A Cry for Help
Original Airdate: April 2, 1983

[Detectives' Squad room]

(Chris arrives in the morning with a big smile on her face, full of the joys of Spring)
MARY BETH: Great night, Christine?
CHRISTINE: Mm.
MARY BETH: This is the guy who took you parachuting, right?
CHRISTINE: Right.
MARY BETH: And hang gliding the week before when he lapped up your legs?
CHRISTINE: I like this one.
MARY BETH: Despite some well-developed death wish does he have any other qualifications?
CHRISTINE: He's gorgeous.
MARY BETH: Of course.
CHRISTINE: An incurable romantic. Last night, at Chez Robert's, he had the dessert chef bake this (taking off a gold chain) into the chocolate soufflé. Hello!
MARY BETH: (taking the chain) Oh, nice.
CHRISTINE: Aw, nice? I don't know. I gonna have to send it back.
ISBECKI: This guy must be a real loser. He's gotta buy you gifts to get a date.
CHRISTINE: Do you wanna get out of here, Isbecki?
ISBECKI: How much do you think he paid for that? Fifty, seventy-five bucks.
CHRISTINE: I couldn't care less. And it's none of your business!
ISBECKI: The only thing I have to give to get a woman, is me?
CHRISTINE: (as Isbecki walks away) Take me off your Christmas list.
CHRISTINE: (quietly) Twenty-four carat gold, I'd say. A hundred and fifty dollars at least.
MARY BETH: So you couldn't care less.
CHRISTINE: Hey, I'm sending it back.
PETRIE: (coming up with a case file) That con man scene you're working on? Three more victims have turned up.
MARY BETH: Oh, thanks.
(Chris looks across the office where three elderly ladies are waiting)
ISBECKI: Lacey! Telephone.
MARY BETH: OK. (to Chris handing her the file) I'll catch up with you inside. (into phone) Detective Lacey, Fourteenth Squad.
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) I can't stand it any more. I have to talk to somebody.
MARY BETH: (into phone) Yes, ma'am.
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) I know you'll stick up for him, You're the police. I know you will.
MARY BETH: (into phone) Excuse me, ma'am, do you wish to report a crime?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) My doctor said it was all my fault. He told me to take tranquillisers.
MARY BETH: (into phone) I'm sorry, lady, what is the problem?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) My husband beats me.
MARY BETH: All right, we will send an officer right over. What is the address?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) No, no, please. That'll just make it worse.
MARY BETH: (into phone) Is he there with you now?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) No.
MARY BETH: (into phone) All right. I'm gonna give you a number to call. They will find shelter for you. ...Hello? ...Are you there?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) Listen, I just wanna know. I just wanna know what you'll do if I turn him in. Listen, he's a... He's a... Never mind. ...Just forget it.
(the line goes dead)
ISBECKI: Mary Beth! Cagney's waiting for you in the interrogation room.

[Interview room]

ROSE: You! You dumb Nan, you wouldn't understand a seventy-five year old.
EDITH: (to Rose) And I say she's living in a dream world if she's gonna make it on social security. I've gotta laugh.
CHRISTINE: We've been investigating this Mr. Ruskin..
NORMA: You should spit when you say that name. This Mr. Ruskin, he said he was a real estate investment councillor. He promised me fifty percent return on my investment. Guaranteed.
CHRISTINE: How much money did you give him?
NORMA: Ten thousand dollars. Money I saved in nickels and dimes. Oh, at first the cheques came every month, regular, like clockwork. Four hundred and sixteen dollars a month. To me the difference between living like an animal and living like a human being. Then he asked me if I had any friends who would be interested.
EDITH: Better she should have kept her mouth shut. Not that I'm blaming anyone.
ROSE: I gave him twelve thousand dollars. For a while it was just like Norma said. I mean a miracle. And then the funny stuff started.
First the cheques were a few days late. Then a week.
EDITH: Then nothing for two months. And every time we call, they say he's out.
NORMA: I can't tell you how bad I feel. Like a criminal.
ROSE: Oh, trust me, you didn't twist my arm. I mean, he seemed very sincere to me.
EDITH: Not to me! I felt something fishy right off the bat. I told you, Norma, that penthouse office and all those rings on his fingers. Someone's gotta pay for that, I said. But Norma said he was OK. So I lost everything. Not that I'm blaming any one.
NORMA: Oh please, officers, is there something you can do?
CHRISTINE: We'll do our best.

[Police Headquarters corridor]

CHRISTINE: (carrying the case files) I don't know why we had to come up here with these. Why didn't Solomon and Nelson come up to the Fourteenth?
MARY BETH: Rank has its privileges.
CHRISTINE: So I hear. You and Brent Nelson graduated at the Academy together. Why does he have two grades on you?
MARY BETH: I would say er, sexual discrimination.
CHRISTINE: Now why didn't I think of that?
MARY BETH: Because he's very smart and very cool and he was number one in our class.
CHRISTINE: Well, I hope number one's got something for us. I don't wanna meet one more destitute widow.

[Special Frauds Division]

SOLOMON: (to Chris) I've finally figured it out who it is you remind me of. My ex-wife. (to Nelson) Number three, right, around the eyes.
NELSON: Solly, come on.
CHRISTINE: Did you get anything back from he IRS?
NELSON: IRS...
SOLOMON: IRS is my connection. I made contact with 'em. I also got in contact with the SEC.
NELSON: (to Solomon) Hey, you turn it over to the Feds and you lose on some lousy security technicality.
SOLOMON: Are you nuts? Mick Solomon always gets his man. (looking at Chris) Usually his woman.
MARY BETH: Brent, you still have a tail on Ruskin, right?
NELSON/SOLOMON: Yeah,...
SOLOMON: ...you know, we thought he was gonna make a run for it. But now, I just love it when they make a run. It's good evidence for a collar.
MARY BETH: Brent, do you wanna make him notice? Like meet him?
CHRISTINE: I can go and meet him. Undercover.
NELSON: You're a bit young for his usual investor.
CHRISTINE: (looking at Mary Beth) Or a mum. 'She lost everything she had.'
MARY BETH: (patting Chris's hand) Isn't that a shame.

