In View of Love

  • Drama

ALL DIALOGUE SPOKEN IN MANDARIN AND ENGLISH AS INDICATED.

 

INT. BEDROOM - TAIWAN - NIGHT

 

The sphere of yellow light from the bedside lamp and a candle illuminate A STATIC VIEW of a bedroom. A TV plays offscreen and flashes intermittent light into the room. DIALOGUE from

an American film plays from the TV.

 

Note: this view remains the same for the remainder of this 

scene.

 

JUSTIN (28), in a white t-shirt and striped pajama pants, lies on the bed with his head against the headboard and a hand on the remote.

 

His hair is short and he has average looking features.

 

In English (with a slight accent, typical to that of an North

American educated Taiwanese)

 

JUSTIN

(shouting to offscreen) It’s the last part.

 

The bedroom door closes and in walks TIFFANY (20s) wearing a rolled up blouse and black tights. Petite, but beautiful.

 

Her eyes fixated on the TV as she walks to and sits on the end of the bed.

 

TIFFANY Is he confessing?

 

JUSTIN

 

Yeah.

 

 

But why?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

 

Justin reaches out to welcome Tiffany in his arms. She follows and they spoon by the edge of the bed, still watching. DIALOGUE continue to be heard from the TV.

 

DIALOGUE FROM TV (O.S.) Once you’re on the stand, you will be admitting to your role in the conspiracy of cover up the murder of Pamela Lorraines.

 

Justin reaches forward with one leg and wraps it around

Tiffany’s as if trying to form a cocoon with her.

 

 

 

TIFFANY He’s gonna do it.

 

Justin rubs Tiffany’s shoulders.

 

DIALOGUE FROM TV (O.S.)

I say give this man a pen.

 

They continue watching for a while.

 

TIFFANY

He’s not going to die in the interrogation room is he?

 

Suspense music creeps in from the TV. The two of them watch intently, waiting for the surprise.

 

JUSTIN

So they basically just brought him here to do that.

 

TIFFANY

And torture him again and again. So dull.

Then...BANG (from the TV). Tiffany’s legs jerk in surprise. In English

 

JUSTIN

Oh shit, here she comes.

 

Justin wraps his arms around Tiffany tighter, half his mind on the movie, the other half enjoying the intimacy.

 

TIFFANY

I don’t wanna watch this anymore.

 

Justin changes the channel to a music video program. The television light now flashes a variety of color onto the room.

 

Justin rolls Tiffany over on her back and begins to kiss her. She receives it.

 

Justin then begins to move his hands under her blouse. Tiffany resists a little, but smiles.

In Mandarin (with the typical accent of an ABC - American

Born Chinese)

 

 

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

I thought we were watching TV.

 

JUSTIN

 

We did.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

But we only watched like half a movie.

 

Justin begins to caress her legs, while quieting her with passionate kisses.

 

Muted PROTESTS from Tiffany emerge, but still covered by the air of playfulness.

 

Justin advances and unbuttons her blouse.

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Movie, movie. Let’s go back to the movie.

 

Justin ignores her and keeps going.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Wine and movie. That’s what you said.

 

He continues to kiss her lovingly but his legs now lock up hers.

 

In Mandarin

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) No...not tonight.

 

Justin swiftly takes off his pajama pants and reveals his also striped boxers. He gets on top of her.

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (struggling to speak over

the kisses)

You said...wine and...movie. This...is...not part of the deal.

 

Justin now focuses his attention on undressing her and manages to take off her pants.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Too fast, too fast, too fast.

 

 

 

He reaches under her panties and touches her, hoping to make her submit to pleasure.

 

In Mandarin

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (a muted shout)

Justin! No. I can’t.

 

Justin now pins her hands down with one hand and quickly strips off his boxers with the other, exposing his erected penis.

 

He climbs on top of her.

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

No. Justin. You can’t. You’re not wearing any protection. You know...babies...and uhh...diseases.

 

Justin backs off for a second but maintains a cuddling position over her.

 

JUSTIN

Just take off the blouse okay? Come on I’ll help you.

 

He strips off her blouse and takes off her bra.

 

Tiffany desperately reaches for the white duvet blanket and covers her.

She jumps into his arms and tries to stop him with a hug. Justin breaks free of it and very quickly takes off his

shirt. He slips into the duvet with her and resumes his

aggression.

 

 

 

Jus...tin.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

Justin reaches down. Tiffany jerks a little.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Hey!

 

Justin’s hand moves aggressively now, under her panties.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (holding onto the last bit

of politeness) (MORE)

 

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

You know...we...don’t...have...to do...this.

 

Justin stops abruptly. He looks her in the eye.

 

JUSTIN

You really detest doing it with me is that it?

 

Justin retracts his body and lays back on his spot. Tiffany jumps back into his arms.

