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Leaving Las Vegas (1995)

by Mike Figgis.
Based on the novel by John OíBrian.
Shooting script, September 1994.

More info about this movie on IMDb.com


FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY


TITLE ON BLACK; Ď10 P.M. - LOS ANGELESí

DISSOLVE TO:

1 INT. SMART BAR IN BEVERLY HILLS - NIGHT


It is the kind of bar where the well-to-do folks of LA go
to pick up - or be picked up. Lesser-known actors, agents
and executives of all ages.

Into this bar comes Ben.

Ben is in his thirties. He is wearing an Armani suit
that could use a visit to the dry-cleanerís. He hasnít
shaved in the last twenty-four hours (but neither has
any of the actors in the bar). He is a good-looking man
but is clearly in trouble of some kind. Although still
in control of his faculties, it becomes clear in the
following scene that he is much the worse for wear with
drink. He looks around the room until he sees someone he
recognizes and then walks over to a table where two couples
are seated. The men are young execs, the girls, both blonde
and busty, have very white teeth and smile all of the time.
The camera follows Ben over to the table. One of the execs
looks up as Ben gets close. He recognizes him but delays
his recognition until the last moment in the hope that Ben
is not looking at him.

			BEN
	Peter

			PETER
	Ben... how are you, man?

They shake hands. Ben is not invited to take a seat and
Peter waits for a while before being forced to introduce him
to the table.

Ben Sanderson, Marc Nussbaum, Sheila, Debbie.


			MARC
	Nice to meet you. I think I
	spoke to you on the phone a
	couple of years ago. Werenít
	you both at MGM with Laddie?

			BEN
	Thatís right. Are you still
	at ICM?

			MARC
	No, Iím at Tri-Star now.

			BEN
	Thatís great. Say hello to
	Mike for me. Thatís a
	beautiful dress, Debbie, and
	those are fabulous earrings,
	Sheila.

There is an awkward silence. Ben does not make a move and
is not invited to join them. The girls smile.

			MARC
	I gotta tell you, Iím a big
	fan of your writing. I loved
	Bay of Pigs.

			BEN
	Thanks a lot. I didnít
	actually write it, I just got
	the credit. I was fired.
		(to Peter)
	Can I talk to you for a
	moment?

Peter gets up and he and Ben walk to the door together.
Peter speaks very quietly.

			PETER
	Listen, Ben, I canít help you
	any more. Do you understand?

			BEN
	This is the last time.
	Promise. I just need some
	cash    tonight. I lost my
	credit cards. The moneyíll be
	on your desk first thing
	tomorrow morning, Scoutís
	honor. Howís the new one
	coming along? I here you got
	Richard Gere.

The two men look at each other for a while. Peterís
friends are looking at them, as are other people in
the room. Peter takes out his wallet and extracts some
notes.

			PETER
	This is all I have in cash.
	Please donít drink it here.

			BEN
	Yes, thatís fine. Iíll
	messenger it over to you
	tomorrow.

			PETER
	I donít want it. Ben... I
	think it would be best if you
	didnít contact me again.

And he turns and walks away, back to his table.


CUT TO BLACK:

TITLE ON BLACK; ĎLAS VEGAS - 1.20 A.M.í

FADE UP ON:

2 EXT. HELICOPTER SHOT - DAY

Las Vegas. A blaze of color in the middle of a desert.

Credit sequence begins.

CUT TO:

3 INT. LOBBY OF EXPENSIVE HOTEL - NIGHT

A mixture of businessmen and gamblers creates a sense
of activity and superficial excitement. Music wafts
across the soundtrack, almost drowned by the dense
texture of thousands of slot machines, creating an
insane New Age symphony.

Credit sequence ends.

Into the lobby from the street comes Sera.

Itís hard to tell how old Sera is - somewhere between
twenty-five and thirty-five. She is a beautiful American
girl. Her face has the freshness of a model in a Sears
catalogue. She is dressed simply in a short black skirt
and matching jacket. High heels complete the picture.
Heads turn as she passes a group of businessmen and itís
clear they find her very sexy. She acknowledges their
glance with a half-smile and steps into the elevator.
She could be a secretary, or a PA to one of the many
execs here in Las Vegas at a convention. The body language
is a bit different, though.

4 INT. PENTHOUSE SUITE OF HOTEL - NIGHT

A view of night-time Las Vegas through a window. Traffic up
and down The Strip; bright, gaudy neon flashing and winking.
We hear the sound of men laughing and the camera pulls
focus and we see reflected in the glass...

... a group of people.

On the table are bowls of potato chips and dip and
sandwiches. The TV is on at a sports channel and two
boxers pound the shit out of each other.

CUT TO:

5 INT. ELEVATOR - NIGHT

Sera looks at herself in the gold-tinted mirror in
the elevator. She takes out a lipstick and freshens
her lips. Some people get out and the elevator climbs
higher. We see from the indicator that she has punched
the Penthouse button. Camera moves in tighter and we
see that she is nervous but concealing it well. The
elevator stops, the doors open and she steps right
into the Penthouse.

6 INT. PENTHOUSE - NIGHT

A bottle of Scotch is almost empty. The man talking is Yuri.
He is Russian, in his early forties, a little overweight,
a big man wearing a blue silk suit. His thick black hair
is greased and combed back. He wears a lot of jewelry,
all gold. Rings, a bracelet and a Rolex. Two men in
business suits and a weird stoned woman in her late
thirties listen to him.

			YURI
	...but please, my friends,
	call me Yuri. It is my
	American name... I picked it
	myself.

The three people laugh. There is a hint of contempt in
the way that they speak to Yuri.

			FIRST BUSINESSMAN
	Where are you from, Yuri? I
	mean, you sure donít talk
	like youíre from this neck of
	the woods.

Yuri smiles at them.

			YURI
		(silky voice)
	No... you are right, my
	friend. How very observant
	you are. I am from Latvia.

			WEIRD WOMAN
	Tough place.

			YURI
	Yes, I hear this too. But I
	am not a tough man. I am a
	simple man who is here to
	learn from my new American
	friends.

The door opens and Sera comes in. Everybody stares at her.

			WEIRD WOMAN
		(turned on)
	Is this your friend, Yuri?

			YURI
	Ah, yes... Sera.

The second businessman takes out a small manila envelope from
his inside pocket.

			YURI(contíd)
	Sera is my gift to you, my
	friends from New York City.
	You may do with her as you
	wish in this beautiful room,
	which is also my gift for the
	night to my friends. You will
	find her a very willing girl,
	for all of youÖjust as we
	arranged.

Yuri smiles again as the Second Businessman hands him the
envelope. The rest of them just stare at Sera, aroused by the
idea of her.

		SECOND BUSINESSMAN
	Of course, Yuri. I think
	youíll find this just as we
	discussed.

Yuri gets up.

			YURI
	So, my friends... I have other
	business to attend. Enjoy.


He heads for the door, passing Sera. She holds out his arm as
he passes.

			SERA
		(whispering)
	Yuri... please! Can I talk to
	you for a moment.


Still smiling, he takes Seraís arm and leads her into the
bedroom.


			YURI
	My friends... excuse me for
	just one moment.


7 INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT
Mirrors reflect mirrors.

			SERA
	I donít want this. Yuri,
	please. I really donít want
	this. You know I donít like
	to do groups.

			YURI
		(playful)
	I want this, Sera. I need
	this!

				SERA
	Please, Yuri.



He holds put his arms. Sera goes to him. He hugs her with one
arm. He pulls up her skirt so that her panties are exposed.

			YURI
		(seductive)
	These are pretty.

Sera watches in the mirror as he pulls her panties to reveal
her buttocks. He strokes her there gently with his other
hand. We see that there are two fine scars there. He speaks
gently, like a father to a daughter.

			YURI(contíd)
	Is this how you would repay
	me for coming all this way to
	find you again? Driving
	through the desert to protect
	my little Sera.

CUT TO:

FLASHBACK-SILENT-GRAINY BLACK AND WHITE

8 INT. ROOM - NIGHT
Yuri and Sera - different time, different place. Sera looking
frightened, backing away from Yuri, who pulls a switchblade
from his jacket and opens it.


CUT BACK TO:

9 INT. PENTHOUSE - NIGHT
Yuri enters from the bedroom. The weird woman is doing a line
of coke.

			YURI
		(cheerful)
	Sera wanted me to ask if she
	might undress at once for
	you. She has a very beautiful
	undergarment witch she would
	like you to see.

ANGLE ON BEDROOM DOOR

Sera comes into the room. She smiles and begins unbuttoning
her jacket.

She takes it off and drops it on the floor, and then unzips
her skirt and steps out of it. Sera is now in control and
playing the room. In the background. Yuri leaves the room.

			WEIRD WOMAN
		(strange voice)
	Come here.

Sera walks over and something strange takes place between
them.

CUT TO:

10 INT. BENíS BAR. LA - MORNING

The bar is dark but through a small window we see that it is
a very bright sunny day outside. The bartender reads the Los
Angeles Times. The bar surface is red vinyl. There are five
customers, all single men. One of them is Ben and he is
sitting at the bar watching TV. A game show is in progress
and the TV sound is loud. Ben finishes his drink and grimaces
before indicating to the barman that heíd like a repeat.
Barman pours him a whiskey - Cranberry - and the camera moves
in closer to Ben, ending in a close-up. Ben takes a big hit
from the drink and concentrates on the TV. We hear from the
TV sound that it is a word game with a big prize. Ben smiles
to himself.

BENíS POV OF TV

The talk show hostess, an American TV beauty, is showing the
audience the prizes available in todayís game show.

ANGLE ON BEN

As he finishes that drink and asks for another. The camera
moves in close on his eyes.

BENíS POV OF TV

She turns from the prizes and looks straight into the TV
camera, which starts zooming into her. At first, what she is
saying makes complete sense, but then things changeÖ

			HOSTESS
		(smoky, sexy voice)
	Just look at this studio,
	Ben, filled with glamorous
	merchandise, including an
	extra special prize chosen
	just for You! A big, bad, BMW
	motorcycle, complete with
	saddle bags stuffed with
	thousands of US dollars.

ĎThere are oohsí from the audience.


			HOSTESS
	So, Ben,
		(tosses her hair)
	letís find a bar, get drunk
	and go for a ride.

The studio lights dim.

			HOSTESS
	Then we can get a suite
	somewhere and order up a case
	of champagne while we fuck
	ourselves silly.

Close-up on males in the audience doing the grunt.

			HOSTESS
	This is it, just for You,
	Ben.

She unbuttons her top, licks her fingers and makes her
nipples hard.

			HOSTESS
	Because Youíve been so
	patient, and because I want
	to fuck you, take care of
	You, and because thereís
	nothing else in the world
	worth doing.

Section of the audience clapping - some women dabbing their
eyes.

			HOSTESS
	Tell you what, Ben, letís go
	to Las Vegas. The bars stay
	open twenty four hours night
	and day. Just you, just me,
	Ben, think about it, all
	right?

ANGLE ON BEN

Lost in his fantasy

			BEN
	Iíll think about it.

He looks back at the screen, but the show has returned to
what is known as ĒnormalĒ. He finishes his drink and then an
attack of nausea hit him. He takes a deep breath and rolls
his neck and his head. The barman puts down a fresh drink.
Ben looks at his own handsÖwhich are steady.

			BARMAN
	You should go on that show.

CUT TO:

11 INT. SMART BUSINESS SPACE - MORNING

Ben sitting at a desk with a phone wedged on his ear, a cup
of black coffee on the desk. The walls are covered with
framed film posters and one complete wall has shelves jammed
with scripts. He nods from time to time and sometimes says
Ďyesí or ĎOKí, but it becomes clear that there is no one on
the other end. He drinks from the coffee cup. A woman comes
up to his desk, a business colleague. She puts a wad of
messages down on the desk.

			BEN
	Yeah, but whatís the back end
	like? By the time weíre
	through with P and A, the
	above-the line is going to
	take it to about fifteen and
	with something like this... I
	donít know if Disney will go
	for it... can I call you back
	on this? OK... chow for now.
		(to the woman)
	Good morning.


			WOMAN
		(cautious)
	Ben... Mr. Simpson was looking
	for you. I said that you had
	a doctorís appointment. He
	said for you to go in as soon
	as... are you OK?

			BEN
		(pulling himself together)
	Iím fantastic, but I gotta go
	out now... very important
	meeting, could make a coupla
	million for the company.

Ben gets up and as he passes her he grabs her and dances a
few steps. It is clear that she likes Ben, but when his face
gets close to hers she smells the alcohol on his breath and
she turns away. Ben stops dancing and smiles sadly.

			WOMAN
		(tender)
	Ben?

			BEN
	What?

			WOMAN
	You should go now.

She leaves the room and Ben goes through some routine at the
desk. He opens a drawer of a filing cabinet and puts in his
whole arm, looking for something at the very back. He pulls
out a small vodka bottle and opens it and then pours the
contents into his coffee cup. With cup in hand he leaves the
room.

CUT TO:

12 INT. SMART OFFICE - DAY

Ben is sitting opposite his boss, Mr. Simpson, who is very
upset. He hands Ben an envelope. Ben opens it and pulls out a
check. He looks at the amount.

			BEN
		(genuinely moved)
	This is to generous Peter.

			SIMPSON
		(close to tears)
	Well... we liked having you
	around, Ben, but you know how
	it is.

			BEN
		(ashamed)
	Sure thing... and Iím sorry.

Ben takes a swig from his coffee cup.

			SIMPSON
		(trying to cheer things along)
	Well... what are you going to
	do now?

			BEN
	I thought I might move out to
	Las Vegas.

