"In writing fiction, the more fantastic the tale, the plainer the prose should be. Don't ask your readers to admire your words when you want them to believe your story." - Ben Bova [ more quotes ]

"FOUR ROOMS"

Screenplay by

Allison Anders

Alexandre Rockwell

Robert Rodriguez

Quentin Tarantino



MAIN TITLES

As presentation credits begin, we hear Johnny Cash's "Home
of the Blues." Then we see Allison's name, under it Alex's,
under that Robert's, under that Quentin's, then under that
the title logo for Four Rooms, followed by "Starring Tim
Roth as the Bellboy." Then "The Guests" listed in alphabetical
order of all the actors playing guests. After the actors'
names, we...

FADE UP ON A WALL

The camera pans down a weathered wall covered with postcards
from Miami Beach, Florida, the Copacabana, N.Y.C., "Wish You
Were Here" from Niagara Falls, rickshaws and babes on beaches,
etc....

The camera comes to rest on an old photograph of a 1930s
hotel, the "Mon Signor," in its heyday, with a full staff of
30 people posed on the lawn in front.

An old guy with a staccato voice delivers a monologue:

VOICE-OVER
There used to be a staff of fifty in
this place. I'm the only one left
from those days. It all comes down
to one sap: the night-shift bellhop,
that's me. What the hell is a bellhop?
You know where the name comes from?
(silence)
Of course not... It's so simple it's
stupid. They ring a bell and you
hop. You hop to front and center. No
heroes in this line, kid. Just men
doing a job. No questions asked,
none answered. I try to keep it
simple, kid, not too personal...

Another voice of a young man interrupts.

TED
You met any of those old stars?

THE OLD GUY
Stars! Are you kidding me? I took
Rin Tin Tin out for a shit, for
Christ's sakes. I taught Shirley
Temple how to roller-skate. I saw
Fatty Arbuckle regurgitate three
cheese sandwiches right on the spot
you're sitting, kid. What did you
say your name was?

TED
Ted.

THE OLD GUY
Ted, right. I remember Marilyn used
to come down at night and doze off
in the kitchen. She liked the sound
of the fans out back spinning around.
Sure, these were stars, kid. Errol
Flynn used to call me "Alibi." You'll
pick up a few stories yourself, kid.

TED
I don't think so, not like yours.

THE OLD GUY
What do you think a star does when
he goes to the bathroom, kid?

TED
Beats me.

THE OLD GUY
He pulls his pants down and takes a
crap just like you and me. Take my
word for it.

A wisp of smoke passes over a napkin pinned to the wall with
a lip print on it signed "Marilyn." The camera pulls back to
reveal Ted and the Old Guy sitting on a foldout cot in a
small back room of the Hotel Mon Signor. The old man is
dressed in a striped T-shirt with a bellhop's cap on. He
looks like an old pirate. Next to him on the bed sits Ted, a
young guy with a bellhop jacket draped over his knees. The
old bellhop takes a long drag off a big cigar.

THE OLD GUY
Camacho!

TED
Who?

THE OLD GUY
The cigar. Cuban. A good cigar,
wrapped in Miami. I get a box of
them every Christmas from the chairman
of the board. I think he sends them
to me to keep my mouth shut. It's
tough not to get a little personal
in this business.

The old bellhop takes a hit off his cigar and stares down at
his cap, lost in thought.

TED
What do you mean?

The old guy passes the cap over to Ted.

THE OLD GUY
Put it on.

Ted puts the cap on.

THE OLD GUY
Frankly, you look stupid... like the
Philip Morris guy. I can't believe I
wore that thing for fifty years. You
keep it.

The Old Guy gets up from the bed and throws a jacket on.
Pulls a few postcards off the wall, throws them in an old
straw suitcase, and slams the lid down. He heads for the
door. Ted follows.

THE OLD GUY
Stay away from night clerks, kids,
hookers, and marital disputes.

The Old Guy pauses for a second and looks Ted dead in the
eye.

THE OLD GUY
Never have sex with the clientele.

TED
No way, not me. You got any other
advice.

THE OLD GUY
Always get a tip.

The door slams shut on the back room.

INT. HOTEL LOBBY--TWILIGHT

The big empty lobby of the Mon Signor. You can tell that at
one point this used to be a swank place. It still is, kinda.
It's also kinda decrepit. The concierge -- a snappy, fast-
talking, red-haired young woman in a blue blazer named Betty --
stands behind the reception desk. The old man, suitcase in
hand, makes a beeline through the lobby, heading toward the
front door. Betty sees him.

BETTY
Sam! Hey, Sam, wait a minute!

The Old Guy stops in his tracks and turns around.

THE OLD GUY
What?

Betty comes from behind the desk.

BETTY
I just want to say good-bye.

THE OLD GUY
Who are you?

BETTY
Uhhh, Betty. The concierge. Your
boss.

The Old Guy squints his eyes at the young gal.

THE OLD GUY
Oh yeah. Gotta light, sister? Goddam
cigar went out.

BETTY
Yeah, sure.

She speaks to the Old Guy as she lights his cigar and he
puffs away.

BETTY
I just want you to know, from the
owner and all the staff, your fifty
years of service have been an
inspiration to us all. You're a legend
in your own time, and the Mon Signor
will never be the --

THE OLD GUY
Just forward my cigars, Red.
(He turns around the
walks out, saying
over his shoulder)
Aufwiedersehen!

Betty is left standing in the lobby. Ted appears behind her
in his bellbody uniform, sans cap.

TED
Sam the bellboy. Now there was a
man.

BETTY
Yeah. Oh, hi, Teddy. Ready to start
the night shift?

TED
Yeah.

BETTY
Well, let me buy you a drink.

TED
You wanna buy me a drink? I'm starting
my shift.

BETTY
You're not an alcoholic, are you;
one drink won't kill you.

TED
Yeah, sure.

They walk out of frame. In the empty frame we

SUPER: NEW YEAR'S EVE 7:00 P.M.

INT. BACK ROOM--NIGHT

Betty and Ted sit in the back room, both with drinks in their
hand. This dialogue is to be delivered rapid fire, Howard
Hawks style.

BETTY
After fifty years, Sam retires, and
you're taking over the night shift.

TED
Correct.

BETTY
You're filling some mighty big shoes.

TED
Oh, I know.

BETTY
Sam was a legend in the hotel
business.

TED
Oh, I know...

BETTY
A bellhop's bellhop.

TED
An inspiration to us all.

BETTY
He ran the night desk for fifty years,
all by himself.

TED
An amazing man.

BETTY
No desk clerk. No night man. No help.
Just fuckin' Sam, and his wits.

TED
A man alone.

BETTY
And you're gonna do the same.

TED
I know.

BETTY
Tonight.

Ted spews his drink.

TED
Tonight!

BETTY
Yes, tonight.

TED
I can't.

BETTY
Yes, you can.

TED
No, I can't. I never worked the night
shift before.

BETTY
Oh night shift -- smight shift.

TED
We were supposed to work it together.

BETTY
I know, but I can't.

TED
Why not?

BETTY
I'm having a New Year's Eve party.

TED
Since when?

BETTY
Actually, I'm not having it. My
roommate is. And there's this guy.
German guy. He's gonna be there. And
so am I.

TED
I can't run this place by myself.

BETTY
Oh, sure ya can.

TED
No, I can't.

BETTY
Sam ran this place by himself for
fifty years.

TED
Yeah, and he had fifty years of
fuckin' practice, too. I haven't had
a day.

BETTY
Look, Teddy, calm down --

TED
-- Don't call me Teddy.

BETTY
Ted, the night's cake. It's easy.
The day's when it's busy. During the
night there's nothing to do.

TED
It's New Year's Eve.

BETTY
Which'll make it less busy than
normal. Ever worked on Christmas?
Unless you sell turkeys, business is
dead. You just got butterflies, that's
all.

TED
What I have ain't butterflies. I
can't handle this hotel all by myself.

Betty slows the scene down.

BETTY
Okay, let's calm down a minute. Slow
it down, cool it off. Let's just
talk.

TED
You can say any goddamn thing you
want --

BETTY
-- Ted? I thought we were calming
down? I thought we were cooling off?
No hostility. Say good-bye to
hostility. We're just talking.

TED
Okay... okay... okay... I'm calm,
I'm cool, let's talk.

BETTY
Ted, in a nutshell, all you have to
do is hold the fort. It's New Year's
Eve. Most of the guests are going
out. You'll just be giving them a
little nod as they come staggering
in at three... four... five... in
the morning. Nobody's having any
parties, a few get-togethers, but no
parties. You got about three people
checking in tonight, that's it. The
only variable is Chester Rush in the
penthouse.

TED
Chester Rush? The guy from The Wacky
Detective?

BETTY
Yeah, him and his entourage checked
in last night. They're in the
penthouse. The only reason I refer
to it as a variable is that he's a
movie star. Ya never know about movie
stars. I'm tellin' ya, Ted, it's
cake.

Betty takes a piece of paper and writes her number down.

BETTY
(continuing)
And look, if you have any problems,
call me at the party.

Ted thinks about it for a moment.

TED
Okay.

BETTY
Great --

TED
-- For fifty bucks.

BETTY
Fifty bucks!

TED
You're shirking your duties for this
Nazi. For that you pay a price, and
the price is fifty bucks.

BETTY
One, Horst is not a Nazi. Two, that's
not a fair price. You're taking
advantage of the situation. Twenty
bucks. Now, twenty bucks is a fair
price.

TED
Yeah, but what you're doin' to me
ain't fair. And, you are completely
and totally taking advantage of me
and your position. So fifty bucks is
the perfect price.

Betty begrudgingly digs in her purse.

BETTY
Okay, but don't be a pussy. You don't
bother me unless it's an emergency.
In fact, for fifty bucks, you better
not call me unless the fuckin'
building's burning down.

She gives him the money.

BETTY
Get ready to take the desk.

Betty leaves.

Ted sits in the chair, takes another drink, and prepares
himself for the night.

FADE TO BLACK

STORY TITLE CARD:

ROOM 321
"STRANGE BREW"

FADE IN:

EXT. THE MON SIGNOR HOTEL--DUSK

Ted, the bellboy, meets his first guest of the evening, as a
taxi unloads her luggage. To his warm surprise, the guest is
a Beautiful Mediterranean Goddess (actually, we will come to
see she is not technically a goddess, but a High Priestess).
She is about 25 years old, speaks with an Italian accent and
is dressed in Gypsy garb. She is Athena.

Ted takes Athena's luggage onto his cart. But one item in a
woven Moroccan bag proves to be unbearably heavy. Athena is
concerned as he attempts to lift it.

ATHENA
Pleeze be careful -- my God. You
have no idea...

Ted strains as he uses all his cojones to lift the insanely
heavy bag onto the cart. Athena tips the cab driver, stingily.
The driver winces and gets in the cab. Ted has now managed
with grunts and groans and strained blood vessels to put
this thing on the cart. The cab skids away. Athena looks at
Ted, who is out of breath.

ATHENA
I'm usually a good tipper, but this
one -- this cab driver -- he had
green all around him. I don't like
that in a man.

Ted wheezes and pounds on his chest.

TED
Green? Is that bad? Like you read
auras or something like that?

ATHENA
Something like that.

TED
Yeah, well what color are you seein'
around me... how's the tip lookin?

ATHENA
I see purple... in your face, and...

As if she can't help herself, Athena's eyes are strangely
drawn to his crotch.

She frowns, confused by this impulse. Ted appears to be
charmingly oblivious.

Athena looks back into his face.

ATHENA
...you're okay.

Ted touches his face -- as if searching for the "purple" in
it -- and moves the cart inside, discreetly checking out his
crotch and giving her a confused side glance.

INT. FRONT DESK--DUSK

Ted shifts hats to check the girl in. He checks her
reservation.

ATHENA
Athena Z.

TED
(scratching his head --
weird name, okay)
You're booked in the Honeymoon Suite --
just one night? With all this luggage?

ATHENA
I will only need to stay till sunrise.

TED
Okay... and how will you be paying?

ATHENA
With gold.

He looks at this wacky Gypsy chick numbly -- she pulls out
her Gold Card and smiles.

EXT. ELEVATOR--DUSK

The doors open and Ted and Athena emerge upon the third floor.
Ted follows Athena with the cart down the hallway to her
room.

AT THE HONEYMOON SUITE DOOR

Ted opens the door, then lifts the easiest bags first. In
the center of the room is a Jacuzzi with hokey plastic cupids
poised with urns on each side. A dormant fireplace looms
beyond the still hot tub.

Ted stares at the heavy bag with anxiety -- then looks in
front of him to Athena as she rubs the round plastic head of
a little Cupid and mumbles, "Perfect."

Then, arms open wide, chin lifted to heaven, eyes closed,
she mumbles a faint incantation. Then she does a belly-dance
wiggle and turns to Ted, who is truly perplexed.

ATHENA
Well -- the other bag -- I need it.

TED
Right.

He starts to lift it, again straining and turning purple. He
laughs sickly.

TED
What the hell you got in here, lady?
Nuclear weapons?

She relieves him of the task and effortlessly picks up the
bag.

ATHENA
(dryly)
The White Cliffs of Dover.

Ted is stunned as she slings the bag over her shoulder and
pauses to pull a 10 spot out of her cleavage. She hands it
to him. Ted is grateful and disoriented.

ATHENA
The others will be coming soon. Send
them, pleeze.

Ted nods, confused by "the others," and walks off with the
cart. Then he turns from outside the doorway.

TED
Oh -- I forgot to show you how to
turn on the Jacuzzi.

But Athena is ahead of him -- she flips a switch and water
begins to flow from the baby cupids' urns into the hot tub.

ATHENA
I been in dis' place many New Year's.
So... you send the others to me,
huh. Go now.

As she says this, the door closes with a strange force,
shutting Ted out. Athena takes the bag to the bedroom of the
suite.

IN THE SUITE BEDROOM

A round bed with pink tuck'n'roll headboard. It's impossible
to imagine having an orgasm in this room -- unless it were
achieved by laughing.

Athena carefully removes a large, beautiful white slab of
stone from her tapestry bag. She caresses it and carries it
like a baby to the bed and places it in the very center, the
head of the rock resting on dusty heart-shaped pillows.

Then she removes from her bag a pink negligee and matching
high-heeled slippers.

And these she places with reverence on the bed.

ATHENA
On this night, oh great goddess Diana,
we restore your virgin flesh and
bring you back to real life.

CLOSE ON the rock slab. We hold the artifact.

ATHENA
Soon -- I take you to the pond for a
cleansing. Well, it's a swimming
pool, but it will be under the setting
sun, okay?

INT. FRONT DESK--DUSK FALLS

Just as Ted is recovering from the mystery of this first
guest, Elspeth arrives.

She has skin like marble, the body of Venus, piercing blue
eyes, blond hair and is dressed all in black clothing, like
Honey West in a rubber dress. She carries several bags, and
a silver sword on her shoulder.

TED
May I help you?

ELSPETH
I... we... have a reservation.

Then she snaps, irritated, behind her.

ELSPETH
Kiva!

ANGLE ON a young punk rocker chick with long orange hair, a
long leather coat, wearing a tight T-shirt with studs spelling
"PUSSY" across her breasts. This is Kiva.

Kiva is kicking the tar and nicotine outta the cigarette
machine. Just as Ted's eyes grow wide with anxiety, several
packs of smokes drop into the juvenile delinquent's hands.

KIVA
Wait up, gawd! I had to get supplies
for this boring ass night.

ELSPETH
(to Ted)
We have a reservation in the Honeymoon
Suite.

TED
Oh yeah... you must be one of "the
others." And what're you carrying --
the Rock of Gibraltar?

She stares at him without humor. He fumbles for the key. He
walks around the desk to help her with her black crocodile
luggage. Jars clang inside. He is ready to go, but Elspeth
turns to lecture Kiva on the hazards of smoking, as Kiva
lights up.

ELSPETH
What'd I tell you about smoking?

KIVA
You smoke.

ELSPETH
That's right -- I smoke, and I'm
addicted to it, and I don't want the
same thing to happen to you.

KIVA
(in game-show host
voice)
"Hello -- welcome to this week's
edition of the Hypocrite of the Year
Award --"

As Kiva goes off on her impression of a game-show host,
Elspeth is growing increasingly rageful, like a mother with
an unruly child. Ted waits, luggage in hand.

ELSPETH
Kiva! That's enough --

She cuts Kiva's ramble off. Kiva blows smoke defiantly.

KIVA
You're not my mother!

ELSPETH
Yes I am.

KIVA
Then why're we sleeping together?

Ted looks on uneasily at the relationship that is beginning
to unfold here.

Elspeth checks his reaction and becomes self-conscious at
his scrutiny.

