THE RUNE-BEARER
ACT FOUR

By DragonWriter17
 

Rating: PG-13

Disclaimer/Spoilers/Pairings: Not applicable.  This is an all-original piece.

My Website: http://www.dragonwriter17.net/

Feedback: Yes, but only if itís of the non-flamey variety: DragonWriter17@aol.com

Distribution: Only here.  (If you are interested in posting this on your site, please contact me first for permission.)

Authorís Notes: This story is in screenplay format, not in fiction format.  NOTE: This screenplay is protected by registration with the Writers Guild of America, East: R14442-00.

Number of Chapters: 7

Complete: Yes

Summary: The Rune-Bearer is a two-hour Movie-of-the-Week that can also serve as the pilot for a one-hour weekly fantasy/drama series.  It features a female private detective who is suddenly bestowed with supernatural powers after a chance encounter with the dying victim of a serial killer.  She uses her skills and her new powers to fight evil and to solve mysteries in Memphis, Tennessee.  It's like Witchblade, only lighter and funnier.

 


ACT ONE      ACT TWO       ACT THREE       ACT FOUR

ACT FIVE       ACT SIX        ACT SEVEN       SERIES PROPOSAL

Return to the Home Page            Return to Original Stories
 

ACT FOUR

INT. CAFE NIGHT - THE LADIES' ROOM - NIGHT

OUTSIDE:

Casey runs into the ladies' room.  Pete arrives just as Casey slams the door shut.  Pete stands outside, touching the door knob then pulling away, forbidden to enter.  He finally settles on knocking softly on the door.

                        PETE
            Casey?

INSIDE:

Casey is at the lavatory, looking in the mirror.

                        PETE (O.S.)
            Casey, are you okay?

Casey turns her head at Pete's words, but does not answer.  She unbuttons her shirt about halfway then pulls it down to expose the Rune.  Then she holds the photo next to the Rune and compares the two.  They are identical.

                        CASEY
            Jesus!

OUTSIDE:

Pete looks embarrassed and awkward as the Waitress comes by and sees him camped outside the ladies' room.  She looks at him strangely.  He knocks again.

                        PETE
            Casey?

Pete's timid knocking is interrupted when Casey abruptly pushes the door open.  Pete barely gets his head out of the way.

                        PETE
            Cas --  Whoa!

Casey grabs Pete by his shirt and drags him into the ladies' room.

INT. CAFE NIGHT - INSIDE THE LADIES' ROOM - NIGHT

Pete pulls himself out of Casey's grip as the door to the ladies' room closes.

                        PETE
            What are you doing?  I'm not supposed to
            be in the Ladies' Room!

                        CASEY
            Shut up, I have something I have to show you.

Casey takes a deep breath and pulls her shirt down, then she places the photo next to the exposed mark.  Casey lifts her head so that Pete can see.

Shocked, Pete looks at Casey then the photo then back again several times.  He takes the photo.

                        PETE
            Wh-wh-what?  H-h-how?

                        CASEY
            Two very good questions.   No wonder you're
            a cop.  The What: It's the same mark you
            got there in your photo.  The How: Beats the
            hell outta me, but she did it.

                        PETE
            What do you mean, "she did it"?

                        CASEY
            Mitzi.  I think she transferred that mark
            from herself to me right before she died.

                        PETE
            What?  That...that's just crazy.

                        CASEY
            How do you explain it then?

                        PETE
            I...you...you already had the mark.

                        CASEY
            No, I didn't.  And your partner can
            verify that.

Pete just looks at Casey, dumbfounded and completely unbelieving.  He shakes his head and looks down, then tucks the photo in his pocket.

                        CASEY
            Look, something very strange happened
            in that alley.

Pete looks up and meets Casey's eyes, with both concern and confusion in his face.

                        CASEY
            I didn't want to tell you because I
            knew you'd think I was nuts.

Casey pauses and breathes deeply as she remembers.

                        CASEY
            Right before she died, Mitzi took my hand. 
            She put it right over her heart.  And then
            wham!  I got hit with some kind of...surge. 
            It was like I was being electrocuted or
            something.  It wasn't till this morning that
            I saw the mark.

