SCENE ONE: IT IS STILL CHRISTMAS, JENNIFER HAS GOT BACK TO THE PENTHOUSE FROM CHRISTMAS AT HER GRANDPARENTS; JACK AND MICKEY ARRIVE THERE AT THE SAME TIME. JACK IS STILL HOLDING HIS ICE PACK. JENNIFER GETS HER KEY OUT.
JACK: Ah, could you just hold it there for just a minute?
JENNIFER: Did you say something?
JACK BACKS UP WITH HER AGGRESSION.
JACK: No, no, not a thing.
JACK: We were supposed to be talking. I mean that was the point of this, right? To, um, share the conversations that we've missed out on in the past few weeks.
JENNIFER: What's your point Jack?
JACK: The point is, we were supposed to be calming down during our separate rides home, thank you very much Mickey, but it's a little obvious that we need someone to help us navigate these difficult waters. A neutral observer if you will.
JENNIFER: How about a referee, Jack?
JACK: I don't think that will be necessary.
SHE GLARES AT HIM AGAIN.
JACK: Then again, maybe it will. (To Mickey) You'll stay Mickey?
MICKEY: I'm afraid I can't Jack, thank you. They're waiting for me at the house. (To Jennifer) So sweetheart, if there's anything that you need?
JENNIFER: No, thank you.
MICKEY: Okay, well goodnight and ah, good luck.
MICKEY GOES TO THE ELEVATOR.
JACK: Thanks for nothing. (Beat) Alone at last!
SHE TURNS AT HIM IN ANGER.
JACK: It was a joke, just a little joke.
JENNIFER: Oh, well we better get inside. We wouldn't want the neighbors to hear us laughing now, would we?
SHE OPENS THE DOOR AND THEY BOTH WALK INSIDE. HAWK IS SITTING ON THE SOFA AND HE GETS A SHOCK TO SEE JACK STANDING THERE WITH JENNIFER. JACK ALSO GETS A SHOCK.
SCENE TWO: JACK AND JENNIFER ENTER THE PEHTNOUSE TO FIND HAWK THERE. THEY ARE ALL SHOCKED. HAWK IS NOT AT ALL HAPPY SEEING JACK WITH JENNIFER.
HAWK IMMEDIATELY JUMPS UP AND TRIES TO COVER HIMSELF.
HAWK: Hey Jack, I thought you were never coming home man.
JACK STARES AT HIM IN ANGER WHILE JENNIFER IS CONFUSED.
HAWK: Well ain't you a sight for sore eyes? Speaking of sore eyes....
JACK WALKS SLOWLY OVER TO HAWK.
JACK: Forget about that! What are you doing here?
HAWK: Well I've been looking for you.
JACK: You said you were going to leave. You were going on the run. You said you were going to disappear.
JENNIFER: What is he talking about? Why would you say something like that Hawk?
JACK: Let's find out. Where have you been for the last six weeks?
JACK IS BARELY CONTROLLING HIS ANGER.
HAWK: I've been right here in Salem.
JACK: Right ! Right here in Salem, that's good. I don't believe this. I don't believe after the things you told me, after the things that you said, that you could turn around and....
HAWK: Hey now, hold on a minute here Jack, alright. You haven't heard my side of the story yet, alright.
HAWK: The stock deal was a con.
JACK: Was a con?
HAWK: That's right, it was a frame up right fresh from the start. The computers, the office, even the murder.
JENNIFER: Murder? What are you talking about murder?
JACK: There was a murder Jennifer. I saw a man killed. An FBI agent and there was blood and I saw....
HAWK: Fake blood, Jack.
JACK: Fake blood.
HAWK: Fake blood, fake bullets. I mean Wedder and that guy are alive and well and they're living it up on the money they cheated you and I out of.
JACK HAS NOT TAKEN HIS EYES OFF HAWK.
JACK: Yeah? When did you hear that bit of news?
HAWK: A while back.
JACK: A while back.
HAWK: Hey listen I didn't know where you were man. I spent the last six weeks trying to find you.
EVEN JENNIFER FINDS HAWK'S STORY HARD TO BELIEVE.
JENNIFER: Is that so?
HAWK: Yes it is.
JENNIFER: And all this time you never once thought it might be appropriate to tell me what you knew about my husband Hawk?
HAWK: Jennifer I was trying to....
JENNIFER: I spent the last two months wondering if my husband was dead. I thought that he walked out on our marriage. I thought that he walked out on me.
