Friday, July 31, 2015

Risky Business


Hey there, crime kids. Happy Friday. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where your most violent fantasies become sins of the flesh, right here, where the hardboiled action is non-stop, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 10 of AFTERHOURS, in the aftermath of rogue cop Vin Vargas shooting Mickey Mertz, Danny reassures his celebrity hostages that he's got things under control ...


INT. THE EXIT ROOM - EARLY MORNING
Danny looks at Vin,
holding his head,
slowly getting up.

DANNY
You okay?

VIN
Yeah.
(looks at Easy)
Asshole.

EASY
Self-defense.
You attacked me.

DANNY
(to Vin)
Apologize to the man.

VIN
What?

DANNY
You heard me.
Apologize.

VIN
For what?
He started it.

DANNY
Vin.
The first rule of
holding people hostage
is to gain their trust.
You lost your temper
and lost their trust.
In order for us to
maintain a sense of order,
they need to trust
we’ll stay cool.

SKY
(to Vin)
Yeah.
Like randomly shooting
one of us.
Did wonders for
my confidence in you.

DANNY
You hear the movie star?
Apologize to the man.

VIN
WHAT?

DANNY
You heard me. Apologize.
Unless you want this
to become a
Lord Of The Flies situation,
we need to remain civilized.

Vin looks down.
Shakes his head.

VIN
I don’t fucking believe this.

DANNY
Vin.

VIN
Jesus fucking Christ.
(low)
I’m -- sorry.

DANNY
Good boy.
Now take care of your leg
and put your fucking pants on.
This ain’t Risky Business.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Trigger-Happy


Happy Thursday, crime slicksters. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where the girls are hot, the drinks are cold, and the hardboiled-pulp-noir action is non-stop, right here, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 9 of AFTERHOURS, the shit hits the fan when rogue cop Vin Vargas 'accidentally' shoots and kills gay Silverlake hipster drug dealer Mickey Mertz ...


INT. THE EXIT ROOM - EARLY MORNING
Danny picks up his drink. Takes a slug.

DANNY
It was a home invasion.
We ripped off a dirty cop
up in the hills.
Thought it’d be a cinch,
two against one,
but he was in bed with some slut,
and trigger-happy over there --

BANG.

Everyone JUMPS.
Turns and looks at --

MICKEY
Lying on the floor.
Half his face, gone.

DANNY
RACES over.

DANNY
What the FUCK, Vin?
What the fucking fuck did you DO?

Vin stands next to Mickey’s body
in his tighty-whiteys
holding his gun,
lower lip quivering.

VIN
He -- made fun of my underwear.

DANNY
I thought he was gonna cut your pants.

VINCE
Changed my mind.
Gay guy with scissors
anywhere near my crotch?
No fucking way, Jose.

AT THE BAR
Angel hugs Mia,
silently sobbing in his arms.

Casey joins them behind the bar.
Easy looks at Sky.

EASY
(whispers)
We gotta do something.

SKY
(whispers)
You gotta plan?

EASY
I’m thinking, I’m thinking --

NEXT TO MICKEY’S BODY
Danny berates Vin.

DANNY
You fucking idiot.
We were all getting along
and you had to fucking RUIN it.
Now they’re afraid of us.
Now they think they’re gonna die.

VIN
Well, aren’t they?

DANNY
(low)
No. We want them to TRUST us.
This will go ALOT
easier if they cooperate.
Now we have to watch them
in case they try and pull something.

VIN
I don’t see what the big deal is.
Dead fag. So what?

DANNY
That man was a HUMAN BEING, Vin.
And if you weren’t so homophobic,
he’d still be alive --
and your leg would be taken care of.

VIN
So I’ll splash some booze on it
and tie a tourniquet around it.

DANNY
Suit yourself.
But first get him the fuck out of here
before they freak out any more.

VIN
Alright, alright.

He grabs Mickey’s body by the ankles
and drags him out of the room.

All eyes follow him.
Danny walks back to the bar.

Sticks his gun in his his waistband.
Takes a seat.

DANNY
I’m really sorry.
My associate has an itchy trigger finger.
I promise I’ll keep him under control.

Danny grabs the bottle.
Pours himself another drink.