Casey stops again and thinks hard.

                        CASEY
            But how does Frederic Johan fit into all this?

Pete gets a scared look on his face.  He rubs his hand through his hair and directs his gaze downward.

                        PETE
            Damn!

                        CASEY
            What?

Pete looks back up, but can't find the words.

Suddenly, the restroom door swings open, and a YOUNG WOMAN walks in.

                        YOUNG WOMAN
            Ooops!

The Young Woman goes out just as quickly as she came in.  Casey and Pete barely notice.

                        CASEY
            Pete, what is it?  Tell me.

                        PETE
            There was another video tape of Johan at
            the morgue, one of him inside the autopsy
            room, one we chose not to show you.  In it,
            Johan locates Mitzi's body and starts
            searching it.  Liz and I both thought...

                        CASEY
            What?  You thought what?

                        PETE
            We thought it looked like Johan was looking
            for the mark that was no longer there.

Casey and Pete are both silent a moment, as the dangerous reality of the situation sinks in.

                        CASEY
            Oh, god...

Casey wraps her arms tightly around herself and turns away.  Pete moves closer and puts his hand on her shoulder.

                        PETE
            We've withheld your name.  There's no
            way Johan can find out who you are or
            where to find you.

Casey turns around.  Pete holds her shoulders firmly with both hands.

                        PETE
            You're safe.

Casey looks at Pete, wanting to believe.  Casey opens up and hugs Pete.  He wraps his arms around her.  They both melt into the hug, savoring the physical contact between them.

When they come out of their hug, they stay close, still touching.  They look into each other's eyes.  Casey's face is creased with fear, Pete's with concern.

                        CASEY
            I'm scared.

                        PETE
            I know.

Pete lifts his hand and gently caresses Casey's cheek, wiping away an escaping tear.  Casey is breathing hard, caught between panic and attraction.  Pete leans down to kiss her.

The imminent kiss is interrupted when an OLD LADY enters the restroom.  Unlike the earlier Young Woman, the Old Lady does not immediately retreat.  She loudly clears her throat then stands there with her hands on her hips and scowls at Casey and Pete.  Casey immediately pulls away from Pete and starts buttoning her blouse.

                        CASEY
            I gotta go.

Casey runs out.  Pete follows, trying to catch up with her.

INT. CAFE NIGHT - LADIES' ROOM/PETE'S TABLE - NIGHT

Casey continues running, from the restroom to their table.  Pete tries to follow, but customers and servers get in his way.

                        PETE
            Casey!

Casey grabs her purse and rushes away.  Pete finally stops and just lets Casey go.  Pete plops down at their table and sighs.

INT. CASEY'S HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Casey lets herself in, locks the door hurriedly, then leans back against the door.  When Casey looks up, she sees Mitzi standing in her living room.  She jumps in fright.

                        CASEY
            Jesus Christ!

Casey stares at Mitzi.  Then she closes her eyes, shakes her head, and looks back.  Mitzi is still there, waiting, her hands perched dramatically on her hips.

                        CASEY
                  (to herself)
            I am losing my freakin' mind. I must be.
                  (to Mitzi)
            Right?

                        MITZI
            Wrong.

INT. CASEY'S HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Casey is gawking at Mitzi in utter disbelief.  Mitzi walks towards Casey and points at her.

                        MITZI
            I didn't think you were ever gonna
            talk to me.  I mean, I tried like a
            zillion times, but no!  Miss
            Gotta-see-it-to-believe-it, wasn't
            havin' none of it --

                        CASEY
            Hey!  What the hell did you do to me?

                        MITZI
            Don't you yell at me.  I gave you a gift.

                        CASEY
            Well, this so-called "gift" is gonna
            get me killed!

                        MITZI
            Yeah...sorry 'bout that part.

                        CASEY
            You're sorry?  You've set a freakin'
            maniac after me, and you're sorry?

                        MITZI
            Look, I had to, okay?  That's the
            number-one rule: You gotta pass on the
            Rune before you die.

