Hello, everybody. Since I enjoyed writing about the “It’s a Wonderful Lie”-inspired episode so much, I thought it would be a pleasure to give you all the complete version, “Your Lying Heart” from L.A. Dynasty which would have aired on NBC on May 7, 2001. This episode would be directed by Benny Medina, produced by Karyn Parsons and Tatyana Ali, and the executive producers would Andy Borowitz and Susan Borowitz.
 
Cast
Jonathan McDaniel aka Lil J as Jay McDaniel
Mark Dacascos as Gregory “Uncle Greg” Perez
Candace Kita as Josephine “Aunt Jo” Perez
Idris Elba as Michael Wellington
David Yost as Howard McDonald
Amy Jo Johnson as Kristen Carter
Walter Emanuel Jones as Tyler James
Thuy Trang as Rose Hyunh
Austin St. John as Justin Ramirez
Adrienne Bailon as Amanda Louisa Perez
Tahj Mowry as Chase Eleazar Perez
Antoni Matteo Garcia as Antony Mark Perez
Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. aka Lil Wayne as Wayne
Charlotte Church as Carla Covington
Molly Orr as Amy
Ashlie Brillault as Tracy
Arjay Smith as Grant
Kyle J. Downes as Cole
Taylor Negron as Sylvester
 
(Interior. Perez family kitchen. JAY is speaking with CARLA on the telephone.)
 
JAY: Carla, hey, girl. I know I talked to you two minutes ago, but I missed you.
 
(Meanwhile, out on the front porch, CHASE is being chased by the family bulldog, LUCIUS, who attacks CHASE.)
 
CHASE (screaming): Lucius, no! Lucius!
 
(LUCIUS growls.)
 
JAY: Hey, Chase, I’m on the phone, I’ll be out in a sec.
 
CHASE: Lucius, down!
 
(CHASE is tackling LUCIUS but to no avail. LUCIUS overpowers CHASE.)
 
CHASE: No! Lucius, down!
 
JAY: Yeah, Carla, you know I love you, baby.
 
(CHASE is grunting and screaming.)
 
CHASE: Lucius!
 
JAY: Yes, I love you. All right, so, I’ll see you tonight? All right. Bye.
 
(LUCIUS has some pieces of CHASE’S fabric on his mouth. CHASE enters the kitchen with his clothes in tatters.)
 
JAY: Oh, so, Chase, what did you want?
 
(Theme song and opening credits to L.A. Dynasty play.)
 
(Interior. The PEREZ family kitchen. SYLVESTER the painter is angling how the PEREZ family is seated, with sketchbook and paintbrush in hand, while GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, JAY, CHASE, AMANDA, and ANTONY are eating breakfast consisting of fruits, pancakes, cereal, eggs, bacon, a pitcher of orange juice, and a pitcher of mineral water.)
 
SYLVESTER (approaching JAY and leans towards him): Stop. Don’t move. Let me see you caress that sweet maple syrup with your tongue.
 
JAY: Why don’t you let me see you caress a Mentos with your tongue?
 
(Cut to ANTONY eating a piece of pancake, with AMANDA giving ANTONY a small smile as she is eating.)
 
SYLVESTER (to JAY): When you are angry, your entire face, it has such character.
 
JAY: Well, look, why don’t you get up out of my character while I’m eating.
 
(SYLVESTER stands up erect, as he has a brilliant idea.)
 
SYLVESTER: I must rush to the easel while the hostility is still fresh!
 
(SYLVESTER exits the kitchen to the direction of the living room.)
 
ANTONY: Dad, Mom, why do we have to do a family portrait anyway?
 
JOSEPHINE: We’re in transition, sweetheart.
 
GREGORY: And we want a portrait to capture us as we are before we drift apart.
 
(Beat. GREGORY and JOSEPHINE turn their attention towards AMANDA.)
 
GREGORY: By the way, Amanda, what are you doing here?
 
(AMANDA is about to take a sip off her glass of orange juice.)
 
