Joel Coen and Ethan Coen


               An opening voice-over plays against dissolving Texas 
               landscapes--broad, bare, and lifeless.

                         The world is full of complainers. 
                         But the fact is, nothing comes with 
                         a guarantee. I don't care if you're 
                         the Pope of Rome, President of the 
                         United States, or even Man of the 
                         Year--something can always go wrong. 
                         And go ahead, complain, tell your 
                         problems to your neighbor, ask for 
                         help--watch him fly. Now in Russia, 
                         they got it mapped out so that 
                         everyone pulls for everyone else--
                         that's the theory, anyway. But what 
                         I know about is Texas...

                                                                     CUT TO

               ROAD  NIGHT

               We are rushing down a rain-swept country road, listening to 
               the rhythmic swish of tires on wet asphalt.

                         And down here... you're on your own.

               INT. CAR NIGHT

               We are looking at the backs of two people in the front seat--
               a man, driving, and a woman next to him.

               Their conversation will be punctuated by the occasional glare 
               of oncoming headlights and the roar of the car rushing by.

               The windshield wipers wave a soporific beat. The conversation 
               is halting, awkward.

                         ...He gave me a little pearl-handled 
                         .38 for out first anniversary.


                         ...Figured I'd better leave before I 
                         used it on him. I don't know how you 
                         can stand him.

                         Well, I'm only an employee, I ain't 
                         married to him.


               Pause, as an oncoming car passes. Finally:

                         ...I don't know. Sometimes I think 
                         there's something wrong with him. 
                         Like maybe he's sick? Mentally?... 
                         Or is it maybe me, do you think?

                         Listen, I ain't a marriage counselor. 
                         I don't know what goes on, I don't 
                         wanna know... But I like you. I always 
                         liked you...

               Another car passes.

                         ...What're you gonna do in Houston?

                         I'll figure something out... How 
                         come you offered to drive me in this 

                         I told you. I like you.

                         See, I never knew that.

                         Well now you do.


               Another pause. Another car.


                         Stop the car, Ray!

               CLOSE SHOT BRAKE

               Stamped on.

               EXT. CAR

               Low three-quarters on the car as it squeals to a halt.

               A car that has been following screeches to a halt just behind 

               Both cars sit.

               Rain patters.

               INT. FIRST CAR

               Close on the man, from behind.

               He looks at the woman.


               She doesn't answer. He turns to look back and we see his 
               face, for the first time, in the headlights of the car behind.

               HIS POV

               The car behind them waiting, patiently. Rain drifts down 
               past its headlights.

               Finally it pulls out and passes them slowly, their headlights 
               showing it to be a battered green Volkswagon. First the car 
               itself, then its red taillights, disappear into the rain.

               BACK TO THE MAN

               Cutting between him and the woman, each from behind.

                         ...You know that car?


                         What's the matter?

                         I don't know... I just think maybe 
                         I'm making a mistake...

               She looks at the man.

                         ...What was that back there?

                         Back where?


                         I don't know. Motel... Abby--

                         Ray. Did you mean that, what you 
                         said before, or were you just being 
                         a gentleman?

                         Abby, I like you, but it's no point 
                         starting anything now.


                         I mean, I ain't a marriage counselor--


               The man is uncomfortable.

                         ...What do you want to do?

               The woman is uncomfortable. After a long pause:

                         ...What do you want to do?

               MOTEL ROOM

               Pulling back from RAY and ABBY in bed, making love.

               The only light is from cars passing along the highway outside. 
               Each sweeping light-by ends in black.

               The pullback ends in a wide shot of the motel room. The black 
               following the last car lingers.

               A telephone rings.

               SAME WIDE SHOT  MORNING

               Ray and Abby are asleep. On a nightstand next to the bed, 
               the telephone is ringing.

               Ray stirs, reaches for the phone.


                         Having a good time?

                         ...What? Who is this?

                         I don't know, who's this?

               A silence at both ends.

                         ...You still there?

                         Yeah, I'm still here.

               Ray listens to another silence. It ends with a disconnect.

               Abby is stirring as Ray gets out of bed.



                         What was that?

                         Your husband.

               BAR BACK OFFICE  NIGHT

               We are tracking past a man seated behind a wooden desk, 
               towards an 8 x 10 black-and-white photograph that has just 
               been slapped down on the desktop.

               The picture is of Abby and Ray in bed together in the motel 

                         I know a place you can get that 

               The voice is familiar as that of the narrator whose musings 
               on life in Texas and the Soviet Union opened the movie.

               We cut to him.

               He is settling himself into a chair facing the desk. He is 
               LOREN VISSER, a large unshaven man in a misshapen yellow 
               leisure suit.

               He smiles at the man behind the desk.

               JULIAN MARTY

               Sits staring down at the photograph. Behind him a window 
               opens on the bar proper. Country-western music filters in 
               from the bar.

               Marty is not pleased.

                         What did you take these for?

                         What do you mean...

               He removes a pouch of tobacco from his breast pocket and 
               nonchalantly starts rolling a cigarette.

                         ...Just doin' my job.

                         You called me, I knew they were there, 
                         so what do I need these for?

                         Well, I don't know... Call it a fringe 

                         How long did you watch her?

                         Most of the night...

               He lights his cigarette, then slaps his lighter onto the 

               It is silver, engraved on the top with a lariat spelling out 
               "Loren" in script, and on the side with a declaration that 
               he is "Elks Man of the Year."

                         ...They'd just rest a few minutes 
                         and then get started again. Quite 

               Marty stares down at the photograph.

                         You know in Greece they cut off the 
                         head of the messenger who brought 
                         bad news.

               A smoke ring floats into frame from offscreen.

                         Now that don't make much sense.

                         No. It just made them feel better.

               Marty rises and goes to a safe behind his desk.

               Visser laughs as he watches Marty.

                         Well first off, Julian, I don't know 
                         what the story is in Greece but in 
                         this state we got very definite laws 
                         about that...

               Marty, hunched over the standing safe behind his desk, tosses 
               in the photograph and takes out a pay envelope.

                         ...Second place I ain't a messenger, 
                         I'm a private investigator. And third 
                         place--and most important--it ain't 
                         such bad news. I mean you thought he 
                         was a colored.
                              (he laughs)
                         ...You're always assumin' the worst...

               Visser blows another smoke ring, pushes a fat finger through 
               the middle of it, and beams at Marty.

                         ...Anything else?

                         Yeah, don't come by here any more. 
                         If I need you again I know which 
                         rock to turn over.

               Marty scales the pay envelope across the desk. It hits Visser 
               in the chest and bounces to the floor.

               Visser looks stonily down at the envelope; no expression for 
               a beat. Then he roars with laughter.

                         That's good... "which rock to turn 
                         over"... that's very good...

               Sighing, he leans forward to pick up the envelope. He rises, 
               straightens his cowboy hat, and walks over to a screen door 
               letting out on the bar's back parking lot.

                         Well, gimme a call whenever you wanna 
                         cut off my head...

               He pauses at the door, cocks his head, then turns back to 
               the desk and picks up his cigarette lighter. Returning to 
               the door:

                         ...I can crawl around without it.

               The door slams shut behind him.

               Marty scowls at the back door. After a moment he rises and 
               crosses the office to the window looking out on the bar.

               Over Marty's shoulder we see the long bar leading up to the 
               window in perpendicular. The camera is tracking forward, 
               past Marty, to frame on the window.

               A black man is just now vaulting the near end of the bar, 
               over onto the customer side.

                                                              MATCH CUT TO:

               MARTY'S BAR


               Tracking back with him as he lands on the customer side and 
               heads across the bar. This shot, from the other side of the 
               back-office window, reveals the window to be one-way glass 
               mirrored on this side

               MEURICE, the black bartender, is muscular, about 200 pounds, 
               dressed in white pants and a sleeveless T-shirt. He is making 
               his way through the crowd towards the jukebox.

               Another man stands in front of it examining the selections.

               He deposits a quarter.

                         Hold it, hold it. What's tonight?


                         What night is it?

                              (studying Meurice)

                         Right. Friday night is Yankee night. 
                         Where're you from?


               Meurice shakes his head and punches the selector buttons on 
               the jukebox.

                         Right. I'm from Detroit
                              (turning to leave)
                         It's a big city up north with tall 

               A Motown song drops. We track behind Meurice as he makes his 
               way back toward the bar. When he reaches it, he claps a couple 
               of people on the shoulder, who make way for him. He vaults 
               back over the top, walks down the bar, and stops in from of 
               an attractive white woman sitting on a bar stool and sipping 
               a brandy.

                         Where was I?

                         You we telling me about the Ring of 

                         Yeah, well, I may be getting in over 
                         my head here, I mean you're the 
                         geologist, but my theory for what 
                         it's worth, you got all these 
                         volcanoes and each time one pops 
                         it's the equivalent of what, twenty, 
                         thirty megatons of TNT?  Enough to 
                         light Las Vegas for how long?  How 
                         many years? Course, I'm no 
                         mathematician but--


               Marty is approaching from the direction of the office.

                         Yeah, I know. Pour 'em short.

                         Has Ray come in yet?

                         No, he's off tonight. Where was he 
                         last night?

                         How would I know?

                         I don't know, didn't he call?

               Marty loses his glare and his gaze drifts over to the woman. 
               After an awkward pause, Meurice clears his throat.

                         ...Marty, I'd like you to meet an 
                         old friend of mine, Debra. Debra, 
                         this is Julian Marty, the dude I'm 
                         always talking about.

               She is unselfconsciously returning Marty's stare.

                         If he does come in I'm not here... 
                         What were you drinking, Debra?


                         You've got a very sophisticated 


                         Give Debra here another drink, and 
                         give me the usual.

               Meurice walks down the bar.

                         ...What's a palate?

               Marty studies her for a beat, she studies him, he smiles.

                         Listen, I got tickets for the Oilers 
                         and the Rams next week in the 
                         Astrodome. Ever sat on the fifty 
                         yard line?

                         I don't follow baseball.

               Marty laughs.

                         You won't have to. I'll explain what 
                         a palate is.

                         You won't have to. I just wanted to 
                         see if you knew.

               Marty smiles bleakly. Debra drains her glass as Meurice 
               returns. He sets another Cognac in front of Debra, and a 
               glass of milk in front of Marty.

                         What's this?

                         You said the usual--

                         Red Label.

                              (picking up the milk)
                         Right. Sorry.

                         Pour that back.


                         Don't throw that out.


               He wanders on down the bar; Marty's attention returns to the 

                         So how long have you know Meurice?

                         About ten years.

               Marty's attention is caught by something down the bar. He 
               half-rises from his stool.


               HIS POV

               Meurice is pouring the milk down the sink. He looks innocently 


               BACK TO MARTY

               Angry but not knowing what to say. He glances around the 
               bar, sinks slowly back onto his stool.

                         Deuce in the corner needs help.


               Marty sits staring across the bar for a moment, nods a couple 
               of times at nothing in particular, then looks back at the 

                         ...So what're you doing tonight?

                         Going out with Meurice.

               Marty tosses a beer nut into his mouth.

                         Tell him you have a headache.

               Debra gives him a level stare.

                         It'll pass.

                         We don't seem to be communicating--

                         You want to hustle me. I don't want 
                         to be hustled. It's as simple as 
                         that. Now that I've communicated, 
                         why don't you leave?

                         I own the place.

                         Christ, I'm getting bored.

                         I'm not surprised, the company you've 
                         been keeping the last ten years.

               They both fall silent as Meurice enters frame. He takes a 
               bottle from the bar and pours himself a drink.

                         What's this?


                              (pointing at Meurice's 

                         Jack Daniels. Don't worry, I'm paying 
                         for it.

                         That's not the point.

                         What's the point?

                         The point is we don't serve niggers 

                              (he looks over his 
                              shoulder; up and 
                              down the bar)
                         ...I'm very careful about that.

               Marty tosses back Meurice's drink, then turns to Debra, 

                         He thinks I'm kidding. Everybody 
                         thinks I'm kidding;
                              (as he turns to leave)
                         if Ray comes in I'm not home.

               Debra watches him go, then turns back to Meurice.

                         Nice guy.

                         Not really. What'd you say your last 
                         name was?


               We are following a large German shepherd as it pads down the 
               hall toward a warmly lit room at its end. We hear only the 
               sound of the dog's paws on the hardwood floor, and the faint 
               clicking of billiard balls.

               BILLIARD ROOM

               It is a paneled, carpeted room with black leather furniture 
               and a nine-foot billiard table. Various stuffed animal 
               trophies are scattered around the room, including a moose 
               head mounted on one wall. Ray stands alone in the foreground, 
               shooting pool, an unlit cigarette in his mouth. The room is 
               very quiet.

               In the background the German shepherd enters from the hallway, 
               sits down in a corner, and benignly watches Ray.

               UPSTAIRS BEDROOM

               It is expensively appointed; a brightly lit woman's bedroom. 
               Abby is opening a hinged drawer in a white antique bureau. 
               She pulls out a leather handbag, gropes nervously through 
               its contents, then puts it aside.

               She crosses the room to a vanity table, takes a purse from 
               underneath, and spills its contents out on top of the table.

               BILLIARD ROOM

               Ray pockets a couple of balls, looks over at the dog, then 
               up at the wall at the far end of the room.

               RAY'S POV

               Hanging on the wall are a couple of framed photographs of 
               Marty and Abby, taken a long time ago.

               BACK TO RAY

               Staring at the pictures. He looks back down at the pool table.

               UPSTAIRS BEDROOM

               Abby is sitting on a large double bed. She puts aside another 
               purse, rises and crosses the room hurriedly, and pushes back 
               the sliding doors of a long wardrobe closet. The upper shelf 
               is lined with handbags--fifteen or twenty of them. She grabs 
               the first one, looks in, tosses it aside; grabs the second, 
               looks--and stops.

