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Don't Mess With Princess
by Lindsay Moxley (foxymoxley2002@yahoo.com)

Rated: R   Genre: Teen Movies   User Review: ****
Mild profanity, some sexual content.


This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.



DON'T MESS WITH PRINCESS

FADE IN:

INT. AIR FORCE ONE - DAY
                                                            
SONG: JOHN MAYER'S "DAUGHTERS"
                                                            
CREDITS ROLL. Sunlight gleams in from the windows. CELESTE
HARTMAN sits across from her father, JACOB HARTMAN,
President of the U.S.A. He is reading a newspaper. CELESTE
looks unimpressed as she reads the tabloids of her from the
past month: America's Princess Raises $100,000 for Cancer
Research; America's Princess Rejects Movie Deal; America's
Princess to Appear on Saturday Night Live; America's
Princess Receives Royal Invitation for Tea.
                                                            
CELESTE lowers the tabloids into her lap.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, pish-posh! This is all
bullshit. I can't believe those
fools. I didn't turn down that
stupid movie proposal for nothing.
                                                            
Hartman's paper jumps out of his hands. He is shocked.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sweetheart! I had no idea you
felt this way.
                                                            
Throwing the tabloids aside, she sits there with her arms
crossed, looking pissed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Well, I guess I fooled you too.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I love you too, princess.
                                                            
 
INT. RESIDENCE - DAY
                                                            
Walking beside her father, CELESTE is happy to be home as
she strolls down the corridor to her room. Her bodyguard,
DESIREE SAXTON (DES), approaches her. CELESTE runs into her
arms.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Excited)
Hi, Celeste. I'm so glad you're
back!
                                                            

2.

                       CELESTE
It's good to be back.
                                                            
The two women end their embrace.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
If it isn't the notorious Desiree
Saxton! Give the old college chum
a kiss.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
If I must, Jake . . . Mr.
President.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Aw, cut the crap. Former
babysitters of my daughter don't
need to address me so formally.
                                                            
HARTMAN gazes into DESIREE'S eyes. While they look as if
they are about to kiss, she whips her head away and leads
CELESTE down the hall to her room. HARTMAN looks as if he
is begging for at least one kiss from DESIREE.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
How was London? Did you enjoy
your tea with the Queen?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Very much. Will you help me pick
out a dress for my party tomorrow
night?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Sure.
                                                            
HARTMAN watches them disappear. He wanders off in another
direction.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S BATHROOM - DAY
                                                            
Formally dressed for a day in the oval office, HARTMAN makes
some last minute touches to his ensemble, such as fidgeting
with his tie, combing his hair, and splashing some cologne
on his neck.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good morning, good-looking.
                                                            
Hartman looks in the mirror and notices a dark piece of lint
on his shirt. He wipes it off.
                                                            

3.

                       HARTMAN
Knock 'em dead, tiger.
                                                            
HARTMAN growls like a lion. He opens the door and exits,
whistling "HAIL TO THE CHIEF."
                                                            
 
INT. OUTER OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN struts in displaying his charm for the ladies.
DESIREE is going over something with HARTMAN'S secretary, a
blonde bombshell named SALLY CARTWRIGHT.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good morning, ladies.
                                                            
SALLY flashes a big smile at HARTMAN. Her business dress is
low-cut. She leans forward a little so that HARTMAN can see
her cleavage. He blushes and winks at her.
                                                            
                       SALLY
Good morning, Mr. President.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (In a bad mood)
Hi, Jake.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
What's the matter with you?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Nothing you need to know about.
                                                            
HARTMAN shakes off DESIREE'S bad mood. Whistling again, he
pushes open the DOOR to the oval office and walks in.
                                                            
 
INT. GIRLS' BATHROOM - DAY
                                                            
SMOKE PUFFS emerge from a stall. CELESTE'S shoes poke out
underneath the door. She coughs several times. A few girls
putting on make-up turn around once they smell the smoke.
They look disgusted.
                                                            
                       GIRL #1
What is that putrid smell?
                                                            
GIRL #1 coughs.
                                                            
                       GIRL #2
Is someone smoking in there?
                                                            

4.

                       GIRL #1
That is so against the rules!
                                                            
The GIRLS exit.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
We'll show Daddy who's "America's
Princess" now. What bullshit!
                                                            
CELESTE coughs several times, then sighs. She TWITCHES her
legs.
                                                            
The GIRLS from before return a few minutes later, only to be
accompanied by the PRINCIPAL and the VICE PRINCIPAL. They
are two old ladies dressed neatly in business suits.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, shit.
                                                            
                       GIRL #1
We caught you now, Celeste
Hartman! Don't think we won't
recognize you by those fancy shoes
you wear. No one else here wears
shoes like those!
                                                            
CELESTE stops twitching her LEGS, freezing into place.
                                                            
The PRINCIPAL pushes open the door. CELESTE, who is indeed
puffing a cigarette, is sitting on the toilet, shocked.
                                                            
                       PRINCIPAL
Put out that cigarette, young
lady, and come with me. You are
in big trouble, oh yes you are.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, bugger!
                                                            
CELESTE throws the CIGARETTE down the toilet and flushes it.
She emerges from the stall, her eyes glued to the floor.
                                                            
 
INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
At his desk, HARTMAN is in the middle of discussing military
tactics with ADMIRAL MCKENZIE when he gets buzzed by SALLY.
                                                            
                       SALLY
Mr. President, the principal from
Celeste's school is on line two
for you.
                                                            

5.

                       HARTMAN
Principal? Are you kidding me,
Sally?
                                                            
                       SALLY
Do I sound like I'm joking?
                                                            
HARTMAN switches to line two.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
This is President Hartman.
                                                            
                       PRINCIPAL
Well, this is Janet MacMillan, I'm
the principal of your daughter's
school.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Is there a problem?
                                                            
                       PRINCIPAL
If you consider your daughter
being expelled from our school for
smoking in the girls' bathroom a
problem, then yes, there is.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Furious)
SHE DID WHAT?
                                                            
                       PRINCIPAL
I have her detained in my office
as we speak. You need to come and
pick her up.
                                                            
They hang up. HARTMAN rises.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm sorry, Admiral, but we will
have to continue this some other
time. Celeste has been expelled
from school.
                                                            
                       ADMIRAL
      (Stammering,
       shocked)
Uh . . . sure, Mr. President. But
- EXPELLED?
                                                            

6.

                       HARTMAN
That's right. For smoking! She's
not even old enough to buy a pack
of cigarettes. Wait till this
gets on the news!
                                                            
The ADMIRAL watches HARTMAN exit. He SLAMS the door behind
him.
                                                            
 
INT. HALLWAY OF SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN'S FEET stomp as he heads toward the PRINCIPAL'S
office. In his FACE, he is angry.
                                                            
 
INT. PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
He enters, still livid and breathing heavily.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You are in big trouble, young
lady. Let's go. And say you're
sorry to the principal.
                                                            
CELESTE looks sheepish. She is RED in the face.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm sorry.
                                                            
She heads toward the door with her father.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
And I expect a big explanation
when we get in the car.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yes, Daddy.
                                                            
He sniffs her.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good grief, you stink!
                                                            
They exit. Another big SLAM of the door from HARTMAN.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S LIMO - DAY
                                                            
In the back seat, CELESTE sits far away from her father as
possible.
                                                            

7.

                       HARTMAN
I can't believe you went and got
yourself expelled right before the
end of the year. If I hadn't
already paid the orchestra and the
catering for your Sweet Sixteenth
ball tomorrow night, I would have
cancelled it! You're going to have
to continue your lessons with
Desiree to make up for what you're
missing. If this gets out to the
news, your perfect image will be
destroyed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I don't care about being
"America's princess anymore."
Someone else can take over.
                                                            
Silence. HARTMAN concentrates on CELESTE, trying to figure
her out.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Do you hate me or something?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
That's absurd, Daddy! I'm just
tired of having to be perfect all
the time. It's all a bunch of
bullshit.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
It won't be bullshit much longer.
I'm not running for re-election.
                                                            
CELESTE is shocked.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What? Why not?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm not fit to handle another
term, Celeste.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yes you are, Daddy.
                                                            
He shakes his head.
                                                            

8.

                       HARTMAN
No, Celeste. I'm not. Sometimes
I can't even breathe knowing that
your mother is gone. I can't keep
it in anymore.
                                                            
CELESTE is silent. She looks as if she is about to cry.
Unbuckling her seatbelt, she scoots closer to her father and
wraps his arm around him. He pulls her close.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm sorry I let you down, Daddy.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
It'll be OK, princess.
                                                            
 
INT. RESIDENCE - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE marches to her room. She is a combination of sad
angry. DESIREE approaches her.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I heard what happened at school
today, Celeste.
                                                            
CELESTE turns around to face DESIREE.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I don't have time for this.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I was just going to offer you a
shoulder to cry on.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thanks, but the tears aren't
coming.
                                                            
CELESTE continues on to her room.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I'll be here if you need anything.
Don't forget, you have a geometry
lesson at two!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Shouting back)
Geometry will not miss me.
                                                            
DESIREE wanders off as CELESTE slams her door.
                                                            
 

9.

INT. WHITE HOUSE PRESS ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
STAFF MEMBERS and the MEDIA gather. HARTMAN comes in
through the door and approaches the podium. Lights flash
from the PHOTOGRAPHERS' cameras.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good evening and thank you for
coming tonight. Throughout my
presidency, this may be the
hardest speech I have to make. I
regret to inform you that I will
not be running for another term.
It was, with much debate,
difficult for me to decide whether
to retire early from my career and
hand over my title to the vice
president. This is a hard and
personal topic to address, but
Americans have the right to know
why I am not turning in my bid for
re-election. The answer is simply
this: I am not fit to run for
re-election. Yes, I know the
death of my wife occurred a long
time ago, but she is still very
much a part of me today. I cannot
battle the pressures of this job
with my emotions. When the end of
my term comes in January, Celeste
and I will move back to Arkansas
and I will continue my former
occupation of being a lawyer. I
see a brighter future for
Americans, but it does not rest
with me. Thank you for your time,
good night.
                                                            
HARTMAN leaves the podium and exits. Vice President DEVON
GARRETT shakes his head, disappointed. He follows after
HARTMAN.
                                                            
 
INT. WEST WING - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN marches down the hallway, GARRETT still following
behind. GARRETT is livid. If he were a teapot, there would
be steam blowing out of his ears.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
You're making a big mistake,
Hartman. I don't believe that you
are unfit to run for re-election.
                                                            

10.

                       HARTMAN
My doctor would disagree, Garrett.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Doctor? I hope there's nothing
seriously wrong...
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Eh, just a bit of
noncardiac-related chest pain. He
said I should take it easy as much
as possible.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
How long has this been going on?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Since the accident.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Oh, Jesus.
                                                            
GARRETT and HARTMAN approach a DOOR and enter the outer
office.
                                                            
 
INT. OUTER OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
The LADIES are busy behind their desks, with phones RINGING
off the hook. HARTMAN and GARRETT head for the oval office.
                                                            
                       SALLY
      (Taking a break
       from the phone)
Oh, Mr. President! Your father is
here, in the Oval Office.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Thanks, Sally.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
I guess I'll come back later.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You do that.
                                                            
GARRETT wanders off as HARTMAN pushes open the door and
walks in.
                                                            
 

11.

INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN enters, surprised, but not at all happy to see his
gray-haired father, DALE HARTMAN, leaning on a cane, with
disappointment smacked on his face. HARTMAN seeks refuge
from his father behind his desk.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Hi, Dad.
                                                            
                       DALE
Your mother and I are very worried
about you, Jacob.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You seem like it.
                                                            
                       DALE
How's your pleurisy?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
It gets in the way.
                                                            
HARTMAN clutches his chest and grimaces. Another bout of
pleuritic chest pain.
                                                            
                       DALE
So I've noticed.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I've been talking to my doctor
about this. He thinks I'm doing
the right thing.
                                                            
                       DALE
Hmmm . . . maybe he's right.
                                                            
HARTMAN, pale, tired and weak, glances up at his father. He
looks as if he is still in pain.
                                                            
                       DALE
Shall I call the doctor?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll be all right. It comes and
goes. Have a seat, old man.
                                                            
                       DALE
Actually, I'm on my way out. Just
wanted to check on you. Have fun
at Celeste's birthday bash
tonight.
                                                            

12.

                       HARTMAN
Thanks. I'll see if I can
schedule you in for a fishing date
sometime soon.
                                                            
                       DALE
All right, son. See you later.
                                                            
DALE exits.
                                                            
 
INT. STATE DINING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The building is decorated in its entirety for CELESTE'S 16th
Birthday Bash. Everyone is in formal attire. CELESTE
waltzes with her boyfriend, BRETT MONAGHAN. HARTMAN looks on
with two members of his staff, the ADMIRAL, GARRETT, and the
White House Chief of Staff, DANIEL BRIGHTON. They each hold
a flute of champaign in their hands.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Celeste is blossoming into a fine
young lady, Mr. President. Minus
the scandal at school yesterday,
of course.
                                                            
HARTMAN cringes as if he has had a tooth ache and blushes,
embarrassed by the school incident.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
It feels like yesterday when I
took her and her mother home from
the hospital after she was born.
                                                            
BRIGHTON swishes the champaign in his flute. He shakes his
head, grinning.
                                                            
                       BRIGHTON
Kids. Gotta love 'em, but they
sure can be a handful! My wife
and I recently became empty
nesters ourselves.
                                                            
                       ADMIRAL
I hear ya, man! There will be
some major celebrating when my
wife and I move into a retirement
home. We're going to work our
children to the bone when they
come to take care of us. See how
they like it - PUH!
                                                            

13.

