Alternative Ending to Series 3

by Mollie and Jason Lundy

Late night exterior under bridge, Peter is sitting at water's edge tossing stones. Assumpta and dog are watching from the trees. The dog makes a sudden noise and Peter turns.

A:    Don't you sleep anymore?
P:     Not lately, what about you?
A:     We're on a walk, want to join us?
P:     Thanks.

Peter rises, they head off downstream, the camera follows, eventually Peter's hand brushes Assumpta's, he takes it, she looks at it, at him, they walk on hand and hand. Later near the bridge Peter is about to say or do something. Assumpta is nervous.

A:     It's late.
P:     Assumpta, I....
A:     Good night, Peter.

Assumpta and the dog sprint off. Peter stands watching.

Interior day Fitzgerald's. Brendan, Siobhan, and Padrig are at the end of the bar. Peter enters and goes over to them.

B:     Peter.
P:     Brendan, Siobhan, Padrig.
B:     We were just saying that Assumpta has the right idea. Don't you agree.
P:     What idea is that?
S:     Leaving Ballykay. Going partners in a Dublin wine bar.
P:     I hadn't heard. Is she in the kitchen?

Interior day Fitzgerald's kitchen Assumpta is busy. She stops when Peter enters. He is upset.

P:    Can I talk to you?
A:     Sure.
P:     Are you serious about leaving?
A:     I think so.
P:     Why?
A:     I'm tired of being alone, I want a life, maybe even a family. I won't get that here will I.
P:     Why didn't you tell me?
A:    It's my business.
P:     I care very deeply for you, I thought you knew that!
A:     It's my business.

Cut to bridge: A very hurt Peter staring down at water.

Night Interior Fitzgerald's Assumpta behind bar, Brendan and Siobhan finishing drinks. Peter very quiet.

A:     Okay, you lot, have you no homes to go to?
B:     Siobhan will you give me a lift home?
S:     Only if you drive.

They stand and start to door. Siobhan turns back to Peter.

S:     Are you coming Peter?
P:     I need a word with Assumpta.
B:     Night all.

Siobhan and Brendan exit. Assumpta goes to door and locks it after them. She is slow to turn back around. She takes a deep breath as if dreading what's coming.

A:     You wanted a word.
P:     I, I...
A:     What's the matter Peter?
P:     This is very hard for me.

Assumpta crosses to the stool nearest Peter, she sits, puts hand on his arm.

A:     Whatever it is you can tell me Peter.
P:     I have no right to ask.
A:     What's wrong Peter?
P:     This is very hard for me.
A:     Peter!!
P:     (on the verge of tears) Please don't leave me. I won't be able to stand it.

Assumpta opens her arms.

A:     Come here Peter.

Peter goes into her arms. Sobs. She comforts him.

A:     I won't leave you Peter.

After a minute Peter calms, beging to kiss her neck. She's surpries at first then goes with it. Peter takes her face in his hands, looks into her eyes, kisses her again.

A:     This is wrong.
P:     I don't care.

Assumpta looks at him, kisses him. Cut to chairs by fireplace. Assumpta's head is on Peter's chest.

Day Interior Fitzgerald's. Assumpta is putting a sandwich in front of Brendan. Peter enters. A look passes between Assumpta and Peter, Brendan notices. Peter motions to the kitchen both go.

Interior of kitchen Assumpta very nervous.

P:     You haven't changed your mind have you??

Assumpta shakes her head. Peter takes her in his arms. Cut to interior of bar. Brendan is watching shadows on the glass in the kitchen door. Cut back to kitchen.

P:     I'm on my way to talk to Fr Mac. I'll call you when he's finished with me. Don't worry I know what I'm doing.
A:     This is a big step for me too.
P:     Too big a step?
A:     Not with you.

Assumpta returns to bar. Brendan is worried.

B:     You're not losing your head are you.
A:     Too late

Later same day, rainy afternoon interior Fitzgerald's Assumpta is pulling a stout for Brendan. Niamh and Ambrose enter, nervous, tenative manner, Assumpta notices.

A:     What!!

Ambrose removes his hat and steps forward, Niamh starts around bar.

Am:     There's been an accident

Assumpta starts toward Brendan with the stout

A:     Who's had an accident
Am:     Peter

The glass crashes to the floor

A:     Is he...
B:     What happened.
Am:     He's in serious condition.

Niamh puts her arm around Assumpta, starting her toward the door

N:     He's asking for you. Ambrose will drive you. Don't worry about this place.

Ambrose and Assumpta exit. Niamh and Brendan start to pick up the broken glass.

B:     What happened?
N:     Fr Mac was driving, haranging Peter as usual. He swerved to miss a sheep and lost control.
B:     What about Fr Mac?
N:     Just some bruises, he had the air bag, but he's pretty shaken up.
B:     And Peter's asking for Assumpta
N:     He might die!
B:     Poor Assumpta.

Niamh looks surprised. Cut to rainy exterior. Garda Car blue lights flashing racing down road. Cut to interior of car. Ambrose is driving, Assumpta is in shock, tears running down face. Ambrose reaches over and pats her hand.

Am: We'll be there soon.

Interior of Hospital hallway, Michael in scrubs, Assumpta and Ambrose enter.

M:     At last
A:     Peter?
M:     It's serious, he should have gone straight into surgery
A:     Why didn't he.
M:     He wouldn't allow it until he could talk to you.

Hospital room Peter in bed, iv's, Fr Mac bruised, praying. Michael, Assumpta and Ambrose enter.

