The Morningsider (Issue 2 – Act 3)

Flirting with Danger

 
interior –
Columbia University
Journalism Lab
day

The lab bustles with tons of people getting ready to put the Sunday edition of the paper to bed. We can see Ellie standing at her desk, in the middle of the throng, shuffling through papers. Dishy stands in the doorway, well-dressed and looking sheepish. He glances around and finally sees Ellie. His eyes light up a little, and he walks over to her desk.

Dishy
Miss Paige?
 
Ellie
(brusquely, not looking up)
What? I’m busy.
 
Dishy
Are you still looking for information on that guy?

Ellie looks up at him, raises a finger to say “wait,” and glances around to make sure no one else heard. She leads Dishy out into the hall.

Ellie
You mean the guy in the park?
 
Dishy
Yeah.
 
Ellie
(arms crossed, leaning out. her body language shows her impatience.)
Talk. Tell me what you know.
 
Dishy
Um. Well, I saw him. The other day. The guy.
 
Ellie
And?
 
Dishy
I think I know him. I think we used to work together.
 
Ellie
So who is he?
 
Dishy
He was a programmer. We worked together. Downtown. Before the–you know–tragedy. Um. He just kind of disappeared after that. I figured he died or something. I even lit a candle for him and stuff.
 
Ellie
But you saw him in the park recently?
 
Dishy
I think so. It was kind of hard to tell. He looked… rough, woolly. You know, with the beard and the dingy clothes and all. I guess he’s homeless now. He smelled bad.
 
Ellie
Does he have a name? A family? Friends?
 
Dishy
I don’t know. I didn’t know him that well. He was quiet. If it’s even the same guy.
 
Ellie
Show me where you saw him.
 
Dishy
In the park? Right now? Don’t you have to, um, do newspaper stuff right now?
 
Ellie
(grabbing Dishy by the arm as she walks off)
This is newspaper stuff.

Dishy looks at her hand on his arm and smiles.

Exterior –
Morningside Park
The high path above the lake
day

We see a wide shot of Ellie and Dishy walking along the high path above the lake where the Morningsider “rescued” the jogger at the beginning of the last issue.

Ellie
So where did you see him?
 
Dishy
(looking around)
Um. Over here. Um by the dog walking place. Um, he was… sitting on that rock, eating some kind of weeds or something.
 
Ellie
Did you talk to him?
 
Dishy
No. I couldn’t remember his name. And, you know, the smell–when I got close. I, uh…
 
Ellie
Why are you wasting my time?
 
Dishy
Huh?
 
Ellie
You suck at lying. So why are you wasting my time?
 
Dishy
Oh. That obvious?

Ellie looks at him with a raised eyebrow that says “get serious.”

Dishy
Look, I saw your picture by your article, and I thought you were… It was a good article. I even went back and read your other ones–about the turkey and the coyote and stuff–and the one about the new park stairs at 120th street. And I thought, “She’s cool. She loves this park, and it matters to her and…”

(beat)

Dishy
And I knew you’d be at the journalism office tonight getting ready for tomorrow’s edition, and I figured I’d try to talk to you. But then you were busy, so I came up with the idea of trying to… And then I got carried away with the lie I was making up. And then you dragged me out here. And…
 
Ellie
And?
 
Dishy
And I think you’re cute, and do you want to go out with me sometime?

Ellie just kind of stares at him, open-mouthed, for a beat. Then she shakes her head a bit.

Ellie
So, you like my writing?
 
Dishy
(dumbfounded for a second)
Yeah. Totally. Like I said, you really care–about what you’re writing. I was impressed.
 
Ellie
Umm.
(half to herself)
I can’t believe I’m saying this.
(to Dishy)
Where do you want to go?
 
Dishy
(confused)
Really? Uh. Wow. I didn’t think I’d get this far… Uh. Well, there’s a parade tomorrow.
 
Ellie
(incredulously)
You want to take me to the Gay Pride Parade?
 
Dishy
Sure. It should be fun. My boss is going to be in it. And supposedly the uptown stretch is more touristy and hetero-friendly and not as crowded.
 
Ellie
Okay. Yeah. I should get back, but yeah.
 
Dishy
Awesome. Okay. Let’s meet up tomorrow a little before noon. Bryant Park. At the fountain. We can grab some lunch and then walk over to 5th and watch the parade go by the library.
 
Ellie
(walking off)
Bryant Park. See you there.
 
Dishy
(to himself, watching her go)
Wow.
(walking off the other direction)
What the hell did I just get myself into?
 
end Act
Previous Act
Coding and Decoding
The Morningsider
Main Page
Next Act
The Last Sunday in June

One response to this post.

  1. […] Issue 2 – Act 3 Flirting with Danger […]

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