HARTMAN raises his glass in toast, the others do the same.
After they CLING their glasses, they down their champaign.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Cheers!
                                                            
HARTMAN spots a server and places his empty flute on his
tray. He walks toward CELESTE and BRETT and taps on BRETT'S
shoulder.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
May I cut in?
                                                            
BRETT is startled as HARTMAN stands next to him.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Oh, of course, Mr. President.
She's all yours!
                                                            
CELESTE winks at BRETT as he walks away. HARTMAN takes
CELESTE'S hand. They continue waltzing.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Daddy, can I go to the teen club
later with Brett?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sure, sweetheart. What time do
you think you'll be home?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Two a.m.
                                                            
HARTMAN shakes his head.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Out of the question. You'll be in
by midnight, no if's, and's or
but's about it.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
That's so unfair, Daddy! Lots of
other kids at my school got to
stay up after midnight.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
A perfect example of what I call
"bad parenting."
                                                            
An expression of disgust crosses CELESTE'S face. HARTMAN
twirls her.
                                                            

14.

                       HARTMAN
You know, you should be thanking
me for allowing you to have this
ball instead of asking me for
permission to stay up until two
a.m!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Whatever, Daddy. I think I'll go
dance with my date now. Des is
over there. Maybe you should woo
her.
                                                            
HARTMAN looks offended as CELESTE goes to tango with BRETT.
                                                            
HARTMAN glides away, approaching DESIREE.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Des, I'd love to share a dance
with you, old chum.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Sure, Jake. If you insist.
                                                            
HARTMAN leads DESIREE to the dance floor. Her FRIENDS are
jealous as they watch them dance together.
                                                            
BRETT twirls CELESTE. CELESTE suddenly grins as if she has
an idea. BRETT smiles in return and PECKS her cheek.
                                                            
 
EXT. WHITE HOUSE - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE is running down the stairs at the front entrance
with BRETT. They look like they have changed into bar
clothes. Two very buff secret service agents, FELIX CARVER
and JOHN ASHBY, follow after them.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Whispering to
       Brett)
Come on, let's create a diversion
- we've gotta get rid of them!
                                                            
                       BRETT
Right behind you.
                                                            
CELESTE and BRETT duck behind some bushes. CARVER and ASHBY
wander off in another direction.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Hey - where'd they go?
                                                            

15.

                       ASHBY
Damn kids.
                                                            
Behind the bushes, BRETT and CELESTE huddle close together,
whispering.
                                                            
                       BRETT
What are we supposed to do now,
get a cab?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Precisely my thoughts.
                                                            
 
INT. TEEN NIGHT CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE leads BRETT to a corner on the upper level of this
two-story building. There is no one there. They kiss
passionately. His hand slides up north into her tank top
and it rests on her breast. As he squeezes it, she giggles.
His hands move down her lacy top. He removes it and throws
it on the floor.
                                                            
                       DJ
Yeah-yeah! We have a birthday
party in the house. Let's have a
birthday shout out to Celeste
Hartman. The president's daughter
is here tonight!
                                                            
There is applause and cheering from the crowd on the second
floor. Suddenly a strong beam of light shines on CELESTE.
She GASPS as a throng of PAPARAZZI snap pictures of her
SHIRTLESS.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
SONG: JEWEL'S "LEAVE THE LIGHTS ON"
                                                            
HARTMAN, still in his tuxedo, fixing a drink at his private
bar with the TV on. A KNOCK at the door.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Who is it?
                                                            
                       SALLY
It's Sally, sir.
                                                            
HARTMAN walks toward the door and opens it.
                                                            

16.

                       HARTMAN
      (Startled, but
       delighted)
Oh, Sally, come on in!
                                                            
SALLY enters, strutting in her ball gown. It is white and
silky with a plunging neckline.
                                                            
                       SALLY
I thought you would be lonely, Mr.
President. A widower like you.
                                                            
HARTMAN blushes.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
A widower like me. Can I get you
a drink from my bar? Scotch,
whiskey? Or do you prefer chick
drinks like margaritas?
                                                            
SALLY struts toward him. She licks her finger, pulling down
the neckline at the top of her dress to let her cleavage
show. HARTMAN'S eyes widen as SALLY inches closer to him.
She drums her fingers on his sleeve. He gazes into her
eyes, seducted.
                                                            
                       SALLY
I want sex . . . on the beach.
                                                            
SALLY leads HARTMAN to the bed. She removes his tie, shirt
and jacket. He reaches under her neckline. They KISS for a
long time.
                                                            
                       SALLY
      (After they've
       stopped kissing)
Oh, Mr. President, I never knew
you were such a romantic!
                                                            
HARTMAN panics and freezes. He stares at her as if he had
seen a ghost.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sally, I'm sorry, but I can't do
this.
                                                            
She jolts off him, disgusted. She heads for the door and
turns around to say something to him.
                                                            
                       SALLY
You surprise me, Mr. President. I
would assume that a lonely man
like you would want some
            (MORE)

17.

                       SALLY (cont'd)
attention, but I suppose I was
wrong. Good night.
                                                            
She exits with a loud SLAM of the door.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good night and good riddance.
                                                            
 
INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
SALLY enters, handing HARTMAN the morning papers with his
coffee. She gives him a stern look.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Thanks.
                                                            
SALLY exits. HARTMAN sips his coffee, holding the morning
paper in front of him. He spits out his hot drink as he
reads a most disturbing HEADLINE featuring a photo of
CELESTE, shocked and shirtless with only a bra on,
accompanied by BRETT:
                                                            
AMERICA'S PRINCESS BECOMES AMERICA'S REBEL.
                                                            
HARTMAN pages SALLY.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Angry, through
       his teeth)
Sally, get Celeste down here
immediately!
                                                            
                       SALLY
Right away, sir.
                                                            
Moments later, CELESTE saunters in, yawning. She is still
in her pajamas, her hair uncombed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yes, Daddy?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Smirking)
Good morning, princess.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Confused)
What's that look for, Daddy?
                                                            
HARTMAN shows CELESTE the picture smacked across the front
page of the paper. She approaches him and grabs the paper
from him. She sinks into the guest chair, disgusted.
                                                            

18.

                       HARTMAN
I'm very disappointed in you,
Celeste. Very disappointed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm sorry, Daddy, but I couldn't
help it if I wanted some
alone-time with Brett on my
birthday!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Even more angry)
I've told you once before and I'll
say it again: NO SEX UNTIL YOU'RE
FIFTY!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
But, Daddy!
                                                            
HARTMAN'S smirk dissolves. He is SERIOUS.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You've blackened the family name,
Celeste. I don't think America
would approve of its president
being a bad parent!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I said I was sorry.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sorry doesn't change anything,
Celeste. Go back to your room and
I'll be up in a bit with your
punishment.
                                                            
Sulking, CELESTE leaves the room. Her head is completely
bowed to the floor.
                                                            
HARTMAN turns to his laptop and surfs the internet. He
types in ALL FEMALE BOARDING SCHOOLS in the Google search
engine. Several listings appear as well as an advertisement
for an Alaskan school called SEAMONT SCHOOL FOR GIRLS. The
advertisement reads: Your daughter will think you have sent
her to summer camp more than a boarding school!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Perfect!
      (Pages secretary)
Hey, Sal. Send in Carver and
Ashby immediately!
                                                            

19.

                       SALLY
Yes, sir.
                                                            
HARTMAN prints out the ADVERTISEMENT. CARVER and ASHBY
enter moments later.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Good morning, Mr. President.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Disappointed)
Not really.
                                                            
                       CARVER
I take it you saw the paper this
morning, sir.
                                                            
HARTMAN thinks about the print-out in front of him. His
eyes then return to CARVER and ASHBY.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
What do you gentlemen think of
sending Celeste to the Seamont
School for Girls in Anchorage,
Alaska?
                                                            
CARVER and ASHBY'S confident expressions change to those of
questioning ones.
                                                            
                       CARVER
      (Dumbfounded)
Brilliant, sir?
                                                            
                       ASHBY
Why Alaska, sir?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Look at this.
                                                            
HARTMAN hands CARVER and ASHBY the ADVERTISEMENT. They read
it over.
                                                            
                       ASHBY
It says here "the nearest boys'
academy is 32 miles away."
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Perfect, isn't it?
                                                            
                       CARVER
Celeste certainly won't be
thinking about any boys out there!
                                                            

20.

The men CHUCKLE.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Precisely my point. What I want
you to do is to keep an eye on
her. Make sure she doesn't sneak
off into town and try to pick up
any damned boys.
                                                            
                       CARVER
We'll do our best, sir.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll want regular reports. And
we'll use a code. Refer to
Celeste as . . . Bambi.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Aye aye, Captain!
                                                            
CARVER and ASHBY exit, CHUCKLING at the pseudonym.
                                                            
                       ASHBY
Come on, Carver, we've got to keep
an eye on Bambi!
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S ROOM - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE is under the covers, trying to sleep. There is a
KNOCK at the door.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What do you want?
                                                            
HARTMAN enters. He whips out the printed ADVERTISEMENT for
the Seamont School from his coat.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
And the verdict is . . . Seamont
School for Girls in Anchorage,
Alaska.
                                                            
CELESTE sits up in bed, shocked.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You're sending me AWAY?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Don't look at it that way,
darling.
                                                            

21.

                       CELESTE
But that's what it is. You're
ashamed to have me around!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sweetheart, that's not the case.
      (Sits on the edge
       of Celeste's bed)
It's like you're going away to
summer camp. Look at this. It
sounds exciting.
                                                            
He hands her the ADVERTISEMENT. She takes it from him and
scans it.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You can't be serious! You're
sending me off to Siberia. If I
didn't know any better, I'd think
you didn't love me anymore.
                                                            
He strokes the top of her head. She looks sad as she gazes
into her father's eyes.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You know that's not true. You're
being unreasonable, Celeste. I
love you more than anything-
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Then why are you sending me away?!
You'll be lonely. Ever since Mom
died. . .
                                                            
Silence ensues for a moment or two. HARTMAN'S eyes trail to
the floor at the mention of his deceased wife.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You shouldn't blame the dead.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm sorry, Daddy, but you can't
ignore the fact that it's a rather
harsh punishment, sending me to
the other side of the country . .
sheesh!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm not exhiling you if that's
what you're getting at. This
school will brighten up your life.
You'll have lots of adventures.
Look at this-
                                                            

22.

He whips out the brochure again and gives it to her.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You'll get to go fishing and
hiking in the fall and spring. And
in the winter you get to go dog
sledding, skiing and toboganning.
Doesn't that sound fun?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Do the secret service agents have
to come too? I'll look like a
geek!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Honey, you have them for your
protection. And to keep you on
your toes.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Can Des come?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You'll have to do this on your
own, dear. We'll keep Des busy
while you're gone, don't worry.
                                                            
HARTMAN kisses CELESTE'S forehead.
                                                            
 
INT. AIR BASE - DAY
                                                            
THREE MONTHS LATER
                                                            
In front of CELESTE and HARTMAN is the extravagant AIR FORCE
ONE. She takes one last glance at the WHITE HOUSE behind
her before boarding the plane with her father. She is sad.
                                                            
 
INT. AIR FORCE ONE - DAY
                                                            
The plane flies over the ALASKAN FJORDS. CELESTE gasps in
amazement. CARVER and ASHBY, seated on a different section
of the plane, keep their eyes glued to the newspaper.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Wow, Dad! Alaska might not be so
bad after all.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Just wait till we get there,
princess.
                                                            
 

23.

INT. LIMOUSINE - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE gazes out the window as she and HARTMAN arrive at
the SCHOOL. It is situated on the coast of Anchorage, in
front of a mountain, a short distance from the VILLAGE.
Above the door hang block letters of the name of the
log-style school in blue. CELESTE is in awe of the beauty of
the scenery. Abundant SUNSHINE glows everywhere.
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE gapes at the decor; HARTMAN is not as impressed. The
decor resembles a ski lodge. The Headmistress, MISS FRANCES
CHAPMAN, appears in a business-like suit. She is of average
height and her most standoffish feature is her medium-length
strawberry-blonde HAIR. She shakes HARTMAN'S hand.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
      (Enthusiastic)
Mr. President, it is such an honor
to meet you and to have your
daughter attending our school.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Thank you, Miss-?
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
Oh, pardon me! Where are my
manners? I am Miss Frances
Chapman. I run Seamont School.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
This is my daughter, Celeste.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
      (Smirking at
       Celeste)
Yes, I know. Interesting girl, I
must say.
                                                            
MISS CHAPMAN'S smirk becomes a sincere smile as she leads
HARTMAN and CELESTE on a tour.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
From the very beginning, our
school's founders decided upon a
log-style school to preserve the
culture of our state. Many of the
girls also find the ski lodge
atmosphere quite relaxing and it
helps them to concentrate on their
school work.
                                                            

24.

                       HARTMAN
How many students currently attend
here? I must say, based on the
size of this school, it couldn't
be more than thirty.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
Actually, our student body size is
only twenty. There are five
freshmen, five sophomores, five
juniors, and five seniors. Now
that your daughter will be
attending, she will increase our
student body size to a mere
twenty-one.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (To her father)
How am I supposed to get
recognized by a good college if I
attend a school this small, Dad?
                                                            
HARTMAN glares at her, urging her to keep up with the tour.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
All our graduates go on to
exceptional universities,
including Harvard and Oxford. We
work our students hard. Very
hard.
                                                            
MISS CHAPMAN glares at CELESTE, whose lips are quivering.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN (cont'd)
Come.
                                                            
They continue on the tour.
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL FOYER - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN is at the door, about to leave. CELESTE is there to
see him out. CARVER and ASHBY stand by the door, stiff as
fences.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Aren't you going to give me a kiss
before you go, Daddy? You won't
be seeing me for a while.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sure, dear.
                                                            

25.