JACK: You know I would never do that Jennifer. We have to understand....
SHE IS STILL VERY MAD AT JACK.
JENNIFER: Let's just talk about this later.
JACK: Look you have to understand....JENNIFER: No, I said later.
JACK IS MAD AND TURNS AWAY FROM HER IN ANGER AND FRUSTRATION. SHE TURNS BACK TO HAWK.
JENNIFER: You knew what I was going through. You were the only person for weeks that I could talk to about it and now you're telling me that you knew everything that was happening and you didn't say one single solitary word to me?
HAWK: Because I was trying to protect you.
JENNIFER: You're going to have to explain that.
HAWK: Alright, listen I thought Jack was part of this big stock scam.
JACK: You what?
HAWK: That's right, once I found out what Wedder was doing, I wanted out. But no, no, you kept pushing Jack. You and your big mouth talked me into a whole heap of trouble and the way I see it, I got conned twice, once by Wedder and once by you.
JACK: I spent the last forty-five days on the run from the Feds. I've been sleeping in alleys, in barns, in cardboard boxes, in a meat locker! I traded my suit, tattered though it was, for.... for several cans of tuna fish. Not Albuquore, not fancy white, just tuna fish. And for that alone I could string you up, I could.
HAWK: Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey. Now you just take it easy here fella.
JACK: fella? What are you calling fella here? Who's a fella?
JACK IS ABOUT TO PUNCH HAWK.
JENNIFER: Please just stop.
JACK: Listen this is just between he and myself.
JENNIFER: NO, YOU STOP THIS, right or I am going to walk this door and you will never see me again.
JACK BLAMES HAWK FOR ALL OF THIS AND HIS LOOK SAYS SO.
JACK: Alright. JENNIFER: (To Hawk) Alright, I want to know what this so called stock thing was all about. Alright, I want an explanation and I want it now!
SCENE THREE: THEY CALM DOWN JUST A BIT AND BEGIN TO TELL THE TALE TO JENNIFER. JACK PACES AS HE TALKS AND HAWK SITS NEXT TO JENNIFER ON THE SOFA.
JACK: And that is when the FBI showed up.
HAWK: Phoneys, of course.
JACK: At that time they were not phoney. I took off, I got out of there. I didn't know what else to do.
HAWK: Jack, neither did I.
JACK: I wanted to call you Jennifer, in fact I tried. However Howie convinced me otherwise saying that would get you all involved with the government and that would be bad.
HAWK THINKS HE CAN STILL MANIUPATE JENNFER.
HAWK: Oh, I was thinking of you.
JACK: You were getting me mixed up. You were trying to set me up with Paul Wedder. That's exactly what you were trying to do.
HAWK: Oh listen, if I wanted to do that, okay, I'd be long gone from here and I certainly wouldn't have any reason to stay.
JACK: I can think of a reason.
HAWK: Let me tell you something Jack. I've been trying to find you, alright. I just wanted to get a hold of you and tell you that it was okay to come home.
JACK: That's not the reason I was thinking of.
HAWK: Oh no?
JACK: I'm thinking that you're after my wife!
HAWK: What?JACK: You show up with a bad back and a cornpone accent and an agenda! Take my wife and my money.
HAWK: Jack you know I think that the time you spent in the meat locker must have done something to your brain.
JENNIFER: Wait a minute, we need to talk please. Hawk, I would like you to leave.
HAWK: Are you sure?
JENNIFER: Yes, I'm very sure. Let's go.
SHE DRAGS HIM TO THE DOOR. HAWK IS SURPRISED THAT JENNIFER IS NOT FALLING FOR HIS LINES.
HAWK: Alright, alright, okay. Jack.... (To Jennifer) You just call me if you need me.
JACK: She won't be needing you, thank you.
HAWK LEAVES AND JENNIFER SHUTS THE DOOR.
JACK: Well what shall we talk about now?
JENNIFER WALKS TO THE DINING ROOM.
JACK: Just trying to lighten up the situation. (Beat) Jennifer?.... Jennifer, what are you doing? Jennifer?
HE FOLLOWS HER INTO THE DININGROOM.
SCENE FOUR: IN THE DININGROOM, JENNIFER IS CAREFULLY PLACING DINNER PLATES ON THE TABLE.
JACK: Jennifer.... you're setting the table. (Beat) Well that's very nice. Ah, I didn't tell you before but I'm actually starving. It's kind of difficult to argue on a full stomach.
