"Chopsticks" - screenplay by Derek Paterson.

       FADE IN:

       INT. DINER - DAY

       A greasy plastic spoon overlooking a busy city street.

       GEORGE and MARIANNE, 20s, slide into a booth.  He's Irish
       handsome with a charmer's smile, she's blonde and pretty.
       They look like they've been in a Die Hard movie, his suit's
       torn, his lip's split, her dress is ripped, she presses
       napkins to her bleeding nose.

       A WAITRESS comes to the table.  She looks from George to
       Marianne, wondering what hit them.

                             MARIANNE
                 Cad I hab sub more nabkins?

       The Waitress grabs a handful of napkins from another
       dispenser.  Marianne tilts her head back.

                             MARIANNE
                 Dank yoo.

                             WAITRESS
                 Rest room's through there if you
                 want to wash up.

       Marianne rises and exits to the rest room.

                             WAITRESS
                 Anything I get you?  Coffee?
                 Breakfast?  A doctor?

       George winces in pain, and spits out a tooth.  It bounces
       across the table.

                             GEORGE
                 Two coffees.  Make mine black.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       Marianne examines her bruised face in the mirror.

       She frowns and feels under her armpit.  Her fingers come
       away slick with blood.

       She opens her purse.  Takes out a bunch of keys, a silver
       compact mirror, a pair of red lace panties, a rattling
       bottle of pills, a .38 caliber pistol.


       INT. DARK STAIRWELL - DAY

       Marianne and George stand back to back.  He's holding a
       pistol and shooting upstairs, Marianne's shooting
       downstairs.

       BLAM!  A CHINESE GUNMAN on the landing below staggers, hit
       in the chest.  He collapses leaving a stain on the wall.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       Marianne counts on her fingers.  One.


       INT. DARK STAIRWELL - DAY

       ANOTHER CHINESE GUNMAN leaps into view, his gun BLAZING at
       Marianne.

       BULLETS thud into the wall close to Marianne's head.  She
       shoots back!

       The Gunman collapses and tumbles downstairs.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       Marianne counts on her fingers.  Two.


       INT. DARK STAIRWELL - DAY

       George urges Marianne to descend.  All the time he's
       shooting upstairs at unseen targets, and they're shooting
       back at him, peeling plaster from the walls.

       A THIRD CHINESE GUNMAN rises and takes aim at Marianne.
       She shoots him through the head, he spins out of sight.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       Marianne still counting, three.


       INT. DARK LANDING - DAY

       George and Marianne step over bodies, and duck into--


       INT. DARK HALLWAY - DAY

       Marianne leads the way, George brings up the rear.

       A GUNMAN lurches into view ahead, his gun BLAZING.  Marianne
       drops to one knee and shoots him twice.  He staggers and
       falls, dead.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       Marianne counts, four and five.


       INT. HALLWAY - DAY

       A door opens and another CHINESE GUNMAN shoots, Marianne
       throws herself to one side, slaming off the door frame
       (this is where she breaks her nose).

       The Gunman and Marianne both shoot at the same time.  His
       bullet kicks off an explosion of wood splinters that peppers
       her side.  Her bullet punches a hole through his heart.
       He clutches his chest and collapses.

       George helps Marianne stand up.

       Angry Chinese voices echo through the building.  Closing
       in.

                             GEORGE
                 You okay?

                             MARIANNE
                 I hurd by dose.

       He takes a handkie from his pocket, holds it to her nose.
       She takes it and nods thanks.  They hurry along the hallway.


       INT. DINER REST ROOM - DAY

       She inspects her nose in the mirror.

                             MARIANNE
                 Four left in the magazine. You're
                 only dead when you're out of
                 bullets.  Remember that.

       Bleeding's stopped.


       INT. JIMMY'S OFFICE - DAY

       JIMMY is 50s, a heavyset Chinese with a ravine-like scar
       that runs from his hairline to his jaw, cleaver damage.
       His desk is cluttered with statuettes, souvenirs, glass
       snow globes with miniature landmarks and figures inside,
       little wind-up toys.

       Marianne sits facing him, clean and fresh and undamaged.

                             JIMMY
                 Mr. Wong is a special customer. I
                 want him to be happy.  Thing is,
                 he's got special needs.

       He lights a cigarette.  The smoke wreathes his face.

                             JIMMY
                 But that's okay because you like
                 guys like that, don't you?

                             MARIANNE
                 Do I?

                             JIMMY
                 Don't play coy with me.

       He shoves a fat envelope across his desk, pushing a tiny
       Statue of Liberty and a clockwork Mickey Mouse aside.

                             JIMMY
                 Five grand says you give him the
                 time of his life.  If he wants to
                 watch you have sex with horse and
                 a pig, you have sex with horse and
                 a pig.  Got it?

                             MARIANNE
                 Is that the kind of guys you do
                 business with?  Animal lovers?

                             JIMMY
                 I don't know what he likes, I just
                 know he likes it kinky.  Sammy the
                 Fish says that's your thing.

                             MARIANNE
                 Sammy the Fish... huh.

                             JIMMY
                 Is Sammy wrong?

                             MARIANNE
                 No.

                             JIMMY
                 If Mr. Wong goes back to Shanghai
                 not happy, some people will be
                 displeased with me.  If that happens
                 I will be displeased with you.
                 Tell me you understand.

                             MARIANNE
                 Maybe it would help if you drew
                 pictures.

                             JIMMY
                 Sammy the Fish said you got a smart
                 mouth.  We're alone so I'll let it
                 go.  But if any of my people heard
                 you talk to me like that, I'd
                 personally cut your tits off.
                 After that you may find work hard
                 to come by... though I understand
                 there are always perverts who like
                 mutilated whores.

       Marianne takes the envelope, slips it into her purse.

                             MARIANNE
                 When and where?

                             JIMMY
                 Go back to your apartment and wait.
                 Someone will pick you up.  I want
                 you there no later than ten tonight.
                 Just do what you're being paid to
                 do, all right?

       Marianne stands up.

                             MARIANNE
                 I'll give Mr. Wong the time of his
                 life.  You can depend on it.

                             JIMMY
                 Smart girl.

       She exits.  Jimmy stares at the door, real thoughtful.


       INT. DINER - DAY

       The Waitress brings two cups of coffee.

                             GEORGE
                 You got a phone?

       She indicates the payphone.


       INT. PAYPHONE - DINER - DAY

       George punches a number.  RINGING.  A CLICK followed by--

                             MAN'S VOICE (FILTERED)
                 You're talking to a machine you
                 dumbass.  Leave your number I'll
                 call you back.

                             GEORGE (INTO PHONE)
                 Sammy, where the hell are you?
                 You said you'd be here dammit.

       OUTSIDE THE DINER

       A sedan pulls up.  SIX CHINESE MEN climb out.  The leader
       is a man-mountain called IRON FIST PANG.  They head toward
       the diner, splitting up.