Simpson looks puzzled.

			BEN
	The bars never close.

CUT TO:

13 INT. BENíS BMW ó DAY

Ben drives though Beverly Hills. He pours the content of a
small bottle of vodka into an empty Coke can, puts the empty
bottle under the seat and then drinks from the can.

He slips a tape into the player and we hear ĒLonely
TeardropsĒ, by Michael McDonald, one of Benís favorite songs.
At a traffic light a cop on a bike pulls up next to him and
Ben takes a pull from the Coke can and smiles, mouths the
word ĒhotĒ. The cop nods back at him, the light changes and
they both pull away.

CUT TO:

14 EXT. SANTA MONICA STREET ó DAY

Ben carries a brown paper bag which clinks. Camera follows
him as he walks down the street. He looks at...

BENíS POV

A girl walking ahead of him in the same direction. She is
walking her dog. She is attractive from behind. We hear Benís
thoughts.


			BEN
		(voice-over)
	Beautiful, not just the shape
	which is nice, but the whole
	walk, the feeling, the
	movement. This girl is
	pleased with herself. Maybe
	this is the only art I can
	appreciate... I donít know if
	this is good or bad, but
	right now she is really
	beautiful. When I was a boy
	it would have been really
	important that she have a
	pretty face, to go with this
	body, I mean. I still would
	like to see her face, but her
	beauty is not dependent on her
	face.

The dog gets interested in something on the sidewalk and she
bends down to pull at its collar.

			BEN
		(voice-over)
	I wonder what kind of panties
	sheís wearing. Shit, thatís
	too specific, but... on the
	other hand, you can never be
	too specific... but then, the
	infinitesimal must be, by
	definition, as infinite as
	the infinite.

Suddenly the girl stops. Ben catches up with her and cannot
resist looking into her face.

			BEN
		(voice-over)
	God, sheís so young.

The girl sees Ben and smiles an innocent smile,

			GIRL
	Hi!

			BEN
	Hi...

CUT TO:

15 EXT. BENíS HOUSE IN SANT MONICA - DAY

Ben walks up to his house still carrying the paper bag. A
young boy of about thirteen years of age is fixing a beat-up
bike. Ben greets him.

			BEN
	Hey, Brad... howís it going?

			BRAD
	Hey Ben. There were a couple
	of guys looking for you.

			BEN
	What did they look like?

			BRAD
	Suits. I didnít tell them
	anything. You know anything
	about gears?

Ben takes a look. The gear mechanism is all bent out of
shape. He bends down to have a look. It is clear from the way
he deals with this mechanical problem that heís good with his
hands. He doesnít try to force anything but he moves the
chain and gear mechanism to get to the problem.

			BEN
	Howíd this happen?

			BRAD
	I was going real fast down on
	the beach and something
	slipped and everything got
	jammed up.

			BEN
	The news is not good, kid.
	This bit here... see
	there... itís broken. You need
	a new  one.

			BRAD
		(upset)
	How much, do you think?

			BEN
	I donít know. Iíll find out
	though.

Ben gets up, picks up his bottles and heads for his house. He
looks back and Brad is sitting still by the bike, looking
totally dejected. This really seems to upset Ben.

CUT TO:

16 INT. BENíS HOUSE - AFTERNOON

Ben is naked and the shower can be heard in the background.
The house is austere, only the minimum of furnishing. He
pours a large tumbler of vodka and takes a gulp, then tops up
the glass. He turns on the stereo, selects a record - Miles
Davis, Kind of Blue - and puts it on the turntable. He turns
on the cassette recorder and inserts a new blank tape. He
puts the machine into the record mode. He kneels down next to
the deck and with complete precision puts the needle on the
second track without any problem. The music starts and
continues through the next sequence.

17 INT. SHOVER - DAY

Ben is in the shower with the glass in his hand.

18 INT. BATHROOM - DAY

Ben shaving with the glass in his hand. He does the area
around his mouth first so that he can drink while he does the
rest.

19 INT. LIVING SPACE - DAY

Showered and shaved and wearing a smart dark suit, Ben looks
handsome and normal. He selects another record and again sets
up the cassette machine to record. He turns the stereo up
full and dances by himself while watching MTV silent. He
tries a turn which is a bit ambitious and loses hi balance.
In slow motion we see him fall. Ben lies still on the floor.
He smiles to himself and decides top stay there for a
while...

FADE OUT:

FADE IN:

20 INT. SERAíS BEDROOM. LAS VEGAS - DAY

Sera wakes up in bed next to Yuri. (The camera is high above
the bed looking down.) She is completely drenched in sweat. A
thin shaft o light comes from the crack in the drapes and
falls across their bodies. Other than that, the room is in
darkness. To get out of bed she would have to climb over him.
She lies still. Yuri speaks without opening his eyes...

			YURI
	I missed you, Sera. You have
	been lonely?

Sera blinks and turns her head towards him.

			SERA
	Iím older now, Yuri.

He puts his hand between her legs, over the sheets and grasps
her there.

			YURI
	You have been lonely?

			SERA
		(tensing a little)
	Iíve been all right.

			YURI
	I will keep you safe. We are
	both older.

He climbs on to her and mounts her. Familiarity.

			YURI
	You have been lonely?

			SERA
		(flat voice)
	I am lonely, Yuri.

He begins thrusting into her.

			YURI
	Yes... so am I.

Camera move slowly into a tight portrait of Sear.

			SERA
		(voice-over)
	I had a new dress... we were
	at the fair, Daddy bought me
	an ice-cream and I spilt it
	on my dress...

CUT TO:

21 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY

Sera is sitting on a sofa talking to an unseen person.
(Although it is no entirely clear when this is taking place,
the sense of it is that we are in present, i.e. all the
events in the film are in the past tense.)

			SERA
	... Mom was with Helen, and
	Dad looked around first to
	see if she was watching and
	then he scraped it all off
	and threw it on the grass and
	then he kissed me and hugged
	me and told me it was all
	right...

22 INT. SERAíS KITCHEN. LATER THAT DAY

Yuri is tucking into a hearty breakfast. Sear plays with her
food.

			YURI
		(planning his day)
	This is such a small
	apartment, Sera. I cannot
	stay here. We will find a big
	apartment. You know how much
	money I can bring you. I
	belong in...
		(laughs)
	... wealth and luxury.

He suddenly looks up from his food and smiles at her.

			YURI
	Why did you run away from me
	in Los Angeles?

Sera says nothing.

			YURI
	Because you are sly. Mmm? You
	knew all along that there was
	more money in Las Vegas.
	Didnít you?

Sera nervously plays with her food.

			YURI
	You have nothing to fear from
	me. You know why? Because we
	belong together, Sera. Donít
	we?

Sear forces a smile.

			SERA
		(quietly)
	Yes.

QUICK CUT TO:

FLASHBACK:

23 INT. ROOM - NIGHT

Grainy black-and-white image. Sera on a bed, pinned down by
Yuri, who has a knife.

CUT BACK TO:

24 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAY

			YURI
	Iím pleased with you,
	Sera... how you have moved up
	in the world. I showed you a
	glamorous world when I took
	you off the streets...
		(shaking his head)
	and how you repay me.

			SERA
	Where have you been staying?

			YURI
	With an old friend.

He drops his fork.

			YURI
	But that is none of your
	affair. You will call this
	morning and book me into a
	hotel suite where I will make
	new contacts for us.

The mood has changed and Sera does her best to move out of
these dangerous waters.

			SERA
	Youíll need some money, then.

Yuri nods. Sera rises goes to a kitchen drawers and finds
money.

			YURI
		(becoming angry)
	It is, after all, Sera, my
	money.

			SERA
		(calmly)
	Yes, of course. How much do
	you need?

			YURI
		(shaking his head)
	All of it. I need to buy many
	things... all of it!

Yuri is very angry and as Sera hands him the money, he hits
her, hard, knocking her back into the refrigerator. His ring
cuts her cheek.
			YURI
		(shouting)
	Donít look at me like that.

And then his anger goes and he becomes quite tender with her.
He takes her face in his hands to look at the cut.

			YURI
	Itís not so bad. It is
	nothing.
		(whispers)
	I need money, Sera. I need it
	fast. You must go on the
	street tonight. For me.

He sits down with shaking hands. He suddenly seems more
vulnerable than she is. He goes to the window and looks out,
left and then right, as if he expects to see something.

			YURI
	I need money fast, Sera. I
	want you back on the street.
	Tonight.

FADE OUT:

FADE IN SLOWLY - SOUND FIRST:

25 INT. BENíS HOUSE - NIGHT

Ben opens his eyes. The only light comes from the TV. The
miles Davis record has got caught on a scratch and is
repeating the sane phrase over and over again. He looks at
his gold Rolex and then fingers the wedding band on his
finger.

CUT TO:

26 INT. BENíS BAR. LA - NIGHT

Ben is sitting at the bar. He drinks a large glass of
something very quickly and then immediately orders another.

He drinks this a little slower but still too quick, finishes
it and then orders another. He looks around the bar and sees
a woman sitting by herself, thirtyish, pretty and receptive.
She looks and sees Ben, and he smiles at her. She smiles
right back. Ben talks across the bar.

			BEN
		(charming)
	Good evening.

			PRETTY WOMAN
		(pleased)
	Hi.

			BEN
	Iím BenjaminÖBen.

			PRETTY WOMAN
	Iím Teri.

Ben walks over to where she is. She is pleased that this
good-looking man has come over to make a play. She makes a
noise with her straw to indicate that her glass is empty.

			BEN
	Iíll get you another
	one... and me too. Mind if I
	join you?

She watches him walk to the bar. He gets the drink and walks
back to her. He sets the drinks down on the table and sits
down. As he does so, his face gets close to hers and she
smells the booze on him.

			PRETTY WOMAN
	Wow... been drinking all day?

			BEN
	But of course.

She looks at him, a disappointed expression on her face. She
is no longer interested in being seduced by this man and this
much is clear to Ben.

			BEN
	Why donít we finish these and
	go to my apartment on the
	beach?

She doesnít respond.

			BEN
	We can watch a movie and Iíll
	mix you up a gooey blender
	drink.

Ben winces at his own words. He shakes his head.

			PRETTY WOMAN
	I have to get up pretty early
	tomorrow. Iíll just finish
	this and go. Thanks anyway.

They drink in silence for a while. Ben takes a deep breath.0

			BEN
		(pathetic)
	I really wish that youíd come
	home with me. Youíre so cute
	and Iím really good in
	bed... believe me... you smell
	good too...

He stops and frowns as he stares into his empty glass.

			BEN
	No, OK.

Ben tries to stand and has to pull himself up by holding the
bar. Itís a strange thing with drunks like Ben... when theyíre
up they have balance and timing, but when theyíre down it all
falls apart. She starts to speak but then doesnít. A look of
great sadness comes over her.

			PRETTY WOMAN
	I have to go now. Thanks
	anyway.

She stands to go.

			PRETTY WOMAN
	Maybe you shouldnít drink so
	much.

She walks to the door and Ben turns to the bar, watched by he
Barman, who is a little concerned.

			BEN
		(to himself)
	Maybe I shouldnít breathe so
	much, Teri. Ha... ha.

			BARMAN
		(sever voice)
	Time to go, buddy... Weíre
	closing up.

Ben gets out his wallet but his hands are shaking so much
that he cannot extract any bills. He is very embarrassed and
tries again, but to no avail.

			BEN
	Would you...?

The barman shakes his head in disgust as he goes into the
wallet and takes some money.

CUT TO:

27 EXT. LA STREETS - NIGHT

Ben is cruising in his car, listening to music on his stereo.

CUT TO:

28 INT. STRIP CLUB - NIGHT

Ben comes into the club and sits down next to the stage,
where a dancer is doing her thing accompanied by a live blue
trio. A swimsuited waitress comes to the table.

WAITRESS
Thereís a one-drink minimum per show, I hope you saw the sign
when you came in. Anyway, theyíre supposed to tell you.

			BEN
	Yes, I heard, and itís not a
	problem.

			WAITRESS
	What do you want?

			BEN
	What are my choices?

			WAITRESS
	Everythingís ten dollars, and
	thereís no alcohol.

			BEN
	No alcohol?

			WAITRESS
	No alcohol. You gotta get
	something else. Everythingís
	ten dollars. What do you
	want?

			BEN
	What do you think I should
	get?

			WAITRESS
	Non-alcoholic malt beverage?

			BEN
	... Noooo.

			WAITRESS
	Orange soda?

			BEN
	No.

			WAITRESS
	Coffee?

			BEN
	No.

			WAITRESS
	Sparkling apple cider?

			BEN
	No.

			WAITRESS
	Water?

			BEN
	Water?

			WAITRESS
	One drink minimum per show.
	Everythingís ten dollars.
	Now... tell me what you want
	or Iíll eighty-six you.

			BEN
		(decides)
	Water.

She writes down W.A.T.E.R. and walks away. Ben calls her
back.

			BEN
	Just how much would it cost
	for you to eighty-six me?

ANGLE ON THE STAGE

A tough black girl dances in a world of her own, impervious
to the men who stare at her. The trio grinds out a dirty
blues. A man opposite Ben places a dollar bill on the stage
and as the dancer squats down to pick it up he stares between
her legs an winks. The Waitress puts down a styrofoam cup and
a bottle of water in front of Ben but refuses to look at him.

			WAITRESS
		(hostile)
	Three-fifty.

Ben puts down a hundred on to her tray.

			BEN
		(polite)
	Could I have fives please?
	Keep one for yourself.

This throws the Waitress for a loop.