Takes a big gulp.
Vin comes back in.

VIN
I put him in the VIP room.
(off everyone’s silence)
It was an accident, okay?

EASY
You shot him because he was gay.

VIN
No I didn’t.

EASY
Yes you did.
I heard you call him a ‘faggot.’

SKY
Yeah, I did too.

CASEY
I like to fuck girls.
You gonna shoot me, too?

Danny shoots her a look.

VIN
What the fuck IS this?
(to Danny)
You gonna let them talk to me that way?

DANNY
Well, if the shoe fits.

VIN
What the fuck is THAT supposed to mean?

DANNY
You just fucking shot someone
because they’re gay
right in front of their eyes.
I think they’ve got the right
to give you shit about it.

VIN
Wait a minute.
Whose side are you ON?
It was an accident, okay?
The gun just went off.

EASY
Was it because he was
a little bit effeminate?
What if he was macho like me?

VIN
What?

EASY
If you found out I was gay,
would you shoot me?

VIN
You’re not GAY.
You’re a pro baseball player.

EASY
That’s true.
And I’m married.
(smiles)
But I also like to suck cock.

DANNY
Check out Easy Washington
coming out of the closet.
Now that took guts.

VIN
Bullshit.
He’s just fucking with me.

EASY
I’d prove it, but you’re not my type.
Don’t go for the greasy Italian thing.
Hate the taste of pepperoni.
(laughs)
Better check the oil.
Looks like you might be a little low.

VIN
HEY.

Vin CHARGES him.
Easy PUNCHES him in the head, THWUMP.
Vin HITS the floor.

Danny WHIPS out his gun.
Aims it at Easy.

DANNY
Thanks.
I’ve been dying to do that all night --

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Art Imitating Life


Hey there, crime kids. Happy Hump Day. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where your most violent fantasies become sins of the flesh, right here, where the hardboiled action is non-stop, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 8 of AFTERHOURS, while rogue cop Vin Vargas gets his gunshot wound attended to by Silverlake hipster drug dealer Mickey Mertz, crazed gunman Danny Peel chats up his hostages, especially Oscar-winning screening Casey Montana ...


A CHYRON reads ‘August 16, 5:06 AM’ over --

INT. THE EXIT ROOM - MAIN LOUNGE - EARLY MORNING
Danny sits at the bar
nursing a cocktail.

One of his shirt sleeves
has been cut off.

The gunshot wound on his arm
has been dressed and bandaged.

Vin sits in a booth
with his bloody pants leg sticking out,
pointing his gun at Mickey.

MICKEY
Cutting your jeans would be stupid.

VIN
I’m not taking them off.
You cut Danny’s shirt,
you can cut my pants.

MIKEY
But it’s different.
Danny can put a jacket on,
but it’s gonna look really stupid
with one long leg and one short leg.

VIN
I could give a rat’s ass.
(aims his gun)
Cut the fucking pants. NOW.

MICKEY
Okay, okay.
Stop pointing that thing at me.

VIN
Shut the fuck up and
CUT MY FUCKING PANTS.

MICKEY
Okay. Calm down.
(beat)
Would you mind standing up?
I can’t get to them with
you lying down like that.

VIN
Alright.
But if you touch my junk,
you’re a dead man, got it?

AT THE BAR
Danny sits at the far end.
Looks at Sky, Easy and Angel
at the other end.

Mia looks down.
Like she’s going to cry.

DANNY
(to Mia)
Why so glum, gorgeous?
Play your cards right and
you’ll get out of this alive.

MIA
My mother had a stroke.
I need to go the hospital
and see her.
If you let me go,
I promise I won’t say anything.

DANNY
Sorry, doll.
Ain’t gonna happen.

Casey comes over.
Plops in a stool.
Looks at Mia.

CASEY
Can I get a drink?
I’m starting to sober up.

DANNY
How’s she doing?

CASEY
She’s breathing.
But I really think she
should go to the hospital.
She could die.

DANNY
Yeah, but then her record sales
would go through the roof.

Mia hands Casey her drink.
She takes a sip.

CASEY
So what did you guys do?
Rob a bank?

DANNY
Nah. Don’t do banks.
(beat)
Why do you wanna know?
Think it would make a good movie?

