(A busy shop-filled street in the city. People with shopping bags
are walking down the street, passing Santa Claus. Santa is ringing a bell
Santa: Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas! Ho ho ho!
(Focus on Rudolph, in a phone booth.)
Rudolph: Those are my conditions.
(Santa starts walking closer, but still chimes.)
Santa: Merry Christmas!
Rudolph: A new job. Another identity. Complete relocation, a whole new life. (Santa comes closer.) Don't tell me I'm asking too much, I'm not asking too much! . . . I don't care about the Agency red tape, I need to come in right now! (Santa sidles up and subtly attaches a bomb to the phone booth. He scurries away quickly.) I'm warning you, before I go down, a lot of your people are going down with me!
(He stops talking when he spots Santa hurriedly hailing a cab. The cab drives away. Rudolph peers around the phone and sees the bomb on the outside of the glass. He drops the phone and frantically tries to get out. In the cab, Santa presses a button on a device. The booth explodes.)
(IFF, Billy's office. A Santa figurine and a small decorated Christmas
tree light up the office. In his desk chair, Billy is reading some papers.
Francine, seated, and Lee, standing, are before him. Billy shakes his head
and lays down the papers.)
Billy: Ted Rudolph.
Lee: Did you get a trace on the call?
Billy (to Francine): Phone booth?
Francine: What's left of it is in pieces in front of Martindale's department store. The Washington police bomb squad said it was a very sophisticated device.
Francine: It wasn't the Salvation Army.
Billy: He wants us to bring him in. If we don't, he says we're going to be very sorry.
Lee: Can he hurt us? Billy: Are you familiar with his file?
Lee: Not in any depth. A company man, old school tie, O.S.S., codename Janus.
(Francine picks up a folder off of Billy's desk.)
Francine: I will just give you the broad strokes here. Ted Rudolph, a.k.a. Kenneth Ciardi, a.k.a. Henry Sturbidge. Born 1925, recruited 1946. (Lee starts pacing. Billy nods with each fact.) O.S.S. post-war Berlin, Paris, Versailles, 1953 to 1957, Prague, '61, Moscow, '64 as a news correspondent. Brought back in '68. Since then, he's been in deep cover working both sides of the street.
(She puts the folder back. Billy looks up at Lee.)
Billy: As you can see, a very valuable man. He brought is Belinsky in '72 and Kasimov is '77. He's plugged in as high as Andropov.
Lee: If he wants to come in, then he must be in trouble.
Francine: Oh, his control hasn't heard from in three weeks. He said he's been acting very strangely over the past three months. He thinks it might be burnout syndrome.
Lee: I'm not surprised. The guy's been walking a tightrope for fifteen years.
Billy: Oh, we're trying to locate his family. His wife died in '75, natural causes, there's a daughter, early thirties, but she's moved away, so we don't have any lead on her.
Lee: What do we do?
Billy: We wait. There's nothing we can do until he contacts us again. (There's a knock on the door. All heads shift in unison to look at it.) Come.
(A guard walks in carrying a shiny, wrapped gift. Billy stands. The guard places it on the desk. Interested, Francine stands and she and Lee walk closer.)
Guard: This came in for you, Mr. Melrose.
Billy: From where?
Guard: Sixth floor. (He hands Billy a clipboard and pen.) Could you sign here, please?
(Billy signs it and gives them back. The guard leaves.)
Francine: Hmm. (Billy looks at them and does nothing.) Aren't you, uh, going to open it, Billy? It looks like a Christmas present.
(Billy looks at her as if to say, "Give me a break.")
Lee: Sixth floor, let's see, that's scenarios and ciphers. (He looks at Francine.) What's the euphemism for dirty tricks?
Francine: Covert operations.
Lee: Yeah. Come on, open it up, Billy. Those dirty tricks guys have a hell of a sense of humor.
Billy: It's probably just some files.
Lee: It's not marked "Eyes Only."
(Billy gives in and removes the lid. Inside is some red fabric. Billy takes it out. It is a Santa Claus suit. Billy holds it up and looks at Lee and Francine as if to say, "See what I mean?" Lee and Francine burst out laughing.)
Lee: Those guys are a riot! (Billy sets the costume aside.) Why don't we send them some phony ciphers or something?
Francine: What's it for?
Billy: Oh, the office Christmas party. I lost the bet on the Redskins game.
(He puts the fluffy Santa cap on his head, which sets off Francine again. Lee keeps a straight face.)
Lee: Billy, I can't think of a better Santa Claus.
(Angrily, Billy whips the hat off his head.)
Billy: There's no way you're gonna get me to put this on.
(Lee grins, enjoying this scene. Francine thrusts the hat back at Billy.)
Francine: Oh, come on, Billy, where's your Christmas spirit?
Lee: It's a dirty job, Billy, but somebody's got to do it.
Billy (sarcastically): Ho, ho, ho.
(Francine laughs again. Lee tries unsuccessfully to hold it in.)
(Amanda's living room. She and Dotty are decorating their relatively
Dotty: I think the tree looks a little smaller this year, don't you?
Amanda: Oh, I don't know. They seem like they get smaller and smaller and more and more expensive every year. You should have seen the really big ones outside of Greery's they had.
Dotty: Remember when you were little? You used to go with your daddy to pick out the tree.
Amanda: Oh, yeah. And he would tell me that the man who sold them was a personal friend of Santa Claus and they came directly from the North Pole.
Dotty: Oh, I hope Phillip and Jamie have those kinds of Christmas memories.
Amanda: Yeah, I hope so, too. I don't know, though. You know, when Phillip was six and I was explaining to him about Santa Claus and how he came down the chimney. You know what he said? He said, "Don't con me, Mom."
Dotty: Amanda, I always think that Christmas is a time to start thinking a little more positively.
(She looks at Amanda pointedly and adjusts the tree decorations.)
Amanda: I have a feeling I know what's coming.
Dotty: Well, children do need stability, darling.