AMANDA: Well, it’s so dark at my house. None of the lights work.
 
JAY: Amanda, you have to have power turned on. Call the electric company.
 
AMANDA: Well, I tried, but the phone doesn’t work.
 
(MICHAEL approaches GREGORY and JOSEPHINE from behind with two fresh glasses of orange juice for them.)
 
MICHAEL: Sir, madam. About this portrait…Am I to be involved?
 
GREGORY (receiving the glass of orange juice.): Well, I don’t know.
 
JOSEPHINE: I suppose, when it’s finished, you’ll dust it.
 
(MICHAEL departs from the kitchen.)
ANTONY: Dad, Mom, I hope Sylvester’s not painting it tonight because I’m meeting up with my friends at the video arcade.
 
CHASE: Yes, and I’m going to a Young Entrepreneurs’ Conference.
 
(The PEREZ family continue to eat breakfast.)
 
(Cross-fade to the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts cafeteria where students are passing by, having lunch, and chatting. COLE is passing flyers for an upcoming party.)
 
COLE (approaching JAY and who is managing the cafeteria stall and GRANT who is looking at today’s specials.): Hey, hey. So, you guys know about this party, right?
 
JAY: Oh, yeah, yeah. Dude, you know, everybody knows about that big party.
 
COLE: All right, cool. All right.
 
(COLE exits.)
 
JAY (to GRANT): Yo, man, how come I don’t know about that party?
 
GRANT: You out of the mix, bro. You’re married.
 
JAY: Whoa, wait a minute, just because I got a girl, don’t mean I can’t hang out with my brothas.
 
GRANT: Hey, cool, but be warned, there’s gonna be babes and honeys up in there. Girls be swarming like bees.
 
JAY: Let them swarm on back ‘cuz I got the queen.
 
GRANT: Okay, but once the party starts buzzing, you’re gonna wish your stinger was free.
 
JAY: All right, hold on, hold on, hold on. The honey is always sweeter at the hive.
 
(GRANT rolls his eyes while smiling.)
 
GRANT: Now, you now that bees pollinate from flower to flower.
 
JAY: Oh, yes, sir, but once they start pollinating, then they…Happen…Uh…Hey, can we just talk, please?
 
GRANT: Fine, fine, but if you ask me, bud, I think you need to dump those pair of handcuffs.
 
(As GRANT is saying this, CARLA enters the cafeteria.)
 
GRANT: Hey, Carla! Girl, you are so fly…You a lucky man, Jay.
 
(GRANT exits.)
 
JAY: Hey, baby.
 
CARLA: Hey, darling.
 
(JAY and CARLA kiss each other.)
 
CARLA: So, what’s going on tonight?
 
JAY: You know, I’ve been thinking. You’ve been neglecting your friends.
 
CARLA: Did you make plans with your friends?
 
JAY: I can cancel them, honey. CARLA: Jay, you don’t have to do that. I don’t care if you wanna go with your friends. Just tell me. We’ll make S’mores, pop popcorn, and dance to Christina in our PJs.
 
JAY: How come we don’t do that in our PJs?
 
CARLA: Jay, I’m serious. Our relationship is based on trust. I want you to have your own life.
 
JAY: Yeah, you’re right. I was tripping. Darn, I feel like a fool.
 
CARLA: So, what are you guys gonna do?
 
JAY: We…uh…
 
(A basketball player passes by.)
 
JAY: Basketball. Yeah, we…We’re going to basketball game. It’s the Lakers versus…uh….the Sharks.
 
(Cross-fade to the Aristotle Academy dance hall. Dance music is playing loudly. Some people are dancing while other people are chatting. WAYNE enters to see JAY.)
 
WAYNE: Hey, Romeo! Juliet let you off the hook?
 
JAY: Me? Last I heard, Crystal was caressing your hide and handing you sweeties.
 
WAYNE: I’m here, ain’t I? It’s all about who wears the fine pants in the family.
 