TIFFANY

Nooooo... It’s just, too quick.

 

Justin turns off the TV with the remote.

 

In Mandarin

 

JUSTIN

Okay, fine. I’m not going to force you.

 

She buries her head in him.

 

TIFFANY

I just don’t feel safe.

 

JUSTIN

Let’s just rest for a little bit.

 

He holds her intimately and rubs her arms like before.

 

The room falls dark in the absence of the TV light. A truce of some sorts.

 

In Mandarin.

 

TIFFANY (laughing)

That was so tiring.

 

They remain quiet for a while. Justin looks a little restless as he kicks his legs out the duvet.

 

JUSTIN Aren’t you hot?

 

TIFFANY Yeah. A little.

 

She moves the duvet off her body just a bit, revealing some skin.

 

 

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) Can you turn back on the TV?

 

JUSTIN No, it’s late.

 

TIFFANY

Then can you turn the light off?

 

Justin gets up and reaches for the light switch.

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (singing)

It’s a good habit to turn off the light~~

 

The light turns off and the room falls DARK, leaving only the small candle light by the edge of the FRAME flickering to Justin’s movement.

 

FAINT SILHOUETTES ON THE BED REMAIN ON SCREEN.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Can you set an alarm for 12:00am?

 

JUSTIN

To go back to your friend’s house?

 

TIFFANY

I don’t want them to freak out when they can’t find me.

 

 

In English

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN

What are they gonna do, call the cops?

 

 

TIFFANY

No, but...because it’s just that I

don’t know anyone else in Taiwan.

 

JUSTIN

They know you’re with me.

 

TIFFANY Only Eric knows.

 

JUSTIN

That guy again. Fine, 12:30am it is.

 

 

 

Tiffany chuckles.

 

Justin’s phone illuminates briefly their faces together on the bed. It goes dark again.

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (imitating a automated

voice)

Under no other circumstances may

you to this private space. You have to make a reservation.

 

JUSTIN

What?

 

 

Tiffany giggles.

 

In Mandarin

 

 

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

 

So before you have sex with a man...before you have sex with a boyfriend...I have to make a reservation?

 

TIFFANY

You’re not an “official” boyfriend now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In English

 

 

 

 

No?

 

JUSTIN (whispers)

 

 

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Well, can you tell the whole world that I’m your girlfriend?

 

JUSTIN (adamantly)

 

Yes.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

No you can’t--

 

JUSTIN

 

Yes I can!

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Yeah right.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

First thing in the morning I’ll announce it on Facebook. I’ll change my relationship status.

 

Sounds of KISSES.

 

TIFFANY Just for one night.

 

JUSTIN

 

What?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

You’d probably just change it for one night.

 

 

 

No. Yeah...

No!

 

In Mandarin

 

JUSTIN TIFFANY JUSTIN

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In English

 

I like you a lot.

 

TIFFANY (sings)

I’m not so sure about that~~

 

 

 

JUSTIN

I’m a noble guy man. The last time

I had sex was...4, 5 months ago?

 

 

 

In Mandarin

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

 

 

 

Beat.

 

I’m a normal guy okay?

 

 

 

TIFFANY (quietly)

I know.

 

 

 

 

Hmm?

 

JUSTIN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beat.

 

TIFFANY I said...I know.

 

 

 

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) Is my hair poking you?

 

JUSTIN No. It’s fine.

 

 

They’re quiet now.

 

The candle dims by the minute.

 

The room is almost pitch black only a dot of light from the candle in the corner of the FRAME.

 

Beat.

 

KISSES resume.

 

The bed sheets RUFFLE as their bodies adjust to new positions.

 

Tiffany lets out a moan.

 

TIFFANY (whispers)

Justin...

 

They begin to have intercourse.

 

Tiffany voices both pleasure and protest.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) You can’t do this.

 

JUSTIN Turn around.

 

TIFFANY We agreed...

 

Justin intensifies his penetration.

 

The sound of the headboard KNOCKING against the wall. Tiffany moans in pleasure...or is it in pain?

The headboard BANGS faster and Tiffany MOANS louder.

 

JUSTIN I’m coming.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

No. Justin, you’re not wearing a rubber.

 

Justin lets out a loud grunt, almost as to silence her protest once in for all.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Wait!

 

Justin comes loudly.

 

The two catch their breath.

 

Justin’s breathing slows, but Tiffany keeps panting.

 

In English

 

JUSTIN Are you alright?

 

TIFFANY

I’m not! Justin, I told you not to.

 

JUSTIN What? Am I so dirty?

 

TIFFANY

No, it’ not that. You didn’t wear...and I’m not on the...

 

JUSTIN You don’t like me?

 

TIFFANY

I didn’t say that...it’s just. Ahhhh....Well, maybe we’re not even going to remember this tomorrow.

