The Dance Transcript

The Dance was an actual episode of Roswell, written to be the 4th episode.
So it would have aired instead of Leaving Normal.

It was never filmed though. The WB PTB apparently weren't happy with where the
show was going and wanted to change directions.


Scene 1



LIZ PARKER:, 16, alone on her roof. She writes in her diary.

(curled up in pajamas)
October 27, 1999. Here's what I'm noticing about high school. No--life. You have all these ideas about how things are supposed to be. Friends, sex, teachers, parents. And the thing about it is... they never are. Maybe the trick is trying to live in the moment; not have too many expectations.

Scene 2


CLOSE ON a set of running shoes, hitting the track. HEAR the sound of someone's labored, even breath as each foot rhythmically hits the pavement over and over again.

WIDEN to reveal MAX EVANS, (wife beater and running shorts) jogging around the periphery of the football field. He is followed closely by KYLE VALENTI, who pulls ahead and falls in next to him. Step for step they eye each other. Max increases his pace and Kyle does the same.

ANGLE ON : Liz, MARIA DELUCA, ISABEL EVANS and VANESSA MARTINEZ, an attactive classmate, doing calisthenics on the football field. MISS WELLS, an uninspired P.E. teacher, drones on.

MISS WELLS: and one and two and one and... Ms. Deluca. Fundamental rule of physical fitness: it involves actual movement of the body.

MARIA: (I'm moving)

LIZ's POV of Max. She can't take her eyes off him.

All expectations do is build false hope. Because even when, by some freaky twist of fate, things turn out better than you thought they would, you still want to have a mini-stroke when you realize that nothing--is ever--what it seems.
(still staring at Max Evans)

WIDE ON Max and Kyle, still running. Their pace has steadily increased. A clear competition is underway.

MISS WELLS: Keep going, girls. One and two and one and two...

MARIA: (to Liz, imitating)
General rule of life, Ms. Wells: being a gym teacher makes you an enormous, androgynous loser.

ISABEL's POV of two boys jogging near Max. They are STU WELDON, a bleached-out blonde and TED GREEN, a pumped-up jock with a ponytail. Stu passes Isabel.

STU: Hey Isabel.

ISABEL: Hey, Stu. Good hair.

CLOSER ON: Max and Kyle. They are neck in neck, sprinting now. Both have their eyes on the finish line. Kyle pulls ahead. Max keeps up. Max pulls ahead. Kyle keeps up. They cross the line at exactly the same time, then slow down and double over, catching their breath.

RESUME SCENE. Liz has seen the whole thing. Vanessa notices Liz watching the boys.

VANESSA: How cute is he?

LIZ: (surprise) Who?

VANESSA: Max Evans.

Liz is speechless.

VANESSA: (cont'd)
I know I've only been here a few months, but, I've scoped out every guy in this school and he--is definitely--it.

Off Liz, who looks at Vanessa, dumbstruck, and then back at Max. She's a deer caught in the headlights.





Scene 3



SHERIFF VALENTI, alone in his office, lost in thought. He stares into the file drawer which once contained the confiscated 1959 murder photos and mystery key. A FLASH of white light (a la the Roswell pilot) and we

an INSERT SHOT from Episode 1 (scene 16) of Valenti depositing the now missing key into a thermos for safe keeping.

RESUME SCENE. Valenti slams the drawer closed in frustration. He paces, goes to this desk and sits.

Another FLASH of white light and we SMASH CUT TO:

An INSERT SHOT from Episode 1 (scene 73) of Valenti; discovering the key is missing.

RESUME SCENE. Valenti sits back in his chair, determined to piece together the puzzle.

A brief KNOCK and DEPUTY BLACKWOOD opens the door.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: Excuse me, Sheriff. (pointing) Maintenance needs you to unlock your window gate. They're going to replace it tomorrow.

Valenti removes a set of keys from his belt and approaches the window. He unlocks the inner lock and slides the glass to one side. He grabs the gate and rattles it, checking to make sure it is secure. He takes another key from his belt, unlocks the gate, and slides it back.

ANGLE ON: the window sill and the extended window ledge which contains an obvious MUDDY FOOTPRINT.

VALENTI: What's this?

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD (approaching): What?

Valenti points to the ledge and Blackwood observes.

VALENTI: A footprint.

Another FLASH of white light and a SMASH CUT TO:

An INSERT SHOT from Episode 1 (scene 60). Valenti, Blackwood and Isabel in the hallway of the sheriff's station. They hear a noise from Valenti's office. Valenti and Blackwood eye each other.

RESUME SCENE. Blackwood is studying the print.


Yet another FLASH fo white light and a SMASH CUT TO:

An INSERT SHOT from Episode 1 (scene 64) of Valenti and Blackwood entering his empty office.

RESUME SCENE. Valenti is still staring at the window ledge.

VALENTI: Let's get Sanchez in here, get some pictures and a sample for the lab.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD (studying him): You think someone was trying to break in?

Valent grabs his jacket and hat.

VALENTI (moving): I don't know why else anyone would have their foot on my window ledge.


VALENTI (resentful): Last time the FBI wanted to get in, they used the front door.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: Who else would take a chance like that? It doesn't make sense.

VALENTI (at the door): A lot of things happening around here lately that don't make sense.

He glances at the window one last time and heads out the door. Off Blackwood, curious.

Act 1 Scene 4


Liz, Maria, Isabel and Vanessa are dressing. Vanessa notices a poster which reads "Katherine Lestor Day Dance."

VANESSA: So, what's the story with this dance?

MARIA: I knew someone would bring this up.

LIZ: (to Maria)
What is your problem?

MARIA: My mother. My mother is in charge of decorating and refreshments. I mean, this is a woman who gave birth to me in a tub of water, for god's sake. All of a sudden she's Shirley Partridge.

VANESSA: So, who's Katherine Lestor?

LIZ: It's called the Katherine Lestor Dance after the Legend of Katherine Lestor.

MARIA: It's a Roswell thing.

ISABEL: Which would actually be cool if they didn't have to make it creepy.

LIZ: The legend goes that there was this high school couple who lived here and they were going out for, like, four years and they were madly in love but they could never tell each other. So on the afternoon before the UFO crash, the boyfriend finally told Katherine how he felt by saying that his soul belonged to her and he wanted to know if he could be trusted with hers.

