SCENE ONE: THE NEXT DAY AND JACK HAS A LIE DETECTOR SET UP IN THE APARTMENT. THERE IS A KNOCK AT THE DOOR.
JACK: Ah, coming, coming. DesirĜe. Well this is perfect. You must have Federal Expressed yourself over here.
DESIRÉE: Well let's not use that word federal okay.
DESIRÉE: But while we're on the subject. I am still getting immunity for helping you out, right?
JACK: Not to worry, you most certainly are.
DESIRÉE: Ah, then I guess we can get down to business huh. Namely nailing Hawk.
JACK: Yes, everything's all set.
DESIRÉE: So where's Jennifer?
JACK: Well Jennifer is well.... she'll be along shortly. But not to worry.
JACK IS TRYING TO STAND IN FRONT OF DESIRÉE SO SHE WILL NOT SEE THE LIE DETECTOR.
JACK: We can still get the proverbial ball rolling.
DESIRÉE: Huh, huh. Why are you walking like that?
JACK: Like what?
DESIRÉE: Look I thought we were here to work out a game plan now.
JACK: We are but first things first. I have a little.... little surprise for you.
DESIRÉE: Ah, what?
JACK: Step right this way. Violù!
DESIRÉE: What is this?
JACK: Let me take your wrap and your purse and I'll tell you what this is.
DESIRÉE: It looks like one of those earthquake doohickies, you know.
JACK: Ah, it's.... something like that. Sit, please. SIT.
DESIRÉE: Oh wait a minute. This is a lie detector.
JACK: No, no, no. I prefer to think of it as an honesty check. (Beat) SIT, please.
SHE SITS ON THE COUCH AND JACK HOOKS UP THE LIE DETECTOR.
JACK: Arm please.
DESIRÉE: No. JACK: Please .
JACK GRABS HER ARM.
JACK: Just think of this as your.... ah.... second bracelet. It's a funny thing you know, in the heat of battle sometimes we forget which side we're fighting on. So I just figured you're so important to us, it's important to find out you're on the right side before I tell you anything more. (Beat) Now, give me your finger.
DESIRÉE: This one?
JACK LOOKS DOWN AT THE FINGER SHE HAS STUCK UP AT HIM; THOUGH IT CANNOT BE SEEN IT IS OBVIOUS THAT SHE IS FLIPPING HIM OFF.
JACK GETS DOWN TO QUESTIONING DESIRÉE.
JACK: Alright, Miss McCall, how old are you?
THE NEEDLES JUMP ALL OVER THE PLACE.
JACK: Oh Jumpin' Jehosifat, can we try that again please?
THE NEEDLES JUMP AGAIN.
JACK: Hmmm, getting closer I can feel it but....
DESIRÉE: Alright, alright, I'm thirty-two.
THE NEEDLES STAY STEADY.
JACK: Bingo, good. Now we can move onto something else. (Beat) Miss McCall, do you actually have psychic abilities?
THE NEEDLES SWING IN ALL DIRECTIONS.
JACK: DesirĜe, if this were one of those earthquake doohickies we'd be getting an 8.5 on the Richter at this moment.
JACK: Yes, puhleeze. Let's be serious and get down to business. (Beat) Miss McCall, do you actually plan to help Jack and Jennifer Deveraux nail Hawk?
THE NEEDLES ARE STEADY.
JACK: Alright, let me rephrase the question. Is there any chance that you will double cross Jack and Jennifer Deveraux and turn their plan over to Hawk?
DESIRÉE: No way daddy.
JACK: Use my name only please.
DESIRÉE: No, I will not double cross you Mr. Jack Deveraux.
JACK: Well, we all seem to be in harmony with the universe.
DESIRÉE: Well then, so you're satisfied, huh?
JACK: For the moment, yes. For the moment.
DESIRÉE: So come on Jack, what is your game plan?