               HER POV

               Inside the purse, a small pearl-handled gun.

               BILLIARD ROOM

               Ray is now standing in front of the pictures on the wall, 
               looking from one to the next.

               RAY'S POV

               A picture of Abby and Marty standing together on a Gulf beach. 
               Marty is wearing a long velour beach robe, Abby is in a 
               swimming suit. Ray's hand enters frame. He traces a finger 
               down her leg.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               His head cocked to the side. After a moment his eyes shift.


               Of Marty's face. He is staring into the camera, at whoever 
               took the picture. His head is thrown back slightly; he is 

               From offscreen in the quiet room we hear a static hum and 
               then Abby's voice over an intercom.

                                     ABBY'S VOICE

               BACK TO RAY

               He turns from the photograph and walks to an intercom speaker 
               next to the mounted moose's head. He presses the speaker 


               He idly takes his unlit cigarette and sticks it in the moose's 

                         ...You get what you wanted?

                                     ABBY'S VOICE
                         Yeah. Let's get out of here.

               MARTY'S FRONT FOYER

               We are looking across a dark, high-ceilinged foyer toward 
               the front door. Ray leans against the doorjamb, in silhouette 
               in the open doorway. He is facing a curved staircase that 
               descends into the foyer. Abby appears at the second-floor 
               landing and starts down the stairs.

                         Why d'you wanna leave all this?

                         You kidding? I don't wanna leave all 
                         this, I just wanna leave Marty...

               As she reaches the bottom of the stairs:

                         ...Drive me to a motel?

                         You can stay at my place, I'll drop 
                         you there.

                         Where... where you going?

                         See a guy.

                         Don't go to the bar, Ray. I know 
                         him, that ain't a good idea.

                         I just gotta see a guy.

               MARTY'S BAR

               The crowd has thinned out. Meurice and Debra are in the 

               Ray enters from the street and makes his way over to them.

                         Howdy stranger.

                         Meurice. Sorry I didn't show last 

                         Wasn't too busy. You missed a good 
                         one, though. This white guy walks in 
                         about one o'clock, asks if we have a 
                         discount for alcoholics... I tell 
                         him to get lost, but Marty's sitting 
                         here listening and I can tell he's 
                         thinking that maybe it ain't such a 
                         bad idea...

               He pours Debra another drink and starts to set one up for 

                         ...Ray, this is Debra. She's a 
                         geologist. That's the theory of rocks.

               Ray nods at Debra.

                         Is Marty here?

                         Not here tonight. Wasn't here last 
                         night. He's especially not back in 
                         his office.

                         Thanks Meurice.

                         For what?

               EXT. BACK OF MARTY'S BAR

               Marty is sitting on the stoop that descends from his back 
               office to a graveled back parking lot; he is framed in the 
               open doorway of his brightly lit office. He stares fixedly 
               at something offscreen.

               MARTY'S POV

               In the middle distance a huge incinerator operates full blast. 
               Orange flames lick out the sides; white smoke billows out 
               the top. Two figures in silhouette are chucking garbage in 
               through a large gate.

               BACK TO MARTY

               Behind him, in the office, we see the door from the bar open, 
               and Ray entering.


               Marty looks over his shoulder, then back toward the furnace. 
               Ray descends the stoop and stands in front of him.

                         ...Well...? What?

               Marty stares past Ray across the parking lot.

                         What "what"?

                         Am I fired? You wanna hit me? What?

                         I don't particularly want to talk to 

                         Well... if you're not gonna fire me 
                         I might as well quit.

                         Fine. Suit yourself.
                              (still staring fixedly 
                              at the furnace)
                         ...Having a good time?

               Ray tenses. There is a pause.

                         ...I don't like this kind of talk.

               Marty still stares at the furnace.

                         Then what'd you come here for?

                              (no more conciliation)
                         You owe me for two weeks.

               Marty shakes his head.

                         Nope. She's an expensive piece of 

               He finally looks up at Ray.

                         ...You get a refund though, if you 
                         tell me who else she's been sluicing.

                         I want that money. If you wanna tell 
                         me something, fine--

                         What're you, a fucking marriage 

               Ray breaks into a strained half-smile.

               Marty grins humorlessly back, mimicking Ray's smile.

                         What're you smiling at--I'm a funny 
                         guy, right, I'm an asshole? No, no, 
                         that's not what's funny. What's funny 
                         is her. What's funny is that I had 
                         you two followed because, if it isn't 
                         you, she's been sleeping with someone 

               He grabs a knee in each hand and leans forward, still looking 
               at Ray. He is becoming only slightly more animated.

                         ...What's really going to be funny 
                         is when she gives you that innocent 
                         look and says, What're you talking 
                         about, Ray, I haven't done anything 

               He leans back again.

                         ...But the funniest thing to me right 
                         now is that you think she came back 
                         here for you--*that's* what's funny.

               Ray moves forward and Marty's eyes follow him as he 
               approaches. Marty's smile abruptly turns to a look of 
               apprehension. Ray enters frame and brushes past Marty as he 
               walks up the stoop, and crosses the back office toward the 

               Marty relaxes, and his gaze returns to the furnace.

                         ...Come on this property again and 
                         I'll be forced to shoot you...

               Ray opens the door to the bar and shuts it softly behind 

                         ...Fair notice.

               MARTY'S OFFICE  LATER

               CLOSE SHOT  CEILING FAN

               At the cut the music and all other bar noise drops out. We 
               hear only the rhythmic whir of the fan. We tilt down from 
               the ceiling fan to frame Marty, tilted back in his desk chair, 
               staring up at the fan.

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)

               WIDE SHOT  THE OFFICE

               Meurice is standing in the door to the bar. Far behind him 
               we can see Debra waiting in the dimly lit, deserted bar.

                         ...I thought you were dead. Going 

                         No. I think I'll stay right here in 

                              (turning to leave)
                         Kind of a bleak point of view there, 
                         isn't it Marty?


               Meurice pauses in the doorway.

                         ...I don't want that asshole near my 
                         money. I don't even want him in the 

                         We get a lot of assholes in here, 

               Meurice and Debra can be heard leaving the bar. Marty looks 
               down at the telephone in front of him on the desk, then picks 
               up the receiver and dials. He tilts back in the chair and 
               stares back up at the ceiling.

               MARTY'S POV

               The ceiling fan, turning slowly.


               In the foreground Ray sits behind the wheel of his parked 
               car, slumped back against the seat. He is staring at his one-
               story bungalow, in which a couple of lights are burning. 
               Inside we can faintly hear his telephone ringing.

               It rings for a long time.

               RAY'S LIVING ROOM


               Abby's hand enters frame, hesitates, then after another ring 
               picks up.


               The is no answer. From the other end we hear only the rhythmic 
               whir of a ceiling fan.

               MARTY'S OFFICE

               Marty listens. He says nothing, still tilted back in his 
               chair, staring at the ceiling.

               RAY'S LIVING ROOM

               Abby listens. She shifts the phone to her other ear, listening 
               hard to the sound of the fan. There is another long pause.


               The phone goes dead just as we hear the front door opening. 
               Abby looks up as she cradles the phone.

               Ray is standing in the doorway.

                         Who was it?


                         On the phone. Was it for you?

                         I don't know, he didn't say anything.

                         Uh-huh. So how do you know it was a 

                         You got a girl--am I screwing 
                         something up by being here?

               Ray leans against the door and folds his arms, watching Abby.

                         No, am I?

               Abby looks at him, puzzled. After an uncomfortable pause:

                         ...I can find a place tomorrow, then 
                         I'll be outta your hair.

                         If that's what you want to do, then 
                         you oughta do it. You, uh... you 
                         want the bed or the couch?

               Abby shifts uneasily, looking at Ray.

                         Well... the couch would be all 

                         You can sleep on the bed if you want.

                         Well... I'm not gonna put you out of 
                         your bed...

                         You wouldn't be putting me out.

                         ...Well, I'd be okay in here--

               Ray walks toward the bedroom.


               MARTY'S OFFICE  LATER

               Still tilted back in his chair, Marty stares glumly at the 
               ceiling. The bar itself is completely still except the 
               rhythmic whir of the fan.

               CLOSE SHOT  A CEILING FAN

               Turning slowly. We tilt down from the fan to frame Abby, 
               lying under a sheet on Ray's couch, staring up at the fan in 
               the darkened living room. The room is still. We hear only 
               the whir of the fan and the distant sound of crickets. Abby 
               turns her head, looking offscreen.

               HER POV

               A ray of light slants up the hallway from the direction of 
               the bedroom. The light is snapped off, leaving the hallway 
               in darkness. We hear a faint cough and the creaking of 

               RAY'S BEDROOM

               Ray lies in bed, staring at the ceiling.

               RAY'S LIVING ROOM / HALLWAY


               Abby sits up. She stands and walks across the moonlit room 
               toward the hallway. We pull her back down the hall toward 
               the bedroom. She pauses in the bedroom doorway and looks 
               down toward the bed.

               ABBY'S POV

               Ray in bed, his eyes closed.

               BACK TO ABBY

               We pull her as she enters the room, then tilt down with her 
               as she hesitantly sits on the edge of the bed.

               ABBY'S POV

               Close shot, Ray asleep.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Framed against a moonlit window from the shoulders up.

               There is a long pause.

               Ray's hand enters frame and pulls Abby down out of frame 
               onto the bed. We hold on the moonlit window.

                                                       DISSOLVE THROUGH TO:


               Through the window the slow dissolve gradually defines the 
               front lawn and the street beyond in the flat pre-dawn light. 
               Abby rises into frame and quietly gets out of bed. The camera 
               tracks behind her as she walks up the hallway into the living 

               We follow her across the living room and move into a close 
               shot on her hand as she reaches into her purse and withdraws 
               a small plastic compact.


               She flips open the compact, then, hearing something, looks 
               up, squinting across the room.

               ABBY'S POV

               In the shadows at the far end of the room we can just see 
               two pointed ears and a glittering pair of eyes. The German 
               shepherd is panting softly.

               OVER ABBY'S SHOULDER

               As she peers into the shadows, her face reflected in the 
               mirror of the open compact.


               In the mirror something moves just behind her. Abby starts 
               to turn.

               Marty's hand clamps over her mouth from behind. His other 
               hand circles her waist. Abby struggles.

                         Lover-boy oughta lock his door...

               Marty's hand drops from her waist to her thighs and slides 
               under the robe.

                         ...Lotta nuts out there.

               Still holding her from behind, Marty forces her down on her 
               knees. Abby's cries are muffled by the hand clamped over her 
               mouth. Marty shoots a glance down the dark hallway. There is 
               no movement.

               Abby's hand is groping forward out of frame.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY'S PURSE

               She upsets it. The contents spill out, among them a small 
               pearl-handled revolver. Her hand gropes for the gun.

               BACK TO ABBY AND MARTY

               Marty yanks her to her feet, looking down the hallway.

                         Let's do it outside...

               He is dragging her to the front door.

                         ...in nature.

               He pushes her through the screen door.

               EXT. RAY'S BUNGALOW

               The neighborhood is deserted and still. The streetlamps are 
               still on. Marty and Abby stumble down the front stoop onto 
               the lawn.

               His hand is still clamped over her mouth. She reaches up, 
               grabs a finger, and bends it back.

               We hear the bone snap.

               Marty screams. His hand drops. His other hand cuffs her on 
               the side of the head, spinning her around.

               Marty is now clutching his broken finger with his good hand. 
               Abby kicks him in the groin.

               He sinks to his knees, drops forward on one hand, and vomits.

               FRONT STOOP

               Ray is coming out the door, hitching up his pants. In his 
               right hand he hold Abby's pearl-handled revolver.


               Slowly gets to his feet, looking at Ray.


               She has backed away from Marty and now stands on the lawn, 
               breathing heavily. She looks from Ray to Marty.

               BACK TO MARTY

               Backing toward his car, a Cadillac parked at curbside, still 
               looking at Ray. He turns to get into the car.

               The German shepherd lopes across the lawn and takes a clean 
               leap into the car through the open window on the passenger 

               Marty turns the ignition. The engine coughs and dies. He 
               tries again; it starts.

               The car roars up the street.


               Watching the car. He looks at Abby.


               Still panting. Up the street we can hear Marty's car 
               alternately racing and stopping, shifting in and out of gear.  
               His engine rumble starts to grow louder again.

                         Like to have seen his face when he 
                         found the dead end.

               In the background we see Marty's car roar by in the opposite 

               MOUNT BONNEL  EVENING

               LATERAL TRACK

               Moving past a row of cars parked on an overlook near the top 
               of the mountain. Below we can see the lights of the city of 
               Austin. The lot is littered with beer cans. We hear the sound 
               of rock music coming from various car radios. Several 
               teenagers lean against cars drinking beer; inside the cars 
               we can see the vague forms of others.

                         Hey mister, how'd you break your 

               His friends laugh.

               TRACK PULLING MARTY

               Ignoring the laughter as he walks past the cars, apparently 
               looking for someone. His right index finger is taped up in 
               an aluminum splint.

               MARTY'S POV

               At the end of a row of cars we see a green Volkswagon bug. 
               Leaning against the hood is Visser, still dressed in his 
               rumpled yellow suit. He is smoking a cigarette, talking to a 
               sixteen-year-old girl in shorts and a tube top. When he 
               notices Marty:

                              (to the girl)
                         Sorry sweetheart, my date is here...

