This Invisible City
by Seana Renay

"Does it have something to do with the film?"

"Excuse me?"

"Developing a movie. I thought it might have something to do with the film. Developing the actual film."

"CJ -- "

"Which seems like it would be a fairly low rung on the ladder of cinematic responsibility. I was wondering if I should feel insulted."

"I'm ninety-eight percent sure it has nothing to do with developing the film. I'm ninety-eight percent sure that the film doesn't need to be developed, at least not by any means with which we're familiar."

"So you're telling me there's a two percent chance I should take offense? Because, frankly, I can work with that."

"It's not a Kodak Instamatic. We're talking about a major Hollywood production. No one's trying to relegate you to a Wal-Mart photo-mat."

"You're ninety-eight percent sure?"

"If it helps, at this point I'm one hundred percent sure that I don't care."


"Your bed is bigger than mine. And your view is better."

"Of course you can come in. Nothing would please me more."

"Want to switch rooms?"

"Although your pitch was tempting, no."

"Come on. I'm next to Toby."

"That's my incentive?"

"That was a plea for sympathy."

"Full-volume CNN?"

"Originally, yes. After a while he switched to BookTV on C-SPAN. Right before I came over here, I think it was The Weather Channel."

"It keeps him awake."

"He and I share the same problem, then."

"No, he's intentionally staying awake so he'll be able to sleep on the plane."

"Getting three hours of sleep now would really throw him off? He does work in the same building as the two of us, doesn't he? He works the same hours?"

"Which would be all hours, yes."

"If by some unprecedented miracle I got twenty uninterrupted hours of sleep in one stretch, do you know what I would want as soon as I woke up?"

"A nice long nap?"

"Exactly. I hate Toby."

"You could call down for a different room."

"My priorities have shifted. Now I want someone to hate Toby with more than I want a quiet place to sleep."

"I like Toby."

"He doesn't floss, you know. Ever."

"Don't be alarmed, Sam, but there's a thing on your pillow."

"I'm aware."

"It looks a little like a blue jelly swimming mask."


"Do you have late-night scuba plans? Am I interrupting?"

"It's an eye thing. It's supposed to be soothing."

"Yes, thank you, I know. I have one. Of course, I also have lady parts. Unlike, I had assumed, yourself."

"Personal hygiene is not solely the prerogative of your gender, CJ."

"I'll remind Toby and Josh of that after we're done laughing at you."

"Sometimes my eyes get puffy. I'm not ashamed of that."


"You haven't touched your mini-bar."

"Not yet, no."

"I'll buy one of your mini-vodkas."

"That will be twelve dollars."

"The mini-vodkas do not cost twelve dollars!"

"Mine do."

"I have five-eighty-five in my pocket."

"Three quarters, one dime?"

"Is that a dealbreaker, you freak?"

"If it's three quarters and one dime, we could play quarters. The glasses are real glass."

"How swanky. It's two quarters, two dimes, three nickels."

"That's fine. I already have some."

"And I don't know how to play quarters."

"It's easy."

"Is it easy, or is it easy like understanding the census?"

"The census is -- "

"Shut up."

"Okay. Sit down. Grab the mini-vodkas, too."

"All of them?"


"Will I owe you seventy-two dollars?"

"The joy of teaching is reward enough."


"I suck."

"You really do."

"I have a deck of cards."

"Currently on your person?"

"In my room."

"Go get it."

"So you can lock me out? Fat chance."

"I won't lock you out."

"Don't think I wouldn't bang on the door until someone called security. Don't think I wouldn't do that just to spare you and Toby from having to write a press release about my removal from the hotel."

"I don't think that."

"Don't think it, Samuel."

"I think you wouldn't do it to spare yourself the embarrassment of having to read a press release about your removal from the hotel. In front of Danny. How is Danny, by the way?"

"You know, it's funny you asked."

"I won't like what's next, will I?"

"In the interest of alleviating some of that first-date tension, I've been thinking Danny and I could go on a double date. With a dear friend. Like yourself. And if Mallory is unavailable for any reason, please feel free -- no, feel encouraged -- to call up Laurie instead."

"There is no humor here."

"At least there wouldn't be any lulls in dinner conversation."

"You never said anything about my dress."


"My dress. We pretended to talk on four separate occasions tonight and not once did you mention my very beautiful, very well-tailored, very expensive dress."

"Well, as you've said, our conversations were pretend. I respect you too much to give you a pretend compliment, CJ."

"You could have given me a real compliment during a pretend conversation."

"If I'd said it was real, would you have believed me? I also respect you too much to torture you with that kind of uncertainty."

"This, if you hadn't noticed, is a real conversation."

"The dress was gorgeous. You looked gorgeous. And may I add that those are some very smart-looking pajamas?"


"Do we have another one of those?"

"I drank the last one."

"Oh. Those?"

"You drank the last one half an hour ago. We're down to... okay, half a mini-whiskey and a Snickers bar. And whatever's left in your room."

"I brought everything from my room when I got the cards."

"Oh. We could go ask Josh. He wouldn't drink more than one. These things knock him out cold."

"Thus rendering him incapable of answering the door."

"We could break in."

"There's another press release I'm just aching to deliver."

"Want to split the Snickers?"

"You eat chocolate? Doesn't it upset your delicate beauty regimen?"

"You just lost half a candy bar, missy."


"You know what they say."

"What do they say?"

"They say that what happens in Los Angeles stays in Los Angeles."

"Oh. So 'they' are the enviably creative minds of the Las Vegas department of tourism."

"The Las Vegas department of tourism says that what happens in Los Angeles stays in Los Angeles?"

"Surprisingly enough, they say it about Las Vegas."




"You taste like chocolate."

"I ate your candy."

"Oh. Right."

"You do have alabaster skin."

"God, don't do that. The shirt I brought for tomorrow won't cover that."



"Today is tomorrow."

"Shut up."



"Was that pretend?"

"Yes. I mean, it should have been. It wasn't. But it probably should have been."


"And Mallory. And work. And -- "

"Right. It probably should have been, then."



"Where are my -- "



"CJ -- "

"I'm sitting next to Toby on the plane."

"That's all it took for you to stop hating him? Don't let that get around, or people will start lining up outside my office."

"I'm telling you now in case you get on before he does and think about sitting next to me."

"Good plan. You're very crafty."

"I should go now. I'm going to go now. I have to change."

"Yeah. I should shower."

"That, too. I'll see you. In Washington. At the White House."

"Air Force One isn't that big."

"I'm sitting next to Toby."

"He's not that big, either."

"Sam -- "

"You should go now."

"Yeah. Okay."

"But first, let me make sure I've got this down. If you get up and head towards the bathroom on the plane, that's my cue to follow you, right?"

"You know, I'm starting to hope you choke on your peanuts, and no one notices you turning blue."

"A pretty unnerving number of my dates have ended with similar sentiments."

"Yeah, yeah. Reel it in, Sparky."


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