 

Justin lets out a laugh.

 

JUSTIN

Is that what you do? Sleep with men and then forget?

 

TIFFANY (embarrassed)

No! It’s you.

 

JUSTIN

Fine, fine. Forget all about me tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

 

No......

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

You don’t like me.

 

TIFFANY I didn’t say that.

 

JUSTIN

Are you going to be responsible for me now?

 

TIFFANY (laughs)

Shut up. It’s you, it’s you.

 

SOUND: Their bodies shuffles and readjusts on the bed.

 

JUSTIN

I guess we’re making up for the last four years.

 

TIFFANY

You’ve been back in Taiwan for four years?

 

 

 

I guess.

 

JUSTIN

 

 

TIFFANY

 

In four days.

 

JUSTIN

We spent the last four days making up for the last four years.

 

TIFFANY

But all I can think about is how we just had unprotected sex.....

 

JUSTIN

When was your last period here?

 

TIFFANY

Let’s just say it’s not in the safe zone.

 

JUSTIN

Let’s just say if you get pregnant, we’ll keep it and get married.

 

Tiffany laughs nervously.

 

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) What you don’t want to?

 

TIFFANY

 

No...?

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

You know Barbie Hsu (celebrity) married her husband after only 40 days?

 

TIFFANY

But...they got married not because she was pregnant. And it was 49 days.

 

JUSTIN

Oh yeah, 49 days. But they probably spent half of that time apart.

 

TIFFANY

No...whatever. You want to beat

Barbie Hsu’s record?

 

JUSTIN

 

 

 

Beat.

 

Yes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

You want to have kids?

 

JUSTIN

 

Yes.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

You want to get married?

 

JUSTIN

Yes. And build a home.

 

TIFFANY You!? Justin Lee?

 

JUSTIN

You see? This is what happens. Everyone sees this side of me, out and about at parties, and they think I’m such a player. But deep down...well, where are your parents?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

My dad is in Santa Monica and my mom passed away.

 

Justin’s voice weakens but still going on his point.

 

JUSTIN

Well...when did she pass away. I’m sorry.

 

TIFFANY

Hmm...around the time we met in school? 2007?

 

JUSTIN Right when we met?

 

 

 

Yeah.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

They fall quiet again.

 

JUSTIN

(then)

You know this world is very fair.

 

TIFFANY (laughing)

How so? Explain.

 

JUSTIN

Like...everyone sees me now, and they envy the things I have now. You know, like...I have a lot of friends.

 

 

 

Uh huh.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

And a lot of people know me. And my family is wealthy, and I get to party a lot.

 

TIFFANY

Trust me...MILLIONS would envy.

 

JUSTIN

Yeah, but they didn’t know that... (beat)

You know, at least everybody else got to spend time together with their mom and dad. You’ve seen them...together right?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

What do you mean seen them together?

 

JUSTIN

I mean, like....family dinners.

 

TIFFANY

Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

 

JUSTIN

Because I never had a home.

 

Tiffany is listening now.

 

In Mandarin

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

I...before I was born, like when my mother was still pregnant with me, my parents got divorced. And when I was born, I lived with my mother first. But my grandma really hoped that I could live with them because they were very traditional.

 

TIFFANY Your dad’s side?

 

JUSTIN

 

Yeah.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Because you were the eldest son or whatever?

 

JUSTIN

Yeah, and they begged my mom to have me back. So I came home and...because my mom was still in Hong Kong, so I didn’t really get to see her. She was busy with whatever business she was in.

 

Tiffany’s cellphone light up in her hand, illuminating their faces. She’s checking her messages.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

And so they...i mean we never got

to spend time together. I mean they were divorced but...

 

Justin sees her looking on the phone.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

Let me just call them so they don’t freak out.

 

 

 

Ok.

 

JUSTIN

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Tell them I’ll be back by....tonight?

 

JUSTIN

Just text them. Tell them we’re at the movies or something.

 

TIFFANY (seriously?)

We’re at a movie?

 

JUSTIN Yeah, a late show.

 

TIFFANY

I should call them.

 

The cellphone light continues to form a globe of intimate light between their faces. Justin is looking at her making the call.

 

In Mandarin

 

JUSTIN

I feel like I should be posting sex ads in the paper now.

 

TIFFANY Hey, hey, hey, hey!

 

JUSTIN

Oh my gosh, I feels so dirty and shitty.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In English

 

TIFFANY (laughs)

Hey, no, no--

 

JUSTIN

What am I, a sex toy for your desires?

 

 

 

 

Justin.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

 

 

 

What?

 

JUSTIN

 

 

TIFFANY

 

I wasn’t the one asking for it!

 

JUSTIN I’m already hurt.

 

Tiffany puts down the phone and hides under his neck.

