Air Date: October 31, 1986
Tape Date: October 15, 1986
Script by B.K. Perlman
[SIOBHAN enters the library, trailed by ERIK.]
SIOBHAN: [mid-tounge lashing] Keep tailgating my taxis, and one of these days the cabbie's going to call a cop and charge you with harassment! And I'll second the motion.
ERIK: [detached] If you choose not to ride in the limo as your husband wishes, my only option is to follow you. I'm merely doing my job, Mrs. Dubujak.
SIOBHAN: And preventing me from doing mine! [turns to him, eyes blazing] That was an important police contact you scared off. He's probably over the Canadian border by now!
ERIK: My condolences.
SIOBHAN: Are you being fresh or just stupid?
ERIK: Neither I hope, Madam.
SIOBHAN: [ready to scream] And don't "madam" me! Get this straight: I'm not riding with you - not tomorrow, not the next day, not ever. So you may as well garage that gas guzzler and buy yourself a pogo stick!
ERIK: [evenly] Shall I pass on your suggestion to Mr. Dubujak, or will you?
SIOBHAN: Get lost, Erik!
[MAX appears on the landing, watching them enigmatically.]
INT. FRANK'S APARTMENT
JOHNNO: He must have threatened her.
JOHNNO: That's the only way Lizzie'd let Harlan get away with spewing out that bilge. I'm going after her!
JILL: Don't Johnno!
JOHNNO: You don't know him like I do. Did you see Lizzie - watching him lie his rotten head off? She oculdn't even look me in the eye. It was like she was shrinking into herself.
FRANK: Isn't it possible she's had a change of heart?
JILL: You told us she's easily led.
JOHNNO: She doesn't want to be tied down with a baby. But she has to pretend because she's terrified of him. Couldn't you tell?
FRANK: Frankly, no.
JOHNNO: He must have scared the hell out of her to shut her up like that. [looks at Frank and Jill, amazed] What's wrong with you two? Couldn't you see through him? [Frank and Jill exchange looks.] You bought his whole lousy act!
INT. HARLAN's ROOM
HARLAN: Told you it was a fleabag, so nix with the remarks.
LIZZIE: [shrinks back] I wasn't going to say anything. [looks around] I've seen worse.
HARLAN: I can't compete with those fancy lawyers. All a bunch of extortionists, anyway. Don't make their money clean. Well, how did I do, Miss Lizzie? What do you think the Ryans make of Harlan Ransome now?
[FRANK, JILL, and JOHNNO are still discussing LIZZIE.]
JOHNNO: After everything I told you, you actually bought Harlan's phony act.
FRANK: We didn't say that.
JILL: We'd never take a stranger's word over yours.
FRANK: If you want to know if I believe you, the answer's yes. If you ask, was Harlan Ransome the man I expected him to be, the answer's no.
JILL: He did seem genuinely concerned about Lizzie and the baby's future. And he certainly didn't behave like the monster you described.
JOHNNO: Did you expect him to walk in breathing fire?
JILL: My experience with cruel, twisted people is that it shows somehow on their features or in their manner. Harlan Ransome impressed me as a well-meaning man willing to discuss a difficult problem reasonably, and willing to compromise. Not at all like the brute you described.
JOHNNO: You ought to see him with a few drinks under his belt. Don't you understand that he conned you?
JILL: If he conned us, imagine what he'll do to a judge and jury. He sure won't walk into court swigging from a bottle. I'm sorry, Johnno, but Lizzie's dad makes a good impression - the impression of a sober, caring father and grandfather, interested in the welfare of Lizzie and Owney.
FRANK: [gently] Jill and I are trying to look at the whole picture from a lawyer's viewpoint, excluding our emotional involvement with you and Owney. And from that perspective, Ransome's position's going to look good in court.
JOHNNO: You want unemotional and objective? He's a liar, a drunk, and a sadist!
JILL: [gently] John, you're fighting for your baby. There's no way you can view any of this dispassionately. But that doesn't mean we don't believe you, or won't fight him with you. We're on your side, honey.
FRANK: But we have to know more about our adversary, if that's what Harlan's going to be. Specific things: Has he ever physically abused Lizzie badly enough to require a doctor's care? If so, there might be a medical record. Are there other people, neighbors, who've witnessed him drunk, verbally abusive, and out of control?
