The High Card
Written by : Juana
Story summary: Ben goes to Felicity with the truth…can she handle it? Does she even know the full story? After Ben’s revelation Felicity decides to take Elena’s advice and mend the fences between her and Ben so as to not fully give him over to Bliss. Felicity is ready to fight for her man…can she win or has the winner already been decided?
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters in my story. They belong to the brilliant writers and creators of the hit WB show.
EXT: NEW YORK CITY STREET-EARLY MORNING
BEN IS WALKING BLISS HOME FROM THE CLUB. BOTH ARE UNUSUALLY SILENT. AS THEY APPROACH HER BUILDING, BLISS FINALLY SAYS SOMETHING.
BLISS: So…I’m glad you came with me to the club tonight.
BEN: Yeah…(not really sure if he means this) me too.
BLISS: (can’t stand tension anymore) Ben…If I’d known watching me dance was going to make you this uncomfortable around me…well I never would have asked you to stick around.
BEN: I know…I’m sorry. I’m trying not to be a complete goof about this…it’s just…okay we’ll there’s not much I *don’t* know about you now.
BLISS: Because you saw me topless? Please if that were the case…every man in that club would have to be considered my best friend.
BEN: Okay…maybe it’s just that I’ve seen a different side of you…a less introverted one. I mean when you were up there…you were *amazing.* There wasn’t a man in there who didn’t want to think that you were dancing just for them.
BLISS: (being coy) Including you?
BEN DOESN’T ANSWER THIS AS BEN AND BLISS ARRIVE IN FRONT OF HER BUILDING.
BLISS: (cont.) Did you want to come up?
BEN: (hesitates) I don’t know…that’s probably not such a good idea right now.
BLISS: (in her best Austin Power’s voice) Why? Do I make you horny?
BEN STARTS TO LAUGH HYSTERICALLY, FINALLY BREAKING THE TENSION BETWEEN THEM.
BEN: (still chuckling) Fine…I’ll come up…but just for a little while…I have class tomorrow.
BEN AND BLISS HEAD INTO HER APARTMENT BUILDING.
FELICITY IS TOSSING AND TURNING IN HER BED. SHE REACHES OVER AND TURNS ON THE LIGHT AND REACHES FOR THE PHONE. SHE CALLS BEN’S LOFT. HE DOESN’T ANSWER HIS PHONE.
FELICITY: (VO) Dear Sally…so it was like 4 am and Ben either A: wasn’t home or B: just not answering his phone. Unfortunately I was pretty sure B wasn’t really an option…because I let the phone ring like fifteen times…even Ben who when he sleeps is dead to the world, couldn’t have slept through that. I had to reach the conclusion that…he wasn’t home…it was 4 am and he wasn’t home. The only place I could think that he might be was the club…so I called there…and they told me he left with Bliss at 3am. So I hung up and tried to go back to sleep…but all I could see where these images…images of Ben and Bliss…together.
BLISS COMES OVER AND SITS NEXT TO BEN ON THE SOFA…AND LEANS HER HEAD ON HIS SHOULDER. BEN’S ARM AUTOMATICALLY GOES AROUND HER.
BLISS: Thanks for tonight Ben.
BEN: What do you mean?
BLISS: For being so open with me…and for listening. You’d be surprised how hard it is to find a guy who will listen.
BEN: Was Dean a good listener?
BLISS: (reminiscing) Oh the best…I mean I knew that he was attracted to me…but he was always able to put that aside when I needed a friend. He had this way of making me feel so comfortable with him. You two are a lot a like.
BEN: Really? I make you feel comfortable?
BLISS: Yes…it’s a great quality…don’t lose it. (Bliss snuggles in closer to Ben)
BEN: (getting a little uncomfortable) You know…I should probably go.
BLISS: (turns and looks at him) Why? You just got here.
BEN: I know…it’s just…(takes a deep breath contemplating) this is really hard for me to say.
BLISS: What is?
BEN: Being *just* your friend…well it’s hard. I realized something tonight…something I’ve been trying to gloss over…because of my feelings for Felicity, but it’s just getting harder and harder for me to deny…so saying that…I should go.