 

TIFFANY (whispers)

I wasn’t the one to ask for it.

 

A sharp DING signals an incoming text on Tiffany’s phone. She looks at it.

 

JUSTIN Who’s that?

 

TIFFANY

 

 

 

Beat.

 

Just Eric.

 

 

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

I think there’s still something between you two.

 

TIFFANY (give me a break)

There’s nothing between us.

 

JUSTIN Yeah, whatever.

 

TIFFANY

He just wants to hangout before I

go back to L.A.

 

JUSTIN

So how many boyfriends do you have right now?

 

TIFFANY

I don’t have any boyfriends. I

haven’t had a boyfriend since...

 

JUSTIN

Just friends with benefits.

 

TIFFANY

I don’t have friends with benefits.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

So you haven’t had sex for four years, is that what you’re saying?

 

TIFFANY

Hmm...I had one right after him. But that only lasted like...two months. That was it.

(beat)

Yeah, I think I’ve been single for like...3 years?

 

JUSTIN

 

Right...

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Why do you think I’m always working until like...midnight?

 

JUSTIN I don’t know.

 

TIFFANY

It’s ‘cuz I have no where to go, other than going out for drinks.

 

JUSTIN

And then just go home with guys at the club.

 

 

 

No! Yes.

 

TIFFANY JUSTIN

TIFFANY

 

Seriously, my friends are really protective of me. No matter how drunk I am, they always make sure I get home safe.

 

JUSTIN

Then they just go home with you.

 

TIFFANY

No! Not that kind of friends. Seriously, no matter how much I drink, even if I drove, they’ll drive two cars to send me home and then drive my car back for me, and then the next day they’ll come pick me up for work.

(beat)

(MORE)

 

 

TIFFANY (CONT'D)

I only hangout with friends I feel safe with.

 

JUSTIN

What if one day your friends are no longer here?

(whispers)

I’ll protect you then.

Tiffany “lets” out a chuckle. They fall quiet for a minute. In Mandarin

 

 

 

Really?

 

TIFFANY

 

 

Justin doesn’t respond.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

On a scale of 1 to 10, how truthful is that?

 

Tiffany nervously laughs.

 

Justin’s cellphone sounds its ALARM.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) Is that the alarm?

 

JUSTIN

 

Yeah.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

 

 

Beat.

 

I should get back soon.

 

 

JUSTIN

Can you sleep over? I’m so insecure.

 

 

 

You!?

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

I’m a very insecure person.

 

TIFFANY

I’m the MOST insecure person in the world.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

No, no, no. Listen, I’m worse. (beat)

Every girl I’ve been with, they always ask me: How can you be so insecure?

 

TIFFANY Like in what way?

 

JUSTIN

It’s like...I’ll like--

 

TIFFANY

Like you want to know where they are?

 

JUSTIN

Most of my girlfriends, they all have a bad track record of...lying.

 

TIFFANY

A bad track record...

 

JUSTIN

Like they always lie to me, and I

always catch them.

 

TIFFANY

Like about what? Like lying about where they are?

 

JUSTIN Not just that. For example...like...hmm...

(beat)

Because I’m always...hmm... (beat)

I don’t know. There were a lot. Too many, that I can’t remember them

all now.

 

TIFFANY (laughs)

You can’t remember?

 

JUSTIN

Ok, like...they would tell me that they’ve stopped communicating with their ex.

 

TIFFANY

How did you find out?

 

 

 

 

 

I just do.

 

 

Mm hmm. (beat)

 

JUSTIN TIFFANY

 

Is that why you think I still have a thing with Eric?

 

JUSTIN I don’t know.

 

TIFFANY No, we don’t. Okay?

(beat)

Maybe...he just thinks that I can’t take care of myself.

 

JUSTIN When you’re here?

 

TIFFANY

Yeah, but I’m fine. I still got some friends here.

(beat)

Maybe he’s just worried because he thinks I don’t know you well enough. And--

 

JUSTIN (loudly)

So you guys talk about me!?

 

TIFFANY

No, no, no...I’m just saying maybe he thinks...No, we don’t talk about you.

 

JUSTIN (sarcastically)

Right.

 

TIFFANY Get out of here.

 

They share a chuckle.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) Like, he thinks I get taken advantage too easily.

 

JUSTIN

Mm.

 

 

 

They fall quiet again.

 

In Mandarin

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) Did it feel good?

 

TIFFANY

 

What?

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

The lovemaking.

 

TIFFANY Lovemaking?

 

Tiffany laughs nervously.

 

In English

 

JUSTIN

So you didn’t like it?

 

TIFFANY I didn’t say that.

 

JUSTIN

 

Then what?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

It-just-wasn’t-meant-to-happen- tonight.

 

JUSTIN

But you’re leaving. And it did happen.