[Ed Ruskin's office]

RUSKIN: I can't stand it that I should have caused your lovely mother a second's discomfort.
CHRISTINE: Well, it's just that you've been very difficult to reach, and she hasn't received a cheque for, gosh, the last couple of months.
RUSKIN: Well, what can I say. Cash flow, that is all it is. A tiny little cash flow problem. You see, the escrow on the sale of a hotel in Grand Cayman has been held up. It's all because of fluctuating interest rates. Well, it's bound to close this week at a three hundred percent profit to the investors.
CHRISTINE: Well, perhaps I could see the paperwork on the new hotel.
RUSKIN: Of course, (picking up a file) of course.
(as Chris puts her hand out to take the file, he puts it to one side)
RUSKIN: Now, ...will you do one little thing for me. Will you reassure your lovely mother from me.
CHRISTINE: (sweetly) I wonder, could you make your books available to my Ma and me?
RUSKIN: Absolutely no problem. (picking up all the papers on his desk) As a matter of fact our auditors are going over the books right now. We should have a statement out for the investors by , oh say, the end of the month.
(his phone buzzes)
RUSKIN: Excuse me. (into phone) Yes. ...Right. ...Oh, right away. ...Thanks.
(he rings off)
RUSKIN: Stupendous news. We've just closed on an office building Juno At an absolute giveaway price.
CHRISTINE: (again sweetly) Oh, isn't that great.
RUSKIN: Thank you. Now if you could excuse me, (holding the files from his desk closely to him) as you can see I have some papers to sign. (shaking her hand) I generally don't do this, but if you have a little cash saved up, I could possibly get you into the Juno deal.
CHRISTINE: Do you have any paperwork on that?
RUSKIN: Of course.

[Precinct front desk office]

(the duo is at the candy machine)
CHRISTINE: (gets a book out of her handbag and gives it to Mary Beth) Hey, Mary Beth, do you read this kinda thing?
MARY BETH: 'Love's Savage Harvest' by Brianna Dumaine. Is this one of those cornball romances?
CHRISTINE: Yeah, a friend of mine wrote it and wants me to say something... And I was wondering if you'd read it for me.
MARY BETH: Me?! Why don't you read it?
CHRISTINE: I can't get through it. But housewives... They think they like this sort of thing.
MARY BETH: (pushing the book back into Chris's hands and walking a way) Thanks a lot!
CHRISTINE: Hey, come on, it's a joke! Mary Beth!
MARY BETH: Not really!
CHRISTINE: (running after Mary Beth) Please, you've gotta help me out here! I've gotta say something to my friend and just do me the favour and er, (giving her the book) ...read it.
MARY BETH: I will try it.
CHRISTINE: Great. Thanks.
MARY BETH: (looking at the book after Chris has gone on ahead) Soap opera without pictures.

[Detectives' Squad room]

(Isbecki is fingering a large white dolphin on the duo's desks)
ISBECKI: Ice sculpture.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) ...he's so good at his con, I don't know if I made him nervous or not.
ISBECKI: (to Chris) So he sent you something you couldn't return.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) I know I'm making you nervous, Sol.
ISBECKI: You should have kept the gold chain.
(Chris slaps Isbecki as he leaves)
CHRISTINE: (into phone) No. Thanks anyway. ...No, you're already married. And five's my unlucky number.
(she rings off)
MARY BETH: I take it Detective Solomon has finally proposed.
CHRISTINE: This guy almost makes Isbecki look good. ...What am I gonna do with a thousand pounds of ice?
MARY BETH: This is all very romantic here, Christine, but what you want is a guy with his feet on the ground.
CHRISTINE: Like who?
MARY BETH: Like Harve.
CHRISTINE: That's great. He's already married. I even like his wife.
MARY BETH: Like er, Brent Nelson.
CHRISTINE: He's married too.
MARY BETH: And I liked his wife. ...Petrie.
CHRISTINE: Could you come up with someone who's unmarried? ...Take your time. (the phone goes) I'll get it.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) Detective Cagney, Fourteenth. ...Solomon, take 'No' for an answer! ...What? ...OK. We're on our way.
(she rings off)
CHRISTINE: Mary Beth, come on. Ruskin just rented a limo. He's on his way to the airport.
MARY BETH: (after Chris who is on her way) Albert Schweitzer.
CHRISTINE: He's dead!

