1 INT. SCHOOL. DAY 1
JANUARY 1962. MONTAGE
A nice girls’ school in a south west London suburb. We see
girls doing what girls did in a nice girls’ school in 1962:
walking with books on their heads, practising their
handwriting, making cakes, playing lacrosse, dancing with
1A INT. CLASSROOM. DAY 1A
In one of the classrooms, MISS STUBBS, an attractive,
bright, animated schoolteacher, is talking to a small group
of sixteen-year-old girls. Some of these girls seem to be
daydreaming – looking out of the window, examining their
fingernails. A couple, including a bespectacled girl who
looks five years younger than everyone else in the class,
write down everything the teacher says. Only one, JENNY,
beautiful and animated, seems to be listening in the spirit
in which Miss Stubbs would like her to listen. She’s
smiling, eyes shining – she loves Miss Stubbs, and these
lessons. Miss Stubbs asks a question, and Jenny puts up her
hand – the only one in the class to do so.
Isn’t it because Mr Rochester’s
2 INT. BEDROOM. DAY 2
Jenny’s bedroom. Books about ponies, a much loved teddy
bear; a cello huge in the small room leans against the
Jenny is bent over a small desk. Victorian novels, Latin
primers and dictionaries teeter in huge towers either side
of her. She stands and stretches as she turns to us.
She kneels and flicks through her half-dozen or so LPs on
the floor near a cheap record player – they’re all
classical, mostly by Elgar, apart from a Juliette Greco
record. This is the one she chooses. As the music begins,
she sings along.
Immediately there is a thumping noise – someone underneath
her is banging on the ceiling impatiently.
MAN’S VOICE (O.S.)
I don’t want to hear any French
singing. French singing wasn’t on
the syllabus, last time I looked.
Jenny sighs, and reaches for the volume control. She turns
the music down so low that she has to lie down and put her
head right next to the Dansette to hear it.
Close on Jenny as she silently mouths the words along with
the almost inaudible track.
3 INT. LIVING ROOM. DAY 3
Jenny, her mother and father are finishing Sunday lunch.
Jenny’s father JACK is in his forties, MARJORIE, her mother
is slightly younger than Jack, but every bit as middle-
aged. The food is grey and brown, in keeping with the
colour scheme of the house. They aren’t talking – they’re
listening to Mantovani on the radio. Jenny gets up from the
I’ve got an English essay to do
by tomorrow morning.
I don’t want to hear anything
through the ceiling this
afternoon, apart from the sound
of sweat dripping onto textbooks.
I thought we agreed that cello
was my interest or hobby?
It’s already your interest or
hobby. When they ask you “What’s
your interest or hobby?” at your
Oxford interview, you can say,
“Cello”. That wouldn’t be a lie.
You don’t need to practise a
hobby. A hobby is a hobby.
You don’t need to be good at it.
You just have to be interested in
Can I stop going to the youth
No. The orchestra shows you’re a
joiner-inner. Universities like
Ah. Yes. But. I’ve already joined
in. So now I can stop.
Well, if you stop, that shows the
opposite, doesn’t it? That shows
you’re a rebel. They don’t want
that at Oxford.
No. They don’t want people who
think for themselves.
(missing the sarcasm, as
is his wont)
Course they don’t.
4 INT. SCHOOL HALL. DAY 4
Jenny with cello sits in the string section. Everyone is
getting settled, tuning up, latecomers still arriving.
Along the row from Jenny, tuning his violin, is a nice-
looking boy of her age, GRAHAM, and she waves at him. Two
13 year old boys sitting between them wave too,
parodically, and then blow kisses, much to Graham’s
embarrassment and Jenny’s fury.
The silly boys dissolve in fits of giggles: this is clearly
one of the funniest moments of their lives – until one of
them farts noisily and, it would appear from all the
frantic gesturing, pungently. The comic value of the fart
tops even the comic value of the wave, and they are
scarcely able to stay seated, such is their mirth.
5 EXT. SCHOOL. DAY 5
Jenny and Graham are talking while he struggles to take his
bike out of a bicycle rack slightly unbalanced by the
violin strapped to his back. Graham is nervous,
chronically unconfident and shy.
Should I wear, you know, Sunday
You’d better, I’m afraid. Just to
show my father you’re un jeune
homme serieux, not a teddy boy.
It’ll be all right. I won’t wait.
It’s going to bucket down in a
minute. I’ll see you at the
Jenny moves as quickly as she can towards the street.
Oh, yes. Bye.
The two silly boys from before arrive to blow more kisses.
SMALLER BOY 1
Goodbye, darling! See you at the
weekend! I will miss you with all
of my heart!
Graham blushes. Jenny swipes the chief offender over the
head with her sheet music.
6 EXT. BUS STOP. DAY 6
The rain has begun. Jenny attempts to cover herself. A
mother and two children cross the road in front of her, and
a beautiful, sleek red sports car – a Bristol – stops to
let them across. David, possibly in his mid-thirties,
dapper, and almost but not quite handsome, is driving the
car. David, distracted, impatient, spots Jenny at the bus
In front of the car a small wellington boot drops off the
foot of one of the children,further slowing down their
painfully slow progress across the road.
Jenny is wet. David makes eye contact. Jenny smiles
ruefully, and enchantingly. David sighs, and then hesitates
for a moment. The window of the Bristol slowly rolls down.
Jenny ignores him.
Listen. If you’ve got any sense,
you wouldn’t take a lift from a
Jenny smiles thinly.
I am, however, a music lover, and
I’m worried about your cello. So
what I propose is, you put it in
the car and walk alongside me.
How do I know you won’t just
drive off with the cello?
Ah. Good point.
He winds down the other window and waves on the cars that
have stopped behind him.
How much does a new cello cost?
Twenty pounds? Thirty? I don’t
know. Let’s say thirty.
He pulls out a wallet, takes out three ten-pound notes,
hands them to her.
Jenny laughs and waves the money away.
7 EXT. STREET. NEAR SCHOOL. DAY. 7
Later. The cello is in the back seat of the Bristol. Jenny
is trotting alongside the car, while David leans
nonchalantly across the passenger seat to talk to her while
I’m David, by the way.
She says nothing.
And you are…?
Jenny. (Beat) I’ve never seen a
car like this before. C’est tres
It’s a Bristol. Not many of `em
Jenny nods, but doesn’t know how to respond.
How did the concert go?
It was a rehearsal. The concert’s
What are you playing?
(making a face)
Ah, Elgar. I often think it’s a
shame he spent so much time in
Worcester, don’t you? Worcester’s
too near Birmingham. And you can
hear that in the music. There’s a
horrible Brummy accent in there,
if you listen hard enough.
Jenny looks at him and smiles. She hadn’t expected him to
be able to make Elgar jokes.
Anyway, I’m not sure Elgar and
Jews mix very well.
I’m not a Jew!
No. I am. I wasn’t…accusing
Oh. (She smiles awkwardly.) Can I
sit in the car with my cello?
David stops the car.
8 INT. CAR. DAY 8
Jenny shuts the door and sinks approvingly into the white
leather seat. David regards the dripping girl with
It’s even nicer on the inside.
Where to, madam?
Jenny makes a face.
I only live round the corner.
What a shame. We’ll just make it
last as long as we can.
9 EXT. STREET. NEAR JENNY’S. DAY 9
The Bristol is crawling along the road at walking pace.
10 INT/EXT. CAR JENNY’S HOUSE. DAY 10
David reaches across Jenny while driving slowly, opens the
glove compartment and takes out a packet of cigarettes.
I’d better not. I’m a bit close
David lights one for himself.
I suppose cellists must go to a
lot of concerts.
We don’t go to any concerts. We
don’t believe in them.
Oh, they’re real.
So people say.
Why don’t we believe in them?
I suppose…What would he say?
Your father, this is?
Oh, yes. He’d say there’s no
point to them. They’re just for
fun. Apart from school concerts,
of course, which are no fun at
all, so we go to those. The
proper ones don’t help you get
Which of course is what is so
wonderful about them. Anyway,
you’ll go one day.
Yes. I will. I know. Sometimes it
seems as though that’s what all
this slog is for. If I get to
University, I’m going to read
what I want and think about what
I want and listen to what I want.
And I’m going to look at
paintings and go to French films
and talk to people who know lots
Good for you. Which University?
Oxford. If I’m lucky. Did you go
I studied at what I believe they
call the University of Life. And
I didn’t get a very good degree
This is me. Thank you.
She gets out of the car with the cello. David stares after
her for a moment, then drives off.
11 INT. JENNY’S SITTING-ROOM. AFTERNOON 11
Jenny, her parents and Graham are eating afternoon tea –
neat fish-paste sandwiches, Battenberg cake, best china.
How’s your mother, Graham?
She’s fine, thanks. She sends her
best, by the way.
Where are you applying, Graham?
Jenny looks embarrassed. She knows what’s coming.
I’m not sure yet.
Well, when will you be sure? You
can’t let the grass grow under
your feet, you know. Otherwise
you’ll be at the back of the
I suppose so. I suppose the
growing grass would knock you off
balance, and then you’d fall
over, and by the time you picked
yourself up, there’d be a queue.
Her father shoots her a look – is she being cheeky?
I might take a year off.
Jenny winces. Jack looks at him as if he’s just said he’ll
take all his clothes off.
I don’t know. Maybe do some
travelling, that sort of thing.
Travelling? What are you, a teddy
Close-up of Jenny – she knows what’s coming, and can’t bear
(nodding at Jenny)
You know she’s going to Oxford,
don’t you? Oxford. English. If we
can get her Latin up to scratch.
So she’s studying English at
Oxford while you’re a wandering
Jenny looks at him curiously. Graham steels himself to
Mr Mellor…I’m not a teddy boy.
I’m an homme serieux. Jeune. An
homme jeune serieux homme.
Jenny winces again. Her father stares at Graham. Graham
12 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 12
It’s the night of the youth orchestra concert. Jenny, her
mother and father are on their way out of the door. Jack is
carrying the cello. Jenny is in her school uniform, with
her hair scrubbed back in a severe ponytail. The three of
them are flustered. Jenny opens the front door for her
father and he stumbles outside.
12A INT/EXT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 12A
She has seen something on the doorstep, and she stoops to
pick it up – a large bunch of flowers.
They’re for me!
Who are they from?
Jenny opens the card that’s attached to them.
Just…A chap I met.
A chap who sends flowers? So he’s
Yes, he is, really.
Jack stares at the flowers in disbelief. The bunch of
flowers has created in Jack the kind of panic and fear more
typically associated with a biochemical attack.
What’s going on here?
(drily, knowing the
trouble this will
Jack,I’m afraid Jenny has been
sent some flowers by a chap.
A chap? What kind of chap? Who?
He’s wishing me luck for tonight.
Are you sure that’s all he’s
wishing? And where does he get
the money from?
He earns it, I expect.
What do you mean, he earns it?
Why isn’t he at school? What does
Can we just go? Otherwise the
bunch of good-luck flowers will
actually be responsible for me
actually missing the concert.
Which would be ironic, n’est ce
Well I don’t like it.
Objection noted. Jenny?
Ten bob’s worth of luck, I
reckon. That’s a lot for a
schoolgirl. You can’t leave them
out here, anyway. I’d burgle a
house that had flowers outside.
They’ll think we’re made of
12B INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 12B
Jenny sighs, puts them inside the house, shuts the door.
13 INT. COFFEE BAR. DAY 13
Jenny and two school friends, HATTIE and TINA, are sitting
at a table in a typical late-50s coffee bar, sipping
cappuccinos. Jenny is easily the most attractive of the
three – and also, we will see, possibly the cleverest.
HATTIE is slower than the other two, and a lot frumpier;
TINA is pretty, and sharp rather than clever. She is also
the least middle-class of the three – she’s clearly a
scholarship girl. They are all dressed in an unflattering
and unambiguous school uniform – no attempts to disguise it
with more fashionable accessories. Jenny is smoking
pretentiously, and seems to be practising some kind of
pout. Tina starts to slurp the froth from her cappuccino
with a spoon, inelegantly and noisily. Jenny tuts her
disapproval. Tina sighs, and puts her spoon down.
The whole point about him is that
he doesn’t feel.
We still don’t have to like him.
Camus doesn’t want you to like
him. What he’s trying to say is
that feeling is bourgeois. Being
engagee is bourgeois. His mother
dies and he doesn’t feel
anything. He kills this Arab and
he doesn’t feel anything.
I wouldn’t feel anything if my
mother died. Does that make me an
No. That just makes you a cow.
14 EXT. STREET/COFFEE BAR. DAY 14
Jenny, Hattie and Tina emerge from the cafe, talking.
Well I’m going to be French. I’m
going to Paris and I’m going to
smoke and listen to Jacques Brel
and wear black. And I won’t
speak. Ever. C’est plus chic,
She breaks off. Parked outside a tobacconists on the other
side of the road is the red Bristol. She looks towards the
shop, and David emerges with a copy of the Times and a
packet of cigars. Jenny crosses the road to talk to him
while the others watch.
Hello. Thank you.
How did it go?
