(A dark night on the Washington, D.C. streets. In a bedroom of a
football training camp, the camera pans across pictures of a family and
children, a neatly made bed with blue sheets, and to a door in the wall.
The room is empty, until the door opens and two men march in. One of them
opens up the door to a closet and looks in. The other walks around.)
Man1: Bela's not here.
Man2: Let's leave him a calling card.
(He snaps his fingers and the two men set to overturning dressers and tables, knocking all the photos onto the floor, and throwing stuff on the bed. Then Man2 overturns the bed and Man1 dumps out the contents of all the desk drawers and then tosses the drawers down. They are still knocking furniture over when the door opens again and the occupant of the room steps in with a towel around his neck. The man is Bela.)
Bela: What are you --
(Man2 grabs the collar of his bathrobe, holds him against the wall, and shuts the door.)
Man2: This is a little reminder, Bela. Mr. Price doesn't want any successful field goals Sunday, Bela.
(Bela is panting.)
Bela: Reminder? I -- I don't need a reminder.
Man2: That's good to know, Bela. We just wanted to know you know. We got our eye on you all the time, Bela. So don't let no one know you know us. You know?
(He smiles, pretending to be friendly.)
Bela: Sure, anything.
Man2: Glad I made myself clear. (He suddenly slams Bela against the wall hard. He and Man1 walk out of the room, with Bela leaning on the wall, watching them.) Remember, Bela. Do what we tell you.
(Sighing, partly from relief and partly from guilt, Bela slides down the wall until he is sitting on the floor.)
(IFF. Billy's office. Francine is leaning on Billy's desk and Billy
and Amanda are standing in front of it. Lee is nowhere to be seen.)
Billy: Won't you have a seat, Mrs. King?
Amanda: Thank you, sir.
(She takes a comfortable position in the armchair. Billy walks around to behind his desk and leans on it.)
Billy: I'll come right to the point. Do you follow Liechtenstinian politics?
(Amanda leans forward with just as casual a smile.)
Amanda: Should I?
(Billy starts to open his mouth, but then Francine chimes in.)
Francine: It happens to be the biggest tax haven in Europe. Millions of dollars are sheltered there.
(Billy puts his glasses on and sits in his desk chair, facing Amanda.)
Billy: We're investigating a man named John C. Crandall. He owns the Washington Pioneers football team and he may have a fortune sheltered in Liechtenstein.
(Amanda has started taking notes on a pad of paper.)
Francine: Recently he's been seen with an Ernst Laszlo, who has also been linked with several political assassinations.
(Amanda has been furiously writing, and now she looks up.)
Amanda: Oh, okay. Uh, Liechtenstein . . . steen? Stein? Liechtenstein? (Francine nods. Amanda goes over her notes out loud.) Football, Crandall, assassinations.
Francine: The only complication is, of course, Bela Pravik.
(She sits on the corner of the desk. Amanda lowers her pad.)
Amanda: Who's Bela Pravik?
Billy: Bela is the new kicker on the Pioneers football team. He's from Liechtenstein. He's the one that told us about Crandall's meetings with Laszlo.
Francine: If Laszlo knew that Bela had seen him, Bela would be instantly killed.
Amanda: If he's in danger, why doesn't he leave?
Billy: And break training?
Amanda: My mistake.
Billy: See, while the players are in training, they're not allowed to leave or even place a phone call. If Bela were to leave, Crandall would know something was up, see? So Bela stays put. Meanwhile, we have a man on the inside investigating.
Francine: Lee used to play football, you know?
Francine: Oh, at many of the universities he was thrown out of.
(Billy looks away. Amanda tries to change the subject.)
Amanda: Uh, sir?
Amanda: I'm sure that there's probably some reason that you're giving me all this information.
(Billy stands up and walks over to her.)
Billy: With the training camp rules being so tightly enforced, it's nearly impossible for Lee to communicate with us. So we want you to pose as a sports reporter. (Amanda smiles happily.) Hang around the camp, let Lee slip you whatever information he has, and report back to us.
Amanda: Like an undercover operative.
Francine: Like a messenger.
(She smiles smugly. Billy glares at her. She raises her eyebrows coyly. Amanda looks at her, then back at Billy.)
Amanda (to Francine): Excuse me. (To Billy:) Sir, do you think Lee will be okay? Those guys play pretty rough.
(Billy laughs out loud.)
Billy: Amanda, Lee's an ex-jock. This is like a fantasy coming true for him. Lee's having a ball.
(On the practice field, Lee, in a dark blue football uniform with
a red pinney over it, falls onto his back and some big muscly guys, some
with the pinneys on, run over him. Lee groans and shakes his head. Coach
Leopold, who has Crandall standing next to him, blows the whistle.)
Coach: Take your showers!
(The players all cheer and trot off the field. Bobby, a tall man without a pinney reaches down and helps Lee up.)
Bobby: Hey, Newcomb, let me give you a hand. (Lee grabs his hand, stands up, and brushes himself off. They walk together to the locker rooms, with Lee limping.) Watch my shoulders, not my knees, boy. It's always the knees that go first. How many operations?
Lee: Oh, a couple.
(They remove their helmets.)
Bobby: Well, you better take care of yourself, boy, before you grow old on all fours.
(Another wise-cracking player runs up behind Lee.)
Player: Hey, Newcomb, are you sure it was football and not hopscotch you played up there in the Yukon? I think we got a ballet dancer at strong safety, Bobby. Of course, I wouldn't worry about him making the cut.
(They laugh. Bobby elbows Lee.)
Bobby: Think you can hang, Pretty Boy?
(The three walk off. Crandall leans over to Coach.)
Crandall: That strong safety doesn't like to hit, does he, Frank?
Coach: He don't like to stick 'em with his face, Mr. Crandall. I always tell the boys, "Stick "em with the face."
Crandall: Yeah, a man who doesn't stick 'em with the face isn't a man in my opinion. And I only want men playing on my football team.
Coach: I understand totally, Mr. Crandall.
Crandall: I reward my boys for taking their punishment like men. (He slaps Coach on the stomach.) Don't I, Frank? No punishment, no reward.
(Crandall walks away.)
Coach: Winning philosophy, Mr. Crandall.
(In the locker room, men are taking their jerseys off. People are
talking and slamming metal lockers. Through the door come more players
and some magazine photographers. Then Amanda pokes her head in to make
sure all the men are decently dressed. She sees Bela bending over to get
a soda from the vending machine. He picks it up, then sees Amanda and straightens
up, surprised. Amanda smiles and nods at him. He smiles back.)
(Amanda cautiously steps out and greets him.)
Amanda: Hello. I'm looking for S--
Bela: Pravik. (Amanda looks blank.) Bela. I kick the ball.
Amanda: Oh, yes, yes, Bela.
(They shake hands.)
Bela: You've heard of me.
Amanda: Oh, yes, yes, of course.
Bela: Uh, do you like, uh, the bowling?
Amanda: I beg your pardon?
