"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 ]

"LIGHT SLEEPER"

Screenplay by

Paul Schrader

SHOOTING DRAFT

1992



JOHN LETOUR, forty, light sleeper. Never meant to be a drug
dealer, it just came along. He's been other things: messenger
boy, cab driver, model, postal clerk, doorman, nightclub
shill -- never meant to be them either. Now he's a D.D. Drug
dealer.

JOHN LETOUR, well-groomed, khaki slacks, leather jacket,
tippet-like scarf, belt pouch, "Beatle" boots, a shadow
drifting in and out of other shadows, New York, day, night:
watching, listening, rarely speaking -- nonexistent, seen
only by those he sees. His face an affable blank. Make of it
what you will. The eyes flicker; the hands shift discreetly.
A map of calculation.

Once he had a drug problem. Life turned a page. Today he
follows instructions: he sleeps light -- one eye open,
anticipating. JOHN LETOUR, D.D., loner, voyeur, has been
drifting toward an unknown destination. At mid-life the
destination draws near. The circle tightens. The dealer is
anxious. The destination is love.

NIGHT IN THE LIFE

CREDIT SEQUENCE: New York by night. JOHN LETOUR nestles in
back of a blue car service sedan, face reflected in the
window. Neon mixes with steam, street people with tourists,
young dates: each with a different agenda, a hidden purpose.

His beeper goes off. He clicks it, checks the digital message.
The DRIVER stops at an uptown corner. LETOUR opens the
curbside door, motions to the DRIVER he'll be back in "ten"
minutes. He enters the video laundromat, a twenty-four-hour
video rental/laundromat/tanning salon.

Inside, he meets a RETRO-YUPPIE (J. Crew Division) in the
"Classics" section. They exit.

On the sidewalk, money is exchanged for a packet. LETOUR
pockets the uncounted cash. The YUPPIE mouths goodbye, eager
to put distance between him and LETOUR. JOHN checks his
beeper, stops at a pay phone, dials.

JOHN LETOUR re-enters the sedan; the DRIVER heads downtown.
High-rises give way to Tudor City. Uncollected trash lines
the curbs. LETOUR eyes a PEDESTRIAN; PEDESTRIAN looks back.
Later. Three a.m. The streets are dark. LeTour's car passes
a glowing Korean market.

LETOUR narrates from diary:

LETOUR
(voice over)
Labor Day weekend. Some time for a
sanitation strike. Everybody crazy
to stock up. They decide to score at
the last minute and want it now.
Never fails. The faces look alike.
You gotta use memory tricks: each
has some peculiarity -- it keeps you
sharp. A D.D. told me when a drug
dealer starts writing a diary it's
time to quit. I started writing after
that. Not every night -- now and
then. Just to burn off the night.
Fill up one book, throw it out, start
another.

The sedan drives on. End credits.

CUT TO:

HOMEBASE

Four a.m.: streets empty. LeTour's sedan drops him off near
a ten-story West 80s apartment building. JOHN gives the DRIVER
a forty-dollar tip (standard procedure), turns the corner.
He presses the intercom; a buzzer unlocks the door. He enters
the lobby, walks past English reproduction furniture toward
the elevators. Presses the button.

Penthouse C door opens. ANN lets JOHN in with a smile.

ANN, forty-four, striking in a tailored dress, greets him
with a wet kiss. Her hair is coiffured, her face made up.
She is John's employer, mentor, confidante, Mother Hen: she
keeps the books. Her ingenuous demeanor belies sterner stuff:
she's been in the drug business fifteen years.

Ann's apartment is a jumble of sensibilities: dark green
walls, zebra-skin sofa, Haitian wall friezes, framed magazine
photos of Paramahansa Yogananda, Liz Taylor, the Duke of
Windsor -- paintings stacked behind an oversized urn. A bird
flits in its cage. One corner of the living area is devoted
to a fledgling cosmetics business: Macintosh computer,
billboard of trade paper clippings and ads, herbal samples,
reference books, color charts.

ROBERT, fifty, slight, waves hello as JOHN locks the door.
Gay, hip, worn, he's John's "co-runner."

They work -- and eat -- out of Ann's apartment. Take-out
tins of Indian food are stacked amid crystals, tarot cards,
glasses, and vitamin bottles. No sign of drugs, drug
paraphernalia, or money.

ANN
Darling.

LETOUR
Ann.

ANN
Have we made New York safe for another
weekend?

LETOUR
(waves)
Robert.

ROBERT
Get a job.

LETOUR
(about ROBERT)
Sad what ten years without sex can
do.

Repartee: the plumbing of family feeling.

JOHN unzips his belt pouch, walks toward the bedroom to
deposit the night's earnings.

ANN
Any hundreds?

LETOUR
Twenties -- and tens.

ROBERT
Tens!

ANN
Goddamn cash machines.

ROBERT
Did what's-his-name give you a hard
time?

LETOUR
(out of shot)
You mean --?

ROBERT
Yeah.

LETOUR
Cash Before Delivery.
(re-emerges)
CBD.

ROBERT
Fucking investment bankers.

ANN
These Wall Street kids deal with
fake money all day, they think cash
is a theoretical concept -- like it
doesn't apply. I see 'em at two,
shudder to think at nine they're
buying and selling -- turned me off
the stock market.

LETOUR
It's late.
(to ROBERT)
You staying?

ROBERT
It's over.

LETOUR
I'm gonna crash -- try, at least.

ANN
(to LETOUR)
Tomorrow will be easier. Maybe we
can all eat together. Go on. You
look tired. Here, take a couple of
C's. I'll pick up anything that comes
in.

LETOUR turns to leave.

ANN
Sleep tight.

ROBERT
Pick up the trash.

LETOUR
(laughs)
Yeah -- big kiss.

He throws two kisses, exits.

CUT TO:

JOHN'S APARTMENT

First light reflects across the Hudson as LETOUR walks west
on 22nd Street toward his Chelsea apartment building. A
delivery truck passes uncollected garbage. He enters a
nondescript doorway. Inside his studio apartment, JOHN sits
at a second-hand table writing in a composition book. He
drinks from an eight-ounce glass of white wine, continues.

The room has little personality; Ann's apartment has enough
for two. Nails indicate where pictures once hung; a boombox
sits on the linoleum floor amid cassettes, books
(Autobiography of a Yogi, The Secret Doctrine), fashion
magazines, a stack of unopened CDs. A futon is unrolled
beneath the room's sole decoration, a poster of a human foot
advertising a forgotten photo exhibit. Wine bottles -- Chenin
Blanc. Precious little to show for forty years.

LeTour's narration resumes as he writes:

LETOUR
(voice over)
"Labor Day." "Union Movement" --
there's a contradiction in terms. I
know about long hours. It's worse
when I'm off -- I just walk and walk.
Where am I going? There's an element
of providence to it all. Like rolling
numbers. Luck. You're walking down
the street, some guy that looks maybe
a little like you does a stick-up
four hours ago, there's an APB
description out and a cop pulls you
in cause he's cold and wants to go
inside -- they grab your stash. Your
number's up. You're busted for
nothing. For bad luck.

CUT TO:

JEALOUS

Five p.m. A Clinton transient hotel.

Inside hotel room, LETOUR meets with JEALOUS, a twenty-five-
year-old drug intermediary in leather jacket. JOHN counts
hundred-dollar bills, hands them to JEALOUS.

JEALOUS
Are they "faced"?

LETOUR
Don't bore me.

JEALOUS rearranges the hundreds:

JEALOUS
Is it so much work to face them the
same direction? You don't do it, I
got to. It's time -- my time --

LETOUR
(overlap)
Jees --

JEALOUS
We've been through all this.
(LETOUR shrugs)
This nineteen-gram shit is a drag.

LETOUR
We pay you more, you put up with
more. White drugs for white people.
Twice the price, twice the safety.

JEALOUS
I can't believe Ann's been working
as long as she has -- never busted.
She's something.

LETOUR
Never made any big money either.

JEALOUS
Sure.

LETOUR
She blows it.

JEALOUS
You believe that? What you gonna do
after she quits? How long you been
with her?

LETOUR
She always says that. We'll see,
Jealous.

JEALOUS
She's out. You should pick up her
trade. You're too old to be a go-
fer. They know you, they trust you.

LETOUR
No way. I'm not the management type.
I get in charge, I'll start using
again -- not for me. I know music
people. I'm gonna get in recording.

JEALOUS
Yeah.

LETOUR reaches for the door.

JEALOUS
Tour.

LETOUR
What?

JEALOUS
Normally this wouldn't matter to
you, but you may get hassled.

LETOUR
Why?

JEALOUS
You read the papers? The Park murder.
All over the Post. Mariah Rangel --
nineteen-year-old Barnard co-ed bitch
dead in Turtle Pond coked to the
fucking gills. All of a sudden they're
hot after mid-level dealers. They're
buzzin'. You know her?

LETOUR
(shrugs)
I look like an encyclopedia? Who
knows?
(opens door)
Thanks for the warning.

CUT TO:

THE NIGHT BEGINS

Ann's apartment. Eight p.m. She opens the door for LETOUR,
kisses him, goes back to the phone. Mantra muzak plays as
JOHN locks door, heads toward bedroom. Inside bedroom, MTV
glows silently as ROBERT, wearing a black turtleneck, works
at a desk amid tools of the trade: digital scale, "hot box,"
Deering grinder, block of manite, pure cocaine, pills, felt
pen. ROBERT scissors glossy magazine paper (Elle) into neat
quarters, folds each into gram-size "bindels" -- envelopes.
Red satin drapes the ceiling.

ROBERT
Jack.

JOHN kisses him atop the head.

ROBERT
You pick up from Jealous?

LETOUR
(passes bag)
Yeah, nineteen grams after four times
last night. We're certainly not his
favorite people.

ROBERT
We don't make the laws. Nineteen is
carrying, twenty is dealing. Let him
be stupid.

LETOUR
He took my hundreds.

ROBERT
(stands)
Take over for a while. I'm getting
contact high.

LETOUR
(sits)
Who's Her Majesty talking to?

ROBERT flips through cable channels as JOHN grinds cocaine.

ROBERT
The Ecstasy connection. From Arizona.
She's trying to get them to come
here -- or, better, Europe.

LETOUR
That's where the money is.

ROBERT
All mark-up -- the "Big One."

LETOUR
(laughs)
Don't dress.
(beat)
You really think she means it?

ROBERT
That's what she says. New Year's Eve
and out -- no Acid House, no product,
no deliveries.

LETOUR
That's just her mouth talking.

ROBERT
Next year -- strictly Akasha.

LETOUR
"Akasha"?

ROBERT
Cosmetics. That's what Ann's calling
the company now --

LETOUR
(interjects)
-- this week. I don't get it --
marigolds, violets, sage -- why'd
anyone pay to put weeds on their
face?

ROBERT
Why'd anyone pay to put them up their
nose? I like cosmetics. I need
cosmetics. You should come in with
us.

LETOUR
You forget: she hasn't asked me.

