Leave A Message
Written by: Juana
Story summary: Felicity is bewildered by Ben’s lack of jealousy until she talks to Eli. After hearing the frantic messages from Tiffany on Ben’s machine she goes to confront her and make her see the truth…but the tables are turned on her when she witnesses some tender moments between Ben and Tiffany.
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters in my story. They belong to the brilliant writers and creators of the hit WB show.
INT: FELICITY’S DORM ROOM-DAY
FELICITY: (VO to Sally) Dear Sally…things always have a funny way of working themselves out. We struggle for a solution and before we know it we forget what the problem was that we were trying to solve. Two weeks ago Ben was riddled with jealousy and insecurity about Noel and Eli…but now it’s like a whole different Ben.
INT: LIVING ROOM BEN’S LOFT-DAY
BEN COMES OUT OF THE SHOWER WITH A TOWEL WRAPPED AROUND HIS WAIST. FELICITY IS SITTING ON THE COUCH IN HER PAJAMAS READING A BOOK.
BEN: Shower is all yours.
BEN WALKS INTO HIS BEDROOM. FELICITY FOLLOWS HIM.
FELICITY: So what are you doing today?
BEN: Um…I told Tiffany I would go with her to the police station.
FELICITY: Oh…why does she need to go to the police station?
BEN: I didn’t tell you? I thought I did…they brought in the guy who beat her up…so there’s some more paperwork they need filled out in order to press charges.
FELICITY: (disappointed) Oh.
BEN: So…how bout you?
FELICITY: Uh…I have to work on an Art assignment with Eli.
BEN: So will you be here when I get back?
FELICITY: Probably not….we were going to go to Central Park.
BEN: Okay…well then I guess I’ll just call you when I get in.
FELICITY: Yeah…I’ll probably be gone most of the day though.
FELICITY: (VO to Sally) Nothing Sally…nada…zip…not a shred of anything even resembling jealousy. So I should be happy right? So why was I so….not happy. It’s not like I wanted him to be the way he was all crazy jealous and picking fights with Eli…but this complete about face was making me…confused. And on top of that he was spending so much time *being there* for Tiffany…I was becoming jealous…in the course of two weeks Ben and I had completely switched roles.
CUT TO: EXT. CENTRAL PARK-DAY
ELI IS SKETCHING SOMETHING HE LOOKS OVER AND SEES FELICITY WHO HAS HER PENCIL POISED ABOVE THE PAPER LIKE SHE IS ABOUT TO DRAW SOMETHING BUT HER MIND IS OBVIOUSLY SOMEWHERE ELSE.
FELICITY REMAINS MUTE…STILL IN THAT OTHER PLACE. ELI WALKS OVER AND LOOKS AT HER PAPER.
ELI: I really like what you’ve done there…it says so much without wasting any paper.
FELICITY: (snapping out of it) What?
ELI: We have been here an hour and you haven’t drawn a thing.
FELICITY: I know…I’m sorry…I’m just…elsewhere right now.
ELI: So I noticed. Did you want to talk about it?
FELICITY: (VO to Sally) I really wanted to talk to someone…but I wasn’t sure talking about Ben to Eli would be very fair to him…but he seemed so willing to listen.
FELICITY: No…thanks…it’s nothing…really.
ELI: It’s Ben…isn’t it?
FELICITY: (adamant) No. Ben and I are fine.
ELI: You don’t need to get defensive. I didn’t say you and Ben weren’t fine…I simply asked if it was about Ben…sorry.
FELICITY: No. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have snapped at you like that…you’re just trying to be a friend.
ELI: Right. So lets talk.
FELICITY: Are you sure you want to hear this?
ELI: Yes…I promise I’ll refrain from any Ben bashing.
FELICITY: Well it’s probably nothing really…it’s just he’s been spending so much time the past two weeks with Tiffany.
ELI: Tiffany the girl he works with?
FELICITY: Yes…and she’s his ex-girlfriend.