[Kennedy Airport main concourse]

(on their way to an arrival/departure gate)
MARY BETH: How we gonna arrest him? We don't have enough evidence for court.
NELSON: Wait until he gets on his plane, so Customs can get it.
CHRISTINE: Where's he going?
NELSON: I don't know. Probably South America. Maybe Switzerland.
(Solomon is standing up, reading a magazine, as the three come up)
SOLOMON: Here she is. The beautiful lady.
CHRISTINE: Where is he?
SOLOMON: Bar.
MARY BETH: (to Chris) He can recognise you.
CHRISTINE: I'll take care of it.
(Chris goes to a stall and grabs a floppy hat and a pair of dark glasses)
MARY BETH: Where's his luggage?
SOLOMON: He didn't bring any. If his overcoat is lined with cash, he's not gonna need any. ...He's moving.
MARY BETH: Where?
(Chris, suitably disguised, rejoins them)
SOLOMON: On your right.
(Solomon grabs Chris and tries to give her a passionate kiss. She squeals)
MARY BETH: (to Chris as she and Nelson follow Ruskin) Let's go to work.
(releasing herself, Chris gives Solomon a slap as they follow. In the waiting area Mary Beth and Nelson sit down with other passengers.
Chris and Solomon stay standing)
CHRISTINE: He's not going anywhere, he's meeting somebody.
(a man from the arriving plane comes through and shakes hands with Ruskin and they leave)

[Detectives' Squad room]

SAMUELS: (as the duo returns from the airport) Where's Ruskin? I thought you were bringing him in!
MARY BETH: Wild goose chase, sir.
CHRISTINE: We got to the airport just in time to watch Ruskin pick up a friend! We've had a lovely two hours ride, in rush hour traffic, following them back to his office. We don't have enough for a collar here. And I'm out eighteen lousy bucks for this dumb disguise!
MARY BETH: Look, your dolphin has melted all over our desks.
CHRISTINE: Oh, God!
SAMUELS: Now, listen, while you were gone, La Guardia took a report from another victim. Seventy-two year old widow. Lost everything she had.
MARY BETH: (as they start mopping up the desks) This guy is worse than the one that censured the turtle.
CHRISTINE: Snapping turtle. God, Remember that?
MARY BETH: And the one that got loose in the Men's room?
(the duo breaks out laughing)
ISBECKI: (holding up the phone) Lacey.
MARY BETH: (into phone) Detective Lacey, Fourteenth Squad. ...I'm sorry. What? I don't understand.
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) I just wanna tell ya he assaulted me again.
MARY BETH: (into phone) You called before, didn't you?
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) Yes. I've bought a gun and if he lays a hand on me, I'm gonna kill him.
MARY BETH: (into phone) Ma'am, please don't hang up. We cannot help me if we don't know...
MYSTERY WOMAN: (on phone) Help me?! You're not gonna help me. He's one of you. He's a cop.
MARY BETH: (into phone) A cop?
(the line goes dead. Later)
MARY BETH: She says she's a cop's wife. He's beaten her and she's bought a gun.
CHRISTINE: Let's get over there!
MARY BETH: I don't have an address, I don't have name.
CHRISTINE: That's a potential homicide/suicide, Mary Beth. Come on, we gotta tell Samuels.
MARY BETH: About what? Two hysterical phone calls.
CHRISTINE: Regulations say a cop like that should be turned in to a superior officer.
MARY BETH: Regulations only work when you know who's doing it, Christine.
CHRISTINE: Why are you dragging you're feet on this?
MARY BETH: Because we don't have anything. If we go in there, the Lieutenant's gonna give us a nice little lecture about the brotherhood of officers, and he's gonna tell us to sit on it.

[Samuels' office]

SAMUELS: Let me tell you a story, Lacey. When I was a rookie, I had a partner. Nicest guy in the world. Except one day I picked him up at his house and his wife had two black eyes and a hole where a front tooth used to be.
CHRISTINE: Did you turn him in?
SAMUELS: No, not me, not true-blue Bert. There was no way I was gonna finger a partner. So I pretended that I hadn't seen what I had seen. Not my place to mix into people's marriages, I told myself. Not my place. So I looked the other way. Eventually we were transferred to different precincts and Sam went down the tubes. And Marge, ...he just kept beating her up ...until she wound up in the hospital. And I could have stopped that. (he thumps his fist down on his desk) Find the bastard and nail him!
LA GUARDIA: (coming in) Excuse me, Bert, could I have a word with ya.
SAMUELS: Hey, the door is closed for a reason!
LA GUARDIA: OK. I'm sorry. Excuse me.
SAMUELS: I'll be out there in a minute! (to the duo) Times have changed. I want you to find this guy. I don't care who he is, I want you to find him. And when you do, I want you to get his wife out of there before it's too late!
MARY BETH: Yes sir.

[Special Frauds Division]

(Solomon is taking details from a young woman. Chris comes in)
SOLOMON: (to Chris) Hello, you little cutie. (abandoning the young woman) Come on in here. Let me whisper sweet nothings.
CHRISTINE: (to Nelson) How do you turn him off?
NELSON: He can't help himself. It's like a reflex.
CHRISTINE: Have you got something on our case?
SOLOMON: Right! Right. Take a look at Ruskin's bank statement. Last year he's worth over three million dollars. Then, poor guy falls on hard times, gets down to his last mill. Today, just before closing, he takes out every last dime. ...In cash. ...He's getting ready to run!
CHRISTINE: You brought me all the way across town for this? (picking up a phone receiver) Alexander Graham Bell. It's ingenious, isn't it?
NELSON: (to Solomon) Why didn't you do this on the phone?
SOLOMON: (to Nelson) She does look like number three! Right? Cute and feisty! (to Chris) Next time I'm between wives, we'll shoot it together.
CHRISTINE: I'm leaving.
SOLOMON: Wait! Wait a minute. Hey, hey, hey. (beckoning her back) I called you over here for a reason.
(the phone goes)
NELSON: Mick, it's your wife.
CHRISTINE: It's your wife.
SOLOMON: It's my wife. (into phone) I told you I'd call you later. ...Sure. ...Ho, ho, ho. I don't care.
(he rings off)
SOLOMON: Sick.
CHRISTINE: Talk.
SOLOMON: Right. You wanna be in on the Ruskin collar. Right?
CHRISTINE: It's my case.
SOLOMON: OK. OK. I figure he's gonna make a run for it any minute. You and me will wait him out together.
CHRISTINE: I'll wait with Lacey.
SOLOMON: You'll have more fun with me. I'll order in a dinner! (Chris walks out) She like's me, I can tell.