He bends over so that he can PECK CELESTE on her cheek.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I want a hug, too.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
If I must.
                                                            
He opens his arms wide, throwing them around her.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Be good.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
We'll see, Daddy. Good-bye!
                                                            
HARTMAN lets her go and flashes her a weak SMILE as he walks
out the door.
                                                            
 
INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY - DAY
                                                            
With CARVER and ASHBY following behind, CELESTE walks toward
a CLASSROOM, dressed in the school's uniform, her head held
high. A fellow CLASSMATE, sitting on a bench and reading a
fashion magazine, stretches out her leg without noticing
CELESTE. The girl is KYRA, an Alaskan Indian. CELESTE trips
and falls flat on her face, cringing and moaning in pain.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Wouldn't it be a shame if
America's Princess had a broken
nose?
                                                            
CARVER and ASHBY help CELESTE.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Yelling)
You did that on purpose!
                                                            
                       KYRA
      (Sarcastic)
Actually, I just had a twitch in
my leg. Sorry.
                                                            
KYRA sneers at CELESTE, who is disgusted. CARVER and ASHBY
follow CELESTE into her classroom where a handful of
STUDENTS are heading.
                                                            
 

26.

INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
The atmosphere resembles that of a 19th century school
house. Only six GIRLS and the junior teacher, MISS ABIGAIL
FISHER, occupy the room. The SCHOOLGIRLS engage in
conversation minus CELESTE, who is staring into space.
CARVER and ASHBY are hiding in the back, wearing sunglasses
as they read a tabloid. MISS FISHER CLAPS her hands twice
to command the classroom's attention. She wears a SMILE so
wide that it is annoying to KYRA.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Good morning, class! We have a
new student among us.
                                                            
All eyes except KYRA'S turn to CELESTE, the only blonde in
the room. KYRA rolls her eyes. The STUDENTS in the junior
class are Alaskan Indian, excluding the newcomer.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Would you care to stand up and
tell us a little about yourself,
Celeste?
                                                            
                       KYRA
She doesn't need too. We learn
everything there is to know about
America's Princess just from
reading the tabloids. How
inspirational: America's Princess
Becomes America's Rebel.
                                                            
KYRA holds up her copy of the TABLOID so that her friends
see it. She returns it to her lap after ensuing a moment of
humiliation and fury for CELESTE, who is glaring at her
newfound nemesis. The other four GIRLS find the headline
about CELESTE amusing. They giggle.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
      (Serious)
Congratulations, Kyra. You are
the first student in the history
of the school to receive detention
the first day back for not
adhering to our "no adhominim"
policy.
                                                            
KYRA looks up, SHOCKED, as if protesting.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Class, please remind Kyra what "no
ad hominim" means.
                                                            

27.

Four of the six GIRLS, excluding CELESTE and KYRA, speak
like robots in their response.
                                                            
                       CLASS
Not against the man.
                                                            
While MISS FISHER speaks, CELESTE smirks at the glowering
KYRA as if saying, "I win."
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
In this class, no one attacks
another. If you have a problem
with someone, go to that person in
private! Now that that's settled,
take out your geography books,
please. We need to inform our new
student about the amazing
geographical features she will
explore here with us.
                                                            
 
INT. OVAL OFFICE - NIGHT
                                                            
HARTMAN looks bored and tired. He spins his globe several
times. As it stops on ALASKA, he looks sad. His eyes then
trail to a framed picture of his deceased wife, ANNA, placed
in a corner on his desk. He picks up the FRAME, gazing at
it fondly.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I must be crazy.
                                                            
DESIREE walks in from the outer office.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Jake, it's getting late. You need
to get to bed.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I can't sleep.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Why not? It's not your wife, is
it?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I've done a terrible thing,
Desiree. I sent my daughter away.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Oh, nonsense! We all miss her,
even though it's only been a
couple of days. You look awful,
            (MORE)

28.

                       DESIREE (cont'd)
Jake. You really need to get some
sleep. You'll make yourself sick.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
If you insist.
                                                            
HARTMAN turns off the LAMP on his desk and follows DESIREE
to the door. DESIREE falters at the light switch as she
stands near the handsome president. His eyes are
mesmerizing. HARTMAN takes her by the waist, leans in and
KISSES her. DESIREE is surprised, caught off guard.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Seductive tone)
Your room or mine?
                                                            
Still mesmerized by HARTMAN'S gorgeous eyes, DESIREE'S hand
reaches back for the light switch. She flips it off as he
leans in and KISSES her once more.
                                                            
 
INT. KYRA'S DORM - NIGHT
                                                            
All the girls in the junior class minus CELESTE are here:
KYRA, MAIA, CHENA, GENEVA AND DELILAH. They are all Alaskan
Indian natives with KYRA acting as their leader.
                                                            
                       MAIA
Honestly, what's President Hartman
thinking by sending America's
Princess into exhile? He's in way
over his head.
                                                            
CELESTE walks by, peeking in for a second, making FACES at
the girls in her class. The GIRLS stare back at her as if
she were some kind of psycho. She continues on to her dorm.
                                                            
                       KYRA
It certainly wasn't very smart of
him to send her here. We're a
bunch of natives, for crying out
loud! I say, let's consult a
tribal ritual or two and drive her
out of here.
                                                            
                       MAIA
      (Rubbing her hands
       in excitement)
Excellent! Her head on a spear,
or shall we roast her like a pig?
                                                            
The girls CHUCKLE in agreement at MAIA's suggestion.
                                                            

29.

                       KYRA
The sooner we get rid of her, the
better.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Amen!
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S DORM - NIGHT
                                                            
Sitting on the edge of her bed, CELESTE sobs into the PHONE.
HARTMAN'S voice is audible on the other line.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Daddy, I hate it here! Everyone
hates me.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You think crying to me is going to
solve anything? They're just
jealous of you, Celeste.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Jealous or not, I want to come
home, and I want to come home NOW!
                                                            
An older GIRL peeks in through CELESTE'S open doorway,
overhearing the conversation.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You can cry all you want, honey,
but you're not coming home. I
already paid your tuition for the
term. Just ignore the girls and
they'll back off. I'll talk to
you tomorrow.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK, Daddy. I love you.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I love you too, princess.
                                                            
They hang up. The GIRL knocks on CELESTE'S door. CELESTE
is startled and dries her eyes.
                                                            
It is TAMARA VAN WYCK, an African American who is wearing a
multi-colored striped sundress. She is somewhat overweight,
but not too heavy. Her trademark is her black frizzy hair.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
      (Timid)
Hi, is this a bad time?
                                                            

30.

                       CELESTE
No.
                                                            
TAMARA walks further into the room and shakes CELESTE'S hand
with a firm grip. She is excited to meet CELESTE even if
CELESTE is not as excited to see her.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Hi, I'm Tamara Van Wyck. I'm the
student body president.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Celeste Hartman.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Yes, I know who you are. I heard
you had a row with Kyra Madison in
class today. She treats all the
new girls like that on the first
day, don't feel special.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Seriously? I thought she was just
singling me out because of who I
am.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
There may be another side to Kyra
Madison that you don't know. She's
the daughter of a chief of a local
native tribe.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I guess that explains why she's so
feisty.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
You could say that. Anyway, I
just thought I'd come up here and
see how things were going your
first day here.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yeah, thanks! It was a bit rough,
but I'm sure I'll adjust.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
That's the spirit! I'll see you
around, Celeste.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Bye!
                                                            

31.

TAMARA exits, sashaying her large hips and HUMMING. Her
dress sways with each step.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S ROOM - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN emerges from the bathroom in a silk bathrobe,
exhausted. As he slides into bed, he turns on the TV. On
comes his favorite evening NEWS PROGRAM in which a female
NEWS REPORTER is delivering an update.
                                                            
                       NEWS REPORTER
It has been confirmed today that
the president's daughter is
attending school in Anchorage,
Alaska. Sources say it will be a
big change for America's Princess.
Or should I say, America's Rebel?
                                                            
On TV, the NEWS REPORTER is with CELESTE'S boyfriend, BRETT.
                                                            
                       NEWS REPORTER
Beside me is Brett Monaghan, the
boyfriend of Celeste Hartman.
                                                            
                       BRETT
It's a shame she has to transfer
to a school so far away. She had
no say about it, but I assume it's
the president's way of punishing
her for that fiasco at the club.
He'll never let me hear the end of
it.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Muttering to
       himself)
Damn straight, cowboy. No one
takes my daughter's V Card until
she's fifty - capische?
                                                            
                       NEWS REPORTER
Others are concerned for President
Jacob Hartman, the youngest
president in our nation's history,
who has announced that he will be
avoiding re-election. Memories of
his late wife Anna Hartman, who
was an advocate for cancer
research, was killed . . .
                                                            
HARTMAN turns off the TV and the LIGHTS. He turns over and
falls asleep.
                                                            
 

32.

INT. CELESTE'S DORM - DAY
                                                            
A pool of SUNLIGHT streams in from the window. Birds are
CHIRPING. CELESTE tosses and turns in bed.
                                                            
 
INT. INDIAN VILLAGE - DAY
                                                            
DREAM SEQUENCE
                                                            
--CELESTE is in her pajamas and tied to a stake like Joan of
Arc in a vast FIELD.
                                                            
--The GIRLS from the junior class are dressed in their
native costumes. They PRANCE around her doing INDIAN CALLS.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Die, princess, die!
                                                            
--Beads of SWEAT pelt down CELESTE'S face. She looks
mortified.
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S DORM - DAY
                                                            
KYRA and her usual gang surround CELESTE'S bed, dragging her
out of it.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Time to get initiated, princess.
                                                            
CELESTE still thrashes about as the GIRLS carry her out the
door.
                                                            
 
EXT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
Kyra and her gang, still carrying CELESTE, march toward the
ANCHORAGE BAY. They walk into the water for about a yard.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Okay, girls, DROP HER!
                                                            
The GIRLS dunk CELESTE into the water and run away doing
their Indian calls as they did in the dream. CELESTE wakes
up in shock and watches KYRA and the others running into the
school. CELESTE'S soaking white nightgown is transparent,
sticking to her body.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
YOU'RE DEAD, KYRA! I'M GOING TO
GET YOU WHEN YOU LEAST EXPECT IT!
                                                            

33.

                       KYRA
WE'LL SEE ABOUT THAT!
                                                            
KYRA continues her Indian calls as she and her friends slip
into the school. CELESTE chases after them, hoisting up her
nightgown. She is furious.
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE slips on the wooden floors as she enters through the
front door. There are GIRLS everywhere, dressed in their
school uniforms. Some LAUGH and others WOLF-WHISTLE at the
sight of CELESTE on the floor, dripping wet. She is
sobbing. MISS CHAPMAN hurries into the foyer where CELESTE
has fallen. She bends over to help her. CARVER and ASHBY
also dash forward to help CELESTE.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Screaming)
KYRA MADISON DID IT! SHE AND HER
MINIONS DROPPED ME IN THE BAY!
                                                            
CELESTE chokes momentarily from her sobbing as the three
ADULTS help her to stand.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
Kyra and her friends will be
severely punished, I assure you,
Celeste. You are excused from
morning classes.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thank you, Miss Chapman.
                                                            
MISS CHAPMAN leads her away. CARVER and ASHBY follow.
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
MISS FISHER looks disappointed at the members of the junior
class. CELESTE is absent. DELILAH and GENEVA tremble in
their seats.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
I am very disappointed in all of
you. Attempting to drown a fellow
student is NOT funny. Wipe that
smirk off your face, Kyra! As you
all know, this weekend we will be
taking a shopping trip to the
village. You are all forbidden to
go!
                                                            

34.

There are GROANS of protests among the GIRLS. KYRA'S smirk
disappears. She glowers at MISS FISHER, who ignores her.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
I am quite keen on forbidding the
rest of your shopping trips into
town as well. If your ridiculous
behavior toward Celeste continues,
you will be forbidden from further
shopping excursions!
                                                            
CELESTE walks in maintaing perfect posture and grins at the
GIRLS. She takes her seat.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Ah, Celeste! I'm glad you've been
able to join us so soon. I've
just explained to the girls their
punishment.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I overheard, Miss Fisher. Thank
you.
                                                            
 
INT. CAFETERIA - NIGHT
                                                            
KYRA and her followers sit at a table together over dinner.
                                                            
                       CHENA
That is so preposterous to ban us
from shopping in town! I can't
believe Miss Fisher had the nerve.
                                                            
                       KYRA
That was rather harsh. Everyone
seems to find out about our
"attempts" as they call them. We
need to find a way to sneak into
town and get her there, since it's
off-campus. They can't punish us
for doing anything off-campus.
                                                            
                       DELILAH
No, but they have those stupid
security guards all over the
place, or whoever those people are
that are following little miss
princess everywhere.
                                                            
CELESTE walks by as a younger GIRL trips her. CARVER and
ASHBY take the troublemaker aside and speak with her. KYRA
and the others explode in laughter.
                                                            

35.

                       CELESTE
      (Angry)
OH, SWEET MOTHER OF GOD! TWICE IN
ONE DAY!
                                                            
                       KYRA
Secret service agents, Delilah.
One of them just took out a
freshman for tripping Celeste. I
bet they're going to have a chat
with us next.
                                                            
CARVER communicates with HARTMAN through a RADIO. Meanwhile,
ASHBY eyes the girl who tripped CELESTE and motions for her
to come to him. She obeys. ASHBY leads the girl away.
Another STUDENT helps CELESTE back on her feet.
                                                            
                       CARVER
These girls have something against
Bambi, sir. There was a drowning
attempt this morning and someone
tripped her on purpose.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I have a chore for you. You need
to privately sort out the
troublemakers and have a chat with
them. She never had a problem
like this at her school here.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Well, half the student body is
composed of natives, sir. I'm a
little intimidated to interrogate
them myself.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
A big tough guy like you, Carver?
Just make sure they don't burn her
at the stake or anything. If
anything else happens, you know
what to do.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Yes, Mr. President.
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S DORM - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE is on the phone with BRETT, lying on her white bed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hi sexy, I miss you.
                                                            

36.

