CARTAGENA - A PARKING LOT BY THE SEA
Cata finds Betty, and tells her that she has to go to a cocktail to begin some arrangements for a video, so Betty is to take the beauty queens to the hotel, so that they can be ready by seven thirty. Betty is shocked! Me? Cata notices the uncertainty in Betty’s face and tells her “How embarrassing Betty, I know that this is not the type of work you are accustomed to, compared to the position you had at Ecomoda… Betty interrupts her and says “no no no no, Doña Catalina, don’t worry, I will do it, it’s just that I find it ironic that I will be riding in a bus filled with beauty queens, I might just damage their image, and she laughs. Cata is not amused by Betty’s words and shaking her head tells her, Betty, you and I have so much to talk about!, Look, she adds, they are there, go take them to the hotel and I’ll send the van for you to take you to the cocktail.
Betty goes and tells the queens to get in the bus. Once inside, all the queens are singing, while Betty is sitting near the front, but completely surrounded by beautiful women. As you hear the singing of the queens, a melancholic music also plays softly and Betty’s face shows sadness and as if she is feeling misplaced.
Margarita is talking to Roberto from Marcela’s office, and tells him not to give so much details about the cancellation of the wedding when people call. She then adds that Marcela is calmer. Margarita invites Marcela to go have dinner with them at their house, but Marcela declines preferring to go to her apartment to rest. Before she leaves, Marcela withdraws “The Letter” from her drawer and puts it in her purse. Approaching the elevator, she finds Patricia crying at her desk; depressed about having lost her Mercedes, Marcela reminds Patricia that she has lost a lot more, both a company and her wedding. Patricia is still thinking of her own misery, and says she can’t even go to have a drink because she’s so broke. Marcela invites her to her apartment to have a drink. Patricia is excited about that. As they wait for the elevator, El Cuartel comes excited because they just found out Berta had he baby, prematurely. They are excited because the are fine. Aura Maria tells Marcela the reason for their excitement, and asks her if she wants the address where Berta is, Marcela tells her not today, because she’s not feeling well, but to she sends her hellos. Patricia and Marcela enter the elevator, and Patricia makes a crack about how fat Berta must be now, Marcela tells Patricia to mind her own business, and Patricia says, if I did, I would only have one name in my mind, Nicolas Mora. Elevator door closes.
Inesita asks Mariana if she already called Betty, Mariana says, “let me tell you, I called and Don Hermes, very angrily and stressed told me not to call Betty again, because Betty has left Bogota!. Where did she go? Aura Maria asks. He didn’t tell, me, Mariana replies.
CARTAGENA - NIGHTIME, A PIER WITH LIGHTS, BOATS AROUND IT.
Camera moves making the viewer feel like we are inside Betty’s body. The background music is happy mood. Betty has arrived to a cocktail on a pier. She is walking moving among many people until she finds Cata, who is surrounded by several people. Good evening Dona Catalina.
Oh hello Betty, Cata replies, what happened to the queens?.
They are on their way by bus, I came ahead in the van.
Oh, ok, let me introduce you. Cata goes on and introduces Betty to several people who are handling the beauty pageant. Betty is obviously a bit overwhelmed, but everybody is behaving very friendly towards her. A tall young man approaches behind Cata and greets her at her ear “Bon Soir”.
Michel!, mon amour!, I thought you weren’t coming to the cocktail, and that I wouldn’t see you until later tonight?.
Neither did I, replied Michel, but I could not wait to see you.
Look, let me introduce you to Beatriz, my assistant, I already mentioned her to you before.
Betty wipes her hand on her dress (her hands are probably sweating from the way she is feeling- which seems to still be overwhelmed by the whole social scene) Please to meet you, Betty shakes Michel’s hand. Beatriz Pinzon Solano.
Michel smiles at her and introduces himself. Cata then explains that he is a very very dear friend of hers. That he is French and as an adventurer that he is, he came to Colombia, fell in love with a Colombian woman, fell in love with Cartagena, left the Colombian woman, but stayed in Cartagena. No no no, let me clarify things, Michel adds, it was the Colombian woman who left me. Ohh Cata says, smiling, and Betty smiles too. Oh! the queens are here, Cata says. All the beauty queens are now dressed in evening gowns, and they come parading on the pier among the guests. Betty moves aside and gazes at the queens. Cata comes to Betty and smiles, at her but moves on to talk to some other people. Betty alone among the people, is offered a drink by a waiter, she first turns it down, but quickly changes her mind. Her eyes look teary.
BOGOTA - A BAR
Armando is drinking alone with a somber depressed look on his face. Mario arrives, and asks for details. Armando tells him he is not in the mood.
Mario says, what did she say?
She wasn’t there!. She’s left town!, and she’s left order that no one is to say where she is.
That’s great!, Mario adds, she’s disappeared and she’s still the true President and owner of Ecomoda!.
Armando reminds him that Betty said she had left them a power of attorney.
Mario says, have you read it?
Not yet, Armando says getting anoyed at Mario.
I don’t like this, that she has disappeared.
No, you don’t like anything Mario!, Armando says, what are you implying that Betty is going to steal the company? It was you who put in my head thought of doubt against Betty, your letter that got me into trouble. It got me into trouble with everybody, and now Betty doesn’t even want to talk to me. I don’t blame her though, because after what that letter says, I wouldn’t blame her if she even keeps the company.
Mario adds, you participated too. Don’t just blame me. You were as paranoid as I was.
I know I know, Armando adds, but by now he is very agitated and arguing louder with Mario.
Ok, don’t hit me now, Mario says, and without putting in doubt the sacral, very sacral honesty of Betty, tell me, do you have any idea where she’s gone?
I don’t know, I don’t know, she left without her money, and her family is poor. Maybe she went to an aunt’s house, who knows, you know how she is, she is a loner, she’s always been that way, she’s not a worldly woman.
Mario adds sarcastically, without world!
What? Armando is offended by the comment and asks, What?
I mean she is not worldly. Mario adds.
CARTAGENA - STILL AT THE PIER
Betty is standing by herself among the crowd. Melancholic music plays in the background. The queens are passing in front of her, as some of them say good-bye to Betty, she replies, with a sadness on her face, she clearly is forcing a smile each time she is greeted. Beautiful women keep passing by, and her sadness is clear. After the last queen passes, Betty walks down the pier to approach Cata who is happily chatting and having a drink with Michel standing on the pier by a boat. “Excuse me Dona CAtalina, if you don’t need me for anything else, may I go back to the hotel?,” Betty asks. CAta looks at her watch and says, actually I’m going to leave now too, we have to go change so we can go to the club. I can take you to the hotel, Michel adds. We have a van, Cata says, but you can pick us up later at the hotel.
Betty asks, can I wait for you in the van?
What’s wrong?, are you feeling ill? Cata asks
Yes, a little, but don’t worry.
Well, Cata says.
Betty extends her hand to Michel and says It was a pleasure meeting you. Michel replies in French. Bon Soir as he smiles at Betty. Betty adds in French, Bon Nuit, and she turns and leaves. Cata tells Michel, She is very shy, among other things. Michel, with a concerned look on his face says, Yes, I noticed.
Betty is seen standing by a palm tree and by now she is crying. She tells herself. This is not my world, this is not my world!
BOGOTA - MARCELA’S APARTMENT
Marcela pours drinks as Patricia again says how angry she is. Marcela says, imagine me, and what people must be saying about the canceled wedding.
How long is it going to be prolongued? Patricia adds.
The cancellation is definite, Marcela adds.
Patricia procedes to give her a lecture about the need to forgive a man like Armando, whom although she does not like him, she still recognizes that he is worth fighting for. He has money, he is handsome, and you should even get on your knees because you are going to end up an old maid. Marcela does not agree.
Patricia says Marce, you think he’s fallen in love with “her”?
Do you think he’s with “her”? Who is she?
Marcela says, you know her, Beatriz Pinzon Solano
Oh Marce, don’t kid me, who is she?
Beatriz Pinzon Solando, Marcela repeats.
Patricia says, Don’t be so selfish, stop teasing me, tell me who she is
Beatriz Pinzon Solano,
Patricia can’t believe it, she is getting nauseous by the thought. She is in disbelief, and says so. How are you so sure? Marcela hands her The Letter. As Patricia reads it, she gulps her whiskey at once and asks for another drink!
Mario finishes his drink and tells Armando, let’s go!
Where? Armando asks
I don’t know, I don’t want to be here drinking like an idiot
I do want to stay here, alone drinking like an idiot! Armando replies.
Armando, listen to me, we are going to come out of this and get Ecomoda out of trouble. We will come out of this financial hell. Besides, I don’t know if it’s worth it for you to be worrying about a woman who turned you in, who exposed you!
Armando is just staring at his drink and Mario seeing that there’s no changing his mind leaves. Armando asks himself out loud “I WONDER WHERE MY BETTY IS?” (his face is sad very sad)
CARTAGENA - THE HOTEL
Cata and Betty walk in and Cata tells Betty to go change. Betty looks down, and Cata notices, and asks her, What’s the matter Betty?
Dona Catalina, would you mind very much if I stay here at the hotel?
Didn’t you tell me in the van that you are feeling better?
I really don’t. I will do for you whatever you need with the queens or the events, but please don’t ask me to go to the social event’s.
Cata explains that a big part of her work is in the social events and that she needs assistance. Cata is loosing a little bit her patience, but she adds softly, what’s the matter Betty?
It hasn’t been an easy day for me, and I’m entering a new world that I don’t know, a world that I don’t yet know how to handle, besides, I haven’t had a single moment alone to myself. Cata comprehends, and smiling she says, ok, lets go to my room.
BOGOTA - MARCELA’S APARTMENT
Patricia finishes reading the letter and then asks where did you get it?
Beatriz gave it to me.
And how do you know it’s authentic?
Because I showed it to Armando and he didn’t deny it.
Patricia says, Ay Marce, let me ask you something horrible, don’t tell me that he used to go make love to her and then went home to make love to you.
No, Marcela replies, he had not touched me in a long time. I imagine he stopped making love to me, when he started having relations with her.
Marce, at least he respected you, because what a horror if he had come to touch you after touching her!
Please spare me your commentaries.
Or.. Patricia adds, don’t tell me that it was another reason, don’t tell me he fell in love with El Garfio!
That’s what you conclude after reading the letter? Marcela adds.
Well, I don’t know, then tell me what is it that torments you then?
That when I began to suspect that he had another woman, I could see that this woman was important to him, that she could awaken things in him, that it wasn’t a woman that he had to kiss in horror. Then, he was so undecided about our marriage, that I am totally sure that he was going to cancel our wedding today.
Ay Marce, don’t tell me that El Garfio was able to get him to fall in love with her. But I don’t think so, because as hateful as he is, he does have good taste, and with all the beautiful women he always chasing after him, I find it incredible that precisely, he’s not going to fall in love with the most ugly woman in the planet. If that should really be the case, then, lets turn off our lives and lets leave this world.
Marcela is completely exhausted and she tells Patricia. I would like to be alone, Patricia. Could you let me think alone?
Ok but I need money. And another thing, this letter is clear, you just need to play hard to get for a while, but don’t leave ARmando alone for too long with all the women that are after him out there.