Bela: Um, um, the bowling. (He imitates throwing a bowling ball.) Knock down pins? (Amanda smiles.) Perhaps we can have date. First pizza and then the bowling.
Amanda: Uh . . .
(Bela looks down, disappointed.)
Bela: Are -- are you girlfriend of a player? In such case, I withdraw my request.
Amanda: Oh, no, no, no, I'm a reporter for the "Washington Blaze" and I'm here to do a story on the team.
Bela: America, what a country. Woman of elegance writing newspaper articles about football. In Liechtenstein, where I come from, woman make pastries, uh, babies, and -- and trouble. (He laughs unattractively. Amanda's smile fades.) So perhaps tonight we can eat pizza and . . . knock down pins?
(He looks up and sees Man1 and Man2 staring sternly at him. He looks away.)
Amanda: Well, I'd love to, but I --
Bela: Excuse me. I will be going now. Perhaps we can meet again. I have vintage Rod Stewart records.
(He quickly escapes.)
Amanda: Uh --
(She turns around and sees the two men smiling satisfyingly and leaving. She raises one eyebrow, then turns back and slowly makes her way through the men. Bobby and Lee's other friend, shirtless and wrapped in towels, stand in front of her.)
Bobby: Well, lookie here, a lady reporter.
Amanda: Hello. I was hoping to get an interview with Sandy Newcomb?
Player: Bum knees. That's his life story. Now, if you want a real exclusive interview with an all-pro tackle, then you've come to the right place.
Amanda: My editor wants a sidebar piece about how the Canadian football league differs from the NFL --
Bobby: Well, they don't hit real good up there, that's the difference.
(Amanda forces a laugh. The other player playfully punches her in the shoulder. She slams onto the lockers.)
Player: Come on, Bobby, let's grab a shower. You want to join us and soak up some real, authentic atmosphere?
Amanda: No, thank you, I've had my shower.
(They walk by, smiling at her as they pass. She laughs politely, but at soon as they leave, she exhales and looks as if they smell. She makes her way through the crowd, suffering calls like, "Hey, cupcake." Finally she finds Lee on a bench, groaning in pain and adjusting a knee strap. Amanda walks up.)
Amanda: Uh, hello, Mr. Newcomb. (Lee looks up. Amanda sits down.) Hello.
Lee: What are you doing here?
Amanda: I'm here to do an interview with "Sandy Newcomb" for the Washington Blaze.
Lee: Oh, God. (Amanda sighs.) I asked Billy to send me a messenger. I assumed that he was going to send --
Amanda: Anybody but me.
(He starts to take off his shoulder pads, then groans and holds his neck. Amanda puts down her bag.)
Amanda: Oh, here, let me at least --
Lee: No, no, no, I can handle it.
(Amanda reaches out and tries to undo the pads.)
Amanda: Oh, come on, just let me.
Lee: I am perfectly able to take off my shoulder pads. (Amanda nods. He finishes and lifts them up and over his head, yelling and shouting in pain. He grabs his neck.) Ow!
Amanda: Ooh, you're in pain, aren't you?
Lee: No, I'm not. I feel fine, perfectly fine. Thank you. I think I'll take off my shoes.
(He bends low to untie his shoes and shouts and holds his back. Amanda leans forward and whispers.)
Amanda: Do you have anything you want me to take back to the Agency for the information? (She straightens up and raises her voice.) Sir?
Lee: Yeah. Yeah. Look, you tell Billy that someone hit Bela's room last night, trashed it, and threatened him. I'm going to take a look around tonight after bedchecks, see what I can dig up on Crandall. He set up an office here on training camp.
Amanda: So you think there's more to this Laszlo-Crandall connection?
Lee: The prime minister of Liechtenstein is due here in three days. He has vowed to change the tax laws there. Crandall and a lot of other people stand to gain a lot if that man were dead.
Amanda: An assassination?
Lee: Come on, Amanda, we're talking megabucks here. I mean, starting a little coup is nothing to these guys.
(They get interrupted by Coach Leopold standing over them.)
Coach: Hey, Newcomb. If you spend more time hitting and less time with the ladies, you might make the team.
(Lee laughs and pats Amanda on the shoulder.)
Lee: Uh, Coach, this is Amanda King of the Blaze. She's a reporter. She's wanting to interview me.
Amanda: Hello, Coach.
Coach: Pleasure, ma'am but, uh, we're trying to run a training camp here.
Coach: Newcomb, can you still walk?
Lee: Walk? Oh, Coach, you just watch this. (He stands up and walks back and forth easily with a slight hobble.) See? Good as new.
Coach: Good. Now hit the showers!
Lee: Yeah, Coach. I will.
(Coach walks away. When he is out of sight range, Lee's smile fades and he sits down, grunting in pain. Seeing Amnada, he laughs as if his knee doesn't hurt.)
(Football training camp. One of the rooms is an office with Crandall
behind the desk and Laszlo in front of him. Crandall is calm, Laszlo is
Laszlo: Mr. Crandall, Bela is one of the few people in the country who could recognize me.
Crandall: You knew Bela was on the team, why didn't you say something before?
Laszlo: I did not know he was on the team! You will forgive me, Mr. Crandall, when I say I have other things on my mind than American football.
(Crandall starts laughing.)
Crandall: Do you really think that he could recognize you?
(Laszlo stiffens, dead serious.)
Laszlo: Mr. Crandall, I am a fairly famous man my part of the world.
Crandall: I guess so, what with all the generals and princes and such that you've blown away.
(Furious, Laszlo slams his hand on the desk and leans forward.)
Laszlo: I cannot work under these circumstances! There is a man here who could recognize me!
(Finally, Crandall gets mad. He stands up to face Laszlo.)
Crandall: All right, Laszlo, just simmer down! You can't back out of this job now. The prime minister will be here in two days and I want this job done!
(Laszlo sits down, now the calm one.)
Laszlo: And it will be done. If you allow me to take care of one other little job first.
(Crandall walks around his desk to a couple feet in front of Laszlo.)
Crandall: Laszlo, I can't permit you to do that! He's the only place kicker I've got.
(Laszlo gets up and walks over to face him.)
Laszlo: Mr. Crandall, you and your friends, you have nearly a billion dollars tied up in Liechtenstein. I daresay, if this coup comes off, you can buy a brand new kicker. (He smiles. Crandall turns away. Laszlo tries again.) The others who joined you in hiring me want nothing to go wrong. (Crandall turns back and tries to interrupt, but Laszlo plows ahead.) Am I correct? (Crandall stares at him for a second, then lowers his head and walks over to the window.) Now, what is your decision?
(Crandall gives in. He turns briefly.)
Crandall: It's got to look like an accident. (Laszlo grins, satisfied, and walks back to the chair.) Now, you've got to assure me of that.
(Laszlo turns and cleverly looks at Crandall's back.)
Laszlo: Well, that shouldn't be too difficult. Football is, after all, a very violent sport. Is it not?
(Crandall, looking frightened, shakes his head slightly.)