       George hangs up and hurries to the rear of the diner.


       INT. TOILET STALL - DAY

       Marianne sits with her panties around her ankles, examining
       her face in her compact mirror.

       A TAPPING on the door.

                             MARIANNE
                 This one's taken.

                             GEORGE (O.S.)
                 We got trouble out here.


       INT. DINER - DAY

       Iron Fist Pang faces the Waitress across the counter.  She
       isn't sure what to make of this mountain of inscrutable
       muscle, or the two unsmiling men behind him.

                             WAITRESS
                 Three breakfast specials?

                             IRON FIST PANG
                 A blonde woman.  And a man.  Where
                 are they?

       Her frightened eyes flick to the empty table.  Iron Fist
       Pang sees the two coffee cups.  His eyes flick to the door
       at the back of the diner.


       INT. DINER REAR HALLWAY - DAY

       Marianne and George run toward the exit, looking back over
       their shoulders.

       The exit SLAMS open, a grinning CHINESE GUNMAN brings up
       his pistol.  Marianne kicks the door, it SLAMS his face!
       She ducks and George shoots through the door, BLAM BLAM
       BLAM!

       Marianne wrenches the door open, jumps over the dead
       Gunman's body.  George turns back--


       INT. DINER - DAY

       Iron Fist Pang runs at the rear door -- CRASH! -- takes it
       off its hinges, barrels inside.


       INT. DINER REAR HALLWAY - DAY

       Iron Fist Pang holds the door like a shield and charges
       like a mad rhino.  George's eyes widen--


       EXT. DINER BACK ALLEY - DAY

       Marianne skids to a stop beside a parked sedan.  She tries
       the door, it's locked.  She pulls out a big nail file from
       her purse, POP, the door's open.


       INT. SEDAN - DAY

       She climbs into the driver's seat, looks back--


       EXT. DINER BACK ALLEY - DAY

       George comes sailing out the diner's rear exit and lands
       in a heap.


       INT. SEDAN - DAY

       Marianne hot-wires the sedan in record time.  The engine
       coughs and splutters and turns over.


       EXT. DINER REAR EXIT - DAY

       Iron Fist Pang throws the broken door away.  He looks down
       at George, who wonders where the hell he is.


       INT. SEDAN - DAY

       Marianne looks ahead.  Her eyes widen.


       EXT. DINER ALLEY ENTRANCE - DAY

       Two Chinese gunmen block the alley, armed and ready.


       INT. SEDAN - DAY

       Marianne slams into reverse and floors the gas!


       EXT. DINER BACK ALLEY - DAY

       The sedan burns rubber, heading for the door.

       Iron Fist Pang's eyes widen--

       George sees the sedan coming and scrambles for his life,
       but the sedan side-slaps him and he takes another tumble.

       Iron Fist Pang leaps back inside an instant before the
       sedan SLAMS into the doorway.  The trunk springs open.


       INT. DINER REAR HALLWAY - DAY

       Confusion as Iron Fist Pang and his men are blocked by the
       sedan and the open trunk.


       INT. SEDAN - DAY

       Marianne leans over and throws the passenger door open.

                             MARIANNE
                 Get in!

       George dives in.


       EXT. ALLEY ENTRANCE - DAY

       The two Chinese gunmen take aim.


       INT. SEDAN -DAY

       Marianne licks her lips.  George looks at her.

                             GEORGE
                 What are you waiting for?


       EXT. DINER REAR EXIT - DAY

       Iron Fist Pang and his men climb out over the back of the
       sedan.  His men aim their guns at George.

       Marianne rolls down her window.  Aims her pistol at Iron
       Fist Pang's belly.

                             MARIANNE
                 It's me you want.  Here's the deal.
                 You let him go, I stay.

       Iron Fist Pang thinks about it... and nods.

                             GEORGE
                 There has to be another way.

                             MARIANNE
                 If there was, I'd take it.

       Marianne dangles her pistol by the trigger guard, offering
       it to Iron Fist Pang.  He takes it.

       Marianne and George reluctantly climb out.

       Iron Fist Pang grabs Marianne and his men beat the crap
       out of George, kicking him a dozen times.  George sinks to
       his knees.

                             MARIANNE
                 Son of a bitch!

                             IRON FIST PANG
                 Mr. Chan wants to see you both.

       His signals to his men.  They pick George up.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Floodlights reveal an impressive property set in the middle
       of walled grounds.


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY HOSUE - NIGHT

       Marianne stands at the windows looking out.  She wears a
       high collared Chinese silk dress.  She nurses a martini.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUB HOUSE - NIGHT

       Car headlights approach the house.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE ENTRANCE - NIGHT

       A big sedan stops and Iron Fist Pang climbs out.  He opens
       the back door and MR. WONG, 60s, steps out.  Wong exudes
       power and cruelty.  He's accompanied by a YOUNG MAN, also
       Chinese, who carries a silver metal briefcase attached to
       his wrist by a chain.


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Marianne sips her martini as doors open downstairs and
       people enter the house.  VOICES speak in Chinese.  Then,
       RAPID FOOTSTEPS on the stairs.

       Marianne turns as Wong, Iron Fist Pang and the Young Man
       enter.  The Young Man grins stupidly.  Iron Fist Pang slaps
       the back of his head.

       The Young Man puts the case down on the coffee table.
       Wong unlocks the chain cuff.  Iron Fist Pang and the Young
       Man go back downstairs.  The Young Man looks back over his
       shoulder at Marianne.  Iron Fist Pang slaps the back of
       his head.

                             WONG
                 They told me you were beautiful.
                 I'm pleased to say they were right.

       Marianne bows from the waist.

                             MARIANNE
                 I am yours to do with as you will.

                             WONG
                 I like a woman who knows her place.
                 Loosen my tie and take it off.

       Marianne loosens his tie and takes it off.

                             WONG
                 Don't lose it, we're going to use
                 it later.  Take off my jacket and
                 hang it up in the bedroom.

       Marianne takes off his jacket and exits to the bedroom.
       Wong sits down on the couch, makes himself comfortable.
       The suitcase attracts his attention.  He sits up, turns
       the case around, unlocks it and opens it.  Whatever's inside
       makes him smile.

       Marianne enters.  Wong snaps the case shut.

                             WONG
                 Get me a drink.

                             MARIANNE
                 What would you like?

                             WONG
                 Scotch rocks.

       Marianne goes to the drinks cabinet and pours.  She gives
       him the glass.  He sips it while he stares at her.

                             WONG
                 How much are you being paid?

                             MARIANNE
                 Five thousand dollars.  But I don't
                 do it for the money.

                             WONG
                 Oh?  Then why--?

                             MARIANNE
                 I do it because I have to.