CUT TO:

29 INT. BATHROOM OF STRIP CLUB - NIGHT

Ben drinks all of a fifth of bourbon. Other guys come and go,
pissing against the urinal. Ben offers one of the guys a
drink, the pianist from the trio. He takes a shot.

CUT TO:

30 INT. STRIP CLUB - NIGHT

Ben sits next to another man watching the show. On stage a
tall blonde dances with her own reflection in a mirror. Ben
turns to his neighbor.

			BEN
	To me nothing is more
	beautiful than the
	relationship between the
	reflection of a woman and the
	woman who has created it.

			NEIGHBOR
		(completely uninterested)
	No shit!

30A EXT. LA STREETS - NIGHT

Ben drives in his car.

CUT TO:

31 EXT. SUNSET BOULEVARD - LATER THAT NIGHT

Ben is cruising in his car, listening to ĎLonely Teardropsí
again. Heís looking for a prostitute. He sees a girl, but
when he slows down she ducks into a doorway.

He looks in his rear-view mirror and sees a cop car coming up
fast. Ben panics for a second. There is a bottle between his
legs. The cop car draws level and cruises alongside him for a
while, but then puts its lights and siren on and speeds off,
doing a U-turn.

Ben continues and then sees an Hispanic girl and stops. He
winds down the window. He is by now almost incoherent.

			BEN
	Good evening.

32 EXT. KERBSIDE - NIGHT

The girl looks up and down the street and then walks over to
the car and bends down to the window.

			HISPANIC GIRL
	You wanna date? You wanna
	date me?

The girlís eyes shift constantly from Ben to the street and
then back again.

			BEN
		(cut to the chase)
	Iíll give you a hundred
	dollars for a straight forty-
	five minutes. You get the
	room.

Ben shows her the money.

			HISPANIC GIRL
		(trying to take him)
	The room is twenty. You pay
	for it.

Ben laughs.

			BEN
	OK... but only because I think
	that the concept of surrender
	fits in with the big picture
	right now. How about over
	there?

He gives her a twenty and indicates a motel across the
street. She sets off and he gets out of the car. As he does,
a wave of nausea hits him. He shakes his head violently and
then lurches across the street, causing two cars to hit their
brakes. The camera follows him into the dark parking lot of
the motel, where the Hispanic girl is waiting.

			BEN
		(slurring badly)
	I canremember... if
	mywifeleffme... or Illeff
	her... bufuckittanyway...

The girl laughs at Ben and says something in Spanish.

Slowly the picture gets darker, until all that can be seen is
the headlights from the passing cars on Sunset... and then...

33 INT. BENíS HOUSE - DAWN

Ben wakes up on the kitchen floor. The fridge door is open
and its light is what lights Ben. Inside the fridge are one
green pepper and four bottles of vodka. Without too much
effort Ben feels for his wallet and sees that it is still
there, as are his car keys. He closes the fridge door and in
the green light from the window he lies still. The first
birds start singing. (the birdsong continues through the
following sequence, which does not have sync sound.)

CUT TO:

FLASHBACK

34 EXT. SUNSET BOULEVARD MOTEL. PARKING-LOT DUMPSTERS - NIGHT

At the rear of the motel. Next to some garbage hoppers, the
Hispanic girl hugging him and kissing his neck. He tries to
kiss her on the mouth, but she turns her face away.

CUT TO:

35 INT. BENíS HOUSE - DAWN

Ben lying on the floor, thinking.

CUT TO:

FLASHBACK

36 EXT. SUNSET BOULEVARD MOTEL. PARKING-LOT DUMPSTERS - NIGHT

The Hispanic girl kneeling in front of him, unzipping his
trousers. Through a gap in the fence, we see traffic going up
and down Sunset.

CUT TO:

37 INT. BENíS HOUSE - DAWN

Ben lying on the floor, thinking...

CUT TO:

FLASHBACK

38 EXT. SUNSET BOULEVARD MOTEL. PARKING-LOT DUMPSTERS - NIGHT

The girl takes his hand and kisses it. She begins sucking the
fingers, taking the whole hand into her mouth.

CUT TO:

39 INT. BENíS HOUSE - DAWN

Ben suddenly sits up and looks at his hand. His wedding ring
has gone. He thinks about this for a long time.

CUT TO:

40 INT. BANK - MORNING

Ben waiting in line to cash a check. He looks unwell and is
having difficulty standing straight. At last it is his turn.
He goes to the counter and hands over a check to the girl.

			BANK GIRL
	OK... four thousand, six
	hundred dollars... one moment,
	sir...

She looks at her computer read-out.

			BANK GIRL
	Thatíll leave five dollars in
	your account. Would you sign
	the back of the check,
	please?

			BEN
		(surprised)
	You couldnít cash it just
	like it is?

			BANK GIRL
		(puzzled)
	Iím sorry, sir. Is there a
	problem?

Ben picks up a pen and tries to sign, but his hands are
shaking so much that he cannot do it.

			BEN
		(embarrassed)
	Well... to tell you the truth,
	Iím a little shaky right now.
	I just had a brain
	surgery... Why donít I come
	back after lunch, when Iím
	feeling a little better? We
	can take care of it then.

CUT TO:

41 INT. BENíS BAR. LA. - MORNING

Ben seated at the bar, a pile of bills in front of him. The
Barman sets down a vodka, picks up the empty glass and takes
some bills, shaking his head in disapproval. The TV is on,
some game show as before, and Ben watches carefully, looking
for a sign from the girl, but the show proceeds in its
Ďnormalí fashion. The only difference is that the hostess is
played by the girl in the bank. Ben grabs the Barmanís
attention.

			BEN
	I think, when Iím done with
	this, Iíll have gin and
	tonic... Bombay gin and tonic.

The Barman loses it

			BARMAN
		(angry)
	You should be having coffee.
	Do you know what time it is?
	Youíre a young man.
		(calmer)
	Itís none of my business, but
	if you could see what I see,
	you wouldnít do this to
	yourself.

Ben is taken aback by the emotion in his voice. In his mind,
cynicism and the desire to cry fight it out. He holds the
emotion back, and looks down at the bar.

			BEN
	I understand what youíre
	saying... I appreciate your
	concern. Its not my intention
	to make you uncomfortable.
	Please... serve me today and I
	will never come in here
	again.
		(cheerful)
	If I do, you can eighty-six
	me.

			BARMAN
	Sure, sure, I can eighty-six
	you now if I want to. Stop
	fucking with me. I donít give
	a fuck what you do.

He picks up a bottle of gin, fills a glass, slams it on the
counter in front of Ben and knocks twice with his knuckles on
the bar.

			BARMAN
	On the house, son.

Ben looks at the TV for a sign. None is forthcoming.

CUT TO:

42 INT. BANK - DAY

Ben waiting in line again. The same Bank girl is there and
she is dealing with her customers in the same inanely
cheerful way that the game-show Hostess dealt with her prize-
winners. She notices Ben waiting and an irritated look
flashes over across her face. Ben studies her. She is pretty
in an ordinary kind of way. We hear Benís thoughts as voice-
over (or maybe he says them out loud to himself).

			BEN
		(voice over)
	Are you desirable? Are you
	irresistible? Maybe if you
	drank bourbon with me, it
	would help. Maybe if you
	kissed me and I could taste
	the sting in your mouth, it
	would help.

Close-up on the Bank Girl as she does her thing, efficiently
counting money, smiling, perfect teeth framed by a Cupid
mouth. She is wearing a white blouse through which frilly
lingerie can just be made out.

			BEN
	If you drank bourbon with me
	naked... if you smelled of
	bourbon as you fucked me, it
	would help... it would
	increase my esteem for you.
	If you poured bourbon on to
	your naked body and said to
	me... drink this...

Camera moves in tighter on her face as she chats with a
customer about the weather.

			BEN
	... if you spread your legs
	and had bourbon dripping from
	your breasts and you vagina
	and said drink here... then I
	could fall in love with you,
	because then I would have a
	purpose, to clean you up, and
	that would prove that Iím
	worth something. Id lick you
	clean so you could go away
	and fuck someone else.

			BANK GIRL
	Next!

Ben takes a moment to come out of his reverie. He smiles and
comes to the counter, completely in control of himself.

			BEN
	Iím back, Iíve got my
	check... and baby... Iím ready
	to sign.

He flips the check over, makes sure she is watching and signs
with a flourish.

			BEN
	There... Steady as a fucking
	rock, excuse my French.
			(serious)
	Wanna have dinner with me?

She counts the money out and glares at him as she hands it
over.

			BANK GIRL
	Iím glad youíre feeling
	better. Do you need a
	validation?

Ben looks at her and smiles.

CUT TO:

43 INT. SUPERMARKET - DAY

Ben throws items into a trolley. Garbage bags, firelighters
and charcoal lighter fluid.

CUT TO:

44 INT. BENíS KITCHEN - DAY

Ben putting all the kitchen utensils into a large garbage
bag. Three other bags are already filled and the kitchen is
looking empty.

CUT TO:

45 INT. BENíS BEDROOM - DAY

Ben is stuffing all the bedding into a garbage bag.  Next he
opens a drawer on the dresser and begins taking out clothes
and stuffing them into another bag. He pauses for a moment to
take a drink from a tall glass.

CUT TO:

46 INT. BENíS LIVING ROOM - DAY

All the books from the bookcase go into another bag. Then all
the records. But he selects certain favorites and as this
sequence progresses we can see that Ben is making tapes of
these tracks. As soon as he is done with the recording, he
throws the album into a garbage bag.

CUT TO:

47 EXT. BENíS YARD - NIGHT

Ben pours lighter fluid on to a pile of photographs and then
throws a match on to it. It bursts into flames. He throws
more stuff on and the fire blazes. A curious neighbor watches
from a safe distance, not wanting too get involved.

ANGLE ON THE FIRE

A watercolor, a poem to his wife, photograph of him and his
wife, a Polaroid of a naked woman, his medical records, his
birth and marriage certificates, divorce papers, strips of
photographs from booths, postcards from Hawaii. Two small
children (his?).

ANGLE ON BEN

Now the flames are high and Ben has to stand back as he
throws things on to the fire ... his camera, an engraved box,
his wifeís Ďleft behindí clothing , a clock...

CUT TO:

48 EXT. BENíS HOUSE - DAWN

Fifteen neatly tied garbage bags and Benís furniture are
stacked up on the sidewalk. Ben comes out of his front door
carrying a racing bike. He walks to the neighborsí house and
places the bike on the porch. We see a label saying ĎTo Brad
from Bení. He walks to his black car with a small suitcase,
gets in and drives off.

CUT TO:

49 EXT. DESERT LANDSCAPE WITH ROAD - DAY

A high wide shot shows a small black car making its way
across the frame.

DISSOLVE TO:

50 INT. CAR - DAY

Through the window we see a dead straight road stretching to
infinity.

The sunlight is painfully bright. On the soundtrack we hear
one of Benís chosen tapes, which continues through into the
next shot.

DISSOLVE TO:

51 EXT. GAS STATION IN THE DESERT - DAY

Ben is filling his car. A towncar drives in and stops next to
the BMW. Three men get out. They look like Russian Mobsters.
Ben nods at them and they nod back.

CUT TO:

52 INT. CAR - NIGHT

Same angle through the window but this time we see Las Vegas
at night as Ben drives down the main drag. An overdose of
neon.

52A EXT. LAS VEGAS STRIP - NIGHT

Ahead we see the light changing, but Ben doesnít notice until
itís almost to late. The car stops and we see Sera crossing
in front of the car. She gives Ben a look of real attitude
because he is over the line and she has to change course to
cross in front.
CUT TO:

53 EXT. HOTEL FORECOURT - NIGHT

Sera is talking to Yuri. A middle-aged man gets out of a cab
and Yuri shakes him by the hand and introduces him to Sera.
He hands Yuri an envelope and then Sera and he go into the
hotel together. Yuri looks around thoughtfully before getting
into a cab and driving off.

54 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY
Improvised scene.(1)

INT. MOTEL RECEPTION - NIGHT

Ben waits to check in while the manager explains the house
rules to a family of large people from the Midwest.

			MANAGER
	All rooms to be paid a week
	in advance, maid service is
	optional, use of the pool is
	at your own risk, there is no
	lifeguard on duty.

Above the managerís head is the name of the motel, The Whole
Year Inn. Ben stares at it and then smiles.

BENíS POV

The sign has changed to The Hole Youíre In.

CUT TO:

56 INT. LIQUOR STORE - NIGHT

Ben has almost filled a trolley with bottles of various
brands. He is whistling and seems happy.

57 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY
Improvised scene.(2)

CUT TO:

58 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Ben driving. He sees Sera and follows her, then drives up on
the sidewalk. She sees him.

			BEN
	Hello!

			SERA
	Hello.

			BEN
	Are you working?

			SERA
		(tough)
	Working? What do you mean,
	working? Iím walking.

And she walks a few steps to prove it, stopping on the
passenger side of his car. They pause for a moment and Ben is
confused. He is quite taken with her beauty, but this is not
going according to plan. He reaches into the car quickly and
picks an open can of bee, draining it before tossing the
empty back on to the rear seat.

			SERA
	Isnít it illegal to drink and
	drive?

			BEN
		(laughs)
	Thatís funny.
		(seriously)
	I wonder if youíll take two
	hundred and fifty dollars to
	fuck me?

Sera doesnít say anything.

			BEN
	That is, if youíll come to my
	room for an hour, I will give
	you five hundred dollars.

			SERA
	Maybe you shouldnít stand in
	the road like that. Youíre
	pretty drunk.

He bites his lips as he waits for her to respond.

			SERA
		(softer)
	Youíre pretty drunk.

			BEN
		(factual)
	Not really. My roomís not
	far. The Whole Year Inn. You
	can drive with me if you
	want...

