by JW Fiction
Rated: 13+ · Script/Play · Comedy · #1481310
Pilot Episode for a dramedy about the life of a young librarian and his friends.
|Ext. Parking Lot – Morning|
JUSTIN arrives in the library parking lot to begin his workday. He sits in his car for a minute, listening to a CD and delaying having to get out. He finally sighs and exits the car, grabbing his bag and slinging it over his shoulder as he heads toward the entrance.
Int. Library - Morning
Justin enters the library to find it empty. He passes by shelves of books and notices yellow post-it-notes on the ends of the stacks. He stops to read one.
Justin: “Shelving completed on 8/23 at 1:15pm.”
Justin walks to another stack of books and sees a half-full cart next to it. He takes the post-it-note and reads it.
Justin: “Could not shelf books due to improper shelving by another employee. Will resolve.”
Justin crumples the post-it-note and walks to the circulation desk to find another note. He reads it and crumples it in frustration before heading downstairs.
Int. Conference Room
Justin lazily enters a conference room where a staff meeting is about to begin. The Library Director, DANIEL is at the head of the table standing and organizing papers. Justin sits at the opposite end of the table. Along the way, he exchanges glances with TRACY, a fellow librarian. Sitting next to Justin is JIMMY. Justin takes his bag off and slumps into his chair.
Jimmy: For being so late, you don't seem to be hurrying too much. Didn't you remember the staff meeting got pushed ahead earlier this week?
Justin: I must not have gotten the memo. Luckily for me though, I got your last minute reminder on the circulation desk.
Jimmy: I had a feeling most of you guys would forget so I put it out last Monday as a reminder.
Justin: That's been there since last week?
Jimmy: How could you not notice?
Justin: Because, Sticky, you leave your markings around the entire library. You're worse than my sister's cat.
Jimmy: My markings don't smell though. They're helpful reminders to keep everyone efficient and on the same page.
Justin: Well I think they stink. And besides, Sticky, why not just go with a chalkboard or something in one central location so we're not always picking up after you. That would be more convenient for everyone...and efficient too. You wouldn't go through so much paper. You know, I think animals are losing their habitats in the amazon because of you. So you should ask yourself what's more important: the proper placing of periodicals or the survival of the three toed sloth and all its friends you sick, uncaring, cold, cold, man.
From across the table, Tracy laughs and Justin smiles. For a moment, his day begins to brighten. He's brought back down when Daniel begins the meeting.
Daniel: Good morning everyone. I'm sure you know what time of year is upon us.
Justin raises his hand.
Daniel: Yes, Justin?
Justin: What is summer, sir?
The group laughs.
Daniel: Is that your final answer?
Justin: I believe it is.
Daniel: I'm sorry! You're only partly right. We're about to enter the busiest part of the summer: The Back To School Rush.
The entire group, excluding Jimmy, gasps in exaggeration.
Justin: Not The Rush!
Nancy (children's librarian): Dozens of kids stampeding over each other for copies of James and the Giant Peach.
Justin: Angsty teenage rebels skimming The Catcher In The Rye.
Tracy: I still have nightmares of last year's To Kill A Mockingbird disaster.
Justin: That poor bird.
Tracy: What does a diorama with a dead bird in it have to do with racial inequality?
Justin: Tragic, I know. Some people just never make it past the cover.
Daniel: Well, in any case, we all know what The Rush means. It means-
MICHELLE, The Head Librarian interrupts and directs her speech toward Justin.
Michelle: Slackers getting their work done at the last minute.
Justin sulks in his seat.
Daniel: Well, yes, but it means we all need to be as prepared as we can be. I'd like to take this time to praise Jimmy for his outstanding organization. We need to get the shelves stacked as quickly as possible. And-
Nancy: Hey Danny what are you going to do for me? You better not strand me down there like you did last year with those little monsters that damn near ate me alive and trashed all my stacks. All their running and screaming...this is what happens when parents don't hit their kids, you know. It's all chaos and spongebob mayhem. It's just madness!
Justin: Wow, for a children's librarian, you don't really like kids that much do you?
Nancy: Not the monster spawn.
Tracy: How many children would you say are monster spawn?
Nancy: What? That's what I call them. They're all monster spawn. Someone needs to teach them some hard manners.
Justin: I vote that we remove the rulers and scissors from Nancy's desk... and any other blunt objects from her section that could be used to harm children...so that means we'd have to take the books...
Daniel: OK everyone. Nancy, I was just about to tell you my plan to help you out this week. Justin, Tracy, I need you two to take time and help Nancy down in the Children's Section until we hire an assistant.
Justin: Aye, captain.
Daniel: OK, well, alright. I guess that about concludes today's meeting. I'll keep you all posted on any changes that we may encounter. Until then, remember preparation is key to surviving The Rush. Have a good day everyone. Ok, excellent. Meeting adjourned.
The meeting adjourns and everyone begins to exit the room. Justin and Tracy stop to talk.
Justin: So, time in Children's, eh?
Tracy: I can't wait.
Justin: Hey Nancy, what's it like in Children's?
Nancy: It's where librarians go to die.
Justin: Well, this is going to be a lot of fun.
Int. Library, Children's Section – Afternoon
TONY enters the bottom level of the library, which is the children's section. Two children run by him as he enters. He doesn't notice that Tracy is there sorting books and she greets Tony as he passes the children. He is taken aback and surprised to see her there.