                             WONG
                 Because you have to... interesting.
                 I don't believe I've heard that
                 one before.  Tell me why you have
                 to.

                             MARIANNE
                 I really don't care to discuss it.
                 It has to do with an incident in
                 my childhood.

                             WONG
                 You will discuss it because I say
                 so.  Was it a relative?

       Marianne hesitates, licking her lips.  And then...

                             MARIANNE
                 A close family friend.

                             WONG
                 What age were you at the time?

                             MARIANNE
                 Fourteen.

                             WONG
                 And he did what to you?

                             MARIANNE
                 He seduced me.

                             WONG
                 Does that mean he had sex with
                 you?

                             MARIANNE
                 No, he didn't have sex with me.

       Wong stares at her, waiting.

                             MARIANNE
                 He kissed me and told me how pretty
                 I was.  He said he couldn't keep
                 his eyes off me because I was so
                 attractive.

                             WONG
                 How did you feel about that?

                             MARIANNE
                 Confused.  Flattered.  I don't
                 know.  Excited.

                             WONG
                 And then...?

                             MARIANNE
                 And then he touched me.  He drew
                 me close and hugged me.  I still
                 had my clothes on, it didn't seem
                 wrong.  He'd hugged me before, at
                 birthday parties, Thanksgiving,
                 Christmas.  When other people were
                 there.

                             WONG
                 But this time it was different.

                             MARIANNE
                 This time he didn't let go, and I
                 didn't want him to.  I liked his
                 warmth.  I liked his smell.  I
                 liked the way his fingers moved
                 slowly up and down my back.  I
                 liked the way he wasn't treating
                 me like a little girl any more.

                             WONG
                 Go on.

                             MARIANNE
                 We sat down on a couch and he kissed
                 me some more.  Then he asked me if
                 I would like to do something for
                 him.  I wasn't sure what he meant
                 but he brought out this box.  It
                 was full of clothes.  Not clothes,
                 underwear.  Silk, satin, lace.
                 The stuff my mom put on when she
                 was going out.  With one of her
                 special boyfriends.

                             WONG
                 What you're wearing under your
                 dress now.

                             MARIANNE
                 Yes.  And there were shoes.
                 Beautiful high-heeled shoes that
                 made me look a lot taller, a lot
                 older.

                             WONG
                 Did he ask you to put them on?

                             MARIANNE
                 He asked me which ones I liked
                 best.  They were beautiful to look
                 at and to touch.  He stood me in
                 front of a full-length mirror and
                 told me how lovely I would look if
                 I wore them.  Then he went
                 downstairs.  I guess he was leaving
                 the decision up to me.

                             WONG
                 The decision?

                             MARIANNE
                 I was only fourteen but I wasn't
                 dumb.  I saw how turned on my
                 mother's boyfriends were when they
                 lifted up her dress and saw what
                 she had on underneath.  They went
                 nuts, only she was in control.
                 Now I had the chance to drive
                 someone crazy.  I had a chance to
                 be in control.

       She shifts the coffee table so she can step in front of
       Wong.  She puts her hands on her hips and exposes a leg
       through the long dress slit.  He stares at her, totally
       mesmerized.

                             MARIANNE
                 I picked out black lace panties
                 and bra, and seamed silk stockings,
                 and black heels.  When I put them
                 on and looked in the mirror I hardly
                 recognized myself.  I wasn't a
                 little girl any more.  I was a
                 woman, ready to please a man who'd
                 already admitted to finding me
                 attractive.  I opened the bedroom
                 door, went out into the hall and
                 walked downstairs, very slowly,
                 very seductively.

       She climbs onto Wong's lap, straddling him.  He gulps hard.
       She nuzzles against his neck.  Wong has problems breathing.

                             MARIANNE
                 When I got downstairs I found him
                 in the kitchen with his wife.
                 She'd just come in with bags of
                 groceries.  She looked at me,
                 standing half-naked in her hallway.
                 Then she started screaming.  She
                 grabbed my hair and dragged me
                 upstairs, shouting at me, slapping
                 me and calling me a tramp.  He
                 tried to stop her, tried to calm
                 her down, but it was too late for
                 that.  She took me into the bedroom,
                 threw me onto the bed, took off
                 her belt and started whipping me.
                 She was crazy, crazy fucking
                 bonkers.  I thought she was going
                 to kill me.

       Marianne picks up Wong's tie and circles it around his
       neck.  She pulls it tight.  He chokes but doesn't pull it
       off.  She closes her eyes again and whispers into his ear.

                             MARIANNE
                 And that was when I saw him in the
                 doorway, watching.  His hand was
                 down inside his pants.  That was
                 when it happened.  His beautiful
                 wife was beating me, her leather
                 belt was slapping against my thighs,
                 my belly, my breasts, leaving hot
                 red welts.  Her husband was gasping
                 and leaning against the door frame,
                 hardly able to stand up.  Everything
                 suddenly burst inside my head and
                 I was in Heaven.  And that was the
                 day I became a whore.

       She stops, opens her eyes.  Wong sits absolutely still,
       eyes open, staring at a point above her head.

                             MARIANNE
                 Holy shit.


       INT. ROMANO'S OFFICE - DAY

       ROMANO is big, dangerous, 50s.  He's eating a roast beef
       sandwich while LUCILLE, a barely legal but well-endowed
       redhead, perches on his knee and smiles.

                             ROMANO
                 Think of it a test.  You pass,
                 you're one of my guys.

       He's talking to George, some hours before George got run
       over and shot at.  George is wide-eyed alert and sitting
       up straight in his chair, like an eager-to-please schoolkid.

                             ROMANO
                 Wha'd'ya think, Lucille?  Is George
                 gonna pass the test?

       Lucille frowns, giving the question serious consideration.

                             LUCILLE
                 I think George can do anything he
                 puts his mind to.

       Romano scowls.  Lucille shrugs, "You did ask."

                             GEORGE
                 So I find Veronica and I get your
                 money and I bring it back here.

                             ROMANO
                 That's right, that's all you got
                 to do.

                             GEORGE
                 Can I shoot him?

                             ROMANO
                 Why would you want to shoot him?

                             GEORGE
                 You said Veronica thinks it's his
                 money.  He thinks that, he isn't
                 just going to give it up.

                             ROMANO
                 You gotta talk to him, make him
                 see sense.

                             GEORGE
                 You really think a six-four, three
                 hundred pound transvestite is going
                 to see sense?

                             ROMANO
                 If I wanted blood shed I'd send my
                 boys round.  I don't want that.
                 Veronica and me do business.  This
                 is just a misunderstanding.  I
                 want you to subtract the "miss"
                 and leave the "understanding."
                 Okay?

                             GEORGE
                 Okay.

       George stands up and heads for the door.  Lucille gives
       him a little wave.  Romano slaps her hand down.