ELSPETH
Well... I didn't mean it... literally.
I... I happen to be the only one
who... cares about you --

But her wild child looks off, bored. Elspeth turns to Ted,
flustered.

ELSPETH
Please -- take us to our room!

Ted smiles uneasily and reaches to relieve her of her sword,
but Elspeth quickly slams her palm on the sword and shoots
him a piercing glare. He jumps back with a light nervous
laugh. He leads the way to the elevator.

AT THE HONEYMOON SUITE DOOR

The couch has been set out here in the hall, as well as coffee
tables, lamps, and the TV. Elspeth and Kiva enter the room.
Athena is gone. As Ted stumbles around the furniture in the
hall, he peers in the room and see a transformation. With
most of the furniture removed, candles and incense and flowers
are beginning to form an altar around the fireplace.

But oddest of all is the pink-tinged water swirling in the
Jacuzzi and pouring from the cupid urns. A sprinkle of white
powder on the carpet encircles the hot tub. Elspeth hands
him a tip as he gawks at the circle.

ELSPETH
Flea powder. One of the others is
bringing her cat.

Ted starts away again, perplexed. He turns for one last look
to see Elspeth kneeling before Kiva, who sprawls on the floor.
He shakes his head and leaves.

ELSPETH
You're gonna have to wait in the
other room.

KIVA
Why?

ELSPETH
Because I said so.

KIVA
I'll watch TV.

ELSPETH
You can't watch TV because the noise
will interfere with our ritual.

Kiva looks around the room and spies the TV in the hallway.
She turns to Elspeth with sarcastic concession.

KIVA
Okay... Mommy.

Elspeth bristles as the brat saunters off to the bedroom.
Elspeth enters the sacred circle, stands before the altar,
whips out her sword, and makes a ceremonial gesture pointing
the sword upward, perfectly centered between her breasts.

Kiva, behind Elspeth's back, exits from the bedroom doorway
into the hall and comes back in, lugging the TV into the
honeymoon bedroom.

Elspeth kneels before the altar. Athena enters the room with
the "cleansed" artifact and lays the slab in the center of
the altar upon the heart-shaped pillows as Elspeth lays her
sword next to the rock. The women look upon the union with
tender affection.

ATHENA
Soon -- our goddess will come. I
will go get her negligee.

Athena stands up but her reverie is dispelled as she shrieks!
Loud TV suddenly blasts from the bedroom and Kiva the brat
is trying on the pink negligee over her clothes. Athena takes
the negligee off the irrepressible youth.

ATHENA
What are you doing! Have you no
respect -- who -- who is dis girl?

ELSPETH
Kiva. My friend. Kiva, turn off the
TV! I can't leave her at home --
she's on probation and I gotta keep
an eye on her.

ATHENA
Well, Elspeth, your friend cannot
stay here during the ritual. She may
be one of your kind, but she is not
one of us.

ELSPETH
She stays!! Or I go -- along with my
offering!

The women have a stare-down. Then Athena calls out --

ATHENA
TURN OF THE FUCKING TV, MAN!

KIVA
(in a seductive pout)
Make me...

Elspeth becomes anxious with jealousy. Athena is exasperated
as she firmly demands from Elspeth --

ATHENA
Let's not forget -- I am the High
Fucking Priestess. Deal with dis
girl!

Elspeth defers to Athena with remembered reverence and
respect. She bows apologetic and scurries to the bedroom.

ATHENA
(eyes lifted to heaven,
wearily)
Tell me -- did we have these problems
in Salem? I don't think so...

IN THE BEDROOM

Elspeth swallows her rage and approaches the brat with a
soft touch.

ELSPETH
Kiva... you know what I love about
you?

Kiva smirks... yeah, she knows.

ELSPETH
Your sweet side.

KIVA
And what do I get if I'm sweet?

ELSPETH
You get whatever you want. And you
know what else I love about you?

KIVA
(seduced now)
What?

ELSPETH
Your nose.

And saying this, she kisses Kiva's nose and leaves the room.
Kiva is quieted now. As Elspeth closes the bedroom door, she
has the last word.

ELSPETH
And I saw you checking her out.

Kiva slinks back on the bed, put in her place -- for now.

IN THE HALLWAY/EXT. ELEVATOR--DUSK

The doors open and Ted pushes a cart of expensive designer
luggage -- and lots of it -- behind yet another Gorgeous
Gal. This one is Jezebel, a Southern beauty, fawning over
her cat, as she carries nothing else, and proceeds down the
hall like a Southern princess.

JEZEBEL
(talking to her cat
in baby talk)
Oh you little stinker... oh you sweet
little muffin. Yes... Mama loves the
baby.

AT THE DOOR

Jezebel bursts in, chattering.

JEZEBEL
Well, this is just darlin'! Just
darlin' Hi-dee, girls...

Ted carries all her bags inside awkwardly. Again, the place
has become all the more transformed with wild canopies of
exotic cloths and fixings. Elspeth and Athena are hard at
work on a strange nature sculpture as Jezebel enters. She
stands inside the powdered circle and before the hot tub,
which now has dark blue water swirling inside. She presents
her cat -- upward toward heaven -- frees the cat, bares her
breasts and sucks in the vibes: "Ahhhh."

Ted settles the bags down, hoping for a peek at her charms,
but her back is to him. The kitty rubs on her leg. She picks
it up and presses it against her bare breasts, petting it
sweetly. She winks and hands him a tip.

JEZEBEL
Toodle-loo.

And saying this, she shoos him away. Through the glass doors
to the bedroom, she sees Kiva sprawled on the bed, writing
on herself.

JEZEBEL
Well -- I see Elspeth has herself a
new lil' fool -- what the hell is
she doin' here on our night of annual
ritual?

ATHENA
(wearily)
I have sanctioned her presence, as
long as she behaves. Come on -- there
is more work to be done to welcome
our great Diana.

KIVA
I WANT ROOM SERVICE!!

ELSPETH
Why do I always attract girls who
are looking for a babysitter?

JEZEBEL
Well now, honey, maybe Juvenile Hall
ain't the best place to find serious
relationship material.

Elspeth seethes at her. Jezebel acts blithely innocent.

IN THE HALLWAY

Ted is walking from the room with the cart. His face is etched
in a mask of perpetual frown as he looks at the tip in his
hand -- at least these lunachicks tip well.

Waking him out of his deep mood is Raven. Another female
intoxication, she wears a short skirt, all done up in Native
American, Southwestern themes. No shoes.

But she carries a small, old handmade broom. She moves down
the hall, blissed-out. Ted makes eye contact, despite himself.

RAVEN
I'm looking for the room for making
love.

TED
You might be referring to the
Honeymoon Suite. Straight thata way...
you can't miss it -- see all that
furniture in the hallway --

RAVEN
Oh I know the way. I just wanted you
to know that I knew where I was going
and that you needn't bother yourself
with me. The others are here -- great!

TED
(wearily)
Oh yeah -- it's so great -- it's
fantastic.

RAVEN
(in deep empathy)
Ohhh... I know it all seems very
strange but you're coping with us
much better than the bellboys of
past New Year's.

TED
Past New Year's?

RAVEN
Oh yes -- we've been coming here
every New Year... for a long time.
Thanks for your patience.

TED
Oh hey -- no problem -- wreck the
place. Bring in cats. Ruin the carpet
with flea powder, pour paint in the
Jacuzzi. Throw the furniture out
the... where're your bags?

RAVEN
I travel very light.

Ted looks down at the broom at her side, her bare feets, her
thick dark hair. It keeps getting weirder. She wanders off.

INT. FRONT DESK--NIGHT

The last of the lovely girls arrives. She is different from
the others. She looks like a farm girl, very Earth Mother,
with a tablecloth halter top and skirt, sandals, and a simple
scarf over her long dark curls. She carries two bags by
herself and holds a small black pot under her arm. She is
Eva.

TED
(already weary of
these girls)
Yeah, yeah, Honeymoon Suite.

EVA
Oh... yes... I'm late.

She lowers her eyes, worried.

TED
All right -- lemme give ya a hand.

EVA
Oh... no, that's all right. I can
carry them by myself.

She is so sweet and sincere that he feels like a heel to
have been irritated with her. He picks up her bags.

TED
I'm a man doin' a job -- no hero.

Eva smiles, beautifully.

EVA
Well gosh -- thank you!

IN THE ELEVATOR

Ted holds Eva's hippy sacks as she holds her black pot. There
is a shy quiet tension here.

EVA
Tell me, how long have the others
been here?

TED
About an hour.

Eva's heart sinks. They arrive at the door. He carries her
bags in.

IN THE SUITE

The room is entirely transformed into a beautiful glowing
palace with an elaborate altar, both earthly and the other-
earthly. The other four girls are arranging the altar as Eva
enters.

ATHENA
You are very late, Eva.

EVA
I'm sorry, Athena. I was attending a
birth and the placenta was late in
coming.

Ted is slightly queasy. She hands him a tip and smiles, then
takes it back.

EVA
Oh, wait, lemme give you a little
more than that...

Ted's no fool, he waits while Eva looks through her change
purse.

ELSPETH
Which birth is more important to
you, that of a mortal or that of a
goddess?

EVA
All life is precious... but I do
apologize for being late, Elspeth.

JEZEBEL
Back home, they jist yank on the
umbilical cord, do a Karate chop on
the mama's belly, and them things
come right out.

EVA
They do that here, too, Jezebel, in
the hospitals, but it causes
hemorrhages. I fed the mother a bowl
of comfrey tea and it brought the
afterbirth down perfectly. The couple
are going to use it for fertilizer
to plant a lovely tree for their
baby.

KIVA
Oh wow -- if they were really back-
to-nature, they'd eat it, like other
mammals do.

CLOSE ON Ted's face as he gets thoroughly grossed out.

RAVEN
In some Native American cultures,
they dry the umbilical cord, grind
it to a fine powder, and put it in a
leather pouch that the baby wears to
ward off evil. But burying the
placenta is also a very sound
ecological practice -- 'cause of the
oxygen it carries.

EVA
(cheerfully to the
others)
Yes -- because you see when the
placenta detaches from the uterine
wall...

TED
(wincing in disgust)
Uh, thank you, ladies -- I'll be
going now. If you need anything --

Eva places a nice tip in his palm.

ATHENA
Wait. We do need a few things.

Ted sighs as Eva enters the circle with her black pot. She
kneels softly, holds her hands in piety before the altar,
and softly incants as she offers her pot and places it on
the altar. The stone and sword and flowers now rest here on
pillows covered in chiffon scarves. The negligee hangs from
the mantel, the slippers underneath as if expecting someone
to materialize into the garments.

ATHENA
We need fresh rosemary from the
kitchen. Mostly what we need is from
the kitchen. Hey, are you listening?

Ted is watching Eva, enchanted.

TED
Yeah, yeah, rosemary.

ATHENA
And a little bit of sea salt or Kosher
salt if you don't got no sea salt. A
bottle of spring water -- Italian
please, not French shit.

KIVA
And some french fries!

ELSPETH
Kiva, shut up.

ATHENA
(irritated)
And some ginger, two of the eyes of
a trout fish, and a piece of raw
meat, liver if you have it.

KIVA
(whining)
I want fries -- you dumb jerks with
your stupid fucking ritual!

ATHENA
Shut up, you little shit.

ELSPETH
Don't talk to her that way!

Ted has scribbled down the items as she speaks. He looks at
this list and these girls and shudders as he walks away. He
turns, points at Eva.

Ted smiles at this angel of a girl. She smiles back. But, as
she looks him in the eyes, he feels a strange buzzing
connection happening. He holds his head, almost swooning
with dizziness. Athena smirks.

ATHENA
Get to work, man.

Ted comes out of his daze, looks at the list again and huffs
off. After he goes, the girls begin to bring forth their
most treasured offerings in ornate ancient bottles, vases or
vials.

Jezebel folds her arms and clears her throat in the direction
of Kiva, sitting idly on the edge of the blue water Jacuzzi,
with her feet dipping irreverently in the water.

ELSPETH
Kiva...

KIVA
What?

ELSPETH
You have to go in the next room now.

KIVA
Oh, wow, like I'm bummed out that I
can't watch.
(whining at Elspeth)
I'm bored!

ELSPETH
UP!

She climbs up the stairs, trying to pull the brat to her
feet.

KIVA
Don't put me in there by myself.
I'll miss you way too much.

ELSPETH
Kiva, don't do this to me.

Kiva sees a bit of weakening here; she takes her feet out of
the Jacuzzi. She begins to speak softly.

KIVA
Please... if you just lemme... I'll
play dress-up with you, the way you
like it... you know what I mean...
remember...?

Elspeth begins to weaken. But continues to pull the brat up.
Kiva pours on softer seduction.

KIVA
We can pretend and I'll do it
exactly... the way you want it...
with the egg whites and the kilt.

Elspeth is now fully seduced. Kiva takes Elspeth's hand and
presses it lightly on her face.

ELSPETH
You mean... like last week?

Kiva nods. Elspeth is enthralled, but from a disgusted "ick"
sound from Jezebel, Elspeth realizes she's revealing this
side of her life -- in front of her coven. She nervously
looks around and see all the coven looking at her: a disgusted
Jezebel, an understanding Raven, a preoccupied Eva and an
impatient and stern Athena.

Elspeth comes to her senses, straightens her posture.

ELSPETH
We'll talk about this later, Kiva.

KIVA
(angrily)
No!

She turns on Elspeth and bites her hand. Elspeth pulls her
arm away and grabs Kiva by the hair.

JEZEBEL
Aw, really now -- child abuse?

ELSPETH
You stay outta this!

ATHENA
I demand this stop now, Elspeth!

Elspeth lets go of Kiva's hair. Kiva jerks away from her.

KIVA
I'm running away from you!

ELSPETH
Fine. Go ahead. And I'll call your
parole officer and she'll find you
and send you back to Eastlake!

Kiva stomps off into the bedroom.

ATHENA
Now that the fucking melodrama is
over, can we start the goddamn ritual --
pleeze?

Elspeth enters the powered circle. Each girl takes off her
shoes. They anoint themselves with oils.

ATHENA
We are communing here on New Year's
Eve to bring to life the great goddess
Diana, who was turned to stone in
this very room forty years ago today.

The girls moan in sleepy, eerie agreement as they begin to
sway within the circle.

ATHENA
Diana, great beautiful one, we make
these offerings to you, that we may
undo the wicked spell which deprived
you of the seed of your lover, your
virginal blood, of your very life.
We now form the symbolic rock with
our bodies.

And saying this, the girls all form a "rock" with their bodies
gracefully draped one upon the other. Music begins, and slowly
they start to unfold from the rock.

The girls each find their place in a semicircle around the
Jacuzzi. Some bare their breasts, other strip off a layer of
clothes. They anoint their arms with water from the Jacuzzi.

They begin a lovely dance, snaking their way around the
semicircle. The first one to go from one end to the other is
Athena. She then proceeds up the stairs and positions herself
between the altar and the Jacuzzi. She steps forth with a
bottle to the altar and pours it into the Jacuzzi.

ATHENA
On this night, in this hour, we Call
upon the Ancient Power O Goddess
bride, I offer thee Milk from a
mother's sweet titty!

Each of the girls moans eerily. Athena places the bottle on
the altar and bows away. She joins the circle as Elspeth now
steps forward with her offering in a vial.

ELSPETH
To reverse the evil which has been
done I make this offering to the
Divine One A whore not, an innocent
was, For whom I seized a virgin's
blood.

JEZEBEL
Goddess of Light, Goddess of Lust,
To undo this awful spell is a real
must. To bring you life and get you
high I offer the sweat of five men's
thighs.

The girls moan loudly as they sway. Jezebel places her
offering in the hot tub and bows out, returning to the circle.
Now Raven comes forth with a small leather canteen. She
unscrews the lid as she offers in her opiate stupor.

RAVEN
Diana, oh great one, we live without
sun Until this wicked curse is undone.
In hope that you live, and to us
appear, I have collected a year's
worth of tears.

She pours liquid into the mix, as the witches moan. Now it's
Eva's turn. Eva continues to sway, not moving forth to the
altar. The girls keep their eyes closed as they sway, waiting
for Eva's offering. Athena finally gives her a push and she
goes.

Eva kneels before the altar. She produces a silver bottle
with a chain on its cap and neck. She timidly begins to
incant.

EVA
Great Goddess Diana, fail you I will,
I was to bring fresh sperm from my
Bill. I had him erect, and his semen
would follow But alas I was hot, so
hot that I swallowed.

The moans turn to wails as the girls GASP and SHRIEK! Athena
opens her eyes, wildly.

ATHENA
You stupid little witch! You swallowed
the sperm! Aye-yi--yi!

