     They
          stare back, unsure what to make of this foreigner.

          MARGARET
          Hey there, folks.   Thanks for coming out.
          I've got a little announcement to make about
          the "wedding."

          RICHARD
          Don't do this.
          Margaret smiles and squeezes Richard's hand.

          MARGARET
          Not sure the best way to tell you all this.
          But, uh... I made Richard marry me.   This is
          all a sham.
          Gilbertson victoriously pumps his fist in the air.

          

          

          

          

          99.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I was going to get kicked out of the country
          -- so I told Richard that I would destroy
          his career if he didn't marry me.

          RICHARD
          Now wait...

          MARGARET
          Richard.   Please.   Let me finish.
          (to the Paxton family)
          Richard wanted to stop this when we got off
          the plane, but I wouldn't let him.   Don't
          blame him.   This is all my fault.
          (to Ramone)
          Could you get the band started?   And give
          these people something to drink.
          (to Gilbertson)
          And you.   Meet me at your dingy in ten,
          you're taking me to the airport.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          You got it!
          Margaret nods, hands Richard the bouquet, and confidently walks
          back up the aisle with all eyes on her.   She stops when she gets
          to Gertrude and leans down.

          MARGARET
          Take care of him.

          GERTRUDE
          Promise.
          Margaret walks back into the house.   Alone.

          INT. MARGARET'S ROOM - DAY

          Margaret's wedding dress is laid out on the bed.   Her bag is
          packed.   Richard knocks and comes in.   Margaret is on the phone.

          MARGARET
          (unenthusiastically to phone)
          Uh-huh.   Yeah.   That's great Frank.   Good
          news.   Talk to you on Monday.
          Margaret hangs up.

          RICHARD
          So Frank's back in?
          Margaret nods distractedly.   Getting Frank to do the publicity
          tour doesn't mean much right now.

          MARGARET
          Yup.   He's in.   For now.

          

          

          

          

          100.

          RICHARD
          Maybe this'll be your Mockingbird?

          MARGARET
          Yeah.   Right.
          Margaret starts collecting her bags.

          RICHARD
          Great exit back there.

          MARGARET
          Thanks.   Fun weekend.

          RICHARD
          Same old, same old, around here.

          MARGARET
          Wasn't sure if your mom would want me to
          strip the sheets, so I just left them.

          RICHARD
          I'll let her know.

          (BEAT)
          Why did you tell them all that?

          MARGARET
          It was getting too messy.   We weren't going
          to be able to keep it up.

          RICHARD
          Don't start lying to me now.
          Margaret stops for a moment.

          MARGARET
          I heard you and Gertrude at the school.   I
          think she meant what she said.   She's a
          great girl, you should stay.   It's the right
          thing.   You're perfect for each other.

          RICHARD
          But... but what about you?   What are you
          gonna do?
          Margaret wants to keep the conversation short.

          MARGARET
          Don't worry about me.   I'll survive.

          RICHARD
          So what?   This is it?

          MARGARET
          Yup.   This is it.

          

          

          

          

          101.
          Margaret walks to the door, but stops.   She turns to Richard.
          Despite her best effort to act cold, she can't help herself.
          MARGARET (cont'd)

          (SINCERE)
          Have an amazing life, OK?   You're a good
          person.   You deserve it.
          She puts out her hand, and Richard shakes it.   It's electric, but
          Margaret denies it.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Goodbye, Richard.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Margaret walks down to the dock carrying her suitcase.   She can
          hear that the party is in full swing and smiles.

          EXT. BOAT - DAY

          Gilbertson drives his little speedboat and Margaret holds her
          suitcase tight.   It's choppy, and the outboard motor is loud.
          The two have to yell to talk.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I want you to say the words.

          MARGARET
          I'm not doing great in the dignity
          department, can we not do this right now?

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Say it.
          Margaret closes her eyes.   Hating that it's come to this.

          MARGARET
          I'll publish your book.
          Gilbertson smiles.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Now was that so hard?

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          Richard sits by himself and finishes a beer by the shore.
          Gertrude walks up to him, looking fabulous, with two more beers.