FELICITY: I mean it’s nothing…right.
FELICITY: Okay you’re going to have to do better than that…that was so unconvincing.
ELI: Well it’s just…I’m not a trusting guy by nature…because of…forget it.
FELICITY: Because of what?
FELICITY: (VO to Sally) Turns out Eli was in a very similar situation one time…his girlfriend at the time Tabitha…starting hanging out with her ex boyfriend…and even though she assured Eli that everything was fine…turns out things weren’t so fine for her and Eli…but pretty fine for her and the ex…so she dumped him.
FELICITY: Are you telling me that Ben is going to dump me for Tiffany?
ELI: I’m just telling you to be aware…the biggest thing I had working against me was my *not* knowing what was going on. Looking back all the signs were there…I just chose to ignore them…because I trusted her.
FELICITY: The signs?
ELI: Yeah…they worked together…and she was always having to work late…always getting rides home from him…she stopped inviting me to work gatherings….and he started to come up in all topics of conversation...in the last month we were together I felt more like a friend than a boyfriend…I thought it was a phase…I was wrong.
CUT TO: INT. TIFFANY’S APT.
BEN IS SITTING ON THE COUCH. TIFFANY WALKS IN FROM THE KITCHEN AND PUTS A SANDWHICH AND A DRINK DOWN IN FRONT OF HIM.
TIFFANY: It’s just like the old days…isn’t it?
BEN: The old days?
TIFFANY: Yeah remember…we’d skip out of fourth period and go to my house. I’d make you lunch.
BEN: Oh yeah.
TIFFANY: I remember I’d pretend you were my husband…and you had just come home for lunch.
BEN: (surprised) You did?
TIFFANY: Yeah I know…it’s corny…but I did. Back then I couldn’t imagine that dream not becoming a reality.
BEN: What do you mean?
TIFFANY: Nothing…never mind…just reminiscing.
BEN: No come on... tell me. ( takes a bite of sandwich)
TIFFANY: It’s stupid…but I mean we were together from 7th grade on.
TIFFANY: I just thought…well I never thought that wouldn’t be the case.
BEN: You dumped me…remember?
TIFFANY: Yeah stupid move on my part…
BEN: I couldn’t agree more…but he did have that college guy appeal.
TIFFANY: I just wish I hadn’t been so quick to discard…well my best friend.
BEN: We’re still friends…I’m here now aren’t I?
TIFFANY: Yes…and believe me that makes me happy…but I can’t help wanting more.
BEN: (shocked) Excuse me?
TIFFANY: Ben...I want things back the way they were…I want you back.
BEN: (uncomfortable) Tiff…that’s flattering…but…I have a girlfriend…and you know that.
TIFFANY WALKS OVER AND SITS NEXT TO BEN ON THE COUCH.
TIFFANY: Don’t you ever think about me anymore?
BEN LOOKS INTO TIFFANY’S EYES. THE EYES HE SPENT ALL OF JUNIOR HIGH AND MOST OF HIGH SCHOOL GAZING INTO.
TIFFANY STARTS TO LEAN IN AND KISS BEN…BEN BEGINS TO LEAN TOWARDS HER TOO BUT THEN STOPS HIMSELF.
BEN: Whoa…wait… I don’t…I mean this isn’t gonna happen.
TIFFANY: (pouting) Why not?
BEN: Because Tiffany…at the risk of repeating myself…I have a girlfriend…one who I love very much.
TIFFANY: I know you’re thinking about me.
BEN: Don’t do this Tiff…we have started a really great friendship…don’t turn it into this big uncomfortable thing…okay?
TIFFANY: I don’t understand how you can sit there and deny that you are attracted to me…I know by the way you look at me that you still are.
BEN: Tiffany…I don’t deny that you’re attractive…you always have been…but thinking someone is attractive and acting on it…those are two different ball parks.
TIFFANY: So how long do you think you’re going to be able to *not act* on those feelings?