Amanda: I know, Mother, and Dean is very stable and I'm very fond of him, he's got a good job, and I know he adores the boys, but I'm just not ready yet.
Dotty: Amanda, I'm not trying to rush you. I just think that it's Christmastime and I know --
Amanda: Mother, lis -- lis -- he's coming to Christmas dinner.
Amanda: You know what he got Phillip? He got Phillip an entire, uh, Redskins football suit with the, uh, shoulder pads and everything and he got Jamie a junior weather bureau kit with a real barometer!
Dotty: He is so considerate.
Amanda: He is, to a fault. (She puts her arm up to hang an ornament and sees the time on her watch.) Uh, I've got to go, I'm going to, uh, deliver a few presents to some of my, uh, people that I walk and water for.
(She rushes off.)
Dotty: Well, that's good public relations! (Amanda, her arms loaded with presents, starts to leave, but Dotty calls her back.) Amanda?
Dotty: What are they like, these people that you work for?
Amanda: Just normal, everyday people.
(IFF, the Christmas party. People are gathered around the punch bowl.
A hand reaches in to get a cup. Someone hands one to him and he takes it.
The arm attached to the hand is attached to an agent who is flirting with
an unenthusiastic Francine. The agent gives her the punch.)
Francine: Thank you. (Her eyes search the room for an escape. She finds one and makes her way to it. The agent gazes after her. Francine walks up to Lee, who looks bored.) Well, you don't seem to be getting into the spirit of things.
Lee: I'm just not very big on parties.
Francine: Oh, come on, it's Christmas!
(Just then, Amanda shows up at the doorway with the gifts in her arms. She waves a present in the air and mouths, "I've got presents!" Francine and Lee smile.)
Oh, speaking of jolly, there she is. Our woman in suburbia, bearing gifts.
(Lee rolls his eyes.)
Lee: Now, don't be nasty, Francine, huh?
Francine: I wouldn't dream of it.
(Amanda briskly walks up to meet them.)
Amanda: Hello, merry Christmas. I just came to deliver some presents.
(She hands them theirs.)
Francine: Oh, you really shouldn't have.
Amanda: Oh, well, you know, it's Christmas and all. Go ahead, open them up.
Lee: Oh, all right. There we go.
(Lee opens his while Francine looks over his shoulder. Amanda points.)
Amanda: Now, see, I got you something that you would never get for yourself. (She holds up and dangles a pair of patterned socks.) Look at that, see? Socks. And they're all the same, so you won't have to worry about matching them when they come out of the dryer.
Lee: Just what I've always wanted.
(Francine opens her box.)
Francine: Oh, perfume, how very sweet of you, Amanda.
Amanda: It's called "Intrigue." Very good for the spy. (Francine laughs politely. Amanda holds up the other present.) Now, I got Mr. Melrose a cardigan sweater. It's beige. Well, you know, his taste in clothes is a little conservative.
Lee: Extremely conservative.
Amanda: Yeah. (At that moment, Billy's door opens and Santa Claus, alias Billy, walks out. Everyone cheers. He bows and walks over to Amanda, Lee, and Francine.)
Lee: Ho ho ho.
Billy: Don't push it, Stetson. (Francine laughs.) Nice to see you, Mrs. King.
Amanda: Merry Christmas, Mr. Melrose. (She hands him the last box.) Here. I hope it fits.
Billy: That's very kind of you.
(The secretary, Margaret, leans over and interrupts the conversation.)
Margaret: Oh, excuse me, Mr. Melrose, but there's a call for you on six-one.
Billy: Thank you.
Lee: Must be the North Pole.
(Billy glares at him and walks away. The other three laugh some more.)
Amanda: He is cute.
Francine: Amanda, tell us, what's new in sinful suburbia?
(Billy's office. Billy, out of the spirit, yanks off his hat and beard and yells into the phone.)
Billy: The 25th is in less than two days, we can't possibly -- be reasonable, man! Even if we could find her, she may not be willing --
(Rudolph is on the other end. No Dancer or Prancer to be seen.)
Rudolph: We have ways of convincing people, don't we, Melrose?
(Billy gives up.)
Rudolph: The cabin in the woods, forty miles out on route 84. You'll find the map at the usual drop. Be there!
Billy: Wait a second, Janus -- (Rudolph hangs up. You hear a dial tone.) Janus! (He sets down the phone, then walks over and opens his door. He sticks his head out and calls.) Lee! Francine! In here.
(He retreats back inside. Lee looks at Amanda.)
Lee: Excuse us, Amanda.
(They follow Billy inside. The agent that was flirting with Francine earlier approaches Amanda. He taps her on the shoulder.)
Agent: How many agents does it take to change a light bulb?
Amanda: I don't know.
Agent: Fifteen! One to screw in the bulb and fourteen to debrief the building!
(Amanda laughs politely. The agent walks away.)
Amanda: Oh, that's good.
(In Billy's office, Billy is informing them of the phone call. All
three are standing around the desk.)
Billy: He's holed up in a hunting cabin in the woods in Virginia. His deadline's the 25th.
Lee: Or else?
Billy: Or else he goes public with the names of every American and Soviet undercover agent working in this country. Ted Rudolph's in a position to jeopardize our most sensitive intelligence programs. As well as endanger the lives of a number of people!
Lee: Well, we can relocate him, can't we? We do it all the time.
Billy: Lee, that's not all he wants. He wants us to find his daughter and bring her to him.
Lee: His daughter? Why?
Billy: I don't know. He wasn't making much sense.
Francine: We've been trying to find Karen Rudolph after the first phone call and so far, we have just drawn a blank.
Billy: Well, we have a name and a birthdate. He hasn't seen her in over 30 years.
Lee: She could have moved, probably did. Odds are she's married and changed her name.
Billy: Well, we've got less than 48 hours.
Lee: Boy, talk about a long shot.
(They hear a tapping on the window and turn to look. Amanda is there, waving. Billy gets the kind of smile on his face that you should be afraid of when you see it.)
(Lee turns to look and sees that smile. he shakes his head.)