Oh, fine. I think. I mean, I
didn’t mess my bit up, anyway.
And no-one got thrown out of the
Always the mark of a cultural
triumph. Listen. I’m glad I ran
into you. What are you doing on
Going to school.
I meant the evening.
Oh. Yes. Of course. Nothing.
Because I’m going to listen to
some Schubert in St John’s, Smith
Square. My friends Danny and
Helen will be going too, so it
wouldn’t be…I’ll tell you what.
I’ll come and pick you up, and if
your mother and father
disapprove, then you can have the
tickets and go with one of them.
How does that sound?
Jenny doesn’t know what to say. She looks at David, and his
eagerness to please seems to convince her.
Thank you. And I’d like you to
take me. I’d like to go with
someone who knows when to clap.
I usually watch Danny. He knows
that sort of thing.
Seven? And we’ll probably go for
a spot of supper afterwards, if
you…But if you, if that’s
not…Well, we can always put you
in a taxi.
If you want.
The trouble is, we’ll already
Well. I mean, if you’d like
supper, then, perhaps on Friday
you could…not eat?
Oh. Yes. Of course.
Jenny smiles, and rejoins her friends on the other side of
the road. Tina and Hattie are standing there almost with
their mouths open, amazed. She doesn’t say anything and
starts to walk on.
I’m sorry. I just had the
strangest dream. I dreamed you
crossed the road and spoke to a
handsome man with the most
beautiful car I’ve ever seen. And
then you came back and you didn’t
Jenny smiles enigmatically. Tina grabs Jenny mock-urgently.
Just a man who’s been trying to
pick me up. We’re going to a
concert on Friday night. And then
we’re having a spot of supper.
A spot of supper?
You’ve heard of supper?
We’ve heard of it. But we’ve
never eaten it.
Neither of you is interested in
the concert part, I notice.
No. Of course not.
Oh my God! I’ve only just
realised! That’s what’s going to
happen to you, isn’t it? Look at
her! Men are going to pick her up
in the street and take her out to
God, you’re right, Tina. I hadn’t
thought of that. Look at her.
Don’t be so daft.
We’re trying to attract the
attention of boys.
And she’s fighting off men.
Anyway. You’re going to have to
tell us more than that.
Because no man’s ever going to
ask us out to supper. Not until
we’re ladies, anyway. You’re
going to have to tell us
everything. Otherwise it’s not
There won’t be anything to tell.
Well, make something up, then.
15 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 15
Jenny is dressed up for her evening out. She looks good,
but also stiff, uncomfortable – she’s not herself in her
dress, which looks too old for her. Her father is standing
in front of her, shouting.
I won’t allow it!
Fine. He’s quite happy for you to
Right. I will.
Where is it?
St John’s Smith Square.
I don’t know. I’m sure we could
Marjorie comes into the room.
It’s in Westminster. Just around
the corner from the Abbey.
Jack looks at her as if she’d just given directions to the
nearest opium den.
How d’you know that?
I had a life before we were
married, you know.
He soon put a stop to that.
There we are.
Where are we?
Near Westminster Abbey. I’m not
going all the way over there.
The trouble is, that’s where St
John’s Smith Square is.
And I’ve just said. That’s where
I’m not going. There must be
something on locally. Where’s the
Jack, she wants to see someone
who can play. She doesn’t want to
see Sheila Kirkland scratching
away. I’ll take her.
And how are you going to get over
there? RAF helicopter?
The doorbell rings.
That’s him. Now what?
Oh, bloody hell.
Jenny starts towards the door, and then turns.
Oh, and by the way…David’s a
Jew. A wandering Jew. So watch
She goes to the door.
What’s she talking about? I’ve
never said anything like that in
my life! Anyway, it’s just an
expression! I’m not against the
Jenny comes back in with David, who is dressed stylishly in
his early-60s young executive leisurewear – sports jacket,
slacks, cashmere sweater. He looks out of place – he is
brighter and brasher than his surroundings, the most
colourful thing in the room, and he seems intimidatingly
David has obviously heard Jack’s last line.
I’m glad to hear it. Hello. David
He offers his hand.
I didn’t mean I’m not against
you… Actually, I did mean that,
because I’m not, but…
David’s hand is still extended – in his confusion and
embarrassment, Jack hasn’t yet taken it. He does so now,
and shakes it for way too long.
I’m sorry. What I’m saying is
that you’re not the sort of, of
person I’d be against, if I were
the sort of person who was
against…people. You’re not an
old…Oh, dear. I’m Jack, and
this is Marjorie.
You didn’t tell me you had a
General confusion, until David chuckles naughtily. Marjorie
giggles, and then offers her hand.
You’re a lucky man, Jack.
I suppose I am, yes.
They all sit down.
So. Gosh. (He looks around
approvingly.) This is lovely.
I’m sorry, David. Can I get you a
I’d love one, Jack, but we’re
running a little late. If Jenny’s
ready, perhaps we’ll shoot off.
Jenny looks at her father, and takes a calculated gamble.
Ah. Well. Dad’s got something to
No, no, nothing…It was more of
a question, really. How would you
get to St John’s Smith Square
from here? For future reference?
Oh, it’s a pretty straight run,
really. Up to Hammersmith, take
the A4 through Kensington and
Simple as that.
Simple as that.
Jack smiles broadly.
So shall I book some tickets for
Back by ten, please, David. She’s
usually in bed by then.
I was hoping Jenny would come
with me afterwards to have a bite
of supper with my aunt Helen.
Jenny studies him carefully. Suddenly his friends Danny and
Helen have become `Aunt Helen’.
Oh, well, I suppose…
How about if I promise to have
her in by eleven thirty?
Well, it’s Friday night. And if
you’re going out to the West
Thanks, Jack. I appreciate it.
See you again.
They exchange warm handshakes. He turns to Marjorie.
Marjorie extends her hand. David takes it, but kisses it
suavely,leaving her a little flustered.
Have a nice time.
Jenny and David leave.
(sniffing the air)
What’s that smell? Has he got
It’s called after-shave, Jack.
And it makes a change from
At least there’s no confusion, if
you smell of carbolic soap.
Marjorie rolls her eyes.
Nobody’s ever going to get
confused about you, dear.
15A EXT. ST JOHN’S, SMITH SQUARE. NIGHT 15A
Jenny and David walk toward the beautiful hall. Jenny
suddenly looks young in the dress that looks too old for
her – other adults are milling around outside, and the
women don’t look like girls dressed up. David makes for an
incredibly glamorous and attractive couple in their late
twenties who are waiting outside – DANNY and HELEN. Helen
is as far from anyone’s idea of an aunt as one can get.
She’s no more beautiful than Jenny, but she’s dressed both
appropriately and spectacularly, in early-60s, pre-hippy
Bohemian gear. She turns heads in a way that Jenny is not
yet able to. Danny too is attractive, but soberly so. David
and Jenny are, in a way, paler, less striking versions of
Hello hello. Are we late?
I was hoping we’d miss the
beginning, and then it wouldn’t
be worth going in, and we could
go off dancing or something.
Helen is one of the more
reluctant members of tonight’s
Jenny and David laugh politely.
Jenny, these are my friends Helen
Jenny shakes hands with the two of them. They both give her
fascinated and clearly appraising looks. They have heard
They walk into the hall.
16 INT. ST JOHN’S SMITH SQUARE. NIGHT 16
It’s a beautiful hall – Jenny is dazzled by the
surroundings and the company. She’s particularly bowled
over by Helen.
Look. We can leave our coats
over there. I want to get rid of
She nods at the coat she’s carrying. Jenny looks thrilled
at the prospect of spending a couple of minutes with Helen.
Danny hands Helen his coat, without saying anything. The
girls walk over to another reception table a few yards
away, behind which is a cloakroom. A lady is exchanging
overcoats for tickets. Almost involuntarily, Jenny touches
the sleeve of Helen’s velvety jacket. She stops herself.
I’m so sorry.
That’s OK. It’s nice, isn’t it?
It’s beautiful. Where did it come
Oh, South Ken somewhere.
Helen looks at Jenny’s outfit, her frumpy `smart’ dress,
apparently wanting to return the compliment.
(nodding at the dress)
This is…Well, it’s good for
this sort of concert, isn’t it?
Helen is now at the front of the queue, and hands her coat
We should go shopping together
one day, if you want.
She takes a ticket from the cloakroom lady.
That would be nice. But South
Ken… C’est beaucoup trop cher
They stare at each other. Helen is bewildered, Jenny
I just said….It was too
expensive for me.
No you didn’t. You said something
I just…Well, I said it in
In French? Why?
Jenny feels humiliated; she is yet to realise what we can
see – that Helen is simply very dim.
I don’t know.
Jenny looks away. Helen stares at her. The performance bell
rings, and they make their way back to the men. To Jenny’s
surprise and pleasure, Helen links arms with her as they
Anyway. It’s too expensive for
me, too. We don’t have to worry
about that. If you want something
in South Ken, get David to take
Why on earth would he want to
take me shopping?
Helen makes a knowing face.
17 INT. ST JOHN’S SMITH SQUARE. NIGHT 17
David, Jenny, Danny and Helen in a row in the middle of the
auditorium, watching the stage and listening to the music.
Jenny can’t concentrate – she’s too excited by the occasion
and the company. Jenny sneaks a glance at Helen, who stares
straight ahead, unblinking and enigmatic. David is smiling,
as if he’s trying to communicate enjoyment; Danny’s eyes
flicker across the stage – he understands the music, its
component parts, which musicians are contributing what.
Jenny takes it all in.
18 EXT. ST JOHN’S SMITH SQUARE. NIGHT 18
Jenny, David, Danny and Helen emerge with the other concert-
I booked a table at Juliette’s.
Will that kill the mood, do you
Oh, I do hope so.
The others laugh.
I always think I’m going to my
own funeral when I listen to
classical music. (Tentatively)
That was classical, wasn’t it?
Yes. Very classical. As classical
as you can get.
Helen looks pleased.
Juliette’s it is, then. Heaven
forbid that we should end the
evening reflecting on our own
Jenny smiles in delight. She’s never met people like this.
19 INT. JULIETTE’S. NIGHT 19
A singer in the Julie London mould is singing `I’m In The
Mood For Love’ while cigarette girls and glamorous
waitresses patrol the tables.
Jenny is sitting with the others at a table in the club,
eating and talking. She looks about twelve, but she’s
thrilled to be there. We know now that her life can never
be the same again, and there will be no going back to fish-
paste sandwiches with spotty Graham.
Have you never heard “Chante
Jenny shakes her head. Her eyes are wide – she’s clearly
awe-struck. David offers her a cigarette – a Gitane – which
she takes. He lights it for her while she’s listening.
Oh, it’s wonderful.
I’ve only got….Well, I think
it’s just called `Juliette
Greco’. The one with the eyes on
the sleeve. I saved up and got my
French conversation teacher to
bring it back after Christmas.
You’ve got a French conversation
Is that why you suddenly speak
French for no reason?
You must have seen her sing?
Jenny shakes her head again and smiles. Where would she
have seen Juliette Greco? Danny, meanwhile, is baffled. Who
hasn’t seen Juliette Greco?
But you should see her in Paris,
not here. David will take you.
I’d love to. You’d fit right in.
Better than here, really.
It’s wonderful to find a young
person who wants to know things.
There’s so much I want you to
They sip their drinks pensively, possibly to allow time for
the double-entendre to disappear into the smoke.
Are you still all right to come
and have a look at that Pembroke
Villas place with me on Friday,
Oh. No. Can’t do it. There’s a
Burne-Jones coming up at
Christie’s on Friday. And I want
(laughing in disbelief)
You’re thinking of buying a Burne-
Jones? A real one?
I just have a feeling that the
pre-Raphaelites are going to take
I love the pre-Raphaelites.
(excited by her
Yes, of course. Rossetti and
Burne-Jones, anyway. Not Holman
Hunt, so much. He’s so garish.
Danny looks at her. There’s clearly more to this schoolgirl
than he thought.
Absolutely! Why don’t we all go
to the auction? Wouldn’t that be
An auction. Gosh. How exciting.
Next Friday morning. David will
pick you up.
She doesn’t want to explain why.
Helen looks at him aghast. Why has he started speaking
Are you sure you’re busy?
No. I’m sure I could….re-
arrange. That would be lovely.
20 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. NIGHT 20
Jenny lets herself quietly into the house. The hallway is
dark, but she can hear noises from the kitchen. She pokes
her head round the corner, and sees her mother doing the
Oh, hello, love. Did you have a
What are you doing?
I can’t get this casserole dish
clean. We had hot-pot tonight,
and it’s all burnt round…
It’s twenty-five to twelve. We
finish tea at seven.
I know what the time is. How was
It was…It was the best night of
And he took you home in his car?
Right to the door?
Jenny looks at her. She doesn’t seem to have heard what
Jenny has just said.
And I’m glad you enjoyed the
21 INT. CLASSROOM. DAY 21
Jenny, Hattie and Tina are sitting on their desks, waiting
for the start of a lesson. Nine or ten classmates are
scattered around the room, talking distractedly, but
Jenny’s group is much more animated: Tina and Hattie are
leaning forward, listening to Jenny, their eyes bright.