CASEY
Maybe.

DANNY
You wrote ‘Wilshire Boulevard.’

CASEY
Guilty as charged.

DANNY
Great fucking movie.

CASEY
Thanks.

DANNY
I love the part where the intruder
rapes the rich bitch,
but turns out to be the guy
she’s having an affair with.

CASEY
She was based on my boss’s wife
at my last job.

DANNY
(smiles)
What’s that expression?
‘Art imitating life?’

CASEY
(smiles)
Ten points.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The Silence Of The Clams


Happy Tuesday, crime slicksters. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where the girls are hot, the drinks are cold, and the hardboiled-pulp-noir action is non-stop, right here, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 7 of AFTERHOURS, after reviving alcohol-poisoned goth rocker Bettie Black, gunman on the run Danny Peel instructs gay drug dealer/former nurse Mickey Mertz to dress rogue cop Vin Vargas' gunshot wound, much to Vin's dismay ...


INT. AFTER HOURS CLUB - NIGHT
Bettie lies motionless on the floor.
Easy takes her pulse.

EASY
SHIT.

CASEY
What’s wrong?

EASY
She’s got no PULSE.

He starts giving her CPR,
PRESSING his hands on her chest.

Sky and Casey kneel nearby.
Casey grabs her wrist.

SKY
Holy shit.

CASEY
Still nothing.

Easy PUMPS his hands HARDER.

CASEY
Nothing. HARDER.

Easy PUMPS her chest
for all he’s worth.

Bettie JERKS back to life.
COUGHS. Opens her eyes --

BETTIE
Need -- a drink.

And passes out again.
Easy strokes her forehead.

EASY
C’mon, baby.
Stay with us.
(to Sky)
Help me move her
over to a booth.
Make her more comfortable.

Easy and Sky pick her up.
Take her over to a booth.

Carefully lie her down.
Casey walks over.
Sits next to her.

Holds her hand.
Studies her face.

CASEY
She doesn’t look good.
We need to get her
to the hospital.

DANNY
You can take her
after we leave.

Mia comes back in.
Takes her place
behind the bar.

Hands a box of
rice cakes to Danny.

MIA
Here you go.

DANNY
(take it, makes a face)
Great.

MIA
They’re blueberry.

DANNY
Yummy.

He takes one out.
CRUNCHES a bite.

Chews.
SPITS IT OUT.

DANNY
Tastes like fucking cardboard.

VIN
Maybe we could order a pizza.

DANNY
Are you TRYING
to look like an idiot?
We’ll figure out something later.
The first order of business
is getting ourselves patched up.
(to Angel)
You good with that first aid kit?
Take care of a couple gunshot wounds?

ANGEL
I could try.

MICKEY
I can.
I used to be a nurse.

VIN
Why doesn’t that surprise me?

MICKEY
I was a trauma nurse, asshole.

VIN
Hey.
Who you calling an assole, FAGGOT?

DANNY
Enough with the name calling.
Let Florence Nightengale
do his thing and shut the fuck up.

VIN
I’m not gonna let him touch me.

DANNY
You want your leg to get infected?
Get gangrene?

VIN
No, of course not.
(beat)
Okay, okay.

MICKEY
I promise I’ll be gentle --

Monday, July 27, 2015

Nights Of Wine And Roses


Hey there, crime kids. Happy Monday. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where your most violent fantasies become sins of the flesh, right here, where the hardboiled action is non-stop, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 6 of AFTERHOURS, crazed gunman Danny Peel makes bartender Mia Tanaka go back to the kitchen for food, but on the way she slips into the bathroom and writes a note asking for help. Meanwhile, faded rock star on the skids Bettie Black's binge drinking leads to disaster ...


INT. AFTER HOURS CLUB - NIGHT
Mia starts pouring shots for everyone.
Vin and Angel return,
Angel carrying a first aid kit.

VIN
(to Danny)
Got quite the set-up back there.
Office. Kitchen. VIP room --

DANNY
Any phones?

VIN
In the office.
Disabled it.
(smiles)
One step ahead of you.

DANNY
Good work.
(to Mia)
You got a kitchen.
I’d fucking kill for a
cheeseburger about now.