Lee: Now wait a minute, Billy. You are not suggesting that Amanda --
(Billy holds out his hands and slowly crosses to the window. Francine rolls her eyes.)
Billy: He hasn't seen his daughter since she was three. (He and Lee talk in front of Amanda, pointing to her while she watches.) Mrs. King happens to be the right age, and besides, he knows all our other women agents.
(Lee looks at Amanda. She gestures to her watch. Lee ignores her.)
Lee: She will never pull it off.
Billy: Well, it's the only shot we have at the moment. (Billy notices Amanda frantically waving and pointing to her watch.) Merry Christmas, yeah.
(He chuckles and looks at Lee.)
(A KGB office in the city. The boss, Ivan, and Dmitri are listening
to a tape of Billy's most recent phone conversation. The player is on a
desk and the boss is in the desk chair. The others are in seats in front
Billy: The 25th is in less than two days, we can't possibly -- be reasonble, man! Even if we could find her, she may not be willing --
Rudolph: We have ways of convincing people, don't we, Melrose?
Rudolph: The cabin in the woods. Forty miles out on route 84. You'll find the map at the usual drop. Be there!
(Dial tone. The boss stops the recording. He looks to his assistants.)
KGB Boss: Comrades, this is from our phone tap of Rudolph's apartment. Quite compromising, wouldn't you say so? (Ivan and Dmitri exchange glances. The boss pours himself some tea.) It would seem to me that we have no alternative but to neutralize Mr. Rudolph. Immediately. (Ivan and Dmitri look at each other again. The boss takes a sip of his tea.) The tea in this country is abominable.
(Ivan, who was about to drink his, lowers it. Dmitri stifles a laugh. The boss sniffs his cup again, then sets it down on the desk.)
Ivan: How do we find him?
KGB Boss: Oh, the Americans will lead us right to him. You will follow whoever they sent directly to Rudolph. (He lifts his tea again.) Terminate him. And then terminate the Americans. With extreme prejudice.
(He raises the glass to his lips.)
(Route 84, the woods in Virginia. Lee's Porsche zooms down the road.
The driver is, of course, Lee. Amanda is sitting beside him.)
Amanda: Are you sure we'll be back in time? The boys always open their presents on Christmas Eve, besides that, I still have to prepare the goose for tomorrow.
Lee: We'll be back by four o'clock, five at the latest. It's a simple assignment.
Amanda: Hmm. That's what you always say.
Lee: Amanda, all you have to do is play your part. You did study your scenario, didn't you?
Amanda: Mm-hmm. My name is Karen Rudolph, um, we lived in Silver Springs, Maryland until I was three years old, that's when my father left, he sent me birthday presents from all over the world, my mother told me that he had a very important job with the government. . . . (She trails off.) Gee, that's sad.
Lee: Sad? What's sad?
Amanda: Growing up without a father.
(Lee answers testily.)
Lee: Some people manage to do very well without a father.
Amanda: Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to get personal.
Lee: Oh, I wasn't speaking personally.
(Amanda smiles and looks forward. The car drives on.)
Amanda: So, how do you usually spend your Christmas?
Lee: On my living room couch, with a large bowl of guacamole dip, a perfectly chilled bottle of Dom Perignon '73, and a good football game.
Lee: Christmas is just like any other day of the year, it's twenty-four hours long, the sun rises, it sets, the football game's on TV, they don't deliver the mail, and the next day is the 26th.
Amanda: Oh, come on, Scrooge, I know somewhere in there, there's a little boy who has lots of homey Christmas memories.
Lee: Home for little Lee Stetson was wherever his uncle, the colonel, was stationed. Once in Greenland, once in Hamburg, twice in Guam. Believe me, Christmas dinner in a mess hall with 500 guys fighting for the dark meat isn't too homey. And that's nothing compared to the Easter egg hunt in the Sahara. (He chuckles. Amanda gazes at him sympathetically. Lee drives the car off into a clear patch of woods. The doors open and he and Amanda get out. Amanda closes her door and walks over to Lee, looking around at the scene. They stand in front of the car while Lee raises the hood. He leans over and hands Amanda the supplies as he hands them to Amanda behind him.) All right, one binoculars.
Lee: One poncho. Two poncho. One map. Two map. One canteen. Two canteen. A pair of extra socks.
(Amanda holds up the socks, trying to find a place for them amongst her armload.)
Lee: Two pair socks. One flare. Two flare. One chewing gum.
Amanda: One chewing gum.
Lee: Two chewing gum.
Amanda: Two chewing gum. (Lee shuts the hood and turns around. Amanda sighs.) Now I know why you really brought me along.
Lee: It's three miles in, should take us an hour, hour and a half, if we keep up a good pace.
(Amanda mockingly salutes.)
Amanda: Yes, sir.
(Lee playfully punches her on the arm.)
Lee: Let's go.
(He walks away. Amanda stands there a few moments, smiles, and turns to follow him. They walk off through the woods. Unfortunately, they don't see a dark car hidden in the trees. The door opens and Ivan and Dmitri, carrying rifles, follow Lee's trail.)
(IFF, Billy's office. Billy and Lucas, are discussing Lee.)
Lucas: The situation is tenuous. Very tenuous.
Billy: Stetson will have Rudolph back here this evening for debriefing.
Lucas: Stetson's methods tend to be a little unorthodox.
Billy: He gets results.
Lucas: Yes, but the bill is sometimes rather high. That naval attaché is still a little hot under the collar about his Jaguar, not to mention his daughter.
Billy: He was just doing his job.
Lucas: I'm sure he was. You are, I trust, aware of the downside risks involved in this Rudolph matter. There are elements within this agency who have promoted a more . . . permanent solution to this problem. The security committee is meeting this afternoon. This matter is on the agenda. Now, I would like the director to be able to assure the President that there's no reason for concern.
Billy: I'm sure Stetson will handle it.
Lucas: Let's hope so. For Rudolph's sake.
(Virginian woods. Lee is tramping through the brush, trying to read
the map. Amanda is following him, panting.)
