Episode #7: “Grant Meets Devlin”
Scene 1: Joe and Sara Foster’s Home, Nashville, Tennessee - Interior - Day
The entire Foster family: Joe, his wife Sara, their son, Jeremy and daughter, Jackie, as well as Sara’s sister, Aunt Linda and family dog, Molly, all gather in their cozy living room. A family get-together at the comfortable Foster home was not at all unusual. In fact, it was a cherished family ritual looked forward to by all of the Fosters. This close-knit family would regularly congregate in the living room to play games, eat popcorn or caramel apples, and enjoy family sing-a-longs to Joe’s guitar playing. Sara would teach the children lyrics to entertaining melodies and Joe would give Jeremy guitar lessons. Sara, Jackie and Aunt Linda liked to make crafts for local charities. Spending quality time together was a priority for the Foster family.
But, on this day, the intent of the family gathering was not in any way, fun and frivolity. All of that sort of activity came to a crashing halt after Joe’s devastating accident with a tractor trailer truck. Now the concentration was on survival, not leisure time activities. This somber family meeting was reluctantly called, to discuss what action the family should take, in light of Joe’s medical condition and the family’s financial status.
Joe Foster, now confined to a wheelchair, continues to do his best to conceal his depression over his accident and his resulting inability to walk. Although usually optimistic, Coach Joe is also a realist. He knows that the children can’t be completely sheltered from the truth and the uncertain reality they must face as a family unit. So, Joe and Sara decide to include the children and Aunt Linda in a meeting with their lawyer, Bart Durham.
Bart Durham is welcomed into the family’s living room to discuss Joe’s case. Always the gracious hostess, even during this family crisis, Sara serves coffee and cookies to the group. Each member of the family talks about their view of what is happening and how Joe’s accident has changed their family life. They share their fears and finally open up about their feelings. Joe briefly closes his eyes, lowers his head and puts his face in his hands, as he hears his frightened children speak. Aunt Linda and Sara do their best to comfort Jeremy and Jackie. While intently listening to the children describe their distress, Joe suffers much greater emotional pain, than any physical pain from his injuries.
As Bart listens to each one of the Foster family member’s thoughts and feelings about Joe’s accident, he hears similarities to the stories of many other Tennesseans whom he has represented in accident cases throughout his years practicing law. The heart wrenching details of the fragile financial and emotional state of the Foster family sounds all too familiar to Bart. The Foster children, Jackie and Jeremy, present Bart with some pictures they drew of their dad coaching Jeremy’s baseball team. Bart accepts the drawings and is flattered by their sweet gesture. The children want Bart to understand that their dad was active and was able to work and participate in many activities, before he had the accident. Sara watches the forlorn expressions on the children’s faces and her eyes well up with tears. Sara quickly exits to the kitchen, under the guise of replenishing the sugar and cream for the coffee. But the truth is, Sara tries to put on a strong façade and spare the children from witnessing her cry. Sara composes herself and returns to the living room with the coffee condiments. This is definitely not the first time Sara has secretly wept since the accident.
The family then turns their attention to Bart Durham, in hopes of hearing promising news. For Joe Foster, it seems like an eternity since he has had even a glimmer of hope. Bart discusses legal matters with the Fosters and carefully explains how the case is proceeding. As he speaks, the Fosters interject with questions and concerns. Bart shares the fact that his son, Blair, (also a lawyer with his firm), went to school with Joe’s doctor, Grant Lawrence, M.D. Bart mentions that regarding Joe’s case, Dr. Grant Lawrence, of Nashville’s Memorial Hospital, is in contact with a Russian doctor living in California. Sara Foster listens to Bart’s every word and wonders what the Russian doctor has to do with Joe. Sara looks at her sister Linda, as if they are both questioning the same thing. Bart further explains that the Russian doctor, Irina Sulemina, M.D. studied under renowned Russian surgeon, Dr. Ivan Pertrofsky, who developed an intricate surgical procedure which might help Joe regain use of his legs. Not wanting to give the Foster family false hopes, Bart concludes by saying “But, it could mean nothing.” Joe Foster, in a fleeting moment of optimism adds, “Yeah, but it could mean everything!” The ability to walk does mean everything to Joe and his family. The Fosters finally had hope that their dream could possibly become a reality. Joe, feeling a mere shell of the man he once was; no longer able to work, walk or coach his baseball team, spends much of his time thinking about what he wants to accomplish, in the event he can again walk. Joe contemplates what is really important in his life, which he has determined is family and friends. He ultimately dreams of one day resuming his baseball coaching duties and being able to run the bases with his son Jeremy.
