The Night Listener (2006) Script

Ready?

Yeah, let's try it like that.

From the studios of WNYH in New York City, I'm Gabriel Noone, and this is Noone at Night.

As a storyteller, I've spent years looting my life for fiction.

Like a magpie, I tend to steal the shiny stuff and discard the rest.

The facts can always be altered when you're telling a story.

But this time, I have to be careful.

I'll lay out the events exactly as I remember them.

I want you to believe this, after all.

That'll be hard enough as it is.

This one is called "The Night Listener".

It began in the worst of all possible weeks.

Jess had moved out, saying it was only temporary.

And I was miserable. Nothing made sense anymore.

I was trying to read one of my ridiculous yarns, the kind I had built a career on.

A sentimental piece about our eighth anniversary.

But it felt so phony. I couldn't put the words into our mouth.

This isn't working.

It wasn't that bad. It just doesn't sound like me.

The levels are the same. I could adjust.

No, no. It-it just sounds fake.

Look, Gabriel. We can't do this again.

Just run an old one, OK?

I-I'm... You know, I can't. I'm sorry, I just can't.

Hey.

Why are you here? I thought I was gonna buy you a drink.

What happened in the session?

We're just having sound problems. Listen, I'm ready to collapse.

You sure you don't wanna go? I'm sure.

None of my business, but the station is worried.

You owe them five shows.

I really don't wanna talk about that.

I'm worried about you. I'm all right. Really.

All right. Look.

Take this with you. Oh, no. Come on, Ashe.

You don't have to write a blurb. Thanks.

Just want you to read it. We're publishing it next quarter.

"A Diary of Transcendent Hope and Courage." Oh, please.

It come with aromatherapy?

Save it, will ya? You'll have real questions after you've read it.

Hang in there, OK? Yeah.

See ya.


Jesus! You scared me.

Just, uh, picking some stuff up. No problem.

See you brought Lucifer.

Lucien. He's just a friend.

Oh, babe, I told ya. I just need a little space.

It's all right. I'll see ya.

No, Hugo. Go. Hugo. Hugo!


"Charles Dickens", wrote Pete Logand, "was only 12 when his parents sent him to make boot polish

"in a factory by the docks.

"This screwed him up forever and made him a writer.

"I think we've all got a blacking factory, some terrible something that makes us lose our baby hearts as surely as we lose our baby teeth."

Mine was in the basement in Milwaukee.

It was converted into a room that was supposed to be my playhouse.

No one ever wondered why my dad made it soundproof.

I knew all his games by the time I was seven.

By the time I was 11, other grownups were with him.

I wondered how much my mom knew.

Then one night I heard her there in the playhouse, whispering.

Telling somebody to move out of the way.

I realized she'd been there all along.

"That was what the blindfold was for - to keep me hidden.

"So they could sell the tapes on the Internet."


You've reached Gabriel and Jess. Leave a message at the tone.

Hi, it's Pete Logand. The guy who wrote that book?

Ashe gave me your number, so I just wanted to...

He said if I talk long enough you might...

Oh, well. Bye.

Ambushed? That's as good a word as any.

I thought it'd make you feel better to distract yourself.

The way I'm feeling, I might say something wrong.

You won't say anything wrong. Did you like the book?

It's somewhat raw. But powerful.

He's a brave kid. How old is he? 14.

Jesus.

How'd you get it?

Right over the transom. No agent, no nothing.

Donna just mailed it to us. Who?

The social worker who adopted him. She got him to write as therapy.

You must have edited like crazy.

Well... What?

It's the cleanest manuscript I've had all year.

Damn.

I wouldn't do this to you unless I thought there was a real connection.

Remember the basement? Yeah.

Well, he listened to the show after they'd gone.

Jesus. He wanted me to give that to you.


Jess?

What the hell are you doing?

Hi.

I can't do your books unless you leave me your checkbook.

This place was a mess.

Besides, I like laundry. It makes me happy.

The power went out. Your fuse box is fucked up. And your dad called.

