SCENE ONE: IT IS MOVING DAY FOR JACK AND JENNIFER. THEY ARE IN THE LIVING ROOM AND THEY ARE TRYING TO FIND PLACES FOR THE FEW BITS OF FURNITURE THAT THEY OWN. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROOM IS THE CRIB THAT MAGGIE LEANT THEM FOR ABBY.
JENNIFER: All right, we only have just one more box left Jack.
JACK: I beg your pardon. We must have more than one box. We must have left something over at your grandparent's.
JENNIFER: No we didn't. This is it.
JACK: This is it. Somehow I'm not surprised by that.
JACK REMOVES THEIR OLD TOASTER FROM THE BOX HE IS CARRYING.
JENNIFER: Jack, listen to me, we are going to fill our house with a lot of love and happiness. Do you hear me?
SHE GIVES HIM A HUG.
JACK: Yes that's all very well and good but let's remember we cannot sit on love or eat off of happiness.
JENNIFER: Well that's all right. We don't have to because we have boxes. A lot of boxes.
SHE SITS DOWN ON ONE AND THEY HEAR A KNOCK AT THE DOOR.
JACK: Oh a welcoming party. Who knows, perhaps they brought us something. A gift perhaps, like a couch or a coat rack or a....
JACK OPENS THE DOOR AND IT IS CALLIOPE. SHE SCREAMS AT THE TOP OF HER VOICE WHEN SHE SEES JENNIFER.
CALLIOPE: AAAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGHHHH JENNIFER. It looks like somebody let the air out of you.
JACK: Ah, come in.
SHE RUNS OVER AND HUGS JENNIFER WHO TRIES TO SHUT HER UP SO THAT ABIGAIL DOESN'T WAKE UP.
JENNIFER: Ssssh, the baby. You'll wake the baby up.
CALLIOPE: The baby! Where is the little boo boo eyes?
SHE RUNS OVER THE CRADLE.
JENNIFER: She's asleep.
JACK: There, if you, ah....
CALLIOPE: Oh she's beautiful. She looks exactly like Bo!
SHE TURNS TO JACK.
CALLIOPE: Just kidding. Actually she's.....
JACK: She's sleeping.
CALLIOPE: She's sleeping. Well can't you just wake her up so I can see her little eyes, pleeeeease?
JACK: Absolutely not. She has another 2 hours and 38 minutes of peace and quiet before she wakes up.
CALLIOPE: 38 minutes! Is he kidding?
JENNIFER: No he's not. What are you doing here?
JACK GOES BACK TO UNPACKING WHILE THEY TALK.
SCENE TWO: CALLIOPE HAS DROPPED BY WITH VERY IMPORTANT NEW FOR JENNIFER.
CALLIOPE: I have big news.
JENNIFER: What, what news?
CALLIOPE: The producers have upped the ante and opened the vault. They want you to come back to New York so badly that they are willing to pay beaucoup bucks!
JACK OVERHEARS THAT BIT.
JACK: How beaucoup?
CALLIOPE: We're talking Oprah money. So what do you say, are you with me?
JENNIFER: Um, Calliope, I'm sorry but I can't. The only place that I am going to play co-host is right here in Salem.
JACK IS PROUD OF HER ANNOUNCEMENT.
JENNIFER: In my own home with my family.
CALLIOPE LOOKS ACROSS TO JACK WHO SMILES JUST A LITTLE.CALLIOPE GETS ON THE PHONE TO NEW YORK WHILE JACK AND JENNIFER FINISH UNPACKING.
SCENE THREE: CALLIOPE IS STILL TALKING TO THE PHONE TO THE NETWORK ABOUT JENNIFER'S DECISION.
CALLIOPE: Thank-you, bye bye. (Beat) Well I broke the news to the producers.
JENNIFER: Were they mad?
CALLIOPE: At first but then they came up with a great idea.
JENNIFER: What, what idea?
CALLIOPE: They always wanted to tap into the heartland of America and what is more heartland than Salem and they figure if Mohammed won't come to the mountain, then....
JENNIFER: They're going to bring your show to Salem?
CALLIOPE: No, actually, it's going to be your show.
JENNIFER: Well what about you?
CALLIOPE: Side kick.
JENNIFER: Oh Calliope that is not fair.
CALLIOPE: What is fair? Me standing on the unemployment line. This is great. Look, you're the meat and I'm the potatoes. You're the class, I'm the crass. Whatever works. Oh please say you're in.