Tracy: Hey, Tony.
Tony: Hey, Tracy. What are you doing down here?
Tracy: Nancy needs help with the back to school rush.
Tony: Ouch. Is Justin around?
Tracy: No, I'm not sure where he is.
Tony: Wow, you two are usually joined at the hip.
Tracy: Yeah, well, I'm stuck down here for the afternoon. (to a child) Hey! Don't eat that! I told you that you can't digest it!
Tony: Sounds like you've got your hands full down here.
Tracy: Yeah, I better get things under control before Nancy starts punting kids through periodicals. I need to go mop up some playdough puke, so I'll see you later. Justin is probably upstairs doing something intellectual.
Int. Library, Main Floor - Afternoon
Justin and Jimmy are standing behind the circulation desk. Jimmy is pulling due-date-cards out of books while Justin is hunched over an encoclopedia with a note pad next to it. It appears that he is taking some kind of notes.
Justin: Alright, Sticky. We've got a total.
Jimmy acknowledges Justing but keeps working, not turning his focus away from his books.
Justin: In this edition, there are one hundred eighty seven thousand, five hundred and eighteen commas. I believe that puts my estimate closer than your measly twenty five hundred.
Jimmy: Fantastic...why don't you go put these books away now.
Justin: I will right after you buy me my free lunch.
Jimmy: I never agreed to buy you lunch. I said I'd buy you lunch if you could guess how many commas were in there. I just wanted to see you actually follow something through to the end for once. I never thought you'd actually read the whole edition.
Justin: I've spent days on this! Never underestimate what a man will do for a free sandwich. And I want mine.
Jimmy: Well, I've got work to do so you're going to have to go buy your own food today.
Justin: That's cold, man. Hold on, let me get my jacket because it's freezing in here today.
Tony approaches the circulation desk. Justin is a bit surprised to see him.
Tony: Hey, buddy.
Justin: Hey, man. Why aren't you in some kind of important meeting right now.
Tony: I'm on a power lunch.
Justin: A power lunch?
Tony: Yeah it's the new rage of the corporate world. A typical power lunch begins with a brisk 20 minute jog, followed by a ten minute yoga cram, then a hardcore meal for the duration of your choice, then finally, an extreme shower back at HQ.
Justin: HQ? Power Lunch? Since when did you join the justice league and how can I learn the technique of your secret corporate power eating?
Tony: When you spend years working on your MBA.
Justin doesn't say anything for a moment. There is an uncomfortable silence.
Tony: So what do you guys have going on here today?
Justin: I was counting commas.
Tony: Oh...how many?
Jimmy: One hundred eighty seven thousand.
Justin: I won a free lunch but Sticky here won't man up to it.
Tony: I thought it felt cold in here.
Justin: I shouldn't have left my mittens at home.
Tony: Well how about you join me on the rest of my power lunch? I'll show you the ropes... You can be my Robin for the afternoon.
Justin exits from behind the circulation desk and him and Tony begin walking away.
Justin: I don't have to take an extreme shower with you, do I?
Tony: I don't think you're ready for that yet.
Justin: I don't think I ever will be. And I don't know about the whole Robin thing. I'd rather be the Hamburgler to your Ronald McDonald.
Tony: Ronald McDonald doesn't have a sidekick. And I think in that universe, if there was a villain, it would be the guy who steals hamburgers from people.
Justin: Not if he was giving them to the poor, spreading the love for hamburgers. In that scenario, he would be greatly aiding Ronald McDonald and society as a whole. Just think of him as the Robin Hood of over processed, genetically altered hamburgers.
Tony: Well, then, sir. We have a debate.
Justin and Tony walk downstairs to leave when they see Tracy with a mop.
Justin: That bad?
Tracy: You know, Nancy might be on to something. She locked herself in the storage room about twenty minutes ago. Right after the playdough puke and right before the ant farm feast.
Justin: Mmm....nothing like playdough and ants to stir up the appetite.
Tracy: Where are you two off to?
Justin: We're on a power lunch.
Tracy: Power lunch?
Justin: It's the new rage of the corporate world. I'll show you the ropes once I earn some merit badges.
Tracy: I'm looking forward to it.
Tony: Why don't you come with us?
Tracy: Sorry, I need to finish up down here and then Jimmy wants to teach me his new filing system.
Justin: Ah, the Jimmy system. Sounds sticky.
Tracy: Well, I'll see you guys later. (to a child) Hey! I told you the ant farm is not a buffet!
Child: (off camera) But I'm an anteater!
Tracy shoots Justin a look of desperation, then smiles and hurries off to the children.
Int. Diner - Afternoon
Justin and Tony enter a diner, a place they've been before, as we can tell because they walk straight to a table as if they sit there often. They are still debating as they enter and continue after they are seated.
Justin: Ok I get that you see the Hamburlger as a villain, but you can you at least ackowledge the possibility that with some tweaking, he could be a serious vigilante figure. The 'Dark Knight' of fast food. Ronald McDonald is too perfect. Actually, what does he even do? He's just a clown, a corporate sell out. The Hamburgler gives the company a mascot with edge, with flaws.
Tony: Hey, buddy, you started this whole thing. I'm done. You win.
Tony: Maybe you're the one who should have gone into advertising.
