Scarecrow and Mrs. King
(A busy Washington street. A man, obviously in pain and holding a
tissue to his chest to pressure the wound, is limping down the sidewalk.
His other hand is holding an object inside his jacket. He stops at a telephone
pole, leans on it, pausing to glance down at his wound, apparently caused
by a bullet, and continues. Two men in a nearby parked car watch him as
he passes by.)
Man1: It's Hadj.
Man2: I told you we hadn't lost him. I knew he'd come this way. Does he still have the book?
Man1: He's carrying something. I'm surprised he made it this far. I got in two good hits. Should we go for it now?
Man2: Nah, let's give it a few minutes, see what happens. It wouldn't be smart to go in there while he's still alive to identify us. It won't be any trouble persuading Keene once Hadj is out of the way.
(They both chuckle and watch as Hadj stops outside a window, on which is painted "Keene's Bookstore; Used Books." Hadj catches his breath and glances around.)
(Inside, Dotty is scanning the bookshelf, just browsing for anything
that catches her eye. She stops, her hand resting a book, and sighs. Then
she looks at what's under her hand and gasps. She pulls out the book and
Dotty: Oh, my gosh. I can't believe it. (She laughs and walks over to the register, book in hand. She sets down her bags and begins talking to a strange woman in front of her, who stares at her.) I can't tell you how long I've been looking for this book. I mean, I never dreamed I'd find it this afternoon. It has been out of print for years. (She lovingly turns the pages. The strange woman steps away to make her purchases. Dotty doesn't notice.) This was my daughter's favorite book when she was a child. And now I'm going to buy it for her son, my grandson, for his birthday. There's something w-- (She turns around and stops, seeing that no one is listening. Meanwhile, Keene, behind the register, is looking very nervous. Dotty sighs and shakes her head and finishes her sentence to no one in particular.) Wonderful about that.
(She bends down and picks up her bags.)
(At the same time, outside, Hadj limps to the door to the bookshop.)
(Back inside, Keene is packing Dotty's books in a plastic bag and
Dotty is writing a check, at the same time talking to a different stranger.)
Dotty: Good. Books are my favorite gift. Toys and bikes are what they want, but books open up whole new worlds. (While she is chatting, the front door opens and Hadj limps in. Keene presses a button on his desk in a rhythm, sending a silent signal to the back room. A man with a mustache, Karlo, appears from the back and watches.) I tell you who's really going to be surprised is my daughter. I cannot wait to see her reaction when Phillip opens this package. (Hadj hands Keene a book. Keene hurriedly stuffs it into a plastic bag, identical to the one with Dotty's books in it.) Identification? I don't have a driver's license. I don't know. Do you mind? I just never learned to drive. (Hadj stumbles over to the counter, next to Dotty, and slams into it, coughing.) Is he all right?
Keene: He's fine.
Dotty: Thank you.
(She takes one of the plastic bags and bends down to get her things. Hadj collapses, knocking a bunch of stuff onto the floor, including himself and the other bag, which Keene swiftly tucks away inside his jacket. All the customers stand back and gasp. Dotty walks out, oblivious as usual. Karlo walks out into the main shop. Keene walks over to him and takes out the bag. He takes out the book. It is Dotty's.)
Keene: Here-- (His jaw drops as he looks at the book.) She -- she took the wrong book! It's a mixup.
(Karlo grabs it from him and looks at it. Angrily, he shoves the book back to Keene.)
Karlo: Maybe it's a mixup, but maybe it's deliberate.
(Karlo strides to the door, despite Keene's desperate calls to him while his customers stare.)
Keene: But I -- but I didn't --
(Too late. Karlo is out the door. Keene sighs.)
(Outside, Karlo exits from the book store out onto the street. He
glances around sees Dotty climbing into a cab. He runs after her. In the
parked car, the two agents also see him.)
Man1: That's Jamil Karlo. I knew we should have followed Hadj in there!
Man2: Do you think Karlo's got the book?
Man1: Of course he's got the book! Who else would have it?
(As they watch, Karlo reaches the taxi just as it pulls away with Dotty and the book inside. He goes to a brown car parked nearby, opens the passenger door, and gets in. He barks instructions to the driver, his partner, Ramad.)
Karlo: Follow that car!
(The car drives away after the cab. Instantly, Man2 goes right after them. The taxi stops a little bit down the street and Dotty gets out. She walks to a little cafe/tea room and enters. In the reflection on the window, we can see Karlo's car stop and let Karlo out. He walks up to the window and peers in. Then, he steps over to the door, opens it, and goes inside. There is a young woman holding menus. Karlo approaches her, a big smile on his face.)
Karlo: Hi. (He looks around the room, then points.) I want that table.
(The woman shrugs.)
(She leads him to the table and he sits, across from where Dotty and Amanda are sitting, going over birthday plans. The woman places a menu in front of him and leaves. Karlo quietly watches the two women. Amanda is going over a list in her hands.)
Amanda: Okay. I got the party hats and the noisemakers, not that they need any noisemakers, and I have the decorations --
Dotty: What about the presents?
Amanda: Presents. Ah. (She counts off from her list.) New baseball glove, electric hockey game. (She looks at Dotty.) No Captain Galaxy. The one thing he wanted, I looked all over town, they don't have it, sold out.
(Dotty grins, leans over, and picks up a blue box. She sets it on the table.)
Dotty: Toy Town, the last one in the city.
Amanda: Oh, Mother!
Dotty: The clerk said he was glad they were gone. I mean, with every shipment, there has been near riots.
(Amanda picks up the box and examines it.)
Amanda: Oh, Mother, Phillip will go into orbit himself.
(Dotty picks up the yellow plastic bag containing the book.)
Dotty: Wait till you see this. Now, I'm not going to tell you what it is because it's a surprise. I'll give you a hint. When you were Phillip's age, you loved it.
(Amanda thinks. She takes the bag and holds it, feeling the shape.)
Amanda: It's obviously a book.
Amanda: It's a book about animals?
Dotty: Uh-huh. . . .
Amanda: Brattleboro? (?)
Dotty: No! (Amanda starts opening the bag. Dotty grabs it from her.) No, no, no, no!
Amanda: Shh, Mother! Shh.
(Dotty looks around at the people staring. She puts the book away. Amanda looks down. Just then, the door opens again and Man1 enters. He brushes right past the woman with the menus and sits beside Karlo, who stops mid-sip.)
Man1: I want that book, Karlo. I killed for it once. I don't mind doing it again.
Karlo: Please don't make me nervous. You see, I have a pistol pointed at your belly.
(At their table, Amanda and Dotty are finishing up. Amanda takes a last gulp of her drink and stands up. Dotty soon follows.)
Amanda: All right, now, there's still a lot to do, so if it's all right with you, I'm going to drop you at the market and then I'm going to deliver this typing (she motions to a manila envelope resting on the table) and then I'll pick you up at the market, is that okay?
