Scene: The offices of Ithaca Real Estate Associates. An attractive but nervous couple, HARRY and MEGHAN, mid-30s, is meeting with realtor PHYLLIS DUNPHY. They’ve decided to relocate to Ithaca, New York....
DUNPHY: It’s nice to meet you both, Mr. and Mrs....Sussex, is it?
HARRY: (they both look at each other) I guess, yes, that works.
DUNPHY: Now, you said in your message that you wanted to scale down. Just so we’re on the same page, what are we downsizing from?
HARRY: Well, the palace has 775 rooms...
MEGHAN: I think she might mean the cottage at Frogmore, Honey. It’s got ten bedrooms, a nursery, some sitting rooms...
HARRY: Two orangeries...
DUNPHY: Wow! Do you have a listing agent? I could...
HARRY: Actually, we’re keeping that house. We’re sort of looking for a second residence.
DUNPHY: How interesting! I guess we should talk finances then, before we go further. What’s your monthly expense on that house?
MEGHAN: $35,000 dollars.
DUNPHY: (she’s drinking coffee and does a violent spit-take) A month?
HARRY: Quite reasonable, I’m told.
DUNPHY: I see...I hope you don’t mind my asking...do your incomes justify a second home?
HARRY: This is a bit embarrassing. You see, neither of us is gainfully employed at the moment.
(a long, awkward pause follows)
MEGHAN: I was on television once. And Harry here, he’s retired military. What with the baby and everything, we haven’t really had time to look for jobs.
MEGHAN: Do you think we could see some of your high-end properties?
DUNPHY: (sighing) Sure. Why not. (brings up photo of a large house on the shore of Cayuga Lake) Here’s a nice four-bedroom, four bath, mid-century trilevel on a one-acre lot listed at 2.1 million. With no income, though...
HARRY: Four bedrooms?
DUNPHY: Isn’t it just the three of you?
HARRY: Are there outbuildings for the servants? And where’s the moat?
DUNPHY: Er...I...I think there’s a small shed...
MEGHAN: Harry, we’ve talked about this. We don’t have moats in America.
HARRY: No moat? I say, whatever will the Master of Moats do, then? And is our Groom of the Stool supposed to live in a shed? And the Lords-in-Waiting? By Jove, Meghan. Had I but known!
MEGHAN: Sweetheart, remember what we agreed? “Senior royal” is a chump’s game?
HARRY: Grand-mum can’t last forever. Maybe if we said it was all a joke. I mean...
DUNPHY: (folding up her laptop) Folks, I have a showing in half an hour. It’s been really great meeting you. I hope you don’t mind showing yourselves out...
FADE TO BLACK