Justin: Yeah, well, how is that going anyway?
Tony: Excellent. Great pay, great hours, great work, great people.
Tony: Excellent. I don't have your longevity, though. How long have you been at the library, now? It's been a while.
Justin and Tony are interrupted by EMILY. Emily is Tony's ex from college. They were all good friends until Tony and Emily went through a bad breakup. They have since patched things up and remain friends. Tony always supsects bitterness in her, though. He doesn't bring it up with her because he feels it's warrented. She has just recently started working at the diner to pay her mounting grad-school debt.
Emily: Hi guys. My name is Emily and I'll be your waitress today.
Justin: Emily! What are you doing here?
Emily: So, my parents told me last month that since I'm a college graduate, it's time to start paying my own way. Only problem with that is they see Grad School as a choice, not a requirement, despite the necessity to go if I want to have a successful career, so yeah. I'm pretty much screwed.
Tony: I didn't know you were in that deep. I'm sorry, Em.
Emily: I mentioned it last week when we were all here. You remember, that night I saw the 'help wanted' sign and said I was so desperate for cash I was a bill away from dancing on the table. You have to remember. It was that night you were all over that trashy blonde with the huge hoo-hoos.
Tony looks away, angry. Justin cracks up.
Justin: "Hoo-Hoos!" Like owls, buddy. "Hoo! Hoo!"
Tony: I'm sorry, Em. I know this must be tough for you.
Emily: Don't worry about it. Hold on I'll go get you guys the usual and I'll take my break with you.
Emily goes to place the order when Justin and Tony see ANGELO enter the diner. ANGELO is a high school friend of theirs who dropped off the map months ago. He was always known as a slacker and a stoner. Angelo approaches the counter, mesmorized by the pastries on display.
Angelo: Uh, do you guys have muffins?
We cannot hear the response.
Angelo: SON OF A BITCH!
Tony: Is that who I think it is?
Tony: Yeah! Wow, it's been a long time.
Justin: Hey! Angelo!
Angelo: No way!
Angelo greets Justin and Tony at their table and sits with them. He purchased a danish at the counter and looks at it in disgust.
Angelo: It's just not the same. There's nothing better than twisting the top off a warm, fresh muffin, and then devouring it.
Angelo tosses the danish behind him over his shoulder.
Angelo: I'd rather starve.
Justin: Don't worry, buddy we've got some cheese fries on the way.
Angelo: It'll have to do.
Tony: So, Angelo, it's been a while man, hasn't it? What have you been up to?
Angelo: Same old, I dunno.
Justin: A bit hazy?
Angelo: What's going on in the life of Justin?
Justin: Well...same old.
Tony: How come we haven't seen you around lately?
Angelo: I just got back. I've been on tour.
Angelo: Yeah, I toured Rome, Venice, Sicily. I saw a lot of crazy stuff. More than the usual tourist sites. Good trip...trips. Had some bad ones but they cancel out. I think.
Tony: You were on vacation?
Angelo: You could say that.
Emily returns to the table with the food and sits with them. She has never met Angelo, but has heard the stories of his reputation.
Emily: Oh, you brought a friend?
Tony: Oh yeah, Em, this is Angelo, mine and Justin's buddy from high school.
Emily: Oh! So you're Angelo. I've heard a lot about you. I'm Emily.
Angelo looks at Tony, then Emily, then proclaims:
Angelo: Dude, my friend did you!
Emily: What?! Who!?
Angelo: The dude right next to you!
Emily: Oh... I see you've heard a lot about me too.
Angelo: A LOT!
Emily: Nice. Well I think I should get back to work.
Justin: But you just sat down.
Emily: Gotta pay the bills. Make sure you leave a generous tip. It might pay for a couple pages of a textbook.
Tony: Hey, wait. I'm sorry. Why don't we all get together later tonight. Dinner?
Emily: I can't spend anything.
Justin: Dinner at my place, then. You're over-due for a check up with Dr. Grill and family.
Emily: How is your dad these days?
Justin: He's been roasting the hell out of me. He's in need of some fresh meat, though. I'd love for you guys to take a couple burns for me.
Emily: Alright. I'll be there.
Tony: See you-
Emily leaves without acknowledging Tony.
Angelo: I can feel the chill in here.
Justin: Yeah that was pretty cold. You ok?
Tony: Yeah. Listen, my power lunch is about up. I'm going to have to bail.
Justin: You don't want to miss that extreme shower.
Tony: Later guys.
Justin: Well, I should probably get back to the library.
Angelo: You're still at the library?
Justin: Yeah. Hey, stop by for dinner tonight if you want. Later, man.
Justin leaves. Angelo is left alone at the table. He looks down at the cheese fries.
Angelo: Hey! No one ate! Hey! No one paid! SON OF A BITCH!
Int. Library - Afternoon
Justin is standing behind the circulation desk trying to assist a difficult woman looking for a book.
Justin: Ok, so let me get this straight. You're looking for a book but you don't know what it's called or who it's by?
Woman: I know it has a blue cover.
Justin: Well, why didn't you say so. I'm going to need more to go on than that, though. Do you know what it's about?
Woman: If I knew what happened then why would I want to read it? It was on the New York Times Best Seller List. Does that help?
Justin: It might. We might have something. I'm going to try to pull up the New York Times on screen here.