ANN hangs up, calls:

ANN
(out of shot)
Johnny! Robert! Come here!

They return to the living area.

ANN
(open arms)
Plant me two kisses, boys, fifteen
hundred Ex at thirty each and the
delivery's here.

They simultaneously kiss her cheeks.

ANN
(to LETOUR)
Whatja think?

LETOUR
Of what?

ANN
The face cream. Almond, marigold,
chamomile, egg, aloe -- the "Almilk"
formula. I remixed it.

LETOUR
(smells her)
Very nice.

ANN
Reminds me, if you get downtown stop
at Enhancements and pick up some
almond oil -- not the California.
(fishes menus from
desk)
What should we order?

LETOUR
How about Indian?

ANN
Darling, it's Saturday.

ROBERT
Thai. We haven't had Thai in a while.

The phone rings. Ann's voice repeats a recorded message:

ANN'S VOICE
"Hello. This is Ann. If you leave a
message, we'll get back to you --
sooner than you think."

Answering machine beeps. MAN'S VOICE speaks from the tiny
speaker: "Ann, this is Ed. Call me. 749-2876."

ANN
(to ROBERT)
Answer that. He'll call back every
five minutes.

ROBERT
(walking)
The night begins.

The phone rings again: another message as ANN examines the
menu.

ANN
"Ped Srilom"? -- it's Northeastern.
Duck.

LETOUR
(glancing)
I'm going veggie. Get me the "Puk
Ob."

ROBERT
(out of shot from
phone)
Me too.

LETOUR
Use it for facial cream.

ROBERT
(out of shot)
Remove unsightly hair!

ANN
Laugh, one day you'll be watching me
on "Oprah" from a welfare hotel.

LETOUR
Forgive us.

ROBERT
(returns)
Eddie wants now. Now. His place. Top
Lady. God knows what happened to his
shit yesterday.

ANN
(to LETOUR)
You take it -- call in.

LETOUR
It was supposed to be light tonight.

ROBERT
Don't you watch TV?

LETOUR
Don't have one.

ROBERT
Well if you were the normal stupid
fuck you should be so lucky to be
and had one, you'd know it's supposed
to rain --

ANN
Good for the trees --

ROBERT
Some farmer whacked his numerology
on us.

ANN
(peers through curtain)
It's started.

ROBERT
The Farmer's Almanac is based on
numerology.

LETOUR
Raining?

ANN
Take a coat.
(to ROBERT)
And you, clean up the product before
the food delivery comes.

JOHN grabs his belt pouch, heads for the closet.

CUT TO:

CONFESSOR LETOUR

Rain falls on LeTour's car near an East Side luxury high-
rise. The door opens to Eddie's apartment: severe decor,
once chic, now dated. EDDIE, thirty-two, is a mess: puffy
face, sweaty shirt, pinched lips -- on a drug jag.

EDDIE
Le Tour! -- finally. What took so
long?

LETOUR
(steps inside)
Traffic. It's raining.

EDDIE
How's things?

LETOUR
Okay.

EDDIE
I need a quarter -- you got it?

LETOUR
(nods)
Robert said he sold you a quarter
yesterday.

EDDIE
(slurs)
Some friends came over. How much is
that? Fourteen-hundred?

LETOUR nods as EDDIE, employing diminished skills, counts
from a roll of twenties. JOHN looks around: full ashtrays,
porn tapes, empty vodka bottles -- there have been no
"friends."

LETOUR
Eddie. Look at yourself. Sit down.
I've known you, what, like eight
years?

EDDIE
(counting)
Yeah...

LETOUR
Knew you from the other job, the one
before the last one you fucked up. I
knew your wife -- remember her? We
used to sit and talk and talk --

Pressures EDDIE into chair.

EDDIE
(whining)
You don't know what she was like --

LETOUR
This is no good. I'll sell you a
gram and some downs, but I ain't
gonna put you in the emergency room.
Cool it. Go to bed. Sleep it off.

John's beeper goes off.

EDDIE
(stands)
You charge $200 for what goes for
ninety on the street -- and you're
not gonna sell?

LETOUR
(clicks beeper)
So go to the street.

EDDIE
I'll call Ann.

LETOUR
Go ahead. You know what she'll say.
Phone's over there.

EDDIE
(irrational)
I'll tell the fucking cops.

LETOUR
(flashes cold)
Fuck you. That's it. You're out.
(turns to leave)
Don't call again. Catch you next
lifetime.

EDDIE
(contrite)
Please, Tour, I'm sorry. You're right.
I didn't mean that. I'm quitting
anyway. I'll take the gram. Sorry.

LETOUR
(turns back)
Okay.

EDDIE
Two hundred?

LETOUR nods.

EDDIE counts $200 as LETOUR takes a gram from his pouch,
gives it to him.

LETOUR
You got downs?
(EDDIE nods)
One more thing. I gotta use the phone.

EDDIE pockets the envelope as JOHN, checking his beeper,
walks to the phone.

Later. LETOUR sits in an Upper West Side apartment as an
earnest MID-TWENTIESH MAN, wearing undershorts, snorts a
hefty line, offers a rolled dollar bill as he talks. LETOUR
declines.

MID-TWENTIESH MAN
(continuing)
...but -- if there's no God, how can
man conceive of him? The idea of God
presupposes the existence of God.
That's the Ontological Argument.
Anselm. Twelve hundred. Fourteen
hundred -- I'm not sure --

LETOUR
(checks his watch)
I've got to go.

MID-TWENTIESH MAN
(gesturing)
Let me finish. Okay, if the idea of
God is implanted by God -- the sensus
divinitatus, the sense of the divine --
what is the role of human thought?
Not faith, thought...

LETOUR's mind drifts. His diary voice overlaps:

LETOUR
(Voice over)
Everybody wants to talk. It's like a
compulsion. My philosophy is: you
got nothing to say, don't say it.
They figure you can tell a D.D.
anything, things they would never
tell anyone else. He understands. Of
course they're stoned to start. If I
could tie together all the hours of
coke talk I've heard, that would be
a lot of string. It was Robert's
idea to add twenty-five dollars to
home deliveries cause it's such a
hassle. Fifty is more like it.

Later. Narration continues as sedan drives through rain.
Later. A Tribeca loft. LETOUR swaps drug jargon with TWO
N.Y.U. STUDENTS at an impromptu party. Attractive ingenues
drift by. TRENDY TWOSOME, blasted, sways, to techno-rap.

Business done, LETOUR turns to leave. The FIRST STUDENT grabs
his shoulder:

FIRST STUDENT
C'mon, Tour, stick around.

SECOND STUDENT
Yeah.

FIRST STUDENT
There's only four of us and like
seven of them -- and we're paying
for the dope. See her, over there,
the blonde, long hair, yellow skirt? --
she's gonna model for Elite.

DOWNTOWN NYMPH, sixteen going on seventeen.

LETOUR
(smiling)
Me? I'm an old man. She'd break me
like an old horse.

SECOND STUDENT
Shit, dude --

LETOUR
Nah. Thanks anyway.
(checks watch)
I gotta go. Have fun.
(heads toward exit)

CUT TO:

FACE FROM THE PAST

LeTour's sedan heads down Lexington Avenue. It rains unabated.
Puddles glisten; red taillights refract on the windshield.
JOHN rests in back, a bag from Enhancements beside him.

Pedestrians, well-dressed and casual, desperately wave for
taxis amid sacks of garbage. No use: nothing for blocks.

John's sedan stops for a midtown light. LETOUR looks out the
window, sees a WOMAN vainly hailing a cab. He looks again.
She turns her head. He recognizes her.

LETOUR
(to DRIVER)
Carlos. Wait a second.

He leans over, opens the far door, calls:

LETOUR
Marianne! Marianne! Hop in! I'll
give you a ride.

MARIANNE JOST, thirty-five, stylish in short black hair and
long black coat, steps closer, looks through the rain.

LETOUR
John. John LeTour.

MARIANNE
(recognizes him)
John?

LETOUR
Get in. You're getting soaked.

She ducks inside, slams the door.

MARIANNE
(awkward)
Hi...

The car moves on.

LETOUR
Where are you going?

MARIANNE wipes rain from her cheeks; her expression deepens:
cautious, suspicious. No reply.

LETOUR
I didn't know you still lived here.

MARIANNE
(second thoughts)
Maybe this wasn't such a good idea.
I should get out.

LETOUR
Don't be crazy. It's pouring.

MARIANNE
I'm not supposed to be around --

LETOUR
(completes sentence)
-- former drug associates.

MARIANNE
It's four years I'm clean. No alcohol,
no cigarettes, no nothing.

LETOUR
I heard. I'm happy for you.

MARIANNE
It's still not easy.

LETOUR
I know. Mar, you don't need to avoid
me. I'm straight -- two years. It
came that time. I tried to tell you.
I wrote. I called.

MARIANNE
(looks around)
I should get out.

LETOUR
Honest.

MARIANNE
But you're dealing.

LETOUR
No. I stopped.

MARIANNE
What's in the bag?

LETOUR
Almond oil. You can check.
(opens bag)
Look.

She does: Enhancements Almond Oil. John's beeper goes off! --
he punches it.

LETOUR
Shit.

MARIANNE
What's that for? In case someone
needs almond oil in the middle of
the night?

LETOUR
I still deal a little, but I'm
straight -- that part's true. Believe
me.

MARIANNE
(to DRIVER)
Stop here. Now. Stop!

LETOUR
I won't say anything. I promise.
I'll just sit here. I'll just give
you a ride.

The car pulls over. MARIANNE opens the door, gets out.

MARIANNE
Goodbye, John.

LETOUR
Where do you live?
(door slams)
Mari...

She fades into the rain. JOHN watches, aching.

DRIVER
Sir?

LETOUR
Eighty-third Street.

The sedan continues uptown.

CUT TO:

MEMORIES

John's apartment. Pre-dawn. His diary lies open on the desk.
LETOUR sits clothed on the futon, drinking white wine. He
pages through a cheap, half-filled photo album. He touches
snapshots, 3×5's from another time:

-- JOHN and MARIANNE, arm in arm, on a Florida beach

-- MARIANNE, surprised by the camera, snorting coke at a
party

-- JOHN, MARIANNE, and ANN posing, smiling, same party

-- JOHN and MARIANNE kissing over birthday cake, same party

-- MARIANNE IN MOROCCO BAZAAR

-- JOHN blowing a kiss in Fez airport

CUT TO:

PSYCHIC HEALING

LeTour's narration continues over embossed card on an entry
table: Teresa Aronow, Psychic Reading, 37 Jones Street, New
York, N.Y. 10012, (212)473-4297. VOICES under narration:

TERESA
(out of shot)
Coffee?

LETOUR
(out of shot)
Thanks.

TERESA
(out of shot)
Black?

LETOUR
(out of shot)
Yeah.

TERESA
(out of shot)
Here.

JOHN accepts a coffee mug, sits on a sofa across from TERESA.
Sunlight falls through crocheted curtains.