She makes no response.

			BEN
	... or we can walk... or Iíll
	give you cab fare.

Takes out his money.

			BEN
	Whatever you want.

She touches the door handle.

			SERA
	Why donít you give me the
	money when Iím in the car,
	and Iíll drive you.

It takes a moment or two to register that she is saying yes.
He comes around the car to open the door for her.

			BEN
	Iím Ben.



They shake hands.

			SERA
	Iím Sera.

She gets in. Ben gets in.

CUT TO:

59 INT. CAR - NIGHT

Ben hands her the money.

			BEN
	Sarah - with an H?

			SERA
	No - S.E.R.A.

They grin at each other.

			SERA
	You wanna start the engine?

They drive off.

60 EXT. MOTEL PARKING LOT - NIGHT

They sit in the car for a while before speaking.

			SERA
	Iím sort of curious... if
	youíre willing to pay me two-
	fifty... not that I mind... I
	mean, Iím OK with that - why
	arenít you staying in a
	hotel?

			BEN
	We can go to one if youíd
	prefer.

			SERA
	No, this is fine.  I was just
	wondering.

Ben switches off the engine but makes no move to get out of
the car.

			BEN
	Well... Iím here because Iím a
	drunk who tends to pass out
	at odd hours for
	unpredictable stretches. Iím
	going to a hotel soon. A room
	with a balcony to pass out
	on... or off.

He falls silent.

			SERA
	Umm. We can stay in the car
	for an hour if you want. But
	I really have to go then.
	Itís your time.

			BEN
	Right, Iíll get your door. I
	tend to fade in and out
	lately.

			SERA
	I guess I do too.

			BEN
	You what?

			SERA
	I sometimes fade out.

			BEN
	Oh... well, maybe we better
	synchronize our spells... or
	stagger them.

			SERA
		(gently)
	You were going to get my
	door.

He gets out and she waits for him to open the door. She gets
out and he offers her his arm. She takes it and they walk
into the motel.

CUT TO:

61 INT. BENíS ROOM - NIGHT

As Ben closes the door. Sera surveys the room.

			SERA
		(amused)
	What this room needs... is
	more booze.

SERAíS POV

There are bottles everywhere. Ben has gone to a lot of troble
to lay them out in a pleasing way.

			BEN
	Do you think so?

She turns and looks at him, appraising him. Suddenly sheís
all business, in control, and Ben likes it.

			SERA
	Mind if I use the bathroom?

			BEN
	Of course.

She goes into the bathroom.

			BEN
	Want a drink? Iím having one.

			SERA (off-screen)
	A shot of tequila, if you can
	spare it.

			BEN
	Of course.

Ben smiles, happier than weíve ever seen him. He gets her
order ready and then he takes a big swig from a bourbon
bottle. He sits on the edge of the bed.

The bathroom door opens and Sera comes in wearing a black bra
and panties. Sheís acting the hooker now, tough and sexy.

			SERA
	For two-fifty we can do
	pretty much what you want.
	Youíve been drinking, so it
	might be better if I got on
	top, but the other wayís fine
	too. I have some jelly in
	case you want to fuck my ass,
	thatís up to you. If you want
	to come in my face, thatís OK
	too, just try to keep it out
	of my hair, I just washed
	it... and my eyes, it stings.

She walks to the table and downs her tequila in one. Then
comes to the bed, where Ben is sitting. She kneels, unzips
his fly and begins sucking him. Ben watches her, looks at her
reflection in the closet mirror, reaches for the bottle and
drinks some, being careful not to disturb Sera. After a while
Sera comes up.

			SERA
	Do you want to fuck now?

			BEN
		(confused)
	Maybe another drink first.
	More tequila?

			SERA
	OK... whatever.

She takes the bottle and drinks. She goes down again. Ben
stops her.

			SERA
	Whatís the story? Are you too
	drunk to come?

			BEN
		(sincere)
	I donít care about that.
	Thereís time left. You can
	have more money. You can
	drink all you want. You can
	talk or listen. Just stay,
	thatís all I  want.

She looks at him, confused. She sees a strange look on his
face. It throws her.

This is a turning point. Both of them are momentarily
exposed.

Ben lifts the sheet and moves to one side, indicating that
she should come into the bed. Sheís as confused as he is. She
gets in with him and he hands her the bottle.

CUT TO:

62 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

Yuri is losing at one of the tables. He continues to bet
though, putting half of what he has left on one number. He
lose again. He mops his face with a red silk handkerchief and
places another bet.

63 INT. SOMEWHERE IN THE CASINO - NIGHT

The three Russian Mobsters we saw in the desert are walking
through the casino, looking for someone.

CUT TO:

64 INT. BENíS ROOM - NIGHT

They are both in bed, drinking.

			SERA
	So, Ben, what brings you to
	Las Vegas? Business
	convention?

They both laugh and Ben hands her the bottle.

			BEN
	No, I came here to
	drink... myself... you know...

			SERA
	To death?

			BEN
	Yes, thatís right.

He looks at her, she at him, not sure whether to believe him
or not.

			BEN
	I cashed in all of my money,
	paid my AmEx card, gonna sell
	the car tomorrow.

			SERA
	How longís it gonna take, for
	you to drink yourself to
	death?

			BEN
	I think about four weeks, and
	Iíve got enough for about two
	hundred and fifty to three
	hundred dollars a day.

			SERA
	Yes... that should do it. What
	am I? A luxury?

			BEN
	Yeah. And your meter just ran
	out.

Ben looks at his watch.

			SERA
	Itís OK... nice watch. Go on.
	Talk some more.

Ben yawns, suddenly deeply tired.

			BEN
	In LA I kept running out of
	booze and the store would be
	closed because Iíd forget to
	look at my watch... so I
	decided to move here because
	nothing ever closes and
	because I got tired of
	getting funny looks when I
	would walk into a bar at six
	oíclock... even the bartenders
	started preaching.
			(yawns again)
	Here, everyoneís from out of
	town so no one cares, no one
	is overtly fucking up

CUT TO:

LATER.

SIDE ANGLE

Sera is in focus, Ben is asleep.

			SERA (voice-over)
	I guess I was intrigued by
	him... There was a lot of
	stuff that I wanted to ask
	him about but didnít because
	I didnít want to sound too
	interested in a trick. But I
	felt as if a relationship was
	being forged very quickly.

65 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY

Improvised scene. (3)

CUT TO:

65A EXT. SERAíS APARTMENT COMPLEX - DAWN

Sera gets out of a cab and makes her way towards her
apartment, changing out of her high heels as she walks.

66 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAWN

Sera lets herself in. Yuri is standing in the shadows. She
gets a fright when she sees him.

			YURI
	Where have you been?

			SERA
	It was a slow night. I went
	to a hotel for a few drinks.

Yuri holds out his hand for her bag. She gives it to him. He
finds the money and counts it.

			YURI
	A full night on the street
	and this is all?

			SERA
	Like I said... it was a slow
	night... Iím sorry. It was
	hard to score.

Yuri slaps her.

			SERA
	Donít hit me.

			YURI
	What do you think... you are
	sixteen years old on
	Hollywood Boulevard?

Yuri talks in Russian, becoming angrier, and slaps her again.
He spits on the floor.

Sera falls against the kitchen table and picks up a lethal-
looking knife. Yuri stops.

			SERA
	Maybe nobody wants to fuck a
	chick with a cut on her
	cheek.

She throws the knife to Yuri, who catches it. She bends over
the table and pulls up her skirt.

			SERA
	There, go ahead!

She mimics him.

A shower of Russian comes out of Yuri, but he doesnít touch
her. He tries to regain his dignity by putting on a coat.

			YURI
	I could kill you. You know
	that.

He goes to the door.

			YURI
	Work, tonight, bring me
	money, no matter the hour.

And he exits. Sera is still on the table.

			SERA
	I will Yuri. I will.

CUT TO:

67 INT. PAWN SHOP - DAY

The proprietor is handling over some cash to Yuri, whose
jewelry is on the counter. He pockets it and as he turns to
leave, Ben comes in. They pass without taking much notice of
each other. Ben removes his Rolex and shows it to the man.

CUT TO:

68 EXT. STREET, LAS VEGAS - DAY

Yuri is walking in the hot sun, sweating. We see him through
long-lens heat haze. The camera wanders into the traffic and
we see the black towncar crawling along behind him, three men
inside.

CUT TO:

69 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY

Improvised scene. (4)

CUT TO:

70 INT. MAIN BAR, HOTEL - NIGHT

A lounge singer belts out a fair rendition of a Tony Orlando
number. Sera sits at the bar, an empty seat on either side of
her. She watches a younger hooker in the final moments of
pulling a dangerous-looking man. The girl is aware of Sera
without even looking at her. The guy she is with looks around
and sees Sera. The girl shoots an icy look. A man sits next
to Sera: a conventioneer.

			CONVENTIONEER
	About ready for another
	drink?

			SERA
	Yes, that would be great. Are
	you her for the convention?

			CONVENTIONEER
	Do I look that obvious? My
	nameís Paul.

They shake hands.

			SERA
	No, of course not, just a
	wild guess. Iím Sera and
	thatís a margarita.

The barman is already pouring. The young hooker leaves with
her dangerous guy. She pauses long enough to give Sera a
nasty smile. The conventioneer pays for the drink and is a
little lost for words. Sera tries to help.

			SERA
	So... are you alone, or are
	you just using me to make
	someone else jealous?

			CONVENTIONEER
		(laughs nervously)
	Alone. Alone. Iím here alone.

			SERA
		(friendly)
	Where are you staying?

			CONVENTIONEER
		(suspicious)
	Right here at the hotel. Why?

			SERA
		(moving a little closer)
	Well... I thought you might be
	looking for a date.

			CONVENTIONEER
		(shocked)
	A date. What, are you a
	hooker?
		(voice getting louder)
	What do you mean a date?
		(and louder)
	Iíve got a wife back home. I
	just came over to talk for a
	few minutes.

			SERA
		(quietly)
	Iím sorry, I guess I
	misunderstood.

She looks around.

			SERA
	Please donít raise your
	voice. I wonít bother you
	about it again.

			CONVENTIONEER
		(calmer)
	Sorry. Look... you seem like a
	nice girl. Iím just sick of
	everyone in this town trying
	to get my money.

He gets up.

			CONVENTIONEER
	Here, have another drink. I
	gotta go.

He leaves. Sera is uncomfortable. People are watching her,
aware that something has been going on. The Barman comes over
to where Sera is sitting.

			BARMAN
	Maybe you should give it a
	miss for this evening.

He walks away. Sera finishes her drink and leaves.

CUT TO:

71 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Sera at work is looking more carefully than usual, hoping to
see Ben. A huge silver limo pulls up and, after some
negotiation, she gets in.

CUT TO:

72 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Long-lens shot of Ben, very drunk on the street. He falls and
lies still for quite a long time before getting up. He falls
into the road and tries to hail a cab, but none stops. A cop
car cruises to a halt and Ben more or less imitates a normal
person as he walks out of shot.

73 EXT. THE POOL, MOTEL - DAY

Ben dives in and swims a length under water. He pulls himself
out and sits next to the large Midwestern family. The father
says hello and introduces his family to Ben. They are all
very friendly. Itís a nice atmosphere around this pool and
for a moment Ben even looks healthy.

CUT TO:

74 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

A limo pulls up and Sera gets out. She sees something.

SERAíS POV

Ben sitting at a bus stop, drinking out of a cocktail glass.
When he sees her he gets up, a little unsteadily.

			BEN
	I couldnít remember what
	happened last time. I was
	afraid that I might have been
	rude, or mean to you.

He looks at her.

			BEN
	If I was Iím sorry.

			SERA
	No, just drunk... but thatís
	OK. Whereís your car?

			BEN
	I sold it this morning. Iím
	going to take cabs from now
	on in.

Sera looks up and down the strip.

			BEN
	Donít run away.

			SERA
		(defensive)
	Why should I? I know youíre
	not a cop, so what is it
	tonight? Another two-fifty to
	watch you sleep?

Ben sits down, a little hurt.

			SERA
	Whatís up?

			BEN
	I was looking for you
	tonight. I donít know if you
	have a boyfriend...

He thinks.

			BEN
	... or a girlfriend, but if
	you have some free
	time... maybe we could have
	dinner.

			SERA
		(tough again, but pleased)
	Are you serious.

			BEN
		(deadly serious)
	I think you know Iím serious.
	Iíll pay you if you
	like... but Iíd like to see
	you.

			SERA
	No, I canít have dinner with
	you.

And she hails a taxi, which stops immediately and she gets
in.

			SERA
	The Mojave Hotel, please.

Ben watches the cab drive off.

CUT TO:

75 INT. CORRIDOR OF HOTEL - NIGHT

Sera walks along, checking numbers on the doors. She finds
the right one and knocks firmly.

			YURI (v.o)
	Yes? What?

			SERA
	Itís me, Yuri.

The door opens a crack and Yuri peers out.

			YURI
	Sera! Itís...

He looks around for a clock.

			YURI
	...itís late.

76 INT. YURIíS ROOM - NIGHT

Sera comes into the room, takes her purse out and counts out
seven hundred dollars.

			SERA
	Sorry, Yuri... good
	night... lots of tricks... I
	think things are picking up.

Yuri sits on the bed. He looks unwell and disoriented. His
face is covered with a thin film of sweat. He seems to be
listening for something, because he stops her talking by
putting his fingers to his lips. He looks at her and then
beckons her to the bed. Sera is nervous. As she walks to the
bed, she begins unbuttoning her blouse. Yuri stops her with a
wave of his hand. Sera is puzzled and frightened now. Yuri
seems to be deranged.

