ALL’S FAIR IN LOVE AND G TRAINS

The following is a short screenplay I wrote back in 2011. It was my first foray in short screenplays, I had only previously written spec scripts for a television show I had hoped to self produce in 2009 and 2010. I made the mistake of showing an earlier draft to friends who tore it to shreds for being derivative and predictable.

After a few years of not looking at it I definitely see places I can improve upon, however I’m still proud of it and I received a lot of positive feedback at the time on the final draft from a class full of burgeoning screenwriters. 

I still love the idea and may end up trying to film it one day. I may have to change locations in order to make it on a reasonable budget, however I think the story is universally relatable and is in fact a story true to my life. 

All’s Fair in Love and G Trains
by
John Longo

February 10, 2011 John Longo

FADE IN:
INT. JAMES’ BEDROOM – DAY

JAMES (17), wakes up slowly as his ALARM CLOCK beeps constantly. He reaches over to turn it off.

He sits up in his bed, looks at the time on the cable box.

6:23am.

James gets out of bed and walks slowly in the dark, towards his clothes which are hanging on a hook near his bed.

He puts on his uniform; WHITE DRESS SHIRT, BLACK KHAKI PANTS, and a PLAIN BLACK TIE. His clothes are wrinkled, clearly worn several times this week already without an iron meeting it
once.

INT. BATHROOM – CONTINUOUS

James flushes the toilet. He turns towards the sink where his TOOTHBRUSH sits. He doesn’t even motion towards it.

He turns on the sink and splashes some water on his head to fix his MESSY GREASY HAIR slightly. He is careful to avoid looking in the MIRROR that hangs above the sink.

INT. JAMES’ BEDROOM – CONTINUOUS

James grabs his keys and IPOD. He puts on his coat, zips it
up and walks out.

INT. TRAIN STATION – DAY

James walks inside the train station, his eyes planted to the
floor. He finds his favorite pillar and places all his weight
on it.

Around him are BUSINESSPEOPLE on their way to work and
TEENAGERS on their way to school. The teens are all sectioned
off in their little clicks, having conversations.

James looks around and sees everyone talking but he doesn’t
speak to a single person. He silently waits for the train.

He stares down at the tracks to his left as he watches the
train enter the station.

The TRAIN arrives.

INT. TRAIN – CONTINUOUS

James boards the train head down glancing up only once to
find a seat.

A PUNK GIRL (17), pretty, with red streaks in her hair sits
to his left moves her bag casually, so James can sit next to
her.

He doesn’t, instead finding a seat closer to the entrance.
PUNK GIRL IS ON THE TRAIN EVERY TIME JAMES IS BUT THE CAMERA
BARELY NOTICES HER.

James closes his eyes and sighs softly.

INT. TRAIN – LATER

The train is less crowded now, only a few people are left in
the seats around James. James decides to put his bag on the
seat next to him.

The train arrives at NORTHERN STREET.

The doors open and in walks DREAMGIRL (17) beautiful, wearing
a RED PLAID CATHOLIC SCHOOL SKIRT, MATCHING KNEE HIGH SOCKS
and a JACKET which just barely hides her WHITE BLOUSE.
She is talking to her FRIEND (17), female. They both go to
sit down but James’s bag is in the way.

DREAMGIRL

(To James)

Excuse me.

James doesn’t immediately notice that she is talking to him.
He turns his head slowly and looks up. He sees her face.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

Yeah, um, so like, can you please
move your bag?

James is a little flabbergasted. He wants to speak, his mouth
starts to open but no words come off his lips.

She smiles at him and immediately he is smitten.

James shakes his head yes quickly trying to reciprocate the
smile but it comes out as a weird half hearted smirk, as if
he was having a stroke.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

Thanks.

She puts her hand on his arm and sits down.
James looks at her hand for the quick second she places it
there. Dreamgirl doesn’t even look at him again,instead,
jumping back into her conversation with her friend.

As the train moves stop to stop James can’t help but feel
more awake now. He glances occasionally with his eyes to see
if she looks at him.

She doesn’t.

Then he keeps his head looking at his reflection in the train
window and by association hers. He tries to catch her
stealing a glance at him.

She doesn’t.

INT. TRAIN – LATER

The train arrives at WOODHAVEN PLAZA. This is James’ stop. He
gets up before the train grinds to a halt.
Dreamgirl and her friend are still talking and giggling.

The train stops; which is when Dreamgirl and her friend stand
up behind James.