Amanda: Can we take a little breather?
Lee: You're the one who wanted to be back at five o'clock.
Amanda: Then we should just slow down a little bit, huh?
Lee: All right, we'll take a little break.
Amanda: Thanks. (While she catches her breath, Lee looks around. He sees Ivan and Dmitri through the trees. He grabs Amanda and pulls her to the ground, landing on top of her. The KGB agents leave.) Lee! Isn't this a little sudden? I mean, shouldn't we talk about this? This would compromise our whole professional relationship --
(Lee silences her by covering her mouth with his hand. Lee hisses at her.)
Lee: Amanda, will you shut up? Please? (Amanda nods. Lee takes his hand away and slowly stands up. Amanda props herself up on her elbows. Lee peers out over the bushes. He straightens all the way.) All right, they're gone.
Amanda: Who's gone?
Lee: I saw two men over there with rifles. They're probably just hunters. Come on.
(He offers Amanda his hand and pulls her to a standing position. She brushes herself off.)
Amanda: So, that's what you were doing. You were protecting me.
Lee: Sure. What else would I be doing?
(Amanda swallows and shakes her head.)
Amanda: Nothing. (She blows her hair out of her face.) That was very gallant of you. Thank you.
Lee: All right, we'll take the shortcut. The terrain's rougher, but it should get us there sooner. Come on. Let's go.
(He sets off again. Amanda follows. Dmitri and Ivan, hiding in the bushes, see the way they go. Ivan shakes his head and goes off. Meanwhile, Lee is leading Amanda through plants and trees. He stops. She catches up.)
Amanda: Are you sure you know where we're going?
Lee: Yes. (He shakes out the map and reads it.) All right, it's north by northwest of here. (He thinks, then lowers the map.) Where's the sun? (He finds it and points.) Ah, there. So if that's due west, then --
Amanda: Of course you'd have to take into account the seasonal adjustment.
(She looks at Lee and nods. Fed up, Lee points forward.)
Lee: We go that way.
Amanda: Well now, the sun is due west only at the Equinox, and we're three days past the winter solstice. . . I think I'd better just check the moss.
Lee: The moss?
Amanda: Yeah, the moss. You see, well, look. (She finds a tree with moss on it and shows Lee.) You just -- you just look at a tree, you find a tree and the moss always grows on the north side.
Amanda: So that is the north side of tree, because moss always grows --
Lee: Do you really think that some Mickey Mouse spy course you're taking can replace actual experience in the field?
Amanda: This isn't from one of my courses, this is from the Cub Scout handbook! (Lee sighs.) Say what you will about the scouts, but they certainly can find their way out of the woods. North is that way.
(She points and trots off. Lee glares at her, then reluctantly follows.)
(Rudolph's hunting cabin. He is inside, cleaning rifles. Amanda and
Lee approach, crunching on leaves and branches. Rudolph hears and becomes
alert, in spy mode. He leans over and picks up the bullet. He cocks the
gun and walks over to the window. On seeing Lee and Amanda, he points the
gun out the window.)
Rudolph: Stand where you are! Don't move!
Lee: Janus, it's Scarecrow!
(Rudolph lowers the gun and walks over to the door. He opens it and stands out on the porch.)
Rudolph: Don't call me Janus! My name is Rudolph!
(He sees Amanda and slowly steps down to meet her. Lee and Amanda slowly walk toward him. He looks at Lee, who nods. Then Rudolph looks to Amanda.)
Amanda: Hi, Dad.
(She smiles. He walks closer and hugs her. They pull away. He sniffles.) You're not a little girl anymore.
(Inside the cabin, Lee is in the background. Amanda and Rudolph are
sitting at the table. Rudolph lights a cigarette while Amanda plays her
Amanda: So it was a surprise when the government called after all these years.
Rudolph: Well, I'm sorry it had to be this way.
Amanda: Me, too.
Rudolph: I imagine, uh, you've been pretty lonely ever since your mother . . . passed away.
Amanda: Well, yes, but I've gotten used to it.
Rudolph: Well, still, it must be very difficult around Christmas.
Amanda: Oh, well, I just try to treat Christmas like any other day. Twenty-four hours long, sun rises, sun sets.
Rudolph: What do you usually do?
Amanda: Nothing much, um . . . I just stay at home, open up a nice bottle of champagne, watch a football game, make a guacamole dip.
(Lee's smile widens.)
Rudolph: Karen, I want you to know that during all this time, I've never forgotten you. I -- I've thought about you so many times. Do you realize what it is to spend Christmas without your loved ones?
Amanda: No, it must be just terrible. (Lee stares at her.) I mean, of course, it was awful to be away from you.
Rudolph: I hope that you got the gifts that I sent you. I mean, they must have arrived in July.
Amanda: Well, better late than never. (Lee crosses to the door.)
Lee: We'd better be getting back to Washington. The sun'll be gone in an hour and a half and it's a long trek.
(Amanda nods. Rudolph stands.)
Rudolph: Just a minute. (He sits next to Amanda.) Karen, let me tell you something. I've got to go away again for a year, or maybe two. It's just to establish a new identity, a -- a kind of new life. (Amanda looks at Lee, shocked. He turns away and looks out the window.) Uh, once we get that behind me, I want to come back and see you. And -- and be the father that I've never been. If you let me.
Amanda: Of course I'll let you.
Rudolph: Thank you, honey.
Amanda: Well, I think Mr. Stetson's probably right, we should probably hit the road. We'll lose the sun in an hour or so.
(Through the window, Lee sees Ivan and Dmitri emerging from the woods, rifles ready.)
Rudolph: All right, let's go --
Lee: Nobody's going anywhere. (Rudolph turns to look. Ivan sneaks around back while Dmitri stays crouched there.) Dammit! Those weren't hunters out there.
Lee: There's two men outside with AKM automatic weapons.
(He stands up and walks over to Lee. They both look out.)