A woman approaches Armando kisses him on the cheek. He is obviously bothered, and she has her arms around him inviting herself to spend the night with him. He tells her to leave him alone.
CARTAGENA - CATA’S HOTEL ROOM
Cata is finishing dressing for the night in front of the mirror. Betty is standing next to her.
Cata- When you get back in your room, I want you to order room service and eat something, then I want you to fill the tub and take a bath. I need you relaxed for tomorrow, because we have a lot of activities.
Ok, Betty replies.
Cata moves to the middle of the suite and asks Betty, how do I look?
Betty - Smiling wide. Divine! Doña Catalina, you look good in anything. You don’t need to ask.
Cata - Aha
That’s Michel, Cata says, as she walks to open the door. Ooo la la!, Cata says, as she sees Michel standing in a tuxedo looking very handsome. He thanks her and hugs and kisses her on the cheek. They come in and he looks impressed by the suite. Cata picks up her purse, and Michel says hello to Betty.
Hello Don Michel, Betty says
Doctor Michel, he corrects her, but smiling adds, but just call me Michel.
Michel then says, Are you ready?
CAta replies, yes, what do you think?
Michel kisses her again on the cheek and says you look very beautiful!
Shall we leave, Michel asks as he puts one arm around Cata and extends the other waiting for Betty. Meanwhile Cata says, yes, I’m ready, Betty, if you need anything, call me on my cell phone.
Oh? you are not coming with us? Michel asks Betty.
Betty who smiles shyly replies, no doc-Michel! and shyly she almost hides behind the wall.
She has to rest!, Cata explains, and smiling she adds, No, it’s just she had a very tough day.
Oh! What a shame, I hope you have a good night. Michel says.
Lock well after me, Cata says as they leave, I already have my key.
Have Fun!, Betty adds,
Thank you they both say, and Cata adds- and you rest!.
Betty looks at them leave and then she puts a serious look exhaling with exhaustion.
BOGOTA - THE BAR
A romantic song is being played and Armando is showing a lot of pain on his face. As the romantic song continues, we see
BETTY WALKING BY THE POOL OF THE HOTEL AMONG MANY PEOPLE
BETTY AND ARMANDO’S FACE ARE SHOWN ALTERNATING THE SCENES, WHILE THE SAME SONG PLAYS.
BETTY REACHES THE SHORE
and she says to herself, El Mar! The Sea! El Mar y no Pensar en Nada! The Sea and I wont think about anything! She walks to the edge of the water still wearing her shoes and as a small wave comes towards her she steps back puts her hands up to her face, like a small child who is playing in the beach for the first time. The wave reaches her and wets her shoes. Smiling she gets her shoes wet more by walking inward a little bit. She smiles more and kneels by the shore touching the water for the first time!. She caresses the water and the sand, feeling its wonder with obvious awe! She then brings her wet hand to moisten her lips with the sea water. She tastes the salty water smiling. She gets up, and she stares out to sea smiling.
ARMANDO’s FACE is over-imposed, and then clearly you see him still drinking with sadness on his face.
MARCELA’s FACE is over-imposed, as then you clearly see that she is still sitting at her desk at home, drinking and reading The Letter, once again. You still hear the same ROMANTIC SONG IN THE BACKGROUND, and also Mario’s voice is heard, reading The Letter.
BETTY again, kneeling by the shore, continues to touch the water.
ARMANDO’s face AGAIN still drinking
Mario’s voice still being heard reading THE LETTER on the background. Armando is clearly defeated. He sits at the bar holding his head, in sadness as he closes his eyes.
MARCELA also drinking, continues reading THE LETTER.as Mario’s voice continues reading the letter.
BETTY BY THE SHORE
ARMANDO AT THE BAR
MARCELA AT HER APARTMENT begins to remember what Margarita said, how it’s a good thing that Armando’s motive with Betty were only to save Ecomoda. Then she remembers Patricia’s voice warning her about leaving Armando alone. Marcela says out loud, ok ok ok, I need to get Armando back!
CARTAGENA - NEXT MORNING. BETTY IS AT HER BALCONY IN HER HOTEL SUITE
She is gazing at the sea, then she turns around and puts her hand to her mouth and thinks. This is very beautiful, but this is not for me, I want to leave, I want to leave, I want to return to my world!
BOGOTA - BETTY’S NEIGHBORHOOD. OUTSIDE HER HOUSE
Nicolas comes walking dressed as he used to (like a nerd), and the gang is in front of Betty’s house. When they see him they mock him and ask him about his clothes and his car. Don Hermes comes out and sends the gang away. Nicolas explains to Hermes how difficult it is to be poor after being rich. Don Hermes reminds him he was never rich, and he should not have been “Scaring his Poor Status” by pretending to be rich, by being arrogant!. Julia comes in the dining room and asks what’s going on, Don Hermes continues calling Nicolas arrogant, etc. and Nico, reminds them that he continued eating with them when he had money. Telephone Rings. Don Hermes answers. It’s Betty, who says hello papa.
Don Hermes says how are you? and then begins to questions her about whether she partied last night.
She says no, and asks to speak to her mother. Betty confides in Julia
Mother, I don’t want father to know, but I’m feeling badly. I want to leave.
Julia looks worried and quietly moves away so Hermes does not hear her ask Betty, Why, did they mistreat you?
No, not at all, what happens is that I feel alone, I feel very depressed, I don’t want to be here.
Why do you feel lonely if you are in an environment of party and joy. We’ve been looking for you on the TV.
Yes, mother, there are lots of people, Cartagena is Divine!, but this is not my world!
Julia is concerned, and then Betty asks for Nicolas.
He tells her how he is busy organizing his phone book and Betty tells him, “Well then you better get really busy, because I’m arriving today!. I’m leaving Cartagena today! And now I got to go, because there’s someone at the door.
Betty opens the door and it’s Cata who greets Betty as she is walking with her cell phone in hand, where she has the agenda stored. She simultaneously tells Betty to get ready because they have a lot of activities ahead, including the arrival of Tais Araujo, “Xica”. That there is lots to be done!.
Betty sits down and says, Doña Catalina, I am returning to Bogota!
What!?, Are you serious?, Why Betty?
Because I’m not good for you. You need a different type of person.
Let me decide that!, Cata tells her seriously. I din’t expect you to function from day one, but I also warned you that this was not going to be the same type of work as what you did at Ecomoda!
Betty, who looks embarrassed and upset, says “I know Doña Catalina and I’m very grateful, but it’s not the work that bothers me, it’s this world, the events, the people, you need someone like you, someone who can handle this, who can be of this world efficiently.
And who told you that you are not from this world?
Me, Betty adds, with a nervous laugh.
But that’s because that’s how you’ve wanted it. Here no one has rejected you, if you feel like you don’t belong, it’s because you’ve chosen not to belong!
I want to leave, Doña Catalina (Cata is looking at Betty very seriously, with eyes wide opened).
Ok, Cata says in disbelief!, ok, ok!, (Cata picks up her cell phone as she adds), you know what Betty?, You were right when you told me that I didn’t know the type of Betty that I brought to Cartagena (she is clearly angry as she quickly adds), prepare your suitcase, Cecilia will take you to the airport!
FINAL SHOT BETTY’S FACE WITH TEARS IN HER EYES!
BETTY’S HOTEL ROOM
After Betty turns in her resignation, Cata immediately calls for help. She orders that someone be sent to her immediately because she can not do all the work on her own. As she’s talking on her cellular telephone she walks out of Betty’s office. Betty lowers her head and wrings her hand.
Cata is still on the telephone and walking. Betty catches up with her and hands over some keys that Cata had left in her room. When Cata tells her to hurry so that she can make the 9:00 a.m. flight, Betty informs her that she plans on staying. Cata tells her to quit playing. Betty tells her that the Betty responsible worker is staying. Cata tells her that this isn’t her world. Betty tells her that neither was Eco Moda and she was able to stay there for a long time and support all that happened to her. She goes on to tell her that Cata had confidence in her and that she can’t let her down. The only thing that she asks is that they talk. Betty will not be tranquil until they have done so.
Cata promises her they will talk when they go to work on the video where Miss Colombia says her good-bye. However, at this moment they need to go to rehearsals.
AT ECO MODA
The Cuartel, including Freddy, are standing by the elevator talking. Aura Maria can not understand how Betty has anything to do with the wedding being canceled. Sophia says that it is logical. If Armando is gone then Betty as his assistant is also gone. Inesita says that she’s with Aura Maria and she does not understand. Freddy wants them to clarify what they are telling him. He asks if they are trying to tell him, that during his absence Armando and Marcela canceled the wedding. The Cuartel answers in agreement. Freddy wants to know why it was canceled. Everyone, except for Sophia, say that they don’t know. Sophia answers that it must have been because Armando was unfaithful. Freddy wants to know if they are sure that they heard right that Armando is no longer the president. Mariana tells him that those four ears, meaning hers and Sandra’s, did not hear wrong. Freddy asks who has taken the over the chair as president. Inesita answers Don Roberto. Freddy wants to know what the circumstances of were.
Sophia answers that they do not know. (Sophia has her back to the elevator. Aura Maria, Freddy and Inesita are to her left facing the elevator. Sandra and Mariana are to her right, also facing the elevator.) Sophia continues to say that since they never heard she is now sure that it must have been due to something Armando did with the company. (As she is saying this, the elevator door opens, Armando steps out.) Armando steps out and says good morning. Everyone greets him. Sophia throws her head up, grits her teeth and turns around says good morning. Armando crosses his arms and lowers his head. Sophia hurriedly runs to stand next to Sandra and Mariana.
Sophia tries to cover her remarks by acting as though she was talking about a telenovela. Armando stands by the elevator door, crosses his arms and listens as Sophia tries to get herself out of this mess. Armando grins. He asks if any of the girls have seen Betty. They all answer, including Freddy no. Armando tells him, “I said algunas”. Freddy says that he understands, but he also has not heard. Armando asks the Cuartel that if Betty calls one of them to please pass him the call. Also, if they find out where she has gone he would like to know.
As Armando begins to walk away the elevator door opens and Patricia exits. Patricia steps out, playing with her hair, greets everyone. Everyone returns the greeting, except for Armando. He turns her and tells her “Good Morning no, Patricia”. He informs her that it is “Good Evening”. He tells her to look at watch and see what time it is. Patricia asks if he can speak to her in private. She grabs his arm and takes him to her desk. Armando has his back to the Cuartel. The Cuartel huddles behind Armando. Patricia tells him, “I’m embarrassed to tell you this, but you don’t have to yell at me anymore because you are no longer the President of Eco Moda. Therefore, you are no longer my boss. The only one that can yell at me is Roberto, who is the new President. I know that he will not do it because he is a man who is serene and educated.” Patricia clenches her teeth and adds, “Therefore, don’t ever yell at me again.” Armando grins and tells her, “You are right, Patricia Peletenida Fernandez.” He goes on to tell her that while he is no longer president he is still a shareholder and he will continue to yell at her whenever he likes. Patricia tells him that since he let the company become seized there are no longer any shareholders. (The Cuartel gasps in surprise.) Patricia tells him that she is not as ignorant as he thinks. She reminds him that she completed six semesters of finance at San Marino. Armando tells her that what he forgets is that she is a gossip. (The Cuartel is excited about his remarks to Patricia.) As Armando begins to walk away he tells the Cuartel, “What are you looking at?”. They saying nothing and take off to their respective desks. As Armando walks away Freddy follows him and Patricia has a grin and tells herself what a relief it is.
