Willow - part four
The following is continuation of a screenplay for a feature film that is meant to be rated R. This screenplay contains fowl language and descriptions of graphic images. Copyright Austin Marion 2014.
Part 4 of 5: For other parts see links at bottom of page.
113 EXT. CHICAGO - ABOVE 34TH STREET - DAY What’s left of the apartment building is a smoldering heap of burning rubble. Television helicopters are flying in from the direction of the city and take up positions over the rubble. Fire trucks are on the scene, dousing the rubble with water. A plume of black smoke rises up into the sky.
114 INT. WASHINGTON - WHITE HOUSE - OFFICE - DAY The room has bright light spilling in through the windows onto the the elaborate oak desk with a few stacks of papers on it. Against one wall is a couch and a small table in the middle of the room. A TV sits across the room from the desk with coverage of the bombing on it. Sitting at the desk is, PAUL, a man in his late fifties with a little gray showing through his black hair. He sits mesmerized by the TV with his hands clasped together in front of him. He stares intently and furiously at the TV. Albert steps into the room. Paul never looks up, he just leers at the TV. PAUL (with destain) Take a seat, Director Spears. Albert walks across the room and takes a seat on the couch and crosses his legs. On the TV, they are showing the many cop cars on Wacker Drive. Paul still hasn’t looked up from the TV. PAUL (CONT’D) What the fuck is this? This is not what we wanted, Albert. ALBERT You were asking for too much, Paul. PAUL The hell I was. We can’t have major cities gripped in fear, which they now all are. The New York stock exchange has suspended trading, while around the world the rest of markets are crashing. We gave you simple orders and your man was led on a chase through downtown Chicago. On top of that he let the son of a bitch get away. Agent Michael Abbott has shown, that he is not capable of catching this man. And that the he’s only capable of creating cluster fucks like this one, which you were given specific instructions to avoid. (looking over at Albert) This looks bad for you. This Agent Abbott is going to take you down with him. You know the President has been looking at replacing you. ALBERT And I’m sure you would be more then happy to let that happen. What was that, that you said to Jonas Pratt? Paul stares narrows his eyes at Albert. ALBERT (CONT’D) Spears has mismanaged the FBI since he took over. He’s turned them into an organization incapable of catching a jay walker, let alone a organized crime boss or a mass murderer. He is a leach on the American tax payer. By the way productivity is up since I took over the FBI. PAUL Congressman Pratt, told you that? Albert nods with satisfaction and Paul sits back in his chair. PAUL (CONT’D) Well there’s nothing better than a good two timing, to let you know the true grit of a man. ALBERT You said it yourself. In this town, you don’t have to have your back to someone, in order for them to stab you in it.
(pause) What exactly is your problem with me? PAUL Problem? What problem? We’ve been friends for twenty... ALBERT (interrupting) We’re not friends. Never have been and you know that. You’ve just been waiting for the day to fire me or I retire. So, you can replace me with someone from your own party. PAUL (angrily) This is not about politics. ALBERT Bullshit. Weather I’m liberal or conservative, doesn’t matter. I don’t walk into that building with that stuff on my mind. It doesn’t have anything to do with my job. It is about upholding, what is law. You on the other hand, make it about politics, every time. In turn every decision I make, like who in charge of what, is the wrong one in your eyes. Paul stares at Albert quietly. PAUL As of right now Agent Abbott is out. ALBERT You forget, that you’re just the Chief of Staff. You’re not my boss. PAUL Then tomorrow, when the President arrives back in DC, Abbott, will no longer be in charge. You will be in charge. ALBERT And when it all goes the same, I guess, I’ll be the next guy that is out. You’ll get what you want. Of course you’ll never say it. But on that day, you’ll sit behind your desk and smile, smugly. I guess that's not any different from any other day. They stare at one another.
