Footprints: An Online Soap -- Episode #52

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Episode #52
Immediately After #51



Seen from above, the ice surface is filled with several practicing COUPLES.

ANNOUNCER (OS): Skaters, this concludes the practice session for Junior Pairs, Group B. Please clear the ice.

Several of the skaters step off the ice. JASON and SHANNON finally step off, beads of sweat resting on their faces. They breathe heavily, heaving with exhaustion. SANDY is waiting for them.

SANDY: Great job, guys!

SHANNON: That felt really good.

JASON: I just wish I hadn’t put my hand down on the triple toe when we ran through the program. But other than that, everything went well.

SANDY: Just keep the energy you had out there alive through the competition and you guys should do very well.

JASON: I hope so. I’ve wanted this for so long ... Two good programs here could send us off to Nationals.

SHANNON: I know! I can’t believe it! I’ve been waiting practically forever to be here, to have a shot at Nationals. Now we’re on Junior and we’re actually contenders!

SANDY: I’m really proud of you guys so far. Keep up the good work.

Sandy begins to walk away.

SANDY (CONT’D): I’ll see you guys in the morning, okay?

JASON: Okay. Bye, Sandy.


Sandy departs.

JASON: Good practice, Shannon.

SHANNON: I couldn’t have done it without you.

She drapes herself onto his shoulder. Jason rolls his eyes, annoyed.



On a small table, the WIG, DIARY, and LOCKER KEY are laid out. DANIELLE and ANDY are looking at the photos. KATHERINE, who is peeking from behind them, seems fixed on one in particular.

DANIELLE: Oh my God!

ANDY: It can’t be -- can it?

Katherine glances at the photo, which shows SHANNON and DAVE talking in the doorway of Shannon’s house, and then at the wig. She gasps.

KATHERINE: It is! It’s her!

Danielle turns to Andy and his mother.

DANIELLE: You recognize her from the video, right, Mrs. Fitch?

KATHERINE: Yes, but--

DANIELLE: (interrupting excitedly) What does Shannon have to do with this?!?

ANDY: Shannon?

DANIELLE: Yeah, Shannon -- Jason’s skating partner. You saw her at the party, didn’t you?

ANDY: You’re right! But I wasn’t talking about Shannon!

DANIELLE: Then what were you so shocked about?

KATHERINE: What Andrew is trying to say, my dear, is that the girl in the picture is Lisa!

Out on Danielle’s astonishment.



JASON enters the room, carrying his skating bag. He drops it onto the floor and removes his jacket. After tossing it onto the only chair in the room, he collapses onto the bed in exhaustion.

A few seconds of silence pass before there is a knock on the door.

JASON: Who is it?

SHANNON: It’s me!

JASON: Hang on.

He rises and opens the door. An overly perky SHANNON steps inside.

SHANNON: Hey! Up for a little hanging out?

JASON: Not particularly.

SHANNON: You’re quite the party pooper, aren’t you?

She messes up his hair flirtatiously.

JASON: Please, Shannon ... I just wanna take a shower and relax.

Shannon’s playfulness is not at all affected by his rebuttal.

SHANNON: Fine, fine, I’m going.

She begins to head for the door.

JASON: See you later.

He heads into the bathroom and shuts the door.

Shannon moves to leave the room, but pauses after opening the door. She raises an eyebrow sneakily and shuts the door without leaving.



ANDY, KATHERINE, and a shocked DANIELLE are gathered around the table of evidence. Andy holds the stack of photos, although their collective focus in no longer on them.

DANIELLE: That’s not Lisa -- it’s Shannon!

KATHERINE: No, I’m pretty sure of this. I mean, her hair is blond, not red, but--

ANDY: The wig certainly accounts for that.


DANIELLE: Wait, no. I don’t understand. Why would Shannon be posing as “Lisa”?

ANDY: I don’t know, but it’s pretty obvious that something incredibly weird is going on here, and we need to get to the bottom of it right now.



The previous scene continues, with ANDY, DANIELLE, and KATHERINE in the midst of a tense discussion.

DANIELLE: I just don’t see why--

KATHERINE: There’s apparently a major piece of this puzzle that we’re missing. There has to be some way to connect what’s going on here -- there has to be a logical solution of some sort.

DANIELLE: I hope so.

The doorbell rings. Andy answers it, revealing BRENT waiting outside.

ANDY: Brent! Come on inside.

Brent steps into the mansion. His initial reaction is one of amazement at the raised ceilings and expensive decor.

ANDY (CONT’D): Brent Taylor, this is my mother, Katherine Fitch. Mother, this is Danielle’s brother, Brent. He’s commander of the King’s Bay police force.

BRENT: (still preoccupied by his awe) Hello again, Mrs. Fitch.