They are clearly awestruck by Jenny’s tales of the outside
I’m not interested in Schubert. I
want to know what else was on the
There was nothing like that. He
was the perfect gentleman. He
just said he wanted to take me
places and show me things.
Things plural? Oh my Gawd!
More laughter. The English teacher, MISS STUBBS, young and
fresh-faced and lively-looking, enters, and picks up on
the excitement of Jenny’s coterie.
I knew that in the end `Jane
Eyre’ would work its magic upon
you. I’m presuming that’s what
you’re so animated about.
The students start to sit down at desks in a more
`Jane Eyre’ and Jenny’s new
He’s not my “new boyfriend”. God.
It’s true. He’s more a man-
friend, isn’t he? He’s got a
sports-car, Miss Stubbs.
Ah. A Mr Rochester figure.
I think he must be as blind as Mr
Laughter. Jenny pulls a face at her.
Is there no end to your thirst
for literary understanding,
Jenny? As you may have noticed,
I’m attempting to turn the
subject away from Jenny’s lurid
love-life and towards the matter
She starts to hand out essays.
And it’s quite clear on this
evidence that most of you know
much too much about the former,
and almost nothing about the
latter. Reluctantly I must
concede that Jenny is evidently
an expert on both matters.
Excellent as always, Jenny.
Miss Stubbs slaps an essay down on Jenny’s desk. We can see
that it’s marked `A+’.
22 INT. JENNY’S BEDROOM. NIGHT 22
Jenny at her desk, working. She puts down her pen,
23 INT. DAVID’S CAR. DAY 23
David sitting in his Bristol, waiting.
24 EXT. SCHOOL. DAY 24
We see the Bristol parked outside, and Jenny walking
towards it, a small figure in a large playground. She’s
clearly just changed out of her school uniform, and she’s
making last-minute adjustments to her civvies. A teacher
walks towards her, and Jenny almost freezes – but the
teacher merely smiles pleasantly and walks past. Jenny
keeps walking at a measured pace for a moment and then
breaks into a run.
25 INT/EXT. CAR/DILAPIDATED HOUSE. DAY 25
Jenny and David are driving along a North Kensington
How do you know Danny?
David is distracted. He’s driving slowly, apparently
looking for an address.
Oh, you know. We kept bumping
into each other, and we became
pals, and we’ve ended up doing a
bit of work together, when it
What kind of work?
Property. A bit of art dealing.
Some buying and selling. This and
He stops the car.
I’ll be two seconds.
He gets out of the car, and Jenny watches him as he crosses
Outside a dilapidated house covered in scaffolding stands a
large West Indian family, mother, father, three or four
small children and a dog. They are surrounded by what
appears to be all their worldly goods. David squats down on
his haunches, talks to the kids, tousles the hair of the
smallest. Then he takes out a bunch of keys and ushers the
family down the path. He unlocks the door and leads them
In an upper window of the house, we see an old lady peering
26 EXT. STREET/DILAPIDATED HOUSE. DAY 26
David emerges from the house, jangling his keys.
27 INT. CAR. DAY 27
Jenny opens the glove compartment where David keeps his
cigarettes, takes out the packet, removes one for herself,
offers the packet to David as he gets into the car. He
lights them both.
I’m sorry about that.
How do you know those, those
Jenny darling, even schwarzers
have to live somewhere. And it’s
not as if they can rent off their
own kind, is it?
He starts the car and drives off.
I’m not sure I quite understand
what you do.
You don’t need to. It’s too
boring. All you need to know is
that I work in property so that I
can take you to nice places.
Jenny’s POV of the black family in one window, and the
little old lady disappearing from another.
28 INT. CHRISTIE’S. DAY 28
Danny intent on a catalogue, Helen gazing dreamily into
space, as David and Jenny push their way through the
crowded auction room. The auctioneer burbles on in the
You nearly missed it.
Jenny is in awe of rich London in all its finery. The
auctioneer clears his throat.
We turn to lot 41, The Tree of
Forgiveness, by Sir Edward Burne-
Jones. This is a rare opportunity
to purchase a key work of the Pre-
Raphaelite movement. Who will
start me off at five hundred
Jenny glances at Danny. He makes no move at this price.
Neither does anyone else. He’s poised and listening hard.
A middle-aged lady, the epitome of the middle-aged
contemporary Sloane, twin-set, pearls and a lot of face
powder, raises her hand.
Thank you, madam. Three hundred?
A man raises his hand.
Do I hear three-fifty?
The middle -aged Sloane nods.
Over to you sir. Four hundred
guineas? Thank you. Four hundred
Danny continues to sit there. Jenny is confused. The middle-
aged lady bids four-fifty. David, sitting next to Danny,
whispers something to him. Danny nods.
(whispers to Jenny)
Jenny looks at him.
No further bids?
Jenny raises her hand high, just as she’d do at school.
Five hundred guineas from the
very eager new bidder.
People look round and smile when they see who has come in.
Jenny blushes, but stares fixedly ahead.
Five hundred and fifty, madam?
Jenny looks at David, who nods.
Six hundred guineas.
Jenny gestures more economically.
Six-fifty? Thank you, madam.
Jenny is almost insouciant this time.
The middle-aged lady shakes her head and purses her lips.
when asked if she wants to bid £700.
Sold for six hundred and fifty
guineas. Thank you.
He brings down the gavel, and a murmur goes around the
room. Jenny is excited and giggly. David pats her on the
Your name, please?
Jenny looks at Danny.
You know who you are.
I know who you are, too. Tell
Thank you. Couldn’t have bought
it without you.
Well done. A nerveless
Jenny beams. She’s thrilled.
29 INT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 29
A beautiful, large, airy sitting room in the first-floor
flat in Bedford Square. The flat is unusually and
tastefully decorated, opulent and indicative of Bohemian
good taste. Jenny is sipping a glass of white wine and
walking around the room enthralled, looking at Danny’s
existing Pre-Raphaelite art collection; he has three or
four big paintings proudly displayed on his walls. Danny
is talking her through them while Helen and David, sitting
on the sofa, watch – David proudly, Helen impassively.
A couple of years ago you could
pick these up for fifty quid, you
know. Nobody was interested.
Really? Fifty pounds? I don’t
Suddenly Jenny sees a cello in the corner of the room – a
That’s not a Lockey-Hill!
There aren’t many people who come
in here and say that.
Certainly not me.
It’s beautiful. Do you play?
I used to. I vowed to myself that
one day I’d own one of these. And
now I own one and never touch it.
It’s vulgar to put it on show,
Give it to Jenny.
That would be even more vulgar.
Play for us, Jenny.
Gosh, no. One day. When I’m good
enough for it.
She’s good enough now.
Oh, David. You’ve never heard me.
Danny stands up and stretches.
I shall come to hear you in St
John’s Smith Square. Or in
Oxford, when you get there.
We should all go and spend a
weekend in Oxford. Straw boaters,
punting, cream teas, antiquarian
bookshops. Bit of business, if we
can find it. What about next
A weekend away? I wouldn’t be
allowed to do that.
They all look at her.
I’ll find a way. I’ll talk to
Jack and Marjorie.
Jenny hoots with derision.
You’re going to ask my father if
I can go away with you for the
weekend? He’d have you arrested.
I’ll bet you you can’t do it.
Be careful, Jenny. You don’t know
who you’re dealing with.
They shake hands. Jenny suddenly notice the clock on
Mon dieu! You must take me back
to school. And I’ve got to change
back into my uniform.
There is a silence. Danny and David make momentary eye
contact – they are clearly contemplating the erotic
possibilities of Jenny’s last sentence. Helen notices.
Oh, behave yourselves.
Jenny looks at them all, mystified.
30 INT. CLASSROOM/LATIN. DAY. 30
Jenny is in her Latin class, waiting for the lesson to
begin. Tina and Hattie aren’t with her, and she sits on her
own -the atmosphere of the class is very different from
Miss Stubbs’ English lessons. The girls are different, more
serious, less fun, and the atmosphere is more sombre. The
teacher, MRS WILSON, is older, plainer, stricter. She pulls
some papers out of her bag.
Test results for the Virgil
translation. We will start from
Jenny puffs out her cheeks. She’s not last.
MRS WILSON (CONT’D)
Absent. Margaret. 48%. Jenny…
MRS WILSON (CONT’D)
52%. That would just about scrape
a pass in the exam proper. Not
good enough for Oxford
31 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. DAY 31
Jenny and her mother are sitting on the sofa, staring into
space, clearly upset. On the coffee table in front of them
is the test, covered in red ink. They hear a key in the
lock, and they look at each other.
I’ll talk to him.
Jack enters, back from work. He’s wearing a suit and
carrying a battered briefcase. He looks at them, and then
notices the essay on the table.
It’s her Latin, isn’t it?
The test didn’t…Well, it didn’t
go as well as we’d hoped.
He picks up the paper.
And you still say I shouldn’t go
down there and have it out with
whatsername? The Latin teacher?
Because this is hopeless.
How are you going to “have it
out” with her? What are you going
to do? Shout at her until she
decides I’m much cleverer than
Everyone’s doing their best,
What if their best isn’t good
enough, though, eh? What do we do
We don’t go to Oxford. Any of us.
Not even you, Dad.
Perhaps it’s all a waste of time
and money anyway.
You don’t mean that.
Well, what’s she going to do with
an English degree? And if she’s
going to spend three years
playing that bloody cello and
talking in French to beatniks,
then I’m throwing good money
after bad. I suppose she might
meet a nice lawyer. But she could
do that at a dinner dance
Oh, yes. That’s the whole point
of an Oxford education. It’s the
expensive alternative to a dinner
What about private tuition?
Is anyone listening to me? How
much is that going to cost me?
Five shillings an hour. Maybe a
little more for A-level.
Five bob! But… we could spend
five bob on this and five bob on
that, and before we know it
that’s our savings down the
And what else are we spending
five bob on? What else are we
spending sixpence on?
Oh, nothing. (He gestures round
the room.) It’s all free. That
vase was free.
It was, actually. It was a
present from Auntie Vi.
That chair was free. The sofa.
We don’t have to pay for
anything. And even if we did, we
don’t have to work for it. That’s
the beauty of life, Jenny.
Everything’s free. Grows on
trees. Wonderful, isn’t it? (He
warms to his theme, and grows
progressively more berserk.)
We’ve got a lovely Oxford tree in
the garden, lucky for you, so
that’s Oxford taken care of. And
a whole orchard of school trees,
so that’s all free. I’m sure
there are some private tuition
trees out there. I’ll go and have
He stands up.
No, no, won’t take me a minute. I
think I saw some at the back
there, right next to the pocket
money tree. I’ll just nip out
and check, see that they’re
doing all right.
Don’t want anyone climbing over
the wall and scrumping, do we?
And you never know. Maybe
there’ll be a man with deep
pockets growing out there.
Because God knows we need to find
He leaves the room, apparently to look in the garden for
the mythical trees.
31A INT. JENNY’S HOUSE 31A
Jenny and her mother move to the window to watch him
talking theatrically to the trees.
32 EXT. STREET/COFFEE BAR. DAY. 32
Jenny, Hattie and Tina are walking back from school.
You could always go to
secretarial college with Hattie.
Hattie and Tina follow Jenny’s eyes, and they see Graham
coming towards them pushing his bike, red-faced, trousers
tucked into socks.
Oh. Graham. Hello.
I haven’t seen you for ages….It
all went wrong, didn’t it? The
tea-party, I mean. Was it because
of the year off?
No, no. It’s just…I’ve got so
much to do if I’m going to get
the grades I need.
Yes. She’s got no time for boys.
Hattie and Tina try to suppress giggles. Graham turns an
even brighter shade of red. Hattie and Tina enter the
coffee bar. Jenny feels sorry for him, is on the verge of
inviting him to join them…And changes her mind.
She follows the girls inside.
33 INT. JENNY’S BEDROOM/UPPER HALLWAY. NIGHT 33
Jenny is deep in her schoolwork. She has a Latin vocabulary
propped open on the window-ledge. She looks at it, walks
away, mutters to herself, attempting to memorize. Her
concentration is broken by a sudden gale of laughter from
34 INT. JENNY’S HALL. NIGHT 34
She stands outside the living room for a moment, listening.
She hears a man’s voice that does not belong to her father,
and then more laughter from her father and mother.
35 INT. LIVING ROOM. NIGHT 35
David is in the middle of demonstrating his ability to
mimic all of the Goons. Jack and Marjorie are laughing so
hard that they can hardly see – they certainly miss Jenny’s
Oh. Hello. David does the most
brilliant Bluebottle, Jenny.
Actually, he can do all the
I don’t think I’m very good at
Oh, no, you’ve got him…
But what’s he doing here?
I wasn’t going to disturb you. I
knew you’d have your nose to the
You came to see Mum and Dad?
Is that so hard to imagine?
Jenny spies an open bottle of wine on the coffee-table.
And you’re drinking? But it’s not
Hark at her! Makes us sound as
though we’ve signed the pledge.
You don’t know everything about
us, you know. We had a life
before you came along.
