KEEPING UP WITH THE DEVERAUXES By Jennifer-Lynn D'Anna EPISODE 78
SCENE ONE: EXT. HORTON-DEVERAUX HOME
JACK is walking up the walk, whistling a tune from "Peter and the Wolf". As he approaches the door, he goes to put the key in the lock but instead peeks into the window at JENNIFER, who is sitting on the couch, reading. He smiles widely but as he peers in closer to what she's reading, his face turns to worry.
JENNIFER, sitting on the couch, oblivious to JACK outside, reading over the papers she stole from her father. She is in deep thought and isn't quite understanding them.
JENNIFER: (voiceover) I have no idea what this means. Maybe Jack was right, maybe I shouldn't get involved. (brushing it off) Nah. Maybe I should've taken Latin classes in high school.
JACK, quickly opening the door and walking in, hoping to catch her in the act. Hearing him, she jumps and stuffs the papers under the seat cushion.
JACK: (animated, trying to lure her to tell the truth) You wouldn't believe the day I had!
JENNIFER: (sarcastic) You? (nervous, trying to cover) I mean, I wouldn't.
JACK: (squinting his eyes at her cat-ate-the-canary look) No, you wouldn't. (sitting down next to her on the sofa) It's a tough, tough world out there, Miss Horton, let me tell you that. The kids with their loud music and their hair (noticing her discomfort)...What, am I boring you?
JENNIFER: (nervous) No...do I look bored?
JACK: Not exactly. Now that I think about it, though, you do look a little flustered.
JACK: Yes, flustered. As in uncomfortable, a little on edge.
JENNIFER: I know what flustered means, Jack.
JACK: Why do you look so flustered, Jennifer? (toying) Because if I didn't know any better, I'd think you were hiding something.
JENNIFER: Hiding something? Why would I hide something?
JACK: I don't know. You tell me.
JENNIFER: Tell you what?
JACK: Why you are hiding something.
JENNIFER: I'm not.
JACK: Not going to tell me or not hiding something.
JENNIFER: The former. I mean, the latter.
JACK: Which is it-the latter or the former?
JENNIFER: The latter and the former. I'm not hiding anything, Jack. (laughing uncomfortably) Why would I be?
JACK: (getting up) You're right. Why would you be hiding anything? (pulling her up from the sofa and taking her by the hands) Have I told you how proud I am of you lately?
JENNIFER: (swallowing hard and looking over to the sofa) Proud?
JACK: Yes, proud. Elated because you did something. Really, Jennifer, should I have gotten you a dictionary for Christmas?
JENNIFER: No, it's just....why are you proud of me, Jack? (her eyes darting to the sofa)
JACK: Why? How can you ask that? I'm proud of you because you haven't done any snooping. To be honest, I never thought you could do it, but here you are, actually avoiding danger. (laying it on thick) I've never been so proud in my life.
JENNIFER: You haven't?
JACK: I haven't. (beat) I am so proud of you that I'm going to call Maggie right now and reserve a table for two at Tuscany (walking to the phone quickly). We can celebrate.
JENNIFER looks absolutely ill at this thought.
JENNIFER: No, Jack, don't.
JACK: Don't? Jennifer, I thought you liked the fare at Tuscany? I mean, it's not Wings, but...
JENNIFER: No, you're right, I love the food there...it's just...
JACK: Are you feeling alright? I've noticed you've been a bit peckish at the dinner table as of late.
JENNIFER: I'm...I'm fine. I just thought...I thought we'd maybe make our own dinner. Abby's at a sleepover and...Jack, we could make that chicken you like so much.
JACK: We could but...but I think Tuscany would be much better. You could put on a nice dress-
JENNIFER: I could put one on here.
JACK: And waste it on just me? No, I want to show the whole world that Jennifer Rose Horton is mine.
JENNIFER: Why? I mean, I'd really rather have chicken, Jack. Then maybe we could...we could...
JACK: (smiling) Oh, I see...Well, then, we'll have chicken. (sitting down on the sofa and opening the paper to read it) What?
JENNIFER: Um...I thought you could help me...with the chicken.