115 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY The room is full of AGENTS working with Junior and Taylor both sitting at the long conference table in the room. Michael stands in a corner in front of TV, watching news coverage. The news shows various shots of the burning rubble of apartment building and cellphone video of Michael chasing after the Bomber. Michael cringes as he sees the cellphone footage. Junior walks up to Michael and watches the TV screen with him. JUNIOR So far, the tip line has received five thousand calls. It’s going to take a while. The TV switches to an aerial shot of the building on Wacker Driver with fifty or so police cars surrounding it. There is a subtitle at the bottom of the screen that says, EARLIER TODAY. JUNIOR (CONT’D) That looks bad. That many cops and we can’t catch a guy with a bomb on his back. They found his backpack and clothes, about an hour ago. There wasn’t a bomb in it and never was. Michael looks over to Junior. MICHAEL I couldn’t catch him. I just got my ass chewed out by the director. JUNIOR So. The son of a bitch calls us here. Lures us into a trap, kills twenty or so, FBI agents and cops. MICHAEL He’s built other bombs. Where’s he going to go? Where would you go with them? Lets turn back time and see if we can figure it out. JUNIOR Yes, sir. Michael’s phone RINGS in his pocket and he pulls it out. On the screen of his cellphone it say’s HOME. He answers it. MICHAEL Hello? Casey, give me just a second. (to Junior) Start without me. I’ll be right back. Michael walks out of the room.
116 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - STAIRWAY - DAY The stairway is dimly lit as Michael enters with his cellphone up to his ear. He closes the door behind him and leans on a railing. MICHAEL Hey, sorry to make you wait. CASEY (V.O.) (concerned) Dad, they’re showing you on TV. Are you okay? MICHAEL Yeah, I’m fine. CASEY (V.O.) Were you there? Near the explosion? MICHAEL No, I was miles away. I’m fine and I was perfectly safe. CASEY (V.O.) Mom, is worried about you. MICHAEL (rolling his eyes) Really? CASEY (V.O.) Yes. MICHAEL Tell her not to be. Let’s talk about something else. How was school, today? CASEY (V.O.) It’s fine. Dad, are you going to be home in time for my birthday? Michael cringes out of apprehension and takes a deep breath. It’s obvious that he forgot, by the look on his face. MICHAEL That’s coming up isn’t it? CASEY (V.O.) Yeah, in two day’s. Right after yours, remember? MICHAEL I’ll be home. CASEY (V.O.) (not believing him) Will you? Michael runs his hand through his hair, nervously. MICHAEL Yeah, I’ll be there. I’ll take you out to eat. CASEY (V.O.) How about we stay in? Make a big dinner. A real dinner, no take out pizza. MICHAEL We can do that. Hey Casey, I need to run. I love you. There is a long silence on the line and Michael stands longingly and holding his breath listening for an answer. His face cringes in apprehension. CASEY (V.O.) I love you, too, Dad. Bye. He breathes a little easier.
MICHAEL Bye. Michael takes the phone away from his ear and hangs up. He grips the phone with both hands in frustration. He walks over to the door and leaves the stairway.