Yes, that’s true. I’m only going
on what I’ve seen over the last
I’m trying to think what you
missed. Nothing much comes to
They can’t stand to see me
Anyway. Would you excuse me? I’ve
got a huge pile of Latin
translation to do.
You didn’t tell me David went to
Jenny looks at David, who stares back at her straight-
No. I didn’t.
For all the good it did me.
What did you read?
Oh, English. Just like every
other semi-employed layabout in
(marvelling at the
English! Which college?
Isn’t that funny?
I was just telling Jack that I’m
going back next weekend. I go and
see my old professor every now
That’s what you need, Jenny.
Someone on the inside track. It’s
not always what you know, is it,
Too true. And Clive would love
Jenny. Have you ever come across
Dad has never come across anyone.
I just thought he might know some
of the books.
Dad has never read any books.
What’s he written?
He wrote a children’s book called
`The Lion, The Witch and The
Wardrobe’ that did very well, I
CS Lewis? That’s the Clive you’re
Well, to us he was just the old
codger who taught Medieval
literature. But I came to know
him very well. We just…got
along, do you know what I mean?
Everyone murmurs their comprehension.
Jenny used to love those books.
Gosh. That dates me. He was
writing them when I was there.
I’d love to meet him.
There is a pause. Jack and Marjorie look at the floor.
Somehow, David has manoeuvred a situation where,
effectively, he is the one being asked.
I’m sorry. I’m being slow on the
uptake. Would Jenny like to come
with me at the weekend?
Well, I don’t know about this
weekend. But one day, yes, thank
How often do you see him?
Oh, once every couple of years.
But next time, eh?
Hopefully I’ll be there by then.
So that won’t be much use.
Well, I suppose…Would she have
to stay the night?
Well, I wouldn’t want to drive
back after one of those Oxford
Jack chuckles knowingly.
Clive will get her a room in
college. That’s easy enough.
Sounds like too good an
opportunity to pass up.
Please, Daddy. It would be so
helpful to know something about
Would it be a bother to you,
I’d be delighted.
Jack, Marjorie and Jenny all beam.
36 INT. HALLWAY. NIGHT 36
Jenny opens the door for David.
That was scandalous.
I told you. You owe me half-a-
He kisses her on the cheek and disappears into the night.
37 INT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 37
David and Danny are waiting for the girls to get ready.
Danny is sitting sprawled in an armchair; David is pacing
up and down.
38 INT. HELEN’S BEDROOM. DAY 38
An ornate four-poster bed occupies most of the space in the
room. Helen is doing something to Jenny, but we can’t see
39 INT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 39
How can they only be nearly
I wouldn’t be surprised if three
of them come out, you know.
That’s the only explanation.
They’re making themselves a
friend. LADIES! Let’s go. Please.
40 INT. HELEN’S BEDROOM. DAY 40
Jenny is wearing a floaty print dress that she has borrowed
from Helen, and there are lots of other beautiful clothes
strewn about the place. Jenny is sitting at the dressing
table, being made up by Helen. Jenny looks three or four
years older, more sophisticated….more like Helen. She
can’t believe it. She looks in the mirror, and for a
moment, she forgets to breathe.
There. You’ll do. You can keep
it. I can only wear so many every
Jenny emerges from her reverie.
Really? Thank you.
What about tonight? Will you be
needing a nightie? Or not?
Jenny suddenly understands what Helen means.
Will we be sharing bedrooms?
You’re not sleeping with him?
Good for you.
Really? Do you think so?
You’re only sixteen. And you
don’t want to get into the
family way, do you?
Oh, I’d make sure that didn’t
happen. I’m going to do it when
I’m seventeen. On my seventeenth
Well…Golly. I suppose it will
be with David, won’t it?
When’s your birthday?
Oh, he’ll be around in April. If
that’s what you want. Anyway.
I’ll find you a nightie.
Jenny stares at herself in the mirror again.
41 INT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 41
The girls emerge. Both men are entranced by Jenny’s
transformation. David can’t take his eyes off her.
Shall, we, ah… Make a move?
He gets to his feet.
42 INT/EXT. CAR COUNTRY ROAD. DAY. 42
The Bristol on the country road to Oxford.
43 INT/EXT. CAR OXFORD DAY 43
The Bristol drives through Oxford. Jenny catches a quick
glimpse of a dreaming spire.
Imagine spending three years
She shudders, as if someone has walked over her grave.
Can we stop?
Maybe later. There are a couple
of things we have to do.
44 INT/EXT. CAR OXFORD BACK STREET. DAY. 44
Jenny and Helen in the back seat of the car, which is
parked outside a house in the back streets of Oxford.
There’s no sign of Danny and David. Jenny sighs
Oh, it’s always like this. There
are millions of places I’ve never
seen because I’ve been stuck in
You never get out?
There’s never anywhere to go in
the places they stop.
Jenny looks out of the window. This is self-evidently true.
45 INT. PUB. EVENING. 45
Helen and Danny, Jenny and David are standing in a quiet,
old-fashioned pub, warming themselves at an open fire.
David has a pen in his hand, and he’s holding a book – `The
Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe’.
So. Now.Is he Clive, do you
think? Or CS?
I’m confused now. I thought you’d
made him up?
(attempting, briefly, to
No, we…Never mind.
David walks over to the nearest table and writes in the
He stands up, hands the book to Jenny.
“To dear Jenny. With the pleasure
of meeting you. Come and see me
again soon. Clive.”
Dirty old man.
Laughter. He takes a long drink from his pint of bitter. A
group of students enter, all carrying musical instruments.
They stand at the bar, waiting to be served. Jenny stares
at them with longing – she wants to be one of them. Helen,
meanwhile, stares at them as if they were aliens.
Why are university girls so
Helen’s right. The girls in the group are all bespectacled
and frumpy. The others laugh.
It’s true. And they can’t all
have started off that way, can
they? Most girls aren’t ugly, but
most girl students are. So there
must be something about those
places that, you know, makes you
fat, or spotty, or short-sighted.
Well, if you look at it that
way…I mean, that’s proper
scientific analysis. And you
can’t argue with science.
Helen looks pleased.
I’m still not quite clear on what
you want to do when you get here.
I want to read English.
You want to read English books?
Oh. Yes. Reading English is just
another way of saying…
I wouldn’t worry, Jenny. You’re
wasting your breath.
Anyway, tomorrow we’ll try to get
more of a feel for the place.
Absolutely. This would be a good
place to do a little business.
David catches Jenny’s eye. This isn’t what he meant by
“getting a feel for the place.”
All those little old ladies
wandering around…I’ll bet this
place is rife with stats.
Please explain what stats are.
You’re always going on about
All right. Think of a number. Now
think about the most boring
lesson you’ve ever had at school.
Now double it. Done? Doubled? Now
multiply it by the number you
first thought of, and there you
are. That’s the official boredom
content of stats.
46 INT. B & B BEDROOM. NIGHT 46
A rather grotty and certainly unromantic B&B bedroom – so
unromantic, in fact, that it even has the same fusty
curtains from Jenny’s sitting room. David is in bed, his
hands behind his head, waiting for Jenny. As far as we can
tell – he’s wrapped up in the sheets quite tightly – he’s
in his underwear. The bedroom is lit unromantically by the
40-watt overhead light. Jenny comes into the room wearing
one of Helen’s nightdresses, a glamorous satiny item quite
inappropriate for the occasion or the surroundings. She
We’ve got exactly the same
curtains at home.
Let’s not talk about curtains.
You look beautiful. You really
are a princess.
Jenny was about to get into bed, but his tone makes her
pause at the edge of the bed.
There’s something you should
know, David. I’m…Well, I’m a
virgin. And I want to stay that
way until I’m seventeen.
I think that’s good. I think
that’s right. And for your
seventeenth birthday I’m going to
take you to Paris or Rome or
Florence and make you feel like
the most beautiful princess in
the kingdom of love. But we can
still be romantic, can’t we?
Well, yes. Of course we can. If
it doesn’t mean…
Is that me?
Yes. You’re my Minnie Mouse, and
I’m your bubbalub.
Oh. If that’s what..
Sorry. Yes, bubbalub?
Would you mind if I had a look at
what might one day be mine? Just
His eyes stray to her breasts. Jenny stares at him.
You just want to see them?
I just want to see them.
Jenny, flustered and nervous, looks at her nightgown – she
doesn’t know what to do.
Let it fall from your shoulders.
She does so. He stares.
He sits up, and lovingly lifts the straps back up. He
smiles at her. Relieved, she smiles back.
47 INT/EXT. CAR COTTAGE. DAY 47
The Bristol, containing David and Jenny in the front seats
and Danny and Helen in the back, passing through a pretty
Oxfordshire village. It pulls up outside a country cottage
with a `FOR SALE’ sign outside.
48 INT. CAR. DAY 48
Might be worth a look.
49 EXT. CAR COTTAGE. DAY 49
The four get out of the car, and Jenny follows David and
Danny to the front door of the house. Helen hangs back.
Jenny turns around.
Aren’t you coming?
We don’t go in.
What are you talking about?
Helen will look after you. Go and
find a nice cup of tea somewhere.
Jenny is mystified.
I don’t need looking after, thank
you very much. David, I want to
David ignores her.
I’m not going to tell you a
second time. Now. Run along.
49A EXT. BENCH. DAY 49A
Helen and Jenny waiting for the boys. Helen is blithe,
chatty; Jenny has a face like thunder.
They won’t be long. Either way.
Sometimes they find something,
sometimes they don’t.
In the distance, David is waving at them urgently.
And when they do find something,
we usually have to leave quite
quickly. They can be a bit
naughty, sometimes. Anyway. It’s
nice to have company. I’m usually
outside on my own.
Jenny stares at Helen. She’s beginning to realise who she
is dealing with.
50 SCENE OMITTED 50
51 SCENE OMITTED 51
52 INT/EXT. CAR NEW COUNTRY ROAD. DAY 52
An old picture of some kind is wedged between Helen and
Jenny on the back seat. Jenny, furious, is staring out of
the window. Helen attempts to peer around the partition,
but settles for a wave.
Jenny doesn’t respond.
Sorry about being a little brisk
back there, Jenny. We have our
way of doing things. Silly,
Still no response.
Oh, come on, Jenny. Let’s not
Me? I’m spoiling things?
I think there must be some kind
Jenny shakes her head bitterly. They continue driving in
53 EXT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 53
The Bristol pulls up outside Danny’s Bedford Square flat.
Who wants to come up for a
No thanks. You go. I’ll find my
own way home.
Jenny gets out of the car and starts up the road. David
gets out and starts to chase after her.
He catches up with her in the street.
It was an old map. A Speed. It
was cooped up in that miserable
little cottage, and she didn’t
even know what it was. What a
waste! It shouldn’t spend its
life on a wall in wherever the
hell we are. It should be with
us. We know how to look after it
properly. We liberated it.
Jenny snorts derisively.
Liberated! That’s one word for
Oh, don’t be bourgeois, Jenny.
You’re better than that. I know
you have fun with us. I can see
it. You drink everything I put in
front of you down in one, every
last drop, and then you slam your
glass down on the bar and ask for
more, and it’s wonderful. We’re
not clever like you, so we have
to be clever in other ways,
because if we weren’t, there
would be no fun.
We have to be clever with maps,
and..and.. You want to know what
stats are? Stats are old ladies
who are scared of coloured
people. So I move the coloureds
in and the old ladies move out
and I buy their flats cheap.
That’s what I do. So now you
Jenny nods reluctantly.
And if you don’t like it, then I
will understand, and you can go
back to Twickenham and listen to
the Home Service and do your
Latin homework. But these
weekends, and the restaurants and
the concerts..They don’t grow on
Jenny looks at him, startled. Trees again?
Do you understand? Of course you
do. This is who we are, Jenny.
He turns to face her and holds out his hand. On Jenny: is
she in or out? Jenny takes his hand. David pulls her
towards him, holds her around the waist and begins to dance
with her. Further up the pavement, Helen and Danny watch,
54 EXT/INT. CAR JENNY’ HOUSE. NIGHT 54
David pulls up in the Bristol outside Jenny’s house, and
they sit in the dark for a little while.
I suppose you have homework to
Gosh. Yes. Loads. (Beat) Thank
you. I had a nice time.
(surprised, despite his
Really? In spite of the, the
incident? With the map?
As you said in the car, it was a
Exactly. A muddle.
You have no idea how boring
everything was before I met you.
I hope that there’s something
more than excitement to our
Excitement’s a lot, when you’re
at school and you live in
You know what I’m trying to say.
I want you to like me for who I
am, not just what I can do for
But that is who you are. I’ve
never met anyone like you. Action
is character, our English teacher
What does that mean?
I think it means that if we never
did anything, we wouldn’t be
anybody. And I never did anything
before I met you. And sometimes I
think no-one’s ever done anything
in this stupid country, apart
That’s a good place to end the
weekend. I’ll give you a tinkle.
They look at each other. David is clearly smitten. He moves
towards her. He wants to kiss her, but he doesn’t want to
frighten her – in the end, Jenny makes it easy for him and
moves towards him. They kiss gently and tenderly.