TERESA ARONOW, fortyish, professionally young, is compact,
demure; she wears business jacket and skirt, patterned blouse.
Nothing about her is remotely paranormal -- nothing except,
of course, her "aura." The "Other Side." Her voice is at the
same time soothing, piercing.

Teresa's West Village consultation room is startlingly
mundane: a bourgeois walk-up. Upholstered furniture, Tiffany
objêts d'art, framed photos of her husband and children -- a
trip to Capri. A twenties portrait of Madame Blavatsky, above
the fireplace, centers the room.

LETOUR
I'm not sure how this works.

TERESA
Have you ever been to a psychic
before?

LETOUR
No, but I've, well, I've heard about
it.

TERESA
Do you need advice? John?

LETOUR
(nods)
No... it's not that... I don't know --
I just decided to come. I thought...

TERESA
Be comfortable.
(smile)
How did you hear about me?

LETOUR
A recommendation. Somebody from work.
Two hundred dollars, right?

TERESA nods. JOHN tucks cash into an envelope, places it on
the coffee table.

TERESA
It's a lot of money?

LETOUR
I don't care.

TERESA
(explaining)
I look at you. I give you my
impressions. I feel your "vibrations" --
I don't like that word, it sounds
phony, but I can't think of anything
better.
(watching)
You're anxious.
(he shrugs)
More than usual. Your aura is very
strong. I feel a very strong vibration
from you. A change is coming. You're
worried about money. You say you
don't care about money but that's
not true.

LETOUR
Yeah.

TERESA
Your livelihood is endangered. You're
worried about the future. You don't
have much money saved. What will you
do?

LETOUR
I don't know.

TERESA
I see a woman who has betrayed you.

LETOUR
(smiles)
My mother?

TERESA
(cuts him short)
Who will betray you.

LETOUR
Not... I...

TERESA
Keep it in mind. I have a strong
feeling about this woman, a woman
close to you, she will betray you.
You're in the entertainment business,
aren't you?

LETOUR
Yes.

TERESA
But you're not happy. You want to do
something else. Is it music?

LETOUR
Yes...

TERESA
You have a talent for music.

LETOUR
As a child.

TERESA
You still have it. It's strong. I
see music in your future. A career
opportunity will come in the music
field. Take it. It won't seem
promising. Take it anyway.
(pause)
You're full of stress. Are you
exercising?

LETOUR
No. I --

TERESA
You should exercise more. You must
let go of this stress. It's not good
for your health. I'm not saying you're
going over to the other side, but
it's not good for you. You're still
drinking, aren't you? You have a
drinking problem?
(he shrugs)
It's interfering with your health
and your life too. You've had other
problems. Drug addiction.

LETOUR
Yes.

TERESA
This was very important in your life.

LETOUR
Yes.

TERESA
You are in the balance. Everything
you do -- positive or negative -- in
this life is a drop that will carry
over in the next. Every act, every
decision matters.

LETOUR
Teresa?

TERESA
What is it?

LETOUR
I'm thirty-eight years old.
(beat)
Forty.

TERESA
You're young.

LETOUR
I have trouble sleeping.
(TERESA waits)
Look. What do you see around me? Is
there anything? Is it dark? Have I
run out of luck? Is there luck?

TERESA
I see a glow. Everything you need is
around you. The only danger is inside
you.

CUT TO:

MONEY CHANGER

Ann's apartment. The night has already begun. ANN sits on
the floor beside a YOUNG HASID counting money. He wears
Orthodox garb: black hat, black coat, peyas. Tibetan bells
reverb from speakers as the Bergmanesque cambist runs faced
twenty-dollar bills through a battery-operated counting
machine, places stacks of cash on the floor. ROBERT returns
a call from the kitchen; LETOUR emerges from the bathroom,
wiping his hands.

ANN
(to LETOUR and ROBERT)
Your pay's on the table.

JOHN walks to the cosmetics corner, finds an envelope with
his name on it, looks inside: $500 in twenties. He pockets
the money.

LETOUR sits as HASID double-checks the total: cash covers
the available floor space.

YOUNG HASID
(dialogue punctuates
action)
One hundred thirty-one, let's make
it 130-$13,000, hundreds for small
bills. One percent commission, $130
to you -- add tens or whatever if
you want.

Opening a satchel, he removes bound $100s, counts off 130 as
ANN adds up commission in small bills. He loads the satchel:

YOUNG HASID
Same time?

ANN
(nods)
Two weeks -- don't run. Stay a while.
We'll order kosher. We'll tell you
dirty stories. We'll talk Zionism.

The HASID laughs. He likes her.

YOUNG HASID
(passes hundreds)
I'm late already. I only come 'cause
I like you. Sure you're not Jewish?
I don't want to see you hurt. Find a
man. You should do something else.

ANN
(offers commission)
Invest in my cosmetics line.

YOUNG HASID
(takes money)
Don't mix business with friendship.

ANN follows him to the door.

YOUNG HASID
Shalom.

ANN
Shalom.
(opens door)
See you next week.
(calls after him)
Don't eat any hot dogs!

ANN closes door.

LETOUR
Jealous said something about a yuppie
murder in the Park. You know anything
about it?

ANN
It's all over the news.

LETOUR
Jealous said to be careful.

ANN
We are careful.

ROBERT
(returning)
We're too small time. Besides, she
wasn't one of ours -- not directly.
(to LETOUR)
Tis is at St. Luke's. He wants
somebody over right away. Second
floor waiting room.

LETOUR
A hospital? What's he doing there?

ROBERT
He says he needs you to come to St.
Luke's. I'd go but I got the other
thing.

LETOUR
The --?

ROBERT
Yeah.

ANN
(to LETOUR)
Go. Keep on his good side. He set up
Arizona.

Phone rings; Ann's machine answers: "Hello, this is Ann..."

ANN
(to LETOUR)
Let's have lunch. Tomorrow.

LETOUR
Me?

ANN
One o'clock. Côte Basque. Is that
too early?

LETOUR
No. Yeah -- sure.

ROBERT
Tonight?

LETOUR
I vote Japanese.

ANN
Fine.

ROBERT
Okay.

LETOUR
(heads for door)
Mixed sushi. Oshitashi.

CUT TO:

ST. LUKE'S

EMS vehicles line street outside St. Luke's -- Roosevelt
Hospital. Inside, LETOUR weaves through Emergency (eerie),
double-steps the stairs, looks for the second floor waiting
area.

TIS (Mathis -- pronounced Tees), thirty-five, Swiss, paces
in the waiting room. He wears a linen jacket, horn-rim
glasses, Cerrutti Euro-swank. He spots JOHN, takes him aside:

LETOUR
What's going on?

TIS
You got some valiums?

LETOUR
(nods)
-- 'n 'ludes.

TIS
Just a valium -- a ten.

LETOUR
What is it?

TIS
You won't believe it. What a
nightmare. I brought in this chick.
She O.D.ed -- man, I didn't even
know her. I didn't have to bring her
in. The cops are coming back to talk
to me. I'm hyper. I gotta come down.

LETOUR
(hands him valium)
Here.

TIS
Make it two.

LETOUR obliges. TIS pops a blue without water, pockets the
other.

TIS
Thanks.

LETOUR
She okay?

TIS
Who?

LETOUR
The girl.

TIS
Yeah, yeah. Met her last night. A
walking vacuum cleaner. What a
nightmare. Underage.

LETOUR
You need a lawyer?

TIS
(gestures toward suited
man)
He's here. Thanks.

TIS folds a bill into John's hand.

LETOUR
Any time.

TIS turns, steps away. LETOUR walks down the long corridor.
Curious, reflective, he slows past open doors. Friends,
family, patients sit in blue light. Each room a drama.

He heads down a duplicate corridor. A VOICE turns his head:

RANDI
John!

He turns to see RANDI JOST, thirty, Marianne's younger sister.
She wears running shoes, jeans, red sweater.

LETOUR
Randi?

RANDI
(kisses him)
I can't believe it. Marianne's here
too. She flew in. It's been so long.
You look great.

LETOUR
(deactivates beeper)
You too. Randi, what's wrong? Why
are you here?

RANDI
Mom. She's back in. Didn't Marianne
tell you?

LETOUR
Serious?

RANDI
(nods)
More chemo.

LETOUR
Can I see her?

RANDI
She's sleeping. She sleeps most of
the time. She'd like it, though. She
still talks about you.

LETOUR
(sad)
I'm so sorry. She's a terrific woman.
I was crazy about her. God.

MARIANNE, head down, approaches. Looking up, she finds herself
unexpectedly beside JOHN and RANDI:

RANDI
It's John. What a coincidence.

MARIANNE
(gathering herself)
Yes.
(extends hand)
Hi.

LETOUR
(shakes hand)
Randi told me about your mom. I'm
sorry.

MARIANNE
Thanks.

LETOUR
She's sedated?

MARIANNE
Yeah.

RANDI
She would be so happy to see John.

MARIANNE
I don't think that would be a good
idea.

An awkward silence: RANDI doesn't get it.

LETOUR
You both look so tired.

MARIANNE
One of us has to be here.

RANDI
The hospital lets us stay in her
room.

LETOUR
Let me buy you some coffee or
something -- the cafeteria's
downstairs. It helps to talk.

RANDI
You go, Marianne, it's my turn with
mom.

MARIANNE
I shouldn't.

RANDI
Go. You haven't eaten. Go on.
(nudges her)
Go on.

MARIANNE
I...

RANDI
Bring me a coffee.

MARIANNE acquiesces.

LETOUR
This way.
(to RANDI)
Kiss your mother for me.

JOHN escorts MARIANNE toward the stairs.

CUT TO:

EUPHORIC RECALL

Hospital cafeteria. JOHN and MARIANNE carry trays to a formica
table, molded chairs. He mixes sugar in his coffee as she
sets out her salad, diet soda, to-go coffee.

An awkward moment. MARIANNE scans the fluorescent room:
doctors, nurses, relatives.

LETOUR
I like your mom.

MARIANNE
She liked you. You know this will
happen someday, but when it does...
Your mother -- that was a shock.

LETOUR
(re: Marianne's mother)
She's been sick a while?

MARIANNE
A year.

LETOUR
Your father?

MARIANNE
("no")
Not this time. His new wife -- he'll
make it to the funeral.

LETOUR
What have you been doing? Where do
you live?

MARIANNE
It's...
(deciding)
I don't want you to know about my
life.

LETOUR
Anything? You married? Have children?
A dog?
(smile)
House plants?

MARIANNE
Details just open the door.

LETOUR
The door to what?
(no answer)
It's not like we're strangers. We
were married.

MARIANNE
We were not.

LETOUR
There was a ceremony.

MARIANNE
He wasn't even a minister. He was an
astrologer.

LETOUR
He was also a minister. "Universal
Harmony."

MARIANNE
He was a Pisces.

LETOUR
You're a Pisces.

MARIANNE
It was not legal.

LETOUR
In the eyes of Jeanne Dixon we're
still --

MARIANNE
I was on the cusp.

LETOUR
We were happy.

MARIANNE
We were miserable. We were either
scoring or coming down -- mostly
coming down.

