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LAST DANCE

by Chris Abbott

TEASER
FADE IN
EXT. COLORADO SPRINGS - DAY ONE
Colorado Springs is bustling with activity. The Sully wagon passes the train station. Inside are Sully, Mike, Katie, Brian and Wolf. Mike is carrying Katie in the sling made for her by Sully. The baby basket is in the back of the wagon with Brian. It's a crisp fall day. Sully, Mike and Brian are wearing jackets. Brian is enthusiastically explaining his day's plans to Mike. He's holding a drawing in his hand which is nearly completed.
BRIAN
Sully's takin' me out to Red Rocks so I can finish my drawin'. Then I'm gonna make a model of it.
MIKE (pleased)
Sounds like an ambitious project.
BRIAN (a grin)
That's what Miss Teresa said.
MIKE
Colleen's taking geology this term at college. Perhaps she could offer you some pointers.
SULLY
What time's her train from Denver arrive?
MIKE
One o' clock.
ANOTHER ANGLE - AS THE WAGON TURNS DOWN THE MAIN ROAD
A banner has been hung above the road. Brian looks up at it as they pass beneath it.
BRIAN'S POINT OF VIEW
We read it, as Brian does:
BRIAN (O.S.)
Sweetheart's Dance Saturday Night.
RESUME ANGLE ON WAGON
as he sees:
ANGLE - THE GENERAL STORE
Sara, Brian's friend, comes out of the general store and walks up the street.
ANGLE - TO INCLUDE BRIAN
Brian notices Sara and becomes paralysed with Sudden Shyness Syndrome. He returns a slight smile and a tiny, little wave. Mike and Sully are oblivious to the romantic drama playing out between Brian and Sara
MIKE
Emma has had five new orders for dresses for the dance.
CLOSE ON BRIAN
As he watches Sara getting further and further away.
MIKE (O.S.)
I think there is going to be a very big turn out this year.
SULLY (O.S.)
Don't forget to save a dance for your pa, Katie.
RESUME ANGLE
Sully is smiling down at Katie. Mike smiles at Sully and then looks back at Brian. She doesn't know how to interpret the sick look on his face.
MIKE (concerned)
Brian? Are you all right?
Brian nods, not trusting his own voice quite yet. She's not convinced. He croaks it out.
BRIAN
I'm fine.
He smiles as an offer of proof. But after Mike turns back around, fear replaces confidence on Brian's face as he thinks of Sara once again. He looks at his drawing to get his mind off his dilemma.
CLOSE ON THE DRAWING
of the Red Rock formation now know as Garden of the Gods. As CAMERA MOVES IN ON THE DRAWING, we:
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. RED ROCKS - DAY ONE (STOCK)
The Red Rocks formation.
BRIAN (O.S.)
Ain't no other place on earth like this one, I bet.
SULLY (O.S.)
No place I've ever seen.
REVERSE ANGLE TO SEE
Sully and Brian in the wagon. There are no red rock formations behind them. Brian is working on his drawing. From the amount of work done, it's apparent they've been here for awhile. Sully's leaned back in the wagon, feet up, relaxing. Brian asks him a question as casually as he can.
BRIAN
Sully? Can I ask you somethin'?
SULLY
Sure.
BRIAN
Say you wanted to ask somebody to a dance.
Sully plays like he doesn't already know what Brian's talking about.
SULLY
Somebody --?
Brian is caught up enough in his terror of the dance that he doesn't see immediately that Sully is toying with him.
BRIAN
Yeah.
SULLY
Like -- a girl, you mean?
BRIAN
Right. A girl. What would ya say to her?
SULLY
You just say, "how would you feel about goin' to the dance with me?"
Brian nods, but he's troubled.
BRIAN
But -- what if you don't want to let on you're really askin' her?
SULLY
Why not?
BRIAN
Maybe -- in case she says "No"
Sully nods. He treats Brian's concern with dignity.
SULLY (genuine)
That's the risk ya gotta take.
Trying to keep his risk limited, Brian comes up with another question:
BRIAN
What'd you say to Ma? When you asked her?
SULLY
I said "Michaela Quinn, will do me the great honor of goin' to the dance with me?"
BRIAN (in awe)
Who told ya to say it like that?
SULLY
Your ma.
He and Brian share a laugh over that and then Wolf, seeing something some distance off, barks, jumps out of the wagon, and starts running towards whatever it is he saw. Sully jumps out after him.
SULLY
Wolf!
Wolf is excited about his find. He doesn't want to restrain himself, but he does so, reluctantly, while Sully walks over to him.
BRIAN (calling to him from the wagon)
What is it?
Sully is close enough now to see that the object is:
CLOSER ANGLE
a hawk. The bird is alive, but motionless. Sully takes off his jacket to cover the bird, who appears to be in shock.
BRIAN (O.S.)
Sully!!!!!!!
Sully turns at the sound of Brian's warning just in time to see a hawk with an enormous wing spread swooping down on him.
Sully drops to the ground, holding an arm up as protection. The hawk's talons take a bit of skin as the hawk pulls up and circles for another attack. Wolf growls and barks, keeping the hawk at bay. Brian jumps out of the wagon and starts running toward Sully.
CLOSE ON SULLY
He checks his arm. A little blood, but nothing serious. As Brian joins him:
BRIAN
You all right?
SULLY
Fine. He's tryin' to protect his mate, is all. She's alive, but she ain't movin'. If we leave her here, mountain lion'll get her.
He carries the jacket-enwrapped hawk with him as he and Brian run back toward the wagon. Wolf runs to the wagon and jumps in.
WIDER ANGLE
The male hawk swoops down on Sully again. Wolf barks and leaps into the air, throwing the hawk off. Sully looks back at the red rock formation to find the nest.
RED ROCK FORMATION - STOCK
We see the hawk fly up and pause at the hole in the red rock which is their nest.
SULLY (O.S.)
There's the nest.
The hawk leaves the nest (Prod. Note: This is on the stock footage, also) and begins its swoop down on Sully again.
THE WAGON
Sully and Brian are already in the wagon, riding away. Brian is holding the female hawk still nestled in the jacket. The male follows them for a while, Wolf, in the wagon, barks at the male hawk.
CLOSER ON BRIAN
Brian looks down at the bundles on his lap, concerned for her safety.
CUT TO:
INT. BARN - DAY ONE
CAMERA STARTS CLOSE on the hawk who is now standing on some straw inside a basket. As camera pulls out, Sully finishes tying a tether to her leg. The other side is secured to the box. Brian is looking on with concern.
BRIAN
Hope she's gonna be all right.
Sully glances over at him, smiles.
SULLY (re: his blood stained shirt)
Why don't you keep her comp'ny while I take care of this.
BRIAN
Sure.
EXT. BARN - DAY ONE
As Sully comes out of the barn, he is startled to see someone at his front door. Sully calls out to him, not hostile, but obviously cautious.
SULLY
Help ya?
The man, who we will learn is Welland Smith, turns at the sound of Sully's voice. Smith is in his late thirties, early forties, a handsome man with an open expression.
SMITH
Lookin' for a man named Byron Sully.