(WAYNE’S cellphone rings, as he hurriedly picks it up from his pocket. WAYNE glances down a new text message he received.)
 
WAYNE: Dang! You never saw me!
 
(WAYNE exits. A blonde-haired girl, TRACY, approaches JAY.)
 
TRACY: Hi, Jay.
 
(JAY observes TRACY from head to toe.) JAY: Hey, wait. You look familiar. Did you used to have a really pudgy twin sister?
 
TRACY: Jay, it’s me Tracy.
 
(JAY’S mouth opens agape. He is shocked to see TRACY.)
 
JAY: Ten-ton Tracy? Girl, you must have lost 50 (TRACY turns around.) 80 pounds! You look nice.
 
TRACY: Thanks. You should get to know the new me. I really tightened up.
 
JAY: Uh huh. I know the feeling. (Beat.) Hey, look, Tracy, babe, if this was two months ago, I would be down. Well, but then, two months ago, you were still up. Listen, I have a girlfriend and, you know, I’m not trying to live like this.
 
TRACY: So?
 
(TRACY puts her arms around JAY while he hesitates.)
 
JAY: Tracy. Uh, Tracy. (Beat) Oh, look, make your own smoothies!
 
TRACY: Ooh! (TRACY hurriedly exits, while JAY hides behind the bar. CARLA, AMY, and two other girls enter the party.)
 
AMY: Aw, yeah!
 
CARLA: All right, listen. We’re gonna hang out for a minute, dance, then we’re heading back to your place.
 
AMY: Pfft…Yeah, right. This is a party, Carla. You’ve been tied to one man for too long. You forgot how to work it. Now, come on.
 
(CARLA and AMY notice that the bar is empty.)
 
CARLA: I guess you have to serve yourself around here.
 
(A hand emerges from the counter with a plastic cup. It messily scoops up ice and pours cranberry juice, which spills all over the counter. AMY is weirded out, but CARLA recognises the hand.)
 
CARLA: I know that hand.
 
(CARLA pulls it out and reveals that it is JAY. JAY is caught red-handed, as he gets out of the bar. CARLA and AMY glare at JAY.)
 
JAY: Um…See, what happened at first was. See, at first…I was at the game…but then the SWAT team came. And…The coach got mugged, shot, and injured.
 
AMY: I know someone who should get mugged, shot, and injured.
 
CARLA: Jay, you lied to me.
 
JAY: Wait. Come on, Carla. See, if this was two months ago…I’d be up in this party now in my boxers doing the Macarena. But I’m not enjoying myself. You wanna know why? Because I feel guilty! That’s right. I’m at Fly Honey Academy and I ain’t having no fun. Now, that’s progress.
 
(CARLA and AMY glance at each other, unconvinced of JAY’S speech.)
 
JAY: Whoa, whoa, wait a minute. What about you, Miss PJ-Wearing, S’More-Munching, Popcorn-Popping, Dancing-to-Christina, At-Least-That’s-What-I’m-Gonna-Tell-My-Boyfriend, Little-Party-Doll?
 
CARLA: Jay, I wanted to stay home, but my friends wanted me to go out.
 
AMY: Carla, you don’t have to play defendant to this clown.
 
(JAY motions to AMY.)
 
JAY: Hush-a-bye, babe.
 
(AMY glares at him. TRACY approaches JAY from behind with her hands on his chest.)
 
TRACY: Guess who, Jay.
 
(JAY looks back at TRACY. He is not pleased. In fact, he is freaked out.)
 
CARLA: Look, darling, I don’t know who you are, but if you don’t take your hands off my man, you’re gonna loose more than those golden locks of yours.
 
(TRACY sulks and backs away from JAY, CARLA, and AMY before anything else happens.)
 
JAY: Geez.
 
(CARLA is about to walk away.)
 
JAY: Look, Carla, babe, let’s take this discussion somewhere.
 
CARLA: This is not a discussion, Jay, this is a fight. And my jacket is in there. (points to the common room.)
 
JAY: It better be.
 