                        CASEY
            The number-one rule?  There are rules
            for this thing?  Who set these rules? 
            And what is this Rune thing anyway?

                        MITZI
            Girl, you better set down.  I got a lot
            to tell you.  And you need to know all of
            it, especially with maniac man on your tail.

INT. THE PEABODY HOTEL - FREDERIC'S SUITE - DAY

Frederic is sitting at the dining table, drinking coffee and eating his breakfast.  A chime from his computer alerts him.  He moves over to the laptop.

The computer shows that he has gained access to the police station's main frame.  Frederic starts searching for data on the murder.

He comes across the mug shot of Casey.  He grins.

He goes through a flurry of keystrokes until the screen shows a status bar "Downloading."  He leans back in his chair and steeples his fingers together, smirking to himself.

INT. CASEY'S HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Casey sits down, and Mitzi joins her.

                        MITZI
            Okay.  Here's the deal.  I got the Rune
            basically the same way you did.  Some
            chick I didn't even know put the whammy
            on me right before she died.  I didn't
            know what the hell was goin' on either
            until weird stuff started happenin' like
            her showing up as a ghost.  Her name was
            Vivienne by the way.  I always called her
            Vi, she hated that.  Hey, you can do stuff
            with it, you figured that out yet?

                        CASEY
            Sort of.  I had a vision, a premonition
            or something.

                        MITZI
            Cool, huh?  I had 'em too.  Sometimes
            they'll be about the future.  But other
            times they'll be about the past or the
            present.  If you work at it, you can
            almost control it.  I had this whole
            side practice goin' on with the fortune
            telling: a little palm reading, doing
            them...what-do-ya-call-it...tarot cards. 
            This one time --

                        CASEY
            Tell me about that later.  I want to know
            about Frederic Johan.

                        MITZI
            Who?

                        CASEY
            Maniac man.  The guy who killed you.

                        MITZI
            Oh, him.  Okay.  Here's the deal.  I was
            workin' one night.  This man drives up
            in this really fancy car.  I mean, really
            fancy.  I was thinking "Pretty Woman, I
            want the fairly tale," ya know?  God, I
            love that movie.  When he comes ridin'
            up to her apartment in that limo, I just --

                        CASEY
            Let's get back to Frederic.  Please.

                        MITZI
            Oh, yeah.  Right.  So we talk, we make the
            deal.  I take him to the Red Lantern -- that's
            the hotel I always use.  Anyway, we get in the
            room.  Then he says, "You have something I want."
            And I say, "You bet I do." Next thing I know,
            he grabs me and throws me on the bed and starts
            ripping at my clothes.  And I'm like, "Hey, man,
            I don't do rape scenes, okay?" I start fighting
            back, but he's like mega-strong or something. 
            I tear at his clothes, and that's when I see it.

                        CASEY
            See what?

                        MITZI
            The Rune.

                        CASEY
            He had a Rune too?

                        MITZI
            Yeah, right over his heart, just like
            mine.  Only his looked different.  Anyway,
            'fore I know it, he's got me pinned down. 
            Then he just stopped and reached over and
            touched my mark.

Mitzi shudders violently as she remembers.

                        MITZI
            Eeek!  Gives me the creeps just thinkin'
            about it.  I mean, I could just feel it,
            ya know?  That this guy was evil.  Sure
            enough, he whipped out this huge knife. 
            So I just blasted him across the room and --

                        CASEY
            Wait!  You "blasted him across the room"?

                        MITZI
            Yeah!  TK, girl -- telekinesis.  It's the
            best perk that came with this thing.  I
            didn't even know what it was till Vi told me. 
            It's the only thing that saved me.  So, like
            I said, I blasted him across the room, and
            then I got the hell outta there.  I packed
            a bag, and I hit the road.

                        CASEY
            But why was he after you in the first place? 
            What does he want?

                        MITZI
            He wants to steal the Rune.  He wants all
            them powers that come with it.  I think
            that's how he got the Rune he has.  He stole
            it from somebody, using that big knife of his.