Elspeth opens her eyes and folds her arms, smirking bitterly.

ELSPETH
It just shows what an amazing lack
of control you have over yourself,
Eva!

JEZEBEL
Honey, why didn't you just use your
hands? Didn't your mama teach you
not to put them things in your mouth?

RAVEN
I understand though...

Eva bursts into tears. Athena is firm.

ATHENA
There is no time to cry over swallowed
sperms. You're gonna have to get
some, baby. You have one hour to
prove what kind of witch you really
are.

Just then: a knock at the door.

ATHENA
(calling out)
What do you want?!

TED
Ted... the bellboy.

Athena smiles and turns to Eva.

ATHENA
Mr. Bellboy, come right in!

Ted opens the door. His eyes bulge out as he looks upon the
fleshly feast. He steps back. They giggle seductively, all
except Eva, who sniffles, red-eyed.

Amazingly, Ted's attention is captivated by Eva's sorrow,
not by the naked charms of the other witches. She shyly covers
her breasts. Sensitive to her shame and sorrow, he looks
away and steps from the door to fetch the room-service cart.
Athena directs the others to put on their shirts. Ted wheels
in the cart.

TED
Here's the things you asked for. Oh,
and uhh, sorry, but I'm not gonna
pick the eyes outta this dead fish.

He points to the trout. Elspeth picks it up, flings the eyes
into the Jacuzzi, and tosses the trout out of the window.
She smirks at him comtemptuously.

ATHENA
(handing Ted 50 bucks)
Okay, mister, here's your fifty-dollar
tip, only, you have to do one more
thing... make our little Eva smile.
Can you? We'll leave you alone.
(to Eva, firmly)
And don't use your mouth!

The girls step out. Athena turns to Eva and points to her
watch, then holds up one finger. Eva looks up, worried. The
door closes on her and Ted. She looks at Ted and sighs. He
covers her with a shawl.

IN THE HALLWAY

The other witches listen at the door.

ELSPETH
If she doesn't get his goop in ten
minutes, I'm going to take him myself.

JEZEBEL
Ha! That'll be a first for you.

ELSPETH
Oh shit -- Kiva!

She runs back in for her bratty girlfriend, who is already
sneaking out the bedroom door.

ELSPETH
And just where do you think you're
going?

KIVA
Well, gawd -- I need a candy bar or
something -- you haven't fed me all
day. I'm getting all shaky. My blood
sugar's really low.

JEZEBEL
Elspeth -- honestly now -- some
babysitter you're turnin' out ta be!

ATHENA
Enough, girls. I will collect fresh
earth. Jezebel, I want you to gather
damp moss. Raven, you bring me a
birch branch.

Elspeth, you go feed your terrible girlfriend. We meet back
here in one hour and let's all have faith that Eva can get
this guy off.

The witches disperse.

INT. HONEYMOON SUITE--NIGHT

Eva sits among pillows before the altar as Ted stands in
front of her. Ted is trying his best to make poor Eva smile.
But no matter what his antics, she looks off sadly.

TED
Help me out, lady. I gotta earn this
fifty bucks!

EVA
Oh look, they don't care if I smile
or not! All they want is...

Ted waits; she sighs and rest her chin in her hand.

EVA
You won't understand, believe me.

She begins to cry tearfully again.

TED
Try me. I've been around, y'know.

He postures proudly, all puffed out. Eva looks at him
helplessly. And he paternally encourages her to explain.

EVA
Well... okay. The five of us --
Elspeth, Jezebel, Athena, Raven and
me -- are a coven.

TED
Ha, like a coven of witches?

EVA
Yes.

TED
(stunned)
Oh.

He looks around the room: QUICK CUTS of candles, iconography,
jars of lurid substances, unknown body parts of animals woven
into the nature sculpture... and are those tongues in that
can? Ted's getting the creeps, but again puffs himself up.

TED
I knew that!

EVA
(getting calmer)
And you see, our coven has spent
forty years trying to perfect a ritual
to undo a wicked curse put on our
goddess Diana.

TED
Gee, you don't look a day over twenty!

EVA
Oh... ha ha... I mean the witches
before us tried and failed. But
Athena, our High Priestess, discovered
a great potion to reverse the evil
spell which turned our beautiful
goddess into an old rock.

TED
(looking at the rock)
Yeah? Is... is that her?

Eva nods, looking lovingly at the stone.

EVA
She was a beautiful virgin. An
entertainer by trade, but a great
sorceress by design. It was here in
this very room, on her wedding night,
a jealous rival placed the curse on
Diana.

TED
She turned to -- that -- here?

EVA
Yes... and her young husband turned
into a pink fish! They found him
swimming in the pool in circles.
While our dear goddess: a stone in
her honeymoon bed.

Ted frowns as he ponders all this. Eva takes a photo from
the altar and hands it to Ted.

EVA
This was Diana.

CLOSE ON photo: a Blond Bombshell in full-on Betty Page
attire, a bare-tittied pinup girl, playfully spanking a girl
in bondage with a spiked high heel.

TED
This girl here? This is the goddess
Diana?

The photograph slowly comes alive. Diana stops spanking the
girl and unties her.

She pulls the girl (in the black satin mask) up off her lap
and makes the girl stand. The women face each other and break
into a cheek-to-cheek tango.

CLOSE ON Ted as he shakes his head. Are his eyes playing
tricks on him?

TED
I hate to tell you this, but I kinda
doubt she was a virgin.

EVA
Oh, but she was! She had lovers, but
she saved that for marriage. Which
is the example I've tried to follow:
to do everything but that till I
marry...

She begins to sob again. Ted comforts her.

TED
Hey, don't cry... a virgin is a rare
and beautiful thing. If you say she
was a virgin, I'll believe it.

EVA
Well, it doesn't matter now... and
she won't be resurrected tonight
'cause I failed her. I let my whole
coven down!

TED
Wait a sec -- that rock was gonna
turn back into this?

He holds up the photo. Eva nods.

TED
Now, that would be something worth
seeing!

EVA
Only, not now -- we were each supposed
to bring something -- a life fluid.

TED
(wincing in disgust)
If this is gonna be like one of those
afterbirth conversations, I don't
think I wanna hear this.

EVA
Only... I swallowed it...

TED
You swallowed what?

Eva looks off. Ted searches his brains, thoroughly sickened
now.

TED
You mean, you were supposed to
bring... like... like a guy's... and
you...?

She nods; he winces, queasy. Eva looks at him, helpless.

EVA
And now, you're my last chance!

TED
(laughing)
Yeah, sure.
(then -- panic)
Whoa, what? You want my -- for the --
witchy poo -- ahh no -- no way --
nope. Besides, it's against hotel
policy. I was warned: "No sex with
the clientele"!

Eva sobs, pleading. She throws off her shawl, baring her
lovely breasts, and reaches her arms around his neck. He
keeps backing off. Unbeknownst to him, he is already doing a
ritualistic shuffle.

TED
Ha, c'mon now, joke's over.
(seeing this is no
joke)
Hey, we're gonna step in the flea
powder.

EVA
That's not flea powder, that's sacred
dust ground from the horns of Albino
goats.

TED
Right! I knew that!

He is backing away, into the circle, as she comes for him,
soft and sweet. Her eyes are again putting the magic hex on
him, as he tries to resist her gaze.

TED
What's a nice girl like you doing in
a coven, anyway?

EVA
Well, see, what I really want to do
is be a midwife. I've attended four
births already! I can prevent vaginal
tears and everything.

TED
(trying to dodge her
hexing eyes)
Well, that's a good thing! A guy
doesn't like surprises down there.

All the while she is stepping toward him into the circle.

EVA
I joined the coven to attain greater
understanding of my feminine power
so I could become a truly great
midwife!

TED
(the hex working now)
Oh, well, I see you've been gaining
a lot of insight into your... girl
powers...

Eva sweetly takes his hand and places it on her breast.

EVA
Do you really think so?

TED
(buckling under the
temptation)
Well, yeah, I'd say that seems to be
the case...
(she licks his neck;
his eyes roll back
heavenly)
Ohhh, God! Betty's gonna kill me!

EVA
Who's Betty -- your girlfriend?

TED
No. My boss.

EVA
Oh good!

TED
Oh no!

They fall into a kiss, as she begins to remove his cap. She
moves him toward the Jacuzzi, closer and closer.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. HALLWAY--NIGHT

Ted pushes his room-service cart. He is flushed. Puffed up.
Lights a cigarette, takes a great big, satisfied drag. Eva
runs to the door dreamily, her naked body wrapped in her
shawl. She passes him a card.

EVA
My phone number in Topanga. Call me?

TED
(cocky)
Sure, baby. Yeah, I'll give ya a
call.

She smiles and shuts the door. The other witches are arriving
with supplies from the garden. Kiva, now having raised her
blood sugar, sucks on a lollipop, a sunny girl. She talks to
Raven, who carries a birch limb.

KIVA
What's that used for?

RAVEN
It's a birch branch, symbolizing
eternal life. You can also use the
bark for a tea which assists in astral
travel.

KIVA
Hey -- I wanna be a witch!

The other girls roll their eyes as Elspeth smiles proudly.
Ted blows smoke at them and pushes his cart off down the
hall. The witches run inside the room.

IN THE SUITE

Eva sits, blissed-out, in the center of the circle, smiles.

EVA
I'm a woman now!

ATHENA
But where is his "stuff"?

EVA
(pointing to the
Jacuzzi)
We did it right there, in the big
cauldron!

JEZEBEL
Ooohhh honey, you're gonna be sore
tomorra! Didn't your mama teach you
that water strips a girl's
lubrication?

RAVEN
Sex in water is great in the movies,
not in real life... but you will
learn. As we all did.

JEZEBEL
Yeah, when she can't walk...
(to Elspeth)
I guess you wouldn't have those kinds
of problems -- without penetration.

ELSPETH
No. And virtually no cervical cancer,
either.

ATHENA
Okay, girls, enough Sex Education
101, let's get going with our ritual,
goddammit.

Athena regally leads the ritual as they all bare their breasts
again. Kiva throws off her shirt to join in. As she does, we
see black bondage tape on her nipples. Elspeth darts a quick
look at the tape, looks at the other witches -- not sure she
likes this -- but she goes with it. The witches sway in a
circle, eyes closed, as Eva makes her offering.

EVA
Goddess Diana, I offer you The jism
of one I wooed for you That you may
live and know such bliss Of getting
laid by a guy like this.

The witches all incant.

ALL OF THE WITCHES
So must it be. Three times three
times three.

They march half-naked as they moan and revel in eerie cries.
The Jacuzzi begins to bubble and boil. Their cries heighten;
the potion bubbles over.

DISSOLVE TO:

HOURS LATER

Athena reads from a huge leatherbound book, The Book of
Shadows, full of potions and spells. Four discouraged witches
pack their bags. The room has been restored to its worldly
under-splendor. Kiva uses the remote on the TV... so much
for witchcraft. The slab of rock remains a slab.

ATHENA
I don't understand what went wrong.

ELSPETH
I say Eva pulled one over on us.

EVA
What?

JEZEBEL
Honey -- Eva was wearing the face of
someone just fucked good... and the
best actress in this world, or any
other, can't fake a thing like that!

ELSPETH
Exactly -- if she was fucked so good,
how could she save his come?

RAVEN
It could be done...

ATHENA
Girls, knock it off.
(she looks up from
the book)
Maybe... maybe it needed to be the
sperm of a virgin male.

EVA
(dreamily)
He was no virgin!

The witches sadly collect their things. Athena, deep in
thought, strokes the slab.

ATHENA
Let's leave her here, with the sword,
until dawn. I will come back for her
before checkout time. I just... feel
too sad to carry her away before the
sun comes up to warm her.

They all agree. They pick up their bags and head out.

JEZEBEL
(cuddling her cat)
I can't believe we have to carry our
own bags out! My mama would have a
hissy fit!

KIVA
(flirtatiously)
I'll carry your bags.

ELSPETH
(firmly)
You're carrying my bags!

They leave the room. Jezebel's cat leaps from her arms as
she hoists her luggage. Eva walks out satisfied, thought
perhaps a little sore -- "ouch," she says, and smiles. Athena
takes one last look at their goddess slab.

ATHENA
Next year, we try again -- with virgin
sperm.

She closes the door on the Honeymoon Suite (till next New
Year's Eve!).

FADE TO BLACK.

FOUR ROOMS

FADE UP ON:

INT. MON SIGNOR LOBBY--NIGHT

Ted behind the desk, on the phone. We only hear his side.

TED
Oh, Jesus, what did I tell you? Do
you want milk and cookies, or do you
not?
(pause)
I can't turn on an adult station
without permission from your parents.
(pause, he checks his
computer)
That's not what the machine tells
me.
(pause)
You be good and you'll get milk and
cookies, but for now leave me alone,
please. I'll be up later to put you
both to sleep.

He hangs up.

TED
(to himself)
Goddamn kids.

SUPER: 1:00 a.m.

The phone rings again.

TED
Room Service.

INT. ROOM 404--NIGHT

A small party is going on. A long-haired Yuppie Scum type in
on the line. Music BLARES. People dance in background.

YUPPIE SCUM
What room am I in?

INT. FRONT DESK--NIGHT

BACK AND FORTH

TED
This is the front desk, sir.

The Yuppie turns away from the phone and speaks to Real
Theodore.

YUPPIE SCUM
What room are we in?

REAL THEODORE
How should I know? I just got here.

YUPPIE SCUM
(into phone)
You know, don't you have one of those
light things?

TED
If you care to go to the door and
look on the other side, you'll find
the room number.

YUPPIE SCUM
(to Real Theodore)
Call my assistant and ask her what
floor we're on.

REAL THEODORE
Who's your assistant?

YUPPIE SCUM
The girl you party with every night.

REAL THEODORE
(to himself)
Who?

TED
I'm here alone, sir.

REAL THEODORE
It's room 404, I think.

YUPPIE SCUM
I could have sworn we were on the
fifth floor.

REAL THEODORE
Right. 404.

YUPPIE SCUM
(into phone)
Right. 404.

TED
What do you need, sir?

YUPPIE SCUM
(to Real Theodore)
What do we need?

REAL THEODORE
Ice.

YUPPIE SCUM
Ice?

REAL THEODORE
Ice.

YUPPIE SCUM
(into phone)
Ice.

TED
Ice.

YUPPIE SCUM
Yeah. Ice.

TED
Right, sir. Ice. 404. I'll be with
you momentarily.

CUT TO:

STORY TITLE CARD:

ROOM 404
"THE WRONG MAN"

INT. DARK HALLWAY

Ted saunters down a hallway with a butt hanging out the corner
of his mouth and a bucket of ice swinging at his side. He
pulls up at a door on which the faded numbers read something
like "Room 404."

Ted knocks on the door. After a moment, the latch is thrown
and the door swings open. Ted cautiously steps into the dark
room.

INT. ROOM

TED
Anybody home?

A DEMONIC CACKLE cuts through the darkness.

MAN'S VOICE
No one here but us chickens.

TED
Say, it's pretty dark in here, sir.

MAN'S VOICE
What do you expect, Theodore, a
fuckin' floor show?

TED
Do I know you?

MAN'S VOICE
I don't know. Do you?

In a flash the lights switch on and Ted finds himself staring
down the barrel of a pretty intense-looking .357 Magnum,
cocked and ready to fire. At the other end of the gun stands
a 50-year-old man, Sigfried, who sports a Cheshire Cat smile
and a "just try fuckin' with me" look on his face. Sigfried
isn't the only person in the room. Directly behind him sits
a beautiful young woman, Angela, gagged and bound to a chair.
Ted drops the bucket to the floor.

TED
I brought your ice.

SIGFRIED
That's cute. In fact, the whole
getup's kind of cute. The monkey
suit's a nice touch, honey puss.

TED
This has to be a mistake. Is this
room 404?

SIGFRIED
Theodore? What do you take me for,
Theodore?

TED
A very upset man?

Sigfried reaches in his pocket and throws a handful of
assorted stimulants into his mouth, chewing on them like
they were breath mints. Sigfried thrusts his hand forward,
gripping Ted by the throat, and leads him to Angela.

SIGFRIED
(to Angela)
I am an upset man, Theodore.

TED
How do you know my name, sir?

SIGFRIED
I'm psychic, Theodore.

TED
Look my name is Ted, actually, and I
have no idea what's going on here,
but I've obviously come at a bad
time.

SIGFRIED
Let's not belabor the fact that you
have no sense of timing, Theodore.
The fact is you're here.

Sigfried turns to Angela.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
And I couldn't think of a better
time for you to introduce me to your
beau than on New Year's Eve.

