A Romantic Comedy In Un Movie Form

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Romantic comedy is a genre I like every once in a while….to be honest, it's usually hard to find one that's any good. But I started to write my own little piece of romance…….that could be the bipolar child of drama and comedy. I hope you like it; but please keep in mind that it's a rough draft as of now and has not had much editing done.

Please bare with me that there are no chapter titles yet…I haven't been able to decide on anything that doesn't sound sickeningly cheesy.

Table of Contents
I

"What are you doing? Come back here!"

"That's it! I'm through!"

"No you're not, mister! You come back here and finish this scene! We have a lot of money riding on this!"

Actor Seth Boroughs turned around to face his producer, his slightly loose-fitting leather jacket waving in the wind that spilled around the set building. His light brunette hair, cut in a very punk-rock style to match his character, flew into his eyes as the breeze swept past him. Angrily brushing the unstable strands, Seth sighed heavily. "I can't take this anymore." He tried to steady his voice into calm as he saw the paparazzi swooping in from the corner of his vision. "I need a break." Turning back around he headed for his trailer. He refused to rise to the threats that the producer was shouting at his back about getting a new actor or sueing Seth for losses to the company. He knew the man didn't have to balls to do either one.

Seth finally reached his trailer and threw open the door before slamming it shut behind him. He slipped out of his leather jacket and tossed it angrily onto the couch before grabbing an open pack of Marlboro's from his cargo pants pocket, taking one out and lighting it. He knew what his assistant and agent said about smoking in the trailer, but he just didn't give a fuck anymore.

Breathing in deep, he let the edged nicotine coat his lungs and let out the smoke with a new wave of relief. He was only marginally calmed down, but it was always a pleasant feeling to know that nicotine never let him down. It never demanded him to do the job required or threatened to replace him at the drop of a hat. He knew his talent was the thing the producers and directors wanted; they would have to deal with his attitude if they wanted his performance. And as much as they seemed to hate him, Seth's performances sold millions of tickets around the world. He was a bonafide teenage heartthrob.

And he hated just about every moment of it.

He heard a light knock on the door a moment before it opened. In popped in Seth's costar, Milly Forestter. She was taller than him, with a long black hair, deep brown eyes and a body that could only be achieved by lots of personal trainers, sex and an eating disorder or two. Seth glanced at her from the corner of his eye as his lips were wrapped around the filter of his cigarette. He took another deep drag and purposefully blew the smoke in her direction while he asked, "What do you want?" Milly made a disgusted face at the smoke and attempted unsuccessfully to wave the smoke away. She shut the door behind her before walking up to Seth.

"I wanted to see if you were alright," she replied sweetly. She moved close to him so he could feel the outline of her breast implants against his upper arm. He glared coldly at her. This rejection only seemed to further excite her intentions.

"Bullshit." He replied. Milly chuckled.

"What?" She asked sweetly, batting her eyelashes. "You think I am incapable of sharing compassion?"

Seth growled. "I think you're incapable of feeling anything but sympathy for yourself in delaying your fifteen minutes of fame."

"Oh, really, Seth, do you think I am that shallow?" She moved her hand to rest it upon his upper arm, rubbing her fingers gently over his muscles. Seth looked down at her hand. As he made to put the cigarette out in the ashtray sitting on the table, he sighed.

"No, I guess not." Milly smiled. "It appears being desparate has outweighed your shallow behavior." Offended and embarassed by his words, Milly quickly snatched her hand away from him.

"I can't believe you would say that to me!"

"Oh, believe it, babe!"

"I could make you feel amazing."

Seth barked out a laugh. "Amazingly sick, maybe." Milly's cheeks started to turn red with anger towards her co-worker. She was shaking ever-so-slightly in silent rage as she glared at him, now standing in front of his trailer door. "Don't you have a director to go blow? Or another writer, perhaps? Maybe this time you'll get lucky and get a few more lines in the movie." Letting out a sudden shriek of horror and anger, Milly threw open the door in much the same attitude Seth had, and stormed out.

As soon as she was gone, a smile slid across Seth's face. He pulled out another cigarette and let it slip comfortably between his lips. Right after he lit it and inhaled his first drag, he thought back to Milly and laughter could be heard echoing throughout his trailer.


II

After Seth's outburst and Milly's apparent spontaneous upset, the producer and director regrettably allowed for an extended two hour lunch break while the two leading actors calm down. The rule was that all the actors and crew had to stay on set (with the exception of a few interns who were sent to fetch coffee and anything else anyone yelled at them to retrieve) while the film was still being shot; one of those prison mentalities of "if I have to be stuck here, so do you".