			YURI
	Have you told anyone that Iím
	here?

			SERA
	No.

Yuri suddenly hears something. He grabs Seraís hand and takes
her to the wall. He presses her head to the wall.

			YURI
	Do you here that?

He looks at her.

			YURI
	Theyíre talking about me.

He pulls himself together.

			YURI
	Go, Sera.
		(whispers)
	Go. Stay at home. I will call
	you tomorrow.
			SERA
	Yuri... are you...

			YURI
		(patiently)
	Sera... please go.

He indicates the wall.

			YURI
	This is very important... and
	I must listen. Now go.

They face each other for a moment and then Yuri does an
almost comic gesture to tell her to go. He hustles her to the
door and shoves her out as she is still buttoning up her
blouse. He slams the door.

			YURI
		(through the door)
	Goodbye, Sera. Donít come
	back here. I will not see you
	again.

Sera stands there for a while, almost in shock, and then she
begins to walk. The camera follows her as she makes her way
down the endless corridor of doors. Ahead of her, three men
are walking towards her, checking the door numbers as they
make their way. Sera doesnít take them in. They pass and turn
a corner. We recognize them as the men from the black
towncar.

ANGLE

The men have stopped outside Yuriís room. The camera pans and
we see Sera down the other corridor getting into the
elevator.

FADE OUT:

77 INT. BENíS ROOM AT THE MOTEL - NIGHT

Ben is lying on the bed watching a game show, drinking.

A coughing fit hits him. He is very short of breath. We see
how ill he really is.

There is a tap at the door.

			BEN
	No thanks... Iím fine.

The tapping persists and eventually Ben gets off the bed and
unlocks it, but keeps the chain on. It is Sera.

			SERA
	Still want to have dinner?

Ben stares at her for a while.

			BEN
	Yes.

			SERA
	I have to change and take a
	shower first. If you want to
	come home and wait.

Ben opens the door.

			SERA
	We should pick up a bottle of
	tequila on the way. I owe you
	one.

			BEN
	You do?

CUT TO:

78 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - NIGHT

Sera is finishing in the shower and Ben is sitting at the
kitchen table. He gets up and walks around the house, trying
to get a sense of her. The furniture is very plain and there
is spartan quality about the hose. He looks with interest at
the bookshelf, which has a good selection of literature.

			BEN
		(to himself)
	This is the home of an angel.

			SERA (off-screen)
	You OK out there?

			BEN
	Yes. Take your time. Iím
	fine.

He pours himself another drink.

			SERA (off-screen)
	Pour yourself another drink.

He sots down and she comes in, toweling her hair.

			SERA
	You OK?

			BEN
	Of course. Wow... you look
	extremely beautiful.

			SERA
	Thank you. What time is it?

			BEN
	Donít know. My watch went the
	way of the car.

He holds up his empty wrist for her to see. Then looks up and
sees her watching him.

			BEN
	Iím rambling. I really like
	you. You make me want to
	talk... I donít know what time
	it is.

			SERA
	I like hearing you talk.
		(businesslike)
	If you feel up to a short
	walk, thereís a place to eat
	around the corner. All the
	food in Vegas is terrible so
	the place doesnít really
	matter. How does that sound
	to you?

			BEN
	Do they have drinks?

CUT TO:

79 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Ben and Sera walk and talk.

80 INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT

Ben and Sera are eating. He plays with his food, eating very
little of it. Finally he pushes it away and orders another
drink.

			SERA
	Iím from the East. I went to
	college, did an arts course.
	I now live in Vegas. I think
	of it as home. I came here
	deliberately to carve out a
	life. I was in LA before, but
	Iíll come back to that later.
		(pause)
	The tough times are behind me
	now. I can deal with the bad
	things that happen. There
	will always be dark
	characters. But my life is
	good. It is as I would want
	it to be. So, why are you a
	drunk?

			BEN
	Is that really what you want
	to ask me?

			SERA
	Yes.

			BEN
		(worried)
	Well, then I guess this is
	our first date... or our last.
	Until now, I wasnít sure it
	was either.

			SERA
	Very clever.

Sera thinks for a while and decides to give in to him on
this.

			SERA
	First. Itís our first. Iím
	just concerned. So... why are
	you killing yourself?


			BEN
	Interesting choice of words.
	I donít remember. I just know
	that I want to.

			SERA
	Want to kill yourself? Are
	you saying  that youíre
	drinking as a way to kill
	yourself?

And she leans across the table to be close to him, listening
intently. Ben becomes uncomfortable and tries to joke it off.

			BEN
	Or killing myself as a way to
	drink.

Sera continues to stare at him, wanting to know the real
answer. He takes a slug from his drink. She sits back.

			BEN
	Weíll talk about it some
	other time maybe. OK?

Sera relaxes and continues with her food. We hear her
thoughts for a moment.

			SERA (v.o)
	It wasnít so important to me.
	I mean, he never asked me why
	I was a hooker, sand that was
	impressive. I really liked
	him. So I decided to just
	play my part. I mean... itís
	good to help someone once in
	a while., itís a bonus to
	being alive, and that was my
	plan... to stay alive. I
	suddenly came to a decision.

			BEN
	What are you thinking? Are
	you angry with me?

			SERA
		(decides something)
	Ben, why donít you stay at my
	place tonight? I mean... look,
	youíre so drunk. I like you.
	I trust you.

			BEN
	Thatís astonishing. Sera,
	look...

			SERA
	I hate to think of you in
	that cheesy motel. I mean...

And she folds her arms and grins at him.

			SERA
	Letís face it, what the fuck
	are you doing in Las Vegas?

			BEN
		(overwhelmed by her)
	Iím going to move to a smart
	hotel, tomorrow if itíll make
	you feel better.
		(looks at her)
	Letís talk about tomorrow.
	Wanna do something?

			SERA
		(warmly)
	Sure... tonight. Then please
	stay at my place.

			BEN
	Sera... you know Iím not much
	good in the sack.

			SERA
	Itís not about sex, Ben. Iíll
	make you up a bed on the
	sofa. Do it for me. We can
	talk till late and then sleep
	till late. As you know, I am
	my own boss.

Ben laughs loud, the most animated weíve seen him, and his
laugh as infectious, and Sera join in. Other diners turn to
stare at them. They seem like a couple.

CUT TO:

81 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Ben and Sera walk and talk, holding hands.

82 EXT. DESERT - DAY

A wide shot. The black towncar makes its way across frame.
Left to right.

CUT TO:

83 INT. SERAíS house - day

Ben is asleep on the sofa. As he wakes up, he becomes aware
that Sera is watching him from across the room. They smile at
each other.

			BEN
	How long have I been her?

			SERA
	Three nights, two days. When
	is your rent coming up at the
	motel?

			BEN
	I donít know.
		(sits up)
	Iíll go and sort it out
	today. Why donít you
	come?... Weíll find a real
	room for me. You can pick it
	out, a tower on the strip.

			SERA
	Thereís no reason to blow all
	your money on a hotel room.

				BEN
	What do you mean?

			SERA
	What I mean is that you
	should bring your stuff over
	here. Weíre spending all this
	time together... what the
	fuck!

			BEN
	Sera...

			SERA
	Letís face it, Ben, weíre
	having fun here. Iíve never
	done so much talking in my
	life.

			BEN
	Me neither.

			SERA
	So! Letís dispense with the
	formalities. I want you
	here... now!

			BEN
	Sera you are crazy.

			SERA
	So... Iím not too concerned
	with long term plans.

			BEN
	Donít you think youíll get a
	little bored living with a
	drunk?

			SERA
	That is what I want. Why
	donít you go and get your
	stuff?

			BEN
	You havenít seen the worst of
	it. These last few days Iíve
	been very controlled. I knock
	things over... I throw up all
	the time.
		(looks at her)
	Now I feel really
	good... Youíre like some kind
	of antidote that mixes the
	liquor and keeps me in
	balance, but that wonít last
	forever. Youíll get tired of
	it really quickly. Believe
	me.

They sit in silence for a while.

			SERA
	OK, you go back to your hotel
	and Iíll go back to my
	glamorous life of being
	alone.

She walks out of the room, and into the bathroom, where she
sits on the toilet to pee.

			SERA
		(to herself)
	The only thing I have to come
	home to is a bottle of
	Listerine to wash the taste
	of come out of my mouth. Iím
	tired of being alone... thatís
	what Iím tired of.

She finishes, wipes herself and flushes the toilet. Pulling
up her panties, she walks back into the bedroom, where Ben is
putting on his shoes.

			SERA
	Donít you like me, Ben?

			BEN
		(devastated)
	Donít be silly?

Ben is unable to deal with the fact that he is absolutely in
love with her. He walks out of the room. She foolows.

			SERA
	We gotta decide this... right
	now. Before we go any
	further. You either stay here
	with me or...

Ben turns to look at her.

			SERA
	...we canít see each other
	any more.

Ben and Sera look at each other for a long time.

			BEN
	Sera... what you donít
	understand is...

			SERA
	What?

Ben is deeply troubled. He comes to a decision.

			BEN
	You can never... never... ask
	me to stop drinking. Do you
	understand?

			SERA
		(dead serious)
	I do. I really do.
		(smiles)
	OK. I have to do some
	shopping alone. You go out
	for a few drinks and then
	pick up your things. Donít
	hurry and Iíll be back before
	you to let you in.

Sera grabs him in a big embrace that knocks him off balance
and into the wall. She kisses him all over his face and
squeezes his skinny frame.

CUT TO:

84 INT. BENíS ROOM AT THE MOTEL - DAY

Ben is packing his liquor into his suitcase. The almost-empty
bottles he pours into a large cup, which he drinks from. The
suitcase is now full and Ben suddenly realizes that he hasnít
packed any clothes. They are all in a pile on the bed. He
talks to himself.

			BEN
	Maybe this isnít a good idea
	after all.

He tries to put clothes in with the bottles, but the lid
wonít close. He sits on the bed and has an imaginary
conversation with Sera.

			BEN
	Listen, angel... the thing is
	that Iím nuts about you and
	this is a bad thing... because
	my real plan is to die here
	and you were never even part
	of my plan... but like I said,
	Iím nuts about you... wait a
	minute, I have an idea,
	angel.

And he opens the closet and finds some plastic laundry bags,
which he puts his clothes in.

85 SCENE CUT.

CUT TO:

86 EXT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAY

Seraís neighbors, a husband and wife, are standing outside
her house. They stop her. They are also her landlord.

			HUSBAND
	We didnít know whether to
	call the police or not.

And they indicate the sleeping figure of Ben, in the doorway,
clutching a bottle of bourbon, using hi suitcase as a pillow.

			WIFE
	Heís been there for about
	half an hour. My husband
	thought heíd seen you two
	together, but I thought it
	best to wait until you got
	home.

			SERA
	Yes, heís my friend. I guess
	he just had a little too much
	to drink.
		(smiling uncomfortably)
	Iíll help him inside.
		(puts down her packages)
	Thanks for the concern. Sorry
	to trouble you.

			HUSBAND
		(gallantly)
	Well, call me if thereís
	anything I can do.

They go to their own house. Sera opens the front door, kneels
down next to Ben and shakes him gently.

			SERA
	Can you wake up?

Ben opens his eyes and looks around with a pleasant, cheerful
expression.

			BEN
	Hi!

			SERA
	Why donít you go in and sit
	down. I have some gifts for
	you.

			BEN
	Right... OK...

Ben stands and almost loses his balance. He picks up his
suitcase and attempts to pick up her packages as well, but
she stop him.

			SERA
	Donít worry... I gotíem.

Ben staggers in with his case. As Sera enters, she looks
around and sees Husband and Wife at the window, still
watching.

			BEN (off-screen)
	Want a drink? Great nap.
	Wanna go out tonight?

			SERA
	Seriously, Ben... I need to
	keep pretty low-key around
	here. Maybe next time you
	could nap this side of the
	door. That was the landlord.

			BEN
	Of course.

She reaches into her purse.

			SERA
	Gift number one.

And she gives him a newly cut key. He takes it and tries it
in the lock, then drops it into his pocket.

			BEN
	I used to carry a lot of
	keys, but one by one they all
	fell victim to the great
	condensation. Now I have just
	this one... which is...

And he tails off and stares at the floor. She waits for him
to continue and then comes to him and touches him on the arm.

87 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAY

			SERA
	Ben?

			BEN
	Sorry.

He shakes his head.

			BEN
	I was miles away.

He sees the parcels.

			BEN
	Ah... more gifts. I have to
	sit down for this.

He strides into the living room and flops on to the sofa. She
follows.

			BEN
	Sera, I love that
	name... S.E.R.A. Before we
	proceed onwards, there is
	something I need to say. OK?

			SERA
	OK.

			BEN
	Iíve come this far... here I
	am, in your house. I want you
	to let me pay the rent for
	this month. All right?

And he stares at her as if to say that nothing can happen
until this matter is resolved.

			SERA
	Why?

			BEN
	Because... itís better for me
	that way. OK?

			SERA
	Well... OK...

She is uncomfortable.

They sit in silence for a while.

			BEN
	Sera... I hope that you
	understand how I feel about
	this. First of all, youíre
	welcome to my money. We can
	buy a couple of cases of
	liquor and you can have the
	rest. But I donít think
	youíre talking to me right
	now about money.

			SERA
		(smiling)
	No?

			BEN
	No. I think youíre talking
	about you. Iíll tell you
	right now that Iím in love
	with you... but, be that as it
	may, Iím not here to force my
	twisted life into your soul.

			SERA
	I know that...