Dotty: Amanda, I don't know why you work for a company that won't give you office days. I mean, you're never going to meet anyone working at home.
Amanda: Mother, I don't want to meet anyone right now.
Dotty: Amanda, that doesn't make sense! How can you not want to meet someone you've never even seen?
(She rolls her eyes and walks to the door. Amanda chuckles, shakes her head, and follows. They stop near the door. Amanda stares at Man2, sitting still, his eyes rolled upwards and his mouth hanging open. He has been shot.)
Amanda: What's the matter?
Dotty: This used to be such a wonderful place to eat until they started serving wine.
(The two leave, Amanda watching for a few more seconds. As the door closes behind them, Man2's head drops onto the table and then he slumps onto the floor, pulling the tablecloth with him. The waitresses scream.)
(Outside, Amanda and Dotty are strolling down the street laughing
and they pass a flower stand. Dotty gasps.)
Dotty: Oh, flowers, we have to have flowers for the party.
Amanda: Here, let me take your bag.
(She takes it from Dotty and waits there while Dotty goes up and inspects the flowers. Amanda looks at her watch and turns around to look at the street. Nearby, Karlo is at a crosswalk. He pretends to check his watch, but keeps his view on Amanda. Slowly, menacingly, he approaches her. When he is close enough, he grabs Amanda around the waist. She cries out in surprise. Karlo throws her out into the middle of the street. The bags scatter. A car screeches to a halt, honking its horn. Dotty looks up.)
Amanda (weakly): Mother!
(Dotty rushes to her daughter's side.)
Dotty: What happened?
(Dotty and the driver that almost hit her help her to her feet.)
Dotty: Are you all right?
Amanda: I think so. Did you see what that man did?
Dotty: What man?
Amanda: The man who pushed me in the street and -- and tried to steal Phillip's presents! I mean, I can't believe it! Look at my new slacks, they're ruined! (She fingers a fresh tear in her pants, down by her knee.) I can't believe that a thing like this could happen in broad daylight on a business street!
Dotty: Amanda, I'm not really sure what exactly did happen.
Amanda: Mother, I think I was mugged. (She takes the bag from the helpful driver.) Thank you.
(They walk over to the curb.)
(She and Dotty, having finally collected all of the bags, leave the middle of the street. Nearby, Karlo, discouraged, gets into his car. Ramad is waiting for him.)
Ramad: The book! Where's the book? You didn't get the book!
(Karlo holds up the ripped handle of Amanda's shopping bag. He throws it down and sighs.)
Karlo: She still has it.
Ramad: Why didn't you just tell her you made a mistake?
Karlo: Because I don't know it's a mistake.
Karlo: Hey, you know, we're not the only people looking for that book. She could be intelligence, she could be counterintelligence, I don't know.
Ramad: You know what happens to us if we make a mistake?
(He claps his fist in his hand, Karlo nods and looks away.)
Karlo: Yeah, I know. All right, we'll get her. Let's go.
(Ramad starts the car and they drive off down the street, passing Man2, who watches him go.)
(Back at the bookstore, Keene is on the phone, stuttering.)
Keene: Hadj - Hadj is dead, Karlo. Did - did you r-recover the book? (At a phone booth, Karlo hangs his head.) They're - they're going to blame me for losing it! I'm a dead man.
Karlo: We'll all be dead if we don't get it back. Now, you stay where you are. I'm on my way.
Keene: Right, right, right, I'll stay right here. And - and Karlo, you know you can trust me, right?
(He chuckles uneasily. Without a word, Karlo hangs up and leaves the phone booth. Keene hangs up on his end and goes to his desk. He pulls open a drawer and begins looking for something.)
(IFF, Intelligence Office. Lee, Francine, and Billy are coming from
Lee: You're sure it was Hadj that they bodybagged in that bookstore?
Billy: Positive ID.
Lee: That means there was a big buy going down somewhere. He's a major broker for tech data for the Eastern Bloc. (They stop near the coffee maker. Lee walks around in front of Billy and Francine and sits on the edge of the table.) Last month, it was array transform processors and binary codes, tomorrow, it's directed energy weapons, laser mirror processors, jamming devices for phase array radar.
Francine: So who feeds him all this data? Or should I say who fed him this data?
(Behind her, Amanda walks in through the doors, carrying a folder. None of the three notice her yet.)
Lee: Well, when Hadj would find out where the work was being done, he bought or blackmailed engineers or lab techs to slip it to him. I've been after him a long time, Billy.
Billy: So, somebody got to him before you, Scarecrow.
Lee: Come on.
Billy: On the other hand, we know he wasn't sightseeing. (He sighs.) Okay, hang in there. (He turns around to leave and nods to Amanda.) Amanda.
Amanda: Sir. (She walks over to Lee and Francine.) Hello.
(Francine looks Amanda over disdainfully.)
Francine: What happened to you?
Amanda: I was mugged.
(Lee stands up angrily.)
Lee: You were what?!
Amanda: I was mugged. In the middle of the street, broad daylight.
Lee: That's terrible!
Francine: That's funny. You know, the same thing happened to me just last week. I was outside the airport making a surveillance pass and all of a sudden I felt this big arm lock around my neck from behind.
Amanda: What did you do?
Francine: Oh, I spiked his instep with my heel, thumbed his eyesockets, pressed my forearm against his larynx, and then brought up my knee in a lifting motion.
(Amanda shrugs and grins sheepishly.)
Amanda: I just screamed.
Francine: Hm. So did he.
(Amanda looks away, embarrassed. Francine leaves them. Amanda faces Lee and sighs.)
Lee: Are you sure you're all right?
Amanda: Oh, yeah, I'm all right. I can't believe -- I can't believe in a city like Washington, there weren't police all over the place. I thought we had more police here than any place else in the country.
Lee: Yeah, and agents. We're tripping over each other.
Amanda: Foreign agents.
Lee: Foreign, domestic, neutral, committed, uncommitted, freelance. (He sighs.) You know what we've got? We've got double agents, counteragents, we've got surveillance and countersurveillance teams.
Amanda: Lots of spies.
Lee: Yeah, lots of spies. I know it's supposed to be a secret, but you know what I think? I think espionage is the growth industry of the decade.
Amanda: Kinda makes my problem seem petty. I mean, I'm worried about Phillip's birthday and the mugging. I mean, the mugging's not petty --
Lee: People like Hadj move around Washington conducting their business as if they own a franchise or something!
Amanda: Who's Hadji?
Lee: H-A-D-J. Hadj.
Amanda (slowly): Hadj.
Lee: It doesn't matter anyway, he's dead.
Lee: He'll have a replacement very soon and I've got to find out who killed him and why. (He looks down and sees her ripped pants. He bends over to take a closer look at them. He fingers the tear.) Oh, my gosh, your pants are all torn up.
(He straightens up.)