Seth, on the other hand, was not going to listen to that little rule. Sneaking out through the main gate, trying to remain inconspicuous, he slipped down the sidewalks of Hollywood, California, heading towards his favorite cafe. It wasn't a very well-known place, despite the fact it sat quite near the heart of the movie capitol of the world. It was never bustling over with celebrities or, even worse, media-whore hungry tourists who were looking for their own special meet-'n-harass with a celebrity. That was why Seth liked it. Plus, they made an amazing BLT.

Before he had dared slip off the set, Seth had put on an ADIDAS running jacket; different than his usual leather one, and a Yankee's baseball cap. He did not want to be noticed by a random passerby.

Going up to the counter, he ordered a Philly cheesesteak to go, along with a side of fries and a large soft drink. Hands in pockets, he bounced back and forth from the balls of his feet to his toes, waiting. He looked anxious as he did this, constantly looking over his shoulder.

"You look like you just robbed a bank."

Seth jumped as the voice hit him; he was not expecting to be noticed. Eyes zipping around the room, he only saw one other person (outside of the people who were employed there) in the dining area. Although it seemed impossible the voice could be coming from her; she was reading a book. In fact, she seemed to be completely engrossed in it. The book was sitting in her lap, the cover and its spine opened and leaning against the table for balance. She had a ready-to-use yellow highlighter in her hand and an open notebook on the table itself, looking to be completely scribbed with notes. She was sitting at least ten feet away from where he was.

Shaking his head, Seth started to think that he was just hearing things and went back to keeping to himself when he heard the same voice again. "See? It's the way you stand. You look so nervous. If I had robbed a bank, I certainly would not want to be looking like you do; I'd be caught in six minutes."

Seth glanced around the room again but noticed that the same girl who was studying no longer seemed to be focusing her attention on the book. She was looking at him, a small and sincere smile playing on her lips. She wore black rimmed square glasses, had dark brown hair that was pulled back into a single pony tail. She was dressed comfortably in a pair of khakis and a black tanktop. She watched Seth with a look of expectancy, almost as if she were waiting for his response on her critique.

All Seth could think to say was, "Uh…me?" The smile on the girl's face broadened and she even chuckled. Normally Seth would find himself aggravated by any criticism— intended to be humorous or not— made towards him; but he did not seem to care with her. Her smile was sweet and seemed to relax him where other such situations would have made him angry. He found himself returning her smile instinctively before shrugging his shoulders and trying to play it off. "A bank robber, huh?"

The girl's gaze followed him up and down, looking him over a couple times as if looking for her final decision. "Well…maybe not a bank robber. No, too loose for that. You definitely aren't dressed or have the attitude of a man who had just robbed a bank. You're looking more like a first time shop lifter. Or maybe you held up some old Indian man at a convenience store; like Abu from The Simpsons. But it's not 2:30 in the morning and you don't seem strung out on Cheese Doodles and Red Bull."

Surprising himself, a laugh escaped Seth's lips. He could not remember the last time he had genuinely laughed at something without intending it to be cruel. The girl's smile broadened and Seth found his heart becoming a little bit lighter. He dared overstep his boundaries by walking towards the girl's table. "What are you reading?" He asked, trying to glance at the cover but the title was hidden.

"Well, that all depends." She smiled.

"On what?"

"On if you're really a thief." She replied. "You never did respond to my inquiry. Why should I trust someone who I suspect robbed convenience store clerk and is now buying a sandwich to wash down the Ho-Ho's?"

Seth laughed again and nodded his head. Taking a step back, he settled his hands back in his pockets. "Okay," he took the bait. "I am not really a shop lifter. And I didn't rob a convenience store. As you said, it's the wrong hour for it." The two new acquaintances shared a levelled look, almost staring each other down, before the girl made an unmentioned decision and slid her book back against her chest so he could see the cover. "You're a med student?"

The girl chuckled. "You sound surprised."

"No." He replied, but the girl raised an eyebrow at him, letting him silently know that he'd spoken too soon. "Well, I mean….yes. I suppose I am, a little."

"And why's that?" She settled back into her chair, gazing up at him with very mischevious eyes. Seth felt engulfed in them.

"You just… I dunno. You don't look like a med student nerd, is all."