Lee: Yeah, I don't think they're here to wish us a merry Christmas. (Amanda sits at the table solemnly. Outside, the two men get their rifles aimed at the cabin. Lee and Rudolph move away from the window. Amanda stands.) Any other weapons besides the .22?
Rudolph: Yeah, the firewood axe.
(Lee gets out and loads his pistol. Rudolph sets his rifle on the table.)
Lee: All right. Let's sit tight. I don't think they're going to do any damage while it's dark.
Rudolph: I don't want Karen hurt. I'll go out there.
Lee: Oh, no, wait a minute. There's no assurance they won't kill us anyway if we're witnesses. Besides, I need you.
Rudolph: What for? We don't have a chance. A .22 rifle and a handgun against automatic weapons, what the hell do you think we're going to do?
Lee: I don't know. But I'll think of something.
(Meanwhile, in Lee's Porsche, Francine is paging him, getting, obviously,
Francine: Scarecrow, this is Flagship, do you read me? Scarecrow, this is Flagship, do you read me?
(At IFF, Francine is sitting at the cubicle, paging the car. Billy
is standing over her.)
Francine: Scarecrow, this is Flagship, do you read me?
Billy: They should have been out of there by now.
Francine: I'll try another frequency.
Billy: No, Scarecrow would know better than to switch channels. I don't like it. In a half hour, they'll have lost the light completely.
(The door opens and Lucas walks in. Francine tries again.)
Francine: Scarecrow, Mrs. Flagship, do you read?
(Billy notices Lucas watching. He tries to explain.)
Billy: Uh, we haven't been able to reach Stetson.
Lucas: Oh. It might be academic. The security committee has decided to dispatch a commando squad if he's not back here with Rudolph by seven P.M.
Billy: Now wait a second, Lucas.
Lucas: This comes from the man himself, Melrose. He was quite specific, and I quote, "I am not prepared to compromise the entire covert operations network for one burned out agent."
Billy: What kind of commando squad?
Lucas: Our very best. They have orders to shoot to kill.
Billy: Now that is overkill. Ted Rudolph is not a dangerous man!
Lucas: Quite the contrary. The man is unhinged and desperate. As a matter of fact, he's a demolition expert. For all we know, he has the entire cabin wired. Now, we can't take any chances.
Billy: I've got two people out there, one of them is a civilian, Mrs. King.
Lucas: I'm sure you explained all the risks involved very clearly to her. (Billy glares at him. Lucas smiles and pats him on the shoulder.) Oh. Merry Christmas, Melrose. Desmond. (He starts to leave, but stops.) Oh. By the way, Desmond, We're having a little party later down on four. In case you want to drop by.
Francine: No, thank you, I have a little bit of work to do here.
Lucas: Oh, well, that's a pity. The deputy director's going to be quite disappointed.
(He walks away. Francine sighs and Billy glares at the door where Lucas disappeared.)
(Rudolph's cabin. Lee is drawing a makeshift map of the area surrounding
the cabin. He points with his pen.)
Lee: Their likely position is here, where there's some cover. Now, you start firing out the front window, covering me while I go out back. When they return fire, I'll get a bead on their position, surprise one of them, and disarm him.
Amanda: Couldn't we call a truce or something?
Lee: They'll never go for it. Believe me. They have the upper hand.
Amanda: Look, it's getting dark, it's cold out there, and doesn't anybody realize it's Christmas Eve?
Lee: The KGB isn't very big on holiday cheer.
Amanda: Well, how do you know that? They're people, aren't they? Now they're out there and they're cold, and -- and -- and they probably have wives and children somewhere --
Rudolph: Karen, you don't know these people the way we do. You just don't understand.
Amanda: Well, I think it would at least be worth putting a white flag out and seeing if they answered.
Lee: Trust me, it won't work. (Amanda sighs. Lee pats Rudolph on the back.) Are you ready for this? (Not being able to tear his eyes away from his "daughter," Rudolph nods.) Huh? (Lee looks at Amanda.) All right. Now please, crouch behind a wall or something, there's going to be some shooting. (Gladly, Amanda stands up and does as she is told.) Let's go.
(He and Rudolph go to their spots. Rudolph watches for the signal. Lee cocks his pistol and goes into the next room. Rudolph pushes aside the curtains on the window and opens it, but Dmitri is ready and instantly fires. Rudolph dodges just as the bullets splinter the wood. Amanda ducks. Rudolph returns fire. Meanwhile, Lee is climbing out a window in the back. He jumps down. Rudolph and the KGB agents are in a bullet match. Some bullets make a row of small holes in the wood. Rudolph fires back. Lee sneaks through the woods and leaps behind Dmitri, gun pointed at his head.)
Lee: Hold it! (Hearing, Ivan stops shooting at Rudolph and rushes over to help his friend. Lee motions for the rifle.) Give me the gun. (Dmitri does not.) Come on, give it to me!
(Dmitri smiles, then throws his gun to the ground a couple feet away. Lee glares at him and, still pointing the pistol, slowly moves over to pick it up. Rudolph runs to the back porch to assist Lee. He spots Ivan sneaking up behind Lee. Before Ivan can fire, Rudolph shoots Ivan in the leg. Lee and his prisoner both whirl around to look. Then they see themselves sandwiched between Rudolph and Ivan. Lee's hostage scrambles away while Lee scrambles for the rifle. He rolls on the ground, but gets shot in the shoulder by Ivan. Rudolph fires some more while Dmitri runs to Ivan, who is lying on the ground. Rudolph helps Lee stagger inside. He shuts the door.)
Rudolph: Are you all right?
Lee: Yeah. (He raises his arm and sees the blood dribbling down it. He sighs.) Maybe not.
(Amanda jumps up and runs over to help Lee. She takes him by the arm and leads him to a place where he can rest.)
Amanda: Here. Come on. (She seats him in a chair and unzips his jacket. Underneath, on his sweater, is a big, messy, bloody wound on his shoulder. She gasps.) Oh, my. . . . Do you have any towels?
Rudolph: There're some rags in the cupboard.
