COMING ATTRACTION – Scene II

die-hard

SCENE II

(The ballroom on the top floor of a skyscraper. Several people are standing with their arms over their head while a man, flanked by two others, holds a gun on them.)

MR. CAINE
Good evening, everyone, my name is Mr. Caine. I am a Palaminian terrorist ordered to hold everyone in this building hostage until the city delivers 70 million dollars to my country. Please believe me when I say that this is not a joke or a prank of some sort. I really am from Palaminia, as evidenced by my thick dialect, and I really am a terrorist, as evidenced by my big gun. I have just spoken with the President of your United States and made my brutal demands. Until I get a response from him, no one is to leave this room. Failure to obey my sinister commands will result in your painfully violent death. I would also ask that no one pick up the pay phones as I forgot to leave the President my number and I’m not sure which phone he will be calling on. I am going to sit down, now, but my evil minions are watching every move you make so please keep your hands on your head and don’t try anything heroic or clever.

(HE sits down. JERRY approached BOBBI and whispers)

JERRY
Hey, stranger.

BOBBI
(smiling)
Well hello there!

JERRY
Small world, isn’t it?

BOBBI
Very small world! What brings you here?

JERRY
Well, I cheated actually. The thought of spending New Years Eve alone was driving me crazy, so I just decided to sneak in here with a large group of executives. They didn’t even ask to see my invitation.

BOBBI
Well I’m not surprised. The security obviously sucks.

MR. CAINE
Is someone speaking? I thought I heard someone speaking!

JERRY
I’m sorry. That was me. We’re old friends.

MR. CAINE
PLEASE DO NOT SPEAK AGAIN OR I WILL BE FORCED TO SILENCE YOU! Or, you know, at least keep it down to a dull roar, okay?

BOBBI
We’re sorry. It won’t happen again.

MR. CAINE
See that it doesn’t, my sexually attractive hostage.

BOBBI
(whispering)
Pig. Where is Palaminia? I’ve never even heard of that country.

JERRY
I don’t think it is a country. I think he’s lying.

BOBBI
(sighs)
What a grand waste of time this has turned out to be.

JERRY
So what brings you here?

BOBBI
My ex-boyfriend invited me. God, I should’ve known.

JERRY
Ex -boyfriend?

BOBBI
Yes. He’s a spy for British Intelligence but I’m not really supposed to tell you that. We broke up about a month ago and I’ve been seeing other people, but this was his last ditch attempt to revive some spark between us.

JERRY
Where is he now?

BOBBI
He was in the first group of hostages that was taken to the roof and shot.

JERRY
Oh. I’m sorry.

BOBBI
Don’t be. I grieved for awhile, but at some point you have to pick yourself up and move on. There was nothing between us anymore. We tried and tried but even on the way over here I knew we had failed. There was nothing.

JERRY
Why did you come?

BOBBI
I didn’t want to be alone. And I thought…no, this is silly.

JERRY
Go ahead. I want to know.

BOBBI
I thought something special might happen.

(THEY stare at each other for a moment.)

JERRY
And did it?

BOBBI
I don’t… I’m not…

VILLAIN EXTRA #1
Oh mighty evil leader! Someone is disobeying your nefarious orders and speaking in a conversational tone! Please allow me to prove my loyalty by killing them both.

MR. CAINE
(slapping VILLAIN EXTRA #1)
Silence, lackey!

(approaching BOBBI and JERRY)
Well, now. It seems that two of my hostages have decided that talking to each other is more important than paying attention to my villainy! Do you have something you’d like to share with the rest of the hostages?

JERRY
Not especially. We weren’t talking about you, honest.

BOBBI
It was a private conversation.

MR. CAINE
Oh it was, was it? Well if it’s so important, why don’t you share it with the rest of us?

BOBBI
Oh, I couldn’t. It was very personal and had to do with my ex-boyfriend that you shot a little while ago.

MR. CAINE
I see. It’s private and personal. HOSTAGES! Please give me your attention! One of your fellow hostages seems to have decided that having her very own private conversation is more important than obeying my orders. I have kindly asked her if she would share the contents of her private conversation with the rest of us.

(general murmur from the other hostages “Yes,
she should.” “It’s only fair.” “Let’s hear it!” etc.)

I need not remind you that failure to comply with my wishes could lead to the death of another group of innocent upper-middle class Americans.

HOSTAGES
Come on! Tell us, for God’s sake! Quit kiddin’ around!

BOBBI
Oh, all right!

MR. CAINE
Please step to the front so that my henchmen and I may leer at your beautiful white skin.

BOBBI
(walking to the front of the room)
God. You are so sexist! Okay. Hello, everyone. My name is Bobbi.

VILLAIN EXTRA #2
Hello, Bobbi.

BOBBI
Hi. This is what happened. I just happened to run into that man over there. His name is Jerry.

JERRY
(waving)
Hello.

BOBBI
We met on an airplane about a month ago and seemed to really hit it off. I was seeing someone else at the time so I didn’t give him my number or anything, but I showed up here tonight and here he was.

HOSTAGES
How about that? Isn’t that a coincidence? Small world. Etc.

