[A man sits on a beige couch with a woman cuddled up under his arm. The two are watching television, whatever they are watching is almost inaudible although it does sound like a sporting event. The man and woman are recognizable as Dan and Maggie respectively – baby Brandon’s parents.]
[Each is comfortable clothes sweatpants a t-shirts and the windows around the room give the feel of night time as the dark blue hue leaks in even through the curtains.]
[The couple has some empty beer bottles in front of them on the coffee table.]
Maggie: I’ve been meaning to talk to you about something.
[Dan shifts eyes off the television and onto Maggie without turning his head.]
Dan: About what?
[Maggie is silent for a moment, but does not turn to face him.]
Maggie: You’re going to think I’m nuts.
Dan: I think you’re crazy for saying you want to talk about something and then not talking.
[She smiles at this comment and then shifts her head so she can make eye contact with him.]
Maggie: Promise me, you won’t get all gruff with me… I’m being honest with you here.
Dan: I promise, now tell me.
[She takes a deep breath and then begins.]
Maggie: Well, at first, I chalked it up to it just being a new environment for us and my hormones being out whack after having the baby… But I keep hearing and seeing glimpses of strange things and find things moved…
[Dan looks skeptically at Maggie with an eyebrow raised.]
Dan: So you think… We have ghosts?
Maggie: I know it sounds crazy, but I just can’t explain these things.
Dan: I can…
Maggie: Oh, you can, huh?
[Maggie is becoming agitated with his lack of concern, rising up a bit from her more comfortable, previous position.]
Dan: Yeah, your glimpses of whatever is the shadows and your eyes playing tricks on you, the sounds are outside noise or the house settling and you’re just forgetting where you leave things.
You’re paranoid because you’re in a new place and you have a wonderful family to worry about – it’s heightening all the things that would not previously be disconcerting.
[Maggie has eased herself back down because the explanation – in particular the last part – makes perfect sense. She could be overreacting because of her desire to protect Brandon.]
Maggie: Yeah, you’re probably right.
[And with that thought Maggie pushes herself up using Dan’s chest as her base.]
Maggie: I’m going to take a peak in on Brandon.
[Without turning from the television’s glare, Dan responds.]
Dan: Okay, cutie.
[Maggie finishes getting up at shuffles offscreen to the right. Her footsteps are audible as she climbs up the steps. As soon as she is out of sight, Dan leans forward grabbing his opened beer bottle and takes a swig.]
Dan[under his breath]: Ghosts.
[He rolls his eyes before leaning back onto the couch.]
[He says lowly, but with force at the game on television. He shakes his head again with s slight grin.]
Dan: Losing it…
[A moment passes and footsteps become audible again coming down the stairs.]
Dan: Wasn’t a very long look-in… He must be sound asleep. Can you grab me a beer from the fridge?
[The footsteps continue through the obscured hallway behind the wall and into another room where we hear shuffling for a moment, which then stops.]
[Footsteps begin again on the stairs and Dan rises up confused. He takes a step towards the opening, but as he does so Maggie has appeared climbing down the last step.]
Maggie: What’s up?
[Dan chuckles at himself.]
Dan: Now you’ve got me doing it.
[Maggie takes a step into the room although not sharing Dan’s joking approach.]
Maggie: Doing what?
Dan: Acting all paranoid. I must have mistook your footsteps upstairs for footsteps in the hall – I thought you came down the stairs and were in the kitchen.
Dan: See what? You just implanted the idea in my head and automatically took what I heard and assigned it to something else. It only proves my point.
[Maggie shakes her head.]
Maggie: Whatever… I’m going to get another beer, you want?
[Dan turns back and sits down on the couch. As Maggie walks into the kitchen the sound is almost identical to before. Dan just shakes his head before focusing back in on the television.]
Dan: Bunch of mumbo jumbo.
[A short distance away a young man is limbering up and stretching in a pair of black basketball shorts and white t-shirt. The young man is Brandon. His brown hair sits mussed on top of his head as he stretches his calves. Simultaneously, he is fiddling with the headphones connected to his IPod.]
[The day outside is indeed perfect for a run aesthetically, there are few clouds in the blue sky, the sun is shining brightly. As Brandon hopes in place getting his legs limber, he pops in his headphones. He takes a deep breath and presses play and begins his run.]
Got to love this – just myself and my thoughts. No poking, no prodding, no instruction, just me and as far as my legs can take me.
[He breathes deep through his nose and a smile crosses his face.]
I wonder what Uncle John was anxious to talk to me about last night… I mean how much insight could I possibly provide on his dead wife… Who knows?
I do feel bad for the guy, I mean that’s really rough. I guess he doesn’t have anybody else to really talk to about that kind of stuff. This business gives you plenty of enemies, not really a sound supply of friends and there’s a lot of movement.
Perfect for me…
[He reaches a street corner and turns right – instantly heading uphill.]
But he knows you can’t allow what you’ve lost – what’s behind you chase you down and bring you down. You know this as well. You’ve seen it firsthand what happens when a person becomes consumed with regret and loss.