                       BRETT
I miss you too, babe. When are
you going to come home and visit
me?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You miss me already? Aw, shucks!
I'd come home in a heartbeat to
see you. The girls here are so
cruel to me.
                                                            
                       BRETT
They're just jealous because they
don't have a hot boyfriend like
you.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
If I weren't the goddamn
president's daughter, I'd come
over there and take you right now!
                                                            
CELESTE makes a moaning noise similar to that of a woman in
climax. One of the sophomore girls walks by and GASPS from
shock at the noise CELESTE is making.
                                                            
 
EXT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
In the early morning hours, CELESTE and a pair of freshman
twins, BRITT and BRYNN DUNCAN, walk briskly away from
school. CARVER and ASHBY follow several yards behind them.
                                                            
                       BRITT
I've never been shopping into town
before. I hope we don't get lost.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You and I are in the same boat,
Britt. I just wish those damned
secret service agents weren't
following us everywhere. They're
on my tail day and night.
                                                            
                       BRITT
I'm glad I'm not anybody famous!
That must be such a pain, not
having any privacy.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It can be a pain in the ass
sometimes. If there are any
screw-ups in my family, it ends up
on the news.
                                                            

37.

                       BRYNN
That sucks.
                                                            
 
INT. VILLAGE - DAY
                                                            
Clusters of STUDENTS from the Seamont School enter the
shopping district of Anchorage. There are strip malls
everywhere, scores of VILLAGERS walking on the sidewalk.
There is a clear view of the Pacific Ocean just beyond the
shopping center. TAMARA walks alongside her older adopted
brother, CURTIS, a handsome Latino American. TAMARA sees
CELESTE and waves.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Hello, Celeste!
                                                            
CURTIS' jaw drops and his eyes bulge as he gapes at CELESTE.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Did you just wave to the
president's daughter?
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Why, do you have the hots for her,
dear brother? DO ya?
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Fine, I admit it, I want to
plaster all of Celeste Hartman's
pictures onto my wall of hotties!
Satisfied?
                                                            
TAMARA pats CURTIS' back.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Atta boy.
                                                            
CURTIS gapes at CELESTE as she approaches them.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
How's it going?
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Oh, you know. It goes. Celeste,
this is my brother, Curtis.
                                                            
CELESTE shakes CURTIS' hand.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Adopted brother.
                                                            

38.

                       CELESTE
That would explain why there is no
family resemblance. Nice to know
you, Curtis.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Yeah, nice to meet you, too. Been
making friends with my sister,
have you?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Got a problem with that?
                                                            
CURTIS winks at CELESTE.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
      (Joking)
Everyone's been so mean to
Celeste, I thought I'd give her a
break. It's my duty as student
body president.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Yeah, the girls at Seamont can be
pretty competitive. I guess they
all want to get into the best
schools. Come on, sis. Let's
give Celeste a tour of the town.
Maybe we can meet the mayor later,
I think he's supposed to make an
appearance. He'd love to meet
Celeste.
                                                            
MUSICAL MONTAGE
                                                            
SONG: BILLY OCEAN'S "GET OUTTA MY DREAMS, GET INTO MY CAR"
                                                            
--CELESTE visits many shops, escorted by TAMARA and CURTIS.
They stop in a Victoria's Secret outlet and enter. CELESTE
spots a cute pair of leopard short-shorts and points to
them, giggling. CURTIS winks at TAMARA and grabs her ass.
TAMARA looks at him, surprised.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
It wasn't me!
                                                            
--More walking down the shopping district by CELESTE, TAMARA
and CURTIS.
                                                            

39.

--They stop at the boarding dock and CURTIS almost gets
attacked by a soaring PELICAN. He runs around screaming.
CELESTE shoves him out of the way. CELESTE and TAMARA burst
into giggles. CURTIS stands there panting, sweating,
embarrassed.
                                                            
END MONTAGE
                                                            
CELESTE, TAMARA and CURTIS walk toward the center of town
where a live BAND is playing Jamaican music on the stage.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I wonder what my father would say
if he found a pair of those
short-shorts we saw at Victoria's
Secret in my dresser.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
He'd probably keep you out here
forever. He thinks there aren't
any boys out here or something?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Obviously, if he sent me here.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Lucky for me I go to a public
school, not any of those silly
private schools for rich kids that
you two go to.
                                                            
CELESTE winks at CURTIS.
                                                            
As they walk around, trying to find a spot in the front,
CELESTE bumps into RAYMOND GEIGER, the Mayor of Anchorage,
while she is talking a mile a minute to CURTIS and TAMARA.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
Excuse me, dear girl.
                                                            
CELESTE looks up at the MAYOR.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Hi, Mr. Geiger. Don't mind
Celeste. She's new in town.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
Goodness gracious, Miss Van Wyck!
You don't mean to tell me that
this is Celeste Hartman, the
President's daughter alias
America's Princess?
                                                            

40.

                       CURTIS
Alias America's rebel...
                                                            
CURTIS snickers. CELESTE jabs him in the stomach with her
elbow, but not hard.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Curtis and I are giving her a tour
of Anchorage.
      (To Celeste)
Celeste, this is Raymond Geiger.
He's the mayor of Anchorage.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's very nice to meet you, Mr.
Mayor, sir.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
Well, now. This is a day to
celebrate! We must get you on TV,
my dear. I'll be going on the
stage in ten minutes. You must
come!
                                                            
CELESTE gives him a shocked look as if saying
that-is-exactly-what-I-don't-need-right-now.
                                                            
 
INT. CENTER OF VILLAGE - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE is on the STAGE with MAYOR GEIGER, whose hand is at
her back. Her facial expressions reveal nothing but
nervousness as the BAND plays a Jamaican version of "HAIL TO
THE CHIEF" on the marimbas. MAYOR GEIGER is holding a
MICROPHONE and passes it to CELESTE as necessary. A CAMERA
CREW stands nearby. TAMARA and CURTIS are in the front of
the throng of villagers, many of whom are Alaskan natives in
authentic tribal costumes. Other members of the audience
consist of the GIRLS from the Seamont School.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
This is a special day, for Celeste
Hartman has come to visit
Anchorage. Now tell me, Celeste,
what has been the purpose of your
trip to Alaska?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I go to Seamont School for Girls.
                                                            
The SEAMONT GIRLS in the audience cheer and applause
CELESTE.
                                                            

41.

                       MAYOR
What grade are you in at the
Seamont School, my dear?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm a junior.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
And what do you plan on doing
after school?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm not sure yet. Anything but
politics.
                                                            
                       MAYOR
Well, my dear, it is my great
honor to present to you a key to
the city of Anchorage and declare
this day Celeste Hartman Day.
                                                            
MAYOR GEIGER shakes CELESTE'S hand and presents her with a
KEY TO THE CITY.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thank you, Mayor Geiger, sir!
                                                            
There are flashes from the photographers in the audience.
CLOSE UP on the following headline: MAYOR GEIGER AWARDS
AMERICA'S PRINCESS A KEY TO THE CITY. The Jamaican BAND
belts out "STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER."
                                                            
 
EXT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
KYRA and her friends are in their gym clothes, gathered in a
circle, tossing a BEACH BALL around. GENEVA grins, noticing
CELESTE walking by. CARVER and ASHBY spy on them, seated on
a bench near the building.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Oh, princess!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Angry)
Don't call me that! I am anything
but.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Oh, but you are! Isn't that what
they call you, "America's
Princess?"
                                                            

42.

                       CELESTE
What do you want, Geneva?
                                                            
                       GENEVA
      (Smirking)
We were just wondering if you
would like to play bitch ball with
us!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
If this is one of your idiotic
schemes to sabotage me again, then
forget it.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Oh, come on, Celeste! Don't be
such a sissy. Bitch ball is a ton
of fun, but we're short an extra
person.
                                                            
The other GIRLS smirk and giggle.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What's bitch ball, anyway?
                                                            
GENEVA looks dumbfounded by the question.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Bitch ball, is, uh. . . Kyra, you
wanna help me out?
                                                            
                       KYRA
      (To Celeste)
Bitch ball is like monkey in the
middle, only we play it with a
beach ball. One girl stands in
the middle, trying to keep the
beach ball away from the other
girls. Whoever captures the ball
wins. Are you game or are you
gonna run back to your secret
service agents? We promise we'll
play nice.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm game!
                                                            
                       KYRA
Good. Then you get to be in the
middle.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK.
                                                            

43.

As CELESTE moves to the middle of the circle, the other five
GIRLS freeze into position as if they are soccer goalies.
                                                            
                       KYRA
On your marks, get set - GO!
                                                            
The GIRLS tackle CELESTE while she holds the BALL high above
her head. Some of the girls SCRATCH and CLAW at her while
the others ram into her. It sounds as if they are having a
real cat fight. CELESTE screams as she is knocked down.
KYRA steps on CELESTE'S feet and kicks at her ankle.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Can you handle anymore, you
pansy-assed sissy? Next time you
feel like taking over Seamont,
you'd better check with me first!
Pounce on her, girls!
                                                            
Looking on, CARVER and ASHBY are unamused by the girls'
behavior as they continue to bruise CELESTE.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Oh, brother.
                                                            
                       ASHBY
That is something I don't wanna
get involved in.
                                                            
                       CARVER
If we don't do something, someone
could get an eye poked out.
                                                            
ASHBY rises and rushes over to the GIRLS, CARVER following
behind. Both their arms are flailing like crazy as they try
to signal the girls to stop. CELESTE screams.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
WHATEVER IT IS I DID TO OFFEND
YOU, I'M SORRY!
                                                            
The GIRLS are still KICKING CELESTE, who is bruised in more
places than one, including her eye. She MOANS.
                                                            
                       CARVER
GIRLS! CEASE AND DESIST!
                                                            
                       ASHBY
STOP OR WE'LL HAVE YOU GIRLS
ARRESTED!
                                                            
The GIRLS immediately cease fighting, frightened by CARVER

44.

and ASHBY'S orders and their tall, muscular bodies marching
toward them. CELESTE MOANS again and GRIPS her ankle in
pain.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, merciful heaven!
                                                            
CARVER and ASHBY each grab CELESTE by her scratched arms and
drag her to the SCHOOL. She is sobbing. KYRA'S eyes glow
red with fury as she sees her weakened opponent being
carried away.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Go home crying to your Daddy,
Princess! And when you come back,
we'll sabotage you again when you
least expect it!
                                                            
KYRA turns back to her group, impressed with their
sabotaging skills.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
That was brilliant, girls!
                                                            
                       KYRA
No, Geneva, you're brilliant!
                                                            
                       GENEVA
Sure, for someone who's getting
all Cs and Ds.
                                                            
The GIRLS CHUCKLE.
                                                            
 
EXT. INFIRMARY - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE exits, walking on CRUTCHES. Her face and arms are
bandaged in various places. The portly nurse, MISS HAILEY
BODEN, holds the door open for CELESTE.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
You take care of yourself, dear.
Make sure to ice those eyes when
you get a chance!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thanks, Miss Boden!
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Bye, dear.
                                                            
The door SLAMS behind CELESTE as she walks down the HALLWAY.
                                                            
 

45.

INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL. HALLWAY - DAY
                                                            
GIRLS are shuffling about with CELESTE in the midst of the
crowd. BRITT and BRYNN approach CELESTE as she huffs and
puffs, carrying her books to class.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hi, girls.
                                                            
                       BRITT
Hi, Celeste.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
Hey Celeste, you wanna go hiking
with us this weekend?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Sure. That's sounds like fun.
Maybe we could go canoeing, too?
                                                            
                       BRITT
We'll most likely go hiking on
Saturday and canoeing on Sunday.
Sound good?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Sure. What time is hiking?
                                                            
                       BRITT
Nine o'clock on the dot. We like
to get out by noon before it gets
hot.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I can't imagine Alaska getting
hot. Not as hot as D.C., anyway.
                                                            
                       BRITT
Oh, it can.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
And it will.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK. I'll see you guys on Saturday
at nine then. Thanks for the
invite!
                                                            
                       BRYNN
No prob.
                                                            
CELESTE hurries away, but in her haste, she BUMPS into KYRA,
who is walking alongside GENEVA. They SCOWL at her.
                                                            

46.

                       KYRA
Walk much, Pansy?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
WHAT did you call me?
                                                            
CELESTE returns an evil glare to KYRA and GENEVA, who
continue on their path. CELESTE wanders in a different
direction.
                                                            
                       KYRA (OS)
      (Shouting back to
       CELESTE)
Sweet, little pansy-ass!
                                                            
 
INT. DORM FLOOR - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE walks out of her room in her hiking gear, which
consists of a solid lavender tank top, khaki shorts and
hiking boots. She also has a small backpack accompanied by
a water bottle. She wanders down the winding stairwell to
the freshman/sophomore floor and meets up with BRITT and
BRYNN. Another GIRL is with them, LEILANI BARRETT, a
Hawaiian student.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Top o' the mornin'.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
Hi. We thought we'd bring Leilani
Barrett along, too. She's from
Hawaii.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Nice to meet you, Leilani.
                                                            
                       LEILANI
Likewise.
                                                            
They shake hands and head down the hallway out of the dorm
residence.
                                                            
 
EXT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
The GIRLS hike away from the building, heading for the
marked TRAIL.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
So, Leilani, what part of Hawaii
are you from?
                                                            

47.

                       LEILANI
Honolulu. Alaska sure is a whole
different environment from Hawaii,
I must say. Colder too.
                                                            
CELESTE smacks a BUZZING mosquito on her arm.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
And more mosquitoes than anywhere
else. I just hope I don't get
eaten alive. So, where exactly
are we going, girls?
                                                            
                       BRYNN
Just follow us and you won't get
lost.
                                                            
                       BRITT
But beware of bears!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Timid)
B-bears?
                                                            
BRITT and BRYNN CHUCKLE to themselves as they hike ahead of
CELESTE and LEILANI.
                                                            
 
INT. SCENIC TRAIL - DAY
                                                            
The SOUNDS of crows and eagles cawing are enough to frighten
CELESTE as she watches the BIRDS fly overhead. She hears a
wolf's CRIES in the distance. CELESTE freezes in her path.
The other three GIRLS are ahead of her.
                                                            
                       BRITT
You'd better keep up, Celeste, or
you'll get lost. Who knows, maybe
you'll even get cornered by that
wolf.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I heard it but I didn't see it.
                                                            
                       BRITT
Trust me when I say they're sneaky
creatures.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'll take your word for it.
                                                            
CELESTE hurries after the GIRLS.
                                                            

48.

