The peach orchard. Murphy Gowan and Gavin are sitting on the fence. Coldplay blasts from Gavin’s van.
Gavin: Don’t you think that everything Coldplay sings speaks to where you are at the exact moment you hear it?
Murphy: Uh huh. I’m bored.
Gavin: What do you want to do?
Murphy: I don’t know. Let’s sneak into a bereaved man’s home and steal his liquor.
Gavin: Good idea. Hey, did Darlington’s wife really die?
Murphy: I don’t know.
(Murphy and Gavin sneak across the orchard and onto the porch. Murphy opens a window and climbs into the house. She goes into the pantry, sweeps the shelves with her eyes and takes down a bottle of Crème de Mint. Gavin closes the window. A tapping sound can be heard upstairs. Murphy turns. Two kittens appear and chase after her.)
Murphy: (Running for the window) Help. Help. (Crashes through the window) Ow, why did you lock the window?
Gavin: (Shrugs) I don’t know. I guess I thought you’d be coming out another way or something.
(Footsteps and the sound of a shotgun cocking are heard.)
Gavin: Gotta go.
(Gavin heads for his van, jumps in and tears away. Coldplay is still blasting from the stereo.)
Murphy: Gavin, Gavin!! Oh, great. By the way, Coldplay sucks. Chris Martin sounds like he’s trying to say something meaningful but it never quite comes off, you know what I mean?
(Walter Darlington appears, shotgun in hand.)
Darlington: You couldn’t have picked a worse day, missy. Consider yourself part of the labour force now.
(He throws a handkerchief over Murphy’s nose and she falls to the ground.)
The Caulie-Smith house. Lita Caulie-Smith, her father, mother, sister Danai, and Danai’s fiancé Brighton are sitting around the table, eating lunch.
Mother: So what did you want as your wedding song?
Danai: I was actually thinking something really classy, Shania Twain maybe. How about “Man, I Feel Like A Woman.”
Mother: Oh, a marvelous choice.
Father: So, Lita, do you have any plans for spring break?
Lita: Yes, Rex and I were going to camp out in my room in a tent and eat chocolate bars and watch daytime TV for the entire two weeks!
Father: Well, Princess, I’m afraid you won’t be doing that.
Lita: Oh, great. Just what did you two have in mind?
Mother: You’re going to help out on your uncle’s peach farm.
Lita: (Smashes expensive china bowl on table) What!? How could you even think of such a thing?
Mother: Your uncle wants you to be an influence on Bertie.
Lita: Oh, great. Rex was really looking forward to our plans, too. He said it would be the most exciting spring break he had ever had. (Puts head down on expensive china plate and smashes it) May I be excused?
Father: Yes, you may. (Lita exits.) We really must do something about those teenage dramatics of hers. It’s getting expensive.
Mother: I suppose it’s too late to ask why camping out in a bedroom eating snack food and watching daytime television would be the most exciting spring break one had ever had.
Father: Well, you see, this Rex boy our daughter is seeing has no sense of direction. At the beginning of every spring break previous to this he would always get lost and locked in the school after the final bell rang.
Bertie’s room. Bertie is sitting in her window seat, talking to her mom on a cordless phone.
Cynthia Darlington: I could not stand that horrible place one more minute. Oh, that terrible farm and that awful husband of mine … and that horrible daughter. Oh, that daughter of mine makes me shudder just thinking about her.
Bertie: Mom, you’re breaking up really bad. I’m going to hang up now.
Cynthia: All right, dear. Remember to eat your vegetables.
(A click is heard on Cynthia’s end of the line. Bertie turns on the TV.)
Anncr: VH-1 now returns to its special presentation on eighties hair bands.
(An eighties hairband member appears on the screen.)
Band Member: I guess you could say our breakup was inevitable. I mean, once we realized we had no talent that was pretty much it, no what I mean?
(Pi enters Bertie’s room.)
Pi: Bertie, lazing around your room while your father is working himself to the bone out in the orchard. Go out and help him.
Bertie: But work in the fields is so hard.
Pi: Ha. Did I ever tell you about that time I was stranded on the ocean with an orangutan and a ravenous tiger? Now that was hard. You see, my father owned a zoo—
Bertie: We’ve all heard that long, boring story that doesn’t even seem to believe in itself before. I’ll go. I’ll go.
(Bertie opens her window and shimmies out of it. She lands on the ground and goes toward the room containing the peach press. She enters and falls right into the press. Enrique is standing at the press with his hand on the handle.)
Enrique: Hmmm, I am contemplating whether I should continue the operation of this peach press even though there is a human specimen recently contained therein.
Bertie: No, no, get me out!
Enrique: It presents itself as a delectable temptation?
Bertie: No, help, help, no!