               The girl drifts off. Marty enters frame and Visser turns to 

                         ...She saw me rolling a cigarette 
                         and thought it was marijuana.
                              (he laughs)
                         I guess she thought I was a swinger.

               Visser open the back door of the car. Marty ignores the 
               invitation, walks around to the front on the passenger side 
               and gets in.

               INT. VISSER'S CAR

               As Visser gets into the driver's seat. A small topless doll 
               is suspended from the rearview mirror. Visser gives it a 
               tap. As it swings back and forth two small lights, one behind 
               each breast, blink on and off.

                         Idnat wild?

               Both men sit watching the doll intently.

               Finally Marty reaches up and stops its swinging with the 
               rounded end of his splint. Visser eyes the splint.

                         Stick your finger up the wrong 
                         person's ass?

               Marty is silent, but Visser is in a good mood.

                         You know a friend of mine broke his 
                         hand a while back. Put in a cast. 
                         Very next day he takes a fall, 
                         protects his bad hand, falls on his 
                         good one, breaks that too. So now 
                         he's got two busted flippers and I 
                         say to him "Creighton, I hope your 
                         wife loves you. 'Cause for the next 
                         five weeks you cannot wipe your own 
                         goddamn ass..."

               Overcome by laughter. Finally:

                         ...That's the test, ain't it? Test 
                         of true love--

                         Got a job for you.

                              (settling down)
                         ...Well, if the pay's right and it's 
                         legal I'll do it.

                         It's not strictly legal.

               Visser shrugs, lights up another cigarette with his 
               fraternally inscribed lighter and drops the lighter onto the 

                         If the pay's right I'll do it.

                         It's, uh... it's in reference to 
                         that gentleman and my wife. The more 
                         I think about it the more irritated 
                         I get.

                         Yeah? Well how irritated are you?

               Marty doesn't answer. Finally Visser laughs.

                         ...Gee, I'm sorry to hear that. Can 
                         you tell me what you want me to do 
                         or is it a secret?

                         Listen, I'm not--this isn't a joke 

               Visser eyes him, still smiling. Finally he shrugs.

                         You want me to kill 'em.

                         I didn't say that.
                              (a pause)

                         Well what?

                         What do you think?

                         You're an idiot.

               Marty's shoulders slump. He seems less tense, almost relieved.

                         So, uh... this wouldn't interest 

                         I didn't say that. All I said was 
                         you're an idiot. Hell, you been 
                         thinking about it so much it's driving 
                         you simple.

               They are staring at each other.

                         Ten thousand dollars I'll give you.

               Visser laughs again.

                         I'm supposed to do a murder--two 
                         murders--and just trust you not to 
                         go simple on me and do something 
                         stupid. I mean real stupid. Now why 
                         should I trust you?

                         For the money.

                         The money. Yeah. That's a right smart 
                         of money...

               He turns and gazes out the window.

                         ...In Russia they make only fifty 
                         cents a day.

               He falls silent again, still staring out the window

               In the closeness of the car Marty is starting to sweat.

                         ...There's a big--

                         I want you to go fishing.


                         Go down to Corpus for a few days. 
                         Get yourself noticed. I'll give you 
                         a call when it's done... You just 
                         find a way to cover that money.

               Marty is slumped in his seat, not responding to the fact 
               that Visser has just ended the conversation.

               Finally he rouses himself and gets out of the car, leaving 
               Visser staring at the door he has left open behind him.

               After a moment we hear Marty's footsteps approaching again, 
               and he leans back into the open door with an afterthought.

                         I'll take care of the money, you 
                         just make sure those bodies aren't 
                         found... There's a...

               These words are difficult to say.

                         ...If you want, there's a big 
                         incinerator behind my place...

               The two men look at each other. Marty leaves. After a moment, 
               Visser leans over to grab the handle of the still open door.

                              (under his breath)
                         Sweet Jesus, you are disgusting.

               The door slams.


               The apartment is dark. We are looking across a shadowy floor 
               towards a large window, through which cold blue street light 
               shines. Through the window we can see the facade of the 
               building across the street; we are three or four floors up.

               We can hear the animated, accented voice of an Hispanic woman 
               approaching the apartment from the hallway behind us.

                                     LANDLADY (O.S.)
                         --big windows, paneleen and 
                         everytheen. So you want, like your 
                         own place? Like a Town House?

               A crack of light shoots across the floor as we hear the 
               apartment door open behind us. A figure enters frame. As it 
               crosses into the shaft of light we see that it is Abby. She 
               moves across the dark apartment, in silhouette against the 

                                     LANDLADY (O.S.)
                         No one will bother you here, sweetie--

               An overhead light is switched on and the room is bathed in 
               light. Several feet from Abby, an old man in a dirty 
               undershirt is asleep on a cot. Abby starts.

               The old man grumbles, slowly sits up, squints.

               With the light, the window behind Abby has become a mirror 
               of the entire room, in which we now see the matronly Landlady 
               standing by the wall switch.

               The Landlady roars at the old man in Spanish. The man glowers 
               at her. The Landlady looks back at Abby.

                              (cheerful again)
                         I show you around.

               We follow Abby as she accompanies the landlady back into the 
               short hallway-entrance foyer. Abby glances back at the old 

                         Are you sure this is... Are you sure 
                         this apartment is vacant?... Mrs. 

               The Landlady laughs cheerfully.

                         Oh yes...

               She gestures to a kitchen alcove on the left.

                         ...That's the kitchen...

               She turns and throws a few more barbs in Spanish back toward 
               the old man, then opens a door on the right side of the foyer 
               and enters the bathroom.

                         ...This is the bathroom...

               She flushes the toilet.

                         ...The toilet works and everytheen...

               She bustles out of the bathroom and takes the two short steps 
               back into the main room. She gestures expansively.

                         ...And here we are back in the liveen 

               She gives one vigorous stomp.

                         ...Good floors. Gas heat.

               She points.

                         ...That's Mr. Garcia.

               The old man is now sitting on the edge of the bed, smoking a 
               cigarette, looking for a place to put the ash. The Landlady 
               snaps at him again in Spanish, and is again cheerful as she 
               turns back to address Abby.

                         ...I was just esplaineen to him that 
                         he moved out of here yesterday...

               She walks to the apartment door.

                         ...You look around. Don't mind Mr. 
                         Garcia; he use do be my brother-in-

               She walks out and shuts the door.

               The room is quiet.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Staring at the door. She looks at Mr. Garcia, looks nervously 
               around the apartment. She looks back at Mr. Garcia.

               CLOSE SHOT  MR. GARCIA

               Staring vacantly at Abby. He blows a stream of smoke across 
               the room. The ash falls off his cigarette.

               STRIP BAR  NIGHT

               EXHORTER'S CUBICLE

               Hunched over the public address microphone in his small 
               cubicle of exhortation, is the middle-aged strip-bar barker. 
               Years of service in the bar have left his exhortations 
               depressingly bereft of conviction.

                         How 'bout it, gentlemen, let's show 
                         out appreciation for Lorraine up 
                         there, a registered nurse from Bolton, 
                         Texas, how 'bout it gentlemen, yeah...

               THE BAR PROPER

               Meurice is one of a line of men sitting at the bar, all 
               looking intently at the same point off left. All of the men 
               except Meurice are conservatively dressed and apparently 
               well-to-do. An audio loop is blaring a bump-and-grind version 
               of "Yellow Rose of Texas," punctuated by the crash of cymbals 
               and the thumping of toms.

               Abby enters and sits into an empty chair next to Meurice.

                         Looks like the state legislature is 
                         out of session.

               Meurice continues to stare intently off.

                         I thought this is where they met.

               All of the heads at the bar start to swivel, including 
               Meurice's. A couple of patrons hurriedly snatch their drinks 
               off the bar.

               In the extreme foreground a stripper dances on the top of 
               the bar into frame. We crop her just above her white high-
               heeled cowboy boots and her bare calves.

               The conversation continues with Abby looking at Meurice, but 
               Meurice and everyone else at the bar looking up at a point 
               somewhere above the stripper's calves.

                         Listen Meurice, you're gonna help me 
                         with a problem.

                         I am?

               The stripper drops a white leatherette vest onto the bar in 
               the foreground. The audience cheers.

                         You're gonna keep an eye on Marty 
                         and Ray, make sure nothing happens.

                         It won't?

               Two sheriff-star pasties drop onto the bar. The audience 

                         ...Ever occur to you, Abby, that 
                         maybe I'm the wrong person to ask?

               THE EXHORTER

               Into his microphone.

                         Let's not sit on our wallets, 
                         gentlemen. Lorraine is up there 
                         dancing her heart out, and if you 
                         let that cash money set on your hip, 
                         you might just as well be broke...

               ABBY AND MEURICE

               She is rising to leave; he is still staring off.

                         Thanks, Meurice.

                         Any time. But you don't have to worry 
                         about a thing for a while. Marty 
                         went down to Corpus yesterday.

               An old-west gunbelt hits the bar. The audience roars.

               THE EXHORTER

               Into his microphone.

                         And remember, gentlemen, we're always 
                         here, two to two, A.M. to P.M., three 
                         hundred and sixty-four days and 
                         Christmas, God willing and the creek 
                         don't rise...

               RAY'S BEDROOM

               The room is dark. We are looking across the room toward a 
               moonlit window. Beyond, across the lawn, the lamplit street 
               is empty.

               Suddenly Abby sits bolt upright into frame from the bed below.

                         He's in the house.

               Offscreen we hear Ray stirring in bed.

                         What's the matter?

               Abby twists around to look down at him.

                         I could've sworn I heard something.

                         Door's locked. Nothing there.

               He pulls her down out of frame and we hold on the window and 
               the empty lamplit street. Then Abby rises back into frame, 
               in silhouette against the window, looking down at Ray.

                         I knew it. 'Cause we wouldn't have 
                         heard anything if it was him. He's 
                         real careful. Fact is, he's anal.


                         Yeah, he told me once himself. He 
                         said to me...

               She taps herself on the forehead.

                         ..."In here, Abby. In here... I'm 

               HIGH ANGLE  RAY

               Looking up at Abby.

                         ...Well I'll be damned.

                         I couldn't believe it either...

               SIDE ANGLE  ABBY

               Framed against the window, looking down at Ray.

                         ...Me on the other hand, I got lots 
                         of personality...

               She drops down onto the bed out of frame. The camera holds 
               on the window through which we see the empty lamplit street.

                         Marty always said I had too much. 
                         'Course he was never big on 

               She rises back up into frame, in silhouette against the 

                         ...He sent me to a psychiatrist to 
                         see if he could calm me down some.

                         Yeah? What happened?

                         Psychiatrist said I was the healthiest 
                         person he'd ever met, so Marty fired 

                         ...I don't know if you can fire a 
                         psychiatrist, exactly.

                         Well, I didn't see him anymore, I'll 
                         tell you that much.

               HIGH ANGLE  RAY

               His eyes half-closed.


                         I said, Marty, how come you're anal 
                         and I gotta go to the psychiatrist?

                         What'd he say?

               SIDE ANGLE  ABBY

               Framed against the window.

                         Nothing. He's like you, he doesn't 
                         say much.


                         Except when he doesn't say things 
                         they're usually nasty.


                         When you don't they're usually nice.

                         ...You ever get tired?

                         Huh? Oh, yeah, I guess. Mm-hmm.

               Ray's hand rises into frame and coaxes Abby back down onto 
               the bed, revealing, through the window, a green Volkswagon 
               now parked at curbside on the lamplit street.

               We hear the rustle of sheets.

               As we hold on the window, we begin to hear the faint, distant 
               sound of metal scraping against metal.

               HALLWAY / LIVING ROOM

               We track down the dark hallway into the living room. As the 
               camera advances the sound of the scraping becomes louder.

               We are moving across the living room up to the front door of 
               the bungalow. The scraping is louder still as we finally 
               frame on a close shot of the doorknob, which is jiggling 
               ever so slightly.

               We hear a click as the lock finally releases.

               The door swings slowly open, revealing a man's hand on the 
               outside doorknob. We follow the hand as the man advances 
               slowly and quietly across the living room.

               Abby's purse comes into frame, sitting on a bureau; next to 
               it is a large tote bag. The hand rummages through the tote 
               bag briefly, then the purse. The man withdraws Abby's pearl-
               handled revolver. He breaks it open.


               It is Visser. As we hear a click offscreen, his face glows a 
               dim orange.

               BACK TO HIS HANDS

               His right holds the revolver, cylinder open, inside the purse.  
               His left holds his cigarette lighter as he inspects the 
               chamber. Three of the holes glint silver, the other three 
               are black--empty.

               We hear the faint creaking of bedsprings.

               WIDE SHOT  LIVING ROOM

               Visser cocks his head, listening, and looks down the hallway. 
               He takes a couple of quiet steps across the living room and, 
               as the camera tracks up to him, opens the back door of the 

               We follow him outside onto the lawn.

               EXT. RAY'S BUNGALOW

               We track behind him as he rounds the corner of the house and 
               approaches the open window to Ray's bedroom. He slows, moves 
               more cautiously, then sinks to his knees under the window. 
               As he reaches into his breast pocket the camera continues 
               tracking up to and over him, finally framing his POV through 
               the window.

               On the bed inside we can dimly see Abby and Ray, asleep.

               We have been hearing a faint rumble, becoming louder and 
               louder as if approaching from a distance. Just as the rumble 
               becomes deafening a sudden bright flash of light illuminates 
               the room, seeming to polarize the image of Abby and Ray in 
               bed, and we:

                                                                     CUT TO

               EXT. PHONE BOOTH DAY

               A huge truck roars by on the street behind Visser, and with 
               it the deafening rumble recedes. It is a painfully bright 
               day. Visser stands sweating in the phone booth with the 
               receiver pressed to his ear. We hear the phone ringing at 
               the other end.