SULLY
I'm Sully. Who are you?
Smith's face breaks into a big grin. He hurries down the steps to shake Sully's hand.
SMITH
Welland Smith, sir. Am I glad to find you. I've come all the way from Washington, DC to offer you a job.
Sully is surprised by this announcement, but he doesn't give much away as Smith stands beaming at him.
FADE OUT
END OF TEASER
ACT ONE
FADE IN
EXT COLORADO SPRINGS - GENERAL STORE - DAY ONE
Matthew and Emma drive up in a wagon. She's holding a string of fish (four or five).
INSIDE THE GENERAL STORE
Loren is going over some paperwork. He glances out the window. Sees:
MATTHEW AND EMMA
Playful, enjoying each other's company. He watches as they get out of the wagon, come towards the door.
ANGLE - AT THE DOOR - FROM INSIDE THE STORE
As Emma and Matthew reach the door, they both hesitate. There's an awkwardness about "should we kiss"/"shouldn't we". They're both uncomfortable about it and they both try to rescue the moment at the same time. Matthew leans in to kiss her cheek. At the same time, she reaches up to pat the upper part of his arm.
EMMA
I had a good time -- oh!
They laugh as his kiss lands on her arm.
EMMA
Sorry.
MATTHEW
My fault (beat). You -- wanta have supper later?
EMMA
I'd like to, but I gotta lot of work to do on those dresses.
MATTHEW
For the dance. Sure. Well, I'll -- see ya later.
She nods and smiles and he turns and leaves. Neither of them has seen Loren, so Emma is slightly startled at his voice:
LOREN (a big sigh)
I s'pose now I've gotten used to ya, you're gonna up and leave me.
She recovers from her surprise, but we get a sense that she's concealing something when she responds.
EMMA
Leave ---?
LOREN
Just like a woman. You start to depend on 'em, they go an' get married.
She sees now that he's joking with her, in his own curmudgeonly way. She smiles at him, looks at him askance.
EMMA
Who's gettin' married?
Loren realizes he's made an assumption and although what he wants to do is give her his blessing, he's not quite sure now how to extricate himself from this conversation.
LOREN
I thought -- that is, the two of you --
She laughs, letting him off the hook.
EMMA
I just started my new business. I ain't ready to get married yet.
He wants her to find a way to seize happiness before it drifts away.
LOREN
Oh! Well, if that's all that's botherin' ya, we can work somethin' out. You could work half days or every other day --
EMMA (full of enthusiasm)
But I don't want to work half days. I want to be here all day. Every day. This business is all I ever dreamed about.
She reaches up and kisses him on the cheek, then hands him the fish. He can't let her know that he's pleased she kissed him. So he covers with a complaint about the fish.
LOREN
Ahhhhh! My clothes!
On her way toward her sewing area, cheerfully:
EMMA
Could you take them over to Grace's for me? I have a fitting in ten minutes.
He grumbles his way out of the store, stopping long enough to smell his vest for any hint of fish smell.
ANGLE - EMMA'S SEWING AREA
Emma sits at her sewing machine. She opens a drawer and takes a small wooden box out from underneath scraps of material. She opens the box and removes the contents.
CLOSE ON - THE CONTENTS
Which consist of a letter addressed to her, General Delivery, Colorado Springs. The return address on the letter says: Gilda St. Clair, Hotel Paris, Paris, France. Along with the letter is a program from a concert in London, England with Gilda St. Clair's silhouette on it.
RESUME EMMA
She holds the letter, not even wanting to read it right now, but wanting to be reassured by its presence. She smells the fading perfume. She rubs her thumb over the stamp. She turns the program over n her hand. She is obviously weighing something in her mind, but what that is right now we don't know.
CUT TO:
INT. CLINIC - DAY ONE
Mike is holding Katie and feeding her from a bowl. This is a pleasurable moment between mother and daughter.
MIKE
My, what a big girl! (playfully). I want you to know I appreciate your eating this delicious baby food. It makes it easier for Mommy to be a doctor.
Katie gurgles and waves her hands and feet around as if she actually understands Mike. Dorothy comes hurrying into the clinic, carrying a letter.
DOROTHY
He said yes!
Mike is delighted to see her friend, but is also still completely caught up in Katie's latest accomplishment.
MIKE
Dorothy! Look how well Katie is eating packaged baby food.
Dorothy doesn't want to be side tracked but she also doesn't want to be rude to Mike or Katie. She does her best to show enthusiasm.
DOROTHY
My. Yes. She certainly is. (A more abrupt transition than she meant to make; re: the letter). Look! I got the go ahead. From my publisher.
She hands the letter to Mike and continues on, pleased:
DOROTHY
I'm writin' a new book. Not about Colorado Springs, I already done that. This one's about the Indians. Well, not all the Indians. It's about Cloud Dancin'.
MIKE (surprised)
It is?
DOROTHY
Got the idea for it during his trial. Why, he sat there under attack, all that time, never once looked scared or angry. I got to thinkin', most people don't get to see somethin' like that. So I'm gonna write a book about it.
MIKE (she knows her friend)
And -- what does Cloud Dancing say about this book?
DOROTHY
He doesn't know about it yet. I'm goin' up to talk to him first thing in the mornin'. Soon's I figure out what to say. Ain't this somethin', Michaela?
MIKE
Yes, it certainly is.
We can see that Mike is trying to be completely positive and optimistic for her friend, but that there is something beneath the surface she isn't giving away. Move in on Mike and ...
CUT TO
EXT COLORADO SPRINGS - DAY ONE
As Mike (carrying Katie in the sling) and Brian walk along the road.
BRIAN
... and then a hawk attacked him.
MIKE
A hawk?
BRIAN
We come across the wounded hawk an' while we was tryin' to rescue her from mountain lions, her mate started attackin' Sully.
MIKE
Mountain lions?
Brian realizes he's over dramatized just a bit too much. He backs away from it a touch.
BRIAN
It wasn't as bad as it sounds.
MIKE (a smile to herself)
I'm relieved to hear that.
They pass beneath the "Sweetheart's Dance" banner, which reminds Mike
MIKE
Are you going to ask Sara to the Sweetheart's Dance?
BRIAN (bravura)
I was gonna -- but I haven't seen her around lately.
And, of course, at that exact moment, Sara comes around the corner and nearly smacks into Brian.
SARA (pleased to see him)
Brian!
MIKE
Sara! We were just talking about you.
Sara's eyes light up. She looks at Brian.
SARA
You were?
Brian, awkward and nervous, looks at Mike, 911 flashing in his eyes. Mike realizing discretion is the better part of motherhood, makes an excuse to leave them alone together.
MIKE
Oh. How silly. I completely forgot -- something. Will you excuse me? I'll be right back.
Mike moves off far enough to keep an eye on them without appearing to eavesdrop on them. Brian scuffles the dirt, looks at his feet. Sara tries to help him.
SARA
Lotta people goin' to the Sweetheart's Dance, I hear.
Brian nods, doing his best to wrangle up the courage to ask her.
SARA
You reckon' you'll be goin'?
He looks up at her, takes a deep breath, goes for it.