Scene 2: _Dr. Irina Sulemina’s home, Malibu, California Deck Party - Exterior - Late Afternoon
Overlooking the majesty of the Pacific Ocean, at her palatial Malibu home, Dr. Irina Sulemina, hosts a deck party for her weekend guest, Dr. Grant Lawrence. Irina decided that if Grant was going to all the trouble of traveling from Nashville to Malibu to visit, she would like him to meet her friends. All day, Irina’s best friends and roommates, Sophia Krainov and Jessica Sanchez, have made the party arrangements, prepared food and readied her home to receive guests. Jessica baked a huge cake in the shape of the state of California and decorated it with the message ”Welcome To Malibu, Dr. Grant”. When presented the “over-the-top cake”, the “down-to-earth” Grant Lawrence blushes with embarrassment from the unnecessary attention he is given. In attendance at the deck party are Malibu’s rich, famous and physically fit residents. Among all the celebrities, Grant finds himself feeling slightly out of place, but tries to appear confident for all outward appearances. Grant wonders how different these California people could be from his friends back in Nashville.
Devlin Max, boyfriend of Irina, arrives at the deck party, making a fashionably late entrance, as usual. Greeted by the attractive bikini-clad Jessica Sanchez, Devlin takes the opportunity to embrace her and steal a kiss. Jessica relishes the opportunity to monopolize the attention of Devlin, the rich and powerful movie studio executive. Party guest on lookers watch as Jessica works her seductive magic on Devlin. Jessica points out Irina in the company of Grant Lawrence and devilishly asks a question (to which she clearly knows the answer), “I wonder what he’s doing here?”, referring to the handsome guest, Grant Lawrence. It is obvious that Jessica’s inquiry got under Devlin’s skin, as he quickly loses attention in her and moves towards Irina and Grant. Jessica follows close behind Devlin as he briskly walks towards Irina.
Devlin makes his way through the enormous deck of perfectly sculpted bodies, that only the finest plastic surgeons could create, to get to Irina’s side. Devlin senses that there was no time to hide his jealousy towards Irina’s former love, Grant Lawrence. The confident Devlin Max decides to take an aggressive approach to show Grant that Irina is his woman. Devlin walks up to Irina and puts his arm around her and caresses her lovely face. Irina introduces Devlin to Grant, as the tension builds thick, to the point it could be cut with a knife. Devlin defensively positions himself as the man in Irina’s life. Conceited and smooth talking Devlin is quick in making Grant aware of just how successful he is, as he name drops only the most famous movie stars in casual conversation.
Devlin invites Grant to join him and Irina and a group of others, on a yacht trip to Catalina the next day. Irina panics at the thought of an all-day excursion on the ocean, anticipating that trouble could ensue if Devlin and Grant got together. Irina quickly responds that they should take a rain check. Brazen Devlin, adamantly insists on Grant joining the group. So as not to appear insecure of Devlin, Grant agrees to go on a yachting excursion with them.
Is the powerful Devlin Max so determined to win Irina’s heart that he would dare eliminate Grant Lawrence on the yachting adventure? If Dr. Grant Lawrence doesn’t return to Nashville, what will happen to Coach Joe Foster? Is there any validity to Aunt Linda’s suspicions of the female Russian doctor? Can Blair Durham influence his former schoolmate Dr. Grant Lawrence in some way, to assure that Joe Foster receives the surgery he needs? What motives does the sultry Jessica Sanchez have for stirring up trouble between Irina and Grant Lawrence? Is Jessica manipulating Grant Lawrence, in an attempt to move in on either Devlin Max or Grant himself? To what lengths will Grant Lawrence resort to lure the Russian beauty and experienced surgeon, Dr. Irina Sulemina, back to Nashville? Will Dr. Sulemina’s hospital in California allow her to take a leave of absence to go to Nashville to operate on Coach Joe Foster?
Stayed tuned for many more amazing episodes of “Coach Foster Fights Back”.