Woman: I'm sorry I'm being such a pain. I appreciate you helping me out.
Justin: No worries, Ma'am. It's my job. In fact, I have a little fun in times like this. I'm like the private eye of literature. Something goes missing and I'm there to find it. I don't care who I have to take down on my way. I stop for nothing in the pursuit of truth--hey what's wrong with the computer? Sticky, come over here. What's going on with this?
Jimmy: It's my new system. I wrote a program that changes the way we search for and file books and media. We can also issue new library accounts electronically, too. No more need for cards. Welcome to the 21st century of libraries.
Justin: What are you talking about, Sticky? This makes Atari look like Advent Children. Is this even DOS? It's just numbers and...Don't tell me our new system is binary.
Jimmy: It's just a beta. The final version is still a few weeks away.
Justin: I hope you included The Wheel with it. Hey, maybe when you've got some free time we can try to make fire. I heard there's a lot of good things you can use fire for.
Jimmy: You'll see. It's going to be the most efficient system we've ever used.
Justin: Well, right now this is absolutely useless. I'm sorry, Ma'am. I'm going to have to solve this mystery the old fashioned way. If you'd like to take a seat I'm going to search through every blue-covered book in the library until I believe I've found the one you're looking for.
Woman: Are you serious?
Jimmy: That will take forever.
Justin: Justice never sleeps. The truth is out there, Sticky. Somewhere within these walls, there is, well, there may be, a blue-covered novel that this woman desires. The very principles of this institution are based upon spreading knowledge and the written word. By not thoroughly searching our library would be denying this woman her consitutional rights. Not only is that unpatriotic, Sticky, it's treason. Do you love this country?
Jimmy: What are you talking about?
Justin: Do you love this country?
Justin: Do you want to see it burn to the ground?
Justin: Then I have a book to find.
Woman: Thank you...for all of your...help...
Justin: You don't have to thank me...And you never will.
Justin hops over the circulaton desk and hurries downstairs. Jimmy and the woman stare at each other, not sure of what they just witnessed. When he's out of their view, Justin casually strolls into the children's section to see what Tracy is up to. He finds her striaghtening up in a corner.
Tracy: Hey, here to help?
Justin: Nope. Search-dodging.
Tracy: Giving up that easy?
Justin, Hey this was a tough one.
Tracy: Oh yeah, try me.
Justin: Ok. Blue Cover. New York Times.
Justin: That's it.
Tracy: Wow, that is a tough one.
Justin: You bet.
Tracy: I could still find it, though.
Justin: It's all yours. So has it gotten any better down here yet?
Tracy: Now that you mention it, it has gotten a lot quieter. I pulled a Nancy and kind of isolated myself here in the corner, but I haven't heard anything break for a while. I hope the kids didn't eat paint and pass out or anything...come check with me.
Justin: Keep your eyes out for a blue book on the way.
Tracy: Give me half an hour. I'll find it.
Justin: Half an hour? Give me ten minutes.
Tracy: I thought you gave up on the book?
Justin: Who said anything about books?
Justin and Tracy walk to the open area of the children's section to see a group of children quietly sitting together as a group on a rug. Angelo is sitting up in a chair reading a children's book aloud. He has their complete attention.
Angelo: And Sammy said, "But I'm just a little snowflake. How can I ever be anything special? I'm too small." Then his brother called out to him, "Come on Sammy! Don't fall behind! We've got a way to go to get to the top!" Sammy raced after his brother up the mountain. He was running so fast he forgot where he was. Sammy was tired. He didn't think he could keep running. He wanted to stop, but he wanted to see what his brother was going to show him.
Angelo pauses, building suspense.
Angelo: No way! Guess what, children?
Angelo: He made it!
The children celebrate and Angelo concludes the story.
Angelo: When Sammy reached the top of the mountain, his brother smiled and said, "Look, Sammy. We can see the entire North Pole from here." "But we're still little Snowflakes." Sammy said. "No, we're not." Said his brother. "Look around Sammy, everyone is here with us." Sammy looked around and saw the rest of his friends and family on top of the mountain. "We might be little snowflakes, Sammy. But together, we can all be one Snowman. If everyone does their part, we can be something great." "Oh boy," Said Sammy. "Now I get it. I love being a snowman with everyone."
Angelo closes the book and the children stand up and begin to leave. Justin and Tracy continue to stare in astonishment.
Angelo: That's it, children. Thanks for reading with me.
Justin: Angelo, what are you doing man?
Tracy: You know him?
Justin: Yeah, hey, Angelo, this is Tracy.
Justin: So what's going on?
Angelo: Oh, nothing. I just wanted to stop by and I saw this book with the cute little snowflake kid on it so I started reading and then all these kids came up and started listening.
Tracy: Oh I love this one! You know there's a whole new series on Sammy The Snowflake. And you know the author also illustrates every book? It's great literature for kids.
Angelo: Sounds like someone has a book-crush.
Tracy: Yeah, I guess I have a book-crush on whoever J.D. Frost is, if that is his real name.
Justin: Or her.
Tracy: Keep dreaming.
Daniel hurries downstairs, worried.
Daniel: Why is it so quiet down here? Where are all the children? Nancy didn't make good on her threat, did she?
Justin: What threat?
Daniel: Oh no, she really did it this time, didn't she? Ok Tracy, you call 911 and Justin, you--
Justin: Whoa, whoa, whoa.
