Helen Steves: [the morning after Robert orders Clare to drop out of the school play; he is now going back to Seattle] I wish you didn't have to leave so soon.
[She kisses him]
Helen Steves: Have a safe trip.
Robert Steves: All right. I'll call you later.
[Clare emerges from the house and runs after him]
Clare Steves: Dad!... I'm sorry about last night.
Robert Steves: Well, just make sure it never happens again, okay?
Helen Steves: Bob, you *could* be more gracious.
Robert Steves: That's what she could've been, too.
Clare Steves: You're right, as always - I quit the play, told the director exactly what you told me. I lost some face in the process, but... well, that's one lucky understudy.
[Her father nods approvingly]
Clare Steves: So when are you coming back?
Robert Steves: Late tonight - Well, more likely tomorrow... or maybe the next day, if not the day after that.
Clare Steves: [smiles] In other words, you have no idea. That's okay, Dad; I'm used to it.
Clare Steves: Well, see you whenever I see you.
Robert Steves: Maybe we can go to a movie this Sunday, or something.
Clare Steves: [half-joking] Gosh, I don't know; is that gonna cut into my SAT-prepping time?
Robert Steves: [smiles] That's my girl.
Helen Steves: [in the kitchen, shortly after Robert has left for Seattle; Helen is working on her laptop computer] ... So did you two patch things up?
Clare Steves: I gave in and did as he said, if that's what you mean.
Helen Steves: ...Clare, how do I reset the paragraphs on this thing?
Clare Steves: You have to click "format."
Helen Steves: I knew that.
Clare Steves: Mom, my friends are throwing me a belated birthday party tonight...
Helen Steves: Clare!
Clare Steves: Laura promised, behind my back, that I would come. I can't just not show up, or none of them will ever speak to me again.
Helen Steves: No, no - you know how I feel about *deceiving* your father like this.
Clare Steves: It's better than all-out defiance, isn't it? I tried passive resistance and that didn't work, so... Can't you talk to him?
Helen Steves: Honey, I don't believe that would do any good. You know how he is. I mean, once he makes up his mind about something...
Helen Steves: ... Look, I know you think he's too strict, but...
Clare Steves: You're calling him *strict?* That's like calling the K2 a molehill! All the other kids in my class are being what, and who, they really are... you know, normal teenagers. He makes me feel as if I froze in time at age 10, without even telling me when or where I've gone wrong.
Helen Steves: And sometimes you *behave* like you're 10 years old.
Clare Steves: Well, I picked the wrong shoulder to cry on, didn't I?
Clare Steves: He let me have more fun when I *was* 10 than he lets me have now. I'm the only girl at my school who doesn't go to dances or have dates - the Odd Lady Out, as it were.
Helen Steves: There are more important things than dates and dances. It means a lot to your father that you get into a good college.
Clare Steves: Other girls my age get into fine colleges. They aren't nearly as wealthy, and they don't live like nuns in the meantime.
Helen Steves: [laughs] Oh, Clare! It's not that bad!
Clare Steves: How would you know? Did your parents raise you the same way?
Helen Steves: [grins and shakes her head] ... Touché, Clare. Go on, have fun at the party.
Clare Steves: Seriously? Thanks a lot, Mom!
Helen Steves: Just see to it that you're home by 11 sharp. And pray to High Heaven your father doesn't get back before you do!
Robert Steves: [on the phone, at dinner] ... I really can't believe this, Al. When I left, the Canadians said all outstanding issues had been resolved. All of a sudden, they get cold feet?
[He scoffs; Clare comes in]
Robert Steves: I know it's a lot of money...
[Clare greets him with a kiss]
Robert Steves: ... but it's a good deal for everyone! Yeah - you tell McKenzie to call me at home tonight. Right - any time up till midnight. If I can't do this by phone, I'll have to come back tomorrow.
[He rings off and turns to his wife]
Robert Steves: ... I don't know what happened. When I left, everything was done. Now the whole deal's falling apart. I may have to go back to Seattle in the morning.
[He turns to their daughter]
Robert Steves: ... Hi, honey. How are you? Anything exciting happen while I was gone?
Helen Steves: Clare got an "A" in math - and in the rest of her major subjects.
Robert Steves: That's fantastic! See, didn't I say you could do it?
Clare Steves: I always get an "A" in everything, don't I? That was your rule - anything below 90% might as well be an "F"... I also got offered the role of "Emily" in OUR TOWN. I didn't even audition; the director just came up to me during lunch and...
Robert Steves: [sighs, cutting her off] I thought we talked about this.
Helen Steves: [half-joking] Or at least *you* did.
Robert Steves: [nods, serious] Bingo.
Clare Steves: I just felt so lucky to receive this role. It'd be awkward if I had to...
Robert Steves: [cutting her off again] I thought we all agreed - no extracurricular activities this semester. S.A.T.s are coming up. *That* should be your focus.
Clare Steves: Did all of us really agree on that? Or did *you* agree on it for all of us?
[He looks at her dangerously]
Clare Steves: ... Same difference, huh? Well, YOU haven't needed to explain that *repeatedly* for everyone at school. Heck, most of THEM find time for extracurricular stuff - and even jobs. If they can juggle that kind of load...
Helen Steves: [to her husband] Honey, the play only lasts a couple of weeks.
Robert Steves: I'm sure there'll be rehearsals every night - no. Next semester, we'll see; but right now, your top priority should be making a good college.
Clare Steves: [deflated] Meaning you think I don't care about that at all, just because it isn't all I *do* care about!
[She excuses herself from the table and storms out of the dining room]
Robert Steves: [his voice dripping sarcasm] Well... I'm glad I rushed home to be with my family.
[He excuses himself from the table as well. Helen sighs]
John Loomis: [in court, as Eddie testifies] So, tell me, Mr. Spencer, was this also part of the game?
[Loomis plays the recorder]
Eddie Spencer: [on tape] Let's hope your daddy listens to you, or you're gonna lose this pretty little finger of yours. You wouldn't want that to happen now, would you?
Clare Steves: [on tape, crying] No, please!
Eddie Spencer: [shouts] Would you?
Clare Steves: NO!
Eddie Spencer: You better do what I say, or else!
Clare Steves: NO, PLEASE!
[Loomis stops the recorder as the court goes stunned]
John Loomis: Is this still a game, Mr. Spencer?
[Eddie does not answer]
John Loomis: Would you like to hear it again, Eddie?
Eddie Spencer: [furiously] Why don't you go to hell!
[the court murmurs until the judge bangs his gavel]
John Loomis: No further questions, You Honor.