Flustered, Jenny breaks it off, gets out of the car and
goes inside while David watches.
55 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. NIGHT 55
Jenny enters the sitting room with her overnight bag to
find the radio on, her father reading the paper and her
mother knitting. When Jenny comes in, Jack beams. He has
clearly turned some kind of corner.
Here she is! The wanderer
Did you have a nice time?
Lovely, thank you.
Was he nice to you?
Jenny unzips her bag and pulls out her copy of the book.
She hands it to her father.
Jack examines the inscription.
Well I never. Look at this,
He hands it to her. She examines it reverently.
“Clive”…Lucky girl. What was he
He was just…normal. Kind.
And did he show you round?
Oh, he was busy. David did,
What did you think?
Did it make you want to work
Never a dull moment with David,
is there? If it’s not concerts,
it’s famous authors. Bit
different from that lad you
brought home for tea, isn’t he?
David’s a lot older than Graham.
Graham could live to be two
hundred, and he still wouldn’t be
swanning around with famous
authors. Hasn’t got it in him.
He might become a famous author,
for all you know.
Being one isn’t the same as
knowing one, is it? Anyone can be
one. But if you move in those
Well, it says something about
you, doesn’t it? It says you’re
going places. It says you’re well
connected. He’s an impressive
young man, that David. I like him
more and more.
Well, they say opposites attract,
don’t they? I wouldn’t have
thought he was your sort.
He wasn’t. And now he is.
Is that how you feel, Jenny?
I feel….I Feel I should do my
She leaves the room. Marjorie watches her go thoughtfully.
56 EXT. PARK. DAY 56
A group of girls cross-country running. Jenny and her
friends are at the back of the group, and the gym teacher ,
jogging backwards, gesticulates at them to get a move on.
Ladies, please. Christmas is
They put on enough of a spurt to satisfy her, and then
immediately stop when the teacher is no longer watching.
Seeing an attractive bench, they sit down. From somewhere
under a skirt, Jenny produces a packet of exotic-looking
cigarettes and offers them around.
What the hell are those?
Hattie and Tina make snooty faces. Jenny takes a cigarette.
The others follow suit. Jenny lights them, and they all
grimace. The contrast between the sophisticated cigarettes,
and the unsophisticated smokers and context is pronounced.
Where did they come from?
She might have bought them from
the Savoy, or Claridges, or the
opera, or some fancy nightclub.
Who knows, with Jenny?
Paris. You can’t buy them here.
(suddenly looking at
You never bought them yourself?
No. I never.
Shut up, you stuck-up cow.
But I’ll bring you some back, if
He’s taking you to Paris?
Isn’t it your birthday next
The two friends shriek and jump up and down.
Oh, my God! Your birthday!
I wouldn’t like to be you. All
those dinners you’ve had off him.
You have such a Victorian
attitude to sex, you two.
Oh, sorry, Dr Kinsey. We’re not
all as experienced as you. I
mean, you’ve done it…(She
counts on her fingers) I make it
never! Can that be right?
But your parents are just going
to let you swan off like that?
They don’t know yet. David’s got
a plan, he says. He usually has
something up his sleeve.
I’ve noticed that. What did he
tell them when you had your
weekend in Oxford?
(animated by the memory)
Oh, it was….(She changes her
mind) David went to Oxford.
Merton. English. And he offered
to show me round.
So you have a good-looking
boyfriend with pots of money,
brains and a nice car.
Apparently I do.
Tina makes a bitter face.
And they tell us there’s a God.
Laughter. Jenny glances off into the distance, and spots a
portly middle-aged woman heading in their direction.
Sod. Miss Davies.
They stand up, grind their Sobranies into the mud, kick
them under the bench, and set off at a brisk trot. The
Sobranie stubs come to rest near a pile of dog poo.
57 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. DAY 57
Breakfast on Jenny’s birthday. Jenny is at the table
buttering toast. Jack is reading the paper, Marjorie is
cooking him eggs and bacon.
Is David taking you somewhere
Not that I know of.
I’ve asked Graham round for tea
and birthday cake.
What do we want him round for?
I happened to be talking to his
mother about something, and…
What did you happen to be talking
to her about?
I thought it would be nice.
What if David turns up?
Are we expecting David to turn
It might not be a bad thing if he
Well, if you think about it,
there’s more than one way of
skinning a cat.
And who’s the skinned cat, in
this enchanting image? Me?
No, of course…
I have an education to pursue.
58 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 58
Graham, Jenny and her father are at the dinner table,
sitting in the dark. Marjorie kicks the door open with her
foot and comes in holding a birthday cake with seventeen
candles burning on it. She puts it down carefully on the
Blow them out, then, before the
whole place burns down.
Jenny closes her eyes, makes her wish, blows out her
candles. Her father and mother both look at her, apparently
attempting to read her mind. Jack gets up to turn the
lights on. We can see that by Jenny’s side are two
unopened, carefully-wrapped presents, both exactly the same
size – clearly books.
Who’d like a piece?
In truth, the cake is a rather sorry and unappetising
specimen. There isn’t enough icing on the top. She cuts a
couple of slices which immediately collapse.
Never mind. I’ll have one of
Come on. Presents.
Without any real enthusiasm, Jenny opens the first one of
the two, from her mum and dad. It’s a Latin dictionary.
Oh. Thank you. I needed a new
The doorbell rings. Jenny perks up. Jack goes to answer it,
and immediately the house is energised: it’s David.
58A INT/EXT JENNY’S HOUSE 58A
Jack answers the door to David.
58B INT. JENNY’S HOUSE 58B
Good grief. You won’t believe
this, Jenny. Did you leave
anything in the shop?
David enters. You can hardly see him for all the parcels
and flowers he’s carrying.
It’s a special day.
He and Jenny exchange a glance. Jack comes in behind him.
She’s a special girl.
Oh, I know it. (to Graham) Hello,
This is Graham.
Graham, a pleasure. I’m David.
They shake hands. Graham suddenly looks five years younger.
Makes your dictionary look a bit
feeble, eh Graham?
Graham looks pained. Marjorie notices.
And ours too, come to that.
Well, we’re not the ones trying
to impress her.
David, what can I get you to
What’s everybody else having?
What have you got there, Graham?
I’ve given him a glass of pop.
I’d better be going I have a
stack of homework to do.
Graham says his goodbyes. He tries to catch Jenny’s eye,
but she looks away. Marjorie shows him to the door.
Yes. Well. You can put the pop
away now. What is there for the
A glass of something warming?
You know me so well.
Hearty laughter from the two men.
Can I open anything yet?
Marjorie comes back into the room.
Wait for me.
Before you start on that little
lot , I have a surprise. Next
weekend, we’re all going to Chez
Georges to celebrate Jenny’s
Chez Georges is in the Boulevard
St Germain. In Paris.
Jenny giggles her delight. Jack’s smile is a little more
How d’you mean, Paris?
You know the one, Dad.
But..We haven’t got any French
money. And I’m not sure…I just
don’t think it would agree with
They don’t like us, the French,
you know. John Sutton at work
went once. They were very rude to
him. I’m not sure I’d like that.
Jenny understands David’s ploy perfectly, and the role she
must play. Her eyes fill with tears. Jack notices.
I don’t want to spoil anyone’s
fun, but…It’s not for me,
Europe. We’ll go another time.
You’ve just said you don’t like
Europe. What’s going to change?
It’ll have to be Europe, won’t
it? Because it isn’t going to be
I can take her.
To France? And leave me here on
Oh, for God’s sake.
Jack looks cornered. He needs to find a way out.
Listen, I’m really sorry to have
caused all this to-do. I just
thought it might be nice. But
I’ll go with Aunt Helen and Uncle
Daniel. They can have your
Jack looks at him.
Aunt Helen? The one who went to
the concert with you?
Yes, that’s the one.
Well, there we are.
Where are we?
Aunt Helen! Don’t you see? If
Aunt Helen’s going to be
(the penny apparently
I didn’t want to put a spoke in
anyone’s wheels. But if you look
at it from my angle…A bachelor,
taking my daughter off to
Oh, impossible. I hadn’t thought
it through properly. I do
apologise, Jack. Would you prefer
it if Helen took Jenny on her
own? I don’t mind. I’ve been to
Oh, I couldn’t possibly ask…No,
no. If Aunt Helen’s going…
He smiles broadly. He’s off the hook. Jenny catches David’s
eye and smiles.
59 INT. CLASSROOM. DAY 59
Hattie, Tina and Jenny are sitting on their desks, waiting
for a lesson to start. Hattie shows Jenny a piece of paper
which apparently contains some kind of shopping list.
There are some things you must
buy for us, and some things you
only have to buy for us if you’re
a proper, true friend. (She
points at Hattie, then at
herself.) Chanel perfume, Chanel
perfume. (She repeats the
gesture) Chanel lipstick, Chanel
lipstick. What have I forgotten?
Those funny cigarettes you were
smoking. Sobranies. Ten packets
A very small girl, twelve or thirteen, comes in to the
classroom and approaches Jenny.
Are you the girl going to Paris?
Tina, Hattie and Jenny stare at her.
Well are you or aren’t you?
Because I’d like some perfume.
Miss Stubbs comes into the classroom carrying books and
essays. She sees the small girl and shoos her out. She then
approaches Jenny and whispers discreetly into her ear.
Jenny, the headmistress would
like a word at the end of the
lesson. I’m afraid that the
legend of Mr Rochester may have
travelled further than you
Jenny looks at her, startled and a little sick.
60 INT. HEADMISTRESS’S OFFICE. DAY. 60
The office is dark, wood-panelled, foreboding, apparently
designed to put all visitors ill-at-ease. The headmistress
would probably choose to be wood-panelled if she could.
She’s tweedy, bespectacled, severe. There is a knock at the
door. She doesn’t look up from her paperwork.
Jenny enters, looking young and frightened.
Ah. Miss Mellor.
Jenny tries to look back at her with all the courage she
We’re all very excited about your
forthcoming trip to Paris. Our
excitement, indeed, knows no
bounds. Some of us can talk of
Jenny looks at her feet.
An older man, I understand. A
word of warning, Miss Mellor.
There may well have been the odd
sixth-form girl who has lost an
important part of herself –
perhaps the best part – while
under our supervision. These
things happen, regrettably. If,
however, we are made aware of
this loss, then of course the
young lady in question would have
to continue her studies
elsewhere, if she still has any
use for `A’-levels. Is that
Can I go now?
Jenny turns round and walks out without saying another
62 INT. HOTEL BEDROOM. EVENING 62
Through the window of a hotel suite, we see a BEA jet
soaring into the sky.
David and Jenny aren’t on it, though. They are letting
themselves into the room. Jenny stares at the featureless
There’s no bed.
Ah. I pushed the boat out and got
us a suite.
Well, if work stops us getting to
Paris until tomorrow, then work
can buy us a nice hotel room.
Anyway, it’s a special occasion,
I would have thought that tonight
of all nights we only need a
Close on David’s reaction – she hasn’t forgotten that
tonight’s the night.
63 INT. HOTEL BEDROOM. NIGHT 63
David and Jenny in bed, in a dimly lit bedroom. They are
kissing – David more passionately than Jenny. He is making
little whimpers of excitement, and Jenny is clearly trying
hard to hide her nerves. We’re acutely aware of her age,
and of her virginity. Suddenly David breaks off.
Hold on a second. I’ve got
Rather absurdly, he half-disappears over the side of the
bed, reaching for something on the floor. He comes back
with a banana. Jenny stares at him.
What on earth is that for?
I thought….I thought we might
want to practice.
Jenny shrieks with horror.
With a banana?
I thought we’d get the messy bit
over with first.
David, I don’t want to lose my
virginity to a piece of fruit.
David attempts to kiss her again. Jenny wriggles clear.
Let’s wait until we get to Paris.
I think the moment might have
I’m sorry, Minnie. I’m such a
Jenny doesn’t deny it.
And David….. if tomorrow night
does happen, it will never happen
Why won’t it ever happen again?
Because the first time can only
So, please…No Minnies. No baby-
talk. I’m not old enough for baby-
talk. Treat me like a grown-up.
David looks chastened.
I know. Let’s go and sit in our
Hooray! I’ll order some
Jenny looks at him with what might, from one angle, be
construed as fondness.
MONTAGE SEQUENCE – PARIS
64 EXT. LEFT BANK. DAY. 64
Juliette Greco on the soundtrack. Jenny leans against a
wall, the Seine and Notre Dame behind her. David takes her
picture. She looks fantastic in the clothes David has given
her for her birthday.
65 INT. ART GALLERY. DAY 65
A crowded Left Bank gallery. Jenny is sitting on the floor
watching an impossibly handsome young Frenchman paint black
the body of an impressively passive naked woman. The young
man sitting next to Jenny gives her an appraising look.
David, standing at the back and looking square and
66 INT. RECORD SHOP. DAY 66
We see three listening booths, all containing customers.
Jenny and David are in the middle booth, listening to the
Juliette Greco song on the soundtrack. (For a moment, the
sound quality changes – soundtrack becomes source music,
seamlessly.) Jenny is studying the sleeve. She wants to hug
herself, she’s so excited.