KATHERINE: It’s nice to see you again.

ANDY: You two know each other?

KATHERINE: Actually, Mr. Taylor did a bit of follow-up work after my husband’s death. Nothing major, but some technical details. Isn’t that right, Mr. Taylor?

BRENT: Yeah.

He refocuses on the situation at hand.

BRENT (CONT’D): Yeah, I’ve been here before. (beat) I have to say, this place is amazing -- even more so than last time I saw it.

KATHERINE: That was quite some time ago. We did some important work on the house itself and then did a good deal of redecorating.

BRENT: It looks terrific.

ANDY: What brings you by, Brent?

BRENT: Actually, I have something incredibly important to discuss with you and Danielle.



SHANNON stands outside the bathroom door, a sly grin on her face. She slowly turns the knob, exerting an extreme amount of effort in order to make as little noise as possible. She is successful at this.


SHANNON tiptoes inside and closes the door as gracefully as she opened it, without making any noise. Steam overflows from the glass shower; its door and walls are fogged up.

Inside the shower, JASON stands under the stream of hot water, trying to relax.
He is turned towards the wall and thus does not see, through the fogged-up glass, Shannon’s blurry figure removing her t-shirt and then her sweatpants. The view pans in on Jason’s face as he shakes his head quickly.

Suddenly, he turns around as a cold draft hits him. He stares in shock as Shannon steps inside, looking down at his unseen rear end.

SHANNON: That’s even nicer than I remember it being.

She smiles seductively at him.

JASON: What are you doing?!?

SHANNON: Why don’t you turn on around--

JASON: What?!?

Conscious of both their nakedness, Jason remains facing the wall, not giving Shannon anymore of a chance than she’s already had to see anything.

JASON (CONT’D): (furiously) Get out!

SHANNON: You don’t mean that ...

She rubs his shoulders and then begins to move her hands down his back. He tries to shake her off.

JASON: I said, get out!

Out on his angry and embarrassed face.



SHANNON stomps out of the bathroom in a huff. Wearing only a towel around his waist, JASON follows.

JASON: What in the hell do you think you’re doing?

SHANNON: I was just trying to liven things up a little.

JASON: All you’ve done is make things worse, Shannon. From the moment you came into our lives, both Courtney and I have seen nothing but misery.

SHANNON: Hey, buddy, that’s not my fault! Courtney managed to screw this up all by herself -- accusing me of such ridiculous things and then getting mad at you for not believing her.

JASON: To tell the truth, I believe all of that a lot more than I believe what’s going on right here, right now.

SHANNON: What’s that supposed to mean?

JASON: What that’s supposed to mean, Shannon, is that I honestly wouldn’t put it past you at this point to have sent someone after Courtney.

SHANNON: How can you say that? Look at everything we’ve shared--

JASON: We’ve shared nothing! There is nothing between us!

SHANNON: You don’t mean that!

JASON: Yes, I do!

Shannon appears completely stunned.

JASON (CONT’D): At one point there was the potential for a great skating career between us, as well as a close friendship. But you blew all that with your schemes and manipulations.

SHANNON: (desperately) Jason--

JASON: It’s enough, Shannon. After we finish this competition, it’s over. My career isn’t worth ruining my personal life for.

SHANNON: But we’re so good together--

JASON: No, we’re not! Why can’t you see that? As a matter of fact, we’re absolutely terrible together!


JASON: Just shut up already. Get it through your head: There is no us, and there never will be.

Jason’s words appear to have slapped Shannon in the face, as she cowers in horror at hearing this again.



BRENT, DANIELLE, ANDY, and KATHERINE are all present.

DANIELLE: What is it that you need to talk to us about?

BRENT: Actually ... Mrs. Fitch, I hate to do this, but I might have to ask you to let us speak in private for a moment. This is police business.

DANIELLE: Don’t worry, Brent. She knows already. We thought she deserved to hear about this whole situation, since she’s pretty involved.

BRENT: That’s fine.

ANDY: So, what is it? Is it a lead in the “Lisa” case? If it is, we’ve got something big to show you--

BRENT: (excitedly) I ran a check on the Powell’s daughter. It turns out that a good deal of her time away at boarding school was spent training as an ice skater. After coming home, she began training in King’s Bay, and changed her name to--

DANIELLE: (interrupting) -- Shannon Parish.

Brent is surprised.

BRENT: How’d you know?

DANIELLE: Have a look at these.

She hands him the photographs. As he flips through them silently, his jaw drops further and further.

BRENT: This is odd. Where did you find these?

ANDY: We actually found an undeveloped roll of film in the bus station locker. Danielle took it to have it developed, and this is what we found.