(JAY walks to the common room and knocks on the door.)
 
JAY: Hey, open up, my girl’s jacket is in there!
 
(The common room door opens. JAY enters. After a few seconds, JAY exits the common room with his mouth agape in shock. GRANT attends to a sobbing and wailing JAY.)
 
GRANT: Hey, Jay, what’s up?
 
(JAY is wailing unintelligibly. Four muscular teenage jocks emerge from the common room. After them, ANTONY emerges, shocked that JAY saw him and the four jocks doing something that a 9-year-old would not do with teenage boys.)
 
JAY: Little boy, no!
 
(ANTONY knows he has been caught Fade to black. Transition to the Perez family yard. JAY dragging ANTONY with CARLA following behind them.)
 
JAY: I’m not playing with you, little dude, come on.
 
ANTONY: Jay, you have no right to drag me home I’m not a little kid.
 
(JAY and ANTONY stop.)
 
JAY: Oh, you’re just a grown man, huh.
 
ANTONY: Listen, Jay, I didn’t do what you think I did.
 
JAY: Little bro, I don’t even wanna think about what you think I did.
 
(ANTONY glares at JAY then looks away.)
 
JAY: Oh, you know what, you’re a regular old party girl now, Carla. Why don’t you give him the 411?
 
CARLA: Oh, okay. Well, let’s see here, Antony. Usually at these parties, there’s a bunch of pathetic nutters and wankers who have a good thing going on. But they think they’re missing something. So, they go out scamming, looking for someone new.
 
JAY: Think I can take from here, Carla. Thanks for the ride home.
 
CARLA: Fine, Jay, you do what you have to do, but we’re gonna handle our business.
 
(CARLA exits. ANTONY enters the PEREZ family kitchen. JAY finds himself left behind.)
 
JAY: Hey, don’t everybody be walking away from me!
 
(JAY enters the PEREZ family kitchen.)
 
JAY: Antony! Listen! I am not playing with you, boy, now what is your problem?
 
ANTONY: It is none of your business, Jay!
 
JAY: Oh, I find my 9-year-old little brother locked in the common room with four quarterbacks and that ain’t none of my business?
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE enter the kitchen, overhearing what JAY exclaimed to ANTONY, and they are not pleased, given their icy glares at JAY and ANTONY. JAY and ANTONY turn to see GREGORY and JOSEPHINE glaring at them. ANTONY is clearly terrified, given that his mouth is open agape.)
 
JAY: Hey, y’all.
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE still do not say a word and are still glaring angrily.)
 
JAY (hesitantly): Um. We was just talking about a movie we had just seen. Um. The movie. It was about four quarterbacks and a football field. You know, and Philip Seymour Hoffman played the coach.
 
GREGORY and JOSEPHINE: Shut up, Jay!
 
JAY: Is that the family room?
 
(JAY departs from the kitchen and goes to the PEREZ family living room. ANTONY is glancing down and shaking nervously, as GREGORY and JOSEPHINE still glare at him. ANTONY knows he is caught red-handed.)
 
JOSEPHINE: All right, young man, out with it.
ANTONY: All right. I didn’t go to the arcade. I went to a party. And, yes, I was with four guys, but I was just touching their muscles–
 
GREGORY: You have no business with with high school fullbacks!
 
(JAY enters from the living room.)
 
JAY: They’re quarterbacks, Uncle Greg.
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE glare at JAY and turn back to ANTONY who is still quaking with trepidation.)
 
ANTONY: Dad, Mom, they were not just anybody. They’re about to graduate Aristotle Academy, and I had a huge crush on–
 
GREGORY and JOSEPHINE: Save it!
 
GREGORY: There are not enough words in the English language to explain your behaviour!
 
JOSEPHINE: My God, do you have any idea the kind of danger a child like you put yourself into tonight?
 
ANTONY: But all my friends–
 
GREGORY: What?! Just because your friends are two to four years older than you does that mean you have to follow them all the damn time?!
JOSEPHINE: And, if your friends zip-lined from the MTV building to Ted Turner’s office, would you do it too?!
 
(HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN enter the kitchen wondering what the commotion is about as they glance at GREGORY and JOSEPHINE.)
 
GREGORY: Do you guys have any idea where your cousin was tonight? Hm?
 
JOSEPHINE: At a high school common room playing Operation with four teenage boys.
 
(HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN gasp as their mouths are agape in shock as they turn their heads towards ANTONY.)
 
HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, JUSTIN (in unison): Antony!
 
ANTONY: Do you guys know Aaron, Trent, Harold, and Henry Thermopolous?
 
HOWARD, TYLER, JUSTIN (in unison): The fullbacks?
 
(JAY enters from the living room again.)
 
JAY: They were…
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE glare at JAY while HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN continue to glare at ANTONY with their arms crossed. GREGORY and JOSEPHINE then turn their attention towards ANTONY.)
 
GREGORY and JOSEPHINE (in unison): Antony, go to your room.
 
ANTONY (turning his attention towards HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN): You guys, please let me–
 
KRISTEN, ROSE (in unison): You heard what your parents said!
 
ANTONY: But, you guys.
 
HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, JUSTIN (in unison): Go!
 
(ANTONY stomps away whimpering and weeping. As soon as ANTONY leaves the kitchen, HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN shake their heads in disbelief that their own cousin/ward would do such an unthinkable deed such as being in full-bodied contact with boys much older than him, despite being clothed.Cross-fade to the PEREZ family mansion and cut back to the PEREZ family kitchen. GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN are drinking tea.)
 
GREGORY: You all right?
 
JUSTIN: We’re fine.
 
KRISTEN: I was just trying to remember what it felt like to be a kid.
 
HOWARD: Especially when it came to doing something I should have known better.
 
ROSE: Or even sneaking out in the night when I shouldn’t have.
 
JOSEPHINE: It didn’t seem so long ago, how could you not remember?
 
(JUSTIN, KRISTEN, HOWARD, ROSE, and TYLER glare at GREGORY and JOSEPHINE for saying something relatively uncalled for.)
 
GREGORY: Uh. What your Aunt Jo meant was that she and I are so upset that we are saying things we don’t even mean.
 
TYLER: We’re gonna go and have a talk with Antony.
 
(TYLER, ROSE, HOWARD, KRISTEN, and JUSTIN exit from the kitchen. MICHAEL enters.)
 
MICHAEL: You know, sir, madam, if you really wanted to teach Master Antony a lesson, you could always take him out of the portrait.
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE throw MICHAEL a look suggesting how ridiculous it sounds.)
 
MICHAEL: I could just shrink myself down to Master Antony’s size. It would be a simple matter of painting my head on his body.
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE continue to glare at MICHAEL as if though he were spouting nonsense. HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN run hurriedly to the kitchen from the living room.)
 
HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, AND JUSTIN: Uncle Greg, Aunt Jo, Antony’s gone!
 
GREGORY AND JOSEPHINE (stand up from their chairs): What?!
 
(Even MICHAEL is shocked to know what happened. Cross-fade to CHASE, JAY, and AMANDA in the car, with CHASE on the driver’s seat, JAY seated at the front seat, and AMANDA at the back seat fixing her hair.)
 
AMANDA: Take the back streets. I don’t wanna be seen.
 
CHASE: Shut up and look for Antony.
 
(JAY dials a number on his cellphone. He calls CARLA who has been rudely woken up from her slumber, as she picks up her cellphone.)
 
CARLA (faintly): Hello.
 
JAY: Hey, Carla, what’s up, it’s me.
 
CARLA: Jay, it’s 1:15 in the morning.
 
JAY: Uh, yeah, I just called you a minute ago. Where were you?
 
CARLA: I was asleep.
 
JAY: Uh-huh. Sure you ain’t just getting it on?
 
