Chapter Four: The Exorcism - Part two: (Opening Arguments)
ALMOST TWO WEEKS LATER
Eldin held the door open by pushing his body into it, while at the same time, he held onto two large paint cans in each hand. The door began to shift towards him and he slid his foot against the edge to stop it. He felt the brush bag, on his shoulder, beginning to slip down his arm. He could have dropped the cans and pushed the loose strap up his am, but for some reason he felt if he just bent his body he could shimmy it up his shoulder again. He almost had it when Jerry walked through the open door reading his brand new folded newspaper.
"Hey, Eldin." Oblivious, as Jerry always was, he walked so close to Eldin that Eldin dropped all his belongings, hitting the floor with a loud bang.
Jerry just kept on walking. Eldin began to grumble to himself and knelt down to pick everything up. He picked up the paint cans and placed them next to the banister, turning around just in time to watch Murphy, who was rambling a Chinese food order on her cell phone, plow over Eldin's brush bag like a steamroller in high-heels.
"That's it!" Eldin yelled, as the sound of broken brushes echoed through his mind.
Murphy whipped her head around. "What!" Her high-heels clicked on the floor, as she about-faced her entire body towards Eldin.
Eldin reached down and picked up his bag like it was a tiny fragile baby. He clung to the bag and stood up. "I can take one of you some of the time, but two of you is driving me insane." Eldin clutched the bag with his right hand and gestured with his left. "Do you know that man has less manners then you do? I blocked the last time he stayed here out of my head, and now I know why!"
"Is it still the honey, Eldin?"
"No, it's not! And it was maple syrup!"
"Not that you would notice, but you just stepped on my brand new fifty dollar, imported, paint brushes." Eldin gestured adamantly with his hands.
"I'm sorry, Eldin! I'll buy you new ones!"
"This is not the point! The point is that they were my property and you destroyed them without any disregard what so ever. "
"JEZZ, Eldin, what's with you! You've been so touchy lately."
"You see what's happening to me." Eldin's gestures became unyielding, as his state became further hurried." This situation is turning me hostile! I am a man of peace, and art, and culture. The man makes my head fill with dead kittens!"
"I don't explain it it's just what I see!" He buried his head in his hands and then quickly pulled them away. "Plus, I'm not getting much sleep lately."
"Oh, I'm sorry, Eldin. Are you alright?"
"I'm fine. I've just been spending a lot of nights at the painters bar." He looked down like a little boy. The women next door to me caught me trying to get into my house last week."
"Oooo." Murphy looked away, as she realized what he was saying.
"She keeps winking at me and bringing strangely shaped baked goods to my doorstep." Eldin, looking like a scared child, took a sugar cookie from his pocket and showed it to Murphy in his palm. "That doesn't look like what I think it is? Is it?" Eldin flinched away from it, as he waited for Murphy's response.
Murphy looked at the pastry and then back at Eldin with a sadden look. "I think so, Eldin…"
Eldin looked back at the food in his palm. "You don't think it could be a little bunny or something?"
"No, Eldin." Murphy continued to look at Eldin. Eldin pointed to the edge of it.
"See, this here could be an ear...ohh, god!" He spun around and put the pastry in his pocket. "I think she waits up at night for me. Each night I stay out later and later, hoping she'll fall asleep. But she doesn't. She just stays up waiting for me like some deranged animal in heat."
"You can stay here, Eldin."
"No way! I'd rather spend the night with the eighty-year old pornographic baker." Eldin cupped his hand to his forehead and paced the length of the foyer.
Eldin abruptly stopped and turned toward Murphy. "Yeah, and last night, I'm not sure, but I think she may have even flashed me from her window." He began to shake his head in his disgust. "Either that or she was hanging up a really white wrinkled dress. Ahh, I can't think about it!" He raised his head. "I must paint to release the good thoughts." He picked up two of the paint cans and walked up the staircase. "If you hear any deep walling noises, just ignore them. I'll just be me trying to stab her image from my brain with the blunt splintered remains of my of imported brushes." Eldin disappeared out of view.
