INT. EVELYN’S APARTMENT. DAY.
There was a loud, persistent knocking on the front door. Evelyn titled her wrist to glance at her watch and put her book aside. She crossed the room and opened the door.
“Peter! I have to say after our dinner I didn’t think I’d see you back here.”
“I need to talk to you. I need your advice.”
He looked ghastly. Exhausted, anxious…he kept drumming his fingers nervously against the side of his leg.
Frowning, Evelyn stepped aside to let him in and then shut the door behind him.
“Would you like a drink?” she asked, automatically starting towards the drinks cart.
“No. Not yet,” he said sharply. He stopped, took a breath, and started again. “I’m sorry. It’s just if I start drinking I probably won’t stop for a couple weeks and I really to concentrate right now.”
“You look terrible,” said Evelyn.
“Yeah. I drove up to San Francisco last night. And then drove back down. I didn’t sleep.”
Peter shrugged. “I don’t know. I just needed to drive and clear my head.”
Evelyn raised a skeptical eyebrow. “And did you succeed?”
Peter snorted. “Do I look clear?”
“Come here. Sit down.” She took hold of his hand and led him over towards the couches. His legs seemed to give out from under him at the last second and he collapsed back against the cushions and his eyes slid shut. He sat there for a long minute, and Evelyn was almost beginning to wonder if he’d fallen asleep, when he opened his eyes again and leaned forward, looking dismally at the wall.
“I don’t know what to do,” he mumbled. “I just don’t know how to handle this.”
Evelyn reached out and patted his shoulder. “Talk to me. It’s obviously why you came here. What’s wrong?”
“I went to over to Holly’s last night. I talked to her about Alan.”
“I tried to talk to her about Alan,” he amended. “But I just couldn’t figure how. And I thought maybe if you could help me-”
“No,” said Evelyn firmly. “No Peter.”
“What?” He looked over at her. “I haven’t explained to you yet-”
“I understand that it’s very hard to have Holly dating another man. And I know I told you at dinner how good it was that you felt this way. But now you have to let it go and move on. The only thing you’re going to do is hurt Holly and yourself.”
“No Evelyn. This isn’t about me. This is about Alan, if you would just let me explain-”
“Alan Ryder is a perfectly nice man. It might be natural to feel he doesn’t ‘deserve’ the woman you love but he does. He’s good to her and they are both very much in love. So be Holly’s friend and leave her alone. You can only upset her at this point.”
Peter scrubbed his face vigorously with his hand, trying to wake himself up. “No, believe me, I didn’t start this right. I’m not here because I’m jealous. I just want to protect her. I found out something that-”
“Peter,” said Evelyn firmly, standing up. “No. You listen to me. Because I know you mean well and you’re just hurting. But Holly is in love with him. She’s going to spend most of the summer with him in Australia. Their relationship is serious and far past the point where you can try and win her over. I know this isn’t jealousy. It’s hurt, but it’s also selfish because if you really wanted to protect her, you’d understand how important Alan is to her. I don’t want Holly hurt either and she’s very committed right now.”
Peter shook his head. “Just hear me out on this one thing and I’ll-”
“Hear me out,” said Evelyn firmly. “Leave Holly alone, and don’t interfere.”
“No but’s. This is as much for your sake as it is hers. You’ll lose the chance to be her friend, and it’s not healthy. You cannot obsess. You have to move on.”
Peter gave a small chuckle. “You’re really not going hear me out are you?”
“I’m trying to help you Peter,” said Evelyn sinking down beside him. “Now, really, how about a drink?”
Peter shook his head. “No thanks,” he said, a little coolly. “I’m good.” He stood up.
“I’ve got to go.”
She watched him head to the door and then called after him, “Just remember what I said.”
Peter glanced back at her, frowned and then shut the door a little too firmly behind him. She sighed heavily and sunk back down into her chair. She picked up her book again but then tossed it aside, feeling oddly unsatisfied.
Downstairs on the street, Peter slammed the car door behind him and turned the key in the ignition. He realized he wasn’t exhausted anymore or confused. He was angry.
He couldn’t bring himself to talk to Holly. Evelyn hadn’t let him get a word in edgewise because she saw him as a love-sick, scorned suitor. Well there was one person he could talk to, one person who owed him a conversation. With an angry jerk on the steering wheel, he turned the car towards Beverly Hills.