CARLA: Just as sure as I’m about to hang up on you. What’s with you calling me at 1:15 then ask me where I’ve been–
 
JAY: All right, all right, all right. My fault, my fault. Look, Antony ran away, and I just thought he might be with you.
 
CARLA: No you didn’t. Keep me posted.
 
(CARLA hangs up.)
 
JAY: All right.
 
(JAY hangs up.)
 
CHASE: When we find Antony, he’s reimbursing me for gas. (Beat.) Where is he?!
 
AMANDA: Well, if it was me and I ran away from home, I’d probably go check into the Six Senses Spa and get a deep cleansing facial and a body scrub.
 
JAY: Well, y’all should’ve seen Uncle Greg and Aunt Jo. They just went straight whacko. Their dragon eyes were about to pop out of their sockets.
 
CHASE: Look, there’s a method to my parents’ madness. If they came down on Antony, it was for his own good.
 
JAY: Brotha, you think everything your parents do is right.
 
CHASE: Of course, don’t you?
 
JAY: Hell….No.
 
AMANDA: Chase, Jay’s right. Dad and Mom are way too strict.
 
CHASE: Well, they maybe strict, but they’re always fair.
 
AMANDA: Yeah, when you’re a son.
 
CHASE: Well, sons are different than daughters.
 
JAY: In your case, barely.
 
CHASE: If you’re referring to the size of my endowment, it’s almost as large as Amanda’s.
 
(CHASE peers outside the window still looking where ANTONY is.)
 
JAY: God, I hope you talking about money.
 
(CHASE continues to drive. Cross-fade to the PEREZ family mansion. Cut to MICHAEL calling the police on the telephone, with GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, who are standing, HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER, who are seated on the couch, trying to find out what the police has relayed to MICHAEL.)
 
MICHAEL: Yes, thank you. I’ll tell them.
 
(MICHAEL hangs up.)
 
MICHAEL: Sirs, madams, the precinct says they’ll keep looking.
 
(HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTINE, ROSE, and TYLER look up to GREGORY and JOSEPHINE and look down again.)
 
GREGORY (sighs): I can’t believe he’s out there somewhere, you guys.
 
JOSEPHINE: Our little boy.
 
(GREGORY reaches out to ROSE’S hand while JOSEPHINE’S to TYLER’S hand. The cousins comfort the parents. Meanwhile, AMANDA, JAY, and CHASE enter from the PEREZ family kitchen door, with JAY coming in last and closing the door.)
 
CHASE: Sorry, guys, we couldn’t find him.
 
(GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN enter the PEREZ family kitchen and confront AMANDA, CHASE, and JAY.)
 
GREGORY: Jay, this is all your fault!
 
JAY: My fault?!
 
JOSEPHINE: Where else did Antony learn such behaviour?
 
JAY: Well, you’re the ones that chased Antony out of here!
 
GREGORY AND JOSEPHINE (in unison): How dare you talk to us like that!
 
CHASE: He dares because he does not respect you. Neither of them do.
 
(Beat. AMANDA and JAY are appalled and in shock with what CHASE had to declare.)
 
AMANDA: What a weasel!
 
JAY: How could you tell such a bold-faced lie like–
 
(CHASE pulls out a tape recorder, rewinding to everything AMANDA and JAY said behind GREGORY’S and JOSEPHINE’S backs.)
 
AMANDA (OVER RECORDER): Chase, Jay is right. Dad and Mom are way too strict.
 
(AMANDA hangs her head low. GREGORY and JOSEPHINE glare at AMANDA, JAY, and CHASE, as do HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN, while CHASE fast forwards to his conversation with JAY. AMANDA and JAY are itching to attack CHASE for being such a snitch.)
 
JAY (OVER RECORDER): Yeah, you think everything your parents do is right.
 
CHASE (OVER RECORDER): Of course, don’t you?
 
JAY (OVER RECORDER): Hell…No!
 
CHASE (about to play another segment from the tape recorder): And listen to this one from last week–
 
JAY (tackling CHASE alongside AMANDA): Hey, man, what the Hell is wrong with you?!
 