Amanda: Oh, I know. Well, I didn't go home, you know, after the mugging --
Lee: You what?
Amanda: -- because I knew that you needed this -- this typing, so --
(She holds out the folder. Lee takes it from her and puts it on the desk, not bothering to look.)
Lee: Wait a minute, wait a second. You didn't go home after you were mugged? That's where you belong, home.
(He takes her arm and takes her to the doors.)
Amanda: Oh, Lee.
Lee: You should have gone home right after you filed your police report.
(He opens the door and she walks out into the hall and stops. Lee follows.)
Amanda: Yeah, well, I just didn't file a police report.
Lee: You didn't file one?
Lee: How do you expect them to find the guy if you don't file a report?
Amanda: Oh, look, Lee. I mean, I didn't have a license number, I'm not sure I could positively identify him, and -- oh, well, look. I mean, how am I supposed to know who I'm supposed to call, anyway?
(Lee takes her arm and they begin walking down the hall.)
Amanda: I mean, we have so many police agencies in Washington. We've got -- we've got park police, we've got, um, capital police, we've got metro-transit police --
(Lee stops and holds up his hands.)
Lee: Now, wait, wait, wait.
Lee: Now, where did it happen?
Amanda: I -- On a busy downtown street.
Lee: All right. Now, that's probably city police. Their jurisdiction ends on the Virginia side of the Potomac. (Amanda nods.) Now please, could we just take it easy? Huh?
(She nods again. Lee smiles and goes back to the offce, leaving Amanda in the hall.)
(She watches Lee go back inside, then leaves herself for home.)
(In the back room of the bookshop, Karlo is leaning against the wall,
facing Ramad. They are waiting. Keene pushes aside the curtain and walks
in. He steps between Karlo and the other man, looking from one to the other.)
Keene: I don't think you should be here, because, uh, I mean, the police might come back.
Karlo: You worry too much. (Keene adjusts his glasses and looks at the other man, then back to Karlo.) You know, it occurs to me that I haven't even seen Hadj's book, and I've only your word that the woman got it. (He leans closer, looming over the small bookkeeper.) Maybe you still have it.
Keene: What, you think I'd - I'd cross you? Never! Because I - I have too much respect for you.
(Karlo puts his arm around Keene's shoulders patronizingly.)
Karlo: Yes, you respect me, don't you, because you know I'd kill you without a second thought.
Keene: Right, right. I respect that a lot.
(Ramad reaches out and takes a small piece of paper from Keene's hands and reads it.)
Ramad: So the woman gave you this check. Huh?
Keene: Yes, yes. Yes.
Karlo: Well, then, we'll just have to pay her a visit, won't we?
(He pinches Keene's cheek, then slaps it. He and Ramad leave. Keene smiles, trying to hide his nervousness, as he watches them go. When they are gone, his smile fades and he massages his temple nervously.)
(Amanda's house, later. Karlo is in the living room. He faces the
camera, looks around, then tiptoes to a desk. Silently, he opens the drawers
one by one. Finding nothing of interest, he shuts them and moves on to
a line of books on top of a cabinet. He examines the titles. Just then,
Amanda's station wagon pulls up into the driveway outside. Karlo hears
the engine and peers out the window. As he watches, the door opens and
Amanda starts to get out. Karlo creeps away from the window and out into
the hallway. Luckily, Amanda and her mother enter from the back door in
the kitchen, carrying their grocery and gift bags.)
Dotty: I tell you, I love parties.
(During this next bit, Karlo eases open the hall closet door and slips inside among the coats.)
Dotty: Even the grocery shopping.
Dotty: Now, as soon as we get these things put away, I want to take a look at that knee.
(By now, Karlo is finished and the view is of Amanda and Dotty unpacking and putting away groceries.)
Amanda: It's okay, Mother, I only just barely skinned it.
(She carries a container to the refrigerator and deposits it inside.)
Dotty: You can't be too cavalier about knees and elbows. They are very tricky propositions.
Amanda: No, no, it's all right, really, it doesn't even hurt much.
Dotty: You should have come right home. (In the closet, Karlo listens intently while he prepares a knife blade.) I know you have business obligations, you've always been very responsible when it comes to things like that, but we should have come right home.
Amanda: Well . . .
Dotty: Did they like your work?
(Amanda looks up at her mother.)
Amanda: They didn't say.
(She looks back down at her grocery bag. Dotty sighs and shrugs.)
Dotty: Ah, well, you see? That is big business for you. Ninety words a minute, no mistakes, and they haven't even got the decency to say thank you. (Amanda mumbles, not wishing to discuss this.) It is a big company, isn't it?
(Amanda stops unloading and sighs. She walks around to face her mother and slides a stool over to her.)
Amanda: Here. I want you to sit down just for a minute. (Dotty rolls her eyes. Amanda carries over her own stool and set it next to Dotty's.) I want to try to explain something to you and it's, uh, it's a little difficult to explain --
(Dotty stops and faces Amanda.)
Dotty: Amanda, I don't know what you're talking about. I mean, did I ask for an explanation?
Amanda: Uh, no, no. No, you didn't. No, you didn't. But I just want to -- I just want to. . . . (She removes a jar from Dotty's hands and places it on the counter, then looks Dotty in the eye.) Well, do you remember when I was little and I had that little brown-and-white dog, Pinto?
Dotty: Of course I remember. But I think I forgot the vanilla.
Amanda: No, uh, you didn't forget the vanilla, I saw it on the check-out counter. (Dotty nods.) Now, do you remember when Pinto got . . . older and he'd sort of start to wander away from the house and we'd wait until Daddy came home and -- and then when he came home, he'd take me by the hand and we'd go all over the neighborhood and we'd look for Pinto and we'd call him and say, "Pinto! Pinto!" (She whistles as if she's actually calling a dog.) But, you know, he couldn't hear us because he'd gotten a little deaf by then, and. . . . But, you know, luckily, we had those nice neighbors, and usually, somebody would have taken him inside and given him a little water and . . . and then . . . do you remember that weekend that you took Pinto up to Uncle Chester's farm and --
(Throughout all this, Dotty has been listening patiently, but finally, she interrupts Amanda.)
Dotty: Amanda, I like to reminisce with the best of them, but don't you think this is getting just a little depressing?
Amanda: Y - yes, Mother, I'm sorry. Yes. But I have a point, though. I have a point, and I want to -- I have a point. Well, the point is, is that, um. . . . Well, I knew that -- that Pinto was really very . . . sick and I knew that you didn't tell me because you didn't want me to worry.
Dotty: Amanda, you would have done the same thing under the same circumstances --
Amanda: Mother, I am doing the same thing.
Dotty: Amanda. If you are trying to tell me that you are dying, I absolutely refuse to accept it.
Amanda: Oh, no, no, Mother, I'm not -- no, Mother. (Dotty exhales a huge sigh of relief.) I'm just -- I'm just, um, trying to tell you that there's something that I'd love to be able to tell you but I can't tell you because I promised that I wouldn't.