VANESSA: (romantic) WOW.

MARIA: But she was so freaked by his telling her after all those years, she couldn't answer. So they made this deal. She was supposed to come to his house and tell him how she felt. But by the time she got there, the crash had happened and he'd disapeared. Never to be seen again.

They all grab their bags and head for the door.

ISABEL: Supposedly kidnapped by the aliens, which is so stupid, because how could they take him if they crashed?

She pushes open the door.

Act 1 Scene 5


VANESSA: That doesn't exactly seem to be the point.

ISABEL: Well, what is the point?

At this point, Max is walking down the hall. Liz is looking at him. He turns his head and smiles at her.

VANESSA: That you can't wait to tell people how you feel.

ISABEL: Give me a break.

She walks away. CAMERA picks up MICHAEL, catching up to Max. He and Maria catch each other's eyes. He looks away. Maria frowns in distaste.

MARIA: (to Liz, re: Michael)
Would a shower be too much to ask?

Liz can't help herself, smiles.

LIZ: (to Vanessa) Anyway, that's the story.

MARIA: So now every year, on cue, every girl at this school has to submit herself to more insecurity and uncertainty than usual and ask some guy to this thing. This thing, decorated by my mother. Kill me now.

VANESSA: I think it's cool. They guys are always the ones who have to stick their necks out. Who are you going to ask, Liz?

LIZ: I don't know. I mean, I'm probably not going. It's so dork-infested. They have it at the UFO Center.

VANESSA: Oh. (to Maria) Are you?

MARIA: I'd rather have my skin removed.

She's gone.

VANESSA: I think I want to go. I'll meet people. You're really not going?

Down the hall, Liz spots Kyle talking to a friend.

LIZ: I've just...I've got so much going on right now.

VANESSA: Well, I hope you change your mind. See you later.

LIZ: See you.

Off Liz, left alone, her confusion showing.

Act 1 Scene 6

Alex walks down the nearly empty hallway. Isabel comes around the corner.

ISABEL: Alex. Just the man I was looking for.

ALEX: Me? You were looking for me? You were looking for me?


ALEX: Why?

ISABEL: (walking)
Do you understand this Chemistry thing?

ALEX: Well, I's either something two people have or they don't.

ISABEL: (looks at him oddly)
No, I mean, the lecture. From yesterday. 'Cause I was wondering if I could borrow your notes.

ALEX: (backpedaling)
Oh. Yeah. No, I knew that. Yeah, yeah, of course.

They arrive at a doorway. A sign reads "Peer Counseling Room."

ISABEL: Okay. I'll catch you later.

And she's off. Alex leans against the door, wanting to die.

Act 1 Scene 7


Max and Michael are hanging out. Other students are having lunch. Posters for the coming dance are hanging in obvious places on the windows. Isabel approaches with Ted Green. She stops and sits. Ted keeps going.

TED: (walking) See you.


He turns, talks to Isabel as he walks backward.

TED: I'll be home tonight. If you want to stop by.

Isabel nods. Ted is gone.

MICHAEL: (re: Ted)
That guy's a jerk.

ISABEL: I think he's kind of cute.

MICHAEL: If he's so cute, why don't you ask him to "the dance"? Then you can watch Jerry Springer and live "La Vida Loca" like the rest of the stupid human race.

ISABEL: Maybe I will. I've now dreamwalked almost every guy in this school-- sophmores to seniors-- and let me tell you, the pickings are slim. This country thinks MTV is a problem? I've never seen so much camouflage in my life. Charlton Heston would have a field day.

MICHAEL: Just forget the whole thing. You shouldn't be going to that anyway.

MAX: Lighten up.

MICHAEL: The more time you spend with them, the more danger you put us in. I don't get you two. We have the key. If we figure out what it means, we could find out who we are.

Just then, Max spots Liz, who sits down with some girlfriends.

MAX: What if we find out our life spans are about seventeen years? That means we'll have spent the first sixteen avoiding everyone and the last one figuring out we're about to kick. We're here, Michael.

ISABEL: We might as well enjoy it.

MICHAEL: You enjoy it. I've got more important things to do.

He walks. Off Isabel and then Max-- at least he's consistent.

Act 1 Scene 8


The room is a lounge with posters, self-help books, etc. CLOSE ON Alex on one of the sofas, reading. Maria enters.

MARIA: Hey, Sorry I'm late.

ALEX: (recovering) Maria, you're always late. It's kind of blatantly passive aggressive, if you think about it.

MARIA: Then don't.

ALEX: You're ovbiously avoiding something.

MARIA: Maybe it's you.

ALEX: You're in denial. Or you're just not ready to do "the work." Whatever it is, you need to face it and deal with it.

MARIA: Or I could just kill you.

ALEX: Hostility would be one way to go. I'm just saying, if you want to counsel, you've got to show up on time. You can't keep people waiting.

WIDE ON the room, completely empty.

MARIA: (lookin around) Like who?

Ms. TOPOLSKY enters.

TOPOLSKY: Good morning.

ALEX: Hey, Ms. Topolsky.

TOPOLSKY: Mr. Whitman, I'd like to discuss the peer counseling program with you.

ALEX: Great.

TOPOLSKY: No one is getting counseled, Alex.

ALEX: Not no one. Yes, today no one, but, normally...We're just going through a dry spell.

TOPOLSKY: (checks her notebook)
According to the records, Alex, in the year that this program has been in place, no one has ever signed up.

ALEX: Oh, signed up. Well, if you're going to put it that way...

TOPOLSKY: We could really use this space, Alex. We may need to do away with the whole program.

ALEX: Do away...? I don't think...

TOPOLSKY: Nothing's been decided yet. Let's just see what happens.

She smiles sympathetically, exits. Off Alex, miserable.

Act 1 Scene 9


MS HARDY instructs the class.

MS HARDY: Make sure and mark down any changes you see in color or consistency. And keep checking the level. The rate of dissipation is important here.

ANGLE ON: Liz and Max, side by side, watching their bunsen burner.

LIZ: So... Maria's all freaked because her mother's in charge of the UFO Center thing. You know...that dance they're having.