SHE COMPLETELY IGNORES HIM AND KEEPS STACKING PLATES.
JACK: Look, Jennifer, the truth is you're being very good about this.
SHE PICKS UP A PLATE AND THROWS IT STRAIGHT AT HIM. HE DUCKS BUT IT BREAKS ON HIS HIP.JACK: OUCH! What are you doing?
JENNIFER: You lied to me. You took our money and you left me. You make me sick!
SHE HURLS ANOTHER PLATE AT HIM BUT THIS TIME IT MISSES.
JACK: Argh.... ah.... that.... your grandmother gave you those plates.
JENNIFER: I know exactly what these plates are.
JACK: Yeah but do you know what those would be worth on today's market?
JENNIFER: I DON'T GIVE A DAMN HOW MUCH. I DON'T CARE ABOUT MONEY. I never did Jack. I'm not like you. You mercenary, you low down deserter.
SHE THROWS ANOTHER PLATE.
JACK: NOOOO! Listen I did not desert you. You wouldn't believe the things that Howie told me.
JENNIFER: You're the one who didn't call. You're the one who didn't write. You're the one who left. Don't try to blame this on anybody else, alright. Don't try to tell me this is about the FBI or the SEC because I know what this was about.
JACK: What was this about?
JENNIFER: You married me Jack. Nobody twisted your arm, nobody forced you into it, alright. If you wanted out of this marriage so badly, all you had to do was say so.
SHE PICKS UP THE LAST FEW PLATES AND DROPS THEM ON THE FLOOR.
JACK: Ah, DON'T.
SHE WALKS STRAIGHT TO THE LIVING ROOM. JACK GETS A BROOM AND DUSTPAN AND TRIES TO CLEAN UP THE MESS.
JACK: I just about got everything cleaned up.
JENNIFER IGNORES HIM.
JENNIFER: I don't want to talk anymore Jack.
JACK: There are some things that we need to say to each another Jennifer.
JENNIFER: I don't think we need to say them right now.JACK: Alright, we'll wait. But in meantime, there are some things that you need to hear, some thingĄs that I need to say.
SCENE FIVE: JENNIFER IS SITTING ON THE ARM OF THE SOFA AND HE SITS DOWN TO TALK. HE SPEAKS SLOWLY AND DELIBERATELY.
JACK: I never wanted to be out of this marriage. That's not what I want.
SHE SAYS NOTHING.
JACK: Did you hear me?
JENNIFER: Yes, I heard you.
JACK: Do you believe me?
SHE TURNS TO HIM.
JENNIFER: I don't know Jack.
HE STANDS UP AND TAKES HER HAND.
JACK: Now you listen to me. I am telling you the truth, alright.
SHE PULLS HER HAND AWAY.
JACK: I'm telling you the truth. I wanted to get in touch with you as soon as everything started happening in New York but Howie started telling me things you wouldn't be....
JENNIFER: I can't believe that you are still trying to blame this on him, Jack.
JACK: I have to blame it on him. It's his fault.
JENNIFER: Alright, he held a gun to your head and he forced you into hiding right.
JACK: No, not necessarily. Literally, no.
JENNIFER: You are an adult now. You make choices and you have to take responsibility for them, alright. You walked out on me Jack. Just admit it.
JACK: I didn't walk out on you. I just.... I just.... I temporarily disappeared, that's all.
JENNIFER: It's the same thing Jack!
JACK: Listen, I tried to get a hold of you. I left you that note.
SHE TURNS TO HIM IN SURPRISE.
JENNIFER: What note?
JACK: I left you a note. I came.... I showed up here a couple of weeks back. I let myself in and I left you a note. I left it right.... I left it right there on that desk.... right there.
JENNIFER HAS TEARS IN HER EYES.
JENNIFER: I never got a note, Jack.
JENNIFER: And you know what I really don't want to hear anymore excuses because there is no excuse. And I can't think of one single reason why I shouldn't kick you out of here and let you spend the night in the street.
JACK IS FEELING REALLY TERRIBLE BECAUSE SHE IS SO HURT.
JENNIFER: But I know that you wouldn't go quietly and I don't really feel like fighting with you anymore.... not tonight.
JACK: Jennifer, I really think that we should talk.
JENNIFER: You can sleep in the guest room Jack and we'll talk again tomorrow.
JACK: We'll talk about what?
JENNIFER: The future! (Beat) If we have a future. I don't know about you but right now I'd say it's pretty doubtful.
