Aly says quietly to Todd.

                                                                 ALY
                                                           (whispers)
                                I'll see you tonight.

                                                                 TODD
                                Great.  See ya later.
                                                           (to Crispin)
                                Mr. Crispin, good to see you.
                                                           (they shake hands)

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Todd.  Nice to see you.  Sit down.
                                                           (Todd sits)
                                That's one good-lookin' lady.  You're gonna
                                see her tonight, huh?

Crispin gives him a "You lucky son of a bitch" look.

                                                                 TODD
                                She's a friend.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I wish she was my friend.  So, how's it goin',
                                buddy-boy?

                                                                 TODD
                                Couldn't be better.  And you?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I'm gettin' there.
                                                           (he downs the rest
                                                           of his drink)
                                Have a drink?

Todd looks at his watch.

                                                                 TODD
                                It's a little early, but... What the hell.

Crispin raises his hand and snaps his fingers loud.  A perky young WAITRESS immediately appears.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                It's never too early for anything.  When you
                                get to be my age you'll understand that.

                                                                 WAITRESS
                                Yes, sir?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Two gin and tonics.  Light on the tonic.
                                                           (to Todd)
                                That okay?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (shrugs)
                                Fine.

The waitress writes it down, then turns to Todd and smiles.

                                                                 WAITRESS
                                Hi, Todd.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (looks up)
                                Hi, Sherry.

Todd looks back to Mr. Crispin who is leering at him.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                You dog.

                                                                 TODD
                                She's another friend.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I like your friends.  So, how's business?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (nods)
                                Good.  Steady.  I sold a house this morning.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                They closed?

                                                                 TODD
                                They will.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                You know that, huh?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (nods)
                                Yeah, I do.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (grins)
                                I'll bet you do.  A good salesman knows when
                                he's sold someone.  And you're a good sales-
                                man, Todd.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (shrugs)
                                Thanks.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Forget thanks, it's a fact.

The waitress brings their drinks.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Thanks, babe.
                                                           (to Todd)
                                So, how many houses is that this week?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (pauses)
                                Uh... It's the only one.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (surprised)
                                In a whole week?

                                                                 TODD
                                It's not a big buyer's market here.  You know
                                that.  We mainly deal in summer rentals.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I do know that, but even still.  One house a
                                week?

                                                                 TODD
                                In a good week.  I average twenty houses a
                                year.  That's not quite one every two weeks.
                                And generally most of the sales come down
                                between January and April, so I can sometimes
                                go more than a month without a sale.  Sometimes
                                two months.  You know all of this.  And just by
                                the way, I sell and rent more space here than
                                the next two Realtors combined.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I do know all of this.  I'm just trying to make
                                a point.
                                                           (downs his drink)
                                Want another?

Todd hasn't even started on his.

                                                                 TODD
                                No thanks.
                                                           (takes a sip)
                                What point?

Crispin snaps his fingers, holds up his glass and one finger.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                How would you like to sell a house everyday?
                                Maybe more than one a day?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (sighs)
                                That would be a lot of commissions.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                It sure would.  And I'm not talkin' forty to sixty
                                thousand dollar houses either.  I'm talkin' a
                                hundred and fifty to two hundred and fifty thousand
                                dollar houses.  Then you're lookin' at a lot of
                                commission.  How does that sound?

                                                                 TODD
                                It sounds... Profitable.  But you can't mean
                                here.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                I don't.

                                                                 TODD
                                Do you mean in the suburbs of Detroit?
                                Bloomfield Hills?

Crispin waves his hand.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Nah.  Houses don't sell that fast there, and
                                most of 'em are more'n two-fifty.  My house is
                                worth four hundred.

Crispin is getting bombed.

                                                                 TODD
                                Really?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Sure.  There's a house up the street from me
                                that's worth six if it's worth a cent.  Five thousand
                                square feet, tennis court, pool, the works.  The
                                ex-president of Ford lives there.  A buddy o' mine.
                                We golf together.  Guy can't chip worth a shit-

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (pleasantly interrupting)
                                -What about all these houses for sale?