MIA
(pouring shots)
Sorry.
We don’t serve that.

DANNY
Well, what DO you have?

MIA
Tapas.

DANNY
What the fuck are tapas?

MIA
Spanish appetizers.

DANNY
Then bring me some tapas, barkeep.
I’m positively famished.

VIN
Yeah, I’m starving.

MIA
All we’ve got left
are pickled anchovies.

DANNY
Anchovies?
I fucking HATE anchovies.

CASEY
(smiles)
Why do you think
that’s all that’s left?

DANNY
(to Mia)
You have any crackers or peanuts,
you know, something edible?

MIA
I think we have some rice cakes.
I can go look.

DANNY
Rice cakes?
(beat)
Alright. Whatever.

VIN
Want me to go with?

DANNY
Nah.
There’s no way for
her to get out.

Mia nods.
Heads off to the back.

Bettie watches her go.
Grabs the bottle.
Starts pouring more shots.

BETTIE
This round’s on me.

She DOWNS hers.
Makes a face.

Then PROJECTILE VOMITS
an ARC OF BROWN SPEW
into the air.

FALLS off her stool.
HITS the floor, THWUMP.
Starts going into CONVULSIONS.

CASEY
Holy SHIT.

Easy JUMPS off his stool.
RUSHES over to her.
Takes her hand.

EASY
Somebody gimme a spoon
or something, QUICK.

INT. LADIES’ ROOM - NIGHT
As gorgeous as the rest of the joint.

Mia hurries into a stall.
Grabs a piece of toilet paper.
Takes it to the sink.

Pulls a pen out of her pocket.
Quickly scribbles on it.

Climbs up on the sink.
Reaches up, opens a
casement window.

Flings the note outside.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Star Struck


Hey there, crime kids. Happy Friday. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where your most violent fantasies become sins of the flesh, right here, where the hardboiled action is non-stop, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 5 of AFTERHOURS, killer on the run Danny Peel holds the group of celebrities in the club hostage at gun point ... but then buys them a round of drinks and chats them up.


INT. AFTER HOURS CLUB - NIGHT
Vin goes to the duffle, zips it open.
Grabs a banded wad of cash.
TOSSES it to Danny.

DANNY
Which one of you is the bartender?

MIA
I am.

DANNY
(SLAPS it down on the bar)
What’s the most expensive scotch you got?

MIA
M-Mcallan’s.

DANNY
I wanna buy a round for the house.

Mia goes behind the bar
to get a bottle and some glasses.

DANNY
(to Sky)
Hey. You’re that movie star.
You’re in all those independent films.

SKY
Guilty as charged.
(weak smile)
With the occasional studio tentpole.

DANNY
Hey. Gotta pay the bills, right?
(nods)
I used to wannabe an actor,
but I really like eating.
(looks around)
Whoah, Nelly. This is celeb-city.
(to Easy)
Easy Washington. My man.
really sorry to hear about your injury.

EASY
Not as much as I was.

Mia gives Danny his glass. He takes a sip.

DANNY
Holy shit is that smooth.
(eyes Bettie)
And what do have we here? Bettie Black.
Big fan. Lost my virginity to your first album.

BETTIE
Really?

DANNY
Nah. Just fuckin’ with you.
I’m more of a classic rock kinda guy.
(sings)
Takin’ care of business --
(sips, looks at Casey)
And who is this lovely creature?

Danny and Casey lock eyes. She blushes.

CASEY
Nobody.
(beat)
I’m a writer.

BETTIE
Shut up.
(to Danny)
She won the Oscar, hello?

DANNY
Oh, yeah.
The media gave you shit
about your tattoos.

CASEY
My agent wanted me to wear
a long-sleeved dress,
but I said ‘fuck that.’

DANNY
Rebel outlaw girl.

Danny drains his glass.
to Mia for another.

DANNY
You gotta first aid kit in this joint?

ANGEL
In the back office.

DANNY
Is there a back entrance?

ANGEL
No.

DANNY
The only way out is the way we came in?

ANGEL
Yeah.

DANNY
Isn’t that against the fire code?

ANGEL
Owner’s tight with the city.

DANNY
You the bouncer?

ANGEL
Yeah.