               Finally, it is picked up.



                         Yeah. Is it...

                         Ya catch any fish?


                         Ya catch any fish?


                         ...What kind of fish?

                         Listen, what is it? Is it done?

               Visser forces a chuckle.

                         ...Yessir, you owe me some money.

               MARTY'S OFFICE  NIGHT


               Being plopped down onto Marty's desk.

               WIDER  THE OFFICE

               Visser sits facing the desk. He lights himself a cigarette 
               and sets the lighter down on the desk in front of him. Marty 
               settles, fidgeting, into the chair behind it.

               The bar is quiet, shut down. We hear only the whir of a fan 
               somewhere offscreen. Marty and Visser are lit by a lamp on 
               the desk between them. Light streams into the room from a 
               bathroom in the background. Visser is looking at the dead 

                         They look good.

               Marty half-rises from his seat and picks up one of the 

                         Want a couple?

               He drops them on Visser's side of the desk. Visser's head 
               draws back: he was only being polite.

                         Just the ten thousand'll be fine.

                         Got something to show me first?

               Visser hands a 9 x 12 envelope across the desk. Marty stares 
               at it for a moment, then quickly bends back the flap and 
               takes out an 8 x 10 photograph.

               THE PHOTOGRAPH

               It is a black-and-white shot of Abby and Ray in Ray's bed. 
               The sheet that partially covers them is pocked with three 
               dark bullet holes and is stained with blood.


               Staring dully down at the picture.

                         Dead, huh?

                         So it would seem.


               Visser is pushing the fish away from his side of the desk 
               with the eraser end of a pencil.

                         What did you...

               BACK TO MARTY

               Still looking at the picture. He traces the outline of Abby's 
               body with his finger.

                         ...What did you do with the bodies?

                         It's taken care of. The less you 
                         know about it the better.

                         Jesus, I don't believe it...

               Marty slips the picture back into its 9 x 12 envelope. His 
               face is pale.

                         ...I think I'm gonna be sick.

               He rises and heads for the bathroom, still clutching the 

               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER

               As his eyes follow Marty's exit. The bathroom door doesn't 
               close all the way; a narrow shaft of light slices the office 
               from the bare bulb in the bathroom.

                         I'll want that picture back...

               He turns to look across the desk.

               VISSER'S POV

               The standing safe behind the desk.

               BACK TO VISSER

               Still looking at the safe. Beads of sweat have popped out on 
               his forehead. He fans himself with his cowboy hat.

                         ...and you did say somethin' about 
                         some money.

               We hear a toilet flush offscreen.

               LONG SHOT  MARTY'S OFFICE

               As he reenters the office.

                         Your money, yeah.

               Visser stares dully down at the desktop.

                         Something I got to ask you, Marty. 
                         I've been very very careful. Have 
                         you been very very careful?

                         Of course.

                         Nobody knows you hired me?


               Marty is hunched over the open safe, still holding the 
               envelope. Blocking Visser's view of the safe with his body, 
               he slides the picture of Abby's and Ray's corpses from under 
               the envelope into the safe, then withdraws two packets of 

                         Don't be absurd, I wasn't about to 
                         tell anyone...

               He shuts the safe and spins the dial.

                         ...This is an illicit romance--we've 
                         got to trust each other to be 

               He walks across the room and throws the money and the envelope 
               down on the desk.

                         ...For richer, for poorer.

               Visser looks from the money down at his hands. They are 

                         Don't say that. Your marriages don't 
                         work out so hot...

               He wipes his hands on his pants.

                         ...How did you cover the money?

               Marty sits and props his booted feet up on the desk.

                         It's taken care of. The less you 
                         know about it the better.

               He smiles.

                         ...I just made a call about that. 
                         It'll look fine.

                              (shaking his head)
                         I must've gone money simple. This 
                         kind of murder...

               He nods toward the envelope on the desk.

                         ...it's too damn risky.

                         Then you shouldn't have done it. 
                         Can't have it both ways.

               He pushes the money across the desk with his boot.

                         ...Count it if you want.

                              (reaching into his 
                         Nah, I trust ya.

               His hand comes out with a gun pointing at Marty and--BAM--he 
               fires, an orange lick of flame spurting from the gun.

               Both men sit frozen. Visser's hand is the only thing that 

               CLOSE SHOT  MARTY

               Staring at Visser.

               After the gun blast we hear only the whir of the fan.

               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER

               Staring at Marty.


               His eyes are now shut. Otherwise he hasn't moved. A blood 
               stain is growing on the front of his shirt.

               WIDE SHOT  THE OFFICE

               The two face each other across the desk. Visser's gun is 
               still trained on Marty.

               After a moment Visser starts fanning himself again with his 
               cowboy hat. The only movement in the frame is the slow back-
               and-forth of the yellow hat, rhythmically in and out of shadow 
               as it catches and loses the light from the desk lamp. There 
               is a long pause.

               Finally one of Marty's feet slips from the desk and hits the 
               floor with a THUD.

               Visser lays the gun on the desk.

               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER

               As he reaches into his breast pocket and withdraws a 
               handkerchief. He wipes his forehead, then picks up the gun 
               and wipes it off. He leans down with the gun.

               CLOSE SHOT  THE GUN

               As Visser places it deliberately on the floor near the desk. 
               It is Abby's pearl-handled revolver.


               As Visser straightens up in the foreground. From our head-on 
               angle shooting across the desk we can see the bright metallic 
               glint of Visser's cigarette lighter underneath the dead fish.

               Visser's hands move over the near part of the desk, picking 
               up the money and the 9 x 12 picture envelope.


               As Visser turns from the desk and walks across the room out 
               of frame. We hear the back door opening.

                         Who looks stupid now.

               The door slams shut.

               The only sound is the whir of the fan. A pause. The camera 
               tracks slowly forward, tilting down to keep Marty and the 
               desktop centered in frame. As the camera moves the noise of 
               the fan grows louder. When Marty's body and the desk are 
               directly beneath us, the blades of the ceiling fan cut across 
               the immediate foreground and effect a:

                                                                   WIPE TO:

               MARTY'S BAR  LATER

               It is completely still. We are looking from the bar, across 
               the dark empty floor, toward the pebbled windows at the front 
               of the building that catch a hard blue light from the 
               streetlamps outside. The jukebox in the middle distance glows 
               in the darkness.

               A pair of headlights catches the pebbled glass and grows 
               brighter as we hear a car pull up to the bar and stop. We 
               hear a car door open and shut, then the sound of feet on 
               gravel. A huge shadow appears on the pebbled glass as the 
               figure crosses in front of the headlights. The man tries the 
               door, finds it locked, and walks back in front of the 
               headlights to cup his hands at a window. He walks back to 
               the door, and a moment later it swings open--framing him in 
               the doorway in silhouette.

               We follow him as he moves across the floor, behind the bar 
               and up to the cash register. He switches on a small 
               fluorescent light clamped to the top of the cash register. 
               It is Ray.

               He punches a key and the register rings open. He lifts up 
               the empty cash drawer and takes some papers from underneath 

               RAY'S POV

               As he flips through the papers; bills, receipts, no money.

               BACK TO RAY

               As he finishes flipping through the papers.


               He slips them back under the cash drawer and slams the 
               register shut. Turning from the register he glances around 
               the bar, the pauses, noticing something.

               RAY'S POV

               Light is spilling out from under the door to Marty's office.

               BACK TO RAY

               As he starts across the floor to Marty's office.


               He reaches the door and knocks sharply. No answer. He turns 
               the knob.


               The door is locked. We hear the muffled whir of the ceiling 
               fan inside.

               A pause. Ray withdraws a ring of keys from his pocket and 
               uses one on the door. The door swings open.

               Over his shoulder we see Marty, still at his desk, his back 
               to us. On foot is still propped on the desk.

                         What's the matter, you deaf?

               No answer.

               Ray stumbles toward Marty.

               He stumbles slightly and we hear the sharp blast of a gun 
               and the sound of something metallic skating across the floor.

               Ray, startled, steadies himself against the desk, then studies 

               RAY'S POV

               There is a dark pool of blood under Marty's chair.

               BACK TO RAY

               He looks back up at Marty, then walks behind his chair and 
               throws a wall switch. The room is bathed in light. His eyes 
               still on Marty, Ray crosses behind the desk.

               RAY'S POV  TRACKING SHOT

               The camera moves in a slow arc around the back of Marty's 
               motionless head.

               BACK TO RAY

               Still moving. He looks away from Marty, scans the floor. He 
               gets down on his hands and knees and peers under the safe.

               RAY'S POV

               There is a glinting silver circle in the darkness under the 
               safe. It is the business end of the revolver that Ray half-
               stumbled over, half-kicked.

               BACK TO RAY

               Still on his hands and knees. He reaches in and we hear a 
               rattle as he gropes under the safe. He withdraws the gun, 
               looks at it.

               THE GUN

               It is Abby's revolver.

               BACK TO RAY

               For a long moment he doesn't move. Then, slowly, he starts 
               to get up.


               The desk, Marty behind it, Ray straightening behind him. Ray 
               looks from the gun to Marty, slowly sets the gun down on the 
               desk. A pause. He begins to hoist Marty from the chair.

               There is noise from the bar, as of someone entering.

               Ray reacts.

               THE DOOR

               Separating the bar and back office. Ray hurries to it.

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)

               Footsteps approach the door.


               He turns it gently. The bolt clicks shut.

               BACK TO RAY

               Meurice's footsteps draw nearer.

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)
                         Marty, ya home?

               There is a rap at the door; Ray stands frozen. The doorknob 
               rattles. Ray reaches out compulsively to grab it, but stops 
               himself before actually touching it.

               Now Meurice's footsteps can be heard going casually back 
               into the bar. We hold on Ray's rigidly set face.

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)
                         What day is it today, Angie?

                                     WOMAN (O.S.)

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)
                         Tuesday is ladies' night.

                                     WOMAN (O.S.)

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)
                         Tuesday night is ladies' night. All 
                         your drinks are free.

               We hear a record drop on the jukebox and a Motown song blares.

               Ray crosses to Marty's chair and takes off his nylon 
               windbreaker. He stoops down and tries to mop up the pool of 
               blood with his windbreaker. This isn't going to work.

               He rises and walks over to the bathroom, the windbreaker 
               dripping blood.


               CLOSE SHOT  FAUCET

               The song continues faintly in the background. The faucet is 
               turned on and Ray's hand enters frame, holding a dirty white 
               towel under the stream of water.


               The song continues in the background. Ray's hand enters frame 
               holding the balled-up towel. His windbreaker is wrapped 
               inside. The camera follows as he pushes it across the trail 
               of dripped blood to the pool of blood under Marty's chair.

               CLOSE SHOT  MARTY

               He still has not moved. Ray rises into frame and takes him 
               under the armpits. He notices something on the desk in front 
               of him.


               Ray's hand enters frame and picks it up.


               Ray's hand enters frame and slips the gun into Marty's pocket. 
               Marty is hoisted up.


               Ray appears in the doorway. The music from the bar, though 
               fainter, can still be heard.

               There are three or four wooden steps going down from the 
               back door to the small gravel parking lot in back. Ray backs 
               down the stairs; Marty's feet THUMP-THUMP-THUMP down the 
               stairs after him.

               The rear door of Ray's car is open. Ray heaves in Marty's 
               torso. Marty's legs rest on the ground outside the car. Ray 
               takes an ankle in each hand and pushes.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               As he shuts the door. He looks up across the parking lot.

               RAY'S POV

               The incinerator belching fire and smoke. We hear its distant 
               roar over the bar song. We hear the car door slam.


               We are looking down on Ray's car as the camera tracks behind 
               it towards the incinerator. At the cut the roar of the 
               incinerator is suddenly louder. It grows louder still as we 
               approach it.

               Ray's car draws even with the incinerator without slowing or 
               stopping. The wadded-up towel is chucked out of his window 
               into the fire. We hold on the fire as Ray's car rolls on out 
               of frame.

               INT. RAY'S CAR

               As he drives down a deserted country highway. We hear the 
               rhythmic sound of the wheels clomping over asphalt. The radio 
               is broadcasting a fundamentalist's sermon, periodically 
               interrupted by static. Ray is sweating.

                         --so there were three signs, the 
                         second of which is Famine, this famine 
                         which I have already pointed out is 
                         devastatin' Africa and the Indian 
                         subcontinent. And the third of these 
                         signs is earthquakes. Now I don't 
                         know why he threw that in but if you 
                         talk to a geologist, and I've talked 
                         to many, he'll tell you that 
                         earthquake activity--

               Ray twists around and looks in the back seat.

               RAY'S POV

               Marty is lying inert.

                         --has increased almost eighty percent 
                         in the past two years, and what's 
                         more, in two years' time we'll be 
                         experiencin' what's knows as the 
                         Jupiter Effect--

               BACK TO RAY

               He looks back at the road. A car roars by.

                         --wherein all the planets of the 
                         known universe will be aligned up 
                         causin' an incredible buildup of 
                         destructive gravitational force. Now 
                         in Matthew Chapter Six, Verse Eighteen 
                         the Lord out and tells us that these 
                         are the signs by which we shall know 
                         that He is at our door. There are 
                         many good people disagree with me, 
                         but it's my belief that this 
                         Antichrist is alive today and livin' 
                         somewhere in Europe, in that ten-
                         nation alliance I spoke of, bein' 
                         groomed for his task--

               Ray switches off the radio.

               We hear the sound of faint, labored breathing.

               EXTREME CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               His jaw tightens. He whips his head toward the back seat. 
               His head snaps forward again and he slams on the brakes.