          GERTRUDE
          So here's the deal.   I'm going to have a
          million questions for you tomorrow...
          Gertrude sits down next to Richard.

          

          

          

          

          102.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          ...but for now I thought we'd just sit here
          and drink beer.   OK?
          Richard nods.   Gertrude hands him a beer.

          RICHARD
          Thanks.
          Richard thanks her with a kiss on the cheek.   Then, realizing
          where and who he is with, he puts his beer down.   He turns to
          Gertrude again with a determined look, gives her a kiss on the
          lips, then follows it up with an even bigger kiss.
          When they finish, Gertrude is grinning, eyes closed.
          Richard looks worried.   Something is wrong.

          GERTRUDE
          You have been practicing.

          RICHARD
          Waddya mean?

          GERTRUDE
          Well.   Margaret told me that you, uh, turned
          into bit of a man whore down there.
          Richard looks down.   A bit ashamed.   Gertrude makes light.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          You're gonna have to put that in check if
          you move back.   Cause me and Beth Cable are
          the only two real options up here... and
          I'll kick that bitch's ass.
          Richard gives her a polite smile.   He's not really in the mood to
          joke.   Gertrude notices.
          GERTRUDE (cont'd)
          So no jokes yet?   Too soon?

          RICHARD
          I'm sorry.   I'm just a little... confused.

          GERTRUDE
          That kiss didn't seem "confused."
          Richard takes a beat to collect himself.

          RICHARD
          You're amazing, Gert.   And I've thought
          about being with you for a long time.   A
          long time.   When you said those things at
          the school?   I've dreamed about hearing you
          say those things.

          (MORE)

          

          

          

          

          103.
          RICHARD                                                         (cont'd)
          But as crazy as this seems.   I know now...
          that we're just not meant to be.
          Gertrude pulls back like she's been punched.
          RICHARD (cont'd)
          Thing is... when I said goodbye to Margaret?
          I felt sick.   For the three years we worked
          together, I wanted to be as far away from
          her as possible.   But now that she's gone?
          I'm just really... sad.   I want her with me.
          What is that?
          The question hangs in the air.

          GERTRUDE
          I don't know.

          RICHARD
          I think I have to find out.

          GERTRUDE
          Find out what?

          RICHARD
          If she feels the same way.
          Gertrude begins to tear up, but won't let herself cry.

          GERTRUDE
          Well.   OK then.   What's a girl gonna do?
          (voice cracking)
          I guess you want who you want.
          Gertrude gives a melancholy smile.

          RICHARD
          I'm so sorry.

          (BEAT)
          But, I gotta go.

          GERTRUDE
          Uh-huh.
          Richard gets up.

          RICHARD
          Are you OK?

          GERTRUDE
          I'm fine.   Really.   Go.
          Gertrude nods her approval and Richard runs off to the party.

          

          

          

          

          104.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - PARTY - DAY

          Debbie, Geoffrey and Annie sit at a table next to the bar,
          dumbstruck looks on their faces.   Ramone mixes drinks and flips
          bottles.   Richard runs up to them all, looking excited.

          GEOFFREY
          What are you so God damn happy about?

          RICHARD
          What?   Oh.   Well, I'm, uh, going to see
          Margaret.

          GEOFFREY
          What?!

          DEBBIE
          She violated you.   We should report her.

          RICHARD
          Who you gonna report her to, mom?

          DEBBIE
          Oh my God.   He's got the Stockholm syndrome.

          RICHARD
          I don't have the Stockholm syndrome.   And
          she didn't violate me.

          DEBBIE
          What is going on, Richard?
          Richard slows down and explains to his mom.

          RICHARD
          I'm sorry I lied to you.   That was an awful
          thing to do.   But it took this weekend for
          me to see how funny, and screwed up and
          perfect Margaret is for me.   I think
          she's... the one.

          DEBBIE
          But you already thought she was the one.

          RICHARD
          No, I didn't.   Not until she left.

          DEBBIE
          Really?   Does she think that too?