JACK: Well.... not that you know this unless you really were psychic, but my class at Fairfield Academy voted me most likely to win an Oscar.
DESIRÉE STARTS TO LAUGH.
DESIRÉE: Oh, really?
JACK: Yes, really. I know that Fairfield sounds a little low ranking but then again one can't be too picky when one's been expelled from all the best. Of course in time Fairfield followed suit and did the same.
DESIRÉE: And what for?
JACK: I blew up the science teacher.
DESIRÉE: What?JACK: Oh not to worry, I was just playing around with a contraption and something went erry. But not to worry, I've learnt to be a lot more careful with my contraptions since then. (Beat) But I digress.
JACK (CONT.): The point is Fairfield Academy. It was at Fairfield Academy that I first learned about the stage, that I first learned about the roar of the grease paint and the smell of the crowd, that I first learned what your average actor makes during a year. So I learned to keep my acting to the real stage, to life, never missing the opportunity to incorporate the latest plays, novels or films into my personal narratives if you know what I mean. And this happens to be the perfect opportunity.
DESIRÉE: To do what?
JACK: To do the movie (Another one of Jack/Matthew's pop cultural references) The Grifters , with Baby Howie. To play Angelica Houston to his John Cusak. Or Annette Benning sans Warren Beatty and baby of course.
DESIRÉE: Huh, huh. It must be a relief to him.
JACK: To who?
DESIRÉE: Nobody.... what part do I play in this thing?
JACK: Oh you have a very good part. You do everything I tell you. What do you think of that?
DESIRÉE: What, in your plan.... I think it's lovely. It sounds great.
THE NEEDLES START TO JUMP.
JACK: I think you're lying.
DESIRÉE: You're right.
JACK: So you hate it?
DESIRÉE: Huh, huh.
HE LOOKS ACROSS TO SEE WHAT THE NEEDLES DO AND THEY ARE STEADY.
JACK: Alright, now we know where we stand. Tell me, what's wrong with my plan?
DESIRÉE: Everything. (Beat) Jack, you just can't take some idea from leftfield and expect it to work, no. A real con takes creativity.
JACK: So you're saying that my plan is not creative?
DESIRÉE: Well it's a creative fantasy.
DESIRÉE: No what we need here is a creative reality, you know. You need timing and precision and....
JACK: Okay, why don't you show me some of your creative conmandship.
DESIRÉE: Okay, okay, ah.... oh let's do that crystal ball thing, yeah. You know when Hawk sees himself at Universal Studios....
JACK: Not! Heheheheh, not even an option. He'll know it's a trick because he knows that you're a phony. You've already blown your cover.
DESIRÉE: Oh yeah, oh yeah. Okay, ah.... oh, oh, we should get one of your friends to dress up like a cop and then he can arrest him.
JACK: Heheheheh I mean more disappointed than before. Just because you were foolish to fall for that, doesn't mean Baby Howie will.
DESIRÉE: Okay, yeah right, right. You see, now what we have to do is start thinking like Hawk if we're going to beat him at his own game.
JACK: Alright, tell me how to think like Hawk.
DESIRÉE: Okay, well he's real sneaky.
JACK: Huh, huh.
DESIRÉE: He likes to play one person against the other.
JACK: Huh, huh.
DESIRÉE: You know, take advantage of their weaknesses.
JACK: Huh, huh.
DESIRÉE: Yeah, like he did when he moved in with you and Jennifer. Yeah. You know he used to read her diaries so he could get the goods to use against you.
JACK IS ANGRY AND SURPRISED.
JACK: I knew it, I knew it.
DESIRÉE: Yeah? How did you know that?
JACK: I.... well it's really quite elementary. Just.... think like a weasel. I mean what would a weasel do. A weasel would open someone else's diary, look through the pages and read it, like a weasel.
JACK IS MENTALLY SEETHING THINKING OF HAWK READING JENNIFER'S DIARIES.
