The Ultimate Cary Grant Pages - www.carygrant.net

"It's a Screwball Life"
Chapters 4 thru 6

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Chapter Four
-- by Debbie Dunlap --

Chapter Four - The Mystery Dame?

Irene looks about the room; disappointment registers on her face. She sighs, looks down at her sleek, cream evening gown and carefully removes a speck. “I am a bit disappointed by the turnout this evening.”

Katharine is also surveying the meager evening crowd. Her arms are crossed across her chest; in her right hand she holds a cigarette. As she speaks, her right waves about. “The Academy Awards are tomorrow night. Everyone’s at home either boning up on their acceptance speech, having their hair done, or being sewn into their gown.” She takes a long drag on her cigarette and exhales slowly. “Or their tuxedo, I suppose.”

Katharine turns to Irene and notices the pained expression. “Oh! Darling, how careless of me! I’m so sorry. So very sorry. I shouldn’t even have mentioned that!”

Irene waves dismissively. The Oscars is NOT a subject she cares to discuss. She spots Cary near a large, potted palm. His hands are jammed into his trouser pockets. He’s listening with a pleasant expression to an older gentleman and his wife expound upon their recent cruise upon the Queen Elizabeth.

Cary glances up and catches Irene’s eye. He smiles. Irene smiles. Cary returns his attention to the older couple.

Katharine spies Baby’s trainer coming through the door and quickly says, “We really must mingle. Ta-ta!”

Irene watches Katharine pounce upon her quarry and rolls her eyes. She, too, moves off to “mingle.”

Cary graciously listens to the Captain and his wife. Some of their tales are highly amusing. “One never knows what will happen aboard a ship so isolated from the rest of the world,” says the captain at the end of an especially entertaining and romantic tale.

Cary fingers the envelope in his pocket for the umteenth time tonight. He smiles a secret smile. “A ship would certainly be the proper setting to begin an affair to remember for a very long time,” he agrees.

Also for the umteenth time tonight, he discreetly scans the room. He is wondering, “Where is she? Who is she? Why did she send me this letter?” Suddenly, as a group of people disperse, Cary’s gaze is transfixed.

”Mr. Grant? Mr. Grant?” the captain’s wife tries to capture Cary’s attention.

Cary cocks his head in the direction of the captain, but his eyes never leave the object of their gaze. “If you’ll excuse me, please.”

Both the captain and his wife turn toward the source of Cary’s distraction. Both smile widely and with complete understanding.

Slowly, as if in a trance, Cary walks towards his goal.

A soft swirl of auburn hair caught up in a chignon. Long neck, feminine shoulders. A sprinkle of freckles across her nose and cheeks. Long lashes. Full mouth, with a russet shade painted on. The shimmering, pale green dress is cut just so that he can see delicious curves, but not so much that his imagination isn’t given the opportunity to run wild with thoughts of what isn’t revealed. As he nears, he hears the soft, delicate sound of her voice. She laughs. “Music”, he thinks. Her eyes? She’s turned slightly, so that he can’t quite make out the shade of her eyes. He can tell they’re dark, though.

Cary stops a few feet from his objective to observe. Again he reaches for the letter. “Is this her?” he wonders.

She laughs again, “Definitely music,” he thinks.

Suddenly, she becomes aware of Cary and turns in his direction.

”Smokey gray.” Cary says.

”Please?” she asks.

”Your eyes are a smokey gray,” he says.

”Yes, they are. And yours are brown. It’s so nice to meet you, Mr. Brown,” she extends her hand.

Cary accepts her hand and squeezes it gently. ”Cary Grant,” he says by way of introduction.

”Lorea Lockwood. It’s very nice to finally meet you Mr. Grant.” Lorea smiles and
then ... winks.

Chapter Five
-- by Aileen Mackintosh --

Chapter 5 - South Bend Siren!

It is sometime later and the party is really beginning to swing. Cary and Lorea are nowhere to be seen. We see Irene and Katharine in earnest conversation.

Katharine: “So where did this Lorea dame spring from? And what about ‘Eve’?”

Irene: “I don’t know, but she reminds me of a woman .....”