The waitress brings Crispin a fresh drink.  As she's about to take the old one he grabs it and dumps the contents into the new one overflowing it.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Look out, tidal wave.  Thanks, hon.  Anyway, I'm
                                talkin' about L.A.  Los Angeles.  Where our company's
                                world headquarters is located.  Been there?

                                                                 TODD
                                When I was a kid I went to Disneyland once.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (confused)
                                That's in Florida, isn't it?

                                                                 TODD
                                That's Disneyworld.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (waves his hand)
                                Who gives a shit.  So, anyway, we've got housing
                                developments in and around L.A. comin' out our
                                ass.  And the schmucks at world headquarters
                                totally overestimated the market growth and
                                overbuilt like mad.  Now the market's gone soft
                                and they've got houses up the ying-yang.

                                                                 TODD
                                And they're still selling a house a day?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Shit, in total they're selling a lot more'n that.  But
                                you're right, not every salesman is selling one a
                                day.  Some aren't moving one a week.  And the
                                interest is killing 'em.  And that's where you come
                                in.  They've put out a call to all the district managers
                                to get their best people out to L.A. to bail their sorry
                                asses out.  I suggested you.

                                                                 TODD
                                You mean, you're not here about my proposal
                                for the industrial park and subdivision?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (disdainful)
                                Fuck no.  We're not interested in that, we've told
                                ya twenty times.  I want you to go to L.A.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (shakes his head)
                                I don't want to go to L.A.  I'm happy here.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Shit!  Don't kid me, pal, I know how much you
                                pull down.
                                                           (he points at Todd's drink)
                                Finish that up, you're way behind.
                                                           (he snaps his fingers
                                                           and holds up his drink
                                                           and two fingers)
                                How the hell can you be happy if you're not
                                netting fifty G's a year?  And you're not.

Todd finishes his drink and nods sadly.

                                                                 TODD
                                No, I'm not.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Goddamn right you're not.  And nobody can
                                really be happy on a cent less'n a hundred,
                                take my word for it.  Are you married?

                                                                 TODD
                                No.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                How old're you?

                                                                 TODD
                                Thirty-two.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                And you're not fuckin' married?  Shit, I was
                                married and had three kids when I was thirty-
                                two.  Why aren't you married?

The new drinks arrive.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (shrugs)
                                I don't know.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                You don't know.  Shit.  You're not married
                                'cause you can't afford it.  That's why.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (skeptical)
                                I'm not so sure about that.  I do pretty good, by
                                Cheboygan standards.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (cynical)
                                Cheboygan standards.  Jesus Christ!  All right,
                                so then why aren't you married?

                                                                 TODD
                                Well, my girlfriend doesn't want to, that's why.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Why not?

                                                                 TODD
                                She was married before and didn't like it.  And
                                now she just doesn't want to.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (seriously)
                                Let me explain something to you, Todd.  I
                                don't care what her attitude is or what her
                                reasons are, if you pulled down a hundred
                                thousand a year, she'd marry you.  Simple.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (sees the possibility)
                                You think so?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Definitely.  Let me give you a little fatherly
                                advice, Todd.  Take this job and get your ass
                                outta this podunk town or you're never gonna
                                get anywhere.  This is your big chance.  Remember,
                                when opportunity knocks...

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (nodding)
                                Right.

Crispin fishes in his pocket for his wallet, then snaps his fingers.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                If you want this job you better let me know
                                by Monday.  That's the deadline, then I'm
                                gonna get someone else.  Take my word for
                                this one, Todd, this'll be the smartest move of
                                your life.  I know.  I'm older'n you.
                                                           (the waitress arrives)
                                How much is it?

                                                                 WAITRESS
                                Fifteen-sixty, sir.

Crispin hands her a twenty.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Here.  Keep it.

                                                                 WAITRESS
                                Thank you, sir.

Crispin points at Todd's drink.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                And finish your drink, boy.  If you're ever
                                gonna get ahead in this business you gotta
                                learn how to drink with the big boys.

                                                                 TODD
                                What about lunch?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                We just had it.  I still gotta stop in Saginaw
                                and Flint.  Let's hit it.