                       CELESTE
      (Nervous)
This is one of the few times I
wish I had my secret service
agents. They're just not quick
enough to keep up with us.
                                                            
More animal NOISES from all corners. CELESTE once again
freezes in her path. She pants from an adrenaline rush and
begins to sweat from fear. The other GIRLS are far ahead of
her now, disappearing into a trail covered by tall bushes
and trees.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hey, girls! Where'd you go?
Girls? GIRLS, WAIT UP!
                                                            
WILD ANIMALS come from all corners of the woods, surrounding
CELESTE. She stares at them in FRIGHT.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Panicked)
Um . . . HELP!
                                                            
As the ANIMALS move in on her, CELESTE sweats PROFUSELY.
                                                            
A Tarzan CALL from above. A young MAN swoops down from a
hanging vine and grabs CELESTE. CELESTE SCREAMS as they FLY
through the air on a VINE.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Celeste, stop screaming, it's just
me!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Curtis? Thank God it's you! I
was about to be lunch for those
mangy animals.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Not anymore. I'll whisk you far
away from here, princess.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What are you doing out here,
Curtis?
                                                            
They land in a TREE far away from the wild animals. CURTIS
releases the vine.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
My dad and I were hunting in some
trees nearby and when I heard your
            (MORE)

49.

                       CURTIS (cont'd)
screams and well, I just couldn't
resist.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
That's awfully sweet of you,
Curtis.
                                                            
CURTIS begins the DESCENT from the tree, helping CELESTE
along the way. CELESTE looks too scared to move.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Don't mention it. Now you can
tell all your friends at the
stingy all-girls school how I
saved your life.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Will do. The girls that I was
hiking with earlier must be
worried to death about me.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Was my sister one of the girls
that was hiking with you?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, no. She's in town shopping. I
came here with a bunch of
freshmen.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Well, I think it's time we took a
little side trip. You can catch
up with the girls later.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK.
                                                            
MUSICAL MONTAGE
                                                            
SONG: SAVAGE GARDEN'S "UNIVERSE"
                                                            
--CURTIS leads CELESTE through the woods.
                                                            
--They approach a SIGN with directions leading into TOWN and
the other leading to the FOREST TRAIL.
                                                            
--They follow the route to TOWN, HOLDING hands. CELESTE is
no longer afraid of the wild animals and is happy to be with
CURTIS.
                                                            

50.

--They stop once along their path as they catch the glimmer
in each other's eyes. They KISS for a long time. When they
are no longer locking lips, CURTIS is serious.
                                                            
END MUSICAL MONTAGE
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What?
                                                            
                       CURTIS
I thought you had a boyfriend back
home?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
We're kind of . . . falling apart.
It's understandable, though,
because he hasn't been there for
me since I've been away at school.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
It's hard to keep a steady
relationship with someone who goes
to school on the other side of the
country.
                                                            
CELESTE nods. Her EYES are glued to the ground, SPARKLING
with tears that have not yet dripped.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Celeste, what's the matter?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
When you mentioned my boyfriend,
it made me think about home and
how much I miss everyone,
especially my dad.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
What do you miss the most about
your dad?
                                                            
CELESTE SIGHS.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
He's been very depressed lately
because of my mother's death.
Their wedding anniversary is
coming up. He has odd memories of
the night they were in the car
crash. We left our relationship
pretty edgy when he dropped me off
here. He just seems so cold and
bitter all the time whenever I
            (MORE)

51.

                       CELESTE (cont'd)
talk to him on the phone. I'm
starting to think that he doesn't
love me anymore. He's not even
running for re-election because of
me!
                                                            
TEARS spill from CELESTE'S eyes. CURTIS' palm rests on her
cheek as he dries some of her tears with his THUMB.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
He does love you, Celeste, I'm
sure of it. He's probably not
running for re-election because he
cares more about healing the
relationship between the two of
you than running this country.
                                                            
CELESTE throws her arms around CURTIS and SOBS.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I can't take it anymore! The
girls in my class at school are so
cruel to me. And my dad is losing
it!
                                                            
CURTIS soothes CELESTE as she SOBS on his shoulder. He
strokes her back.
                                                            
                       CURTIS
Shhhhh...
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I want to go home . . . !
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S DORM - NIGHT
                                                            
On her BED, CELESTE is talking to DESIREE on the PHONE.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hi, Des!
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Miserable)
Uhhhn . . . hi, Celeste.
                                                            
DES CLEARS her throat and SNEEZES.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You don't sound too good.
                                                            

52.

                       DESIREE
I'm afraid I've caught the flu. I
vomitted at work. Your father sent
me home.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I hope it's nothing too serious.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Oh, no. The doc said I'll be fine
after a couple of days. How are
things up north?
                                                            
CELESTE pulls back the BLINDS and peeks out the WINDOW. The
SNOW is BLOWING like crazy.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's all right. It's just
starting to snow, but it's snowing
HARD. I'm sick of it, frankly.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
That's too bad. We all miss you
here.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Does my daddy miss me?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I'm sure he does, dear. We've got
enough to keep ourselves busy at
the moment, but we can't wait for
you to come home. Your father is
thinking of taking a break soon
one weekend to come see you.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Really?
                                                            
More COUGHING and SNEEZING from DESIREE.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Yes, but don't keep your hopes up.
There is always a chance that he
could cancel if things get too
hectic around here, re-election
and all.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
He's always so busy. Will you do
me a favor, Des?
                                                            

53.

                       DESIREE
Depends on what it is, dear.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Will you just remind him that I'm
a person with feelings too? I'm
his daughter, for Pete's sake!
Fathers are supposed to do things
with their daughters!
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I will, dear, but it's awfully
hard to hop on a plane every
weekend to come see you on the
other side of the country. You
may just have to wait until
Thanksgiving.
                                                            
CELESTE FLIPS over on her stomach and SIGHS, annoyed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, brother! Sometimes it feels
as if he's ignoring me. He
doesn't call me that much and
whenever I call and complain to
him, he's always so cold with me.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
He's just a busy man, Celeste. I'm
sure you understand.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Please get him to come through for
me, Des. You saw how crazy he was
when Mom died. I'm afraid he's
slipping away again.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I'll try, princess. Everything's
going to be all right.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK, Des. It's bed time for me.
Good night.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Good night, Celeste. Be good.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Whatever.
                                                            
CELESTE hangs up her phone.
                                                            
 

54.

INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
Sitting at his desk, HARTMAN looks stressed as he tugs at
his hair and breathes heavily. DESIREE walks in with piles
of papers, HACKING and SNEEZING into her HANDKERCHIEF. There
are BAGS under her eyes, no color in her skin. HARTMAN
looks at her, concerned.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Are you sure you're all right to
come back to work today?
                                                            
DESIREE reaches for a TISSUE and BLOWS her nose. HARTMAN
turns his HEAD away for a moment, disgusted.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I'll be all right. The doc said
it's just the flu.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Flu or not, I don't want you
spreading your germs to my staff.
And if you start vomitting again,
I'll send you off to the hospital.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I said I'll be fine. I'm more
worried about you than about me.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Worried about me?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Celeste called last night.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
She called you instead of ME?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
She said she feels like you're
alienating her. How do you like
that?!
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Aw, come on, Des. You know I've
been busy.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Here are a couple other things to
keep you BUSY.
                                                            
DESIREE lays them out on HARTMAN'S desk, glowering at him.
HARTMAN stares at them, confused.
                                                            

55.

                       HARTMAN
What are these?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Just some emergency contact
information and medical insurance
papers. You know, the works.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I can't believe I've forgotten
about those!
                                                            
                       DESIREE
It's all right, Jacob. I'm sure
the school knows that you're as
busy as you say you are, but
Celeste is important too, you
know.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm her father. I think I would
know that.
                                                            
ANGER flares in DESIREE'S eyes.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Angry)
Then ACT like it.
                                                            
DESIREE walks away HACKING and SNEEZING. She SLAMS the door
behind her. Sweat streams down HARTMAN'S face.
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL FOYER - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE is wearing a light winter jacket, nothing big like
the heavy parkas that the other girls wear. She steps
outside with BRITT, BRYNN, and LEILANI. They all have
sleds. Upon opening the door, fierce winds of snow blow
outside. CELESTE'S teeth CHATTER as the cold winds blow
past her. CELESTE slams the door, the other GIRLS stepping
back with her.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Shouting)
Are you sure you guys want to go
outside in that weather?
                                                            
                       BRITT
We're used to it.
                                                            

56.

                       LEILANI
I'm not. I'm from Hawaii, for
crying out loud.
                                                            
From behind, we see KYRA poking her head out between the
RAILS of the staircase. She shouts to CELESTE:
                                                            
                       KYRA
Hey, princess! Maybe your father
the king should have researched
that it snows nine out of twelve
months here. You'll get
frostbitten for sure!
                                                            
                       LEILANI
      (To Celeste)
Just ignore the twit.
                                                            
                       KYRA
What'd you call me, freshman?
We've got an old tribal ritual for
all you baby cracks - you'll get
it when you least expect it!
                                                            
KYRA CACKLES like a wicked witch as she marches back up the
stairs to the dorms.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Don't mind her. She's bluffing.
                                                            
                       LEILANI
You guys go, I should probably
finish studying. Us "baby cracks"
have a huge test tomorrow. See
ya!
                                                            
LEILANI hurries away.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Leilani, don't listen to Kyra,
she's not worth it.
                                                            
The GIRLS watch the WINDS and the SNOW die.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
Well, it stopped snowing, but it's
bound to pick up again.
                                                            
                       BRITT
It snows like a madman out here.
                                                            

57.

                       CELESTE
I'm not gonna stand around and
miss my chance - let's go
sledding!
                                                            
CELESTE, BRITT and BRYNN hurry outside.
                                                            
 
EXT. SEAMONT SCHOOL - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE gasps from the cold air. Her FACE is instantly red
and slowly turns a lighter shade of purple. She grabs her
HAND and tries to MASSAGE it.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OW!
                                                            
BRITT and BRYNN rush outside by CELESTE.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
Celeste, what's the matter?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I think I got frost bitten.
                                                            
                       BRYNN
We'd better get you to the
infirmary then. Come on.
                                                            
BRITT and BRYNN escort CELESTE back inside the school.
                                                            
 
INT. INFIRMARY - NIGHT
                                                            
MISS BODEN is wrapping CELESTE'S frostbitten hand in
BANDAGES.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
You don't write with this hand do
you?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Nah, I'm a leftie.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Good thing, too. I hear you girls
all have big tests coming up this
week.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Eh, midterms. No big deal.
                                                            

58.

                       MISS BODEN
"No big deal," she says. You'd
best run along and get some sleep.
Be well rested for tomorrow.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yes, ma'am. Thanks for helping
with my frostbite.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Anytime, dear. Run along now.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Yes, ma'am.
                                                            
CELESTE rushes out the door.
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S DORM - NIGHT
                                                            
Alone on her bed, CELESTE is on the phone with her father,
who is audible on the other end.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Miserable)
Hi, Daddy.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Hi, darlin'.
                                                            
CELESTE sits up on the bed. She is angry as she talks to
her father on the phone.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Daddy, I can't believe you sent me
here! It's only October and I've
been frostbitten already.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
That'll teach you to keep your
shirt on, princess!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's not funny! I want to come
home.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Aw, sweetie, you can tough it out
until December, can't you? Is it
just the cold weather that's
bothering you, or are the girls
still being savages?
                                                            

59.

                       CELESTE
Both.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (Yawning)
I wish I could help you, princess,
but deal's a deal. Love you, good
night!
                                                            
HARTMAN hangs up. CELESTE is disgusted.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Angry tone)
Good night, Daddy.
                                                            
She hangs up her phone.
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL. HALLWAY - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE walks around with her pajamas on. She bumps into
TAMARA, also in her pajamas. Other GIRLS are wandering
around in their pajamas, mingling, TALKING of the upcoming
northern lights show.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Oh, Celeste! A bunch of us are
going up to the roof to watch the
northern lights. You wanna come?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
The northern lights? What are
those?
                                                            
                       TAMARA
I guess somebody hasn't been
paying attention in astronomy. Why
don't you meet us in my room in
ten minutes and we'll sneak up to
the roof?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Sure. I'll just put go on my
winter gear. I wouldn't want to
get frostbitten again.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
We'll see you in a bit, then.
                                                            
CELESTE walks away.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You got it.
                                                            
 

60.

INT. TAMARA'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
TEN MINUTES LATER
                                                            
TAMARA and the remaining four girls from her class are
gathered in their winter gear. A clock in the corner reads
11:45 p.m. CELESTE comes in all bundled up, wearing more
than one jacket. TAMARA and the other seniors gape at her
and break out in LAUGHTER.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
You sure don't mess around. It's
only October!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Just lowering my chances of
getting frostbitten AGAIN.
                                                            
As CELESTE holds up her bandaged frostbitten hand, the GIRLS
explode in LAUGHTER once more.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
We only have a few minutes until
the midnight show of the northern
lights. Let's go!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Gee, you make it sound like we're
going to a movie premier.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Yeah, well, it's the closest thing
we've got to one around here.
                                                            
 
INT. ATTIC - NIGHT
                                                            
The GIRLS climb a long and winding stairwell to the roof.
TAMARA takes the lead followed by EMMA, ADRIENNE, RYANNE,
KELLY and CELESTE.
                                                            
                       EMMA
Ouch! I think someone stepped on
my foot.
                                                            
                       ADRIENNE
Shush! You want us to get into
trouble? We're out way past our
bed time.
                                                            
 

61.