The girl smiled and nodded her head, breaking her gaze from Seth and looking back at the book. "I guess you're right," she admitted. Picking up an index card, she placed it on the open pages where she had been reading and closed it. "Which is why I am not a med student. It's for my class, but not my concentration." Seth nodded his head in understandment. At that same moment, one of the workers at the cafe came over with a bag that contained Seth's lunch.

"Have a nice day." The employee said. He did not expect to get a return on his farewell, so it came as a great shock when it was returned with a "You, too." from Seth. In the weeks that Seth had been coming to the cafe on a regular basis, none of the employees had heard a single nice gesture escape his lips. He always seemed so rude and distant. Unable to believe it, the employee looked back at his co-workers in shock.

Seth, meanwhile, had turned his attention back to the girl who had so intrigued him. She was packing up her things into a black and blue messenger bag. "You're leaving?" His voice showed a hint of disappointment that he was not used to expressing.

"Yeah," the girl sighed. "I have a major test next week I have to study for and a lab to prepare for…so I should get back to the school. It was nice talking to you, Mr. Psuedo-Robber Man." She smiled at him and once again, her eyes seemed to catch the very rays of the sun and shine. Seth felt his heart skip another beat within his chest and even a few butterflies form in his stomach. He fought off the obvious observation his brain was flashing of "she's so beautiful" and tried to keep a level head. Sticking out his free hand, he said,

"My name's Seth, by the way."

The girl shook his hand, her smile never fading. "Well, it was a pleasure to meet you, Seth. It's even more of a pleasure to know you're not a thief." Seth laughed at her statement and nodded his head. After they stopped shaking hands, the girl glanced at the wall clock and her smile did fade with the time. "I really have to get going. I'm so sorry that I just run off and all, but it was really nice to meet you." As she hurriedly made to the door, Seth hurried behind and called after her.

"What's your name?"

"Arianna!" She called back. Seth ran her name over and over again in his head as he watched her fade off into the distance. A smile remained permanantly tattooed on his lips as he walked back to the studio. He didn't even pay attention when the director and producer yelled at him for leaving the set again without supervision or permission or how Milly was exceptionally snide to him for the rest of the day. Nothing seemed to phase him that evening, and it seemed very out-of-character for him, and every member of the cast and crew noticed the change.


III

For the next week, every chance he got, Seth would sneak down the street to the cafe in hopes of running into Arianna, but he had no success. He tried asking the employees of the cafe but none of them knew more than her name. Although there was one of the cooks who knew her last name and where she went to school, but he couldn't tell Seth how to get in contact with her.

Every day without seeing her again started to drive Seth a little mad. He had had a single moment of sanity injected back into his chaotic life and it seemed to be slipping through his fingers faster than soft beach sand. He was beginning to convince himself that it had been little more than a dream; a tease to prove to him once again that the world was a cruel place that seemed to want nothing than to laugh at your suffering. He returned to snapping at the people he worked with and continued his abusive and self-destructive behavior. He would taunt the paparazzi and pleasure in making the interns or even his co-star cry. He started smoking more and him walking off-set was beginning to be a reoccuring financial disaster.

Thirteen days after he met Arianna, he went back to the cafe. He had not hoped in running into her again; he had abandoned that hope the week before. Life rang up too much disappointment when you did nothing but hope for something you had no control over. He went into the cafe and all the employees fell into attention just like loyal military enlisted would. None of them wanted to deal with his temper and bad attitude if they did anything wrong.

"You should stop scaring the folk, Herr. Seth." Once again, Seth found his heart skipping a beat and a breath caught in his throat as he turned to stare at the owner of so sweet a voice. He could barely contain his excitement that he fumbled over his words as he tried to speak.

"I…uhm….you see…" He struggled to stay something coherent before he just stopped himself long enough to regain his composition. Clearing his throat and taking a deep breath, Seth finally smiled calmly and relaxed. "Hi." The atmosphere in the room definitely seemed to thin out and cool down with him.

"Hi." Arianna returned his greeting. Not daring to look at her, Seth asked,

"So how did your test go?"

"Oh, you remembered." She sounded pleased at this and the very thought made his heart pound hopelessly. "I did well, thanks. My professor was very impressed."

"Did he have a reason not to be?"

"Well, no. But it never hurts to know that I can still impress people. Although I know: it does seem so impossible, right? I mean, I am so impressive to begin with…" This statement brought Seth's eyes to hers. He returned her heart-melting smile and nodded his head. He could feel his cheeks burn as he tore his eyes away and stared down at his shoes.

