Part Two of the un-made horror script.
James is sitting at a bar, alone. Clutched between his fingers is a shot of whiskey. He quickly downs it, slams it on the table and asks the bartender, a pretty girl with tattoos, to pour him another.
NARRATION: Was that Woman right? I am sick… no. No, what I saw was a combination of stress and lack of sleep. Maybe after I get this issue done I should take some time off…
A figure walks up behind him, disembodied by the shallow lights of the bar. All that is illuminated is a single hand, which lands on his shoulder.
FIGURE: Hey, James, chill! It’s just me!
A man sits beside James at the bar. He’s small, and thin and balding. His face is bird-like, with a long beak-like nose. His smile is obnoxious and boastful, his eyes small and beady. He has a tacky red-leather coat on.
JAMES: Jesus, Amon…don’t do that.
Amon gestures to the bartender.
AMON: Whatever he’s having, give me one, too. So, James…how did the signing go?
JAMES: Got yelled at by a Grandmother.
AMON(with a laugh): See, this is why I do the kiddie stuff. You illustrate “Chuck the friendly cockatoo” and Grandma’s love you. And so do single Mom’s, by the way…
James looks down at his shot, seemingly not interested.
AMON: Seriously. I did an autograph session at this bookstore for the kiddies last year at Christmas, and this one really fucking sexy bitch with a two year old…well, she keeps giving me eyes, right? So I write my number down with the autograph, give her a little wink, and then two days later? Bam! I gave her her very own autograph session. A private one. Y’know?
James is still quiet.
AMON(after a beat): Y’know, James? In my pants! I fucked the shit out of her!
Stares at James, half out of worry and half out of irritation, and then slams his shot.
AMON: Okay…what the hell happened with this woman?
NARRATION: Amon Sanders is the closest thing I have to a best friend. I met him in college, we were roommates. While I worked, he fucked. And somehow, we met with the same success. I wonder who that speaks more of.
James leans in, beginning to talk to Amon.
NARRATION: I tell him. Well, just about everything. I leave out the ending.
AMON(waving his hands dismissively): So? Fuck that bitch!
NARRATION: The fact that Amon writes children’s fare never ceases to amaze me.
AMON: Seriously, man…what does she really expect? YOU to be responsible for HER kid? That is such bullshit!
JAMES: I think she might be right, Amon. Maybe I am sick.
AMON: Well, sure you are! Who the hell does what you do and isn’t?! And more specifically, you’re sick because you aren’t parlaying your fame and imminent fortune for poon tang! I mean, seriously! Horror comics, and you AREN’T getting laid? I mean, when was the last time you even talked to a girl?
JAMES: I don’t have time for romance right now.
AMON: Who said anything about romance? I am talking knees around your ears, full frontal NC-17 “Dear Penthouse” shit!
JAMES: Amon, do you live your entire life as a living embodiment of irony, or is it an accident?
Amon looks at him for a moment, looking concerned for a moment, and then his face cracks in a grin.
AMON: Jesus, man…sometimes I forget you actually have a sense of humor. He shrugs, nods and taps his finger on the bar for the bartender to see. Okay, let’s talk serious, then. What’s bothering you, really? Pretend I care.
JAMES(with a ghost of a smile): Well, it isn’t just the signing. I’ve been…well, I’ve been having…bad dreams.
AMON(looking slightly exasperated-speaks matter-of-factly): You write stories about beheadings and draw pictures of people having their faces eaten.
JAMES(nodding with a widening smile): I know. But these are…well, different. These are…realer. Scarier. I feel like…well, that these things are coming for me.
AMON(cutting him off, waving his arms and making a time out signal): Okay, let Doctor Amon give you a little advice, okay?
AMON: First of all, get laid. Seriously, it’s the healthiest thing a man can do. Secondly, you need to take some time off. Possibly while getting laid. If this is starting to freak you out, take off. Stop working on the comic, go sight-seeing or something.
JAMES: Might not be a bad idea, really. The vacation part, anyway.
AMON: Do it. You need some time off. Checks his watch. I gotta fly. So be good, and remember what I said, yeah? Amon leaves James alone.
NARRATION: Yeah. A vacation. Sounds like a plan.
The Grandma runs down a back alley, looking over her shoulder in fear. Already, blood is oozing from a wound on her leg, and she is missing one of her shoes. She huffs as she runs, terrified, strangled sounds escaping unheeded from her throat.
A shadow falls upon her as she puts more distance between her and her attacker.
She turns a corner, running through mist oozing languidly from a manhole cover. She begins to scream GRANDMA: Help me! Please! Someo- She sees it coming closer, even as we do not. That horrid shadow, falling upon her, obscuring her from the light of the evening streetlamps, from the eyes of those who may(but would not) look for the source of the pleas they hear, faintly.
She is running again, but she is slowing. Time has taken some of her speed from her, as it had her looks and her husband. However, it has not taken her need to survive. She turns another corner, like a rat in a maze, and stops- no, is stopped, colliding with a wall. She falls backwards onto her backside, sitting up and looking at the obstruction without an ounce of understanding.
And then the sound returns. She closes her eyes, praying(GRANDMA: Oh, Jesus, oh lord Jesus please help me save me don’t let them…), but no answers come, as they never do. She turns on all fours, looking up at the shadow that once again falls upon her, for the last time She gazes up at the thing before her.
GRANDMA: Please…I beg you…please don’t hurt me.