Todd takes a last gulp and stands.  He follows Mr. Crispin to the door.

EXT. STEAK & ALE - DAY

Mr. Crispin and Todd come out the door of the restaurant.  Crispin is clearly staggering.  They start to head in different directions, Crispin weaving his way toward a huge, gold Cadillac Fleetwood.

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                Monday, buddy-boy.  Don't let me down.

                                                                 TODD
                                Yes, sir.  Uh, do you think you should be
                                driving?

                                                                 CRISPIN
                                                           (offended)
                                You think I'm drunk?  Shit, pal, you've never
                                seen me drunk.  Never will.

Crispin gets into his car, starts it up, backs out at 30 mph, comes to a screeching halt, then peels out of the parking lot in a cloud of blue burnt rubber smoke.  He pulls out onto the road, having just gone through a stop sign, nearly gets into an accident, then screams away up the road at seventy.

Todd stands in the cloud of blue smoke and waves the smoke away from his face.

INT. TODD'S CAR - DAY

He gets into his car, looks at his briefcase sadly, then tosses it in back.  He opens the glove box and takes out the bottle.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (to himself)
                                I don't know how to drink, huh?

He downs the remainder of the bottle in a single gulp.  He tosses the bottle back into the glove box.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (to himself)
                                Is that what Laura wants and just doesn't
                                know it?

Todd sighs, pulls up to the stop sign, stops, looks both ways, then slowly pulls out onto the road.

EXT. VACANT LOT - DAY

Todd sits on the hill of the vacant lot looking wistfully around.  He reaches down, digs out a handful of dirt, crumbles it around in his hand and lets it slip through his fingers.

At the bottom of the hill a red Ford Escort pulls up behind Todd's car.  Laura gets out and walks up the hill.

Todd smiles as he watches her approach.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Hi.

                                                                 TODD
                                Hi.  How'd you find me.

                                                                 LAURA
                                I stopped by your office and Eileen didn't
                                know where you were 'cause she called the
                                Steak & Ale and Aly said you'd left an hour
                                ago.  So, where else would you be?

                                                                 TODD
                                Pull up a chair.

Laura sits down on the ground beside him.  She looks him in the eyes.

                                                                 LAURA
                                You look swacked.

                                                                 TODD
                                You should see the other guy.  I had lunch
                                with my district manager.  I had one drink for
                                each of his three.  And then he drove three
                                hundred miles back to Detroit.

                                                                 LAURA
                                I'm glad I didn't have to get onto I-75 today.
                                What's wrong?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (sighs)
                                Mr. Crispin offered me a top sales position in
                                L.A.  I could easily make three or four times as
                                much as I'm making now, maybe even more,
                                plus it's a big move up in the company.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Well, that's great.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (seriously)
                                Is it?  I'd have to move away.

                                                                 LAURA
                                But it's a big opportunity.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (looks at her)
                                You really think so?

                                                                 LAURA
                                Sure.  You'll never make that kind of money
                                here.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (searching)
                                Does that matter?

                                                                 LAURA
                                Well, of course it does.

                                                                 TODD
                                But what about us?

                                                                 LAURA
                                                           (smiles)
                                We'll always have Paris.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (discouraged)
                                I'm not kidding, this is important.  If I move
                                away I might never come back.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Then that's just how things were meant to
                                be.  I knew it would end sooner or later.

                                                                 TODD
                                It doesn't have to.  Why don't we just get
                                married and move into your great big old
                                house and live happily ever after?

                                                                 LAURA
                                                           (shakes her head;
                                                           very seriously)
                                I don't want to get married again.  Don't base
                                your plans on me.

                                                                 TODD
                                So then what we have means nothing to you?

                                                                 LAURA
                                It's not like that.  I like you a lot.  And if you're
                                here it'll just go on the way it is.  But I'm very
                                happy with myself and I don't want to screw
                                that up.

Todd considers for a second, then...

                                                                 TODD
                                That's it.  I'm gonna use the L-word.

                                                                 LAURA
                                                           (quickly)
                                No, don't.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (honestly)
                                Why not?  It's true.

