Mike Tells Sonny About His Sister
Sonny has just found out that Mike has had a family that he’s never told him about. He wants answers. Mike arrives at the Penthouse and tries to explain. 12/26/01 and 12/27/01.
Mike: Any word on Courtney?
Sonny: My life was all right until you showed up what six or seven years ago?
Mike: Something like that.
Sonny: Why did you find me?
Mike: You’re my son.
Sonny: Your rich son with enough money to buy your debt, the right connections to keep you from getting your kneecaps broken. You came for the money, Mike. Everything else was a con. How many times did you say you were sorry? You tried to explain? You asked for my forgiveness? And I almost bought into it.
Mike: Michael, that’s not . . .
Sonny: Okay. Listen to me. How old was she when you found me? Ten or twelve years old? Do you even remember, Mike?
Mike: I’m not sure.
Sonny: Did it ever occur you to tell me? Did it ever cross you mind?
Sonny: What if she hadn’t shown up? How would you have mentioned it? Would you have worked it into the conversation somehow? Hey, Sonny. I walked out on your sister too.
Mike: I’ve made mistakes and other people have paid for them.
Sonny: How does it work? What was going on in your mind? Were you looking for another game? The big score? What?
Mike: I don’t know . . .
Sonny: How can you walk out, on two children, in the same lifetime!
(Next day. The scene continues).
Sonny: You already walked away from one child. How can you turn around and father another one, then abandon her too?
Mike: It was nothing I planned. When I started with Janine my intentions were good.
Sonny: We already went over this. You got lucky at the card table, then you got lucky with the dealer.
Mike: And you said you understood . . .
Sonny: I did! I understood that you lied to me. Again. You couldn’t tell me the truth anymore than you can face it now. You had another child. You failed her. What more is there to say? (Complete anger).
Sonny: (Walks past Mike and brushes his arm).
Mike: Why should I try and explain anything? I’m already tried and convicted.
Sonny: Am I wrong? Tell me?
Mike: I wanted to start over.
Mike: And Janine didn’t see the whole history of pain and screw-ups that I kept dragging after me. And she never looked at me with eyes full of trust and unselfish love. The kind of love that I knew I’d never be worthy of.
Sonny: All right. If this is where you start blaming my mother for your choices, don’t.
Mike: Janine was different. She loved the game as much as I did. And she wanted to enjoy life. And for a while, we did.
Sonny: So, what broke the winning streak? She got pregnant and you didn’t want another family? Is that what happened?
Mike: I know it isn’t pretty, Michael. Why do you think I didn’t want to tell you? (yelling)
Sonny: BECAUSE YOU’RE A COWARD!!!!!
Mike: NO! BECAUSE I DIDN’T WANT TO LOSE YOU. I’ve tried for a long time and very hard to reach you and I didn’t want to give that up. And I knew that this was going to happen. I knew you would refuse to listen or even try to understand.
Sonny: (tearful) No. I understand. I know your act by heart. You love me then you’re (voice shaking) sorry. You lied because you’re afraid. You left because my mother . . . whatever sorry excuse comes into your head that makes you leave every time. I get that. I understand that. You’re not a man. You have no spine. And you can’t be held responsible for anything.
Mike: I’m not perfect Michael.
Sonny: Well . . .
Mike: And I never will be. And just like you, there are things about me that I can’t change. So, lets just forget about it. What’s the use? I’m going to go look for Courtney.
Sonny: Hey. We’re not finished.
Sonny: How old was your daughter when you left.
Mike: I didn’t leave. Janine took Courtney and disappeared. She left me for parts unknown and I never heard from her again.
Sonny: Did you look, Mike? Did you try and find your daughter and her mother?
Mike: I wanted to get back on my feet. I wanted to get something started. I wanted to sock something away so I could take care of Courtney again. But, it didn’t work. Don’t you see? They were better off without me.
Sonny: Don’t you ever get tired of telling yourself lies, Mike?
Mike: We can’t all be like you Michael. Never mind that you leave a path of destruction three miles wide. You take responsibility. You keep your honor. That way, you don’t have any regrets.
Sonny: You taught me honor, Mike. You showed me how to be a man. I learned to keep my word by watching you break yours. I learned to stand up by watching you run away. I learned to face my sins by watching you hide from yours. Is that why you gave up on your daughter? My hate was too much to carry, so instead of watching her learn to hate you too, you took the easy way out. You let her think you were dead.
Mike: Janine told Courtney I was dead!
Janine: (Janine comes into Penthouse). I told Courtney you were dead because you should have been. If you want to know the truth about this than you are definitely talking to the wrong person.
Sonny: Mike lies, so do you. Why should I believe either of you?
Janine: (She explains that she supported Mike for eight years. Then he stole her entire life savings by blowing it on a crap game. She kicked him out. Mike adds that Janine asked him to leave. He was gone for a few days and when he came back she had disappeared. Janine says that she gave him so many second chances. Living with him was a dead end.
Sonny: (He accuses Janine of using her own daughter for money. Then he accuses Mike of being too busy trying to get in with him instead of looking for his daughter. Sonny says the only reason Mike came back into his life is the money).
Mike: I wanted your love. And I wanted to try over again with you. And I did it the wrong way. I’m human Michael. And your standards are so high you tend to forget that sometimes.
Sonny: (He is tearful as Mike is saying this).
(Courtney walks in. She is full of anger and doesn’t want to talk to Janine or Mike. Sonny wants to talk to her alone. Courtney protests. Sonny says he’s her brother, so get used to it. Then, Janine protests. Sonny asks if she has a problem with that? Both Mike and Janine leave and Sonny is left with just Courtney).