You didn't pick up, did you? I had to. He kept saying:

"Pick up, goddammit. I know you're there."

He's a nice old coot.

If he met you, he'd call you "that cute Chink gal" behind your back.

I am a cute Chink gal. Mm-hm.

How old is he anyway? He's got to be, like, ancient.

Why? Because I am?

I just hope that I'm over my parents by the time I'm your age.

Good luck.

They asked about Jess. You haven't told 'em yet, have you?

No. 'Cause he'll be back by then.

Right.

Hello. Please leave a message after the tone.

Hi, Pete. This is Gabriel Noone.

Ashe gave me your number and, uh...

I read your book. I really liked it.

Hey. Hey.

You swear it's really you?

Why wouldn't it be me?

I dunno. You don't sound like yourself.

Well, I'm a little less dramatic in person.

You sound like hammered shit.

That pins it down pretty well.

No offense. Just can't fuckin' believe it's you, man.

You just fuckin' have to.

I'm sorry. My new mom says I've got a trashy mouth.

Really? Well, she's fuckin' right.

Anyway, I was really impressed by your book. I want to wish you good luck.

So what do you guys do for Christmas?

What do you mean?

You and Jess. Do you have a tree? Oh, no.

We're not that big on Christmas.

Yeah. I know what you mean.

We got a rusty water tank across the street. They hang a damn star on it every year.

A star. That sounds nice.

Yeah.

Except it doesn't face this way. Just lights up the graffiti.

The rest of the town gets "Bethlehem." All's we get is "Roberta blows."

I swear, big ol' red letters, "Roberta blows".

They painted it out last year. It came back.

She must really blow.

You OK?

Shit.

Pete?

Shit.

Yeah, I'm OK. Gotta warn me if you're gonna be funny, man.

Drink this. Sorry.

What is it? Well, Donna's here now being a pain.

I wouldn't put up with it, except she's a babe and I like redheads.

It's him. Say something.

Hi. This is Donna Logand. Hey.

I'm sorry to cut this short. This cough is worrying me.

Well, sure. I understand...

Hello?

It's Donna.

He's asleep now. We had to drain his lungs.

Has he told you about the AIDS? Yeah, he did.

Listen, there are some incredible drugs nowadays. They worked wonders for Jess.

Yeah, we've tried a lot of them but he had syphilis when he was eight and his lungs are like Swiss cheese.

He doesn't have very long. A few months at the most.

It probably doesn't make it any easier, being out here in the middle of nowhere.

But I just can't have those creeps knowing where he is.

I thought they were in prison.

His father was, but his mother disappeared after her arraignment.

They don't know where she is. Surely after all these years...

We don't know what she's capable of.

But the point of moving here is not to be paranoid, right?

The thought of that haunted me all night.

Over the next few weeks, Pete and I talked almost every day.

Who do you want to talk to when your book is published?

What do you mean?

You know, somebody famous who really likes your book.

Derek Jeter would be cool.

Well. OK. Yeah.

You don't know who that is, do you?

Of course. He's a sports guy.

Yeah, what sport?

Gettin' picky on me.

Just 'cause you're a dick-smoker don't mean you can't watch ball games.

What?

What, a dick-smoker? You've never heard that?

No.

Well, no offense or nothin'.

You and, uh... Jess seem pretty cool.

So, how's he doing?

He's OK. So when can I talk to him?

Well, that's gonna be kind of difficult. He moved out a couple of weeks ago.

Oh, man. That sucks.

He says he needs to be alone, but he says he's coming back.

I'm sure. It seemed like you had something special.

I think you've just gotta be patient, Gabriel.

Something like that doesn't come every day.

That's what I want.

That kind of thing.

One of these days.

Don't worry. You'll get it.

No. Ain't a lot of girls between here and the hospital.

You think about girls a lot?

That's all I can do, man. Think about 'em.

Seeta.

You have Playboy?

Hey, you. Hey.

Hugo.

For a friend. Yeah.

I was gonna call you. I'm having a small Christmas party. You wanna come?

Sure. OK. I'll call you.

See ya. See ya.