JOHNNO: There must be. In a small college town like Bridgewater, everybody knows everybody else. First-name basis. They'd know about his drinking. How he treated Lizzie. She's scared to death to be around him. Look, guys, I'm sorry, but I've got to get her out of there.
[JOHNNO heads towards the door.]
JOHNNO: I can't leave her with him; I know what happens next. Watch Owney for me, will you?
FRANK: ...He says he doesn't love her, but he certainly cares. When he was a kid, Johnno tended to exaggerate - like Delia, you know. Maybe Ransome's somewhere in the middle of the two versions we have.
JILL: Reminds me of that movie, Rashomon. The same event viewed by three different people results in three entirely different stories.
FRANK: You don't buy Johnno's version?
JILL: I believe John. What I question is how well he knows Lizzie. Johnno thinks she's ready to give him Owney and back gracefully out of their lives. I don't think she wants to let either one of them go.
FRANK: If that's the case, she's holding one hell of a trump card - and his name is Owney. All we can do right now is try and stack the deck as heavily as we can in Johnno's favor. I think I'll take a drive up to Bridgewater and ask around about Harlan on his own turf.
INT. HARLAN'S ROOM
HARLAN: Why the hell wouldn't the Ryan's like me! Was I impolite? Did I make any demands, any threats?
LIZZIE: You want to take away their grandson. That's enough of a demand and a threat.
HARLAN: "Their" grandson? Who gave them first dibs on the kid? And that better-than-anybody boyfriend of yours - not wanting to let me see his precious baby. He's my grandson, too, and don't you ever put me second in line to those Ryans, you hear?
LIZZIE: I wasn't.
HARLAN: You owe me, Miss Lizzie, not the other way around. I'm the one who raised you, and it wasn't any picnic, either. I did right by you, and there's plenty who know it. If I hadn't kept you on the straight and narrow, you'd have six bastards by now instead of one. And I'm not through keeping you in hand, understand? You still hot for that college boy?
LIZZIE: I love John Reid, Daddy.
HARLAN: I can help you get him - if you help me. There's a few things I want from this world while I'm young enough to enjoy them.
LIZZIE: Like what?
HARLAN: That's my business. Your buisness is to cooperate. Yes or no?
[JOHNNO knocks on the door.]
HARLAN: Who the hell's that? Did you tell lover boy to come after you?
[HARLAN opens the door and finds JOHNNO.]
HARLAN: What do you want?
JOHNNO: [to Lizzie] Let's get out of here, Lizzie.
HARLAN: The hell you say! So you can brainwash her again? Make her feel she's too dumb to be a mother to her own kid?
LIZZIE: [nervous] Don't fight, please! I can't stand it. He doesn't make me feel dumb - you do!
HARLAN: What's the matter, Ryan? This place isn't good enough for you? It's good enough for us Ransomes.
LIZZIE: I hate it. I don't want to stay here!
HARLAN: You want to go with him, get dumped again, go ahead! I'm not holding you back.
JOHNNO: [takes Lizzie's hand] Come on.
HARLAN: You let me know where you are and your phone number. [to John] She didn't grow on a pumpkin vine; she has a father who cares!
JOHNNO: [ignoring him] Let's go, Lizzie.
[JOHNNO and LIZZIE go out the door. After a moment, HARLAN begins to cautiously follow them.]
[SIOBHAN is still angry. ERIK stands by her.]
SIOBHAN: I'm home safe, Erik, so stop hovering!
[ERIK exits. MAX claps on the landing and comes down.]
MAX: ...And in this corner, the plainclothes policewoman battles the uniformed chauffeur for The Last Word. [raises her hand] The winner and still champion!
SIOBHAN: That man infuriates me!
MAX: [kisses] Ahh, ma petite - your sweet tongue can rival the rage of the North Atlantic. Did poor Erik deserve such a pounding?
SIOBHAN: Damn straight, he did! I made it very clear I didn't want him driving me today.
MAX: ..Which was in direct opposition to my orders, and therefore, placed him in an untenable position. Did you forget, cherie, you promised he could chauffeur you? As part of the regime of taking better care of yourself?
SIOBHAN: I didn't promise. I said I'd think about it, and I did. I can't do it, Max. It interferes with my work. He interferes with my work.