                             ROMANO
                 'Course, you don't pass the test,
                 I don't want to see you again.
                 Ever.  You got that?

                             GEORGE
                 Okay.

       George exits.


       INT. WESTERN THEME BAR - DAY

       A DRUNK COWBOY sits at the bar, happily smiling to himself
       as he waves a finger in time to piped country music.  He
       picks up a glass, empties it.  Adds it to the impressive
       collection of empty glasses already lining the bar.

       He leans forward to confide in the unsmiling BARTENDER...

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 I like this place.  Nice atmosphere.

       He reaches into his shirt pocket, pulls out a wad of money.
       He peels off a 100 and tosses it onto the counter.

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 Plenty more where that came from.
                 You bet.  Yeah.

       He stuffs the wad back inside his pocket.  He puts his
       hands on the bar, pushes himself up off his stool.  Gets
       dizzy.  He sits down again.

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 One more for the road.  Then I'm
                 outta here.  Yeah.  Heading north.
                 Got people waiting for me.

       He beckons the Bartender closer.  A conspiring whisper--

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 Can't tell you about it.  But it's
                 big.  Real big.

       He slaps his shirt pocket.

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 Bigger'n this.  Bigger'n you and
                 me.  It's too big.

       TWO MEN join Drunk Cowboy.  He looks from one man to the
       other, and smiles.  They don't smile back.  They're big
       and mean, Redneck Mafia.

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 Buy you boys a drink?

                             REDNECK #1
                 You're supposed to be on your way.

       Drunk Cowboy holds up a set of keys, attached to a lucky
       rabbit's foot.

                             DRUNK COWBOY
                 Just going.  I'm just going.

       Redneck #2 puts a six-shooter to the back of Drunk Cowboy's
       head, and thumbs back the hammer.

                             REDNECK #2
                 You sure are.

       Drunk Cowboy has a "Huh?" moment.

       BLAM!


       INT. CITY STREETS - NIGHT

       A taxi cab crawls through late night traffic.


       EXT. VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       A glossy lap dance joint, the name in pink neon.

       The taxi cab pulls up.  George climbs out.  The DRIVER, an
       old black guy who's seen it all before, leans out.

                             DRIVER
                 You sure you want to go in there?

                             GEORGE
                 Yeah, why?

                             DRIVER
                 No offense but you ain't a brother.
                 I'll keep the engine running.

       George heads for the door.  Just as he's about to enter he
       stops and glances back across the street.  A sedan's parked
       there with a CHINESE MAN at the wheel, watching George.


       INT. BAR - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       Private booths, soft lights and music.  A sprinkling of
       CUSTOMERS buy GIRLS drinks.  Everything goes quiet when
       George enters.  After a pause they resume their
       conversations.

       George heads for the bar.  BOBBY, 20s, beautiful and aloof,
       looks him up and down.

                             BOBBY
                 What can I do for you?

                             GEORGE
                 I'm looking for Veronica.

                             BOBBY
                 You're not his type.

                             GEORGE
                 It's business.

       Bobby glances at a closed office door.  George follows her
       look.

                             BOBBY
                 He's with some people.  He doesn't
                 want to be disturbed.

                             GEORGE
                 I'll wait.

                             BOBBY
                 Come back tomorrow.

                             GEORGE
                 There's a Chinese guy watching
                 this place.

                             BOBBY
                 The guys in there are Three Finger
                 Tong.  That's why you should come
                 back tomorrow.

                             GEORGE
                 Three Finger Tong.  I've heard of
                 them.

                             BOBBY
                 You're lucky they haven't heard of
                 you.  This really isn't a good
                 time--

       A SHRILL WOMAN'S SCREAM comes from behind the door.

       George runs to the door and kicks it open!


       INT. OFFICE - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       VERONICA, a large black man wearing a blue sequin dress
       and a blonde wig, sits behind his desk, held by THREE
       CHINESE GANGSTERS.  One of them just cut three of Veronica's
       fingers off with a meat cleaver.

       WHAM, George kicks the door open.

                             MEAT CLEAVER
                 Go fuck yourself.  This private
                 business.

                             GEORGE
                 I need to talk to Veronica.  Do
                 you mind leaving us alone for a
                 moment?

       Veronica speaks through clenched teeth.

                             VERONICA
                 Who the fuck are you?

                             GEORGE
                 I'm an associate of Mr. Romano's.

                             MEAT CLEAVER
                 You don't get outta here, you dead
                 meat.  No more warning.

                             GEORGE
                 I think we should all calm down
                 and seek a peaceful solution to
                 this situation.

       Cleaver grins at the two guys holding Veronica.

                             MEAT CLEAVER
                 You want peaceful solution?

       He reaches inside his jacket--

       BLAM, George shoots Meat Cleaver through the head.  The
       other two gangsters claw for their guns -- BLAM, BLAM,
       they slide down the wall.

       Veronica looks around in disbelief, stares in wonder at
       George.

                             VERONICA
                 Did I already say who the fuck are
                 you?

       George exits.


       INT. BAR - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       The customers and girls are gone, only Bobby's still here.

                             GEORGE
                 Ice bucket and a couple of towels.

       Bobby gives him an ice bucket, George grabs it and runs to
       the office.  Bobby grabs some bar towels and follows him.


       INT. OFFICE - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       George drops the severed fingers into the ice bucket.
       Bobby wraps a towel around Veronica's bloody hand.

                             GEORGE
                 I know a guitar player, got his
                 arm torn off in an auto accident.
                 They sewed it back on.

                             VERONICA
                 Who'd you say you were?

                             GEORGE
                 An associate of Mr. Romano's.

                             VERONICA
                 Didn't catch your name.

                             GEORGE
                 George.  I'd shake your hand,
                 only...

                             VERONICA
                 Well George, you just shot three
                 Triad goodfellas.  If I was you,
                 I'd be thinking about leaving town.

                             GEORGE
                 I don't want any trouble with
                 Triads.

                             BOBBY
                 Too late now.

       She ties off a neat knot.  Veronica inspects the makeshift
       bandage and nods thanks.

                             GEORGE
                 I just want to talk about Mr.
                 Romano's money.

                             VERONICA
                 Tell Mr. Romano his money is up my
                 ass, if he wants it he can suck it
                 out.

                             GEORGE
                 I was kinda hoping you'd be a little
                 more cooperative, seeing as how I
                 just stopped these guys from cutting
                 you up.

                             VERONICA
                 They weren't going to kill me.
                 They just wanted to give me a
                 warning.

                             BOBBY
                 Oh man, is that what you think?

                             VERONICA
                 Hell do you know?

                             BOBBY
                 It's in the name.  You're a bad
                 boy, they cut off one finger.  A
                 real bad boy, two fingers.  Three
                 fingers is 'way past warning.

                             GEORGE
                 What were they going to do to him?

                             BOBBY
                 You don't want to know.