BRIAN
Speakin' a that, I was wonderin' -- uh -- I was thinkin' that -- if you weren't doin' anythin' else --
SARA
Yes --?
BRIAN
If -- (he loses heart) -- if you could come over sometime and see my geology project.
SARA (surprised and a little disappointed)
Sure. (Beat). Was there anything else you wanted to ask me?
The sound of the train gives Brian his "out."
BRIAN
Colleen's train! Gotta go! Bye!
He bolts away from Sara, running for the train station.
ANGLE - ON MIKE
watching the abandoned invitation with a bittersweet smile. As she hurries to catch up with Brian, we go to:
EXT. GRACE'S CAFE - DAY ONE
Smith is standing over a map he has spread out over one of Grace's tables. Another man, in his early fifties, stands with him, glancing at the map, glancing at Sully. Sully is examining the map with them. Smith has the bearing and dress of a sophisticated politician, while the other man, McKendrick, has all the earmarks of a mountain man.
SMITH
Took McKendrick here three years to convince me this was a good idea. Took me another two to convince Congress to even listen to him. (Proud of their accomplishment). Next week, President Grant will sign Senate Bill 392 ... let's see, here it is (reading from a document) "An Act to set apart a certain Tract of Land lying near the Headwaters of the Yellowstone River as a great national park."
Because there's never been one before, Sully is not exactly sure what a national park is.
SULLY
National park?
McKENDRICK
Protected land. Nobody can build on it, farm on it, or hunt on it. It belongs to the country.
Sully is stunned and impressed.
SULLY
You're sayin' congress has agreed to keep people off this land?
SMITH (proud of their accomplishment)
Tell 'em how you did it.
McKENDRICK (pointing to the map)
Told the Senators this land here was uninhabitable, not fit fer farmin' -- in short, completely useless.
SMITH
We're calling it Yellowstone National Park. What do you think?
SULLY
It's -- great.
SMITH
We're going to need someone to map out the boundaries, prepare reports on the natural wonders, and protect two hundred head of buffalo.
Sully is astonished.
SULLY
You have buffalo there?
McKENDRICK (proud)
Last ones on the continent. They'll be protected there, if we can chase off the poachers.
SMITH
President Grant -- you met him once I gather?
Sully half nods, half shrugs.
SMITH
He's convinced you're the only man for this job. So what's your answer, Mr. Sully? Can we tell the President you're accepting our offer?
SULLY
How soon do you need to know?
McKENDRICK
We need ya in Wyoming by the end a the week.
Sully has no idea what to say. His mind is reeling with the possibilities and the obstacles. We hear again the sound of the train and we:
FADE OUT
END OF ACT ONE
ACT TWO
FADE IN
INT. BARN - NIGHT ONE
Colleen, holding Katie, and Brian watch while Mike finishes examining the hawk. Sully is nearby but deep in thought.
MIKE
I don't feel any broken bones.
COLLEEN
Why wouldn't she be moving?
MIKE
She may have bruised her chest. When I press there, even gently, she becomes quite agitated. She won't be able to move until the pain subsides.
BRIAN
How long will that be?
MIKE
I would think a day or two at the most.
BRIAN (mostly to himself)
I hope she can find her way back to her nest again.
Sully comes out of his reveries for this last line of Brian's. He speaks quietly, his mind still working on the job offer.
SULLY
We'll see to it she gets back.
MIKE (smiling at Sully)
We'll have to. Hawks mate for life. They'd be lost without one another.
But Sully doesn't acknowledge her remark. He's lost in thought again.
INT. HOMESTEAD - CLOSE ON COLLEEN AND KATIE - NIGHT ONE
Colleen is feeding Katie more of the baby food. Colleen is tickled at how well Katie is doing.
COLLEEN
Here you go -- open wide -- good, good, Katie.
WIDER TO SEE
Brian is working on his salt dough model of the Red Rock formation. Sully is reading the Gazette. Mike is putting away the last of the dishes. It's a Rockwell moment, all right.
COLLEEN (slight beat, then heartfelt).
When I'm at school, I miss you all so much.
BRIAN (teasing)
You could quit school and come home.
MIKE (gentle reprimand)
Brian!
Colleen laughs.
COLLEEN
Sometimes I wish I could. But I love school, too.
MIKE
I'm so pleased to hear that Colleen.
COLLEEN (beat, thoughtful)
There is somethin' about bein' away that makes you feel -- funny -- when you come back.
BRIAN
What'a ya mean "funny?"
COLLEEN
Well, you don't even notice that you're missing home, and then the train stops and you get out and -- there it is. The place you know. The people who know you. Everything is right where you left it and -- it makes you feel happy, but kinda sad at the same time.
MIKE (understanding)
That's because your roots are here. You want to grow and branch out, but you also need to know that your feet are still firmly planted in home soil.
BRIAN
I never thought about people having roots.
MIKE
I believe people need roots the same as trees do.
She picks up Katie.
MIKE
Come along, Katie. Time for you to go to sleep.
Mike carries Katie up the stairs to the bedroom, leaving Colleen, Sully and Brian downstairs. Sully is thinking about what Mike just said. Colleen moves over to the table and begins working on the model with Brian.
BRIAN
You think people need roots, Sully?
SULLY (quiet, sincere)
I never did much thinkin' about it before.
He watches Brian and Colleen working for a moment, then gets up and walks out the front door.
EXT. HOMESTEAD PORCH - NIGHT ONE - A SHORT TIME LATER
Sully is sitting on the porch. Mike comes out, sits down next to him.
MIKE (snuggling in)
Mmmmmm. This is my favorite part of the day.
He puts his arm around her and they enjoy the beautiful Colorado night together.
MIKE
You've been quiet tonight. Something on your mind?
SULLY
Tell ya the truth, I was thinkin' about the train comin' to town.
MIKE (beat)
That was such a terrible time, wasn't it, Sully?
SULLY
It was -- hard.
MIKE
You were so opposed to it -- you said you'd leave Colorado Springs if the train came through here and -- I --
it was a complex issue, but Sully simplifies it.
SULLY
You said you wouldn't.
MIKE (a smile)
You make it seem so simple. (Beat, remembering the pain of the time). But it wasn't simple at all.
She waits for him to go on. When he doesn't:
MIKE
What made you think about that?
He's not ready to talk about this yet, even though he'd thought he was.
SULLY
Just -- crossed my mind. That's all.
We hold on them sitting in silence, each lost in his/her own thoughts. And we:
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. INDIAN RESERVATION - DAY TWO
As close to dawn as we can manage. Dorothy rides on to the reservation. She looks around for Cloud Dancing. She sees him.
DOROTHY
Cloud Dancin'!
Cloud Dancing turns to see her. Dorothy dismounts, walks toward him.
DOROTHY (a little nervous)
I was wonderin' if I -- could I talk to you -- about somethin'?
He smiles warmly at her, a little curious about what might bring her to talk to him. He motions a direction for her to take so they can talk privately. And we:
CUT TO:
EXT. A QUIET PART OF THE RESERVATION - DAY TWO
Dorothy and Cloud Dancing sit on a small rise overlooking the reservation. Dorothy starts in with as much confidence as she can muster.