(He runs over to get some rags. Amanda finishes unzipping and pulls it out of the way. Rudolph returns with the rags. He starts reaching under the sweater to mop it up. Amanda feels Lee's pulse and forehead.)
Amanda: Any kind of, uh, antiseptic? (Rudolph shakes his head.) Something to stop the bleeding. Is it bad? How bad? (Lee grunts in pain.) A medical kit in the car. I saw it in the trunk of the car.
(Lee passes out.)
Rudolph: It's three hours round trip to the road if you can get past them. And it's getting dark.
(Amanda nods and lowers her head.)
(The boss's office. He is on the phone with someone and writing on
something. A line of KGB soldiers stand at attention in the room.)
KGB Boss: Yes, very good. (He hangs up the phone and stands.) That was Dmitri's control. He has just received a transmission. Ivan is wounded and there are two American agents with Rudolph. Here's their position. (He passes out some papers to the first soldier and walks back to his desk.) I am confident that you fully understand just how inconvenient it would be if any of the Americans would come out of these woods alive. (He nods to the door and the soldiers march out.) A merry Christmas, Mr. Rudolph.
(Rudolph's cabin. Outside in the woods, Dmitri is treating Ivan with
blankets. He speaks to him in Russian. An owl hoots. Inside, Amanda is
doing the same to Lee, who is asleep. Rudolph is by the door. Amanda sees
a white shirt on the table and gets an idea. She gets up from Lee and walks
over to it. She takes it and a coat and marches over to the door.)
Rudolph: What are you doing?
Amanda: I'm going to try to get to the car.
Rudolph: What makes you think they're going to let you pass? (She puts on her coat.)
Amanda: One of them is wounded, too.
Rudolph: There's more at stake here than the lives of two men. This involves national security.
Amanda: All I know is I don't want him to die.
(She nods toward Lee. Rudolph walks closer.)
Rudolph: We know the risks, it's our job! Try to understand that!
Amanda: Look. He is very badly wounded and one of them is wounded, too. Now, there's a medical kit in the car, it's got antiseptic and gauze --
Rudolph: Karen, don't be so stubborn! I'm not going to let you do this, you're my daughter!
Amanda: I'm not your daughter.
Amanda: My name is Amanda King, Mr. Rudolph, I work part-time for the Agency. Rank GS7, seasonal employee. I'm very sorry. (Rudolph lowers his head.) Now I'm going to try to make it to the car, so you . . . take care of Mr. Stetson while I'm gone. (Rudolph barely nods. Amanda touches him comfortingly on the chest, but he does not notice. She leaves. He still stands there, looking straight ahead. Amanda opens the door and sticks the shirt out, waving it like a white flag.) May I have your attention, please! (The Russians see her. Dmitri crouches and aims his gun. Amanda pokes her head out.) I know you're out there. I'm coming out. (She steps out, her arms raised up. Rudolph prepares with his rifle, just in case. Amanda starts stepping down, gripping her flag.) We have a wounded man inside and he's hurt very badly and I need to go to the car to get the medical supply kit so that I can help him so. . . . (Ivan looks at Dmitri.) It's awfully cold out here, so if you'd like to come inside the cabin and wait for me, that would be all right. (Dmitri looks from Ivan to Amanda, trying to decide. Amanda starts to cry.) Look. It's Christmas Eve. (She clears her throat.) And I don't know what that means to you, but to me it means that we should be thinking about peace. And helping each other. (Dmitri looks away from his gun and looks at Ivan, as if asking him.) I shouldn't be here, I should be at home, I have two little boys. (Dmitri starts to falter.) Phillip, he's ten, and Jamie, he's eight. And I should be at home, filling their stockings. And I wish I were. But I'm not. I'm here. (Ivan looks at his friend for help.) All I'm asking you to do is just call a truce for a few minutes so that we can help each other, and that's all. Now, I'm going to step down and please don't shoot me.
(Rudolph awaits to see how her speech turns out. Dmitri is still crouched there. Amanda slowly step down onto the grass and starts walking to the woods. Dmitri suddenly grabs her. She gasps.)
Dmitri: Give me car keys. (Amanda drops the keys in his hand. He looks at her.) First, you help me carry Ivan inside. (Amanda nods.) Then I go to car for supplies.
(Amanda nods again, then turns to look at him. She squeaks out an answer.)
(IFF. Francine and Billy are the only ones left. Francine is in her
cubicle and Billy is pacing.)
Billy: Dammit, I should have never sent them in.
Francine: It's not your fault, Billy.
Billy: Well, whose fault is it, then? (Francine shakes her head.) Look, why don't you take off? It's out of our hands now.
Francine: No, I'll -- I'll stick around a little while.
Billy: Francine, it's Christmas Eve. Surely you made some plans.
Francine: Oh, just a party some letch on the Far Asia desk is giving. Domestic champagne and paper cups. I'll pass. What about you?
Billy: Oh, the usual. A quiet evening at home with Jeannie and the kids. Dinner. Open a few presents. Maybe watch the midnight mass at St. Patrick's on TV.
(They stay silent a few moments.)
Francine: They'll be okay, Billy.
(He smiles, but both of them know that they are probably already not okay.)
(In the woods, Agency jeeps pull up. Camouflaged agents jump out
and get their rifles.)
Agent: Everyone's on alert. The orders are shoot to kill.
(They all march off to hide in the bushes.)
(In the cabin, Lee is awake. Amanda is pouring some water for him.)
Amanda: There you go. (He tips his head back and she pours the water into his mouth.) Sip. (Rudolph watches. Lee finishes and mumbles.) Okay.
(She strokes his hair. He turns his head to look at her.)
Lee: What's happening?
Amanda: Nothing. You just relax. Everything's all right.
(He nods and closes his eyes again. Amanda brings the cup across the room to Ivan's bed. He is awake. She hands him the cup and he takes a drink.)
(This means "thank you" in Russian.)
Amanda: You're welcome.