			BEN
	...and Iím not here to demand
	your attention to the point
	where it changes your life.
	We know Iím a drunk... but
	that seems to be all right
	with you. And I know that
	youíre a hooker. I hope you
	understand that Iím a person
	who is totally at ease with
	this... which is not to say
	that Iím indifferent or that
	I donít care... I do... it
	simply means that I trust and
	accept your judgement. What
	Iím saying is... that I hope
	you understand that I
	understand.

			SERA
	Thanks, I do understand. I
	was worried about how that
	would be... but now Iím not.
	And you should know that
	included with the rent here
	is a complimentary blow job.

			BEN
	Ah, yes... I suppose sooner or
	later we ought to fuck.

			SERA
	Whatever that means. Open
	your presents.

She hands him the larger of the two parcels.

			SERA
	Open this one first.

Ben awkwardly unwraps the present, a large, colorful shirt. A
genuine smile comes on to his face.

			BEN
	Very nice.

He holds the shirt against himself.

			BEN
	This should work very nicely
	with my suit, which, by the
	way, is the only item of
	clothing I brought over from
	the motel with me.

Sera raise an eyebrow.

			SERA
	Right... the suitcase was
	clinking. So what did you do
	with your clothes?

			BEN
		(laughing)
	I threw them into the
	garbage., which was perhaps
	immoral, but I wanted to come
	to you clean, so to speak. I
	thought we could go shopping
	and pick up a pair of jeans
	and forty-five pairs of
	underwear and just throw them
	out each day.

			SERA
		(smiling)
	Nice talk, Ben. Keep
	drinking. In between the
	hundred and one proof breath
	and the occasional drool,
	some interesting words fall
	from your mouth.

She hands him the last present.

			SERA
	Now, try this one.

Ben unwraps the smallest gift. It is a silver hip flask. He
is very touched and a little tear trickles down his cheek.

			BEN
	Well... looks like Iím with
	the right girl.

He turns it in his hands.

			BEN
	I must say that Iím very
	impressed that you would buy
	this for me. I know you
	wouldnít do this without
	thinking about it.
	Funny... you did just what I
	would have done.

Ben stands and tries the flask in his pocket for fit. It is
fine. He walks to the door.

			BEN
	Iím going to fill it right
	now.

			SERA
	Do you want to go gambling
	tonight? We could go out and
	play for a few hours.

Ben comes back into the room, takes the flask out of his suit
pocket and has a drink.

			BEN
	I hadnít planned to
	gamble... but if you would
	keep the bulk of my money
	here, then I could safely
	blow a couple of hundred
	bucks.

He takes out all of his money, peels off a few hundreds and
then gives her the rest.

			BEN
	Giving you money makes me
	want to come.

			SERA
	Then come.
		(pause)
	Iím going to change. Watch
	TV. Iíll be half an hour.

And she leaves. There is a slight edge to her voice and Ben
is not sure if he offended her or not. He watches through the
small angle of the door as she changes.

			SERA
	I am planning to go out and
	do some work.

			BEN
	When?

			SERA
	Tomorrow night as a matter of
	fact.

88 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Ben and Sera walking. The camera follows them. He is wearing
his new shirt and looks good in it. She is wearing a green
dress and mismatched earrings and looks great. They walk and
talk.

			BEN
	I like your earrings.

He changes sides.

			BEN
	I like women who wear
	mismatched earrings.

			SERA
	Well, then... I hope we donít
	run into any tonight.

			BEN
		(laughs)
	What do you mean?

			SERA
	I expect some kind of loyalty
	here. Just because I fuck for
	money doesnít give you cause
	to start picking up women and
	leaving me looking silly.

And she stops and looks at him, smiling but serious.

			BEN
	And I only have eyes for you.
	And we both know that you
	would never become
	romantically involved with a
	trick, right?

89 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

They walk around the huge space, which is full of people and
energy, and suddenly Ben grabs Sera and pushes her against a
slot machine and kisses her deeply. At first she resists and
then she gives in to him and responds. They knock over some
change, which falls to the floor, and Ben pulls from her a
beat to bend down and scoop up all the change and hand it to
the bemused player, before returning to Seraís mouth or more.
They break for air and then Ben leads her towards the bar. As
he waves to attract the barmanís attention, she squeezes his
arm.

			SERA
		(quietly)
	I love you.

But he doesnít hear her.

ANGLE ON CASINO ACTIVITY

On long lens we see Ben and Sera at the bar. Suddenly Ben
seems to fall asleep. Sera tries to wake him and then he goes
crazy and falls backwards off his stool, knocking a waitress
and her drinks over. Security Guards appear and begin arguing
with Sera.

CUT TO:

90 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - NIGHT

Ben wakes up on the sofa, fully dressed. A night-light gives
a soft glow. He rolls off the sofa, landing on all fours on
the floor. He crawls to the kitchen , opens the fridge door
and takes out a vodka bottle and carton of orange juice. With
difficulty he gets to his feet, finds a glass and pour s a
drink. He swallows the mix and then stands over the sink just
in case he has to vomit.

91 INT. SERAíS BEDROOM - NIGHT

Sera wakes and Ben comes in and gets into bed with her.

			SERA
	How are you doing?

			BEN
	Very well... umm... I never
	expected to have to ask you
	this again... but how did our
	evening go? I remember
	getting to the casino... I
	remember kissing you... that
	was really nice but
	everything after that is a
	blank.

			SERA
	Well - I was prepared for
	worse, but it wasnít so bad.
	We were sitting at the bar,
	talking about blackjack. You
	seemed just fine, a little
	drunker than usual, but
	nothing really strange, but
	then your head started to
	droop and I put my arm on
	your shoulder and then, wham,
	you swung you arm at me, and
	fell backwards off your stool
	into a cocktail waitress. You
	smashed everything on her
	tray, it was a real mess. You
	kept yelling and yelling.

			BEN
	Oh, and what did you do?

			SERA
	I tried to shut you up and
	help you to your feet but you
	kept swinging at me - not
	like you wanted to hit me,
	but more just waving me away.
	Security came and when you
	saw them you stopped yelling.
	They wanted to carry you out
	and dump you on the street,
	but I talked them into
	letting me walk you out.

			BEN
	Thatís impressive. How did
	you do that?

			SERA
	I told them you were an
	alcoholic and T would take
	you home. I also promised
	that we would never come in
	there again.

			BEN
	We?

			SEAR
	Yes, we.

			BEN
		(holds her hand)
	What happened then?

			SERA
	You were OK for a while, so
	we walked for about a block
	and then you said you wanted
	to go home and fuck, but I
	think even you knew that
	wasnít going to happen. We
	got a cab and you asked him
	to stop at a liquor store,
	even though I told you that
	we had plenty at home. In the
	store you gave the kid a
	hundred and told him to keep
	the change. I asked you if
	you knew it was a hundred.
	You said you did, so I let
	you do it. We got here, you
	fell asleep on the couch and
	I covered you up and came to
	bed.

			BEN
	I warned you...
		(kisses her hand)
	...but Iím sorry.

			SERA
	Hereís my speech...
		(kisses his hand)
	...I know this shouldnít be
	acceptable to m, but it is.
	Donít ask me why. I sense
	that your trouble is very
	big... and Iím scared for
	you... and so Iím doing what I
	think you need me to do.
	Falling down in casinos is
	little stuff. It doesnít
	bother me. It has nothing to
	do with us.

			BEN
	Thatís amazing. What are you?
	Some sort of angel visiting
	me from one of my drunk
	fantasies? How can you be so
	good?

She turns away to the wall and curls up like a small girl.

			SERA
	I donít know what youíre
	saying. Iím just using you. I
	need you. Can we not talk
	about it any more, please.
	Not another word.

He thinks about this. He gently pushes her until she is lying
on her front and then he pulls up her nightdress and strokes
her naked back. He kisses her in the small of her back.

			BEN
	Why donít you go back to
	sleep. Iíll go out and buy us
	some breakfast.

			SERA
	Be careful.

He stands and goes to the door.

			BEN
	Donít worry.

As he leaves the room, she calls after him.

			SERA
	Ben, Iím  working tonight.

He opens the door and smiles at her.

			BEN
	I know.

CUT TO:

92 EXT. SIDEWALK - EARLY MORNING

Ben gets out of his  cab and walks up to the doorway of a
grocery store. It is locked. Ben looks at his wrist and then
remembers that he no longer has a watch. He looks around,
sees something and exits frame.

CUT TO:

93 INT. ROUGH ENGLISH BAR - EARLY MORNING

Ben enters and makes his way to the bar. This is a dirty,
dark place. An ageing blonde in leather hot pants is dancing
by herself at the jukebox. A very drunk Biker Couple argue
noisily in a corner, slurring their words. There ins not much
gambling taking place at the eight slot machines. Ben sits at
the bar and the Bartender slaps down a paper napkin.

			BEN
	A beer and a double kamikaze
	please.

			BARTENDER
	Sure thing. Anything to eat?

			BEN
	Not quite yet. First I have
	to drink myself sober,
	then... a few crackers, maybe
	an egg and toast...

The Bartender walks away to get Benís drinks, Ben continues
anyway.

			BEN
	...then Iíll go home with the
	groceries and weíll have
	breakfast together, and
	thatíll make her feel better
	about my condition...

Ben is interrupted by the arrival of the Biker Girl. She is
young tough and pretty. She puts an arm around him and
presses against him.

			BIKER GIRL
	Who the fuck are you talking
	to, Mr?
		(laughing)
	Why are you all dressed up,
	honey? My, donít you look
	fine.

She runs her tongue around her mouth.

			BIKER GIRL
	I am very bored with my date.
	Would you like to buy me a
	drink?

Ben looks around and sees the Biker staring at the two of
them.

			BEN
		(loudly)
	Do you mind if I buy her a
	drink?

			BIKER
	Fuck her. I donít care what
	the fuck you do with her.

			BEN
	Maybe I could buy you both a
	drink?

			BIKER
	Fuck you. Donít fuck with me,
	motherfucker. Fuck off. Go to
	it, sheís waiting for her
	drink.

The Biker walks over to the slot machine and begins dropping
in quarters, never taking his eyes off Ben and the Girl.

			BIKER GIRL
	See what an asshole he is.
		(big smile)
	Iíll have a rum and Coke.

			BEN
	Barman? A rum and Coke,
	please.

The Girl leans with her back to the bar, closer to Ben , who
is facing the bar on a stool. She brings her face closer to
his.

			BIKER GIRL
	Can I stay with you for a
	while?

			BEN
	You mean move in with me?
	Isnít this a bit sudden?

			BIKER GIRL
	Oh, I donít have a lot of
	stuff.

			BEN
		(smiling)
	I donít think my wife would
	dig it too much.

She moves to his ear to whisper.

			BIKER GIRL
	Maybe we could just go find a
	room and fuck all day. You
	wouldnít have to tell your
	wife about that, would you? I
	could suck you like this.

And she begins sucking on his lobe. Behind them. At the slot
machine the Biker is still watching. His face fills with a
drunken rage.

			BEN
	See, the thing is... fucking
	you would be wonderful, but I
	am deeply in love with
	Sera...

The Biker throws down his beer can and walks towards the bar.

			BEN
	...and itís almost impossible
	for me to imagine being with
	someone else...

The Biker arrives at the bar and grabs Ben.

			BIKER
	Now listen, asshole, Iím not
	gonna just sit around and
	watch her suck on your ear.

The Biker is about to hit Ben then holds back. He leans in
and puts his face next to Benís.

			BIKER
	Now, I know that she came
	over to you, like she does,
	so Iím gonna pretend that
	youíre innocent and give you
	one chance to walk out of
	this place... right now.

			BIKER GIRL
		(to biker)
	Get lost, jerk.

The Biker slaps her and then grabs Ben by the collar.

			BIKER
	What do you say?

Ben shakes his arm free from the Bikerís grip. He thinks
about it for a couple of beats and then decides.

			BEN
	Iím sorry... but she and I
	have decided to spend a few
	hours together in a mo -

The Biker headbutts Ben in the face, sending him crashing off
his stool to the floor. His head cracks against the tiled
floor. The Biker walks over to him, picks him up by his shirt
front and punches him in the nose. Blood sprays on to his
face. The Biker walks out of the bar. The Girl follows him
quickly. The Bartender takes a wet towel and walks over to
where Ben is struggling to get up, holding his face.

			BARTENDER
	Youíre quite a fighter.

He gives him the towel.

			BARTENDER
	This may sound silly, but Iím
	going to have to ask you to
	leave. Itís what we do around
	here  when thereís a fight.
	Menís room is around the
	back.

CUT TO:

94 EXT. SERAíS HOUSE - MORNING

Ben lets himself in with his key. He is carrying a big bag of
groceries. His clothes are bloodstained. The Landlady watches
from poolside.

			BEN
	Iím back.

He walks into the living room and finds Sera reading on the
couch. She looks up and sees his face and his bloodstained
shirt.

			SERA
	Oh, no! Oh, fuck, Ben, look
	at your face. You get in a
	fight? I thought you didnít
	fight. Goddammit. How do you
	feel? Wait here. Sit down.

She goes to the bathroom and we hear her rummaging in the
medicine cabinet.

			SERA (off-screen)
	Did you stop at the bar?

She comes back into the room, armed with bottles and cotton
wool.

			SERA
	Did you say something stupid
	to someone stupid?

She goes to work on his face, dabbing an open cut with some
mercurochrome.

			BEN
	Absolutely not... ow... I was
	defending the honor of some
	poor wayward maiden.

She thinks about this for a moment and then kisses him on the
forehead.