SHE WALKS INTO THE BEDROOM AND HE SINKS TO THE SOFA.
SCENE SIX: A BIT LATER SHE IS SITTING AT THE DESK WITH A HEADACHE AS HE COMES OUT OF THE BATHROOM.
JACK: I take my shower and my closets are empty. What the hell happened to all of my clothes?
JENNIFER: I gave them away.
JACK: You did what?
JACK COMES OUT DRESSED IN HER WHITE ROBE WITH OSTRICH FEATHER TRIM.
JENNIFER: The Salvation Army was having a clothing drive so I decided to do my part Jack.
JACK: What, you could have.... you could have.... you could have dressed the entire Army for the cost of one of those suits alone. I had a single breasted, a double breasted....
JENNIFER: They were taking up valuable space in my....
SHE TURNS AND SEES HIM IN HER ROBE.SHE CANNOT HELP BUT SMILE AND SHE COVERS HER MOUTH WITH HER HAND TO TRY AND STOP LAUGHING.
JENNIFER: They were taking up valuable space in my closet. (Beat) And they're not gone. They're downstairs in the storage area. They haven't picked them up yet.
THE WHOLE TIME SHE IS TRYING NOT TO SMILE.
JACK: This makes you smile, huh?
JENNIFER: Excuse me?
JACK: I said you smiled and then you laughed.
JENNIFER: No I didn't.
JACK: It just tells me one thing. Very soon you're going to calm down, you're going to start listening to me and we're going to be able to get things back to normal.
JENNIFER: You think that that's all it takes right. Put on a dress or crack a joke.
JACK: No, no, no.
JENNIFER: Anything to make silly little Jennifer laugh. But don't go to too much trouble because she's too easy for that.
JACK: No, no, that is not what I'm thinking.
JENNIFER: That is not.... yes it is. You don't realize it but it is what you think. But I don't blame you Jack. I blame myself. I have forgiven you so many times, what else are you supposed to think. But things are different now, I'm different.
JACK: If that's the case, why did you smile?
JENNIFER: I didn't smile. I was laughing because you just look completely ridiculous.
JACK: Huh, huh. If things have changed and you've changed why didn't you get rid of my suits?
JENNIFER: Because they couldn't send the truck to pick up your clothes until after New Years Jack.
JACK: Why didn't you drive them down yourself?
JENNIFER: Because I have been very busy. I had to work two jobs in case you forgot.
JACK: Because you care about me the same way that I care about you. You care about me, that's why you're angry. Just admit it.
JENNIFER: Why don't you take a look in the mirror and you'll see the same thing that I see. (Beat) A total complete jerk!
JACK: I know this isn't exactly my color....
JENNIFER: I'm not talking about the robe Jack. You are a jerk because you cannot take responsibility for your actions. You screw up your life, you screw up my life and god knows who else's life and you can't even own up to it.
JACK: Well there's obviously a lot of things that we need to talk about still. But until we do that, I think it would be best if I slipped into something a little less comfortable.
JENNIFER: I don't think that's a very good idea. I think I've heard enough for tonight. The only thing I haven't heard is I'm sorry.JACK: I am sorry.JENNIFER: Well I wish I could believe you but you know that would require a leap of faith on my part. And right now I'm not capable of making one.
JACK: If you would listen to me.... if you would really listen for just a minute.
JENNIFER: Jack, I have forgiven so much with you. There are times when I loved you, there are times when I hated you and there are times when I would have been very happy to wring your neck. But there has never been a time when I didn't trust you.... until now. Goodnight.
SHE WALKS AWAY CRYING. JACK IS VERY SORRY FOR THE HURT HE IS CAUSED. SHE GOES INTO THE BEDROOM AND SHUTS THE DOOR, CRYING HER EYES OUT. HE FOLLOWS HER AND STOPS OUTSIDE THE DOOR, LISTENING TO HER CRY.
JACK: Jennifer are you alright?
JENNIFER: (Speaking in tears) I'm fine.
JACK: You sure?
JENNIFER: Yeah I'm sure, why wouldn't I be sure?
JACK: Okay.... well goodnight.
HE HEARS HER SOBBING AND KNOWS HE CANNOT COMFORT HER YET. HE REACHES UP AND TOUCHES HIS SORE EYE WHERE SHE PUNCHED HIM.
JACK: Merry Christmas.... Merry Christmas.
SHE THROWS HERSELF ON THE BED IN TEARS.