SCREEN:White letters on black background "October 31, 1992" SETTING:Lights rise on David's apartment, USL. AT RISE:DAVID primps nervously wile talking to JEREMY.
JEREMY He's never hit anybody outside of a boxing ring. Instead, he throws things onto the floor, but only unbreakable objects, just like the little girl in Wait Until Dark. The other night, we threw every unbreakable thing in the apartment across the room and then discovered one another in the debris. And get this. His stage name is Eduardo Cacciatore. But his real name is Bill Brown.
DAVID It's amazing what can happen at Jenny Craig. Do I look okay? Oh, God. I can't believe I'm nervous. All I keep thinking of is Matthew, Matthew, Matthew. What would he think about this? If he were still here, I imagine he'd be pissed. I was thinking about when we met. I was so inarticulate I can't imagine what he saw in me.
JEREMY Sincerity. He said you were able to talk about what was bothering you at the moment. You could share and not embellish. And you withheld things that were painful. He respected that because the people he's known always wore their personal suffering like a medal. He said He said he fell in love with you almost instantly. He told me this the next day. He was surprised you went into the woods with him.
DAVID That's cute. There I was going weak in the presence of beauty. He wasn't even aware of it. Of course, there was more to it. No one had ever grabbed my hand and ran with it. That astonished me. He astonished me. (Pause.) Is that him? (Beat) Neil, silly. He's here. Who did you think I meant?
JEREMY I don't know. Oh, well. I'm off. I've got a date with Eduardo. His place. He has all these shatterproof Rubbermaid products. I may not be into work for a few years. Tell Neil to get the muffler fixed. Don't do anything I wouldn't do.
DAVID This from a man who had a crush on his priest. (Jeremy exits. David checks himself out in the mirror. Knock. David gets the door and lets Neil in. He has candy, flowers and a large brown bag.)
NEIL Hello, Dear. Wait until you see what I've got. Oh, these are for you. (Gives him the candy and flowers.) We have (Takes out a smaller bag from the big one and turns the big one over.) Bagels of all Nations: Israel and the U.S. And Fried Peking Dumplings.
DAVID Hi, Honey. I'm fine. NEIL Stop me if I'm going too fast. But, I've been thinking. It's been two months, okay, you're right. Fifty nine-days since our first date. Well, since our first good one. I know we haven't seen each other much in the past few weeks. But, I've had time to think. I know. Alarm bells. Silence them. I'm not proposing marriage. I'm not proposing sex. I'm not objecting to it, mind you; but, I'm not proposing it. And I don't want things to go too fast, like my rate of speech right now. But, I do want a direction. I know how you feel. I'm confused too. But this is what I hope we both want. Let's eat, and then perform the romantic right of passage of buying clothes together. Seriously, David. I'm falling in love. I know I'm walking the plank when I say that. But I had to say it. You can have all the time you need to respond. But, I love you. (Pause) You're turn.
DAVID I love poppy seed bagels. And I love Peking Dumplings, especially the fried ones, even though the steamed ones are supposed to be better for you. And I still love Matthew. I may always be in love with him. He's on my mind a great deal still. The thing is, Mr. Neil McQuillan, so are you. I'm often reminded of how he'd do things like this all the time. It got on my nerves. I'd call him "inappropriately spontaneous." But his flaws weren't so tragic. His life was, but not him. To be honest, I was very afraid of you.
DAVID (cont'd) I didn't want to say anything wrong. There seem to be so many chinks in your armor. But, I realize that there is strength in that fragility. There's this inexplicable fortitude. I wish I had it. I feel love for you, but of the wrong amplitude. Not to say that that won't change. In fact, I can feel it shifting inside my heart right now. But I also feel like something's giving way. And I'm scared because I'm not sure I'm ready to let it. But, if it's direction you want, I'd have to say we're headed the right way.
NEIL How do we proceed? DAVID I'm open to suggestion. (Pause. Neil grabs two bagels and hands one to David. Neil leads David to the couch. They sit. Neil puts his bagel aside and places one hand on David's shoulder. Neil closes his eyes and kisses David gently on one cheek, then again on the other. He then places a gentle kiss on David's lips. David shows the slightest response. Neil backs off. Pause. David warily puts his arms around Neil. He nervously kisses him on the mouth. The kiss becomes increasingly more passionate. David drops his bagel and collapses into Neil.) (END OF SCENE)