			SERA
	Why donít you go and finish
	this in the bathroom. Take a
	shower and put on your other
	shirt. Iíll fix breakfast and
	then weíll go shopping and
	get some new clothes. I think
	this suit must be unlucky.

CUT TO:

95 INT. MALL - DAY

Ben and Sera come out of a clothing store. Ben is wearing
black jeans, red socks and a white dress shirt. They go up
the Ďupí escalator.

			SERA
	Very creative. Now we can get
	you a black bow tie and you
	can look like one of those
	casino dealers.

			BEN
	OK, but remember that they
	wear it because they have to.
	I wear it because I want to.
	Thatíll make me look
	different. Letís get a drink.

Ben somehow gets on the Ďdowní escalator, leaving Sera on the
higher level.

			SERA
	Ben?

CUT TO:

96 INT. SHOPPING MALL BAR. DAY

Ben needs a drink badly but this is not the best place.
Mothers with children, old people and a Waitress with
attitude. Ben tries to order but becomes angry when she
doesnít bring it straight away. People begin staring. At the
next table a dignified older man sits alone.

Ben hands Sera a small package.

CLOSE ANGLE

			BEN
	There was no time for me to
	write a card, with you
	breathing down my neck all
	day., so youíll just have to
	wing it, baby.

He laughs and this induces a coughing fit. He downs his drink
and holds up the empty glass to let the waitress know she
should bring another.

			BEN
	Open it.

She does so. It is a pair of onyx earrings. Black onyx set in
white gold.

			SERA
		(pleased)
	Your color.

			BEN
	I think you should wear one
	at a time. One of these... and
	one of your others. In fact,
	I was going to buy just one,
	but I didnít think it would
	fly... as a gift, I mean.

His new drink arrives and he takes a swallow straight away.

			SERA
	Iíll wear them tonight... one
	of them.

She looks at him, aware of what she has said, wondering how
he is reacting. She smiles and Ben takes a deep swallow,
finishing his drink. His mood suddenly changes.

			BEN
	Yes... tonight. Put it on.

She does so. Ben helps her, bringing his face down close to
hers.

			BEN
	Youíll be able to feel it,
	sharp and hot under your ear,
	as one of the brothers is
	driving your head, face down
	into one of the penthouse
	pillows.

They are both suddenly deeply shocked by what he has said.
They sit in silence for a while. Sera is close to tears. Ben
gets up suddenly, puts down a couple of bills and walks away
from the table. When he is almost at the door Sera gets up
and quickly tries together up all of the packages.

			SERA
	Ben, wait... please wait for
	me.

ANGLE ON THE DOOR

The dignified older Man stands in Benís path and places his
hands on Benís shoulders.

			MAN
	Maybe you should wait for
	her, sir.

			BEN
	Why?

			MAN
	Because... you can hear in her
	voice that she really wants
	you to.

Sera catches up and the Man lets go of Ben. Ben takes the
packages from Sera and the two of them step out into the
mall.

97 INT. MALL - DAY

They walk together.

			SERA
	What was that all about?

			BEN
	Can we just forget it?

			SERA
	I donít understand any of
	that.

			BEN
	Can we just ignore it?

They stop and look at each other. The PA system gives an
inane message.

			BEN
	Please!

			SERA
	Yes... Iíll give you that.

			BEN
	Thank you, Sera.

			SERA
	Do you want me not to go
	tonight?

			BEN
	No... we already talked about
	that.

CUT TO:

98 INT. SERAíS BEDROOM - NIGHT

Sera is preparing for work. In the background we can hear the
TV next door. She dresses carefully. Black underwear,
stockings, heels, a tight black skirt.

99 INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ben is watching TV and drinking.

100 INT. SERAíS BEDROOM - NIGHT

Sera at the mirror, putting on her make-up. Her make-up is
more pronounced than we have seen it before . Everything is
more extreme.

101 INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Sera comes into the room. Ben looks up at her and sucks in
his breath.

			BEN
	Wow.

She walks over to him and takes his head and places it
between her breasts and kisses the top of his head.

			BEN
	Maybe I should follow you
	around and ask one of your
	tricks what itís like to
	sleep with you.

			SERA
	They wouldnít know.

She comes on to him.

			SERA
	Maybe you should ask me
	sometime. Iíd be happy to
	show you.

She goes to the door.

			SERA
	Iíll be back home around
	three. If youíre back by then
	we can watch TV or
	something... I guess what Iím
	saying is... that I hope you
	are back when I get home.
	Please be careful.

			BEN
	You be careful to. Iím going
	to miss you.

			SERA
	Shall we go away for a couple
	of days?

			BEN
	Yeah... Iíd like that.

CUT TO:

102 INT. SMART HOTEL - NIGHT

Sera walks through the lobby, looking for business.

103 EXT. A STREET - NIGHT

Ben lying down with people walking past and over him.

ANGLE ON BENíS FACE

A big smile appears on his face. He starts to laugh.

FADE OUT:

FADE IN:

104 EXT. DESSERT - DAY

A blue car drives across frame. The sun is bright.

105 EXT. DESERT MOTEL, POOL - DAY

Sera is a very good swimmer and we see that Ben must have
been quite an athlete. They look at each other under water.
Theyíre under water for a long time. Ben exhales. Sera pushes
him towards the surface.

Ben and Sera come to the surface. Ben has swallowed water and
has a coughing fit. Sera hugs him until the fit passes. The
camera moves in tighter on them and music gives the moment a
strange chill.

			SERA
	Donít do that to me. Donít
	frighten me like that.

CUT TO:

106 EXT. POOL - NIGHT

Ben and Sera are watching the TV next to the poll. They are
sitting in reclining chairs. Inn the distance a coyote howls.

			SERA
	Years ago, in LA, I turned a
	trick on Sunset and Western.
	The guy was polite and didnít
	argue about the price. He
	parked his car and I took him
	to a house that I had an
	arrangement with. A fat
	Mexican woman was watching a
	TV and I told him to give her
	the twenty for the room.
	There were three or four
	small naked children playing
	on the floor and we had to
	step over them to get into
	the room. The room had a bed
	and a dresser. He lay on his
	back on the bed and I put a
	rubber on him and sucked him
	for a while until he was hard
	and then I eased on to him.
	About twenty minutes later
	there was a knock on the door
	and it was the woman saying
	our time was up. I felt kind
	of guilty because he hadnít
	come and I offered to reason
	with the woman and get
	another ten minutes, but he
	said it was all right and
	began dressing. When we were
	ready to leave the room he
	stopped me and... hugged me
	and kissed me on the cheek.
	He gave me an extra hundred
	as a tip and went back to his
	car. I remember being
	relieved that I wouldnít have
	to work again that evening.

			BEN
	Last spring I happened to
	walk past a house that I had
	once patronized. There was a
	cool breeze blowing off the
	ocean and through the window
	I could see a bare leg. The
	girl must have been taking a
	break between customers. It
	was a strange moment for me
	because it reminded me of my
	mother and despite the fact
	that I was late for something
	already I just stayed there,
	loving the atmosphere of it
	and my memory and... the
	reason Iím telling you  this
	epilogue is that I felt that
	Iíd come full circle.

			SERA
	Where was that house? The one
	in LA, I mean.

			BEN
	Fifth and Mayflower. You know
	it?

			SERA
	Yes. One of my friends was
	there. I wonder if you ever
	clipped her.

They watch the TV in silence for a while. Sera holds his
hand.

			BEN
	I like it here with you.

			SERA
	Letís stay for a while.

			BEN
	OK.

CUT TO:

107 INT. MOTEL ROOM - DAY

Ben mixes a cocktail for himself, then one for Sera. The
camera follows him as he goes...

108 EXT. POOL-SIDE - DAY

...to the side of the pool, where Sera is sunbathing. He
lowers himself unsteadily into the chair but avoids spilling
a drop of the drinks, which he puts down on to a glass-topped
table. He is pretty loaded. Sera turns over and moves out of
his shadow.

			SERA
	Iíve missed the best sun. Why
	did you have to pawn your
	watch?

			BEN
	I didnít know Iíd ever need
	it again.

Sera gets up, takes a drink and then walks to the diving
board. As she takes a position at the end, she pulls the
bathing suit out from her bottom, does a very natural dive
into the pool, swims a length under water and then comes out
near Ben, pulls herself out of the pool in one move and bends
down and kisses Ben for a long time. Ben responds and kisses
back. There is no one else around the pool.

The kiss becomes heated and urgent and Sera sits on Ben,
making him wet from her. He pushes the top of her suit down
and kisses her breasts. She picks up the glass and drinks,
letting the alcohol spill from her mouth, over her breasts.
Ben drinks from her.

			BEN
	Take this off.

He tries to pull her swimsuit down.

			SERA
	Maybe we should go inside.
	Come on.

She stands up, covering herself. Ben stands up, laughing,
loses his balance and slips on the wet concrete. He falls
backwards, half on to the chair, which he breaks, and then on
to the glass table. The table goes over and it and the
glasses all shatter on the concrete. Ben falls on the broken
glass and cuts himself all over his back and his arms. Glass
goes into the pool. Blood mingles with the water on the
steaming cement.

			BEN
	Whoops.

Sera picks up her towel and lays it down next to him. She
kneels and helps him up, trying to pullout the little bits of
glass sticking to him. Ben stands unsteadily.

			BEN
	Iíll go and clean up. Perhaps
	you could take care of this.

He indicates the mess, then walks to their room. Sera begins
carefully picking up the broken glass. The desk clerc appears
with a broom and a dustpan.

			DESK-CLERK
		(cheerfully)
	Everybody OK?

			SERA
	Yes, fine. Donít worry. Weíll
	pay for the chair, and Iíll
	clean all this up, the pool
	too.

			DESK-CLERK
	Donít worry.

He begins sweeping the broken glass into the pan, cheerfully
ignoring Sera.

			SERA
	You seem prepared for
	accidents.

			DESK-CLERK
		(still smiling)
	Yeah... we get a lot of screw-
	ups here.

He looks directly at Sera.

			DESK-CLERK
	Now, you two keep you loud
	talk and your liquor to your
	room. Check out first thing
	tomorrow and after that I
	donít want to see either of
	you here again. I donít need
	you paying for the chair or
	cutting your pretty hands on
	the glass. Letís leave it at
	that.

Nodding firmly, he goes back to the mess, indicating that the
conversation is over.

			DESK-CLERK
	See ya in the morning.

CUT TO:

109 INT. MOTEL ROOM - DAY

Sera comes into the room.

			SERA
	Ben?

She sees that he is already asleep on the bed, his half-naked
body covered with countless bits of bloodstained tissue. The
image has an almost religious feel to it. The TV is on and a
sitcom is playing.

Something funny catches Seraís attention. She laughs and sits
on the bed next to Ben.

			SERA (voice-over)
	I think we realized that we
	didnít have long and accepted
	it. My charm, for him, was
	that I accepted him exactly
	as he was and didnít expect
	him to change. I think we
	both realized that about each
	other. Ben needed me and I
	liked his drama. I loved him.

CUT TO:

110 EXT. DESERT LANDSCAPE - DUSK

We see Las Vegas lighting up. The blue rental car passes
through frame and drives towards the town.

FADE OUT:

FADE UP ON:

111 INT. SERAíS BEDROOM, LAS VEGAS - NIGHT

Ben wakes from a dream. He is fully clothed and very
agitated.

			BEN
	Sera?

112 INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

Sera is cooking.

			SERA
	Iím in here. You probably
	donít want to hear about it
	right now, but I bought some
	plain rice. I thought it
	might be something you could
	eat. So if you get hungry
	later on, just let me know.

Ben comes in from the kitchen and takes vodka bottles from
the fridge.

113 scene cut.

114 scene cut.

115 INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

Benís hands are sweating and itís difficult for him to keep
hold of the bottle as he drinks. He gets most of it down and
then he hunches over the sink and immediately vomits. He
takes the second bottle and tries again.

CUT TO:

116 INT. SHOWER - NIGHT

Still holding the bottle, Ben stands in the shower. He drinks
some more and closes his eyes.

CUT TO:

117 INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

Ben enters, smartly dressed and smiling.

			BEN
	I think Iím ready for the
	rice!

CUT TO:

118 INT. DINING ROOM - LATER THAT NIGHT

Ben and Sera sitting opposite each other. He has a bowl of
rice, which he is pretending to eat in between sips of vodka.
She has a bowl of vegetables and rice. She sits, silently for
a while, and then puts down her chopsticks.

			SERA
	Youíre pretty sick.

Ben looks away.

			SERA
	What are you going to do?

She folds her arms.

			SERA
	I want you to go see a
	doctor.

He thinks for a while and then turns to meet her gaze. They
look right into each otherís eyes.

			BEN
	Sera... Iím not going to see a
	doctor.

Sera continues to look at him almost defiantly.

			BEN
	Maybe itís time I moved to a
	hotel.

			SERA
	And do what... rot away in a
	room?
		(becoming angry)
	Weíre not going to talk about
	that. Fuck you! I will not
	talk about that. Youíre
	staying here. You are not
	moving to a hotel.

			BEN
	Will you lighten up, please?

			SERA
		(close to tears)
	One thing... one thing... this
	is one thing you can do for
	me. Iíve given you gallons of
	free will here! You can do
	this for me.

She leans right forward.

			SERA
	Letís face it. Sick as you
	are, Iím probably the only
	thing thatís keeping you
	alive.

She stands up

			SERA
	I have to go to work now.

Ben doesnít say anything. He just stares a hole in his bowl
of rice.

CUT TO:

119 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

Ben walks by himself. He is deep in thought.

CUT TO:

120 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

Ben recklessly bets two hundred dollars at the craps
table... and wins. As he leans forward to collect his
winnings, he sees...