BLISS: Saying what exactly?
BEN: I’m attracted to you Bliss.
BLISS CONTEMPLATES THIS NEW TURN OF EVENTS FOR THE MOMENT.
BLISS: What about Felicity?
BEN: That’s why I should go. I mean if there was no Felicity…there would be nothing wrong with what I’m feeling…but there is…so…
BLISS: Well truth be told…I’m attracted to you too Ben…I sort of thought you already knew that. So where does that leave us?
BEN: (confused) I don’t honestly know.
BEN AND BLISS ARE LOOKING AT EACH OTHER. INTENTLY. IT’S THAT “ALMOST KISS” MOMENT. BLISS GETS UP OFF THE COUCH.
BLISS: Maybe…you’re right…maybe you should go.
BEN: Yeah…if that’s what you want…I’ll leave.
BLISS: No…of course it’s not what I want. But I think…well I think we both have the same problem.
BEN: What problem?
BLISS: We both have residual feelings for someone else. It wouldn’t be fair to either of us to start something up…knowing that. The last thing I need to do right now is get my heart broken…again.
BEN: I’m sorry.
BLISS: Don’t be. Felicity is *very* lucky to have found someone like you. Someone who doesn’t give up as easily as Dean did.
BEN: I guess. I mean if I I’m such a great guy…then how come I can’t forgive her?
BLISS: You will…just give it time.
BEN: Sometimes…sometimes I think it would just be easier to let her go…get on with my life. I mean how much am I going to regret not pursuing something with you if things never work out with me and Felicity?
BLISS: I guess we’ll never know.
BEN LOOKS AT BLISS AND ALMOST WITHOUT THINKING KISSES HER. IT’S JUST MEANT TO BE THIS LIGHT SORT OF THANK YOU KISS BUT THE MINUTES THEIR LIPS MEET HE’S LOST. THEY PROGRESS INTO A HEATED MAKE OUT SESSION ON THE COUCH AND BEN’S HANDS AS WELL AS BLISS’S START TO ROAM. AS THINGS ARE SPIRALING OUT OF BEN’S CONTROL BLISS BREAKS AWAY FROM HIM.
BLISS: ( out of breath) Are you sure about this?
BEN: (also out of breath) Not entirely…(starts kissing her and undressing her again)
INT. FELICITY’S DORM ROOM-DAY
IT IS 7AM AND FELICITY IS TRYING BEN’S LOFT AGAIN BEFORE SHE HAS TO GO TO CLASS. STILL NO ANSWER.
FELICITY: Where the hell are you Ben?
THERE IS A KNOCK AT FELICITY’S DOOR. FELICITY HANGS UP THE PHONE AND GOES TO ANSWER IT. BEN IS STANDING THERE WEARING THE SAME CLOTHES FROM THE PARTY THE NIGHT BEFORE.
BEN: Can I talk to you for a second?
FELICITY: Sure. Come in.
BEN COMES IN CLOSING THE DOOR. FELICITY SITS DOWN ON THE BED AND HE COMES AND SITS NEXT TO HER. FACING HER.
FELICITY: You look so serious…what is it? (knowing…but not sure she want’s to hear)
BEN: Ever since I’ve known you…you’ve had this way of making me deal with situations different…with honesty.
FELICITY: Uh huh.
BEN: I want this situation to be the same…I don’t want to lie to you.
FELICITY: Lie to me? About what?
BEN: I told you last night that if something happened with Bliss…well I told you I would be surprised.
FELICITY: I remember.
BEN: Last night…after you left….I went to the club with Bliss.
FELICITY: (a feeling of dread is over taking her) And?
BEN: And I went back to her apartment with her…after she was done for the night.
BEN: And something happened.
FELICITY: (deflated) What happened Ben?
BEN REMAINS SILENT
FELICITY: (cont.) Did you sleep with her?
BEN: We don’t need to go there Felicity…I just needed you to know…that things have *changed* for me…and for Bliss.