VILLAIN EXTRA #1
What do you think of him, Bobbi? Do you find him attractive?

BOBBI
Well, yes…I suppose… He’s not my dream man, but he’s very cute.

VILLAIN EXTRA #2
And his personality? Does he have a good personality?

BOBBI
Yes, he does. We have a lot in common actually.

(HOSTAGE #1 raises his hand)

BOBBI
Yes? You have your hand up?

HOSTAGE #1
Hi, Bobbi. Do feel that fate, somehow, has brought you together under these dire circumstances?

HOSTAGE #2
Fate, or “Kismet” if you will?

BOBBI
Well, I hadn’t thought about it really. I mean we haven’t had a chance to talk about it yet. I guess I just don’t know. How can you tell when you’ve met the right person? And what if our attraction for each other is just circumstantial? What if it becomes too difficult to maintain and five years from now we look back on our life together as wasted time? I’m not getting any younger and, to be fair, neither is he.

VILLAIN #2
I am a firm believer that when you meet the right person, you know right away.

VILLAIN #1
NO! YOU ARE WRONG! LOVE MUST BE BUILT UPON SLOWLY! AND NURTURED LIKE A VAST EMPIRE!

MR. CAINE
Enough chatter! Sit back down! Don’t make me shoot my powerful gun into the air!

(the radio begins to squawk and
BRUCE’S voice comes out of it)

BRUCE’S VOICE
Caine? Are you there? Answer me you bastard!

MR. CAINE
That voice. No, it can’t be…

BRUCE
Answer me, Caine, or I swear to God if I ever get my hands on you…

MR. CAINE
(picking up the radio and speaking into it)
Really, Mr. Conners. Such rough talk coming from such an old, dear friend.

BRUCE
Don’t play games with me Caine. Let the hostages go. This is between you and me.

MR. CAINE
Wrong again, Mr. Conners. This is between you… me… and seventy million dollars! And you will do absolutely nothing, I assure you. That is, unless, you never want to see your beautiful wife again.

BRUCE
Let me talk to her, you asshole!

MR. CAINE
You are not in the position to be giving orders here, Mr. Conners. Your wife is here and very much alive… for now. But I swear to you; if you come within so much as a mile of here, I’ll blow up this building and everyone in it!

MRS. CONNERS
Don’t listen to him, Bruce! He’s a madman!

MR. CAINE
Silence her!

BRUCE
No! Okay. You’ve got me. I’ll…I’ll do whatever you say.

MR. CAINE
A very wise choice, Mr. Conners. (to Mrs. Conners) And you, my dear. I’m keeping an eye on you.

BRUCE
And how do you plan to do that, Caine, when the lights are out?

(Suddenly, the lights go out.
General chaos, people screaming, etc.)

VILLAIN #1
The lights! What happened to the lights!

VILLAIN #2
What’s going on? Where did the lights go?

MR. CAINE
He must already be in the building! Spread out, men! Find him! I WANT THAT MAN DEAD! DO YOU HEAR ME? DEAD!

(The three of them exit while the hostages lie face down on the floor. Jerry slowly gets up and scoots over to Bobbi.)

JERRY
Are you okay?

BOBBI
Oh, sure. I got dust all over the knees of my skirt, though. I hate that.

(They stare at each other for a bit.)

JERRY & BOBBI
Listen, I…(they laugh)

BOBBI
You go ahead.

JERRY
No. You first.

BOBBI
Okay. Look, I’m sorry I didn’t give you my number back on the plane. I don’t want you to think that I didn’t feel anything between us…but…it was a very confusing time for me.

JERRY
Really, I understand.

BOBBI
I mean, what if this hadn’t happened at all? What if we had never seen each other again? We might be perfect for each other and we’d never know.

JERRY
But how can you know something like that so quickly? You did the right thing.

BOBBI
But I’m ready, now. I’m ready to get to know you.

JERRY
Bobbi….

BOBBI
You seem like a nice guy. I do feel a certain attraction to you, both sexual and spiritual. I really think this is something worth investigating.

JERRY
It’s not that easy. I’m… I don’t know how to say this…

BOBBI
What? What is it?

JERRY
I am attracted to you. I really am. And yes I do feel something between us, but… I’m seeing someone right now.

BOBBI
Oh. You are.

JERRY
Yes. Kim Basinger, actually.

BOBBI
Kim Basinger? Really?

JERRY
Yes.

BOBBI
I thought she was married to Alec Baldwin.

JERRY
She is. Alec doesn’t know about us. It’s all very confusing.

BOBBI
Boy. How am I supposed to compete with Kim Basinger? She’s nearly perfect.

JERRY
She’s not so perfect. Once you get to know her.

BOBBI
Sure she is. Tell me one thing about Kim Basinger that’s not perfect?

JERRY
Well, I… (thinks about it a bit)

BOBBI
You see? You can’t, can you?

JERRY
Not offhand, but look… We just don’t have that much in common. Not like you and I do anyway.

BOBBI
Well, I know this is none of my business but… she is married. What kind of a future can you have with a married woman?