               The car screeches to a halt.

               EXT. HIGHWAY

               LONG SHOT  THE CAR

               As Ray's door flies open. He is bolting from the car. The 
               camera, at waist level, tracks toward him as he races out 
               into the field that abuts the highway.

               Fifty yards in he finally stops, panting, framed from a low 
               angle. His breath vaporizes in the crisp night air. We hear 
               only his breath and the chirring of crickets. He is looking 
               back toward the road.

               RAY'S POV  LONG SHOT  THE CAR

               Standing abandoned on the shoulder of the deserted highway. 
               Its headlights cast a lonely beam up the road. No movement.

               BACK TO RAY

               His panting slows. He is in a cold sweat. After a long moment, 
               he starts walking slowly, reluctantly, back toward the car.

               RAY'S POV  TRACKING

               Toward the car. Still no sign of movement.

               BACK TO RAY

               He slows as he draws up to the back of the car. He looks in 
               the back window.

               RAY'S POV  BACK SEAT OF THE CAR

               It is empty.

               The door on the highway side is ajar.

               BACK TO RAY

               No reaction.

               He walks around the back of the car onto the highway. He 
               looks up the road.

               RAY'S POV

               Marty is crawling up the road on his hands and knees, leaving 
               a trail of blood. The headlights of Ray's car give a 
               fantastically long shadow.

               BACK TO RAY

               Still no reaction. He gets into the driver's seat and stares 
               through the windshield as he gropes for the ignition key.

               RAY'S POV

               Marty, crawling.

               BACK TO RAY

               He throws the car into drive, looks at his target, thinks--
               decides. He pulls the key out of the ignition and goes around 
               to the trunk of the car. He opens it and pulls out a shovel.

               MARTY  LOW ANGLE

               From in front. The headlights glare behind him. His breath 
               vaporizes. In the background Ray is walking toward him, 
               dragging the shovel, which scrapes along the asphalt. As Ray 
               moves into the foreground and turns to face Marty only his 
               lower legs and the shovel are in frame.

               The shovel rises out of frame.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Both hands hold the shovel tensed over his shoulder. He stares 
               down at Marty. A long pause. We hear a distant rumble.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY'S FEET

               Inches away from Marty. Marty's hand slides forward and wraps 
               around one of Ray's ankles.

               BACK TO RAY

               He shudders. He adjusts his grip on the shovel.

               The rumble grows louder.

               RAY'S FEET

               He jerks his foot away, breaking Marty's grasp.

               BACK TO RAY

               Looks up from Marty. The rumble grows louder.

               RAY'S POV

               Headlight beams, although not yet the headlights themselves, 
               are visible a long way down the road.

               BACK TO RAY

               Staring down the road. Finally he lowers the shovel, walks 
               back to the car and throws it viciously into the trunk, walks 
               back up into the foreground and stoops down.

               CLOSE SHOT  MARTY

               As Ray grabs him under the armpits and starts dragging him 
               back to the car. Just before Ray heaves him into the back 
               seat, Marty coughs weakly. A fine spray of blood comes out 
               with the cough.

               The engine rumble is quite loud now.


               As he slams the back door shut. He presses himself against 
               the side of the car. Headlights glare over him; the truck 
               roars by just behind him.

               EXT. OPEN FIELD

               FULL SHOT  RAY'S CAR

               Sudden quiet at the cut. We are looking at Ray's car in 
               profile, parked in the middle of a deserted field. From 
               offscreen we hear the sound of a shovel biting into earth.

               We track laterally down the car, along the beam of its 
               headlights, to finally frame Ray as he climbs out of the 
               shallow grave he has just finished digging.

               He plants the shovel and walks back to the car.

               VERY WIDE SHOT

               The grave in the middle background; the car's headlights 
               beyond it.

               Ray is dragging Marty toward the grave. He dumps him in.

               HIGH SHOT  THE GRAVE

               As Marty thumps to the bottom, face up.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               As he bends over to pick up the shovel, dripping sweat. We 
               hear the shovel biting into earth.

               HIGH SHOT  THE GRAVE

               Ray, in the foreground, pitches the first shovelful of earth 
               onto Marty. Marty moves slightly.

               LOW SHOT  RAY

               As he pauses, looking down into the grave. He stoops down 
               and resumes shoveling, bobbing in and out of frame as he 
               hurls dirt into the grave.

               BACK TO HIGH SHOT

               As Ray shovels, Marty is moving under the loose dirt. A faint, 
               inarticulate noise comes from the grave.

               Almost imperceptibly, Marty's right arm starts to rise.


               Ray stands on the lip of the grave, hunched over his shovel, 
               crisply illuminated by the headlights. In the shadowy 
               foreground Marty's arm rises, extended toward Ray. He is 
               clutching Abby's gun in his splint-fingered hand.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               As he straightens up and stands motionless, expressionless, 
               watching Marty, making no attempt to get out of the way.

               HIGH SHOT  MARTY

               The gun extended into the foreground. His index finger 
               splinted, he slides his middle finger over the trigger of 
               the gun.

               LOW SHOT  RAY


               HIGH SHOT  MARTY

               The gun trembling in the foreground. His knuckle whitens 
               over the trigger.

               The trigger releases and we hear the dull click of an empty 

               LOW SHOT  RAY

               Staring blankly down at Marty.

               SIDE SHOT

               Of Marty's gun hand as Ray slowly sinks down on the lip of 
               the grave, bracing himself with the shovel. His hand reaches 
               for Marty's. Marty squeezes off two more empty chambers. 
               Ray's hand slowly closes over the barrel of the gun.

               As he pulls, the gun slides from Marty's fingers.


               Biting into the earth.

               MED SHOT  RAY

               Furiously shoveling dirt into the grave.

               HIGH SHOT  THE GRAVE

               Marty barely visible under the dirt.

               MED SHOT  RAY

               Shoveling, panting.

               HIGH SHOT  THE GRAVE

               Half full.

               MED SHOT  RAY

               Working furiously. His breath comes in short gasps.

               HIGH SHOT  THE GRAVE

               It is filled. Ray is packing down the earth, slamming the 
               shovel furiously against the bare patch of earth.


               Being slammed down against the earth. Again and again.

               EXT. OPEN FIELD  SUNRISE

               The staccato beat of the shovel slamming against earth drops 
               out at the cut. There is perfect quiet. The sun is just 
               peeping over the horizon. In the foreground Ray is sitting 
               in the open door of his car, smoking a cigarette. His gaze 
               is fixed on a spot offscreen.

               HIS POV

               A house. Quite near by.

               The house and its perfect green rectangle of lawn are set 
               incongruously in the middle of the open field.

               BACK TO RAY

               Staring, without emotion.

               He takes one last, fierce drag on the cigarette, then flicks 
               it away. He takes the shovel, walks over to the grave and 
               stares at it for several seconds, shovel clasped firmly in 
               both hands.

               He walks back to the car.

               HIGH SHOT

               House, car and grave. Ray throws the shovel into the car, 
               gets in, and turns the ignition.

               The engine coughs weakly and dies.

               He tries again. Same result.

               One more time. The engine coughs, sputters, and fires to 
               life. The car runs over the grave and rattles on across the 
               rutted field towards the highway in the distance.

               INT. RAY'S CAR  DAWN

               As Ray drives down the straight empty highway in the flat 
               early-morning light.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Pale and unblinking.

               RAY'S POV  THE HIGHWAY

               In the distance we see a beat-up white station wagon 
               approaching. It's headlights wink on, then off again.

               BACK TO RAY

               He squints at the approaching car.

               RAY'S POV

               The car is closer. It's headlights wink again.

               BACK TO RAY

               His jaw tightens. He stares intently at the car. Then, 
               abruptly, he looks down at his dashboard.


               His headlights are on. Ray's hand enters frame and pushes in 
               the knob.

               SIDE ANGLE  RAY

               Watching the approaching station wagon. As it passes we catch 
               a glimpse of its occupant. He grins and cocks a you-got-it 
               finger at Ray before roaring out of frame.


               HIGH ANGLE

               The station hasn't opened yet. Ray's car, empty, stands alone 
               in the lot. Flat prairie stretches to the horizon. No movement 
               in the frame.

               At the cut we hear the faint sound of a phone ringing through 
               a receiver. After four or five rings the phone is picked up 
               and we begin a slow crane down.

                              (through phone; 

                              (present; very hoarsely)
                         Abby... you all right?

                         Ray?... What time is it?

                         I don't know. It's early... I love 

               A beat.

                         ...You all right?

                         I don't know. I better get off now.

               The continuing crane down reveals Ray in a phone booth in 
               the foreground.

                         Okay, see ya... Thanks, Ray.


               The phone disconnects.

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Her sleeping head on a pillow. Offscreen we hear a door open 
               and shut. A moment later Ray's dirt-caked hand comes into 
               frame and gently brushes a wisp of hair back for Abby's face. 
               We hear Ray walk across the apartment and a moment later the 
               sound of water running.

               Abby stirs. She looks offscreen.

               LONG SHOT  RAY

               Standing in the doorway to the bathroom. He is wiping his 
               hands on a towel.


                         You're bad.

               Still half asleep, Abby smiles.


                         I said you're bad.

               There is a long pause. Finally:

                         ...You're bad too.

               Ray swings a chair out and sits down behind a table at the 
               far end of the room. He leans back and props his legs up on 
               the table. He is staring across the room at Abby.

                         We're both bad.

                                                                   FADE OUT


               As we hear the click of a pull-string the camera is dropping: 
               down past an orange safe light, down the length of the string, 
               down to a metal darkroom tray where two short strips of 
               negative are burning.

               Visser's hand and yellow sleeve cuff (now orange) enter frame, 
               with an 8 x 10 black-and-white photograph. The photograph is 
               dropped into the tray. As it burns we see that it is the 
               same picture of Abby's and Ray's "corpses" as Visser showed 
               Marty, except that in this print the bullet holes and blood 
               are less convincingly brushed in.

               Another print is dropped into the tray and ignites. In this 
               one we see bullet holes but no blood.

               A third print is dropped in and ignites. It is the original 
               undoctored shot of Abby and Ray asleep in bed.

               Visser's hands enter frame holding the picture-envelope that 
               he took away from Marty's office. Visser rips it in half and 
               is about to drop it into the tray, but stops abruptly.

               There is posterboard, not a photograph, peeking out of the 
               torn envelope.

               Visser's hands pull the two halves of the placard from the 
               envelope and fit them together. The stenciled 8 x 10 placard 
               says: "All Employees Must Wash Hands Before Resuming Work."


               Staring at the placard in disbelief.

               After a moment his hand rises into frame to deposit a 
               cigarette in his mouth. His hand drops back down, groping in 
               a pocket.

               His hand jumps back into frame, empty; he thumps at his breast 
               pockets; he can't find his lighter.

               He wheels and exits frame. The light snaps off. A door slams 

               ABBY'S APARTMENT  DAY

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               He has dozed off in his chair. Offscreen we hear a door slam, 
               and his eyes open.


               Emerging from the bathroom. Her voice has a flat echo in the 
               bare apartment.

                         Why didn't you get into bed?

                         I didn't think I could sleep. I'm 
                         surprised you could. Are you all 


               She walks over and sits down on the bed.

                         ...You called me this morning.


               Abby looks at him, expecting more. Finally:

                         ...I just wanted to let you know 
                         that everything was all right. I 
                         took care of everything. Now all we 
                         have to do is keep our heads.

                         ...What do you mean?

               Ray finally looks directly at her.

                         I know about it, Abby. I went to the 
                         bar last night.

               Abby is looking at him in alarm.

                         What happened?--Was Meurice there?


               He laughs shortly.

                         ...He didn't see me, though. Nobody 
                         saw me.

               The chair grates back as he stands up and looks vaguely around 
               the room.

                         ...Is it cold in here?

               Abby is looking at him nervously.

                         Well... what happened?

                         I cleaned it all up, but that ain't 

               He starts nervously pacing around the room, looking for 

                         ...What's important is what we do 
                         now; I mean we can't go around half-
                         cocked. What we need is some time to 
                         think about this, figure it out...

               He moves a packing crate aside, still hunting around the 

                         ...Anyway, we got some time now. But 
                         we gotta be smart.


                         Abby, never point a gun at anyone 
                         unless you're gonna shoot him. And 
                         when you shoot him you better make 
                         sure he's dead...

               Ray's pacing is more agitated as he looks distractedly around 
               the apartment.

                         ...because if he's not dead he's 
                         gonna get up and try and kill you.

               He pauses, seemingly at a total loss.

                         ...That's the only thing they told 
                         us in the service that was worth a 
                         goddamn--Where the hell's my 

                         What the hell happened, Ray?

               Ray is walking to the window. Sunlight streams in around 

                         That ain't important. What's important 
                         is that we did it. That's the only 
                         thing that matters. We both did it 
                         for each other...

               He stoops down to look through a pile of clothes by the 

                         ...That's what's important.

                         I don't know what you're talking 

               Ray's head snaps around. Staring at her he slowly rises to 
               his feet and then remains still.

                         I... I mean what're you talking about, 
                         Ray? I haven't done anything funny.

                         ...What was that?

               Abby, startled, can't contain her agitation anymore.

                         Ray, I mean you ain't even acting 
                         like yourself. First you call me at 
                         five in the A.M. saying all kinds of 
                         nice things over the telephone and 
                         then you come charging in here scaring 
                         me half to death without even telling 
                         me what it is I'm supposed to be 
                         scared of. I gotta tell you it's 
                         extremely rattling.


               We track toward him, isolating him against the window. He is 
               perfectly still. For a long time he can't speak.

