EXT. JEN'S AUNT'S HOUSE - NIGHT

Jay's blue Honda pulls up in front of a nice old brick house.

INT. JAY'S CAR - NIGHT

Jay looks down at the napkin on his finger which is totally soaked with blood.

                                                                 JAY
                                Oy gevult!

A SUPERIMPOSED SUBTITLE APPEARS: "The pain and suffering that my people have endured."

Jay pulls the napkin from his finger and blood starts running down his palm.  He quickly replaces the napkin.

EXT. JEN'S AUNT'S HOUSE - NIGHT

Jay steps up to the door and knocks.  Jen answers looking terrific.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Hi.

                                                                 JAY
                                Hi.  You look great.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Thanks.
                                                           (they walk to Jay's car)
                                What's all over your sleeve?

                                                                 JAY
                                Grease.  Would you mind driving?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                No --

                                                                 JAY
                                -- Great --

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                -- Except my car's in the shop.  Something wrong
                                with yours?

                                                                 JAY
                                No, no, it's fine.
                                                           (waves his hand)
                                Not a problem.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (concerned)
                                What's wrong with your finger?

                                                                 JAY
                                I cut it.  It's no big deal.

He removes the napkin and blood drips down.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                You know, I took first aid classes, if you've got a
                                needle and thread I could sew it up.

Jay opens the passenger door for Jen and she gets in.

                                                                 JAY
                                It's not that deep.

He goes around to the driver's door, gets in, turns the key and . . . Click!  Jay turns to Jen and forces a smile.

INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT

Jay and Jen sit at a booth.  A waitress goes walking by.  Jay raises his hand to get her attention and we now see two bloody napkins on two of his fingers.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (to waitress)
                                Excuse me . . .

The waitress walks right past.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (perturbed)
                                Well . . .
                                                           (turns to Jen)
                                So, what do you do?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I'm a graphic designer.

                                                                 JAY
                                Oh, is that like business cards and stationary
                                and stuff?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                It could be, but that's not what I do.  I do corporate
                                logos, TV bumpers, film credits, that kind of thing.

Jay isn't paying attention.  He's looking at his injured fingers.

                                                                 JAY
                                These damn things won't stop bleeding.
                                                           (looks up, annoyed)
                                And where the hell is the waitress?  What do we
                                gotta do, send up a flare?  So, like, if I needed
                                stationary, you could do it for me?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Yeah, I guess.  Do you need stationary?

                                                                 JAY
                                No.
                                                           (sticks his arm straight up)
                                Hello!  Jeez, usually the service is just fine here,
                                I don't know what's gotten into them?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                So, what do you do?

                                                                 JAY
                                I'm the assistant manager of a dinette store.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (uninterested)
                                Really?

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (smiles)
                                Yeah, it's not half as interesting as it sounds.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (smiles back)
                                Do people still buy dinette sets?

                                                                 JAY
                                Only the ones that want to eat at tables while
                                sitting in chairs.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Do you have any hobbies?

                                                                 JAY
                                I write.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Write what?

                                                                 JAY
                                I'm writing a novel.  Or, let me say, I'm rewriting
                                it.  It's already written.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (interested)
                                That's fascinating.  What's it about?

                                                                 JAY
                                Well, ostensibly, it's about Heinrich Himmler.  But
                                it's really about his best friend who ends up killing
                                him.  The theme is friendship and betrayal.  It begins
                                in 1933 when the National Socialists came into power
                                and --

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                -- National Socialists?

                                                                 JAY
                                The Nazis.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Oh.  So it's about World War Two?

                                                                 JAY
                                World War Two is just a sub-plot.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Sounds ambitious.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (smiles)
                                Thanks.
                                                           (his smile fades)
                                If we don't get served soon we'll miss the movie.
                                                           (looks up)
                                Hey!  Could we get some service around here or
                                what?!!

Jen winces.

EXT. MOVIE THEATER - NIGHT

A green and white Checker cab pulls up in front of a movie theater.  Jay and Jen get out of the cab and head over to the box office.