[Detectives' Squad room]

CHRISTINE: I can't stand that man.
MARY BETH: Christine, (indicating a tape player) come here. Listen to this. I got a copy of this tape from Communications.
OPERATOR: (on tape player) Fourteenth Precinct.
MW (on tape player) I want to speak to Mary Beth Lacey, please.
OPERATOR: (on tape player) Yeah, hold on.
MARY BETH: That's the cop's wife. Asking for me by name.
CHRISTINE: Do you recognise the voice?
MARY BETH: No, I listened to it over and over. So I got a printout of all the guys in this precinct that are married, and I'm going over it, but I can't believe it's one of our guys. Do you think that Petrie beats up on Claudia? Or Davidson or Coleman.
CHRISTINE: Nobody ever thinks it's anyone they know, Mary Beth. But one out of four guys hits his wife. That's a fact.
MARY BETH: You're talking statistics here, Christine. I'm talking about people!
CHRISTINE: So am I. The chances are that one of those people is beating up his wife. (sitting down at her own desk) Special Frauds says that Ruskin's gonna make a run for it. Wants us to stay by the phone.
MARY BETH: So we stay.
CHRISTINE: Say, do you wanna go home to Harvey and the boys. I'll stay. Huh?
MARY BETH: I'll stay.
CHRISTINE: I'm missing my date.
MARY BETH: We could send out for pizza.
CHRISTINE: Italian! Great. I was getting tired of all that fancy French food anyway.
(later only the duo are there)
CHRISTINE: (into phone) Well, it's a personal favourite of mine.
MARY BETH: (into the phone while reading the book) Yes, I'm checking on handgun registration in the last two weeks. ...All right, then, I'll hold.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) Right. ...Oh. Well, that's even better. ...Ha, ha, ha. Would you stop it! ...It's not fair. Ha!
MARY BETH: (into the phone) Yeah, I'm still here. ...All right.
(the phone rings. Mary Beth indicates to Chris to pick up the call)
CHRISTINE: (into phone) Yeah, ha, ha.
(Chris doesn't pick up the call. Mary Beth does)
MARY BETH: (into the phone) Detective Lacey, Fourteenth. ...Yeah, Mick. ...You got the gate number? ...All right, we're on our way.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) Ha, ha, ha...
MARY BETH: Chris! The airport.
CHRISTINE: (into phone) You'll have to start without me.
MARY BETH: (picking up the book) Just at the exciting part.
CHRISTINE: Yeah, me too.

[Kennedy Airport main concourse]

(Nelson, reading a newspaper, is sitting between Mary Beth and Chris in her disguise)
NELSON: It's for real this time. Ticket is to Quito, Ecuador. He's got a bag and he's not letting it out of his sight.
TANNOY: Intercontinental flight three-four-seven for Quito, Ecuador will be boarding at gate seventeen.
(Ruskin goes towards the Men's room, spots Chris and makes a break for it. Chris knocks the bag out of his hand. Mary Beth, Nelson and Solomon chase Ruskin down a corridor. Mary Beth brings Ruskin down with a flying tackle. Nelson and Solomon secure him)
MARY BETH: I'm gonna check on Chris.
(as Ruskin is taken away he sees Mary Beth, leaning against the wall, back to reading the book. Chris is in a side room with the case)
NELSON: OK, Security is gonna witness this.
CHRISTINE: I've never held a million dollars in my hands before. It's lighter than I thought it would be.
SOLOMON: Right, let's open it. One million bucks. Hello, you pretty green... ...Shorts. ...Shorts. ...Socks! ...Shorts!

[Detectives' Squad room]

(Norma, Edith and Rose, reading the book, are there)
EDITH: My cousin reads her. She tells me they're nothing but smut. All smut these days! Movies. Television. Both. All smut.
ROSE: Oh, of course, Edith, you think it's bad for me.
EDITH: Oh, I wouldn't want to tell you what to do, dear.

[Samuels' office]

SAMUELS: Takes all his money out of his bank, returns to his office, and then goes straight to the airport with a one-way ticket for Quito, Ecuador. Where's the money?
CHRISTINE: Two hundred bucks is all he had on him.
SAMUELS: Well, it's gotta be some place. It doesn't make sense.
PETRIE: (comes in) Excuse me, Lieutenant. (to the duo) Your real estate con victims are waiting for you.
SAMUELS: All right, they'll be there in a minute.
CHRISTINE: A guy cannot leave the country with just two hundred bucks.
SAMUELS: Well, that's exactly my point, Cagney. So go find it!
MARY BETH: Yes sir.
SAMUELS: Now, Lacey, wait a second. How ya doing on finding this cop?
MARY BETH: I called all the gun dealers in this city, sir. If she bought the gun legally then we can match up the registration with our personnel file. I've got Alice Martinez doing a computer run for me.
SAMUELS: Well, that's good. I'll call Martinez and tell her it's top priority.
MARY BETH: Thank you, sir.