 

TIFFANY

I know. I’m still trying to digest that right now.

 

They’re thinking in silence.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) Doesn’t your dad ever come back home?

 

JUSTIN

Of course. But even if he does, he usually just goes upstairs.

 

TIFFANY

But isn’t this place usually a...quiet space?

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Huh? Oh. No, I closed that partition. This is practically two separate houses.

 

TIFFANY (laughs)

Oh, okay.

 

JUSTIN

You’re coming back to Taiwan in a few years right?

 

TIFFANY

I don’t know. I have to work.

 

JUSTIN

How are we going to get married if you’re there?

 

Tiffany laughs nervously.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

I can’t get married to someone who’s like, thousands of miles away. And besides, your parents wouldn’t approve of me.

 

TIFFANY

 

Why not?

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

Well because...like all my girlfriends’ parents never approve of me, because, you know, I’m a celebrity and all. And they want their little girls marrying someone more simple and normal.

 

TIFFANY

But then isn’t...you know, your kind of family.

(gathers her thoughts) Don’t you guys marry people of status, like people who your family would benefit from?

 

JUSTIN

That’s only in soap operas!

 

TIFFANY I don’t know~

 

 

 

JUSTIN

That’s in Cantonese soap operas, not real life.

 

TIFFANY

Yes, in real life! I have a couple of friends like that. Like they’ll be married, you know, in an arranged marriage. Then they’ll

also have someone else who they see on the side. Someone they like.

 

JUSTIN

Trust me, if your company was big and powerful enough, you don’t need to find an ally through marriage. Like our company is at the top in the industry, so we don’t need to

do that. Trust me, they just want me to find a simple girl, that’s it.

 

TIFFANY

But the companies that..do need connections, they do have these arranged marriages right?

 

JUSTIN

Well, I mean...yeah. If your company isn’t big enough and, say, you have a competitor that can benefit you more as an ally, then...

 

TIFFANY

Maybe my friends’ company is like that.

 

JUSTIN

Yeah, that happens only in soap operas and mid-level companies. There aren’t a lot of insurance companies in Taiwan. Maybe 15, and we’re like...number 3.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

 

Beat.

 

Mm hm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

I mean your business of selling salts, you can do that here right? Why do you have to do that in L.A.?

 

 

 

TIFFANY

Because the market is there.

 

JUSTIN What market?

 

TIFFANY

The market we’re targeting is in

L.A.

 

JUSTIN

But you could still work in Taiwan.

 

TIFFANY

Well...I could, but I’d need to solidify my base in America before I can, you know...leave.

 

JUSTIN

Uh huh. Well, then you can solidify it, then come back.

 

TIFFANY (laughs)

Well, God knows how long that’s going to take.

 

JUSTIN

I guess that depends on how you love me.

 

 

 

Pfft...

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

If you love me, then you’ll work really hard.

 

TIFFANY

Of course, I’d work really hard.

 

JUSTIN Just not for me.

 

TIFFANY

You know when you don’t have a lot of money, you need to make it up with time.

 

 

 

Okay...

 

JUSTIN

 

 

 

TIFFANY

Like people with funds, like from a lot of investors, they can just setup shop in a lot places and push their product. But with small businesses like ours, you can only do so much. Then you build a little after that. It takes a long time to build something, you know?

 

JUSTIN

So you don’t love me.

 

TIFFANY

Well, then why don’t you come to

L.A.?

 

JUSTIN

Maybe I’ll tell my dad to open a

U.S. branch.

 

She laughs in amusement.

 

TIFFANY

You know that might not be a bad idea. It’s a good market to be in right now actually. You know all the small ones died, only the big ones left, and B.L.B. sucks.

 

JUSTIN

You know you can just focus on online sales. You can do that here.

 

TIFFANY

Yeah, but...I can’t just leave my store there. When it’s your own thing...

 

JUSTIN (jokingly sobbing)

So you just use me...then.

 

TIFFANY (laughing)

Stop it! It’s not funny. (beat)

Why don’t you fly there!?

 

JUSTIN

Because I have to work!

 

TIFFANY

Uh huh...

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Because my working hours aren’t as flexible. And I have thousands of employees...looking at me, so if I leave...like even when I went to Shanghai for a vacation, I had to sneak out there. I had secretly go when my dad was in Japan, then call in sick.

 

TIFFANY

That’s okay then, I guess. I live in Taiwan time zone when I’m in L.A. anyway. I sleep at like 3:00 or 4:00am.

 

JUSTIN

And go out with guys.

 

TIFFANY

No...I told you I’m not that kind of a girl. I’m super...homey. Like I stay at home all the time.

 

JUSTIN

Well, then you need to get a webcam at home, so I can spy on you all

the time to see if you’re home.

 

TIFFANY There’s Facetime.