JENNIFER LOOKS ACROSS TO JACK WHO TURNS AWAY.
JENNIFER: Um, you know what? I'm going to talk this over with Jack.
CALLIOPE: Okay, well I'm going to go to the new pub. Talk fast because we have to give them an answer by tonight.
CALLIOPE: Okay, bye. Great furniture, really. Nice boxes.
JENNIFER TURNS TO JACK AND THROWS HER HANDS IN THE AIR.
JENNIFER: Well, what do we do?
JACK: We don't do anything. They don't want me to be the host of a talk show. They want you.
JENNIFER: Well then I won't do it.
JACK: Because you don't want to?
JENNIFER: I want to be here for you and the baby.
JACK: You don't think you can do both at once?
JENNIFER: Not if you don't want me to.
JACK: That's not what I said.
JENNIFER: Then you want me to do it.
JACK: I didn't say that either.
JENNIFER: Well what are you saying?
JACK: I'm saying that if you want to be here with the child, that's fine. Well manage. But if you want to be in your chosen field, doing what you want to do, we can do that too. We'll manage. (Beat) We'll manage.
JENNIFER: So, ah, it wouldn't bother you that I would be making more money than you?
JACK: (Beat) No. No it wouldn't, not at all. Not at all.
HE BENDS OVER A BOX AS IF IT DOES NOT MATTER BUT HIS FACE SHOWS THAT IT DOES. JENNIFER DOES NOT SEEM TO NOTICE.
JENNIFER: Well then Jack, this would work out great then because we would both be working and I could Abby to work with me. You know I would get a nanny to come with me....
JACK: Who said anything about a nanny?
JENNIFER: Well I would have to have someone to help me with Abby during the day.
JACK: No.... nannies.
JENNIFER: Oh.... well we can afford it with my salary.JACK: That is not what I'm saying. I will not have my child raised by a nanny.
JENNIFER: Our child will not be raised by a nanny. It's not going to be the way you remember when you were growing up Jack. We are going to be there for our baby all the time.
JACK: We most certainly will be there. I'll see to that.
JENNIFER: What do you mean?
JACK: I'm not sure what I mean. I'm still thinking about it. But I'll figure something out. (Beat) Believe me, I will.
JENNIFER IS WORRIED ABOUT JACK'S MOOD.
SCENE FOUR: AWHILE LATER CARLY COMES OVER TO VISIT JENNIFER.
CARLY: I wasn't sure if I had the right address.
JENNIFER: This is it. This is our new home. Come on in.
CARLY: Oh, it's great.
JENNIFER: You haven't seen the baby!
CARLY: I haven't seen your baby.
JENNIFER: Go see it.
CARLY WALKS STRAIGHT OVER TO THE CRIB WHERE ABBY IS SLEEPING.
CARLY: Oh my gosh, you sweet Abigail.
CARLY LEANS OVER AND TALKS TO THE BABY.
CARLY: Oh my apologies for not meeting you sooner.
CARLY: Welcome to the world, little one.
JENNIFER PICKS UP THE BABY.
JENNIFER: She says thanks Carly, thank-you
CARLY: Oh Jen, she is beautiful.
JENNIFER: Hi doll.
CARLY: So beautiful. Yes you are. I heard that the paramedics didn't get to you in time and Jack had to deliver her.
JENNIFER: Can you believe that? I never thought that I would get Jack in the delivery room and there he was delivering the baby.
CARLY: Well you did a terrific job, both of you.
JENNIFER: It was incredible. It was so scary there for a while Carly and then when Jack put her in my arms, it's just the most wonderful moment of my life.
CARLY: Oh I come bearing gifts.
JENNIFER: You didn't have to do that.
CARLY: Of course I had to do that. You're my best friend and you just had a beautiful little girl and besides it's so much fun shopping for little girls things for a change. What do you think?
CARLY HOLDS UP A CUTE LITTLE DARK GREEN DRESS.
JENNIFER: Oh it's so cute. I love it.
CARLY: Do you like it Ab?
JENNIFER: Yes. Yes I do.
CARLY: Can I hold her?
JENNIFER: Yes, you let me have that and lay that down here.
CARLY TAKES THE BABY.
CARLY: Oh you sweet girl.
JENNIFER: There we go
CARLY: Oh you are just precious. Now who is this person? Who is this?
CARLY SITS DOWN WITH THE BABY.