OUTSIDE ARMANDO’S OFFICE
As Armando is about to enter the office, Freddy stops him. (Freddy has a very sad look and it seems as though he is about to cry.) Freddy tells him that he had heard about the terrible decision to remove him as president. Armando is smiling and tries to say something, but Freddy continues. Freddy tells him that he loves him very much. Armando tells him that he also feels the same. (Armando puts his hand on his shoulder.) Armando asks him what he is going to call his father. Freddy tells him that he will also address him as president because his heart is big enough to recognize both magnificant men.
Armando takes out his employee badge and gives it Freddy to archive. Freddy, with Armando’s permission, plans on wearing his badge under his own until Armando returns as president. Armando thanks him.
Hugo comes walking hurriedly down the hallway saying “Ines! Ines!” “Where can she be with all the work that there is.” Armando calls Hugo and asks the status of new collection. Hugo ignores him and continues to talk to himself about where Ines can be. Armando yells, “Hugo!” Hugo wants to know if he is talking to him. Armando repeats his question. Hugo tells him that information will only be told to the president. As he is speaking, Armando grabs him by his jacket. When he does this, Hugo starts backing down. He informs Hugo that he will not go over him. Hugo tells him that it is a shame that he is such a good friend of Marge’s because he would like “to go over him.” Armando releases him and informs him that he will continue going to the office and supervising the costs and production of the collection. He tells him that he will continue to report to him. Hugo wants to know if he is still going to insist on doing that job. He wants to know if he will still need to give reports to that monster that he hired as an assistant. Armando tells him that Betty will not be returning so he is no longer to talk about her. Armando walks into the office. Hugo yells for help that a crazy person walked into the president’s office. Before Armando has a chance to come back out Hugo takes office.
Armando glances towards Betty’s office. Walks around his desk and picks up the telephone. He calls Betty’s house and speaks to Dona Julia. He wants to know if she has talked to Betty. (He has a smile and is excited.) She answers no. (A worried look comes across his face.) He asks if it is not strange that she has not called them. He asks her to tell Betty that he is waiting for her call. They hang up. Armando glances back at Betty’s office. (He looks as though he is about to cry.)
Don Hermes and Nicolas walk in. Don Hermes asks if it was Armando. He asks why she didn’t tell him that Betty had called. Dona Julia says that it was the first thing that Betty had asked. Don Hermes comments that he doesn’t like what is occurring. Don Hermes walks out of the room. Nicolas asks Dona Julia of Betty will be returning that day. She tells him that she does not know.
ON THE BOAT
Cata and Betty are at the boat where the video of Miss Columbia will be taped. Betty makes jokes about how Miss Columbia will be the prettiest woman for a year where there are women like her who will be ugly all of their lives. She laughs. Cata does not. She tells her that there are some women who prefer to be ugly.
BACK BY THE ELEVATOR AT ECO MODA
The Cuartel is talking about the cancellation of the wedding. They make comments about all the money that is going to be lost and how they could all have been married with that amount of money. Sandra says that she prefers to stay married than to be in the position that Marcela now finds herself. (Again, everyone but Sophia is facing the elevator.) As the elevator opens and Marcela steps out Sophia makes the comment that if Marcela didn’t marry Armando she will now stay as an old maid. Marcela greets everyone. Sophia turns around and greets her. Again, Sophia hurriedly acts as though she were talking about a telenovela.
Patricia runs to greet Marcela. Patricia wants to know what she decided. Marcela asks if Armando has arrived. She says yes that he is waiting for her “in-laws”. Patricia catches herself and says “ex in-laws”. Marcela informs her that they are suppose to meet with the lawyers. She says after the meeting she will have a serious talk with Armando. Marcela asks if Betty has arrived or if she has called. Patricia says no and that it is better for Betty to forget about all of them.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty is making more jokes about being ugly. She laughs. Cata, again doesn’t. Cata tells Betty that know they can talk. Betty says that she prefer to talk bad about herself before everyone else does. Betty begins to tell her story.
Marcela is putting the items that Armando have given to Betty back into the trash bag. Patricia wants to know what all of that stuff is. Marcela tells her that it is all of the cards that he had written Betty. Patricia corrects her and says that Mario wrote them. She tells her that it was all part of the plan and that Armando did not become emotionally involved. Marcela says that it doesn’t stop the pain. She can’t imagine him flirting and seducing her. (While Marcela is speaking Patricia is making a face that shows that she is disgusted with the thought of Armando flirting and seducing Betty.) Marcela says that what leaves her colder and surprised is that what Armando is capable of doing, especially in front of her. She says that he is a manipulator.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty is continuing her story. She’s telling Cata that she did everything that Armando asked her to do. She’d doctor the balance sheet and support him because he protected her and he trusted her. She says that it was like being with the man of dreams, though unreachable. (As we hear Betty’s voice we see Armando opening the door to her office.) Betty continues that it was like when a person goes to the movies and spends two hours with the man of their dreams, but she had Armando more than twelve hours. She was happy. (Armando is now heading to Betty’s desk.) She was happy until he came up with his plan and she fail into his game. (Armando sits at Betty’s desk.)
Marcela is walking towards Armando’s office and Patricia is right at her heels. Patricia asks Marcela what she is going to do. Marcela tells her that she does not want to have remembrances of them in her office. She is going to return the items to their owner. Patricia asks why she doesn’t throw it away. Marcela tells her that it is up to him to do as he pleases. She says that he might want to keep them as remembrances of how he turned over the company to Betty, how he deceived her or how he made her fall in love with him. She says that maybe Armando wants Betty to keep them as a reminder of the sacrifice that she had to make. She goes on to say that Betty is now paying for getting involved with Armando. She had no right to believe that she deserved him and did she believe that she was going to be able to keep him. (Marcela takes off.)
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty is telling Cata that she never rationalized after the turning over of Eco Moda that he would begin his plan of conquest that was obviously to protect his company. (Armando is sitting at Betty’s desk looking sad.) She could never believe that he would notice her. Much less on a night that he had too much to drink he would kiss her. (Armando pulls opens her desk drawer and pulls out a picture of Betty.) Betty continues to say that Armando sent her flying. (Armando is looking at her picture and smiling. When Marcela walks in he puts the picture in his pocket.)
They greet each other. He asks how she is doing. She says fine, “did you think that I would commit suicide or end up in a mental hospital”. (Armando has crossed his arms and looks down.) She tells him that she is fine and that she is there to see what can be done to save the little bit of the company that is left. (She puts the bag on Betty’s desk.) She tells him that Betty left those items for her in her office. She thought that before she threw them away that she should return them to him. (Armando sits down.) She tells him that he may want to make an inventory to make sure that she has not kept anything. He tells her that he know that she hasn’t. She tells him that maybe its Mario’s job. (Armando turns his face away from her.) She asks what he did while Mario wrote all those cards. Did he stay indifferent. She goes on to say that he made Betty fall in love, seduced her, slept with her and acted like nothing happened. (By this time, Armando is staring at her.) Armando tells her that he is not going to discuss this with her. Marcela tells him that it was obvious that he was going to cancel their wedding she wants to know why. Was it because of the situation he was living with Betty and the company, because he couldn’t be with her while Betty was illusioned with him and had control of the company? “Is there another reason?”, she asks. Armando reminds her that he is not going to discuss that with her. He reminds her that the attorneys are coming and he doesn’t want them to be fighting. Marcela wants to know what he had planned for her and what is happening to him. Armando answers, “The truth, I don’t want to hurt you anymore.” Marcela looks a bit in shook and stares at him. (We know here Betty’s voice telling Cata that when she began working at Eco Moda she knew that Armando and Marcela were going to be married.) Marcela and Armando are still staring at each other. Marcela turns around and angrily walks out. (Betty is still talking. She continues to say that from the first time she started working Marcela and Patricia would humiliate her, especially Marcela.)
As Marcela passes Patricia’s desk, Patricia wants to know what happened. Marcela informs her that there is more going on with Betty. Patricia asks for her not to say that Armando has fallen in love with her, because she will throw herself out of the window. Marcela doesn’t know what it is, but it has to do with Betty.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty’s says that what freed her to love Armando was the certainty that he didn’t love Marcela.
BACK AT ECO MODA
Mario steps out of the elevator and greets Marcela. Marcela tells him that she has not had the opportunity to congratulate him. She tells him that she didn’t realize that the company had a writer as talented as he. She mentions the part of the letter where he states that he will not let him borrow his apartment for a second time. (Mario is just staring.) She asks if it ruined his imagine. He tries to speak, but she interrupts. She continues with parts of the letter. He again tries to speak and before she walks she reminds him that he was going to be the bestman at their wedding.
Armando is looking the gifts and cards that he gave Betty. (Betty’s voice is heard saying how she believed every promise that he made and how she thought that he loved her. Until she discovered the letter.)
Mario walks into Armando’s office. He asks how he is doing. Armando says that he “feels bad everytime I think of this damn letter, the time that Betty had this in her hands, what she assumed, comprehended. All the time that she had the opportunity to know what was happening.” He says this is the time that he understands why she began to act as she did.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty says that she stayed quite because she kept hoping that it was a lie. However, Armando showed her step by step that it was true. She goes on to say how she began to fill with hate and she wanted to get revenge. She tells her the story of how she used Nicolas as her rich boyfriend. She made many errors and did things that hurt her. She tells her how she had lapses. She would kiss him and desire to be with him. Even though she had the letter, she never stopped loving him.
Armando tells Mario that the letter ruined his life. (Mario rolls his eyes.) Mario tells him that he thought that they had already discussed this issue. Armando tells him that Marcela just left wanting explanations. Mario tells him that the letter left it clear that he did not love Betty. Armando tells him “no”, because Marcela has her doubts. Mario tells him that he could have cleared everything with her. Armando says that he decided not to since they have the meeting with the attorneys. He goes on to tell him that this letter hurt Marcela, but it does not compare to the pain that it has caused Betty. He asks if he realizes that he could have lost Betty for the rest of his life.
(Mario rolls his head.) He tells her that Betty has left, he has lost her, forget her. Mario says that Betty hates him. Armando does not believe that she does. She may believe that she does, but he could feel that she loved her. That is what is giving him hope.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty tells her how as the meeting neared she felt compassion for him and that she had to leave. Armando was able to move her. She goes on to tell her about the conversation she overhead between Armando and Mario. She tells him how it hurt her to do that to Don Roberto. He’s the one that built the company and he had confidence in her.
BACK AT ECO MODA
Don Roberto and Dona Margarita arrive. They hurriedly greet everyone. Patricia excitedly jumps out of her chair and goes to greet her. They brush her aside and make their way into the conference room.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty tells Cata that she wanted Armando to know that she knew everything. Cata asks how Armando reacted. Betty tells her that he denied everything. She says that Armando told her it was all a lie and that he loved her. Up until the end, he denied everything.