                                                                 LAURA
                                                           (definitely)
                                Because the minute that comes up the
                                relationship ends.  That's one thing I know.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (exasperated)
                                Not for everybody.  Not for most people.

                                                                 LAURA
                                No, just for me.

                                                                 TODD
                                I don't know what to say.  I can't make you
                                love me.  So I guess I'll take the job.

                                                                 LAURA
                                It's the sign I was looking for.  You'll leave
                                and we'll both move on.

                                                                 TODD
                                I really think you're wrong.

                                                                 LAURA
                                We'll see.  I've gotta get back to work.  I'll
                                see you tonight.

                                                                 TODD
                                Right.

Laura leans over and kisses him.  It's a long kiss.  Todd's hands are in his lap.  Finally, he reaches up for her and that's when she pulls away.  Todd is left with his hands in the air.

Laura walks down the hill, gets in her car drives away.

Todd watches her go, then sighs.

                                                                 TODD
                                Maybe she's right.  What do I know?  Maybe
                                I'm kidding myself.  Just 'cause I like to be
                                with her and look at her and sleep with her,
                                doesn't necessarily mean I love her, does it?

Todd shrugs.

INT. DECADE 31 OFFICE - DAY

Todd sits at his desk drinking a cup of coffee and telling Eileen the story.

                                                                 TODD
                                ...And then he went careening into traffic
                                and drove away.  So what do you think?

                                                                 EILEEN
                                                           (smiling)
                                I think it's marvelous.  And with world head-
                                quarters being right there you're bound to
                                move up in the company much faster.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (explaining)
                                But look, it's not that I joined this company
                                because I cared about the company; I care
                                about real estate; houses; land.  This real
                                estate.  Decade 31 just happened to be the
                                only company in town.  See?

                                                                 EILEEN
                                I do see, but a good salesman can sell
                                anything.  And this was great training,
                                because it's an depressed market.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (nods)
                                Yeah, that's true.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                Don't you want to make $200,000 a year?

                                                                 TODD
                                I do.  I mean, I never thought I did, but I guess
                                I do.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                Of course you do.  Everyone does.

Todd seriously considers this.

EXT. MAIN STREET - DAY

Todd walks up Main Street with a thoughtful expression, his brow furrowed.  He goes in the opposite direction he took earlier.  He passes The Huron Furniture Company and Dick and Chris are hanging around out front smoking cigarettes.  They see Todd and are taken aback.

                                                                 DICK
                                Whoa!  Todd's not smiling.  What's the
                                deal?

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (seriously)
                                What do you guys think about L.A.?

Dick and Chris look at each other.

                                                                 DICK
                                Good bud.

                                                                 CHRIS
                                Yeah.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (confused)
                                Beer?

                                                                 DICK
                                No, man.  Hooter.  Zeet.  Combustibles.

He pantomimes smoking a joint.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (understands)
                                Oh, well, that's important.
                                                           (to himself)
                                Look who I'm asking?

                                                                 CHRIS
                                You goin' to L.A.?

                                                                 TODD
                                Maybe.

                                                                 CHRIS
                                Send us back some.

Todd keeps walking.

                                                                 TODD
                                Yeah, sure.  And some automatic weapons,
                                too.  I'll make $200,000 in my first week.  And
                                isn't that the point?  Make as much money as
                                fast as you can?

Chris and Dick both look at each other and nod their heads.

                                                                 CHRIS & DICK
                                                           (simultaneously)
                                Definitely.

INT. BETTER BUSINESS EQUIPMENT - DAY

Todd stands in the office supply store waiting patiently for Ed to get off the telephone.

                                                                 ED
                                                           (into phone)
                                ...No, not next week, tomorrow!  You're
                                two months overdue.
                                                           (listens)
                                I know there's a recession on, that's why I
                                need the money.
                                                           (listens)
                                ...Fine. ...Great. ...Bye.

Ed hangs up.

                                                                 ED
                                Okay.  L.A.  Well, Jesus, Todd, I'm going
                                broke here and you wanna know if I'd rather
                                be making $200,000 a year?  What kind of
                                question is that?

                                                                 TODD
                                A silly one, I guess.