EXT. ROOF - NIGHT
                                                            
The GIRLS push open a door and find a place to sit close
together.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I've never been a big fan of
astronomy. All I've seen are the
four phases of the moon and the
stars, of course.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
I'm the only one of us who has
actually seen the northern lights
on a regular basis, being an
Alaskan native myself. The rest
of you lot are out-of-townies.
                                                            
                       EMMA
      (Sarcastically)
Aren't you special.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Does anyone have a watch? I
forgot to bring mine.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I've got mine!
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Oh, good. What time is it?
                                                            
CELESTE glances at her watch.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
One minute till show time.
                                                            
                       EMMA
We're gonna be so dead for classes
tomorrow. We'll get in so much
trouble.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Oh, shut up, Emma. Life's not
about following the rules all the
time.
                                                            
                       RYANNE
Hear, hear!
                                                            

62.

Moments of silence follow. Nothing but the sound of blowing
wind passing is audible. The GIRLS are consumed by the
beauty of the northern lights as they paint the sky in
brilliant shades of YELLOW and GREEN, RED and BLUE.
                                                            
                       RYANNE
I suppose being dead tired in
class tomorrow is worth it to see
a sight like this.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You sure don't see anything like
this in D.C.
                                                            
                       RYANNE
No way.
                                                            
The girls sigh as they stare at the NORTHERN LIGHTS DISPLAY.
                                                            
 
INT. MISS FISHER'S CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
The JUNIOR-LEVEL GIRLS are ALERT except for CELESTE who
SNORES at her desk.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Look's like "America's Princess"
had a late night.
                                                            
The other GIRLS GIGGLE as CELESTE SNORES louder. MISS
FISHER saunters in, apparently furious over something. She
SLAMS a DICTIONARY-SIZED book that she had been carrying
onto her desk.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Wake up, girls! We are going to
begin with an extensive lecture on
aurora borealis, or the northern
lights as you prefer, but I am
sure Celeste is VERY knowledgeable
about the subject.
                                                            
CELESTE is still SNORING. CHENA, sitting next to her, tugs
at her sleeve. CELESTE opens her eyes, BLINKING several
times.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Looks like someone took a little
side trip last night. Did you
watch the northern lights on the
roof last night, Celeste?
                                                            

63.

                       CELESTE
      (Yawning)
Nuh-uh.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Then why were you sleeping in my
class?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I was up late studying for our
geography test today. I don't
give a rip about the northern
lights.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Then I'm sure you will ace it. If
not, I will know that you were
lying to me, my dear. The faculty
and I heard footsteps on the roof
last night and there was more than
one pair of feet.
      (To class)
Turn to page 342 in your astronomy
books, please.
                                                            
 
INT. KYRA'S DORM - DAY
                                                            
KYRA and her usual crowd are perched atop the beds. MAIA
looks especially wiped out.
                                                            
                       MAIA
Phew! It's been a long day.
                                                            
                       KYRA
You can say that again.
                                                            
                       MAIA
It's been a long LONG day.
                                                            
                       KYRA
I didn't mean that literally,
idiot!
                                                            
MAIA glares evilly at KYRA.
                                                            
                       DELILAH
Okay, before you two start killing
each other, let's think of some
more schemes to sabotage little,
miss America's Princess. Who in
here is good at chemistry?
                                                            

64.

                       KYRA
Don't look at Geneva. She can
barely pass geometry. What are
you going to use chemistry for,
anyway?
                                                            
                       DELILAH
For concocting a poison, dim wit.
                                                            
KYRA'S face lights up.
                                                            
                       KYRA
      (Rubbing hands
       together in
       satisfaction)
Ooooh, most excellent!
                                                            
                       DELILAH
I thought so. But not the kind of
poison that would finish her, I'm
talking about the kind that will
make her sick enough so that she
will never want to come back to
Seamont. Something like a
laxative, but not coming out from
THAT end.
                                                            
                       KYRA
I like the sound of that.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
      (Grinning)
I'll drop it in her breakfast
tomorrow, if you'd like!
                                                            
                       DELILAH
Since the labs close at eight,
we'll have to get in there within
the hour to get our materials and
find a secret hide out to concoct
our special poison.
                                                            
                       KYRA
Cheers!
                                                            
MUSICAL MONTAGE
                                                            
SONG: JOAN JETT'S "BAD REPUTATION"
                                                            
--The GIRLS sneak around the school's hallways and pry open
the DOOR to the CHEMISTRY LAB.
                                                            

65.

--They take the MATERIALS that they need from the CUPBOARDS
and smuggle them to their secret hideout - the BASEMENT of
the school, which is hidden from most people under some
FLOORBOARDS in the LOUNGE. The FLOORBOARDS are covered with
CARPET, which CHENA removes.
                                                            
--They are busy at work in the basement with DELILAH in
charge.
                                                            
END MONTAGE
                                                            
 
INT. SEAMONT SCHOOL. CAFETERIA - DAY
                                                            
The STUDENTS, all in uniform, enter in single file. When
CELESTE leaves the stand with her tray, GENEVA hides behind
her and SLIPS something over CELESTE'S cereal bowl. A shiny
BLUE CONTAINER of the poison appears and vanishes in a
second, whisked away by GENEVA'S slippery hand. CELESTE
sits down at a table with the SENIOR CLASS. She takes a
bite.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
So, Celeste, I heard you caught up
with Curtis in the woods when you
were hiking the other day. He
said he "swept you off your feet."
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Sounds like him. You'd better
watch out for him, though. He may
be getting too cocky for his
britches.
                                                            
CELESTE'S face cringes. It does not take long for her face
to turn GREEN. She grips her STOMACH.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, bugger.
                                                            
CELESTE flees.
                                                            
 
INT. GIRLS' BATHROOM - DAY
                                                            
Behind a closed STALL is CELESTE, MOANING. Only her SHOES
and STOCKINGS are visible from the stall. The school bell
RINGS.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Just when I thought things
couldn't get any worse . . .
                                                            

66.

She VOMITS.
                                                            
 
INT. MISS FISHER'S CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
MISS FISHER is in the middle of a history lecture while the
SOUNDS OF VOMITING erupt from the girls' bathroom across the
hall. She stops abruptly when she hears the sounds. Some
of the GIRLS cringe. KYRA and GENEVA giggle. DELILAH looks
satisfied, as if she had received top marks on a chemistry
test.
                                                            
                       GENEVA
      (Grinning)
Case of the missing princess is
solved.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
      (Seriously)
Wipe that smirk off your face,
Geneva! Listening to another
student vomit is not considered
comedy.
                                                            
GENEVA'S SMIRK disappears and her expression is replaced by
one filled with fear for her teacher.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
I'm going to have to tend to this
matter. Please excuse me.
                                                            
MISS FISHER flees the room, her long skirt SWISHING with
every move.
                                                            
 
INT. GIRL'S BATHROOM - DAY
                                                            
MISS FISHER saunters in, her shoes going CLANK-CLANK.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Celeste, is that you?
                                                            
CELESTE retches for a long time before she is able to
answer.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Moaning)
I wish it weren't. Somebody . . .
please . . . kill me.
                                                            
                       MISS FISHER
Now, now. Don't talk like that.
We'll get you to the infirmary.
            (MORE)

67.

                       MISS FISHER (cont'd)
Just open the door and we'll drag
you out.
                                                            
CELESTE opens the door to her stall. She is sitting on the
floor, hanging onto the toilet bowl. Her EYES roll in the
back of her head. There are renegade patches of VOMIT all
over her SWEATER and her HAIR.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Ugh . . . I threw up on myself.
                                                            
 
INT. INFIRMARY - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE lies on one of the patient's beds while MISS BODEN
examines her. MISS CHAPMAN supervises. CARVER and ASHBY
stand against the wall, keeping guard.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Good lord! I wonder why she is
the only student with these
symptoms. Someone must have done
this deliberately.
                                                            
                       MISS CHAPMAN
Maybe it's the stomach flu.
                                                            
MISS BODEN touches CELESTE'S forehead.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
She's not running a temperature.
Must be food poisoning or
something catastrophic. I'm going
to have to call her father.
                                                            
 
INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
Seated at his desk, HARTMAN is overlooking some bills.
DESIREE has just walked in, but freezes in place when
HARTMAN suddenly becomes busy on the phone. His intercom
BUZZES.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Yes?
                                                            
                       SALLY
Mr. President, the nurse from your
daughter's school is calling. She
says it's urgent - line two.
                                                            

68.

                       HARTMAN
      (Grumpy)
Fine.
      (After switching
       to line 2)
This is President Hartman.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Mr. President, this is Hailey
Boden, head nurse from Seamont
School for Girls.
                                                            
HARTMAN'S expression turns to one of ANGER, but it does not
show in his tone of voice.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Oh, dear God, what has she done
this time?
                                                            
HARTMAN hears the sound of CELESTE vomiting on the other
line while MISS BODEN is speaking. He CRINGES with disgust.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Your daughter is very ill. She's
been vomitting since early this
morning. I'm afraid she's been
poisoned. You'll have to pick her
up. She'll be excused from
finals, of course.
                                                            
Another loud RETCHING noise from CELESTE on the other end.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
All right, Miss Boden. Thanks for
your help.
                                                            
                       MISS BODEN
Anytime, Mr. President. Good luck
with the rest of your term.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Thank you kindly, Miss Boden.
                                                            
HARTMAN slams the PHONE onto the receiver.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
That didn't sound too good, Jacob.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You're going to have to cancel
everything on my agenda for the
next couple of days, Des. I have
to go to Alaska and pick up
            (MORE)

69.

                       HARTMAN (cont'd)
Celeste. She's been poisoned at
the school.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Do you want me to come with you?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sure. Celeste would like that.
                                                            
HARTMAN winks at DESIREE. There is a SPARKLE in his eyes.
                                                            
 
INT. AIR FORCE ONE - NIGHT
                                                            
DESIREE and HARTMAN sit across from each other, both reading
magazines or newspapers. HARTMAN'S eyes occasionally sneak
a glance at DESIREE, admiring her long, slender legs.
DESIREE catches him, flashing him a GRIN. He takes a sip of
his Rum and Coke and nearly CHOKES.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Grinning)
Going for me now instead of Sally,
eh, Jake?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Eh, what's a widower like me to do
but look at other women?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Good point, but honestly, I
haven't seen you take a shine to
anyone since, uh . . . you know.
                                                            
DESIREE'S EYES trail to the floor.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
There hasn't really been anyone
since my wife died. But you've
always been there for me, Des,
ever since we left college. If I
were to go after anyone, you'd be
it, but I can't ignore the memory
of my wife.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
You shouldn't, but I'm flattered
that you'd choose me. If you were
running for re-election, I'd vote
for you.
                                                            

70.

                       HARTMAN
You're just saying that because
you're my oldest friend.
                                                            
Silence.
                                                            
DESIREE looks as though she is THINKING about something.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Do you ever wonder what would've
happened between us if you hadn't
met Anna?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'd probably be married to you.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Funny. I wonder why I've never
married.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
That's easy. You're too
work-oriented. You need to liven
up a bit. I never see you at the
bars.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Not my thing. I can make my own
drinks at home. If you swing by
my place sometime, I might make
you one.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Will you make me a Love Potion #9?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Why, Jacob, that is my specialty.
                                                            
HARTMAN moves over to DESIREE and kisses her. She is more
taken aback than the first time he kissed her.
                                                            
 
INT. INFIRMARY - NIGHT
                                                            
Lying on the bed is CELESTE, hurling into a bucket. HARTMAN
rushes in followed by DESIREE. MISS BODEN is making rounds,
inspecting the other two PATIENTS. CELESTE looks up and
sees her father. She is excited even if she is in pain.
CARVER and ASHBY are still keeping guard by the door.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Daddy! Des!
                                                            

71.

An unattractive shade of GREEN tints CELESTE'S face. She
PUKES into the bucket once more. HARTMAN and DESIREE cringe
in disgust.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Desiree, get another puke bucket
from Miss Boden. We're taking
Celeste home.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Yes, sir.
                                                            
DESIREE walks toward CELESTE with hesitation, afraid that
she might get puked on.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Hey, partner. We're going home.
You'll have to empty your puke
bucket.
                                                            
CELESTE bursts into tears.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Do I have to?
                                                            
She vomits again. HARTMAN'S CRINGES in disgust.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Let's go, hon.
                                                            
DESIREE helps CELESTE into a wheelchair and gets her another
puke bucket, provided by MISS BODEN. She wheels her out
with HARTMAN, CARVER and ASHBY following behind.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
      (To the agents)
Let's go home, boys.
                                                            
HARTMAN whistles "HAIL TO THE CHIEF" again as they wander
out.
                                                            
 
INT. AIR FORCE ONE - NIGHT
                                                            
HARTMAN puts CELESTE to bed in a secluded section of the
plane. As she stretches out on the couch, HARTMAN covers
her with a blanket. He pats her head. She is pale, in
tears.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
My stomach hurts, Daddy.
                                                            

72.

                       HARTMAN
That's because you've been
throwing up so much, princess.
You'll feel better in a couple
days. I've canceled everything on
my agenda for tomorrow so that I
can take care of you.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thank you, Daddy. I'm sorry if
I've caused any trouble.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Don't worry about it, princess.
The main thing is for you to get
better.
      (Kisses her
       forehead)
I love you.
                                                            
CELESTE'S eyelids flutter to a close.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I love you too, Daddy.
                                                            
CELESTE SNORES as she falls asleep.
                                                            
HARTMAN leaves the room and returns to his seat across from
DESIREE.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Poor girl must be exhausted from
all that vomitting . . . ick.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
She'll feel better in the morning.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I hope so.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
You're going to have to cancel
everything I have planned for the
next few days. I'll need to keep
a close eye on Celeste.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Not a problem, Jake.
                                                            
 

73.