DESIRÉE: Let's forget about that right now, really. And let's just deal with the subject at hand, you know. How to con a con man?
JACK GETS A BIG IDEA.
JACK: WAIT! (Beat) Don't think, don't move, don't even talk.
JACK: I'm having a vision. I'm envisioning the way to finally get Baby Howie.
SCENE TWO: A SHORT TIME LATER JENNIFER RETURNS AFTER SEEING CARLY ABOUT BO'S DISAPPEARANCE.
JENNIFER: I mean I think it's wonderful that Carly has Sean Douglas to take care of because she has to be strong for him. And I think that's what's holding her together.
JACK: Sure she's not optimistic at all?
JENNIFER: Well Jack she's trying to be but the longer this drags the worse the odds are of seeing Bo again.
JACK: I'm sorry to hear about that.
JENNIFER: It's just hard. I mean she's my best friend and she's in so much pain and there is nothing that I can do to help her.
JACK: Well I think you can only.... you can do what you do best. You just be her friend. That's what she seems to need most right now.
SHE LEANS UP AND KISSES HIM.
JENNIFER: I think that's what we all need. Thank you.
JACK: Don't thank me. But you can return in kind. You can stand there and listen to me while I tell you what my morning with DesirĜe.
JENNIFER: How was your morning with DesirĜe?
JACK: Well she passed the polygraph test and as expected she hated my plan. So with a little of her expertise, we came up with another one.
JENNIFER: Great, great. I can't wait to get started.
JACK: Great. It already has got started.
JENNIFER: It has?
JACK: Yes and if DesirĜe's doing her job right, we are going to have company very soon.
HE HANDS JENNIFER HER DIARY.
SCENE THREE: DOWN AT ALICE'S RESTAURANT, DESIRÉE TALKS TO HAWK.
DESIRÉE: How's it going daddy?
HAWK: Hey Dessy, well it couldn't be better.
DESIRÉE: No kidding. I can only think of one thing that would have you in such a choice mood and that's.... ah, Jennifer Deveraux.
HAWK HALF SMILES.
DESIRÉE: I don't care how many fights she has with her hubby, she is never going to leave him for you, Hawk.
HAWK: Oh is that so?
DESIRÉE: Darling, I'm telling you, face it! The boat has sailed with that babe man. You're waving goodbye from the docks.
HAWK: You're forgetting about Cindy.
DESIRÉE: Oh puhleeze. What, the meat packer? Hawk, no man in his right mind would ever leave Jennifer for her.
HAWK: Well who ever said that Jack was in his right mind?
DESIRÉE: Mister, there is just one word for you. And that word is capital "N," capital "A," capital "STY."
HAWK: Well thank you Dessy. But you know I haven't hooked Jennifer yet. I will though. I just don't want to seem too obvious but I've got to come up with a good solid reason to see her.
ALICE WALKS OVER RIGHT AT THIS POINT.
SHE LOOKS VERY WORRIED.
DESIRÉE: Oh Mrs. Horton, is there something wrong?
ALICE: No, no. I'm fine.
HAWK: Well Mrs. Horton, maybe you'd like to take a seat right here and we can talk about it and maybe Dessy and I can figure out whatever it is and maybe clear up your head.
ALICE: Maybe you're right.
DAVE COMES PAST AND ASKS HOW ALICE IS TOO. HE IS WORKING THERE TO HELP HER OUT.
DAVE: Is everything alright Mrs. Horton?
ALICE: Yes, yes just fine. Do you think you could take over for a while Dave?
DAVE: Oh sure thing.
HAWK: That's the waiter from Wings, right?
ALICE: Yes, yes, isn't he wonderful? He volunteered to come over here and work on his day off.
HAWK: So, um, Mrs. Horton, I mean what's going on? I've never seen you like this before.
ALICE: Well I'm just so worried about Jennifer. She's still having trouble with Jack and she won't confide in me.