Tracy: It's ok, Daniel. The kids are fine. The kids are safe.
Daniel: Where are they?
Justin: Contently browsing our selection, I guess.
Daniel: Really? Order in childrens? That's unheard of. How did you do it? Don't tell me you drugged the Hi-C, because I swear if you did, the legalities of--
Tracy: It's O-K, Daniel. Angelo here read them the first Sammy The Snowflake book and they loved him.
Daniel: Sammy The Snowflake? Who are you, again?
Angelo: Angelo, sir.
Daniel: Great to meet you, Angelo. Do you have a job? Great, good, great. You just got one. I want you to be our children's librarian assistant. Can you do that? Great, good, excellent. You can start tomorrow. Don't worry about all the paperwork. We'll get that done. You just keep doing what you're doing. Storytime, keeping order, all that. Justin and Tracy will teach you the rest. Good, Great. Well, ok, good to meet you Sammy--er Angelo. Great to meet you. Have an excellent day.
Daniel hurries back upstairs.
Justin: He's had way too much coffee today.
Angelo: Did I just get a job?
Justin: Yeah, I think so.
Tracy: That's good for you, Angelo!
Justin: Great, actually.
Ext. Moore Home - Night
Justin pulls into his driveway and shuts off his car. He remains inside for a moment and sighs. He notices Emily sitting on his doorstep. He exits the car and approaches her.
Emily: I know, I'm early for my appointment.
Justin: Are you that anxious to see Dr. Grill?
Emily: I'm over-due for my checkup.
Justin isn't paying attention anymore. Emily snaps him out of it.
Emily: Long day?
Justin: Yeah. Tired.
They hear conversation coming from inside.
Justin: What's that?
Int. Moore Home - Night
Justin and Emily enter the house to find Tony sitting with Justin's parents in the living room. He's telling them stories of work and they are entertained.
Tony: So there I was with some of the most powerful men in Tokyo, and I said to them, "Why should you sign with us? I dunno. You tell me. Our record speaks for itself." And you know what? We got the deal signed that day.
Mrs. Moore: That's fantastic, Tony.
Mr. Moore: I'm glad you're doing something postive, Tony. It's good to see you so successful.
Justin rolls his eyes.
Justin: Hey look who's here.
Mr. Moore: Yeah, Tony was just telling us--
Justin: No, we're here, Dad. Us. Me. Your son. With company. Emily. Hi. Say hi, Emily.
Emily: Hi, Mr. Moore, Mrs. Moore.
Mrs. Moore: Emily! So good to see you. How have you been?
Emily: Oh, same old. I start grad school next week, though.
Mr. Moore: Grad school? We've got another professional in the house.
Justin: So, meatloaf? Chicken? I can't wait.
Mrs. Moore: Dinner's just about ready. Everyone go sit down. I'm going to find your sister and then we'll be all set.
Mr. Moore: Busy day pushing books, son?
Justin: And the probing begins. Just wear a glove this time, Doctor.
The group enters the dining room and sits down. Emily sits next to Justin and across from Tony. They exchange awkward glances. Mrs. Moore returns with Justin's younger sister, SAMANTHA. Samantha is a flirty high school freshman. She's had a crush on Angelo since the 6th grade. They sit down and the group begins eating.
Emily: This is really good, Mrs. Moore.
Tony: Great, actually.
Justin: Excellent cooking mom.
The doorbell rings. Justin goes to answer it but no one is at the door. He goes back to the dining room and Angelo has entered from another room of the house. He's holding a baking pan.
Angelo: I brought raviolis!
Justin: What...How...Where did you come from?
Angelo: Tricks of the trade, my friend.
Tony: So you work for the CIA now?
Justin: Actually he works with me.
Emily: You're a spy too?
Mr. Moore: That would require college.
Tony: Does anyone smell something burning? Or is it just Justin?
Mrs. Moore: Sit down, Angelo. It's so good to see you.
Samantha: Great, actually.
Justin: Let's not go there.
Angelo: I brought raviolis. I was going to bring desert, but I was thinking, you know, I can make raviolis, too. So I did.
Mrs. Moore: That's so thoughtful of you, Angelo. Thank you. Who wants some?
Mrs. Moore begins distributing the raviolis and the group samples the food.
Mr. Moore: So, Angelo, where have you been locked up lately? We haven't seen you around.
Angelo: I've been on tour, sir.
Mr. Moore: Tour?
Tony: Good trips, bad trips.
Justin: The usual.
Mr. Moore: What's this I hear about you and Justin working together?
Justin: Angelo here came in today and braved the children's section. Mr. Bloom gave him a job as assistant children's librarian.
Tony: No way, really?
Mr. Moore: You're a librarian too, now?
Justin: Here we go.
Mr. Moore: You're telling me that they hired him off the street to do your job? What does that say about the skill level required to be a librarian?
Justin: Our responsibilites are slightly different.
Mr. Moore: Give me three differences.
Mrs. Moore: How are the raviolis, everyone?
Samantha: I love them.
Angelo: They're special.
Justin looks up from his plate, alarmed.
Justin: Special? How special, buddy? What makes them so special? You didn't make them yourself, did you? Use any of your own ingrediants?
Angelo: They're special because they've brought us together here tonight.