Murphy slapped her cell phone closed, tossed it into her bag, and then cast her purse against the arch of the foray and the living room. She lifted through the mail, but found nothing worth reading right away. She flung the letters on the table, grasped the newspaper that was sticking out of her purse, and walked into the living room.
"What was that all about?" Jerry sat in the big chair near the fireplace reading his newspaper. "I heard something about dead kittens?"
"Don't ask." Murphy sat down in the chair directly opposite of Jerry. She opened the newspaper and lifted through all the sections with her fingers. She proceeded to cast aside all the different sections of the paper she did not care about on to the coffee table, and the floor, and the couch, until she was satisfied with a right section. All the time making low toned verbal comments on how she felt about each section of the paper.
Jerry peered from around the side of his newspaper. "Do you always have to do that!"
"Throw all the different sections around the room when you know you're only going to read the front page and sports section." The noise was also distracting, but Jerry decided to focus on one thing at a time.
"There could be other sections I want to read?"
"No, there isn't, Murphy!" He crushed his newspaper downward on to his lap. "You read the front page and then you read the sport section. Then you leave the paper hanging around this place until after dinner when you leaf through the business section for interesting articles. Which usually takes about five minutes, because maybe once in a blue moon do you actually find something interesting that makes you read the whole article and not just the first half of it. So, in theory there are only two sections you're interested in."
"I always read the entire business section. And I could want to read the other sections."
"Like..." Murphy looked around her debris for something.
"The entertainment section! I also read the entertainment section."
"Really?" Jerry pushed his lips out as he did when he was humoring Murphy. Murphy picked up the paper and sat back in her chair." What's happened in Hollywood?" He leaned forward
"Well look at here. That guy from that. Ahh, what's the name of that movie. Ahhh, ahhh." Murphy clenched her eyes together. "I hated it." Murphy looked down at the paper and started to read something and then looked back at Jerry. "You know it's my house I can do anything I want!"
"Yes it is."
Jerry was very calm. Murphy hated that. It meant he had the upper hand. She gave him a dirty look. Jerry smiled and disappeared behind his newspaper. Murphy folded the paper in anger and discarded the section to the floor and recovered the front-page section.
"I'll just go and read my paper in silence. Thank you, very much!"
Jerry turned the page of his paper and placed his leg up onto his knee. He said nothing and never moved from behind the paper. Murphy folded the paper under her arm and walked to her den. It wasn't until Murphy was completely out of site that Jerry chucked to himself.
Like the sound of thunder the next sound heard 'round the Brown household was that of Avery Brown's feet clamoring down the stairs.
"Hi, Jerry!" Avery's patter reached the living room.
"Hey, Kid." Jerry continued to read his paper. Avery looked around the couch, as if he was looking for something. He checked under the couch, and behind it. He then began to crawl along the coffee table until he was just head shy of Jerry's feet. Jerry leaned out from behind his paper
"Are you looking for something?"
"Aren't you always looking for that thing?"
"Yeah. I always lose it." Avery crawled around the right side of the couch.
"What is this GAME BOY thing anyway?"
"It's a video game."
"Why don't you just play the one you have here?" Jerry pointed to the television.
"This one's portable."
"Ah." Jerry shook his paper to make it straight and then disappeared behind it again. Soon the doorbell rang and Avery popped his head up from behind the couch.
"Is that the food?" Avery's head sprung up. Jerry folded his paper and reached into his back pocket.
"Here, Kid." Jerry tossed Avery his wallet. "Use the twenty." Avery ran off. "And don't give more than a five dollar tip!" Jerry folded the paper in half and set it on the coffee table. Avery ran into the living room holding a large bag in both hands. Jerry walked over to him and took the bag from him. "Tell your mother the foods here."
"MOM! THE FOODS HERE."
Jerry shook his head and stuck his finger in his ear.