Katharine: “Oh no you can’t do that! We’ve had that routine already!”

Irene: “.....I knew years ago.” (A pause.) “I remember now. Minnie Vance.”

Katharine: “Not Minnie the moocher!! The siren of South Bend!?”

Irene: “Yeah, but she looked different back then.”

Katharine: “Say, she could mess up all our plans. Where is she, by the way?”

They both look round the room, gradually becoming aware that Lorea is nowhere to be seen - and that Cary, too, is missing.


We see the inside of a small but exclusive restaurant. There is a 3 piece Jazz combo playing in one corner, and the waiters have an air of deference toward the clientele. Cary is sitting alone in an alcove to one side of the restaurant, with Lorea sitting next to him and a champagne cocktail in his hand. They seem preoccupied with each other.

At this moment there is a swoosh of air as a bunch of people enter the restaurant. Cary glances up as he hears familiar voices and his expression becomes one of wariness. He hopes that he and Lorea will not be spotted in their alcove.

Irene and Katharine enter the restaurant. They spot Cary and head in his direction.

Irene: “Hello all!”

Katharine: “Hello. Say Casanova, aren’t you going to introduce your lady friend?”

Cary: “Err, um, Lorea Lockwood, Kate and Irene.”

Irene by this time is staring intently at Lorea, absolutely convinced now of her identity.

Irene: Lorea, didn’t you use to sing? I’m sure I’ve seen you sing.”

Lorea: “I think you have me confused with someone else.”

Cary: “She can’t sing - tone deaf, you know.”

Irene: “Cary, this here ‘lady’ is holding out on you. She sings beautifully.”

Irene turns and seen only by Katharine, winks. The two of them give a knowing smile to each other, then Katharine beckons a waiter to their table, and gives him a message for the band leader.....

Chapter Six
-- by Helen Fredericks --

Chapter 6 - Which Way Did She Go?

Cary: Now listen here you two. This young lady does NOT sing and we are trying to have a private conversation. So please, go sit over there.

(Cary waves his hand as if shooing a pesky fly.)

Ignoring Cary’s request, Irene slides into the booth next to Lorea as Kate slides in next to Cary.

Kate: Of course you are darling. Go right ahead.

Cary: I said a PRIVATE conversation…. Do you mind?

Irene: Mind, of course we don’t mind

Cary looking very flustered.

Kate to Lorea : Now what were we discussing?

Cary: WE were not discussing anything!

Irene: Then why are you going on about a private discussion? Do you know what he’s going on about Kate darling?

Cary: Oh dear.

Lorea is watching this interaction and making mental notes. ‘These two are going to be trouble,’ she thinks to herself.

Kate: Well, I have no idea what he’s going on about! Why are you going on?

Cary: Yes, indeed. Why do I go on?

Cary turns to Lorea and smiles helplessly.

Cary: Lorea, I see I have lost control again.

Kate: Lost control? Why Cary old man you never HAD control to lose!

Irene: All men are like this dear. They always have illusions of control!

Cary: Kate, don’t you have an early call tomorrow?

Kate (ignoring Cary): So Lorea, you will sing for us, won’t you?

Irene: Oh yes, you must!

Cary: She doesn’t sing! Do you Lorea?

Kate: Of course she does! Like a sweet canary!

Lorea: Please, I do not sing. You have me mixed….

Irene: Nonsense! I saw you sing in South Bend!

Lorea: I have never been in South Bend!

Irene: Sure you have! You’re the dame with the Canary voice!

Cary: She has never been in South Bend AND she is NOT a Canary with a dame voice. Eh…a voice with a canary Dame…eh... Oh! (Cary shakes his head)

Kate: We know what you mean, Cary. Now be a good boy and be quiet. We’re talking with this Dame here!

Cary: She is not a Dame!

Irene: Could’ve fooled me!

Kate: She looks like a Dame to me! Are you a dame or not?

Lorea looks a Kate and then to Irene then to Cary.

Just as she is about to speak the Bandleader makes an announcement.

Bandleader: Ladies and Gentlemen. We have a special treat for you tonight! We have in our audience a great singer, Miss Minnie Vance! Maybe she will honor us with a song!

