Rosy Cheeks

“Rosy Cheeks” By Jessica Wadsack-Stewart



          1     EXT BUS STOP-MORNING                                       1

We open up on a bus stop. It’s a rundown/urbanish type area.

It’s autumn. Leaves are falling from the trees and collecting in little piles at their bases. A college age young  man, SEAN, is sitting at the bus stop bench. A high school freshman, MARNIE, walks towards the bus stop.

MARNIE wears clothes that are unfashionable and cheap. She kicks the leaves as she walks and shrugs her shoulders to keep her large backpack situated on her back.

MARNIE spots SEAN and spends a while staring at him. He is very handsome.

SEAN smiles, listening to music, he doesn’t see her. After a bit she runs back the way she came. We see her path to the bus stop as she runs back home.

          2     INT MARNIE’S APARTMENT-MORNING                              2

MARNIE’S apartment is well-worn. There is a kitchen to the left with a kitchen table. To the right is a small living room with a couch and a CRT is set up on coffee a table. A hallway leads out of these rooms to bedrooms and a bathroom. MARNIE opens the door and rushes in.




Mama! School’s cancelled! Someone called in a school shooting!

MARNIE’S mother, MAMA, is sprawled on the couch, exhausted.

She is still wearing her work clothes.



Alright, alright, Marnie. Stop yelling about it.

MARNIE bursts open the door to her room which is decorated with printed out pictures of Disney princesses and pictures of boy bands cut out from  magazines all taped up on her walls. Young adult romance novels from the library are by her bed. MARNIE opens her closet. She looks at her clothing. Dissatisfied MARNIE shuts her closet and her eyes trail off to MAMA’s purse. END OF SUBTITLES.

          3     EXT BUS STOP-NEXT MORNING                                   3

MARNIE walks to the bus stop wearing much more appealing clothing and holding a cloth covered basket under her arm. She carefully sits at the opposite end of the bench that

SEAN is sitting at. SEAN is listening to music with earbuds in.


(glancing over)

Hello. Good morning. Do you want a cupcake?

MARNIE reaches into her covered basket and with a bit of difficulty pulls out a store bought cupcake.

SEAN doesn’t notice MARNIE until the cupcake is right in front of his face.

SEAN looks at the cupcake and accepts it. He pulls out an earbud and looks MARNIE up and down.

SEAN Thanks.

He smiles and takes a bite.


It’s nothing. I made them for this girl in my class who’s birthday is today but I made too many.

SEAN Well, that’s considerate of you.

(beat) My name’s Sean.

MARNIE I’m Rosalind.


That’s a pretty name. Rosalind. Do you go to school around here?

MARNIE Yeah, I do.

SEAN Oh, really? Which university?


Western. I always wanted to go there since I was a kid.


Nice, Western State’s a good school. You have to be pretty intelligent to get into there. Of course, it doesn’t hold a candle to

Millard’s. You got to have basically a 4.0 and know the people, who know the people.

MARNIE Is that where you go?



Yeah. I got pretty lucky. Turns out my great, great, grandfather knew the guy who founded the place. So, I was basically guaranteed a spot.

It’s dumb but that’s just how the world is sometimes. So, what do you study?


SEAN What’s your major?


Oh, my major. I haven’t really decided yet.


Undecided then. There’s nothing wrong with that. I was undecided for a few semesters until I landed on pre-med as my major.


You’re a planning on like being a doctor?

SEAN Not just “like” a doctor.

(pause)  Do you want to listen?

SEAN holds up one of his earbuds


It’s this new wave band called

“Electra and the Beasts”. It’s a mix of folk and pop with brass instruments worked in. They’re sort of underground.


I’ve heard of them. A friend of mine worked security on one of their shows before. He said they’re all major drama queens.

SEAN Then you definitely want a listen.

SEAN and MARNIE sit side by side listening to the song. We hear the song too. As they watch people on the street mill about their day in stop motion style. The song ends.

The public bus pulls up.


This is my ride. Thanks for the cupcake, Rosalind.