FELICITY STARTS REALLY CRYING.
FELICITY: (matter of fact) You slept with her…that’s just great.
FELICITY: No…just leave…I can’t believe you ever again. I mean just yesterday you told me that I was the one you were still thinking of…still dreaming of…I feel like such a fool.
BEN: That was the truth…I did not lie to you.
FELICITY: You expect me to believe that?
BEN: I wanted things to work out with us Felicity…I did. But things were definitely not heading that direction…you and I both know this.
FELICITY: Difference being…you gave up…I didn’t. Don’t you think I could have found someone to spend time with? I didn’t want to…I wanted to work things out with you…and that’s what I was devoted to making happen…you on the other hand went the other way…and devoted yourself to getting to know Bliss. So congratulations…you have successfully moved on with your life.
BEN: I don’t know what you want from me.
FELICITY: What I *wanted* was for you to forgive me…what I *want*?… I want you to leave.
BEN: (resigning himself) Okay…fine. (starts to walk away…stops and turns back around.) I didn’t do this to hurt you…regardless of what happened between me and Bliss…(you can believe this or not) I still love you.
FELICITY: Okay…that isn’t helping…just go.
BEN EXITS THE ROOM. FELICITY DROPS DOWN ON THE BED CRYING HYSTERICALLY.
INT. ELENA’S ROOM-DAY
FELICITY HAS SKIPPED HER CLASS AND GONE TO ELENA’S ROOM.
ELENA: Face it Felicity…all men are bastards.
FELICITY: It’s just…I thought…he loved me…just me.
ELENA: I still think he does…but hormones pretty much always win…hands down.
ELENA: Yes…you don’t honestly think he had anything other than sex with Bliss…do you?
FELICITY: I don’t know.
ELENA: Well I do. What you and him had…that was love. What she and he have…it’s lust.
FELICITY: God…everything is just so *changed* now. I have nothing left to fight for.
ELENA: Not necessarily. I mean if you really wanted to fight for Ben…you have the ammo.
FELICITY: What do you mean?
ELENA: Well first thing you’re going to have to do is *pretend* you’re going to be okay with this new development.
FELICITY: I don’t think I can do that.
ELENA: If you ever want to get close to Ben again…you’ll do it.
FELICITY: (accepting this) Okay…then what?
ELENA: Start dating someone…let Ben see you with someone else.
FELICITY: And what exactly will that accomplish?
ELENA: He will be jealous…for one.
INT. BEN’S LOFT-DAY
BEN AND LYN ARE SITTING AT HIS KITCHEN TABLE TALKING. BY THE CONVERSATION IT’S OBVIOUS THAT JULIE HAS SENT HIM.
LYN: What is going on with you man?
BEN: What happened to your support? A few weeks ago you *urged* me to get on with my life.
LYN: Yeah I know. But I didn’t really think you’d do it…I was trying to be supportive guy.
BEN: (shocked) You didn’t think I’d do it?
LYN NODS HIS HEAD AND TAKES A SIP OF HIS DRINK.
LYN: The feelings man. I thought the feelings for Felicity would keep you glued.
BEN: I can’t believe you. Have you been honest with me about anything?
LYN: Of course. Don’t get all whacked on me.
PHONE RINGS. BEN GETS UP TO ANSWER IT.
INTERCUT BETWEEN BEN AND STEVE.
STEVE: Hey Covington…it’s me…Steve.
BEN: Steve…man it’s great to hear from you. What’s going on?
STEVE: Many major things.
STEVE: I’m getting married man.
BEN: (surprised) To who?
STEVE: What do you mean to who? To Christy of course.
BEN: Yeah of course…wow…this is good news.
STEVE: So…yeah I wanted you to know I was getting married, but my real reason for calling was to ask you a favor.
BEN: What kind of favor?
STEVE: You and me…we go way back.
BEN: Yeah…seventh grade.
STEVE: I’ve been thinking about this…and well…I was wondering if you would be my best man?
BEN: (completely shocked) What?
STEVE: I’m asking you to be my best man. Will you do it?