Dotty: And you thought I was bugging you about your work? Amanda, you know me better than that! I wouldn't pry into your life. I mean, I have too much of my own life to worry about.
(Amanda grins and pats Dotty on the arm.)
Amanda: Well, I'm glad to hear it, Mother, because . . . you wouldn't approve and you'd worry.
Dotty: Yeah.(They both chuckle. Amanda stands up and carries her stool back to where it was. Dotty stops laughing. She picks up her caot and pocketbook.) I wouldn't approve? And I'd worry? Oh! (Now worried, she stands up and walks out of the kitchen to the hall closet, where Karlo is squeezed into the corner with his knife in hand. Staring in the direction of the kitchen, confused, Dotty opens the door, removes a hanger from the rack, and hangs her coat up. She pushes it over to the side and closes the door. Karlo relaxes. Dotty walks back into the kitchen, where Amanda is still unpacking.) We have to find a good hiding place for these presents because Phillip has the instincts of a bloodhound when it comes to presents.
Amanda: Yeah. Mother, how many cakes should we bake now that there're going to be twelve kids?
Dotty: Well, I would say enough for twenty, including me. (Amanda laughs. Dotty picks up the torn bag of gifts.) Now, I am going to take these and put them up in my room and don't you peek at the book!
Amanda: I won't look at the book. (Dotty walks out. Amanda picks up the other bag and calls after Dotty.) I'll put these other ones someplace else.
(She walks out into the hall with the bag in her arms. Judging by the scary music that suddenly starts up and the look on Karlo's face, my guess is that her hiding place will be the hall closet. Sure enough, she opens the door and Karlo lunges at her with his knife. She screams and holds the bag in his face, pushing him back into the closet and causing him to fumble with his blade. Amanda slams the door shut, locking it on a coat, and makes a run for the kitchen. In the closet, Karlo catches his breath and silently curses. In the kitchen, Amanda picks up a mallet and stands, ready. Karlo forces the closet door on him and a couple bags of stuff falls on his head. Having had enough, he makes a run for it himself - out the front door. Amanda, still frozen in shock, with the mallet in hand, stares after him. Dotty comes in and takes the mallet from her daughter's hand.)
Dotty: Amanda, don't we have a better hammer than this? See if you can find a box of nails.
(She leaves. Amanda, still poised as if she has a hammer raised in her hand, bites her lower lip, thinking.)
(IFF, Intelligence office hall. Lee eits through the doors and begins
walking briskly through the hall. Billy walks after him, trying to keep
up. Lee does not stop of slow down.)
Lee: I'm in kind of a hurry right now, Billy.
Billy: So I noticed, but since you expressed an interest in Hadj, I thought you'd like to know. Word is that whatever he was selling is still up for grabs.
(That gets Lee's attention. He stops at the elevator and turns around.)
Lee: That's great. We still have a crack at it.
Billy: I'll run everything we have through the computer. It may take a little time, but at least --
Lee: Well, a little time is just what I need at the moment. Look, I just got this semi-hysterical phone call from Amanda. I think I'd better get over there right away. I'll see you later.
(The elevator arrives. Lee gets into it and the doors swish shut. Billy nods and looks down at the floor.)
(Keene's bookstore, now closed. In the back room, Ramad is bandaging
Karlo: I cut it at the King house.
(Keene cautiously walks up and peers at Karlo's hand.)
Keene: H - he's lost a lot of blood for a cut like that. He's not a bleeder, is he? (Karlo glares at him.) I mean, of - of course, a lot of very important people have - have been bleeders. Royalty, people like that. (Karlo just stares. Ramad finishes and goes to the other side of the room to pour some coffee. Keene tries his luck with this guy.) And, uh, there's no - there's no problem at all, you know, just cleaning things up, as far as. . . . Look, everybody knows that I'm a very generous man, and a man that, that, uh, you know, doesn't think of himself or his safety, you know, before his friends.
Keene: Or - or business associates. And - and believe me, there's - there's - I - I - I felt it was okay that you came here without, you know, even a phone call, but there - this is one problem that I think I should mention. (He leans over to Ramad's ear.) Um, what - what if Karlo dies? I mean, you know, where does that put me? I have Hadj in the front room, I have Karlo in the back room, and it's going to look awfully suspicious to the cops.
(Ramad looks up.)
Ranad: Hey, Karlo.
Ramad: Keene wants to know if you're planning to die.
(Karlo looks up.)
Keene: And - and you've never - you've never looked better, honestly.
Karlo: The answer is no, Keene. No, I am not planning on dying. Maybe I'm planning on killing.
Keene: Well, as - as good as you look, um, I - I wouldn't push it. (To Ramad:) A good night's sleep, that's all he needs.
Karlo: That's exactly what I intend to do. And then tomorrow, I'm going to get the book. And if I don't, the woman dies, and so do you. You can count on it.
Keene: That - that sounds okay to me.
(Karlo just stares intimidatingly.)
(Amanda's house. Amanda opens the back door and slips outside. She
closes the door and paces nervously, waiting for someone. At Lee's voice,
Lee: Are you all right?
Lee: You said on the phone the guy had a knife!
Amanda: Yes. There was a man in the closet holding a knife.
Lee: And . . . ?
Amanda: I opened the closet door.
Amanda: I saw the man there holding the knife. I screamed. I slammed the door closed, I ran into the kitchen, the man ran out the front door, and he got blood on the floor. I think he cut himself, with the knife.
Lee: Well, that's probably what saved your life.
Amanda: It was the same man who pushed me in the street and tried to steal my shopping bags.
Lee: Are you sure?
Amanda: I am absolutely positive. I knew it the second I saw his face.
Lee: That doesn't make any sense. I mean, a guy who mugs you in the street doesn't usually follow it up with a house call. I mean, he didn't get your house keys or your address, right?
(Amanda shakes her head.)
Amanda: No. Don't you see what this means?
(Amanda glances around, then leans in closer.)
Amanda: It had something to do with the Agency.
Lee: No. Wrong. You haven't been tied in with anything worth killing for --
Amanda: Lee, I know you don't think I have a very logical mind, but I have a very logical mind, and I know that in my day-to-day living, I don't do anything that would warrant having a man hiding in my closet with a knife in his hand.
(She looks Lee firmly in the eye. He sighs and looks away.)
Lee: You're right.
Amanda: I am.
Lee: Well, what did you have in that shopping bag?
(Amanda sighs, exasperated.)
Amanda: Phillip's birthday presents, some decorations, that's all, things like that.
Lee: All right, we're going to need to take everything down to the Agency --
Amanda: No, no, no, you can't. Mother's got the presents nearly all the way wrapped, She's going to finish as soon as she fixes the closet shelf.
(Lee locks eyes with her.)
Lee: We need everything, Amanda.