                             VERONICA
                 I want to know.

                             BOBBY
                 They were gonna slit your guts
                 open.  That's their trademark.  I
                 never figured why they didn't call
                 themselves the "Steaming Guts Tong."

                             VERONICA
                 Ah, fer cripe's sake...  I'm gonna
                 throw up.

                             GEORGE
                 Slit guts is no way for a man to
                 die.  Or a transvestite.  So how
                 about it, Veronica?  I'd say you
                 owe me.  What about Mr. Romano's
                 money?

                             VERONICA
                 You'll appreciate I don't have
                 time to think about that right
                 now.

       The Chinese driver from the sedan across the street skids
       to a stop in the doorway, holding a machine gun.

       BLAM!  George snap-shoots without even looking, punching
       the driver out of sight.

                             GEORGE
                 Make time.

       Veronica and Bobby exchange looks.

                             BOBBY
                 You'll get out of here right now
                 if you've got any sense.

                             GEORGE
                 I can't leave without Mr. Romano's
                 money.

                             VERONICA
                 Romano tell you what this is about?

                             GEORGE
                 No.


       INT. HALLWAY - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       Veronica hurries along, cradling his hand to his chest.
       George and Bobby follow, George has the ice bucket.

                             VERONICA
                 Romano buys a stake in a deal,
                 see?  I take all the risks, Romano
                 gets a split of the profits.  How
                 fair is that?  Anyway, the thing
                 is, the merchandise we paid for
                 disappears.  I've got guys out
                 looking for it--

                             GEORGE
                 I don't want you to think I'm being
                 rude, but Mr. Romano isn't
                 interested in some story.  He wants
                 his quarter million and he wants
                 it now.

       Veronica stops, George almost runs into him.

                             VERONICA
                 He only staked two hundred gees.

                             GEORGE
                 Guess he must have added interest.

                             VERONICA
                 What you said about that guy lost
                 his arm, is it true?

                             GEORGE
                 Worst guitar player I ever heard,
                 but he wasn't complaining.

                             VERONICA
                 Funny, I know all Romano's guys
                 but I never saw you before.

                             GEORGE
                 I'm kinda new.

                             VERONICA
                 The thing is... George... I don't
                 keep that kind of money here.
                 That's just asking for trouble.
                 But even if I did, I wouldn't give
                 it to you.


       INT. STAIRWAY - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       Hurrying upstairs--

                             VERONICA
                 I appreciate what you just did for
                 me, but business is business and
                 I'm already out a hundred thou' on
                 this deal.  I don't see why I should
                 lose more than I already have.
                 You can appreciate that, can't you
                 George?

                             GEORGE
                 Yes I can.


       INT. LANDING - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

                             VERONICA
                 Plus, what with me not knowing
                 you, I'm not going to give you a
                 stale fart never mind a quarter
                 million bucks.

                             GEORGE
                 So what am I supposed to do?

                             VERONICA
                 Go back to Mr. Romano and tell him
                 you don't have his money.

                             GEORGE
                 Who does have it?

                             VERONICA
                 Now you're just confusing me.
                 See, nobody has it.  It's in a
                 state of maximized potential.


       INT. BEDROOM - VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       Veronica empties wardrobes and drawers, throwing clothes
       and shoes into a big suitcase.

                             VERONICA
                 If it had been delivered when and
                 where it was supposed to be
                 delivered, you and me wouldn't be
                 having this conversation.

       He picks out a dress, holds it up, has seconds thoughts
       and puts it back, takes another.

                             GEORGE
                 The Chinese have a stake in this
                 too?

                             VERONICA
                 Smart boy.  Only they didn't send
                 a nice guy like you who listens to
                 reason.  They sent a bunch'a crazy
                 guys with meat cleavers.

       He closes the suitcase, zips it up one-handed.

                             VERONICA
                 Then again, they just wanted their
                 money back, none of this quarter
                 million shit Romano's trying to
                 pull, so I guess they're not all
                 bad.

       He picks up the suitcase.

                             VERONICA
                 If you don't mind, I'm going to
                 get the hell out of Dodge before
                 someone else shows up.

       George passes the ice bucket to Bobby, grabs the suitcase,
       throws it onto the bed.  He opens it, searches among the
       clothes, finds a carrier bag containing bundles of
       banknotes.  Veronica looks guilty.

                             GEORGE
                 How much?

                             VERONICA
                 A hundred, give or take.  It's my
                 rainy day fund.

                             GEORGE
                 Maybe Mr. Romano won't be so pissed
                 with me if I bring him something
                 back.

                             VERONICA
                 There is that possibility.

       George catches Bobby's worried look.  He pushes the money
       back into the suitcase, zips it up.

                             GEORGE
                 Guess I'm an all or nothing kind
                 of guy.

       Veronica stares at him, stunned.  George points at the
       door.  Veronica and Bobby exit.

       George shakes his head at his own stupidity.  He follows
       them outside.


       EXT. VERONICA'S PUSSY CLUB - NIGHT

       George watches a CAR carrying Veronica and Bobby drive
       away.  Bobby waves to him out the window.  They disappear
       into the distance.  George sighs and climbs into his taxi.


       INT. TAXI CAB - NIGHT

       George stares out the window, deep in thought.  POLICE
       SIRENS get closer.

                             DRIVER
                 Where to now?

                             GEORGE
                 I wish I knew.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Lights are on inside the house, outside lies in darkness.


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Marianne stares at Mr. Wong, who stares at the ceiling
       with unseeing eyes.  Mr. Wong has gone to join his
       ancestors.

       Marianne rests her head in her hands.  What's a girl to
       do?

       Her gaze falls on the silver case.  She opens the lid,
       looks inside.  A cold silver light shines from inside the
       case and reflects off her astonished face.

       The phone RINGS, Marianne nearly shits herself.


       INT. DOWNSTAIRS HALLWAY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       The Young Man picks up the ringing phone.  He listens.
       His eyes flick toward the stairway.  It's for Mr. Wong.


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Marianne stands at the top of the stairs, listening.

       The Young Man calls upstairs--

                             YOUNG MAN (O.S.)
                 Sir, I apologize for interrupting,
                 it's an important call for you.


       INT. DOWNSTAIRS HALLWAY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       The Young Man stands at the bottom of the stairs, waiting
       for an answer.  He frowns, puzzled.

                             YOUNG MAN
                 Sir, is everything all right?


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Marianne leans back against the wall, closes her eyes and
       sucks in deep breaths.


       INT. STAIRWAY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       The Young Man reluctantly climbs upstairs.

                             YOUNG MAN
                 Sir, an important telephone call,
                 from Shanghai...


       INT. LIVING ROOM - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       He reaches the top, and stares.  Marianne's down on her
       knees in front of Mr. Wong, her head bobbing up and down
       on his crotch.  Mr. Wong stares at the ceiling in apparent
       ecstasy.