So he gets the Playboy. Next thing you know he's hiding it from his new mom.

Who knew I'd be a heterosexual influence?

That is just the sweetest thing I've ever heard.

Isn't it? I'd be careful if I was you.

Why? Folks could talk, that's all.

About what?

Use your damn head. That boy was abused by gays.

He was abused by pedophiles. Haven't you been listening?

They were men. Straight men.

Lift you leg, sweetness.

How could they be straight if they messed with a boy?

They called him "faggot" while doing it. Do you have to make everything filthy?

Honey, calm down. Don't get so angry.

That's much easier than feeling something.

What kind of New Age crap is that?

Just 'cause you're shut down doesn't mean we have to be.

Just because you're a big crybaby... Come on, guys.

Should I go somewhere? No.

Come on, let's... We're gonna be late.

You two seemed a little better this time. Yeah.

Another thousand years we'll be able to have a conversation.

What were you gonna tell us about Jess? Nothing.

Maybe we'll see him on our way back to Raleigh.

Just say goodbye to the little prick. What? "Little prick"? He can handle that.

I can handle big ones, actually.

You are nasty.

What'd he say? See you, Pap.

OK, son.


Hey, Gabriel!

Gabriel! Hey!

Where are you going? Why'd you invite me to this?

It's a party.

Ridiculous.

Gabriel.

Come here.

What's the matter?

Who are all these people? My friends. My roommate's and mine.

Since when did you know so many people?

Hey, most of my friends were your friends.

I wanted new friends. What's the problem here?

I don't understand what's happening.

When I moved in with you, I was barely out of college.

I wanted to take care of you.

And you don't think I wanted to take care of you?

I'm not saying that. That's what you think.

Gabriel, for eight years I was gonna die.

And now it looks like I'm not going to, and I want to see what that feels like.

Look. I just...

If you had any guts, you'd end this.

That's not how I feel.

No, no, no. Come here. Come here, please.

Comin' out.

OK?

Yeah. I'm OK.

You've reached Gabriel and Jess. Please leave a message at the tone.

It's Donna.

I'm at the hospital.

He's in the oxygen tank.

It's not looking very good.

I don't think he'll make it through the night.

I'll call you back when there's news. Bye.

End of message.

Ah.

Don't you think she'd have called if anything happened?

I've just got this gut feeling.

So call the hospital. I don't know which one he's in.

Do you think it's possible they're being a little melodramatic?

You know, the abusive parents, the basement. It all seems so over the top.

Some people have shitty lives. They're not shitty all the time.

They may be revving it up a bit.

I can't believe you'd even suggest that a dying child would embellish it.

Hello? It's Donna.

Hi.

Donna, I'm gonna put you on speaker phone. Jess is here.

Hi, Jess. It's nice to meet the real thing. It's nice to meet you, too.

Gabriel, the Bactrim's kicked in. Pete's better this morning.

Thank God.

He wants to say hello. Sure. Put him on.

Hey, dude. Hey, kiddo. How you feelin'?

Better than yesterday. Great.

Hey, Jess is here. He's fixing my fuse box.

I don't even wanna know what that means.

OK. Well, they want me to go to sleep now. You guys stay cool.

Sleep tight, dude.

What a relief.

Yeah.

What?

I think it's the same voice, babe.

What?

Yeah. Pete and Donna. I...

I don't know, they... they have the same voice.

One is higher-pitched, but they're...

Are you saying it's some kind of impersonation?

Yeah, more or less.

Why would someone do that? I don't know.

Dozens of people know them. Who?

Doctors. There's a nurse who comes and stays at the house.

You've only been told that.

What about Ashe? Did he ever actually go to Wisconsin?

He must have. What about the photo?

That could be anybody.

There's ways to prove this. Hey.

I'm happy to be wrong.

No. No, you're never happy to be wrong.

This is the first time I've felt decent in weeks. Why are you trying to destroy it?

Because this isn't one of your stories. You never look at things for what they are.

That's such bullshit. Bullshit?

Bullshit? OK.