(Football training camp. A door opens and Lee sneaks out into the
hallway. He peeks down the hall and sees Coach coming for bedchecks. Coach
stops at one door and knocks on it.)
(The player inside groans.)
Player: Coach, give us a break.
(Coach opens the door, pokes his head inside, and looks around. Lee creeps back into his room.)
(Inside another room, a player called Phil and Mr. Crandall are watching
the tape of the day's practice.)
Phil: Look at that! Look at that! That ain't so bad, sir. Hm? Hm?
(Crandall sighs, pats Phil on the thigh, and stands up. He walks over to the TV set and turns it off.)
Crandall: You're slowing down, Phil.
Phil: I got my man, Mr. Crandall.
Crandall: Your man was playing with a broken ankle.
Phil: I can still play this game, Mr. C.
(Crandall chuckles and pats Phil on the shoulder. He walks around and gets a cigar out of the box on the coffee table.)
Crandall: Phil, you know I'm fond of you. I've always been fond of you. I was fond of you when you were an overweight rookie. (Phil chuckles.) Yeah, I was fond of you. When you, uh, got messed up with liquor in '75 and drugs in '76 and when the league wanted to throw you to the wolves in '77. I'm still fond of you, boy.
Phil: I appreciate that, Mr. C.
(Crandall walks back over and sits beside Phil.)
Crandall: Well, of course you do, because you know that loyalty to friends is one of my finest qualities. Just as I know that your zest for violence and abuse brings out the best in you.
Phil: Thank you, sir. You know I'd do anything for you and the Pioneers.
Crandall: I never doubted it. (He is about to light his cigar, then lowers it. He laughs.) You remember when you split Shultz's skull for refusing to sign a new contract? (He laughs out loud.) I knew from then on that you were a team player all the way.
Phil: And I'd do it again.
(Crandall looks up, his laughter subsiding.)
Crandall: Yeah. You will. (There is a knock on the door. It opens and Laszlo, dark and menacing, walks in. Phil stares. Crandall gets up and walks over to him, followed by Phil.) Uh, Phil, this is, uh . . . Coach Laszlo, we brought him in special to help us with, uh, some plays.
(Cheerful and friendly, Phil sticks out his hand.)
Phil: Hi there, Coach Laszlo. Uh, what league were you in?
(Ignoring the outstretched hand, Laszlo walks away.)
Laszlo: None of your business.
(Laszlo and a confused Phil take seats facing each other. Crandall, with a folder in his hands, walks over and sits next to Phil.)
Crandall: Now, Phil, Coach Laszlo and I have worked out a nuance for our kicking play for Sunday's opener against Philadelphia. (He gets a paper out of the folder.) It's, uh, it's 34 red B, with just one small pattern change. Here, take a look-see.
(He hands the paper to Phil. Phil looks at the letters and circles on the paper and traces the line with his finger.)
Phil: Uh, I'm pulling. I don't pull on field goals. Philly's defense will be over the top. Bela would get creamed.
(Crandall looks up at Laszlo, pretending not to know this fact.)
Crandall: You sure?
Phil: Absolutely. The guy's got no protection.
Crandall: Oh, that's nice. 'Cause in the ensuing pile-up, Bela Pravik's carotid artery will be pinched and in ten seconds he'll be dead. (Phil looks up at him.) In a funny way, that's far simpler than our usual play.
Phil: But what player on the team would do something like that?
(Phil's head snaps toward "Coach" Laszlo.)
Crandall: You are team captain.
Laszlo: Using a technique which I have perfected, and will later demonstrate, it is possible to stop the flow of blood and produce instantaneous death.
(Crandall whistles. Phil's head goes back and forth like a ping-pong ball whenever one of the other men talk.)
Crandall: Makes just plain old tackle seem like the Dark Ages, doesn't it, Phil?
Phil: But, Mr. C., what if --
(Crandall throws his hands up and interrupts Phil. He stands up.)
Crandall: Ah-ah, no what-ifs, Phil! Bela has a lot to learn about sportsmanship, he's trying to harm us. Now, we can't permit him to do that, can we? (Phil bites his lower lip and looks at the floor.) Now, Phil, it's a mighty cold world out there for ex-players with bad hands and damn wits and no future. Of course, when you're washed up, you'll still have a place in the world. You'll be assistant coach to Frank, good job, good salary, and a reason to go on living.
Phil: But what if they --
Crandall: Oh, think positively, Phil! (He picks up a little pad with a quote on it and tosses it at Phil. Then he recites the quote.) Remember, when life hands you a lemon, make lemonade! (He laughs. He walks back over and sits next to Phil again, who is looking at the play.) You do it right and it'll look like just another football accident. (He puts his arm around Phil's shoulders.) And the fans will love it!
Laszlo: Were you to cross us, (he sighs and shakes his head) I would have to slit your throat.
(Phil looks at the paper again. Crandall removes his arm and looks at Phil, probing him for an answer. Phil finally looks up.)
Phil: God, this game's gotten tough.
(Out in the hall, Lee creeps down and peers around the corner. A
door opens and Laszlo, Phil, and Crandall all walk out and split up, Laszlo
and Phil silent.)
Crandall: Good night, Phil. (He closes and locks the door, then follows Laszlo out of sight. Lee appears around the corner again and tiptoes over to the door that they just emerged from. He starts to pick the lock. Lee is successful. The door opens and he steps into the dark room, looking around him and closing the door behind him.)
(Coach walks out of a room and stops at Lee's door. He knocks.)
Coach: Bedcheck! (No answer. He knocks again.) Newcomb!
(He opens the door and marches in.)
(In the other room, Lee turns on a lamp and starts going through papers in a folder on the desk. After finding nothing, he sets it down and opens a drawer, where he finds the folder with the death play in it. He picks it up, reads it, then pushes things aside to lay the paper in a clear spot. He fishes a small camera out of his pocket and snaps photos.)
(Out in the hall, Man1 and Man2 are walking down the hall, but hear
Coach and duck into hiding. Grumbling, Coach slams Lee's door behind him.)
Coach: That hotshot wants some team discipline. . . .
(In Crandall's office, Lee is rearranging the things on the desk
back to way they were. Then he turns off the lamp and steps out into the
hallway, closing the door. He opens the large window in the wall and looks
Lee: Are you out here?
(Amanda's head pops up from below the window, startling Lee. He sighs.)
Amanda: Of course I'm here. You got anything for me?
Lee: Yeah. (He opens the back of the camera and takes out the film. He hands it to Amanda.) Get this film to the Agency.
Amanda: What's on it?
Lee: It's a football play.
Amanda: A football play?
Lee: Tell Billy to run it through cryptology and see if he can find something.
Amanda: What for if it's just a football play?
Lee: There's something that's. . . . I don't know, it just bothers me, so just do it, okay?
Amanda (touchily): Okay. I mean after all, what do I know? I'm just an assistant agent.
Lee: Apprentice agent.