BEN DOESN’T ANSWER THE QUESTION. HE GETS UP AND GETS HIS JACKET AND HEADS TO THE DOOR.
HE TURNS AROUND AT THE DOOR.
BEN: I think maybe it would be better if we cooled it here for awhile.
BEN: I think you’re gonna be fine…and I suddenly realized something.
TIFFANY: What’s that?
BEN: I’ve been neglecting some pretty important things.
TIFFANY: Ben…I’m sorry I was just trying to be honest with you…don’t shut me down.
BEN: The thing is Tiffany…I think we both got kind of wrapped up in this…reminiscing thing.
TIFFANY: I don’t understand.
BEN: This is just a dangerous place for me to be…I mean up until Brett the college boy…you and I were pretty happy…it would just be too easy to fall back into that pattern…and I can’t do that.
TIFFANY: Did you ever think maybe that’s what your suppose to do?
BEN: (hesitates)Yes…but then I think of what my life was before you came back into it…who I was spending it with…Felicity…and I know that’s what I’m suppose to do…I can’t explain it.
TIFFANY: I think you’re wrong…I think you’re just afraid.
BEN: Tiff I won’t even try to make you understand what Felicity means to me… but…she’s the one I want to be with…she’s the one…I see my future with.
TIFFANY: (angry) Then why are you here now?
BEN: Probably for all the wrong reasons…which is why I’m leaving…and why I think it’s a good idea for us to cool things for awhile.
CUT TO: INT. LOFT-DAY
BEN COMES WALKING IN AND ELI IS IN THE KITCHEN.
BEN: Hi…is Felicity here?
ELI: No…she went back to the dorm.
BEN: How’d the sketching go?
ELI: Mine went good…hers…well she’ll have to tell you about that.
BEN: Oh. Were there any messages for me?
ELI: Yeah…Tiffany has left like six messages since you left her apartment.
ELI: Yeah…all of which Felicity heard…she left pretty quickly after the last one.
BEN GOES INTO HIS BEDROOM AND GOES STRAIGHT OVER TO HIS MACHINE IT IS BLINKING 10 MESSAGES HE PUSHES PLAY. TIFFANY’S VOICE COMES ON.
TIFFANY: (Message 1) Ben…why did you have to leave the apartment without resolving this? We have way too much history to just close each other off like this. (machine beeps)
TIFFANY: (Message 2) Ben…you must be home by now. We need to talk about this…your admission to me today is proof we still have something. (machine beeps)
TIFFANY: (Message 3) Ben…okay look…avoiding me is not going to make this any easier…we still work together…the attraction isn’t going to go away. (machine beeps)
TIFFANY: (Message 4) Ben…if you just listen to your heart all the confusion about me and Felicity will go away…and you’ll know the only answer is me. ( machine beeps)
TIFFANY: (Message 5) Come on Ben pick up…Felicity is not the issue here…it’s you and me…and the love we still feel…stop feeling guilty. (machine beeps)
TIFFANY: (Message 6) I guess the only thing you need to really know Ben is that I love you…I’ve always loved you…that is never going to change for me…and after today…well I know that it is never going to change for you either. (machine beeps)
BEN IS SITTING ON THE BED WITH HIS HEAD IN HIS HANDS…AS THE MACHINE CONTINUES PLAYING. MESSAGES 7-9 ARE ALL HANG UPS AND BEN IS ABOUT TO PRESS ERASE ON THE MACHINE WHEN MESSAGE 10 COMES ON.
FELICITY: (Message 10) (very upset) Ben…it’s Felicity…I’m sitting in my room and I’m replaying all of Tiffany’s messages in my head…wondering…hoping you have some logical explanation for her words. Please call me when you get home…we need to talk.
ELI WALKS INTO BEN’S ROOM AFTER THE LAST MESSAGE.
ELI: What’s going on?
BEN: Tiffany has probably just completely ruined my life.
ELI: It’s all bullshit what she’s saying though…Felicity will understand that.
BEN DOESN’T RESPOND TO THIS.