In the brief seconds before the doors open, James once again
using the windows as his detective tool glances at the
reflection of Dreamgirl’s blouse which is slightly more
visible.

He sees the crest of ST. HELEN’S HIGH SCHOOL. The doors open
and James exits. Dreamgirl and her friend follow behind him.

EXT. STREET – CONTINUOUS

James waits for the street light to change so he can cross
the street. He turns his head to catch one last glimpse of
Dreamgirl.

Dreamgirl is standing, waiting at a bus stop with her friend
and they have company. They are talking to TWO PRETTY BOYS
(17), with short slicked hair and varsity letter jackets,
they look like they could be cast members from a reality TV
show.
.
James puts his head back down and continues on his way to
school.

INT. CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL OF BOYS – LUNCHROOM – DAY

James sits alone in the lunchroom scribbling and doodling in
his notebook as his classmates act rowdy around him. He looks
around for a second, to see if anyone will sit with him. They
don’t.

He looks back down and we see that he is sketching Dreamgirl.
He’s not a bad artist as the picture is a clear caricature of
her.

James looks back up, just in time to see a TALL GAWKY
CLASSMATE (17) with a BASKETBALL, walk by him. He knocks
James’ books off the table.

GAWKY CLASSMATE
(To James)

Watch it! Loser.

James picks his book up and watches the kid walk away. He
looks up at the bulletin board where the gawky classmate just
came from.

There is a SIGN that says: BASKETBALL TRYOUTS SATURDAY

INT. JAMES’ APARTMENT – DAY

James gets ready for school, his routine remains mostly
unchanged this time however he grabs a tube of HAIR GEL from
the MEDICINE CABINET.

He rubs a large amount through his head, first slicking his
hair back to look like PAT RILEY.

He looks at himself in the mirror for a second, makes a
disturbed face and grabs his comb.

This time he starts, spiking his hair up. He now resembles
BART SIMPSON.

James shakes his head no, turns on the faucet and washes the
gel out of his hair.

INT. TRAIN – DAY

James, with his IPOD BLASTING, sits on the train staring at
the door. Dreamgirl walks on the train, again with her
friend, holding bright BIRTHDAY BALLOONS.
.
They sit on the train’s version of a love seat, to James’
right, their backs are turned away from him.

Through his music he can only hear a minor portion of their
conversation, as they sound muffled, like they are miles
away.

He turns his IPOD off, but keeps the buds in so as not to
arouse suspicion.

James turns his head awkwardly trying to catch a glimpse of
them. He pretends to be looking for someone else not that it
matters as they don’t notice him at all.

DREAMGIRL
(To her friend)

Oh my gawd, he is like seriously
super cute.

FRIEND

Ew… really?

DREAMGIRL

Shut up, you’re just jealous.

FRIEND
(Laughing)

Of what? The two pack he calls a
six pack? God he’s such a wanna be.
Why do you like guys like that?

DREAMGIRL

Shut up he’s cute, I like his hair.

FRIEND

Michelle I swear, just get a tit
job and a poof, cause you’re a
little airhead.

James head perks up when he hears her name. He takes out a
small notepad from his backpack and writes it down.

DREAMGIRL

What? Shut up! Slut.

FRIEND

Whatever, skank.

DREAMGIRL

You know he’s also like, the
captain of the basketball team.

She stops for a second looks up towards the heavens, shivers
dramatically.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

And you know that’s like, just
crazy hot.

FRIEND
(Laughing)

Why, you hoping he’ll dunk you?

Both Dreamgirl and her friend laugh.

James looks at them and then underneath her name he writes,
LIKES. ATHLETIC GUYS. He glances back at them and smiles.

INT. JAMES’ BEDROOM – DAY

James flips through magazines trying to find the right look.

There are guys in suits, guys in skinny jeans, guys in tights
and guys with just underwear on.

All of them beautiful, all of them with rock hard bodies.
He rolls his eyes, picks up his shirt, and looks at his
stomach in the mirror.

Not bad, but not great. He quickly pulls the shirt back down.

He flexes his arms. Somewhere, Hulk Hogan breathes a sigh of
relief.

He gets on the floor and starts doing push ups.

ONE, TWO, THREE. He stops. Short of breath and starting to
sweat.

He LAYS DOWN and begins doing SIT UPS. ONE, TWO, THREE – he
continues until he finishes TEN.

He stands back up. He lifts his shirt and looks at his abs
again.

No Change.

James gets up and sits on his bed.