Amanda: Purist. (Lee chuckles.) Is there anything else I can do?
(They hear the coach calling him.)
Coach: Newcomb! Newcomb, I'm looking for you!
Lee: Yeah, this.
(Knowing that he must have a reason to be hanging out the window after curfew, Lee grabs Amanda and kisses her. He pretends to enjoy it, while she tries to talk.)
Amanda: MMPH! Mmph! Mmph? Mmmmmm. . . .
(The coach comes up behind them.)
Coach: Excuse me, Mr. Newcomb.
(Lee lets go and backs up. Amanda looks at him, shocked. Lee grins cockily at her.)
Lee: I hope you, uh, got all you came for, Mrs. King. (He winks.) Interview-wise, that is.
(Amanda starts to protest, but the coach interrupts.)
Coach: Enjoy your work, do you?
Amanda: Yes. Very much. (Lee nods modestly.) Thank you so much. I have a deadline to meet.
(Amanda leaves. Coach gets up closer to Lee.)
Coach: What was that all about, Newcomb?
Lee: Ah, just a good rapport with the press, I promised her an in-depth interview earlier.
Coach: At eleven o'clock PM.
Lee: Yeah, well, she, uh, she got rearended by a truck. Good night.
(He leaves. The coach watches him go.)
(Football field, at a practice game. Bobby is curling a cheerleader,
who appears to be enjoying it. His friend walks over.)
Player: Hey, Bobby, that looks like fun, give me a shot.
Bobby: Are you sure you can go a hundred?
Player: Sure, let a manly man do this. (Bobby tosses the cheerleader and his friend catches her and starts curling.) Okay, that's three.
Bobby: That's one.
Bobby: That's two.
Player: That's enough, I'm getting bored.
(He tosses the girl into Bobby's arms. She shrieks with laughter. The player walks away. Bobby runs off with the cheerleader, who puts an arm around him. Behind them, Amanda is leaning on a refreshment table, watching. Lee walks over to her and she stands up.)
Lee: Hello, Mrs. King.
Amanda: Hello, Mr. . . .
Lee: Did you make your deadline?
Amanda: No, as a matter of fact I didn't, I still have a little more research to do.
Lee: Mm-hmm. What did Billy say about the play I gave you?
Amanda: Nothing. Your code people couldn't identify it at all. It's probably just another play.
Lee: There is something wrong with that play, I just feel it. I went through the entire playbook, I couldn't find it anywhere.
Amanda: Billy wants to know if Bela said anything about Laszlo.
Lee: He stopped talking about anything.
Amanda: He did?
Lee: Yeah, I'm so surprised. We were getting to be friends.
Lee: Yeah. He probably sensed my athletic background, figured I was someone he could talk to.
(Amanda raises her eyebrows at him.)
Lee: Yeah, I'm serious!
Amanda: I know.
Lee: Spies are jocks, too, you know. Come on. Hey, I do tougher stuff than this every day.
(Somewhere away from the spies are Crandall and Coach Leopold. Crandall looks at Lee.)
Crandall: Is that the one that broke curfew, Frank?
Coach: That's him, sir. Caught him necking with that reporter. (They walk a few feet and Crandall tosses out his drink. Then they continue walking down toward Lee.) Sandy Newcomb. Fifteenth round draft choice from Canada.
Crandall: That's right, he doesn't like to hit! Cut him, and do it just before the game on Sunday. (They pass by Lee and Amanda.) Hey, Newcomb, you better save yourself for Sunday's game. Now, we're counting on you.
(Lee gives him a thumbs-up.)
Lee: All right, you got it, Coach.
(A bouncy, peppy cheerleader trots up to Lee, shaking her pom-poms.)
Cheerleader: Hi, Sandy. I've been looking for you.
(The cheerleader lowers her voice and bats her eyelashes.)
Cheerleader: Could you help freshen my pom-pom?
Lee: Uh --
Amanda: Oh, wait a minute, let me. (She takes the pom-poms from the cheerleader and turns them over, looking for the handle.) They don't look too bad. (She shakes them out a couple times, then hands them back to the cheerleader.) All better now. (The cheerleader smiles politely. Amanda playfully punches Lee in the stomach.) Save yourself for Sunday.
Lee: Yeah. Excuse me.
(He walks off arm-in-arm with the cheerleader. Bela approaches Amanda with a big smile on his face.)
Amanda: Oh. Hi, Bela. I didn't see you.
Bela: It is because I'm short. It occurs frequently.
Amanda: No, well, you don't have to be very tall to kick the football, do you, and you certainly do that well.
Bela: Thank you. Maybe short men are pleasing, like Napoleon and Mickey Rooney and Dudley Moore, but a lot of American women like their men tall.
Amanda: Oh, no, not me. I like all men. (Bela starts to retreat.) I mean, well, I don't like all men. I don't know all men, I mean. But I probably don't even know too many percent of the men in . . . (She stops when she sees Bela gazing adoringly at her. She changes the subject.) How do you like America?
Bela: I love it every day more and more. And, uh, my English is getting better, no?
Bela: And soon I'm speaking like famous actor Lionel Baltimore.
Bela: You're -- you're full of tact, Mrs. King.
(They laugh. Bela, out of the corner of his eye, see Man1 and Man2 supervising. Bela gulps noisily.)
Amanda: What's the matter?
Bela: Um, I must go.
(He quickly walks away. Amanda turns to find what scared him so much. She sees the man watching through their dark glasses. She raises one eyebrow, then leaves. The men, watching her, also get up and walk away.)
(On a street around empty warehouses, Amanda is walking aroung, looking
for the nervous kicker.)
Amanda: Bela! Bela, are you here? Bela! Bela, where are you? (Suddenly, she gets pulled into one of the warehouses. About to scream, she sees Bela holding on to her hand and clamps her mouth shut.) Bela. What are you doing?
Bela: I'm resting. Crowds make me nervous.
Amanda: Crowds, or those two suspicious-looking guys who were watching you?
Bela: Suspicious-looking guys, what suspicious-looking guys?
Amanda: Oh, come on, you know the ones.
Bela: Do you notice them, too?
Amanda: Yes, I notice them. I'm a reporter. I'm trained to notice suspicious people, odd behavior, bad tailoring --
Bela: Please, Mrs. King, do not notice anything else. It's not safe for me if you keep noticing. Maybe you could look another way a little bit more.
Amanda: Bela, if you're in trouble, all you have to do is just tell someone and they'll help you.
Bela: Please, I am very nervous, I'm -- I can't think, and I can't be seen -- I can't be seen talking to you!
(Bela sees Crandall and Coach Leopold coming around the corner. He grabs Amanda and kisses her. She protests.)
Coach: Another interview, Mrs. King?
(Bela lets go and Amanda pulls away. Hardly able to speak, she comes up with an excuse.)
Amanda: For the Sunday supplement.
(Crandall chuckles silently. Coach nods. Bela hangs his head.)
Bela: I -- I am very sor-- I am leaving.