67 EXT. CAFE. EVENING. 67
A Left Bank cafe – David and Jenny are eating steak frites
outside, drinking vin ordinaire, watching the world go by.
They are both anticipating the night ahead.
68 EXT. VIEW OF SACRE COEUR/MONTMARTRE 68
69 EXT. PARIS HOTEL. DAWN 69
Jenny is smoking at the second-floor window of a simple,
pretty Parisian hotel, wearing a glamorous-looking slip and
looking at the street life below her.
70 INT. HOTEL ROOM. DAWN 70
The bedroom is simple and romantic – everything the airport
hotel wasn’t. David is lying amid rumpled sheets, smoking
what is clearly a post-coital cigarette, and watching Jenny
Do you still feel like a
Jenny turns round, smiles, shakes her head.
And it wasn’t too uncomfortable?
Not after the…first bit. It’s
funny, though, isn’t it? All that
poetry, and all those songs and
films, about something that lasts
no time at all?
David looks at her. She isn’t being cruel. She just doesn’t
know any different. She returns to her people-watching. He
71 EXT. PARK. DAY 71
…Jenny in her games kit, smoking her Sobranie with her
friends on the park bench again. Hattie and Tina are
examining their bottles of Chanel reverently. Jenny is back
to being her seventeen-year-old self; somehow her seventeen-
year-old self looks comical, and no longer appropriate.
How can you go back to double
French when you’ve had a weekend
with an older man in a posh hotel
in Paris? You wouldn’t catch me
coming anywhere near this dump.
It wasn’t all glamour. We spent
half the weekend at Heathrow in a
hotel suite .
A suite? Oh my God. Your life.
They smoke their Sobranies ruminatively.
You’re going to miss it. All the
swanning around in posh hotels.
Why will I need to miss it?
When you go to Oxford. Unless
you’re planning on being with
Jenny doesn’t say anything.
You’re not, are you?
So? Won’t you miss it?
Jenny shrugs. Clearly she will, and clearly she hasn’t
thought about it before.
We’ll miss it.
72 INT. CLASSROOM. DAY 72
Jenny’s English class file past Miss Stubbs at the end of a
lesson. Miss Stubbs stops Jenny.
Jenny, could I have a word?
Of course.(To Hattie and Tina)
I’ll catch you up.
Miss Stubbs waits until the room empties.
You can do anything you want,
Jenny. You know that. You’re
clever and you’re pretty… But
sometimes those things fight. I’m
worried that at the moment clever
Jenny and pretty Jenny are
What do you mean?
I couldn’t bear it if clever
Jenny lost. It’s because of
people like you that I plough
through illiterate essays by
Sandra Lovell about her pony. And
there aren’t many of you, I can
tell you. One every few years. Is
your boyfriend interested in
I think so.
Interested enough to let her do
what she wants?
He couldn’t stop me.
He might not have to stop you.
That’s what I’m trying to tell
I’m not sure what you’re trying
to tell me.
I’m telling you to go to Oxford.
No matter what. Or you’ll break
Jenny looks at her.
Where did you go?
Where did you go? Which
What does that mean? `Oh’?
You’re clever. And you’re pretty.
So presumably, Clever Miss Stubbs
won. And here you are, reading
all those pony essays. I don’t
know. These last few months, I’ve
been to Paris, and to jazz clubs,
and I’ve eaten in wonderful
restaurants, and seen wonderful
films, heard beautiful music…
I’m sure you have. But I was
filled up with beautiful things,
books and music and conversation,
in exactly the same way at
Cambridge. And I didn’t have to
pay the same sort of price. Are
you taking precautions, Jenny?
Jenny stares at her angrily.
It’s nothing to do with that.
Maybe our lives are always going
to end up with pony essays. Or
housework. And yes, maybe we’ll
go up to Oxford. But if we’re all
going to die the moment we
graduate, maybe it’s what we do
before that counts.
I’m sorry you think I’m dead.
I don’t think you’re dead. But…
You’d better get to your next
She turns her back on Jenny.
73 EXT. CAR. NIGHT 73
Helen, Danny, Jenny get out of David’s Bristol, which is
parked outside a nightclub called Esmerelda’s Barn. David
has parked next to a white Rolls-Royce.
(looking at the Rolls-
And we know the person who owns
Yes. Perec Rachman. He’s a….
Danny and David laugh.
He’s a business acquaintance, and
we need to talk to him.
I gathered that much. But why do
we have to crawl around the West
End looking for his car? Why
don’t you just make an
appointment, if you want to see
The men snigger.
What? Ring his office? Talk to
his secretary? That isn’t how it
works with him, dear.
74 INT. CLUB. NIGHT 74
The four walk in and take their coats over to the
cloakroom. The club is a smoky West End club, full of
smartly-dressed and dubious-looking men, and young,
glamorous, dubious-looking women. Jenny and Helen look out
of place – Helen too ethereal, Jenny too innocent. There is
There he is.
We see a nasty-looking man in his late 30s/early 40s. He is
wearing a white sharksin suit and smoking a big cigar. He’s
standing by the roulette table, talking to an even nastier-
looking man in a dark suit.
They find a table at the back and sit down. A waitress
comes over to their table.
A bottle of champagne, please.
Oh-ho. Champagne, eh?
He looks at Jenny and David expectantly.
Don’t be bashful.
No. Be Sneezy.
Everyone ignores her.
All right, then. If you won’t
tell them I will. Jenny got two
As and a B in her mock-A levels.
The B was in Latin. But it’s much
better than it was, isn’t it,
Rachman is now standing on his own. Danny nudges David, and
they go over to talk to him just as the champagne arrives.
The waiter pops the bottle of champagne and pours two
glasses. The girls smile and clink glasses.
Someone told me that in fifty
years no-one will speak Latin,
probably. Not even Latin people.
So you shouldn’t mind too much
about your B.
Jenny stares at her, trying to think of a response.
75 INT. CLUB. NIGHT 75
Danny and David are at the bar, having just finished
talking to Rachman. Danny puffs out his cheeks and shakes
Well, I’m not sure you’d want him
to marry your sister. I’m not
even sure you’d want to talk to
him in a night-club, come to
They both chuckle. There is a silence for a moment.
You do know what you’re doing,
old chap? With Jenny?
This is the one, Danny.
We’ve heard that before.
You can see she’s different.
She’s got everything. You’ve got
And you’ve got Helen with brains.
I don’t want to see her hurt.
They make their way back to their table.
76 INT. CLUB. NIGHT 76
While David and Helen watch, Danny and Jenny dance. Danny’s
a good dancer; Jenny is nervous at first, but becomes more
comfortable and more expressive, with Danny’s help.
(knowing that she should
make conversation, as
all the couples around
her are doing)
Have you…Have you bought any
more paintings recently?
Have I? Let’s think? Oh, I picked
up a little Piper the other day.
A good `un, I think.
I’m still trying to work out what
makes good things good. It’s
hard, isn’t it?
The thing is, Jenny, you know,
without necessarily being able to
explain why. You’ve got taste.
That’s not even half the
battle. That’s the whole war.
Jenny smiles at him with gratitude. There is a sudden
closeness between them. David is watching them carefully.
They return to their table.
Jenny, we should go. It’s late.
Alas. One day, school will be
over forever, and we can talk
about art all night.
You’re all right in a taxi,
He guides Jenny firmly out of the club.
77 EXT. CLUB. NIGHT. 77
Jenny is about to to open the passenger door of the
Bristol, but David stops her.
He runs to the back of the car, opens the boot and starts
rummaging through it. It seems to be full of everything
but the thing he’s looking for.
What are you doing?
He slams the boot shut and comes back empty-handed.
Will you marry me?
Jenny stares at him for a moment, then laughs.
What were you looking for?
I thought I had a ring. It
wouldn’t have been the right one.
But it would have done for
(eyes twinkling with
You’re very sweet.
What do you think?
Please take me home.
She gets into the car. We see the desperation in David’s
face, lit by the headlights of a passing taxi, as he slams
the door on Jenny after she’s got in.
78 EXT. SCHOOL YARD. DAY 78
Jenny, Tina and Hattie all smoking in the school toilets.
Jenny is distracted, and standing apart from the others.
Tina looks at her.
How do you say `A penny for your
thoughts?’ in French?
A franc is too much, isn’t it?
For her thoughts, yes. You’d be
overpaying by about ninety-nine
Suddenly the door bursts open and the Latin teacher comes
79 INT. HEAD’S OFFICE. DAY 79
The three girls are lined up in front of the headmistress,
hands by their sides.
I’m surprised that you two are
standing in front of me. I’m not
surprised to find you here, Miss
Mellor, though I do feel rather
like the judge who sent Al Capone
to prison for tax evasion. We
take a very dim view of smoking.
We take an even dimmer view of
some of your other behaviour,
which as far as we know has taken
place off school premises. Your
appearance here today, however,
allows me to remind you that we
are trying to teach you how to
become young ladies, not
nightclub hostesses. In reality,
of course, you are neither. You
are merely silly little girls.
Detention after school. Go away.
Jenny’s face sets hard. Something in her shuts down.
80 EXT. JENNY’S BALCONY. EVENING 80
Jenny is smoking on the balcony.
80A INT. JENNY’S BEDROOM. 80A
Jenny is at her desk in her bedroom, trying to work, but
she can’t concentrate. Her hair is tied back in a pony-
tail. She gets up, pulls back the curtains, looks out of
the window. We see what she sees: a sleepy suburban street
at night. She looks back at her desk. It looks even more
boring than the street. She looks at her scrubbed seventeen-
year-old face in the mirror – so much younger than the
Jenny we have seen with David. She makes herself up, and
she gets older and more glamorous before our eyes. In her
make-up and her school uniform, she’s half-woman, half-
child. We hear the noises drifting up from the kitchen: the
radio, the washing-up, occasional muffled conversation.
Jenny walks out of the bedroom and slips downstairs.
81 INT. KITCHEN. EVENING 81
Jenny’s mother and father are doing the washing up and
listening to the radio. They have their backs to the door.
Jenny enters the room quietly and watches them for a moment
MAN ON THE RADIO
They do need some looking after,
but nothing that will require too
much work. Just leave them in
your potting shed for a couple of
weeks, and they’ll look after
Oh, aye. The potting shed. Who
does he think I am? Prince
Rainier of Monaco?
What if I got married instead of
going to college?
Jack and Marjorie turn around and stare at this strange
apparition wearing too much make-up and a school uniform.
It would depend who it was,
Would it? That’s interesting.
Course it would. I wouldn’t want
you married off just for the
sake of it.
Has somebody asked you?
Marjorie rolls her eyes.
What did you tell him?
No. A man I just met walking his
David’s asked you to marry him?
Bloody hell. Pardon my French.
Do you have any choice? Or is it
She looks at her daughter knowingly. Jack merely looks
Of course she’s got a choice. But
it’s an interesting one, isn’t
This is where you’re supposed to
say, “But what about Oxford?”
Well. Looked at it one way, you
wouldn’t really need to go now,
would you? He’s a man going
places. And say what you like,
but they know how to take care of
their money, don’t they? He’ll
see you’re looked after.
(quietly, turning the
words over in her
I wouldn’t need to go. Would you
like to expand on that?
You know what I mean.
Jenny laughs bitterly. She can’t believe it.
All that Latin! All those essays!
What was the point? Why didn’t
you just send me out prowling
round nightclubs? It would have
been less trouble. And I might
have had more fun.
We don’t know about nightclubs.
We knew about education. Anyway,
it all turned out for the best.
He wouldn’t have wanted you if
you were thick, would he?
Jenny stares at them and walks out.
82 INT. CLASSROOM. DAY 82
English. Miss Stubbs is standing at the front of the class,
holding a copy of King Lear, and listening as various
members of the class massacre the text. Some are messing
about by overacting; others read to the best of their
ability, tonelessly and with no understanding of the words.
Lear himself is being read by Ann, the bespectacled girl
from the first scene. She’s no King Lear, and she’s one of
the bad readers.
May not an ass know when the cart
draws the horse? Sings whoop jug
I love thee.
Yes, when it says `Sings’, it
means he sings those words.
Girl 1 looks at her blankly.
Never mind. Lear…
Does any here know me. This is
not Lear. Does Lear walk thus?
(sotto voce, to Jenny,
in the seat next to
Jenny starts to giggle.
Tina shakes her head.
Where are his eyes?
Tina doesn’t need to say anything – she just looks at
Jenny, makes a pair of spectacles with her fingers and
squints. Jenny’s giggling fit increases in intensity.
Either his notion weakens, or his
discernings are lethargied. Ha!
Waking? Tis not so. Who is it
that can tell me who I am?
Jenny’s arm shoots up, as if to answer the question.
Ooh. Miss. Me. I can.
Miss Stubbs looks at Jenny more in sorrow than in anger –
Jenny’s behaviour now is something new in their
relationship. Jenny stares back at her defiantly. Suddenly
Miss Stubbs notices something glinting on her hand: an
She is, as she promised she would be, heartbroken.
Take it off.