TED
Oh fuck, there's a mistake. You're
fucking wrong here. My name is
Theodore, yes! My mother named me
that and I hate the name. But I'm a
fucking bellhop. People call me Ted.
I work here.

Suddenly, with great force, Sigfried slams the butt of his
pistol smack into Ted's temple, sending him to the floor.
Ted looks up at Sigfried in shock.

SIGFRIED
Look, I'd love to sit here all night
with you talking about things like
when you broke in your first mitt --
(pause)
That was insensitive of me, wasn't
it, T H E O D O R E? But let's cut
to the chase, okay?

TED
Okay.

SIGFRIED
So apologize!

A tense silence fills the room. All eyes are on Ted, who
can't figure out what the fuck this guy wants.

TED
For what?

Sigfried looks hard with disbelief at Ted, who winces back.

SIGFRIED
You are really beginning to annoy
me, Theodore.

Sigfried throws another handful of pills into his mouth.

TED
Look, obviously you two are working
something out and if I could help
you with your problem I would.

SIGFRIED
What are you saying? Are you saying
I got a problem? Are you trying to
say I don't give her what she needs?
That I'm FUCKING INSENSITIVE!!

TED
Look, is this about another man? Or
something?

Ted has struck a raw nerve. Sigfried's mood swings
drastically; he bends down next to Ted.

SIGFRIED
Let's get our ABC's right, here,
Theodore. Theodore, right?

TED
Ted's better.

SIGFRIED
Ted, okay... Are you saying my wife
cheats on me?

TED
I didn't say that... I...

SIGFRIED
Oh, for Christ's sake, Theodore,
this is about as intimate a situation
as you can get, you, me, and Angela
here. It's pretty cozy. To say nothing
of how stupid an idea it is to lie
to a man with a loaded gun without
considering the possible response. I
demand an apology!

The phone rings.

SIGFRIED
Don't move. I've got to take this.

Sigfried glances at it. Then to Angela. He picks up the phone.

SIGFRIED
(into phone)
What?
(pause)
We ain't got any needles here, kid.
Just a big fucking gun.

He listens to the other line, says good-bye, and hangs up.

SIGFRIED
(to Ted)
Now, where was I? Oh yeah, I remember.

Sigfried kneels next to Ted and assumes a prayer position.

SIGFRIED
I want you to pray for forgiveness,
Theodore.

Sigfried, hands clasped together, signals for Ted to do the
same. The gun lies at his side. Ted considers a bold move,
but thinks better of it. Sigfried's eyes pop open. He cuts a
look to Ted, signaling him to assume the pose.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
Now say after me, "I apologize..."

TED
I apologize...

SIGFRIED
For what?

Ted looks to Angela for help. She can only stare back with
intense, wide-open eyes.

SIGFRIED
For fucking what?

TED
That I said you might have been
unfaithful?

SIGFRIED
"That I said you might have been
unfaithful?" Listen, Theodore, you're
in church here... you're kneeling in
front of an altar. Truth... truth is
all it hears. Say the following, "I,
Theodore, must humbly and sincerely
apologize for saying that you fucked
another man!"

Ted repeats what Sigfried has told him. This appears to have
a calming effect on Sigfried, who gets up off the floor,
turning his face to Angela.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
Satisfied?

Angela nods.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
Do you accept the fucking apology?

Naturally, Angela says nothing.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
You always gotta get the last word,
don't you? It's one way with you,
Angela, isn't it? I give and I give
and I get nothing back.

Sigfried turns to Ted.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
She just sits there waiting for me
to jump through hoops...

Angela attempts to speak through the gag. Both men wait with
bated breath for a response. Sigfried's had enough.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
Stupid me, for a second I thought
you were going to say something...
something like, "I'm sorry." HA!
"I'm sorry." You're absolutely right,
love cakes, I wouldn't want it that
way. That's one thing you can say
about Angela. She'll never do anything
she doesn't want to do. If the feeling
ain't there, she just isn't going to
do it. There is nothing in this world
as fucked as a woman who gives when
she doesn't want to. Never let that
happen to you, Theodore. It makes
you feel very little indeed.

Ted beckons Sigfried.

TED
You mind if I...?

SIGFRIED
Go ahead. Spit it out.

TED
I don't mean to upset you further,
sir, but I think she was trying to
say yes.

SIGFRIED
Are you condescending to me, Theodore?

TED
Absolutely not, I would never do
that.

SIGFRIED
Why don't you just say it?

TED
Say what?

SIGFRIED
That you think I'm an idiot.

TED
I would never say that.

SIGFRIED
You think you're superior to me,
don't ya, Theodore? You don't think
I notice there is a gag in the woman's
mouth.

TED
Of course you do.

SIGFRIED
Naturally "of course." And do you
know how I know that?

TED
How, sir?

SIGFRIED
Because I PUT THE GAG IN HER MOUTH!
I'm gonna let you in on a little
secret about communication, Theodore.
It's all in the eyes...
(points the gun at
Ted)
Him?
(turns the gun on
himself)
Or me? Him or me? No one? Okay. Let's
drag it out.

Sigfried empties the last of the pills into his mouth, heaving
the empty bottle over his shoulder. He takes off, disappearing
into the bathroom.

INT. ROOM

Ted finds himself alone with Angela. They lock eyes. Angela
implores Ted to lean forward. Ted sizes up the situation:
His chances of making it to the door are slim due to the
fact that he would have to pass by the bathroom door. Ted
paces back and forth in front of Angela, who struggles to
get his attention. He whips around and they face off in what
appears to be a game of charades. Ted finally gets the point
and cautiously removes the gag from Angela's mouth. Angela
spits an old sock out.

TED
What!

ANGELA
We don't have time to play charades
here, asshole! Untie me quick.

TED
Listen, lady, I don't know what in
the hell is going on here, but I'd
appreciate it if you would explain
to that nutcase that he's making a
big mistake.

ANGELA
Look, whether you like it or not,
you're in the middle of a situation
here you can't just wish your way
out of.

TED
But I've never seen you people before,
we're complete strangers.

ANGELA
Everyone starts out strangers, Ted,
it's where we end up that counts.
Hurry up.

Ted wrestles with the idea of whether to untie Angela or
not.

TED
I don't know if I can do this. It's
too hard.

ANGELA
Life is hard, Ted. You ever stopped
to consider how many times you change
your underwear in a lifetime?

On nervous impulse, Ted begins the calculations.

ANGELA
I don't mean literally, you ignoramus.

TED
What?

ANGELA
Forget it, listen to me. There's a
gun in my suitcase behind the bed,
it's loaded...

TED
I'm not going to shoot anybody.

ANGELA
Fine. Get the gun and I'll shoot
"anybody."

TED
And make me an accessory in the murder
of your husband?

Ted collapses to his knees in front of Angela.

TED
That's not fair. It just isn't fair.

ANGELA
Get a fucking grip on yourself. First
off, who says he's my husband? And
second, we are a long way from fair
here, fair is back in jolly old
England eatin' crumpets and sipping
on tea.

Ted collects himself.

TED
Tut. Tut. Tut. Not so fast. Well,
maybe there are two sides to this
thing.

ANGELA
There are two sides to a plate, still
you only eat off of one. Now GET THE
GUN!

TED
So why's he got you tied up?

ANGELA
I'm a werewolf, Ted! Get the gun!

Ted is at a loss as to what to do. Angela turns on the charm.

ANGELA
Come on, Ted. Come over here just
for a minute. You can do it. Come
on, Ted. You look like a good guy.

Ted creeps towards her.

ANGELA
That's it, Teddy. You look so much
more attractive when you're self-
assured.

Sigfried suddenly comes to life... He's heard from the
bathroom belting out "Life is but a dream... she-boom, she-
boom."

ANGELA
(she panics)
Quick, he's coming back. Put the gag
back in, and remember the gun!

Ted hurries to replace the sock in her mouth.

TED
Nine thousand, three hundred and
twenty-two times, to the best of my
estimation.

INT. ROOM

Sigfried coughs, sending a chill up Ted's spine. Ted whips
around to discover Sigfried leaning up against the door to
the bathroom.

SIGFRIED
I was just beginning to think I could
trust you, Theodore. Silly me.

Ted's fingers are frozen over Angela's lips.

TED
I was just trying to help her breathe
a little.

SIGFRIED
Don't let me stop you, Teddy. You
don't mind me calling you Teddy, do
you?

TED
That's fine.

SIGFRIED
I used to have a little bunny rabbit
named Teddy, it looked real cute
nibbling on Angela's ear. Only problem
here is you're no bunny rabbit,
Theodore, and it really fuckin' razzes
me to picture you doin' it. But don't
let me stop you, Teddy... no need to
play sneaky-poo.

Ted starts to back toward the door.

TED
Look, man, if this is some kind of
Voodoo thing and you want me to have
sex with your wife, there is
absolutely no way.

SIGFRIED
(shouts at the top of
his lungs)
I said, nibble, asshole! Now!

The directness of Sigfried's command, coupled with the SOUND
of a trigger being cocked, forces Ted to approach Angela.
Angela is a stunning beauty, and Ted being kind of a shy guy
makes for an awkward situation. Ted leans forward. As he
closes in, Angela's eyes close.

TED
(whispers)
Sorry, lady.

Ted pulls up short of actually nibbling on Angela.

SIGFRIED
What's the matter, no whiz left in
the cheese? I'm not cramping your
style, am I?

TED
Look, I'm not playing this game
anymore.

Sigfried yanks Ted backwards. He wraps his arms around him.

SIGFRIED
It's almost all over, Theodore, and
soon you can go home to Mommy.

Ted struggles to free himself from Sigfried's powerful bear
hug and blasts out the following monologue.

TED
My name is not Theodore, it's TED,
TED, TED, T... E... D... TED... NOT
TEDDY, NOT THEODORE... TED... Yes,
my mother did me the service of naming
me Theodore and I haven't a clue as
to how you know that because everyone
who knows that lives a long way away
from here. Do you have any idea what
it's like to go to school where all
the other kids' parents are in jail
doing time for crimes like grand
larceny, aggravated assault, burglary
and murder, and you get stuck with a
mother who names you Theodore and
dressed you up in little matching
pink outfits with, get this, a little
blue bow fucking tie! Well, I'll
tell you what happens. Pretty soon
Theodore becomes "Theo the Thumper,"
and when Theo the Thumper gets old
enough, he packs his bags and goes
thousands of miles away where he can
put the whole bloody mess behind
him. So, if you don't mind, shoot me
now, because no one is going to call
me that again. My name is Ted, okay?
Got it? TED!

Sigfried has followed the entire tirade in stunned silence.
He takes a step toward Ted and offers him his hand.

SIGFRIED
Sigfried.

TED
What?

SIGFRIED
My name is Sigfried.

TED
Sigfried?

Sigfried cuts a "Something wrong with that?" look at Ted.

SIGFRIED
Yah, Sigfried.

TED
Nice to meet you, Sigfried.

Ted cautiously takes Sigfried's hand.

SIGFRIED
Very impressive, Ted. "Theo the
Thumper?"... Ouch. It's a deal, kid.
Ted it will be.

TED
Thanks.

Sigfried holds onto Ted's hand. The soft sound of distant
fireworks pops in the background. Car horns and a muffled
countdown signal that it's New Year's.

Sigfried moves uncomfortably close to Ted and from out of
nowhere bolts forward, planting a wet kiss right on Ted's
mouth. Something snaps in Sigfried. He is either really
getting off on this or he is caught in the grips of a seizure.
He doubles back on the floors. Ted and Angela watch as he
flops around like a flounder with the cocked gun waving all
over the place. Ted wipes his mouth with his jacket sleeve
while trying to dodge the barrel of the gun.

TED
You okay, mister? I'll get help!

Sigfried manages to steady the gun and point it directly at
Ted. He signals for Ted to go to the bathroom.

TED
(continuing)
That's the wrong door, sir.

Sigfried grabs Ted by the leg and shove the barrel of the
gun into his crotch.

Sigfried pulls Ted's face closer to his.

SIGFRIED
Get me the nitro... it's in the
bathroom cabinet. Now!

Ted rushes into the bathroom, leaving Sigfried a babbling
mess behind.

CUT TO:

INT. BATHROOM--SAME TIME

Ted enters the bathroom, which appears shaken by an
earthquake. Towels and wet clothes are all over the place.
An evening gown is flushed halfway down the toilet and pills
are everywhere. Sigfried is shouting from the other room to
hurry. Ted checks the cabinet, searching for a bottle marked
"Nitro." No luck.

Ted spots a small window set above the toilet.

He figures this is the best chance he's got to make a break.

Ted goes for it. He manages to get his head and one arm
through the window before he gets stuck. His legs dangle in
the bathroom. Struggle as he may, he can only hit the toilet-
bowl lever, which sends a loud FLUSH SOUND out through the
apartment.

SIGFRIED (O.S.)
(shouting in the
distance)
It's no time to take a leak, Teddy,
I'm fucking dying here!

EXT. BATHROOM WINDOW--NIGHT

Outside the window, Ted's in another world. He's almost safe.
It's a strange feeling, kind of like bathing in warm water
in paradise, knowing a huge shark is ready to rip his ass
off. He can see the flickering red glowing light from the
witches' room from the floor below.

EXT. BATHROOM WINDOW AND BELOW--NIGHT

Ted sees Eva bopping naked past the window. He shouts her
name out, to no avail.

The MUSIC drowns out his voice and they ignore his calls for
help. The blood rushes to his head. He lets himself hang
there for a moment. He wonders how many other people have
found themselves in situations like this before him. Probably
everyone. Right next to his face, Ted recognizes a bloody
hand print. It's not his blood.

EXT. BATHROOM WINDOW AND ABOVE--NIGHT

Ted hears a sound from above and twists himself around,
spotting a young man (previously seen as the Yuppie Scumbag
on the phone) leaning out of the window directly above him.
After a quick moment of sizing him up, Ted gathers himself.

TED
Hi...

No answer. Something's wrong with the guy, all the blood is
drained from his face and he is mumbling something.

TED
Listen, I'm stuck here in a situation
that I can't even begin to explain,
but would you be so kind as to get
help? Could you call the police,
please?

Silence.

TED
(continuing)
You okay?

The young man manages to belt out the word "ice" just before
hurling a mouthful of vomit toward Ted. It takes all Ted's
strength to dodge the puke and pull himself back into the
bathroom. He falls back on the floor.

He props himself up and checks for damage. He notices
something odd... the room is silent. No Sigfried. He walks
into the bedroom.

CUT TO:

INT. HOTEL BEDROOM--MOMENTS LATER

Ted looks around the still room. No one's there.

TED
Sigfried?

He heads toward the door and, from out of the corner of his
eye, he spots Sigfried's hairy leg. Sigfried has passed out
on the floor. Angela's chair has been knocked on its side.
Ted races over to help lift her back up. He pulls the gag
from her mouth. Angela jumps all over him.

ANGELA
Where's the fucking nitro?

TED
I couldn't find it!

ANGELA
You took long enough. Untie me, for
Christ's sake, you fucking upset him
and he's dying.

Ted struggles to untie Angela.

TED
I thought you wanted to kill him.

ANGELA
You'd make a great cop, Theodore.

The knots are all over the place and a real bitch to untie.

TED
I can't handle this alone, I'd better
get help.

Ted turns on a dime and runs smack into Sigfried, who's been
taking in the whole conversation.

SIGFRIED
I tie a pretty good knot, don't I,
Ted?

TED
Thank God you're okay...

SIGFRIED
Never felt better.

Angela hears Sigfried's voice from behind her back.

ANGELA
You bastard!

SIGFRIED
(to Angela)
Come on, honey, don't get mad. It
was just a little test, and I'm glad
I did it because now I'll know forever
that you really do love me. Truly
and deeply.

ANGELA
If the simple fact that I didn't
want your bloated, dead body lying
out on the floor is love, then no
wonder we find ourselves as we are
at this very fucking moment.

SIGFRIED
Oh, no. I heard you and there was
genuine care in that voice. Can't be
denied. Can it, Ted?

TED
I think you're right and, if you
just keep this kind of open dialogue
going, you'll go a long way to
resolving this misunderstanding.

Ted edges his way toward the door.

TED
(continuing)
You'd be surprised what happens when
people just listen to each other
without succumbing to all that pain
and anger.

ANGELA
You heard shit, monkey boy. Easy for
you to say after you fuck another
man's wife. You should at least have
the guts to stand by your convictions.

Sigfried turns an icy eye on Ted, who has given up all hope
of ever getting out of the room.

TED
That's a lie, Sigfried. I swear to
God.

Angela continues her tirade.

ANGELA
When I think of all the times you
were inside me promising me a better
life, it makes me want to puke.

Sigfried slowly raises his gun, pointing it directly at Ted's
chest.