JACK: Oh, you need my help?
JENNIFER: It would be nice.
JACK: Well, then...I guess I'll help.
Smiling, they both head into the kitchen. As soon as they open the door and walk in, he stops.
JACK: You know, I left my pap-(going to head back out the door)
JENNIFER: Jack-(rushing through the door following him)
They both dive for the sofa, her landing on top of him, who has pulled the sofa cushion off, revealing the papers.
SCENE TWO: INT. HORTON-DEVERAUX LIVING ROOM
JENNIFER, still sitting on JACK's back, looks very guilty.
JENNIFER: You can't leave well enough alone, can you, Jack?
JACK: Me? (turning over and pushing her softly to the floor and showing her one of the pages) You're the one who couldn't leave well enough alone. And to think, I was going to buy you dinner.
JENNIFER: You were not. You came in here trying to get me to spill it, Jack.
JACK: So what if I did? You didn't spill anything.
JENNIFER: Did you honestly think I was going to?
JACK: Of course not. Jennifer, I told you how dangerous this was.
JENNIFER: Jack, I can't even understand it, it's some sort of puzzle in Latin.
JACK: Riddle, actually, but that's beside the point. You told me that you weren't going to get involved.
JENNIFER: What else was I going to do? Sit here and bake cookies while you risk life and limb?
JACK: Yes. There's no risking anything right now. It's just the figuring out stage...why am I telling you this?
JENNIFER: Because you always do. No matter how many times you tell me to not get involved, I always do.
JACK: (growing serious) I should've never said anything.
JENNIFER: No, Jack, I'm glad you did. I'm glad you told me about my father.
JACK: Are you really?
JENNIFER: Yes. It meant a lot. If you let me help out, it would mean a lot too.
JACK: I...I can't do that, Jennifer. I don't even want to be helping out. You understand that, correct?
JENNIFER: (thick with emotion) I guess I do.
JACK: I mean it. No more snooping, no more hiding things under sofa cushions or the like. We'll find something else to keep your mind preoccupied.
Just then, the front door opens and JO and VERN walk in.
VERN: (seeing JACK and JENNIFER on the floor) What's this, a pow-wow?
OUT on JACK and JENNIFER, smiling embarrassingly.
SCENE THREE: INT. HORTON-DEVERAUX LIVING ROOM
JO: (joining VERN in the living room) What, the sofa's not good enough for the two of you?
JACK: (getting up) Very funny. (beat) Jennifer and I were just...just looking for change. You know, rent's due and all and since we are not gainfully employed...
JO: (reaching for her purse) Do you need money, son? I don't have much, but-
JACK: (pushing her checkbook back into her purse and chuckling nervously) No...no we're not in complete dire straits yet. (beat, trying to change the subject) Besides, you have a wedding to pay for. How was the wedding planner visit anyway?
Behind him, JENNIFER puts the sofa cushions back on and JO and VERN sit down.
JO: (sighing) Useless. That woman knew nothing about wedding planning.
JACK: Sounds like someone's in the wrong business.
JO: No, she knew about wedding planning alright...of the rich and famous.
JACK: (wistful) Ah, weddings and funerals, the meat and potatoes of the enormously wealthy. (noting JENNIFER'S look) What? I was the son of a senator, after all.
VERN: What Jo means is that the woman just didn't understand us or didn't want to for that matter. She wanted us to have this whole theme ceremony, complete with live fish in bowls on the tables and all.
JACK and JENNIFER cringe at this thought.
JO: (squeezing VERN'S hand) So Vern and I have decided to elope. (smiling widely, waiting for a reaction)
JACK: Elope? What kind of a couple elopes?
JENNIFER: (smiling evilly) You and Eve did it.
JACK: Oh, yes, Bundt Cake. Please refrain from mentioning that unholy union in my presence. (shuddering) I wonder how her and Francoise are anyway.
JENNIFER: I'm sure they're fine. (to JO and VERN) Jo, have you thought about planning your own wedding? People do it all the time.
JO: Oh, Jennifer, I wouldn't know the first thing about planning a wedding. Me and Duke, well, we just married at the courthouse.