          RICHARD
          I don't know.   I've got to get to the
          airport to find out.
          Debbie doesn't say anything, then breaks into a smile.

          

          

          

          

          105.

          DEBBIE
          (so romantic)
          He's going to stop her from leaving!   At the
          airport!

          RICHARD
          But I gotta hurry.   Her plane leaves any
          second.   I might not make it.

          DEBBIE
          (so romantic)
          He's not sure he's going to make it!

          GEOFFREY
          Are you buying this horse shit?

          DEBBIE
          Oh, Geoffrey!

          RICHARD
          I don't have time to explain this to you.

          GEOFFREY
          Well then make some god-damn time.   Cause I
          won't let you throw your life away for some
          woman.

          RICHARD
          I don't care.

          GEOFFREY
          Excuse me?

          RICHARD
          I don't care.   I love you and want you to
          understand.   But I'm not asking your
          permission here.   I'm doing this.

          GEOFFREY
          Oh, really?
          From behind them, Annie stands up and shouts.

          ANNIE
          Boys!   Stop it! Stop it!   Stop it!
          But suddenly, a look of panic flashes across Annie's face.   She
          grabs the table to steady herself, but pulls the table cloth,
          causing a loud crash.   Geoffrey and Richard run over.

          GEOFFREY
          Mom, are you OK?

          ANNIE
          I'm having a... I need to go to the
          hospital.   Fast.

          

          

          

          

          106.

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          Margaret and Gilbertson board the jet together.   Margaret finds
          her seat in first class and discovers the Handsome Man from the
          flight before sitting nearby.

          HANDSOME MAN
          (re: Gilbertson)
          Is this another gay assistant?
          Margaret doesn't say anything and takes her seat.

          EXT. PAXTON ESTATE - DAY

          TWO COAST GUARDSMAN carry Annie on a gurney to their waiting
          helicopter.   Geoffrey, Richard, and Debbie follow behind.   They
          all pile into a large chopper and fly off.

          INT. COAST GUARD HELICOPTER - DAY - CONTINUOUS

          An oxygen mask covers Annie's face.   Geoffrey holds her hand.
          Annie motions for Geoffrey to come closer and he leans down.
          Geoffrey sits up and shouts over the helicopter noise.

          GEOFFREY
          Richard!   She has something she wants to say
          to us!
          Richard leans down, and joins Geoffrey and Annie.   Their three
          heads are very close together.   Annie speaks to them both through
          the oxygen mask.

          ANNIE
          Listen to me.   You two need to stop
          fighting.   You'll never see eye to eye, but
          you're family.   If this doesn't stop, one
          day you'll regret it.
          (to Geoffrey)
          Promise me you'll stand by Richard, even if
          you don't agree with him.

          GEOFFREY
          I... I promise.

          ANNIE
          And Richard.   Promise you'll work harder to
          be a part of this family.

          RICHARD
          I promise, Grandma.

          ANNIE
          OK, then.
          Annie closes her eyes.   She looks peaceful.   A moment passes.

          

          

          

          

          107.
          Then suddenly Annie takes off her mask, sits up, and yells to th
          pilot.
          ANNIE (cont'd)
          (as if nothing happened)
          I'm feeling much better.   I don't need to go
          to the hospital.   Take us to the airport,
          please.
          Richard and Geoffrey are confused.   Stunned even.

          GEOFFREY
          What... what is going on?
          (so the Coast Guard can't hear)
          Did you fake a heart attack?

          ANNIE
          We didn't have time for your squabbling, and
          I knew a helicopter would be the quickest
          way to the airport.   It seemed like the best
          way.

          RICHARD
          The best way?

          ANNIE
          And remember, you two promised me that
          you're going get along.   I wasn't kidding
          about that.

          COAST GUARD PILOT
          Ma'am, I'm not authorized to take you to the
          airport...

          ANNIE
          (to pilot)
          Larry Ferris!   Don't make me call your
          mother!