Armando rises from his chair and tells Mario if he only had the opportunity to explain everything to Betty. If he could have told her at what point everything changed. If he could demonstrate which cards he wrote. (Sophia walks in to inform that Roberto and Margarita are waiting for them.) Mario says its time for the second round.
IN THE CONFERENCE ROOM
Marcela walks in and Armando’s parents are concerned about her. Marcela asks for them to treat her normally. Armando and Mario walk in. Armando’s parents ignore Armando’s greeting.
Daniel arrives with the attorneys and asks them to go ahead. Daniel asks if Patricia’s little boyfriend did not give her the money for the Mercedes, since he didn’t see it outside. She tells him that it is not his problem. He answers of course it isn’t. He goes on to tell her that she has lost her car and the value has gone down. So what could they give for her, $1,000. (He’s looking at her and shaking his down.) He says that they will see what they can do for her. Patricia tells her that she doesn’t need his help. He says not his, but his friends. As he walks off he tells her that he hopes that there is coffee in the conference room.
Daniel is greeting everyone and Don Roberto tells him to hurry up and sit down. Don Roberto explains to the attorneys why they have asked them to Eco Moda. They attorneys state that Daniel has filled them in and they would like to look at the documents. They attorneys asks where Betty is at. Daniel says that she was fired. Armando corrects him and tells them that she resigned. Daniel says that she resigned before they had an opportunity to fire her. He says that she took off.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty says that they are never going to forgive her for being his accomplice. She says that they never liked her, except for Don Roberto. They discriminated against her. They never thought that she could be his right-hand because she didn’t have the correct presence. They always wanted her out of Eco Moda.
The attorneys have reviewed the documents and will take them back to their offices in order to review them closer. They state that Betty’s signature is not enough and that she will be needed. Don Roberto tells Armando to call Betty and to make an appointment with her. Armando says that he doesn’t know where she is. His father tells him to locate her. They will meet again tomorrow.
BACK AT THE BOAT
Betty says that she did not want to hurt the relationship between Armando and Marcela. Therefore, she only put a copy of the letter in Armando and Mario’s portfolio. Due to Marcela’s hate she demonstrated all the gifts to her and told her that Armando was still Marcela’s. Betty tells Cata that is her story and she is relieved to have told her. Cata tells her that her telling her the story is not going to erase her blame. Betty says that she understands that and that she is paying for her errors and will continue to pay for the rest of her life. Cata says that she did bring with her the Betty that she knows. She also tells her that one thing is clear and that the same Betty will not return to Bogata. Betty agrees. She wants to manage her life different and be another.
Armando and Mario are pacing. Armando, “Where is Betty?” I need her here. I need Beatriz. Where the devil did she go?” Mario says that they don’t have another option and he needs to call Betty’s family. Armando says that he is sure that they do not know what has happened. He says that he is not capable of telling Don Hermes what has happened. Mario gets up and says that he will either have to face either Betty’s father or his.
Today…CARTAGENABetty looks out at the ocean. They finish taping the farewell video of the current Miss Colombia. She looks sadly on at the action around her; Catalina fixing the queen’s hair, cameras all focused on her…The taping wraps and everyone exchanges congratulatory kisses all around. The boat heads in to shore. Betty, now on land harbor side is joined by Miss Colombia, dressed in skin tight yellow pants, a sheer blouse and fancy bra. She politely asks how long Betty has been in Cartagena, slightly inattentive. Betty hesitantly asks a question, “Is a woman like you a slave to the mirror?” The beauty queen responds that she has never felt that she was the one destined to be Miss Colombia. Betty can’t believe that the queen could doubt her ability to be the queen, but she tells her that her sister is considered the family beauty and elaborates on this theme. Betty asks her when she decided to pursue the crown, what treatments she had to take to become the queen, etc., and the queen shares with her that she reached about 15 and took up the gym to avoid putting on weight but really she’s not done that much more. “And how does a woman like you feel now the world admires you so?” asks Betty, curiously, dreamily. To her surprise, the queens concerns are with being happy with her family, not with the public image. Betty’s last note is that it seems a happy story, but the queen leaves her with something to think about: advice on feeling happy from the inside.
CASA SOLANOHérmes berates Julia about the lack of jobs in the paper: the only thing left to him is to start his own job. He hasn’t even gotten his severance pay. He continues to grumble about the murky story behind Betty taking a job that takes her away from home and the reason for leaving Eco Moda. Julia shares a little detail with him about Betty and he jumps on this, wanting to know why Betty didn’t tell him: what other secrets Julia is keeping from him. She responds that Betty didn’t tell him because she knew he’d overreact. Before they can pursue this argument, the phone rings and they both look at each other, not wanting to appear to be too anxious to beat the other to the phone.
THE PHONE CALLOn the other end is Armando who mildly panics when it’s Hérmes that answers. He’s not ready to face Betty’s papa. He holds his hand over the mouthpiece and insists that Mario talk to him; pretend to be a friend of Betty and ask for her… Mario gets on the line to here Hérmes peremptorily demanding, “Hello! Who’s there!” “Ahem… Ah…Ah…” starts Mario. Armando prompts him, “Diego…” and Mario tells Hérmes that he’s Diego. “Diego who!” demands Hérmes and the interchange between Armando and Mario repeats itself. “Ah… Ah… Ibanco,” responds Mario, winging it. Hérmes tells him that the Niña isn’t there, she isn’t in Bogota. Armando wants Mario to find out where she is and when she’s coming home, but Hérmes tells him that’s confidential information and he’s not telling. Armando tells Mario to tell him he wants to talk to Betty’s mother and Mario does so, to Hérmes’ confusion, “Julia? Why?” Julia takes the phone. Armando takes the phone away from Mario and takes over the conversation. “It’s Dr. Mendoza, Doña Julia. Please don’t let Don Hérmes know that it’s me on the phone. I haven’t heard from Betty and I’m very worried. I need to speak with her urgently. Betty has to return, I don’t want to alarm you, but it’s very urgent.” Armando continues. “She needs to help wrap things up with the lawyers. There’s a meeting tomorrow morning with the lawyers and she needs to be there.” Julia asks him if it’s serious. “Yes, it’s serious.” Julia tells him that she’ll tell Betty when she calls. Armando pleads with her, softly, passionately, “It’s urgent that she communicates with me. Trust me…” Julia looks pensive.
ARMANDO’S OFFICEAs soon as Armando hangs up, Mario pesters him for details on whether or not he’s learned if Betty will be at the meeting. Armando’s frustration explodes and he shouts at Mario that he’s told him as much as he can; he doesn’t know any more! Mario has had enough of this attitude and says he’ll leave him to his hysterical outburst. After Mario leaves, Armando rises from his desk and walks around his desk in the direction of Betty’s office. He leans against the wall near her door and tucks his hands under his armpits and looks troubled.
CASA SOLANOHérmes asks Julia for more details as to who that tal Diego was. She tells him that it was a co-worker from the office but Hérmes doesn’t understand why he didn’t want to talk to him. Julia feels that it has to do with his tendency to bark at people but he can’t see this and he wants to find out exactly why. He tells her to call this guy back and let him talk to him. She doesn’t respond to this and walks away. Hérmes barks, “Julia!” and then sighs, “I’m going to lay down…” He strides off and she shakes her head.
CARTAGENAIt’s night and the scene is similar to that of Carnaval: there are fireworks, dancers dressed in costumes similar to those from the samba parades in Rio, drummers and other musicians… At the hotel, Betty and Catalina descend the main stairs. Betty is on Catalina’s cell phone confirming some details. They’re due to meet Tais Araujo (sp?), the famous actress from the Brazilian novela, “Xica da Silva”. A van pulls up and Tais exits. They hand her a bouquet of flowers which she admires. She effuses enthusiastically about the beauty of Colombia. “Cartagena is so beautiful that when I have my honeymoon I’ll have to come here!” She feels that the climate is much like Rio’s and feels very much at home there. Catalina is pleased by her remarks and they continue this line of conversation briefly while Tais checks in. They head up the main stairs and Catalina outlines the agenda for the evening. “And you are coming with me tonight, right?” Catalina asks Betty, and Betty agrees with a smile.
Upstairs, Betty asks her if the evening will be very elegant. Catalina agrees that it will be and asks if she has a cocktail dress. Betty tells her that she does have one and Catalina asks her to hurry, they have lots to do.
BETTY’S PHONE CALL FROM JULIABetty enters her room to hear the phone ringing. She answers and it’s her mother. Julia wants to know what’s happening; isn’t she coming back to Bogota tonight? Betty tells her that she isn’t; everything has been resolved. “Besides, I can’t leave Catalina now. She needs me.” Julia tells her somewhat sternly that “Dr. Mendoza called again.” Betty responds with a cynical tone of voice, “Oh? And what did he say now?” Julia tells her that Armando’s message was that he needs her to call him urgently, to return to Bogota for a meeting with lawyers. Betty can’t believe this, “It’s some pretext. I left everything that he needs all signed. (sigh…) Besides, I can’t leave now anyway. If it’s serious, have Nícolas deal with it.” Julia’s a little surprised by this, “Nícolas?” “Yes, he’s fully aware of everything there. I have to hurry. Doña Catalina is waiting for me.” With that she bids her mother good-night, promising to call later and sending her greetings to her father.
(Note the new commercial “bumpers”; the in and out scenes!)
CASA SOLANOJulia opens the door to Nícolas and he notes the phone in her hand and thinks there’s a call for him. She disabuses him of this notion so he turns the topic to his favorite subject: food for him. Julia is silent and pensive. After a pause she tells him that Dr. Mendoza called the house and Betty needs him to go to Eco Moda tomorrow morning to a meeting with the lawyers. Nícolas starts at this (running through his brain is the following thought, “Eeek! Go to Eco Moda and face Patricia? Double Eeek!”) He says that he thought that Betty was coming home—she could go. Julia tells him that she’s not; he’ll have to go. Right now Nícolas wishes HE could leave Bogota!
ECO MODACut to Patricia fixing her makeup at her desk. She notes Marcela looking like she’s heading out for the evening and screeches out her desire for a ride to her apartment. Marcela asks her where Armando is. Patricia jumps on this, “Why? Are you going to talk to him? Well, if I were you, I’d head in there and tell him you forgive him and the wedding’s back on!” Marcela doesn’t need this type of advice; she just wants to be prepared for the confrontation of the meeting tomorrow.
CATALINA’S ROOMCatalina is putting the finishing touches on her hair and makeup for the evening and Betty enters, dressed in a long-sleeved dress, black sheer nylons, sober shoes… more ready for a funeral than a cocktail party. Noting her expression, Betty comments that she doesn’t look good. Diplomatic Catalina tells her that it’s just that she’s dressed more for Bogota than for the balmy seaside Cartagena. Betty tells her that it’s the only dress she has and Catalina suggests that she lend her one. Betty is a little surprised and embarrassed. “We have different styles.” Catalina is sincere with her; she tells her that with her feeling isolated perhaps dressing a little differently might make her feel more able to join into the other world. She walks behind Betty and casually mentions doing something a little differently with her hair and Betty shrinks back in mild alarm.