DOROTHY
Goodness it's hard to know where to start. Fact, I was up most a the night, tryin' to find the right way to say this -- (beat) You -- know what I wrote a book about Colorado Springs -- ?
CLOUD DANCING
Yes.
DOROTHY
Well -- I wrote to my publisher about another book -- and he said he'd publish it.
He smiles at her, pleased for her.
DOROTHY
I -- I was gonna write the book about you.
His face becomes immediately expressionless as he listens to what else she has to say. He gives away none of his thoughts, but she feels the palpable change which has come over him.
DOROTHY
So many people are -- scared and misinformed. I -- want to show them that not all Indians are bad.
She hears how bad that sounds the minute it's out of her mouth and she'd give anything to take it back, but it's too late. It's already hanging in the air.
DOROTHY (upset)
That isn't what I mean to say at all. What I mean to say is --
She thinks a moment about what it is she did mean to say and she recognizes it right away and says it to him with great vulnerability and honesty.
DOROTHY
-- that I know you are -- different than what most people think Indians are like. And I want them to see you the way I do.
He is touched by her obvious sincerity.
CLOUD DANCING (quietly, gently)
I am honored that you wish to write a book about me.
Dorothy is holding her breath.
CLOUD DANCING
But I cannot allow it.
He gets up. She jumps up also.
DOROTHY
But -- but -- why not?
CLOUD DANCING
The reasons are not important.
DOROTHY
They are to me.
She's right. He thinks a moment, then, with no bitterness, just resignation:
CLOUD DANCING
My people are scattered and dying. I can not see how any good will come from giving the white man more knowledge about them.
He turns and walks away from her. She watches him go, devastated.
INT. CLINIC - DAY TWO
Colleen, Mike and Katie come in. Mike puts Katie in her cradle.
COLLEEN (trying to be casual)
I wonder when Andrew's coming back from Boston.
MIKE (casual, playing with Colleen)
He is back.
COLLEEN (surprised)
Oh.
MIKE
He's probably having coffee at Grace's right now.
COLLEEN
Oohhh.
Colleen glances out the window, turns, back, tyring not to show how anxious she is to see him. Mike lets it sit for a tiny little beat, just long enough to wind Colleen up.
MIKE
You could go let him know that we're here.
COLLEEN (trying to appear unconcerned)
If you really want me to --
MIKE
I do.
Colleen springs for the door, still two parts young lady, one part wild-spirited teenager. Mike smiles after her.
EXT. GRACE'S CAFE - DAY TWO
Smith and McKendrick are eating breakfast at Grace's. Colleen comes in, looks around, sees Andrew sitting by himself, having a cup of coffee, reading the Gazette.
COLLEEN
Andrew!
He looks up, smiles, happy to see her.
ANDREW
Colleen,
She hurries over to his table. There is an awkwardness between them as they greet each other, each obviously happy to see the other, but not wanting to appear too smitten, either.
ANDREW
Your mother -- mentioned that you were coming home for the Sweetheart's Dance.
Colleen is embarrassed that Mike would relay this information to him.
COLLEEN (trying to appear nonchalant)
I didn't come home just for the dance.
ANDREW
Oh.
COLLEEN
Not that I don't want to go. Of course I want to go. I just meant there are other reasons, too --
She's digging herself further in, but fortunately she is saved by:
BECKY (O.S.)
Colleen!
Colleen and Andrew look up to see Becky hurrying over to their table. Becky seems unusually awkward and tongue tied.
BECKY
I'm sorry I -- couldn't make it to the train station yesterday, but I was gonna come see you -- today. After -- awhile -- at the clinic.
Colleen thinks perhaps Becky is embarrassed because she has interrupted Colleen and Andrew. Colleen tries to make her friend feel better.
COLLEEN
Sure. That'll be fine. I'll be there in another half hour or so.
Andrew and Becky stare at her. Colleen is baffled by their behaviour. Is it possible they think she's being rude? She changes direction.
COLLEEN
Or - you're welcome to join us for a cup of coffee, if you like.
Becky looks at Andrew, wondering if she's misunderstood something along the way.
BECKY
Oh --!
ANDREW
I had -- already invited Becky. To have breakfast. With me.
Colleen is mortified by her misinterpretation of the situation. She tries to salvage any part of pride or ego still intact.
COLLEEN
Ohhh! Yes. Yes, of course. I didn't --
Becky hates this awkwardness between them. Now she tries to salvage the situation.
BECKY
You could join us.
COLLEEN
No! Ma's waitin' for me at the clinic. I just stopped by to let Andrew know she's here. That's all.
ANDREW
Ah.
COLLEEN
She's here.
ANDREW
Good. (Beat) Then ... I'll see you later. At the clinic.
COLLEEN
Yes.
Colleen turns and walks away as quickly as she can without looking like she's fleeing. Becky wants to go after her -- a little bit. More of her wants to stay with Andrew.
CUT TO
EXT. CLINIC - DAY TWO
Colleen comes running around the corner of the building from Grace's cafe. She stops abruptly once she's around the corner. How could she have made such a blunder? She's embarrassed, and a little hurt and confused. As she sorts out her feelings, and catches her breath, we:
CUT TO
INT GENERAL STORE - DAY TWO
Brian is helping Loren stack merchandise as Loren responds to a question.
LOREN
The first time I asked a girl to a dance?
BRIAN
Yeah. What'd you say to her?
LOREN
Nuthin'.
BRIAN
Nuthin'?
LOREN
Oh, I practised a lotta things, but by the time I got the courage up to ask her, it was too late. She'd already agreed to go with someone else.
BRIAN (worried this could happen to him)
So what'd you do?
LOREN
I asked her sister.
Sara comes into the General Store. Loren is surprised to see her.
Sarah! Shopping twice in one day?
Sara doesn't lie very well.
SARA
My ma -- forgot a few things. She gave me this list.
Loren takes the list. We can see, as he looks at it, that there is only one item on the list. And the handwriting looks more like that of a girl Sara's age than of her mother's age.
LOREN
Soap?
Loren glances over at Brian and sees that he's turned into a statue. Loren understands immediately what the situation is.
LOREN
Soap! Of course, soap.
There are shelves full of different kinds of soap behind Loren. He doesn't turn around to look at them. Instead, he gives it some hard thought.
LOREN
I know I have some soap, but I can't remember where I stored the darn stuff. Why don't you kids talk while I look for it.
Brian makes no move. Loren nudges him.
LOREN (whispering to Brian)
He who hesitates is lost!
BRIAN
Huh?
Sara smiles at Brian as Loren sets about to look busy.
EXT. MATTHEW'S HOMESTEAD - DAY TWO
There are a few chickens roaming about. Sully's horse and Matthew's horse are nearby. Sully and Matthew work on mending a portion of broken fence. They work in silence a few moments. Matthew is deep in thought. Sully notices. Finally, Matthew confides in him.
MATTHEW
Sully, how do you know -- when it's the right thing to ask somebody to marry ya?
SULLY
There ain't any doubt. You know.
Matthew nods, not reassured.
SULLY
You 'n Emma makin' plans?