117 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY All of the agents are sitting around the conference table with Junior standing at the head of the table, giving a run through of the events. Taylor sits at the other end of the table from Junior. Michael enters the room and leans against the door jam of the door with a busy office behind him. JUNIOR At eleven PM last night, we received a call on the tip line, from a man claiming to be the Bomber. Michael stands thinking to himself, he is starting to look tired. He interrupts Junior. MICHAEL What was that thing that he said during the call? JUNIOR What thing? MICHAEL He quoted something. What was it? JUNIOR Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears? MICHAEL Yeah, that. TAYLOR It’s Shakespeare. From Julius Caesar. MICHAEL Why say that? JUNIOR He’s an idealist. Everything thing he’s communicated to us, say’s, he has an idea of how the world should be. He’s not happy with it. He thinks for a moment with everyone in the room staring at him. MICHAEL (confidently) The profile’s wrong. JUNIOR You want us to throw out his entire profile? MICHAEL No. We had to have been right about something. We revamp it. Everything he sent us fits the profile. He’s been dicking with us. He’s misled us with every letter. If he was really some kind of Nazi extremists, idealist, we would have found him by now. Taylor taps her fingers on the table thinking. TAYLOR We would have caught him well before the Kansas City Bombing. He would have been writing blog’s and giving speeches. He would have stood out like McVeigh did. JUNIOR But, we missed McVeigh, just like the dozens of other terrorists like him. MICHAEL He basically wrote his own profile. This guy knew, that we would go into the apartment and that we would have kept our distance from him if we thought he was carrying a bomb. (pause)
This guy told us that he is living the same life that he did before. He doesn’t stand out. He’s been walking around camouflaged as a normal person and he still is. It's more of a serial murder case than terror. Typically we don't start catching wise till they kill a lot more and the heat is turned onto them. When that happens they make mistakes, this guy has been deceiving us from the beginning and knows how to to do it very well. If we continue to go off of what we think we know about him, he’ll get away. Everything he leaves us, would have been left behind deliberately. We have to find a new way to head him off. We need a new profile not based on what he wants us to find. The phone in front of Taylor rings and she answers it. TAYLOR Agent Martin. She listens intently then looks up at Michael. She looks at him with a tranquilized look. She hangs up the phone. TAYLOR (CONT’D) CPD has something. Michael stares back at her. 118 EXT. CHICAGO - WEST SIDE APARTMENT - DAY The building is a plain tan brick building. The street is cordoned off at both ends. Michael, Taylor and Junior drive up in an black SUV. The SUV parks and they get out in front of the apartment. JUNIOR They swept the building already. Not a single trace of explosives. TAYLOR We sure this time? JUNIOR Yeah. A neighbor called nine-one- one repeatedly, saying she saw a man that fit the description, leave this morning. They walk toward the entrance of the building.
119 INT. CHICAGO - WEST SIDE APARTMENT - LIVING ROOM - DAY The living room is sparsely furnished with only a futon couch, TV stand with TV and a dinner table. On top of the dinner table is a computer and color printer on it. There’s also a few pieces of paper on the table. The room has several CRIME SCENE TECHNICIANS working in various areas of the room. Michael and Taylor stand together at the table. On the table are two printed out photographs inside plastic bags. One of pictures is of the Jewelry store Kansas City blowing up and the other is a picture of the apartment on 34th street blowing up. Michael picks up the picture of the 34th street bombing and looks at it. TAYLOR He took that one with a wildlife camera on a tree across the street. We found it after CPD saw this picture. MICHAEL How the hell did he get back to it? You would need to physically get to the camera in order to download the pictures. The streets are blocked off three blocks in all directions. TAYLOR Posed as a city worker or a cop, maybe. We’re checking with every one there to see if they saw something. Junior enters the room holding a file folder. He hands it to Michael and he opens it. He looks through its contents. JUNIOR He presented a fake Indiana license with a non-existent Gary address when he rented apartment. Also, he signed with his left hand. Just like the other times he provided us with his handwriting. He’s definitely a righty, it’s a little sloppy. The landlord said, there are security cameras at all of the entrances. MICHAEL (frustratingly) Who is this fucking guy? TAYLOR We’ve found a lot of physical evidence. Finger prints, hair and DNA. That should help, right? JUNIOR Even with a rush on it, it’ll be, too late. A week minimum on the DNA, alone. Michael closes the folder and looks at Junior.
120 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - NIGHT Junior and Taylor sit in a cubical looking at a computer screen. On the screen is an image of the bomber entering the apartment building, wearing a baseball cap that obscures his face. They both look on in frustration. TAYLOR How much you want to bet, that every picture of him is like these? Both leaving this morning and entering and leaving this afternoon, his face cannot be seen. JUNIOR He knows the camera’s there. They both sit back in their chair. Michael's conversation didn’t go well with the director. It seams like it’s bothering him. TAYLOR That’s not what’s bothering him. This job doesn’t get to him like that. Junior gives her a curious look. JUNIOR How would you know that? She gives him a stern look. TAYLOR Just do. I’ve worked with Michael Abbott for long enough and so have you. They both look back at the screen.