HAWK: Yeah, you know that's really too bad because I think really what Jennifer needs is someone to unload on.
ALICE: Well, she's obviously not comfortable discussing her marriage with me and she should have somebody to talk to. Now if I could just think of someone who wasn't related to her or someone her own age....
DESIRÉE: You were friends with Jennifer.
ALICE: That's right, Hawk. Would you go and see Jennifer? You know I'd feel so much better if she had someone to comfort her.
HAWK: Yeah, well....
ALICE: Thank you.
HAWK: Well I'll do anything I can, I mean.
ALICE: Thank you, thank you Hawk. I.... I feel better already.
HAWK: Well Mrs. Horton I don't want you to worry about a thing. I would do anything I could to help Jennifer through this. You know I think I'm going to pay her a visit right now.
HE GETS OUT HIS WALLET TO PAY HIS BILL.
ALICE: Oh no you don't young man. Breakfast is on me.
HAWK: Well thank you very much Mrs. Horton. Miss McCall, nice seeing you again.
DESIRÉE: Huh, huh.
HAWK LEAVES AND ALICE BRUSHES HER NOSE WITH HER FINGER. DESIRÉE LOOKS AT HER STRANGELY AND SHE DOES IT AGAIN.
DESIRÉE: Mrs. Horton, is there something.... like is your nose itching?
ALICE: No! Didn't you ever see The Sting?
DESIRÉE: The what?
ALICE: The movie, The Sting, oh never mind.
DESIRÉE: Well I don't know about that movie but nobody could have done a better acting job than you just did, just now.
ALICE: You weren't so bad yourself.
DESIRÉE: Well I only had one line.
ALICE: But you gave it very well.
DESIRÉE: That was a nice touch when you paid for his breakfast.
ALICE: Hmmm, now we've set the trap and we'll just see if Hawk falls into it.
ALICE AND DESIRÉE TOUCH FINGER TIPS.
SCENE FOUR: BACK AT THE PENTHOUSE, JACK IS HIDING THE LIE DETECTOR WHEN HE NOTICES JENNIFER'S DIARY ON THE DESK. HE CHECKS TO SEE IF SHE'S AROUND THEN WALKS OVER AND OPENS IT.
JACK: Oh.... oh what, yes what.... what?
JENNIFER: What are you doing?
JACK: I'm not doing anything. Nothing at all.
JENNIFER: You were reading my diary. That's what you were doing.
JACK: No, I wasn't. I wasn't reading your diary. I was.... ah, well I had to check the diary and make sure that we had the right selection open to Howie, right.
JENNIFER: Yeah but you had to read all the other pages to make sure that you were looking at the right selection, right?
JACK: Well.... whatever I was looking at for right or wrong.... I appreciate it.
JENNIFER: Appreciate what?
JACK: Well someone was writing here saying that I had.... tremendous prowess.... as a lover.
JENNIFER: OH! Well I don't know whose diary you were reading but it wasn't mine.
JACK: I'm telling you, it's right here....
JENNIFER: Jack, forget about the diary. You've put this whole plan together much too fast and I'm not ready. I need to rehearse. I need....
JACK: There is no way we can rehearse. We don't know how Howie is going to react. You have to wing it.JENNIFER: I can't. I'll never pull it off Jack. I'll never be able to do it.
JACK: You have to act right. Just think, acting is believing.... acting is believing. You have to believe, that I'm cruel and angry and unfeeling and can be hurtful.
JENNIFER TURNS AND FROWNS AT HIM.
JACK: Ah, then again, there's no need to go for the sense memory and get back into the past.
THERE IS A KNOCK AT THE DOOR.
JENNIFER: That's him. He's here, what do we do, what do I do?
JACK: You open the door, alright. You calm down. I'll be right in the other room.
JACK: Calm down.
JENNIFER: I have to try and wing this.
JACK GIVES HER A THUMBS UP SIGN THEN SHUTS THE DOOR TO THE DINING ROOM.