 

JUSTIN

You can’t turn on Facetime all the time.

 

TIFFANY

And with Facetime I can know where

YOU are.

 

JUSTIN

Well with webcam I can only be at home.

 

TIFFANY

Or you can find a room outside and decorate it exactly like this room.

 

JUSTIN Yeah right.

 

They share a laugh. Tiffany lets out a sigh.

 

 

 

 

In Mandarin

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

 

So you’ll marry me?

 

TIFFANY

You’re really going after Barbie Hsu’s record huh? Say they did spend half the time apart. That’s still only 20 something days. We haven’t spent more than 4 days together here. And we’re not even “together” together.

 

JUSTIN

They got engaged after 4 meetings!

49 days is just how long they’ve known each other.

 

TIFFANY

Interesting. Ha-ha. Well...you’ll probably start ignoring me when I go back.

 

JUSTIN

No, I won’t. You know I won’t. I’m a noble guy okay? I told you.

 

TIFFANY

You’ll start going out and recruiting girls to join your circle of “friends”.

 

JUSTIN

I won’t ignore you if you behave.

 

TIFFANY

Hey, I’m a good girl okay?

 

JUSTIN

Like going out drinking is not behaving in my books.

 

TIFFANY You go out!

 

JUSTIN

Guys are not the same. Seriously, it’s not the same for guys and girls. Girls can’t protect themselves. There are a lot of bad guys out there.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

I have my friends to protect me.

 

JUSTIN

I don’t know your friends.

 

TIFFANY

Well...I don’t really drink.

 

JUSTIN Yeah, sure.

 

TIFFANY

I even quick smoking. I really

don’t drink much. Not-like-you! And you’re so aggressive when you’re drunk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In English

 

JUSTIN What do you mean?

 

TIFFANY

You get so angry sometimes.

 

JUSTIN

What? Me? Eric is even meaner.

 

TIFFANY

You just don’t like him.

 

JUSTIN

No! Okay, like last time at the club. He was scolding that waitress. You know, the short one?

 

TIFFANY I don’t remember.

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Because you know, that waitress, her job is to service me. Only me. She’s there at the club to service me. I have two private glasses at the club. And so when I arrive, they make sure to pour the glasses before I sit down. And I think he wanted to have the same drink and took the glass and she’s like...”sorry that’s Mr. Lee’s glass.” He was like, “what the fuck,” and started going at her.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

Oh, was that what it was about?

 

JUSTIN

I mean, she’s there to service me alone. If anyone can yell at her, it’s me. Nobody else. I mean there’s not much to yell about anyway. So I was like, chill out man.

 

TIFFANY

I guess I didn’t see that part. (beat)

Yeah, he was pretty angry when we were married. I mean, that’s not why we broke up, but...

 

JUSTIN

If you ever meet my dad one day, don’t ever bring up you were ever married.

 

TIFFANY

Won’t someone dig it up, somehow?

 

JUSTIN

How? You were married in L.A.

 

TIFFANY

I don’t know, the media?

 

JUSTIN

The paparazzi in Taiwan is not that competent like in the U.S.

 

TIFFANY

What about all those Cantonese celebrities? Look at Edison Chan (famous Cantonese celebrity who got leaked sextapes of himself and multiple high profile celebrities).

 

JUSTIN

Nah, the dogs in Taiwan aren’t that good. And besides, you’re not a celebrity.

 

TIFFANY

No...but, you are! Then they’ll dig everyone around you.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Yeah but they’ll just ask, who you are? And you’re just a normal girl. They won’t find anything about you.

 

TIFFANY Like a pedestrian?

 

JUSTIN

It’s not like they can Google you and find out things about you. Can they?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beat.

 

TIFFANY No, they can’t...

 

JUSTIN

The most they’ll do when we get married is to interview you. That’s all.

 

 

TIFFANY (chuckles)

Are we really have a serious marriage discussion right now?

 

JUSTIN

What? You don’t want to? Fine.

 

TIFFANY (moaning)

No...it’s just...it’s just...I

don’t know that much about you.

 

JUSTIN

There are a lot of things you don’t know about me.

(beat)

Like I often tell people, a person’s persona, how he is to the public, how he acts, how he speaks, is just a facade to protect

himself. I’m just protecting myself.

 

 

 

Yeah.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

And it wasn’t always easy. I used to get into a lot of fights. There are a lot of scars on me.

 

 

 

 

 

You?

 

TIFFANY

 

 

The sound of Justin getting off the bed. The light FLICKS on, blasting a harsh white light in the FRAME.

 

The two of them have switched positions over the course of the conversation. She has the duvet wrapped tightly just above her breasts, revealing her shoulders. He is completely naked.

 

The white light slowly adjusts to a more gentle orange, an act of “White Balancing.”

 

JUSTIN Look, my hand here.