121 INT. CHICAGO - HOTEL - MICHAEL’S ROOM - NIGHT The room is on a high floor of a skyscraper and the window looks out onto the skyline of Chicago. Along the side of the bed between it and the window, is a desk with a laptop on it. An extremely tired Michael sits at the desk working on the laptop. His briefcase sits open on the bed next to him. On his computer screen are copies of reports that have ATF on the header. KNOCK. KNOCK. At the door. Michael looks at the door and looks at the time on the clock next to the bed. It’s 12:03 AM. He gets up and answers the door. It is an equally tired looking Taylor standing in the doorway. TAYLOR Didn’t wake you, did I? MICHAEL No. TAYLOR Can’t sleep either? MICHAEL No. Come in. He lets her in and closes the door behind her. She walks across the room, takes a seat at the table and Michael returns to his seat at the desk. She looks at his laptop screen. TAYLOR What are you working on? MICHAEL Looking through ATF reports on fertilizer sales. TAYLOR (reading from the screen) Field report, April 3rd, 2008, Bute, Georgia. MICHAEL Looking for something we missed. There’s nothing there but it doesn’t hurt. She glances over to his briefcase and sees the file and picture of the little girl killed in the Kansas City Bombing. She looks back to his tired face. TAYLOR How’s Casey? MICHAEL She’s good, I guess. Her birthday is in two day’s. (glances at the clock) Well tomorrow. I forgot. TAYLOR You’re going to miss it again. You can send her something. MICHAEL Yeah, I guess. I’ll sneak out tomorrow and find a gift. TAYLOR I’m sure, she’ll understand. (pause) You should go to bed. By the way, how do you forget her birthday since its so close to yours. MICHAEL Don't know. Taylor stands, walks over to him and puts her hand on his shoulder.
TAYLOR (reassuringly) Tomorrow is another day. We’ll catch him, Michael. Just like you did with the Whisky River Killer. I'm sure you went through this same thing doing that and you caught that guy. He went to the gas chamber and justice was served. MICHAEL (dejectedly) This is a little different. I spoke to Spears earlier in the afternoon. It’s not good. He said the talking heads in Washington are going to have him take me off of this. TAYLOR Everything will be fine. He puts his hand on top of hers and puts on a fake smiles. MICHAEL Thanks. She turns and leaves the room. Michael watches her leave and his smile disappears.
122 EXT. SPRINGFIELD - THEATER - DAY The theater is a three story tall brick building. Down the street the capital building rotunda can be seen. On the billboard above the lobby of the building is a sign that reads, NOW PLAYING JULIUS CAESAR. 123 INT. SPRINGFIELD - THEATER - DAY The theater is dark and the play is in full swing. It is a full house, about three hundred PEOPLE sitting in the audience. Under several of the seats are bombs. 124 INT. CHICAGO - MARSHALL FIELDS BUILDING - DAY The store is busy and Michael is walking through the girls section of the store. He stops at a rack of clothing, looking at a sun dress with a floral pattern on it. He looks through the sizes. Michael finds the size he’s looking for and pulls in out and looks at it. MICHAEL (to himself quietly) I guess this one. (thinking) God, I suck at this. This was way easier, when I was married. His phone vibrates in his pocket and rolls his eyes. He pulls out his phone, its a text message from Junior. He opens and reads the text message. His face goes white. He places the dress back on the rack and runs for the nearest escalator. 125 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - DAY The office is full of cubicles with frantic FBI AGENTS. Michael walks in from the elevators and Junior spots him from across the room. Junior runs over to him. MICHAEL What happened? JUNIOR A theater just went up in Springfield. The field office there, is already on the scene. Michael, it was a packed matinee showing. There’s at least one hundred dead. MICHAEL Jesus Christ. They walk briskly to the conference room. 126 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - CONFERENCE ROOM The AGENTS are in a frantic commotion in the conference room and is about two times more than the office outside. Junior and Michael enter. Taylor is already sitting in the room and is on the phone. Michael looks around the room and walks over to a chair with his briefcase siting in it and his laptop open on the table. He looks around. The TV in the corner is on and is showing news coverage of the bombing in Springfield. MICHAEL Everyone quiet down. The commotion slowly tappers off. MICHAEL (CONT’D) Where is he going, now? Taylor hang up the phone she is on. TAYLOR Agent Abbott, the play at the theater was Julius Caesar. Michael stands and thinks for a moment. Everyone stares at him. MICHAEL Okay. He’s left use a few clues. First, he tells us where to go.