LETOUR
There were good times. Area, out on
the street, laughing, dancing with
friends -- we were magical.

MARIANNE
You took off for three months without
telling me and called once. That's
how magical we were. You were an
encyclopedia of suicidal fantasies --
I heard them all. Nobody could clear
a room like you, John. And the
friends, you may have noticed, turned
out to be mine, not yours. I envy
you. A convenient memory is a gift
from God.

LETOUR
You exaggerate.

MARIANNE
In rehab they call this "euphoric
recall." You only remember the highs,
never the lows.

LETOUR
We were happy.

MARIANNE
I was drowning.

LETOUR
It wasn't me --

MARIANNE
You watched --

LETOUR
You jumped --

MARIANNE
You did nothing -- "It wasn't your
business, you weren't responsible" --
you still think like that.
(shakes head)
Actions have consequences; so do --

LETOUR
(overlap)
I --

MARIANNE
-- inactions.

LETOUR
I didn't --
(MARIANNE smiles)
I meant well.

MARIANNE
You always meant well.

LETOUR
We were in love?

MARIANNE
Yes.

LETOUR
We were happy?

She doesn't answer. He slides his hand across the table. She
notices his gold and onyx ring.

LETOUR
You bought it for me. It's inscribed
inside.

She pushes his hand away. Details open doors.

LETOUR
Ann's quitting. I've got to find
something else to do.

MARIANNE
Ann? I'll believe it when I see it.

LETOUR
It's true.

MARIANNE
Are you really straight?

LETOUR
Yeah.

MARIANNE
Let me see your eyes.

JOHN leans forward, eyes open. She presses up an eyelid,
examines one iris, the other:

MARIANNE
Eyes are deceiving.
(beat)
Congratulations.

LETOUR
If I could do that, I could do
anything.

MARIANNE
What do you mean?

LETOUR
We could do anything. We could start
over.

MARIANNE
(bangs her head)
What was that? I think I heard
something.

LETOUR
I'm serious.

An INTERCOM VOICE announces visiting hours will end in five
minutes.

MARIANNE
You're crazy.

LETOUR
(gestures to room)
This is crazy.

MARIANNE
I have to get back.

JOHN nods, checks his watch -- he's late too. They exchange
"last looks"; MARIANNE stands.

LETOUR
I'll walk you.

He stands, follows.

CUT TO:

NEW DIARY

Later. LeTour's sedan pulls up near Palio, a midtown
restaurant.

JOHN steps around garbage bags, enters.

Inside, JOHN "maps" bar, greets the MAÎTRE D'. LETOUR spots
the FRENCH (LaCroix and Montana) COUPLE in the dining section,
catches the man's eye. He nods to the MAÎTRE D', makes his
way toward their table.

He joins the FRENCH COUPLE, declines a drink, exchanges
drugs/money amid air kisses.

Late night. Fog hangs over 22nd Street: Chelsea's deserted.
Homeless men behind windbreaks of trash.

John's apartment. He writes bareback at the desk. He completes
his composition book diary mid-sentence, closes it, discards
it. He lifts a new book from the floor, opens it on the desk,
continues.

He fills his glass with wine:

LETOUR
(voice over)
I can always find another way to
make a living. I never planned this
in the first place -- not like Ann.
She came up to sell, have parties,
make contacts. She was so glamorous.
I just wanted to be around her. She'd
sit up listening to coke stories.
Now it's me and Robert. The whole
crowd was the same age. Everybody's
younger now. She made me.

LETOUR pulls his weekly pay from his pants, puts five twenties
in an envelope. He addresses the envelope. "Linda Wichel,
1012B-2 A Street, Sacramento, California," stamps it.

Dissolves: (1) LETOUR vanishes from his desk, (2) materializes
fetally on his futon, bareback, slacks, boots, anxious,
awaiting sleep.

LeTour's diary contains parallel columns of names: one headed
"People Who Are Left Handed," the other, "People Whose Eyes
Don't Match."

CUT TO:

CÔTE BASQUE

Midday. JOHN, wearing a black tweed jacket, tie, khaki slacks,
mails the Sacramento letter, enters CÔTE BASQUE, a hoity-
toity 55th Street restaurant.

Midmeal. ANN and LETOUR sit in a prominent booth; power moguls
confer quietly. A deferential WAITER brings fresh berries,
retrieves empty salmon plates.

ANN
You have any money saved?

LETOUR
There's some. Not much. A thousand
or two. Maybe more -- I'm not sure.

ANN
What do you do with your money?

The CHEF stops by, asks if the meal was satisfactory. ANN
assures him it was, kisses his hand. The CHEF nods, gratified.
JOHN resumes the conversation:

LETOUR
I don't know. It's not that much in
the first place -- as you know.

ANN
(counterpoint)
It's tax free --

LETOUR
Rent, utilities, phone, tips, CDs --
what about your money?

ANN
Kitty Ford once told me, "Ann, the
only person I know that lives as
well as you is my grandmother." All
the money I've made, all the money
I've spent -- it never adds up. This
last two years cosmetics' been taking
everything.

LETOUR
I wish I could help.

ANN
You still go to meetings?

LETOUR
No, but I'm okay. What are the odds
of meeting someone you haven't seen
in years twice in two days?

ANN
Ask Robert to make up a chart for
you; the other person -- who is it?

LETOUR
Just a contact -- you don't know
him.

ANN
What's the plan?

LETOUR
The plan?

ANN
What you gonna do?

LETOUR
My future?

ANN
Too conceptual?

LETOUR
We had this conversation two years
ago. We'll have it two years from
now.

ANN
This time it's for real.

LETOUR
(accepting premise)
I'm thinking of some music courses.
Mixing, sound editing --

ANN
You took that before.

LETOUR
That was acting.

ANN
(corrects him)
Modeling.

LETOUR
Why all this concern? Suddenly you
care?

ANN
I have feelings too -- you may have
noticed. I guess I'm worried. I'm
tough, you gotta to be tough,
especially in this business, it's
one thing to act tough -- I've seen
Zipporah twice this week.

LETOUR
She helps you?

ANN
(nods)
-- harmonizes, she's encouraging me
to get out of this into the cosmetics
thing --

WAITER leans in, deposits check as WELL-TANNED CUSTOMER,
fifty-five, cologne and hauteur, passes. He looks at ANN
blankly, continues. She watches:

ANN
(about CUSTOMER)
Nomination for Best Picture. I knew
every girl he fucked -- how, why. I
knew when he had trouble shitting.
Like this.
(crosses fingers)
His wife says he gets straight or
she cuts him off. Old money. I
remember the last thing he said to
me: "See you soon." Yeah, sure. That
was five years ago.

ANN pulls a wad of twenties from her purse, counts bills
atop the check: $260.

ANN
(vulnerable)
You'll still talk to me, won't you?

A beat: this is the reason for lunch. The WAITER picks up
the cash, appraises the gratuity.

LETOUR
You --?
(to ANN)
Of course I will.

ANN
It'll be strange without you around.
I hadn't thought of it -- it hit me.

LETOUR
(clever)
We'll always have Paris.

ANN
(reproachful)
John.

JOHN reaches, touches her visceral emotion. He takes her
hand:

LETOUR
Ann, you want me, call, write a
letter, tell a wino -- I'll be there.

She smiles, clasps his hand. Touching, he is touched.

CUT TO:

GENERAL HOSPITAL

Afternoon. St. Luke's. LETOUR, wearing tweed jacket, walks
down the corridor, checks room numbers. A NURSE passes. He
stops at a room, pushes the door a crack, peeks inside,
quietly enters.

Inside the hospital room, MRS. JOST, sixty-five, lies sedated,
attached to IV tubes and a respirator. Flowers wreathe the
bed.

RANDI sleeps in a chair by the window.

LETOUR looks from MRS. JOST to RANDI and back again: a vibrant
woman reduced to a shell. He soundlessly eases into a vacant
chair.

His mind goes back.

RANDI twists fitfully in her chair. A stuffed bear peeks
over family photos on the window sill.

MARIANNE steps into the doorway, stops, frozen -- watching
the tableau: JOHN, RANDI, her mother. Her face is ravaged:
the death watch has taken its toll. LETOUR reaches his arm,
touches the hospital bed.

MARIANNE tiptoes behind JOHN. He turns, stands.

LETOUR
(soft)
I'm sorry. I...

She puts her finger to her lips. He nods. She steps closer,
holds him politely. His cheek nestles in her neck.

They turn toward the door, step into the corridor, walk arm
in arm as if supporting each other.

LETOUR
(after a moment)
I always thought my father would die
first. He would die, then my mother
and I would reconcile. Just her and
me. I hated him for living.

MARIANNE
It's like a joke. It's not a real
feeling. It's like a feeling of a
feeling.

LETOUR
My old man bawling in the hospital,
me popping in and out of the john
getting loaded.
(beat)
I miss you.

They stop. She kisses him.

MARIANNE
You tried to kill me. You took ten
years of my life one way or another.
(he kisses her)
I couldn't hate my mom -- I was too
busy hating you.

LETOUR
I thought I was just killing myself.

She runs her hands under his shirt, up his back.

LETOUR
Selfish.

MARIANNE
I remember.

LETOUR
What?

MARIANNE
What it felt like.
(kisses his face)
What this tasted like.

He slips his hands under her blouse, caresses her breasts.

LETOUR
I see you and my heart starts
thumping.

MARIANNE
John.

They kiss deeper, bodies grinding. The painful present fades.
A NURSE approaches with WHEELCHAIR PATIENT. She tries to
pass one side of JOHN and MARIANNE, tries the other side, is
blocked again. The NURSE stops, stares at their soap opera.

Sensing her glare, JOHN and MARIANNE, hands over and under
each other, stop, look to the NURSE: embarrassed -- yet
blissful.

LETOUR
Excuse us.
(to MARIANNE)
Let's go.

MARIANNE
Come. Come with me.

CUT TO:

HOTEL SEX

Paramount hotel room: Vermeer's Lace Maker dominates Phillipe
Stark decor.

LETOUR and MARIANNE are all over each other. The pain of the
moment, the pain of the past are subsumed by passion. Blind,
welcome sexuality.

Naked, they kneel facing each other on the bed, faded bleeding
heart tattoo on his bicep:

LETOUR
Have you ever had sex totally
straight?

MARIANNE
Not with you.

LETOUR
Neither have I.

MARIANNE
Such an erection.

LETOUR
Never had anything like it stoned.
Feel it.
(she does)

MARIANNE
Weird.

LETOUR
(caresses erection)
Wow.

MARIANNE
I'm dripping.

LETOUR
Let's disappear.

They smack their sweaty bodies, tumble yelping to the carpet,
kiss indiscriminately:

LETOUR
Kiss, kiss, kiss.

MARIANNE
Kiss, kiss, kiss.

LETOUR
Together.

Later: night. They lie nude in a scramble of twisted sheets
and mattresses. Street lights cast horizontal shadows. LETOUR
crawls over, falls upon Marianne's breast. She wakes up,
looks at JOHN, looks out the window, returns to slow sad
reality.