Hattie, who is sitting behind Jenny, notices the ring, too,
for the first time.
Oh my God. Is that really what I
think it is? I’M GOING TO BE A
There is an excited susurration in the classroom.
You know there’s a school rule
Half the girls in this room are
Yes. But none of it is going to
ruin their lives.
We have a difference of opinion
Miss Stubbs stares at her. Jenny can only just steel
herself to stare back.
Let’s see who’s right. Come with
Jenny doesn’t move.
Please don’t make me drag you out
like a child.
Jenny gets to her feet. Teacher and pupil leave the room,
while the rest of the class watches.
83 INT. HEADMISTRESS’S OFFICE. DAY 83
How far advanced are these
ridiculous plans? Have you set a
date? Have you decided on a
We won’t be getting married in a
church. David’s Jewish.
The headmistress stares at her, dumbfounded.
Jewish? He’s a Jew? You’re aware,
I take it, that the Jews killed
(beginning to feel less
intimidated by her
And you’re aware, I suppose, that
our Lord was Jewish?
The headmistress snorts scornfully
I suppose he told you that. We’re
all very sorry about what
happened in the War. But there’s
no excuse for that sort of
malicious and untruthful
Jenny smiles to herself.
Anyway, I can now see that you
are even more in need of
responsible advice than I
realised. Is it true that you
don’t intend to sit for your
exams? And therefore you won’t be
applying for University?
Yes, that’s right.
What do you think you’re doing?
Nobody has been able to explain
to me the point of University.
Therefore I don’t see the point
of the exams, either.
Nobody does anything worth doing
without a degree.
And nobody does anything worth
doing with one, either. No woman,
So what I do isn’t worth doing.
Or what Miss Stubbs does, or Mrs
Wilson, or any of us here.
Jenny doesn’t say anything. The headmistress takes her
silence as an admission of defeat.
Because none of us would be here
without our degrees, you realise
that, don’t you? And yes, of
course studying is hard, and
Jenny can’t contain herself any longer.
Studying is hard and boring.
Teaching is hard and boring. So
you’re telling me to be bored,
and then bored, and then finally
bored again, this time for the
rest of my life. This whole
stupid country is bored. There’s
no life in it, or colour in it,
or fun in it. It’s probably just
as well that the Russians are
going to drop a nuclear bomb on
us any day now. So my choice is
either to do something hard and
boring, OR to marry my… my Jew,
and go to Paris and Rome and
listen to jazz and read and eat
good food in nice restaurants and
have fun. It’s not enough to
educate us any more, Mrs Walters.
You’ve got to tell us why you’re
Because without formal
She grinds to a halt. She has never had to answer this
It doesn’t have to be teaching,
you know. There’s the Civil
Jenny stands up.
I don’t wish to be impertinent,
Mrs Walters. But it is an
argument worth rehearsing. You
never know. Someone else might
want to know what the point of it
all is, one day.
She leaves the office.
84 EXT. SCHOOL. DAY 84
Jenny is half-walking, half-running, towards the school
gates. She’s scared, of course, but exhilarated, too. All
that pressure, and all those years of education, suddenly
over, unexpectedly, and certainly unceremoniously. She
looks neither left nor right, but other girls, younger
girls, watch her through the windows as she leaves. Jenny
doesn’t even look round when she goes through the school
85 INT. KITCHEN. EVENING 85
Later. Jenny and Marjorie are sitting at the kitchen table.
Jack is standing over them; he hasn’t even taken his coat
off, or put his briefcase down.
How d’you mean, left?
Jenny doesn’t answer.
What about your exams?
I’m not sitting them.
What are we going to tell people?
Oh, telling people. I’d forgotten
that what we tell people is more
important than anything.
Marjorie knows what he’s going to say, and doesn’t want him
No. No need for Jack. She should
hear it. All that money! Do you
know how much it’s cost me for
you to go through school and take
I’m sure David will pay you back.
Send him a bill. As you said, he
wouldn’t have wanted me if I was
dim, so he should fork out. Just
tell me why there’s a point in
sitting my exams, and there’s no
point in me going to University.
Jack gapes at her. He’s floundering.
You know what your trouble is,
don’t you? You’re too clever by
In which case I should have left
school years ago, shouldn’t I?
Ask them for the money back. If
I’m too clever by half, you
overpaid by a third.
86 INT. DANNY’S FLAT. NIGHT 86
Danny, Helen, David and Jenny are in Danny’s flat; we have
just missed The Announcement – there is champagne already
open. Danny glances quickly and discreetly at David, who
catches his eye.
That’s…Gosh. That’s fantastic
Danny isn’t so pleased.
There is much chinking of glasses.
I thought you’d see sense about
You’ll stay pretty now.
Laughter from David and Jenny.
Am I still allowed to read?
You won’t be laughing when she
goes all speccy and spotty,
Helen is bemused by their mirth. Danny watches David
87 EXT. DANNY’S. NIGHT 87
David and Jenny come out of Danny’s flat and approach
Danny didn’t seem very pleased
about our engagement.
I thought that, too! I was
wondering whether he might be a
(trying not to be
You may have noticed that Helen’s
not really Oxford material. I’m
going to keep him out of your
They both smile. David opens the door for Jenny and she
gets into the car.
87A INT. JENNY’S KITCHEN. DAY 87A
Jenny is making David a cup of tea. Her mother is keeping
an eye on Jenny – in Marjorie’s mind at least, this is a
rehearsal for something.
I haven’t put my…my stamp on it
yet. Haven’t had time. It needs a
woman’s touch, really. And if you
don’t like it, we can move. Just
say the word.
Where is the flat again?
You have to put the cosy on
Jenny sighs and rolls her eyes. She picks up the hand-
knitted tea-cosy and puts it on her head.
No. On the tea-pot.
She puts the tea-cosy on the tea-pot.
Just down from Russell Square.
Two minutes’ walk from the
Jenny! We could walk to…(She
tries to think of somewhere Jenny
might find interesting.) We could
walk to the British Museum!
Jenny gives her a look.
I’ll leave you to it. Don’t let
She leaves the room.
And this is where you’re living?
I’ve stayed there for the last
couple of nights. (Beat) On and
You’ve stayed there two nights
“on and off”?
Is that tea ready? One sugar,
(frustrated by his
I’m sorry. You must think I’m
No, but…. You seem to float
around. I never know where you
She hands him his tea.
A wandering Jew.(He pauses to
take a sip.) If I tell you
something, will you promise not
It depends on how funny it is.
I live at home.
We all live at home.
No. I mean…I live at home…in
the same way that you live at
But I live with my mother and
fa…(It clicks.) You don’t mean
David nods, shamefacedly.
Your mother and father?
Just my mother. My father’s dead.
I’ve been meaning to tell you,
Minnie, and it would have been
much better than all those silly
He looks quite upset. We warm to him. Jenny leans over and
takes his hand.
Anyway. You can see how much I
need you. And you won’t regret
this, I promise. We’ll have so
much fun. And just think. When we
get married, you won’t have to
wait in the car while I do my
business.. You’ll be waiting at
home, looking at the Burne-Jones
on the wall. Home, Minnie. Our
home. Can you imagine?
Close on Jenny. She can’t imagine, really.
90 INT. COFFEE BAR. DAY 90
Jenny, Tina and Hattie in the coffee bar. Jenny is eagerly
scanning the English literature exam paper.
Did you do this one? “Show from
any TWO scenes in `Pride and
Prejudice’ how far it is true
that Jane Austen’s methods are
It says two here. Look.
She shows the paper to Hattie. Hattie slumps onto the
formica table and groans.
Two. Two. Two. I can’t believe
Tina rubs Hattie’s head sympathetically.
It was an unfair question. You’re
hopeless at maths. What do you do
all day, anyway, Lady Muck?
I’ve been looking at flats. I’ve
been to look at dresses. I’ve
been reading a lot, too.
Reading, trying on dresses…
Where did we go wrong?
What’s this afternoon?
French. The translation paper.
Jenny is lapping it all up. She might even be envious.
91 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. EVENING 91
Jenny and Marjorie are in the sitting room, all dressed up
and waiting for David to come and pick them up. Jenny looks
great, as usual; her mother looks smart, if somewhat old-
Don’t worry. He’ll find a nice
place in no time. He sees plenty
I’m not sure he sees plenty of
Would you like a radiogram for a
wedding present? We love ours.
Something about this depresses Jenny. Marjorie notices.
You won’t be bored, you know.
He’s not boring.
Now they are both thoughtful. As if on cue, Jack comes into
the sitting room, pulling at his tie, looking apprehensive.
He appears to be wearing Brylcreem. He looks like a little
boy who has been made to put on his Sunday best.
What sort of things can you have
for starters? I mean, how will I
know what are starters and what
aren’t? I’m all right if it’s
soup or fruit juice. But if it’s
anything more than that…
We’ve been through this, Dad.
It’ll be quite clearly marked on
The doorbell rings. Jack stiffens. Jenny goes to answer the
Why don’t you three go out? I’ll
be happy here with a tin of…
David enters the room. He is relaxed, happy. He has worn a
tie, possibly because he knew that Jack would wear a tie.
Jack and Marjorie stand, and they exchange greetings.
Everybody ready? I think you’ll
like this place, Jack. Their wine
list is as good as anything I’ve
seen in London.
Someone told me that.
David, probably. Who else would
it have been?
92 EXT. STREET/JENNY’S HOUSE NIGHT 92
Jack and Marjorie approach David’s Bristol.
I was hoping you’d take us in
Oh, you won’t want to go in
anything else after tonight. Mind
you, it drinks petrol. I’m afraid
we’ll have to stop on the way in
He opens the back door for his future in-laws.
They get in, he closes the door, runs round to open the
front passenger door for Jenny.
93 INT. CAR. NIGHT 93
David starts the car, and glances in the rear-view mirror.
I feel like Eamonn Andrews.
Is that a good thing?
Of course. Eamonn Andrews is the
poshest person that Jack can
94 EXT. STREET/PETROL STATION. NIGHT 94
The Bristol cruises down a London arterial road.
95 INT. CAR. NIGHT 95
We see, from David’s POV, a petrol station approaching.
Sorry about this.
He slows the car and turns in to the garage.
96 EXT. GARAGE. NIGHT 96
David gets out of the car as the attendant comes over.
How can I help you, sir?
You might as well fill her up.
David looks around and spots a phone box just outside the
garage. He leans in through the open car window.
I’m just going to make a quick
call. I’ll be two ticks.
97 INT. CAR. NIGHT 97
Jenny watches him walk towards the phone box.
Do you think we should offer him
some petrol money? Or would he
Jenny watches David as he dials the number. He notices her,
waves, puts the money in the slot.
He’d feel insulted, probably. He
said tonight was his treat. That
must include the petrol, for
David starts to talk, and turns away, as if he’s frightened
that someone in the car can lip-read.
What do you think?
Nobody pays him any attention. They lapse into silence.
Jack starts to fiddle with the features in the car – a
table springs down from the seat in front of him, much to
God almighty. What have I done?
Jenny opens the glove compartment, looking for the
cigarettes that David always keeps there. She finds the
cigarettes, and closes the glove compartment. But she has
seen something in there, so she opens it again. She takes
out some letters and papers and starts to look through
98 EXT. GARAGE. NIGHT 98
David has finished his phone call and is walking towards
the car. He sees Jenny looking through letters and papers,
sees the open glove compartment, starts to run across the
It’s too late. We see Jenny’s stricken face, gleaming in
someone else’s headlights.
99 INT. CAR. NIGHT 99
David gets into the car.
(as cold as ice)
Take us home.
What’s going on?
There’s been a…Jenny’s had a
bit of a shock.
Jenny laughs, mirthlessly, then starts to weep.
It’s another one of David’s
little muddles and
Jenny, it’s not…
I don’t want to hear another word
from anybody. Take me home. NOW.
Marjorie and Jack look at each other. David swings the car
around and they drive home in silence; Jenny cries
constantly, without making a sound.
100 EXT. JENNY’S HOUSE. NIGHT 100
The Bristol draws up outside Jenny’s house. David jumps out
of the car and lets Marjorie and Jack out. Jack starts to
walk towards the house and then stops.
You can sort this out, can’t you,
Jenny gets out of the car too.
Of course I can. She’s just got
the wrong end of the stick about
Go inside, Dad.
Jenny and David watch Jack and Marjorie go into the house.
The moment the door is closed, Jenny walks towards David.
She’s holding a bunch of letters that she took out of the
glove compartment. She starts to throw them at him, one by
Mr and Mrs David Goldman, Mr and
Mrs David Goldman, Mr and Mrs
David Goldman, Mr and Mrs David
When she has thrown the last one, she flies at David – she
slaps him, punches him, scratches him. David tries to grab
her hands, but she’s too wild.
Just let me…
Legally, yes, but…
Finally he manages to subdue her. She leans against the
When were you going to tell me?
Soon. It just – it never seemed
the right time. You seemed so
happy, and I was happy, and…It
would have spoiled everything.
What can I do, Minnie? What can I
do? How can…
“Oh, Jenny. I’m just too busy to
find somewhere to live…I live
with my mummy.” You were living
with your wife! All this time!