JUNIOR (interrupting) And it was a trap. Michael gives him an angry look as Junior walks over and stands next to him. MICHAEL Then, he quotes Shakespeare and blows up a theater showing the same play. What easy to look over detail has he given to us? Michael looks around the room at a bunch of blank faces. Juniors attention is drawn up to the TV. He looks stunned as he looks at the images on it. JUNIOR Someone turn up the TV. Michael looks at the TV shortly followed by everyone else. There is a headline on the screen saying, BREAKING NEWS. A NEWS WOMAN is on screen. One of the agents near the TV turns it up. NEWS WOMAN Breaking news just coming in from downtown Nashville. The shot switches from a shot of the News Woman to a shot of downtown Nashville and a smoking high-rise building that has had a bomb go off in front of it. GASPS ring out in the room. After a moment of stunned shock, a look of realization comes to Michael’s face. Michael takes Junior by the shoulder and leads him out into the office. 127 INT. CHICAGO - FBI OFFICE - NIGHT They walk into the office and stop at the doorway. Taylor can be seen in the conference room and is watching them from her seat. MICHAEL What were all of the post marks, for the letters? JUNIOR Two for Kansas City, Chicago, Springfield, Nashville and... (realizing too) Atlanta. He left us a trail? MICHAEL We need to go to Atlanta. Now. We’ll need everything. National Guard, state and local polices and every Federal agent we can get our hands on. We’re going to have to lock down the city. JUNIOR We don’t know where he’s going to strike. There’s no way in hell, we’re not going to be able to get or keep an entire city locked down, today. It will take at two day’s to attempt it. We can’t possibly organize that fast. And if we do manage to lock it down, there’s not a way to keep him from moving in and out. He’s already showed he can do whatever he wants.
MICHAEL We’ll have to find a way. JUNIOR Michael, it’s impossible. And you know that Washington want’s us to be as discreet as possible. What if it's another trap or deception to send us in the wrong direction. Michael nostrils flare in anger. MICHAEL Why, all of a sudden, you’re questioning everything I do? Have you checked out? Have you already moved on to whatever assignment you’re going to take? JUNIOR How dare you, accuse me of questioning your authority, Michael. I have worked for you for seven years. Yesterday, when I said it was nothing personal, I meant it. You’re not going to catch him this way. Michael becomes enraged and the office comes to a sudden quiet. MICHAEL I WILL CATCH HIM! AND NO ONE WILL STOP ME FROM DOING THAT! NOT DIRECTOR SPEARS! NOT THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES! AND MOST CERTAINLY, NOT YOU! They stare down one another and Michael notices the entire office watching him. He runs his hand through his hair and takes a deep breath. MICHAEL (CONT’D) Whatever. Make the calls. I want to be on the ground in Atlanta, this afternoon. Michael walks away, leaving Junior standing there. A very angry Taylor, appears in the doorway and glares at Junior. JUNIOR What? She glares at him angrily and leaves the stairway.