ELI: It is all bullshit…right?
BEN: It’s complicated.
ELI: I think if that’s the explanation you’re planning on giving Felicity…you’re sunk.
BEN: It’s just…I mean…I was with Tiffany for five years…that’s a long time…and a lot of memories.
ELI: Do you still love Tiffany?
BEN: (pauses) I don’t know. I mean when she came to Felicity’s that night…all beat up…It was weird…it was like this time warp thing…I reverted back to being her boyfriend…and kind of stayed there for two weeks.
ELI: And did you like it? Being there?
BEN: I didn’t not like it…it felt familiar. Which probably makes me like the biggest jerk around.
ELI: No…but if you think there’s any possibility that being with Tiffany is what you want…you have to tell Felicity the truth.
BEN: I know. (gets up off bed) I have to go see Tiffany.
ELI: You're not going to call Felicity?
BEN: (looks at phone) Not yet.
CUT TO: TIFFANY’S APARTMENT-DAY
TIFFANY OPENS THE DOOR TO SEE FELICITY STANDING THERE.
TIFFANY: Uh…Felicity…Ben’s not here.
FELICITY: I know. I came to talk to you.
FELICITY: I heard your messages to Ben…I think that we need to talk.
TIFFANY: You listened to my messages?
FELICITY: You act so surprised…when I’m pretty sure that’s what you were hoping for.
TIFFANY: Look this is between me and Ben…so…
FELICITY: I suggest you let me in…before I make such a huge scene you’ll be apologizing to the neighbors for weeks.
TIFFANY: I really don’t think there is anything to talk about.
FELICITY: (pushes past her into the apt.) Think again.
TIFFANY RELUCTANTLY CLOSES THE DOOR BEHIND FELICITY.
TIFFANY: Fine…come in.
FELICITY: I came here to tell you to just back off. Ben is not interested in you.
TIFFANY: You’re jealous?
FELICITY: I am not jealous…I am stating the facts.
TIFFANY: Or what you believe to be the facts.
FELICITY: What are you talking about?
TIFFANY: I’m talking about your lack of knowledge on this particular topic.
FELICITY: My lack of knowledge?
TIFFANY: Look Felicity…Ben and I…we have a history…a past.
FELICITY: My point exactly…you have a past…not a future…not a present…a past.
TIFFANY: Ben still cares about me.
FELICITY: Yes…he does…but he loves me.
TIFFANY: He thinks he does, but the truth is he never *stopped* loving me.
FELICITY: How can you say that? Did he tell you that?
TIFFANY: No…but he will…he’s just feeling confused right now.
FELICITY: Face it Tiffany…it’s over. And I resent the fact that you are trying to come between me and Ben. I have been nothing but nice to you.
TIFFANY: Nice doesn’t keep you warm at night.
THERE IS A KNOCK ON TIFFANY’S DOOR. TIFFANY AND FELICITY ARE STANDING JUST STARING AT EACH OTHER…THERE IS ANOTHER KNOCK FOLLOWED BY BEN’S VOICE.
BEN: Open up Tiffany…it’s Ben…we need to talk.
FELICITY IS STUNNED THAT BEN IS AT TIFFANY’S AGAIN AND STARTS TOWARDS THE DOOR. TIFFANY GRABS HER ARM.
TIFFANY: Hold on.
TIFFANY: This is the perfect opportunity for you to see what I’m talking about…you can go into my room and listen.
FELICITY: You want me to eavesdrop on Ben?
TIFFANY: I want you to realize that you fought a good fight…but you’ve lost…Ben is here for me.
BEN: Tiff come on please…I know you’re here…I saw your car in the parking lot.
FELICITY: You're wrong…he loves me.
TIFFANY: Now’s your chance to prove it.
FELICITY RELUCTANTLY GOES INTO TIFFANY’S BEDROOM AND CLOSES THE DOOR TO JUST A CRACK SO SHE CAN HEAR.
FELICITY: (to herself) I can’t believe I’m doing this.