(Amanda nods and smiles. Bela walks away. Crandall and the coach shake their heads and continue walking. Amanda's smile turns into a weird look. She shrugs.)
Amanda: And at any way we can.
(Bela is walking away. He stops in his tracks when he sees Man1 and Man2 come out of a door, looking for him. Bela abruptly turns and walks briskly in the other direction, where he is stopped by Laszlo and Phil, who is rubbing his neck. Terrified, he starts to climb a pole. Laszlo begins running. Phil stares. Bela jumps from wall to wall. Laszlo, underneath, tries to aim a gun at him. It misses. Laszlo stands up and chases after Bela, who is climbing on the rafters and hanging onto a pipe. Laszlo follows on the rafters, more agile than Bela. Petrified, Bela slowly makes his way along the beam with his arm held out, reaching for the next. Laszlo fires. The bullet ricochets off the pole and Bela jumps and lands sprawled on the next beam. Laszlo fires again. Bela stands up and walks quickly across the rafter to the next. He pulls himself to a high window in the ceiling while Laszlo struggles up the pipe to him. Bela jumps up, grabs onto the roof and pulls himself out of the window. Laszlo glares at the window where Bela disappeared from.)
(The football field, at a refreshment table. Amanda is waiting. Lee
Lee: Where were you?
Amanda: There you are! Under the stands with Bela. He's really afraid of something. I think it has something to do with those guys wth the plaid sports coats.
(Lee is about to respond when Bobby points to something and yells.)
Bobby: Hey, look at that!
(Everybody turns to look. They see Bela hopping over the bleachers, running from something. Everybody yells and jeers at him. Not hearing them, Bela jumps over the high wall, falling down. Everybody gasps and shouts his name.)
Amanda: Oh, my gosh!
(Following his agenting instincts, Lee runs away. He scans behind the wall for Bela, but doesn't see him. He looks around. In one of the cars, Laszlo looks up and starts the engine. Lee hears and looks in time to see the car pulling out of the parking space with tires screeching. After watching it go, Lee spots Amanda and runs over to her.)
Lee: Amanda! Get to Billy, tell him we've spotted Laszlo, but Laszlo may have spotted Bela.
Amanda: Right. (Lee runs off. Amanda yells after him.) What are you going to do?
Lee: Find Bela!
(Amanda nods, then rushes over to her station wagon, also parked there. But the two suspicious-looking guys in sports coats are also sitting in a car, watching her. While Amanda pauses to buckle her seatbelt, Bela sits up from the backseat. Amanda stares at him.)
Amanda: Bela! Are you all right?
Bela: Yes, all right. I fell in bushes. Please, burn rubber?
(Amanda burns rubber and hightails it out of the parking lot. Man2 starts up his car and speeds after them.)
(IFF, Billy's office. Lee is looking over a map or something and
Billy is on the phone.)
Billy: No, I don't want the D.C. police on this. You pull every man you can get your hands on and send them here, to me. . . . Yes, I know it's Saturday night. I have a calendar in my office, thank you very much.
(He angrily hangs up the phone and sits on his desk. Lee walks over with the map.)
Lee: I don't know, he's not at his apartment, no one has seen him.
(He sighs and sits in one of the armchairs.)
Billy: How far could he have gotten on foot?
Lee: I went over the grounds thoroughly. You know, for two cents I'd pull Crandall in.
Billy: For what? Even if you could prove he's met with Laszlo, it's still not a crime.
Lee: Look, Billy, if you're going to start throwing technicalities at me --
(He gets interrupted by Francine, who opens the door and immediately starts talking.)
Francine: You will never know just how inappropriate your beep was.
Lee: I can imagine. (Francine looks at him.) The poor guy.
Billy: Laszlo went after Bela and Bela ran. I want you to get on the phone with our man at Dulles and have him watch out for Laszlo in case he tries to get out tonight.
(Francine turns to the phone, picks it up, and begins dialing.)
Lee: No, I wouldn't bet on it. I think he wants to finish the job.
(Waiting for the phone to ring, Francine picks up her original topic.)
Francine: I spent two hours at the hairdresser this afternoon. Not to mention the manicure.
(Lee pretends to be seriously thinking.)
Lee: Could have had yourself bronzed.
(Francine glares at him. Billy takes the map from Lee and looks at it.)
Billy: Maybe he stole a car. Maybe he got a ride with someone.
Lee: A ride? With whom?
(Outside an office building, Amanda's station wagon pulls up and parks, with Bela still inside.)
(In Billy's office, Lee is walking back and forth, going over the
facts for Billy. Francine is on the phone.)
Lee: Liechtenstein's prime minister is due in Washington on the 23rd.
Billy: He's got to be the target. Everything points to him.
(Francine hangs up the phone and scribbles down some notes on a pad of paper.)
Lee: Except that Laszlo's afraid that Bela will blow the whistle. He goes after Bela, and --
Billy: We've got to get to Bela first.
(The phone rings. Francine picks it up.)
(In a phone booth by her car, Amanda is talking with Francine.)
Amanda: Hello, this is Amanda King.
Francine: Amanda, we're a little busy at the moment.
(Amanda speaks joyfully.)
Amanda: I have Bela!
(Francine looks up and repeats this to Billy and Lee, shocked.)
Francine: She's got Bela.
(Instantly, Lee picks up the extension.)
Lee: Amanda, where are you?
(Behind Amanda, Man1's and Man2's car pulls up and they get out. They walk over to her station wagon. Amanda turns around and checks the street signs.)
Amanda: Um, I'm at the corner of Hoover and Northwest Jay Street. (While she speaks, Bela is getting pulled out of her car by the two men.) Uh, listen, I would have called you sooner except he was awfully scared and I just now talked him into letting me call at all.
Lee: Were you followed?
(Behind Amanda, the two men are forcing Bela into their car as she speaks.)
Amanda: No, of course not, I wasn't followed. I know how to get rid of a tail.
Lee: All right, all right. Where is Bela?
Amanda: He's right here where I can see him (she turns in time to see the dark car driving away) being driven away by those two bad men!
(She drops the receiver and runs out of the booth to her own car.)
Lee: Amanda? Amanda! Amanda? Amanda, are you there? Amanda!
Billy: What? (Lee hands the phone to Billy and marches out the door. Billy and Francine follow him, with Billy stretching the cord.) Lee?
(Down the streets of Washington, Amanda is shadowing the car that
abducted Bela. She finds an audio cassete, holds it up to read the label,
and pops it into the tape player. She presses play. The woman on the tape
begins talking to her.)
Woman: The following tape is the property of the Agency and may not be used without authorization.
Amanda: All right, all right.
Woman: Automobile Surveillance Refresher Tape. In the course of his --
Woman: -- duties, the agent may be called upon to conduct the surveillance of a suspect from a moving vehicle. (Amanda nods.) The following basic principles apply. One: Always keep the subject vehicle in view.
Woman: Two: Keep one neutral vehicle between you and the subject vehicle whenever feasible.
(Amanda shakes her head.)