SCENE FIVE: AT THE PENTHOUSE, HAWK IS AT THE DOOR, SHE LETS HIM IN, AND BEGINS TO SET UP THEIR STING.
JENNIFER: Hawk, hi.
HAWK: Hi, how are you doing?
JENNIFER: Ah, I'm fine, come on in. What a nice surprise.
HE SITS DOWN AND SHE GIVES HIM A CUP OF COFFEE.
HAWK: So, how are you getting along?
JENNIFER: I'm fine.
JACK PEEPS THROUGH THE DOOR.
JENNIFER: Really, I am. I'm doing good. I mean between all the work at the newspaper and the studio you know, my days are pretty booked up.
HAWK: And what about your nights?
JENNIFER: Ah, why are you asking?
HAWK: Jennifer, there's a lot of people who are really worried about you right now, especially your grandmother. In fact she's the one who asked me to come over here and check up on you.
JENNIFER: Ah, well you can just tell my grandmother that I'm fine.
HAWK: Well how can I tell her that if it's not true? I mean.... I'm going to tell you something that I know and you can just take it from there. I know that Jack cheated on you and that the two of you had a big fight about it the other day and that Jack moved out.
JACK IS FROWNING AS HE LISTENS TO THIS AND HE IS ALMOST CAUGHT PEEPING. THE DOORS MAKE A NOISE AS HE CLOSES THEM.
HAWK: What was that?
JENNIFER: Ah, that was.... I hung this little picture in the dining room and that must have been what it was. It must have fallen. But you know what Hawk, you're right. You're right, Jack and I have been going through a horrible ordeal and I don't know how much more I can take.
HAWK: But you know Jennifer, you don't have to put up with this guy anymore.
JENNIFER PLACES HER HAND ON HER DIARY SO THAT HAWK NOTICES IT.
HAWK: You know ever since I have known Jack, the guy has always just run games on people and then he cheats on you. I think you ought to just dump him.
JENNIFER: I can't do that Hawk.
HAWK: Why not?
JENNIFER: Because.... I.... because I still believe.... nothing excuse me.
SHE RUNS OUT IN TEARS. HAWK IMMEDIATELY PICKS UP THE DIARY AND GOES TO THE MARKED PAGE.
I know that Jack has a mean streak in him but I've never seen so filled with hate. He still blames Hawk for all the bad things that happened to us. When Jack was packing to move out, I saw him put a gun in his suitcase. I asked him where he got it and he said he bought it because he was going to kill Hawk. At first I thought he was just trying to scare me but now I'm not so sure.
JENNIFER: Hawk, I'll be right there.
HAWK: Ah yeah.
HE PUTS DOWN THE DIARY.
JENNIFER: I'm sorry.
HAWK: Are you okay?
JENNIFER: Yeah, this is just really hard for me, you know. I mean if Jack had never come back to Salem then everything would be fine but he did come back so it is my duty to make our marriage work. I mean this affair with Cindy, it's not going to last. It's not. It's going to burn out and he'll come back to me with that puppy dog look on his face and I won't be able to resist.
HAWK: Jennifer, I think you're making a very bad mistake here.
JENNIFER: No, what I'm.... I made a commitment to my husband. Till death do us part. (Beat) Although I have to admit that I've wanted to kill him a few times myself.... but.... you know at any rate I would really like to be alone right now.
HAWK: Okay, sure.
JENNIFER: Thanks for coming by.
HAWK: I'll see you later.
JENNIFER: Okay. Ah you just tell my grandmother that I'm fine.
HAWK: I'll do that.
JENNIFER: Oh.... and Hawk.... just be careful.
HAWK IS REALLY SCARED.
SHE SHUTS THE DOOR AND JACK COMES RUNNING OUT.
JENNIFER: Come here quick Jack.
JACK: Ssssh. He's gone.