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          Gilbertson talks non-stop.   Margaret is in hell.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          ...I want my book launch to be special.   I'm
          thinking we throw a soiree at the Nevsky
          Monastery.   In St. Petersberg?
          Margaret stares at him blankly.
          MR. GILBERTSON (cont'd)
          (as if she should know)
          Where Dostoyevsky is buried?   Hello?   I
          thought you were a professional...
          Margaret closes her eyes to numb the pain.

          

          

          

          

          108.

          EXT. SITKA AIRPORT - DAY

          The helicopter lands, and Richard jumps out.   His family follows
          as they run to the control tower.

          INT. AIRPORT TOWER - DAY

          CHUCK has an easy job.   Jets fly into Sitka, but there are only
          about six flights a day.   He is half awake as he radios
          Margaret's flight.   Reggae music plays in the background.

          CHUCK
          Flight 1601, you're clear for takeoff.

          PILOT (O.S.)
          Roger that, Chuck.
          The PHONE RINGS in the tower.   Chuck picks up.   Intercut as
          necessary, with Richard running on a cell phone.

          CHUCK
          Tower.   Talk to me.

          RICHARD
          Hey Chuck, it's Richard.

          CHUCK
          Hey man.   Heard about your lady bailing.
          How often does this happen to you?

          RICHARD
          Need you to do me a solid, brother.   I gotta
          see my girl and she's on that flight.   Could
          you stop it for me?

          CHUCK
          No can do brohan.   Need a good reason for
          the FAA holes.   Lose my jobby job if I
          delivered that favor.

          RICHARD
          Oh, c'mon Chuck!

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          The plane rattles as it gains speed for takeoff.   Margaret
          studies the safety pamphlet, trying to ignore Gilbertson.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          ...so next topic.   Celebrities.   Let's
          invite the Bill Clinton's and leave out the
          Paris Hilton's, OK?
          Gilbertson smiles as he looks out the window and sees the plane
          leave Sitka.

          

          

          

          

          109.

          EXT. TOWER - DAY

          Richard and his family stand outside the tower and watch
          Margaret's plane take off.

          RICHARD
          Well.   That's it.   Once she gets back to New
          York, it'll be like this never happened.
          Richard looks defeated.   Geoffrey sees how sad his son is, and
          takes a deep breath.

          GEOFFREY
          So, you know I think you shouldn't be with
          Margaret, right?

          RICHARD
          You've made that crystal clear.

          GEOFFREY
          Good.
          (looks at Annie)
          Well, consider this me keeping my promise.
          Geoffrey pulls out his cell phone and hits a button.   He waits
          for an answer.
          GEOFFREY (cont'd)
          (to phone)
          Hey!   Maguire!   Yeah, yeah, yeah, her
          running out was something.   But that's what
          I'm calling about.   I've got a favor to ask
          you, ‘bout one of your planes...

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          Gilbertson continues to talk.   Margaret is in a stupor.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          ...you know those two hundred pages I took
          out?   I'm going to put them back...
          A flight attendant comes to Margaret and interrupts.

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT
          Ms. Mills?   Would you come with me?
          Margaret is excited to get away from Gilbertson.

          MARGARET
          Yes, of course.
          She unbuckles her seat belt, about to get out of her seat.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          What's this about?

          

          

          

          

          110.

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT
          (never done this before)
          There's someone on the radio for you.
          The flight attendant points to the Flight Attendant CB located at
          the front of the plane, outside the cockpit.
          FLIGHT ATTENDANT (cont'd)
          Uh, a Richard Paxton?
          Margaret shakes her head and re-buckles her seat belt.

          MARGARET
          Tell him I'm not here.

          CUT TO:

          INT. TOWER - DAY

          Richard and his family are huddled around the radio in the tower.
          Chuck sits nearby.

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT (O.S.)
          (from radio)
          I'm sorry.   She won't come talk to you.

          RICHARD
          Shit!   She's never going to pick up...

          CHUCK
          (to Richard)
          Know what, home slice?   Cut this chica
          loose.   You remember Beth Cable?   She'd
          totally be into you...
          Suddenly, Richard has an idea.   He picks up the hand mic.

          RICHARD
          Excuse me Miss Flight Attendant, could you
          ask the captain to do me one more favor...