JERRY
God, I know. I know.

BOBBI
I know I haven’t played lesbian bondage games with Micky Rourke or anything but I suddenly feel…I don’t know. I don’t want to rush you or anything but I think if you could just open yourself up to the idea of me, I know that I could make you happy.

JERRY
You could?

BOBBI
I promise.

JERRY
I don’t know. It’s so confusing.

BOBBI
Give me a chance. What if we don’t have another opportunity? We almost missed our chance the first time because of me. Don’t make the same mistake I did. This is it. Right now. We may never have another shot at happiness again.

JERRY
(he stares at her)
Okay. (smiling) Okay. I’ll do it!

(THEY hug each other)

BOBBI
Oh, Jerry! You won’t regret it.

(suddenly, the lights come on. MR. CAINE
and VILLAIN EXTRA #2 run into the room.)

MR. CAINE
Where are you, Conners? Show yourself!

VILLAIN EXTRA #2
He is unstoppable, Mr. Caine! He is a killing machine!

MR. CAINE
No man is unstoppable!

(A noise comes from the doorway. VILLAIN EXTRA #1 stumbles into the room holding his neck. It is covered in blood)

VILLAIN EXTRA #1
Mr. Caine. Kill him. Kill the American devil. Avenge my death for all…of…Paliminia…

(He keels over, dead)

MR. CAINE
CURSE YOU, CONNERS! THAT WAS MY FAVORITE SIDEKICK!

VILLAIN EXTRA #2
Hey!

MR. CAINE
Sometimes. Not all the time. You know what I mean. I love you both, just in different ways, that’s all.

(BRUCE’S voice rings out from all sides of the room.)

BRUCE
Let the people go, Caine. Unless you want to wind up like your friend over there!

(CAINE picks up MRS. CONNERS
and holds his gun to her head.)

MR. CAINE
I’LL KILL HER! YOU HEAR ME, CONNERS? I’LL KILL HER, I SWEAR TO GOD!
MRS. CONNERS
You expected a poor helpless female hostage, didn’t you? You didn’t count on me being a master in the ancient art of Tai-Chi!!!!!

(MRS. CONNERS breaks free and knocks out VILLAIN EXTRA #2. She hits MR. CAINE and sends him to the ground toward JERRY and BOBBI. JERRY rolls away, but he grabs BOBBI and holds his gun to her head.)

MR. CAINE
I’ve got a whole room full of hostages, Conners!

BOBBI
Jerry?

JERRY
Bobbi. I…

MR. CAINE
Show yourself, Conners, or you’re going to have one very beautiful, very dead woman on your hands.

BOBBI
Jerry, help me.

JERRY
I don’t know what to do.

MR. CAINE
You’ve got until the count of three, Conners!

JERRY
I don’t know what to do.

MR. CAINE
ONE!

BOBBI
Jerry, please. Do something. Anything.

MR. CAINE
TWO!

BOBBI
Jerry…

JERRY
Bobbi, I…

MR. CAINE
TWO AND A HALF!

BOBBI
I’m scared. I’m really scared.

MR. CAINE
THREE!!!!!!

(HE pulls the trigger, but no shot goes off)

MR. CAINE
What the…

(Suddenly, Bruce leaps forward from the
group of hostages and punches MR. CAINE)

MRS. CONNERS
Bruce!

BRUCE
Didn’t know you were out of bullets, did you Caine? Good thing I counted.

MRS. CONNERS
Bruce! You were disguised as one of the hostages! But how… I heard your voice coming from above us. We all did.

BRUCE
(taking off fake wig and mustache)
It was easy, really. After sneaking through the ventilation system and pulling the breakers so the lights would go out, I planted my miniature tape recorder next to the PA system, then jerry-rigged a remote control device out of one of the dead guard’s walkie-talkies.

MRS. CONNERS
So clever.

JERRY
Bobbi. I’m sorry. I didn’t know what to do.

BOBBI
I was scared, Jerry. I was actually scared for the first time in my life. I’ve been through twenty-five earthquakes, been trapped under a giant meteor and almost went down in a plane crash, but I’ve never been that afraid.

JERRY
I was too. I was terrified.

BOBBI
I didn’t even care what happened to me, but I realized that if I died I’d never see you again. Why didn’t you do something?

JERRY
Everything was happening so fast. It felt like such a big commitment. I choked. I’m sorry.

BOBBI
Yeah. I’m sorry too.

BRUCE
What do you say, Mrs. Conners?

MRS. CONNERS
I say you’re an amazing man, Mr. Conners.

(THEY kiss)

BRUCE
Let’s go home.

MRS. CONNERS
Home. That’s the best idea I’ve heard all night.

JERRY
Bobbi. Let me try to explain.

BOBBI
There’s nothing to explain, Jerry. I need to go now.

JERRY
Bobbi…

BOBBI
Jerry, I just want to go home.

BRUCE
What do you say? New Years Eve next year? Same time, same place.

MRS. CONNERS
Don’t you dare, Mr. Conners, don’t you dare!

(THEY laugh and embrace and kiss while
BOBBI and JERRY just gaze at each other)

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