DANNY
(to Vin)
Vin, go with him to the office
and get the first aid kit
and scope out the rest of the crib.

VIN
(drains his glass)
You got it.

He gets up. Nods at Angel.
They head off toward the back.

Danny sips his drink. Looks at Mickey.

DANNY
What’s your story?

MICKEY
I’m a dealer.

DANNY
Check it out.
Not afraid to admit it.
I like that.

MICKEY
Thanks.

DANNY
What do you deal?

MICKEY
You name it.
Weed, X, coke, shrooms, pills --

DANNY
Maybe I’ll hit you up later.
(off his look)
Don’t worry, I’ll pay for it.
I may be a fugitive from the law,
but I don’t steal from other criminals
unless they fuck with me.

MICKEY
That’s -- great.

DANNY
Are you a top or a bottom?

MICKEY
Excuse me?

DANNY
You heard me. Do you pitch or catch?

MICKEY
I’m -- versatile.

DANNY
I’ll keep that under advisement.

MICKEY
Okay --

DANNY
Relax. Just fucking with you.
(looks around)
C’mon, everybody.
Stop looking like the dog just died.
Let’s PARTY.
(to Mia)
Barkeep. Another round for my friends.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Stand Your Ground


Happy Thursday, crime slicksters. It's time once again to take a trip to the dark side, where the girls are hot, the drinks are cold, and the hardboiled-pulp-noir action is non-stop, right here, at the coolest crime joint in cyberspace ... at That Killing Feeling.

In Chapter 4 of AFTERHOURS, crazed criminal on the run Danny Peel bursts into the after hours club and holds the celebrities hostage at gun point ... and then buys them a round of drinks.


INT. AFTER HOURS CLUB - NIGHT
Two BIG MEN BURST INTO THE ROOM.

The bigger guy holds
a sawed-off shotgun,
the other a chrome handgun
and a giant duffle bag.

Bigger Guy aims the shotgun
at the girls at the bar.

BIGGER GUY
Cell phones ON THE FLOOR, NOW.

Meet DANNY PEEL (40’s).
Would be a dead ringer
for George Clooney,
except you can tell
he parties too much.

Arm a bloody mess.
Eyes wild and desperate.
But still kinda hot.

DANNY
CELL PHONES. NOW.

He aims the shotgun
at the ceiling.

FIRES. BANG.
Plaster RAINS DOWN.

Mia SCREAMS.
Bettie and Casey
TOSS their phones.

Sky and Easy TOSS theirs.
Mia DROPS hers.

ANGEL AND MICKEY
Appear in the doorway.

ANGEL
(low)
Holy shit.

MICKEY
(a whisper)
Ohmigod.

Smaller Guy,
bleeding from the leg,
aims his gun at them.

SMALLER GUY
Glad you could join the party.
Toss your phones, NOW.

Meet VIN VARGAS (30’S),
your typical grunt cop
gone to seed. Paunchy.

Dark circles under his eyes.
Sweating like crazy.

Eyes darting back and forth.
Pumped with adrenaline.

ANGEL
Okay, okay.
Don’t shoot.

Angel and Mickey
TOSS their phones.

DANNY
Okay.
Everybody go sit at the bar.
(to Vin)
Smash ‘em.

VIN
You got it.

He drops the bag.
Starts CRUNCHING them
with his boot.

Sky, Easy, Angel and Mickey
move to the bar. Take stools.

DANNY
Okay, everybody.
We’re gonna be here
a little while,
so I want you to get
nice and comfortable.
Do exactly what I say
and nobody gets hurt.
(off their terrified looks)
Just because I’m holding a gun
and covered in blood
doesn’t mean I’m not a nice guy --
so, in the interest of
all of us getting along,
the next round’s on me.
(to Vin)
Vin?

VIN
Yeah?

DANNY
Can I get some of that cash?

VIN
Yeah. Sure.

He goes to the duffle,
zips it open.

Grabs a banded wad of cash.
TOSSES it to Danny.

DANNY
Which one of you
is the bartender?

MIA
I am.

DANNY
(SLAPS it down on the bar)
What’s the most expensive
scotch you got?

MIA
M-Mcallan’s.

DANNY
I wanna buy a round
for the house --