ARMANDO’S OFFICEMarcela enters and preempts any discussion by telling him she didn’t come to talk to him, she only wants to be apprised of what to expect for the meeting tomorrow morning. Will Betty be at the meeting? He soberly tells her that he hasn’t heard from her yet: he’s waiting at the office for her to call him. Marcela can’t believe her ears, or her eyes. She can see how he’s reacting. He’s waiting around for his assistant to call him? He tells her not to worry, she’ll be there. He hesitates and she jumps on this, wondering what really happened at the meeting. He confides in her the truth: he really doesn’t know where Betty is, but he believes she’ll be there, they don’t need to worry. Marcela can hardly control her contempt hearing this. She heads to the door with disparaging words for Armando.
CARTAGENAIn the hotel lobby, Michele is playing host to Tais Araujo and the others of the evening’s party. One comments that she’s heard that Rio is lovely and Tais agrees, telling them that they should try to go to Rio during Carnaval when all is crazy and dancing the Rumba, and then take a plane to Bahia for more. She asks where the other woman is from and learns she’s from Cali. The two exchange small talk. Catalina comes down the stairs and apologizes for being a little late. Michele asks for Betty and she tells him that she’s right behind her. Indeed, Betty is tripping down the stairs nervously in a light blue halter topped knee-length cocktail dress and ugly sandals. Michele greets her very politely and the group is introduced. They head off and enter the van, Betty trailing behind. They’re going to spend an hour at the cocktail event then drive around Cartagena to show Tais the night spots of the city. Tais asks if they can put on some music and they do: all sway to the beat (but the nervous Betty).
ECO MODAPatricia asks Marcela for details (she seems pretty well apprised of what went on there… was she listening at the door?) and Marcela tells her that Armando is waiting for Betty to call and she’s going to wait too. Patricia’s concern is that now she’s without a ride home and she demands money from Marcela to pay for a taxi because if Marcela hadn’t decided to stay she wouldn’t need a taxi. Marcela pulls some bills out of her purse and is stunned when Patricia takes the big ones and leaves her the small one, chattering on about how she shouldn’t be stingy with her friend and she’s an unconditional friend…
CASA SOLANONícolas has begun to make Julia nervous with his squirrely attitude towards going to Eco Moda and his reaction to Armando’s call. Nícolas backtracks and tries to calm her by telling her that Betty can work it all out when she comes home. “But Betty trusts you,” responds Julia. The phone rings. It’s Armando again.
THE ARMANDO & JULIA CALL Armando apologizes for calling again, but he tells her that he’s very concerned that Betty still hasn’t called him. Julia tells him that it’s impossible for Betty to return for the meeting tomorrow and Armando, hand over the mouthpiece, panics, “How can she do this to me?” Julia tells him that Betty has arranged for Nícolas to come to the meeting tomorrow. The jealous Armando responds, “Nícolas Mora? Nícolas Mora?” Julia tells him that’s what Betty had suggested, wondering if there’s a problem with this and Armando reassures her that that will be fine. For now he’s a beaten man. He makes one more appeal, “Please, do me a favor… Please tell Betty not to hide from me anymore… I need her…” His voice is full of love and longing and (IMO) Julia hears this. She smiles in wonderment. Armando, after hanging up, wonders confusedly what Betty is doing… what is she planning…?
CARTAGENAThe party heads off to a naval ship where the cocktail event is being held. Betty lags behind in her heeled sandals and Michele steps back to smilingly pull her along. Catalina asks her to wait for the bus with the pageant contestants; they’ll only be 15 minutes, then come up. Betty is happy to oblige and they show up very soon, a veritable parade with full military honors. Betty greets all of the contestants and they smile happily at her and she at them. Everyone heads gingerly up the gangplank in their formal gowns and high heels and Betty follows. (Hey, was that an ankle bracelet I saw?)
On board, everyone mingles and Betty has no one to talk to. She longingly looks around at the small groups of people conversing, particularly at the beautiful women of the pageant. She grimaces in self-deprecating fashion. She slowly edges towards the group with Tais and Michele. She wanders around the fringe: they laugh and she laughs trying to blend in. She adjusts her frumpy heeled sandals and looks awkward. Surrendering to her feelings of isolation, she wanders away from the group towards the railing of the boat.
CASA SOLANONícolas gathers some papers and floppies from the sideboard in the dining room for the meeting. Hérmes enters growling about his wornout slippers and confronts Nícolas as to what he’s up to. Julia tells him it’s just some papers he needs for a meeting tomorrow and Nícolas elaborates that there some miscellaneous details from Terra Moda. Hérmes is suspicious: he thought everything had been turned in and what’s the deal with Dr. Mendoza calling? Nícolas tries to deflect this line of interrogation with “you know how papers hide and that guy’s a kook” type of jokes. He turns to teasing Hérmes about his clothing and makes his getaway. Hérmes is left growling and Julia can only smile bemusedly and shake her head.
CARTAGENABetty continues her solitary wandering. In the background you can hear the murmurs of the party. Catalina joins Michele and asks after Betty. He points her out and Catalina cries that she needs her and heads off to reel her in. Betty is staring out at the sea when Catalina approaches. “Betty! I need you to help with the crowd. Tais doesn’t speak Spanish…” she lists a few areas where Betty can help her and Betty responds. She heads back into the fray, timidly, moving awkwardly, reminding me of those sea birds, sand pipers or small herons, the way they pick their way along the sand, leading with their heads and necks. She helps a contestant straighten her sash, mingles with the crowd a bit and ends up near Catalina and the ship captain. They chat pleasantly. Betty goes off to try to collect Andrea Cerna, a journalist who’s one of the women in their party, who’s in the middle of an interview. She swats Betty off like a pesky mosquito and Betty leaves.
ECO MODAArmando exits his office, tired, and wipes his face in fatigue. He is startled to see Marcela sitting at Patricia’s desk like some attack dog. “What are you doing here?” She responds without any small courtesies, “What time is she coming?” “She’s not coming,” he says, quietly. Marcela wants to know what is going on here; why is he so tranquil about this? He tells her he’s not tranquil about this; she’s sending a replacement to stand in for her. Marcela explodes at this, “What representative?” She notes Mariana and Sandra sorting papers trying to look like they’re not eavesdropping and asks if they can speak in private. He nods, making a face of resignation.
CARTAGENAThe party leaves the ship. The contestants one by one bid Betty a good night. She kisses them good night, they kiss her, she reminds them to be on time… Very pleasant. Catalina asks her to make sure that all are on the buss okay. Michele escorts Tais off the boat. Later, Betty tells Tais how her mother loved Xica and would be so impressed with her having met her. She heard that it was very good, but with work she wasn’t able to watch it. (Obviously not a novela addict like some we know…) She asks for Tais’ autograph and she happily agrees. Betty brings Tais up to the head of the pageant and introduces them and they make polite conversation. Catalina is very happy with the way the evening has turned out. She asks after the other guests and they collect the last missing one and head off.
MARCELA’S OFFICEMarcela tells Armando that she doesn’t want to intrude on his intimate life (this, from a woman who called him every hour on the hour), but she wants to know what happened between him and Betty. Going into the meeting he was so upbeat, as if he thought Betty was going to help him. She doesn’t understand how this turned around. Armando tries to explain that things weren’t like that. Marcela can’t understand how he trusted Betty so much. She can only hope that she hasn’t betrayed him, them, the company the way that he betrayed her according to the letter. She wants to know why he had so much faith, so much confidence, so much trust in her. She knows why he made her fall in love with him, but, “I want to know what happened with you… What was she to you? Did you fall in love (shudder of terror/disgust/disbelief) with Beatriz?” There are tears in her eyes and tears in his.
Armando refuses to discuss Betty with Marcela, but Marcela insists “I’ve given you three years of my life. I was just hours away from marrying you. The least I deserve is an explanation! And don’t tell me you don’t want to hurt me….” She pauses as it dawns on her “You’re in love with Betty, aren’t you?” she sobs.
Armando remains silent, looking at her with infinite sadness. “Your silence tells me it’s true” . Armando nods stoically. Marcela wails and flails at him with her fists “No! How did this happen? You’ll pay for this in Hell!” With a haunted look in his eyes, Armando whispers “I know. I’m paying …”
Back in Cartagena, Cata and the gang are having a grand ol’ time in the van. Everyone except Betty, who quietly asks to be dropped off at the hotel because she’s not feeling well. Unable to dissuade her, they drop her off. A concerned Cata tells Michel to go on to the party and take care of the girls. She follows Betty into the lobby and asks what’s wrong. “I just can’t handle it” replies Betty. “Nonsense” retorts Cata " Let’s talk before you quit on me again”.
Out on the hotel terrace, Betty tells Cata that she can wear borrowed clothes and frequent the best spots in town, but inside this dress is the same old Betty.
“Yes” replies Cata “The same old Betty that refuses to change. How can you be so strong professionally yet so weak in your personal life?
“There are certain things in life you’re suited for and others you’re not. This life isn’t for me” says Betty.
“But wouldn’t you like to be a part of this life? You’re simply denying yourself the opportunity. Experiment for once, take a risk. Trust me. Give it a shot and if it doesn’t work I’ll put you on the first plane back to Bogota” counters Cata. “Tomorrow we’ll go downtown and see the parade and the President. Then I have something special in mind!”
Meanwhile, back in Bogotá, a forlorn Armando sits at his desk, gazing at Betty’s carnet photo with longing “How long will you keep doing this to me?” he whispers.
Early the next morning Betty sits on the beach, gazing at the ocean. She spies Tais jogging towards her and daydreams that it’s really herself running, free and wild. Tais runs up to Betty and they chat. Tais asks if Betty has cheered up a bit. Betty replies that it’s nothing, it’s just that she’s very shy.
Tais looks at her sharply “That’s not what I think. It looks to me that it’s ‘saudade’. That’s a word we use in Brazil when you feel melancholy - when you miss something or someone you love. Don’t get me wrong, saudade is not a bad thing. But misery and sorrow is. And in Brazil we know how to get that out of our soul. At Carnival, we dance and sing. We’re helped by Iemanjá, the goddess of the sea.”. She pulls Betty up and insists that they dance. “Dancing exorcises all the bad and allows the good in. Your body is your temple. Get rid of the bad stuff. Scream, dance, let it out!” Betty giggles and awkwardly lets out a primal scream. Soon she’s jumping and running around with Tais, relishing these new sensations. Cata approaches the out-of-breath, laughing girls. She tells Betty they have to leave to go see the President of the republic.
A tired and drawn Armando arrives at Eco Moda and is greeted by Sandra and Mariana. Once again he asks if they’ve heard from Betty. Again they tell him they haven’t. Dejected, he goes into his office. Mariana and Sandra comment on how it seems that both Armando and Mario aren’t willing to give up their offices. They also think Armando’s fixation on finding Betty is very strange.
Armando tells Mario that Betty won’t be coming to the meeting - that Nicolas Mora is taking her place. Mario grimaces “Great. A change of gremlin.” Armando goes on to say he still has no idea where Betty is. Mario warns him that he’d better hide his misery . They have to put up a good front and not retreat.