(AMANDA and JAY are tackling CHASE trying to get the tape recorder away from him. Cross-fade to the darkened pool house that JAY enters in.)
 
JAY: Hey, what up, Antony?
 
(JAY turns around to see someone there, as he turns on the light. JAY sees ANTONY sitting on the couch with a pillow on his lap.)
 
ANTONY: Hi, Jay.
 
(JAY chuckles. Surprised to find his cousin/surrogate younger brother in the pool house.)
 
JAY: You mean we’ve been out running all over this city looking for you, and you’ve been up in here.
 
ANTONY: Well, I did run away, but there are so many weirdoes and creeps out there. You know something, this is all your fault.
 
JAY: What is that, The Perez Family Motto? “When in doubt, blame Jay.”
 
ANTONY: If it wasn’t for you, Mom and Dad would never have found out about that party.
 
JAY: Well, Antony, that still doesn’t mean you should’ve been there.
 
(JAY sits beside ANTONY on the couch.)
 
JAY: Antony, listen, senior high school boys are like predators. You know, they prey on innocent little pre-tweens like you. Sure, you may be in the sixth grade, but you’re still nine. The point is, they’re like jackals, Antony, and you’re 130 pounds of little boy fodder.
 
(ANTONY glances at JAY.)
 
ANTONY: 128. And I’m not as innocent as I look.
 
(JAY shoots a glance at ANTONY suggesting that he begs to differ.)
 
ANTONY: All right, I am.
 
JAY: Well, are you ready to walk that last mile.
 
(ANTONY glances at JAY.)
 
ANTONY: Jay, I didn’t do anything.
 
(Both JAY and ANTONY stand up from the couch. JAY places his hand on ANTONY’S shoulder, walking out of the pool house.)
 
JAY: The Lord is my shepherd…
 
(Cross-fade to The PEREZ Family Living Room. AMANDA is seated on an armchair in the left. HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER are seated on the sofa in the centre. CHASE is seated on another armchair in the right. GREGORY and JOSEPHINE are pacing around. They are all nervously anticipating ANTONY’S return. JAY enters the living room with ANTONY looking down with remorse, unsure if he is going to face his family.)
 
JAY: Hey, everybody, look what I found.
 
(GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, TYLER, AMANDA, and CHASE glance at JAY and ANTONY. Knowing what is going to occur between GREGORY, JOSEPHINE, HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, JUSTIN, and ANTONY, AMANDA and CHASE depart from the living room in a huff.)
 
KRISTEN (at ANTONY): Are you okay?
 
ANTONY (hesitantly): Yeah, I…I’m all right.
 
(GREGORY is sighing with relief while still angry at ANTONY. JOSEPHINE comforts him.)
 
JAY: Now, we got a volatile situation here. A cannonball about to come loose if you will. A mishandling of this situation could have repercussions that will reverberate forever.
 
GREGORY: Justin, call your brother and sister-in-law and tell them that they are about to lose a close relative.
 
JOSEPHINE: Indeed. Kristen, you do the same and call your sister and brother-in-law to tell them the same thing.
 
JAY: I’m gonna call them myself.
 
(JAY exits from the living room, as ANTONY steps forward. He looks down in fear of what is going to occur. GREGORY and JOSEPHINE approach ANTONY.)
 
GREGORY: Look. We can ground you forever. We could put bars on your windows. We could put locks on your doors.
 
JOSEPHINE: We could even deprive you of your allowance and bar you from any activity you would have participated in.
 
ANTONY: Mom, dad–
 
GREGORY, JOSEPHINE (in unison): Don’t “mom, dad” us!
 
GREGORY: Do you have any idea what you put this family through?! Running around doing God knows what with God knows who!
 
ANTONY: If I had asked you, you wouldn’t have let me go.
 
JOSEPHINE: Exactly! You are nine years old! You have no business at a party with senior high school boys!
 
ANTONY: All my friends were there!
GREGORY, JOSEPHINE (in unison): Your friends don’t live here!
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE compose and calm themselves down.)
 
