(Dialogue between Lee & Kara, sat in a pub.)
L: I can’t answer that!
K: Really? But you were doing so well.
K: It’s just a question. Aren’t we a little beyond worrying about ego?
L: It’s not that. That’s not me.
K: I know darling.
L: It’s just . . (pause)
K: Go on.
L: Fuck! OK . . it’s been weird how we’ve . . clicked, I suppose . .
K: And . . ?
L: . . and . . (draws breath) Look, I told you I already have a female best friend. A girl.
K: A woman. So?
L: I don’t really get close to male friends.
L: I could introduce you to a couple of brilliant blokes. Blokes who’ve known me for years. Blokes who’ve seen me at my worst . . (laughs). Blokes who’d help me bury . . you know, blokes who’d hide shit for me . . never, ever speak of it . . and never ask questions.
K: (Smiling) Were you a gangster?
L: Shut up woman!
K: Well, at least I’m no longer a girl. (Still smiling)
L: What I’m trying to say is that I’m not close to them. I’m close to my best friend. Just her . . I mean . .
K: You mean you’re not going to answer my question!
K: Get to the point man!
L: Aaagh! (Smiling, wide-eyed, looks into the distance then focuses intently on her). I feel too close to you, too soon.
K: Oookay . .
L: It’s been like a blur. It’s like you arrived with this Paddington Bear label around your neck, saying ‘I’m important; I’m your friend; look after me’.
K: I don’t need looking after.
K: . . and I don’t like marmalade.
K: The bear. I don’t like marmalade. And I don’t have a hat.
L: You don’t have a hat? What, you don’t wear them?
K: Of course I do! But I don’t have a Paddington Bear hat.
L: See! This is the problem!
L: This is not a two-days-down-the-road-from-meeting conversation.
K: Oooookay . . what sort of a conversation is it?
L: I’m tired of this.
K: (Just gives him that look)
L: What happened? What did I miss? Is this how strangers talk now?
K: We’re hardly strangers.
L: Kara, we’ve seen each other twice.
K: We’re hardly seeing each other.
L: Hmmmm . . and here’s my problem.
K: (Gives him that look again)
L: You gave me that look.
K What look?
L: That look you give me.
K: Lee, fuck the look! What the hell are you going on about?
L: You know what, I really have no idea. I can’t even remember what I was talking about, let alone where we came into this conversation.
K: You said there was a problem.
L: (Quizzical look)
K: You said this was an odd conversation.
L: Right . . no, it’s not odd. I mean . . I mean, we don’t know each other. I mean this is day two of me knowing you and we’re talking like we’ve known each other forever . . like we’re close.
K: We are close.
L: See what I mean? How does that work exactly? Did I skip a generation. Do you speak like this with everyone you’ve just met?
K: What, so it’s my fault we got on?
L: Well, do you?
K: (Silence, looking at glass of wine)
L: (Deep breath) I’m not going to answer your question.
K: Well, that’s clear enough. Why not?
L: (Silence, looking at glass of beer)
L: Because . .
L: . . (Long pause) . . because I haven’t decided whether I’m going to fuck you yet. (Looks away with brows furrowed)
L: (Still looking away with brows furrowed)
K: . . . Ohhh, I like that!