Justin: Oh, well. Good. I thought we were all here because I invited everyone. But I see where you were going with the raviolis. It's good to have some normal...special but ordinary raviolis. Good to have everyone here.
Samantha: I'm so glad you came, Angelo. Aren't you going to tell us about your vacation?
Justin: Ignore the jailbait, buddy.
Mr. Moore: Don't talk about your sister that way.
Justin: I can't help it if she's had a mega crush on the poor guy since she was 12. You remember that phase, don't you sis? The braces and the pigtails and the love letters and the poems.
Samantha: Oh my God I can't believe you. You're so embarassing.
Justin: Oh-em-gee, sis, my bad. That's for letting your cat urinate all over my room.
Samantha: I'm sorry but I know it's the only pussy you're getting
The group gasps. Justin can't believe what he just heard.
Mrs. Moore: Samantha!
Emily: Someone want to turn the heat down?
Mr. Moore: (laughing) That's enough, Samantha.
Justin: Wow, sis. Just wow.
Mr. Moore: No more arguing. This is a rare occasion for us. Look at the cast of characters we have at this table tonight: A deal closing businessman, an aspiring graduate student, and a young man so talented he was offered a job off the street.
Justin: I'm not so hungry anymore. I'm sorry buddy, but I wish these raviolis were just a little bit more special. It would have really hit the spot.
Justin leaves the table and walks outside.
Mr. Moore: Look's like someone is over-due for a nap.
Angelo: That was an excellent pun, sir.
Ext. Moore House - Night
Justin walks outside and takes a deep breath. He's about to get into his car when Emily stops him.
Emily: I'm sorry...about what happened in there.
Justin: Don't worry about it. That's what happens when you live under the same roof as Dr. Grill.
Emily: I'm sure he doesn't mean for it to sound the way it does.
Justin: Of course he does. He's right, too. He's this big shot orthodontist and Tony's the man at his firm, Angelo got a job without doing anything, you're going to have a great career, and then there's me. He can't stand the fact that I spend my day putting books on shelves and looking up encyclopedias.
Emily: But you like it, don't you?
Justin: Yeah...I dunno. I think so. It's just that sometimes...
Justin: Forget it.
Emily: No, what?
Justin: Do you ever wonder if you've missed your chance?
Emily: I'm not sure I know what you mean.
Justin: I mean all this time I've been at the library, you've all been at college. And look at us now. I'm still the same and you're all moving on with your lives. I still live with my parents, Emily. I don't see it changing in the near future, either.
Emily: Can I tell you a secret, Justin?
Justin: Of course.
Emily: I wish I had your life.
Justin. Ha! How come?
Emily: Because between classes and work and all my debt, I ask myself every day if it's worth it. All our lives people have told us to aim high and work hard- That we would succeed and be happy if we worked hard enough. But what is success? Or happiness? If it's just your name on a diploma and a lot of numbers on a paycheck, then I don't know if it's all worth it.
Justin: I can't tell you what happiness is. If I could, we wouldn't be out here talking right now.
Emily: Yeah, I'm sorry. This is kind of heavy.
Justin: Maybe those really were some special raviolis.
Justin: Thanks, Emily. I needed a good talking to.
Emily: I like talking with you, Justin.
Justin: You're not such bad company yourself. And don't worry. All your hard work is going to pay off. You're too good a person for it not to work out. No one works harder than you.
Emily: Speaking hard work, I should probably get going. I'm sorry, but I have a few orientations to go to tomorrow, and then I've got work, and then I need to--
Justin: Don't worry about it. Get some sleep. It's been a long day.
Emily: We should have some more of these little chats.
Justin: I'll bring the raviolis.
Emily gets into her car. She waves to Justin as she drives away. He waves and remains outside for a moment. He sighs and sits on the curb.
Ext. Library Parking Lot - Morning
Justin arrives at the library to begin his work day. He is listening to the same song that we heard him listening to on the previous day. He puts his head down on the steering wheel for a moment and then turns his car off. He exits, slings his bag over his shoulder, and enters the library.
Int. Library - Morning
Upstairs, Justin finds a yellow post it note on the computer screen at the circulation desk.
Justin: What's this, Sticky?
Jimmy: Mr. Bloom wanted me to tell you he needs to have a conference with you.
Justin: And you needed to leave a note? Why not just tell me?
Jimmy: I was just making sure the message was delivered.
Justin: Didn't we have a conversation about paper conservation yesterday? Wow, that's amazing. If you switch the V and the S, you get two entirely different words. I love the english language.
Jimmy: You're late for your conference.
Justin: Where's Tracy?
Jimmy: She's showing the new guy around in Children's.
Justin: Angelo. How's he doing?
Jimmy: You're late for your conference.
Int. Office - Morning
Justin enters Daniel's office to find him seated at his desk with Michelle standing next to him, arms folded.
Daniel: Good morning, Justin. have a seat.
Justin: Morning, Michelle, Mr. Bloom.
Daniel: How are you doing?
Justin: Ok, if this is about the blue-covered book, or the very long power lunch I took yesterday...
Daniel: What's a power lunch?
Justin: It's the new rage of the corporate world. First you start with....well, nevermind.
Michelle: We need to talk, Justin. What's this we hear about you spending the past week counting commas in one of the encyclopedias?