 

Justin reaches out his right arm for her to see.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D)

That’s from smashing a bottle on somebody.

 

TIFFANY

That’s you hitting someone else!

 

JUSTIN Ok, see here?

 

Justin shows her his back.

 

TIFFANY

 

Uh huh.

 

 

And here.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

 

Justin shows her the back of his right ear.

 

 

 

Hmm.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

Justin gets off the bed and turns the light off again. THE ROOM FALLS PITCH BLACK.

JUSTIN

I used to have bodyguards but my

mom says it looks too high profile, so I don’t have them anymore.

 

TIFFANY Hmm, yeah, I guess.

 

 

 

 

Beat.

 

In Mandarin

 

 

 

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

Will you love me?

 

TIFFANY

I’m scared you won’t love me.

 

JUSTIN

 

I do.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

I’m going to go back and then you won’t call me again.

 

JUSTIN

I’ll setup a Skype account right now and call you everyday.

 

TIFFANY

That’s okay. I’ll take your word for it.

 

JUSTIN

Hey it’s me that should be worried okay. You have so many guy friends.

 

TIFFANY

No, it’s not like that. I’m just...I don’t get a long with girls you know, because I’m not like a girly girl. We don’t have that much in common. Like I don’t have heavy makeup, or do my nails.

 

JUSTIN

I hate girls with, you know, those colorful, bright red, yellow, neon, acrylic nails.

(beat)

I forbid Maggie to wear any nail polish when we were together. She had to beg me on her birthday. She’s like, “please, please, would you let me wear nail polish on my birthday?”

 

TIFFANY (timidly)

How did you guys breakup?

 

Justin thinks about it.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Mmm...let’s put it this way. Her and her mother were not smart enough.

 

TIFFANY Not very smart?

 

JUSTIN

They were looking at 100,000NTD (3,500USD) a month.

 

TIFFANY

Like for you to pay for her living?

 

JUSTIN

Instead of, say, us getting married and I take care of her for life. Then she wouldn’t have to worry about any money.

 

TIFFANY

That was the price to be with her?

 

JUSTIN

And after we were together, I left the company. I moved out of the house.

 

 

 

Why?

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

Because my dad didn’t like her.

 

TIFFANY

How long were you guys together?

 

JUSTIN

Two years. And I mean, I had savings so I didn’t ask for my dad for money.

 

TIFFANY

And so you guys broke up because you were running out of money?

 

JUSTIN

Not just that. Like little things too. I mean she made like,

30,000NTD a month, and she wanted

to live in Da’an district, buy L.V. purses, and eat at Ding Tai.

(MORE)

 

 

JUSTIN (CONT'D)

So then, I was just like...I

couldn’t take it anymore.

 

TIFFANY

How many years ago was that?

 

JUSTIN

Umm......two years? Yeah, two years ago.

 

TIFFANY

Then who was the girl 4 months ago?

 

JUSTIN

No, she was a news anchor. Maggie was the last, last one.

 

 

 

Oh...

 

TIFFANY

 

 

They give it a rest for a moment.

 

JUSTIN

So you know, my parents don’t want me to be with like...complicated girls, like who would go out to events and stuff and be on camera a lot. Better that they’re small business owners...

 

TIFFANY (laughs hard)

Yeah right! Yeah right.

 

She continues to chuckle.

 

JUSTIN (whispers)

I love you.

 

TIFFANY (whispers)

Hmm...

 

JUSTIN

Can you scratch my back?

 

Bodies moving in the duvet cover.

 

 

 

Higher. Here?

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) TIFFANY

 

 

 

 

 

Lower.

Like that? More left.

(beat)

 

JUSTIN TIFFANY JUSTIN

 

More right. (beat)

Down. (beat)

 

Up.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

That’s the same spot!

 

JUSTIN

Yeah, like you know how when you scratch one spot, the skin next to it gets itchy, then the next, then the next...

 

He makes her laugh...

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) (a cute yell)

I don’t want you to leave!

 

He makes biting sounds.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) Can I kidnap you?

 

TIFFANY

Why didn’t you say earlier?

 

JUSTIN Can I tie you up?

 

TIFFANY

Will I see you tomorrow?

 

JUSTIN If you want to.

 

TIFFANY

 

Will I?

 

 

Yes.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

 

 

 

 

 

For lunch?

 

 

Yes.

 

TIFFANY

 

 

JUSTIN

 

 

Tiffany’s cellphone RINGS.

 

TIFFANY

I think it’s under you.

 

The cellphone light is revealed under his body. She picks it up.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (to the phone)

Hello?

 

No one answers.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D) (to the phone)

Hello? Oh, hey. Why didn’t you answer. Uh huh. Yeah, I’m on my way. No, I’m around 101 (Taiwan’s tallest building). Yep. Okay. Bye.