MAX: How so?
SIOBHAN: I had an extremely important meeting with an informant today. Erik ruined it by injecting his presence. My canary panicked and flew the coop, and that's the last I'll see of him.
MAX: I'm sorry, darling.
SIOBHAN: Tell Erik to stay behind the wheel, where he belongs.
MAX: I'll certainly speak to him. Was this an important case?
SIOBHAN: ...Operation Overlord. Today might've been the breakthrough we've been waiting for. And in walks Erik-the-Stick, and I'm left talking to the wall.
MAX: That won't happen again, Siobhan. But surely it can't complicate your work if he merely drives you to and from the precinct or your meetings?
SIOBHAN: I don't like him, Max. Don't you ever get the feeling he's on automatic pilot? Something's missing there. Something human.
MAX: [smiles] The Swiss run impersonal hotels, not warm, convivial family bars. But I assure you, my love, he came with the highest references for honesty and loyalty. And frankly, I prefer his silence to a gabby, intrusive driver.
SIOBHAN: Then you ride with him. I'll drive myself or take cabs.
MAX: [lightly] I can't win with you, can I? [sighs] If my business associates knew this hardheaded deal maker turned to putty in his wife's slender [kisses her fingers], tender hands - I worry about you so.
SIOBHAN: Max, I don't mean to worry you, but...
MAX: Then don't. Give Erik another chance. [kisses] For me?
SIOBHAN: This is sexual and emotional blackmail!
MAX: Right. How'm I doing?
SIOBHAN: I'll let you know. [kisses]
SEAN: Watch out, Sybil, so you don't get run over.
SYBIL: You watch out, Monsieur Driver, for the chair legs!
[SYBIL sticks her head back into the kitchen. SEAN continues playing with the car, but he stops when the car hits a black boot. SEAN looks up and sees an emotionless ERIK.]
[ERIK looks down at SEAN, smiles, and bends down.
SEAN: I have a garbage truck in my bedroom.
ERIK: I have [takes pen out from pocket] a special pen.
[ERIK's pen is of the type that has six different ink colors. ERIK takes out a small notebook from his pocket and opens to a blank page.]
ERIK: Can you spell red? [Sean nods no; Erik writes red in red ink] R.E.D. spells red. Can you spell blue? [Sean nods no again; Erik writes blue in blue ink] B.L.U.E. spells blue.
SEAN: [fascinated] Can it spell green?
ERIK: [nods and writes green] G.R.E.E.N. spells green.
[SEAN grins. ERIK hands him the pen, and SEAN tries to write red with green ink.]
SEAN: It doesn't work.
ERIK: Look - see this little red knob sticking out? See the blue - and the green? When you want the color, you push the knob up.
[SEAN tries with red knob, makes squiggly R, and smiles broadly at his achievement. He offers the pen back.]
ERIK: Keep it. Surprise your friends.
SEAN: [thrilled] Really? Thank you! [offers car] You can have this. For keeps!
ERIK: [serious] Thank you very much. [examines car] This is some set of wheels!
SEAN: Did you ever drive a real racing car?
ERIK: [smiles] Yes.
SEAN: How fast?
ERIK: Oh - about 170 miles an hour?
SEAN: How old were you?
[SIOBHAN enters, looks in disbelief as "cold" ERIK and SEAN warmy interact.]
ERIK: It was just a few years ago.
SEAN: [shyly] Can I sit up front with you in our car?
[SIOBHAN swoops down on them and scoops up SEAN.]
SIOBHAN: Milk and cookie time, Buster!
[SIOBHAN carries SEAN to the kitchen. ERIK watches with inscrutable eyes.]
INT. DAKOTA'S APARTMENT
JOHNNO: This is it. Jill gave me a key in case I ever needed a place to crash.
LIZZIE: You sure it's all right? Dakota won't mind?
JOHNNO: This place has been standing empty. My grandparents gave him a room over Ryan's. I'll talk to him, but I'm sure it'll be fine.
LIZZIE: Everything looks so new.
JOHNNO: It is. Dakota bought all new stuff.
LIZZIE: But it didn't work out for him and Jill. Maybe this place is jinxed!
JOHNNO: Come on, Lizzie. This is your lucky day. You know how hard it is to find a decent apartment in Manhattan? Sit down; relax.
