Once and Again
A Door, About To Open

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A Door, About To Open

It's nighttime when the show begins. There's a series of images seen through a hazy film, and the whole sequence has the feeling of a dream. The cuts are rapid, but the movements they show are slowed down, as if everyone is underwater. We see a torn picture of Jessie, drawn by a child. Rick's car pulls up along the curb. His hand turns the keys to cut the engine. Through the window, we see Lily hold a cranberry sweater to her face and breathe in deeply, as though she's in a Fleecy commercial. Zoe's in the foyer, watching earnestly as Rick pulls open the back door of his vintage SUV. Jessie climbs out, looking like she's about to walk the Green Mile. Hands slide the torn picture back together. Rick and his kids walk toward the door, with the kids hanging back a little. Eli takes Jessie's hand. Lily comes down the stairs and joins Zoe by the door. Grace comes down and hands the repaired picture to Zoe. Rick's finger presses the doorbell.

Suddenly, Rick's voice jars us out of this dreamlike sequence. He's sitting at his desk talking on the phone. The screen tells us it's "Twenty hours earlier..."

Rick's talking to Lily, complaining that "he's all over every damn decision I make." Three guesses who he's talking about. We see Lily on her cordless phone, standing in her walk-in closet (of course she has a walk-in closet). She's advising Rick how to deal with Miles -- like she's an old pro at handling clients. As she's dispensing her advice, Rick gets an incoming mail message on his computer and groans. Lily, ever the stern disciplinarian, demands, "Richard Sammler, are you checking your email?" Rick smartly denies the accusation, pushing his chair away from his computer like he's afraid she can see him as he says, "No, no, no. I'm talking to you." He knows better than to give Lily less than his full attention. She, meanwhile, starts complaining that she has "nothing to wear to work." I know we've all felt that way sometimes, but really, she's standing in a walk-in closet that has double racks hanging on three walls, and they're all crammed with clothes. I'm having a crippling bout of closet envy, seeing as I live in a loft with exactly NO closets. I'm not feeling a lot of sympathy here. Lily continues her oh-so-important rambling, telling Rick that Zoe's still obsessed with global warming, and he replies that she should be thankful -- Eli works his girlfriend, Cassidy's, name into every conversation. Lily pulls a cranberry cardigan from a shelf in her closet and puts it up to her face, breathing in its scent. She tells Rick she just found a sweater that belonged to her father. She moves into the bathroom to try it on in front of the mirror. She then blurts that "the kids should meet each other soon. Tomorrow." "What?" Rick says, and proceeds to hedge and say that maybe in the summer... Lily sniffs the sweater's cuff and cuts him off, saying, "Let's do this. People put things off, and they shouldn't."

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Once and Again

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