Amanda: I don't know what Phillip's presents could possibly have to do with anything.
Lee: Well, that man wanted them and I want them examined! We're also going to need you to come down and make a composite image for the computer. (Amanda sighs and looks away.) I know what you're thinking, Amanda. I've already got a security team setting up right now. So no more unexpected guests.
(Amanda nods, pleased.)
Amanda: Thank you.
(Lee grins assuredly.)
Lee: All right.
(Just then, Dotty calls from inside.)
Dotty: Amanda, will you help me with the ladder?
(Amanda turns toward the door and calls back. Lee turns and goes back behind the shrubbery.)
Amanda: Uh, yes, Mother, I'll be right there! (She turns back to where Lee was standing.) Lee --
(She stops and sighs. Then she turns around and goes back inside.)
(IFF, that evening. Francine and two other agents are carefully sliding
the presents out of their wrapping and examining them. Amanda looks up
from her seat at a computer, where Lee is standing behind her and a female
agent is working the keyboard.)
Amanda: Oh, please do be careful, those presents have to go back just as soon as we're finished here.
(Francine and one of the men look up.)
Francine (not really meaning it): Uh-huh.
(They turn back to the toys.)
Lee: How about the nose, Amanda?
Amanda: Uh, the nose was long and thin. (She looks at the computer screen. The woman taps some keys.) Mm-hmm.
Woman: Hair line okay?
Amanda: No. No, no. He had more forehead, his hair was dark and wavy -- Now you have too much hair. (The woman fixes it.) Mm-hmm. Now, his -- his jaw was more pointed and he had a mean little mouth.
(Amanda simulates with her hand. The woman types.)
Woman: How about eyebrows? Thick, bushy . . . ?
(Amanda looks up and calls to Francine and the others.)
Amanda: Um, and when you're finished, you can put those things back together again and no one will ever know that you took them apart.
(She turns back to the toy.)
Lee: Amanda, Amanda, the eyebrows.
Amanda: The eyebrows were dark and close to his eyes.
(The woman adds in this information. Just then, one of the agents working with Francine sits on the counter and something crunches under him. Francine gasps.)
(Everyone looks up. He stands up sheepishly. Amanda groans and looks down. Lee stares at her. She glares at him as if it is his fault.)
Amanda: That was the last Captain Galaxy doll in the entire city.
(Lee grimaces and watches as Francine and the man examine the crushed doll.)
Francine: Oh, boy.
(Lee turns to Amanda.)
Lee: Amanda, we'll get you another one.
Amanda: By tomorrow?! My mother and I looked for that doll for four days. It's the only thing that Phillip asked for. Oh, look, I know it was an accident, but what am I supposed to tell him? Am I supposed to tell him that he almost had a wonderful birthday, he almost had a birthday that he would never forget, and he almost had the best birthday present in the entire world until one of your guys sat on him?!
Lee: Amanda, listen. I promise you I will get you another Captain Galaxy. Trust me, huh?
Amanda: Of course I trust you, but you don't know the toy market.
(Lee, a little confused by this remark, looks toward Francine.)
Woman: Now how about the eyes, hmm?
(Something else cracks. Amanda winces and massages her temple. Lee looks up and calls to the three.)
(From his office, Billy comes out and assists the toy agents.)
Amanda: Little, mean, and beady. (The woman types in these last instructions and a picture of Karlo appears on the screen. A sheet of paper prints out and the woman hands it to Amanda. Amanda looks at the image of Karlo on the paper and gasps in awe.) Ooh, that's very good. That's him.
(Lee takes the paper from her and examines it. He looks up.)
Lee: That's Karlo. (On hearing that name, Billy and Francine walk over. Lee hands the picture to Billy.) Look at this.
(Billy puts on his glasses and stares at it. Francine glances at it and sighs.)
Francine: You know, I have read so many bulletins on this guy I feel like I already know him.
Amanda: Was I mugged by a well-known person?
Billy: You're right, Lee. It is Karlo. How'd he come up?
Lee: He was at Amanda's home a few hours after he tried to take her shopping bag. Now, we are working on the possibility that Amanda had something that he was after.
Amanda: Who is he?
(Lee takes the paper and looks at it.)
Lee: He's a middle man for agents selling high value items to the Middle East. He arranges drops, guarantees pickups and deliveries and takes a cut from both sides. There's a lot of distrust in this system. This man (he taps the paper) furnishes a kind of insurance to both the buyers and the sellers.
Amanda: What does he want with me?
Lee: Well, that's what we're trying to work out.
(He gestures toward the toys. Amanda nods.)
(Francine returns to the other two men to finish her job. Billy thinks aloud.)
Billy: I wonder what Karlo had to do with Hadj's murder. They both worked the same game.
Lee: He's a good candidate.
(Amanda picks up her coat and purse and stands.)
Amanda: I'm ready to go home now, please.
(Lee quickly picks up his coat and goes after her as she heads for the door.)
Lee: Uh, Amanda.
(Amanda does not slow down or look back.)
Lee: I'm sorry. You're being provided with the best security there is in the business.
(Amanda stops with her hand on the doorknob and sighs.)
Amanda: Yes, I know.
Lee: For you both and your family.
Amanda: Yes, I know.
Billy: Lee? (Lee and Amanda look up in unison.) I'd give my pension to see Karlo put away. Now, you use whatever we've got and ask for whatever you need.
Amanda: Please be careful with those presents. (Lee reaches behind her to open the door. She nods to Billy.) Goodbye, sir.
Billy: Goodbye, Amanda.
(Amanda leaves, followed by Lee. Lee closes the door after them.)
(Keene's shop. The place is closed. Man2 and a new partner stop at the door and peer inside. Seeing no one, they look at each other and walk briskly back onto the sidewalk and around the corner into an alley.)
(In the shop's back room, Keene is neatening up. Karlo and the other man are nowhere to be seen.)
(Once in the alley, they draw their guns and approach the back door to the book shop. Man2 knocks on it.)
(Inside, Keene does not look up.)
Keene: Hello! We're closed -- closed!
(Man2 knocks again, harder this time.)
(Keene straightens up fearfully and runs his hand through his hair.
He walks to the door. As soon as he opens it, he gets a gun pointed at
Keene: I said we're -- (He stops when he sees the gun. He adjusts his glasses.) I'll bet you have some questions.
Man2: Right. And no patience at all.
(Man2 steps up and joins Keene in the doorway. They walk inside, followed by the new partner. Forcing Keene ahead of him, Man2 goes to the back room.)
Keene: Well, I - I was just, um. . . . I was just going to, uh. . . . I was -- I was just, um . . . uh. . . . You see, I - I have a very low pain threshold. Um . . . here. (He reaches into his pocket and pulls out a notebook. He holds it out to the men.) Take notes, and - and start where you like.
Man2: Where'd Karlo go?