INT. CELESTE'S ROOM - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE lies in her bed, still asleep. There is a tint of
PURPLE in her eyelids. She looks tired, lifeless. She
shakes under her covers, from hypothermia. Someone KNOCKS
at her door.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Celeste, are you decent?
                                                            
She MOANS.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Depends on your definition of
"decent."
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Are you dressed?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm still in bed. You'll have to
drag me out.
                                                            
HARMTAN opens the door and sits beside CELESTE on her bed.
He notices her SHAKING.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Celeste, are you all right?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I can't stop shaking.
                                                            
HARTMAN brushes his hand against CELESTE'S forehead.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Jesus, you're freezing!
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It does feel a bit chilly in here.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Your eyelids are purple - you look
like you've been in a fight.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Well, I HAVE had a couple of those
at school. Maybe the bruises are
just starting to show. Bitch
ball, BLECH!
                                                            
HARTMAN tucks her in her sheets, her heavy comforter lying
on top.
                                                            

74.

                       HARTMAN
You are not to move from this bed
until your temperature stabilizes,
understand?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Sounds good, Daddy.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Now, about this Christmas ball
next week . . . do you have a
date?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I have to talk to Brett, Daddy.
But that's sweet of you to ask.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I wasn't asking. I have a date
myself.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You came here to gloat, oh joy.
                                                            
CELESTE pulls the COVERS over her head, but HARTMAN pulls
them down. She OPENS her eyes for the first time that
morning, SHOCKED to see her father's face so close to hers.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
No, I didn't come here to gloat.
But what would you think if I went
out with Desiree?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
That would be cool. She's been my
buddy for a long time, and yours
too, as I recall.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Yeah, that's why I asked her to
the ball. Well, sweetheart, hurry
up and feel better. I'll be back
later. You should try to eat
something.
                                                            
HARTMAN rises, heading for the door. CELESTE closes her
EYES again.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, barf! I'll just throw it back
up again.
                                                            

75.

                       HARTMAN
Whatever. I'm glad you're back,
Celeste.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's good to be back, even if I am
sick as a dog.
                                                            
HARTMAN exits.
                                                            
 
INT. WHITE HOUSE RESIDENCE - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN sees DESIREE cantering and catches up to her.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Des, wait up!
                                                            
She slows to turtle speed.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Oh, hi, Jake. How's Celeste
today?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Terrible. She has hypothermia.
She was as cold as ice when I saw
her.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
That's awful. We've been getting
press calls about the poisoning
incident. You need to make a
statement about this matter so
that America can stop worrying.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll get to it this afternoon.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
It is the afternoon.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Fine, I'll take care of it this
evening. Schedule me for a brief
announcement at eight.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Great. Catcha later, Jake.
                                                            
He wanders off in a different direction than DESIREE.
                                                            
 

76.

INT. WHITE HOUSE PRESS ROOM - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN enters and approaches the podium. STAFF MEMBERS
line the walls while REPORTERS and PHOTOGRAPHERS occupy the
seats.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good evening. Last night I
received a terrible phone call
from Celeste's school in Alaska.
She had been poisoned. To our
knowledge, she was the only
student poisoned at the school. It
is safe to assume that the
incident was intentional and we
are investigating the matter.
Celeste is in a hypothermic state,
but she will be fine after a few
days. Thank you for your concern.
                                                            
As HARTMAN walks away and exits, there are shouts of "Mr.
President" from REPORTERS trying to win his attention.
                                                            
 
INT. CELESTE'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Still in bed, CELESTE hears her PHONE ringing on her night
table. She answers the call.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hello?
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Celeste, it's Tamara.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, hi Tam.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
I heard what happened. Are you
all right?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'm miserable. I'm confined to
bed rest for the next few days.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
The girls who poisoned you have
been expelled.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Good. Remind me to rwrite a thank
you note to Miss Chapman. So
            (MORE)

77.

                       CELESTE (cont'd)
there are no more juniors over
there, huh?
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Not until next year. By the way,
I told Curtis you left last night.
He's very heartbroken.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Tell him I'll come and visit. My
daddy's a very rich and powerful
man, I can do whatever the hell I
please.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
You'd better come and visit.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Don't worry, I'm not one who
breaks her promises.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
All right, Celeste. Feel better.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thanks.
                                                            
                       TAMARA
Bye, dear.
                                                            
CELESTE hangs up the PHONE, hesitates, then picks up the
receiver again and dials BRETT. She talks to him so fast
that she doesn't even give him time to respond.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hey sexy. . . Yeah, I need a date
for the Christmas ball next week .
. . December Twenty-fourth at
7:00, dinner and dancing to
follow. . . Bye, sexy.
                                                            
CELESTE drops the PHONE on the receiver, puts her hand over
her eyes for a moment and gets out of bed. She STAGGERS to
the bathroom and SLAMS the door behind her.
                                                            
 
EXT. WHITE HOUSE - NIGHT
                                                            
The building is decorated for Christmas, inside and out.
Guests arrive in limousines, all except for BRETT who comes
squeaking up the driveway in his white Jeep. The VALET
ATTENDANT approaches him. BRETT, formally dressed, hands
the VALET ATTENDANT his keys. BRETT rushes in.
                                                            
 

78.

INT. WHITE HOUSE - NIGHT
                                                            
BRETT is halted by CARVER and ASHBY. They scan him for
weapons.
                                                            
                       BRETT
      (Protesting)
How was Alaska, boys?
                                                            
                       ASHBY
Cold.
                                                            
                       CARVER
Miserable.
                                                            
                       ASHBY
Glad to be back. Raise your arms
please, monsieur.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Fine.
                                                            
As ASHBY continues scanning BRETT with his arms raised,
BRETT sees CELESTE walting in wearing a beautiful ball gown,
her HAIR done up. She smiles at him, he smiles back.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Excited)
Hey, you!
                                                            
                       BRETT
Long time no see, mon cherie.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Mmm, I love it when you speak
French to me.
                                                            
ASHBY is done scanning BRETT.
                                                            
                       ASHBY
All set, partner.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Thanks.
                                                            
BRETT takes CELESTE by the arm and escorts her away.
                                                            
                       BRETT
I've missed you, Celeste. I've
been so lonely.
                                                            

79.

                       CELESTE
Me, too. The girls in my class at
Seamont were even more cruel than
I thought. I had to come home a
couple days early because they
poisoned me, those bitches!
                                                            
                       BRETT
Shame.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Let's not worry about any of that.
I just want to enjoy tonight.
                                                            
                       BRETT
I'm sure you will, Celeste. I'm
sure you will.
                                                            
They turn a corner and enter the State Dining Room.
                                                            
 
INT. STATE DINING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Couples everywhere are dressed in their best. HARTMAN is in
a corner engaging in conversation with his usual crowd,
ADMIRAL MCKENZIE, GARRETT and BRIGHTON. They turn their
heads to CELESTE as she enters the room with BRETT. CELESTE
waves to her father and his companions. They wave in
return, grinning. DESIREE has left the room momentarily.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
I swear, she does look thinner
than the last time I saw her. Much
thinner.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
That's the last time I'm sending
her away. I'll make sure she goes
to a college close to home.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Well, Mr. President, we sure will
miss you when you leave office in
January.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll miss you guys, too. It's
been a good run, but my time is
up.
                                                            

80.

As HARTMAN takes a long swig of champaign, DESIREE
approaches HARTMAN, floating like an angel. HARTMAN is so
startled by her beauty that he SPITS out his champaign. He
CHOKES. BRIGHTON, standing next to HARTMAN, pats his back.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Are you all right, Jacob?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll be fine. Let's dance, shall
we?
                                                            
A SERVER walks by with an empty tray. HARTMAN places his
empty glass on it. He leads DESIREE to the dance floor. The
BAND switches to "Come a Little Bit Closer" by Jay and the
Americans. HARTMAN leads DESIREE into a cha cha.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
You are a marvelous dancer, Jacob.
You surprise me.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
It's funny you should say that. I
haven't danced much since my wife
died. I suppose it's just coming
back to me.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
You're doing all right. I could
offer you private dancing lessons.
      (Watches CELESTE
       dancing)
I see Celeste's summer lessons
have paid off.
                                                            
CELESTE is dancing like a pro nearby with BRETT. Apparently
he is not is good as her, the way he stumbles everywhere,
stepping on CELESTE'S feet once in a while.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Celeste is a natural, like her
mother was.
                                                            

81.

FLASHBACK SEQUENCE
                                                            
--HARTMAN and his wife ANNA are driving down a snowy, empty
ROAD. ANNA is behind the wheel.

--They hit an icy patch and SPIN 180 degrees.

--ANNA is FRIGHTENED as a CAR is heading toward her, unable
to stop.

--Nothing but BRIGHT LIGHTS and the SOUND of the crash.
                                                            
SEQUENCE ENDS
                                                            
HARTMAN is nervous around DESIREE. She looks alarmed as he
shakes his head and walks away. She follows him.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Jacob, what's the matter?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I think I need some fresh air -
damn champaign. I'll be back in a
bit, Desiree.
                                                            
DESIREE tries to follow HARTMAN as he wanders off, but is
interrupted by an approaching GARRETT. The BAND switches to
a slower song, like Norah Jones' "I Don't Know Why."
                                                            
                       GARRETT
      (Concerned)
Desiree, what is the matter with
the president?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I don't know. I was going to go
find out.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Please do. Tell him to come find
me when he returns.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Yes, sir.
                                                            
 
INT. GARDEN - NIGHT
                                                            
Away from the loud music of the State Dining Room, CELESTE
and BRETT are enjoying the quiet outdoors. They walk around
admiring the FLOWERS and find a BENCH to sit on. BRETT
wraps an arm around CELESTE.
                                                            

82.

                       BRETT
Did you enjoy Alaska?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It was all right until it got cold
and snowy.
                                                            
CELESTE'S smile DISAPPEARS, as if she is uncertain about
what she is going to do with BRETT.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Brett, we need to talk about
something.
                                                            
                       BRETT
What's there to talk about?
                                                            
CELESTE takes BRETT'S arm off her shoulder.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Nervous)
I . . . I think we need to call it
quits.
                                                            
BRETT'S jaw DROPS. He is speechless.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Why?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Since I've been away at school,
you haven't really been there for
me. I feel like we've lost touch.
And now that my dad isn't going
to be in office next year, we're
going to move back to Arkansas. We
won't be able to see each other.
                                                            
                       BRETT
You don't feel the sparks anymore?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
No sparks, no magic. I'm sorry,
Brett.
                                                            
Still shocked, BRETT stares at the floor. He shakes his
head once.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Damn!
                                                            

83.

                       CELESTE
I suppose that's my cue to call it
a night.
                                                            
CELESTE rises from the BENCH.
                                                            
                       BRETT
Good night, Celeste. Even though
it didn't work out, I'm glad we
had this.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Me too, Brett. Good night.
                                                            
CELESTE heads back to the White House.
                                                            
 
INT. STATE DINING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE approaches the ADMIRAL, GARRETT and BRIGHTON in
search of her father. The MEN are loitering around the
dance floor, conversing among themselves and enjoying their
champaign.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Hey fellas, has anyone seen my
dad?
                                                            
                       ADMIRAL
I haven't seen him since he
stepped outside a minute ago, my
dear. He said he would return
shortly.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Well, I'm off to bed. Good night,
gentlemen.
                                                            
                       BRIGHTON
Good night, Celeste. You look
beautiful.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Thanks. Merry Christmas.
                                                            
                       BRIGHTON
Merry Christmas, dear.
                                                            
She floats away, disappearing from the room like a ghost.
                                                            
 

84.

INT. OUTER OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS
                                                            
SALLY is startled to see GARRETT marching in, furious about
something, as usual.
                                                            
                       SALLY
Good morning, Mr. Vice President .
. . sir.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Good morning, Miss Cartwright. Is
the president in?
                                                            
                       SALLY
He should be. I must warn you
that he's a bit under the weather
- I wouldn't vex him.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
What's the need for any vexing?
                                                            
GARRETT pushes the door to the oval office and enters.
                                                            
 
INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS
                                                            
GARRETT approaches HARTMAN'S desk, where the president is
busy signing bills and what-not.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Mr. President, we need to chat.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Not now, Garrett - I'm busy, as
you can see.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
You're always busy.
                                                            
Another bout of pleuritic chest pain. HARTMAN clutches at
his chest.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I thought Sally told you not to
vex me.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Are you all right, Mr. President?
                                                            

85.

HARTMAN does not answer, but continues to grimace as if he
has had a terrible head ache.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Mr. President . . . ?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Garrett . . . I think . . . you
should call . . . the doctor.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Sally will take care of that.
Let's you up to bed. I'll take
care of everything else.
                                                            
GARRETT peeps into the outer office for a second.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Miss Cartwright, get the
president's doctor on the phone
immediately!
                                                            
                       SALLY
Yes, Mr. Vice President.
                                                            
GARRETT helps HARTMAN from his desk and escorts him out of
the room.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The room is dark. All shades are closed. HARTMAN lies in
his bed, a helpless vegetable. He looks like shit. A KNOCK
at the door. CELESTE enters and approaches her father's
bedside. She sits in the cozy chair.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
How are you feeling, Daddy?
                                                            
HARTMAN turns his head to look at her. She looks
distressed, worried.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Lousy.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I heard the doctor was here.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm sick, baby girl.
                                                            

86.

                       CELESTE
But you'll be all right, won't
you?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'll need to stay in bed for a few
days.
                                                            
He closes his eyes for a moment.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Do you think America needs to know
about your condition?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'd rather not, Celeste. They'd
think I'm weak.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Franklin Roosevelt was in a wheel
chair, Daddy. I don't think
anyone thought he was weak.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
This is different, Celeste. I
could die if I'm not careful.
That's why I'm not running for
re-election.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's going to be all right, Daddy.
I love you.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I love you, too.
                                                            
He falls asleep.
                                                            
 
INT. WHITE HOUSE LIBRARY - DAY
                                                            
A COUPLE DAYS LATER
                                                            
CELESTE is on the couch, reviewing a FRENCH BOOK. The door
is wide open. DESIREE walks in and joins her on the couch.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Did you enjoy the Christmas ball?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Not really, I broke up with Brett.
                                                            

87.