Amanda: Not feasible.
Woman: Three: Maintain a constant speed. This is no time for colorful driving skills. (This piece of advice, Amanda is following, even as she rounds the corner.) Four: Anticipate traffic congestion and obstructions before you encounter them. This of course includes traffic signals. (Amanda grimaces as she sees the light ahead of her turn red.) Don't call attention to yourself by running a red light.
(Amanda, without having time to stop, drives right on through the intersection. She winces.)
Woman: Successful surveillance of a subject vehicle is a priority status suspended only by emergency situations or agents' personal discretion.
(Amanda shakes her head.)
Amanda: It's more complicated than my income tax form.
(The dark car finally stops in an alley. Amanda slowly parks across the street.)
Woman: Now, at last, you reach your destination. Congratulations. Keep the subject in sight and mentally review detainment procedure. (Amanda can see the men yanking and jerking Bela to go inside. She starts undoing her seatbelt and exiting her car, but the tape stops her.) Do not, of course, leave your car without a weapon and proper backup.
(She cringes and closes the door.)
Amanda: Now you tell me.
Woman: Keep in contact at all times with your superior.
Woman: That concludes Automobile Surveillance Refresher Tape part one.
(Outside the phone booth where Bela was taken, Lee is leaning on
his Porsche, waiting for Amanda. He checks his watch. Then, he hears frantic
honking and beeping. He looks up. Amanda's station wagon, with Amanda waving
out the window, parks behind his car. He walks over to her and leans into
Amanda: They got him. I'm glad you're here.
(Lee speaks harshly to her.)
Lee: Well, why wouldn't I be here? I was told to be here, only the person that told me to be here wasn't here!
Amanda: Look, I'm here now, aren't I? I was listening to the cassette, I was trying to remember everything in the training manual. (Fed up, Lee walks away to the other side of the car. Amanda keeps talking.) Look, it only makes sense that if I'm baking a chocolate cake and someone sticks his finger in the cake and I want to find out who it is, I keep my eye on the cake. Even though I pretend I'm not looking at the cake, I never take my eye off the cake --
(Lee gets into the passenger seat beside her, used to her babbling by now.)
(Amanda points her finger at him.)
Amanda: And that's exactly what I was doing when I was -- I never took my eye off --
Lee: Amanda. Amanda!
Lee: Who has him?
Amanda: The men that I told you about in the plaid sports jackets.
Lee: You lost them, right?
Amanda: No, I didn't.
Lee: Where are they?
Amanda: They were in a real seedy-looking kind of a bar and grill.
Lee: What's its name?
Amanda: Well . . . you know how sometimes when you look at a neon sign and some of the letters are out and you can't really --
Lee: The address?
Amanda: Well, I was so busy listening to the cassette and trying to remember the manual --
Lee: You didn't get the address.
Amanda: I guess you could say that.
Lee: Oh, Amanda.
Amanda: Look, I could take you there.
Both: That's a good idea.
Amanda: Yeah, yeah.
(She starts up the car.)
(In the seedy-looking bar, the two men are interrogating Bela in
a back office. Price opens the door and walks in. He laughs.)
Price: Any trouble?
Man2: If you can call it that.
Price: Then we can expect company. Bring 'em up to me when they show up. (Man2 nods and motions for Man1 to follow. They leave the room. Price faces Bela, who is sitting in a rolling chair. Bela rolls back as Price gets closer, rubbing his hands together. He slaps Bela across the cheek.) What's doing, kid?
(Panicking, Bela breathes heavily.)
Bela: I -- I'm being protected by United States government.
Price: Some protection.
(He laughs as if this situation is the funniest thing ever in the world.)
(Outside, Amanda's station wagon drives up to the bar and parks.
Lee gets his pistol ready.)
Lee: All right, if I'm not out in five minutes, you call Billy.
Amanda: Lee, are you sure you can go in there alone? I mean, it could get dangerous.
Lee: Amanda, please. I'm a professional, remember? I think I know a little bit about this.
(Amanda nods. Suddenly, a head and gun pop up outside the window. They belong to Man2.)
Man2: Hand it over, or you're dog food.
(Sighing, Lee hands the gun to the man and looks over at Amanda. She looks out the window and closes her eyes.)
(In the bar office, Man1 and Man2 are watching Lee and Amanda as
they all await Price. Then the door opens and Price walks in, lighting
a cigarette. He stands by the desk and blows out a puff of smoke. Lee stands
unfazed, but Amanda, unable to stifle it, coughs. Lee stares at her. Price
looks at Lee.)
Price: I'm listening.
Lee: Okay, I'm going to take a real chance here. (Interested, Price takes a seat, his gaze never leaving Lee.) I'm willing to bet that you are the kind of guy who is ready to get out of something before he gets in over his head.
Lee: I trust you know what I mean when I say "Liechtenstein"?
Price: What is this, a quiz show? Somebody hit him, huh?
(Man2 starts to stand, but Lee holds up his hand.)
Lee: Wait, wait, hold, whoa. All right. Liechtenstein doesn't ring a bell. (He glances over at Amanda, who meets his worried gaze.) Okay, I am Sandy Newcomb, I play football for the Pioneers. (He gestures toward Amanda.) This is Amanda King, she's a reporter for the Blaze.
Price: And I'm the pope. (Man1 and Man2 burst out laughing. Price stands up.) The night before the final practice, the little ball kicker winds up in her car and you show up here with a heater. Is somebody going to hit him or not?
(Gleefully, Man1 stands, but Amanda starts talking.)
Amanda: No, wait a minute. (Man1 stops. Lee looks at her.) We are actually agents of the United States government and at this very moment, this entire building is being surrounded by . . . (her voice starts to trail off) great big guns and tanks.
(The men all laugh even harder.)
Price: She's good, the bimbo. Terrific! (Amanda smiles and shrugs.) Honey, you ever want to come work for me, I'll make room for you.
(The phone buzzes. Man1 picks it up.)
(Price sits again.)
Price: You're working for Greco, aren't you? (Lee looks blank. Amanda raises her eyebrows.) He's going to be broke by Sunday night.
(Man1 lowers the receiver and speaks to Price.)
Man1: Hey, Marty, will you write up Rosenfeld for, uh, 75 hundred at three and a half?
(Amanda and Lee exchange confused looks.)
Price: Rosenfeld? Yeah.
(Man1 speaks into the phone again.)
Man1: Okay, it's a deal.
(He hangs up the phone. Lee runs his tongue along his teeth, then rubs his forehead and sighs. He looks at Amanda.)
Lee: Amanda, it's . . . it's no use. (Playing along, Amanda nods. Lee looks at Price, who is staring intently.) All right, I'm going to level with you. We're down on the Pioneers for a real bundle. All we wanted to do was make sure that nothing was going to happen to Bela. That's all.
(Amanda nods. Price removes his cigar from his mouth.)
Price: Just what I thought.
Lee: Well, you sure have us pegged. So we'll just be on our way. Come on, Amanda.