Keene: After the book. Some woman's got it, but here. I'll - I'll write down the address for you. (He produces a pen and starts to write, then looks up.) Do you need a street guide? (The men just stare silently. Keene writes on the paper.) I mean, uh, anything at all. Shoot. (He stops and looks back up at the two men with guns.) I didn't mean. . . . Uh, I meant . . . ask. Uh, instead of sh - shoot.
(He finally shuts up and writes.)
(On the street in front of Amanda's house, a truck full of "workers,"
is parked and men with hard hats are hanging around nearby. A worker removes
a tripod from the back of the truck and sets it up facing Amanda's house.
He takes a walkie-talkie from his jacket and raises the antenna. Glancing
around, he speaks into it.)
Worker: Check one.
(Another worker in a raised platform also speaks into an identical radio.)
Worker: Check two.
(The first man slides the antenna back into the walkie-talkie and clips it to his vest, then he goes back to work angling the camera just right.)
(Inside the kitchen, Amanda is mopping furiously. Dotty runs into
the kitchen wearing a coat, dirtying the freshly cleaned floor. She slides.)
Dotty: Oh! I'm running --
Amanda: Ooh! Mo--
(Dotty carefully tiptoes around the slippery floor and behind Amanda to the back door. Amanda chuckles and grins as she listens.)
Dotty: I'm running late. If I miss my appointment with Mr. Emilio, he will kill me.
(Dotty makes it to safe ground and bends over to pick up her things. Amanad returns to mopping.)
Amanda: Yes, Mother. Uh, look, I'm really sorry that I can't drive you, but this is the last chance I'll have to clean the house before the party.
(Dotty carefully walks back over to Amanda, who stops mopping and stands up.)
Dotty: Don't worry about it. I will take another driving lesson one of these days. Now think about Phillip's book. If you think about it -- hard -- you'll get it.
Amanda: Yes, Mother.
(Dotty looks down at the shiny floor.)
Dotty: Sorry about this.
Amanda: Go ahead.
(She motions to the doorway across the linoleum. Dotty briskly walks across.)
(Dotty is out of sight. Amanda again returns to mopping. She gradually slows down until she hears the front door close, when she stops completely. She drops the mop, grabs the counter, and peers down the hallway to make sure her mother is gone. She opens the lid to the bread box and takes out the book, still wrapped in the yellow plastic bag. Without opening it, Amanda crosses to the phone, picks up the receiver, and dials a number.)
(At the Agecny, Lee picks up a loudly ringing phone. He presses the
button and speaks into the receiver.)
Lee: Lee Stetson.
(Back home, Amanda grins broadly.)
Amanda: Hi, it's me. I just remembered the book.
Lee: The book?
Amanda: The one that Mother bought for Phillip. She'd already hidden it when I brought the other presents in to be checked out at the Agency, and so you haven't seen it and I just thought that maybe it might be important.
Lee: Well, I won't know till I run it through analysis. What is it, anyway?
Amanda: I don't know. It's supposed to be a surprise and Mother said that it was one of my favorite books when I was a kid.
Lee: The title, Amanda.
Amanda: I'd have to look at it. . . . But I . . . guess, under the circumstances, I. . . .
Amanda: I'll look at it.
(She pulls the book out of the plastic bag, loudly crinkling and crumpling the bag, then lifts the book to her gaze and stares at the tan cover in bewilderment.)
Lee: What is it?
Amanda (confused): Drought Cycles of Burma.
Lee: Your favorite book was Drought Cycles of Burma?
Amanda: No, of course not. This has to be a mistake. I mean, Mother must have picked it up by mistake. Gosh! (Suddenly she gasps.) Oh, that's it! Oh, that's got to be it! And she's having her hair done!
Lee: Wait, whoa, whoa, whoa. Whoa. I'm not following you.
Amanda: Lee, I've been worried because I thought that I should be protecting my home and myself, but, you know, uh, Karlo. I don't think he's after me, I think he's after my mother! And she just left the house, she's out there all alone.
Lee: Okay, okay, hold it. (He picks up a pad of paper and a pen.) Just tell me where.
Amanda: She's at Mr. Emilio's, 14th and Cleveland, I'll meet you there.
(With that she hangs up and heads for the door.)
(At Mr. Emilio's, Emilio, a big, burly guy, is checking on the customers.
He is looking over one woman's haircut. He smiles and nods.)
Emilio: Good, yeah. That's good.
(He pats the hairdresser on the back and continues on to the hair dryers, under one of which, Dotty is asleep with her glasses on. Emilio bends down and looks up at her face, then she slowly slides her glasses off and places them in her lap. He walks away to go see anybody else. Dotty is still asleep under the very large and very noisy hair dryer.)
(Outside, Karlo and Ramad are waiting in their car. After a quick
nod to the other man, Karlo opens the door on his side and gets out onto
the sidewalk. Across the street, Lee and Amanda are watching Karlo from
Lee's parked Porsche.)
Lee: Hold it. (As they watch intently, Karlo passes some shops and opens the door to Emilio's, entering. Lee leans over to Amanda.) Now you stay here, you got that?
(Lee gets out of the car and casually crosses the street after Karlo. Amanda watches. The instant Lee opens the door to the salon, she opens the door and climbs out onto the street. Abandoning casual, she races to the door after Lee.)
(Inside, as Lee opens the door and looks around in the background,
Karlo has extracted a knife from his jacket and gets it ready in his hand.
He advances on Dotty, still fast asleep. He walks right up behind her,
followed by Lee, followed by Amanda. Just before Karlo lowers his knife
to Dotty's head, Lee calls out, his own pistol aimed right at Karlo.)
Lee: Karlo. (Karlo turns, sees the pistol trained on him, and without warning, flings the knife toward Lee. Lee dodges to the side and the knife flies into the wall, just a little distance from Amanda, who winces. Karlo runs up to Lee and tackles him. They both fall to the ground, knocking over Emilio. The customers and staff in the salon scream and gasp as Karlo picks Lee to his feet and throws him against the wall, Dotty, oblivious to it all, is still in dreamland. But behind her, Karlo again throws Lee, this time into a glass window. Both men go crashing through it and the shards scatter everywhere. This time Lee gets to his feet first and picks up Karlo. Lee punches him in the stomach and throws him to the floor. Lee runs to Karlo to pull another move, but Karlo tackles Lee's ankles and brings him down. More people run out of the way. They pick each other up and Karlo uses his knee to kick Lee in the stomach. Lee cries out and doubles over, and Karlo throws him though another glass window. But Lee gets back to his feet and pulls the same knee move on Karlo, then does a high karate kick to Karlo's chin, sending him somersaulting backwards over a table. Karlo grabs the woman at the table and holds his knife, which is either a backup or he retrieved it, I'm not sure, inches from her neck. Lee's gun falters. Karlo and the woman inch to the door. When they get there, Karlo throws the girl aside into Lee's arms, and runs out the door to his waiting car. Even before he is inside, the engine starts up. Inside, Lee sets the woman back on her feet and runs after Karlo. But by the time he gets outside, the car is speeding away with squealing tires. Other cars follow behind it until it is impossible to pick out the right one. Amanda runs out of the hair salon and stands beside Lee.)