"I"LL BE RIGHT THERE!" Murphy's voice echoed from the den.
"She'll be right here," Avery said deadpanned.
"Thanks." Jerry pushed the objects on the coffee table to the side and began to take out the contents of the bag and place them on it.
"Just put my wallet down over by the phone, ok."
Avery walked behind the couch and placed the wallet on the table next to the phone. He looked over at Jerry like he wanted to get something.
"Is this your chicken and scrimp?" He opened the container a bit and looked inside it.
Avery walked towards him. "Jerry, who's the picture of the girl in your wallet?"
"What girl?" Jerry opened a second container and looked in it before placing it on the coffee table. He was not pleased with what he found.
"This one?" Avery handed Jerry a small old and tattered picture.
"Where did you find this?"
"In your wallet."
"I know it's just I..."
"Is she your daughter?"
"How did you know I had a daughter?"
"I didn't. I just guessed."
"Well. You're right. It's my daughter. Now, if you could just put the picture back where you found it." Jerry handed Avery back the picture and continued looking for his own food among the white containers.
"Is she my age? She looks my age?" Jerry took back the picture.
"In this picture she's about your age, a little older." He looked at the picture. "But it's an old picture." He walked over to his wallet and placed the picture in it. "But she's much older now."
"Why do you have such an old picture of her?"
"Well. It... It's the last picture... time I saw her… so, it's the most current picture I have. 'Where's your mother? Murphy!"
"I"LL BE RIGHT THERE!" Murphy's voice echoed through the house.
"Why don't you see her?"
"Well, it's complicated."
"Like why I don't see my father?"
Jerry looked at him. "Yeah, Like that." Jerry sat down and opened his noodles and vegetables.
Avery jumped on the couch next to him. "Jerry? Can I ask you a question?"
Jerry realized he didn't have a fork. "Sure kid." He stood up and reached for a fork at the bottom of the bag.
"Are you my father?"
Jerry froze in the bag. He took his arm out of the bag and sat back down. "No, Avery, I'm not. Didn't your mother tell you who your father is?
"Yeah, Jake Lowenstein. She showed me some pictures and I saw him on TV once."
"Then why did you ask me?"
"Because, I sometimes over hear your name mentioned in conversations about me and my father and stuff."
"People said that stuff in front of you?" Jerry was appalled by the behavior of some people.
"They didn't know I was there."
"People will say a lot of bad things. Just listen to what your mother says."
"Why did they say things like that if you're not my father?"
"Because, well...I guess I could have been your father, but I wasn't. I would have liked to be. But Jake is your father." Jerry reached back for the forth. "Not me," he said harshly.
"Did you know my father? Again Jerry was stuck, frozen for a moment, as to how he could answer the question.
"Yes." That was easy he thought.
"What was he like?" The question of death.
Jerry thought for a moment and then sat back down on the couch. "Well…" He thought for a moment. "I really didn't know him that well..." He looked towards the boy. "But I'm sure he was a real nice guy."
"That's what Mom says." Avery reached for his own food.
"Well your mothers a smart woman." Jerry didn't look at Avery.
What Jerry and Avery didn't know was that this entire time Murphy had been listening to the conversation from the other side of the wall. She had heard everything and was careful to not let the two know she was listening in.
"Where is your mother?" Jerry whispered. He placed his food down and walked towards the den. He walked up the step and started into the dark hallway. He saw Murphy instantly at its edge. She was leaning up against the wall.
"What are you doing? The food is getting cold." Murphy grasped him by the label and pulled him into the hallway. She pulled Jerry towards her and landed a big kiss on him. He responded affectionately back.
"Why do I have the feeling that was for a reason?" He leaned his arms against the wall on either side of Murphy
"Do I ever need a reason?"
"Come on, let's eat." He took her hand and began to lead her away. She didn't move. Jerry looked back at her.
"Thank you, Jerry."