MAX: Oh, yeah.

A moment. Liz musters more courage.

LIZ: The girls have to ask the guys. You know, there's this story...

MAX: Yeah, I know.

Liz writes her observations in her notebook. Max looks over her shoulder.

LIZ: You dance?

MAX: Dance? No. I mean, I'm...I don't...I don't dance.

LIZ: Oh.

MAX: I don't even...I mean...I don't usually go to those things, so I...

LIZ: Yeah. No. Me either.

MAX: Yeah...

MS. HARDY: Okay, people. As soon as it hits 212, pull the plug or your results will be screwy.

Liz and Max stare at their thermometer, not seeing it. Ms. Hardy wanders by.

MS. HARDY: (cont'd)...Guys? You're at the boiling point. It's now or never.

She stands there watching them. Max picks up the tongs and removes the burner from the flame. The moment is gone.

Act 1 Scene 10


Maria hangs out as Liz exchanges books. Nearby, a dance poster is being hung.

MARIA: You're aware, right, that Kyle is going to expect you to ask him to the dweeb fest?

LIZ: I know.

They walk. The hallway is nearly empty.

MARIA: I've seen more enthusiasm at a bikini waxing.

LIZ: (lowers her voice)
I'm just so...confused.

MARIA: About what?

LIZ: Max. Ever since he saved my life. No way before that. I've had these feelings for him and...I don't know what they mean. I've never felt this way before.

MARIA: I know, but you and Kyle...

LIZ: That's the thing. Kyle is so great. He's so different from Max. So what if hes not Mister Smooth, Romantic, Articulate Man? He's sweet and awkward and it's, like, totally endearing. He makes me feel safe.

MARIA: Yeah. Just the fact that he's from earth...
(off Liz's disapproval)
Look, Liz, didn't Max already tell you that you and he couldn't happen? That it wasn't safe? I mean, do you need to be hit over the head?

LIZ: You're right. You're right. I mean, there's no dilemma, really. I'm crazy about Kyle and we've been seeing each other and I need to live my life.

MARIA: Gather ye rosebuds, girl.

LIZ: Ye?


LIZ: Bye.

Maria goes. Off Liz, trying to swallow her own story.

Act 1 Scene 11


Liz and Kyle sit in English Lit. They sit next to each other. Liz is staring at Kyle. She seems as if she has something to say. Kyle notices.

KYLE: What?

LIZ: (jolted) Nothing.

Mrs. WILTON, a high school English teacher rapidly approaching the age of 70, addresses them.

MRS WILTON: Today, we continue our journey through the works of Mr. William Shakespeare, whose brilliance was depicted so inadequately in Hollywood's most recent debauchery, Shakespeare In Love. I hope you all enjoyed Mr. Shakespeare's sonnet.

Which one of you would like the privilege of explaining its significance? (then)
Mr. Weldon?

Stu Weldon stands, opens his notebook.

STU: The guy who's writing...he's, like, a scorned lover. And he's saying, talking himself into the fact, that this girl's not good enough. Like, maybe she's cheated on him or...whatever. And he's pissed.

MRS WILTON: I beg your pardon?

STU: Mad. And he's, you know, convincing himself. Like when he says... (looking at his book) "My mistress eyes are nothing like the sun/Coral is far more red than her lips..."

Stu stops and waits for her reply.

MRS WILTON: That would be one interpretation.

KYLE: It's an answer to someone else's poem.

All eyes turn, surprised. Kyle stands, equally surprised.

MRS WILTON: Mr. Valenti?

KYLE: Some guy wrote another poem, saying his girlfriend is perfect. So Shakespeare writes this thing back saying his girlfriend isn't. Instead, he says..."My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground." He's saying she's fragile and real.
"And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare as any." He loves her the way she is.

Dead silence. Liz is staring at Kyle. In fact, the whole class is staring at Kyle. Mrs. Wilton is near orgasm.

MRS WILTON: (flushed) Well, Mr. Valenti.
(then) I couldn't have said it better myself.

Kyle sits, feeling a bit exposed. Off Liz, still in shock.

Act 1 Scene 12


The hallway is full. Liz and Kyle are exiting Mrs. Wilton's class. Liz stops, turns to Kyle.

LIZ: That was amazing.

KYLE: (embarrassed) Thanks.

LIZ: How did you...?

KYLE: I don't know.

Liz studies him.

LIZ: So, listen, I was thinking about you and me...and how things are going. They're good, right?

KYLE: (where's she going?) Right.

LIZ: So I was thinking that maybe we should go to the dance together.

KYLE: You were?

LIZ: Yeah. If you want to go with me.

KYLE: Yeah. Yeah, I do.

LIZ: You do?

KYLE: Yeah.

LIZ: Good. Okay then.

KYLE: Okay.

LIZ: I better get to class.

Kyle turns to go. He stops, turns.

KYLE: I'm glad we're going.

LIZ: Me, too.

She smiles. He moves. Off Liz, wondering if she's done the right thing.





Act 2 Scene 13



Valenti enters, removes his jacket and turns on a desk lamp. Blackwood enters holding serveral computer enhanced photos of a bootprint, as it would appear from several angles. The boot has a very specific tread and logo embedded in it.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: Photo came back from the lab, Sheriff.

VALENTI: (study it) Looks like a workboot.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: See this pattern? I took it over to Belson's Sporting Goods. They're the only ones around who carry it. Old Man Belson told me he sells ten, fifteen pairs a month. Mostly to high school kids.

VALENTI: High school kids? (then)
What would high school kids want in my office?

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: Police reports? Records?

VALENTI: I don't keep any records in here.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: They don't know that.
(then, showing his hand)
Maybe it was those kids from the Crashdown.

VALENTI: What kids?

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: The one you questioned at the Crash Festival and his friend who was with him the day of the shooting.

Valenti takes a moment, deciding how to play this.

VALENTI: What would make you think that?

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: The Parker girl lied to you about those two boys leaving the scene of the crime. And then, the day the FBI claims to find a lack of evidence on the girl's uniform, they seize your records and the sister of the one of those boys shows up here, trying to distract us with a flat tire.

Valenti takes a moment, makes a decision.