Amanda: Where is he?
Lee: I lost him.
Amanda: He's after my mother.
(She and Lee exchange worried glances.)
(Inside the salon, the staff memebers are busily working to sweep
up the shards of glass and other evidence of a fight. Dotty stirs and yawns.
She lifts open the hair dryer a crack and leans out.)
Dotty: Am I dry yet?
(One nearby worker stares at her, then rolls his eyes and walks away. Dotty just sits there, waiting expectantly for an answer.)
(Later, in Billy's office at IFF, Amanda is sitting in a blue chair
facing Billy's desk, where Billy is seated. Lee is crossing the room. Amanda
looks up at him nervously, then at Billy.)
Amanda: Are you sure my mother is going to be protected?
Lee: Yes, yes, by the very best men in the Agency.
Billy: At least we've nailed down a connection between Karlo and your mother. Now we need to know . . . why?
Lee: And it's not an Agency-related connection.
(Just then the door opens and Francine walks in with some papers and a huge grin. She walks right over to Lee.)
Francine: Drought Cycles of Burma just hit the bestsellers list down in Cryptography. (She shows Lee the papers.) Look. Microdot enlargements had the design of broadband filters, whatever they are.
Lee: They're filters that neutralize the close-combat laser-assault weapon.
Billy: That's high-priority technology. The East Bloc would pay a lot for it.
Francine: Crypto's still on the first chapter, but they say they expect a lot more.
Lee: That's the same kind of tech that Hadj dealt. Karlo, too.
Amanda: What am I going to tell my mother? Captain Galaxy's a pile of plastic, Phillip's book is a vital piece of national security, and I don't even know what the right book was so that I can get him another one.
Francine: The right book?
Amanda: Well, yeah, the book that my mother meant to buy, or that she did buy and got it got mixed up with another -- Well, you know, I mean. . . . I should be able to figure this out. She said it was one of my favorites, and it's about animals. . . . (She closes her eyes and thinks. Lee, Billy, and Francine are all staring at her. Lee sighs and rolls his eyes. Suddenly, Amanda grins.) Oh! (She laughs.) Sky Chief Rides Again. Oh, Lee. It has to be Sky Chief Rides Again! It's about a horse and Phillip loves horses and I loved horses. Oh. (She sits up, her eyes wide.) And I bet they have another one at that bookstore!
(Billy leans forward in his chair.)
Billy: Amanda, I'll get you another copy. I have to see Mr. Keene very shortly.
Amanda: Thank you, sir. I'll need it by two o'clock tomorrow. (She looks up at Lee.) Just like Captain Galaxy.
(Lee glares, then clenches his teeth and nods politely. He looks to Billy.)
(On a busy street, Karlo and Ramad pull up their car and park by the curb. They get out. Karlo gets a gun in his hand and holds it again his jacket. He opens the door to a van parked nearby. He gets in beside the driver and holds his gun up. Meanwhile, Ramad shows up at the other window and points his gun in from that direction. The driver looks from one barrel to the other.)
(At the same time, Lee is driving Amanda home in his Porsche. They
are stuck in heavy, slow-moving traffic. Lee glances over at Amanda in
the passenger's seat, silent.)
Lee: Hey, are you okay?
(She looks up, startled.)
Amanda: Hmm? Oh. Yeah, I think so, just worried about my family. I mean, we've got a dangerous spy after us and it's all because of a book.
Lee: Yeah, well, that book is very important, Amanda.
Amanda: Well, sometimes I get the feeling that people get a little lost at the Agency. You know what I mean? Everybody is so concerned with, um, spies and stolen formulas and secrets that, well, I don't know, sometimes it just starts to seem like it's a . . . game.
Lee: Yeah, well, that game gets pretty serious at times. (Amanda nods.) We can play it like a game, but we know it's just a cleaner battlefield.
(Amanda looks away, bothered by this new mood. Finally, she breaks the silence and changes the subject.)
Amanda: You know, I think if we take one of the side streets, we'll go a lot faster.
Lee: Yeah, you're right.
(Looking around, he turns onto a little neighborhood street.)
(Keene's Book Shop. In the back room, Keene is packing some clothes
into a suitcase when there is a loud knocking on the metal door, the same
one that the two men entered in earlier. Keene stops and looks up. The
knocking continues. Keene wipes his brow, adjusts his glasses, and walks
over to open the door. When he opens it, Billy flashes an ID in his face.
There are also two other men there. Keene reads the ID, then looks up.)
Keene: I-I'm in big trouble, right? (Billy nods. Keene nods, too, understanding.) Right.
(One of the other men, a large white-haired man that sort of looks like my school superindendant, speaks to the man behind him.)
Man: Okay, come in.
(Keene leads them into his back room, with Billy right behind him and the others at the end. When they reach the room, Keene leans against the wall while Billy and the men look around.)
Keene: Okay, uh, I know my rights, so just tell me where to start. (He points to his desk.) Do you need my tape recorder?
(Billy walks over to the desk, then turns around and faces him.)
Billy: We've got three ways to go. We can put you away for twenty years, we can leak information that you're our man, which should get you killed in a hurry, or then there's the third option.
Keene: I'll, uh, I'll take it.
Billy: I know you will. You're working for us.
Keene: Me? Working with -- with, uh, you guys?
Billy: We know you, Keene. You give slime a bad name.
Keene: Well --
Billy: We don't trust you, but we think you'll play it straight with us. You're a survivor, and you know we'll protect you. You simply have more to gain with us. There's also the redeeming quality of working with your country instead of against it. There's even a chance we might find a human being in you, somewhere. (He walks up to Keene and looks him in the eye.) You're under protective surveillance, right now.
Keene: Good, good.
Billy: I'll send in a team to brief you as to what we expect. (Keene nods. Billy starts for the door, then stops and turns around.) Oh. Get me a copy of Sky Chief Rides Again.
(Keene nods. Billy and the other men leave.)
Keene: Sky Chief . . . Rides. . . . (He pulls a small notepad out of his pocket and opens it. He shrugs.) Again.
(Outside Amanda's house, the road has been partially blocked off
by the workers, who are standing around, talking. A blue car drives past
and around the corner, parking at a neighbor house. When the park, they
dark blue van that Karlo and his friend hijacked comes around the corner
and slowly goes past the road blocks toward Amanda's house. In the car,
Karlo, who is driving, gives instructions to Ramad.)
Karlo: You better go to the door, she might recognize me. As soon as she answers the door, I'll follow right behind.