Where exactly did I tell you I tested positive?

What the...? Answer the question!

In the park on a bench in front of those guys playing drums.

No.

No, that's what you put in your show.

It was at a grimy old deli on 3rd. But that's not very interesting, is it?

Look, I moved out because I needed a break.

You always sift through this relationship looking for material for your show.

Tell me you didn't fuckin' relish it.

I went along with the show because I thought it gave my death meaning.

But I don't need that anymore.

Well, great. Because there's no show. Are you happy?

That's not my fault.

You don't know him.

Maybe.

Looks transparent to me. What's that supposed to mean?

You're always talking about wanting kids. And now you've created this...

Fuck you. You're such an asshole! Fuck it. You know, go play with Tiny Tim.

Do you know anyone who actually met Pete Logand?

No.

Not a doctor or a social worker or neighbor, anybody?

They live in Wisconsin.

Jess thinks Pete and Donna sound alike.

They do. That doesn't strike you as odd?

Pete didn't talk when he came to live with her and ended up imitating her.

That wasn't in the book. A lot isn't.

You know 'cause she told you. Yeah.

You got all of your information from her. Her and Pete.

Did she show you a birth certificate, an adoption document, something substantial?

If you think it's a hoax, you're off base.

Why? Because!

I spent over a year speaking with them and they told me things you couldn't imagine.

Now, maybe your present situation is coloring the way you think.

It has nothing to do with that.

You're about to publish a book by an author you know shit about.

Shouldn't you be a little concerned?

You've reached Gabriel and Jess. Please leave a message at the tone.

Oh, uh... Well, I guess you're not there so I'll just try again.

Hello? Oh, it's Donna.

Hi.

I know this isn't much notice, but we'd love for you to come visit for Christmas.

Really? Yeah, sure.

The guest room ain't fancy, but I cook a mean plum pudding and it would mean so much to Pete.

So...

Is that Pete? Yeah, he still has a cough.

But he's fine. So, can you come?

I can't think of a better way to spend Christmas.

That's great. Yeah, it is. Really is.

Hey, Gabriel. Hey, Marie.

Didn't know you played baseball. Oh, no. It's a gift for a friend.

Signed by, uh, Jerry Deter.

You mean Derek Jeter?

Yeah. Yeah.

Fuck, she bailed on you.

What was her excuse? There was no excuse.

Doctor said he shouldn't have any visitors. They're worried about him catching a flu.

Fucking planes are petridishes. I don't want him to catch something from me.

So later, maybe.

Yeah. If he's still around.

Well, you never know.

No, you don't.

Not about anything.

We shouldn't see each other anymore. Babe, it doesn't have to be like this.

Yeah, babe.

I don't want to be jerked around. I want a clean break.

We're not gonna speak to each other? I'm too old for this shit.

Come on, Gabriel. Listen, you ruined what we had.

You're the fucking one who can't see the reality.

What do you mean there won't be a book? I thought your editor believed this kid.

He does, but his bosses got cold feet.

And Donna and Pete? They're totally devastated.

What do you have?

There is no record of any Pete Logand in any kind of trial.

Doesn't mean anything.

Pete took Donna's name when she adopted him.

Ashe thinks they were using an alias because that way his real mother couldn't track him down.

Cute kid... whoever he is.

Why would someone do this? That's what I keep asking.

It's a hideous way to promote a book.

Maybe it's not about that for her. Maybe she doesn't even know she's doing it.

Like a multiple-personality thing?

Wait, what if she had a kid who died in some, like, horrible way and now she needs to assume his identity in order to...

No.

What if she has him embalmed?

You know, like that guy from Psycho? Mm.

No, wait. Oh, my God. Oh, my God.

What if she's the one who doesn't exist? What if he's impersonating her?

Please, now stop it.

This is not some sort of parlor game.

Sorry.

What if there is some half-dead kid and I've just taken away his last shred of hope?

I couldn't live with that.

Ever thought about a voiceprint?

Like what the cops use? They're as good as fingerprints.

Now you're scaring me.

Hey, it's Davia. There's a new Thai place...