MARIANNE stands, pulls on her panties.

LETOUR
(waking)
You need to go back?

She dresses before responding:

MARIANNE
This is the end. It was wonderful.
I'm glad it happened this way. It
will never happen again. You will
not see me, you will not call me
again. I'm happy for you. I wish you
the best. I'm leaving. I'm going
back to the hospital. I shouldn't
have left -- but I don't regret it.
Please dress and leave as soon as
possible. I have a key. Goodbye.

LETOUR
Marianne...

MARIANNE
It's my fault.

MARIANNE, clothes askew, exits.

LETOUR
I love you.

LETOUR is alone. He pulls his pants on. Looking for his socks,
he peruses Marianne's personal things. He examines her
cosmetics, her underclothes. He dabs her perfume on his cheek.

Buttoning his shirt, he retrieves his beeper from suit jacket.
Activated, it disgorges messages. He checks his watch: 9:00
p.m.

CUT TO:

GET ON OUT

Nine-thirty: Ann's apartment building. Trash stacked high.

LETOUR presses the buzzer.

LETOUR, exhausted, unfocused, enters Ann's apartment. ANN is
immediately upon him:

ANN
Johnny, what is this? Your beeper
broke, gettin' some shiatsu? Two
hours: where have you bee?

LETOUR
There was a mix-up --

ANN
How you gonna survive on your own?
The U.N.'s got some conference in
two days. The holiday's over --
ragheads everywhere trying to score.
U.N. security at every hotel -- little
creeps with lapel pins. Even I've
been out. This is where our money
is: Europe, Asia, not the streets --
you wouldn't know crack from
crackerjacks.

LETOUR
Where's Robert?

ANN
Busting his ass. He's out doing your
job.

LETOUR
It was a confusion.

ANN
Get confused on your day off.

LETOUR
When is that?

ANN
Don't get wise. What do you want me
to do? Suck your dick? -- okay. A
raise? No way. Get out there. There's
a list on the TV. I love you. Get
your ass outta here before I kiss
it.

LETOUR
(pecks her cheek)
I'm on my way. Love you. Forgive me.

CUT TO:

AU BAR

LeTour's sedan waits between limos.

Inside, JOHN passes the MAÎTRE D', looks around: he's known
here. Au Bar, a restaurant/club open 9:00 p. m. to 4:00 a.
m., caters to the young, the rich, the European.

He spots TIS with THOMAS, twenty-five, his handsome trainer,
and TWO MODELS at a second-floor table. They exchange nods.

LETOUR scans the room: suspicion is second nature.

A laughing man (GUIDONE) at the bar catches his eye. He seems
to blend: Italian, twenty-eight, silk suit, impeccable hair,
accent -- but something's not right. His black shoes have
rubber soles. LETOUR looks for a gun bulge, dirty hands. The
ITALIAN turns; LETOUR glimpses his face: too pale. The ITALIAN
averts his eyes. Glancing back, LETOUR walks up the stairs
to Tis' table.

TIS
Tour, sit. Take a rest. LeTour, this
is Gabri, Tasha -- you know Thomas.
They're here for a show.

The MODELS respond in respective accents. THOMAS extends his
hand. JOHN shakes, remains standing.

LETOUR
Enchanté.
(to TIS)
How'd it turn out?

TIS
(to GABRI)
Questo è un vero Americano.
(to LETOUR)
What?

GABRI and TASHA buzz.

LETOUR
St. Luke's.

TIS
No problem, but -- can you believe
this? -- she's out of the hospital
in one day, calls me up, wants to
"get together." Some people are just
born for losing. Want to go in back?

LETOUR
Not now.

TIS
Huh?

LETOUR
Look at the bar. Black-haired guy,
late twenties, brown suit, drinking
tonic?
(TIS nods)
He's casing you. Not me, you.
Undercover, whatever -- he's on you.

TIS
You know him?

LETOUR
(shakes head "no")
Just a feeling. You holding?

TIS
No. Need help?

LETOUR
("no")
Leave a message. Robert or I will
come by later.

TIS
Forget it. It wasn't for me anyway.
(to MODELS)
Who am I trying to impress?
(they smile
uncomprehendingly)
Make it tomorrow. A half -- no, three-
quarters.

LETOUR
Nineteen is the top. I'll make two
trips.

TIS
Nineteen is fine.

LETOUR
(leaving)
A domani. Take care, girls.

CUT TO:

THERE IS A DIRECTION

The blue sedan drives west past Times Square, turns north on
Eighth Ave. A plastic wall of trash stretches toward the
river. Port Authority hustlers -- male, female -- cruise as
TRANSIT COPS whack an emaciated CRACKHEAD. JOHN, lit by neon,
lowers his power window.

John's apartment. Night. He writes in his diary, drinks.

LETOUR
(voice over)
I feel my life turning. All it needed
was a direction. You drift from day
to day, years go by. Suddenly there
is a direction. What a strange thing
to happen halfway through your life.

He goes to the phone, dials. A voice answers:

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Paramount Hotel.

LETOUR
Marianne Jost, please.

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Just a moment.

A pre-recorded message comes on:

HOTEL MESSAGE
"Welcome to the Paramount. Your party
is out. If you would like to leave a
message for --
(Marianne's voice)

'MARIANNE JOST'
(back to message)
-- please do so after the beep."

LETOUR hangs up, carries the phone to the boombox. He dials
again, presses 'Record,' holds the receiver to the mike,
records the hotel message, hangs up.

First light slants from the window. LETOUR lies clothed on
the futon, boombox by his ear. He presses "Play" and "Rewind,"
running the tape over and over, listening, re-listening to
Marianne's voice: "Marianne Jost." "Marianne Jost." "Marianne
Jost.")

CUT TO:

PHONE CALLS

Midday. Twenty-second Street. A helter-skelter of daytime
activity unseen before.

John's apartment. Sunlight fills the studio apartment. LETOUR,
unshaven in T-shirt and slacks, sets the phone on the desk
beside his open composition book. He pauses, dials.

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Paramount Hotel.

LETOUR
Marianne Jost.

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Just a moment.

JOHN waits, closes his diary.

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
I'm sorry. Ms. Jost checked out this
morning.

LETOUR
She was there yesterday.

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
She checked out this morning.

LETOUR
Did she leave a forwarding number?

HOTEL SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
No.

LETOUR
Thank you.

He hangs up, thinks, redials.

ST. LUKE'S SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
St. Luke's -- Roosevelt Hospital.

LETOUR
Mrs. Jost. JoAnn Jost. She's a
patient.

ST. LUKE'S SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Just a moment.

A long silence. JOHN looks out the window. A MEDICAL STAFF
VOICE from the hospital:

MEDICAL VOICE
(out of shot)
Who is this calling?

LETOUR
(thinking)
Skyline Floral. We're trying to
confirm a delivery.

MEDICAL VOICE
(out of shot)
Mrs. Jost passed away last night.

LETOUR
Are the funeral arrangements local?

MEDICAL VOICE
(out of shot)
Just a sec -- yes, Plaza Memorial.

LETOUR
Thank you.

MEDICAL VOICE
(out of shot)
You're welcome.

JOHN hangs up, paces, sits.

CUT TO:

DIRTY LAUNDRY

Afternoon. Chelsea laundromat. Mothers and maids gossip,
sort clothes. Hispanic radio underscores the whirl of
machines.

LETOUR, unshaven, shoves dirty clothes into a washer. He
counts out quarters, starts the machine.

Heading toward a vacant chair, he spots a MAN out the window.
It takes a second to place the face: it's the "Italian" from
Au Bar in street clothes. He watches JOHN watching him.

LETOUR walks outside, approaches GUIDONE on the sidewalk:

LETOUR
Can I help you, officer?

GUIDONE
What?

LETOUR
I hope I haven't made a mistake. You
are a cop, aren't you?

GUIDONE
Yes.

LETOUR
Could I see a badge?

GUIDONE eyes LETOUR with disdain: the contempt of a cop for
a dealer, of youth for middle age.

GUIDONE
(shows credentials)
Bill Guidone.

LETOUR
What is it?

GUIDONE
You think you're invisible, don't
you? You think we don't know you,
LeTour -- that's the name you use,
right?

LETOUR
My father's a partner in a powerful
law firm. If you have anything in
mind, do it by the book.

GUIDONE elbow-stabs LETOUR, kicks his shin. Wincing,
retreating, JOHN staggers, regains his balance.

GUIDONE
(in his face)
You? Who the fuck cares about you? I
could grind you right here! -- maybe
I will! -- and nobody would give a
fuck! You're not worth the paperwork.
I look like Narcotics? I'm Homicide --
I'm investigating the Park murder.

LETOUR
(acquiescent)
I don't follow the news.

GUIDONE
Downtown's interested how a Barnard
honors student with fancy parents
got a quarter of uncut coke on her
when she was murdered. I mean, we
just don't see this girl cruising
Alphabet City trying to score.
Somebody sold her, somebody upscale
and classy -- you're classy, I hear --
and that somebody knows something we
need to know.
(hand inside LeTour's
shirt, pinching his
tit)
Delivery boy!

LETOUR
I wish I could help. I don't even
know who's president.

GUIDONE
Let me put it this way. Here's my
card
(hands card)
Ask around, take a week or so. Call
me. Tell me something I don't know.
Either that, leave town, or get your
ass busted day in, day out.

LETOUR examines the card.

CUT TO:

FUNERAL HOME

Evening. LETOUR, shaven, in black tweed jacket, white shirt,
black tie, crosses Amsterdam Avenue, enters Plaza Memorial
Chapel.

Inside funeral home, JOHN checks the letterboard for Mrs.
Jost's name. An arrow directs him.

Nondenominational muzak. Senior citizens whisper off-screen.

Walking, he sees MARIANNE, dressed in black. She sees him,
turns to him; her face hollow, desperate:

MARIANNE
Get out.

LETOUR
Marianne...

MARIANNE
(emotion rising)
Every time you come into my life
something terrible happens. I thought
I was rid of you. How'd you get here?
I don't want you here! I don't want
you around me, I don't want you around
my mother! Damn you!

LETOUR
Marianne...

MARIANNE
(wild)
Get out!

A PLAZA MEMORIAL EMPLOYEE approaches. RANDI, in black,
intervenes, pulls JOHN toward the door. MARIANNE YELLS from
behind: "Out!" Outside, they stop midsidewalk.

LETOUR
I didn't...

RANDI
I'm sorry. That's the way it is. You
shouldn't have come. Marianne has
been up all night, crying and crying.
She wasn't there when Mother passed --
died -- she blames herself. It
wouldn't have made any difference.
She just slipped away. Marianne's --
I'm worried --

A CRACKHEAD strides past trash ramparts, cursing, demanding
money: "Fuck white devil, fucking the black, give the fucking
money, white fuck...," etc.

LETOUR
It's...

RANDI
Don't try.

LETOUR
How are you?

RANDI
Me?

LETOUR
Yes, you. I can't think of anything,
but if there was anything I could
do...