Out by the elevators, Patty has waltzed in. The Cuartel gives her a hard time about her tardiness. Patty asks if that vulture, Betty, has arrived because she’s urgently required to attend the meeting. The Cuartel retorts that she won’t be coming because she’s out of town. “Well, she’s got to be here” snaps Patty “It’s not like she’s hanging with the President of the Republic, or something!”
Actually, that’s exactly what Betty is doing. She and Cata sit in the stands and watch the Presidential parade, the marching bands, the Parade of Sail. Pomp and circumstance.
Back at Eco Moda, the Cuartel gossips. They can’t figure out what’s going on. Patty, as usual, orders them back to work and accuses them of taking advantage of the vacuum created at EcoModa by all the resignations. Sofia retorts that the only vacuum at Eco Moda is in Patricia’s head. Patty bristles and announces that because Armando and Mario are no longer with the company and because Marcela, Roberto, Hugo and Gutierrez aren’t around, she’s in charge. “Right now I’m the President!”.
At this moment, the elevator door opens and Daniel and the lawyers overhear Patty’s last remarks. Embarrassed, Patty mumbles that it’s a good thing Daniel has arrived so he can put everything in order. Daniel smirks and orders her to get him coffee. Patty makes a face and asks him not to treat her like a servant. Daniel turns to the lawyers and informs them that if they ever need a maid with great legs, he’s got just the person.
Roberto and Margarita arrive. They join Daniel and the lawyers in the conference room. Marcela joins them. Then Mario and Armando come in, looking a tad nervous. Daniel asks when Betty will show up. Armando tells him she’s out of town., but that her representative, Nicolas Mora, will soon arrive. “Oh? Betty’s flaming boyfriend?” asks Daniel, disgusted.
Nicolas slinks out of the elevator. Catching sight of Patty, he pulls his coat over his face and tries to sneak by. No such luck. Patty yells “What are you doing here? Get out, you damn rapist!”. Nicolas jumps from the frying pan into the fire by escaping into the conference room. Roberto is surprised that Betty is not present. Again, Armando mumbles excuses. Nicolas assures him that he is Betty’s legal representative and he’s got business cards to prove it. The lawyers disagree, informing him that he’s not legally entitled to represent Betty and Terra Moda and that the power of attorney is not sufficient. Nicolas gets cocky and tells them he’s got another appointment and if he won’t do, they’ll just have to wait until Betty gets back. Feathers ruffled, Daniel threatens drastic measures if Betty doesn’t appear. Roberto calms things down and tells Nicolas to bring Betty up to date on everything that’s happened and they will meet again tomorrow. As Nicolas exits the room, Armando insists on talking to him privately, Marcela’s snide remarks notwithstanding.
Armando’s asks Nicolas to reason with Betty. He says that Betty can do whatever she wants to him, but not to the company - she’s giving the impression that she is running away. Nicolas retorts “What makes you thing Betty will change her mind just because you ask her to”.
“Please tell Betty I have to talk to her. I’m dying for her” begs Armando.
“I’ll talk to Betty, but I won’t intercede for you. Betty just wants to be left in peace. She gave her life for you and now just wants to be left alone”. He walks out, as Armando’s desperation increases.
The cuartel surrounds Nicolas as he tries to get in the elevator, asking him for news of Betty. He tells them he’s not a liberty to say. They wring their hands in worry. Just when he thought he was safely out, Patty grabs him “Desgraciado! Maldito! Cobarde!”. She pummels him as he beats a hasty retreat. Taking advantage of a momentary pause as Marcela walks up, he quickly ducks into the elevator. “How could you have slept with that thing?” asks Marcela. “Speak for yourself” Patty barks “How could’ve Armando slept with that gargoyle, Betty?”
Back in Cartagena, Cata has just dragged Betty into a boutique and asks to see some outfits …
In Cartagena, Betty and Cata enter a boutique and start to look around. Cata tells a saleslady that they’re looking for clothes for Betty. Betty immediately interjects that she left EcoModa on bad terms and one of those bad terms was that she didn’t take with her any of the benefits to which she was entitled. Cata tells her not to worry, she will deduct everything from her paycheck.
Back in Bogotá, Román and his gang intercept Nicolás as he arrives at Betty’s house, they make fun of his new poor status and ask about Betty’s whereabouts. Nicolás responds that Betty is in Cartagena, at the National Miss Colombia Beauty Pageant. The news, of course, takes Román and his gang by surprise and they begin to make ironic and sarcastic remarks about a ‘fea’ participating in a beauty pageant. As the exchange between Nicolás and Román heats up and gets louder, Don Hermes, comes out and, as always chases Román and his gang away. Once inside, he asks Nicolás about the meeting at EcoModa, more particularly as it impacts Betty. Don Hermes tells Nico that if there’s a problem because of the way Beatriz left, he’s willing to stand up for his daughter because a Pinzón always leaves a place of employment with his or her reputation intact, clean, transparent … in the same fashion he left the company for which he worked for for 20 years, even if they didn’t pay him his severance pay. He reproaches Nicolás the fact that he’s doing nothing with regard to the difficult financial situation they find themselves in … does he plan on living off of his mother’s bakery? Hermes adds that he’s not willing to live off of his daughter. As Hermes leaves, Doña Julia asks Nicolás how everything went. Nicolás nervously answers that the best thing that could happen is that Betty return as soon as possible and confront the people at EcoModa so that they can put an end to all of their problems. Nicolás’ answer makes Julia even more anxious and she asks Nicolás for the full details. Faced with Nicolás’ reluctancy to answer these questions, Julia threatens to call Armando Mendoza to ask him everything, or better yet, adds Julia, with telling Hermes that there are real problems surrounding Betty’s resignation from EcoModa. Faced with Doña Julia’s persistence, Nicolás begins to tell her everything, every last detail, but warns her not to tell Betty that he spoke up because she’s capable of jumping on top of him and cutting his jugular with her braces. :o)
In the meantime, at EcoModa, Armando and Mario discuss their difficult situation and Armando’s inability to locate Beatriz. The t.v. is on behind them and, in the news, they show images of El Buque Gloria’s arrival into Cartagena, and President Pastrana. While Armando and Mario ask themselves where Betty could be, we see a close-up of Betty and Cata on the t.v. behind them. Armando tells Mario that he confessed to Marcela that he was in love with Betty. He asks Mario to please turn off the t.v., he’s not in the mood to hear about beauty pageants and beauty queens. Mario does as he is asked. Oh, if only they’d been watching …
At the Pinzón household, Nicolás continues his detailed story about the situation currently facing Betty and him, Terra Moda and EcoModa. Hearing all of these details only serves to make Doña Julia more anxious and worried, and in that state she questions out loud how Betty was able to do all that she did. In order to avoid an answer, Nicolás tells Doña Julia that the answer to that belongs to Betty’s intimacy and that is territory into which he doesn’t delve. Julia guesses that she did it for love, because she fell in love with Armando Mendoza, and says so out loud to Nicolás. Nicolás tries to change that line of questioning, he has become even more uncomfortable than before, and tells Doña Julia that judicially they did nothing wrong, however, if you think about the ethics surrounding the situation, everything was less than above-board. Julia says that if Don Hermes were ever to find out about any of this, he would be capable of killing Betty and then Nico. Julia says that she’s got to get in contact with Betty to try to persuade her to reconsider coming back to Bogotá, and she proceeds to dial the hotel. Don Hermes comes back into the room and begins to question Nicolás (who is enjoying a cup of hot chocolate and ‘buñuelos’ – sort of like doughnuts, but they’re shaped like a ball) and Julia about the long-distance call she is making. He reminds her that their economic situation is difficult and they are living in austere times.
Betty and Cata have finished their shopping in Cartagena and Cata proceeds to take Betty to the best beauty salon in town (which just happens to have a huge Pantene sign, LOL). Betty becomes extremely uncomfortable with the situation and is reluctant to go in. She says to Cata that “neither a beauty salon nor a stylist will fix my life.” Cata reproaches her attitude and asks Betty to give her the opportunity to help her change, to embark upon a new routine for her life. Though afraid, Betty finally relents and goes in. However, she turns down every single suggestion that the stylist makes. At a total loss and running out of patience, the stylist turns to Cata who intercedes and manages to convince Betty to just go with a shampoo, maybe cut her ends and get rid of her bangs. Betty nervously lets Cata take her glasses, holds on to Cata with one hand and holds on to the arm of the chair with the other hand for dear life.
While at EcoModa, Marcela tells Margarita that Armando has fallen in love with Betty and that she is convinced that she has definitely lost him. She adds that if she once had hope that she could get him back, it’s all gone now. Margarita tells Marcela that she can’t give in so easily against an enemy of the likes of Betty (this last statement was made despectively). After all, she continues in a venomous tone, Betty cannot possible compare to Marcela, they are not in the same league … all of this must be another one of Armando’s immature and passing whims and he’ll get over it when that skinny, badly-dressed and ugly woman returns. Aaarrgh … I can’t stand Margarita!
Cata arrives at the pool bar of the hotel and he finds Michel sitting poolside. He asks him if he’s seen Franco de Vita, who is scheduled to sing at the beauty pageant. Michel tells her that he hasn’t and then goes on to ask where Betty is. Cata tells him that she’s coming and, when Michel turns around, he looks totally surprised at what he sees. Michel is pleasantly surprised with Betty’s new look - no more bangs, discreet makeup, a pretty and fashionable blue dress and no stockings - and he congratulates her on her new attitude. Cata tells Betty that she’s going in search of Franco de Vita … Michel accompanies her and Betty starts to wander around the pool area. As she’s walking, she’s constantly staring at her new reflection in the mirror of her compact and smiling. Suddenly, she runs into Franco de Vita, who is sitting reading a newspaper at one of the tables. She timidly approaches him, introduces herself as Cata’s assistant and tells him that Cata is off looking for him. She asks him not to move (about 3 times) and tells him that she’s going to go in search of Cata. But the famous Venezuelan singer/songwriter convinces her to stay with him and have a drink. When the waiter comes over, Betty orders her usual ‘jugo de mora’ and Franco de Vita does likewise. The singer puts the newspaper back up (rather rudely, IMO) and Betty begins to timidly question him about his impressions of Cartagena. De Vita answers with short quips and puts the paper back up again, so Betty starts to lowly sing “Un Buen Perdedor” (A Good Loser) – one of de Vita’s biggest hits. Franco compliments Betty on her singing and adds that she looks fresh and pretty. Betty blushes because she can’t believe what she’s hearing and tells Franco that that’s the first time anyone has said that to her. With that, Cata finally returns and Betty excuses herself to go back to her room. On her way back, she runs into Michel, who sincerely congratulates her on her new look. Betty looks radiantly happy … two compliments in one night, first Franco de Vita, now Michel. Cata walks up to them and reminds them that Taís Araujo departs tomorrow and they need to give her a big send-off, Colombian style. Michel tells Cata not to worry about it, he’ll take care of everything. The ladies say good night and start walking in the direction of their room.