VALENTI: Seems like a stretch, Deputy. Those kids wouldn't take a chance like that unless they knew for sure there was something incriminating in here.
Good work on the photo, though.

Blackwood stares at him, not ready to give up.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: We've been friends a long time, Jim.
What's going on?

Valenti studies him. His face unreadable, he walks to the door and reaches for the handle. He turns slowly back towards Blackwood, prepared to fill him in.

Act 2 Scene 14


Alex steps out of the counseling room into the empty hallway. He closes the door behind him as he HEARS the sound of two high heels clicking loudly on the linoleum. Ms. Topolsky comes around the corner. She seems to be heading straight towards him. Anxious to avoid a confrontation, he turns the other way and spots Kyle coming down the hall. He turns back and sees Topolsky getting closer.

ALEX: (grabbing his arm) Kyle. Come right in.

He re-opens the door and pulls a confused Kyle into the counseling room, closing the door behind them. Kyle looks down at Alex's hand on his arm.

KYLE: Whitman? What do you think you're doing?

ALEX: (unhanding him) Sorry.

Topolsky enters.



TOPOLSKY: Hi. I just wanted to go over my plans for the program. Is this a good time?

ALEX: Sorry, Ms. Topolsky. Kyle and I were just about to begin a session.

TOPOLSKY: Oh. I didn't see that on the schedule. Good. Okay. I'll catch up with you later.

She exits. Kyle turns to Alex.

ALEX: Could you do me a favor, Kyle? Could you let me counsel you?

Off Kyle-- You want to...?

Act 2 Scene 15


CLOSE ON a pair of worn workboots, laces half untied, moving down the hallway. PULL BACK to reveal Max and then a few scattered stragglers. The BELL RINGS. Max rounds the corner. Sensing something over his shoulder, he turns around.

MAX's POV of the empty hallway behind him.

He turns back and continues, opening a classroom door and entering. The door closes.

Valenti steps around the corner into the hallway. He approaches the door. Topolsky comes out of nowhere and steps in his path.

TOPOLSKY: Sheriff.

VALENTI: Ms. Topolsky.

TOPOLSKY: What are you doing here?

VALENTI: Police business.

TOPOLSKY: Nothing serious, I hope.

She continues down the hallway. Valenti waits for her to round the corner and then approaches the door which Max previously entered and looks through the glass portion.

VALENTI's POV of Max, sprawled in a desk chair. His foot is placed on the empty chair in front of him. Valenti's eyeline goes to Max's feet. ZOOM IN to Max's boot, where we specifically see the logo that Valenti is looking for.

Act 2 Scene 16


Kyle and Alex.

KYLE: So, what am I supposed to talk about?

ALEX: Often times, it's helpful to talk about things you have in common.

KYLE: We don't have anything in common.

ALEX: True. (then) What about Liz?

KYLE: Liz? Yeah. Have you noticed anything strange about her lately?

ALEX: Go with that thought.

KYLE: Well, that guy Max. Have you noticed them hanging out a lot?

ALEX: Is that what you've noticed?

KYLE: Yeah. Ever since that thing at the Crashdown when people thought she got shot.

ALEX: What I hear you saying is that you feel insecure about Max.

KYLE: I did, for a second. But now, it's like she's totally turned around. She said this thing about how things are between us. That they're good. You know, the thing about girls is, you gotta just let them go through their stuff. They end up figuring it all out. It's like, you can't try to control them. You do the right thing, you act like a man and everything falls into place.

ALEX: Let me be honest with you, Kyle. You're deeply troubled. You need me.

Off Kyle, doubtful.

Act 2 Scene 17


CLOSE on two funky "girl" shoes walking behind the lunch counter, away from the kitchen.
WIDEN TO reveal Liz, in her waitress uniform. She approaches the counter and places a plate in front of Vanessa, who sips a milkshake. Maria can be seen in the background, picking up food.

LIZ: One Interplanetary Platter, no mayo.

Vanessa is distracted by Max, who sits at a front table with Michael. Liz notices.

LIZ: (to Vanessa) How's the milkshake?

VANESSA: Good. (then) So, what do you think of Max?

LIZ: What do I...? He's okay.

VANESSA: Just okay?

LIZ: He's nice.

VANESSA: I wonder if he's going to the dance.

LIZ: (on it) No.

VANESSA: How do you know?

LIZ: I asked him.

VANESSA: To the dance?

LIZ: No. I asked him if he was going and he said he doesn't really go to stuff like that.

VANESSA: (disappointed) Oh.
Maybe if somebody asked him, he'd go.

Liz thinks about this.

LIZ: You never know unless you go for it.

Just then, Maria passes and Liz grabs her arm.

LIZ: (cont'd) Maria, can I talk to you?

She drags her away.

Act 2 Scene 18


LIZ: Vanessa's going to ask Max to the dance.

MARIA: Are you sure?

LIZ: Yes. And I'm out there encouraging her. What am I doing?

MARIA: You're being a good person.

LIZ: Good? I'm evil. I'm standing here praying that milkshake makes her skin break out.

MARIA: Liz, what are you worrying about?

LIZ: I don't know. That's the problem with evil. It's irrational.

MARIA: Max isn't going to go to this dance. He told you that.

LIZ: You're right. You're right. He doesn't do stuff like this. That's what he said.

MARIA: So everything's great.

Off Liz--everything is not great.

Act 2 Scene 19


Isabel is on her bed, an open West Roswell High yearbook in front of her. She is looking at a picutre of Ted Green. All the other boys' photos have large ink-marked "X's" across their faces, indicating they've already been dreamwalked and eliminated. Isabel sits up, places the book on her lap and closes her eyes, concentrating on Ted.

Act 2 Scene 20


Ted Green, asleep in his bed.

Act 2 Scene 21


The hallway is crowded with students. Ted, holding his backpack, walks casually down the corridor wearing nothing but his pajama bottoms.

Several students stop and take this in. Ted notices the odd looks, but doesn't catch on. Isabel come around a corner and approaches.

ISABEL: Ted. You're wearing your pajamas.

Ted looks down. A pained expression crosses his face. Isabel takes his hand and leads him to a door.

She opens it and gently pushes him inside, closing it behind him. Within one second, the door re-opens and Ted steps out, dressed. Isabel takes his hand again.