CUT TO TIFFANY’S LIVINGROOM. SHE GOES AND OPENS THE DOOR FOR BEN.
BEN: Thank god…I was starting to get worried.
TIFFANY: What are you doing here?
BEN: I needed to see you.
FELICITY CRINGES IN THE OTHER ROOM AS SHE HEARS THIS.
TIFFANY: What about?
BEN: Well it’s about our conversation today…I was pretty harsh.
TIFFANY: You were just being truthful.
BEN: Not entirely.
BEN: The part about loving Felicity…that’s true. The part about what you mean to me…that part I’m not so sure about.
TIFFANY: I knew it.
BEN: There are other people involved here though.
TIFFANY: (matter of fact) Felicity.
BEN: I love her Tiffany.
FELICITY SMILES IN THE OTHER ROOM.
BEN: (continued) She is so much a part of the person I have become.
TIFFANY: I know that…and I thank her for that.
BEN: I know that you think that you and I should be together.
TIFFANY: I do.
TIFFANY MOVES CLOSER TO BEN. BEN DOESN’T BACK AWAY INSTEAD HE TAKES HER IN HIS ARMS.
TIFFANY: It feels so good to be in your arms again.
FELICITY WHO CAN’T SEE ANYTHING FROM THE OTHER ROOM TAKES A PEEK THROUGH THE DOOR. BEN IS HOLDING TIFFANY IN HIS ARMS AND HIS EYES ARE CLOSED. FELICITY STARTS TO CRY. BEN STEPS BACK FROM TIFFANY. TIFFANY IMPULSIVELY KISSES HIM…BEN STARTS TO BACK AWAY BUT INSTEAD KISSES TIFFANY BACK. FELICITY IS DEVESTATED.
BEN: (Ben stops the kiss) Tiffany…wait…this is a
FELICITY WALKS OUT OF THE ROOM
BEN: (shocked) Felicity?
FELICITY: Don’t stop because of me…you looked like you were enjoying yourself.
BEN: Oh my god…no…this is not what you think it is.
FELICITY: I’m pretty sure I know what I saw though.
FELICITY DASHES OUT OF THE APARTMENT.
BEN: Why didn’t you tell me Felicity was here?
TIFFANY: Because she needed to hear the truth Ben.
BEN: God…Tiffany no…the only one who needs to hear the truth is you. I came over here to tell you that yes… I got carried away with the memories…but I realized that’s all they are for me now…memories. You will always be someone special…but ….I can’t do this now. I have to go find Felicity…before this just gets worse.
FELICITY WALKS INTO HER ART CLASS AND SITS DOWN AT THE EASEL AND STARTS DRAWING. AS SHE IS DRAWING TEARS START SLIPPING DOWN HER FACE. AS SOMEONE WALKS INTO THE ROOM SHE TRIES TO WIPE HER EYES. IT IS ELI.
ELI: (walks over to Felicity) Hey…I got here as quick as I could after listening to your message…you sounded so upset…What the hell happened?
SALLY: (VO to Felicity) Dear Felicity…with the decisions we make, come consequences. We both decided to hold off on the commitment and now we’re both regretting the closeness we have set aside. Ben is I’m sure just trying to do what he feels will make you happy…he knows the jealousy bit was wearing thin. Tiffany coming around on the other hand is an entirely different cause for alarm. Ben and Tiffany if I remember correctly had a fairly long standing relationship… Bonds like that are hard to understand if you haven’t experienced them before. John had an ex-girlfriend Amanda…she left him for another *not so nice guy* She would constantly call him at all hours of the night to tell him what *the bastard* was doing or saying to her. It got real old…real quick…but John just didn’t see it. He was convinced that she was just being a friend…not the least bit attracted to him…Until she came on to him… So my advice to you is talk to Ben…explain your jealousy over Tiffany…it will then be his choice to make whether or not he spends so much time with her…My guess? You mean the world to Ben…so Tiffany will just have to find a new best friend.