In Bogotá, we find Armando still at EcoModa and still drinking. He looks extremely sad and he lovingly stares at Betty’s picture once again. Mario comes in and asks Armando whether he’s received any new information as to Betty’s whereabouts. Armando answers that he hasn’t heard a thing … he still has no idea where she could be. Mario sights Armando’s wallet laying on top of his desk, reaches over, and opens it. When he sees Betty’s picture stare back at him, he reacts with such fright that he almost drops the wallet (I’m sorry … I have to admit that I laughed at Mario’s antics). Armando gets extremely angry at Mario and demands the return of his wallet. Mario gives it back and remarks that his friend certainly finds himself in a very strange mood of reflection (referring, of course, to his continued contemplation of Betty’s picture). Armando once again yells at him and Mario gets out … he senses his life is in danger.
Finally in her room, Betty walks over to the mirror, stares at the girl that looks back at her, and asks, “Betty, Betty, are you in there? Hello Betty!!!”. She looks at herself from head to toe and sideways and is apparently starting to believe this is indeed her. The phone rings … it’s Doña Julia. Betty excitedly begins to tell her mother about the Buque Gloria, that she met the President of Colombia and Franco de Vita. But Doña Julia just answers with a short, “that’s nice, honey” and tells her that Nicolás needs to talk to her. When Nico gets on the phone, he tells Betty that she must return, that they’re facing a very delicate situation. He also tells her that Armando Mendoza begged him to tell her to call him. Betty responds that she doesn’t care about any of that … she doesn’t care what happens to him and to his company, they can wait until she returns because she can’t leave Doña Catalina alone in Cartagena. Nico asks her when she’s coming back, and she answers that she’ll be back next week. Hermes walks up to Nico and tells him that he wants to speak to his daughter, but Nico ignores him and says goodbye to Betty instead. Don Hermes reacts in his usual fashion … grumpily, that is … and tells Nicolás that he has a right to speak to his daughter and that he better not forget that for the next time. As Hermes walks out, Julia anxiously tells Nicolás that he’s got to go back to EcoModa tomorrow and tell them that Betty can’t come back just yet, but she’ll be back next week. Nico tries to tell her that he can relay this information over the phone, but Doña Julia insists that if he doesn’t show up in person they will begin to suspect there’s a negative motive for Betty not returning. Nicolás finally accedes to do the deed in person. With that, the telephone rings … it’s Armando again, sounding even more anxious than the previous times. Doña Julia tells him that Betty will not be back by tomorrow and that Nicolás will once again be her representative at the meeting. Armando, who is sitting at Betty’s desk, tells her that he doesn’t need Nicolás, he needs Betty. But Julia responds that those are the instructions Betty left. Armando asks when Betty’s coming back, but Julia keeps her promise and doesn’t give him any information. When Armando hangs up, his frustration at this entire situation finally gets a hold of him and he bangs his desk very hard three times, knocking his glass of whiskey over and yelling, “No more, Beatriz, no more!!!” Nicolás asks Doña Julia what Armando said, and she relates that he will expect him tomorrow morning. But, she adds, the one thing she doesn’t understand is that she knows that the people at EcoModa always treated Betty badly, but she always spoke highly of Armando Mendoza. She could never stop talking of how he stood up for her and protected her … what happened? Why is she hiding from him? Nicolás tells her that Don Armando made a big mistake in regards to Betty and he doesn’t think that she’ll ever forgive him, as a matter of fact, he thinks that she’s right in not wanting to forgive him. Doña Julia, even more anguished (if that is possible), asks, “But what did he do to her?”
The scene opens with Nicolas telling Dona Julia that the things she wants to know about belong to Betty’s privacy.
In Marcela’s office, Margarita is telling her that love is more than a physical attraction, or “chemistry.” That it is also solidarity, something that Betty hasn’t given Armando since she turned him in, has made him suffer, and then disappeared. Margarita tells Marcela that they need Betty to come in, sign whatever papers are necessary and then disappear again! Marcela tells Margarita that Betty will never let go of a man like Armando and that when Betty returns, Armando won’t let go of her either. Margarita makes Marcela promise her that she won’t give up. Margarita leaves and tells Marcela she will see her the following day at the meeting.
Cata tells Betty that if she needs to return to Bogota, it’s ok, not to worry about it. Betty informs Cata that she’ll stay in Cartagena until all their work is concluded there. Tais Araujo tells them that she is returning to Miami and that she had a wonderful time in Cartagena. Tais is very happy that Betty has changed her appearance.
Patricia asks Marcela why Nicolas Mora is coming to EcoModa instead of Betty (El Garfio). She threatens to squash Nicolas if he ever returns to EcoModa.
Michel insists that Betty be happy and enjoy the party with them. Betty begins to get into the party mood. Armando continues to drink inconsolably.
Patsy-Pat hangs around the office for Marcela to take her home. Marcela instead gives her money for the taxi. Patsy-Pat says her friend is cheap. Marcela goes into Armando’s office to talk to him.
Marcela asks Armando if he has spoken to Nicolas Mora. He tells her he hasn’t. Marcela asks if he has spoken to Betty and he tells her that he hasn’t spoken to Betty either. Marcela tells him that she doesn’t want him to feel pressured and that she knows that he has told her that he doesn’t want to hurt her but that her body is numb and that she doesn’t care. Marcela asks Armando what he plans to do if Betty doesn’t come back. Armando tells her that he’ll speak to the attorneys so that they can…… Marcela: No, no, I’m not referring to the legal status of the company. I’m referring to you personally. Have you thought what will happen with your life if she never shows up? Or better yet, if she doesn’t want anything to do with you?”Armando: No, no I hadn’t thought of that.Marcela: Does that mean that you still hold on to the hope that she’ll come back to you?Armando: Marcela, really, I don’t want to, nor can I discuss this with you.Marcela: Of course not! But don’t worry; you’ve said it all! Don’t look at me that way; I haven’t come here to interrogate you. You have all the right, you have the freedom….. I just want you to answer a few questions.” (I thought she said she wasn’t going to interrogate him? hmmm) Marcela sits down.Marcela: What do you understand by love? What is it you look for in a woman? What do you find in a woman that makes you fall in love with her? Because frankly, where Betty is concerned, I’m a bit disconcerted. I don’t mean physically although it did surprise me that you broke out of your mold (couldn’t find the right word for this in English folk—sorry). I am referring to what you expect from a woman who is apparently weak, submissive, who has principles, but is willing to get mixed up with her boss, a man who is about to get married, who is capable of having a clandestine romance.Armando walks over to the desk to sit on it.Marcela: Don’t sit there. Sit here (she points to the sofa).Armando: Marcela, really, I am not willing to have any more questions directed against Betty. I just won’t put up with that.Marcela: Of course not! Love is blind. And this example is more than obvious. Not only is it blind, it’s deaf, irrational……………What do you expect of a woman who was capable of getting involved in the dirty dealings you orchestrated with this company and who turned you in at the board meeting?Armando: Marcela you’ve asked me these same questions a million times! Enough!Marcela: She turned you in to the woman with whom you were to be married. She turned you in with evidence and proof; with all the little things (detalles) you gave her. What do you expect from a woman who you ask, you plead to come to your aid when you are in over your head and she sends you a “messenger.”Armando: She’s hurt, you know that Marcela.Marcela: Armando, many times I have been hurt, but I have always been at your side. I want you to understand that she only loves you in the good times, and not in the bad times. She doesn’t consider you, it’s as if she felt nothing. I would have been incapable of abandoning you in this fashion, especially if I had been a part of the problem you were in. I want you to understand that she has left you up to your neck. That’s all; I only wanted to let you know. I feel sorry for you! Armando is sitting in his office and in the solitude of it all he leans back and screams “Betttttttyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.” (Again, this reminded me of Rochester calling out for Jane Eyre)
Betty seems to hear Armando! She seems to lose her balance and seems almost to feel faint for a second. Her lips form the words “Don Armando!” Tais Araujo seems to bring her back to reality. Tais says that when she gets married she wants to return to Cartagena, although she still doesn’t have a boyfriend. Tais makes Betty promise her that from now on she will be happy. Betty promises her that she will be happy.
Armando enters a bar in the hopes of continuing to drown his sorrows.
Michel and Betty dance and drink. Cata excuses herself shortly thereafter because she wants to go to bed. Betty insists on going to bed when Cata does and Michel asks her to stay. Cata discreetly tells Betty that it would be discourteous to Michel if she were to turn him down. Betty feels uncomfortable staying with Michel because she thinks he’s Cata’s boyfriend. Cata explains to Betty that Michel is only a good friend who doesn’t deserve to be stood up. Betty and Michel are alone at the beach.
Betty and Michel talk, drink, and enjoy the evening. Betty tells Michel how much she has enjoyed seeing the ocean for the first time in her life. She also tells him that she has to return to Bogota where a lot of problems are waiting for her.
Armando, drunk at the bar, asks the bartender for another drink. The bartender asks him to stop drinking, but Armando insists causing a major scene. Armando ends up telling the bartender all his woes. He tells the bartender that he’s in love with the most wonderful woman, but she has one heck of a temper. He keeps getting the poor bartender confused because he keeps talking about Marcela and then Betty. He shows the bartender a picture of Betty (the one he is in love with and left him, he says) and the bartender tells him he understands why he is drinking (very funny scene)! :)
Michel takes Betty back to the hotel and when he says goodnight, he kisses her softly on the cheek. Betty enters her room and sees her beloved Armando looking at her accusingly in the mirror. She calls out “Leave me alone Don Armando, leave me in peace.”
Armando is asleep at the bar at closing time. The bartender calls a taxi for him. Monica Agudelo (Marcela’s friend who called her to tell her she had seen Betty and Armando at the restaurant) shows up and asks Armando about his cancelled wedding. He avoids answering her and calls her a busybody and runs her out of the bar. Armando sees Monica Agudela again outside of the bar before getting into the taxi and calls her Monica Agudelo Lewinsky and asks if he can take her somewhere to take some pictures! Armando continues with his self-pity and introduces himself to the taxi driver as Armando Mendoza, the ex. The ex-fiancée of Marcela Valencia, the ex-love of Beatriz Pinzon, the ex-President of EcoModa, on and on (very, very funny scene).
The following day at the beach, Catalina asks Betty how things went with Michel. Betty tells her that things went well and she supposes that Catalina had asked him to be very nice to her. Cata tells Betty that if Michel was special with her, it’s because he truly likes her and he want to be, not because she asked him. She asks Betty to have more confidence in herself.
Marcela arrives at EcoModa and Patsy-Pat wants to know what Marcela and Armando spoke about the night before. Marcela informs her that nothing unusual transpired. Mario Calderon arrives and is ignored by both Patsy-Pat and Marcela. Don Roberto and Dona Margarita arrive with Daniel and ask if Armando is in. Patsy tells them that he hasn’t arrived. Marcela goes into Armando’s office. Daniel reminds Patsy-Pat that she needs to get coffee for the meeting. Everyone in the boardroom wonders why Armando is late. Armando arrives at Eco-Moda hung over and disheveled on his cell phone with Calderon who is sitting in the boardroom ready for the meeting (funny). Don Roberto asks if Betty is coming and Armando tells him, no, that she is sending a representative. The elevator door opens and Nicolas steps out. End.