You’ve got to leave it behind you – no matter how much it chases after you. I’ve managed to do that because I’m like Uncle John, I’m strong.
Although it does feel like I’ve got something nipping at my heels.
[He takes a quick glance over his shoulder as he reaches the top of small hill – the ground flattens out. After the quick turn, he smiles and shakes his head, clearing the thought from his mind.]
It can’t catch you – whatever it is as long as you just keep running. You keep striving to live. To survive… And to be more.
To be great. To be legendary. To inspire.
God, I want so badly to inspire. To show that you can persevere and overcome the worst this world throws at you.
[His pace begins to pick up – the sweat is forming on his brow as his legs pump faster.]
Show everyone you leave whatever is in your past… Behind. You cannot change the past, you can change the future. And that’s why you keep striving, keep running.
[He starts to slow down as he approaches traffic intersection where the light is against him. As he reaches the corner he jogs in place.]
And part of reason you keep going is that you know there’s something there… Nipping at your heels.
So you cannot slow down – you are constantly running to keep ahead. It drives you.
[After a second of stopping, the light changes and Brandon starts off across the street. To his left behind a mini-van on the street, our eyes catch a black mass or shadow peaking out from behind the van before ducking back again.]
[Late evening, the sun is setting down on a partly cloudy day. The sun is turning the horizon a combination of orange and purple as it sinks below the horizon.]
[The historic landmark – the Kobe bell – the symbol of peace and friendship between Seattle and Kobe, Japan, constructed as a gift in 1962, in part, to heal old wounds from World War II. The structure is distinctly Japanese in its architectural style.]
[From behind the bell itself we see a pair of black shoes walking along and making their way to the edge of the structure. Into the view appears, the Minstrel wearing a charcoal grey suit with pinstripes and grey shirt beneath the suit jacket. The ever-grinning mask of the Greek comedy smiles at the camera as he turns the corner.]
I told you, I had something special planned, but I guess not every was a fan of my work… Eh, Paz?
[His snickering is audible as he moves closer.]
Well Court, your little tirade on behalf of all the ladies in the locker room was surely appreciated.
Especially by me, Court, thanks for the clarification – you really set me straight sweetheart. Thank heavens, I have you to help me change my ways.
[He gives a thumbs up with his right hand as his methodical words reek of sarcasm.]
But all kidding aside, Court… Thanks. Your thick, cheap perfume has probably killed too many of your brain cells for you to comprehend what you’ve done, but I think you’ll understand when it’s…
[With his tone turned almost guttural, he raises each hand up and slaps them together dead center.]
Slapping you in the face.
[He chuckles before turning and leaning back against the railing of the Kobe Bell.]
Oh, Go Go, we had so much fun last week did we not – so much so, that good ole’ Art has pinned us against each other. I hope you’ll be able to show… I hope the concrete wall wasn’t too much.
But I know you’ll be there – dragging yourself to the ring if you have to because you’re all heart kid.
[He taps his chest when he says this – once again with a biting sarcasm.]
Even if it’s not your own.
[He laughs and covers his mouth after a second, but continues his giggling.]
Whoops – sorry to beat a dead horse… Dead kid… Damnit!
[He snaps his fingers in mock frustration at his lack of restraint.]
Go Go, I’m sure you are wondering why did I do what I did? Why were you the target?
Well, honestly, there’s a ton of reasons, but I’ll give you two for now… First, I’ve always wanted to toss someone into a concrete wall.
[He holds out his hands and counts on his left hand – one.]
Cross that one off the bucket list, but I could have done that to anyone…
[He pulls down his second finger.]
Second, frankly, you make me sick. Your whole life – your attempt to inspire – your total underdog mentality…
Sick, sick, sick.
And frankly, if it weren’t totally illegal – I may have ripped little Frankie’s heart right out of your chest to put an end to your whole saga.
[He makes this statement almost whisper soft, but with careful emphasis on each word.]
Need to speak to the Congressman about that one, huh?
[Just as quickly the tone changes back as he snickers at this comment.]
See, you are everything I hate in this world – you are the consummate dreamer.
[He gestures to the Kobe Bell behind him.]
Is supposedly a symbol of peace and friendship… Only to the f----- hippies.
[He points back at the camera.]
That is a symbol of the end of turmoil, chaos and destruction…
Unfortunately, for you Go Go – your personal torment is only beginning. Your chaos has only just started. The destruction is only going to get worse. I’ve only just started this chase… This war. This is your nightmare.
So cheers, lovely.
[He mocks tipping a drink ceremoniously.]
Enjoy these next couple of days, recuperate because come Chain Reaction – this isn’t funny, this isn’t a joke. And there’s no salvation from Frankie or Jesus Christ.
(The scene opens inside a locker room where we see a IWF superstar, the 19 year old female lucha libra sensation that is beginning to slowly pick up steam here in the federation following her big debut win last week on Chain Reaction against Mary-Lynn Mayweather and Johnny Niles, but then was cut short after getting viciously attacked by other fellow newcomer, The Minstrel backstage immediately after her match.)