But these pleas fall on deaf ears. The shadow advances. And she screams in horror. Oh, THE HORROR.
Again, he has woken with his own scream. Again, he slams his palms against his eyes, squeezing them shut against what he has seen inside his own mind. Squeezes them in vain, as he forgets that the visions are not outside, but within.
JAMES: Oh, God…what’s wrong with me?
The bar again, alone. James sits in the same seat. The same Bartender is serving him the same drinks. A woman walks over to him, from across the room. She has purple hair, and a nose ring. She wears a pair of tight black jeans, tucked into thigh-high boots. Her body is small, frail and delicate looking. Her breasts are modest, little cleavage peeking out from the black tank top she wears. Her pale arms are bare, save for the tattoo of a rose on her left shoulder.
NARRATION: Women. I’ve had little time for Women in my life, especially lately. At first, I was a geeky artist from a small town. Girls there were looking for a Prince Charming to rescue them on a white horse, to take them away from that world altogether. In college I met a few…but I’m too stoic, too quiet. As cliché as it sounds…well, I’m misunderstood. Most Women don’t seem to want to be around a guy who thinks about murder and cannibalism before he thinks of flowers and poetry.
The woman approaches him from the side, stopping at the chair beside him.
WOMAN: Um…is this seat taken?
The woman slides onto the seat beside him. She raises a hand to order a drink.
WOMAN: So, hey…don’t I know you from somewhere? James doesn’t look at her.
JAMES: I doubt it. I’d remember. He glances at her, then back to his drink.
WOMAN: Nah…you’re that guy? The comic guy. Who writes “The Horror”? I saw you at that signing. You signed an issue for me. James looks at her, and then sighs.
JAMES(dryly): You want me to sign another? She frowns.
WOMAN: No. I wanted to talk, actually. My name is Marigold.
JAMES: Marigold? Is that your real name?
WOMAN: As far as you know. She grins mischievously at him. And you’re, uh…Lunt. Right?
JAMES: James. James Lunt.
WOMAN: Right. I love your stuff.
JAMES(dry as ever): Always nice to meet a fan.
MARIGOLD(with a groan): Y’know what? Stop being a pain in the ass! He looks at her, surprised. I am trying to have a conversation with you. Because you look lonely, and I know your stuff. And here you are, acting like I’m some obnoxious fan trying to get an autograph or something. It’s insulting. So stop brooding like a child, look at me and talk, or tell me to get lost. Because you’re acting like an ass.
JAMES(A small smile spreading across his face): Okay. I’m sorry. My name is James Lunt. I’m glad to meet you, Marigold. They shake hands.
MARIGOLD: That’s better.
JAMES: So what brings you to this dive?
MARIGOLD: I pre-game here. Then I go to the club.
JAMES: Yeah, what club?
This club. Black lights give the room a strange purple glow, while the constantly moving fixture on the low ceiling sends a myriad of colors over the dance floor. James and Marigold stand together before a pair of red couches, overlooking the dance floor. On the walls are strange looking art, depicting some strange and unsettling things. James looks uncomfortable there. Marigold looks around, smiling, swaying to the sounds of industrial beats. She looks at James.
MARIGOLD(shouting over the music): So this is the place!
JAMES(Also shouting): Yeah?! I never've been here!
MARIGOLD: It’s okay! It’s the only place to go these days, though! Hey, I know the person who sets this all up! I bet I could get her to buy some of your work for the walls and shit!
JAMES: Nah, that’s okay…I have an agent for that! He winces, feeling stupid. She looks amused at his discomfort. A man in pretentious 17th century noble clothes walks by, nodding to James. Marigold waves to him.
MARIGOLD: Hi, Ezekiel! Love the outfit! He bows and continues on.
JAMES: Friend of yours?!
MARIGOLD: Can’t stand the pretentious fucker! You want a drink?!
JAMES: Uh, no, thanks! I gotta go, actually. It was nice meeting you! He turns for the exit and walks up the stairs.
Outside, she catches up to him. He has made it partially up the sidewalk when she runs up to him, jumps in front of him, and slaps his arm.
JAMES: Ow! Hey, what’d you do that for?
MARIGOLD: Because! James looks at her incredulously. Because you’re stupid!
JAMES: How am I stupid?
MARIGOLD: Look, if you don’t like me, then tell me. But you’re leaving without my number and that pisses me off! James stares at her, uncomprehendingly. Marigold rolls her eyes and groans. You are impossible! Let me spell it out for you: I like you. I like your work. Are following along thus far? James nods, dumbly. Okay, progress! I think you’re cute, and you’re nice(if not a little slow, clearly) and I want to see you again. I want you to ask me out for coffee, and I think you do, too, but you’re being a wimp. James is dumbfounded. Fine! Here! Marigold grabs his hand and writes her number on it. There. Now you can call me if you want. If you don’t, then fine! She storms back towards the door to the club. James turns back to her.
JAMES: Marigold? She turns. Um…I don’t think I can find my way home from here. Can you show me? He smiles, and she smiles in return.
MARIGOLD: You men take such looking after…
A scream is heard nearby. James and Marigold run towards an alley near the club. Down, deep down the alley, is a pair of kids. One of them is a girl, and her mascara is running down her pale cheeks. The boy, holding her, in what once was clearly a romantic embrace, is looking down in shock. There, at their feet, is what was once the Grandma, disembowled.
NARRATION: At this point, if I were writing the story, I’d say: The Plot Thickens.