In Highflying, two sisters MADDIE and DENA talk with one another in a neighboring room to a funeral parlor, while attending a wake.
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DENA: How do you do that?
DENA: Get everyone in the room to look at you and show interest?
MADDIE: You think?
DENA: All the time. In fact, there isn’t a time when your presence isn’t felt.
MADDIE: The way you say it makes me feel like it’s a bad thing.
DENA: No, it’s not a bad thing…I wish I had that magic.
MADDIE: Ha, ha, ha. Magic?
DENA: I’m serious. The way you waltz into the room, doesn’t matter what the event, doesn’t matter what time of day…everything always seems to line up for you. People go up to you to say hi, shake your hand, give you a hug and these are people you’ve never met before in your life. I should know, I’m your sister so, I know who you know and it’s always the same, you meet and greet like you’ve known these strangers for years. It puzzles me and astonishes me cause I didn’t inherit not one percent of whatever it is you have naturally…I’m always the one who has to scream for attention, wave my hands to get noticed and the best part of it is that you don’t even seem to realize it or maybe it’s just that you don’t even care or maybe you care and you are so used to it that you handle these encounters with grace and dignity and…
MADDIE: Hey…hey, are you okay?
DENA: Oh, Maddie, please, the last thing I need is another big sister therapy session from you. I rather puke in my own mouth.
DENA: And don’t be sorry. God! Can you just once stop being so freaking perfect and saying all the right things?
MADDIE: Should I just stand here mute?
DENA: (laughs) …No, I’m sorry. (beat) Greg is leaving me.
DENA: Piece of shit.
DENA: The loser already left, actually…it’s all about filing papers to finalize the divorce.
MADDIE: This is terrible…Dena, I’m—
DENA: If you say you’re sorry I’m liable to punch you in the face.
MADDIE: Oh, no, um, I’m, I’m here for you is all I’m trying to say—
DENA: (crying) I’m sorry, I love you, I love you…I’m just in a bad place right now.
Dena pulls out a gun.
MADDIE: Holy shit!
DENA: No, not for me. I want to give you this gun because I actually thought of shooting Greg. Not killing him but wounding him. Kept imagining myself being in one of those Tarantino movies and busting a cap in Greg’s knee but I’m too soft, I can’t go through with it. Take my gun.
Dena hands it to Maddie.
Just put in in your Louis Vuitton bag, it’s the perfect size for a gun, no? And what’s it like having one of those Louis bags anyway?
MADDIE: And what do you want me to do with it?
DENA: I don’t know, you’re my big sister, you’ll figure it out.
MADDIE: Right, right.
DENA: Poor Greggie. He’ll never know how close he came to death.
MADDIE: You really shouldn’t be talking this way.
DENA: What other way is there? I don’t have the perfect highflying life like you dear sister.
MADDIE: My life isn’t all that perfect.
DENA: Ha, ha, ha.
MADDIE: Laugh all you want Dena but you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.
DENA: Oh, please, spare me your little problems. What could they possibly be? I don’t think you’ve experienced anything worse than a broken fingernail or a bad hair day.
MADDIE: There are things about me you have no clue about.
DENA: Such as?
MADDIE: Things, Dena, things I won’t talk about.
DENA: For fear of what? Huh?
MADDIE: It’s personal.
DENA: I just gave you a gun I was considering blowing my husband’s head off with and you can’t give me something, anything??
MADDIE: I’m in remission.
Maddie stares into her sister.
Oh–my–you didn’t tell me!
MADDIE: Shut up. Of course I didn’t. You have the biggest mouth in the family and if you say anything just remember I now have a gun.
DENA: I won’t say a word to no one.
MADDIE: I don’t want to get into it but you asked for an example and I gave you an example, so there.
DENA: I take back what I said. (beat) Are you going to be alright?
MADDIE: I was lucky, caught it in time and it was in the earliest stages and I really don’t want to say anything more than that.
DENA: Okay, okay, I get it.
MADDIE: Let’s go drinking.
MADDIE: You down for a margarita or do you want to sit there and cry all day?
DENA: I’m down.
MADDIE: Let’s go. We’ll take my car…I need to get out of here…
Maddie and Lena exit out the back entrance.
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