          CUT TO:

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          DING!   The captain comes on over the loudspeaker.

          CAPTAIN
          (over plane loudspeaker)
          Welcome to flight 1601 to Seattle, this is
          your captain.   We've reached our cruising
          altitude of 30,000 feet.   Flight time'll   be
          three hours and thirty minutes.   And
          Margaret?   Richard has something he'd like
          to say to you.

          

          

          

          

          111.

          RICHARD (O.S.)
          (over loudspeaker)
          Uh, hey Margaret.   And cause I'm on the
          loudspeaker, hey everyone on the plane.
          The other passengers look around to try and figure out who's
          Margaret.   Meanwhile, Margaret looks down and acts like she
          doesn't know either.
          RICHARD (O.S.) (cont'd)
          (over loudspeaker)
          This certainly isn't how I wanted to do
          this.   I mean, I'm not really into the whole
          baring your soul in front of strangers
          thing, but I figure it's now or never.   So
          here goes.

          CUT TO:

          INT. TOWER - DAY

          Richard puts down the hand mic for a second to gain composure.
          His family encourages him on.

          CHUCK
          You're doing great, man.
          Richard pushes the button down on the hand mike.

          RICHARD
          I know you're used to being on your own.
          And that you're comfortable with your life
          the way it is.   And that in a million years
          you wouldn't have thought that we should be
          together.   I know, because I felt the exact
          same way.

          CUT TO:

          INT. PLANE - DAY

          Every passenger is enraptured by the words coming out of the
          loudspeaker.   The flight attendants, the Handsome Man, everyone.

          RICHARD (O.S.)
          (over loudspeaker)
          And you know what else I know?   I know that
          I'm tired of being alone.   And I think
          you're tired of being alone too.   So come
          on.   Talk to me.   Please.
          The Handsome Man turns to Margaret.

          HANDSOME MAN
          (with genuine concern)
          Do you really feel like you're alone?

          

          

          

          

          112.

          MARGARET
          Oh, good lord.

          CUT TO:

          INT. TOWER - DAY

          Richard and his family stare at the radio, waiting to see if
          there is going to be an answer.   Chuck crosses his fingers.

          MARGARET (O.S.)
          (from radio)
          What the hell are you doing?
          Everyone in the tower smiles.   They're making progress.

          RICHARD
          We need to talk.
          (Intercut as necessary.   Margaret stands at the front of the
          plane with the passengers watching.)

          MARGARET
          About what?

          RICHARD
          Have you ever thought there might be a
          reason we've been together for the last
          three years?

          MARGARET
          As boss and assistant.

          RICHARD
          Things change, Margaret.

          MARGARET

          (INCREDULOUS)
          Things change?

          RICHARD
          Yeah, things change.

          MARGARET
          Is that the best you got?
          Geoffrey hits Richard, as if to say "see, that's what I said."
          Richard composes himself.

          RICHARD
          Now, tell me the truth.   When you left, were
          you relieved or sad that we didn't have an
          excuse to be together anymore?
          Geoffrey gives Richard the thumbs up.   That was a good one.

          

          

          

          

          113.

          MARGARET
          What's your point?

          RICHARD
          Because I am sick that you left.   And if you
          feel sick too, then why shouldn't we just be
          together?
          Margaret goes to answer, but stops.   Richard is right.   She wants
          to go back.   Even the passengers on the plane can see it.
          Gilbertson panics.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Are you thinking about going back to him?
          Margaret doesn't answer.
          MR. GILBERTSON (cont'd)
          We have a deal!   You can't back out now!
          The flight attendant steps in, annoyed that Gilbertson is trying
          to break up Richard and Margaret.

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT
          Sir, you need to sit down.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          I will do no such thing.

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT
          Sir, I'm ordering you to return to your
          seat.
          Other passengers yell "sit down asshole" at Gilbertson.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Who said that?

          FLIGHT ATTENDANT
          Sir, this is your third and final warning!