       Without looking up Marianna raises a finger telling the
       Young Man, "Just one minute!"

       The Young Man tip-toes back downstairs, grinning.


       INT. DOWNSTAIRS HALLWAY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       The Young Man picks up the receiver.

                             YOUNG MAN
                      (in Chinese)
                 Mr. Wong will be with you in a
                 moment, please be patient.

       Iron Fist Pang gives him a curious look.  The Young Man
       grins and simulates oral sex, sticking his tongue in his
       cheek.  Iron Fist Pang slaps the back of his head.


       EXT. LIVING ROOM BALCONY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       Marianne looks down, searching for a way out.


       EXT. BENEATH THE BALCONY - COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       A GUARD stops and looks around.  He lights a cigarette,
       throws the match away.  Looks up in time to see the
       briefcase swing down from above on its chain and SMACK HIM
       right in the face.  He does a backward somersault and flops
       on the ground.

       The briefcase lands with a THUD.  Marianne drops down onto
       soft earth.  She checks the Guard, sees he's out cold.
       She grabs the briefcase's chain and drags it after her.
       Heave, scrape.  Heave, scrape.

       Marianne ducks down as light suddenly floods the area.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       A SEDAN moves up the driveway.  It stops at the side of
       the house, doors open and two CHINESE MEN get out.  Iron
       Fist Pang exits from the house.  The two men are surprised
       to see him and instantly respectful.  They speak in rapid
       Chinese.

       Marianne approaches the sedan from behind so they don't
       see her.  She grips the rear door handle, pulls it.  The
       CLICK makes one of the men look round.  Marianne freezes.
       He doesn't see her and turns back to the conversation.

       Marianne puts one foot into the back of the car -- and
       finds herself looking at a CHINESE WOMAN who looks at
       Marianne in shocked surprise.  SUZI is a beautiful young
       hooker wearing a tight silk dress with diamond earrings.

       Suzi looks out the window at the three men, then looks at
       Marianne.  Her thoughts are inscrutable.

       Iron Fist Pang indicates the house, then indicates the
       sedan and gestures for the men to GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE!
       He turns and stamps back into the house.

       The two men exhale with relief.  They return to the sedan
       and climb in.


       INT. SUZI'S SEDAN - NIGHT

                             CHINESE GUY #1
                 Who the fuck does he think he is?

                             SUZI
                 What's the problem?

                             CHINESE GUY #2
                 Someone's using the house.  We'll
                 have to go somewhere else.

                             SUZI
                 I'm not in the mood any more.
                 Take me home.

                             CHINESE GUY #1
                 Man, you gotta be kidding me!  We
                 paid you a hundred bucks!

       Suzi fishes a wad of green out of her purse and throws it
       onto Guy #1's lap.

                             SUZI
                 Keep it.

                             CHINESE GUY #2
                 We had a deal.  You give us what
                 we want, or else.

                             SUZI
                 Or else what?  I go missing, Jimmy
                 will come after you.  I tell him
                 you threatened me, he'll come after
                 you.  So take me home, right now!

                             CHINESE GUY #1
                 Bitch!

       He starts the engine.


       EXT. COUNTRY CLUBHOUSE - NIGHT

       The sedan turns around and heads back down the driveway.


       INT. SUZI'S SEDAN (MOVING) - NIGHT

       Suzi looks out the window, cool and casual.  She glances
       down at Marianne who is squeezed uncomfortably in the rear
       footwell, hugging the briefcase.


       INT. MOTEL ROOM - DAY

       A black cowboy hat sits on top of a neatly folded black
       shirt and jeans.  A MAN lies face down on the bed, asleep.
       Tattoos over rippling muscles.

       PHONE RINGS.  He instantly sits up, swings his legs out
       the bed, snatches the receiver.  Listens, as a voice DRONES.
       When he talks, his voice is gravel.

                             MAN IN BLACK
                 It's gone up.  Fifty thousand.
                      (he listens)
                 That was yesterday.  When you blew
                 me off for cheap and cheerful.
                      (he listens)
                 Better not wait too long.  It's
                 liable to go up again.

       He hangs up.  Stands.  Heads for the bathroom.  PHONE RINGS.
       He turns back, picks up the receiver.  Listens.

                             MAN IN BLACK
                 Uh-huh.

       He hangs up, heads for the bathroom, closes the door.

       Lying on the bedside table, a pair of guns, a Bowie knife
       in a leather sheath, a hand grenade with a neck chain
       threaded through the ring.


       EXT. MOTEL - DAY

       The Man In Black dumps his bag into the back seat of a
       black Trans-Am, climbs in, starts the engine, and burns
       rubber.


       INT. ITALIAN RESTAURANT - DAY

       BIG ROCCO, 50s, and three WISEGUYS eat their way through a
       mountain of spaghetti and meatballs.  Also sitting at the
       table, but not eating, is George.  His gaze roams the
       restaurant, checking everyone out.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 That dipshit Mozatti.  He's asking
                 for trouble.  Well, he's gonna get
                 it.  Nobody makes a fool out of
                 Big Rocco.

                             WISEGUY #1
                 You go up against him, some people
                 are gonna be unhappy.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 We can take the heat.  What about
                 it, Petey?

                             WISEGUY #2
                 I dunno.  He's been recruiting.
                 Street scum, mostly.  Turning them
                 into soldiers.  They act like
                 they're made men.

       George's gaze drifts over to a table where a MAN and a
       PRETTY GIRL are having an intimate dinner together.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 Marty, you bring in muscle from
                 the other territories.  Make sure
                 they're solid.  No connections
                 with Mozatti or his guys.

                             WISEGUY #3
                 Okay.  When do you want it done?

       The restaurant door opens and a BEAUTIFUL WOMAN, 30s,
       enters.  She looks around... her gaze touches George, then
       finds the couple's table.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 When do I want it done?  When do
                 you think I want it done?  Get on
                 the phone tonight.  Wake up those
                 crazy Sicilian cousins of yours
                 and tell them there's some action.
                 They'll be over here before you
                 put the phone down.  Hey George.

       The Beautiful Woman approaches the couple's table.

                             GEORGE
                 Yeah Mr. Rocco?

                             BIG ROCCO
                 You're in on this.  Pull in as
                 many guys as you need.  I want
                 maximum security from this moment
                 on.

                             GEORGE
                 Okay.

                             BIG ROCCO
                      (to Wiseguys)
                 George says okay.  We're going to
                 war with Mozatti and George doesn't
                 bat an eyelid.

       The Wiseguys chuckle.  George doesn't even notice, he's
       watching the drama at the other table...

       The Man is shocked to see the Beautiful Woman.  She throws
       wine over him.  He jumps up, grabs her, slaps her.  The
       Beautiful Woman is helpless in his iron grip.  He hits her
       again, she cries.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 What's going on over there?