What’s your address?
David gestures vaguely.
Byron Avenue! It’s no wonder we
kept bumping into each other,
then, is it? What number?
There’s no point..
Jenny picks one of the envelopes up off the ground and
looks at it.
Good grief. It’s the truth.
Please. You have to understand. I
was with you just about all the
spare time I had.
Spare time? Spare time? I can’t
tell you how grateful I am.
Don’t be like this.
I have nothing. I left school. I
didn’t take my exams. Where’s it
all gone, now? I gave my life
Jenny, I can get a divorce.
Everything will turn out for the
best. You’ll see.
We can see Jack and Marjorie peering through the lace
Go and tell them. Go and tell
them, then go and tell your wife.
I want to see you. I want to
stand there and watch.
David stands on the pavement, looking towards the house. He
looks away; he can’t make eye contact with Jenny’s parents.
They’re not going to listen to me
now. Let me come round tomorrow.
When everyone’s calmed down a
Please don’t leave me to tell
them on my own. Please. You owe
me that much. You owe them that
I owe them a lot more than that.
I owe them everything. They gave
He opens the boot. It’s full of cases of whiskey. Jenny
doesn’t even bother asking what they are doing there. David
takes one of the bottles, opens it, takes a long slug.
Two minutes. And then I’ll come
out and drag you in.
Jenny marches into the house and slams the door. The camera
stays on David. He gets back into the car and takes
another slug of whiskey. Then his shoulders begin to
shake, and he cries and cries.
101 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. NIGHT 101
Jenny comes in, leaving the door open for David. Her
parents are standing in the sitting room, looking at her
anxiously. Their coats are still on, and they haven’t put
the lights on yet.
What’s going on?
He’s helping himself to some
Dutch courage before facing you.
Stolen Dutch courage, from the
look of it. He has something to
She stands, pale and young-looking again, opposite her
parents. Suddenly they are all three lit up by headlights.
Shot from their POV of the Bristol roaring off up the
He just drove off.
We close slowly in on Jenny’s face. But of course he’d
Can you tell us? Please? Jenny?
Jenny can’t deal with her own pain, let alone his. He
already looks like a broken, foolish old man. They should
hug. But they don’t.
102 EXT. STREET/DAVID’S HOUSE. DAY 102
A suburban street, full of semi-detached houses, not far
from Jenny’s house. Jenny walks down the road tentatively –
she’s looking at the numbers on the houses. She looks young
again – tired, no make-up, no elegant clothes. She can’t
bring herself to wear anything that David bought her.
She hesitates at the top of the driveway to the house,
steels herself to walk down. But just at that moment the
door opens; there’s a homely-looking woman, early 30s. She
is holding the hand of a three-year-old. Jenny is stunned.
But there’s more to come.
The woman deposits the child in the drive, goes back into
the house, comes out behind an enormous 1950s pram. David
has found time to father another baby.
Hello. I’m sorry. I think I must
have the wrong house.
The woman stares at her.
Yes. I wanted number…It’s my
cello lesson. Silly. I…
She dries up and looks at the woman helplessly.
Oh, no. Don’t tell me. Good God.
You’re a child.
Jenny blushes. Beat. She turns and tries to walk back up
the driveway, but the woman won’t let her go.
No. No. You stay here. If you’re
old enough to sleep with him,
you’re old enough to look at me.
But she doesn’t move, either.
You didn’t know about any of
Jenny shakes her head.
No. They never do. Did he ask you
to marry him?
Yes. Of course he did. You’re not
in the family way, are you?
Because that’s happened before.
Jenny shakes her head.
Thank God for that. At least you
can escape intact. (Beat)
Relatively speaking. Not all of
them have done.
She nods at the children.
That’s why he never goes through
with anything. He does love them.
(looking into the pram)
Thank you. He. (Bitterly) He’s
four months old.
Jenny does the maths. It’s all she can do to stop herself
from reeling backwards – she’s visibly shaken.
Yes. Babies often are that sort
of age. Perhaps you can remember
a night four months ago when he
seemed a little distracted.
Anyway. If you’ll excuse us.
She pushes past Jenny and leaves her standing bereft on the
103 INT. JENNY’S HOUSE. DAY 103
Marjorie and Jack are in the kitchen. Marjorie is sipping
tea, shoulders hunched, defeated. Jack is pacing around the
room, furious. Normal life has clearly been suspended
during this crisis. Jenny walks in.
Did you see her?
I saw her. I didn’t talk to her.
There wasn’t any need.
Well we’ve got to have this out.
If you won’t do it, I will.
He starts for the door.
I beg your pardon? I’m still your
Oh, you’re my father again, are
you? What were you when you
encouraged me to throw my life
away? I’m a silly schoolgirl.
Was, anyway. Silly schoolgirls
are always being seduced by
glamorous older men. But what
about you two?
He gives up hopelessly. Marjorie says nothing.
And now I’ve got nothing.
Jack looks at her.
That doesn’t mean….what I think
it means, does it? It can’t.
What are you talking about?
Just tell me that you
didn’t…you haven’t, you
Jenny looks at him in disbelief.
I wondered how stupid you were.
Now I know.
104 INT. UPPER HALLWAY. NIGHT 104
Jack stands outside Jenny’s bedroom door with a cup of tea.
He knocks tentatively.
105 INT. BEDROOM. NIGHT 105
Close-up of the floaty print dress that Helen gave her. The
dress is suddenly jerked out of shot, and we pull back to
reveal a weeping Jenny stuffing it violently into an
already full box of things she is throwing out. The
contents represent her now-despised, David-created adult
self. We can see Juliette Greco albums, photos, expensive-
looking jewelry boxes. She continues to stuff things into
the box. There’s a knock on the door.
She continue to put her David-life away into bags. She
106 INT. UPPER HALLWAY. NIGHT 106
Jack is almost in tears.
There’s a cup of tea for you
No answer. He puts the tea on the floor, and sits down next
I know I made a mess of
He waits for an answer – nothing.
All my life I’ve been scared, and
I didn’t want you to be scared.
That’s why I wanted you to go to
Oxford. So that if someone asked
you out to a nice restaurant, you
wouldn’t panic about what was a
starter and what was a main
course. And then David came
along, and he had money, and he
knew famous writers, and he knew
how to get to classical music
concerts. But he wasn’t who he
said he was. He wasn’t who you
said he was, either.
107 INT. BEDROOM. NIGHT 107
Jenny is about to rip a poster off the wall, but she
108 INT. UPPER HALLWAY. NIGHT 108
The other day, your mother and I
were listening to a programme
about CS Lewis on the radio, and
they said he moved to Cambridge
in 1954. And I said to Marjorie,
Well, they’ve got that wrong,
because how would our Jenny get
her book signed, if he wasn’t in
109 INT. BEDROOM. NIGHT 109
Jenny’s face crumples. She knows he’s right.
Jenny, I’m sorry.
109A INT. DANNY’S FLAT. DAY 109A
Jenny is sitting on the sofa in Danny’s flat. Danny and
Helen are in dressing gowns; there are newspapers strewn
around. Danny pours her a brandy. Helen is sitting next to
her, holding her hand.
I don’t really understand what
difference it makes. When I found
Helen! Not now.
I tried to tell him. I’m not
speaking to him now, if that’s
It’s a funny world you people
live in. You both watched me…
carrying on with a married man,
but you don’t think it’s worth
Ah, well if you want that sort of
conversation…You watched David
and I help ourselves to a map,
and you didn’t say much, either.
He holds Jenny’s gaze. She looks away.
110 INT. HEADMISTRESS’S OFFICE. DAY 110
Jenny has put on her school uniform for this meeting; it
completes a circle. She’s back where she started from, or
would like to be, anyway. If she seems older than she did
when we first met her, it’s because things have happened to
her, and they’ve left a mark on her face. She’s worried and
tired. The headmistress, meanwhile, is delighted by her
return – but only because of the opportunities for smugness
and schadenfreude it provides.
So. Your Jewish friend turned out
to be married already, I
understand. How unfortunate.
Jenny doesn’t say anything. She has clearly decided to
swallow anything she has to.
Anyway. How do you think we can
I’d like to repeat my last year
at school. Start all over again.
I got the impression the last
time we spoke that you didn’t see
the point of school. Or of me, or
of any of us here.
I know. I was stupid.
So what is the point?
I know that I need to go to
And what happens if some other
chap wants to marry you during
your studies next year?
Some other chap? There won’t be
any other chaps. Not for a long,
long time, anyway.
I’m afraid I think you’re the
sort of young lady who attracts
chaps whether she wants to or
not. No,I think the offer of a
place at this school would be
wasted on you. You showed how
little you valued us only weeks
ago. And I must confess that it
gives me a sort of grim
satisfaction to return the
Is it really so grim, your
It gives me no pleasure to see
our schoolgirls throw their lives
away. Although, of course, you’re
not one of our schoolgirls any
more. Through your own volition.
I suppose you think I’m a ruined
Oh, you’re not a woman.
Beat. Jenny stands up and leaves without saying a word. The
headmistress is pleased with her final line.
111 INT. BEDROOM. NIGHT 111
Jenny working hard in her room. It’s been completely
stripped bare of everything except schoolbooks. She has
become ageless, genderless – her life is now monastic.
112 EXT. PARK. DAY 112
Jenny walking alone through her old park.
113 INT. COFFEE BAR. DAY 113
Jenny on her own, smoking nervously. Hattie and Tina come
in. They obviously haven’t seen her since it all happened.
They both hug her sympathetically and sit down. Nobody
knows what to say.
I’m sure my uncle knows someone
who could kill him. If that would
Jenny smiles wanly, and briefly.
We should have stopped you.
Did you want to?
Of course we didn’t. Why would we
stop you? Restaurants, hotels,
foreign cities, no exams…
Yes. Who’d have thought there’d
be a down side to all that? I
could tell you all about the
imagery in Jane Eyre. But I
couldn’t see that a man who stole
maps from old ladies might be a
They look at her. This is new information.
Well, if you’d told us that we
might have tried to stop you.
There are a lot of things I
didn’t tell you. I was dreaming.
That’s the thing about our lives,
isn’t it? It’s so easy to fall
asleep, when there’s nothing to
keep you awake.
Are you getting on with the work
all right on your own?
No. No, I’m not.
114 EXT. STREET MISS STUBBS FLAT. DUSK. 114
Jenny in a suburban street. She’s looking for an address.
She finds the house, walks down the path, rings on a bell.
Miss Stubbs comes to the door.
It’s a warm greeting. She ushers her inside.
115 INT. MISS STUBBS’ FLAT. DUSK. 115
It’s a proper Bohemian flat, up in the eaves. There are
books and papers and paintings covering every available
surface. Jenny looks around. Finally, for the first time,
we see her in somewhere she can feel at home.
This is lovely.
Miss Stubbs makes a face.
But it is. Really. I’d love to
live somewhere like this.
Miss Stubbs laughs.
Oh, it’s not hard. Go to Oxford
and become a teacher and this is
what you end up with.
But all these books and
Penguin paperbacks. Posters and
Yes, but…That’s all you need,
Just a place to…I’m sorry I
said those silly things. I didn’t
Let’s forget all about it.
A poster catches Jenny’s eye.
Miss Stubbs laughs.
You make it sound as though it’s
an original. Do you like him?
Yes. I do. Still.
Still? Gosh, you sound very old
I feel old. But really not very
wise. Miss Stubbs, I’m….I need
I was so hoping that’s what you
were going to say.
116 EXT. STREET IN OXFORD. DAY 116
Eighteen months later. Swelling orchestral music. Close on
Jenny cycling, absorbed, happy, the cello strapped to her
precariously. The camera pulls back to show her cycling
through the streets of Oxford. She’s done it. We follow her
for a little while. She dismounts outside a church and
leans the bike against a wall. Just as she’s about to leave
it, she sees something and freezes. We follow her gaze:
it’s the red Bristol, parked a little way down the road
just in front of her. She scans the street to see if she
can find David. She can – he’s coming round a corner, a
littler further down the street, unwrapping a packet of
cigarettes. Jenny moves into his eye-line. He sees her,
stops, then walks towards her.
Jenny says nothing.
Jenny. Minnie. I wanted to tell
you that I am going to ask my
wife for a divorce.
Jenny looks at him disbelievingly.
Don’t you understand what you’ve
David looks at her. This isn’t going to be as easy as he
I can see my behaviour must have
been… confusing. But we’ve
never sat down and had a proper
chat about it all. About the whys
and wherefores. They can wait.
The important thing is that
you’re still my Minnie Mouse, and
I love you, and you had fun. You
know you had fun.
Yes. I had fun. But I had fun
with the wrong person, at all the
wrong times. And I can’t ever get
those times back, now.(Beat)
Look, David. I’m in Oxford. Every
day I wake up and pinch myself.
And when I think how close I
She looks at him and shakes her head, as if awaking from a
dream. A young man stops behind her on his bike, dismounts,
leans his bike against the wall next to hers, waits for her
to finish. She turns her back on David, and the young man
offers her his arm. They walk away together, and David
stares longingly after them.