INT. THEATER LOBBY - NIGHT

Tickets in hand, Jay and Jen cross the lobby and pass a poster for Akira Kurasowa's KAGEMUSHA.

INT. AUDITORIUM - NIGHT

We hear the film's soundtrack: the sound of wind blowing and the occasional, grunted, monosyllabic word in Japanese.  Jay sits in the dark completely enraptured by the movie, his eyes wide, his mouth open.  Jen looks bored.  She glances over at Jay, then down at her watch, sighs, then looks back up at the screen.  Jen starts to get out of her seat.  Jay glances over, not wanting to look away from the screen.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (whispering)
                                Something wrong?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (whispering)
                                I've got to go to the bathroom.

Jay nods and turns back to the movie.  Jen stands and walks up the aisle.

INT. THEATER LOBBY - NIGHT

There are two closed doors leading into the auditorium.  Jen comes out the right door at the exact same moment that Pete comes out the left door.  They see each other and do double-takes.

                                                                 PETE
                                Jennifer?

Jen points at Pete indicating she knows him, then snaps her finger indicating she can't remember his name.  He helps her.

                                                                 PETE
                                Pete.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (sighs)
                                Pete Harold.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (corrects her)
                                Herman.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (confused)
                                Herman Harold?

                                                                 PETE
                                No, Pete Herman.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Right.  What're you doing here?


                                                                 PETE
                                I heard this was a good movie.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Me, too.

They both start to laugh.  Pete walks over to a bench and Jen follows.  They both sit down.

                                                                 PETE
                                How are you?  It's great seeing you.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I'm fine.  It's good to see you, too.  What's
                                happening?

                                                                 PETE
                                Well, I've actually tried to call you, but there was
                                a recording.  I called that number and got some
                                weird foreign guy.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Yeah, that was the guy I moved in with.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (quickly depressed)
                                Oh.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                But, I've already moved out.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (quickly happy)
                                Oh.  Where are you living now?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (shakes her head)
                                Well . . . I'm staying at my aunt's house, which
                                is completely impossible.  See, my parents moved
                                out of town, so I've got nowhere to go home to for
                                the first time in my life.  So, I guess I'm looking for
                                a place.

                                                                 PETE
                                Really?  Well, ya know, I have a two-bedroom
                                apartment and my asshole, metalhead roommate
                                just moved out last month, so, ya know, if you
                                want to move in, you're perfectly welcome.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (lighting up)
                                Really?  I'm interested.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (grinning)
                                You'll have to redecorate.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Big deal.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (curious)
                                You're moving in doesn't mean we can't date
                                while you're there, though, does it?



                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Well . . . no, I guess.  But if I move in it's strictly
                                as a roommate.

                                                                 PETE
                                Right, of course.  What do you say we start this
                                dating process right now, go over to Union Street
                                and get a drink?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I'm here with someone.  I'm on a date.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (embarrassed)
                                Oh.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                It's not serious, just a date.  Why don't you give
                                me your number and I'll call you.

                                                                 PETE
                                Sure.

Pete and Jen both write their numbers on the back of flyers and exchange them.  Jen stands.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I'll call you.  It was nice seeing you again, Pete.

                                                                 PETE
                                You, too, Jen.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                And thanks for the offer.

                                                                 PETE
                                Not a problem.  'Bye.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (smiles)
                                Sayonara.

Jen goes back into the auditorium.  Pete sits there for a moment grinning to himself.  Finally, he shrugs.

                                                                 PETE
                                Well, maybe I'll watch just a little more.

Pete goes back into the auditorium as well.

INT. AUDITORIUM - NIGHT

Pete walks down the aisle.  The wind is still blowing and there is still the occasional Japanese grunt.  Pete looks for Jen in the crowd.  He spots her, grins and waves.  Jen sees him and waves back.  The fellow beside her turns back toward the screen and Pete sees that it's Jay.  Pete's face goes stony.  He quickly turns and leaves.  Jen watches him go with a confused expression.  Jay is oblivious.