TED: Where are we going?

Act 2 Scene 22


Isabel and Ted enter. The dance is in full swing. HEAR Cowboy Junkies' "Where Are You Tonight?"

TED: What's this?

ISABEL: The dance. We're on a date.

TED: (going along) Okay...

Isabel leads Ted onto the crowded dance floor. They begin to dance. After a few steps, Isabel pulls away and notices that the center is empty except for the tow of them. Ted doesn't seem to notice. She shrugs and leans against him again, relaxing until...His hand comes up her back and begins to unzip her dress.

CLOSE ON Isabel's face, getting a clue. She pulls away.

ISABEL: What are you doing?

Ted pulls her in and continues what he was doing.

TED: (don't stress) We're alone. Dance for me.

He begins to slip the dress off her shoulder. She grabs her shoulder strap and gives him a shove with one arm while holding the dress with the other.

ISABEL: You jerk..

She walks away, zipping up her dress as best she can.

TED: (after her) Hey, it's my dream!

Act 2 Scene 23


Isabel, still in her position of concentration, opens her eyes, disgusted. She picks up a black marker andputs a big "X" across Ted's photo before she slams the yearbook closed and throws it across the room. It lands a certain way and opens up. Isabel notices and approaches, curiously. The book has specifically, almost magically, opened to the page containing Alex Whitman's photo--the only remaining one wihtout an "X".

Act 2 Scene 24


CLOSE ON a pair of Birkenstocks, climbing down a ladder.

WIDER ON AMY DELUCA, mid-thirties, hard at work decorating the place. A Solar System and hundreds of "star" lights hang from the ceiling. Max is busy hanging life-sized cardboard cutouts of well-known historical and fictitious lovers. Maria enters.

MARIA: What's this supposed to be?

AMY: It's supposed to be the universe. And hello to you, too.

Amy unravels some crepe paper.

MARIA: I brought your keys.

AMY: Thank you. Do you know Max? He goes to your school.

MARIA: (to Max) What are you doing here?

MAX: I work here.

MARIA: (laughing) You work here?

MAX: (don't start) Yeah.

MARIA: How convenient.

AMY: (re: crepe paper) You think this stuff is recyclable?

Maria shrugs, approaches Max.

MARIA: (re: cutouts) What are these?

AMY: (moving) I decided to do a theme. "Star-Crossed Lovers."

MAX: Romeo and Juliet, Antony and Cleopatra, Samson and Delilah.

MARIA: Superman and Lois Lane?

AMY: Cute, huh?

MARIA: (no) I am so glad I'm working that night.

AMY: You're not coming?

MARIA: There's not a guy within four hundred miles of this town I would dance with.

AMY: Why don't you and Liz just come solo?

MARIA: Because Liz isn't solo. She's coming with Kyle.

Off Max. This is the first he's heard of it.





Act 3 Scene 25



Topolsky and Maria.

TOPOLSKY: So, as you know, I've decided to make peer counseling mandatory for some students. I've scheduled an appointment for you to counsel...

Michael enters.

TOPOLSKY: (cont'd) Ah. Mr. Guerin.

MARIA: What?

TOPOLSKY: (to Maria) I have chosen you to be Michael's counselor.

MARIA: Big mistake. Lewinsky proportions.

TOPOLSKY: I disagree. I think you'll find you have a lot in common.

MARIA: You don't know how wrong you are. He's from another world.
(off Topolsky's silence)
We're nothing alike.

TOPOLSKY: This is a mandatory assignment, Maria. Deal with it. Mr. Guerin, I expect your cooperation.

Topolsky exits. Maria eyes Michael, who seems unaffected. He flops into a chair. Maria sits.

MARIA: Well, I guess we better make the most of it.
I think we're supposed to talk about what a loser you are.

MARIA: (cont'd) For never going to class and flunking stuff and whatever else you do.
(off his silence)
You know, you don't have to be so anti-social all the time. Just because you are...what you are. Most people feel like outsiders at least some of the time. I know I do.

MICHAEL: (dismissive) You?

MARIA: Yeah. Like, take this moronic dance. Everyone's going to the stupid thing; making plans and acting like it matters. Like we all didn't come into this world totally alone and we're not going out the same way. And everyone else says they're not into it and then they run around pairing up like the ark is coming. I mean, what is wrong with everyone?
Michael has no idea.

MARIA: (cont'd) And then this thing with my mother. I mean, I know she probably feels guilty because she's a single mother and everything. So I get that, because she probably thinks I want her to do stuff like decorate for the dance, but--newsflash--I don't. That's the thing with parents, they're always doing things that weren't done for them when they were kids. Like, stop reliving your own nightmares and deal with mine for once.
You know?

Maria's expression changes.

MARIA: (cont'd) This is bizarre. I sat down feeling totally negative about this; you and me, trying to communicate. But I think getting things off your chest might be really good for you. Freeing. And being helpful might be really good for me. Because I'm feeling kind of...better. Are you?

Michael stares at her.


Off Maria--he's impossible.

Act 3 Scene 26


Max is at his locker. The hallway is emptying. Vanessa approaches.

VANESSA: Hey, Max.

MAX: Hey, Vanessa. What's up?

VANESSA: I wanted to ask you something.

MAX: Sure.

VANESSA: What would you think about going to the dance with me?

MAX: Oh. I, uh...I don't usually...

VANESSA: Yeah, I know. But, here's the thing. I'm an army brat. I've gone to four schools in the last five years and I thought, hey, I never do anything. And my life is so, like, out of control and I'm here, you know?

MAX: Yeah. The thing is, Vanessa, I kind of...I'm kind of involved with someone.

VANESSA: Oh. So, you're going with her?

MAX: No. I mean, it's not really working out, so...

VANESSA: Oh. I'm sorry. So, hey, I've got an idea. Let's go as friends. I mean, I've been hanging out with Liz and she's going with Kyle. It would be fun.

VANESSA: (cont'd) And I could meet more people and feel normal, for once. What do you think?

MAX: (half to himself) Normal, huh?
As friends, right?


Max takes a moment.

MAX: Okay.


Max closes his locker, starts to go.

MAX: Oh, yeah. One thing I should tell you. I am the worst dancer.