No.

Hey, dick-smoker. That's him. Stop it.

OK. So what do you have from her? Nothing. I erased the last message.

Then you have to call her. Get her on tape.

How do I do that? Uh...

You just, uh, press this button right before you talk to her.

I don't know, uh...

It's an answering machine, not a thermonuclear device.

But what if I'm, you know, recording her and the machine beeps?

We're sorry. The number you have reached is not in service.

Please check the number or try your call again. This is a recording.


So, do you have family in Wisconsin?

Yes, actually. A son.

Oh.

He lives with his mother, though.

But I get to see him on holidays.

How old is he? 14.

You must have had him late.

Well, yeah, I... Fairly, yeah.

Do you have any pictures?

As a matter of fact...

Oh, my goodness. Look at those eyes.

Yeah.

He has your nose and chin though.

Does he? Hm.

Excuse me.

I hope this isn't too pushy, but I saw your name on the passenger list and I just wanted to say I really appreciate everything you've done... for us.

The pleasure was mine.

You've done something for flight attendants?


We're sorry. The number you have reached is not in service...

Please check-


500.

507.

509.

511.

Fuck.


Hi.

I've done something really dumb and I was hoping you could help me.

I have a good friend who lives here in Montgomery.

I've always assumed that 511 Henzke was her actual address.

You meet her online?

No. Nothing like that. It's just...

She's a good friend and I'm sure she comes in here all the time. Donna Logand?

People pay us so they don't have to use their real address.

It's the point of the place.

Well, sure.

She's a friend.

I came a long way to...

OK. Fine.


Hey!

Are you OK? Thanks, yeah.

OK.

You like those burgers, but they're awful on your tummy.

I'll fix you something when we get home.

Hey. You back for more cocoa?

Does twice a day make me a junkie? Not by me. Anything for him?

Oh, no, thanks. We shouldn't make a habit of it.

You mind if I have a cuddle? Go ahead.

He needs all the love he can get. Don't you?


OK, let's go.

See ya.

You betcha. Stay warm.


Aren't you gonna say hello, Gabriel?


Chamomile OK?

Sure.

Is this enough light? It's fine. Thanks.

It was Hank. The clerk at the grocery store?

That's how I knew you were here. Oh.

It's not some spooky blind thing. Oh.

How long have you been blind?

I remember a dollhouse I used to have, my father's face, things like that.

What about your mother?

She died when I was two. My father tried to raise me. I guess Ashe didn't tell you.

No. Well...

It makes us more vulnerable. We've already had to move once this year.

It's really wonderful what you've done for Pete, though.

How did you find us, anyway?

The star. I...

I remember Pete mentioned he could see a star on a water tower.

And, uh, when I saw it, I just found...

All the way to the house?

Well, to this block.

And I saw you on the front porch and...

So...

Who followed me from the coffee shop?

It's important I be able to trust you, Gabriel.

Your phone line was down. I figured...

The tea.

Can I use your bathroom?

Sure. Top of the stairs.


You found his room.

Velveteen Rabbit. I used to have one of those.

So, Pete...?

He's at the hospital getting tests. It's not looking good.

I'm sorry. His lungs? Yeah.

They're getting worse.

Can I see him tomorrow? That'd be great.

He means a lot to you, doesn't he? Yeah, he does.

Well, I know he feels the same way about you.

As a matter of fact...

The lights of the highway are streaming past and one of you reaches out and holds the other one's leg.

It's the truest moment in the world.

That's one of our favorite episodes.

Thank you.

So Pete told me about you and Jess.

You two seemed good together.

Do you still love him? I don't know.

Does he feel the same way?

I don't know what he thinks.

Could I... get a face to go with the voice?

Sure.

It's a hard place to be, not knowing for sure.

Yeah, it's purgatory.

And you're just the kind of guy who needs proof.

The hell of it is, we're only as loved as we think we are.

I can't wait to see him.

Who, Jess?

No, Pete.

I'm sorry.

Everyone does it. He's just special that way.

Yeah.