BEN: Yeah man…I can do that for you.
INT. FELICITY’S ROOM-DAY
INTERCUT BETWEEN FELICITY AND CHRISTY ON THE PHONE.
FELICITY: (surprised) You want me to be your maid of honor?
FELICITY: This is such a huge honor. Of course I’ll do it!
CHRISTY: Thanks so much. God this is just gonna be the greatest time.
FELICITY: Yeah, it is.
INT. DEAN AND DELUCA-NIGHT
FELICITY IS GETTING READY TO CLOSE UP FOR THE NIGHT WHEN SHE HEARS A KNOCK AT THE DOOR. SHE LOOKS UP AND SEE’S BEN STANDING THERE. SHE WALKS OVER AND LETS HIM IN.
BEN: (walking in) Okay…I’m here. What did you want?
FELICITY: To talk.
BEN: (frustrated) What is there left to discuss?
FELICITY: Our friendship for one thing. (looks at him and takes his hands in hers) We were friends first…I don’t want to lose that too.
BEN: You still want to be friends?
BEN: Even knowing that that would involve seeing me with Bliss?
FELICITY: (puts on a brave face) Yes.
BEN: God…you’re amazing. I don’t think…in fact I’m pretty sure that if the situations we’re reversed…I think I’d probably be *hating* you right about now.
FELICITY: I don’t think love and hate should share the same space…so I opt to not hate you.
BEN: And the love?
FELICITY: It’s always going to be there…the love I have for you is a part of who I am.
BEN: I don’t deserve that kind of understanding.
FELICITY: You’re right…you don’t…but you have it.
BEN COMES OVER AND GIVES FELICITY A BIG HUG. WE SEE THIS COMPLETELY SAD LOOK ON HER FACE. BEN FINISHES HUGGING HER AND STEPS AWAY RELUCTANTLY.
BEN: Did you want me to wait for you to finish here…so I can walk you home?
FELICITY: No…thanks though. I’m going out with Julie and Elena tonight…so they’re meeting me here.
BEN: Do you want me to wait with you?
FELICITY: Um…no…it’s okay you can go. They should be here really soon.
BEN: Okay. (leans over and gives her another hug) Thanks for calling me.
FELICITY OPENS THE LOCKED DOOR AND LETS BEN OUT. SHE WATCHES HIM WALK DOWN THE STREET. AS HE IS WALKING AWAY HE TURNS AROUND AND WAVES TO HER ONE LAST TIME. THEN HE WALKS AWAY. FELICITY GOES OVER TO THE PHONE AND DIALS.
INTERCUT WITH FELICITY AND ELENA
ELENA PICKS UP HER PHONE.
FELICITY: This plan of yours had better work.
FELICITY: Yes…Ben just left.
ELENA: Are you guys friends again?
FELICITY: Yes…but lying to him like that…telling him I was okay with everything…I feel like such a…low life.
ELENA: Just remember…it’s all for a good cause.
FELICITY: Well it better work quickly…cause regardless of what I told him…I will not be able to watch him with Bliss…I would rather strangle her than be her friend.
ELENA: You gotta learn to keep that in check girl…or you will blow this. Now listen up…the next part of the plan is simple….
FELICITY IS SITTING DOWN IN DEAN AND DELUCA LISTENING TO ELENA ON THE OTHER END OF THE PHONE.
SALLY: (VO) Dear Felicity…it’s easy to feel cheated when someone we love…finds someone else. I remember when I met John…well we started out as friends…because he had a *significant* other in his life…Amanda. Not soon after we met was when Amanda decided to *pursue* other relations. So I got lucky. I didn’t have to wait long…but the three or so weeks I did…pure hell. I know what you are going through…and I have enormous empathy for you. I have thought over “Elena’s plan of attack” and I’ve got to say…it just might work. Having said that…I now must say this. Playing games with Ben can be dangerous. Often we think we have the best hand, when in turn it was our opponents who held the high card all along. The high card this time being trust. Ben trusts you now, but will he feel the same if he finds out you’ve been hiding your true feelings…and lying to him?