128 EXT. CHICAGO - MILLENNIUM PARK - DAY Michael sits on a park bench watching a man play with his eight-year-old child. Michael then closes his eyes, looking to enjoy the peacefulness of the park. His phone vibrates and he looks annoyed by it. He pulls the phone out and the ID says SPEARS. He answers it, his voice sounding stressed. MICHAEL Abbott. ALBERT (V.O.) Michael, I hear that you tracked him to Atlanta? MICHAEL Yes, sir. His next target should be there. ALBERT (V.O.) I’m on my way there, myself. I’ll meet you at the airport. MICHAEL I’ll look forward to it, sir. ALBERT (V.O.) Michael, are you alright? You sound a little off. MICHAEL I’m fine. I’ll see you in Atlanta, sir. Albert hangs up and Michael lowers his phone. He looks back over to the man playing with his child. Michael looks down at his phone. He then pulls up on his phone a picture of Casey and him at a baseball game, the same picture that sits on his desk. 129 EXT. ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - TARMAC - DAY A private business 737 jet has just taxied up the Tarmac and it’s passengers are being let out. Coming down the stairs from the plane is Michael followed by Taylor and Junior. A YOUNG AGENT is waiting for them at the bottom of the stairs for them. YOUNG AGENT Agent Abbott? MICHAEL Yes? YOUNG AGENT This way, sir. The director wishes to speak to you privately. Michael looks back at Junior and Taylor with a raised eye brow. He looks back at the Young Agent. MICHAEL Lead the way. He reaches the bottom of the stairs and follows the Young Agent toward a small private terminal.
130 INT. ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - TERMINAL - DAY The terminal is small with a few rows of chairs in it. Albert is the only person siting in it, reading a newspaper with grim headlines and pictures of the blown up buildings. There is a TV on one of the walls with the news on. Michael enters and Albert looks up. Albert has a stern and grim face, as he looks up at Michael. ALBERT Come on in Michael. Albert sets the newspaper to the side, as Michael walks up and sits down across from Albert. MICHAEL Good to see you, director. ALBERT I wish I had better news. While you were in the air, our bomber, via special courier, sent a message to CNN. He named Atlanta as his next target. He has gripped this entire city in fear. He also, gave them a picture of you and said thank you for letting him get away. He also, said that a lot people are dying, because he cannot be caught. I’m in a tough spot, Michael. I’ve been told to take you off of the lead in all of this. And I have done that. I’ll be leading this investigation, through it’s completion. They suggested that I put you as far away as possible, so you’re no longer in the media light. That would be a waist. Tomorrow morning, we’re sending you to Nashville to oversee the investigation at the bomb site there. I’m sorry, Michael. Michael’s stress and need to yell out and scream is apparent on his face. It is a look of failure. He keeps his composure, stands and begins to leave the terminal. Michael stops at the door and looks back, as Albert picks up his newspaper. MICHAEL He rigged this hole thing up for us. I couldn’t control it when this thing got away. I’m sorry, I let you down. ALBERT I know. Remember what I told you, a few day’s ago? It’s all politics. Dirty, filthy politics. Michael nods then, leaves the terminal as Albert goes back to reading his newspaper.
131 EXT. ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - TARMAC - DAY Junior and Taylor are loading their luggage into a black sedan. Michael walks up and they both look at him, noticing the look on his face. TAYLOR What did the director say? Michael ignores the question and opens the passenger door of the car, about to get in. JUNIOR (demanding) Michael, what did he say? MICHAEL He said, I’m no longer in charge and going to Nashville. JUNIOR We’re going to Nashville? MICHAEL Not you guy’s. Just me. He gets into the car and shuts the door. Taylor and Junior look at one another with a bewildered and sad look.