JENNIFER: (sitting next to her) Now, you don't mean that. Surely you helped Adrienne with hers and Justin's.
JO: Oh no. That was all the Kiriakises. They had an entire staff plan out their wedding.
JACK: (to JENNIFER) Meat and potatoes, I tell you.
JENNIFER: (ignoring him) Then what about Steve and Kayla's?
JO: No, that was all the Bradys. (beat) I did help him rent the boat, though.
JENNIFER: See, that's a start. I'm sure you can do this, Jo. You can do practically anything yourself nowadays with books and the Internet.
JO: (sheepishly) Do you really think I could?
JACK: (seeing a golden opportunity and putting his arm around JENNIFER) Of course she does. In fact, I have a wonderful idea. Since Jennifer is not otherwise preoccupied, I'm sure she'd be happy to take you through the planning project, from engagement party to bouquet tossing. (smiling cattily) Isn't that right, Jennifer?
OUT on JENNIFER, unhappy about JACK'S idea.
SCENE FOUR: INT. DEVERAUX LIVING ROOM
JO: (noticing the tension and laughing to break it) No, I couldn't ask her to do that.
JACK: No, why couldn't you? She's obviously very bored right now and I'm sure there's nothing she'd like more than to help out a loved one, especially since she has nothing to keep her mind on right now.
JENNIFER: (sighing) Jo, I'd love to help.
JO: (face lighting up) You would? (grabbing her hands) Oh, Jennifer, this is so wonderful. We'll have so much fun. (getting up) I'm going to run upstairs and grab all those bridal magazines I bought and...I'm just so excited.
She exits and JENNIFER looks to JACK, who's extremely happy.
VERN: Jenny-Girl, it means a lot to us. It really does.
JENNIFER: (smiling) I know.
There is a brief moment of silence. Feeling the tension, VERN gets up to go to the kitchen.
VERN: Well, I'm going to get me a little orange juice. Anybody else want some?
JACK and JENNIFER speak at the same time.
JENNIFER: (overlapping) No thanks.
JACK: (overlapping) I'll be there in a minute.
VERN tosses them a look and then exits. After he is gone:
JENNIFER: I hope you're happy now.
JACK: Never been more so in my life.
JENNIFER: I...I can't believe you.
JACK: (playing innocent) What? I did nothing wrong. You, obviously were very bored and I figured-
JENNIFER: I wasn't bored, Jack.
JACK: You weren't? Is that why you were spending your leisure time putting your nose where it doesn't belong?
JENNIFER: (getting up and straightening the magazines on the table) That's it, Jack. How do you know where my nose doesn't belong?
JACK: Have you ever thought that I might be right?
JENNIFER: No...yes...I don't know. I just feel useless, that's all.
JACK: (sighing) I know you do. Maybe helping Jo will be a good thing for the both of you.
JENNIFER: How do you figure? My mind will still be wherever you are.
JACK: But your body wouldn't. What good's your mind if you have no body to carry it around?
JO comes running down the stairs with magazines.
JO: (excited) Jennifer, I found these. Oh my, this is going to be so much fun (seeing their looks). Oh goodness, am I interrupting something?
JENNIFER: (overlapping) Yes. (his answer registers) I mean, no. Jack was just about to go into the kitchen to talk with Vern so that you and I had time to get down to business.
JACK: (relieved that she's complying) Yes, I was. Now, if you'll excuse me. (they lock eyes for a moment and JACK walks to the door, only turning back when he realizes what he forgot. He reaches for the papers just as JENNIFER does) Oh no...I think I'll be taking those.
She throws him a look of disdain as he exits.
JO: What was that all about?
JENNIFER: (making light) Oh...nothing. Nothing at all. (sitting down) Now, show me what you've got so far..
VERN is sitting at the table, drinking o.j. and reading the paper when JACK walks in.
VERN: What was that all about?
JACK: (looking back towards the door) That, my friend, was brilliant thinking. Oh yes, sometimes I'm too good.
OUT on JACK, laughing at his own brilliance and VERN, thoroughly lost.
END OF EPISODE 78
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