(They start to leave, but Man1 steps in front of the door with a loaded gun, stopping them.)
Man1: All right, hold it.
Price: Let's be reasonable. We're all businessmen here. I let you go, you switch your action. Maybe even call the feds. Suddenly the spread goes haywire and I'm into nickels and dimes.
(Amands speaks weakly, knowing that he won't believe her.)
Amanda: We are the feds.
(The men laugh.)
Price: She's priceless, I love her!
Lee: All right. What are you going to do with us?
Price: I'm going to offer you my hospitality till after the game. And don't worry about Bela. We'll deliver him safe and sound. All Bela's got to do for me is miss a couple of field goals. (Lee and Amanda raise their eyebrows, questioning this.) I've got to protect my investors.
Lee: Well, I'm sorry. We just can't stay.
(Lee starts to go. Price looks away and delivers a short instruction.)
Price: Hit him.
(Man1 clobbers Lee in the stomach. Lee shouts and doubles over. Amanda stops in her tracks.)
(Training camp, office. Phil is sitting on the couch, crushing nuts
with a mallet. Crandall is pacing back and forth, massaging his temples.
The door opens and Laszlo walks in, his coat swishing behind him like a
cape. Phil jumps up and stands next to him.)
Phil: Coach Laszlo!
(Laszlo tosses his coat on a chair and walks away.)
Laszlo: Shut up, you moron. (Phil continues crushing nuts loudly. He walks over to Crandall and looks him in the eye.) Where is he, Crandall?
Crandall: I don't know, I don't know. I've checked every place I can think of, every bowling alley in town.
Laszlo: Well, if he doesn't show up for final practice tomorrow, I think we can safely assume he's come to the authorities.
Crandall: He will be here! (Frustrated, he turns to Phil and yells at him.) Will you stop with those nuts! (Phil stops, then sets down the mallet and begins eating the unshelled nuts.) Laszlo, all that boy's got is football. Now, I'm sure that you scared him when you were chasing him around out here, but why would he go shootin' his mouth off for no good reason and blow a career?
Laszlo: Well, we'll know tomorrow, won't we? And if he does show up, then we'll take care of him during practice. (Crandall starts to say something, but Laszlo continues.) I cannot afford to wait for Sunday's game.
(Crandall throws up his hands, sighs, and walks back and forth.)
Crandall: Well, if we do it during practice, uh, I'll have to switch Phil to defense for that play. (Worried, Phil crosses over to Laszlo.) I guess it can be done.
Phil: Just send me in, Coach. I'm ready.
(Sarcastically, Laszlo sighs with relief.)
Laszlo: Good, Brunowski. I'll sleep so much better just knowing that.
(He shakes his head as if to say, "What a moron.")
(Back office in the bar, the next morning. Sunlight streams through
the window and lands on Lee, guarding from the desk chair, clad in a straitjacket.
He blinks as sweet morning music plays. Amanda, asleep on the couch, also
in a straitjacket, does not stir. Lee attempts to yawn before he realizes
that his arms are held together. His elbows go up. He stops yawning, looks
from one elbow to the other, then drops his arms. He twirls his feet around
onto the floor, swivels, and stands. He tries to untwine his arms, but
fails. He walks over to the sleeping spy and sits across from her. He gazes
at her, then wakes her.)
Lee: Psst! Amanda!
(Still half asleep, Amanda tosses and turns.)
(Lee kicks the couch.)
Lee: Amanda. (Finally, she awakens. She tries to spread her arms, but also finds them in a straitjacket.) Yeah.
Amanda: Oh. I must have dozed off.
Lee: Yeah. The whole night.
Amanda: I can't believe I spent the night in a bookie joint in a straitjacket and my mother will never believe it.
Lee: Amanda, believe me, we have worse problems than your mother thinking you were shacked up.
Amanda: Oh, I wasn't shacked up.
(She pulls herself to a sitting position.)
Lee: We've got to get out of here. If they deliver Bela to that practice field, Laszlo will have another shot at him.
Amanda: No, no, no, not on the last practice. There'll be too many people there.
Lee: The way to Laszlo is through Bela. (He stands up and paces, reviewing the facts.) Now, Price delivers Bela to the stadium into the hands of Crandall. (Amanda tries to scratch her nose with her arms.) But there are people around. And he'll have to account for Bela, so . . . he puts him in the practice game.
Amanda: I've always thought that short men shouldn't play football. It's too dangerous.
Lee: No, no, no, kickers don't get tackled.
Amanda: Oh, yes they are. Don't you remember in the Superbowl, it was . . . about two years ago? Do you remember the guy, the kicker, he was going to pass it instead for the time-maker? They creamed him!
Lee: Unless it's a busted play! (Suddenly, it dawns on him.) He could get blocked, and then. . . . The play! (Amanda looks up at him. Grinning broadly, Lee rushes over to her.) The play! Amanda, the play!
Amanda: What play?
Lee: The one I found in Crandall's office.
Amanda: Billy ran it through the computer, it's just a regular old ordinary football play.
Lee: Of course, yes, that's all it is, an old football play! The guard is pulling! The left guard, left tackle, and safety will run right through the hole. Why didn't I see it?
Amanda: See what?
Lee: They're going to kill Bela right there on the field.
(Amanda's jaw drops and her eyes widen.)
(Practice field. The players are all in two lines doing jumping jacks. By the refreshment table, Crandall is standing, obviously waiting for someone.)
(In the back office bar, Man2 is creeping down the hall. He opens
a door with "Keep Out" marked on it, kicking it open and pointing
his gun. He sees no one. Suddenly, Amanda pops her head up from behind
Amanda: Good morning!
(Startled, Man2 points his gun at her, but before he can shoot, Lee runs at him from behind another cabinet and butts him in the stomach. Both hostages are still in the straitjackets. Lee and Man2 go tumbling off the desk, knocking everything to the floor. Amanda gasps. Lee struggles up armless. Man2 is unconscious beside him. Lee smiles at Amanda.)
Lee: Mr. Crandall likes it when we stick 'em with the face. (Out in the hall, a janitor is pushing a cleaning cart. In the office doorway, Lee and Amanda are standing. Lee speaks to the young janitor, startling him.) Hey! (The janitor stops in his tracks and looks up.) We're federal agents. You've got to help us. (The janitor looks as if he is about to run away. Lee looks to Amanda for help, then tries again.) Uh, look, we have got to stop this Liechtenstinian assassin and, you see, we're running out of time, and --
(The janitor's expression worsens.)
(On the field, Crandall is observing. The coach is reading a clipboard.
The players are practicing plays. One of them stands ready to get the ball.)
Player: And . . . hike!
(The men all run and scatter everywhere, mostly into each other. Just then, Price roughly escorts Bela onto the field. Crandall taps Coach on the arm and rushes over to Bela.)
Crandall: Pravik, where have you been?
Bela: I, uh --
Price: Detective Sergeant Prescott. 23rd precinct. Your boy here got a little rowdy last night. Spent the night hospitality of the city, and we made sure he got a good night's sleep, though.