"I can easily believe that." He glanced back at her and she looked slightly embarassed by his words; but she was still smiling.

"Well, you're extremely kind to play along with me, Mr. Seth. Or should I call you something like, Mr. Would-Not-Be-Thief-Man?"

Seth laughed and nodded his head. "I think I like that. It has a certain..uh…" he paused to think of the right description but Arianna interjected.

"Je nais sais que?" She asked. Little goosebumps ran up Seth's arms and neck as he heard her speak French. He felt like Mr. Addam's from the Addam's Family. Feeling his face flush once again, he nodded his head.

"Yeah. Well, I was gonna say 'catchy', but your description works too," Arianna laughed.

A silence fell between the two of them where each one tried to think of something to say before the awkward silence settled its way in. Seth went with the first thing that came to mind. "So it's lucky we ran into each other today, huh?"

"It wasn't luck," Arianna replied. This seemed to surprise Seth, who glanced over at her.

"No?"

"No. Luke, the guy who works as one of the cooks here, he told me you asked about me last week. I would have been by here sooner, but what with classes and teaching and all…"

"You teach?" Again, Seth was shocked by her.

"Well, teacher's assistant, so not much teaching. It's a little bit of moneyemphasis on the 'little' part but it looks good on a resume at any rate. And I guess it beats out a lot of intern positions." Seth's mind wandered back to the interns on the movie set and he nodded his head in agreement. His mind then focused on one thing she had said and he froze out of disbelief.

"You would have been here sooner?" He repeated, shock ringing through his voice. Arianna smiled meekly and seemed to catch herself too latel on that statement. Averting her gaze by looking down at the floor, she fidgeted nervously and fumbled for words.

"Yeah, well, I would have been, but I—" Seth was not interested in any sentences involving a counterpoint like 'but'. Cutting her off, he took her hand which caused her to look up at him in surprise. A smile spread across his face that seemed to wash away any previous scars and made him shine like a new man.

"Come to dinner with me." He said. A small smile played on her lips but Arianna seemed unsure of herself.

"Uhm…huh. Was…was that a question? Or do I not have a choice?" Seth smiled sweetly and lowered his voice so only the two of them could hear each other.

"More like a plea, actually." Arianna's face flushed from being flattered so and she had to look away; but as soon as she peeled her eyes away from his, they were right back staring into his.

The two acquaintances were certainly gathering a lot of buzz around the employees at the cafe; but they didn't want to disturb them. They figured any woman who could soften up that out of control actor was well-worth holding onto. It wasn't until the bell chimed as the door opened that brought the two out of their moment together. That was also the same time that Arianna looked at her watch and saw the time. "I really have to go," she said, looking sincerely apologetic. She took a few slow steps away from Seth, watching him up to the very last minute before she turned. Right before she slipped out the door, Seth ran after her.

"Wait!" He stopped Arianna out on the street. He couldn't handle seeing her hurry off a second time without a definite attempt to see her again. Arianna turned around and stopped her pace for a moment. Seth ran up to her so the two of them were standing side by side again. "Please," he did beg that time. "Eat dinner with me."

"Seth, I have classes and homework and my apartment and a cat…I don't—" But she was cut off by Seth's finger pressing gently against her soft lips. Seth stared intently into her eyes.

"I don't want to force you," he spoke softly, his voice barely above a whisper. The tone of his voice and the look of intensity in his eyes made Arianna freeze in her tracks. "But I would like it very much if you would be able to meet me for dinner. It won't be anything extravagent or time consuming, if you are worried about that. Just a small dinner together."

Arianna lifted her hand and removed his finger from her lips. "When?" She sounded like a girl who had ran out of options to say no; but she looked like a girl who wanted very much to go out to dinner with him, despite something holding her back.

"Tomorrow night?" He asked. "I know my boss has to go out to a business dinner, so we should get enough time. Meet me outside the cafe at seven: thirty?"

Arianna looked concerned as she debated. Finally she nodded her head. At first there was an air of sorrow surrounding her final decision but that soon dissapated into excitement and enthusiasm. A large grin settled itself onto Seth's lips and he lifted her left hand and kissed it gently.

"A promise then?"

Arianna smiled back at him, the sparkle in her eyes was back. "A promise." She then turned to leave and, as she walked away. she glanced back several times over her shoulder to see if he was still watching her.

He was.

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