TED
Why are you doing this? What have I
ever done to you people?

ANGELA
What didn't you do, stick man?
Unfortunately, you don't have the
balls to back up the actions of your
huge cock.

The words hit Sigfried like bullets to the chest... his legs
weaken.

SIGFRIED
(whimpering)
He's got a huge cock?

TED
She's lying again, mister. It's not
that big.

SIGFRIED
Show it to me.

TED
Come on, man, she's lying. Can't you
see she's fucking with you?

ANGELA
Put it this way, God made up for
what he did to Gumby with Ted here.

SIGFRIED
Show it to me.

ANGELA
Show him your cock, Theodore.

Sigfried runs over to Angela and kneels in front of her.

SIGFRIED
Stop talking about his cock, will
you?!

ANGELA
It's hard to stop talking about
something so huge. I could go on and
on about his cock, bone, nob, bishop,
wang, thang, hotrod. Hump mobile,
Oscar, dong, dagger, banana, cucumber,
salami. Sausage, kielbasa, schlong,
dink, tool, Big Ben, Mister Happy,
prick, disk, pecker, peter, pee-pee,
wee-wee, weiner, pisser, pistol,
joint, hose, horn, middle-leg, third-
leg, meat, stick, joystick, dipstick.

Angela is on a roll. She fires the words at Sigfried, hitting
him pointblank. He staggers. He pleads with her to stop,
covering his ears. Ted watches the man crumble.

ANGELA
(continuing)
Junior, the little head, little guy,
Rumple Foreskin, Tootsie Roll. Snake,
one-eyed monster, one-eyed wonder,
shaft, sword, meat whistle, skin
flute, love muscle, Roto-Rooter,
instrument, banger, rammer, ramrod,
cherrypicker, log, pole.

Sigfried tries jamming the sock back in her mouth to stop
the flow; she manages to give him a "fuck of a bite" in the
process. Meanwhile, Ted figures this to be his moment to
make a move and bolts for the door, only to be tackled by
Sigfried at the one-yard line. After a struggle, the two men
rest on the floor, catching their breath in a relaxed embrace.

SIGFRIED
Please, don't leave me. I'll call
you Ted from now on.

TED
It's not me, mister, I swear.

SIGFRIED
Personally, I don't give a fuck,
Ted, it's just I don't want to be
alone right now. I'm feeling a little
vulnerable.

Sigfried heaves the gun over his shoulder, grabs a half-empty
bottle of Jack Daniel's, and passes it to Ted, who takes a
hit.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
No guns, okay? Just you and me, Ted.
You know my father used to say that
forgiveness is the only thing that
evil can't sink its teeth into.

TED
That's beautiful.

SIGFRIED
Kind of nice down here on the floor,
isn't it, Ted?

TED
Yes, actually.

SIGFRIED
Things take on a whole new
perspective... You'd like my trust,
wouldn't you, Ted?

TED
Yes I would.

SIGFRIED
I just got one thing to ask you and
I'll let you go.

TED
Okay. Okay.

SIGFRIED
Tell me straight now.

TED
What?

SIGFRIED
What was it like?

TED
What was what like?

SIGFRIED
You know, you and her.

TED
Oh, for fuck sake, Sigfried, what do
you want me to say?

SIGFRIED
Either way you're fucked, right? You
ever gonna see her again, Theodore?

TED
If I ever saw her again, I'd run the
other way.

SIGFRIED
Promise?

TED
I promise.

Sigfried releases Ted and stands up.

SIGFRIED
You're lying, but I can respect that,
Ted. If you told me, it would no
longer be a secret, and secrets have
a power, kid. You open that box and
they disappear forever. A bad secret
will rip you apart, but the good one
are all you got. In the end, when
all the people you knew are dead and
gone, all you'll have left are you
secrets. And when you die, the box
is open and it all blows away --
dust to dust -- all the anger,
jealousy, desire and love just blow
away.

Sigfried throws his hand out to help Ted up.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
So you know what I say, let's call
it a truce, kiddo.

Sigfried takes Ted by the hand and leads him to an open
window. Ted is overcome by the sweetness in Sigfried's voice
and follows him to the window willingly.

The two men look out into the dark Los Angeles night.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
I'm a man of love, Theodore. Love is
all I live for.

TED
I can see that.

SIGFRIED
Maybe to a fault.

TED
Don't beat yourself up over it.

SIGFRIED
That's nice of you to say, Ted, but
I probably should make a clean break
of it, cut her loose and get my own
place. I just can't imagine living
without her. Do you think I should
seek professional help?

TED
It's not for everyone, but maybe in
your case it could help.

SIGFRIED
You ever been out on the ocean at
night?

Ted shakes his head.

SIGFRIED
(continuing)
I have... scary as a motherfucker,
all that darkness around you. It's
like a big black carpet rolled out
as far as the eye can see. Sometimes,
if you're lucky, you'll see a light.
It could be as small as a little
spark, but it will cut a path straight
through all that blackness, straight
to you. It could be another boat, or
some distant fire on an island, but
that light will shed a shining path
of diamonds cutting through mile
after mile of darkness to lie at
your feet. That's love, Ted, it's
like a path of light in an ocean of
darkness.

Ted and Sigfried stare out of the window in peace, transfixed
by the glimmering lights of the city. A loud SHOT rings out,
shattering the still moment. The two men spin around. Angela
stands there with a smoking gun hanging at her side.

Sigfried drops to his knees. Ted checks him out, no blood.
Angela has fired the gun into the floor below. Ted looks up
at Angela. Angela opens the chamber of the pistol and hands
the bullets to Ted.

ANGELA
(to Ted)
You'd better go check to see if I
killed anybody downstairs.

Sigfried is bent over, silently weeping on the floor.

TED
You people gonna be okay?

Angela sits next to Sigfried and gently strokes his back.

ANGELA
We're fine, Ted.

Ted points to a tray with half-eaten food on it.

TED
Would you like me to...?

ANGELA
Another time, Ted.

Ted slowly walks toward the door and takes one last look at
the strange couple at rest in the corner of the room before
closing the door behind him.

CUT TO:

INT. HALLWAY--MOMENTS LATER

Ted walks down the hallway, lost in thought. An energetic
Young Guy with a bouquet of flowers plows into him.

YOUNG GUY
Happy New Year, buddy.

TED
Happy New Year.

YOUNG GUY
I was just in room 404, what a party!
You know where room 409 is at?

TED
Beats me. It's somewhere around here.

The guy takes off in the direction Ted's walking from. Ted
suddenly realizes who this guy is and whips around, shouting
to the Young Guy.

TED
(continuing)
Hey, what's your name?

The door SLAMS on room 409.

FADE OUT

FADE TO BLACK

STORY TITLE CARD:

ROOM 716
"THE MISBEHAVERS"

FADE UP

THE FRONT DESK

SUPER: 10:30 p.m.

Ted is relaxing at the front desk. He breathes slowly. He
finally has one moment's peace after an already long night.
He even has a chance to straighten his tie.

The phone RINGS.

TED
Front desk.

CUT TO:

ROOM 716

CLOSE-UP of a cigarette hanging out of a Man's mouth as he
speaks into the telephone.

MAN
Bottle of Moet et Chandon. Fast.

Man hangs up the phone and stubs out his cigarette into an
already overstuffed ashtray by the bed. Man turns around to
face the camera. He is a dark and handsome Latin male in his
mid-30s. Dangerous. Impatient.

He walks toward the camera as he continues straightening his
tie.

He stops at the door of the bathroom and watches his Wife
and two kids get ready for the party. Wife seems to be a
beautiful woman in her mid-30s. The children are Sarah, nine,
and Juancho, six.

Man strikes up another cigarette and finishes his tie.

He watches his Wife comb Juancho's hair down and to the side
like an idiot.

Not being able to stand it anymore, Man tears Juancho away
from his Wife and snatches the comb.

MAN
Give me that...

Man begins to slick Juancho's hair back.

MAN
There... see? You look cool with
your hair up like this. Like me...

Juancho is smiling now. He's happy he's going to look like
his dad.

MAN
Not down and to the side, all stupid
like your mom likes to comb it.

Juancho looks over at Sarah, who is going through the tortuous
ritual of having her mother brush the tangles out of her
long, unmanageable hair.

Wife seems to be taking out her aggressions on the tangled
mess.

Man is starting to have problems of his own with Juancho's
hair. Juancho's hair is thinner than Man's, so it won't stay
up.

Man puts down his cigarette in order to get a better handle
on it. We see the frustration growing in his face.

Juancho picks up the cigarette and pretends he's smoking
too, just like his dad.

Man tears the cigarette away from Juancho and smokes it down
to the filter. He looks at his own cool hair, and then down
at Juancho's, which won't stay up.

Man flicks the cigarette butt into the toilet in frustration.

MAN
You've got your mother's hair.

In anger, Man starts messing up Juancho's hair.

MAN
I can't do anything with it.

Furious, Man simply swipes Juancho's hair back down and to
the side, the way Wife had it before. Juancho looks like an
idiot again.

MAN
There. Go.

Juancho slouches past everyone as he exits the bathroom.

Sarah watches him leave as her own hair is finished.

WIFE
(putting a plastic
clip in Sarah's hair)
There. Go.

Sarah exits.

Wife then finishes her own gorgeous hair. Man lights up a
new cigarette.

WIFE
(mocking)
So, are we gonna have fun tonight?

Man blows smoke in Wife's face as he walks out of the
bathroom.

WIFE
I didn't think so.

Sarah has joined Juancho in watching television.

Man watches the children watch TV. We can see the wheels
turning in Man's head.

He turns back to the bathroom.

He watches Wife now. Wheels turning. Practically burning
rubber.

MAN
Hey.

Wife puts the lipstick down and turns to her husband. She is
beautiful.

MAN
(shrugs)
Let's just leave the kids here.

Wife glances out at the children, eyes glued to the tube.

WIFE
Here in the room? By themselves?

MAN
No... with the television.

Wife thinks about it for a second. She shrugs a "sure."

MAN
You want to have fun tonight, don't
you?

WIFE
Yes.

MAN
They'll be fine.

He kisses Wife's face and exits the bathroom. She covers the
wet spot with more cake makeup.

MAN
Hey.

The children turn to face him.

MAN
You guys are going to stay here and
watch TV.

The children look at each other.

MAN
I want you to be in bed asleep before
twelve. Your mother and I will be
back later on.

Wife goes straight for the door.

MAN
Okay?

He blows one kiss. One for both of them.

As Man and his Wife walk out the door, Man turns back to the
children...

MAN
Don't misbehave.

He closes the door.

Sarah stands in the middle of the room. She's looking at the
door Man and Wife just disappeared through. Stunned.

Her dress looks frilly and beautifully uncomfortable. She
touches the edges of the fabric.

SARAH
Why did we have to get all dressed
up if we weren't going with them?

CUT TO:

INT. HALLWAY

Man and Wife are walking down the hall.

Man stops in his tracks. Wife stops too and looks at Man.
They wait.

CUT TO:

ROOM 716

Juancho shuts off the television. He drops the remote to the
floor. His attention is on the fireworks outside. He leaps
to the window and begins unlatching it.

SARAH
What are you doing?

JUANCHO
Escaping. Stinks in here, anyway.

Man bursts through the door of the hotel room and stands in
the doorway, glaring at the mischievous Juancho.

Juancho bangs his head on the window trying to get back
inside. He leaps to the floor and tries to turn on the TV
with the remote.

MAN
(stern)
What did I say?

Juancho turns to Man as if he'd been sitting there watching
television the whole time.

MAN
Behave.

JUANCHO
Yes, Papa.

Ted appears at the door with Man's champagne.

TED
The champagne you ordered, sir.

MAN
No time for this. Leave it on ice.

Ted proceeds to place the champagne in the room.

WIFE
But I want some now...

Ted is torn. Man pushes him into the room.

MAN
There'll be plenty for you and the
party, baby, you can bomb yourself
all you want at the party.

WIFE
What a waste.

Ted places the bucket near the bed. After setting up the
bottle, he turns to leave, but now Man closes the door,
trapping Ted inside with them.

MAN
(to Ted)
Hey.

Ted looks around, bewildered. Now what?

Man is reaching into his coat pocket.

MAN
You want five hundred bucks?

TED
Sure!

Man hesitates a moment, then pulls out his wallet. That was
too easy.

MAN
How about three?

TED
Three hundred?

MAN
Yeah.

TED
Three's good.

MAN
My children are staying here tonight
watching TV. I want you to check up
on them every thirty minutes.

TED
Check up on 'em?

MAN
Make sure they're all right, make
sure they're fed, make sure they go
to bed.

TED
We can call out and hire a babysitter.

MAN
I don't trust babysitters. My children
are safer alone than with some fucked-
up pedophile babysitter I don't know
from the man in the fucking moon.

WIFE
What about him? What makes you think
you can trust him?

Man grabs Ted's face and tilts it torward Wife.

MAN
Tell me that's not a face you can
trust.

Man lets go of Ted's face. He feels his jaw. It's still there.

TED
Look, sir, I'd like to help you out,
but I really can't. I'm all alone
here tonight.

Man whips out his wallet and counts out money in Ted's face.

MAN
One hundred... two hundred... three
hundred...

TED
I thought you said five hundred.

Man glares at Ted.

MAN
I said three hundred.

Ted doesn't back down.

TED
No, you distinctly said five hundred.

The angrier Man gets, the quieter he talks.

MAN
You calling me a liar?

Ted, while not backing down, massages the situation.

TED
No, I'm not saying you're lying. I'm
saying you accidentally forgot that
what you first said was five hundred.

Man has never been challenged like this by a fuckin' bellboy.

MAN
I don't do anything accidentally,
jerk. I might've first said five
hundred, but what I last said was
three hundred, and what you say last
is what counts.

Ted not only doesn't back down, but psychologically pokes
his finger in the scary Man's chest.

TED
Well then, if you say five hundred
one last time, we got a deal.

Man's eyes narrow. He physically pokes his finger in Ted's
chest.

MAN
You fuckin' with me, Pendejo?

Now Ted takes a step backwards.

TED
No, not at all. It's New Year's Eve
and I'm here alone. If there was
somebody else here, no problem, but
I'm by myself. And looking after
your kids is a pain in the ass I
don't need --

MAN
You callin' my kids a pain in the
ass?

TED
-- No, they're not a pain in the
ass, it's the situation that's a
pain in the ass.

Man drops the tenseness.

MAN
No, you were right the first time.
You win, tough guy, five hundred.

Man respects Ted for not backing down, but not insulting him
either. A skill Man never learned. Wife shoots a look at the
children.

WIFE
(disgusted)
You kids are getting expensive.

Juancho turns back to the TV.

Sarah stares down Wife.

MAN
(looking at name tag)
What's your name? Ted?

CLOSE-UP of name tag.

TED
Yeah. It's Ted.

Man tears off Ted's name tag and throws it to children.

MAN
(to the children)
His name is Ted. If you need anything,
dial 0 and ask for Ted.

Sarah catches the name tag and reads the name on it: "TED --
BELLHOP."

Sarah looks up at Ted. She clips the pin to her dress and
smiles shyly at him.

Man puts the money in Ted's pocket and then grabs his ear,
pulling him close.

MAN
(deadly whisper)
If something happens to my children,
I wouldn't want to be you.

WIFE
Make sure they're in bed before
midnight.

TED
(thinking)
Before midnight? Then should I wake
them up for the countdown to the New
Year?

Wife looks disgusted.

WIFE
No...

As Man and Wife exit, he turns to the kids and says:

MAN
Don't misbehave.

Man closes the door.

INT. HALLWAY

Man and Wife book it down the hall before Ted can change his
mind.

ROOM 716

Ted is standing facing the door the Man and Wife just
disappeared through. He turns around slowly to face the
children.

His eyes are wide. His face is quiet. Stern.

The children are staring at him.

TED
Okay. These are the rules. Don't
break the rules and I won't break
your necks.

The kids look at each other.

TED
(smiling)
I always wanted to say that. Someone
said that to me when I was a kid.

Sarah laughs at his joke.

TED
Except they were joking. I'm not.

Ted goes to the door.

TED
The rules are simple. Don't do
anything you wouldn't do if your
parents were here. If there's an
emergency, call me on the phone,
like your dad said.

SARAH
That's not what he said.

Ted's surprised by a challenge this early in the game.

SARAH
He said to call if we need anything.

TED
Well, I've got a lot of work to do
and I can't have you calling me every
time you want a drink of water, so
please limit your calls to emergencies
only.

SARAH
We paid you five hundred dollars.
We'll call you if we need anything.
You don't want to upset my dad.

TED
Okay. Please. Try to call only when
necessary. Watch TV, and if you're
good, I'll bring up some milk and
cookies. Bye.