VANESSA: (smiles) Me, too.

MAX: See ya.

VANESSA: See ya.

Act 3 Scene 27


DIANE EVANS, Max's mother, is in the living room, writing on her laptop. Max wanders in.

DIANE: Hey, Honey.

MAX: Hey.

He sits in a nearby chair, his elbows on his knees. Diane eyes him.

DIANE: What's up?

(off his silence) Everything okay?

MAX: I gotta go to this dance Friday.

DIANE: Really?

MAX: Yeah.

DIANE: That's great. I don't remembering you ever doing that.

MAX: This person asked me.

DIANE: (covering her delight) A girl?

MAX: Her name's Vanessa. She's just a friend.


MAX: So, I don't...I never...could you show me how to dance?

DIANE: Sure.

She approaches him.

DIANE: Unless I am seriously old, you're going to stand up for this.

Max does. Diane puts her hands out. Max takes them. The doorbell RINGS.

DIANE: (cont'd) I'll get it.

Diane move and opens the door to Liz.

LIZ: Hi.

DIANE: Hello.

LIZ: Um, could I speak to Max?

DIANE: Sure. He's right here. Come on in. (moving)
You must be Vanessa.

They arrive in the living room.

DIANE: (cont'd) Max, look who's here.

MAX: Liz.

DIANE: Oh, I'm sorry. I thought you were...

LIZ: I'm Liz.

DIANE: (sotto, to Max) When it rains, it pours.
Are you going to the dance, too?

LIZ: Too?

DIANE: Max is going with Vanessa.

Liz looks at Max, reacts to the news.

LIZ: Oh.
That's actually what I came over to tell you. I'm going to go with Kyle.

MAX: I heard.

DIANE: That'll be fun, won't it?

LIZ: (no) Yeah.

MAX: Fun.

DIANE: Anyway, I'm glad you're here, Liz. We were just having a dancing lesson. Could you help us out?

MAX: Ma, no...

DIANE: I'm too tall for you, anyway. Liz, you don't mind, do you?

LIZ: Um...I...

DIANE: Come on, don't be shy.

She moves the two of them together.

DIANE: (cont'd) Now you put your left hand here and your right hand here and just sort of pull here in close. Then...hold on.

She moves to the stereo. Max and Liz are left gazing at each other, motionless. Diane turns on the stereo and we HEAR John Lennon's "Imagine." She turns back to the kids.

DIANE: (cont'd) Then you just...

But she sees that Liz and Max are moving, just doing what comes naturally.

DIANE: (cont'd) ...that.

The two are lost in their own world. They gaze at each other as they slowly move. The rest of the universe seems to have disappeared. The moment goes on and on...

Off Diane, motionless in the face of the chemistry.

Act 3 Scene 28


A dark, smoky pub-type place. The room is crowded with small tables and young people. Alex is on stage, playing Buddy Guy's "Feels Like Rain" on guitar. He pauses momentarily to drink from his root beer.

ALEX's POV of the audience. A hip crowd of drinkers in awe of his talent. Suddenly, Isabel appears in the doorway, holding a beer bottle. She walks slowly to the stage and offers the bottle.

ISABEL: It's a dream. Live a little.

Alex takes the beer, drinks from it. Isabel takes his hand. He puts down the guitar and follows her to the door.

ALEX: Where are we going?

Isabel doesn't answer. She walks through the door of the pub and directly into...

Act 3 Scene 29


Again, We HEAR Cowboy Junkies "Where Are You Tonight?" Alex look around, impressed.

ALEX: Cool. (then, to Isabel) You want to dance?

She nods. He leads her onto the dance floor.

ALEX: (cont'd) Bear with me here.

But he puts his arms around her and dances perfectly. CLOSE ON Isabel, slightly tentative. Alex pulls back and looks into her face, smiling at her and moving her hair out of her eyes. She looks perfectly stunned. He embraces her again and continues dancing.

ALEX: I wonder about you.


ALEX: How anybody so smart got to be so pretty.

He reaches over and gives her a gentle kiss on the lips. Off Isabel, immobilized by his sweetness.

Act 3 Scene 30


Isabel opens her eyes, a confused expression on her face. She looks down at her yearbook, open to Alex's photo, not knowing what to make of his dream. CLOSE ON the yearbook. The only photo unmarked by a black "X" is Alex's. Isabel picks up her black marker and circles the picture.

Act 3 Scene 31


Valenti and Blackwood are looking at the computer enhanced photos of the bootprint which are hanging on an evidence board.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: Are you going to bring him in?

VALENTI: Don't have to. Those kids are going to self-destruct if we give them half a chance.


VALENTI: They're already getting careless; breaking into my office. And they're telling people. The Parker girl and her ditzy friend. She's the key. If I can find a way to her, I've got 'em.

DEPUTY BLACKWOOD: How are you going to do that?

VALENTI: I'm just going to bid my time. Make my presence felt until they slip up again.
Believe me, it won't be long.

Act 3 Scene 32


Alex is on his bed, fiddling with is guitar. His back is to the door. A knock.

ALEX: (over his shoulder) Come in.

The door swings open, revealing Isabel. Alex turns and, shocked, begins to get up. He hits himself in the head with the guitar.

ALEX: (cont'd) Isa..Ow...

ISABEL: Are you okay?

ALEX: Yeah, yeah. I was just...playing.

ISABEL: Very smooth.

ALEX: Yeah.

He looks at her--What are you doing here?

ISABEL: So, look. I want to go to the dance. And there's nobody I want to go with. Every guy in school is, like, a sexual assault waiting to happen. So, I thought, if nobody's asked you...we should go.

ALEX: (ridiculous) What?

ISABEL: I said...

ALEX: I heard. Yes. Yes. I'll go.

ISABEL: Good. And just so you know...this isn't a date. We're just going...together.

ISABEL: (satisfied) I'll pick you up.

ALEX: Okay.

Isabel exits.

ALEX: (cont'd) (after her) And don't be late.

Isabel sticks her head back in the doorway--What?

ALEX: (cont'd) Kidding.

She smiles, shaking her head, then goes. Off Alex, wondering whose life he's living.

Act 3 Scene 33


A three-way mirror. Several dressing room doors on either side. Liz is in front of the mirror wearing a conservative black, Audrey Hepburnish dress. Maria looks her up and down.