[Detectives' Squad room]

CHRISTINE: (to Rose) You're reading Brianna Dumaine's book!
ROSE: (throwing down the book) Not me!
EDITH: Smut! We heard on the news that you arrested Ed Ruskin with our money.
CHRISTINE: Well, we haven't recovered the money yet.
NORMA: You haven't? Have you checked with his bank. Perhaps it's still there.
MARY BETH: He withdrew all of his funds before he tried to leave the country, ma'am.
NORMA: Well, then it must be in his home.
MARY BETH: Believe me, Mrs. Fisher, we're searching everywhere for it.
EDITH: His office? His car?
CHRISTINE: We tried his car.
EDITH: A mistress. He probably had a mistress. Check for that.
MARY BETH: We'll look everywhere, ma'am.
ROSE: Well, I don't know how I'm gonna be able to pay my rent next month if you don't find the money.
MARY BETH: We will find it, ma'am.
(later)
SOLOMON: I've never seen such a dead bang case. Now look, the hotel er, something or other, in Grand Cayman. That's owned by Ledic Corporation.
MARY BETH: So it's not Ed Ruskin?
SOLOMON: Now technically, Ed Ruskin is Ledic Corporation.
MARY BETH: So it is Ed Ruskin!
SOLOMON: Yeah, him and ten other guys, all of who think they own twenty-five percent.
(to Chris who has come in and sat down and started to eat a candy bar) What is that perfume you're wearing? You know, you're driving me wild.
CHRISTINE: Eau de chocolat.
MARY BETH: (handing Chris a brochure) Ruskin sold two hundred and fifty percent in that hotel.
SOLOMON: Hey, hey, wait, small potatoes. Take a look at this office building in Juno.
CHRISTINE: That's the one he tried o sell me!
SOLOMON: Owned by...
MARY BETH: Let me guess. Ledic Corporation.
SOLOMON: You got it.
MARY BETH: And I assume there are several other investors in this property also.
SOLOMON: Several, he sold five hundred percent.
CHRISTINE: Can you prove it?
SOLOMON: The case is solid. We got the man, we got the crime, now where the hell's the money.
MARY BETH: Sir, (showing him a brochure) you're gonna wanna see this.
SAMUELS: (to Solomon) Where's your partner?
SOLOMON: Down, with the flu, it's going around.
SAMUELS: Can I see you two in my office for a minute? Will you excuse us for a minute, Detective Solomon?
SOLOMON: Sure. I'm just clearing up. (he grabs Chris's arm) Give me a call later if you wanna put in a little overtime.
CHRISTINE: Solomon. (taking his hand off her arm) Enough. Huh?

[Samuels' office]

CHRISTINE: (to Mary Beth) We've gotta arrest him and read him his rights.
SAMUELS: (handing a piece of paper to Mary Beth) Alice Martinez found your wife beater.
MARY BETH: Oh, that's not possible. (handing the paper to Chris) Brent Nelson.
CHRISTINE: Oh, no, I er...
SAMUELS: Do you want the details?
MARY BETH: Yeah.
SAMUELS: Got thirty-eight snub-nosed registered in her name.
MARY BETH: This is crazy, sir, I never even saw him angry.
SAMUELS: Just like my father was. Jekyll and Hyde. Solomon said he's out with the flu.
MARY BETH: She told me she's got a gun.
SAMUELS: You two better check it out right away.

[Outside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

(the duo arrives and rings the doorbell twice. Chris looks through the window)
MARY BETH: One more time.
(the door opens)
NELSON: Yes? Hey, what are you two doing here, huh?
CHRISTINE: We want to talk to you about Ruskin. Can we come in?
NELSON: Well, you should have called me. I got the er, the flu. I don't think you ought to get too close to me.
MARY BETH: Oh, that's all right, if I haven't got it from the kids by now I'm not gonna get it. Look at this house!
(Mary Beth pushes past Nelson)

[Inside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

MARY BETH: Oh, it must be great to have a house. Harve and I are always talking about buying.
NELSON: I'd show you around the place, but it's a mess.
MARY BETH: Is Phyllis here? I'd love to see her.
NELSON: So what do you want to talk to me about?
CHRISTINE: Solomon said the Ledic Corporation belongs to Ruskin.
NELSON: Yeah, he called me. Say, let's talk about this tomorrow. I'm feeling rotten.
MARY BETH: Oh, I'm sorry. We shouldn't have got you out of bed. You're right. So we'll just say a quick 'Hello' to Phyllis and then we'll get out of your hair.
NELSON: You'll have to do that another time. She's not here.
MARY BETH: (to Chris) Isn't that funny? You know, Harvey's such a baby when he's sick I can never leave him home alone.
NELSON: She's out getting me some cough medicine.
MARY BETH: So will she be back soon?
NELSON: I don't mean to be rude but I'm in no condition to talk to you, OK?
(a door opens. Phyllis in large, dark sunglasses comes in)
MARY BETH: Phyllis. Long time.
NELSON: Listen, Phyllis, honey, you remember Mary Beth Lacey, and this is her partner, Christine Cagney.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Hello.
MARY BETH: How are you?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: I got your cough mixture. I think you ought to go to bed.
NELSON: What you trying to get rid of me?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: No. No!
NELSON: Something wrong, Phyllis? Oh, do you want to girl-talk with Mary Beth?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: I was just concerned about your cold, that's all.
NELSON: Isn't she the best little wife in the world?
NELSON: I'll take my medicine right away and you can talk to your friends.
MARY BETH: (to Nelson as he goes out) The place is great.
MARY BETH: So how's it going? We know that you've been calling.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: I don't know what you're talking about.
CHRISTINE: You don't have to stay here. If you call again, we can find you a place to stay.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: This is my home. Why would I want to leave it.
MARY BETH: You tell me.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Look, now, Mary Beth, I think you'd better go. Brent! Mary Beth has to go. Do you wanna say 'Good bye'?
MARY BETH: Now, Phyllis, you call me sometime soon. I would love to get together.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: I'm so busy now.
MARY BETH: Let's go, Chris.
CHRISTINE: Nice to have met you, Phyllis.
(the duo leaves)

[Squad car]

(still outside the house)
CHRISTINE: She never took those sunglasses off. It looked to me like she had a shiner.
MARY BETH: Well, we can't drag her out of there if she doesn't want to go.
CHRISTINE: At least she knows we're on to him. Maybe it'll scare him off.
MARY BETH: Maybe we've pushed him over.

