The Linguist (Scene 8)

For reference, see character thumbnails.

[inside Abbott estate; REESE and NELL are sitting on the couch watching the news; WILL comes in and kisses NELL on the top of her head as he passes; REESE is taken aback]

REESE:     Well, that’s interesting.

NELL:     Please just say what you mean. I’m off-duty on the socio part of the linguistics today.

REESE:     I just meant that I am happy for you. Can’t really say I’m surprised anyway. You two were always circling each other in high school. That’s why it didn’t work with me and him.

NELL:     It’s not serious. Insofar as that means we plan to take this beyond the weekend, I mean.

REESE:     Sure, sure.     [beat]     Listen, Nell, I know things are weird with you and mom…but can you just make it until the meeting Monday? For my sake?

NELL:     I can try. It’s hard being here…without dad.

REESE:     I know. But I need this.      [beat]     Look, Rodger doesn’t know this because he’s been so preoccupied with the afterschool program he started for the kids from Brookside, but things are not great financially speaking. I got pretty cheap health insurance because I wanted to save more for Eliza’s college fund, so I had to take out a loan to pay her doctor bill. Let me tell you, the interest is not kind. I had to tell Norah we couldn’t afford to send her to circus camp this year. You should’ve seen her face. And I just turned down partner at the firm last year so I could do non-profit…what was I thinking, Nell? We can’t both save the planet. One of us has to make good money.

NELL:     Wow.

REESE:     [leaning into her sister]     Yeah. Wow. How did I get myself into this mess?

NELL:      Why haven’t you told Rodger all this?

REESE:     He’s so busy and he loves his work too much. I don’t want him to think that he has to give it up so I can take my turn playing the saint. Besides, those kids need him. Brookside is not a pretty place.

NELL:      Okay…well, you don’t have to worry. I’ll ‘be good.’

REESE:      Really? Thank you, Nell! Thank you so much.

[lights go down on NELL looking slightly unhappy]

—End Scene—

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