RANDI
Thanks. I'm okay -- I guess. I mean,
we've been expecting it. It'll hit
me later.

LETOUR
I saw her.

RANDI
Who?

LETOUR
Your mother. I came in the room. You
were sleeping. I just watched.

RANDI
Oh.
(beat)
I'd better get back. Marianne's
probably flipping out.

She re-enters the funeral chapel.

CUT TO:

ON A ROLL

Eight p.m. LETOUR, direct from Plaza Memorial, enters Ann's
apartment. ANN, coiffured and made up, gestures to take-out
tins:

ANN
Have some shu mai. Just delivered.

LETOUR
No.

ROBERT
(entering)
I told Ann you'd be on time. Tis
called. He said before ten. He said
you were right.

ANN
About what?

LETOUR
An undercover cop. Not a narc. The
Park murder. Jealous was straight on
that -- you hear anything?

ROBERT
Remember the time that cop called
here? Wanted to know if we had "nose
candy"?
(laughs)
Ann says, "John Candy?" "John Candy?"

ANN looks at JOHN, approaches:

ANN
What's wrong baby? You like like
shit. Something wrong?
(holds his face)

LETOUR
No.

ANN
You can't fool me. I can read you.

LETOUR
(distressed)
What do you care? You're leaving me.
A few more months -- sayonara.
(to ROBERT)
You too. John who? What was his name
again? Le --?
(to ANN: pained)
I mean it's not exactly like I got a
pension plan.

ROBERT
(hurt)
Jack.

ANN
(takes his hands)
Johnny, it's not that at all. Is
that what you think? You hate
cosmetics. You don't care about it.
You told me that.

LETOUR
I know.

ANN
Who knows what will happen?

ROBERT
I got a friend -- a D.D. -- got into
lapidary. I'll introduce you. You
have to pass a test.

LETOUR
Lapi --?

ROBERT
Gems, you know, crystals, diamonds.

LETOUR
Any more about the Park murder?

ANN
(re: murder)
What's with this thing?

ROBERT
Stay away.

ANN
(genuine)
You want in? We'll make a place for
you.

LETOUR
No.

ANN
It's --

The kitchen phone rings. A voice follows the pre-recorded
message:

EDDIE
(out of shot --
answering machine)
"Ann, this is Ed. You gotta come.
The other thing is over. I'll be
home all night. 749-2876."

ROBERT
Shit.

ANN
(unequivocal)
Don't answer it. Let him call all
night. He's trouble. I don't want to
deal with him.

LETOUR
It's alright, I'll go. Let me handle
it.

ROBERT
I'm sorry if --

ANN
(about EDDIE)
He gives you shit -- fuck him.

LETOUR
(to ROBERT)
Forget it.

ROBERT
We're going Chinese tonight, okay? I
mean we're on a roll --

ANN
Spring roll.

LETOUR
(preparing to leave)
Sure, whatever. Surprise me.

CUT TO:

INTERVENTION

Eddie's high-rise apartment. EDDIE is worse, if anything.
He's been scoring on the street: broken pipes and vials crunch
underfoot.

EDDIE and LETOUR argue ("Fuck you!" "Fuck you!"). EDDIE spits,
pushes TOUR, JOHN pushes back. Eddie's feet tangle. He trips,
FALLS. A bottle SMASHES.

JOHN goes to the phone, checks Eddie's directory, dials.

EDDIE
(on floor)
You gotta get permission? Check with
Mama?

LETOUR
I'm calling your brother.

EDDIE
Huh?

LETOUR
Yeah, the lawyer in Bronxville. I'm
gonna ask him to come over.
(EDDIE protests)
You've told me so much about him.

EDDIE
(panicked)
No, don't. Please, I'll give you
money, anything. He doesn't
understand. Whose side are you on?

LETOUR
(on phone)
Is this Martin Jeer?
(beat)
Thank you.

EDDIE, woozy, tries to stand.

EDDIE
I shoulda never called.

LETOUR
(to EDDIE)
I recommend Hazelden. It has the
best all-around program.
(on phone)
Martin Jeer?
(beat)
I'm here with your brother Ed.
(beat)
Yeah, in the city. I'm afraid there's
a medical emergency. You're going to
have to come.

EDDIE lurches toward LETOUR. JOHN -- flash of anger --
bootkicks him in the head! Eddie's cheek hits the carpet.

LETOUR
(on phone)
He'll be here.

JOHN, cooling down, measures his breaths. A spring can only
be wound so tight.

CUT TO:

LEXINGTON AVENUE

LETOUR walks from his sedan around the corner to the Lexington
Avenue entrance to Grace Towers, a pre-war apartment building.
In the lobby, he gives his name to the SECURITY GUARD, is
directed to the express elevator.

He exits on the thirtieth floor; footsteps muted by thick
carpet.

Victorian prints on dark blue walls. He looks about,
approaches a door, presses the buzzer.

THOMAS opens the door; JOHN enters Tis' opulent apartment.

Salle and Clemente hang on the walls; New York twinkles
outside panoramic windows. A pipe and syringe lie atop art
books. TIS, in jogging sweats, comes from the bedroom to
greet him.

TIS
Tour, just in time. We were out.
Nineteen, right?

LETOUR
Thirty-eight hundred -- got any
hundreds?

TIS
Some, not the whole thing.
(to THOMAS)
You got hundreds?

THOMAS
No.

LETOUR hands him a plastic bag of gram envelopes. TIS opens
a packet, pours the contents on the coffee table.

TIS
I like that about Ann. Always takes
the time to grind it. If you do it,
do it right.

JOHN hears footsteps, turns to see MARIANNE stumble out of
the bedroom! She looks terrible: shoeless, blouse out, hair
undone, bruise on her forehead -- perhaps she fell against
something -- hands trembling.

TIS
(to MARIANNE)
Looks like you could use some help.
(MARIANNE looks up,
sees JOHN, goes pale)
Mari, this is Tour. You got any
hundreds?

JOHN stares speechless: the girl who won't talk to him because
he's a dealer. MARIANNE bolts back into the bedroom, SLAMS
the door!

TIS
Not the talkative type. Haven't seen
her in years. You know her, don't
you?
(no answer. TIS counts
the money, offers
it. LETOUR is frozen)
Why they call me? What a nightmare.
(extending money)
You want it or not?

LETOUR
(vacant)
Yeah.

LETOUR pockets the cash. TIS, his arm on John's elbow, "walks"
him to the door:

TIS
See you later.

TIS nudges JOHN to the corridor, closes the door behind him.
JOHN looks toward the elevator; TIS, behind the door, calls
"Marianne!"

Time cut: LETOUR stands in the elevator, red floor numbers
flashing past, blank eyes mirrored in dark glass.

CUT TO:

FALL FROM GRACE

JOHN exits Grace Towers, walks past a limo toward Lexington
Avenue. Rounding the corner, he sees his blue sedan. He looks
at the cash, repockets it. He continues slowly, each step a
separate task.

LETOUR reaches for the door handle. A scream pierces traffic
noise. A car screeches, another. Voices call out.

LETOUR steps back, listens. He retraces his steps, turns
onto Lexington Avenue. The SECURITY GUARD, walkie-talkie in
hand, clusters on the sidewalk with the limo driver, two
pedestrians. A cabbie jumps from his taxi, joins the confusion
("My God!"). A siren approaches. John's beeper goes off.

Drawing closer, LETOUR sees the partial bloodied shape of a
broken body on the sidewalk: he recognizes Marianne's skirt.
A squad car brakes with a screech. TWO COPS converge, climb
over trash, clear the crime scene:

FEMALE COP
Get back!

MALE COP
Who saw it? What happened?
(the FEMALE COP bends
over Marianne's body)
EMS is on the way.

FEMALE COP
Too late --

A second squad car pulls up. JOHN turns away, walks around
the corner.

LETOUR opens the car door, closes it, sits inside. A wailing
ambulance flashes past, speeds up Central Park West.

LETOUR doesn't react. Beeper re-beeps; he disconnects the
battery.

The driver, CARLOS, twenty-five, Hispanic, shirt starched,
turns, looks, thinks, says:

CARLOS
Where to?

LETOUR
What?

CARLOS
Where to, sir? Where are we going?

LETOUR
Nowhere just now. Wait.

CARLOS
(after a moment)
You want me to wait here?

LETOUR
Yes.

Pause. More police cars. The EMS siren starts up; the
ambulance speeds downtown past LeTour's sedan. No reaction.
CARLOS turns off the engine.

LETOUR
Downtown.

CARLOS
Yes.

CARLOS starts the car, pulls into traffic.

CUT TO:

TWENTY-TWO MINUTES

John's apartment. Late night. LETOUR, barefoot, T-shirt,
slacks, stands flat against the wall.

WINS broadcasts twenty-four hour news on the boombox. ("Give
us twenty-two minutes and we'll give you the world.") Sports,
ads, bullshit -- LETOUR hears what he's been waiting for:

NEWSCASTER
(out of shot -- radio)
This story is just in. A woman has
fallen thirty stories to her death
from a posh Grace Towers apartment
on Lexington Avenue. Police are
withholding identification pending
the notification of the next of kin.
The incident happened about ten p.m.
According to the sources on the scene
there was no one else in the posh
Grace Towers apartment when the fall
occurred. We will bring you more
details as we get them.
(teletype efx)
An end to the sanitation strike seems
imminent. Negotiations at the Helmsley
Palace are continuing to this hour...

Actions have consequences.

CUT TO:

MOTHER TERESA

First light. Jones Street. LETOUR, sleepless, pounds on
Teresa's door. No answer. Knocks again. Again.

Noises from inside. A sleepy voice:

TERESA
(out of shot)
Who is it?

LETOUR
John. John LeTour. Can I see you?

TERESA
(out of shot)
What time is it?

LETOUR
It's important, Teresa.

TERESA
(out of shot)
Call. Make an appointment.

LETOUR
Open the door. You're awake anyway.
(no answer)
Teresa.

TERESA, wearing oriental bathrobe, unlatches the door. JOHN
enters, turns to her. The door closes.

LETOUR
Read me. What do you see?

TERESA
Do I know you?

LETOUR
We had a session last week. What do
you see?

TERESA
(remembering name)
John?

LETOUR
Yes. Look at me.

TERESA takes a moment to concentrate.

TERESA
Step back.
(he does)
Again.
(he does)
Death.

LETOUR
Someone I knew died tonight.

TERESA
This was not an accident. This person
was murdered.

LETOUR
Am I in danger?

TERESA
(beat)
There is danger around you. It's
very close. I'm sleepy.

LETOUR
What should I do?

TERESA
I can't see it.

LETOUR
Please.
(she shrugs)
Am I lucky?

TERESA
Yes. Don't be afraid. Go home.

TERESA shuffles toward her bedroom -- the "reading" is over.

LETOUR
What do I owe you?

TERESA
Nothing. Forget it. Let me sleep.

CUT TO:

SNITCH

Mid-morning. LETOUR, still awake, walks past towering Chelsea
trash.