LIZ: What do you think?

MARIA: I like it. It's elegant, it's subtle. It's understated. Very chic.

LIZ: (doubtful) I don't know...

MARIA: Here's the thing to remember about this whole thing. He would probably rather be with you. And he's not you. You're it. You're the one. Whoever she may be, she doesn't have what you have. She's not you.

Just then, one of the dressing room doors opens and Vanessa steps out wearing an incredibly sexy red dress. She is fiddling with her zipper and doesn't see Liz and Maria. They see her, though. Their mouths are on the floor. Vanessa looks up.

VANESSA: Liz? Hi, Maria.


VANESSA: Are you shopping for the dance?

LIZ: Yeah.

(re: Liz's dress)
I love that.

LIZ: Thanks.

VANESSA: What do you think of this?

LIZ: It''s...



LIZ: You look good in red.

VANESSA: Really?

MARIA: I think that would look great with a jacket over it.


MARIA: A big red jacket. Like the kind of oversized blazer thing. Big.

VANESSA: Really? I'm not much of a jacket person.
Thanks for the input, though.

She goes back in the fitting room, closes the door. Liz turns back to the mirror and looks at herself.

LIZ: (unbuttoning) This is not going to work.





Act 4 Scene 34


The early stages of the dance. The room looks incredible-- otherworldly. romantic and arcane. The "planets" are lit from inside, the stars are aglow. The star-crossed lovers are everywhere. Dance music is playing. Kids are loitering at the alien displays and the food table. Liz and Kyle enter. Kyle is wearing his VARSITY LETTER JACKET. Amy DeLuca is at the door, greeting people.

LIZ: Hi, Ms. DeLuca. You know Kyle.

AMY: Hi, Kyle. Come on in, guys.
(checking her clipboard)
Hey, you two are nominated for "couple of the night." Don't forget to vote for yourselves.
She points to the ballot box, on a nearby table.

KYLE: Thanks.

Just then, a PHOTOGRAPHER comes out of nowhere, snapping a picture of Liz and Kyle.

PHOTOGRAPHER: Smile, young ones!

The flash goes off and Liz and Kyle are momentarily frozen. Max enters with Vanessa, who immediately spots Liz.


LIZ: Hi.

Max and Liz look at each other. An awkward moment. Max looks at Kyle, who nods his head in acknowledgement. Max nods back.

AMY: Hi, Max.

MAX: Hey, Ms. DeLuca. The place looks great.

AMY: Thanks. I'm only sorry a certain daughter of mine couldn't be here to see it. But, young people need the freedom to express themselves in whatever way they see fit and as long as that doesn't include religious sacrifice or serial killings, I intend to let my daughter explore her own emotional life.

VANESSA: You must be Maria's mother. I'm Vanessa.

AMY: Hi. Isn't this fun?

Vanessa nods enthusiastically.

LIZ: Fun.

MAX: Yeah.

Isabel enters with Alex.

ALEX: Wow. Look at this place.

AMY: Hi, Alex.

ALEX: Hi, Ms. DeLuca.

Liz reacts to Alex and Isabel. So does Max.

AMY: (to Isabel) I don't believe I know you.

ISABEL: (looking around) I'm Isabel. You've got Saturn in the wrong place.

Amy looks up.

AMY: I don't think so, Hon.

ISABEL: Trust me.

KYLE: (to Liz) Let's get something to drink.

Liz and Max eye each other before Liz moves off with Kyle.

Max and Vanessa are caught by the Photographer.

PHOTOGRAPHER: Smile, young people!

He snaps the photo.

LIZ's POV, from the punch table, of Max and Vanessa having their picture taken. Kyle hands her a drink.


The Photographer snaps a picture of Alex and Isabel.

Sheriff Valenti enters, pauses at the door. he spots Max and looks him up and down. Max meets his eye. Valenti breaks the moment, looks directly at Isabel, who also meets his eye. Again, he breaks the look, looking around the room. He moves off.

AMY: (to Max) Isn't that the sheriff?

Max nods.

ISABEL: (sotto, to Max) What's he doing here?

Max shrugs.

MAX: Stay away from him.

(then to Vanessa)

Want to get something to eat?

Vanessa nods, they move off. The music changes and we HEAR Liz Phair's "Johnny Feelgood." Alex turns to Isabel.

ALEX: (gawking) I can't believe how good you look. I mean, I can't believe...

ISABEL: (putting an end to this) Down boy.

She grabs his hand and drags him onto the dance floor. She begins to dance--really well. Alex, mouth open in awe, stands still. Isabel stops, puts her hands on her hips and glares at him. Alex contains himself and launches into his own movement which resembles some sort of interpretive modern dance. He's kind of making a fool of himself and it's all for Isabel's benefit. She can't help herself--she laughs in appreciation and dances again.

ANGLE ON: Valenti, making his way through the crowd, checking everyone out.

VALENTI's POV of the students, who look him up and down as he goes by.

ANGLE ON: Liz and Kyle. They see Valenti approaching.


KYLE: Hey. I didn't know you'd be here.

VALENTI: (pointedly) Hello, Liz.

LIZ: (uncomfortable) Hi, Mr. Valenti.

They all watch the dance floor. Liz would like to escape.

LIZ: (to Kyle) You want to get some air?

KYLE: Yeah.

Kyle nods at his father and he and Liz head for the door.

CAMERA PICKS UP Max and Vanessa, watching Alex and Isabel.

MAX: (feeling pressure) You want to...?

He gestures at the dance floor. Vanessa shakes her head.

VANESSA: Maybe we could just wait for a slower song.

MAX: (relieved) You want to get some air?

ACT 4 Scene 35


Liz and Kyle are across the street from the center, under a streetlight. Over Kyle's shoulder. Liz can see the entryway door.

KYLE: I'm glad we came out here.

LIZ: Why?

KYLE: There's something I wanted to ask you.

LIZ: What?

KYLE: I've been thinking about us, too. And I thought, maybe...
(slipping off his jacket)
I want you to wear this.

ANGLE ON: the entryway door, where Max and Vanessa are exiting. Max holds the door for her.

VANESSA: Thanks.