(She picks up her canteen and covers it. She walks over to the table and sits across from Rudolph.)
Rudolph: You really are something.
Amanda: Hey, I don't know. First day training.
Rudolph: May I ask you a question?
Rudolph: Did they really try to find my daughter?
Amanda: Yes, they did, there just wasn't enough time.
Rudolph: You know, it's funny, I have no idea what she looks like.
Amanda: They'll find her.
Rudolph: How the devil did you get mixed up with this Agency business?
Amanda: Well, that's kind of a long story, but, um. . . . Well, one morning, I was at the train station, I was taking this friend of mine to catch the train and this, this fellow all dressed up in a waiter suit came up to me and handed me this package and said, "Get on the train and give this to the man in the red hat," so I . . . did.
Rudolph: But why?
Amanda: I don't know. I really don't know. I've said to myself, "Amanda, why are you in this spy business?" I have perfectly nice children, two of them, two boys, a mother, and a nice house. I have a man who cares about me. (She shrugs. Just then the door opens and Dmitri walks in with the medical kit. Rudolph jumps up and points his gun. Dmitri does the same. Amanda stops them.) Stop it! No guns. There's a truce inside this cabin. (Dmitri steadily watches Rudolph. Rudolph looks at Amanda.) Please? (Both men put the guns down. Amanda nods, pleased.) Okay. (She takes the guns and puts them in the far corner of the room.) Thank you.
(Outside, dark cars full of KGB soldiers are driving up. The agents hop out and start running, armed, and whispering in Russian.)
(Inside, Lee wakes up again to find Amanda talking and pouring coffee
for Rudolph and Dmitri. Lee sighs.)
Lee: A bad dream. (He closes his eyes and opens them again, but sees the same scene. His gaze shifts over to Ivan, in the bed next to him. Ivan nods at him. Lee whispers.)
(Amanda stops and looks at him. She holds up a finger.)
Amanda: Just a minute. (She puts the coffeepot back and then kneels by his side. She brushes his hair out of his eyes, which are suspiciously scanning the room.) You all right?
Lee: What the hell is going on here?
Amanda: Oh. (She smiles.) We called a truce.
(Lee stares at her.)
Lee: They agreed?
Amanda: Sure. Well, you see, Ivan was wounded, too and it was very cold outside so Dmitri went and got the medical kit.
Lee: Ivan and Dmitri? (Amanda nods. Lee closes his eyes.) Oh, I don't believe this. I'm in the middle of The Brothers Karamazov.
(Outside, both sides are setting up on opposite sides of the cabin.)
(Later, Amanda has cooked some baked beans. She stirs it and brings
the pot over to the table. Lee is sitting up in bed, holding his wound.)
Amanda: Well, it's not much of a Christmas dinner, but it's all we have. (She spoons some onto Dmitri's plate.) There you are. (She sits and serves herself. Dmitri stands up and walks away to get something.) Don't you like beans?
(Dmitri returns with his jacket. He reaches into the pocket and pulls out a can of something and a flask.)
Dmitri: Herring. Do you like?
Amanda: Well, I'm -- Dmitri: It's very good herring. From Baltic Sea. Imported.
Rudolph: What's in the flask?
Dmitri: Uh, vodka, hundred ten proof. Makes herring taste better.
Amanda: Oh, well . . . good. (Dmitri unscrews the cap and offers the flask to her. She holds up her hands.) Uh, no, I -- I really couldn't.
Dmitri: I eat your beans, you drink my vodka.
Amanda: Well, if you insist, maybe just one little nip to be sociable.
(She takes a swig and sets it on the table. She coughs. The men chuckle. Dmitri walks over and offers Lee the flask.)
Dmitri: Vodka. Good for blood circulation. Make you feel better.
(Lee smiles and takes it.)
Lee: You got any vermouth? We could make a martini. (He laughs. Dmitri just stares.) It's just a joke. (Dmitri walks back to the table. Lee looks at Ivan, then raises the flask and takes a good long drink. When he is done, he lowers it and exhales. He passes it to Ivan.) Mmm.
(Ivan reaches across and takes it. He looks at Lee.)
Ivan: Thank you.
Lee: Don't mention it. (Ivan drinks some.) It's a crazy business we're in, huh?
(Ivan smiles and looks down.)
(Outside, the American and Soviet agents are creeping through the dark woods.)
(Inside, Ivan is asleep and Amanda is busy trying to feed beans to
a reluctant Lee.)
Amanda: Now, you have to eat. To keep up your strength.
(She holds the spoon up and he turns away.)
Lee: I hate beans.
(At the table, Dmitri and Rudolph are still eating. Dmitri pours Rudolph a cup of vodka.)
Rudolph: Why should I drink?
Dmitri: Because you're very sad tonight, Rudolph. Tonight we drink together, tomorrow we make war again.
Rudolph: You were sent to kill me, weren't you?
Dmitri: It's nothing personal, you understand.
Rudolph: Never is.
Dmitri: This business. I give my word to lady "no guns in cabin," I have honor. So tonight we drink, no?
(Rudolph gives up and reaches for his cup. Lee looks at Amanda again.)
Lee: Amanda, how did you pull all this off?
Amanda: Well . . . it's Christmas Eve, we just called a truce.
(Lee shakes his head.)
Lee: Come on, Christmas isn't very big in this business.
Amanda: Well, it's stopped you from killing each other, hasn't it?
Lee: Yeah. Look, I'm sorry I got you mixed up in all this mess.
(Amanda stares at the beans.)
Amanda: Oh, that's all right. Look, how often does a suburban lady like me get to drink vodka with the KGB and (her voice starts becoming more sad) eat beans on Christmas.
Lee: Speaking of vodka. . . .
(He looks at Rudolph and Dmitri clinking cups and drinking together. Amanda senses what he wants.) Amanda: Oh, no, I -- I really don't think you should.
Lee: Yeah, for medicinal purposes.
(Amanda looks down at the plate in her hands.)
Amanda: Will you eat your beans?