[Laceys' bedroom]

MARY BETH: Are you telling me Phyllis likes to get beat up, because that I don't believe.
HARVEY: (obviously fed up with the details of the Nelson's private life) Mary Beth, if I hit you, you would leave me.
MARY BETH: Not everybody is me, Harve! Worst of all I know he's on the job! I know, I can take care of myself. Not every woman knows that!
HARVEY: Hey, would you give me a break, huh? If the woman stays, I say that woman has got a problem!

[Ladies' room]

(Mary Beth is reading the book. Chris comes in)
CHRISTINE: You'll never guess who's just called?
MARY BETH: Phyllis Nelson?
CHRISTINE: Brent. He wants us to meet him and Solomon at Rikers Island at ten o'clock.
MARY BETH: What?
CHRISTINE: He says he has an informant who can tell us where Ruskin stashed his money.
MARY BETH: Did he say anything about Phyllis?
CHRISTINE: Nothing. He acted just as if everything was just hunky dory.
MARY BETH: Maybe it is.
CHRISTINE: Sure! Phyllis looked just swell to me yesterday.
MARY BETH: Maybe we should butt out.
CHRISTINE: Oh, I see. You think she got that shiner by walking into a door.
MARY BETH: I don't know for sure. Harve says, if he was hitting her and she stays, then that's her choice. It's none of our business.
CHRISTINE: I can't believe you mean that.
MARY BETH: What's there to believe? A, we don't have any hard evidence that Brent ever laid a hand on her. And, B, if he did, then I've gotta ask myself 'Why?. What is Phyllis's part in it. What's she done to him?
CHRISTINE: What she done to him?! There's nothing! I mean 'Nothing' that justifies a man hitting a woman.
MARY BETH: Oh, that's very easy for us to say, Christine, but we're not there. We don't know what goes on there.
CHRISTINE: (after a long pause) Remember Jeremy?
MARY BETH: Certainly I remember Jeremy. I never could understand why you let that one get away.
CHRISTINE: Well, I'll tell you what, I let him hit me. ...He beat me up. ...Once. That's all it took. And I can fight back!
MARY BETH: You never told me.
CHRISTINE: I know. I just couldn't talk about it.
MARY BETH: Why?
CHRISTINE: According to him, he had his reasons.
MARY BETH: Which were what?
CHRISTINE: It doesn't matter! There are no reasons! There are excuses, there are no reasons! ...Jeremey said he was sorry. He promised it would never happen again. You bet it wouldn't! ...I loved him. ...Then I left him, because you don't hit! A man's gotta a problem, then he talks it out. If he's really mad, he walks out, but he doesn't hit! Ever!!
MARY BETH: I am gonna call Phyllis. (stroking Chris's arm) Make sure she's OK.

[Precinct House yard]

(the duo comes out to the Squad car)
MARY BETH: Well, she couldn't have been nicer. A lawful wife, insisting she's fine, they're fine.
CHRISTINE: But?
MARY BETH: But she also did everything to get me off the phone. So now we can go back to work with Brent and pretend that nothing's happening.

[Rikers Island interview room]

OBIE: Ruskin said he put the money right under your noses.
CHRISTINE: That's it?!
CHRISTINE: Yeah.
CHRISTINE: That's what he said?
OBIE: Yeah.
CHRISTINE: He didn't say anything else?
OBIE: Nothing!
SOLOMON: The man's a goldmine of information.
OBIE: So what do I get for helping yous out?
SOLOMON: Ten years in Sing Sing. That's if you're lucky. Let's get outta here.
NELSON: (as the others leave) Obie! You put me over again. You ...are ...through!

[Special Frauds Division desk]

(the duo is going through Ruskin's case, money and other possessions)
SOLOMON: What a waste of time.
MARY BETH: The man says it's right under our noses so it's worth going through this stuff again.
NELSON: It's gotta be here!
SOLOMON: Course it is. Would a Brent Nelson informant lie?
MARY BETH: Look at this. The guys got a ring for every finger. Gold rings gold bracelets, gold medallions. (to Chris showing the jewellery) How much is that, all together?
MARY BETH: Are they stoned?
MARY BETH: Er, no.
CHRISTINE: Three hundred apiece, maybe five.
MARY BETH: Six thousand dollars all told?
SOLOMON: Great. Now we're nine hundred and ninety-four dollars short. And change. But, what the heck, I love to spend my day out at Rikers Island.
NELSON: I don't need the cheap sarcasm from ya!
SOLOMON: No, no. I mean it sincerely, I can't thank you enough for slapping us out here.
NELSON: If you wanna work on this case by yourself. (throwing the file) Fine!!
SOLOMON: (as Nelson storms out) The man can't take a little ribbing.
MARY BETH: I'm going after him.
SOLOMON: He's my partner! Finish up here. I'll see you back at the Fourteenth.
MARY BETH: OK.
CHRISTINE: What if he doesn't cool off before he gets home? He could take it out on her. I'm turning him over to IAD.
MARY BETH: Let's give him a chance to turn himself in, OK? We'll clock him the minute we get back, OK?
CHRISTINE: It's not here!
MARY BETH: What?
CHRISTINE: Whatever it is we're looking for that's one million bucks, it's not here!