FrMac: Thank God you're here at last.

Assumpta goes to bed, takes Peter's hand.

A: (softly) Peter.

Peter opens his eyes.

P:     Assumpta.
A:     Why won't you let Michael operate?
P:     I had to see you. Make sure you knew.
A:     Knew what?
P:     I love you!
A:     Peter, you've got to let them operate
P:     Marry me.
A:     We'll talk later when you're better.
P:     No, now. I may not have later.

Assumpta looks at FrMac who nods, Michael signals and orderlies with a gurney enter and begin to place Peter on it.

FrMac: Peter do you take Assumpta for your wedded wife?
P:     I do.
FrMac: Assumpta do you take Peter for your wedded husband?
A:     I do.
FrMac: I now pronounce you husband and wife.

Peter kisses her hand as he is wheeled out. FrMac puts his arm around Assumpta and guides her to a chair. She doesn't seem to notice.

FrMac: I was wrong about you two. I was wrong about so many things.

Cut to interior Fitzgerald's usual crowd very somber.

B:     Niamh will you call the hospital again. I can't stand this waiting.
S:     It's been hours
P:     It can't be good or we would have heard something by now.

Niamh start to phone. Interior hospital room night, FrMac is asleep in chair Assumpta is standing by nightstand running her fingers over a wallet, watch and rosary. Michael enters looks exhausted, Assumpta holding her breath, Michael smiles goes to her.

M:    He's done well. I think in time he'll make a full recovery.
A:    Thank you.
M:    You 're exhausted, why don't you let me give you something

Assumpta shakes her head

A:    When can I see him.
M:    They'll be bringing him back in a little while.
A:    Thank you Michael, for everything

Cut to interior Fitzgerald's late night.

N:    It doesn't look like we'll hear anything tonight. I better lockup.

Phone rings, everything goes quiet.

N:    Fitzgerald's
Am:    Niamh, the surgery is over. Michael says he'll be fine
N:    Thank heavens, are you and Assumpta coming home now?
Am:    Just me. She won't leave him. Wait up for me. I have something to tell you.
N:    Okay

Niamh turns to crowd.

N:    Good News! That was Ambrose. Michael says Peter should be fine. So, have you no homes to go to.

Interior night Niamh's kitchen. She and Ambrose are drinking cocoa.

N:     Seriously!
Am:     Yes, Fr Mac married them as they wheeled Peter out to surgery. I've known Assumpta since we were at the National School, but I've never seen her like that. If he hadn't made it, I think it would have killed her.

Niamh if floored.

N:    She has told me about how she felt about him but...
Am:    He wouldn't let Michael start until he could tell her he loved her.

Niamh smiles

N:    Maybe she'll finally be happy. And Fr Mac married them. I would have thought he'd have thrown a tempter tantrum.
Am:    Guilt, I suppose. The accident was clearly his fault. He was too busy yelling at Peter to pay attention to the road. You should have seen the way he was with Assumpta. So gentle.

Early morning hospital room. FrMac is asleep in chair. Peter is in bed, iv's. Assumpta is in chair by side of bed holding Peter's hand. Michael enters goes to check on Peter Assumpta sits up.

A:    Is everything okay?
M:    At the moment he's doing better than you and Fr Mac are. You need some rest.
A:    I can't leave.

Peter opens his eyes, squeezes Assumpta's hand.

P:    Michael.
M:    How are you feeling Peter.
P:    A little sore.
M:    To be expected. Rest. I was just about to tell your wife, you'll be up and around in a week or so.

Peter smiles.

P:    Thank you Michael

Michael turns and leaves Assumpta puts her hand to Peter's face, a gentle kiss. FrMac is awake and watching.

A:    I was so scared.
P:    So was I, I thought we'd left it too late.
A:    Promise me you'll never leave me.
P:    Never.

Assumpta puts her head next to his and begins to cry. FrMac stands up puts a finger to his lips and slips out. Cut to morning interior church. FrMac is just finishing mass to a large crowd.

FrMac: Before we go I want to thank you for all your prayers. Peter Clifford and I are very grateful. I'm sure you'll be pleased to know that he is well on his way to a full recovery. Peter has asked me to tell you how much he enjoyed being the curate here. He came to regard so many of you as friends and this community as his home. However for sometime before our accident Peter came to believe that God had chosen a different path for him. He decided that he had to leave the Priesthood. I want you to know that this was a vety difficult decision for him. He had planned to tell you himself, but unfortunately the accident prevented it. Now there is quit often a lot of gossip surrounding a Priest that leaves the church. I want to discourage that. Peter took his vocation seriously and was a good Priest but he no longer felt his life was in the church. We should honor his decision. I hope that you will make his welcome as a friend and a neighbor when he returns. I for one wish him and his family well and hope that they will be happy in this parish.

Cut to croud murmuring.

Day, interior. Fitzgerald's kitchen. Assumpta and Peter are opening the mail at the table. Crutches are by the stove.

P:     Something from my Mum.
A:     Has she finally forgiven us?
P:     Guess so. (flapping a check around)
A:    What's that.
P:     A check.
A:     How much?
P:     30,000 pounds.
A:     You didn't say she was rich.
P:     She's not, this is my share of my Dad's insurance.
A:     Your Dad died years ago, why are you getting it now?
P:     She wants to make sure her grandchildren are properly taken care of when she's gone.
A:     What have you been telling her?
Peter smirks P: Why don't you call Brian and get a few estimates.

Roll credits