He passes a newsstand. Tabloids feature yearbook photo of
MARIANNE; the headline: "Fall from Grace."

LETOUR walks to a pay phone, takes out Guidone's card, inserts
a quarter, dials.

POLICE SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Ninth Precinct.

LETOUR
Bill Guidone, please. Homicide.

POLICE SWITCHBOARD
(out of shot)
Hold on.

JOHN, suspicious, looks around. GUIDONE speaks:

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
Guidone.

LETOUR
This is John LeTour. Remember me?

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
Laundromat. Your father's got
connections.

LETOUR
You said I should ask around, tell
you something you didn't know.

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
I thought you'd call.

LETOUR
It ain't much, but it's something.

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
Go on.

LETOUR
A girl died last night. Lexington
Ave.

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
The jumper. Druggie.

LETOUR
The news said she was alone in the
apartment when she went out -- she
wasn't. It's a cover-up. There was
someone else.

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
Who?

LETOUR
Who lives in the apartment?

GUIDONE
(out of shot)
You there?

LETOUR
That's all I know. You asked me to
tell you something. I told you
something.

Hangs up.

CUT TO:

A LITTLE SLEEP

Noon. LETOUR enters a West Village apartment building.

He presses an intercom button. Robert's voice answers:

ROBERT
(out of shot)
Who is it?

LETOUR
Jack. Let me in.

The door buzzes.

ROBERT opens the door to his overdecorated apartment. JOHN
looks around. TONY, Robert's younger, unattractive lover,
sips coffee at the table.

ROBERT
Where have you been? We were worried.

LETOUR
I need some sleep -- not much. I
don't want to go home just yet. A
little sleep first. Can I crash here?
Nice place.

ROBERT
It's hideous. I did it years ago.
I've got to throw everything out.
You haven't been here?
(noticing TONY)
Oh, Jack, this is Tony. I told you
about him. You should talk. He's the
lapidopterist -- gems.

TONY
(corrects him)
Lapidarian.

ROBERT
Same thing.

LETOUR
Can I?

ROBERT
Sure.

LETOUR
What do you know about Tis? What's
his relationship to Ann?

ROBERT
They go way back -- before me. Did
you cross him?

LETOUR
No.

ROBERT
Don't. He's Ann's Ecstasy connection.
She needs that score. What happened?

LETOUR
Nothing.

ROBERT
Don't mess with him.

LETOUR
Is he dangerous?

ROBERT
Everybody's dangerous. We heard what
you did to Eddie. Ann thought it was
great. She was afraid that was why
you didn't come back.

LETOUR
It was something else. Tell me if
you hear anything.

ROBERT
About what?

LETOUR
Tis.

ROBERT
Tis who? Ann says you want a chart
done.
(beat)
What's wrong?

LETOUR
(internal)
Ah...

ROBERT
(sympathetic)
You down?

LETOUR
(nods)
Yeah...
(culling thoughts)
You ever think about it?

ROBERT
What?

LETOUR
That it'd be like this -- like, your
life, you... that it would turn out
this way? --

ROBERT
Compared to what? My thinking this
or that is going to make any
difference? There's a plan unfolding.
"Will my plane crash?" "Does life
have meaning?" -- why ask me?
Thinking's a fear of living, negative
living; living's something else.
You're afraid. Let the plan unfold.
Stop. Stop, live one day -- one day --

Words blur to jargon. LETOUR cuts in:

LETOUR
-- Robert --

ROBERT
-- day at a time.

LETOUR
(touches ROBERT)
You've lost your fucking brain.

ROBERT
(laughs)
I'm a drug dealer.

LETOUR
Got a tub?

ROBERT
(gestures)
Yeah.

LETOUR
Great.

Turns to bathroom.

ROBERT
There's a plastic bottle of bath oil
in the cabinet. Yellow. Use it --
tell me what you think. It's a new
formula.

CUT TO:

JUMP-OFFS

Six p.m. LETOUR, shaved and bathed, rides a cab uptown, past
Harlem, past 158th Street. He motions to the DRIVER; the
taxi stops at a blue door between retail stores begging for
renovation. TEENAGE LATINOS hang out. LETOUR gives the CABBIE
a twenty. LETOUR walks to the blue door; the YOUTHS stop,
watch. He knocks on the door. A PUERTO RICAN DOORMAN in white
leather pants and a heart-shaped diamond ring opens the door,
looks him over. JOHN reaches into his pouch, removes a gram
envelope, hands it to him. The DOORMAN takes a taste, buzzes
him through a door hand-lettered "Jump-Offs."

Inside Jump-Offs, a cocaine "spot," every eye turns to JOHN:
the only Anglo in a Hispanic after-hours club. Tough young
faces, each with a style and two inches of attitude. Willie
Colon plays on the jukebox.

Searching, LETOUR recognizes a face, walks over:

LETOUR
Manny.
(MANUEL, thirtyish,
Puerto Rican, looks
closer, trying to
place LETOUR)
LeTour.
(helping out)
Jealous. "Jell." SOB's.

MANUEL
(remembering)
Reggae night.

LETOUR
Burning Spear.

MANUEL
How'd you get in?

LETOUR
C-C.

MANUEL
You buying?

LETOUR
How's product?

MANUEL
(gesture: "primo")
How much?

LETOUR
I got a problem. I need a piece.

MANUEL
Piece? Piece of what? Piece of candy?

LETOUR
A gun.

MANUEL
When?

LETOUR
Now. Anything.
(MANUEL is silent)
Am I speaking too fast?

MANUEL
How much you spend?

LETOUR
The rate. What you got?

MANUEL calls over a TEENAGE DOMINICAN, explains the situation
in Spanish. The DOMINICAN replies; MANUEL turns back to JOHN:

MANUEL
He's got a 64 Smith-son. Detective
Special. Nobody wants 'em. Fresh
from a cop.

LETOUR
How much?

MANUEL
(consults DOMINICAN)
Four -- including me.

LETOUR
You're fucking me.

MANUEL
("so what?")
Street price.

LETOUR
Where is it?

MANUEL
Sigame.

They lead him to an even darker back room. The DOMINICAN
retrieves an automatic pistol from a trash pail, hands it to
MANUEL. JOHN counts cash from Tis' roll; MANNY hefts the
piece.

MANUEL
The hundreds -- Franklins.

Bills and guns exchanged.

LETOUR
How do you use this?

MANUEL
Automatic.

LETOUR
I don't have much use for a gun.
Never used one like this.

MANUEL
(translates for
DOMINICAN)
Cono!

The DOMINICAN laughs; LETOUR takes his measure.

LETOUR
(businesslike)
What do you do?

MANUEL
Simple. You put the bullets in --
(inserts cartridge)
you point it at the bad guys, pull
the trigger and they fall down!

MANNY repeats this for the DOMINICAN ["bang, bang!"]; they
laugh again. LETOUR eases the .38 into his crotch. MANNY
turns, exchanges Latin hug:

MANUEL
Vaya con Dios.

LETOUR
-- Dios.

JOHN exits, works his way through the club.

CUT TO:

OUT WITH THE OLD

John's apartment. Seven p.m. LETOUR, sweating, bareback,
tucks the .38 under his futon.

He takes a bottle of cologne from the bathroom, pours it
over his hair, face, and torso, rubs it in.

Licking his finger, he removes Marianne's gold and onyx ring
with a tug. His finger stings. He opens a window, throws the
ring full force into the junk-strewn courtyard. He shakes
his torso; cologne glistens.

CUT TO:

JOHN AND RANDI

Interior, Plaza Memorial Chapel. LETOUR enters the "viewing
room," motions to RANDI. She follows him.

They slip into a door, enter the embalming room: stainless
steel table surrounded by surgical cabinets.

They embrace, disengage. JOHN looks: Randi's exhausted face
mirrors his.

LETOUR
Have you been to the police station?

RANDI
(nods)
She was back on drugs. Really back.
They're gonna bring her here too. My
God.
(he comforts her)
I thought she was playing for
attention.

LETOUR
I didn't know.

RANDI
You're not to blame. Don't blame
yourself. You weren't responsible.
She was always -- she loved you.

LETOUR
(wipes tear from her
cheek)
She loved you. You were what she
wanted to be.

RANDI
She scared me.

JOHN pulls a Polaroid from his pocket.

LETOUR
Look. Do you recognize anyone?

The picture features ANN and TIS: side by side at a dinner
party.

RANDI
Tis.

LETOUR
You know him?

RANDI
His father's a lawyer. Did some tax
things for Mom. He was at the
hospital. What's that smell?

LETOUR
It's me. Cologne. I'm a sucker for
that cheap airplane stuff. Did
Marianne mention him yesterday?

RANDI
("no")
It was his apartment. What are you
thinking?

LETOUR
I don't know.

RANDI
She jumped.
(LETOUR hangs on every
word)
You loved her, but she -- this sounds
terrible but it's true -- she was...
she ruined everything... bad luck.

LETOUR
(heard enough)
When's the funeral -- your mother's?

RANDI
Tomorrow. Will you come?

LETOUR
(vague)
Well, I got this thing to do. It's --
I don't know if I can get away.

RANDI
Try? For me.

LETOUR
I'll try.

CUT TO:

PRODIGAL SON

Ann's apartment. Eight p.m. ANN greets LETOUR with a hug.

ANN
The Prodigal Son.

LETOUR
Sorry about last night. Something
came up.

ANN
Where were you?

LETOUR
T.C.T.E.

ROBERT
"Too Complicated To Explain."

LETOUR
(enters bedroom)
I'm $500 short from last night. I'll
get it, you can take it from my
salary.

ANN
(stung)
This is family. Are you saying that
to hurt me?
(LETOUR returns)
It's not money.

LETOUR
(chagrined)
Sorry.

ROBERT
Look at this.
("Akasha" visual)
We had a graphic artist make it up --
you know, Billy, Five Towns.

ANN
The label for the cosmetics line.

LETOUR
(examines it)
Classy. Sorta -- Katmandu...

ANN
(corrects him)
Kathmandu.

LETOUR
I love it.

ROBERT
Tis called twice. He wants you to
come by.

LETOUR
(wary)
Me?

ANN
Yeah. Says you were supposed to show
up again yesterday, but didn't.

LETOUR
A lie. I don't want to go. The suicide
and all. Let's stay away.

ANN
Can't. He's the Ecstasy connect. No
way I can fuck this.

LETOUR
C'mon...

ANN
This is business.

LETOUR, suspicious, looks from ANN to ROBERT. He knows TIS
knows he knows MARIANNE was not alone when she went out the
window.

LETOUR
Let Robert go.

ANN
Tis won't deal with fags.

LETOUR
Since when?

ANN
Just is -- so he's a bigot? What's
new? So's everybody else.

LETOUR
I don't want to go. I got a bad vibe.

ROBERT
He said you.

ANN
(to LETOUR)
Why?

LETOUR
(to ANN)
Why don't you go? He's your contact.

ROBERT
He is --

ANN
(to ROBERT)
You giving orders?

ROBERT
(deferential)
No, Missy.