MATTHEW
Been thinkin' about it a long time. Sometimes I feel real good about it.
SULLY
And other times?
MATTHEW
I feel -- bad -- that I don't feel good about it.
Sully waits to Matthew to explain.
MATTHEW
Ya couldn't find anybody sweeter -- or prettier. She makes me laugh. She's always pointin' out things I woulda missed -- like a squirrel runnin' up a tree or a deer on the ridge. I don't think I ever had a better friend. (Beat) Thing is, I don't feel about her like I felt about Ingrid.
Sully looks out over the land surrounding the homestead, thinks for a long moment.
SULLY
What do you want to do?
MATTHEW
I -- wanna do what's right.
Sully realizes that's exactly what he needs to do as well.
SULLY (quiet strength)
Then tell her how you feel.
Matthew looks over at him, a little surprised and a little scared.
SULLY
You're afraid of tellin' her 'cause you don't wanta upset her. Hurt her feelin's.
Matthew nods, that sounds right.
SULLY
Problem is, you'll hurt her a lot more not bein' honest with her (beat, to himself). You're only foolin' yourself if ya think you're protectin' her.
Matthew couldn't quite hear this part.
MATTHEW
What did you say?
SULLY (a lighter mood, a brisk determination)
I said I gotta go talk to your ma.
MATTHEW
What about the fence?
SULLY (cheerful)
Sometimes roots are more important than fences.
What? Matthew has no idea what he's talking about. But it's all right with him. He senses that Sully knows what Sully's talking about.
CUT TO:
EXT. HOMESTEAD - DAY TWO - CLOSE ON MIKE
Digesting what Sully has just said to her. She's in shock.
MIKE
Wyoming?! That's -- so far away.
WIDER - TO INCLUDE SULLY
Sully stands quietly, but with conviction about the rightness of his decision, while she expresses her feelings.
MIKE
We would have to give up everything we've worked so hard for -- our beautiful house -- all our friends here -- (another shock wave) Matthew. And Colleen. They couldn't come with us.
MIKE
We need time to think things through, carefully, so we don't make a decision we'll later regret.
SULLY (gently, he knows this is hard for her)
They hafta know by the end of the week.
MIKE (frustrated)
I need more time than that! Why didn't you talk to me about this last night?
SULLY (simply)
I knew you'd want me to turn it down.
MIKE
Then why are we discussing it now?
SULLY
I don't want to turn it down.
MIKE
And you expect me to say yes, just like that?
SULLY
Not "just like that," Michaela. I've given it a lot of thought, now I'm askin' you to do the same.
She looks at him and then turns and runs into the house without another word. Sully watches her go. He looks around at the homestead. How can he help her understand how important Yellowstone Park is -- can be -- to so many people. An idea starts to form, and we:
DISSOLVE TO:
INT. BARN - NIGHT TWO
It's dark inside the barn. We can see the shadowy form of the hawk flying. Now we see Sully still has her on the tether. He puts his arm out. She flies back to him and perches on his arm.
INT. HOMESTEAD - NIGHT TWO
Mike needs to talk about this dilemma, but she knows she shouldn't dump it on Colleen, so she asks in a roundabout way, certain that Colleen will have no idea what her real question is.
MIKE (still slightly agitated)
Does it seem -- crowded here, to you? I know compared to Denver it must seem very quiet, but compared to how it was when I first met you, has Colorado Springs changed very much?
Colleen answers the question honestly and simply.
COLLEEN
In some ways it hasn't changed at all. But in other ways -- the railroad, the bank, the new hotel goin' up. It's like -- (she finds the right metaphor) -- it's like Katie. You're around her all the time so you don't see how much she's changed. But anyone comin' back after bein' away can't help but see it.
It makes sense to Mike, even though it wasn't what she was hoping to hear. At that moment, the door opens and in walks -- Matthew. Mike is surprised to see him.
MIKE
Matthew! I didn't know you were stopping by tonight. Let me fix you something too eat.
MATTHEW
No! No. I just stopped by to -- spend some time with Colleen.
COLLEEN (too fast and too nervous)
Yes! I forgot to tell you, Ma. I'm sorry.
But Mike smells a plot. Curious, but not wary:
MIKE
What's goin on, here?
Fortunately, Brian runs in, saving Matthew and Colleen from having to deny anything.
BRIAN
Ma! The hawk! You gotta help her, quick!
Mike runs out of the house.
EXT. HOMESTEAD - NIGHT TWO (CONTINUOUS)
As Mike hurries down the stairs, a horse comes thundering down the road. We cannot tell who the rider is until he is upon us. He swoops up Mike and lifts her up onto the galloping horse.
MIKE
Sully! What are you doing?! Put me down! Sully!!!!
As Colleen, Matthew and Brian come out onto the porch to watch, Sully and Mike disappear into the dark night.
ON THE KIDS
watching them ride off at a gallop. Colleen is worried.
COLLEEN
I don't know if Ma is gonna like bein' kidnapped.
MATTHEW
Sully wouldn't do it, 'less he had his reasons.
BRIAN
Yeah. He said it was important and she'd understand.
Colleen and Matthew aren't as optimistic. They turn and go back into the house. Brian stays outside until he can no longer hear the pounding horses hooves.
BRIAN (to himself)
Sure hope he was right.
He stays on the porch a moment longer, as we:
FADE OUT
END OF ACT TWO
ACT THREE
FADE IN
EXT. WOODS - NIGHT TWO
Sully and Mike come riding into a clearing in the woods. She is still angry at his actions.
MIKE
I cannot believe you are dragging me off into the woods in the middle of the night.
He's in a cheery mood, confident she'll come around to his way of thinking. He slides off the horse, moves over to an area where he has already laid the firewood for a fire.
MIKE
What if Katie needs me?
SULLY
The kids're with her. They know where we are.
He lights the fire and stokes it.
MIKE
There could be an emergency at the clinic --
SULLY
Andrew's stayin' there 'til we get back.
By the light of the fire, she can see that he has already been out her to bring bedrolls, a coffee pot, and to prepare the fire wood. She's starting to relax, let go of her pride and play with him a little.
MIKE
The least you could've done was ask.
SULLY
If I had asked, don't ya think somethin' woulda come up -- so you couldn't go?
She has no reply -- he's dead on right. He stands up, moves to her, pulls her close to him, kisses her long and hard. When he releases her, she's speechless. Not to mention, breathless.
MIKE
I -- just wasn't expecting to be -- kidnapped.
SULLY
That's why they call it a surprise.
He smiles at her, she smiles back. He starts to prepare supper.
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. HOMESTEAD - NIGHT TWO - ESTABLISHING
INT. HOMESTEAD - NIGHT TWO
Brian is in the living room, looking into a mirror, practising.
BRIAN
"Sara, would you do me the great honor of goin' to the dance with me."
Matthew comes in from the kitchen as Brian is practising.
MATTHEW
Brian -- what're you so worried about? It's not like ya don't know here. You even kissed her once.
BRIAN
That was dif'rent.
MATTHEW
What's different?
BRIAN
There's a dif'rence between knowin' somebody and askin' them to a dance. What if she doesn't -- think about me like that? What if she says no?