132 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - MICHAEL’S ROOM - NIGHT Michael sits at a desk in the corner of the room with ATF reports on his laptop screen. He stares blankly at the screen looking deep in thought. His face looks sunken and dejected. He sits back in his chair and checks the time on his watch. He takes a deep breath and sighs. Michael stands and leaves the hotel room. 133 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - ELEVATOR - NIGHT Michael stands staring up at the display in the ornate wood elevator. The display is counting down the floors till the ground floor. His cellphone RINGS and he pulls it out of his pocket. He looks at the screen on the floor and looks at it in lukewarm look. It says, JESSICA, on the screen. Michael hesitantly presses the button on the screen to send the call to voicemail. MICHAEL Going to regret that. He places the phone back in his pocket and looks back the display in the elevator as he arrives at the ground floor. 134 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - BAR - NIGHT The bar is empty of patrons. The BARTENDER is standing behind the bar cleaning glasses. Michael walks in and find a seat at the bar. He looks up to the TV, which is on the news and is showing images of the bombings. The Bartender walks up to him. BARTENDER What can I get you? MICHAEL A beer... (thinking for a moment) And a double shot of whisky. The Bartender nods and gets his beer. He then reaches under the bar, pulls out a short glass and a bottle of whisky. He pores the whisky and pushes the glass to Michael. BARTENDER Anything else, sir? Michael shakes his head no and points at the TV. MICHAEL Could you change the channel? BARTENDER Getting tired of it myself. The Bartender changes the channel to a baseball game. MICHAEL That’s much better. Thank you. Michael takes his double shot of whisky and drinks it. He cringes slightly, sets the glass back on the bar and takes a drink from his beer. Another man, wearing a button up polo and khakis and has slick back hair, walks into the bar. He is in his mid-forties and his name is GEORGE. MICHAEL (CONT’D) You know what, get me another, please. BARTENDER Rough day? Michael nods his head with a flustered look. George walks up to the bar and sits down next to Michael. He pulls out his wallet and places a twenty on the bar. George speaks with a thick Georgian accent.
GEORGE (to the Bartender) Can I get a scotch on the rocks. The Bartender finishes making Michael’s second double shot and goes to makes George’s drink. Michael stares long and hard at it with a vacant look. George looks over at Michael with curiosity. GEORGE (CONT’D) (to Michael) Boy, it looks like you already need to take it is easy. Before you get hurt, you know. MICHAEL This is the most I’ve drank since I had my kid. The Bartender places Georges drink in front of him. He takes a sip from it. GEORGE Kids will do that to you, I guess. I was always too busy to start a family. What do you do? MICHAEL (hesitantly) I’m not sure anymore. GEORGE That bad of a day. It’s amazing, we work fifty, sixty hours a week. Every last minute of which drags along. Then we go home and they’re unhappy about it. The things that we do to keep the wife happy. MICHAEL Unfortunately, that was part of the problem. (smiles) I’m divorced. She got unhappy with the long hours. Took the house and my daughter. GEORGE So, did mine. George raises his glass in a toast. GEORGE (CONT’D) I’m George. MICHAEL Michael. GEORGE To unhappy lives and wives. Michael takes his glass and raises his. They toast and drink their drinks. GEORGE (CONT’D) Do you at least get to see your daughter? MICHAEL Not as often as I’d like. But, I can call anytime and see her. The last time we spent an entire day together, we went to a baseball game. She had so much fun. GEORGE Those are important memories for a kid. When I was a kid, every weekend, I would go fishing with my dad. Spend an entire day, casting our lines in the river. We wouldn’t catch shit but that didn’t matter. Just me and my dad. I missed those times. Great times. Happy times. MICHAEL Her birthday is tomorrow. It’s the third in the row that I’ve missed.