Jerry smiled at her, embarrassed. The couple walked through the arch as they heard the doorbell ring. "You eat. I'll get the door." They parted and Murphy opened the door. Standing at the other side of Murphy's front door was Kay. Her arms were filled with as many videocassettes as she could carry.
"Kay, what are you doing here?"
"I'm here for dinner." Kay walked in without waiting for an invitation.
"Why!" Murphy shut the door.
"You said I should come over sometime and have dinner with you and Jerry."
"That's an expression, Kay. It doesn't mean you just come on over whenever you feel the urge."
"Ooo. Is that Chinese I smell!" Kay's eyes lit up and she walked into the living room.
"Hi, Kay." Jerry had a mouth full of noodles.
"Hi, Jerry. How are you?" Kay dropped all her tapes on the closest chair. Kay looked up and lifted her hand. "Please, don't tell me until after you've swallowed." She peered at the table of food and seized one of the containers inhaling the fumes.
'Is this orange chicken?" She opened the box with delight. "Lucky day! It is!" She looked at Murphy. "My fav!"
"Actually, Kay, that's mine," Murphy smiled slyly.
"That's ok, Mom. They gave us extra by mistake, the guy didn't charge us." Avery looked up from his Gameboy and then back down at it. He had found it in the crevasse of the couch.
"Thanks, Avery." Murphy did not seem pleased. Kay made her way on the couch next to Avery. Murphy walked over to the bag on the table and looked for her own food.
"Hi, Avery!" Kay took a fork and sat down on the couch next to him. She peered over his shoulder
"Hi, Kay." He didn't look up from the Gameboy.
"There a secret passage in that rock...no under the rock." Kay leaned her heard away from the screen
"No problem, Avery." Kay took a bite of her food.
"Kay, what's with all the tapes?" Murphy looked down at them.
"Stan wants to up the start date for the new show. The networks so hyped about it they want to start it in the summer as opposed to the fall. Which means - I have less time to find my anchors." Kay took another bite. "You know, you should really get your chicken spicy, Murphy. Chinese food isn't Chinese food unless it enters all your nasal passages and burned them to a heavy crisp."
"I remember that next time I order for myself!" Murphy sat down on the edge of the chair. She looked down at all the tapes.
"Is this all you got."
"Not even close!"
"MOM." Avery was looking at his watch. "It's eight o'clock. Can I take my food upstairs and watch TV?"
"OK." Avery dashed off the couch. "But eat on the floor. And try not to spill anything again!
"So, what is this show about, Kay?" Jerry placed his food container on the coffee table.
"It's sort of a hard-news version of The View. Stan's idea." Kay bent her elbow on her knee and buried her face in her hand. "It'd be fine if he didn't refer to it as hard news broads!" She looked up at Jerry and Murphy. "He keeps sending me these tapes of all these women with either big breasts or no brain. Maybe one or two of them are really good, but for every three great ones, I have to watch about twenty of Stan's bimbos. If I see one more women named Candy tell me how I can get the cheapest waxing and bleaching I think I'm going to crack." She buried her face in her hands again.
"Why have to wait? I think you're already there." Jerry smiled, stood up, threw his empty container in the bag it came from, and took it into the kitchen.
"Then you shouldn't have brought all these tapes home with you? You'll give your eyes whiplash if you do this twenty-four hours a day."
"Actually, my VCR is broken."
"Then why did you…" Murphy looked at the tapes and then at Kay. "Ahh, no." Murphy sprung up.
"Please, just for a short time?"
"No!" Murphy waved her hands and backed up from the chair.
"Just for a few hours. And then I'll go. I'm soo behind and they threw me out of the editing bay."
"How did you get yourself thrown out of the editing bay?"
"I called Mitch a horse's ass!"
"Mitch, Mitch. Ruler of the Keys, Mitch?"
"I don't care what he says Jerry McGuire is NOT the best movie ever made!"
"Kay! This is Jerry's last night in the house," she started to whisper. "We have plans!"
"When does Avery go to sleep?"
"I'll be out by nine-thirty." Kay snatched the remote and turned the television on.