Ted leaves.

CUT TO:

INT. HALLWAY

Ted walks briskly down the hall, counting his money the whole
way.

CUT TO:

INT. ROOM

Juancho takes off his socks and shoes and throws them onto
the floor. Sarah looks at the discarded shoes and socks.

CLOSE ON the shoes and socks.

Sarah looks over at Juancho's bare feet. Her nose twitches.

SARAH
Your feet stink.

Juancho smells his feet.

JUANCHO
They don't stink.

Sarah throws his shoes and socks behind her. They land on
the bed.

Juancho is flipping channels and finds an interesting show.

JUANCHO
Check it out. T & A.

Sarah realizes he found a Nudie station.

SARAH
Change it. You're not supposed to
watch this.

JUANCHO
We're supposed to watch TV.

SARAH
Not this kind of TV. Change it.

Juancho rolls up in a ball, the remote tucked in some recess
of his stomach.

Sarah hits him, then goes to the phone. She punches 0, sits
on the bed, and checks the name on the name tag pinned to
her shirt.

CUT TO:

FRONT DESK

Ted walks up to the front desk just as the phone rings.

TED
Front desk.

INT. ROOM

Sarah is taking off her white winter tights.

SARAH
Ted? Hi. It's me, Sarah. You're our
sitter for tonight.

TED
Oh, Jesus, what did I tell you? I
said if you don't bother me, you'll
get milk and cookies. Now, do you
want them or do you not?

SARAH
I want you to turn off the Nudie
station in our room.

Ted checks the computer.

TED
(reading stats on
room 716)
I can't turn on an adult station
without permission from your parents.

SARAH
No.
(struggling with winter
tights)
Not turn it on, turn it off. It's
already on.

TED
That's not what the machine tells
me.

SARAH
Well, stop listening to the machine
and listen to me. There's naked ladies
dancing on my TV and I want 'em off.

TED
If you're good, you'll get milk and
cookies, so leave me alone, please.
I'll be up later to put you both to
sleep.

He hangs up.

ROOM 716

Angry, Sarah slams down the phone. She has an unusually adult
temper. We know where she gets it from. She looks up and
sees that the nudies are still in full force.

SARAH
Change the channel, now!

Juancho turns around. He has a face like someone just laid a
fart in his nose.

JUANCHO
Man, you're the one with the stinky
feet.

Sarah smells her feet. Twice.

SARAH
They don't stink.

JUANCHO
Yeah, they do.

SARAH
Here, smell for yourself.

She sticks her foot out for Juancho to smell. He's reluctant.
Fearful.

SARAH
Go ahead.

He slowly, very slowly... climbs onto the bed and lowers his
head to her foot. Very slowly.

Sarah waits until he's close enough to her foot before she
kicks him in the face, sending him somersaulting off the bed
and crashing to the floor.

She grabs the remote control he left behind and changes the
channel to a cartoon.

Juancho gets up and realizes his defeat. He decides to wander
about. Looking for something to do...

Sarah tries to ignore him as he stalks the room. It's only a
matter of time before he finds mischief.

Juancho sees the champagne bucket and Bingo!, he goes for
the bottle.

JUANCHO
(holding up the bottle)
Hey, get a bottle opener!

Sarah opens her mouth, as if about to tell him to leave the
champagne alone. She stops herself when she realizes she
wants some champagne too.

She quickly scrambles about for a bottle opener while Juancho
unwraps the bottle top.

Sarah opens the dresser drawer with such force that a few
hidden contents long forgotten in the back of the drawer
slide forward.

Some coins, a paperclip, and a hypodermic needle. She looks
down at the needle that lays beside the Gideon Bible and
casually picks the phone back up and punches 0. The phone
rings.

FRONT DESK

Ted, bucket of ice in his hand, gets ready to go to room
404. As he crosses the desk, the phone rings. He looks at
the board and see room 716's light blinking.

He sighs in exasperation.

INT. ROOM

Sarah sees Juancho shaking the champagne bottle violently.

SARAH
Don't shake it!
(into phone)
Ted? Hi. It's me. Sarah.

TED
Yeah. Who died? No one? Then don't
call me.

SARAH
I thought I'd tell you that your
cleaning ladies are doing a bum job.
There's all kinds of leftover stuff
around here.

Sarah picks up the needle and rolls it over in her hand
several times.

SARAH
Needles and things. We're not supposed
to have needles here, are we? I mean,
they don't come with the room, do
they? Send someone up here to clean
this place up right.

The champagne bottle explodes all over Juancho. He looks
surprised.

SARAH
(to Juancho)
I TOLD YOU NOT TO SHAKE IT!
(to Ted)
I gotta go. My brother just exploded
the champagne all over the room. Oh,
and bring us a couple of toothbrushes.
There's a card in the bathroom that
says you'll bring free toothbrushes
if we ask for them.

She hangs up.

A frustrated Ted hangs up the phone. He walks briskly to the
elevator.

Sarah and Juancho are pouring themselves champagne. They
turn up the television and drink. Juancho shudders at the
taste, but tries to drink as much as Sarah.

Sarah clearly doesn't like it, but tries to pretend she does.

Sarah picks up an instruction card near the phone to see how
to make room-to-room calls.

SARAH
I'm calling another room, give me
three numbers.

JUANCHO
4-0-9.

Sarah punches in the room number. The phone rings.

She holds the needle up to the light to examine it.

SARAH
Hello? Hi. You don't know me, and I
don't know you, but... do you have
any needles? We've got needles here
and I was wondering if they come
with the room or not. Don't have
any? Thanks. Just checking.

She hangs up.

Juancho puts down his champagne glass and searches his
father's coat pocket. He finds a pack of cigarettes and takes
one out. He puts it in his mouth and pretends to smoke.

Sarah checks out the hypodermic needle carefully. She has an
idea.

MONTAGE:

In the bathroom, Sarah seeks out her mother's lipstick.

ROOM 716

Sarah stands atop the chest of drawers and uses the lipstick
to draw a bull's-eye on one of the hotel art paintings. She
writes numbers next to each circle representing points.

Juancho is standing at the foot of the bed, cigarette hanging
out of his mouth, as he practices his dart-throwing technique.

SARAH
(pointing out the
rules)
The center is the bull's eye, 100
points, this one's 10 points, this
one's 20 points.

WHACK! The needle lands an inch from her face in the 20-point
slot.

SARAH
Hey, wait a minute. Let me get out
of the way!

Sarah, a little tipsy now, grabs the needle and staggers to
the bed. She hears the key in the doorway and throws the
needle into the curtain to hide it.

Ted enters the room, somewhat disheveled from his encounter
with Sigfried. He has a tray and a new bottle of champagne.

He puts the champagne bottle into the empty bucket. He spots
the original bottle lying on the floor half empty and dripping
into the carpet.

TED
I brought you some milk and cookies.
If you want some you have to eat
them now, because you're going to
sleep.

SARAH
We're going to sleep now?

TED
Your parents said put you to bed
before midnight. Well, it's before
midnight. Maybe that way you'll leave
me alone.

SARAH
Those aren't milk and cookies.

TED
We were out of cookies, so I brought
you milk and Saltines. Don't complain!
Now hurry up and eat. You're going
to bed right now.

Juancho bites into a Saltine. Sarah simply examines one.

JUANCHO
These are old.

SARAH
They're stale.

TED
(impatient)
Dip 'em in the milk! The milk will
make them soft.

Sarah gives up and throws the cracker back onto the tray.
She's a little drunk.

Ted picks up the ruined champagne bottle.

Juancho dips his crackers and eats them. He makes a face and
drops a soggy cracker onto the tray.

TED
No crackers? Okay, fine. Sleepy time.
Now, I don't want you guys wandering
around, so if you need to go to the
restroom, go now.

They go to the bathroom. Ted sits on the bed. Waits.

He sees the painting on the wall but can't figure out what's
different about it.

The red lipstick blends right into the aesthetic value of
the painting.

Ted smells something funny. He looks down and sees the socks
on the bed. He grabs a fork from the tray and uses it to
throw the socks across the room.

The kids come back out.

JUANCHO
What about our pajamas?

TED
You wanna look nice in case there's
an earthquake, don'tcha?

The children nod.

TED
Okay. Then stay in those clothes.

The kids lie on the bed.

Sarah notices a jar of Mentholatum ointment on the dinner
tray.

SARAH
What's that?

TED
Oh, this is just some Mentholatum
ointment. Come on, under the covers.
Close your eyes and I'll tell you a
story.

The children close their eyes. Ted opens the jar of the
ointment and sniffs it.

Strong stuff by the look on his face.

TED
Your dad says he doesn't trust
babysitters. I don't blame him. You
know what my babysitter did to me
once?
(confiding)
I never told my parents, either.

The children lie in the bed, eyes closed, listening intently.

Ted dips his fingers in the jar of vaporous ointment.

TED
I hated going to sleep. You know,
it's nighttime and you wanna run
around and act crazy. So what my
babysitter did to make sure I'd go
to sleep and not be tempted to get
up, was, she'd take some of this
vapor rub stuff... Can you smell
this?

Eyes closed, the kids inhale. They smell the ointment and
nod yes.

TED
Well, she'd just dab a little of
this over each eyelid, so that I
would be sure and keep my eyes closed
all night.

Ted is spreading the ointment over their eyelids as he says
this.

TED
There. Now you've got some, too!
Don't open your eyes or it'll burrrn,
burn, burn. The smell helps clear
your sinuses too, so it's doing double
duty.

JUANCHO
What happens when it's morning?

TED
If you keep your eyes closed all
night, it will wear off by morning.
But DON'T OPEN YOUR EYES BEFORE
THAT...

SARAH
Did you ever open your eyes?

Extreme CLOSE-UP on Ted's eyes.

TED
Yes... I did.

The children are quiet.

TED
And now look at me.

CHILDREN
(in unison)
We can't.

TED
Good. You'll do just fine. Sleep
well and I won't tell your parents
about the champagne.

Ted leaves.

CUT TO:

AFTER A MOMENT OF DARKNESS

After a moment of darkness, the night is disturbed by the
loud crashing of fireworks outside the window.

Sarah sits up, eyes closed. Her face feels the warmth coming
from the window and she tilts her head toward it.

The light of the fireworks dances its reflections off her
face.

She inhales deeply... then makes a sour face. She goes for
the bathroom, arms outstretched like a blind girl. She gets
to the bathroom, turns on the light, and searches for the
sink.

She begins to wash the ointment off her eyes very carefully.
She dries her eyes thoroughly and opens them... checks them
in the mirror. A little red, but otherwise fine.

She goes back into the bedroom, turns on the television and
grabs the new champagne bottle. She shakes it violently.

Juancho wakes. He turns his head to her. His eyes are still
closed.

JUANCHO
Are you watching TV?

The champagne bottle explodes. She pours herself a glass.

SARAH
Yep. If you wanna watch too, you
have to go wash your face.

Juancho gets up smiling and tries to run to the bathroom. He
slams into the wall, hard.

SARAH
Be careful...

Juancho walks into the bathroom a little slower, more
cautious.

Sarah pours herself another glass. She downs the glass and
shudders.

She smells the bad smell again. Only now she really smells
it.

She smells her feet. Nothing. She smells the champagne.
Nothing.

Juancho enters the room and sits on the bed. Sarah grabs his
foot and smells it.

She drops his foot.

Juancho stares blankly at her.

Sarah looks down at the mattress. She smells the mattress.

Juancho looks at her as if she's drunk.

Sarah leaps off the bed and turns on the room lights. She
takes a huge swig from the champagne bottle, then stalks
toward the mattress.

Juancho leaps off the bed as well and stands back.

Sarah pulls the mattress off of the bedsprings enough to see
what is underneath it.

Juancho screams. Sarah is too stunned to scream. Stuffed
into the bedsprings is a woman's dead and beaten corpse.

CUT TO:

CLOSE ON

Ted's phone ringing.

Ted looks at the phone as if pondering whether or not to
answer it. He taps his fingers. Finally he answers the phone.

ROOM 716

SARAH
Ted!

TED
What do you want now, for Christ's
sake! Who died?

SARAH
(near tears)
I don't know, but she's in my bed!

TED
What?

SARAH
There's a dead body in my bed!

TED
That's just your brother. Sound
asleep.

SARAH
No, there's a woman's dead body inside
the bed, in the mattress.

TED
You saw the body?

SARAH
Yes!

TED
Impossible. You've got ointment on
your eyes! You can't see shit! Now
go to sleep!

Ted hangs up the phone.

Sarah redials.

Ted answers.

TED
Godammit, go to sleep!

SARAH
(crying now)
I washed it off...

TED
You washed off the ointment?

SARAH
(pissed, drunk)
Yeah, didn't you ever think to do
that?

Ted is quiet on the line. Thinking.

Juancho lights up a cigarette for real and takes nervous
puffs.

Sarah carries the phone over to Juancho and snatches the
cigarette away from him. She stuffs it in her own mouth and
nervously takes a long drag on it.

SARAH
(through cigarette)
You never tried it, did you? Then
you agree I'm smarter than you...

TED
All right. Now you listen to me...

SARAH
Get your ass up here and call the
police, because there's a dead body
in my bed and it smells like shit
and it looks even worse, and if you
don't help us, my dad is gonna lay
you down right next to her, I swear
to fucking God!

She drinks from her champagne bottle. She's pulling the
mattress back over the corpse again.

JUANCHO
Go, sis.

She's drunk all right.

TED
(incensed)
I'm coming up and if there isn't a
dead body by the time I get there,
I'll make one myself. You!

FRONT DESK

Ted slams down the phone.

As he walks away from the counter, he spots the children's
parents driving up to the valet out front.

TED
Oh shit!

Ted breaks into a sprint and dives into a closing elevator.

CUT TO:

ROOM 716

Sarah continues to cover the body with the mattress.

ELEVATOR

Close on Ted's face as the elevator car races up seven floors.

LOBBY

The Man is carrying his drunk Wife through the lobby. Not
happy.

ROOM 716

Ted bursts into the room. He sees the disarray.

Ted pushes the champagne out of Sarah's hand, spilling it
onto the floor.

TED
What the fuck is going on??!!

He sees Juancho with the cigarette hanging out of his mouth
and rips it away from him. The butt goes flying onto the
carpet near the spreading champagne spill.

TED
Your parents are on their way up and
I'm not taking responsibility for
this mess!

SARAH
Check under the mattress!

TED
For what?

SARAH
(crying)
For the body, can't you smell it?

TED
It's your feet!

Sarah grabs the mattress and pulls it off herself.

Ted sees the rotting corpse.

Vomit spews out of Ted's mouth.

TED
(gurgles through vomit-
spewing lips)
Jesus fucking Christ! What the fuck
is this?

He tears at the phone.

TED
(into the phone)
Police, it's an emergency!
(pause)
Hello, Police, this is the Mon Signor
Hotel, get someone up here right
fucking now, there's a DEAD WHORE
stuffed under the mattress!

Tears well in Sarah's eyes as she looks at the body.

SARAH
Don't call her that...

TED
(into the phone)
I'm dead fucking serious, there's a
dead fucking Whore stuffed in the
bedsprings of the fucking bed!

SARAH
Stop calling her that!!

Sarah grabs the hypodermic needle from under the curtain and
stabs it into Ted's leg.

TED
FUCK!!

Sarah steps back, almost tripping over the champagne bottle.
She picks up the bottle and holds it defensively in case Ted
tries to retaliate. Ted spins around, now noticing the needle
sticking out of his leg.

TED
Jesus!!

Juancho lights up another cigarette.

The champagne spill has spread to the fallen cigarette butt.
The carpet bursts into flames around the spill.

CUT OUTSIDE TO:

EXT. ROOM

CLOSE ON a key going into the keyhole outside.

BACK TO:

ROOM 716

Ted tries to pull the syringe out of his leg, but yanking it
makes it break in two, the plunger in his hand, and the needle
still stuck in his leg.

Ted staggers and grabs hold of the dead woman's foot for
support as he steps on the remote control, flipping the TV
on to the Nudie channel, just as...

Man opens the door.

Man stands at the door, drunk Wife unconscious on one arm,
the door knob in the other hand. He's looking mean.

Man's POV: focused on the dead woman in the bedsprings. We
pan up the dead woman's leg to find Ted holding her foot. We
pan down Ted's leg to find the hypodermic needle jutting
out... then pan over to the other hand holding the broken
syringe plunger.

We pan over to the Nudie channel, then down to the fire
blazing behind the children. Pan up to the dripping champagne
bottle in Sarah's hand, then over to the cigarette hanging
out of Juancho's mouth. Juancho tosses his cigarette out of
his mouth to an area behind him. Another blaze starts
immediately.