(Crandall and Coach exchange glances.)
Bela: I don't feel so good. Maybe it's mistake to play.
Crandall: Oh, you're playing, all right, you little creep.
(He sticks his cigar in his mouth. Coach whacks Bela's shoulder pads.)
Coach: Get on that bench, slime.
Price: I love that team spirit.
(Along the Washington streets, Lee is wildly driving Amanda's station
wagon with Amanda clutching onto the seat. She gulps. Their straitjackets
Amanda: You're driving like a maniac!
Lee: We have got to get there before they run a field goal play.
(Amanda smiles and sighs.)
Amanda: I used to have this driving instructor, Barney, who, Barney's, uh, Barney's driving instructing school, and he used to say that the cardinal rule of the highway was haste makes waste.
(Abruptly, Lee steps on the gas and accelerates. Amanda gasps and grabs onto her seatbelt.)
(On the football field, the players are drilling the plays. On the
bench, Phil is sitting next to Bela, who is nervous. Phil turns to him.)
Phil: Gee, uh, Bela, I guess we'll be running that field goal play anytime now.
Phil: How's the neck doing?
(Bela stops and realizes something. He turns to Phil.)
(The coach walks over to the bench. Crandall follows.)
Coach: Okay, kicking team on the field. (He hits Bela's pads again.) That's you, shrimp.
Crandall: Men, I want to see some hittin' out there! Good, clean, vicious hittin'.
(Coach tosses Phil a red pinney.)
Coach: Phil, Mr. Crandall wants to try you on defense this play. Uh, play 34, red B. (Phil stands up and nods at Coach. Then all the players run onto the field except Bela.) Move it, shorty.
(Bela, still looking at him and uncertain, walks onto the field.)
(Just then, Lee pulls Amanda's car up in the parking lot, much like
a lunatic. He stops it and removes the keys.)
Lee: All right. Call the Agency, make sure Billy is on his way with the artillery, huh?
(She frantically starts undoing her seatbelt.)
(On the field, the players have set up for the field goal play. Lee
runs onto the field in time to see the ball get passed. Phil starts pushing
people aside, heading for Bela. Crandall observes, stroking his chin. The
player with the ball places it on the ground for Bela to kick. Phil continues
running. Lee also runs right at him. Furious, Crandall watches him. Phil
keeps on running at top speed. Bela runs to the ball to kick it. Lee runs
to Phil. Phil shouts a war cry and leaps on Bela, tackling him. They go
rolling over a fallen player. Phil begins strangling Bela. Lee runs as
fast as he can, steps on the fallen player, grabs Phil, and pulls him off
Bela. Crandall yells in disapproval. The Coach also yells. Lee punches
Phil in the stomach twice. Coach blows his whistle, but it does nothing.
Lee and Phil go wrestling to the ground. While Phil staggers up, Lee bounds
to his feet and karate kicks Phil in the jaw. Phil tumbles backwards. Then
Lee turns around and spots Laszlo running off the field. Lee runs after
him, pushing other players away. Amanda sees Laszlo coming right for her.
Thinking quickly, she raises her heavy camera and snaps a picture. The
bright flash blinds Laszlo and stops him dead in his tracks. Lee catches
up, grabs him by the collar, and punches him in the jaw. Laszlo falls onto
the cement. The other players, curious by now, gather around. Ambulance
sirens are heard. Billy and his men run onto the field. Billy points.)
Billy: There's Laszlo. Get him!
(Lee laughs and looks at Amanda.)
Lee: Hey, you're pretty good with that camera.
Amanda: Well, thank you, I minored in photo journalism in college. I always knew it would come in handy someday.
(Billy walks up. He and Lee shake hands.)
Lee: Hey, Billy. Nice to see you.
(Bela, who is crossing, stops and gazes gratefully at Lee.)
Bela: You're having my most profound ingratitude.
(He shakes Lee's hands.)
Lee: Sure, sure. No problem.
(Billy looks at Bela.)
Billy: We're picking up Price and his men now. You won't have to worry about them either.
Bela: Thank you very much.
(He leaves. Billy, smiling, turns back to Lee. Lee is rubbing his injured hand.)
Amanda: You know, it makes absolutely no sense to me at all how grown men can do this to each other.
Lee: Oh, come on, it was great! (Billy cocks his head.) I don't know when I've ever had so much fun. (He gestures out to the field.) You know, those guys aren't all that big. This game is made for me. (Billy raises his eyebrows. Lee's voice begins to fade and tire. He starts to sway.) I . . . I really think I . . . I could play . . .
(He falls backwards. Amanda catches his arm.)
(That night, Amanda's house. Amanda is washing dishes. She inspects
a glass, then sets it down. Lee pops up from behind a bush, holding a football.)
Amanda: What are you doing here?
Lee: I, uh, brought you a gift.
(He hands her the football. She places her dishrag down and takes it.)
Amanda: Oh, well, thank you, I needed it. Football. (She notices the message on the ball.) Oh. "To a heck of a good reporter. Best wishes, Sandy Newcomb."
(She laughs and sets the ball down. She looks up and sees Lee grinning, holding out a bottle of wine and a glass he obviously got from under the bush.)
Lee: Just a souvenir of our case. (He begins pouring the wine.) I'm out celebrating the end of my illustrious football career.
(He chuckles and hands her the glass.)
Amanda: Thank you.
(Lee bends over to pick up another glass and fills it. They clink their glasses.)
(Amanda's mother calls from offscreen.)
(Lee ducks down. Amanda turns.)
Amanda: Uh, yes, Mother?
(Dotty staggers into the room wearing a bathrobe and carrying a headache mask.)
Dotty: Well, my headache mask is leaking and my sinuses are killing me. (She notices the drink.) Oh. Having a little party, are you, dear? (Amanda starts to answer, but Dotty continues.) You know, Amanda, sometimes you puzzle me. (She gets a bowl out of the cupboard.) I mean this only in the most loving way. (Amanda nods.) But last night, you didn't get home until morning. Then, dear, you do get these rather odd phone calls, after which you go rushing out of the house. I mean, I'm sure it is perfectly innocent.
Amanda: It is, Mother.
Dotty: Bless you. (She sits, relieved, at the counter and starts to tie a handkerchief around her eyes.) It's just that I get jittery because I . . . I'm thinking about my uncle Iggy.
(Lee cautiously pokes his head over the windowsill.)
Amanda: Uncle Iggy?
(While Dotty answers, Amanda turns her head and looks at Lee, who slowly stands with the wine and glass in his hand.)
Dotty: He was a brush salesman in Topeka. One day they found out he had joined a cult. He was becoming a wizard. (Amanda smiles and turns all the way to Lee.)
Amanda, you're not Uncle Iggy. Imagine, you, leading a double life. (She laughs out loud. Silently, Lee and Amanda clink glasses.) Imagine, you! I mean, that is a silly thought! . . . Amanda?