GEORGE She’ll understand. One day. Michael drinks his whisky, looking unconvinced. 135 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - ELEVATOR - NIGHT The elevator is going up with Michael in it. He has dark bags under his eyes and he is very, very drunk. The elevator stops and the doors open. He teeters back and forth as he walks out. 136 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - HALLWAY - NIGHT Michael rides the wall down the hallway and stops at a room door. He fumbles in his pocket and pulls out his key card. He slides the card and red light flashes. He slides the card again with the same outcome. He raises the card closer to his face and realizes he has the card facing the wrong direction. He flips the card over and tries again. The red light flashes. He groans in frustration. MICHAEL Come on. He tries the handle for a moment and the door is pulled open. Taylor stands in the doorway. She looks half asleep. TAYLOR Michael? He looks away with an embarrassed look. MICHAEL (slurring) Shit, wrong room. I’m sorry. TAYLOR Are you drunk? He still looks embarrassed and laughs slightly. She stares tiredly at him. 137 INT. ATLANTA - HOTEL - MICHAEL’S ROOM - NIGHT The room is dark, the only light comes in through the open shades of the window. Taylor is helping Michael to his bed, which he falls heavily on. He sits and looks at Taylor. He has a bleak and given up look in his face. MICHAEL Sorry. TAYLOR You said that already. Take off your shoes. Michael struggles to take them off. He manages one off. MICHAEL I’m a failure. I’ve fucked everything up. TAYLOR You didn’t fuck up anything and it’s not your fault.
She kneels down and begins to help him take off his other shoe. MICHAEL No. I fucked up everything. My wife hates me. I’m sorry... (correcting himself) My ex-wife hates me and now my daughter hates me. TAYLOR Casey, doesn’t hate you. She gets his shoe off and looks up at him. MICHAEL Yeah, she does. When I talked to her yesterday. She knew I was lying when I said, I was going to be there for her birthday. She was testing me. Then this, fucker. TAYLOR Is he testing you, too? MICHAEL No. He just messing with us. He’s hid himself to well. He’ll get away and fade into oblivion with the likes of the Zodiac killer. After we all die, we’ll only have theories of who he was. He promised that he’d kill one thousand people. Today he’ll get that. (pause) And I’ll be on a plane to Nashville and my daughter will still hate me. I used to think, I was doing this for her. Now, I don’t have a clue, why I do this fucking job. It’s almost as if when that bomb went off five years ago, she lost me in it. That I died. Taylor stares at him with a flustered look and stands up. TAYLOR Go to bed, Michael. MICHAEL Why do you, do this job? Why be an FBI agent? TAYLOR To make a difference. MICHAEL Have you done that? TAYLOR Not most day’s. When I transferred to anti-terrorism, I was coming off of a bad case. We were looking for this twelve year old girl. We didn’t find her in time. I couldn’t live with myself. Now I know, it’s just is, what is. MICHAEL I've always been the guy who caught the fucking Whisky River Killer. The golden boy of solving violent crimes. I failed at that case to. TAYLOR How did you fail at that? It made your career. MICHAEL (laughs slightly) What kind of world is this that I make career on blood and death. It took me eight months to find him and six more victims. Every time I review the case, I find that I could have got him earlier. It might as well have been me killing those girls.
TAYLOR Don't dwell on the past, because that's all you do. She leaves the hotel room and he sits on the bed. He reaches into his pocket and pulls out his cellphone. He brings up the picture of Casey and he at the baseball game. He sees that he has a new voicemail on the screen. It’s from Jessica and he plays it on speaker phone. JESSICA (V.O.) Mike. I know you don’t want to talk to me, it’s just I’ve been thinking. I didn’t mean to say all of those things. Anyway, I know you wont make it in time for the birthday party. She’ll understand. It is, what it is. Bye. MICHAEL What the fuck does that mean? He stares at the phone.
Willow concludes in part five, see below links.
Links to other parts of Willow
- Willow - part one
Part one of the screenplay Willow, which follows FBI agent Michael Abbott as he tracks down an elusive serial bomber.
- Willow - part two
Part two of the screenplay Willow, which follows FBI agent Michael Abbott as he tracks down an elusive serial bomber.
- Willow - part three
The following is continuation of a screenplay for a feature film that is meant to be rated R. This screenplay contains fowl language and descriptions of graphic images. Copyright Austin Marion 2014
- Willow - part five
Part five of the screenplay Willow, which follows FBI agent Michael Abbott as he tracks down an elusive serial bomber.