[Detectives' Squad room]

(the duo has brought Ruskin's possessions with them. Chris is holding up a pair of boxer shorts)
ISBECKI: Maybe these shorts belonged to George Washington or somebody. You know, collectors' items. They'd be worth a fortune.
CHRISTINE: Very creative, Isbecki.
ISBECKI: Just trying to help.
CHRISTINE: Go away!
LA GUARDIA: You know, it's amazing the things people collect. I went to an exhibition and sale last week. Antique shoehorns, power stays, corsets, but no stockings.
MARY BETH: This is nothing. Why don't we throw it out the window.
PETRIE: (into phone) Fourteenth Squad, Detective Petrie. (across the room) Who wants to talk to Mick Solomon?
CHRISTINE: Mary Beth.
PETRIE: On two.
MARY BETH: Thank you. (into phone) Hello Mick. ...No, nothing yet. ...Well, your guess is as good as mine. I thought you two were coming over here. ...Oh, I see. How long ago did you leave him? ...Yeah. ...Sure. ...Talk to you tomorrow.
(she rings off)
MARY BETH: Brent got into a fight in a bar. Mick told him to sleep it off at home.
CHRISTINE: I'm right behind you.
(the duo rushes to Brooklyn, light flashing, siren blaring)

[Inside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

(Nelson slaps Phyllis across both cheeks and pushes her into a chair)
PHYLLIS: NELSON: (screaming) You promised me you'd never hit me again!
(he grabs her by the head. She screams and he throws her against the fireplace)
PHYLLIS: NELSON: No! No!
(he throws her to the floor)
NELSON: Turn over! Turn over!
(he picks her up and shouts at her)
NELSON: You called them, didn't you? You opened your big damn mouth!

(the Squad car draws up outside the house. The duo can hear the screams)

[Inside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

PHYLLIS: NELSON: Brent! Brent!
(he slaps her one more time and she goes over the back of a settee. She gets up and pulls the gun from a side table drawer)
NELSON: Hey! Hey, what are you doing?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Don't come any closer or I'll kill you. I will.
NELSON: You'll pay for this. You're gonna be sorry you were ever born!

[Outside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

(the duo, guns drawn, is at the door. They can here the shouting)
CHRISTINE: Watch your eyes!

[Inside the Nelsons' house in Brooklyn]

(Chris breaks a pane in the door with her gun butt. Mary Beth puts her hand in and opens the door. The duo crouch, guns trained)
MARY BETH: Phyllis, put the gun down. ...Phyl, on the floor.
(Phyllis complies and breaks out sobbing. Nelson goes to move. Chris moves on him)
CHRISTINE: Stay right there, Brent!
NELSON: Damn! It's not your business. Stay out!
CHRISTINE: No! You don't take one more step. Do you understand me?
MARY BETH: Can you walk, ...Phyllis? Can you walk! (she nods) Right, come on. We'll take you outta here. Come on.
NELSON: Where are you taking my wife?!
MARY BETH: Sergeant Nelson, you have until eight o'clock tomorrow morning to turn yourself in to IAD.
NELSON: Phyllis!
MARY BETH: If you don't, I will! ...And Detective Cagney will back me.
(as Mary Beth helps Phyllis to the car, Nelson lets out a cry)

[Laceys' bedroom]

(Harvey is asleep. Knocking wakes him)
HARVEY: Oh my God. What the heck?
(he and Mary Beth get up. The knocking continues)
HARVEY: Take it easy! ...All right, all right! Take it easy!
(Harvey looks through the spy hole)
HARVEY: Brent Nelson! Get back into your room, I'll handle this.
MARY BETH: Harvey! (she gets her gun from the coat stand) Open the door.
(the knocking continues)
HARVEY: All right, Brent, take it easy.
(Harvey opens the door)
MARY BETH: Put your gun on the floor, where I can see it.
NELSON: OK.
MARY BETH: (as he moves forward one pace) ...Now, don't get crazy now, Brent, put it on the floor.
HARVEY JR.: Mom!
HARVEY: (to Harvey Jr.) Get back in...
MARY BETH: Go to your room and close the door.
(Brent puts his gun on the floor and Harvey moves it away)
HARVEY: Why are you here?!!!
NELSON: How would you like it if somebody comes and takes Mary Beth, what would you do?
MARY BETH: You're scaring my kids here! I want you out!
NELSON: Oh, it's OK for you to come busting into my place and sticking your nose into my business.
MARY BETH: You were beating her up.
NELSON: That is crap!
MARY BETH: How can you deny this? I saw her!
NELSON: Maybe I once. I... ...Once. ...Once.
MARY BETH: That's a lie.
NELSON: Aw. (to Harvey) Hey. Hey, come on. (obviously very drunk) You know what it's like. You come home tired. Right? Under a lot of pressure. She starts whining. Whines. Whines.
(Mary Beth looks back to the boys room)
NELSON: And she starts complaining because the washing machine has broke down. And all I want is a little peace ...and quiet, huh? Huh.
(Harvey and Mary Beth look on silently)
NELSON: What do you expect of me. (breaking down) It's not my fault. It's not my fault. Oh God, I am sorry. I'm so sorry.
(as he starts to sob, Harvey closes the door and Mary Beth goes and hugs him)

[Detectives' Squad room]