Matthew sits down next to him. He has a different question:
MATTHEW
What if she says yes?
BRIAN (without hesitation)
That'd be great.
Matthew can see that Brian unhesitatingly knows his heart.
MATTHEW (encouraging)
Then ask her.
Brian looks at Matthew. Can it be that simple?
BRIAN
Ask her?
Matthew nods.
MATTHEW
Ask her.
On Brian, considering this radical thought.
CUT TO:
EXT. RESERVATION - MORNING - DAY THREE
Dorothy rides up to the reservation again. She dismounts, walks through the reservation looking for Cloud Dancing.
ANGLE - ON ONE OF THE CABINS
Little more than a shanty. Cloud Dancing has a small fire going. He's doing his morning meditation. Dorothy respects his privacy, does not move in close to him until he is finished.
DOROTHY
Excuse me, Cloud Dancin'. I been thinkin' 'bout what you said. About the book.
He waits to see what she has to say. She goes on:
DOROTHY
Legally, I could write it without your permission, but I ain't -- I'm not -- gonna do that. But somebody will. (Beat). May I sit down?
He gestures for her to sit next to him. She does so.
DOROTHY
Books are gonna be written about Indians and they'll be fulla mistakes 'cause mostly -- people don't care too much about the truth.
Cloud Dancing gives no discernible sign of his reaction to what she's saying. He just listens.
DOROTHY
If you could help me -- not help, I mean -- talk to me. Teach me. Then we got a better chance at gettin' it right.
CLOUD DANCING (quiet, still firm)
There is no right or wrong in this. No matter what is put on paper, it turns out badly for my people.
She sighs, leans in a little closer to him, speaks more quietly.
DOROTHY
I will give you the book when I'm finished. If you don't like what I've written, I'll burn it. No one else will ever read it.
Cloud Dancing sits silent a moment. This is an enormous offer. He wants to find a way to show her what she is offering. He picks up a large leaf, could be a page from a book.
CLOUD DANCING
You will give me what you have written --
DOROTHY
Yes.
And if I say no -- you will throw it into the fire? Like this?
He tosses the leaf into the fire. Dorothy watches the flames consume it. It would kill her to have to do that to her book. Nevertheless:
DOROTHY (looking him square in the eyes)
Yes. I will.
HOLD ON DOROTHY AND CLOUD DANCING and then:
CUT TO:
EXT. WOODS - DAY THREE
Sully wakes with a start. He looks around. Mike is nowhere to be seen. He sits up.
EXT. WATERFALL - DAY THREE
Mike is sitting on a ledge next to the pool of water being made by the waterfall. She's reflective.
SULLY
comes through some trees, stops when he sees her. He's not wearing a shirt, only his buckskins.
CLOSE ANGLE ON MIKE
As she senses Sully's presence, then looks up at him.
ANGLE TO INCLUDE SULLY
As he approaches her. She stands up. The waterfall separates them. She moves into the waterfall, lifts her head up to it and lets it wash over her, spilling off her hair to the pool below. Sully, without regard for the buckskins he's wearing, wades into the pool and takes her in his arms and they seem completely unaware of the water cascading over them as he holds her and then embraces her and we ...
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. WOODS - CLOSE ON HAWK - DAY THREE
This is a long dissolve so that we understand that the hawk is the symbol of their relationship. When we are completely on the hawk, a hand reaches in to feed it.
WIDER ANGLE - TO SEE SULLY
The hawk is tethered to the ground. Sully leaves a scrap of meat on the ground in front of the hawk.
ANOTHER ANGLE - TO INCLUDE MIKE
They two of them are working in silence to break camp. Some time has gone by since the waterfall. Hair and buckskin are dry, the bond between the two of them is reaffirmed. But there is still the matter on the table.
MIKE (fairly casually)
What does this Yellowstone National Park look like?
SULLY
These men from Washington said it's got geysers eruptin' every hour and boilin' mud pots - all diff'rent colors.
MIKE (honestly)
Sounds extraordinary.
SULLY
Yep.
MIKE
How many other people would be going?
Sully stops the activity, sits down, gestures for her to sit with him. She does. He talks to her without pressure, without coloring the truth to make it look more attractive to her.
SULLY
There'd be you, me, Brian, Katie an' a coupl'a hundred buffalo.
She knows this is the real discussion; the one where they put all the cards on the table. The possibility of moving to such a remote, unknown territory is frightening to her.
MIKE (her most basic fear)
If anything were to happen to the children, we could never get help in time.
SULLY (reassuring)
Lucky we got a doctor in the family.
They sit without talking. Sully says what's been in his heart since Smith and McKendrick first asked him to take the job.
SULLY
I didn't talk to you about this to upset you, Michaela. I know how important Colorado Springs is to you. Your practise an' your friends.
MIKE (in case you've forgotten)
And everything that reminds me of you. Of us, when we first met.
He nods acknowledgment of that.
SULLY
The thing I keep thinkin' about is -- if nobody stands up for the land, what's gonna happen to it. What're we gonna leave for our grandchildren -- and their grandchildren? (Beat). Figure they got a right to share all this, too.
It hits home with her. She sits quietly, considering the ramifications of saying yes.
EXT. RED ROCK FORMATION - DAY THREE (STOCK)
The male hawk is nowhere to be seen.
EXT. THE MEADOW SIDE - DAY THREE
Sully and Mike ride into the meadow area on Sully's horse. Sully is carrying the hawk on his arm. Mike slides off the horse first, then holds the reins as Sully and the hawk get off. Sully looks around.
HIS POINT OF VIEW -- THE ROCKS (STOCK)
Still no sign of life. Just rocks forever.
RESUME ON SULLY AND MIKE
Sully unties the leather strap from the hawk's leg, and removes the hood.
AERIAL SHOT - HAWK'S POV
We're looking from a great height down at Sully, Mike and the female hawk.
ON SULLY AND MIKE
The female hawk is sitting completely still. She's not going anywhere. Then, we hear the startling sound of the male calling to her.
AERIAL SHOT
As Mike and Sully look up and at the hawk.
ON SULLY AND MIKE
The male calls again. This time the female rustles her feathers, as if she's going to fly off, but she doesn't.
Mike and Sully look at each other, both aware of the parallels between the hawk's situation and theirs.
ANOTHER ANGLE TO SEE
The hawk makes a swooping pass at Sully. Mike flinches, slightly. Sully doesn't react at all.
ON SULLY AND MIKE
To see another pass of the male hawk. This time, as he soars upward, the female stretches her wings and slowly takes flight. Mike and Sully look at each other and then watch the hawks.
INTERCUT BETWEEN MIKE AND SULLY AND THE HAWKS
TBA. This sequence will be determined by the stock footage.
MIKE AND SULLY
Stand quietly a moment, each digesting what they've just seen. Finally:
SULLY
Better be gettin' back.
They both walk toward the horse, two separate individuals, more separate than they have been in a long time. Before they mount up, she stops him. She knows she needs to say this fast or she might change her mind.