ANGLE:

...a Blonde in a very low-cut outfit. She smiles at Ben and
walks around the table to pick him up. Ben puts all of his
winnings on one bet and wins again. This pattern repeats a
few times and drinks are on the house.

			BLONDE
	Hey... that was quite a play.
	You in for the convention?

Ben gets to the point.

			BEN
	Iíd like to fuck you.

A few people hear Ben and the Blonde is almost put off, but
he does have about eight thousand dollars in winnings and so
she leans in very close so that she can talk quietly.

			BLONDE
	Iím very expensive.

			BEN
	How much to lick your pussy?

The Blonde picks up a sizeable stack of chips and looks at
Ben.

CUT TO:

121 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - LATER THAT NIGHT

Sera lets herself in, looks around and opens the bedroom
door.

ANGLE:

In one fluid movement the naked blonde gets off the semi-
conscious Ben, pulls her dress over her head and walks past
Sera. Moments later we hear the front door slam. Ben comes to
and looks at Sera. He is more or less unaware of what has
just happened.

			BEN
	Hello...

ANGLE ON SERA

Her eyes are wet.

			SERA
	There are limits.

			BEN
		(remembering)
	Yes... I guess I knew that.

Ben gets out of the bed. He picks up the bottle on the
bedside table and stands.

			BEN
	Perhaps I could crash on the
	couch for a few hours... and
	then Iíll leave.

He walks out of the room and closes his the door. Camera
moves in on Sera. She covers her face with her hands. She
drops her purse and slides down the wall to the floor,
weeping quietly.

			SERA (v.o)
	I heard the door slam a
	couple of hours later and he
	was gone.

FADE OUT:

FADE IN:

122 EXT. STREET - DAY

Ben coming out of a liquor store with a large brown bag.

CUT TO:

123 EXT. STREET - NIGHT

Sera getting out of a car. The car drives off. Sera examines
her face in a pocket mirror. Puts on more lipstick.

CUT TO:

124 INT. MOTEL ROOM - DAY

Ben is on all fours in the bathroom trying to vomit. His thin
frame is heaving. Bottles everywhere.

CUT TO:

125 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Three college boys with beer bottles walk the The Strip. They
are all wearing the same numbered jersey. Nice middle-class
boys looking for an adventure. They see Sera and go into a
huddle before walking over to her.

			TALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	How much will it cost us to
	fuck you?

The other two College Boys titter. Sera starts to walk away
and then hesitates.

			SERA
	Sorry, guys, but I donít know
	what you mean. Anyway, I
	never date more than one guy
	at a time.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	Come on... we got money... show
	her the money.

The other College Boy gets out his wallet and opens it to
show her. Sera hesitates, not somehow comfortable with the
situation, then goes ahead.

			SERA
	How much of that money did
	you guys want to spend?

			TALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	How much you want? How about
	two hundred for an hour?

			SERA
		(becoming annoyed with them)
	Donít your friends talk?
		(no answer)
	Try three-hundred for a half
	hour.

			OTHER COLLEGE BOY
		(nervous)
	Three hundred for the hour.

			SERA
	OK... three... and weíll see
	how it goes. Where are you
	staying?

				TALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	The Yukon, room twenty-four.

			SERA
	Iíll see you there in fifteen
	minutes. You can pay me then.
	Why donít you all take a
	shower while youíre waiting.

			OTHER COLLEGE BOY
	A shower? In fifteen minutes?

			SERA
	Look... Iíll only need one of
	you at a time. RIGHT?
	UNDERSTOOD? So... the other
	two can shower while Iím
	there. OK?

They walk off in a huddle, giggling - three small boys.

CUT TO:

126 EXT. YUKON MOTEL - NIGHT

Sera drinks from a beer bottle as she approaches their room.
She talks to herself.

			SERA
	Where are the boys this
	weekend, Frank? Why, hell,
	Charlie, I sent íem off to
	learn the one thing I
	couldnít teach íem.

She looks at the numbers and finds the room. She knocks and a
moment later the Tallest College Boy opens the door in his
jockey shorts.

127 INT. MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT

Sera steps in. One boy is coming out of the bathroom wearing
a towel and the third is sitting in a chair smoking a
cigarette, which he passes to the boy in the towel. The other
boy is fooling around with a video camera. The atmosphere is
weird and Sera is suddenly alert.

The Tallest College Boy hands her the money. He is very well
built, a football player. Sera hesitates, holding the money.
The Tallest College Boy closes the door and then leans
against it. They are all staring at her now. No one says
anything. Sera smiles suddenly and puts the money in her
purse. All business.

			SERA
	OK... whereís the bedroom, and
	whoís first?

They all look at each other.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	I want to fuck her in the
	butt...

He looks at the other.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	...you too, right?

			SERA
	Forget that. No oneís doing
	that. Youíll all go one at a
	time. I f you want Iíll suck
	you instead, but thatís all.
	Then Iím out of here.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
		(looking at tallest)
	You said I could fuck her in
	the butt.

			OTHER COLLEGE BOY
	Shut up.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
		(shouting)
	Itís my fucking money)

			SERA
	Thatís it... Take your money
	back. Iím leaving.

The Smallest College Boy gets off the bed and comes over to
Sera.

			SMALLEST COLLEGE BOY
	No... donít go.

The Tallest Boy is still standing in front of the door and
things are getting strange. The Other Boy turns on the video
camera. Sera loses her cool.

			SERA
		(to the Smallest Boy)
	Maybe youíd like to fuck one
	of your friends in the butt
	instead.

The room goes very quiet. The kid tears up. Sera tries to
back-pedal.

			SERA
	Hey... Iím sorry...

The kid punches her hard in the stomach, knocking her to the
ground.

CUT TO BLACK:

QUICK FADE IN:

Close-up on Seraís face pushed into a bloodstained pillow,
her body being pounded from behind. The naked legs of two of
the boys behind her. We hear voices, filtered, from a long
way off.

			VOICE
	Go on... fuck her ass...

			OTHER VOICE
	Look at me... look at
	me... look at me.

A hand comes into frame and pulls her head up by the hair. A
pair of legs moves in. There is the sound of a punch.

FADE OUT:

FADE IN:

Seraís body on the floor. In the background trousers being
hastily pulled on to legs. The boys exit with sport bags.

The last one turns out the lights and closes the door.

FADE OUT:

128 INT. MOTEL ROOM - DAWN

In the half-light Sera gets up and walks with difficulty to
the bathroom.

129 INT. BATHROOM - DAWN

She clicks on the mirror light. Her face is awful. One eye is
swollen almost shut. Her top lip is cut.

CUT TO BLACK:

130 INT. CAB - EARLY MORNING

Sera gets into the cab with considerable difficulty. The cab
driver is a cynic.

			CAB DRIVER
	Whatís the matter, honey, get
	a back-door delivery you
	werenít expecting? You gonna
	be able to pay the fare?

Without speaking she takes out a twenty, leans forward and
drops it on the front passenger seat. He drives. Looks at her
in the mirror.

			CAB DRIVER
	Oh, donít wanna talk to me,
	unh? Well, donít take it out
	on me, Iím just covering my
	ass. What the hell do you
	expect, stuttiní around like
	that... dressed like that? You
	oughta be glad the creep
	didnít nail ya.

CUT TO:

131 EXT. SERAíS HOUSE - MORNING

As the cab drives off, Sera walks slowly to the door.

Her Landlordís wife passes and takes in her face.

CUT TO:

132 INT. SERAíS SHOWER - DAY

Sera is slumped on the floor of the shower, her arms hugging
her legs, the water pounding down on her.

CUT TO:

133 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAY

Sera opens the door and we see the Landlord. Behind him, on
the sidewalk, we can see his wife. He is embarrassed.

ANGLE

Sera, wearing dark glasses. She looks terrible. Her mouth is
swollen and some of the bruising around her eye is visible.

			LANDLADY
	Iím sorry... but weíd like you
	out by the end of the week.

CUT TO:

134 EXT. WHOLE YEAR INN - DAY

Sera gets out of a cab and goes into reception. She is
wearing huge dark glasses to hide the black eye and the
bruising.

CUT TO:

135 INT. HOTEL - DAY

The desk clerk is wearing a shirt of Benís that we recognize
from an earlier scene.

			DESK CLERK
	Iím sorry, maíam. He never
	checked back in.

CUT TO:

136 EXT. THE STRIP - NIGHT

Sera walks alone. Sheís dejected as she looks for Ben.

137 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

Sera comes to an elevator and waits. She is wearing a thin
black top without a bra. Her bruised face makes her suddenly
very conspicuous and vulnerable. A big man in a white stetson
stands next to her. He looks at her and grins. She smiles,
coldly. He takes from his pocket two black, hundred dollar
chips, places one in each hand and deliberately places each
one against her nipples. Other people see this and stop and
watch. Sera looks down at his hands and stares until the man
becomes uncomfortable.

			STETSON MAN
	Whatís the problem,
	honey?... You on strike?

And he walks away laughing.

CUT TO:

138 EXT. 7-ELEVEN - DAY

Sera is sitting on a freshly-painted red kerb. She smokes a
cigarette and doesnít give a damn that her short skirt is
somewhat revealing. Opposite her a bum is sleeping on the
pavement. For a moment it looks like Ben. The camera comes in
tight on to her face. She looks more lost that weíve ever
seen her. She drinks coffee from a styrofoam cup. The sun is
bright and hot and traffic is noisy.

139 INT. DOCTORíS OFFICE - DAY
Improvised scene. (5)

140 INT. CASINO - NIGHT

Sera comes in and the camera follows her as she makes her way
to the bar. She has covered up much of the bruising with
make-up but it is still pretty obvious. In wide shot we see
her strike up a conversation with the man next to her at the
bar.

CLOSE SHOT - THE BAR

A hand comes in to shot and grips her arm firmly. We see that
it is a casino security guard.

			SERA
	Let go. Whatís the problem.

			SECURITY GUARD
	We donít want you in here,
	thatís the problem. Letís go.

And he jerks her arm. People are watching now.

			SERA
	Donít worry... If you donít
	want me in here, then I donít
	want to be in here. Just let
	go of my arm and Iíll walk
	out of here.

			SECURITY GUARD
	Yeah... weíll both walk out
	now.

He steers her firmly across the floor.

CUT TO:

141 EXT. CASINO. NIGHT

They reach the sidewalk and, without relaxing his grip, he
grabs her between the legs with his free hand and says in her
ear:

			SECURITY GUARD
	Next time it wonít be so
	fucking easy.

And he pushes her towards the street and walks back into the
Casino. Sera is shocked. She looks around and the group of
people who have stopped to watch the event move away.

142 INT. SERAíS HOUSE - DAY

Sera is throwing clothes into a suitcase.  The phone rings.
She thinks about it for a long time and then it stops. She
carries on packing and then the phone rings again. She pick
it up.

			SERA
	Hello... hello...
		(suddenly alert)
	Ben? Where the fuck are you?
	Give me the address.

CUT TO:

143 INT. CAB - LATE AFTERNOON

The driver is black and friendly. The radio drones quietly  -
a religious program. The Rev. Ike is taking listenersí calls.

			BLACK DRIVER
	What in the hell happened to
	you, Miss?

			SERA
	Oh... it was an argument.

			BLACK DRIVER
	Leave him, Miss. Pretty girl
	like You could get any man
	that You wanted.

144 INT. BENíS MOTEL ROOM - DUSK

The door opens. Ben is naked. His body looks bad. Leaving the
door open, he retreats to the bed.

145 INT. BENíS MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT

Sera comes in, closing the door behind her. The shades are
drawn and the room is gloomy. Ben has got back into bed. She
comes to the bed and sits.

			SERA
	Ben... Iíve been looking for
	You. Have You been here since
	You left? It smells bad in
	here. Itís so dark.

She clicks on the bedside light and is truly shocked by his
face.

			BEN
	I wanted to see you...

			SERA
	Oh, Ben... you look so very
	sick... my love... youíre so
	pale.

She goes to the bathroom and returns with a wet face-cloth.
She wipes his face.

			BEN
	I wanted to see you... youíre
	my angel.

He sits up painfully and finds a bottle, summoning up some
last strength to drink. His entire body shudders as he drains
the bottle. He puts it down and focuses on her for the first
time. H sees her damaged face, touches her face, looks at her
questioningly.

			SERA
	Something went wrong... Iím
	OK.

Ben begins to cry and that sets her off.

			BEN
	Iím sorry I put us assunder.

She shakes her head, unable to speak for the moment. She gets
into bed with him, kissing his face. She caresses his whole
body, which is shaking, possessed by an uncontrollable fever.

			BEN
	See how hard You make me
	angel.

She excites him with her hand, kissing his face gently. When
he is about to come, she straddles him and brings him inside.
As he comes, he opens his eyes wide and looks at her.

			BEN
	You know I love you... yeah?



			SERA
		(she comes)
	Yes.

SLOW FADE TO BLACK:

FADE IN:

Sera is sleeping. A sudden gasp wakes her. Ben is having a
spasm. Suddenly his body relaxes. He turns his head, opens
his eyes wide and looks straight at her.



			BEN
	Oh... Iím so sorry...


He smiles and turns his head away. He is very still.

			SERA
	Ben... Ben... Ben?

CUT TO:

146 INT. BENíS MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT

In the darkened room we can just make out Sera sitting on the
bed, looking at the still form of Ben.

CUT TO:

147 EXT. STREET NEAR MOTEL -  DAWN

Sera walking. A paramedic van goes past with its lights
flashing. The soundtrack is empty - silent. We slowly fade in
theme music and titles start to roll.

FADE OUT:
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