                                                                 ED
                                F.Y.I., anyone that makes over $150,000 a
                                year is in the top 2% on the wage scale.  The
                                other 98% of us are dying.

                                                                 TODD
                                I don't make $150,000 a year and I don't feel
                                like I'm dying.

                                                                 ED
                                That's 'cause you're single.  You're a lucky
                                guy.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (cynical)
                                Yeah, being single has always made me
                                feel lucky.  You know, I hate the way married
                                people pretend like it's better being single.
                                Being single at thirty-two sucks the big one.

                                                                 ED
                                                           (leering)
                                Being single in L.A. with $200,000 a year
                                might just be okay.

Todd considers this very seriously.

EXT. THE HOLMAN HOUSE - DUSK

The Holman's family house is a small, wooden house a bit out of town, set back in the woods.  The large front yard is very well-tended with flower beds everywhere.  The many species of flowers are all dying now.  Todd's car sits in the front drive behind a ten year old, yellow Chevy Nova.

EXT. HOLMAN'S BACKYARD - DUSK

The Holman's backyard is quite large, surrounded by thick woods.  The last golden rays of sunlight filter through the colorful autumn leaves.  There are a multitude of fruit trees, plants, shrubs, vines and flowers.  MR. HOLMAN is 66, has white hair, is in pretty good shape (with a little gut and a red nose) and is very busy pruning trees.  MRS. HOLMAN is 61, has brown hair streaked with white, is attractive and slim and looks like she's worked hard her whole life.  She is making cuttings of her flowers.  They both wear work gloves and windbreakers and are busy as bees.  Todd follows behind one then the other and is made to hold things as they talk.

                                                                 MR. H
                                Well, big guy, it sounds like the opportunity
                                of a lifetime.  To make a $200,000 in a year,
                                it's incredible.  When I retired from the U.S.
                                Postal Service after twenty-five years I was
                                making twenty-two five.  I'da sold both my
                                kids and my wife into slavery and worked in
                                a rock quarry for a hundred grand.

                                                                 TODD
                                So then you're for it?

                                                                 MR. H
                                Abso-Goddamn-lutely.  You don't want to
                                stay in this crummy little backwater the rest
                                of your life.  Join the navy and see the world.

                                                                 MRS. H
                                Oh, Chuck, you're such a hypocrite.  If anyone
                                dared make a disparaging remark about
                                Cheboygan in front of you you'd tear their
                                eyes out, but you'll run it down at the drop of
                                a dime.

                                                                 MR. H
                                A hat.  And I can do whatever I damned well
                                please.  I'm free, and over twenty-one.

                                                                 MRS. H
                                Way over.  When you were twenty-one
                                Michigan still belonged to the Indians.

                                                                 MR. H
                                                           (waves his fist)
                                One of these days, Alice.  Bang, zoom to
                                the moon.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (interjecting)
                                What is this?  A vaudeville routine?  This is
                                my life I'm talking about.  What do you think,
                                Mom?

                                                                 MRS. H
                                It's entirely up to you, Todd.  If it's something
                                you feel you've got to do then you should do
                                it.

                                                                 MR. H
                                Damn right.  A man's gotta do what a man's
                                gotta do.

Todd considers it all, then shakes his head and sighs deeply.

EXT. THE BLIND PIG SALOON - NIGHT

The Blind Pig Saloon is a storefront bar on Main Street with the cryptic announcement above the door, "World Headquarters."  We can hear the sound of a televised basketball game coming from within.

                                                                 SPORTSCASTER (V.O.)
                                ...He brings it up the court, stops at the top
                                of the key and waits for the Pistons to get
                                into position...

INT. BLIND PIG - NIGHT

The Blind Pig is a small sports bar with a zillion photographs on the walls and a canoe hanging from the ceiling.  There are a multitude of TV's all around.  At a long table in the back, all by himself, sits Todd holding a mug of beer.  He has a pitcher of beer beside him with six unused mugs.  Todd looks around expectantly, sighs and looks back at the game.

                                                                 TODD
                                My friends.  Fair-weather fans, one and all.