LIZZIE: [shaking] I can't. Not yet.
JOHNNO: Harlan didn't hurt you, did he?
LIZZIE: No. But just being with him - you know.
JOHNNO: Yeah. [Johnno and Lizzie hug.] Take some deep breaths. It'll help.
LIZZIE: Helps having you close by. Why did he have to come here and spoil everything? I wish he'd go back home. I bet you're wishing I'd go back with him. Or disappear off the face of the earth.
JOHNNO: You know that's not true. All I want is to see you far away from him. As far as posible. Even New York is too close.
LIZZIE: But if I stay here,I'll get to see Owney. [plaintive] You said I could, John Reid - see him whenever I wanted to.
JOHNNO: You can.
LIZZIE: So staying here makes more sense, doesn't it?
JOHNNO: If that's what you want.
LIZZIE: Do you want me to stay?
JOHNNO: What I want is for you to do what's best for you.
LIZZIE: [hurt] I get it. You don't care if I stay or go as long as I don't take Owney from you, right?
JOHNNO: Last I heard, that was never your intention. First thing you said to me in Rick Hyde's office was, "Don't worry John. I didn't come here to claim my child." Well?
LIZZIE: [sits down on couch] I don't know what I said. Or what I meant. I don't know anything anymore. Expect how awful I feel about giving up my baby. I love him, John Reid. I truly love him, and I don't think it's fair for him not to have my mothering when I want to give it to him.
JOHNNO: [miserable] I didn't know you felt this way.
LIZZIE: I didn't either. So what do we do?
JOHNNO: We do what's best for Owney. You have changed Lizzie. you might not think he was such a burden now. Supposing - you did stay in New York - got a job - made a life for yourself - maybe we could take turns having Owney. What do you call it - have joint custody. Half the time he's with me, half with you.
LIZZIE: You'd trust him with me? Even though I don't know anything about babies?
JOHNNO: I didn't know anything at first, either. You get confidence as you go along. And I'd help you. Jill and my mother would, too. And my Dad. We'd all want you to succeed. what do you think?
LIZZIE: I'm thinking what it'd be like the times I didn't have him. So lonely. I don't know anyone here. No one to talk to - except you.
JOHNNO: You know Rick and Ryan. And on the job you'll meet people. You join clubs, take a course, join a church. Thing is to be with people, lots of people, and try to be outgoing. That's how you get a circle of friends and support. That's all you need, Lizzie, till Mr. Right comes along. [joins her on couch]
LIZZIE: [looks at Johnno] He already has.
JOHNNO: I haven't been that for you. More like Mr. Wrong.
LIZZIE: [smiles] Nuh-uh.
JOHNNO: What have I ever given you besides heartache and disapointment?
LIZZIE: [softly] Owney. I'd take ten times the heartache if I thought you and me - we...
JOHNNO: It can't be, Liz. You've changed, but I haven't.
[LIZZIE kisses JOHNNO's hand. He withdraws his hand quickly.]
LIZZIE: You can't even stand my touching you!
JOHNNO: That's the problem. I like you touching me, but it's not fair.
LIZZIE: Maybe if you let your body love me, your heart would follow along.
JOHNNO: We tried that. It doesn't work.
JOHNNO: It's just - I can't explain it.
LIZZIE: When we were out West, we didn't need words to explain. You were so loving to me, so warm - then you come back here to your family and you act hard and cold. Why? 'Cause of them? 'Cause I'm not good enough for you?
JOHNNO: Because it's over.
LIZZIE: I tried to think it was. I told myself it was. But it isn't.
JOHNNO: It is for me.
LIZZIE: Just words, John Reid. I don't believe a single one of them.
[LIZZIE wraps her arms around JOHNNO and kisses him.]
INT. BRIDGEWATER BAR
[FRANK enters a bar near HARLAN's Bridgewater home. A group of men halt their conversation and look at FRANK strangely. He smiles.]
FRANK: Afternoon. [to Bartender] I'll have a beer. Whatever's on draught. [pause] I was told Harlan Ransome comes here.
BARTENDER: Once in a while. Who wants to know?
FRANK: Part of a check my company's doing on him. [smile] Has nothing to do with his drinking habits. It's character references I'm after, from longtime buddies. Any volunteers?
John Reid Ryan