I need your help.

Whoa.

What? It's very dark.

I don't know where the light switch is. Try by the door.

Somewhere in here is my other sewing bag.

I've been spending so much time at the hospital, I'm making Pete a new sweater.

Can you help me find the dark green one?

It'll go really well with his eyes.

Here.

Thanks.

Hey, do you wanna see my sweater?

Sure.

I still need to put the buttons on, but it's kind of fun.

Turn around. Oh, OK.

I'm really trusting you here. You better not be peeking.

I won't.

OK.

Turn around.

How does it look?

Well... It's...

It's nice.

You wanna feel it? It's nice and soft.

Feel it.

Yeah, soft. Right.

It's nice.

What's the matter? Nothing. It's nice...

Is there something wrong with me? No, it's fine...

I know you like guys. I was just trying to be friendly.

You're such a fucking weirdo.

Turn around!

I'm sorry. I...

So are you the reason his book was canceled?

That's what I thought.

That book meant everything to him.

That's why I'm here. I'll help him find a new publisher. I'll do anything...

It's obvious why you came here. You don't believe us.

I do.

Let's just forget about tomorrow. No! I want to see him.

You know, I thought you'd be different.

I thought you'd be able to look into his soul with his complexities and contradictions and see him as your own flesh and blood the way I do.

That is how I see him.

I don't think so. You wouldn't have distrusted us.

I spent two days stumbling around this fucked-up place so that I can say...

Just so you could say what?

That you were sorry for thinking him a fraud? Give me a fuckin' break.

Pete needs people who are really there for him.

And there's no way I'm taking you to see him.

No way.

Your car is here.


Where's the nearest hospital? Madison. But that's 50 miles from here.

That's fine. Let's go. OK.


L-o-g-a-n-d.

There's no Pete or Peter Logand listed anywhere here.

Maybe he's listed under another name.

So what name should I be looking for?

I don't know.

Maybe you're at the wrong hospital.

I've been to all the others. He's gotta be here.

Can I just go up to Pediatrics and look around?

What do you think?

Thanks for your time.


God, no.

I'm sorry. I-I-I made a mistake.

I thought you were someone else...

Who are you?

Security!

Security! Security!


Oh.

Oh...

Hello?

Hello.


Oh.

Can I top you off there? Sure.

There was a blind woman here last night.

Donna. Yeah.

Have you seen the boy she takes care of? I haven't seen him in a while.

You mean Pete.

Yeah, that's him. Have you seen him?

He's at the hospital. He's a very sick boy.

Have you ever actually seen Pete?

He spends most of his time at the hospital.

Which hospital is he at?

Can I get you anything else?

So you won't help me.

You have a nice day.


Hello.


I-I was just visiting a friend.

Maybe you know him. Pete?

Have you ever seen him?

I don't know what she told you, but I...

What are we doing?

Ow!

What are we doing?

What the hell are we doing?


Wait. But wait, she's been... Everybody know...

What you sick fucks did to that boy.

You leave him alone now, perv! You leave him alone now!


Gabriel?

I'm sorry. They're very protective of me. Stay away from me, Donna.

I came back to help you.

Why are you pissed at me? You broke into our house.

I went to the fucking hospital. He wasn't there!

You went to the wrong hospital. I went to every damn hospital in Madison.

He was in Milwaukee.

Of course. If I asked which one, you'd say he moved.

Just stop it. Or he suddenly...

He's dead.

He died last night. Bilateral pneumonia.

His lungs were saturated and they couldn't resuscitate him.

Jesus, you're good.

What? You have a fuckin' answer for everything.

Oh.

It's the truth!

Yeah.

If someone gets close, you kill him off. You don't know what you're talking about!

They know everything! And they're calling the hospitals. They don't like being lied to.

I'm not lying!

Jesus, why did I come here?

You know why? Because you thought this would make a great fucking story.

You'll talk about me and Peter on the radio. That's what this has always been about.

All you care about is your audience loving you. What kind of sick person are you?

For years Jess was dying and you picked over him like a vulture. Stay.