The Pistons score a basket.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (excited)
                                All right!  Do it Pistons!
                                                           (looks around again;
                                                           his smile fades)
                                Missin' a good game, too.  Nobody gives a
                                damn about me here.

Todd downs his beer and pours another one.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (to himself)
                                I'll make a lot of money, go out with good-
                                lookin' babes, buy a nice car.  It'll be great.
                                Can't live my whole life in this silly little back-
                                water.

Todd nods with some assurance and sips his beer.  He looks up and Chris and Dick come walking up.  The both look buzzed.

                                                                 TODD
                                                           (smiles)
                                Hey, guys.

                                                                 CHRIS
                                Hey, Todd.

                                                                 DICK
                                How're the Pistons doin'?

                                                                 TODD
                                Up by eight at the half.

                                                                 CHRIS
                                All right!

                                                                 TODD
                                Sit down.  Anchor yourself to the planet Earth.
                                Have a beer.

                                                                 DICK
                                Don't mind if we do.

Dick and Chris take off their jackets, pull up chairs and pour themselves beers.
Eileen, Todd's secretary comes walking up holding a Martini.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                Todd.  Fellas.

Chris and Dick nod.

                                                                 TODD
                                Hi, Eileen.  Nice to see you.  Sit down.

Todd holds a chair for her and she sets down her drink and takes off her coat.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                Now, what are we watching?  Football or
                                baseball?

                                                                 TODD
                                Basketball.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                And that's the Lions?

                                                                 TODD
                                The Pistons.

                                                                 EILEEN
                                Got it.

She sips her Martini.

Ed and his very pregnant wife, JEANINE, come walking up.  Todd stands and smiles.

                                                                 TODD
                                Look out, it's an incredibly pregnant lady.

                                                                 JEANINE
                                Hi, Todd.

Todd and Jeanine kiss.

                                                                 TODD
                                I can hardly get to you.

Ed and Todd shake hands.

                                                                 ED
                                Whose winning?

                                                                 TODD
                                Pistons by eight.

                                                                 ED
                                Excellent.

Aly and the cute waitress, Sherry, from Steak & Ale both come walking in looking great.  Chris and Dick check them out.

                                                                 ALY
                                Hi everybody.

                                                                 SHERRY
                                Hi.

Todd stands and hugs Sherry, then Aly.  He whispers to her.

                                                                 TODD
                                I'm glad you came.

                                                                 ALY
                                Well, "L.A. LAW's" a rerun, so...

                                                                 TODD
                                Have a beer.

He pours them both a beer.

Just then Mr. and Mrs. Holman come in.  Todd sees them and waves.

                                                                 TODD
                                Mom.  Dad.  Over here.

Mr. and Mrs. Holman walk up and everybody says hi.

Todd looks toward the door expectantly, then looks away.  He sighs and shakes his head.  He looks back at the door and there is Laura.  Todd grins happily.  Laura sees him and starts over.

Laura sits down beside Todd.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Hi.

                                                                 TODD

                                Hi.  I'm glad you came.

                                                                 LAURA
                                I said I would.

                                                                 TODD
                                I know.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Who's winning?

                                                                 TODD
                                Pistons by eight.

                                                                 LAURA
                                Great.  Todd...?

                                                                 TODD
                                Yeah?

                                                                 LAURA
                                Will you come over tonight?

                                                                 TODD
                                Yeah.

                                                                 LAURA
                                OK.  Good.  And Todd?

                                                                 TODD
                                Yeah.

                                                                 LAURA
                                I'll miss you.

Todd looks at Laura for a long moment like he's going to say something, but doesn't.  He's said it all.  He puts his arm around Laura's shoulder and squeezes her.  She snuggles up next to him.

Todd looks up the table and sees all of his friends smiling and laughing together.  Todd grins contentedly, then glances up at the TV.

                                                                 SPORTSCASTER (V.O.)
                                ...We'll return to the Pistons and the Clippers
                                at the Los Angeles Sports Arena in just a
                                moment...

CLOSE-UP TELEVISION SET

We see a day, exterior, aerial shot of the Los Angeles Sports Arena, then a variety of shots of L.A.: downtown, Melrose, Hollywood Boulevard, then finally...

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