LETOUR
(testing her)
Come with me -- the two of us.

ANN
(upbeat)
Okay. You got it. Like old times --
Ann and Johnny.
(turns to go)

LETOUR
Okay.

ROBERT
Stop it. You're breaking my heart.

CUT TO:

LAST RIDE

Night. ANN and LETOUR side by side in the sedan. CARLOS, at
the wheel, anonymous. Outside, SANITATION WORKERS toss sacks
of trash into garbage trucks: the strike is over.

ANN reminisces as lights flash:

ANN
It's going to be strange, not doing
this. I mean I've had it, but
sometimes...

LETOUR
You're gonna do it, aren't you? You're
gonna quit.

ANN
(nods)
I think so. Seal this thing with
Tis, turn it -- go with the cosmetics.
You gotta take a chance in life. No
risk, no gain. I've already got retail
connections here, London. It was
great at the beginning, though.

LETOUR
When?

ANN
You know, when we first started out
of the place on Greene Street. Before
deliveries, when you were still using.
It was open house every night but
Sunday. We had everything: uppers,
downers, meth, six kinds of hash,
all in that trousseau, remember? You
could get in for a gram, stay all
night -- everybody, music people,
movies, Wall Street, fashion -- even
politics. I think like five marriages
came out of those parties, babies --
really. God.
(JOHN eyes her: why
this Niagara, this
nostalgia?)
You stayed, you then Robert -- but
he... I'da never thought you'd, what
is it, twelve years? Others, lucky a
year max, eight months, in, out,
start using, unreliable -- nice kids.
Remember when you first came: long
hair, dirty fingers --

LETOUR
(overlapping)
You made me --

ANN
-- never washed --

LETOUR
-- khaki pants.

ANN
I should write a book someday. Did
you know somebody wanted to do my
story? Ghostwrite. It was impossible,
of course -- my lawyer freaked I
even had the meeting. People envy
me. They think my life is so
glamorous, but they don't know. I
know. Glamorous.
(beat)
It was for a while. Then came crack
and fucked everything.

JOHN wonders: The Big Goodbye? Is she acting at Tis' behest?

LETOUR
I gotta stop home a second.

ANN
Why? It's out of the way. They're
expecting you.

"They're?"

LETOUR
You know I got a bad vibe about Tis.

ANN
(unconvincing)
Chill. This is routine.

LETOUR
I want to get my lucky jacket.

ANN
Oh. Okay.

The sedan continues south. It turns, stops in front of John's
Chelsea apartment building.

JOHN hops out, goes in.

Inside John's apartment he -- a man possessed -- pulls his
black tweed from the closet, throws it on the futon. He rolls
up his shirt, reaches under the futon, removes the .38.

He straps the gun to his back, wraps duct tape around his
chest, end to end over the .38. He tucks in his shirt, puts
on the jacket, checks the mirror to see if the gun shows: it
doesn't. A pause to appreciate.

LETOUR closes his diary, throws it out the window: a trifle.
He slaps cologne on his cheeks -- annointing; heads toward
the door.

Outside, LETOUR emerges, walks quickly to the car, plops
beside ANN. The sedan drives off. Back seat:

ANN
That took long enough. What did you
do, douche while you were at it?

LETOUR
Ann, you got some mouth on you.

ANN
You don't want to know where it's
been.
(sniffs him)
Cologne?

LETOUR
For you.

ANN
Phew. It smells like that stuff they
give you on airplanes. It's no good
for your skin. All chemicals.

LETOUR pulls out a slip of paper, writes a name and address:
"Linda Wichel, 1012B-2 A Street, Sacramento, California."

ANN
What's that?

LETOUR
Do me a favor.

ANN
What?

LETOUR
Don't ask why, just promise.

ANN
What is it?

LETOUR
(testing again)
If anything happens to me -- if I
should like, you know, fucking die --
write and tell her.

Extends slip of paper.

ANN starts to speak, stops.

LETOUR
It's my sister. Her husband's in San
Quentin. She worries, you know.

She takes the name and address.

ANN
(eye contact)
Okay.

ANN, sad, looks out the window. She touches his knee. The
car pulls in front of the Pennsylvania Hotel, 34th and 7th.

LETOUR
I thought we were going to Tis'?

ANN
We are. He's here. He can't very
well work out of his apartment after
what happened yesterday, can he?

They get out.

CUT TO:

SHOOT-OUT

Pennsylvania lobby: a baseball card convention is in progress.
ANN squeezes through, goes to the house phone. JOHN follows,
scans the tacky lobby: what's up?

ANN
(on phone)
Mathis Bruge, please.
(beat)
Tis? Ann. I'm here with Tour.
(beat)
Okay.
(hangs up)

LETOUR
Tis there?

ANN
Twelve-oh-four.

They go to the elevators, wait with CHATTY CARD COLLECTORS
[Pete Rose this, Pete Rose that].

Twelfth floor. ANN and JOHN step out of the elevator, look
for 1204.

LETOUR, a step behind, is all eyes, all ears.

ANN checks the number, rings the bell.

THOMAS lets them in the standard issue suite, locks the door.

LETOUR was right: it's a set-up. THOMAS and a TEENAGE CUBAN
stand either side of them, waistbands conspicuously bulging.
No TIS. JOHN turns to ANN:

LETOUR
(Jesus-to-Judas)
Ann.

ANN's confused, then furious: she had no part in the "set-
up." In fact, she doesn't even know it's a set-up.

Bursting rage, she turns on THOMAS, YELLS:

ANN
I told you greasy fucks I don't deal
with guns! I see guns, I walk! How
dare you?

She slaps THOMAS, pulls the 9mm from his waistband, throws
it to the carpet.

The CUBAN watches bewildered, gun drawn, awaiting
instructions. Now ANN's on him:

ANN
And you, beaner, whoever the fuck
you are, kiss my fat ass!
(she spits on his
shirt, knees him in
the crotch, yanks
his gun, throws it
beside the gut-
clutching CUBAN. She
crosses the room,
YELLING:)
That's it! TIS! Shitball! I know
you're fucking there! Let this be a
lesson! You wanna deal, you gonna
apologize for this!
(to LETOUR)
Let's go.

THOMAS and the CUBAN TEEN retrieve their guns; ANN unlocks
the door.

THOMAS
(pointing gun)
Hold it! Stop right there.

She turns defiantly. TIS enters from bedroom:

TIS
(to THOMAS)
No!
(to ANN)
Sorry about the guns. My fuck-up. I
was just trying to make a point -- I
apologize.

TIS looks to THOMAS and the CUBAN: they lower their weapons.
He only means to threaten LETOUR.

TIS
(about THOMAS and
CUBAN)
Assholes. What a nightmare.
(to ANN)
We'll make the deal tomorrow -- same
terms. Ann. Sorry. Go on, leave,
you're upset. I just need to talk to
Tour a second. About a police matter.
(to LETOUR)
Right?

LETOUR
(to ANN)
Go on.

She hesitates.

TIS
Tour and I need to get our stories
straight. Somebody's talking to the
police. The guns were for emphasis,
to make a point, dumb --

ANN gets it. Fear hits:

ANN
(to TIS)
We came together, we're leaving
together.
(to LETOUR)
Johnny, come with me.

Opens door.

TIS
(a command)
Thomas.

THOMAS fixes his gun on ANN.

TIS
(to ANN)
Don't be stupid. Get out. Leave.
(to LETOUR)
I had nothing to do with Marianne --
she jumped: she was there, then she
was gone.
(nods ANN to leave)
Nothing will happen to Tour.

ANN computes, bolts out, flees, SCREAMING at the top of her
lungs:

ANN
(out of shot)
Fire! Fire! Fire!

The fire bell rings.

THOMAS, TIS, and the CUBAN stare dumbfounded.

LETOUR reaches behind his shirt in the confusion, yanks out
the .38 with a painful rip, turning, fires point-blank into
the Cuban's chest. BLAM! Shirt fabric flares, flies: the
CUBAN falls with blank expression.

THOMAS, off guard, wheels and fires wildly at LETOUR.

JOHN fires back. Both are hit. TIS ducks into the bedroom.

THOMAS and LETOUR fire again, again -- hitting, missing. A
bullet hits its mark: THOMAS, frozen, grabs his blood-spurting
throat, slumps to floor.

LETOUR bleeds from the stomach and shoulder. His shirt soaks
red; he struggles to stand. CUBAN and THOMAS -- both dead.
LETOUR checks the .38: five rounds fired -- one left.

LETOUR staggers into the bedroom, finds TIS frantically
searching an open suitcase. Off-screen VOICES under the fire
bell.

TIS
(desperate)
I didn't --

LETOUR steps to TIS, aims, shoots him barrel to forehead.
Exit debris hits the wall. He is dead.

Off-screen screams of guests are countered by commands from
hotel security: "Get down!" "Get back!" Fire horns and sirens
reverb from the street.

LETOUR, losing consciousness, sits bedside. Gun slips from
his hand.

Deflating, he drifts back-first to the bedspread. Blood
spreads. His eyes are open.

POLICE VOICES approach.

FADE OUT:

EVERY GRAIN OF SAND

Prison waiting area. ANN, wearing a wool suit, waits among
black/Hispanic FRIENDS and RELATIVES. The first scene without
LETOUR: she sits quietly. A CORRECTIONS OFFICER instructs
the visitors to proceed.

ANN walks through a concrete corridor, finds the visiting
area.

LETOUR, in prison fatigues, sits at a table. He sees her,
smiles.

ANN sits down. This is not her first visit.

LETOUR
Hello.

ANN
Hi.

Checks watch.

LETOUR
Twenty minutes. You look terrific.

ANN
I look respectable. Any news?

LETOUR
Sentencing's in ten days -- supposed
to be. Because of the extenuating
circumstances -- our cooperation --
they say it won't be more than five
years -- maybe seven. With time
served, good behavior, parole, I
could be out in two years -- maybe.
I hope.

ANN
It feels like forever.

LETOUR
It's not so bad. It's a relief in a
way -- at least so far. I've been
writing, reading.

ANN
I love your letters.
(pause)

LETOUR
How's business?

ANN
Robert quit. He went back to dealing.
I think he thought it would be less
work, more money. It's lucky in a
way I got mixed up in it -- now I
have to see this thing through. So
it's cosmetics after all.

LETOUR
(affectionate)
I miss you.

ANN
Me too.

LETOUR
Did we ever fuck?

ANN
What do you mean?

LETOUR
You know, make love.

ANN
(thinks)
There was that party when everybody
was so stoned, but -- oh yeah, that
night you came over and crashed and
we slept together.

LETOUR
We were naked, but did we --?

ANN
You had a hard-on...

LETOUR
I didn't --

ANN
You tried...

LETOUR
I was thinking about it and I realized
we never really did. It's one of the
things I think about. It's one of
the things I look forward to. I've
been looking forward.

ANN
Me too.

LETOUR
(touches her hand)
Something can be right in front of
you and you can't see it.

ANN
(kisses his hand)
Strange how things work.

The tableau fades.

THE END

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