MIKE
I don't know how I'm going to adjust, giving up everything I know for a second time .. Leaving the beautiful house, you built for us ... leaving all our friends. Maybe I will hate our new life. Maybe not. Maybe it will inspire me to do great things. I can't predict what's going to happen. (Beat). When the train came to Colorado Springs, you were determined to leave. But because it was important to me, you stayed. (Beat). Now it's important to you that we go. So -- I'll go.
He lets her words sit in the still morning air for a moment. Then he tenderly, almost hesitantly puts his arms around her. There is no sense of victory here for either one of them, just the pain of having to respond to life's difficult choices.
CAMERA MOVES IN CLOSER
Mike is resting her head against Sully's neck as he holds her. Her expression is peaceful, but tears are running down her cheeks.
FADE OUT
END OF ACT THREE
ACT FOUR
FADE IN
EXT. HOMESTEAD - DAY THREE
As Sully and Mike ride up to the homestead.
CLOSER ANGLE
Mike slides off the horse.
MIKE
The children -- perhaps it would be better to tell them about this after the Sweetheart's Dance.
He nods. He agrees that it's a good idea to wait.
EXT. A CLEARING - DAY THREE
It's afternoon. Cloud Dancing is in the middle of a traditional dance demonstration for Dorothy. He explains it's meaning to her as he does it. Dorothy takes notes.
CLOUD DANCING
This dance tells of a hunting party. The dancer is searching for prey. He has a porcupine headdress, ribbons and an otter tail extending down the back of the dancer. He calls to the prey.
Cloud Dancing lets out a loud "Whoop" which startles Dorothy. He smiles and sits down beside her.
CLOUD DANCING
This is the way my people tell stories. With words, yes, but also with dancing. There is one dance the reminds the members of the tribe of endings and rebirths.
DOROTHY
I'd like to see it.
CLOUD DANCING (shaking his head no)
It is danced only at night at the time of the full moon.
DOROTHY (plucky)
I ain't afraid of ridin' out by myself at night. If it's for the gooda the book.
CLOUD DANCING (not sure it's a good idea)
It has been many winters since I have seen this dance myself.
DOROTHY
Well, you know, we have our dances too. I'll show you one Michaela taught me.
She starts to do the steps by herself.
DOROTHY
It's called a waltz. And it goes like this -- one, two, three --
She realizes that he's not getting an accurate picture of it.
DOROTHY (a little laugh)
I mean, we don't do the dance alone. It's -- men and women dance together.
He has no way of knowing this means actually touching, so he stands up and tries to follow her steps.
CLOUD DANCING
One, two, three ..
There is a sexual tension between them which Cloud Dancing recognizes but would not consider acting on -- for his own integrity as well as hers. Dorothy is aware of it on an unconscious level only. She chatters on, cheerily, to keep herself from having to consider this chemistry.
DOROTHY
Yes. That's it. Well, they do it as partners -- close to each other. But that's the right step.
He moves closer to her. They don't touch, but except for that one minor detail, they are dancing together.
Cloud Dancing is clumsy with it. It seems so simple, unless you've never done it before in your life.
CLOUD DANCING
One, two, three --
DOROTHY (pleased)
That's right.
CLOUD DANCING
One, two, three (he stumbles)
DOROTHY
Try not to look at your feet. Just feel the rhythm. One, two, three ...
His eyes are locked on his feet.
DOROTHY
One, two, three --
He's still very clumsy with it. She laughs with delight at his progress.
DOROTHY
See? You're gettin' it already.
CLOUD DANCING
One, two, three, one, two, three ...
They're still clumsy, but they keep at it with increasing energy. As Cloud Dancing counts "one, two, three, one, two, three" he begins to laugh.
Camera pulls back as Dorothy and Cloud Dancing One-Two-Three across the scrub-brush, laughing, tripping, starting over, having a wonderful time.
EXT. MATTHEW'S HOMESTEAD - CLOSE ON EMMA ON PORCH - DAY THREE
Emma is sitting on the porch. She is re-reading her letter from Gilda St. Clair.
ANGLE - MATTHEW
rides up. She stands up quickly, nervous about what she needs to say to him. He's a little nervous too, but also, in a way, relieved. It's time for them to talk. He knows that.
EMMA
I hope you don't mind me comin' out. Somethin' came up -- I wanted to talk to you about.
MATTHEW
Yeah, I need to talk to you, too.
This is difficult for Emma. She tries to be courageous but the tears form in her eyes as she looks at Matthew and tells him:
EMMA
You remember Gilda St. Clair? The singer?
Matthew has a rueful smile.
MATTHEW
Who could forget her?
EMMA
She wrote me a letter.
She hands him the program. He looks at it as she talks.
EMMA
She offered me a job.
Matthew looks up, surprised. Emma's enthusiasm is starting to win out over her discomfort.
EMMA
Travelin' with her, to make dresses 'n such.
He's thrilled for her, but also completely taken aback. She misinterprets his stunned silence.
EMMA
The thing is -- about gettin' married --
MATTHEW
That's what I was gonna talk to you about.
They both want to say it, but neither can quite do it.
EMMA
Oh Matthew -- I wanna take that job.
Matthew is quiet, sweet, understanding, and, of course, a little grateful he's off the hook. But the prevailing feeling is happiness for Emma.
MATTHEW
I think that's wonderful, Emma.
EMMA
You do?
She doesn't even know what to say from there. They're still awkward with each other, not knowing whether to hug or not.
EMMA
I don't know hot to tell you all you've done for me -- when I decided to leave Hank's -- 'n nobody wanted to accept me -- as somethin' different than what they thought I was --
He moves to her, puts his arms around her.
MATTHEW
I didn't look at it as helpin' ya, Emma. I just liked bein' around ya. And the more I was around ya, the better I felt.
She pulls away, slightly to look at him in the face.
EMMA (simple, but deeply felt)
Me, too.
MATTHEW
Guess ya don't hafta be married to be friends.
She puts her head on his chest and he holds her tighter.
EMMA
I'll send you postcards -- from all over the world.
MATTHEW (genuine)
This is so excitin' for ya.
They stand quietly holding each other a moment. Then Matthew breaks the moment, gently pulls away, starts to walk with her to the wagon.
MATTHEW
There is one favor I'd like ta ask ya, before ya leave.
She looks at him, curious.
MATTHEW
Emma, would you do me the great honor of attending the Sweetheart's Dance with me.
EMMA (with a big smile)
I would love to.
As they arrive at the wagon, we:
DISSOLVE TO:
INT HOMESTEAD - NIGHT THREE - ESTABLISHING
Mike is carrying Katie. The lamps have ben lit in the main room. We see Sully come quietly down the staircase. He stops, just out of Mike's sight, watching her for a moment.
MIKE (bravely)
Well, Katie, what do you say? What shell we leave behind?
Katie makes a gurgley sound at her.
MIKE (laughing)
Yes, I'd like to take it all, too, but we can't.
Mike moves over to an heirloom china figure and picks it up. She studies every inch of it, memorizing it.
MIKE
Will you remember any of this, Katie? I -- I'm afraid you won't.
Sully is moved by the realization of the sacrifice Mike is making.
MIKE (to Katie)
But I will tell you everything about it when you're old enough to understand.