INT. PETE'S CAR - NIGHT

Pete's hand pounds the steering wheel.  He looks very pissed off.

                                                                 PETE
                                That really burns my ass!

EXT. MOVIE THEATER - NIGHT

Jay and Jen exit the theater.  Jay looks very pleased, Jen looks confused.  They walk along the sidewalk.

                                                                 JAY
                                I don't know what kept you so long in the
                                bathroom, but you missed the best part.  I
                                love that movie.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Are you friends with Pete Herman?

                                                                 JAY
                                Yeah, we're good friends, why?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I ran into him recently.  I was just curious.



                                                                 JAY
                                Pete and I have been friends since we were kids.
                                He's my best friend.  You couldn't find a nicer
                                guy if you tried.  So, you wanna get a cup of coffee
                                or something?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                No, I'm tired.  I'd like to go home if that's O.K.
                                with you?

                                                                 JAY
                                Sure, fine.  What's the matter?  You didn't like
                                the movie?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                No, it was great.  I'm just tired.

                                                                 JAY
                                Whatever you'd like.  So, what are you doing
                                tomorrow?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Well, I'm not sure.  I may have something.

                                                                 JAY
                                I'll call you.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (shrugs)
                                Well . . . All right.

EXT. BUS STOP - NIGHT

They have arrived at the bus stop.  A bus pulls up, stopping with a hiss of it's air brakes.

                                                                                                       DISSOLVE:

INT. JAY'S KITCHEN - EVENING

Jay sits at the kitchen table reading The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich and taking notes.  He puts the book down, picks up the telephone and dials.  The phone rings and rings, then the machine gets it.


                                                                 PETE'S VOICE
                                                           (O.S.; recorded)
                                Yeah, what do you want?

INT. PETE'S APARTMENT - EVENING

We see the answering machine on Pete's desk with its lights lit up and its tape spinning.  It beeps.  As we hear Jay's voice leaving a message our view moves away from the machine and roams across Pete's apartment where we see a number of cardboard boxes sitting on the floor.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Hey, motherfucker, just calling to see what's goin'
                                on?  Thought we might get together and, ya know,
                                have a meeting with Mr. Green.  So, give me a call
                                when you get in.  'Bye.

Our view stops at the front window, where, out in front of the building, Pete is helping Jen unload the boxes from her car.  They both grab as much as they can hold and carry it into the apartment.

They get inside and set the stuff down.  Winded, they both sit down.  Pete can't stop looking at Jen and grinning.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Do you have a washer and dryer?

                                                                 PETE
                                In the basement.  It takes quarters.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (Jen nods)
                                Good, I hate laundrymats, they seem so desperate.

                                                                 PETE
                                Be careful in the basement, though, there's giant
                                bugs from the Pleistocene era.
                                                           (grins)
                                So, for dinner, I'm going to make you my
                                specialty -- Chicken a la Herman Supreme, and
                                I bought a bottle of wine.  Two, as a matter of
                                fact.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                That's fine, but I'm still just here as a roommate.

                                                                 PETE
                                I know, I know.  That doesn't mean I can't try.
                                Besides, now I get to go out on dates without
                                leaving home.  Think of the money I'll save in
                                gas.
                                                           (Jen smiles.  Pete continues
                                                           conversationally)
                                So, uh, what were you doing out with Jay the other
                                night?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                You have a problem with that?

                                                                 PETE
                                No, no.  Don't get me wrong, Jay's a great guy, but
                                where did you meet him?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                You introduced us, don't you remember?

                                                                 PETE
                                I mean recently?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (stands up)
                                Oh.  At Kaye's party.

Jen grabs a box and walks out of the room.  Pete sees the light on the phone machine blinking.  He pushes the button and hears Jay's message.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Hey, motherfucker, just calling to see what's goin'
                                on?  Thought we might get together and, ya know,
                                have a meeting with Mr. Green.  So, give me a call
                                when you get in.  'Bye.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (angry)
                                I think my Gramma's gonna be sick for a while,
                                motherfucker!