SEAN steps onto the bus. The doors close behind him and the bus drives away leaving MARNIE sitting on the bench alone.

After a few moments a yellow school bus with “Greendale High

School” written on the side pulls up. MARNIE gets in and sits down in the front, alone. She looks down at her feet and smiles a smile that can hardly be contained.

4     INT MARNIE’S APARTMENT-NIGHT                                 4

MARNIE is lounging on the couch carefully painting her nails and watching a telanovela on the CRT. There is a pile of crumpled paper towels with smeared nail polish and nail polish remover on the floor next to the couch.

MARNIE is just finishing a nail when MAMA comes in through the front door.

MAMA is frazzled, like always. She is wearing a different work uniform from the last time we saw her.



You’re home late-ish. “Un Momemento Amor” is on if you want to watch it with me. It’s just starting to get juicy.

MAMA makes her way to the kitchen table to put down her things. She moves a cupcake tin ruined with burnt baked on batter and wrappers.


I was thinking about making some dinner.


Ooh, that’s good too. What’s for dinner?

MAMA Nothing.

MARNIE Nothing?


Yeah, nothing. Like I said I “was” thinking about making some dinner that is until my card was declined at the grocery store.

MAMA goes over and turns off the TV.


(very serious) Marnie, did you take my card?

MARNIE Mama, you know I didn’t.


Don’t lie to me Marnie. I’m so sick of your lying.

MARNIE I really didn’t, Mama!

MAMA opens her mouth in disgust and walks to the window.


You know what I did after I went to the grocery today? I checked my bank statement online. And do you want to guess what I saw?


(indignant) Nothing?

MAMA storms back.


(furious) A whole heck of a lot of charges!

MARNIE Those were for school!


Hockey puck! You know and I know they weren’t for school! And honestly, I don’t care what you say they are for because I know whatever you say is just going to be another baldfaced lie!

MARNIE But I’m telling you the truth!

MAMA goes to the kitchen and rummages through a drawer.


(crying, upset)

You don’t care when I steal for you! When I lie for you!

MAMA pulls out a large wooden spoon from the drawer.


(wounded) You know why that’s different.

We see another shot of MARNIE’s crying face as her mother advances on her.


We see the outside of the apartment building as we hear MARNIE get beat with a wooden spoon.


MARNIE is sitting in her room curled up against her door.

She’s not really crying anyomre but her face is red and puffy. MAMA knocks on the door.

Long pause.


I’m sorry, mija. It’s just so hard to love you through the lies you tell.


We really needed that money. I don’t know what we’re going to do without it. I just don’t know.


7     EXT BUS STOP-NEXT MORNING                                   7

MARNIE is walking towards the bus stop. Today it’s raining.

Marnie holds an umbrella as she looks at the ground. She looks up. SEAN isn’t there. Dejected MARNIE looks like she is about to just call it a day and head home when an expensive looking car pulls up. The window rolls down revealing…

SEAN Hey, cupcake girl you want a ride?


(overjoyed) Heck yeah!

SEAN Well, hop on in.

MARNIE climbs into the car closing the door behind her.

8     INT SEAN’S CAR-MORNING                                      8

 They start to drive.


So where are you headed? Western campus?


Um… No, actually. My teacher’s kid broke their leg so class is totally  cancelled.

Marnie touches the lump texture of her messed up nail job.

SEAN So…not Western campus.


Yeah, I was actually just trying to catch the bus so I could go buy some presents for my little sister’s birthday.

SEAN So like the mall.

MARNIE Yeah, the mall.


Heck, my classes don’t start until

11:00 today. If you want we could make it a  date.


We see a flash of a princely dressed arm gently taking the hand of an equally lavishly dressed maiden.


MARNIE Really? That sounds amazing!

SEAN Aren’t you the enthusiastic one.


Hey, if you don’t mind me asking what’s your name, again? I have a terrible time with names. I think it might be a condition at this point.

MARNIE It’s fine.


 It’s Rosaline. Don’t forget it this time, alright?