                         ...Don't lie to me, Abby--

               BACK TO ABBY

               Still worked up.

                         How can I be lying if I don't even 

               The ring of the telephone cuts her off. She looks at the 
               phone, pauses for a moment, then continues, struggling.

                         ...I mean if you and him had a fight 
                         or something, I don't care, as long 
                         as you...

               Her voice trails off.

               The telephone won't stop ringing. Abby and Ray are staring 
               at each other, seemingly oblivious to it. Finally:

                         ...Pick it up.

               CLOSE SHOT  TELEPHONE

               Still ringing. Abby's hand enters frame and picks it up.


               Through the phone we hear only the rhythmic whir of a ceiling 
               fan. Abby shifts the phone to her other ear, listening hard. 
               It is the same sound we heard earlier when she picked up the 
               phone at Ray's house.

               As before, the line clicks dead.

                              (looking at Ray)
                         ...Welp, that was him.

               There is a long moment of silence. Then Ray's voice comes 
               from across the room:



               There is silence again.


               Ray shifts in front of the window. He laughs humorlessly. 
               The laugh stops abruptly.

                         ...What's going on with you two?

                         All right...

               He starts across the room.

                         ...You can call him back, whoever it 

               He is heading for the door.

                         ...I'll get out of your way.

               He pauses at the foyer and pulls Abby's gun out of his pocket. 
               He sets it on a shelf by the door.


               Watching. We hear the door open.

                                     RAY (O.S.)
                         You left your weapon behind.

               We hear the door slam shut.

               CLOSE SHOT  CEILING FAN

               We hear the rhythmic whir of the fan. We tilt down from the 
               ceiling to reveal that we are in the living room of Ray's 

               In the foreground Visser sits in a chair with the cradled 
               telephone in his lap, facing the front door, which stands 
               open in the background. The contents of Abby's tote bag lie 
               strewn on the bureau next to Visser. Her purse is not there. 
               After a moment Visser rouses himself and starts to sweep the 
               articles back into the tote bag.



               It is dark, lit only by the morning light leaking in around 
               the drawn blinds. It is a small modern apartment such as one 
               sees in large apartment complexes--shag carpeting, built-in 
               bar. In the extreme foreground the small red "Power" light 
               of a telephone answering machine glows in the darkness.

               The front door opens in the background, spilling bright 
               sunlight. Meurice stoops down, picks up two newspapers, 
               enters, and shuts the door. He walks toward the camera and 
               his hand enters frame in extreme foreground to punch the 
               rewind button on the machine. His hand leaves frame. A few 
               pieces of mail are flipped down onto the machine table, piece 
               by piece, as the machine rewinds. He reaches down again and 
               hits playback. After a beep:

                                     WOMAN'S VOICE
                         Hi Meurice, this is Helene, Helene 
                         Trend, and I'm calling 'cause I wanna 
                         know just what the hell that remark 
                         you made about Sylvia's supposed to 

               Mail continues to flip down onto the table, piece by piece.

                                     WOMAN'S VOICE
                         ...She says you're full of shit and 
                         frankly I believe her. And hey, I 
                         love you too. Sure. Anyway, you better 
                         call me soon because I'm going to 
                         South America tonight--you know, 

               Dial tone. Beep.

                                     MARTY'S VOICE
                         Listen asshole, you know who this 
                         is. I just got back from Corpus and 
                         there's a lot of money missing from 
                         the safe...

               The mail stops dropping; Marty has Meurice's attention.

                                     MARTY'S VOICE
                         ...I'm not saying you took it but 
                         the place was your responsibility 
                         and I told you to keep an eye on 
                         your asshole friend. Don't--uh, don't 
                         come to the bar tonight, I've got a 
                         meeting. But tomorrow I want to have 
                         a word with you, and with Ray--if 
                         you can find him.

               Dial tone. Beep.

               Meurice's hand drops into frame.

                                     WOMAN'S VOICE
                         Meurice, where the hell have you 
                         been? I--

               His finger presses the stop button.

                                                              MATCH CUT TO:

               RAY'S FINGER

               Pressing into a dark stain in the upholstery of the back 
               seat of his car. When he raises it the fingertip is red--the 
               seat still wet with blood.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Looking down at the seat. He backs out of the car and walks 
               up the driveway to his house.

               INT. RAY'S LIVING ROOM

               As he comes through the screen door. It bangs shut behind 
               him. As he crosses the living room we see, and he hears, 
               Meurice's Trans Am pulling up and stopping at the foot of 
               the lawn. Ray turns and looks out the window.

               CLOSE SHOT  CLOSET DOOR

               Ray throws it open and hurriedly pulls out the first thing 
               at hand--a sheet. We hear the door of the Trans Am open and 
               slam shut.

               EXT. RAY'S BUNGALOW

               TRACKING SHOT  ON RAY

               Exiting the house as the screen door bangs and shudders behind 
               him. He hurries down the walk.

               TRACKING SHOT  RAY'S POV

               Meurice is rounding the bottom of the lawn and starting up 
               the drive toward the incriminating car. Its back door is 
               standing ajar.

                         I hope you're planning on leaving 

               BACK TO RAY

               Reacting to the line as he reaches the car. He bends over to 
               throw the sheet over the seat just as Meurice walks up behind 

                              (his back to Meurice; 
                              arranging the sheet)
                         Got a problem, Meurice?

                         No, you do, cowboy. You been to the 

               Ray is still hunched in the open doorway. He freezes 
               momentarily in arranging the sheet.


                         You shouldn't have taken the money...

               Ray doesn't reply or turn around. Meurice is getting more 

                         ...Look at me man, I'm serious. You 
                         broke in the bar and ripped off the 

               Ray backs out of the car and turns around.

                         ...Abby warned me you were gonna 
                         make trouble. Trouble with you is, 
                         you're too fucking obvious; the only 
                         ones with the combination are me and 

               Ray looks evenly at Meurice. Behind him the sheet has been 
               arranged over the seat. He puts an unlit cigarette in his 

                         ...and Abby. Maybe. But as far as 
                         I'm concerned that only leaves one 
                         fucking possibility.

                         What's that?

               Meurice reaches out and swipes the unlit cigarette out of 
               Ray's mouth.

                         Those things are nothing but coffin 

               He turns and stares down the street, exasperated.

                         ...Look. Personally I don't give a 
                         shit. I know Marty's a hard-on but 
                         you gotta do something. I don't know; 
                         give the money back, say you're sorry, 
                         or get the fuck out of here, or 

               Mow that his temper is gone, he realizes he has nothing much 
               to say. He shakes his head and turns back down the drive, 
               muttering as he lights himself Ray's cigarette.

                         ...It's very humiliating, preaching 
                         about this shit.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Standing in front of the back door of his car, watching 
               Meurice walk away. His right hand rises into frame to deposit 
               another unlit cigarette in his mouth. Offscreen, Meurice 
               calls from the end of the drive:

                         I'm not laughing at this, Ray Bob, 
                         so you know it's no fucking joke.

               We hear his car door slam. After a moment Ray exits frame, 
               heading for the house. The camera tracks slowly in to the 
               back window of the car.

               Traces of blood are starting to seep up from the upholstery 
               into the sheet.

               INT. MARTY'S HOUSE  DAY


               We are looking across the tiled floor toward the front 
               doorway. The room has the dim gray cast of daytime inside a 
               shuttered house. We hold on the empty foyer as we hear an 
               intermittent high whining sound. We hear the padding of feet 
               on carpet, and then the clatter of nails on tile as Opal, 
               Marty's German shepherd, trots into frame and circles the 
               foyer, still whining. She jumps up and scratches desperately 
               at the front door.

               A slow, rhythmic pounding is very faint on the track.

               EXT. MARTY'S BAR  DUSK

               Abby has just gotten out of her car and is walking up to the 
               front of the darkened bar. The faint, rhythmic thumping 
               continues over the cut, its source somewhere offscreen. As 
               Abby takes a key out of her purse and lets herself into the 
               bar, the thumping stops.

               INT. MARTY'S BAR

               Abby switches on the lights, looks around, goes to the back-
               office door. Locked. As she fits her key into the lock:


               The door swings open, fanning a shaft of light onto the 
               darkened room.


               We are looking from the inside at the bathroom door that 
               won't close all the way. As the light fans into the office 
               beyond and seeps in through the crack of the bathroom door, 
               we see Visser's sleeve cuff and his hand pressing against 
               the door, to hold it near-shut.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Standing in the office doorway. We pull her into the room. 
               She stops abruptly, looking past the camera, and wrinkles 
               her nose.

               ABBY'S POV

               Marty's fish, now half-decayed, still lie on the desk.

               Some of the desk drawers stand open, with some of their 
               contents strewn across the surface of the desk.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She takes a step forward. We hear the crunch of glass 
               underfoot. She looks down at the floor.

               ABBY'S POV

               Shards of broken glass lie on the floor.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She looks up from the floor toward the back door.

               ABBY'S POV

               The pane of the back-door window closest to the knob has 
               been shattered from the outside, scattering broken glass 
               into the office.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She crosses slowly to the desk, staring at the rotted fish. 
               She looks up from the desk.

               ABBY'S POV

               On the standing safe behind the desk lies a white towel. 
               Abby's hand enters frame ans picks up the towel.

               In slow motion a hammer that's been wrapped inside slips out 
               of the towel, falls end-over-end, hits the floor with a dull 

               BACK TO ABBY

               Stooping down to pick up the hammer. At eye level as she 
               stoops down is the combination dial to the safe. The dial 
               has been battered by the hammer. Abby looks from the hammer 
               to the floor under the desk chair.

               ABBY'S POV

               Blood stains.


               Staring down at the floor. She rises and looks at the desk. 
               As she rises we hear glass under her feet.

               ABBY'S POV

               The dead fish. Beyond them, on the floor around the desk, 
               broken glass.

               BACK TO ABBY


               ABBY'S POV

               The dead fish.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She seems to be falling slowly backwards. The camera falls 
               with her, keeping her in close shot. Her head hits a pillow. 
               We pull back slowly to reveal that she is lying on the bed 
               in her apartment, staring across the room. She lies motionless 
               on the bad, her eyes wide.

               ABBY'S POV

               Across the darkened apartment we see the curtainless windows, 
               and beyond them, across the lamplit street, the facade of 
               the opposite building.

               LONG SHOT  ABBY

               Lying still. After a moment she gets out of bed, crosses to 
               the front door of the apartment, locks it, then walks 
               unsteadily back to the bed.

                                                                   FADE OUT

               FADE IN:

               SAME LONG SHOT  ABBY IN BED

               She opens her eyes, lies still for a moment, coughs. She 
               gets out of bed and walks across the still dark apartment to 
               the bathroom. She shuts the bathroom door.


               Abby looks at herself in the mirror above the sink, then 
               turns on the tap water. From a neighboring apartment we hear 
               a dull rhythmic thumping on the wall. She pauses, listens 
               for a moment, then starts to splash water on her face.

               From somewhere offscreen we hear the sharp sound of glass 
               shattering. It reverberates for a moment, then dies. Abby 
               looks up at the bathroom door. We hear a scraping at the 
               lock of her apartment door. Abby listens.

               Suddenly we hear the lock springing open, and the front door 
               swinging on its hinges.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Startled. She shuts off the water and stands motionless. 
               Droplets of water are streaming down her face.

               We hear the sound of footsteps in the next room, crunching 
               across broken glass.


               There is no answer. After a moment we hear bedsprings creak 
               in the next room. Abby opens the bathroom door and walks 

               MAIN ROOM

               A shaft of light slices across the floor from the open 
               bathroom door. Broken glass glints on the floor. In the semi-
               darkness we can see that someone is sitting on the bed. The 
               person looks up.

               It is Marty.

               Abby recoils.

                         Lover-boy oughta lock his door.

               Abby looks nervously at Marty. Droplets of water are still 
               running down her face. She brushes one from her eye.

                         I love you...

               He smiles thinly.

                         ...That's a stupid thing to say, 

               Abby takes a step back.

                         I... I love you too.

               Still smiling, Marty shakes his head.

                         No. You're just saying that because 
                         you're scared...

               He stands. We hear glass under his feet. He unbuttons the 
               middle button of his coat and reaches inside.

                         ...You left your weapon behind.

               He withdraws something from an inside pocket and tosses it 
               to her.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY'S HANDS

               As she catches the object. It is her compact.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               She looks from her hands up to Marty.

                         He'll kill you too.

               Marty gags, leans forward, doubles over to vomit--blood.

               The blood washes over the floor at his feet.


               Bolts upright in bead with a muffled groan. Sweat pours down 
               her face. She brushes a drop of sweat from her eye and looks 

               ABBY'S POV

               Moonlight glints through the windows across the hardwood 
               floor. Through the windows we can see the facade of the 
               opposite building. The apartment is dark and still, just as 
               we left it before she fell asleep.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She slumps back onto the bed. One hand gropes down out of 
               frame and comes up holding an illuminated alarm clock. She 
               looks at it, drops it back to the floor.

               She turns on her side and stares across the room toward the 

               ABBY'S POV

               The window.

                                                       DISSOLVE THROUGH TO:


               It is still not quite light. The few lights that shined in 
               the windows of the opposite building before are now off; the 
               facade of the building is a flat, undetailed gray.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Still lying on her side on the bed, her eyes open, staring 
               at the window.

               BACK TO LONG SHOT  WINDOW

               After a moment Abby enters frame. She picks her coat off a 
               chair and puts it on.

               We hear a car door slam.

               EXT. RAY'S BUNGALOW  PRE-DAWN

               Abby has just gotten out of her car in the foreground and is 
               crossing the lawn to the house. Down the road the street 
               lights are still on. One light burns in the house, in the 
               window of Ray's bedroom. Abby approaches it.