JENNIFER: You know what Carly, it's a good thing that you're sitting down because Jack has been going crazy with everybody carrying her all over the place. You've no idea how protective he is.
CARLY: Oh he is going to be a great father.
JENNIFER: Yeah, I know he is.
CARLY: (To the baby) Oh I like the smile from you.
JENNIFER: Is this okay for you?
CARLY: Oh yeah, yeah. It's more than okay. Listen I don't want people thinking just because I lost my own baby that I can't be happy for others because I am happy for you and Jack. More than you know.
JENNIFER: Well you know you're going to be holding your own baby one day.
CARLY: We'll see.
JENNIFER TAKES THE BABY AND PUTS HER BACK IN THE CRIB.
CARLY: Oh Jennifer you're so good with her. Being a mother must come naturally to you.
JENNIFER: I think it just comes naturally when it's your own child.
CARLY: Yeah, probably.
JENNIFER: You know when you're with Shawn Douglas anybody would think that you were his mother.
CARLY: I forgot to tell you. As of December 4th I will be, his step-mother.
JENNIFER: What? Is that the day you're getting married?
CARLY: I'm getting married!
JENNIFER: I can't believe it. I'm so happy for you.
CARLY: I'm surprised. I'm happy for me too and I'd be even happier if you'd promise for the last time to be my matron of honor.
JENNIFER: Promise? How many times have I promised?
CARLY: Like back in school when I wanted to marry Rhett Butler.
JENNIFER: That's right. Oh Carly, I'm so happy for you. You are finally getting everything that you want and it's going to be wonderful for you and Bo. As wonderful as it is for Jack and me.
CARLY: I hope so Jen.
JENNIFER: Wait, what is this doubt I'm seeing.
CARLY: We've just been having some problems lately.
JENNIFER: Yeah, but nothing that serious. I mean you're planning to get married.
CARLY: You're right, you're right but in the past it's always been Bo and me against the world, you know, not each other.
JENNIFER: But that's okay, it is. Your love is going to get you through the rough spots because once you've loved somebody you never lose that. It's always there. It's always inside you.
SCENE FIVE: SOME TIME LATER, JACK HAS RETURNED AND HAS TAKEN OVER BABY-SITTING DUTIES. HE HAS JUST GOT ORGANIZED TO GO OUT AND IS HOLDING THE BABY AND A LARGE BAG OF DIAPERS, ETC. WHEN THE DOORBELL RINGS. IT IS JO.
JACK: Ah, coming, yes.
JO: Oooooh how is my little grand daughter?
JACK: Great, just great.
JO: Here I'll take her. Oh sweet.... oh did you know something? Did you know you're getting prettier every day, every single day? Just your like mommy, did you know that?
JO: Yes you are. Where's Jennifer?
JACK: She's down at Brady's Pub with Calliope Jones.
JO: Oh, just you and daddy. That's fun isn't it, isn't it?
JACK: Yes. Tell me you really do care for the child, don't you?
JO: Well of course I do. What kind of a question is that?
JACK: Well I was just.... I was just thinking.... perhaps you could help.... you could help with taking care of her from time to time?
JO: Oh well I'd love to. You know I'd baby-sit with her anytime. You know that.
JACK: Well I don't know about anytime. You do have your job to think about.
JO: Well.... I was thinking about quitting. I haven't told you this with the excitement but.... I signed up for this fall semester at college.
JACK: College, you?
JO: Well it's something I've always wanted to do but with the kids and work and everything I've just never had enough time but I've saved my money and I can do it now. (To the baby) Yes I can.
JACK LOOKS WORRIED.
JO: What's wrong?
JACK: Wrong? Nothing, nothing's wrong.
JO: Are you sure? Because I mean if you need me I.... I can go some other time. I'd rather do anything for you.
JACK: No, no, absolutely not. I think pursuing a higher education is a wonderful thing and I will not stand in the way of it. I.... I couldn't be happier for you.
HE TAKES THE BABY FROM JO.
JACK: Really, I couldn't be happier.
HE LOOKS DOWN AT ABIGAIL.
SCENE SIX: MEANWHILE DOWN AT THE BRADY PUB, CALLIOPE IS TALKING TO ALICE AS JENNIFER ARRIVES.
ALICE: So you're really thinking of moving back here.
CALLIOPE: It's really up to Jennifer.
JENNIFER OVERHEARS THAT BIT.
JENNIFER: It's up to Jack.