INT. PETE'S SPARE ROOM - NIGHT

Jen stands in Pete's spare room holding a box and looking around in amazement.  The walls are completely covered with pictures of heavy metal musicians.

                                                                                                       DISSOLVE:

EXT. WOODED COURT - DAY

Our view tilts down from the sky to the wooded court to find Pete standing there by himself.  He kicks at some pebbles looking troubled.

After a moment, Jay's car comes driving up.  Pete doesn't move as Jay goes around the cul-de-sac and pulls up beside him.  Jay gets out of the car.

                                                                 JAY
                                Hey, man.

                                                                 PETE
                                Hey.  How ya doin'?

                                                                 JAY
                                O.K.  Where you been?

                                                                 PETE
                                Been?

                                                                 JAY
                                Yeah, for like the last two weeks?  I keep calling
                                and leaving messages and you don't call me back.
                                In fact, I don't know where anyone's been.  It's like
                                everybody went on vacation and forgot to tell me.
                                It's like a "Twilight Zone" episode.  So where've
                                you been?

Pete looks away, troubled.

                                                                 PETE
                                Well . . .

                                                                 JAY
                                Yeah?

                                                                 PETE
                                . . . I've been seeing Jen.

                                                                 JAY
                                You've been seeing her?  Where?

                                                                 PETE
                                What do you mean, where?

                                                                 JAY
                                Well, there's been no answer at her aunt's house
                                for a week.  Where have you seen her?

                                                                 PETE
                                Well . . . I've seen her in a number of places.
                                Like my place, for instance.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (eyes widening)
                                You're place.  Are you sleeping with her?

Pete pauses and bobs his head around like it's on a spring.

                                                                 PETE
                                Maybe I am, what's it to you?

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (furious)
                                You fucker!  You little fucking motherfucker!
                                How could you do this to me?  I was going out
                                with her!

                                                                 PETE
                                But I told you not to!  You went and did it anyway,
                                not even thinking about my feelings, so don't play so
                                pouty and hurt.  You stabbed me in the back without
                                a second thought and I'm your best friend.

                                                                 JAY
                                So now you're stabbing me back, huh?


                                                                 PETE
                                I'm not doing anything to you.  This is something
                                Jen and me are doing to each other.  She really likes
                                me, what can I say?  I didn't force her to move in.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (eyes widen again)
                                Move in?

                                                                 PETE
                                That's right.

                                                                 JAY
                                Jesus fuckin' Christ!  I'm losin' my mind!

                                                                 PETE
                                Hey, come on.  You and her only went out once,
                                and you didn't even have a very good time.

                                                                 JAY
                                I had a great time!

                                                                 PETE
                                Well, she didn't.  She doesn't like KAGLAMANCHA
                                and neither did I.

                                                                 JAY
                                                           (indignant)
                                Hey!  Fuck you!!  It's KAGEMUSHA and it's a great
                                fuckin' movie!  What do either of you know?  Besides,
                                she missed the best part!

                                                                 PETE
                                Jay, look, just accept it.  Jen and I are living together.
                                That's how it is.

Jay gets back in his car.

                                                                 JAY
                                Oh yeah?  Like hell I will!  Fuck you and fuck her!
                                                           (Jay turns the key and
                                                           gets nothing but a click)
                                And another thing, you owe me fifteen bucks!

Jay pops the hood release and gets out of the car.

                                                                 PETE
                                Oh, really?  As it turns out, I talked to Bill and that
                                bag was only sixty-five.  You over-charged me by
                                ten bucks.

Jay goes under the hood.

                                                                 JAY
                                All right, fine.  You still owe me five bucks.
                                Cough!

                                                                 PETE
                                I haven't got it, but I'll get it to you.

Jay sticks his hand into the engine -- ZZZING! -- the engine starts.

