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Episode

Five


Frank: I just came to say goodbye. Iím going off for a few days.

Womanís voice: Pardon me? Did you say you were going off?

Frank: I did. Iím headed up to London to see Irene.

Womanís voice: You never go anywhere. You havenít been out of the village for fifteen years or more!

Frank: Well, Iím going now. She phoned, you see. Said sheíd like it if I met her for dinner. Maybe spend some time sightseeing.

Womanís voice: In my day, women did no such thing.  Imagine, calling a man friend!  And just what do you think we will do?

Frank: Get along without me, I suppose. Iíll be back soon enough.

Womanís Voice: This isnít right!

Manís Voice: Never mind.


Flo: Good morning, Miss Knytleigh.

Emma: Good morning. Iím surprised to see you here! I thought the whole lot of you had decamped.

Flo: Iím not needed in London, as it turns out. Alan is concentrating on the early relationship between Loretta and Reginald, and Peter felt that my presence would be distracting. He couldnít be Reginald, you see, with Lorettaís aunt and chaperone along.

Emma: Is he a method actor, then?

Flo: Well, to be honest, I think he wants to get her into bed and thinks that Iíd be in the way. I came by to soak in the atmosphere. I like it here now that theyíre gone. Itís so peaceful. Quiet, in a way that I imagine the eighteenth-century house must have been.

Emma: Well, Simonís gone off with Gary, Annís in London shopping, and Shirleyís at hospital with Martin, so it is pretty quiet. Just me and John kicking around here this morning.

Flo: And Frank? Where has that dear man gone?

Emma: I have no idea.

Flo: Do you think heíll be here tonight? Oh, I do hope so.

Emma: Iím really not sure. You know, Frank and I truly are finished. People donít seem to understand that, but itís true.

Flo: You? And Frank? I had no idea... youíre just a child! Oh, I am sorry! That was terribly rude of me, wasnít it?

Emma: And you are Ömore his age?

Flo: No, no, itís nothing like that. I just need Frankís services. He was going to introduce me to someone this evening, thatís all.

Emma: Whoís that, then? Maybe I could help.

Flo: I donít think so.

Emma: Why not?

Flo: I want to meet Helena OíRall.

Emma: Sheís dead.

Flo: I know that! But you know, Frank has a gift.

Emma: Well, I hate to disappoint you, but his "gift" doesnít include talking to his mum. Sheís never said so much as "boo" to him.

Flo: His mum? Helena OíRall is Frank Churchillís mother?

Emma: She is. Or rather was. If you ask me, youíre on to a loser here. Sheís not talking.

Flo: What shall I do?

Emma: Why do you want to talk to her?

Flo: I need help with Beatrice Farthingale. I donít understand her motivation. She doesnít speak to me.

Emma: Well, Helena OíRall sure in hell wonít either.

Flo: I see. Thank you. Oh, one more thing. What do you suppose Frank meant when he told me that I should consider the tulip?


Reverend Banks: I missed you at the hospital this morning. How are you?

Shirley: Ah, Reverend, Iíve been better.

Reverend Banks: Chin up, dear. The tests havenít shown anything upsetting, have they?

Shirley: No. But thatís just it. Itís all this not knowing. All this time wasting, with him getting worse and nothing anyone can do about it. If they just could say, "Martin, itís your spleen," or "Shirley, he has complications of the liver." But everyone is so vague. Heís still in hospital, though. Thereís nothing vague about that!

Reverend Banks: We donít always have all the answers, Shirley.

Shirley: I know that. But Iím afraid Iím losing him.

Reverend: There, there. No need to cry. Heíll be back on his feet, weeding the garden in no time. The answers are in Godís hands. Heíll share them soon, Iím sure. Now then, can I get you some tea?

Shirley: That would be lovely.


John: Come and sit.

Emma: In here?

John: Yes. Right here. Sit down.

Emma: Okay, Iím sitting.

John: Letís get married.

Emma: Can you say that again, please?

John: Iím sorry, I didnít do it properly. (Kneeling) Emma Knytleigh, will you marry me?

Emma: No.

John: No?

Emma: No. Oh, for Godís sake, get up!

John: Why wonít you?

Emma: Why are you asking?

John: Because I love you.

Emma: And why else?

John: Well, Iím worried about my granddad. I want to get married, have a family, before he goes. Heíd like that.

Emma: So now Iím a mother? How soon is he going?

John: Emma!

Emma: Sorry, that wasnít very good of me. John, listen. I care about you, but getting married, having children, well, those are things to think about. Things to do with you and me. Not to make your granddad happy. Besides, heís going to be fine. Heís just having some tests, isnít he?

John: Yes, but none of the doctors can say why heís been so ill. He could be dying.

Emma: He could have lots of things wrong with him, most of them completely curable. John, he wouldnít like to see you rush into something as serious as marriage. Iím sure of that.

John: Well, even if he gets better, Iíd still like to marry you.

Emma: When.

John: When?

Emma: When he gets better.

John: So youíll marry me, then?

Emma: No, John. I donít think I will. Iím not ready for that. I donít want to be a wife. Your wife.

John: Never?

Emma: No, I donít think so.

John: Oh. Well then. Thatís it, then, isnít it?

Emma: Should we talk about this?

John: No. I understand.

Emma: John, I am sorry.

John: Right. Why donít you just go?

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