Everyone is looking around the room as a murmur rises in the room.

Bandleader: Will everyone give a warm welcome to Minnie Vance of South Bend!

Instantly, a spotlight shines on Lorea. Kate and Irene stand-up, applauding.

Cary: (as he lowers his shaking head): Oh no!

Lorea: I’m not her! It’s a mistake!

But the crowd can’t hear her as Kate and Irene pull her from the booth and push her towards the stage. Lorea looks at Cary with a look of panic on her face. She mouths, “Help!”

Cary jumps up and cuts the threesome off just before they reach the stage.

Cary: Now wait a minute you two. This has gone far enough!

Kate: Look it’s a knight in shining armor! Come to save the damsel in distress!

Irene: I thought it was Casanova.

Kate and Irene start arguing over what character Cary is ‘playing’ for his new dame.

Cary: Will you two stop? This is not a movie, it’s life. I am not playing this game and you are not going to embarrass this poor girl anymore! Come on Lorea, we’re getting out of …

Cary looks around and sees Lorea running from the room in tears.

Cary: Now see what you two have done!

Kate: Gee Cary, we were just having fun!

Irene: Yeah, we didn’t mean to hurt anyone.

Cary: Well you have! Are you satisfied?

Kate and Irene look at each other and wink.

Cary: Red, I expect as much from you! But Irene? You’ve been hanging around HER too much!

Kate: Hey, what’s that supposed to mean!

Irene: Cary I’ll go get her and apologize. I think she headed to the Ladies room.

Kate: I’ll go with you!

Cary grabs Kate’s arm: Oh no you don’t. They only let ‘Ladies’ in there!

Kate: Well you don’t have to make nasty cracks ole’ boy!

Irene rushes off to the Ladies room and Cary and Kate go to the lobby to wait. Cary and Kate stand back to back, both making nasty comments under their breath. A few minutes later, Irene comes out, alone.

Cary: Well, where is she?

Irene: I don’t know! She wasn’t in there. She must have left.

Cary Harumps and turns to Kate making like he’s about to strangle her. Then growls.

Cary turns to Irene: Now what?

Irene: Well, you’ll have to call her.

Cary: Call her? That would be great if I had her number!

Kate: You don’t have her number?

Cary: No, I do not have her number!

Irene: Well why not?

Cary: I was interrupted by two insane women!

Kate: You two go outside, maybe she’s out there. I’ll look for a phone book and see if she is listed. What was her last name?

Cary: Lockwood, Lorea Lockwood!

Kate: Lockwood, got it!

Cary: And DO NOT call her…just get a number!

Cary and Irene rush out the front door of the club. Kate looks around for a phone booth. As she heads down a corridor, she spots two phone booths. The door is partly closed on one. Kate slips into the 1st one and begins looking in the phone book when suddenly she recognizes the voice coming out the next booth.

Kate thinks to herself: That sounds like Lorea.

Kate leans farther out the door of the booth she is in.

Kate whispers: That IS Lorea! What is she saying?

Kate leans a bit closer to the slightly open door of the phone booth Lorea is in.

Lorea: I tell you they are going to spoil everything!

Then silence.

Lorea: No I tell you it was working perfectly! …….Yes, that’s right ….OK…But I tell you they recognized me…. No! They DID!……

Kate thinks: She is Minnie the Moocher! What is she up to?

Lorea: No, Kate and Irene. …..What do you mean ‘get rid of them’! We can’t just ‘get rid’ of Kate and Irene….Oh I see. Is Jimmy still outside?…..Well great! What do I do now?…..Ok, I’ll duck out the back.

Lorea hangs up the phone, slowly opens the phone booth door and checks to see if the coast is clear. She quickly walks down the corridor, through the kitchen and out the back door.

Kate follows her out the kitchen door into an alley and watches her as she hails a taxi. Kate runs down the alley just in time to see Lorea get into a taxi. Kate turns and hails a taxi.

Cabby: Where to sweetheart?

Kate smiles and thinks: I always wanted to say this.

Kate: Follow that taxi!

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