                       DESIREE
There will be others.
                                                            
CELESTE shrugs her shoulders.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
How's my dad? I haven't seen him
yet today.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
He's been running a high
temperature, last time I checked.
He'll be OK though.
                                                            
DESIREE picks up CELESTE'S French book and flips the pages
to their lesson.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Let's go over your French, shall
we? Comment allez-vous?
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Comme ci, comme ca.
                                                            
 
INT. LIBRARY - NIGHT
                                                            
HARTMAN appears in his bathrobe. DESIREE is spread out
across the sofa, reading.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
You must be feeling better, Jacob.
You got your color back.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
My fever broke this afternoon. I'm
still a bit weak from being in bed
the past three days.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
That'll pass. It's a late night.
                                                            
She YAWNS and STRETCHES.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Are you up for some chess?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Sure. Where did we leave off?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
We're pretty nearly done with the
game.
                                                            

88.

DESIREE joins HARTMAN at the table by the window. Their
chess board is indeed nearly empty, save for five pieces.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Celeste broke up with her
boyfriend the other night.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Good. I wasn't too fond of him
after that catastrophe at the teen
night club in May. Why didn't
Celeste tell me herself?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Oh, you know. You've been ill and
she didn't want to bother you with
her problems.
                                                            
Silence.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Have you decided what you're going
to do when I leave office? You're
more than welcome to come back to
Arkansas with us.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I haven't really thought about it.
I don't have much of a life here
after you and Celeste are gone.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
We can just go back to the way
things were, before I became the
president.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I liked that life.
                                                            
He catches her in check.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Me too. Check.
                                                            
She makes a move and wins.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Check ma-
                                                            
HARTMAN clutches at his chest. He looks as if he is in more
pain than the other times.
                                                            

89.

                       DESIREE
Not again! Jake, what's the
matter?
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I can't breathe...
                                                            
As his skin reddens, his eyes roll in the back of his hand.
DESIREE'S jaw drops open wide. She stares at him in shock
for a moment and runs to the nearest SECURITY GUARD outside
the double doors. He is standing against a wall, stiff as a
statue.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Panicked)
I need your radio!
                                                            
                       SECURITY GUARD
What seems to be the problem, Miss
Saxton?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
The president is having chest
pain. He says he can't breathe.
                                                            
                       SECURITY GUARD
I'll call an ambulence, ma'am.
                                                            
DESIREE runs back to HARTMAN in the library. He is still
clutching his chest, slouched in his chair.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Jacob, a guard is calling an
ambulence. They'll be here in two
minutes. We need to get you at
the front.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
OK. Just get Celeste . . .
                                                            
She helps him and escorts him out.
                                                            
 
INT. RESIDENCE - NIGHT
                                                            
DESIREE canters down the hall. She does not look happy.
                                                            
 
EXT. CELESTE'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
She KNOCKS furiously at the door.
                                                            

90.

                       DESIREE
Celeste, wake up!
                                                            
CELESTE GROANS on the other side.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
What the hell, Des? It's
two-thirty in the morning! Come
back in eight hours.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Now is not the time to be playing
games, Celeste. Your father is on
his way to the hospital. He wants
you there with him.
                                                            
A SIREN blares from outside the White House.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Panicked)
What's the matter? Why is an
ambulence coming to get Daddy?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
He's having chest pain. It could
be a heart attack. Get yourself
together and let's go. We're
going to meet him there.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK, I'll be there in a minute.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Hurry!
                                                            
CELESTE emerges from her room with bags under her eyes. It
looks as if she threw her clothes on in such a hurry that
she did not bother to smooth out the wrinkles or arrange
them right or brush her hair. She is carrying a BAG with
her stuff in it.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Come on.
                                                            
DESIREE has her hand at CELESTE'S back, pushing her along.
They hurry down the hall.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I don't understand how my dad
could have chest pain so young.
He's only forty-two years old!
                                                            

91.

                       DESIREE
Forty is a prime age for men to
have chest pain. Put a clip on
it.
                                                            
They hurry and turn a corner.
                                                            
 
EXT. LIMO - NIGHT
                                                            
The driver of HARTMAN'S LIMO is SPEEDING. There is hardly
any traffic at this hour of the night. A fleet of POLICE
ESCORTS leads them and another fleet backs them up.
                                                            
 
INT. LIMO - NIGHT
                                                            
CELESTE, who is biting her thumb nail, sits next to DESIREE
in the back seat.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'll never forgive myself if
anything happens to him, never.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I'm sure he'll be fine, Celeste.
He's tough.
                                                            
CELESTE sniffles. She breaks down in tears. DESIREE hugs
her, patting the back of her head.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Everything will be OK, princess.
Shhh, don't cry.
                                                            
 
EXT. MEDLINK HOSPITAL - NIGHT
                                                            
The president's LIMO arrives at the front entrance. DESIREE
and CELESTE exit the vehicle, dashing into the front
entrance.
                                                            
 
INT. MEDLINK HOSPITAL - NIGHT
                                                            
DESIREE has CELESTE by the arm as they hurry down the hall.
They approach the FRONT DESK.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Where is President Hartman,
please?
                                                            

92.

                       RECEPTIONIST
He's still getting his x-rays and
an EKG done, ma'am. Then they're
taking him to suite 201 when he
gets back.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
OK, we'll wait.
                                                            
                       RECEPTIONIST
I'll have the doctor come get you.
You may have a seat over there.
                                                            
The RECEPTIONIST points to the LOBBY. DESIREE and CELESTE
walk over there and sit down. CELESTE pulls out some
magazines from from her bag. One of them is Fitness
Magazine and the other is Teen People. CELESTE hands her
Fitneess Magazine.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Wanna read about fitness?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I suppose I could use a little
more of that in my life.
                                                            
DESIREE yawns and takes the MAGAZINE from CELESTE.
                                                            
AN HOUR LATER
                                                            
A DOCTOR emerges from the corridor with the name NEIL
BERKHOFF, M.D., plastered on his white jacket. He carries a
clipboard. He approaches DESIREE and CELESTE.
                                                            
                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
You must be Miss Saxton and Miss
Hartman, pleasure to meet you
both. I'm Doctor Neil Berkhoff.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Nice to meet you, Doctor Berkhoff.
How is the president?
                                                            
                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
He's heavily sedated for now. The
good news is that his EKG is
negative. The chest pain he was
experiencing earlier is not
heart-related.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Then what's wrong with him?
                                                            

93.

                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
He has pleurisy. Some major
swelling showed up in his x-ray,
that's what caused the chest pain.
Miss Saxton, has the president
suffered any chest trauma lately?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Not since he had the accident, but
that was fifteen years ago. How
could this be happening now?
                                                            
                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
Didn't you know that he was
diagnosed with pleurisy when he
had the accident?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
He never told me about it.
                                                            
                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
According to his records, he's
supposed to be coming in to see me
annually, but he hasn't gotten
around to it this year. I'm going
to confine him to bed rest for a
few days, and after that, he will
be fine. Just make sure does his
check ups or it could be his
funeral next time.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Thank you, Doctor.
                                                            
DOCTOR BERKHOFF shakes their hands again.
                                                            
                       DOCTOR BERKHOFF
Yes, well, very nice to meet you
both. So sorry it has to be under
these circumstances. Have a good
day.
                                                            
He exits.
                                                            
CELESTE leans against DESIREE, wrapping her arms around her.
She looks EXHAUSTED.
                                                            
 
INT. MEDLINK HOSPITAL LOBBY - DAY
                                                            
As the SUN rises behind the windows, a beautiful young NURSE
enters, approaching DESIREE and CELESTE.
                                                            

94.

                       NURSE
Excuse me, but the president would
like to see you now, Celeste.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (To Desiree)
I'll be back in a bit.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Take your time, dear.
                                                            
The NURSE holds out her hand for CELESTE to take. She
follows her.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S HOSPITAL SUITE - DAY
                                                            
CELESTE comes in, somber. She pulls up a chair next to her
father's bed.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
You look awful, Daddy.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm doing OK, baby.
                                                            
Silence. HARTMAN strokes CELESTE'S cheek for a moment as
she sits there, close to tears.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Des told me you dumped your
boyfriend.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
He had it coming to him.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I've missed you, Celeste. I'm
sorry I sent you away.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It wasn't that bad, Daddy, but
I've missed you too.
                                                            
HARTMAN'S chest hurts again. He grimaces and takes his hand
to put pressure on it.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Do you want me to get the doctor,
Daddy?
                                                            

95.

                       HARTMAN
It only lasts a few seconds when
it comes. Celeste . . . perhaps
it's time I've told you how your
mother died.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
Oh, I already know about all that,
Daddy. I hear it on the news all
the time.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
That's just the news reported
version, Celeste. You need to
know it from someone who survived
the night it happened. Me. You
were just a toddler - three years
old to be exact - when the
accident happened in January that
year. Arkansas had an unusually
bitter winter that year. There
was a blizzard that night, the
first in twenty-five years. Your
mother and I were coming down a
hill in our SUV. We skidded on a
long sheet of black ice in the
middle of an intersection and our
SUV made a hundred and eighty
degree spin. Your mother was
driving that night. She got hit
by an on-coming car that couldn't
stop. Your mother died instantly
on impact. I was in a coma for
eight weeks. The doctor wasn't
sure if I would come out alive. I
had a crushed lung and I developed
pleurisy in the other. You stayed
with Desiree while I was
recuperating.
      (Close to tears)
It took me four weeks to learn how
to walk and talk again.
                                                            
CELESTE is sorrowful, but not in tears like her father. She
strokes her father's arm.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's all right, Daddy.
                                                            

96.

                       HARTMAN
I just can't imagine what would
have happened to you if you had
been with us that night, if you
had lived or died.
                                                            
TEARS stream down his cheeks.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I love you, Daddy.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I love you too, princess.
                                                            
CELESTE leans in and wraps her arms around her father.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
It's going to be okay, Daddy. I'm
not going anywhere.
                                                            
Another brief moment of silence before HARTMAN speaks again.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I don't think I'll be sending you
back to that school next term. You
can continue your lessons with
Desiree.
                                                            
She manages a smile, but it is a weak one.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I'd like that, Daddy.
                                                            
 
INT. MEDLINK HOSPITAL LOBBY - DAY
                                                            
DESIREE is asleep, but wakes up when her cell phone RINGS.
She reaches inside her purse and grabs it out. The screen
on the CALLER ID reads the name DEVON GARRETT.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Hello, Mr. Vice President.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Hello, Miss Saxton. I realize it
is quite early in the morning, but
the media has been pressuring us
for a statement on the president's
condition.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Tell them that the president will
be all right, but he will require
            (MORE)

97.

                       DESIREE (cont'd)
bed rest for a few days. He has
had a nasty bout of pleuritic
chest pain.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Is he fit to continue the
presidency?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
      (Nervous,
       uncertain)
Well, uh . . .
                                                            
                       GARRETT
DESIREE.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Probably not, but I haven't gotten
a statement from him yet. Celeste
is with him right now.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
I need a confirmation from the
president himself. If he's unfit
to carry on, then I'll have to
take over for the next few weeks
until Inauguration Day.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Yes, sir. I'll call you back in a
bit.
                                                            
DESIREE hangs up on him.
                                                            
 
INT. HARTMAN'S HOSPITAL SUITE - DAY
                                                            
HARTMAN is asleep. CELESTE watches him in her chair nearby.
DESIREE walks in, livid. HARTMAN wakes up when he hears
her footsteps.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Celeste, I need to talk to your
father for a minute. Privately.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
OK.
                                                            
Yawning, CELESTE exits. DESIREE takes her seat.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
I ought to slap you, Jacob
Hartman!
                                                            

98.

                       HARTMAN
Dare to speak to the president in
such a tone, Desiree?
                                                            
                       DESIREE
People used to DIE of pleurisy!
You're supposed to be getting your
check-ups annually and you forgot
to this year.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I'm sorry, Des, but I've been . .
.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Busy, I know. Garrett called. He
wants to know if you are fit
enough to continue the presidency
until the new president is
inaugurated.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
Oh, Christ. Do you have to throw
that at me now? I've been sedated
and it hasn't worn off yet.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
But you're clearly awake, so make
up your mind.
                                                            
HARTMAN takes his hand to his eyes for a moment, thinking.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
What shall I tell him, Jacob? Yay
or nay?
                                                            
HARTMAN looks at DESIREE, serious.
                                                            
                       HARTMAN
I resign.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
You're making the right decision.
I need to make a phone call, if
you'll excuse me.
                                                            
DESIREE rises from her chair to leave, but hesitates, turns
around and KISSES HARTMAN for a long time.
                                                            
 

99.

EXT. HARTMAN'S HOSPITAL SUITE - DAY
                                                            
DESIREE emerges, closing the door behind her. CELESTE is
waiting for her, crossing her arms and staring at the floor.
DESIREE grabs her by the arm and leads her down the hallway
in haste.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Come on, hon. Your father is not
the President anymore.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
      (Shocked)
What do you mean, Des? He said he
wasn't resigning.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
He just told me. Now come on, we
need to get back to the White
House. We have some business to
take care of.
                                                            
 
INT. LIMO - DAY
                                                            
DESIREE is on the phone with GARRETT. CELESTE sits next to
her in the back seat, silent.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
OK, Garrett, Jacob Hartman is no
longer the president.
                                                            
CELESTE covers her ears and shakes her head.
                                                            
                       CELESTE
I can't listen to this!
                                                            
DESIREE ignores CELESTE'S outburst.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
Thank you, Miss Saxton. I'll
inform the media.
                                                            
                       DESIREE
Good. Hartman's moving back to
Arkansas as soon as he is released
from the hospital.
                                                            
                       GARRETT
I'll tell them that, too. Are you
on your way back?
                                                            

100.