               THROUGH THE WINDOW

               Over Abby's shoulder, as she leans against the sill of the 
               open window and looks inside.

               Ray sits on the bed in the empty room, smoking a cigarette, 
               his profile to the window, gazing fixedly at the wall.


               Ray starts and looks toward the window, squinting.

               INT. RAY'S BUNGALOW

               WIDE SHOT  LIVING ROOM

               Abby is coming through the screen door. The room is strikingly 
               bare of everything except furniture. All personal effects 
               have been removed.

               Abby looks around, bewildered, as Ray enters from the hallway.

                         ...Where is everything?

                         In the trunk.

               Abby, still standing in front of the door, looks at him 
               uncomprehendingly. Ray walks over to a couple of cardboard 
               boxes stacked in the corner.

                         ...In the car.

               He ties a knot around the top carton with a piece of cord, 
               then cuts the cord with a collapsible fishing knife.

                         ...You leaving?

                         Isn't that what you want?

               She slowly shakes her head.

                         Wanna come with me?

               He leans back against the boxes, watching her.

                         ...But first I gotta know what 

                         What do you want to know?

                         You broke into the bar. You wanted 
                         to get your money. You and Marty had 
                         a fight. Something happened...

               Ray shakes his head, smiling. Abby squints at him, looking 
               for help.

                         ...I don't know, wasn't it you? Maybe 
                         a burglar broke in, and you found--

                         With your gun?...

               He puts the knife in his pocket and walks over to the door. 
               As he approaches her:

                         ...Nobody broke in, Abby. I'll tell 
                         you the truth...

               Ray faces Abby in front of the door.

                         ...Truth is, I've felt sick the last 
                         couple of days. Can't eat... Can't 
                         sleep... When I try to I... Abby...

               It's difficult to bring out. Ray's hand gropes for the cross-
               slat on the screen door. Finally:

                         ...The truth is... he was alive when 
                         I buried him.

               Abby stares.

               An object materializes in the sky beyond them. It is flipping 
               end-over-end in slow motion, moving toward Abby and Ray and 
               the screen door. Abby and Ray, each staring at the other, 
               fail to notice until--

               THWACK--it bounces off the screen.

               Abby starts; Ray doesn't.

               The spell is broken, Abby pushes hesitantly at the screen 
               door. Ray's hand slides off the cross-slat; he makes no move 
               to stop her.


               As Abby steps over the rolled-up newspaper that hit the screen 

               TRACKING SHOT  ON ABBY

               Hurrying down the driveway to get to her car. A low rumble 
               is building on the soundtrack. Abby glances at Ray's car as 
               she passes it.


               More blood has seeped into and dried on the dropsheet covering 
               the back seat. The bass rumble grows louder, punctuated by a 
               rhythmic thumping.


               OVER ABBY'S SHOULDER

               As she pounds frantically on the door--the sound continuing 
               over the cut. After a moment the door edges open.

               Meurice is standing in the doorway in a long bathrobe. A 
               sleeper's blindfold is pushed up over his forehead.

                         Abby. What's the matter?

                         I... I'm sorry, Meurice. I gotta 
                         talk to you... Can I come in?

               He looks at her hard.

                         Yeah... yeah, come in...

               He steps aside to let her pass.

                         ...but I gotta tell ya...


               As Abby enters.

                         ...I'm retired.

               Meurice switches on a table lamp; the curtains are drawn 
               against the sun. Abby follows Meurice over to the bar.

                         Jesus, I got a hangover. Want a drink?

                         No, I--

                         Well I do...

               He pours himself a drink.

                         ...For you I answer the door. If you 
                         wanna stay here, that's fine. But 
                         I'm retired.

                         Something happened with Marty and 


               He glares at her.

                         ...Let me ask you one question...

               He slams back the drink.

                         ...Why do you think I'm retired.

               He grimaces.

                         ...Ray stole a shitload of money 
                         from Marty. Until both of 'em calm 
                         down I'm not getting involved.

                         No Meurice, it's worse than that. 
                         Something really happened, I think 
                         Marty's dead--

                         What?! Did Ray tell you that?

                         Sort of...

               Meurice sits her down on the sofa.

                         That's total bullshit. Marty called 
                         me after he was jacked up...

               He tries to coax her into lying down.

                         ...I mean, I don't know where he is, 
                         but he ain't dead.


                         You don't look too good. You sleep 
                         last night?

               Her head meets an end cushion.

                         Meurice, you gotta help me...

               Meurice rises from the sofa, sighs.

                         All right. Just sit tight. Try to 
                         get some sleep...

               He leans down to the table next to the sofa.

                         ...I'll find Marty, find out what's 
                         going on.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Her head on the cushion. We hear engine rumble. Abby twists 
               her head back, following Meurice. As we hear the table lamp 
               being switched off we:

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT. HIGHWAY  NIGHT

               POV FROM A CAR

               The engine rumble continues over the cut. There is no other 
               traffic on the highway. A light fog covers the road. A green 
               highway sign says: "San Antonio 73 mi." We hear a car radio 
               playing softly.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Driving. He is gently lit by the light from the dashboard. 
               He reaches forward to turn off the radio. The only sound now 
               is the hum of the engine and the rhythmic clomping of tires 
               on pavement. The look and sound of the scene are close to 
               those of the first scene of the movie.

               Ray takes a cigarette out of his pocket and puts it in his 
               mouth, but leaves it unlit.

               RAY'S POV

               The headlights of an approaching car materialize in the fog. 
               The car passes with a roar.

               Up ahead a traffic light is turning amber.

               BACK TO RAY

               The engine hum drops as he slows. We hear the low engine 
               rumble and the squeaking brakes of another car. Ray is now 
               stopped in front of the deserted intersection. He looks up 
               in his rearview mirror.

               RAY'S POV

               Another car is stopped just behind him, the fog floating up 
               past its headlights. The headlights halate in the fog; none 
               of the rest of the car is visible.

               BACK TO RAY

               The unlit cigarette still in his mouth. He looks down from 
               the rearview mirror to the intersection ahead of him. There 
               is a long pause, during which we hear only the steady purr 
               of Ray's car and the knocking rumble of the car behind him.

               Ray looks up at the traffic light.

               RAY'S POV

               The light is just turning from red to green.


               He takes his foot off the brake, hesitates for a moment, the 
               replaces it on the brake.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               He looks up in his rearview mirror.

               RAY'S POV

               The headlights of the other car remain motionless behind 
               him. The car makes no move to pass.

               BACK TO RAY

               He slowly takes the cigarette from his mouth and drops it 
               onto the seat next to him. His eyes shift from the rearview 
               mirror to the traffic light.

               RAY'S POV

               Green fog floats past the green light.

               BACK TO RAY

               His face frozen. He turns slowly to look behind.

               RAY'S POV

               The other car is still motionless. We hear the muted rumble 
               of its engine.

               BACK TO RAY

               His eyes shift back to the mirror. He gropes for his window 
               handle and slowly rolls it down. He sticks out his left arm, 
               eyes still on the rearview mirror, and waves for the other 
               car to go around him.

               RAY'S POV

               The other car remains still for a moment. White fog floats 
               up beyond the red fog created by Ray's brake lights.

               Finally the car pulls out slowly to the left to pass.

               BACK TO RAY

               Watching the car pass.

               RAY'S POV

               As the car pulls out into the light from the intersection 
               and Ray's headlights, we see that it is a battered green 
               Volkswagon. First the car itself, and then its red tail 
               lights, disappear into the fog.

               BACK TO RAY

               Watching, for a long moment.

               Finally he takes his foot off the brake, turns the steering 
               wheel hard left and hangs a U-turn.

               MARTY'S LIVING ROOM  WIDE

               A light is switched on in the expensively appointed room. 
               Meurice enters, walking silently on the carpet, looking around 
               the room. He throws the light off at the far end and leaves.

               MARTY'S BEDROOM  WIDE

               The door swings open.  Meurice throws the switch near the 
               door and the room is bathed in light. We are once again in 
               the bedroom where we earlier saw Abby looking through her 

               We start to hear the faint buzzing of a fly.

               Meurice glances around, throws off the light, and shuts the 
               door. Black.

               MARTY'S OFFICE

               Somewhere offscreen a light is switched on and we are looking 
               in close shot at the dead fish.

               The sound of the fly is louder with the cut.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Standing in the doorway from the bar, staring down at the 

               WIDE SHOT  THE OFFICE

               Ray glances around at the broken glass lying on the floor. 
               His gaze shifts to the safe and the hammer in front of it. 
               He walks over to the safe and stoops down.

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY AT SAFE

               He works its battered dial and it swings open. He shuffles 
               through the contents and brings out a small pile of 

               RAY'S POV

               As he flips through the photographs. The first four are Ray 
               and Abby in the motel room bed. The last is a mounted 8 x 
               10: Abby and Marty on a Gulf beach.

               BACK TO RAY


               HIS POV  PICTURE DETAIL

               Marty is still laughing.

               BACK TO RAY

               He scowls at the shots Visser took, then puts them back in 
               the safe. When his hand comes out he is holding another 
               photograph--this one folded twice. He unfolds it.

               RAY'S POV

               His and Abby's corpses.


               As he straightens slowly from the safe in the background.

               At desk level, we again see the glint of Visser's lighter 
               under the dead fish.

               Ray crosses slowly around the desk into the foreground and 
               lays the picture flat on the desktop. For a moment he stares 
               down at it, then wheels abruptly and leaves frame.

               INT. RAY'S CAR

               CLOSE SHOT  RAY

               Driving. He glances up in the rearview mirror.

               MARTY'S KITCHEN

               As Meurice enters and throws an overhead light. The white 
               room is bathed in bright, shadowless light. As Meurice steps 
               into the kitchen his foot strikes something on the floor 
               below frame, which clatters hollowly away.


               The empty bowl skids into a wall, bounces back, and wobbles, 
               spinning on its bottom rim.

               MARTY'S BILLIARD ROOM



               On a low skewed axis the camera is tracking in toward the 
               impassive trophy head on Marty's billiard-room wall.

               The moose still has Ray's cigarette protruding from its mouth.


               As he walks toward the moose, head cocked to one side, 
               frowning quizzically up.

               He hears something, and looks through the door to his left.

               MEURICE'S POV

               The long shadowy hall. We hear panting.

               CLOSE SHOT  MEURICE



               THE HALLWAY

               A form starts to materialize in the shadows.


               Taking a step back.

               HIS POV

               The dog bounding down the hallway. Its panting has become a 
               low growl.

               FROM BEHIND MEURICE

               He wrenches a cue stick from the rack and squares.

               HIS POV

               Opal snarling, leaping.



               The splintered top half of the pool cue is slammed down to 
               rest on top of the coffee table.

                                     MEURICE (O.S.)
                         Even the fucking dog's gone crazy...

               MED SHOT  ABBY

               Sitting on the sofa, looking down out of frame. Behind her 
               Meurice agitatedly paces back and forth, waving the splintered 
               bottom half of the cue stick. His voice is unnaturally loud.

                         ...Something pretty fucking weird is 
                         going on. Put your coat on and I'll 
                         drop you at home. But don't talk to 
                         either of 'em until I do. And don't 
                         worry. Believe me. These things always 
                         have a logical explanation. Usually.

               ABBY'S POV

               The splintered top half of the cue stick on the coffee table.

               INT. ABBY'S HALLWAY

               Abby approaches her door in the foreground and lets herself 

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Looking toward the window. The room is dark. Through the 
               window we see the facade of the building across the street. 
               Abby enters frame in the foreground, in silhouette against 
               the window, and throws an overhead light switch. The bright 
               light reveals Ray standing by the window, looking out.

                         Turn it off.

               Abby jumps, startled.



               From the roof of the building across the street we are looking 
               down on the facade of Abby's building. Most of its windows 
               are dark, but in a brightly lit fourth-floor window we can 
               clearly see Abby and Ray.

               A man is on the roof in the foreground, hitching a rifle to 
               his shoulder.

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Ray turns from the window which, with the switching on of 
               the overhead light, has become a mirror of the interior of 
               the apartment.

                         Just turn it off.

               EXT. FACING ROOF

               The light goes out in the apartment across the street; its 
               window goes opaque.

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Dark now. Ray still stands by the window, looking out. Abby 
               still stands by the light switch.

                              (answering a question)
                         No curtains on the windows.

               Abby is clearly apprehensive--about Ray, not about anything 


                         I think someone's watching.

               Abby doesn't understand, and has had enough. As she throws 
               the light back on:

                         So what'll they see?

               Ray turns angrily from the window.

                         Just leave it off. He can see in.

               EXT. FACING ROOF

               Ray and Abby are once again clearly visible. Ray is starting 
               across the room.

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Abby takes a fearful step back as Ray strides toward the 
               light switch, next to her.

                         --If you do anything the neighbors'll 

               This brings Ray up short. He stares at Abby. It registers 
               that it is him she's afraid of.

                         You think...

               He shakes his head.

                         ...Abby. I meant it... when I 

               Abby takes another step back. Her voice comes out, after a 
               pause, half-strangled:

                         ...I love you too.

               Ray winces. He slowly shakes his head with a pained half-

                         Because you're scared.

               We hear the dull report of a rifle and the deafening sound 
               of shattering glass. The gun shot hits Ray in the back, 
               knocking him to the floor. He lies still.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               She stares dumbly down at Ray. She looks slowly up to the 

               THE WINDOW

               It has a gaping black hole. The sound of shattering glass 
               still reverberates in the apartment. Small shards of glass 
               chink down from the window and shatter on the floor.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Staring at the window, paralyzed--almost in a trance. Quiet 
               except for the chinking of glass.