 

JUSTIN

Fine, go back to Eric.

 

TIFFANY That’s not Eric!

 

JUSTIN

That’s okay. I’ll just think I’m your sex toy.

 

TIFFANY

(for the last time!)

No! It’s like, I told them, 8:00pm. And then they text me, I say

9:00pm. 10:00pm. Now it’s 12:00am!

 

JUSTIN

Yeah, but that was before we had sex!

 

TIFFANY

You! You wanted it...

 

JUSTIN

You just use me and leave.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

There’s really no way around you is there? I lose. You just have your way of turning it around and guilt trip me. And...the guilt works!

 

JUSTIN

It’s okay. I’ll just tell my friends I got dumped.

 

TIFFANY

Stop...Should we meet at 1:00pm?

 

JUSTIN

 

So early.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

If I leave at 3:00pm, will I be able to catch my flight at 6:00pm?

 

JUSTIN

Oh yes, plenty of time.

 

The sound of a body getting off the bed. The light FLICKS on again.

 

Another “White Balance.”

 

Justin sits up at the edge of one side of the bed.

 

Tiffany gets up from the other side, trying to put back on her clothes.

 

TIFFANY

You know, you’re not like the

Pisces that I know.

 

JUSTIN

I don’t believe that. I don’t believe that there are only 12 types of people in this world.

 

TIFFANY

Well not 12 types of people...

 

JUSTIN

Everyone is the way they are from their background, from how they grew up, how their environment shapes them.

 

TIFFANY Yeah, I know...true.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

There are not just 12 types of people.

 

TIFFANY

When I fall for a Pisces, and it goes wrong, it’ll be DISASTROUS.

 

JUSTIN

Okay...what are you trying to say?

 

TIFFANY

Nothing, it’s just...I’m scared. You know?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In English

 

JUSTIN

Listen, I told you. If you behave, and be a good, normal girl. It’s like, why would girls always ask me that? I’m like, “if you don’t do anything wrong, anything bad, why would I ever leave you?”

 

 

 

TIFFANY

Guys just get sick of girls.

 

JUSTIN

No, girls just do things that piss guys off. At least, I believe...a couple who is together forever,

they become best friends, even when there’s no romance anymore.

 

TIFFANY

Yeah, the butterflies go away quickly.

 

JUSTIN

They trust each other and...

 

TIFFANY

It’s just all the relationships I’ve had, have ended poorly. Like crazy retaliations and...

 

JUSTIN

You can’t be hurt that often. How old are you?

 

TIFFANY

It’s always 2-3 years. But it dates back since high school.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

How long were you with Eric?

 

TIFFANY Like...7 years.

 

JUSTIN

 

Wow.

 

 

 

TIFFANY

 

Yeah...and even that ended. So...

 

JUSTIN (sings)

Easy come, easy go~

 

Tiffany throws a pillow at him.

 

TIFFANY Can I trust you?

 

JUSTIN

Two people were just naked in the same bed together, and you ask me if you can trust me!?

 

Tiffany LAUGHS.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) I’m hurt man.

 

TIFFANY

Do I ever have a chance of asking you something before you hit me with that?

 

JUSTIN

Get out of here. Go.

 

TIFFANY

I really need to fix my hair. I

look like--

 

JUSTIN

Like you just had sex.

 

They laugh.

 

TIFFANY

So I don’t look like a slut.

 

Tiffany walks toward the door. Justin, still sitting, stops her and puts his arms around her.

 

 

 

JUSTIN

Why? You don’t want people to know?

 

TIFFANY

Know that I’m a slut?

 

JUSTIN Know you love me.

 

Justin buries his face in her stomach. She caresses his hair.

Beat.

 

He pinches the fat on her stomach.

 

TIFFANY

Stop pinching my fat!

 

JUSTIN

I want to eat it. It’s mine.

 

Tiffany looks OFFSCREEN, presumably a mirror. She fixes her hair.

 

TIFFANY

Man, I look like a mess.

 

Tiffany is released and heads out the door.

 

Justin is left alone in the room, sitting at the edge of the bed.

 

He looks at the messy bed.

He turns his gaze and blankly looks on the ground. Beat.

 

TIFFANY (CONT’D)

Hey, can I take a shower, or is that too obvious?

 

JUSTIN Sure, go ahead.

 

Justin snaps out of it and checks himself in the mirror

OFFSCREEN.

 

JUSTIN (CONT’D) (yelling)

Hey, use the blue shampoo by the railings.

 

 

 

He sits for a moment longer then gets up.

 

He walks right up to the FRAME. His face barely by the edge of FRAME.

 

His hands is on a computer mouse. The FRAME SHAKES a little.

His eyes search the FRAME. He’s looking at US now. CLICK.

The screen goes black.

In View of Love

Anonymous