Man drops his Wife to the floor.

In the WIDE SHOT of Ted and the children, we see that the
fireworks are bursting big and bright outside the window
behind them. Almost as bright as the flames eating through
the room.

Man simply glares at Ted. Finally Man speaks...

MAN
Did they misbehave?

Ted stares blankly at Man (the camera) as the sprinklers
burst on... drenching the room as the picture

FADES TO BLACK

FOUR ROOMS

FADE UP ON

INT. HOTEL LOBBY--NIGHT

SUPER: ONE MINUTE AFTER ROBERT'S STORY. TWENTY MINUTES BEFORE
DAWN.

The elevator rides down to the lobby. The doors open and a
wet, disheveled, and frantic Ted steps out.

He staggers across the lobby to the reception desk. He grabs
the phone.

INT. BETTY'S APT--ALMOST DAWN

The wild New Year's Eve party is winding down. Some Guests
are passed out, some are asleep, some are making out, two
guys are playing Nintendo, a Girl watches them. The phone
RINGS. The Girl, who wears a "Guinness Stout" T-shirt, answers
the phone.

GUINNESS GIRL
Happy New Year!

BACK TO TED: BACK AND FORTH

TED
Let me speak to Betty.

GUINNESS GIRL
Party's over, she probably went home.

TED
She lives there.

GUINNESS GIRL
Oh, well, I haven't seen 'em in a
while.

TED
Do you even know who I'm talking
about?

GUINNESS GIRL
Yeah... yeah... yeah... I know 'em,
I know Eddy.

TED
Betty, not Eddy.

GUINNESS GIRL
Yeah... yeah... I know Betty too...
Tall...

TED
No, not particularly. She's got curly
red hair.

GUINNESS GIRL
No, no, no, no, no, I know, I know.
Japanese girl.

TED
She's not Japanese! I just said she
had red hair.

GUINNESS GIRL
Yeah... yeah... yeah... I know her.

TED
Well, then get her on the phone,
it's an emergency.

GUINNESS GIRL
Who -- who should I say's calling?

TED
Tell 'em Teddy from work's on the
phone, and it's a major fuckin'
emergency.

GUINNESS GIRL
Gotcha, Betty from work.

TED
Not Betty from work, I'm calling
Betty! I'm Teddy. Just say Ted.

GUINNESS GIRL
Hi, Ted, I'm Margaret. You sound
down. Has this not been the happiest
of New Year's?

TED
(resigning himself to
talking with Margaret)
No Margaret, this hasn't been my
best New Year. This year's starting
off pretty badly.

MARGARET
Awww, how come?

TED
Well, Betty -- the chick whose house
you're at, even though you don't
know her -- leaves me here all by
myself on New Year's Eve. And first
thing right off the bat, I'm fucked
by a coven of witches.

MARGARET
An oven full of witches fucked you?
Is that like at the circus when they
stick all those clowns in an itty-
bitty car?

TED
A coven. A coven of witches. Well,
one witch in particular.

MARGARET
Was she an old hag with a mole, with
hair growing out of it?

TED
No-no-no, she was... quite beautiful.

Margaret thinks for a moment.

MARGARET
Ted?

TED
Yes.

MARGARET
What's the problem?

TED
Well, admittedly, that was the best
part of the night. It was pretty
fuckin' cool, actually. But it was
still an unnerving way to start off
the night.

MARGARET
Sounds to me like a pretty great way
to start off the night.

TED
Okay, let's just skip over the
witches.

MARGARET
-- Skipping over the witches.

TED
So, later, in another room, some
crazy sucking maniac sticks a gun in
my face and forces me to play out
some psychosexual drama with his
wife.

MARGARET
He made you have psycho sex with his
wife?

TED
No, he didn't make me fuck his wife,
he thought I'd fucked his wife! He
held me at gunpoint with a loaded
gun!

MARGARET
What kinda gun?

TED
I don't know, I'm not a gun guy. It
was big.

MARGARET
Like Dirty Harry's gun.

TED
Yeah, something like that.

MARGARET
Did it have a real long barrel or a
short barrel?

TED
What difference does it make?

MARGARET
Well, for one thing it's the
difference between a .44 Magnum and
a Magnum .357.

TED
Who cares if it was a .44 or a .392,
it was a fuckin' loaded gun, pointed
at my fuckin' head!

Margaret takes this in.

MARGARET
You wanna skip over this part, too?

TED
I want you to get Betty on the phone!

MARGARET
Hold on.
(yelling to the room)
Anybody live here named...
(to Ted)
What's her name again?

TED
Betty.

MARGARET
Betty!

The sleepy room stirs. Betty wakes up from the floor.

BETTY
Yeah, whatcha screamin' about?

MARGARET
You're Betty?

BETTY
Yeah, I'm Betty, it's my fuckin'
place, who the fuck are you?

MARGARET
I'm Margaret
(hands her the phone)
And this is Ted.

Betty takes the phone.

BETTY
Ted, what's the problem?

TED
What's the problem? I don't got a
problem, I got fuckin' problems!
Wanna hear?

BETTY
(yawning, wiping sleep
from her eyes)
Sure.

TED
Well, most recently, there's room
716. There's a scary Mexican gangster
dude pokin' his finger in my chest.
There's his hooligan kids snapping
their fingers at me. There's the
putrid rotting corpse of a dead whore
stuffed in the springs of a bed.
There're rooms blazing afire...
There's a needle from God knows where
stuck in my leg, infecting me with
God knows what, and finally, there's
me walking out the fuckin' door right
now! Buenas noches.

A RINGING SOUND happens that we haven't heard before. Ted's
head turns toward it.

It's the guest board. And the top light, the penthouse, is
ringing. It rings where all the others buzzed.

Betty can hear it distinctly on her side of the line. The
sound fully wakes her up. They start talking Howard Hawks
style again.

BETTY
(suddenly alert)
Is that the penthouse?

TED
Yeah.

BETTY
That's the Chester Rush party, they
want something.

TED
Yeah, well, tough titty. They're
just gonna have to wait, 'cause I'm
out the door.

BETTY
(panicking)
Now, Ted, wait a minute. I know you're
freaked, I know you're stressed.
You've had a real bad night --

TED
Yes, Betty, I've had-a-real-bad-night --

BETTY
-- You say there's a dead body in a
room?

TED
Yes, I did.

BETTY
No problem, this is a hotel, we've
had dead bodies before, it's just
the price of doing business. You
said the hotel was on fire. Is it
still on fire?

TED
No, it's out.

BETTY
Good, sprinkler system worked like a
charm. Now, you wanna leave, you've
had enough. Perfectly understandable.
I'll take care of everything else.
The only thing I ask is that you
take care of Chester Rush. Then you
can leave.

TED
Now, look --

BETTY
Ted, he's a very important guest of
this hotel. In fact, he is the most
important guest at the hotel. The
Mon Signor used to be a haven for
movie stars. Through the thirties
and forties, and the first half of
the fifties, more movie stars -- if
you break it down on a night-by-night
basis -- stayed at the Mon Signor
than any other hotel in Hollywood.
Now, we had some hard time in the
eighties, even though we were the
official hotel of Cannon Pictures,
but we're coming back strong in the
nineties. And a movie star clientele
is important to that comeback. If we
can keep stars of his magnitude happy,
we're on our way. So, Ted, just take
care of him, then you can leave.

TED
Look, I don't feel like --

BETTY
He probably just wants some champagne!
You can do that, can't you? Please
just take care of him, the entire
staff of the Mon Signor is begging
you!

Ted crumbles.

TED
Okay. But get your ass here pronto.

BETTY
You're a good man, Ted. Thanks.

Ted hangs up the phone. And picks up the board phone.

TED
Hello, Mr. Rush. Sorry for the delay.
How can I help you?

FADE TO BLACK

STORY TITLE CARD:

THE PENTHOUSE
"THE MAN FROM HOLLYWOOD"

EXT. HALLWAY TO PENTHOUSE--NIGHT

The elevator door opens and Ted wheels out his tray into the
hallway.

There's been a bit of an effort to make himself appear a bit
less disheveled than in the last scene. He's only minorly
successful in the attempt. His uniform still looks like shit,
his hair looks tousled, and he walks with a limp.

He wheels the cart up to the penthouse door and KNOCKS at
the door.

A woman opens the door, it's Angela from Alex's story.

ANGELA
Hi, Theodore.

TED
What the hell are you doing here?

She holds up the drink she has in her hand.

ANGELA
Having a drink.

TED
Is that crazy husband of yours in
there?

ANGELA
Are you kidding, he'll be asleep
till Christmas.

From behind her we hear:

VOICE (O.S.)
Entrez, entrez.

Angela steps aside and Ted wheels in the tray.

INT. PENTHOUSE--NIGHT

The penthouse is huge, far and away the best suite in the
house. And standing in the middle of the biggest room in the
hotel is the hottest, newest comedy star to burst onto the
Hollywood scene in nearly a decade: Chester Rush. At this
moment in time, he's the king, and he has the swagger of a
new king. After only one movie, he's pulled the sword out of
the stone. And the look on his face says, "King's good."
Surrounding him is his entourage. They all look like once
upon a time this evening they were dressed sharp; however,
at this late hour, everybody looks about as disheveled as
Ted.

One of the lads, Norman, has planted roots in a comfy chair
with his leg thrown over the arm and a bottle of Jim Beam in
his hand.

The second guy, Leo, is in the back of the room pacing back
and forth on the telephone. He is completely oblivious to
the rest of the room's activity.

In Chester's hand is an ever present glass of champagne,
which he constantly spills as he gestures wildly. Around the
room are the leftovers: pizza boxes, fast-food hamburgers,
and empty bottles of Cristal Champagne.

CHESTER
(still sitting)
Entrez, entrez, come in, come in.

TED
(wheeling in the tray)
Hi, sorry I took so long, but I got
everything you asked for --

CHESTER
-- Not a problem, my friend Mr.
Bellboy.

ANGELA
(closing the door)
His name's Theodore.

TED
Actually, it's not Theodore,
(he throws a look at
Angela)
It's Ted.

Chester rises from the couch.

CHESTER
So, Ted the Bellboy, as I was saying --
would you care for some champagne?
That's not what I was saying, but
would you care for some champagne?

TED
No, thank you.

CHESTER
Ya sure? Cristal. It's the best. I
never liked champagne before I had
Cristal, now I love it.

TED
Okay, yeah, sure.

As Chester goes and pours Ted a glass:

CHESTER
-- As I was saying, Ted, don't worry
about being late. For our purposes,
promptness is far behind thoroughness.

On "thoroughness," he hands Ted the glass.

CHESTER
Chin-chin.

They clink glasses and drink.

CHESTER
Whadya say, Ted?

TED
Thank you?

CHESTER
No, not thank you. Whadya say about
the tasty beverage?

TED
It's good.

CHESTER
Fuckin' good, Ted. It's fuckin' good.
Let's try it again, shall we? So,
Ted, whadya think about the beverage.

TED
It's fuckin' good.

CHESTER
You bet your sweet bippy, Ted. It's
fuckin' Cristal, everything else is
piss.

Norman in the chair starts yelling at Ted.

NORMAN
Bellboy! Bellboy! Bellboy!

Ted knows he's being laughed at, but not why.

CHESTER
(to Norman)
Knock it off, you're making my friend
Ted here uneasy.
(to Ted)
Pay no attention to Norman here,
Ted, he's just fuckin' wit' ya, that's
all. That's from Quadrophenia. Now
me, myself, when I think of bellboys
I think of -- "bellboy" isn't an
insult, is it? Is there another name
for what you do that I'm ignorant
of? Bellman, bellperson --

TED
Bellboy's fine.

CHESTER
Good. I'm glad they haven't changed
that. There's a friendliness to
"bellboy." As I was saying, Ted,
when Norman thinks of bellboys, he
thinks of Quadrophenia.

But me, when I think of bellboys, I think of The Bellboy,
with Jerry Lewis. Didja ever see The Bellboy?

TED
No.

CHESTER
You should, it's one of Jerry's better
movies. He never says a word through
the entire film. A completely silent
performance. How many actors can
pull that off? And he has to go to
France to get respect. That says it
all about America right there. The
minute Jerry Lewis dies, every paper
in this fuckin' country gonna write
articles calling the man a genius.
It's not right. It's not right and
it's not fair. But why should that
surprise anybody? When has America
ever been fair? We might be right
every once in a while, but we're
very rarely fair.

TED
Where do you want this?

CHESTER
You in a hurry, Ted?

TED
(he is, but doesn't
want to rush the
movie star)
No, not particularly.

CHESTER
Good, then stop playing "Beat the
Clock." Now let me introduce you to
everybody.

He puts his arm around Ted and leads him around the room.

Angela crosses frame, drink in hand.

CHESTER
Our friend from downstairs you already
seem to be acquainted with.

As she snuggles up in a big comfy chair:

ANGELA
Oh, me and Theodore go way back.
Don't we, Theodore?

TED
The name's Ted, Angela. I only let
people with loaded guns at my head
call me Theodore.

CHESTER
Angela's like you, Ted, a newfound
friend.

ANGELA
We met at the pool.

CHESTER
(to Ted)
Have you ever seen Angela in a one-
piece?

TED
No.

CHESTER
Well, it's somethin' to see.
(arm around Ted)
The Man sitting in the chair, with
the bottle of Jim Bean in his hand
and the sense of humor, is Norman.
Norman, say hello to Ted.

NORMAN
What's up?

Norman shakes his hand.

CHESTER
The sociable son of a bitch on the
telephone is Leo. And the person on
the other end of the phone is his
lovely wife Ellen.
(to Leo)
Leo, say hello to Ted.

Leo breaks away from his phone conversation for two seconds.

LEO
Hi, Ted, glad you could make it.
(back to phone)
What?
(pause)
What does punctuality have to do
with love?

CHESTER
Which brings me to me, Chester Rush,
Ted. Pleased to meetcha.

Chester shakes Ted's hand.

TED
I know. I'm sorry I haven't seen
your movie.

Chester stops.

Ted wonders if he should have said that.

Chester walks over to the table and pours himself some more
champagne. When he talks now it's slower and somewhat
distracted. The tone of the scene starts changing.

CHESTER
It's quite all right, Ted, nothing
to feel sorry about. That's why God
invented video. But you know, Ted, a
lot of people did see it.

Chester takes a drink of champagne, a disgusted look crosses
his face, and he slowly puts it down.

His manner gives the room a chill.

When he talks, he addresses the room.

CHESTER
Who drank out of this bottle last?

No answer.

Chester walks over to Ted and fills his glass.

CHESTER
Who drank out of this bottle -- not
the other bottles -- this bottle
last?

NORMAN
What's wrong, Chester?

He spills the champagne from his glass onto the floor.

CHESTER
It's fuckin' flat, Norman, that's
what's wrong. The champagne -- the
fuckin' Cristal's fuckin' flat.

Chester improvises a temper tantrum about the flat Cristal.
Everyone looks at him, not knowing what to say. Even Leo
walks over to witness. The whole room is uneasy and a little
frightened.

When Chester finishes his tantrum, he turns his attention
back to Ted. As he talks to him, he opens up another bottle.
But it's not the rapid-pace delivery Chester has done so
far. It's more troubled and distracted.

CHESTER
I was saying, Ted, a lot of people
did see it. And not just on video,
either. Leo, what was the final take
on domestic?

Leo is still in the doorway making sure his boy's cool.

LEO
72.1 million.
(worried tone)
You okay, champ?

CHESTER
(struggling with bottle)
I'm cool, so talk to your wife.

Leo turns his attention back to the phone and goes inside
the room.

CHESTER
(to Ted)
72.1 million dollars. That's before
video and before foreign, and before
pay-TV and before free TV. We're
talking fuckin' asses in fuckin'
seats.
(he pops the cork)
Before all that other shit, The Wacky
Detective made 72.1 million dollars.

Chester walks over to Ted and fills his glass.

CHESTER
And my new one, The Dog Catcher,
it's projected to break a hundred.
(he clinks Ted's glass
with his)
The Dog Catcher.

TED
The Dog Catcher.

They both drink.

The tantrum's over, and Chester's back to his fast-talking,
good-natured self.

CHESTER
Now let's stroll over here and see
what goodies you brought us.

TED
Do you mind me asking what's all
this stuff for?

CHESTER
One thing at a time, Ted. I'm not a
frog and you're not a bunny, so let's
not jump ahead. C'mon, Norman, you
should be interested in this.

NORMAN
Damn Skippy!
(pause)
Tell it.

Ted produces the things they called for.

TED
A block of wood.

Chester knocks on it.

CHESTER
Good.

TED
Three nails.

NORMAN
Why three nails?