(Lee looks from the plate to the flask as if weighing the consequences. Finally he surrenders. he makes a disgusted face and opens his mouth. Amanda spoons him some beans.)
(Outside, the soldiers are still marching with guns and rifles.)
(Inside, everyone is laughing and having a good time. Rudolph and
Dmitri finsh their drinks. Rudolph makes a satisfied sound. He stands up
and walks over to the fireplace.)
Dmitri: I propose toast. To Christmas, to politbureau, and to mother Russia.
Amanda: Hear, hear!
(They all take a drink.)
Lee: I propose a toast.
Lee: To Christmas, the President, and the Washington Redskins.
Dmitri: To Dallas Cowboys!
Lee: Ah, yes.
(They all drink.)
(Outside, the soldiers are still going.)
(Amanda's living room. Dotty is peering out the window as snow falls
heavily. Phillip and Jamie are looking at the decorated and lit tree.)
Dotty: I hope she remembered to put snow tires on her car. I knew that weather was going to turn bad.
(She walks back to the boys. Phillip looks at her.)
Phillip: Grandma, are you sure we can't open up just one present?
(Dotty laughs and takes the present from his arms.)
Dotty: Phillip, no, honey. You know your mama would be so disappointed. You know how sentimental she gets at Christmastime.
Jamie: Not even a little small one?
Dotty: You've got to be patient. She's going to be home soon.
Phillip: Where is she anyway?
Dotty: She went to deliver some presents to some of her clients.
Jamie: Mom's okay, isn't she, Grandma?
(Dotty hugs him.)
Dotty: Of course she's okay. She, um . . . she probably got caught up in some kind of a Christmas party. People get very sentimental and very festive this time of year.
(In the cabin, everyone is still proposing toasts. They take a drink.
Amanda stands up and walks over to the window.)
Amanda: Look! It's starting to snow. (Everyone cheers. Amanda pulls aside the curtains, revealing the windows, the snow, and a large bullet hole in the glass. Amanda turns around.) I'd like to propose a toast. (She raises her cup.) To peace on earth, and goodwill toward men. And women. (Everyone takes a long drink from their cups.) Merry Christmas.
(Outside, the agents have finally reached the cabin. They kneel down, the snow covering their caps and clothes, and cock their guns. They aim, then lower them with a strange look on their face.)
(Inside, everyone is singing Christmas carols whil Ivan plays the
Everyone: Si-ilent night, ho-oly night. All is calm, all is bright. Round yon vir-irgin mother and child.
(Outside, the KGB soldiers have reached it. They do the same as the Americans, even stop when they hear the singing.)
All: Holy infant so tender and mild. Sleep in heavenly pe-eace. Slee-eep in heavenly peace.
(Outside, all the agents look at each other. They lower their guns, realizing that they can't shoot at the cabin. The people inside start the song again. The camera backs up on the scene: snow drifting down, people in a cabin singing carols, and two enemy groups of soldiers crouched on opposite sides of the cabin, listening.)
(Amanda's house the next morning. All the decorations are up and
Amanda is asleep on the couch, using her coat as a blanket. Jamie and Phillip
bound downstairs, but stop when they see their mother.)
Phillip: Boy, it must have been some Christmas party.
(Jamie nods. He and his brother silently tiptoe over to the tree and attack the presents. Amanda shifts. Her eyes flutter open. Seeing her boys, she smiles and watches them try to quietly rip open the wrapping paper.)
Amanda: Merry Christmas.
(She sits up. Phillip and Jamie turn.)
Phillip: Mom, what are you doing sleeping down here?
Amanda: Well, I wanted to be sure Santa Claus didn't miss the house. (Phillip and Jamie exchange knowing glances.) Come here and give me a hug. (They scramble to their feet and run over to her. They all embrace in a big bear hug.) Hello.
(Jamie looks up at her.)
Jamie: You okay, Mom?
Amanda: Yeah, I'm fine. Tell you what. Why don't you go wake Grandma up, tell her we're going to make some special Christmas waffles, and then you can open your presents. (She kisses his forehead.) Okay?
Amanda: Hope you run! (Jamie and Phillip take off for an unsuspecting Dotty.) Okay, hurry up!
(Once they're gone, Amanda takes a card out of her pocket, picks up the phone, and dials the number on the card.)
(The phone rings in a hospital room, where the patient is Lee. He
reaches over and picks up the phone.)
Amanda: Hi. How're you doing?
Lee: I'm fine, just fine. Oh, I could use a little more sleep. They wake you up at the crack of dawn around here.
Amanda: I guess it's pretty bleak to be spending your Christmas in the hospital.
Lee: I've spent Christmas in worse places. (He reaches under his bed and pulls out a bucket of champagne.) By the way, Billy came to see me this morning, he brought me a toothbrush. (He takes the bottle of champagne and looks at it. He smiles.) And a couple of other necessities.
Amanda: Oh, he did? Good.
(Lee starts opening the bottle.)
Lee: Listen. They found Ted Rudolph's daughter. She's married, has three kids, and lives in Portland.
Amanda: Oh, I'm glad. What about, um, Ivan and Dmitri? What's going to happen to them?
Lee: They'll be deported. Probably spend New Year's in Moscow with all the herring they can eat. Lucky everyone decided it was a no-win situation. We'd still be shooting it out. (Amanda laughs.) It was a hell of a Christmas Eve, wasn't it?
Amanda: Yeah, it was.
(Then, Phillip and Jamie run down to Amanda.)
Jamie: Grandma will be right down.
(They run off.)
(In the hospital, Lee uncorks the champagne. It fizzes and bubbles
Amanda: What was that?
(Lee smiles and pours the champagne into a glass.)
Lee: Oh, just the medicine that they insist I take.
Amanda: Oh. Poor Lee.
(Lee raises the glass and sips.)
Lee: Mm. Nah, the stuff doesn't taste too bad.
Amanda: Look, I guess I'm -- I really ought to go now.
Lee: Merry Christmas, Amanda.
Amanda: Merry Christmas, Lee.