                        CASEY
            Jesus!

                        MITZI
            What?

                        CASEY
            Pete said --

                        MITZI
            Who's Pete?

                        CASEY
            A homicide detective.  The one assigned
            to your case.  Anyway, he said there were
            two murders in Europe that were similar
            to yours.  Two women, stabbed to death,
            both with remnant marks like yours.

                        MITZI
            That would mean he has two Runes already.

                        CASEY
            I guess so.  How many of these Runes
            are there?

                        MITZI
            Beats me.  All I know is that each
            Rune-Bearer has different powers.

                        CASEY
            "Rune-Bearer"?

                        MITZI
            Yeah, that's what Vi called us.

Mitzi pauses as Casey turns reflective.

                        CASEY
            What else do you know?

                        MITZI
            Not a lot.
                  (reciting formally)
            The Runes are supposed to be used
            for good, and they're supposed to
            be held by women.

                        CASEY
            Then how does Johan have one?

                        MITZI
                  (shrugging)
            I don't know.
                  (continuing her recital)
            Oh!  And the number-one rule, as I said
            before: You gotta pass on the Rune before
            you die.  If you don't, it gets lost.

                        CASEY
            It gets lost?

                        MITZI
                  (shrugging again)
            Whatever that means.

Casey stands up and walks away, thinking hard.  Then she turns and faces Mitzi.

                        CASEY
            Tell me about my powers.  Show me
            how to use them.

                        MITZI
                  (grins widely)
            You're gonna love this part.

INT. CASEY'S HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY

Casey is sitting on the couch, touching the Rune, concentrating hard.  She is levitating the cordless phone receiver. 

The receiver is floating in the air about a foot or so above the charger.

                        MITZI
            Yeah!  You go, girl!  You're doin' great!

                        CASEY
            Do I have to touch the Rune to do things?

                        MITZI
            Nah, but sometimes it helps.  Okay, now
            pull the phone over to yourself.

                        CASEY
            Okay.

Casey concentrates again, and the phone starts floating towards her.

                        MITZI
            Oh, there is one thing you'll really
            have to work at, and that's --

The phone suddenly speeds up and flies toward Casey with tremendous speed.  Casey ducks just in time, and the phone goes crashing into the wall, antenna end first, embedding itself in the dry wall.

                        MITZI
            -- control.

                        CASEY
            Holy cow!

INT. POLICE STATION - DAY

The entire police station is in chaos.  Officers are clamoring about in the different sections of the station, hovered around their computers, banging on them, cursing.

Pete and Liz, in fresh clothes, follow the maze of hallways and stairways down to the Computer Center.

INT. POLICE STATION - COMPUTER CENTER - DAY

Pete and Liz enter.  KEITH is sitting at a terminal, typing frantically, while MICKEY stands behind him, looking over his shoulder.

                        MICKEY
            Keith, how the hell did he get in?  I
            thought we had multiple firewalls in
            this thing.

                        KEITH
            We do, we do!  I don't know how he did it.

                        LIZ
            Mickey, what's going on?

                        MICKEY
            Security got breached.  We had to shut
            the whole network down.

                        LIZ
            What happened?

                        MICKEY
            Somebody hacked into the main frame. 
            He searched the databases, found some
            records, and downloaded them.

                        PETE
            What records did he download?

                        MICKEY
            I'm not sure yet.
                  (typing away)
            Gimme a sec.
                  (a few final clicks)
            Here you go...field notes, preliminary
            report, autopsy report, crime scene photos --

                        PETE
            What case?

                        MICKEY
                  (more key clattering)
            Hey, it's one of y'all's...Mitzi Howard.

                        PETE
                  (to Liz)
            He knows how to find Casey.

                        LIZ
            Let's go.

EXT. CASEY'S HOUSE - DAY

A limo pulls up to the house and parks on the street.  Frederic gets out.

Frederic walks slowly up Casey's driveway.  Then he walks up the sidewalk until he arrives at the front door.  He looks to each side of himself then slips the dagger from his sleeve.

 

GO TO ACT FIVE
 

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