IN FRONT OF SANDRA AND MARIANA’S DESK
Nicolas exits the elevator and greets Sandra and Mariana. (He is hiding something before his back.) As he excuses himself, Patricia approaches him and he offers her a red rose and tells her that it is nice to see her about. She grabs the rose out of his hand and throws it to the floor. As he tries to leave she grabs him by his coat and he tells her that he has an important meeting with the Mendoza’s. She tells him that he has some nerve to show up at the office and look ridiculous. He tells her that she has to understand his situation. (He pulls out the inside of his front pockets to demonstrate that he is broke.) He walks off.
Sandra and Mariana look at Patricia, then at each other and say “Aye”. Patricia makes a face at them.
Nicolas enters the conference room. He informs the Board that Betty will not be returning until next week. Marcela wants to know why not until next week. Nicolas tells him that she has some very important engagements outside of Bogata. Daniel asks Nicolas what it is that they want? Nicolas tells him that he doesn’t understand? Marcela clarifies by asking how much money Betty wants in order to return the Company. Nicolas tells them nothing. One of the attorneys steps in and says that it is important that Betty appear to sign documents in order to stop the legal action that Terra Mora has against Eco Moda. Daniel wants to know where Betty can be located. He informs them that he is not authorized to give out that information. Marcela says that Betty wants to stay with Eco Moda. Nicolas tells them that they are wrongly judging the situation. Daniel says that there aspiration is to keep the Company. Marcela informs him that they already have the Company. Nicolas says that they are wrongly judging Betty. Daniel says that it doesn’t seem that way since she is hiding. (During this entire conversation, Armando stays quite and looks at everyone.) After they thank Nicolas for crossing, Marcela informs him that they are not going to stay still with their arms crossed while Betty takes away the Company.
IN THE HALLWAY
Nicolas is hiding from Patricia as she speaks to her father on the cellular telephone. She is explaining to her father that she can’t decide if she should keep her credit card which she has not been able to use for three months and to move into an apartment that is more economically feasible. Or should she stay in her apartment and get rid of her credit card.
Sandra and Mariana come around the corner and they are discussing the scene between Patricia and Nicolas. They are wondering why Nicolas has brought a flower for Patricia. They walk upon Nicolas and he asks that they not say his name outloud. They ask what’s the situation between him and Patricia. He tells them that since she hates Betty, she hates her. He asks that they get the elevator for him.
Patricia is still speaking to her father and informing him that if she doesn’t pay the credit card the bank is bound to show up at her place of employment and take her paycheck. She tells him that she can’t afford to make a telephone call on her cellular telephone and that she is fortunate that he is the one that called her.
Mariana has obtained the elevator for Nicolas and Sandra escorts him to the elevator. (Sandra is walking beside him in order to hide him from Patricia.) Patricia is telling her father that all she has left is the jewelry that her mother left and that she is going to use that to pay for her burial. She catches Nicolas trying to sneak into the elevator and yells in English “STOP”. She runs and blocks the elevator and puts her leg up against the elevator to keep him from getting in. As Sandra is arguing with Patricia Nicolas crawls under her legs to get into the elevator. Mariana pulls her away from the elevator and as Patricia argues with Mariana and Sandra, Sandra threatens to beat her up if she doesn’t leave Nicolas alone. Patricia accuses them of being Nicolas and Betty’s accomplishes. As Nicolas pushes the button to close the door he thanks Sandra and Mariana and throws Patricia a good-bye kiss.
Daniel tells everyone that he is in agreement with Marcela and they have to do something. He tells the attorneys to proceed with the action. Armando speaks up and tells them that they can’t do that to Betty. They are in no condition to take action against her. Daniel tells him that no one asked him for his valuable opinion and tells him that he has no say so. He reminds him that he left them in ruins and he turned over the company to her and he know defends hers. Armando gets up and starts to yell at Daniel. Daniel rises from his chair. Marcela steps in and makes comments about his appearance. Daniel makes comments about him being drunk. Robert speaks up and tells Armando that he does not have the right to speak and then goes on to speak about his appearance. He tells him to be respectful and never to show up in again in that condition. Margarita tells everyone to calm down. Daniel continues with his remarks about Armando. Daniel begins his sad story about how he lost his opportunity to invest in the new venture and that they have also left what their parents left them. Armando speaks up and tells him that he is not going to let the Company go. Daniel wants to know how much longer they are going to have to support the drunk. Roberto tries to calm things down and tells them that they need to look at other avenues and that they will meet tomorrow to discuss those options. Roberto begins to leave and Margarita tells him that she wishes to stay behind to speak to Armando. Roberto says that he is not capable of speaking to him and he leaves. (During this entire scene Marcela is staring and her anger is rising.)
After Roberto leaves Daniel wants to know if they should have a toast. Armando gets up and heads toward his office. Daniel asks him when he plans on moving out of that office. “Do you not realize that you are no longer the president”. Armando informs him that he plans continuing to occupy that office until a new president is appointed or his father steps down from his position. Daniel asks him if he realizes that a Japanese would have already committed hara-kari for doing less. Armando turns and walks away.
Mario gets up to follow Armando into the office. As he is walking towards the office, Daniel makes a comment about Mario being Armando’s accomplice. Mario doesn’t say a word, but closes the door.
Daniel excuses himself from Marcela and Margarita. Marcela’s telephone rings.
Mario asks Armando what is happening to him. He wants to know how he dared to show up in those conditions. Armando tells him that he just didn’t want to go home to sleep last night. Mario asks where he was. Armando answers in a taxi.
“In a taxi”, says Marcela. It is Monica Lewinsky from the previous evening notify her of Armando’s whereabouts the previous evening. She asks Marcela questions in regards to her relationship with Armando, are they still together and does she have any intention of trying to recoup him. Margarita wants to know if maybe they are doing the wrong thing by leaving him alone during this time.
Mario wants to know what is happening to him. Does he not realize what Betty has done to him. She is destroying him. She turned him into the entire company and to Marcela and now she disappears. Armando gets upset and calls him “Marcela #2”. He tells him that he is tried. Everyday Marcela comes in and reminds him of what Betty has done to him.
Mario tells him yes he is “Marcela #2”, because he agrees with her. He is more concerned about his small romance with Betty then what is happening with the company. He tells him to slap himself and wakeup, “We have lost the company”.
Armando tells him that is not Betty. If she wanted the company she would have sent the lawyers and not Nicholas. Mario tells him that he hopes he is correct. Mario leaves the office.
HOTEL AT CARTEGENA
Betty and Cata are speaking in the hotel lobby. They are making arrangements to leave in 30 minutes and Betty informs Cata that she needs to call Bogata to check on the status of the events at Eco Moda. As she is about to leave Michele arrives. Michele wants to know how Betty passed her evening. “Listening to the ocean”, says Betty. Cata decides to have a heart-to-heart talk in regards to Betty. She explains that Betty has gone and is going through a tough time, with a past love and at her previous place of employment. Michele states that Betty talked a little bit about it and that it shows.
Cata explains that Betty believes that he is only being nice to her because of his friendship with her. Michele explains that this was so in the beginning but that things have changed. Since then he has seen a new Betty, one that smiles, dances and is beginning to enjoy herself. He tells her that when she had asked him to pay special attention to her on the bus that it was no problem for him. He says that with no special interest, he wants to be nice to her. To him, she is a special person. Cata agrees.
Cata explains how intelligent she is and how she ran Eco Moda. When Betty informed her that she was resigning Eco Moda she didn’t have any second thoughts about asking her to come work for her. She tells him that she is a simple and solidarity person and that is the person that she is trying to change. It is that woman that she wants to help her come out ahead. It would be both of their benefits. Cata tells him that she doesn’t want her to fell that he is only being nice to her because of Cata. She asks him to make that clear to her.
Right after Nicolas arrives the telephone rings and Don Hermes will not let anyone other than himself answer. Betty assures him that all the events that she has attended are work related. As he is speaking to Betty, he gives her advice on taking care of her skin. He tells her not to spend to much time in the sun, because it will wrinkle her skin. He also advises her not to go into the ocean because it is not the same as her bathtub at home.
Nicolas informs Betty of how bad the situation is at Eco Moda and that she should return immediately and sign the papers. Betty says no. Nicolas goes on to explain that they don’t trust her and believe that she is trying to keep the company. Nicolas asks for permission to tell them where she is and what she is doing.
She tells him that she doesn’t want to cause problems for Dona Catalina. She also doesn’t want to deal with Armando’s telephone calls. She explains that she is going through a very important process in her life and that she wants to finish what she is living at the moment.
Nicolas wants again asks her to return. She tells him that Armando and Mario had no consideration for her and she will not have it for them. They can wait until she returns. She tells him that she realizes that it is boring for him to go and show face with them. He tells her that it is not with them but with Patty. Anytime he runs into her it is like a action movie. He tells her it is terrible.
Nicolas wants her to realize that they are a powerful that are not going to sit there with their arms crossed. They are capable of ruining them. Betty tells him that if that is the way they are playing then the attorneys need to speak. Nicolas tells her that it if the attorneys get involved it would make matters worse. Betty disagrees. They will facilitate matters. They can review the documents that they want her to sign. She says that just like they don’t trust her, she doesn’t trust them either.
Nicolas agrees to help Betty, “boss”, even though it is without pay. Betty tells him that she needs to live through this moment. He tells her not to worry, that he will cover her back. Nicolas says that he is worried about Don Hermes finding out, because he will strangle him.
After they hang up, Dona Julia wants to know what Betty said. Nicolas tells her and Dona Julia wants to know why she is behaving this way. Dona Julia wants to know what Armando has done to her. Nicolas tells her to wait until Betty returns to speak to her. As Dona Julia gets up to leave the table she makes the remark that Armando has done something very horrible to Betty.
Dona Margarita walks in, asks how he is doing and gives him a hug. She tells him that they haven’t talked in quite awhile. He wants to know if she doesn’t believe what the Board has said to him isn’t enough. He says that he realizes his errors. He knows them well. He has lashed himself plenty for everything that he has done and for not marrying Marcela. Dona Margarita says that she has not come to lash out at him or to talk to him about he has done with the company or Marcela. She is there to talk to him like a mother and she is worried about him.
Armando tells her that he is fine. He only had too much to drink. Dona Margarita asks how far does he plan on drowning himself. She says that he has turned over the company to that woman who has disappeared and all he can do is go the bars and drink. She asks where does he plan on taking his life. He assures her that he is only going through a rough moment. She says that no he is doing more to himself. Not only that, instead of trying to work out the company problems he spends his time at the bars.
Armando tells her that he has committed many errors and that he cannot be the hero she wants him to be. He is barely picking up the pieces of his life. He doesn’t want anyone to look at him with compassion or pity. He has put himself in this situation and he alone will take himself out. She says by going to bars. He know it’s not the best way, but it’s just a process. He is trying to get his life back in order and when that happens he will be the hero that she is expecting.
Dona Margarita wants to know when that will happen, “when she appears, if she appears and returns the company”. “What if she doesn’t appear”, she asks. “What is going to happen to us and to you?” “Are you going to die?” Dona Margarita continues and says that he is not upset about the company, but over her.