CHESTER
That's how many Peter Lorre asked
for. Continue, Ted.

Ted is completely bewildered.

TED
A roll of twine.

CHESTER
That's definitely a roll of twine.
Continue.

TED
A bucket of ice.

CHESTER
(to Norman)
You into it?

NORMAN
(to Chester)
I'm into it.

CHESTER
(to Ted)
Go on.

TED
A donut.

Chester takes it and eats it.

CHESTER
That's for me. Continue.

TED
And a hatchet.

CHESTER
A hatchet as sharp as the devil
himself is what I asked for.

TED
Well, you be the judge.

Ted holds the hatchet out for Chester to take. Norman snatches
it instead.

NORMAN
I'll be the judge.

Norman touches the end of the blade with his thumb.

CHESTER
Whadya think?

NORMAN
That's a sharp motherfucker. Bring
all this bullshit over to the bar.

CHESTER
You heard him, Ted.

Ted is completely confused and starting to get a little
scared, but he does what he's told.

Leo slams down the phone.

LEO
Bitch!

NORMAN
You still married?

LEO
Maybe, maybe not, but I don't give a
flyin' fuck either way. I've had it
with that Machiavellian bitch! I'm
too drunk to drive home. I'm sorry
about that, I'm real sorry about
that. I got drunk on New Year's Eve,
cut my fuckin' head off...
(noticing Ted at the
bar)
What's going on here?

CHESTER
We now return you to The Man from
Rio, already in progress.

LEO
(surprised)
Noooo, you're gonna do it?

NORMAN
Looks like.

LEO
You guys ain't bullshittin', you're
gonna really go for it?

Angela is still curled up.

ANGELA
After talkin' about it all night,
they better. I wanna see a show.

CHESTER
When we do it, you'll have something
to see.

Leo walks up to Norman and throws his arm around him.

LEO
You are one radical dude.

Ted doesn't know what anybody's talking about, which is just
fine with him. He finishes laying out everything on the bar
and says:

TED
Well, that's everything, so if you
don't need me for anything else,
I'll go back downstairs.

CHESTER
Not so fast, Ted. We ain't quite
done yet. Why don't you take a seat
at the bar, get comfortable, and
have an open mind when we explain
the festivities of the evening to
you.

TED
Look, guys, you paid for the room.
As long as you don't break up the
furniture, you can do whatever the
fuck you want. And me personally, I
don't care if you break up the
furniture. You don't have to explain
anything to me. Whatever constitutes
a good time as far as you guys are
concerned is your business.

CHESTER
Well, it's your business, Ted. 'Cause
we want you to take part.

TED
Take part in what?

LEO
Chester, your way of breaking the
news to him gently is scarin' the
shit outta him.

ANGELA
Look at the poor guy. Just spit it
out.

Little by little everybody has gathered around Ted.

CHESTER
First off, let me say that there's
nothing homosexual about what we're
going to ask you to do. There's
nothing sexual at all about what we
want. But I was thinkin' you might
be thinkin' we want you to do some
sex thing. Pee on us, suck us off,
shit like that. Let me assure you
nothing could be farther from what
we want --

Angela interrupts:

ANGELA
Can I jump in here?

CHESTER
No, you can't jump in here, this is
my story.

ANGELA
Theodore's been here fifteen minutes
and you've talked about everything
but.

CHESTER
Hey, if you don't like it, you can
get the fuck out.

Leo taps his champagne glass with a tiny spoon, shutting
everybody up.

LEO
If it'll please the court, let me
explain to Ted our intentions.

NORMAN
(yelling)
I second the nomination!

CHESTER
(yelling)
Move the nomination be closed!

Chester takes the hatchet and brings it down on the bar like
a hatchet.

CHESTER
(calmly)
Leo, the floor is yours.

LEO
Thank you.
(to Ted)
Ted, did you ever watch the old
"Alfred Hitchcock Show"?

TED
(totally bewildered
at this point)
Yeah.

LEO
Did you ever see the episode The Man
from Rio, with Peter Lorre and Steve
McQueen?

TED
I don't think so.

LEO
Oh, you'd remember it all right. In
the show, Peter Lorre makes a bet
that Steve McQueen can't light his
cigarette lighter ten times in a
row. Now if Steve McQueen can light
his cigarette lighter ten times in a
row, he wins Peter Lorre's new car.
If he can't he loses his little
finger.
(pause)
Norman and Chester just made the
same bet.
(pause)
Norman's putting up his pinky against
Chester's mint convertible, 1964 red
convertible Chevy Corvelle that he
can light his Zippo ten times in a
row.

Pause.

Ted looks at all of them, taking in the information, before
saying:

TED
You guys are drunk.

CHESTER
Well, that goes without saying, but
that doesn't mean we don't know what
we're doing.

NORMAN
I'll tell ya what I'm doin'.

Norman lays an issue of Hot Classic Cars in front of Ted on
the bar. On the cover is a picture of Chester smiling,
standing next to a beautiful 1964 red convertible Chevy
Corvelle. The headline reads: "Hollywood's Hottest New Star
Next to America's Hottest Old Car."

NORMAN
I drive a motherfuckin' Honda my
sister sold me. You hear what I'm
sayin'? A little white motherfuckin'
Honda Civic.
(he holds up the
magazine)
You see this shit?!
(reading the magazine)
"Hollywood's hottest new star, next
to America's hottest old car."
(he hands Ted the
magazine)
Now you take a good look at that
machine that this motherfucker over
here is standing next to. That's a
1964 nigger-red, rag-top Chevy
Corvelle. And I love that car more'n
I love hips, lips, and fingertips.
Cut to we sittin' here celebrating,
gettin' high, drinkin' champagne --

CHESTER
-- Cristal. When you're drinkin'
anything else, you're drinking
champagne. When you're drinkin'
Cristal, you say you're drinkin'
Cristal.

NORMAN
-- drinkin' Cristal. Watchin' TV.
"Rockin' New Year's Eve." When all
of a sudden we flip on Steve McQueen
and Peter Lorre bein' fuckin' badass.
And I look at this funny motherfucker
over here, and I say, "I'd do that
for the Chevelle."

LEO
And Chester replies...

CHESTER
"...Oh, really?"

TED
You guys wouldn't be doin' something
this stupid unless you were drunk.

Everybody breaks into a "here, here" murmur.

NORMAN
I think that pretty much goes without
sayin'. We'd probably chicken out.
But when you're fucked-up, you don't
lie. You tell the fuckin' truth. And
the fuckin' truth is, my lucky Zippo's
gonna win me Chester's car.

TED
(to Chester)
Why are you doing this?

CHESTER
Thrill of the bet. I'm the one with
something to lose here. 'Cause I can
pretty near guarantee that I love my
car more'n Norman loves his pinky.

TED
(to Leo)
How 'bout you guys, you're just gonna
sit back and let your friends mutilate
each other?

LEO
Why not? Life don't get much more
exciting than this. I mean if Norman
was puttin' his dick on the choppin'
block, I'd step in, 'cause, ya know
in the morning, we'd really regret
that. But his pinky? Who gives a
fuck? I mean theoretically, he could
lose that choppin' onions tomorrow.
Life still goes on.

TED
(to Angela)
How 'bout you?

ANGELA
(to Ted)
I don't care.

CHESTER
Which brings us to your part in this
little wager.

TED
I don't have a part.

CHESTER
Now, Ted, my old granddaddy used ta
say: "The less a man makes declarative
statements, the less he's apt to
look foolish in retrospect." Now
there're some inherent obstacles in
this undertaking. First of all, I'm
not some sick fuck like Peter Lorre
on that show, travelin' the
countryside collecting fingers. We're
all buddies, here. Nobody wants Norman
to lose his finger. We just wanna
chop it off. So if fate doesn't smile
on ol' Norman, we'll put his finger
on ice and rush 'im to a hospital,
where in all likelihood be able to
sew it back on.

TED
Hopefully.

LEO
Eighty percent.

NORMAN
Our side.

CHESTER
So Norman's protected. His interests
have been looked after. My interests,
on the other hand, have not. I am as
emotionally attached to my car as
Norman is physically to his finger.
I'm putting up a very expensive piece
of machinery on this wager. Now, if
I lose, I lose, I have no problem
with that. I'm a big boy, I knew
what I was doing. However, if I win,
I wanna win. If Norman lights his
lighter ten times in a row, he's
gonna have no emotional problems
about taking my car keys whatsoever.
But if I win, it's not inconceivable
that Leo or myself, at the last
minute, might not be able to wield
the ax. Which brings us full circle
to you, Ted. Sober Ted. Clear-eyed
Ted. We want you to be the diceman.

Pause as they all look at him. Angela breaks it.

ANGELA
Helluva night, huh, Ted?

TED
I gotta get out of here.

Ted abruptly gets up and makes a beeline for the door.

Chester whips out a hundred-dollar bill and quickly calls to
Ted from his position at the bar.

CHESTER
Ted, I got a hundred-dollar bill
here with your name on it, whether
you do what we ask or not, just to
sit back down in the chair for one
minute more.

Ted spins in his direction.

TED
I'm not gonna cut off his finger!

CHESTER
Maybe you will and maybe you won't,
but that has nothing to do with this
hundred-dollar bill in my hand. You
can tell us all to go fuck off and
walk right out that door. But if you
sit back down and wait sixty seconds
before you do it, you'll be a hundred
dollars richer.

Ted just stands across the room, thinking.

ANGELA
Ted. Take the money.

LEO
Ted, you're gonna do whatever you
want to do. We're just askin' you to
indulge us for another minute more.
And Chester's willin' to pay for it.

Ted thinks.

TED
I'll take your money, and I'll sit
back down. But a minute from now,
I'm gonna walk out the door, and
when I do, there'll be no hard
feelings?

CHESTER
Well, I want you to have a bit more
of an open mind than that, but, yeah,
we'll either convince you or we won't.
No hard feelings. Right, guys?

Everybody agrees.

Ted wearily sits back down.

Chester positions himself in front of Ted at the bar.

CHESTER
Okay, Leo, you be the timekeeper.
Let us know when one minute begins
and when it ends.

LEO
You got it.
(he checks his watch)
Gentlemen, start your engines.

Chester jumps up and down, loosening up.

LEO
Begin!

Chester, who talks fast anyway, starts his pitch. It's Chester
who now plays "Beat the Clock."

CHESTER
Okay, pay attention here, Ted, I
ain't got much time. Now I'm gonna
make two piles here on the bar.
(he takes the hundred-
dollar bill and lays
it out on the bar)
One pile,
(pointing at the
hundred-dollar bill)
which is yours. And another pile,
(Chester whips out a
money roll fat enough
to choke a horse to
death)
which could be yours.
(he lays a matching
hundred-dollar bill
on the bar, starting
a second pile)
Now, what you have to be aware of is
we're gonna do this bet, one way,
(he lays another
hundred on the end
pile)
or the other.
(he lays another
hundred on the pile)
Whether it's you who holds the ax,
(he lays another
hundred on the pile)
or the desk clerk downstairs,
(he lays another
hundred on the pile)
or some bum we yank off the street.
(he lays another
hundred on the pile)

NORMAN
You can buy a lot of soup with that
pile.

CHESTER
(to Norman)
Shhhh, I'm the closer.
(to the group)
How much is on the bar already? I
lost count.

ANGELA
Six hundred.

CHESTER
Six hundred. Ted, do you know how
long it takes the average American
to count to six hundred?

TED
No.

CHESTER
(laying another bill
on the pile)
One minute less than it takes to
count to seven hundred. You know,
Ted, a person's life is made up of a
zillion little experiences.
(he lays another bill
on the pile)
Some, which have no meaning, are
insignificant and you forget them.
And some that stick with you for the
rest of your natural life --
(he lays another bill
on the pile)
-- barring Alzheimer's of course.
Now, what we're proposing is so
unusual, so outside the norm, that I
think it would be a pretty good guess
that this will be one of those
experiences that sticks. So, since
you're gonna be stuck remembering
this moment for the rest of your
life, you gotta decide what that
memory will be.
(He lays down the
last bill on the
pile)
So, are you gonna remember for the
next forty years, give or take a
decade, how you refused a thousand
dollars for one second's worth of
work, or how you made a thousand
dollars for one second's worth of
work?

LEO
Time!

CHESTER
Well, Ted, what's it gonna be?

Ted looks at the pile, then looks up. We dolly into his face.

FLASHBACK

We see a quick MONTAGE of horrendous moments from all the
other stories.

INT. PENTHOUSE--NIGHT

Back to Ted.

TED
Okay.

The group cheers.

TED
But when it's over, no matter what
happens, I get the money?

CHESTER
As long as you do your part, you can
take the pile, walk out the door,
and not say another word.

TED
Let's do it right now, before I change
my mind.

NORMAN
Here, here.

Everybody gets in their position by the bar. Norman lays his
left hand on the block of wood with his pinky sticking out.

In his right hand is his Zippo lighter, poised and ready to
strike.

Chester hands Ted the meat cleaver.

Ted takes it, raises it up above Norman's finger, in position.

CHESTER
Perfect, perfect, perfect, perfect!
This is great! This is a moment in
time none of us will ever forget.

Everybody is crowded around the scene, on pins and needles.

CHESTER
Norman, you ready?

NORMAN
Ready!

CHESTER
Ted, you ready?

TED
Ready.

CHESTER
Okeydoke. Norman, begin.

Norman looks hard at the Zippo in his hand. Ted, holding the
cleaver, stares focused on Norman's pinky.

Norman readies himself.

Places his thumb on the wheel in the Zippo.

Takes a breath.

And strikes.

It sparks, but doesn't light.

Without missing a beat, Ted brings down the cleaver, slicing
off Norman's pinky.

Norman lets out a scream.

Ted, in one move, lays down the cleaver, scoops up the money
and walks out the door.

INT. HALLWAY--AFTER DAWN

CAMERA is positioned at far end of hallway, looking down it
at the elevator at the other end.

Ted walks out of the penthouse in the f.g. In a MEDIUM SHOT,
he takes the thousand dollars in his hand, looks at it,
smiles, and sticks it in his pocket. It might've been a bad
night, but it's been a profitable one. He chuckles at the
irony, and, whistling a happy tune, turns his back on the
camera and walks down the hall to the elevator.

All the while we hear PANDEMONIUM breaking out behind the
door.

As Ted walks to the elevator, the CREDITS ROLL. He waits for
the elevator, it arrives, he gets in, the doors close.

As CREDITS CONTINUE TO ROLL, we hold for about two beats...
then...

The door BURSTS open and everybody comes piling out.
Everybody's screaming, yelling different things to one
another. Norman has a bloody towel wrapped around his hand,
he's screaming and crying.

NORMAN
My finger, my fucking finger!!

Chester has the bucket of ice with the finger in it. Leo's
trying to direct everything. Everybody's in frantic activity,
except for Angela, who stands back, drinks her drink, and
watches the show. They all run down the hall, toward the
elevator. Somebody trips and they all hit the ground. The
bucket of ice with the finger goes spilling. They run around
like crazy, looking for the finger and picking up ice cubes.
Norman lies on the floor and screams. They pick it all up,
get to the elevator, and push the button.

When it arrives, they all dive in except for Angela.

ANGELA
You know, I'm gonna call it a night
and go back to my room. It's been
fun.

The doors close on the screaming maniacs.

Angela walks through a door marked "Stairway."

INT. 4TH FLOOR HALLWAY--AFTER DAWN

MEDIUM STAIRWAY DOOR

CREDIT ROLL continues Angela comes through the door; we
STEADICAM in front of her as she walks the halls, looking
for her room. She finds it...

WE STOP CREDITS

FOUR ROOMS

Angela sticks her key in the door, then stops when she sees
something approaching. The look on her face combines strange
awe and mild shock.

Almost floating ethereally, a mysterious Blond Bombshell,
wearing Diana's see-through negligee and slippers, armed
with Elspeth's sword slung over her shoulder, wanders toward
her. She is in a daze, perhaps lost or drunk.

ANGELA
You okay, lady?

The bombshell looks up at her dizzily.

ANGELA
I said -- you looking for someone?

DIANA
(disoriented)
Uhhh... yes... my husband... I think.
Have you seen him?

Angela and the girl have a strange moment as they connect
through the eyes.

Having had enough emotional intensity tonight, Angela breaks
their eye contact.

ANGELA
Lady, I haven't seen anybody.

Diana quietly says, "Ohhh," as she drifts on down the hall
in a daze. Angela puts her hand to her temples before opening
her hotel door. She does a double-take on the hallway --
empty.

She pauses a beat, then walks into her room. After the door
closes, we hear Sigfried on the other side.

SIGFRIED
Where the hell have you been?

CREDITS CONTINUE TO ROLL

THE END

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