You're so pathetic, you actually think he's gonna come back to you.

Ohh...

Jesus. Get up.

Like you care, you heartless fuck!

Come on, there's a truck coming.

Help me.

I can't let you do this.

Let go of my arm! He's all I have.

Ah, oh!

Get up! Get up! Ah!

Ah!

Fucking crazy!

Gabriel?

Gabriel!

Come back here!

Come here!

Gabriel, don't leave me!

You don't know what you're doing!

Gabriel!

Don't leave me!


Hey. Hey, how are you?

Gone? She left.

Who told you that?

The police.

They went to check on her and the house was empty.

Did they find the kid at the hospital?

There never was a kid.

You've reached Gabriel and Jess. Please leave a message at the tone.

And that's been going on for three days? Yeah.

You have to call the police. What am I gonna say?

"Excuse me, Officer, but there's this crazy blind lady in Wisconsin

"who has an imaginary child and she's upset with me."

No, fuck her.

I'm not turning my life inside out.

She tried to kill you. Yeah.

Well, tried to kill herself and me along with her, yeah.

I did some research. There's this actual pathology called "factitious disorder."

The people who have it feel unworthy of love so they make up stuff to get sympathy.

Like, uh, their own illness or - no thanks - a sick child.

It's, uh, it's like Munchausen's by proxy, only there is no child.

They don't know they're doing this? They know.

But the attention feels so good they can't stop lying.

What happens if you call them on the lie?

I don't know. It didn't say.

Hm.

Great.


She called two days ago. She started shouting at me.

Just ranting and raving. Completely out of it.

This woman is relentless.

She's desperate. I mean, just so desperate.

She's blind. What is she gonna do?

No fucking way.

This is Gabriel and Jess...

Should we pick up? No.

No, it might set her off, trigger something.

What should we do? Ignore it.

Hello?

Your story doesn't have an ending, Gabriel.

I'm at the Hudson Plaza Motel at JFK.

Room 142. I left something for you.


Donna?

Who's this?

It's me. It's Pete. Gabriel, is that you?

Don't freak out. I know she told you I was dead. She was just trying to protect me.

Where are you?

I'm at the airport, waiting for Donna. Is she there?

No. She just left.

Too bad. I really wanted you two to talk.

I kind of promised her I wouldn't talk to you. She's mad at you.

Pete? Yeah?

I need to ask you something.

What?

Did something happen to Donna when she was little?

You understand, right? Yeah, but...

I don't know.

She never talks about her childhood.

Did she ever tell you what caused her blindness?

No.

I think she fell down the stairs.

You know, there's people who can help her.

I have to go now.

OK, kiddo.

Bye. Bye.


You know, that tape doesn't prove anything.

That kid could be anybody, right? Could be a neighbor, cousin.

Yeah, I know.

So, what is it, then?

It's just...

What?

How can I be missing someone who never existed?

Is that possible?

Hey.

What about those Star Trek conventions?

You know, all those guys, they dress up like Kirk and Spock, right? Why?

Because they really miss them.

Am I that pathetic?

Hey.

You have got a great big heart.

That's the best part about you.

It always was.

I gotta go.


From the studios of WNYH in New York City, I'm Gabriel Noone and this is Noone at Night.

As a storyteller, I've spent years looting my life for fiction.

Like a magpie, I tend to steal the shiny stuff and discard the rest.

Well, we've wandered in the woods for an hour only to discover that we've circled back on ourselves.

And in the end, I'm not sure what really happened.

But it is clear that Donna and I are more alike than not.

Both of us afraid.

Not wanting to be alone.

Longing for a good listener.

It sounds perfect.

And we also have a model condo available with all the furniture included.

That'd be great.

And, uh... when does your son get out of the hospital?

Tomorrow.

That's tight. But, no, we can work it out.

Thank you.

If you don't mind me asking... how did he lose his leg?

As for Pete, there's a line in "The Velveteen Rabbit" that reads:

"Real isn't how you're made.

"It's the thing that happens to you."

I'm Gabriel Noone. Good night.