CALLIOPE: Oh, how is my favorite male chauvinist pig who wants to keep you barefoot and pregnant.
JENNIFER: He wants me to be a big TV star, Calliope.
CALLIOPE: And smiling and happy and....
ALICE: Jack wants you to do the show?
CALLIOPE: I knew there was something besides his looks that I loved.
JENNIFER AND ALICE LAUGH.
CALLIOPE: Oh thank goodness.
ALICE: Congratulations darling.
JENNIFER: Thanks grandma.
ALICE: Who's going to take care of Abigail?
JENNIFER: Well Jack told me to leave that up to him.ALICE: Oh.
SCENE SEVEN: BACK AT THE HOUSE, JACK HAS ANOTHER VISITOR, JULIE.
JULIE: Come here you precious thing. You look just like your mommy. Yes. Do you know that?
JULIE PICKS UP THE BABY.
JACK: Yes she must. Everyone tells her that everytime they see her.
JULIE: Ah Jack, she resembles you too darling. She has your.... (Beat).... your chiseled jaw.
JACK IS SOMEWHAT EMBARRASSED.
JACK: There's no need to humor me, really. She looks like her mother and I'm glad that she does.
JULIE: Then why are you so....
JACK: Down, depressed, bleak?
JACK: Take a look around. Is this type of bleak house you'd want to bring your firstborn home to?
JULIE: Oh Jack. It isn't so bad. Just like so many things that have the charm of experience, it could do use a face lift.
JENNIFER COMES IN THE DOOR.
JACK: Face lifts cost.... take a lot of money.
JULIE: Oh not necessarily. I could help you redecorate.
JENNIFER: You could?
JULIE: Sure, I'd be glad to Jennifer.
JENNIFER: I would love that.
JACK: Ah, I think we should talk about this.
JENNIFER: Well what's there to talk about?
SHE TAKES THE BABY FROM JULIE.
JENNIFER: I mean Julie used to be a professional decorator and I want to redo this place from top to bottom.
JACK: That could cost a lot of money.
JENNIFER: It's okay. I took the job.
JACK: You took the job.
JULIE: Jack told me all about it. I'm very happy, very happy for both of you.
JULIE: When do you start?
JENNIFER: Oh right away.
JULIE: Oh gee you don't get much maternity leave, do you?
JACK IS WORRIED ABOUT ALL THIS.
JENNIFER: Well you know Jack and I, we're going to work all that out.
JULIE: Okay, okay. Well I must go back to the newspaper. I have loved seeing you all especially my beautiful beautiful little bitty blue-eyed cousin.
JENNIFER: Bye Julie.
JULIE: Bye, bye. Jack, I'll see you at work tomorrow.
JACK: Ah, actually I think we should talk about that.
JULIE: Oh you're not going to ask for maternity leave now, are you darling?
JACK: Um, maybe I could just walk you to your car. We could have a little.... um.... a little chat maybe.
HE SMILES AT JENNIFER AND GOES OUTSIDE WITH JULIE.
SCENE EIGHT: WHEN HE COMES BACK INSIDE, JACK TELLS JENNIFER ABOUT HIS PLAN.
JENNIFER: You're what?
JACK: I'm.... I'm taking care of the child.
JENNIFER: Are you just going to drop your whole career?
JACK: No I am not dropping my whole career. I am working out of the house.
JENNIFER: Are you sure this is what you want to do Jack?
JACK: I'm sure. I'm sure. This way the child will know that her parents value her above anything else.
JENNIFER: Well now don't make me feel too guilty.
JACK: I am not trying to make you feel guilty. You will work out of the house and I will from the house.
JENNIFER: I just still can't believe it. I mean you were so afraid of being a father and now you want to be Mr. Mom.
JACK: Let's not use that term please.
ABIGAIL STARTS TO CRY.
JACK: And let's try to be positive. It can't be that hard can it.
JENNIFER: (To the baby) Oh what's the matter?
JACK: And she's going to sleep for another.... 35 minutes by my reckoning. Excuse.... allow me, please. I can do anything you can do. Yes.
JACK PICKS UP THE BABY.
JENNIFER: Yes, well that's true Jack. You can do anything I can do. Unfortunately right now, you can't do what I can do. She's hungry. Come on honey.
JENNIFER: Let's go eat. Come on, yeah.JACK: Well that's only for the time being but we'll.... we'll work these little kinks out. (Beat) Or I will.