They walk a few steps. Vanessa stops, leans against the wall. Max leans next to her. They can not see Liz and Kyle.

ANGLE ON: Liz and Kyle. He places the jacket around her shoulders.

KYLE: I think we should just see each other. Not see other people.
If that's okay with you.

ANGLE ON: Max and Vanessa. Vanessa looks over at Max, noticing something.

VANESSA: (leaning) You have a piece of...

She removes a piece of lint from his shirt.

ANGLE ON: Liz and Kyle. Liz looks up just in time to see Vanessa touching Max. She absorbs this for a moment and then slowly slips her arms into the jacket.

Act 4 Scene 36


Maria lets the last two customers of the night out of the Cafe. She puts the keys in the door and begins to lock it. Michael arrives on the other side and knocks. Maria turns over the CLOSED sign. Michael knocks again. Maria unlocks the door and opens it a crack.

MARIA: We're closed.

MICHAEL: Not for another ten minutes.

MARIA: Look, it was a slow night...

MICHAEL: You have to let me in. Legally.

Maria glares at him, then opens the door wide and gestures him in.

MICHAEL: (cont'd) Thanks.

He moves to the counter. She follows.

MICHAEL: (cont'd) So, why aren't you at the dance?

MARIA: I'm not into organized events.

MICHAEL: Yeah, me either.

It looks as though these two might have more in common than they thought.

MICHAEL: (cont'd) (friendly) So, what do you say? Can I get a cheeseburger and a side of fries?

Maria doesn't move.


MICHAEL: What do you mean, no?

MARIA: I mean no. I had to let you in. Legally.
I didn't say the cook was still here.

Michael gets up.


He moves toward the door. Maria watches.

MARIA: (begrudgingly) I guess I could make you a sandwich.

He turns back, looks at her.

MICHAEL: (understated) Cool.

He walks back and sits. Maria takes a roll from the covered cake stand and begins to cut it. Off Michael, his expression carefully in check.

Act 4 Scene 37


Valenti stands against the wall, surveying the scene. Amy approaches.

AMY: (hand out) Sheriff? I'm Amy DeLuca. I'm in charge tonight.

VALENTI: (shakes) Nice to meet you. DeLuca. You must be Maria's mother.

AMY: You know my daughter?

VALENTI: Through my son, Kyle.

AMY: Oh, of course.

VALENTI: (looking around) I haven't seen Maria tonight.

AMY: She's not here. Teenage rebellion. I think it's healthy, don't you?


Amy smiles at him, pleased.

AMY: I'm surprised to see you here. There's no trouble, is there?

VALENTI: No, no. Just came to check in. It's good for the kids to see us here.

AMY: (flirting) I know it's good for me.

The photographer snaps a picture of them.

PHHOTOGRAPHER: Smile, chaperones!

Valenti gives him an ugly stare.

ANGLE ON: the door as Max and Vanessa re-enter. The music changes and we HEAR Jonathan Brooke's "Because I Told You So."

MAX: (re: the floor) You want to...?


They approach the dance floor. Max takes her hand and they begin to move, slowly.

ANGLE ON: Amy and Valenti.

VALENTI: Ms. DeLuca?

AMY: Amy.

VALENTI: Amy. Would you like to dance?

AMY: Aren't you on duty?

VALENTI: It's not a martini, it's a dance.

AMY: (smiles) I'd love to.

He puts out his hand and she takes it. He leads her onto the floor and they dance.

ANGLE ON: the door, where Liz and Kyle re-enter. Kyle spots some friends nearby and begins talking to them with his back to Liz and the dance floor. Liz is frozen, watching Max slow dance with Vanessa, her heart breaking.

ANGLE ON: Max, his eyes locked to Liz's. She involuntarily shakes her head and bolts for the door. Max takes this in.

MAX: (to Vanessa) I'll be back.

Max walks away from Vanessa, who looks baffled. He spots Alex near the dance floor.

MAX: Alex, dance with Vanessa.

ALEX: What?

Max grabs him and leads him to the floor.

MAX: I'll be right back.

Alex shrugs--God, life is strange these days. Vanessa goes with it, smiling at Alex. They dance.

Act 4 Scene 38


Liz leans against the wall, near tearas. Max exits the center, spots her and approaches.

MAX: You okay?

LIZ: I'm fine.

MAX: You don't seem fine.

LIZ: Well, I am.

Max watches her.

MAX: (tell me) Liz.

LIZ: I thought you didn't come to these things.

MAX: I don't. I didn't. I mean, I told you, I don't come to these things because I don't dance. I didn't know how to dance.

LIZ: That's what you said?

MAX: What'd you think I said?

LIZ: I don't know.

MAX: (turning the tables) I thought you didn't come to these things.

LIZ: I don't. I mean, I wasn't going to.
You should go back and dance with Vanessa.

MAX: Is that why you're out here? Because I'm dancing with Vanessa?

LIZ: No. You came with her.

A long beat.

MAX: I came with her because she asked me.

Liz looks into Max's eyes trying to figure out what he's saying. He stares back at her. No one can look away.

Just then, the entryway door opens and Alex sticks his head out, spotting Liz and Max. We can HEAR the sounds of the dance from inside.

ALEX: Liz. Kyle's looking for you.

Liz looks at Alex and back at Max.

AMY: (O.S.) Ladies and gentlemen, we're ready to announce our winners...


Act 4 Scene 39


CLOSE ON a hand, reaching out. PULL BACK to reveal that it's Kyle's hand. He's on the dance floor, reaching for Liz.

AMY: (reading) ...and the couple of the evening are...Kyle Valenti and Liz Parker.

Claps and whoops as Liz takes Kyle's hand and allows him to lead her onto the otherwise empty dance floor. HEAR David Gray's "Say Hello, Wave Goodbye." Kyle pulls Liz in close and they dance, alone in the spotlight.

MOVE IN on Liz, watching Max over Kyle's shoulder.

The other thing I'm noticing about life is...sometimes, even when you try really hard not to have too many expectations, the things you want don't go away. They're still right there...reminding you, all the time, of what you can't have.

MOVE IN on Max, his eyes glued to Liz's. Time seems momentarily suspended as the CAMERA PULLS BACK and we...



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