"Or do I have to tell Mitch what you told me regarding your thoughts about a certain Tom Cruise film?" Kay smiled at her. "Hand me one of those tapes would you?" Murphy took a tape from the chair and handed it to her with much protest.
"You owe me big for this one, Kay."
"Put it on my tab," she laughed
"And I am not doing this because I am being blackmailed. I am doing this out of the extreme kindness of my heart."
"Oh, that's a good one. I've got to write that one down."
Kay opened the notebook and pen that always hung around her neck. She noted the quote in her book, laughing gleefully as she wrote. She then reached into her small leather backpack and emerged with a large yellow legal pad and ballpoint pen.
Murphy gave Kay an evil look and walked behind the couch, folding her arms. Kay placed the cassette in the VCR and made herself comfortable.
Jerry entered the living room from the kitchen with his hands in his pockets. He looked over at Kay and then walked closer to Murphy.
"Kay, is just going to stay here for an hour and a half and watch some tapes," her voice was a low whisper
"Ok," Jerry also spoke softly. He rubbed his hands on Murphy's arms and she faced him
"She'll be gone by nine-thirty!"
"As long as you're not leaving, I'm fine." He reached for his wallet.
Murphy stopped his hand. "Can I see the picture?"
"You heard that part?"
"Yes. I want to see what she looks like."
"The picture is faded. It's ten years old."
"I just want to see it."
"Why can't I see it?"
"Did I say you couldn't see it?"
"What's with you? I asked you about her last week and you acted this way? You never acted like this before?"
"When did I ever talk about her?"
"In the bar..."
"That was a long time ago."
"I want to see the picture!" Murphy's voice shrilled.
"Fine!" Jerry opened his wallet in anger and shoved the picture in Murphy face.
Murphy looked at the picture and her face transformed from quite upset to the appearance of a sweet smile. "She's beautiful, Jerry."
"Has nothing to do with me. She looks just like her mother." He snatched back the picture and placed in back in his wallet
"Do you ever think of contacting her, Jerry?"
"Why would she want to see me?" Jerry placed the wallet on the table.
"You're her father."
"If I were her I wouldn't want to see me." Jerry turned towards Murphy again.
Murphy placed her hand over Jerry's hand, which rested over his wallet. "I know you think you were a bad father."
"I wasn't bad; I just wasn't born to be one."
"You think I ever thought I was born to be a parent?"
"You're different, Murphy. You tried and it worked. I tried and it didn't. End of story!"
"What about Avery. He likes you. What is that some kind of fluke..."
"I'm awkward with him!" Jerry pulled Murphy towards the window for a more private conversation.
"That will go away."
"No, it won't!"
"Oh, I hate your parents for putting these ideas in your head!"
"They didn't put them in my head!
"GOLD! LOOK! When I first brought Avery home I didn't know what I was doing. Frank had to come over and teach me how to hold him and put him to sleep. And still, to this day, I don't know everything, but I learn as I go along. And that's the way it is." Murphy shook her head. "You always think you know everything..."
"I don't want to discuss this..."
"I think you do, Jerry. I've notice the way you've been acting in the past month, even the last two weeks. I don't know whether it's either being around Avery or Elka having her baby or I don't know, but something has brought all the regrets you feel towards your daughter back into the forefront of your mind. I see it in your eyes, Jerry. You can't lie to me."
"I don't have regrets...I don't want to discuss this now. I'm not good with children. This has been established!" Jerry stopped for a moment as if he was taking something in.
"Jerry, she's not a child anymore!" Murphy noticed Jerry's distraction. "Jerry?" Murphy looked at him confused.
"I thought I heard... Never mind!" He shook his head. "I'm gonna get some smokes." He walked over to his wallet.