JENNIFER: Do you think he bought that?JACK: Well, we'll certainly find out tomorrow night won't we?
SCENE SIX: HAWK GOES DOWN TO SEE ALICE WHO IS SITTING WITH TOM.
HAWK: Mrs. Horton, I thought you'd like to know I just checked up on Jennifer and she seems to be doing fine.
ALICE: Oh thank you for taking the time.
HAWK: Good, nice seeing you.
HAWK WALKS AWAY.
TOM: What was that all about?
ALICE: It's very complicated. I'll explain it all at home.
DESIRÉE IS DOING A READING AT A BOOTH AND HAWK SENDS THE GUY PACKING.
DESIRÉE: This better be important Hawk. You just cost me serious money.
HAWK: Well you can charge you next customer double. We've got some business to discuss here.
DESIRÉE: What kind of business?HAWK: Jack Deveraux is digging his own grave and I'm going to bury him in it.
SCENE SEVEN: BACK AT THE PENTHOUSE, JENNIFER IS VERY NERVOUS.
JENNIFER: I know he just saw right through me Jack. I just know he did.
JACK: No, no, you did great. "Hawk, Jack and I are going through such a horrible ordeal." "Ordeal" was perfect.
JACK (CONT.): And then the last thing you said. Hawk.... "be careful." I mean you were just planting that last little seed of paranoia. It was perfect. You were fabulous. You were fabulous.
HE HUGS HER.
JENNIFER: I don't know Jack. Alright I was.... maybe I was, I don't know.
JACK: Look it was crunch time and you came through with flying colors.
JENNIFER: Well we'll find out for sure tomorrow night, won't we?JACK: Yes and if everything goes according to plan, who knows? We might even sell the movie rights, maybe.
SCENE EIGHT: A BIT LATER JACK IS SITTING THINKING ABOUT THE PLAN WHEN JENNIFER COMES OUT WITH A HEAP OF HAWK'S STUFF.
JACK: Jennifer, what are you doing?
JENNIFER: It's Hawk's stuff. Some of the stuff he gave to me, some of it still his. I'm throwing it out. I'm giving it to the garbage man. Like this ugly red shirt, this country and western album, who is Little Jimmy Dickens anyway, Jack?
JACK: He has albums anyway.JENNIFER: His stupid books. Oh, cochina doll from Howard the Homeless. Look how I fell for that one Jack. And last but not least the bolo tie that I got for my birthday from Hawk. I was such an idiot. I can't believe it.
JACK: Well there's no reason to do this to yourself. I mean perhaps you just didn't know that you couldn't trust him.
JENNIFER: Jack, but the point is that I knew that I could trust you and I didn't. I mean I was taking Hawk's word over yours and you're my husband. I never should have doubted you. I mean it just makes me sick to think of everything we lost because of him.
JACK: Well, you don't have to say anything to me. I mean I bankrupted the paper. But we will get all that back. Financially we will bound back and get on our feet.
JENNIFER: Jack, I'm not talking about the money. I'm talking about all the time that we lost, all the months that we were apart. And I was so busy being angry and hurt, I never thought about how you felt. I mean you were all alone, no friends, just the clothes on your back.
JACK: That's probably why I had no friends.
JENNIFER: I'm thinking about all those months when we could have been happy. (Beat) I hope you'll forgive me.
JACK: Forgive you for what?
JENNIFER: For letting Hawk do this to us.
JACK: Well Jennifer far be it for me to judge you for anything. I mean look at my situation. I should have come to you in the beginning and told you what was happening instead of running around behind your back and sneaking around and actually thinking you were running around on me. It was all rather stupid wasn't it?
JENNIFER: Yeah, the whole thing.
THEY HUG EACH OTHER.
JENNIFER: So where do we go from here?
JACK: Well believe it or not, I think we've already gone.
JACK: I mean it. We've already gone. The point is we're not going apart, we're going together. It means we might actually accomplish it this time.