(We find the young Go-Go Spectacular sitting down on a bench. She is all dressed out in her ring gear. Her midsection is all taped up and she sits with her mask in her hands, which is still stained from her own blood from where Minstrel lawn darted and tossed the young girl into the wall. We never see Go-Go's face as the camera stays behind her but she rubs the dry blood that was in the inside but has traced through to the outside even though the mask is black we can see it up close. Go-Go is in deep thought as she rubs the mask until the sound of her cell phone vibrates and rings. She looks down as it reveals "Momma calling. She sets the mask down to answer the the phone.)
"Angel, your pappi and I are worried about you. You said that everything is alright and you are still cleared to wrestle against this Minstrel guy who attacked you but I can't bare to watch and relive what happened to you last week. What if something happened to your heart. He could have done some real damage to you. Are you sure you wanna fight this loco pan'da'ho tonight?"
"I appreciate your concern and I love you. I'll be alright. I was cleared to wrestle. My ribs were just bruised and my head got stitched up. Nothing is wrong with my heart. I will be fine. This Minstrel attacked me backstage and I will settle it like a true Latina and I will settle it in the ring. And he won't escape me. This is me doing what I need to do a little thing called paying my dues and being put through the fire. This is just the beginning but if I don't do something and this doesn't go unchecked it will never end. I must make a stand tonight. I was booked to fight him and I am going to make him pay for what he did to me. I am doing this for me, and I am doing this for Frankie. He will pay."
"Angel, I know that you are not scared even though you should be but I am scared for you and I can't watch you get in the ring with that maniac. Don't do it."
"Momma, I am scared. I am scared every single time I get in the ring but when that fear sets in I have to conquer it and feel it melt away. I know that it will hurt but he can't finish me off. Just like nothing can happen to my heart anymore. Frankie's heart is now apart of me. We are now one. We are well past the rejection phase. My blood pumps through his heart. We are united and strong. There is nothing that Minstrel or anybody can do to me from here on out. I will be alright and I will talk to you when I get backstage after my match to let you know that I am alright. I love you momma. Give pappi and Enrique my love. I gotta go."
"I love you to Angel, I'll be by the phone but don't expect me to watch your match again. Be careful and safe in there.."
"I will momma, bye."
(Go-Go hangs up the phone and sets it down. She resumes and picks up the mask.)
"Last week was a big win for me but it was a hollow victory after what Minstrel did to me backstage. But what was worse that what he did to me was what he said to me. It was what he said about my hero Frankie and seeing 'heartless' all over his face. What does he even now about heart? How dare he write on his beautiful face. He has made this personal and he doesn't even know me nor him. But I will be what he is not. I will be the better and settle this all in the ring this on Chain Reaction tonight and leave it all in the ring. However, I have this feeling that this will not be the end but it will be beginning of a very long a brutal war between us that will tell a long painted story and leave more than it's fair share of scars on our bodies and on our souls. So I look down upon this blood stained mask that I wore last week and that I wear this week. I feel the stains as if it was all done just yesterday and I say bring it on."
(Go-Go takes the mask and puts it on her head and tightens up the laces. She then turns around to face the camera. Her eyes burn with anger through the eyeholes beaming into the camera.)
"Last week Minstrel, you jumped me before your match and then you got suspended for the night so nobody knows how you wrestle in the ring. I suppose you think that makes you a wildcard and an anomaly when we fight against each other. Good for you. Well you have a inkling of how I wrestling and I am sure that you will spend quite a bit of homework trying to know me from the inside out. You're going to find out that it isn't enough. You have just barely grazed the surface with me and you don't know me for squat. You put me through hell last week when you jumped me like the little pan'da'ho coward that you are. Yeah I know you pretty well. You are loco. Make no mistake about it. Maybe you are El'Diablo in the flesh but come Chain Reaction, I am going to show the world that the devil can be beaten down within an inch of your life and you will know what truly drives me. I'm going to cut the devil and I am going to watch you bleed. I want this to end tonight and leave it all in the ring but we both know that this is only the beginning."
"nside of me, there is a fire that burns everlasting that will never be snuffed out. I think that in a way I should be thanking you Minstrel because when you attacked me, you put through the fire. You've made it stronger. You've made me stronger. I come into this match hurting. I may not even walk out of this match as the winner but I will walk out nonetheless. I will walk out with my vengence in hand and I will be content. If I have to I will walk out with your blood on my hands and I wouldn't have it any other way. This is just the beginning but where it ends only God truly knows."
"This mask that I wear will be a symbol of tradition, heart, soul, drive, and fire. It will tell a story. It will tell of my story and the first chapter is being written as we speak. That chapter is of you and me and how you set the tires and lit the fires within my soul. I will paint the picture and tell the story of how The Latina Fire Go-Go Spectacular looked the devil in the eye and then proceeded to make him bleed. At Chain Reaction 8. You will hurt. You will bleed. And you will know my name."
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