Enrique: Upon further cogitation, I do not think my employer would like to have his progenitor brought to her mortality in such a manner and at such a nubile age.
Bertie: Hey, who are you calling nubile?
(Enrique reaches into the peach press and helps Bertie out.)
Enrique: No comprende. My English, it is no so good.
Bertie: Why didn’t you warn me that stupid press was there?
(Enrique points to his head and then his mouth. Bertie kicks her foot at him and falls back into the peach press.)
The cellar of the Darlington house. Murphy is lying on a cot. Walter Darlington enters dressed in a clown suit.
Walter: Worky time. Wakey wakey.
(He blows a party blower.)
Murphy: Oh, why couldn’t I have just been turned over to the police and sentenced to juvey where I could be bullied by tough girls and treated inhumanely by burned-out, unfeeling guards appointed by the state?
Walter: So you don’t like me dressing as a clown for your first day of slave labour? That hurts my feelings, you know. Anyway, my daughter will show you what to do. Bertie!
Murphy: Hey, Chicky Darlington.
Bertie: My name is Bertie.
Murphy: Whatever your name is, you’re dead meat.
Walter: Well, good, it seems like you two already know each other. I’ll leave you two alone to get better acquainted.
Murphy: How did you get a name like Bertie, anyway?
Bertie: My full name’s Alberta.
Murphy: Oh, I get it. You’re family’s rich so they wanted to give their daughter a hoity-toity name like all other proper rich families.
Bertie: No, I’m named after the Canadian province of Alberta. In fact, I wasn’t always called Alberta.
Murphy: Then when did your parents start calling you that?
Bertie: When I became a teenager. They named me after Alberta because I had so much oil.
Murphy: Listen, I don’t want to work. Couldn’t we do something else?
Bertie: I guess we could watch Nellie’s latest video on my phone.
Murphy: Sounds good to me.
(Bertie brings up the video on her phone. Nellie appears on screen.)
Nellie: (Sings) Oh yeah, oh, oh, oh,
I know I ain’t got no talent,
I don’t really even rap,
But I got in wit da right people,
So screw you.
I just speak in a sing-song way,
Instead of rappin,
I ain’t even been popular in years,
But I’m goin do this anyway.
I’m real insecure,
Cause I ain’t good at much else,
So I’m goin act like I’m so big,
Maybe people won’t see.
Now, ladies and gentleman, speakin of hasbeens, yo, here’s Kelly Roland.
(Kelly Roland appears onscreen and wrestles Nellie to the ground.)
Kelly Roland: It’s getting hot in here so take off all your clothes. Oooh, there’s a clever line if I ever heard one. And that duet we did together, how pathetic was that?
Bertie: Well, enough messing around. Let’s go.
(They walk out to the peach orchards and stop in front of a tree.)
Murphy: Wow, a peach tree. Just the very thing we’re looking for.
Bertie: That’s the attitude. Now, you do know how to pick peaches, don’t you?
Murphy: I think I can figure it out.
(She pulls a hammer out of her pocket and takes a swing at the tree.)
Bertie: What did you do that for?!
Murphy: Don’t you have to tap a peach tree for its sap?
Bertie: No, that’s a maple tree. This is Georgia! There aren’t even any maple trees around here! What were you thinking?!
Murphy: So, I don’t spend that much time out in nature. Sue me.
(Walter comes up to them.)
Walter: Well, that doesn’t really matter now, Murphy. I’ve decided to sell the farm to some twisted billionaire who has no love for the soil or the world in general. Finances are so bad I just can’t make it anymore. (Nectarines start falling from the sky) Holy moly, with these nectarines I’ll be rich! The sale’s off!
(A hurricane suddenly blows up. Bertie grabs Murphy and runs for a rickety old shed.)
After the storm. Bertie and Murphy crawl out from under the remains of the shed which has been blown down.
Bertie: (Looking around) Wow, everything around us was damaged, but except for the shed, everything at Darlington Orchards is undamaged.
Murphy: Hey, look, up on the porch. It’s Enrique. Don’t you have a bit of a crush on him?
Bertie: I do not!
Murphy: Wanna go see him, make sure he didn’t get hurt in the storm?
Bertie: Thought you’d never ask! (Bertie makes her way from where the shed previously stood to the porch in three steps. Enrique is sitting on the front porch of the Darlington house with a very attractive young woman in his lap. Bertie bursts into tears.) Enrique!How could you do this to me?!
Enrique: Relax, babe. This is Felicia. She’s my new baby sister.
Bertie: Oh, that’s so cute! I love you Enrique.
(Silence for five seconds. Bertie gives Enrique a big kiss.)
Based on “Peaches” by Jodi Lynn Anderson.