Rosaline, really? That’s a gorgeous name.


(smiling) Thanks.


Well, Rosaline do you want to listen to some tunes? This is my favorite composer.

SEAN reaches for the dial on his dashboard and music floods the car.

As that happens we begin a montage of their time at the mall.The music of from the car radio overlays the montage as they go to different stores, talk, laugh, eat ice cream, etc.

Interspersed between these clips of the date are clips of the royally dressed couple dancing together to the music of the from overlaying the scene. The couple is  revealed to be in fact, SEAN and MARNIE.

Eventually, the dancing scene overtakes the montage and we watch SEAN and MARNIE waltz romantically in a lush garden until the crescendo of the song.

11    INT SEAN’S ROOM-NIGHT                                      11

SEAN You look beautiful.

MARNIE and SEAN stand in SEAN’S bedroom. The room is lowlit with lots of dark reds, oranges, and blacks. On the walls there are wall- mounted bookshelves with science fiction and fantasy books lined up on them. In the corner of the room there is a large queen-sized bed. SEAN is holding MARNIE’S hand.

MARNIE is still wearing the dress from the garden scene.

SEAN is wearing his usual attire.

MARNIE blinks and looks around. Her eyes land on a door.

MARNIE I have to go to the bathroom.


Oh, yeah. It’s just over the–

MARNIE breaks SEAN’s hold and rushes into the bathroom connected to his bedroom.


MARNIE washes her hands and looks into the mirror. MARNIE smiles, giddy. MARNIE stares at the mirror some more. A red ribbon pokes out of the side of the mirror. The mirror is a medicine cabinet. Out of curiosity MARNIE opens the medicine cabinet.


SEAN adjusts his clothes as he waits for MARNIE. MARNIE’s track phone rings. SEAN follows the sound and traces it back to MARNIE’s purse which is on the bed.


MARNIE looks at the things inside SEAN’s medical cabinet. An orange prescription bottle with something inside catches her eye. She reaches out and inspects it in her hand.


SEAN sits down on the bed. SEAN goes through MARNIE’s purse the phone stops ringing before SEAN can pick it up. Although SEAN misses the call, his hand hits something else, a student ID card.


MARNIE opens up the pill bottle inside is a roll of cash.

500 dollars. MARNIE looks at the money in her hands and then looks at herself in the mirror.


SEAN looks at the student ID. It is for Greendale high school. MARNIE’s picture is on it along with her real name and grade, 9th. SEAN stares at the ID. At the sound of MARNIE  opening the door to the bathroom SEAN quickly puts back the ID card and zips up her purse. MARNIE walks into the room.

MARNIE Did I miss a call?

SEAN Yeah.

MARNIE crosses over to the bed where SEAN is sitting. She sits down next to him. MARNIE looks down and puts her hands between her legs. SEAN looks at MARNIE up and down.


Hey, Sean. There’s something I have to tell you.

SEAN Yeah… What is it?


There’s something wrong with me. I try and try but no matter how hard I try… I can’t stop lying to people.


MARNIE (cont’d)


I’ve lied to you about so many things… Rosaline isn’t even my real name. My real name is so much uglier. I am so much uglier… I’m sorry…

MARNIE sits sobbing on the bed. SEAN grabs MARNIE’s arm and pulls her close. He smooths the cloth on her back.

SEAN You’re perfect.

SEAN kisses MARNIE on the forehead then the eyelid.

SEAN (CONT’D) There is nothing wrong with you.

SEAN holds MARNIE close petting the back of her head as MARNIE cries.

SEAN lowers MARNIE onto the bed, trapping her in a cage of his arms.


Besides you are so, so, so beautiful.

MARNIE looks intimately up into SEAN’s eyes and throws up.

Puke gets on SEAN’s shirt and all over her princess dress.


The front door of SEAN’s apartment slams open. MARNIE runs out.

MARNIE runs across town passing locations previously visited.


MARNIE finally finds herself at the bus stop. She stops running. She stands there. And cries.