He grabs his notepad and stares at Dreamgirl’s name for a
second, scribbled sloppily.

He pulls out a pen and he starts to write a LETTER. He starts
it, DEAR MICHELLE.
.
INT. TRAIN – DAY

Dreamgirl gets on the train this time she is the one with an
IPOD blasting. She is alone and sits almost directly next to
James.

He nervously taps his foot on the floor, as he holds the
letter he wrote to Dreamgirl with a vice grip, careful to not
let her see her name written on it.

Two guys from James’ school walk towards them. The first one,
a short light BLONDE GUY (17) nods at James, his way of
acknowledging his existence.

The other, is the same tall gawky classmate from the
cafeteria who doesn’t even pretend to notice James.

They stand in front of Dreamgirl, presenting themselves as if
they are animals in heat.

BLONDE GUY

(To Dreamgirl)

What up babe?

Dreamgirl looks up. She takes her headphones out of her ears
and looks at the guys.

James watches, waiting to see what happens.

GAWKY CLASSMATE

Chillen right?

Dreamgirl looks around the train. She clearly wants no part
of these two.

DREAMGIRL

You guys need something?

BLONDE GUY

Pssh… just you baby. What’s your
number cutie?

Dreamgirl rolls her eyes.

DREAMGIRL

Yeah… no I don’t think so.

GAWKY CLASSMATE

Awe come on shorty my mans here is
the dude of ya dreams.

DREAMGIRL

Sorry guys, I don’t have
nightmares.

Dreamgirl’s joke makes James laugh, he’s careful to hide it
but both guys notice as does Dreamgirl. The guys are
embarrassed.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

If you guys don’t mind moving, I’d
rather not stare at your crotches.

The guys look at each other and then at James. They shrug
their shoulders, shake their heads in disappointment, and
walk away.

Dreamgirl puts her headphones back in her ears.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

Pathetic.

James hears her say this. He looks at the letter, then back
quickly at Dreamgirl who is oblivious to him.

He hides the letter back in his pocket and turns head away,
visible shaken.

INT. CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL OF BOYS – LUNCHROOM – DAY

James dives head first onto the cafeteria table. He’s
depressed. He takes out the letter and RIPS it up.

He gets up and walks over towards the GARBAGE CAN to throw
out the remnants . He looks up at the bulletin board as the
pieces of the letter shift into the oblivion of the trash.

The sign is still there. BASKETBALL TRYOUTS SATURDAY.
James stares at it for a moment.

INT. CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL OF BOYS – GYM – DAY

James is at basketball tryouts. He is in a group of about 25
guys.

SERIES OF SHOTS
1 – James taking lay ups
2 – James shooting jump shots, making most of them.
3 – James running sprints with the other boys.
8.

LATER

Game action, James is playing defense against the tall gawky
classmate. The gawky classmate thinks he has the upper hand
on James, and smiles slyly.

He makes a quick move to his right then turns and makes an
elaborate spin move.

James reads his move perfectly, reaches in quickly, and
steals the ball. He takes it cross court finishing with a lay
up.

Oh yeah, James is good, and he knows it. He smiles as he runs
back down the court, the gawky kid looks at him. Surprised
and a little disgusted.

INT. CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL OF BOYS – LOCKER ROOM – LATER

James is getting changed, several other BOYS come up to him
and give him high fives, pounds, and other congratulatory
gestures.

He made the team. James smiles at each one of his new fans.
He gladly reciprocates their high fives and fist bumps.

INT. TRAIN – DAY

James, Dreamgirl, and her girl friend are all on the train
together.

James is starting to dress better. His clothes don’t look
like they have just been used as a snot rag for a circus
clown and his hair is neatly arranged.

Dreamgirl and her friend are quiet. They don’t really talk to
one another.

James keeps a coy eye on them, hoping that he and Dreamgirl
will make eye contact. They don’t.

The train pulls into their stop. Dreamgirl and her friend
both get up before James. They walk towards the door.
James gets up, he looks at the empty seats the girls have
left behind. He sees that they are not quite as empty as he
thought.

On Dreamgirl’s seat a SCHOOL ID sits unclaimed, lost.
James takes a large step towards it and picks it up. He
confirms that is Dreamgirl’s.
.
He turns quickly and sees that the girls are already heading
up the stairs. To make matters worse the train doors are
starting to close.

James runs out, JAMMING HIS BODY BETWEEN THE CLOSING DOORS.

He GRIMACES in pain.

