Reading and Remembering

INT. LOUNGE ROOM – DAY

TOM (12, bushy hair) sits on a lush brown L shaped sofa, the kind you sink into, inside a modern but comfortable lounge room. He reads a young adult fantasy novel. His Dad, GEOFF (41, still fit but beginning to bald) sits on the other side of the L sofa, he also reads a novel. The sun streams through the wide windows.

TOM
Dad, did you read books when you were my age?

GEOFF
Hmm? Oh not really.

TOM
I love reading, sometimes when I’m at school all I think about is coming home and reading in my room by myself.

GEOFF
That’s good mate.

TOM
I like reading with you here too though.

GEOFF
(sarcastically)
I’m touched.

TOM
Did you and Mum like to read together when you were still married?

GEOFF
No, not really. With your Mum and me there was always so much…drama…going on, there wasn’t much time for reading.

TOM
What does that mean?

GEOFF
How about we don’t talk about me and your Mum, alright mate?

TOM
Alright. What did you like to do at my age?

GEOFF
What? Oh, sports I guess. I was always outside, especially if I could convince your uncles to play with me.

TOM
Did you ever read books with your Dad?

GEOFF
Ha, no. It was different for me and your Grandpa. I was the youngest, but even still he didn’t really do stuff with any of us.

TOM
Oh. Why not?

GEOFF
It wasn’t his way. He provided for us, that was enough.

TOM
Do you remember ever doing anything with him.

GEOFF
Well. Yes actually. One Saturday I was in the backyard and he came up to me and said ‘Geoffery we’re going fishing’, and so we did. It was great. I had almost forgotten about that.

Geoff smiles wistfully at the memory.

Beat.

TOM
Mum doesn’t like me talking about you and her either.

GEOFF
Oh no? Well I suppose she wouldn’t.

TOM
Why?

GEOFF
I guess people just want to forget some things. If we don’t talk about it it’s easier to do that.

TOM
Did you want to forget you and Grandpa fishing? Is that why you couldn’t remember it?

GEOFF
No, no I like that memory. Sometimes you just forget things.

TOM
Oh.

Tom thinks.

TOM (CONT’D)
I hope I remember today, you and me reading together, it seems like a good memory to keep.

GEOFF
Yeah, me too.

Tom returns to his book. Geoff smiles at his son, then also continues to read.

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