                             WISEGUY #1
                 Looks like somebody got caught
                 with his pants down.

                             BIG ROCCO
                 George, get that bum out of here,
                 he's ruining my meal.

       George is already up and moving fast.  As the Man raises
       his hand to slap his crying wife again, George grabs his
       wrist.  The Man turns to George, eyes cold as ice.

       And that's when George realizes everything's wrong.  The
       Pretty Girl pulls a pistol out of her purse, presses it
       into George's crotch.  She stares up at him with unblinking
       eyes.

       The Beautiful Woman and the Man draw silenced pistols and
       hurry to Big Rocco's table.  Big Rocco looks up, his mouth
       full of spaghetti.  The Wiseguys catch on, they claw for
       their own guns, but too late!

       The Beautiful Woman and the Man OPEN FIRE at point blank,
       blasting the three Wiseguys.  Blood and meatballs spray
       everywhere.  Everyone in the restaurant screams and runs
       and ducks under tables.

       George trembles with angst, wanting to help his boss, only
       there's a gun at his balls.  The Pretty Girl smiles sweetly.

       A WAITER runs out of the kitchen holding a machine gun
       with a huge drum magazine.  He takes aim at Big Rocco and
       OPENS FIRE!  Big Rocco SCREAMS IN AGONY as he's nailed to
       the wall by hot lead.  The Waiter keeps firing long after
       life has left Big Rocco's ventilated body.  Big Rocco slumps
       down.

       The Beautiful Woman and the Man run for the exit, passing
       George.

                             PRETTY GIRL
                 Take out your gun, real slow.

       George takes out his pistol, holding it between thumb and
       forefinger.

                             PRETTY GIRL
                 Throw it away.  That's a good boy.

       George throws his pistol away.

       The Waiter-gunman runs by.  George wants to grab him but
       the Pretty Girl shakes her head, warning him.

                             PRETTY GIRL
                 I thought it was real nice, the
                 way you helped Christine.  There
                 are so few real gentlemen left in
                 the world.

       She gets up and backs away, still covering George.  She
       reaches the door and runs outside.

       George walks over to the table of death.

                             GEORGE
                 Sorry boss.  I let ya down.

       George heads for the door, stopping to pick up his pistol
       on the way out.

       People crawl out from under their tables to see what
       happened.

       NEWSPAPER MONTAGE

       Front page headline declares, ANTHONY "BIG ROCCO" ROCCANZI
       GUNNED DOWN IN RESTAURANT BLOODBATH.

       A picture shows Big Rocco slumped against the wall which
       is decorated with bullet holes and sauce.

       A headline reads, 312 BULLETS SPELL MOBSTER'S DOOM.

       And lastly, A NEW UNDERWORLD RECORD.


       EXT. HIGHWAY - DAY

       An 18-wheeler chugs along.

       The Man In Black behind the wheel.


       INT. DOWNTOWN BAR - DAY

       George sits alone on a stool at the bar, staring
       thoughtfully into his drink.

       MOZATTI slides onto the stool beside George and gives him
       a toothy smile.  Mozatti's young, ambitious, ruthless.  A
       Great White Shark in a suit.

                             MOZATTI
                 You're a hard man to track down.

       George looks in the mirror behind the bar.  Two of Mozatti's
       GOONS stand by the door.  Another two GOONS stand nearby.
       They're all watching George.

                             GEORGE
                 I haven't exactly been hiding.

                             MOZATTI
                 A little bird tells me you were at
                 Veronica's last night.  The cops
                 are still dragging out the bodies.

       George sips his drink.

                             GEORGE
                 If you wanted me dead, I'd be dead.
                 So, what do you want?

                             MOZATTI
                 I want you to come work for me.

                             GEORGE
                 I'm working for Romano.

                             MOZATTI
                 Come on, this is me you're talking
                 to.  That pissant Romano likes to
                 play games.  He gave you a job to
                 complete, didn't he?  Maybe
                 something to do with that cross-
                 dressing fag he likes doing business
                 with, who incidentally seems to
                 have disappeared.  So here you
                 are, all alone, nursing a drink
                 and trying to figure what the hell
                 to do next.  And here I am, offering
                 you a job.

                             GEORGE
                 I hope I haven't wasted too much
                 of your time.

                             MOZATTI
                 Is that a "no"?

                             GEORGE
                 It has to be a "no."  You know
                 why.

                             MOZATTI
                 Look, me and your boss had a falling
                 out.  I don't know how things got
                 so tense.  One moment we were
                 talking, the next he was shaking
                 his fist in my face.  Those things
                 happen, don't they?  Anyway, don't
                 pretend he wasn't planning to do
                 to me what I did to him first.
                 Look me in the eye and tell me I'm
                 wrong.

       George stares into his drink.

                             MOZATTI
                 That's what I thought.  I already
                 got two of his lieutenants on my
                 payroll, and their crews.  You got
                 to be philosophical about these
                 things.  What's the point in
                 fighting when your boss is dead?

                             GEORGE
                 Can't argue with that.

                             MOZATTI
                 Now that Big Rocco's gone to the
                 big lap dancing club in the sky,
                 business is good.  I'm expanding.
                 I got an opening for someone with
                 your talent.  George, I'm trying
                 to be your friend here.

                             GEORGE
                 I appreciate that, Mr. Mozatti.
                 But Big Rocco was good to me.  He
                 treated me like his own son.  This
                 is difficult for me.

       Mozatti signals to the BARMAN.

                             MOZATTI
                 Bourbon, no ice.

       The Barman pours and delivers.  Mozatti knocks it back and
       bangs down the glass.

                             MOZATTI
                 Hits the spot.  George, have you
                 ever heard of the Japanese samurai
                 warriors?

                             GEORGE
                 I go to the movies.

                             MOZATTI
                 Then you know how these guys worked.
                 They had a boss, right?  They gave
                 him their undying loyalty.  But
                 when that boss got killed by another
                 boss, they were out of a job, and
                 that pissed them off.  A jobless
                 samurai was not a good thing to be
                 in those days.  Everyone treated
                 them like they were Irish.  They
                 didn't even get to keep the name.
                 They weren't samurai any more,
                 they were row-nin.  Warriors without
                 a boss.  Anyway, they'd do anything
                 to be samurai again and that meant
                 getting a new boss.  But you know
                 that, don't you?  That's why you
                 went to Romano.

                             GEORGE
                 That's why I went to Romano.

                             MOZATTI
                 And he gave you some pissant job
                 to do and said if you succeed he'll
                 take you on, but if you don't,
                 you're still a good-for-nothing
                 row-nin.

                             GEORGE
                 That's right.