          MR. GILBERTSON
          Listen sweetheart...
          (he pokes the flight attendant)
          I'm a federal officer, so why don't you get
          me another cocktail and mind your own...
          BUZZ! ZAP!                                                            400,000 Volts of electricity surge through
          Gilbertson.   He twitches violently and crashes to the floor.
          Behind him, The Handsome Man holds a stun gun and a badge.

          HANDSOME MAN
          Well, I'm a federal Air Marshall.   And
          you're under arrest for disobeying a crew
          member, assault, and possible intoxication.

          

          

          

          

          114.
          The Handsome Man pulls out flex cuffs, zips them around
          Gilbertson's wrists, and throws him in the bathroom.   He then
          takes the CB from Margaret and speaks to the passengers.
          HANDSOME MAN (cont'd)
          Sorry everybody, but protocol says we need
          to get this unruly passenger off the plane
          ASAP.   Sitka's the closest airport, so if
          it's OK with you, I'm gonna have the captain
          turn this bird around.
          There are wild cheers from the passengers.   Margaret blushes.
          HANDSOME MAN (cont'd)
          (winks at Margaret)
          Told you I was a romantic.

          EXT. SITKA AIRPORT RUNWAY - DAY

          Flight 1601 glides to a safe landing.   Richard and his family
          wait on the tarmac, and the plane taxis to them.   A truck drives
          stairs to the front door of the plane and the door opens.
          Margaret steps out.   Richard walks up the steps.

          MARGARET
          This wasn't supposed to happen.
          Richard looks Margaret in the eye.

          RICHARD
          But it did.
          Margaret looks down.   A little embarrassed.

          MARGARET
          I'm not the kind of girl who gets saved.
          Richard smiles, and without warning, Margaret grabs him, and
          plants a long, deep, and wet kiss on him.
          The long kiss is interrupted by the Handsome Man and Gilbertson.

          HANDSOME MAN
          Uh, sorry, but excuse us.
          The Handsome Man leads a handcuffed and still dazed Gilbertson
          down the steps.

          MARGARET
          (to Gilbertson)
          Hey!   Do you think getting arrested might
          affect you at work?
          Gilbertson has no retort.

          

          

          

          

          115.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          Oh, and I'm not going to be able to publish
          your book after all.

          MR. GILBERTSON
          So you are getting married this weekend?

          MARGARET

          (SMILING)
          Absolutely not.   But who knows?
          (looking at Richard)
          We might by the time you get out of jail.
          Gilbertson makes a "go to hell" face and shuffles off.
          Margaret turns back to Richard.   All smiles.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          I've got some explaining to do.
          Margaret and Richard walk down the steps and stand in front of
          Richard's family.
          MARGARET (cont'd)
          (to Debbie)
          Hi.   I'm Margaret.   I've known your son for
          years, but we've just recently begun to see
          each other romantically.
          (to Geoffrey)
          I want to get to know you all, and spend
          some real time up here in Alaska.
          (to Annie)
          I'm not sure when you are going to see him
          get married, but I promise as long as I'm
          with him, he'll be happy.
          Passengers cram up to the plane windows to see what will happen.

          GRANDMA ANNIE
          That's all we ever wanted.
          Grandma Annie gives Margaret and Richard a big hug.   Debbie joins
          in.   Then Geoffrey.   Passengers cheer.

          CUT TO:

          EXT. PAXTON ISLAND - DANCEFLOOR - DAY

          The party is in full swing.
          Balzac chases his balls.
          Ramone slides onstage and SINGS with the band.   He has a
          beautiful voice.
          Debbie and Geoffrey cut a rug.   They've done this before.

          

          

          

          

          116.
          Gertrude and Annie chat and laugh at a nearby table.   The
          Handsome Man brings Gertrude a drink.   Grandma Annie winks and
          leaves these two alone.
          Margaret and Richard dance.   All smiles, even though they aren't
          very good.
          And as everyone dances, we track up the tallest tree on the
          island, to an eagle's nest at the very top.   Inside the nest,
          three eaglets chirp along to the music, snuggled up to Margaret's
          phone.

          

          

          

          THE END

          
 

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