(The other man soaks up this information. Karlo pulls the car into Amanda's driveway while the workers watch. The passenger door opens and Ramad gets out, leaving his door open a tiny crack behind him. He walks up the pathway. In the blue car that pulled up right before Karlo, Man2 and his brand new partner are watching him.)
Man2: That's Ramad, Karlo's partner. They can save us from work.
(Ramad walks up the path to the door, being watched by Karlo, the workers, and Man2.)
(Inside, Dotty is running the electric mixer with the TV on, obscuring any noise.)
(Just then, Lee's Porsche appears on Amanda's street. They look at
Lee: Are you having cable installed?
(Lee picks up a walkie-talkie and speaks into it.)
Lee: Watchover, this is Scarecrow. The van in the drive is a possible security leak. Check it.
(The watching worker hears the message and removes a gun from his pocket. He turns to Ramad.)
Worker: Excuse me, sir! Hold it!
(When Ramad turns, the worker fires and everyone jumps out of the way for the returning fire. Ramad runs back to the van, shooting all the time. Karlo shoots from his window and the workers all shoot back.)
(Inside, Dotty does not hear a thing over her TV and her mixing.)
(Outside, the blue van is backing out into the street. The workers
continue firing until the van speeds out of sight, the tires squealing
all the way. When the van goes past Man2 and his partner, they follow after
it, not wanting an instant replay. Lee spots them and executes a sharp
turn to follow them.)
Lee: Hold on, here we go.
(Amanda shuts her eyes tight. Lee goes after the van and the car, and is followed by a couple of the workers in their tan pickup.)
(Dotty turns off the mixer and picks up a container and a spoon, her eyes transfixed to the TV screen.)
(The parade of spiesturns the corner one by one and come out on an
empty street. Man2's partner leans out his window and fires ahead at Karlo
and Ramad. The back doors of the van open, revealing the real driver, who
is tied up and gagged, and Ramad, who fires back, hitting the windshield.
Lee follows behind, keeping a close eye on both vehicles. Ramad keeps firing
at the windshield until there are so many cracks that the two men can't
see the road. They crash into some road blocks and flip in the air, landing
upside down on a mound of dirt. Lee glances at this as he zooms past, on
his way to catch up to Karlo. In his car, Karlo holds up one thumb and
smiles grimly. The pickup truck screeches to a halt by the upside down
car and the workers jump out with pistols aimed at the car.)
Worker: Hold it! Get out of the car. Hands up! Get against the car. Move it!
(They run over and grab the men as they are crawling out and shove them facefirst against the outside of the car. Meanwhile, Lee is still chasing Karlo. The van's doors are still hanging open and Ramad is shooting at Lee, but missing. The cars go around a sharp turn and Ramad is thrown from the van. He rolls on the ground, past the Porsche. Amanda gasps as she watches. Lee takes a quick peek, then slams on the gas and continues his chase. Karlo looks behind him, then sighs and shakes his head. He turns back to the front and goes around another corner onto a street with lots of people and parked cars. Lee follows the same way. The van turns another corner onto a residential street. Lee screeches to a stop in the middle of the street.)
Amanda: It's a cul-de-sac!
(They see the van stop abruptly.)
Lee: Take cover.
(He and Amanda get out of the car. Amanda runs for safety behind a tree and Lee crouches behind his car. They both watch the van back up and turn around, then stop. Karlo leans out his window and fires at Lee. Amanda ducks behind the tree. As the van starts up again and heads straight for him, Lee shoots. The van veers around and the tires squeal. Amanda runs onto a nearby lawn and bends over to reach for something. Lee continues firing.The van drives up over the curb and onto the yards, going toward Amanda. She picks up a running water hose and sprays at the windshield as the van passes by her. Karlo can't see out the windshield and crashes through a picket fence and a car parked on the street, narrowly missing Lee's Porsche. When the van stops, Lee runs up to the driver's side and opens the door.)
Lee: All right, pal. End of the line. Come on. (He shoves Karlo against the van. Amanda runs over and Lee grins at her.) See? We got him.
(Amanda applauds. The bound driver hops out and watches. Lee shakes his head and catches his breath.)
(The next day at Phillip's birthday party, the King living room is
brightly decorated with streamers and balloons. The boys are all wearing
colorful party hats and cheer when Dotty carries the cake out. Amanda stands
up to help her. Very carfeully, they set it down on the table before Phillip.)
Dotty: Now make a big wish.
(Phillip takes a deep breath and blows hard. All the candles go out and everybody cheers.)
Amanda: Happy birthday!
Phillip: All right! I'm digging in!
(Dotty turns to Amanda and lowers her voice.)
Dotty: You know, he was so good about not getting Captain Galaxy, it made me even want to feel worse.
(Phillip picks up a big slice and sets it on a plate.)
Amanda: Mother, look, they're all having a good time and that's all that matters.
(She puts her arm around Dotty's shoulders.)
Dotty: And Sky Chief? I could have sworn that I put it in that present. I could have sworn!
Amanda: Well --
Dotty: I called the shop, and they said the last copy is gone, someone took it.
Amanda: I think they need more lemonade, I'll get it for them.
(She walks away to the kitchen and Dotty looks at Phillip's huge slice.)
Dotty: Oh, honey, honey! Oh, my gosh, way too big!
(They boys all laugh as Dotty uses a knife to trim down his slice. At the refrigerator, Amanda has the pitcher in her hands when she hears a voice from outside.)
Lee: Psst! Amanda! Psst!
(Amanda smiles nervously and closes the refrigerator door. She slowly inches sideways to the back door, still holding the lemonade. Finally, she is out of sight from the birthday party. She opens the door, sets the pitcher down on a table, and steps outside, quietly closing the door behind her.)
Amanda: Hi. (Lee hands her a wrapped, rectangular present. Amanda gasps and takes it.) Captain Galaxy!
Lee: I said I would.
Amanda: Yeah. How'd you do it?
Lee: Well, the manufacturers are in Taiwan, so it was just a matter of getting one of these to the naval air station in Guam, an air force transport brought it to the Bulling Air Base, and the rest was easy. (Amanda chuckles. Suddenly Lee remembers and hands her something else, something small.) Oh, and, uh. . . .
(She takes the package and sighs.)
Both: Sky Chief Rides Again.
(Lee laughs. Amanda glances toward the door.)
Amanda: Well, I wish I could ask you in for a piece of cake.
Lee: Well, just save me a piece.
Amanda: I will.
Lee: Oh! I didn't mention it before, but you know that bit with the sprinkler and the hose?
(Amanda shrugs sheepishly.)
Lee: That was all right.
Amanda: It was?
Lee: Yeah, your reaction time was pretty good, you thought right on your feet there.
Amanda: You were glad I was there.
Lee: Well, I. . . .
Amanda: I was glad I was there.
(Lee grins.) Lee: Yeah.
(Amanda nods to the noisy house.)
Amanda: Gotta go.
(Amanda turns to go back inside, then stop. She turns around.)