"Don't you walk away from me, GOLD!" Murphy followed behind him. Jerry began to pick up his wallet and stared at the TV screen. His body froze as he looked forward towards the television. There, on the screen, was a girl he recognized. At first he wasn't sure why. But her voice, her skin, her hair, and her eyes were unmistakable. He felt like he was watching it all in slow motion. The girl on the television tossed her hair back and pulled the microphone up to her mouth. She meshed her lips together. Her cheeks bounced up like a child, but on a woman's face. He blocked out the sound and focused on her face only. It was her mother's face.
Murphy noticed the changes in Jerry, making her balk in mid-sentence and stare at him. After a moment she gazed at what Jerry was staring at. She looked at him and then the screen. She looked at the screen and then back at Jerry again. Both times she saw his eyes staring back.
"Give me the picture, Jerry?" she said softly.
"I have to go." He walked away from the window.
"Jerry!" Murphy ran after him. She followed him into the foyer. "Don't walk away from this, Gold! You're going to have to face up to this!"
"Just leave me alone about it, Brown! It's none of your business!"
"None of my business! I see! That's rich, Gold. You want me to open my life to you, but you don't want to open your life to me."
"This is so not the same thing, Brown!" Jerry Gold searched for his retort, but for the first time in his life he was dry. This frustrated him more than he and Murphy's entire conversation. "I just don't want to discuss it!" Jerry opened the door. "I'll be back," he muttered and slammed the door hard behind him.
Murphy took in a determined breath. "Kay?" She took large strides into the living room. "Rewind that tape!"
"Rewind the tape... to that last girl, the brunette."
"In the blue blazer?"
Kay snatched the remote and rewound the tape. "Why?"
"Just do it?"
Murphy walked behind the couch and suddenly noticed something that stopped her in her tracks. Jerry forgot his wallet. She picked up the wallet and rummaged through it for the picture.
"I got it." Kay hit the remote and Murphy looked up at the television. She looked at the girl and searched for the picture in the wallet.
"God, Gold, do you ever throw anything away?" All she seemed to be finding were receipts and business cards.
"You know there is something about her I can't place?" Kay leaned back. "I think I might have met her before? Of course with my memory lately she could have kissed me naked in the center of Times Square and I wouldn't remember her. "
"Found it!" Murphy found the picture in the deep crevices of Jerry's wallet. Murphy looked up at the screen and down at the picture. She walked over to the couch and sat next to Kay. Again she looked at the screen, only this time for a longer time, and then did the same back to the picture.
"I am sure I know this girl? Come on, brain." She hit her head. "Come up with it."
"I don't think you recognize her because you've met her before, Kay? I think you recognize her because you know her father."
"Her father? Who's that?"
"Jerry Gold." She handed Kay the picture who stared at it in amazement.
The fourteen-year-old girl in the picture remarkably still looked like the girl they saw in front of them. That's the thing about girls. It's easier to pick them out from such a young picture. Not much changes in the face. The two looked at each other, as Jerry's daughter spoke her sign-off line.
"And this is Rachel Margolis reporting from Midtown. Back to you, Ted."
Her brown eyes pierced. And she smiled.
TO BE CONTINUED...
What will happen next? Who knows? I do..
Will Frank and Murphy make up?.
Will Jerry and Murphy really be able to stay in long-term relationship?
Will Jerry look for his daughter?
Will his daughter look for him?
How will Jerry buy cigarettes without his wallet?
If Jerry Gold is the male Murphy what does that make Rachel?
Will Miles blow a gasket when he finds out he use to shtupp Jerry Gold's daughter?
Does he already know?
If he doesn't already know does this mean my Maalox stocks will go up? (Make note call broker)
Will Eldin ever get some sleep?
Will Doris and Jim ever want to go on a cruise again?
Will Corky ever get a scoop over Barbara Walters?
Will Phil have to go back to the safe house?
Will Stan replace all the women on Kay's new show with orangutans?
Will I ever stop asking theses stupid questions?
And will Kay be the only person in this story NOT gettin' some?
To find out the answers do theses and all other questions that plague you:
Tune into Part Two: Vol. 2 of: AFTER FYI: Murphy in Purple & Gold