GREGORY: We can’t do this.
 
JOSEPHINE (at HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER still sitting on the couch): You five talk to your cousin. We’re done.
 
(GREGORY and JOSEPHINE depart from the living room to the direction of the dining hall. ANTONY paces forward to HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER on the couch.)
 
ANTONY: You all hate me.
 
(HOWARD turns towards ANTONY.)
 
HOWARD: Antony, if that were true, we wouldn’t care when you did something foolish like this.
 
(GREGORY re-enters the living room stamping and raging while HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER look down demurely.)
 
GREGORY: What you have to understand is that we know what’s best for you! It may not seem like it now, but one day you’ll understand that! End of discussion!
 
(GREGORY exits the living room and heads to the stairs. ANTONY peers if his father is returning and moves one step forward towards his cousins/legal guardians on the couch.)
 
ANTONY: Guys, don’t you understand?
 
TYLER: Yes, we understand.
 
ROSE: We understand you lied.
 
JUSTIN: And you ran away.
 
(JOSEPHINE re-enters the living room also stamping and raging.)
 
JOSEPHINE: And another thing! As long as you live in this house, you will follow our rules! That’s it!
 
(JOSEPHINE also exits the living room and heads to the stairs. ANTONY looks to see if his mother has finally gone upstairs.)
 
ANTONY (moving forward towards HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER): You guys–
 
(HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER motion for ANTONY to stop by raising their hand at him. The door slams.)
 
KRISTEN: Antony, we understand what you’re feeling.
 
JUSTIN: But you have to consider the seriousness of what you did.
 
(ANTONY looks down in remorse.)
 
ROSE: You really hurt us this evening.
ANTONY: All I want for you guys is to trust me.
 
HOWARD: Trust is a very fragile thing.
 
TYLER: And you’re gonna have to start earning it all back.
 
ANTONY: I messed up really bad.
 
JUSTIN: We’ll talk about it tomorrow.
 
(ANTONY is about to go upstairs while HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER still sit on the couch.)
 
HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER (in unison): Antony.
 
(Just as ANTONY is about to go upstairs, HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER stand up and go towards ANTONY. ANTONY turns towards HOWARD, KRISTEN, JUSTIN, ROSE, and TYLER.)
 
ANTONY (sobbing): You guys, I’m sorry.
 
(As ANTONY is saying this, KRISTEN, ROSE, TYLER, HOWARD, and JUSTIN all envelop him in their embrace. All six of them are choked with tears, as HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN comfort the sobbing ANTONY. Despite the misdeeds ANTONY committed, HOWARD, KRISTEN, TYLER, ROSE, and JUSTIN know they cannot stay angry at their cousin/ward forever knowing that he is safe, sound, and back home.)
 
(Cross-fade to the pool house. CARLA is setting up the DVD player.)
 
CARLA: I saw Antony’s tutor leaving.
 
(JAY is putting the bowl of popcorn on the table.)
 
JAY: Oh, yeah, they’re actually gonna let Antony eat tomorrow.
 
(JAY and CARLA sit on the couch with a blanket covering the both of them.)
 
JAY: That’s what happens when you lie. You gotta be punished.
 
(CARLA glances at JAY.)
 
CARLA: So, what do you think your punishment should be?
 
JAY: I think it should hurt. I think it should really teach me a lesson. And I should be wearing some kind of hat.
 
(CARLA chuckles, nudging JAY.) CARLA: You are sick.
 
(JAY also chuckles while cuddling CARLA.)
 
JAY: Okay, no hat.
 
CARLA: I think people lie because the truth hurt. Like. Take this jacket you’re wearing.
 
(CARLA touches JAY’S jacket.)
 
JAY: What about this jacket?
 
(Beat.)
 
CARLA: I love it.
 
(JAY and CARLA proceed to lean back and watch their favourite film on DVD. They have also made amends in their romantic relationship.) (End. Roll credits.)

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