                                                                 JAY
                                Holy shit!!

He pulls his hand out and it's bleeding.  Pete starts to laugh.

                                                                 PETE
                                Are you all right?

Jay pushes his way past Pete and gets in his car.

                                                                 PETE
                                Come on, Jay.  Don't be like this.

Jay burns rubber and peels up the street, spraying gravel.

Pete is left standing by himself in a cloud of dust.  He waves the dust away and watches Jay's car disappears.

                                                                                                       DISSOLVE:

INT. PETE'S APARTMENT - DAY

Pete is getting dressed for work: black leather shoes, khaki pants, a V-neck sweater, a white shirt and a tie.  Once he's done he leaves the bedroom.

Pete steps into the living room and finds Jen sitting at the desk in front of her computer.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Pete, what exactly do you do?

                                                                 PETE
                                I'm an artist.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                I thought you worked for a petroleum company.

                                                                 PETE
                                I do.  But in my heart I'm an artist.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (exasperated)
                                Really?  And what is it you do for this petroleum
                                company?

                                                                 PETE
                                I'm one of their top sales representatives.

Jen nods, kind of impressed.

EXT. GAS STATION - DAY

Pete is pumping gas into a car.

                                                                 PETE
                                Would you like me to clean the windows?

We hear a customer's VOICE.

                                                                 VOICE
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Sure, and check the oil, too.

                                                                 PETE
                                You got it.

INT. GAS STATION - DAY

Pete comes into the station.  Sitting inside is BEAR, a big guy with a very long beard.  He is chain-smoking cigarettes.

                                                                 BEAR
                                So, you finally got a broad to move in with
                                you, eh, pal?  That's a big accomplishment.
                                How'd ya do it?

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (shrugs)
                                It just happened.

                                                                 BEAR
                                Did you lie to her about workin' in a gas station?

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (patiently)
                                No, Bear, I didn't.  She did it because she likes me.

                                                                 BEAR
                                Wow!  You mean there really is a broad in the
                                world that actually likes a guy that works in a
                                gas station.  I'm impressed.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (condescending)
                                What can I say, Bear, some guys got it and some
                                don't.  I guess she just respects me for who I am.
                                                           (a customer steps up
                                                           to the window)
                                . . . Hold on a second.
                                                           (Pete turns and finds
                                                           Jen standing there. He
                                                           blushes and stutters)
                                Uh, uh, uh, Jen.  Hi.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (flatly)
                                Hello, Pete.  So this is where you work?

                                                                 PETE
                                Yeah, come on in.

Jen comes inside.  Bear watches with amusement.  Jen looks around.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Is this the regional sales office?

                                                                 PETE
                                Uh, no, not really.  Jen, I'd like you to meet Bear.
                                Bear, Jen.

Bear plugs a butt in his face and shakes Jen's hand.

                                                                 BEAR
                                Lookin' good, hon.  What'cha doin' with a loser like
                                Pete?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (cold)
                                None of your business, weird-beard!
                                                           (to Pete)
                                Top sales representative?
                                                           (points at Bear)
                                Who's he?  The CEO?

                                                                 PETE
                                O.K.  I'm sorry.  I lied.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                But why didn't you just tell me the truth?

                                                                 PETE
                                I don't know.
                                                           (glances at Bear)
                                Uh, look, could we talk about this later?

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                Sure.  I mean, it doesn't matter to me anyway.
                                We're just roommates.  I don't care what you do.

                                                                 PETE
                                                           (leans toward Jen and
                                                           whispers)
                                You know, I really like you.  A lot.

                                                                 JENNIFER
                                                           (nods)
                                I'll take ten dollars on pump three.

Jen hands him a ten dollar bill.

                                                                 PETE
                                Right.  I'll see you at home when I get off.

Jen nods and goes out the door.  Pete punches up the gas purchase.  Pete turns and finds Bear staring at him, grinning.

                                                                 PETE
                                Up yours!

                                                                                                       DISSOLVE:

 

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