INT. TRAIN STATION – WOODHAVEN – DAY

James runs up the stairs after Dreamgirl and her friend. She
hasn’t gotten too far.

He reaches and grabs her arm.
Dreamgirl, defensively, turns around. She must think she is
getting robbed, what else could be happening?

Instead she sees James, who is a bit out of breath (as much a
result of this face to face with Dreamgirl as he is from his
door fight).

He holds out her ID in his hands.
She pensively takes it and gives him a look. Her mouth shifts
from cautious to relieved.

DREAMGIRL

Oh my goodness, thank you!

She’s places her hand gently on James shoulder and he melts
while looking at it.

JAMES

Uh…

FRIEND

Michelle, hurry up!

Dreamgirl looks up the stairs and then back quickly at James.

She starts to move away.

DREAMGIRL
(At James)

If I lost this I would have been in
deep…

Her eyes dart down, shakes her head, and grins, but not a
happy grin.

DREAMGIRL (CONT’D)

Well, yeah. Thanks again!

She runs up the stairs before James gets to answer, but he
doesn’t care. He feels great.

His face betrays his happiness, as a KOOL AID SMILE dances
across his lips from side to side.

INT. JAMES’ BATHROOM – DAY

James looks in the mirror. Today is the day he talks to
Dreamgirl. He knows it.

He turns on the shower and gets in.

INT. JAMES’ BATHROOM – LATER

James finishes his shower, he opens a bar of deodorant. He
judiciously rolls it under his armpits.

He takes out his tooth brush and brushes his teeth.

He grabs the hair gel, this time taking a smaller dab. He
runs it through his hair spiking the front up slightly.

INT. JAMES’ APARTMENT – LATER

James starts ironing his shirt. He gets dressed, careful to
ensure every crease stays perfect.

He grabs a small bottle of cologne, CHARLES BY BARKLEY. He
sprays it on his neck, his body, and his arms.

EXT. STREET – DAY

James walks by a bodega. Outside there is a VENDOR selling
single roses for TWO DOLLARS. He hands the man some money and
takes a rose.

INT. TRAIN – DAY

James sits on the train. He smells great, he feels great. He
holds the rose in his hand, and watches the door, anxiously
awaiting for the train to stop at Dreamgirl’s station.

The train arrives. James looks up at the door, he can see
Dreamgirl waiting behind it. He smiles.

The doors open and Dreamgirl walks onto the train, hand in
hand with her BOYFRIEND, one of the kids James saw her with
at the bus stop.

They sit down a few feet from James, and KISS.

Heartbroken, James gets up and walks away to the opposite end
of the car. His eyes glass over. He holds back tears.

He looks for a seat.

Punk Girl watches him. She moves her bag so he can sit down
next to her. He does.

James stares at the floor for a second. Punk Girl stares at him.

She knows him, and he must know her. But he doesn’t. She taps his shoulder.

PUNK GIRL

Excuse me.

James turns his head towards her. He nods as if to say “what’s up?”

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Don’t take this wrong way… cause
I like have seen you around-

James waits patiently to see where this is going.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

So I think its my duty to tell you-

James inches closer, eager to hear what she has to say.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

But your HAIR, it- kinda sorta
makes you look like a rapist.

Punk Girl laughs wildly at this. James just looks at her, confused, mouth open slightly.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Sorry, sorry, that was mean. It’s just I am really scared you might
rape me.

She continues to laugh, this time harder then before.

Again James just looks at her. Speechless and slightly mortified.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)
(Chuckling)

I’m just kidding you know.

She pushes his right shoulder playfully.

James nods his head yes. He looks back down at the floor, not really sure what to make of this girl.
Punk Girl looks at him again. She is determined to win him over.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Come-on, seriously, what is with
this junk.

She runs her right hand through his hair. James moves back slightly but does not put up much resistance.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Ew…

Punk girl looks at her hand which is now sticky and greasy. She rubs it off on the train seat.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

What’s the matter with you? You going for that kind of look…?

Punk Girl nods her head towards Dreamgirl’s boyfriend.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Cause he definitely looks like he’s got more than a few young ladies locked in his basement.

James smiles, bright, wide.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

Ah, See, much better.

They smile at each other.

PUNK GIRL (CONT’D)

So what’s up Rape-y McMasterson, my name’s Claudia.

James looks over at Dreamgirl, who for the first time looks back at him as if she finally notices him.

He turns back to Punk Girl without hesitation. He smiles.

JAMES

I’m James.

FADE OUT.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s