                             MOZATTI
                 You know about samurai and you
                 know about those row-nin guys.
                 But do you know what the samurai
                 called the boss of all bosses?
                 They called him the Show-goon.
                 That's what I'm going to be, George,
                 the Show-goon.  I'm going to sit
                 on that throne.  But I need good
                 quality samurai to get me there.
                 Which is why you and me are talking.
                 I'm sorry Big Rocco had to go, but
                 he had to go.  Forget about him.
                 Be my samurai, George.  Come and
                 cut heads off for me.  The pay's
                 good and I'm working on a health
                 care package.  Wha'd'ya say?  Look,
                 I'm offering you my hand.

       Mozatti offers George his hand.  George hesitates... then
       accepts.  Mozatti grins.

                             MOZATTI
                 I knew you'd make the right
                 decision.
                      (to his men)
                 Didn't I say he'd make the right
                 decision?
                      (to George)
                 First thing you're gonna do for
                 me.  Kill this guy.

       Mozatti drops a folded newspaper onto the bar.

                             MOZATTI
                 Not to prove your loyalty to me.
                 Not as some kind of test.  But
                 because I want him dead and you're
                 my samurai.  Go bring me his head.

       George stares at the photo.


       EXT. STREET JUNCTION WITH TRAFFIC LIGHTS - NIGHT

       A MAN in a torn suit lies curled up on the ground, holding
       his guts.  He groans.  Pushes himself up.  He's beat all
       to hell.  JAKE VARGAS, 30, sways till he gets his balance.

       He sees a bar across the street.  He stumbles toward it.


       INT. BAR - NIGHT

       Miscellaneous UNSAVORY CUSTOMERS watch as Vargas painfully
       sits himself down on a stool.  The BARTENDER leans close.

                             BARTENDER
                 You look like shit.  Take it
                 outside.

       Vargas shrugs as if he's easing sore muscles.  The motion
       exposes the .45 AUTOMATIC under his armpit.  The Bartender
       loses his attitude.

                             VARGAS
                 Gimme a beer.

       The Bartender pours a beer, Vargas drinks, he needed that.

                             VARGAS
                 Phone.

       The Bartender brings the phone.  Vargas cradles the receiver
       and dials.

                             VARGAS (INTO PHONE)
                 It's me.  What's the scoop?
                      (he listens)
                 Yeah?  Tell him to go fuck himself.

       He slams the receiver down.  Finishes his beer.  Opens his
       wallet, slides a ten across to the scowling Bartender.

                             VARGAS
                 You can go fuck yourself too.

                             BRUTAL CUSTOMER
                 Hey, tell me to fuck myself, prick.

       Vargas draws his .45 on the startled big guy.  He pistol-
       whips him to the floor, kicks the crap out of him until he
       stops moving.

                             VARGAS
                 Anybody else want some fun?

       No takers.

                             BARTENDER
                 You got serious problems, man.

                             VARGAS
                 Comes with the job.

       Vargas lurches for the door, stumbles outside, as customers
       move to help the guy on the floor.


       EXT. BAR - NIGHT

       A black-and-white PATROL CAR cruises up the street.  Vargas
       waves, sticks his fingers into his mouth and WHISTLES.
       The patrol car brakes, turns around, pulls in.

       The two uniform COPS grin as Vargas leans in the window.

                             VARGAS
                 You guys going anywhere near the
                 precinct house?


       INT. FRONT DESK - PRECINCT HOUSE - NIGHT

       The busy DESK SERGEANT nods as Vargas passes by.  COPS
       book STREET SCUM and HOOKERS.  Vargas looks the girls over.
       One of them smiles at him, maybe he'll do her a favor?
       Vargas ignores her.


       INT. OUTSIDE INTERROGATION ROOM - PRECINCT HOUSE - NIGHT

       Vargas and LIEUTENANT LO (Chinese) stand at the observation
       window, watching the beaufiful woman who sits alone in the
       room.  It's the older HIT WOMAN who took out Big Rocco's
       Wiseguys in the restaurant scene.

                             LIEUTENANT LO
                 You look like shit.

                             VARGAS
                 I got jumped by a couple of your
                 guys.  Didn't even take my wallet.
                 They just up and ran away.

                             LIEUTENANT LO
                 "My guys"?

                             VARGAS
                 They looked Chinese.

                             LIEUTENANT LO
                 That narrows it down.  What d'you
                 suppose they wanted?

                             VARGAS
                 Maybe they didn't like round eyes.

                             LIEUTENANT LO
                 Man, I hear that.
                      (re the Woman)
                 We got three positive IDs from
                 customers at the restaurant.

                             VARGAS
                 You look like her, people are going
                 to remember you.

       Lo hands Vargas a folder.

                             LIEUTENANT LO
                 Organized Crime wants Mozatti real
                 bad.  All we need is her signature.
                 Go get it, round eye.


       INT. INTERROGATION ROOM - POLICE PRECINCT - NIGHT

       Vargas sits down opposite the Beautiful Woman.  He opens
       the folder, flicks pages, shows no interest in her.  She
       watches, impassive.

                             VARGAS
                 Witnesses put you at the scene
                 with a gun in your hand.  D.A.'s
                 office has requested death by lethal
                 injection.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Got a cigarette?

                             VARGAS
                 They tell me it's just like falling
                 asleep.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 You think they'll let me wear a
                 dress?  I look real good in red.

                             VARGAS
                 I bet you do.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Why don't we save the taxpayers
                 some money?  Leave one bullet in
                 your gun.  I'll do the business
                 right here.

       She sticks her fingers under her chin, pretending a gun.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Baboom!  Right into the brain.  I
                 won't even need touching up.  You
                 can watch from out there if you
                 want.  Catch yourself a cheap
                 thrill.

                             VARGAS
                 It'll happen in a little room with
                 no windows.  Nobody's gonna see
                 you die.  Just the doctor who
                 injects death into your vein.
                 He'll stand there, looking at his
                 watch.  Timing how long it takes
                 your heart to stop beating.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Oh, you're good.

                             VARGAS
                 Are you willing to give up Mozatti?

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Do I walk?

       Vargas gives her a cigarette, strikes a match.

                             VARGAS
                 My guess?  You'll serve fifteen
                 years.

       Her cigarette shakes as he lights it.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Fifteen years is a long time.

                             VARGAS
                 You'll still have your looks when
                 they open the gates.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 Was that a compliment?

                             VARGAS
                 Nah, just an observation.  You're
                 not my type.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 I won't last fifteen minutes.  You
                 could lock me up in Fort Knox,
                 Mozatti's still gonna find me.
                 From where I'm sitting, the needle
                 sounds a lot better than a shiv in
                 the guts.

                             VARGAS
                 Suit yourself.

       Vargas closes the folder, moves to the door.

                             BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
                 You'll come watch when they put my
                 lights out, won't you?

                             VARGAS
                 I already told you.  You're not my
                 type.

       He exits, closing the door on her worried expression.

                                                                  07/02
end excerpt

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