               EXT. FACING ROOF

               We are looking through the telescopic sight of a high-powered 
               rifle. The rifle sweeps up from Ray's body across the brightly 
               lit room, and centers Abby, still staring at the window, in 
               the cross hairs.

               INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

               We are looking past Abby toward the shattered window at the 
               far end of the room. A brass lamp stands in the foreground, 
               between Abby and the camera. Abby still stands paralyzed.

               Glass has stopped chinking from the window to the floor; 
               there is a painful silence.

               Suddenly Abby dives to the floor just as CRASH the rest of 
               the window falls away and PING the brass lamp somersaults 
               toward us from the impact of the bullet.

               The window is now completely gone--just a black hole in the 
               brightly lit wall.


               Scrambles into a corner at the window end of the room. The 
               only sound is her heavy breathing. She looks over at Ray, 
               then up at the bulb on the ceiling.

               ABBY'S POV  CEILING BULB

               BACK TO ABBY

               Breathing heavily, almost hysterical. She looks down at the 

               ABBY'S POV

               Ray is sprawled on the floor in a pool of blood and broken 

               BACK TO ABBY

               She reaches down and pulls off one of her shoes. She throws 
               it at the ceiling bulb.

               We hear the bulb shatter and the room goes black.

               Abby rises and makes her way cautiously across the glass-
               littered floor toward Ray. She stoops over him.


               Its front door in background. Abby rises into frame and backs 
               toward the doorway, staring down at the floor. One of her 
               hands is covered with blood.


               She winces and almost loses her balance as we hear a piece 
               of glass crunching under her bare floor. She turns and moves 
               to the front door, favoring one foot, and throws the door 


               Abby lurches from her apartment and pounds on the neighboring 
               door. No answer. She pounds on the door across the hall.

                                     OLD WOMAN'S VOICE
                              (frightened, in Spanish)
                         Get away! I'll call my son-in-law!

                              (groping for the words, 
                              in Spanish)
                         No no--you don't understand--

                                     OLD WOMAN'S VOICE
                              (in Spanish)
                         He has a gun!

               Abby heads for the stairway at the far end of the hall. The 
               heel of her shod foot is throwing her weight onto her bad 
               foot; she kicks off the shoe.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               As she reaches the top of the stairs. She takes one step 
               down, then brings herself up short. She looks over the railing 
               down the stairwell. It is quiet. An innocent-sounding cough 
               echoes somewhere in the building.

               We hear the sound of footsteps from somewhere below.

               Abby turns and hobbles back to her apartment. The bareness 
               of the hallway sets off her abandoned shoe.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               As she enters and slams the door behind her. She scrabbles 
               at the lock, finally manages to get it shut, then turns and 
               looks frantically around.

               ABBY'S POV

               Ray is lying still in the darkness.

               We can hear footsteps approaching up the hallway.

               Abby enters frame and kneels down next to Ray. She fumbles 
               around him briefly in the darkness.

               The doorknob rattles. Abby freezes, listening, trying to 
               control her breath. After a moment we hear a scraping at the 

               Abby moves to the bathroom adjoining the main room and shuts 
               the door behind her.


               It is very small. Abby presses her palms against the door 
               and slowly eases her ear against the door to listen. The 
               scraping in the apartment door lock continues. Sweat streams 
               down Abby's face. She brushes a drop from her eye.

               We hear the snap of the lock springing open, and the front 
               door swinging on its hinges.

               CLOSER ON ABBY

               Her ear pressed to the door. From the next room we hear the 
               sound of footsteps crunching across broken glass.

               Abby backs away from the door, stares at it, then turns and 
               moves to the bathroom window. She looks out.

               ABBY'S POV

               A sheer drop to the narrow backyard of the building four 
               stories below. Next to Abby's window is another window, 
               separated from hers only by the breadth of the wall, that 
               separates the two apartments.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Visser hunches, hands on knees, over Ray, who lies on the 
               floor out of frame.

                         All right...

               He hunkers down closer to Ray.

                         ...You got some of my personal 

               He is rummaging through Ray's pockets but comes up empty-

                         ...One of you does.

               Visser looks down at Ray, glances around the room, looks 
               back down at Ray.

                         ...I don't know what the hell you 
                         two thought you were gonna pull.

               His hand, gripping something, flashes down out of frame. We 
               hear a dull crunch.


               Abby has drawn her head back from the bathroom window. She 
               moves back to the door and braces herself against it.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               Visser straightens up from Ray's body. He drops something to 
               the floor, out of frame, that lands with a thud.

               He goes over to the light switch on the wall and flips it 
               back and forth. No light.

               He goes over to the brass lamp, sets it upright, tries its 
               switch. Again nothing.

               He disappears into the kitchenette as we hold on its open 
               doorway. After a moment we hear a refrigerator hum as a cold 
               blue light plays in the doorway. There is the rattle of a 
               can being pulled off the refrigerator rack, and the snap of 
               its pull-tab being opened. After a couple of audible slurps 
               we hear the can go back on the rack and, as the blue light 
               disappears, we hear the refrigerator door close.

               Visser reappears in the doorway. He surveys the room, fixes 
               on the bathroom door, goes over, turns the knob. The door 
               swings open.

               He walks in.


               Visser looks around the cramped space. The shower curtain is 
               drawn. He casually draws it back. The shower is empty.

               He goes to the window and leans out.

               VISSER'S POV

               The sheer drop below; the other window to one side.

               BACK TO VISSER

               He draws his head back in, presses his palms against the 
               adjacent wall, and eases his ear to the wall to listen.

               Perfect quiet.

               After a moment he goes back to the window, braces himself 
               against the sash, and sticks his arm out--groping for the 
               window of the adjacent apartment.


               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER'S FACE

               Pressing against the glass as he leans against the upper 
               half of the bathroom window.

               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER'S HAND

               It finds the adjacent window and starts to raise it.

               BACK TO VISSER'S FACE

               Again we see him through the window. His jaw is set as he 
               gropes offscreen.

               Suddenly his body jerks violently forward, his head smacking 
               against the glass and cracking it.

                                                              QUICK CUT TO:


               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER'S HAND

               Abby (out of frame) has grabbed it and now THUMP she slams 
               the window down on his wrist, catching it between the window 
               sash and sill.

               Her other hand flashes across frame to THUNK pin Visser's 
               hand to the sill with Ray's knife.

                                                                 QUICK CUT:

               BACK TO VISSER

               We hear the shatter of glass as the shock causes his head to 
               break through the window. His hand is nailed into the 
               apartment next door. He is in pain.


               Abby back slowly from the window, staring at the hand. From 
               the ground below we hear the faint and echoing sounds of the 
               shards of glass shattering against pavement.

               ABBY'S POV  THE WINDOW

               Visser's pinned hand is writhing.

               As we hear a muffled CRACK, a circle of light opens with a 
               puff of plaster dust in the wall that separates the two 
               apartments. A line of light shoots across the dark apartment 
               from the bright bathroom next door.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Staring at the wall. We hear a second CRACK.

               ABBY'S POV

               A second hole has opened in the wall, letting through a second 
               shaft of light.

               Four more sharp reports in rapid succession: With each gun 
               blast a bright circle opens and a new shaft of light 
               penetrates the dark apartment.

               Finally we hear the CLICK of an empty chamber, and the clatter 
               of the empty gun being dropped to the floor of the bathroom 
               next door.

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Staring at the lines of light that crisscross the apartment.

               There is a long moment of silence, then a sudden THUMP.

               ABBY'S POV  THE WALL

               Six circles of light.

               The circles go black momentarily as there is another THUMP. 
               And another. Each time Visser pounds his fist against the 
               wall, there is a muffled THUMP and his swinging arm strobes 
               the bullet holes.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She turns and hobbles toward the door of apartment. The 
               muffled thumping continues, as in her dream.


               As Abby emerges from the adjacent apartment. She stops and 
               looks down the hall.

               ABBY'S POV

               The stairway is at the far end of the hall. The door of her 
               own darkened apartment stands slightly ajar.


               CLOSE SHOT  THE WALL

               The bullet holes strobing. The pounding, more purposeful 
               now, grows louder and more intense.

               Finally, with a crash, Visser's fist penetrates the wall in 
               an explosion of light and dust.


               We pull Abby as she limps hesitantly down the hall.


               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER'S HAND

               Waving aimlessly through the ambient dust. He is blindly 
               groping for the sill--and the knife that pins his other hand.

               His outstretched middle finger just grazes the handle of the 


               Pulling Abby as she draws even with the door of her apartment.

               ABBY'S POV

               Her pearl-handled revolver sits on the shelf just inside the 
               door, where Ray left it. It catches the light from the hall.



               The side of his middle finger rubs against the knife handle; 
               the tip of his index finger barely touches it. Visser's 
               fingers are trembling, indicating that his arm is stretched 
               to its uttermost.

               A surge against the wall gives his fingers another inch or 
               so and they curl around the handle of the knife.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               As she steps in from the hallway to pick up the gun. She 
               looks around the apartment.

               ABBY'S POV

               The window of the apartment, its glass now completely gone, 
               lets in streetlight. Ray's corpse is a dark form in the middle 
               of the floor. A bright shaft of light slices across the room 
               from offscreen. It glints on the shards of glass that litter 
               the floor, just as in Abby's dream.


               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER

               As he slowly, quietly draws his hand in from the hole in the 
               wall. He is holding the knife.

               He turns slowly to face the door, listening.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               She steadies herself against the wall and turns to look toward 
               the bathroom.

               ABBY'S POV

               The bathroom door stands slightly ajar. The interior of the 
               bathroom is a bright band in the shadowy recesses of the 
               back of the apartment.


               CLOSE SHOT  VISSER

               Moving quietly toward the door.

               ABBY'S APARTMENT

               CLOSE SHOT  ABBY

               Staring, almost transfixed, at the bathroom door. She raises 
               the gun, trembling, and trains it on the band of light.

               ABBY'S POV

               Visser's shadow falls across the crack in the doorway.

               BACK TO ABBY

               She shifts the gun slightly and fires.

               ABBY'S POV

               With the roar of the gun, a small circle of light opens in 
               the door. As the door waffles under the impact, we hear Visser 
               collapsing behind it.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Leaning against the facing wall. She lowers the gun. She 
               slides down the wall to finally rest seated on the floor. 
               She brushes a drop of sweat from her eye.

               HER POV

               The cracked bathroom door spilling light.

               BACK TO ABBY

               A pause. After a moment, her voice comes out half-choked:

                         ...I ain't afraid of you, Marty.

               HER POV

               The bathroom door. Quiet for a long moment.

               Then, from inside the bathroom, we hear laughter.

               BACK TO ABBY

               Staring at the door. We hear the laughter subside, to leave 
               the sound of labored breathing. Finally:

                                     VISSER (O.S.)
                         ...Well ma'am...


               Visser lies on his back, his head underneath the bathroom 

               His good hand is pressed against his belly, which rises and 
               falls with his heavy breathing. Blood seeps out between his 

               He is smiling.

                         ...If I see him, I'll sure give him 
                         the message.

               HIS POV

               The underside of the sink, its convoluted chrome works beading 


               Looking, with mild interest.

               HIS POV

               A condensed droplet trickles down the chrome.

               Directly overhead, it hangs for a moment from the lowest 
               joint of the pipe.

               It fattens, wavers, wavers--and falls, spelling...


                             [DELETED SCENE FROM 1st. DRAFT]

               "...In an early draft of the script, Ray, the befuddled 
               bartender who for want of a more compelling character served 
               as our story's hero, fled the scene of the tale's protracted 
               central murder and checked into a motel outside of San 

               MOTEL LOBBY  DAY

               DUSTY RHODES, a lean man with a weathered face and large 
               Adam's apple, stands behind the Formica check-in counter. 
               KYLE, a heavyset man of thirty wearing a feed cap, sits in 
               the lobby's one piece of furniture, a beat-up leatherette 
               sofa. He sips from a can of soda.

               Ray, begrimed and haggard, enters out of the glare of the 
               noonday sun.

                         Hey there, stranger! What can I do 
                         you for?

                         I need a room.

               Calling out from the divan:

                         He needs a room, Dusty.

                         I reckon I can hear him...
                              (to Ray)
                         ...Room rate's eight sixty-six a day 
                         plus sales tax, plus extra for the 
                         TV option.

                         How much extra?

                              (calling out)
                         He wants the TV option, Dusty.

                         I reckon I can hear him. TV option, 
                         that's a dollar twenty, makes nine 
                         eighty-six plus tax.

                              (calling out)
                         Tell him the channels, Dusty.

                         Channels, we got two and six. Two 
                         don't come in so hot.

                         Just a room then.

                              (calling out)
                         He don't want the option, Dusty.

                         I reckon I heard the man.

                              (after shooting Kyle 
                              an irritated glance)
                         Does he work here?

                              (calling out)
                         Sure don't.

                         See, Wednesday's the special on RC 
                         Cola. I don't know if I explained 
                         about the TV option. If there's a TV 
                         in the room, you got to pay the 

                              (calling out)
                         And how many room got TV, Dusty?

                         Ever durned one.

                         Okay, I'll take the TV option.

                         Well see the thing about that is, 
                         we're booked.

               "Looking at this scene now, years later, it strikes us that 
               revising it out of existence, as we did, constituted too 
               much rewriting. Indeed, the more prosaic scene we replaced 
               it with, involving Ray stopped at a traffic light, can be 
               found in the finished script but not in the finished movie. 
               It was shot but then deleted in order to more quickly get to 
               the carnage, which was the picture's raison d'^etre..."

                                    JOEL & ETHAN COEN