(Chris is fiddling with a ring on one of her fingers)
MARY BETH: Morning.
CHRISTINE: Morning.
MARY BETH: I spoke to Phyllis Nelson. She is doing OK. And I said we'd come by the shelter and see her in a couple of days.
CHRISTINE: Good. So, do we go to IAD now?
MARY BETH: That is taken care of. He went in this morning on his own.
MARY BETH: What have we here? Is that another bauble from mystery man.
CHRISTINE: Yeah. I don't have to send it back. It's a present.
ISBECKI: (who has come up) What is that? Looks like he got it in a jumble.
CHRISTINE: Shows what you know, Isbecki. It happens to be worth a fortune.
MARY BETH: Come on, Christine, even I know this stuff. It goes by weight.
CHRISTINE: Not if it's four hundred years old.
ISBECKI: What's the matter? Couldn't he get you something new?
(Isbecki goes off chuckling)
CHRISTINE: That's twenty-four carat gold.
MARY BETH: That's like Ruskin's stuff. The rings that I itemised yesterday. ...They're all like this.

[Museum]

(the curator is examining one of Ruskin's rings with a magnifying glass)
MUSEUM CURATOR: A hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars, even in a depressed market.
MARY BETH: For one ring!
MUSEUM CURATOR: It's Minoan. Now that one is Chinese, Tang Dynasty. I take this to be Mayan. This is a remarkable collection.
MARY BETH: So where would Ruskin get 'em? You don't walk into a museum and buy this stuff.
MUSEUM CURATOR: Indeed not. Antiquities like these are generally sold on the black market.
MARY BETH: Ruskin's friend at the airport.
CHRISTINE: The South American connection. They made the switch in his office.
MARY BETH: Well, I know at least three dear ladies who are gonna be very happy. I don't think that Edith thought she was ever gonna get her money back.
CHRISTINE: Not that she's blaming anybody!

[Shelter]

(Phyllis Nelson brings the duo in. She has two heavily blacked eyes)
PHYLLIS: NELSON: We could talk in here.
MARY BETH: Do you wanna sit?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Sure. This OK? ...Yeah, this place isn't bad. And if I could fix him up... ...You know, I always thought if I loved Brent enough, I could fix him up. You know what I mean? I could make him feel good about himself so that ...he wouldn't hit me. ...But I can't. I... I can't do it for him.
MARY BETH: He's getting help from the Department.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Yeah. I hear he turned himself in.
CHRISTINE: You talked to him?
PHYLLIS: NELSON: No, er, they've called him. I can't see him yet. I'm afraid he'll talk me back into the house. You know, I know police work has been really tough on him. And I'm really glad that he's turning himself in. He's getting help, you know. Maybe he'll get better, you know. Maybe he will. ...I don't know. Maybe he won't. ...I just know, that I gotta do what I can to make sure that I'm OK. ...You know. Without him...
MARY BETH: You're doing good. ...You're doing fine.
PHYLLIS: NELSON: Thank you.

[Precinct House yard]

(the duo arrives back)
MARY BETH: (Getting the book out of her bag) Oh here, I keep forgetting to give this thing back to you.
CHRISTINE: Did you finish it?
MARY BETH: I said I would.
CHRISTINE: Well, what do you think?
MARY BETH: I hated it.
CHRISTINE: Really.
MARY BETH: Yeah, right up until four o'clock in the morning when I finished it.
CHRISTINE: Couldn't put it down?
MARY BETH: Right.
CHRISTINE: Because you hated it?
MARY BETH: Right.
CHRISTINE: Right.

[Detectives' Squad room]

(as the duo comes in they are waylaid by Isbecki)
ISBECKI: Cagney, there's somebody to see ya.
MARY BETH: Is that the mystery man?
(she whistles)
ISBECKI: Why do hang around with these losers?
CHRISTINE: (to Isbecki) Huh. (to Joe Klotzman) Hi.
JOE KLOTZMAN: Hi. I know I'm a little early but er...
CHRISTINE: It's all right. Mary Beth Lacey, I'd like you to meet Brianna Dumaine.
MARY BETH: You're Brianna Dumaine?!
JOE KLOTZMAN: Oh, sometimes. But my mother knows me as Joe Klotzman.
MARY BETH: How do you do.
JOE KLOTZMAN: Have you read my books?
MARY BETH: Well, no, not really.
JOE KLOTZMAN: Well, you ought to try them. You'd like them. Christine reads all my books the minute they come off the press.
MARY BETH: Oh?
JOE KLOTZMAN: I know I can count on her for an honest opinion.
CHRISTINE: Maybe we better get going. We're gonna be late for our dinner reservation.
MARY BETH: Now, don't rush off. Now, why don't you tell Joe your honest opinion of 'Love's Savage Harvest'
JOE KLOTZMAN: (to Chris) Oh, you finished it?
MARY BETH: Stayed up all night. Couldn't put it down. Isn't that what you told me, Christine?
CHRISTINE: That's right.
MARY BETH: So, tell Joe your favourite part.
CHRISTINE: (to Mary Beth) Could I see you in the conference room for just a moment?
JOE KLOTZMAN: I'd really like to know what you have to say. Really.
MARY BETH: She had no favourite part. She loved the entire book. ...Every page. ...Every line. ...Loved it.
CHRISTINE: Loved it.
JOE KLOTZMAN: (to Chris who smiles sweetly) You're wonderful. (to Mary Beth) Nice meeting you.
MARY BETH: Nice to meet you.
JOE KLOTZMAN: (as he leaves with Chris) Wonderful little restaurant...
MARY BETH: Have a good time!
JOE KLOTZMAN: Bye bye.
CHRISTINE: Thanks. Bye.
(Chris nips back and gives Mary Beth the thumbs-up out of Joe Klotzman's sight)

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