Justin: So I've been ratted out. I get it. I knew this was a sticky situation.
Daniel: It's not just about the encyclopedia, Justin. We're concerned about your recent decline in performance.
Justin: I've been getting my work done. You can't say I haven't.
Daniel: We're not. We just think that--
Michelle: That you've been slacking off too much. We're starting to doubt your commitment to the library.
Justin: My commitment? I wasn't aware this was a long-term relationship.
Daniel: Justin, you've been with us for over five years. What are you saying?
Justin: I'm sorry, that was a poor choice of words. I don't know, Mr. Bloom. It's just the end of the summer, I guess. It's been a long season, but fall is right around the corner. I can turn this around.
Daniel: But do you want to turn it around, Justin?
Justin: Of course.
Daniel: Where do you see yourself in five years?
Justin: Guys, it's eight in the morning. It's a little early to be having such a heavy conversation. Wait. Angelo didn't bring any leftover raviolis with him, did he?
Michelle: What are you talking about?
Justin: Ok, good. Listen, I don't know where I'm going to be in five years. No one knows. All that matters is where I am right now, and that's here.
Daniel: What matters most is if you're happy where you are. Are you happy here?
Justin: I want to be.
Justin exits Daniel's office and heads downstairs.
Int. Library, Children's Section - Morning
Justin finds Tracy and Angelo in front of a stack of books.
Angelo: What's good?
Justin: Not much, man. How much longer are you stuck down here, Tracy? It's getting too Dr. Phil-ish upstairs.
Tracy: Daniel wants me to train Angelo in Children's today. He said he would have Nancy do it if he wasn't afraid of her training him to hate children.
Justin: That makes sense.
Tracy: Hey, Story Time is about to start, why don't you join us.
Justin: What did you have picked out?
Angelo: Sammy The Snowflake and the Great Vacation.
Tracy: It's a great choice. In this one, Sammy and his family take a trip to Florida during a rare snow storm.
Justin: Wouldn't they melt when the storm passed?
Angelo: It's a kid's book, man. First of all, if it were realistic, the snowflakes wouldn't talk. And if they all melted, that would be like...
Tracy: So are you in?
Justin: Of course.
The three of them approach the group of children sitting on the rug for story time.
Tracy: Good morning, everyone!
Children: Good morning.
Tracy: Welcome to Story Time. My name is Tracy, and these are my friends, Justin and Angelo.
Angelo: Hello, children.
Justin: Hey, kids.
The children remain silent.
Tracy: Ok, so today we've got a great book to read. It's called Sammy The Snowflake and the Great Vacation. It's a really fun story with lots of neat pictures.
Angelo: I flippin' love this book, Children.
The children laugh.
Justin: Yeah, it sure is a good read.
The children remain silent.
Tracy: Ok, let's get started. I'll start reading first, and then Angelo can finish the second half for me.
The children grow restless. More children begin to enter the library, some of them young and with parents, and some of them older; middle school and high school students. As more kids begin to rush in, Angelo looks confused. Justin and Tracy stare at each other. They know The Rush has begun.
Angelo: What's going on?
Justin: Oh, no. It's here!
Angelo: What's here?
Justin: The Rush!
Tracy: But it's so early!
Justin: We never thought it could happen so early. It looks like they all woke up early to try to get their books before everyone else.
Tracy: But we're not ready. We haven't had the time to prepare! We're not ready!
Justin: We need to get upstairs. We'll never survive down here. Come on!
Justin grabs Tracy's hand and hurries her upstairs with Angelo close behind.
Tracy: But what about Nancy?
Justin: There's no time!
Tracy: We can't leave her behind!
They stop and turn around to see Nancy being swarmed by a throng of children searching for books. She calls up to them in desperation.
Nancy: Come back!
Tracy: We have to go back!
Justin: We can't! She's already gone, Tracy. She's gone!
Angelo: Leave no one behind! Keep going, I'll bring her back!
Angelo runs back downstairs to save Nancy. He picks up children over his head and places them behind him to get closer to Nancy. More children swarm around him as he tries to reach Nancy.
Justin: There's nothing we can do for them now, Tracy! It's just us. We have to get upstairs, NOW!
Justin and Tracy run upstairs to alert the rest of the staff. They all come out to the circulation desk.
Daniel: What's going on. What happened to you two?
Justin: It's here, everyone! It's happening. Now!
Michelle: What's happening?
Tracy: The rush!
The group gasps.
Daniel: Oh my God, are you serious?
Justin: We wouldn't joke about it, Daniel.
Daniel: It's so early...but where's Angelo? What happened to him?
Justin: He...didn't make it.
Daniel: You left him behind?
Tracy: We had no choice. He went back for Nancy, and...
Daniel: My God, it was his first day. He never had a chance.
Justin: I'm sorry, sir.
Tracy: What are we going to do?
Daniel: Everyone, man your stations. We cannot lose the circulation desk. This desk is all that seperates us from the mob. We cannot let this desk be breached.
Justin: Maybe we should try to hold them down in Children's for a while so we can fortify up here.
Daniel: Good idea. Oh, no. Here they come. Hold strong, everyone.
A massive group of kids varying in age storm the circulation desk. They are all yelling about what books they need. Some are waving papers and lists in the staff's faces. No one knows what to do. Everyone tries to answer questions individually, but the rest of the mob won't wait for their turn to be helped. Jimmy begins to check out books for some children. He starts to hit the computer and panic.