DANIELLE: Even if it’s true -- even if somehow, Shannon and “Lisa” are one and the same -- why would she have pictures of herself talking to some guy in the doorway? They look unposed for, after all.

Brent studies the pictures, squinting and crinkling his nose as he examines.

BRENT: This is too weird.

KATHERINE: Why do you say that?

BRENT: The man in the picture is Dave Roberts -- the hitman who attacked Courtney.

Although Katherine’s limited knowledge of the situation prevents her from having such a reaction, Andy and Danielle are just as stunned as Brent at this revelation. Out on their collective shock.



A towel-clad JASON stands angrily before SHANNON, who is on the verge of breaking down in tears.

SHANNON: How can you say that?

JASON: Very easily: There is no us!

SHANNON: Don’t you care about my feelings at all?

JASON: I stop worrying about you the minute you decided it was okay to ruin the lives of everyone around you to get what you wanted!

SHANNON: I didn’t mean any harm, Jason. Really. I just wanted to be with you so badly ...

She softly rests a hand on his chest. He angrily brushes it off.

JASON: If your goal was to completely disgust me, you certainly accomplished it.

SHANNON: Just hear me out, please. I know we can make this work.

JASON: (firmly) No, we can’t. There’s no chance of it. (beat) Now get out of my room before I call Sandy.

SHANNON: Jason--

He points a finger to the door while moving her towards it.


She flashes him one last desperate look.


Shannon turns and exits wordlessly. After she closes the door behind her, Jason drops his head in frustration and heads to the dresser, where he opens up a drawer and pulls out a t-shirt.



BRENT, DANIELLE, ANDY, and KATHERINE are gathered around the photos.

KATHERINE: I don’t understand ... What’s the importance of these photographs?

BRENT: It’s kind of a long story. (beat) Jason’s real skating partner is -- was -- this girl Courtney, who’s been his best friend since they were kids. She got hurt on the ice and had to take a season off, so Jason’s coach recruited Shannon to be his partner for the time being. When Courtney was ready to start skating again, she was attacked. The attacker blew out her knee and she was on crutches for a few weeks and won’t be skating again for a month or two. She told Jason that Shannon had been threatening her -- apparently, there are some feelings between Jason and Courtney which Shannon picked up on -- and said she thought Shannon hired the hitman. We arrested the guy, but he hasn’t admitted to being hired by her. There were no clues except the testimony of Courtney and her friend to go on, other than the fact that Courtney claimed she had pictures of Shannon meeting with the hitman that Shannon managed to steal from her.

ANDY: Wow ... I didn’t even know the entire story, just the general outline. (beat) So these are the photos?

BRENT: It looks like it. Which means Courtney was probably telling the truth -- and Jason is down in Arizona with a psychopath at this very moment.



JASON finishes putting on a t-shirt. He stands in place, displeasure written all over his face.

JASON: (sotto voce) I don’t understand why Shannon is acting like such a lunatic. It’s like she doesn’t care what anyone thinks anymore.

He sits down on the bed, exhausted.

JASON (CONT’D): (sotto voce) As long as we get through this competition okay, everything will be fine. I can get back to King’s Bay and forget about Shannon ... but after everything she’s done to Courtney and me, I doubt she will ever be forgotten.



Next door, SHANNON is looking equally disappointed, although for a different reason. She detachedly flips through television channels.

SHANNON: (sotto voce) Jason’s starting to get too suspicious of me. This can’t be good. And worst of all, he’s rejecting me, even though he can’t have Courtney!

She turns the TV off and drops the remote to the floor.

SHANNON (CONT’D): (sotto voce) I need to find a way to make this work. If we do well in the competition, maybe he’ll get so excited ... You never know. I just need to be subtle for a few days.

Her eyes bulge in frustration.



The group has now moved into the elegant living room. ANDY, DANIELLE, and KATHERINE are in mid-conversation. All speak as though still in shock.

DANIELLE: I find it so hard to believe that Shannon is some kind of murderer.

ANDY: I can’t believe I didn’t recognize her at the party! She was right under my nose the whole time.

His mother pats his shoulder sympathetically.

KATHERINE: You had no way of knowing, honey. When she played “Lisa,” that girl put on a wig and changed her makeup completely. We both thought she looked familiar, but neither of us knew how true that was.

DANIELLE: Poor Jason -- and Courtney. They’ve suffered at her hands for months, not knowing what she’s truly capable of. Apparently the hitman was just the beginning of it.

BRENT enters the room.

BRENT: Okay, I just got Paula and Bill on the phone. They’re flying out for the competition tomorrow morning; the short program is tomorrow night.

DANIELLE: So what should we do?

BRENT: We need to get to Phoenix before that competition is over. Jason is in for the shock of his life.

Out on Brent’s face, filled with the anxiety of having such an important case to deal with.


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