Play Sully's reaction as well as Mike's touching moment with Katie.
MIKE (holding Katie close, talking mostly to herself)
I'll remember it for you.
MOVE IN ON MIKE AND KATIE and ..
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. HOMESTEAD - DAY
Sully has hitched the horses up. He leaves the wagon in the road as he goes back inside to let Mike know he's ready.
INT. HOMESTEAD - DAY
As Sully comes in.
SULLY
Michaela?
MIKE (O.S.)
Upstairs.
Sully walks toward the stairs but is stopped by something sitting on the table.
ANGLE - ON BRIAN'S GEOLOGY PROJECT
The salt-dough map has been completed and painted. It looks remarkably like the Red Rocks formation.
ON SULLY
drawn to the model for some reason he can't quite fathom. He picks up the drawing Brian made. Mike comes down the stairs. She and Katie are dressed to go to town with him. He's recognizing something on a very deep level. Brian comes charging down the stairs, stepping all over the moment.
BRIAN
Didja see my project, Sully? Do ya like it?
SULLY (beat)
Yes.
Brian takes his project and starts out the door.
BRIAN
I'm gonna walk to school, Ma. Don't wanna take any chances of this gettin' broken.
MIKE
All right. See you after school.
Brian's out the door.
SULLY
Before we go to town, there's somethin' I need to do.
She looks at him questioningly, but he's not talking. He opens the door for her and Katie and they start out.
EXT. GRACE'S CAFE - DAY FOUR
Becky is having a cup of coffee. Colleen comes in, sees her, decides to go over and talk to her. Both girls are happy to see each other, want to have things okay between them, but not sure how the other feels. Therefore there is a tentative quality to their conversation at first.
COLLEEN
Hi, Becky.
BECKY
Hi, Colleen. You -- wanna have breakfast with me?
COLLEEN
Sure.
Colleen sits down. There's a small beat of silence, but the awkwardness is subsiding.
BECKY
How're things at school?
COLLEEN
Good. I'll be goin' back right after the dance. (Beat). How're things -- here?
BECKY
Good. (Beat, casual). Anybody asked ya to the dance yet?
COLLEEN (as if she had completely forgotten about the dance)
Oh, no. (Beat, not even looking at Becky)
You?
Becky shakes her head no.
BECKY (no self pity)
I don't know if I'll go. It's no fun to go by yourself.
Colleen looks at her, surprised.
COLLEEN
You don't have to go by yourself.
BECKY (glum)
I'm tired of goin' with my brothers.
BECKY (that reminds her)
Remember when we used to go to the socials together?
COLLEEN
'Course I do.
They're back on familiar, solid ground.
ANGLE - ANDREW
arriving at the Cafe. He's carrying one long stem rose. He looks around. He sees:
HIS POINT OF VIEW
Becky and Colleen are laughing and reminiscing. They're having a terrific time together.
RESUME ANDREW
who smiles and slips quietly away, unseen by the girls.
EXT. COLORADO SPRINGS - NEAR THE SCHOOL HOUSE - DAY FOUR
Brian is still carrying his science project to class. He's practising his speech again.
BRIAN
"You hafta say you'll go to the dance with me, Sara, 'cause -- 'cause there's nobody else I would ever want to take."
SARA (O.S.)
I'd love to Brian.
Brian turns, startled, to see Sara right behind him. He's stunned. She smiles.
SARA
I been walkin' behind you since Snow Creek. You were so busy askin' me to the dance, you never even noticed me.
BRIAN (not trusting his own ears)
Did you say --
SARA
I'd love to.
He's thrilled beyond words. So she helps move the conversation along.
SARA
Is that the geology project you were gonna show me?
BRIAN
yeah!
He puts it down so they can both look at it. As he points out various landmarks, CAMERA MOVES IN on the map.
BRIAN
This is where we found the hawk. She couldn't fly an' if we'da left her there, she'da been eaten by mountain lions.
Sara shudders at the thought. We carry Brian's lines over as we:
MATCH DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. RED ROCK FORMATION - DAY FOUR - (STOCK)
The actual Red Rocks.
BRIAN (O.S.)
Sully was attacked by the hawk's mate. It was excitin'. Lots of excitin' things happen out there. It's my fav'rite place.
ANGLE ON THE SULLY WAGON
Sully and Mike (carrying Katie) pull up to the red rocks. Sully stops the wagon and looks at the formation a moment.
MIKE
Sometimes I forget how beautiful these rock formations are.
Sully nods.
SULLY
Somethin' Brian said got me to thinkin'. If I'm gonna fight, it oughtta be this land I'm fightin' for. (Beat). This is our home. This is where we became a fam'ly. This is where Katie was born. (Small beat, turning to Katie). Reckon she'd wanta know why we pulled up roots and went off someplace else when we had this all along.
MIKE (almost not daring to hope)
You're -- turning down the Yellowstone job?
SULLY
Seems to me this is as uninhabitable, unfit for farmin' and totally useless as Yellowstone.
She looks at him. What the devil is he saying?
SULLY (a grin)
No reason Congress wouldn't make it a national park, too.
Mike is so happy.
MIKE
Oh, Sully!
He puts his arms around her and Katie. Mike and Sully kiss and enjoy the wondrous feeling of being one, together. Sully breaks the moment with a quiet, seemingly serious question.
SULLY
There is one thing I have to ask you.
She looks at him curious.
SULLY
You -- feel like goin' to the Sweetheart's Dance with me.
Her happiness is palpable. She snuggles into his arms again and as the CAMERA MOVES OUT, we HEAR the STRAINS of the MUSIC of the Sweetheart's Dance as we:
DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. WATER TOWER - NIGHT FIVE
The entire town has turned out for the Sweetheart's Dance.
DANCE ANNOUNCER (V.O.)
And this dance will be ladies' choice. Ladies' choice.
We move into a montage sequence featuring:
SARA -- taking Brian by the hand to the dance floor.
LOREN -- smiling as an older, not terribly attractive woman approaches. He's going to be generous and dance with her, even though she's so plain. She passes him by and asks Andrew. Loren scowls.
EMMA AND MATTHEW
feeling the bittersweet feeling of happy endings that are different from what you thought they would be.
BECKY AND COLLEEN
are sitting, talking. Andrew dances by with the older woman. She's much bigger than he is and is practically flinging him around the floor. He looks over at Becky and Colleen who start to laugh at his discomfort. He's gesturing for one of them to cut in. They respond by getting up and ... dancing with each other.
Andrew flies out of frame with his partner.
INTERCUT, NOW WITH:
EXT. AT THE RESERVATION - NIGHT FIVE
Dorothy and Cloud Dancing are waltzing. He's still looking at his feet. But the movement is indeed becoming a bit more fluid. They still aren't touching.
Then, tentatively at first, and then with assurance, Dorothy reaches out and puts one hand on his shoulder, the other in his hand. He gingerly puts his arm around her waist.
AT THE WATER TOWER
Sully and Mike, in their own world, dancing together. CAMERA MOVES IN .. And we:
FREEZE FRAME AND FADE OUT
THE END

 

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