Jimmy: Oh, no! OH NO!
Daniel: What is it, Jimmy?
Jimmy: The system is down, sir!
Justin: What do you mean the system is down, Sticky?
Jimmy: It's just a beta! It crahsed! It can't handle this much at once!
Daniel: Can you fix it?
Jimmy: No, the computers are fried!
Daniel: My God, Jimmy, it's over!
Tracy: We don't have a chance!
Justin: You designed it, Jimmy! You have to fix it!
Jimmy: I can't, there's nothing I can do!
Daniel: Then may God have mercy on us all.
Tracy: It's over, Justin.
Justin: I'm sorry, Tracy.
Justin and Tracy gaze at each other as we see the children breach the circulation desk. The children sworm the staff members. Justin looks around and sees the chaos and panic of the situation. He turns to see Angelo carrying Nancy up the stairs in his arms. Justin decides to take charge. He jumps on top of the circulation desk.
Justin: EVERYONE! ENOUGH!
The library becomes silent as everyone, including the children, give Justin their attention. He is a bit surprised to have stopped the chaos, but he continues to direct the group.
Justin: Ok! We have a problem with the computers, but we can get through this. We all just need to work together. Sitcky, note-pad, now!
Jimmy tosses Justin his pad of yellow post-it-notes.
Justin: Tracy, pen, please.
Tracy tosses Justin a pen.
Justin: Alright, so this is how it's going to work. If you need to register for a library card, form a line in front of me and I'll give you a yellow post-it-note. On your yellow post-it-note, you're going to write down your name, address, and phone number. If you need a book from the children's section, you're going to see that man right there, Angelo. He's going to find your book for you. If you're in middle school or high school, see Tracy. She'll help you. When you've got all the books you need, you're going to write them down on your little post-it-note and bring it over to Jimmy by the computer. He's going to file it the old fashioned way and check your book out for you. This can only work if you all remain calm, civil, and patient. Ok, people, let's go!
The mob breaks off into groups. A line forms in front of Justin and groups of children follow Tracy and Angelo to their sections of the library. Daniel and Michelle look up at Justin in admiration.
Daniel: You saved the day, Justin.
Justin smiles. He looks around him and sees his co-workers looking at him with the same admiration. For the first time in a long time, Justin feels that he has accomplished something.
Int. Library - Evening
Justin and Jimmy are standing at the circulation desk. There is one more child remaining in the libary. Jimmy finishes filing the registration and the child leaves. Tracy approaches the desk.
Tracy: Is that it?
Justin: Yeah, I think that was the last one.
Tracy: Wow, I can't believe we made it.
The rest of the staff approaches the desk.
Daniel: Well, Justin, I don't know what to say. You really did save the day. Great job.
Michelle: Looks like you were saving all that hard work you had in you for today.
Justin: You gotta pick your battles. Choose wisely. And sometimes I guess you just get lucky.
Daniel: At least we know The Rush is over now. We can all go home and get a good night's sleep. We all deserve it after today. Good night everyone.
Everyone begins to leave, congratulating Justin along the way. Tracy stays behind to talk to Justin.
Angelo: I didn't think I'd make it back, man.
Justin: I'm glad you did, buddy. Take it easy.
Jimmy: Good work today.
Justin: Hey, a compliment. That's rare. Thanks, Jimmy. Any chance on that free lunch?
Justin: I tried.
Nancy: You looked me dead in the eye and left me down there.
Justin: What would you have done in my position, Nancy?
Nancy: Good point. See you tomorrow.
Justin and Tracy are left alone in the library.
Justin: Quite a day, huh?
Tracy: I'm really proud of you, Justin. You did a good job today.
Tracy: I mean it. You looked different this morning when you jumped on top of the desk.
Justin: It's all about perspective, you see. You're not used to looking at me from that angle.
Tracy: I'm trying to be serious. It was good to see you the way you were this morning.
Justin: You know, I feel different now. Lately, I've been so lazy and spaced out I forgot how much I like this place.
Tracy: Well I'm glad that all it took for you to remember was total chaos and the complete breach of the circulation desk.
Justin: Are you happy here, Tracy?
Justin: Are you happy here? Is this just a job for you or do you really like what you do?
Tracy: We've been here a long time, Justin. It used to be just a job, but I really like what I do now.
Justin: Do you ever think that you missed your chance? Like you should have done something else, but you got stuck doing the same thing over and over?
Tracy: You can't dwell on what could have been, or what could be. I'm content. I'm happy. What about you?
Justin: Sometimes I wonder how things would have been if I had left with everyone to go on to college. But sometimes, Tracy, I really love my life.
Tracy: You're getting pretty deep. You haven't been eating Angelo's raviolis, have you?
Justin: How do you know about those?!
Tracy: Hey, look what I found today.
Tracy shows Justin a paper-back novel with a blue cover. They continue their conversation as the episode ends.
Justin: No way! How did you find it?
Tracy: Simple. I just picked up the New York Times and scanned the list for new-releases.
Justin: Good work. You think we should put it on hold?
Tracy: We could. I told you I could find it.
Justin: And I told you all I need is ten minutes.
Tracy: Are you still talking about books?
Justin: I could be. Probably not, though.
Tracy: Keep dreaming.